Monday, December 29, 2008
(Scene: Local Meijer grocery store customer service desk. For the uninitiated: Think Walmart but cleaner, and less hobo-ridden).
I bought item X for 169.99 on sale (original price was 209.99) two days ago.
It went on sale yesterday for 25% off the original price, making it about $157. Meijer does the whole "price match" thing so, if something gets cheaper within a week, you get the difference.
I should have gotten the difference between what I paid and what the new sale price is: about $13.
169.99 - 157.49 = 12.50
Still with me?
*What actually happened:
Customer Service Girl insists I should get 25% of 169.99.
Me: Are you sure?
Me: Really? I don't think that's right.
CSG: Yes, have a good night!
169.99 x 25% = 42.50
Me: Oh, I will.
Sunday, December 28, 2008
Come one (or bring a date), come all (or stay home and continue to digest the 8,000 cookies you ate this week) to the most exclusive (well, everyone is welcome) party (more of a gathering) in town (Chicago, city proper).
It's the second annual Drysdale Awards for Blogging.
It's not to miss! Last year, Grant Miller got really drunk and kept snapping all the ladies' bra straps.* Some Guy taught us 400 different words for snow.** I took my top off and danced on the tables for tips.*** GetKristiLove charmed the bartender to give us free drinks all night.**** I found out Coaster Punchman is actually a covert spy in the Mormon church (dismantling the theocracy from the inside--clever!).***** Bubs shot a man just to watch him die.****** These are but a few highlights of that fateful night.
Shock and awe, people. Shock and awe.
So, don't be shy. No one bites (except Grant and only when prompted), and it's a nice way to cap off Jesus' birthday.
See you there!
*With his mind!
**And he's not even part Eskimo.
***This didn't actually happen at the party, but at our hotel room afterwards.
****It was more her sneaking behind the bar and stealing bottles, but who's counting?
*****Actually, this one is true.
******This one too.
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
We're having dinner at Jim's Uncle's house and then we'll spend the night at his parents' place.
I'm really lucky in that I get along with Jim's parents better than most people I know get along with their in laws. Sure they do stuff that makes me wince sometimes (give the kids WAY too much junk food, for example), but they usually learn their lesson without me having to resort to being a hag about it (getting puked on, for example).
Jim's family is really different than mine in a lot of ways. My family gathers, eats, chats a bit, and gets the hell out of dodge. His family likes to come early and stay late. My family is kind of quiet for the most part. His family is loud and raucous. My family's gatherings are strictly "dry" affairs. The wine and beer (and when we're really celebrating, bourbon) flows with abandon on his side of the family.
Every year, Christmas at my in laws' is like walking into a Norman Rockwell painting. The tree is real, but has been manicured to such perfection that is looks fake. There is a toy train (from Jim's Dad's youth) riding around a tree that would make Martha Stewart blush with envy. Little puffs of smoke trail out of the train as it rounds the tiny vintage village nestled where the presents usually sit. We've been going over there for over a decade and every year I still find something new under there.
We always have the same breakfast on Christmas morning: sausage and homemade buttermilk pancakes. It is always delicious and I always eat too many pancakes. I can't help it. They are just that good.
The tree and gifties are in the basement. The lights are dimmed just so, giving off a warm cozy feeling. After the Christmas music is put on, we all claim a spot and start doling out the loot. The fire crackles, the kids run around too excited to sit still, and we all drink his Mom's ridiculously strong coffee.
Even the way the gifts are wrapped are a work of art. It's not just the beautiful paper she wraps everything in. She adds baubles and real ribbon and berries and wreaths to everything. Sometimes I feel bad ripping into them they are so pretty.
I let the girls pick a few toys to get out of the packing to play with. I try to stash some of it because I know we will end up forgetting a piece to something if I don't. Usually we'll watch a movie, but this year we are going to bring our new Wii. Should be fun.
I always enjoy the holidays at their house. It's just so different that how I grew up. Sure we did the usual Christmas stuff at my house, but Jim's parents take it to a whole new level. Tradition is tradition over there. Nothing else will do.
Normally I'm all for bucking the status quo, but there is something so comforting about the way everything is like a made for tv movie over there.
I know how much they enjoy doing all of this especially now that they have grandkids to share it with. I hope they know how much I appreciate it.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Jim went apeshit this year. He assures me that he stuck to our no credit card rule and paid all cash.
First, we got a Wii and a Wii Fit. I was jonesin' something fierce for those two gems. He got a bunch of games too, so we're pretty much not leaving the house until we are dragged out. Whoever comes to extricate me will have to come at me from the left. My right arm could punch through a wall at this point. Who gets sore from playing a video game? Me, that's who.
Second, he got me a new laptop. This is genius for many reasons including the fact that my current laptop is pretty much a zombie at this point. Add to that Audrey used it as a footstool last week and it has lovely ink splatter-like streaks across the monitor.
The girls were giddy over their gifts. Santa did a really good job this year. Honestly though, how hard is it to buy for a 7 and 4 1/2 year old? Um...one of everything and throw in some sparkle markers. Done!
We don't ever go super crazy with the girls' gifts. The grandparents' have the whole spoil the grandkids thing down pat. We try to figure out what their "big" gift will be and throw in a smattering of stuff we know they will love.
Mina is really into designing clothes right now so I found this kit with stencils and sequins and pretty paper and shit and she loved it. It even comes with teeny tiny hangers.
Audrey thinks the Care Bears are tits and I found a movie at Target for 5 bucks.
They both got kits to write their own books. Mina's is one you send back to the company once it's done and they make an actual hardcover book out of it. Audrey's is a DIY pop-up book.
I love finding stuff like that.
We've been so busy playing with our new toys that I haven't even had the time to open the box my laptop came in. That might happen at some point, but right now it's my turn to get that much closer to my carpal tunnel surgery. Wiiiiiiii!
Monday, December 22, 2008
Stacy also reminded me of the name of one of our songs (that she DID come up with):
De Kappa Kappa Kappa Tate.
Tell me we weren't onto something there.
God, I miss being 21.
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Most of the people we knew were in bands, so why not us? Did it matter than we didn't know how to play any instuments or carry a tune? Of course not.
First order of business was to find a name. What is a band without a name?
Stacy, in a moment of pure genius, was the one to come up with our moniker.
