Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Join "The Club"

I am wondering why the car - a rusted 1980's Cutlass Supreme - parked in the secured garage of my apartment building - which a friend likes to refer to as the Ritz Carlton (I even have a concierge at my beck and call) - amidst all the Range Rovers, BMWs, Infinitis and Mercedes (and even the Volvo) - in the middle of Yuppyville (crime is so DC) - locks up the steering wheel every night with The Club. The Club. I am sure they rest much easier knowing their car is not going to get stolen. That's nice.

I remember one time going on a date with a Clubber. I shamefully admit to being a little turned off. Am probably a snob like that. Sniff. A gazillion failed dates later, I wonder: Was HE the one?

The fucking one? Whatever the fuck that means. (I should point out that I swear when I am angry, so you have been warned. Just nod your head and agree with me. Oh, and don't get in my way.)

See, it was probably about seven-eight years ago when I was leaving the long hours and stressful days of a law firm and heading to an accounting firm to become the law librarian there. Oh, and they were going to double my salary and make me work much less. So I am capable of some smart decisions. (A positive! I might stop swearing now.) So when I was leaving the old job, one of the new first year associates asked me out. I am not sure I was surprised he asked. He was always coming 'round to the library and checking out the books. All of a sudden the books weren't going to be there anymore so then he felt perfectly justified in asking me out then because he never would have if I still worked there - you know, fraternizing with the help or something like that.

On our first date, I learned that he may be a straight-laced attorney by day, but by night he was a rock star. Literally, he was in a local band - played bass guitar and sang. I admittedly never heard of them so he gave me a CD of their music and I was quite impressed. So we hit it off. Because what is not to like about that package? An artist, but not a starving one which - in my best-of-both-worlds mind - was a turn-on. Until.....

Date number two and he picked me up and we drove out to Annapolis - for some reason. Details are fuzzy however, the only thing I do remember is him pulliing into a garage in downtown Annapolis - finding a nice spot to fit his little Escort and, um, pulling out The Club. You know, to lock up the Escort, of course.

Why did this bother me so? Because our next date he invited me over to his house and he cooked for me and he bought this Charlie Parker CD for me and he did some other sweet thoughful things for me. I still don't think I ever kissed the guy. I just could not get into him. What was wrong with me? He was in hot pursuit, we had lots in common, he certainly wasn't bad looking. Similar ingredients to my Peter Pan connection. But Rock Star I couldn't get into. After that date, I called it off and said we were better friends. Of course, I never heard from him again.

So I just googled him - because I wonder if HIS was the boat I missed out on because, like I said, MY JUDGEMENT CAN'T BE TRUSTED. And I am digging deep into the karmic love destiny these days. Apparently, he left DC, hung up the suit and tie, and moved to San Francisco to become a full-time rock star. I thought about linking to him right here, and maybe he'd find his way back here, but, no, that isn't what I really want. I am just reassessing my mistakes and wrong turns in the wake of Relationship-What-The-Hell-Just-Happened. I thought I was finally falling for the "nice guy" - you know, growing up - when really he was just every other - cliched - non-committal type that I am attracted to - subconsciously, albeit. Peter Pan indeed. I should have heeded the warnings when his mom gave him that nickname.

I don't know if anyone noticed but I had a post up about last Thursday night and running into him and his ignoring me and then our little Dance Showdown. But I took it down because - yuk - I just didn't like it. It bugged me, seeing it on the screen, and even reading it. And, um, who directed Star Wars? I should totally fact check before I post. I need an editor. I plan on making my bloggiversary post - in March? - about that very thing. Because writer, I am not. See? I write as if I am talking to my friend, not something that somebody - who is not in my head - has to read. And then the tangents are just the different "me's" having a party. They drink heavily. While I will only have one glass of red wine tonight. Nope. Fucking Bush is on - make that two glasses.