After School Snatch.
Let the sink in for a moment. Fuck yeah.
Google it and you get this:
On Thu, 11 Dec 1997, TJ O'Brien wrote:> In Normal, Illinois, there was a group of girls that were going to be backed by a group of guys (a la thee Headcoatees), and they were going to be called After School Snatch. I really wish they would've gotten (have no idea where this was going...wish this guy would have written more)
I really wish there'd be more of that old girl-group style stuff. I really enjoyed The Pussywillows back when they were around. And in Long Island just a couple years before that there was Bedrock A Go-Go, who'd get up and do a couple songs with LI garage group The Vindicators backingthem. (The Vindicators included Secret Service guitarist Rob Normandin as"Norman Roberts," along with then-Plastic Device organist / then-future King Missile bassist Chris Xefos. Oh yeah, they did one 7" that lists 4songs but has only three on it. And I seem to remember the first pressing having the hole slightly off-center. To think, I've even got a signed copy!)
See? I'm not making this shit up.
Apparently someone else liked the name enough to use it, and I think they actually went on to make actual music because there is another band out there with the name.
We had a few songs that we wrote ourselves. One was called "All Girls Love Satan" and another was about how stupid frat boys were. Can't remember the name of that one. I know they were all about how we would pretty much kick everyone's collective asses. Think The Donnas, but drunker and way sluttier.
We had some friends of ours on guitar, bass and drums and played one whole show. I don't remember a whole lot except that it was in a bowling alley on punk rock night, it was the birthday of our guitar player and I was really really drunk. I do remember it was super fun and I wanted to do it again and again. But it was not to be.
After that show our drummer had to have some kind of carpal tunnel surgery and, in the haze of being the dopey young people we were, the novelty wore off and we moved on to other things.
My singing voice hasn't gotten any better and I still don't know how to play an instrument, but if given the chance to be a rock star again, I would so be all over that.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Sunday, December 14, 2008
I'm lucky because my side of the family picks a weekend well before the actual day to get together instead of expecting everyone to travel like maniacs trying to get all their visiting done at once.
I drove up to my parents' house early Saturday and we headed to NW Indiana to our annual pot luck eating extravaganza.
It was fun to see family I don't see but once (or twice, if I'm lucky) a year. Our family is so big that we have to rent a space to meet at. No one's house is big enough to hold us all. Even with some of our crew missing, it was still a tight fit.
The girls and I headed back to my parents' house afterwards and opened even more gifts. We spent the night and the next morning my Mom said that she had been sick in the night. At first she thought it might be food poisoning so we tried to compare and contrast what each of us had or didn't have because my Dad, the girls and I were all fine.
We left for home earlier than planned because I could see my poor Mom was exhausted.
We weren't 2 minutes from home when I heard Mina from the back seat, "Mom...I kind of feel like I have to puke."
Now, if you have children under the age of 12 you know that when your kid says they think they might throw up, you have about .005 seconds to get them somewhere acceptable to spew.
By the time they say they are going to be sick, it's already too late.
As soon as she blessed her lap and her booster seat with breakfast she said she felt "much much better".
I called Jim from the car to make sure he had supplies at the ready. I cracked the windows and told the girls to sit tight for the next few blocks. I have to say, Mina was a real trooper. She had to sit in her own barf for what probably felt like an eternity and didn't complain once. She'll make a fine college student, no?
I don't think it's the flu. She was hungry for lunch and dinner and has been playing sans whining or fever for a few hours now.
I'm just holding my breath for Audrey's inevitable puke-fest in the middle of the night.
I cannot have gotten off this easily, can I?
Thursday, December 11, 2008
In a class I am sort of guilted into pushing through because everyone around me is too. When I work out by myself I usually get bored and quit early.
Today though I actually pushed myself and...RAN. Not super fast or anything, and only for a few minute burst, but I did it. And I didn't die. It's a good start.
After about a half hour I decided I wanted to be done, but I knew Audrey would have a Britney-scale freak out if I told her it was time to leave the kid care room. She loves that place.
I decided I would go upstairs and, no matter what the 10:15 class was, I would take it.
Lucky me, it was that "dance" workout class, Zumba.
Not wanting to puss out, I stayed. The teacher was really sweet so I wanted to at least give it a chance.
The second I decided to stay, I saw this woman walking towards me who I recognized from Audrey's first preschool. I don't remember her name, so I'll just call her "Bitch that won't shut the hell up" or BTWSTHU for short.
BTWSTHU started in immediately. "HI! How've you been? Carson is in preschool today so I'm here taking this class, it's fun, I've only done it once, but it was really really fun, how's Audrey? I think about her all the time, I knew I would run into you sooner or later, do you do swim lessons? We do them at Happy Splashes, and my sons love it, it's two times a week so they really liked it, it's expensive but I think it's worth it, you will love this class, it's not that hard...."
No breaths taken. No pauses for responses.
And she's one of those who, instead of taking a breath or a break from yapping, she inserts a "well, like I said before" to segue back into something she already beat to death 10 minutes ago.
It's impossible to escape conversation with her short of being hit by a car.
Thankfully the class started and the music was so loud I couldn't hear her. Finally, she stopped talking.
I'll admit the class was kind of fun. I'll probably do it again but really, if I feel like dancing around like an idiot I'll do what I normally do and throw back a few drinks before heading downtown to the gay bar. Duh.
I stopped to take a water break at the same time as an old lady in the class. As soon as I had the water bottle to my lips I heard, "Excuse me. I think that's mine".
I felt really bad, but it wasn't really my fault. She put her water, which looked exactly like mine, right next to my stuff.
"I'm so sorry, " I said. What was I supposed to do? So I added, "Um...I don't have cooties if that makes you feel any better." and kind of lightly put my hand on her shoulder to really bring the point home.
What do you think that bitch did? Bristled! BRISTLED at my friendly gesture. And then took the other water bottle and went out of her way to throw it in the trash.
Oh, for the love.
I ended up leaving the class early because I had had enough of both BTWSTHU and Crotch-face old lady. Plus I was getting hungry.
As I was leaving I made sure to make eye contact with Crotchy and mouth the word "Herpes" and blow her a kiss.
That'll show her.
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
I got the last of the booty today and even got some of it wrapped.
This Saturday I am headed up north for holiday festivities with my maternal extended family. It's just me and the kids this year. Jim could not get the shop covered so he'll have to while away the weekend watching soccer and eating a bunch of disgusting food I can't even look at without wanting to barf (potted meat product for example).
I went to Target this morning instead of working out. Given the choice between exercise class and going to my most favorite store ever BY MYSELF even...well, it wasn't even a contest.
My parents don't need anything, so they are really hard to shop for. They won't tell me what they want ("Oh honey. Don't you spend any money on us!"). So they are getting one of those digital photo frame things.
I was half-way through wrapping it before I remembered that I was going to upload a bunch of pictures of the girls on it. I guess my laptop will be joining us on our journey to the wilds of Suburban Chicago.
It's mostly for my Mom to take to work with her so I got my Dad a few things that seemed perfect for him.
Speakers for the iPod he still doesn't know how to use, tiny tap lights because he's old and old people love that shit, and these weird shoe attachments to prevent slipping on the ice. Again, perfect old person gift.
I already got my Mother-in-law a set of vintagey-looking ornaments and Jim will fill in the blanks on the rest of his parents' gifts.
I got most of the girls' gifts on BLACK FRIDAY. I always feel like I have to say that real menacing-like. MUWAHAHAHAHAHA BLLLAAAACCKKK FRIIIIDDAAAYYY.
Yes, I went out for the first time ever on a crazy day after Thanksgiving adventure. It was SO much fun. Yes, I said fun.
My friend Meghan and I got going at 5am and we were done and home before 10. Everything went really smoothly save for the assface in front of Target.
We got there at 5, thinking they opened at 5. When we got in line, we were told they didn't open until 6. As much as I loves me some Target, I wasn't about to wait for an hour in the 20 degree weather.
As Meghan and I walked back to our car, some fucktard yelled at us that we weren't going to find a shorter line somewhere else. Dick.
We promptly ran up to him, poured our hot lattes down his Dockers and punched him in his smart mouth. Or we didn't. You weren't there, so that's the story I'm sticking with.
So, I'm all done with what usually takes me into the day before the day before Jesus' birthday.
And very best, most delicious part?
I didn't put one red cent on a credit card.
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
If you are one of the carriers of this story virus (i.e. you have been tagged and choose to contribute to it), you will have one responsibility, in addition to contributing your own piece of the story: you will have to tag at least one person that continues your story thread. So, say you tag five people. If four people decide to not participate, it's okay, as long as the fifth one does. And if all five participate, well that's five interesting threads the story spins off into.Not a requirement, but something your readers would appreciate: to help people trace your own particular thread of the narrative, it will be helpful if you include links to the chapters preceding yours.
Here is the beginning of this adventure (compliments of the mad scientist who started this, Splotchy):
The bus was more crowded than usual. It was bitterly cold outside, and I hadn't prepared for it. I noticed that a fair number of the riders were dressed curiously. As I glanced around, I stretched my feet and kicked up against a large, heavy cardboard box laying under the seat in front of me.
And the continuation by Bubs:
Its owner, a fat shifty-looking hillbilly, slouched uncomfortably under the weight of his Bulgarian army surplus wool coat and cap. I could tell he wasn't cut out for this weather. He jerked around, almost spastic, when he felt the box tap against his feet. He gulped and stared at me bug-eyed, one obscene rivulet of sweat running down his temple, down along his jaw, finally disappearing somewhere between his second chin and the fake fur collar of his coat.
Right away, and for no good reason, he pissed me off.
(and my contribution):
I wasn't exactly in the mood for any bullshit today. Yesterday, sure. I went looking for it. But today, not so much.
I had already missed my regular bus because sometime in the middle of the night the power had gone out and my alarm clock doesn't run on good intentions.
Normally, I would catch the 6:52 into work, but here I was on the 7:42, affectionately called "The Geek Train" by locals.
Going for a world record bad day I kindly asked Mr. Bulgaria if he would mind directing his stank breath in the other direction.
**Edited to add Wonder Twins Power...Inebriate! to the story writing fun.
Sunday, December 7, 2008
I would have a fire going all day every day if I could.
We got our Christmas tree today and had to trim a few hang-y branches around the bottom. We had a fire going, so Jim started throwing them in there.
He was "directing" the girls while they put the ornaments on, so I started throwing more branches in the fire.
The smell was a wonderful wintery aroma of pine and seasoned wood. The sap in the branches made the most magnificent sound and the fire burned so hot I think I got a sunburn from sitting in front of it.
It kind of freaked me out, how intense the fire got. All I could think about is how fast our tree would go up if our house caught on fire.
Because that's what I do. Enjoy something beautiful until I can come up with some tragic scenario and ruin the whole experience.
I got a call last night at about 5 that my in laws were bringing the girls back home. Audrey was screaming bloody murder about her ears hurting. She was inconsolable.
I figured she'd fall asleep on the ride here from Peoria but I guess she just whimpered the whole way.
When she got here and I saw her I wanted to cry right along with her. She looked so pathetic.
I gave her some Motrin and waited, but she didn't seem to feel any better.
Being 7pm on a Sunday night, I figured I'd take her to the ER and hope they could help us out.
Audrey fell asleep in the car on the way there. I had to make a "Mom Call".
Do I turn around and hope she stays asleep until tomorrow when the Prompt Care opens?
All it took to stay was picturing a 3am scream fest that would send us right back out into the 5 degree weather.
I woke her up and asked her how she felt. Her ears still hurt and the tears started again, so we checked in for our two hour wait.
For a kid who is miserable with a double ear infection, the little Bean was in pretty good spirits.
"Mama, that lady's head isn't round. People's heads are supposed to be ROOOUUUUNNNDD."
"Mama, that girl is wearing boy shoes."
"Whas yo name? Girl! WHAT'S YOUR NAME?"
"Lady, why is your coat green?"
"Why you need that wheelchair? Can I ride too?"
I made sure she didn't get too near anyone who looked contagious (read: holding a puke pan) by letting her hold court from my lap.
Naturally she charmed the nurses, and we had fun getting her to try to say sphignometer (ooh, I spelled that right on my first try!).