Anyway, let's bring it back to "the club." As metaphor! It could be the Club of jilted and wronged women - the "woe is me" bandwagon - woman who love too much - shrieking harpies - a "what's wrong with me" club. Blah-di-blah-blah-blah it's him, everyone says. Yes. I know that. And that's the point. I am usually a pretty good judge of character. I have very good Dick-Jackass-Fucking Bowler Radar. I just feel duped by him - like he mis-represented himself in some way. Reeled me in. Hook. Link. And sink, she did. I have to admit it - I really, really liked this guy. (In case, NOBODY has been paying attention.) Not only did I tell all my friends, "Shriek! He's "the one!" But I also told my dentist, my gynecologist, and my vet. I even took a walk down Girly Avenue and started visualizing a wedding - and how I was going to start saving for it. People - I NEVER do that. I am usually pretty private. And I am also usually very cautious - in every aspect of my life. My friends don't even let me drive because I am so cautious. I inspect my food - each bite - before eating it. (That's how come I didn't eat that roach that was in the cafeteria jello that one time in high school.) I don't dive into the deep end - I dip my toes first.

YET, I just let myself be in this relationship - I submitted willfully and whole-heartedly. So now, I am locking up - with The Club of course! Ain't nobody "taking" me again.

Monday, January 30, 2006

God Works In Mysterious Ways (And She Moves In Mysterious Ways)

Last Thursday night, I was just minding my own business, squeezing onto an over-packed metro train, when I ran into a friend. She ended up dragging my ass out to a bar to see a band - a band from the "beach house years." So I thought that this might be just the thing I need - a little nostalgic shakedown of happier times because - if you have been reading along - January kind of sucks for me right now. I thought this night had happy potential.

"Oh God, take me to that happy place!"

So God looked down on my wishes and said, "Well I do have something in store, you won't be happy about it, but in the long run you will be in a happy place. Know that this is for you. Put on some tight jeans, put some silk mist in your hair and some black eyeliner, and go to that bar. Trust me." Then the basket of money was pushed under my nose and I knew I had to ante up my $5 charitable contribution - for the Lord speaketh (or cometh).

So what did before my eyes I see? But a tool in the likeness of Peter Pan, of Break-Back in 2 weeks!-Mountain fame. And so the bizarre story of Boy Who Was In Hot Pursuit Of Me nosedives - out of control - into Boy Who Is Purposely Fucking With My Heart. Because this boy was being quite friendly with some ugly girl with a big nose and 3 inches on him and a bad dye job - if I must be frank. I mean we look nothing alike - style or appearance-wise. But the worst part of all this? He KNEW I was there, we exchanged a very brief "hi" earlier and then he put on the show for me.

Cheeseball gropes The Nose. Tickets are NOT going fast. Pretty people sell pictures and they couldn't sell out the theater even if Francis Ford C. was directing. On second thought, they might be good extras in the next Star Wars. Yoda, anyone?

But I ask: For the love of God - WHY????

And this is when God graced me with consideration again. He listens to prayers because I was on the brink of either: (a) taking a turn to Crazy Town and confronting him (and her) and subsequently Lorena Bobbitting him right on the spot ("Yeah, go try hanging out in your white sweat pants now!"), or (b) cry, cry, cry, crying.

But God answered the prayers and decided to spare me Embarrassment. For that, I am grateful so I put an extra $5 in the money basket. Because at that very moment he sent in a savior in the form of - get this - a Cute Boy! I told Cute Boy the deal, expecting Cute Boy to run for the hills but he hung out with me and I did my own dirty dancing with the boy.

So I put on my own little show. Boa Gets Her Ass Grabbed. Private and limited engagement.

And I am all of 12 now.