Two hours later we were sent back to a room. I found an old coloring book and a handful of crayons to keep her busy. She tired of that but told me that "the next time we come here, I'll color more." The next time. Sure.
The nurse told Audrey that our doctor looked like Santa Claus and she got pretty excited. When he arrived, and he was fairly slim with a close-cropped beard, Audrey let him know in no uncertain terms that he most certainly did NOT look like Santa.
We got our prescription called in and I told Audrey it was time to go.
She clung to the side rails on the bed and refused to leave. I think she liked being there.
Maybe it was the fact that everyone was paying attention to her (as opposed to having to share attention with her sister). Maybe it was the novelty of all the buttons and gadgets she wanted to play with the second my back was turned. I don't know.
But what kind of kid wants to hang out at the ER?
This morning she is in good spirits and ate a little bit. Then she puked.
It's going to be a long Sunday.
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Then the good stuff wore off.
Slept most of the day away, then like a rock all night. This morning I woke up and my mouth felt like a squirrel had burrowed in it all night.
I don't feel too bad today. A little tired, a little achey.
I got to the surgicenter place at 6am and they took me back to the prep area by 6:15 or so. The nurse made me pee in a cup. I tried to tell her that there was no way I was pregnant--well, there was that .0001% my tubes decided to unravel and let something through, but it was highly unlikely.
She gave me some spiel about how if I had all my "parts", they had to do the test. Then told me a funny story about how "you haven't lived until you've asked a nurse for a pregnancy test". I got confused and asked her if she went to a Catholic high school. Laughs all around.
She gave me my sexy gown, robe and non-slip socks. Got my IV. Talked to the anesthesiologist. No loose teeth to worry about, no allergies, no problem.
My doc came in and we chatted about what was about to go down. Can med students watch the procedure? Sure, why not? Who doesn't want their vadge on display for a bunch of strangers?
Then the nurse gave me something to "take the edge off".
HOLY SHIT. I don't remember anything past that.
Last thing I do remember is watching that "Clean Sweep" show with that woman from Reno 911 and then BOOM, I was waking up from the gas.
Nurse gives me some ice chips. Do I need anything for the pain? Um...yes, please.
There's my husband. Change back into my street clothes. Get my prescription filled. Kind of remember calling my Mom.
I've watched bits and pieces of all kinds of shitty movies. The kids are at their grandparent's house until tomorrow.
All in all, this has been a pretty sweet vacation from life.
Thursday, December 4, 2008
I have to say, that sounds even more appealing in print than it does out loud. Try it..."UTERINE LINING". Mmmm. Has a nice ring to it.
This is supposed to be the last resort short of the big H which I'd rather not get if I can help it. I like my uterus. It just doesn't like me. We're working on it.
I'm driving myself over to the hospital at 6am to check in, and Jim will be over there after dropping the kids off at their respective schools. They won't let me take myself home after being under general anesthesia and on what will hopefully be pocketfulls of pain killers.
Mmmm. Pain killers.
I told Jim the other day that I was kind of looking forward to having a couple days during which I am supposed to do absolutely nothing--and not feel guilty about it.
And of course, there's the pain killers.
To clarify, I have plenty of days where I do absolutely nothing, but it's all that guilt about it that really pisses on my parade.
I was thinking about making myself a nice little play list on my iPod. Do they let you listen to music while your under the knife or, in this case, some sort of laser-beam coat hanger contraption?
Not that it matters. I'll be completely out.
But what if I have some kind of out of body experience? Mama needs a soundtrack.
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
I just have to email you and tell you how much I like working with Mina. She brightens every day!! Her smile is one of the most beautiful smiles!! My son was really impressed with her the day he came and saw the program. She was helping us move desks and Ryan asked what her name was. She really makes an impression on people because of her personality. I just want you to know that I think she is such a wonderful little girl. I want to keep her for another year!!!!
I emailed her back and thanked her for completely making my day. I also thanked her for being such a great teacher. Mina adores her and I can tell that she is really retaining what she is learning. She actually applies what she's learned, and that to me is the sign of a great teaching style (well, and a smart kid).
The teacher then sent this:
I just adore her and listen to every word she says because everything she says has meaning. I don’t say this about many students. I just know as a parent I would want to know that my child’s teacher feels this way. You have done a beautiful job with her. She is so much a polite, young lady already. Have a great day!
Who doesn't like to hear how kick ass their kid is? Yeah, I'm pretty damn proud of my big girl.
That's not to say that I'm not madly in love with little Miss Audrey. She's just a whole different animal from Mina. Audrey is my clone. Perfect strangers even comment on how much she looks like me. It's cool, but also kind of weird at the same time.
Her personality is a little more "aggressive" than Mina's. She's not physically aggressive, but she isn't afraid to use verbal force to state her case--even when it's a bigger kid on the other end of the dis.
Today we had this exchange:
Audrey: Mama, could you please help me take off my shoes?
Me: Sure, since you asked so nicely.
Audrey: I was nice to Carter (a boy in her preschool class) today.
Mama: Well, that's good. Are you usually NOT nice to him?
Audrey: Um...how much nice?
Monday, November 24, 2008
I ran with an insane crowd of people back then. I still hang out with some of them, but our insanity has settled into more of a simmering weirdness.
A lot of these old friends have been posting pictures from "back in the day". Some of them make me laugh my ass off and some of them make me have to catch my breath. I lived a lot of life in those few short years.
By looking at all those old pictures, mostly what I am reminded of is how much of a total dipshit I was.
I tried to explain this on the phone to an old friend the other day. He just laughed and told me that "we were ALL dipshits". I don't know though. That's not exactly how I remember it.
It doesn't help that I still live in the same town that I went to college in. Maybe if I didn't have to drive past the houses and apartments I partied in (or the spaces where the houses and apartments used to be) it wouldn't still be so fresh in my mind.
You'd think with all the mind-altering substances I put into my body during that time I wouldn't be able to remember much, but it's still there.
Don't get me wrong. I had A LOT of fun--probably too much fun. But somewhere in between all that "fun" were some not so pleasant memories. Part of getting older and having to become a "grownup" must be the lingering guilt of the past.
Or is that just me?
I don't think I was a mean person, just thoughtless. Selfish. Self-centered.
If I could go back in time and talk to my 20 year old self, I would tell that person to quit being such a dumb ass. I would tell her to try and think her decisions through to the end instead of demanding instant gratification.
"See that guy? You will come home from a party and find him bleeding in your bed."
"And that guy? He will dump you "to be alone", but introduce you to his new girlfriend about 12 hours later."
"That one? You'll catch him ogling another girl's tits at a party and he'll break up with you when you call him on it. (But he'll make a spectacular fool of himself trying to sleep with her, so it all evens out in the end. And then he'll ask you to take him back by biting the heads off roses and spitting them at your feet at a bar.)
Obviously what's done is done. And things turned out pretty peachy in the end.
I just can't help but think of how much time got wasted getting here.
Besides, I'm pretty sure my 20 year old self wouldn't have listened anyway.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Friday, November 14, 2008
It took their agent an entire MONTH to get back to me. Once she finally called (while I was at Mina's class Halloween party no less), she told me to go get a second estimate. I should note that I think the only reason she did call me was because my agent left her a nasty voicemail about going over her head and basically dropping the proverbial hammer on her ass.
So I got the second estimate, and it was within 30 bucks of the other one. I sent copies to her and another full week went by with no word.
I left a voicemail yesterday and she called me this morning. I don't know if she was planning on blowing me off forever, but I was determined to hunt her down until this got resolved.
Yes, they are going to pay for it. Which place would I like to go? I didn't really care, but asked if I should schedule now or wait to hear from her.
She told me that I could go now if I wanted to, but I might want to wait until I got the check.
I assumed that they would send a check to the place or at most, a reimbursment check to me once they had proof I got it fixed.
I get a big fat check.
Fuck the car. I'm paying off another credit card.
Monday, November 10, 2008
Your unyielding cuntiness has made my life a little easier, and you have my utmost gratitude. Let me explain:
It all starts when you meet your future husband. He's smart, cute in a dorky way and never seems to look at other women (well, not 3-dimensional women anyway). He treats you well, has a good work ethic and seems to want to settle down. He's pretty great in every way... except that pesky comic book/action figure/anime/video game/cult DVD collection that seems to take up his garage/room in his apartment/section of his parents' basement.
You ignore the collection(s) because hey, you're only dating. It's not like you guys live together and you have to look at that vintage Millenium Falcon every day, right?
But then, things get more serious. Maybe a couple years goes by and you decide you guys should move in together. You can only afford a one bedroom apartment, but you have to get two. One room for your sweet, sweet lovemaking and another for the boxes upon boxes of collectibles the Mister has.
"OK", you think, "It's not like we're MARRIED. I can overlook all this stuff."
But then you do get married.
And the hammer drops.
"It's me or the stuff."
Naturally, you win.
The poor schlub brings his collection(s) in to my husband. Tears in his eyes, he tells Jim the oh-so-familiar story of woe before walking out with a fraction of the cash he shelled out over the years to collect all that stuff. Unfortunately, Overstreet doesn't factor sentimental value into the going rate of that run of Spawn the Mister meticulously bagged and boarded 18 years ago.
A few years go by and things don't work out so well. If you ask me, the writing was on the wall the second you asked him to get rid of his stuff, but that's neither here nor there.
After you split up, after you've stripped the poor knucklehead of his toys for entrance into your favor, Jim gets another visit. This visit ends on a much much happier note--for him AND for Jim.
And, most importantly, for me.
Thanks to you, Bitch Wife, I've got a whole mess o' bills paid off.
You didn't think that Spiderman obsession vacated his brain the minute the vows were spoken, did you?
My eternal gratitude to all the Bitch Wives, the "grownups", the "ultimatum givers" and the Suburban Upwardly Mobile Haters Club.
I thank you. My husband thanks you. My bank account thanks you.
Friday, November 7, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Mina: I like him.
Jim: You LIKE him?
Mina: Yes. I like him.
Jim: WHY do you like him? Is it because he looks like a Grandpa? (Note: McCain does sort of look like my Dad--who is a die hard Republican. Then again, so does Captain Picard.) Who's telling you to like John McCain? Is it someone at school?
Mina: No. I just like him.
We went to sleep on that, but this morning I brought it up again.
Me: Mina, who really told you to like John McCain?
Mina: NO ONE, Mama!
Jim: You know he's a bad man, don't you?
Mina: (looks worried)
Me: Yeah, and he wants to tell you what to do with your own body!
Mina: (looks confused)
Jim: And he hates dogs.
Mina: He hates dogs?!
Jim: Yeah, he kicks them when he sees them. He got a dog just to kick it.
Mina: That's mean!
Me: I know! And wants to tell people who they can marry.
Mina: I don't want to get married!
Me: Well, if you vote for John McCain, he'll MAKE you get married.
Jim: ...and kick dogs.
Then Audrey piped in."I like arockabama!"
Me: Good girl.
Jim: John McCain hates our dogs.
Mina: But they're so cute! Would he kick OUR dogs?
Jim and Me: Yup.
Mina: I don't like John McCain anymore.
Me: Good girl.
Those last two were real snoozers in my opinion. I kept getting pissed at long-winded answers that weren't really even answers at all.
But last night was different.
I'm no political analyst, but I think we can all agree that Obama put the smack down on Grampa, yes?
One thing is bothering me though.
Near the end, McCain started talking about how Sarah Palin would fight the good fight for children with special needs, especially Autism.
Several times I heard him refer to the fact that she especially knows what it's like to deal with a child with Autism.
Uh...unless I missed a press release, the only child she has with special needs is her son--with Downs Syndrome.
Sure, Bristol had a "special need" for an abortion about 6 months ago and Track has a "special need" to legally change his name when he turns 18, but I digress.
Did McCain get confused? Does he not understand the difference between Autism and DS?
Did anyone else catch that or am I just imagining things?
Monday, October 13, 2008
The only problem is that I forgot that I did schedule something for today.
Maybe I was thrown off because we only had one usable car today. Jim needed brakes on his van.
Strike one, Columbus Day weekend.
I hate going to the gym on Mondays so I took Jim and the girls there and I was planning on running some errands then going to pick them up.
About halfway there I got a call from the person I was supposed to giving a haircut (along with her husband, her two kids, her friend and her two kids). Oops.
I had it on the calendar. I just didn't check it before leaving the house today.
I felt like a total asshole. Mostly because this is isn't the first time I've done this to her. I flaked out last haircut appointment too. I felt like an official fucktard.
The day started shaping up better after I made a little money doing the haircuts and got Jim's van to Sears and him to work. Mina got one of those free pizza things from school for doing her reading stuff.
I took the girls to lunch there and we had a lot of fun. They were perfect angels the whole time and even afterwards at the grocery store.
Yes, the day was turning out OK. The weather was gorgeous and the girls played outside together (no fighting!) and even came inside to play together in the basement (no screeching!).
I capitalized on their good behavior to take a little quiet time for myself upstairs.
Naturally, there is a Strike three.
Am I new? Did I forget the Golden Rule of parenting?
When all is quiet, all is still
Do not assume there's danger nil.
When not a nary sound they make
It's best to have a look to take.
If children play without a sound,
Do not walk, but quickly bound.
For minors left to their own accord....
Are most likely trashing the fucking basement.
I first realized something was "off" when Audrey appeared in the living room completely naked and soaking wet. There is a bathroom, but no shower or a tub to be found down there, so I just knew they were making a mess of apocalyptic proportions.
And I was correct in that assumption.
It seems they thought it was a good idea to "wash" about 15 stuffed animals in the sink. Not only that, but they thought the computer chair would be a great place to let them dry-the computer chair that sits on top of carpet.
The bathroom was a real treat too! A good inch of water on the floor and sloppy clumps of wet toilet paper strewn about. Nothing says "good time" like mounds of mushy slop all over the place.
Words escaped me for a moment. Then they didn't. I'm pretty sure the neighbors heard the tirade. Most of them have children that are or very recently were my children's' ages, so I know they have been in my position at one point or another and aren't going to hold the yell fest against me.
The girls both knew they were in deep shit too. I'm almost certain that actual steam came out of my ears. I told them to go to their rooms and get dry clothes on. Not only were they wet, but the clothes they were wearing earlier were also soaking wet in a pile on the carpet down there.
I got NO argument.
When I told them that neither of them get to watch TV for the rest of the week, they just nodded their heads.
We left the house shortly after the 'discovery of evidence' to go pick Jim up from work. When I told him what happened, he laughed.
When I went next door to the record shop to say hello and tell them what happened, they thought it was funny too.
And you know what? It IS funny. In fact, it's pretty god damned hilarious. But I can't let my kids know that. I'm afraid that the next time they might escalate the "hilarity".
Don't get me wrong. I am still pretty pissed off that they thought it was a good idea to wash stuffed animals in the sink and proceed to make a monumental mess, but now that I am looking at the bottom of a glass of wine, I can definitely see the humor in all of this.
And I'm going to watch CNN every day after school just to spite them.
Friday, October 10, 2008
My nickname for the last 16 years or so has been "Gidget". Just about anyone who met me after August of 1992 knows me by this name--so much so that many people thought that was my given name until told otherwise.
Today, Mr. Good made me this fabulous "portrait" after I agreed with him that I needed my own talk show.
Whatcha' think? Could you see this flying down the street on a city bus? Because I definitely could.
Thursday, October 9, 2008
I'm back in school now. I can only take one class at a time because I am paying for it on my own. I suppose I could find some financial aid, but I'm already paying off a chunk to Sallie Mae and I just don't want to have to add more to the pile.
In order to finish my Associates I have to take a math class. The kicker is that I had to take an assessment test to find out which math class I could sign up for next semester.
They don't just let you take the 100 level class and be done with it. No. They want to make sure they humiliate you as much as possible before letting you in.
So, I took the test this morning, and I felt like someone hit me in the head with a hammer and asked me to walk a tightrope.
I haven't been in a math class in many many years and even then I was pretty lost most of the time.
From question ONE I was scratching my head.
Needless to say I tested into the "dummy math".
There are three (not for credit!) classes below the 106 I need for my degree and I tested into the second to the lowest--Math 087.
You don't even need a calculator for this class. Just all your fingers and toes.
So now I have to take 087, 096 and THEN I can take 106. And by the way, if I want to get back into ISU as a Psychology major I also need a finite math class.
I'm going to be drowning in numbers for the next 4 semesters.
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
I'm thankful for two things:
1) The girl I hit is OK.
2) It totally wasn't my fault.
I was driving Mina to school and was at the four way stop a few blocks from my house. I waited for my turn and, just as I let off the brake to go, I had a college coed on my hood. Not in a teenage boy fantasy Whitesnake video kind of way either.
It happened so fast. I seriously did not see her until she was right there splayed across the front end of my car.
She got right back up and started apologizing to me. I felt like an attempted murderess.
A witness across the street called 911 and they were there in like 3 minutes.
The cop was super nice and kept asking Mina if she was alright (she was).
Basically, the girl wasn't watching and didn't stop at the crosswalk before riding through. There was no way I could have stopped in time. The witness, the cop and even the girl all said it wasn't my fault.
I held it together until I had to call Jim at home and tell him he needed to give Audrey a ride to preschool. Then I started a lovely hysterical sob in front of Mina. And still, she held it together.
It took me a whole weekend to process the whole ordeal.
Monday I took my car in for an estimate on the damage. My car came away with some hefty scratches and a dent. I wasn't really going to do anything about it, but my insurance agent said I really should as this would seriously lower my trade in value.
TWELVE HUNDRED DOLLARS.
We're turning it into her parents' insurance. There's no way I would be able to get it fixed otherwise. Since the cop said it was her fault, her Mommy and Daddy get to pay for the fixin'.
Except that her Mom isn't being real forthcoming with the info. My agent said she's, and I quote, "being real North Shore cunty about it".
Apparently Mommy doesn't understand why we would "go to all this trouble on a 6 year old car".
Sorry I can't trade in my lease for the newest Jag every other year. Some of us have to drive older cars that they worked very hard to get paid off.
So Friday will be two weeks since the accident and I still haven't heard a word from their insurance. I can't really do anything about it until their person comes and does their own assessment of the damage.
Part of me thinks they might try and fight it. Can they do that?
More importantly, is there a possibility I can come away from this with a new car?
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
For the most part, she loves it. Occasionally she comes home with "mean girl" tales (it's starts in kindergarten people, and it sucks ASS), but she's chugging along nonetheless.
Almost every night she has homework. We have a nice little routine going where she'll have a snack at the table and work on whatever her teacher sent home that day.
After seeing what she's supposed to do I tell her to work on it and I'll check it when she's done.
And herein lies the problem.
When I was pregnant with her, my first child, people would ask me what I was having. When I told them the baby was a girl some people would get all giddy and squishy about it.
"Oh, maybe she'll have red hair like you!"
"I bet you can't wait to do her hair all pretty!"
"I LOVE buying girl clothes--all that pink!"
And OK, maybe those things did cross my mind, but the thing I wanted most for my baby girl was for her to be smart.
I remember a conversation with a friend of mine during my pregnancy. When the words "Dougie Howser, MD" passed my lips, you would have thought I wished for my baby to be born with a tail (P.S. That thought also crossed my mind).
"But why would you want her to be a freak?!"
So maybe being a doctor at ten wasn't ever going to be in the cards (damn you Neil Patrick Harris or setting the bar so high), but was it too much to hope she would have a head up in the academic world?
I'm not saying Mina isn't bright. She's an amazing artist and comes up with fantastic stories which she illustrates herself. Socially, she's a firecracker and can make friends in an instant. She's the kid at the playground who'll have eight other kids playing underwater mermaid ninja adventure ten minutes after we get there.
The schoolwork however is another story.
I try to help her correct her homework, but the whole ordeal leaves me wanting to poke my eyes out with a No. 2 pencil. I get so frustrated. Didn't she JUST learn this at school? Didn't her teacher come up with some cute fancy way to help them remember how to make 17 cents a few different ways? Didn't we just read that same word a page ago?
It's like she's guessing most of the time or waiting to guess what I want her to say. She doesn't take her time and think it through. The "17 cents" homework sent me into fits. It's COUNTING for chrissake. I know very well she can count and add and what the different coins are worth.
I try to keep my utter lack of patience on the down low. I'm sure I'm not doing a very good job.
Thankfully Jim has much more patience than I and can come up with those cute fancy ways teachers have of helping students remember things.
I know I probably set an unreasonable set of expectations Mina's shoulders. Not all kids are going to "get" everything the first few times they are taught something. It doesn't help that she gets mad at herself (and wants to either give up or not try something at all) if she isn't good at it. My poor little Type A child.
I did that to her. It's OK. I can admit that. I didn't mean to, but it happened and now all I can do is try to fix it...
By letting her father help her with her homework for awhile.
Saturday, August 30, 2008
The more it sinks in, the more I kind of feel sorry for the old dude.
Yes, it was a "smart" move to try and woo the conglomerate of pissed off Hillary supporters to the dark side. And yes, unfortunately, it will work on some of them.
That's sad for so many reasons.
The only thing Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton have in common is a vagina.
And matronly hair.
None of this attempted wooing has any affect on me though. I've been an Obama supporter since the primaries. Actually I voted for Obama when he was running for the Senate, but I didn't know that much about him back then. All I knew was that he wasn't Alan Keyes, and that was good enough for me at the time.
I bring this up not just because it's what everyone is talking about, but to share a story from Disney World...
While waiting in line for Pooh's Honey Spot (is that what it's called? That's pretty pervy), I saw a young man wearing a t-shirt that stopped me in my tracks.
I'm always excited to see other people supporting the same candidate as me. Like, "Yeah, we're on the same team! GO US!". In this case though...I was kind of embarrassed.
The shirt in question featured an outline of Obama's face on top with Clinton's face below.
Over it was written:
"BRO'S BEFORE HO'S"
Not wanting to ruin my family's vacation I retracted the claws, and tried to ignore it every time we passed this guy in the ever winding line to see Audrey's favorite little bear all stuffed with fluff.
Most of me however wanted to shake this young man by the shoulders in an attempt to rattle his mind and "help" him figure out why his shirt sucks major donkey balls.
Don't we have better things to do than encourage the already abundant sexism in this race (country)? I want to see the humor in it. I really do. Worn ironically 15 years from now, I would be on the floor in a puddle of my pee from a fit of the giggles. But now? Not so much.
And we were in Florida--Land of the Republican. I couldn't help but take this guy's t-shirt as a sign that he doesn't truly care. Hell, maybe he isn't even registered to vote. He looked pretty young. Maybe he's not even old enough to vote?
Maybe the Republicans themselves are selling these t-shirts? After all, wasn't it the big R that was hocking the buttons which read: "Keep the White House White"?
The saddest part is that this guy was with what appeared to be his whole family--Mom and Grandma to boot. I have to draw the conclusion that they think the shirt is an OK statement too.
Way to forward the cause, assholes.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Good morning everyone!
I hope that your families have had a great beginning of a new school year! It's always so much fun getting new school supplies and clothes and shoes and getting to see all your friends you miss from last year! I still love a new box of Crayola crayons!
Doesn't (school name) look wonderful! It's amazing how quickly and how well they've gotten all the classrooms renovated!!! What a great place for our children to learn!!!
I just wanted to drop you a short line to let you know that we will be meeting for the first 2008-2009 (school name) PTO meeting on September 8th at 6:30 pm at (school name). Our meetings will be on the 2nd monday of each month for the whole school year with the only exception being in October. We will meet on October 6th instead!!!
We will be providing childcare during the meetings this year by high school students! So if you would like to come but don't have anyone to watch the kids, please feel free to bring them.
The data base is being created so we can keep more folks in the loop of happenings, so please forward this to all your friends at (school name) and ask them to reply so we can put them on the list as well!
We look forward to seeing everyone at the meeting!!!
Please call me if you have any questions!
(phone number removed)
What the holy fuck is with all the !!!!!!'s?
Who's this excited about the PTO? Why is she yelling at me? What's she like in person? Was she drunk typing?
I think I'm too scared to go.
Monday, August 25, 2008
Naturally I had to get their dance on record even though Mina seemed awfully peeved that I made her perform ("OK! I'll do it!").
Why the hell do people have kids if they can't be entertained by them?
So many old friends, so much food and most importantly, lots o' liquor.
I hope we can do this again in another ten years!
I didn't take nearly enough pictures.
This is how we started, but somehow ended up with 12 bottles by the next morning. I don't have to buy wine for a year!
Travis being surly and pervy at the same time. I love him.
Kim and Jill. This was at the start of the party, and Jill's being silly. The most ironic part is that she actually ended up like that by the end of the night. See where she's sitting? That's where she was standing as she sacrificed all her liquor back to my porch.
We had keg issues. Three taps later, we finally had our Heineken.
Jim is no doubt saying something VERY important
Obligatory drunk hostess shot
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
I've been planning for a long time, and it's finally here.
I'm not worried about making food or having enough liquor. Anyone who's here can feel free to crash in any bed or open floor space they can find, so I'm not worried about anyone driving drunk.
No. My worry?
Cleaning my house.
I'm an OK housekeeper--meaning there isn't anything rotting underneath anyone's bed, the floors get vaccumed almost daily and I'm usually not worried about anyone seeing the state of my bathroom on most days.
Getting the house clean and keeping it clean are two completely different stories. I don't daydream about fancy vacations. No, my fantasies involve having a maid to follow my children around and clean up after them (and maybe some other stuff that has nothing to do with cleaning products...).
Honestly, I'm not usually this much of a freak when it comes to this stuff.
It's when I am having a gathering of people over that I panic.
Some of the friends coming to the party live far away and most of them haven't been to our house.
Considering the squalor we all lived in back during our college years, I really don't know why I have this obsession to get my house perfectly clean.
Why the fuck do I care if there are crumbs under the toaster?
But I do.
I'm really glad that I am back in school and working my brain a little. I'm a little bit scared of what I'm becoming.
Not that there's anything wrong with being home to cook and clean and all that shit. I actually enjoy it most of the time. It sounds weird, but I feel more sane when everything's picked up.
I know people that can live happily in chaos, but I can't even stand to wake up to dirty dishes from the night before.
I think part of it is that I finally live in the kind of house I've wanted to live in since I was a little kid growing up in tiny apartments. If I don't take care of it, it's almost as if I don't appreciate it.
Kind of like when people win the lottery and squander it all away in a matter of years. I don't get that at all. There's only so many lap dances one can get before it gets boring.
I plan on taking a million pictures on Saturday. Not only because so many old friends will be there but also to document how, for at least one day, my house was sparkling.
Monday, August 18, 2008
I got to work with one of our medical advocates. What a woman! She is just amazing--so calm, educated, caring and just really really good at what she does.
She was a great teacher to me last night. I felt like I came away with a better understanding of how to be a victim's advocate.
I got the page after I'd already been asleep for a couple of hours, so I scrambled to throw some clothes on (thankfully we don't have to dress up to do a hospital visit), and got my ass over there.
On the way there, a million things went through my head. I didn't know who was there waiting for me or what the scenario was going to be.
All I could think was that something bad happened to someone and it was my job to try and make the situation as easy and comfortable as possible--if it was possible. I couldn't let my emotion cloud what I was there for.
It's just really hard to not think about my girls and how I would deal if they were hurt in such a heinous and disgusting way. Or about friends that have had to deal with sexual assault, rape, molestation...
As soon as I walked in though, it was gone. I felt ready to deal with whatever they threw at me.
And I did.
The only thing I didn't like was leaving. My job, at this point in my volunteering, is to be there for support, give resources and be done.
I'm anxious to "level up" and work more on the prosecution's end. As much as I enjoy helping people in the thick of it, I really want to help put the perpetrators behind bars.
I'm working on it.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Had a great time despite the heat then the rain, then more heat and more rain.
We had to get the girls up SO early to get to the airport. I told them they could stay in their pajamas.
Mina thought it was cool we got to watch the sunrise.
Our layover in Atlanta (which the girls kept calling "Atlantis")
In Orlando we stayed at the timeshare where my Aunt and Uncle own a place. They told my Mom that we'd have a full kitchen and washer and dryer.
Uh...not so much.
But it was clean and fufilled our needs which was a place to sleep, shower and store our shit. Also, there was a washer and dryer in our building that we could use which was a good thing because I only brought enough clothes for half the week.
Our neighbors liked to stay up late and cook (burn) food at around 1am every night, so by the second day I stopped telling the girls to be quiet in the hallway in every morning.
Future neighbors be warned: If you're going to make all kinds racket until the wee hours, don't expect to sleep in.
Here's a shot Mina got at breakfast by the pool one of the mornings:
It was just Grandma, the girls and I until Wednesday when my brother got there and Thursday when Jim got there.
We spent Monday and Tuesday at Sea World (or "Water World", as the girls kept calling it. No Kevin Costner to be found anywhere.)
It was so bright, I managed to keep getting crooked shots (that's my excuse anyway). Oh, and it was already close to 90 freakin' degrees by 9 o'clock in the morning.
Meeting Elmo after the show:
We fed dolphins:
Saw the manatees (real and bronze):
Played in Shamu's Happy Harbor:
Mina liked playing in the sand most of all. Audrey is a bit more adventurous and loved the roller coaster and other rides.
We didn't end up seeing the Shamu show. My Mom and I were hellbent on taking the girls to see it, but they didn't really give a shit either way. This was a good thing as we would have had to wait in line for about an hour in the searing sun.
We did however get a couple pictures out front on our way out to at least say they saw a fiberglass replica of the whale.
My brother arrived bearing gifts. He helped them make their own fairy getups:
And now...the Disney experience:
Breakfast with Pooh and Friends
I think he farted or something
They look so glum, and we had just gotten there (maybe because it was already 95 degrees?)
But they did cheer up
I think Audrey was trying to steal her jewelry
And this is what we had on our hands by the end of day two:
This is back at home. No Disney trip is complete without a lighter wallet. (Some of) the goods:
For Your Scrapbook
- Do they not teach math in public school anymore?
- Hey you! Don't watch that! Watch this!
- An open letter
- Over the river and through the woods...
- And then my brain exploded and my arm fell off
- One time I was in a band
- Just Because You Can Doesn't Mean You Should
- One Christmas down
- I wish I had a communicable, uncurable disease rig...
- Out of the mouths of babes
- I'm Done
- Son of the son of the...It's a fun story thing.
- Apparently my whole family wants to go the hospita...
- She lives!
- Giving my Health Insurance a Work Out
- ► November (6)
- ► October (7)
- ► August (10)
- ▼ December (18)