At the end of the Dance Showdown I let the Boy With No Name walk me home and - in a possessed state - I invited him up for water. Isn't that an enticing offer? "Would you like to come up for a nice glass of water. I've got a Brita pitcher!" And he wanted water. Perhaps he thought he was getting more. It was 2 o'clock in the morning at that point. I did what any girl would do in that situation - I made out with him. I still was possessed - the visions of the night were haunting me. And first I kissed him and I thought, "Ooo, this is nice." And then no, not such much. He kept doing this downward jab with his tongue. So then I was bored and I was sad and the weight of all that happened that night just hit me. I sent him off and I laid in bed for the next four hours in and out of sleep with the weirdest dreams. Peter Pan making out with The Nose. Peter Pan moving on. Peter Pan being mean. Peter Pan as a totally different person. A wolf in sheep's clothing?

Sad. Sad. Sad.

But I gave the Boy With No Name my phone number. I totally see what is going to happen. This guy is going to be all over me because he knows that I am not interested in HIM - and since he is 25 I will NEVER date him anyway. But he just might be my distraction for the time being to get over Peter Pan.

I wonder if he is going to keep to our Feb. 5th date now...because by the looks of Thursday night he didn't appear to be giving our relationship any thought. I was caught off guard running into him in the first place and I snubbed his advance to hug me and kiss me. I was confused. But that is because we never discussed the paramaters of the "break" especially if we were to run into each other. And I have never been able to think on my toes.

Therefore if he is going to blow me - blow the whole thing off - then God, I have one more wish. Can you put Idiot Boyfriend in those white sweat pants again for my viewing pleasure? It helps as a model for the ugly picture that is being painted.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Relationship Rehab

"Let's take a break," Rachel said to Ross.

That's a TV show!! I am meant to be in the audience - that "break" in "Must See" TV Land should only be for my entertainment purposes! I can even hear the canned roar of the audience laughing at the punchline, "We were on a break!" Can I go back to observing this scene? Because I should not have to act this part out in real life. I am not laughing.

Therefore when art imitates life - your life - you do need a break - a break from your life. So I stayed home from work Monday and Tuesday to throw myself a pity party - with no liquor involved because that didn't go over so well on Saturday. You learn that the hard way when your guy friend gives you a hard time about why you didn't show up to happy hour on Friday and you don't want to tell him the real reason why you didn't go out that night - that you ditched your friends to have a heart-to-heart with Peter Pan because things are not going so well - apparently - that is the Relationship, According to Him. And you don't want to tell him for the simple fact that he is best friends with Yukkell, the soon to be Ex-Ex. After all, there is a new opening for "Ex" quite possibly. SO to avoid honesty, I joined him and the rest of the guys at a bar at 1 pm on a Saturday afternoon because my other options are (1) shopping - but I have given that up for the time being on account of my little self-imposed spending moratorium (even though I need a $110 perfume!); (2) Mav - who is being all studious and disciplined right now, as she should be, except I don't know why that girl is considering moving to Florida; or (3) my Anthony Kiedis autobiography that I had been reading, which - spoiler alert! - um, he was a BIG FAT junkie - bet you didn't know that. It's not like rock stars DO that kind of thing. I mean, that would be so cliche or not. So I decided afternoon drinking it is!

So I drank all afternoon and talked and laughed too. And then a few of us went to the mexican restaurant to meet up with another friend and then you know what happens at the mexican restaurant? You partake in the poison known as The Swirl - which are just TROUBLE (and I should be saying "is trouble" as in one swirl, but no, there were multiple swirls so they are all in on this) . So given the backdrop I am giving you here - the props that affect any scene - you might be able to guess how this is going to play out - you know, given the current emotional state of someone on a "break." Because you know when it has been emotionally TOO MUCH and you end up crying your eyes out when you THINK you have lost your phone and at that moment you really believe that the world is ending (and your phone is right there the whole time) - which you would realize if you allowed Rational Thought any place in your head right now. But you have pushed it aside for now. So at this time - Day 1 of "The Break!" - losing your phone seemed like the most traumatic thing to happen to you so you start CRYING. Body shiver crying. And your sweet, sweet guy friend - a person who you didn't want to know about your little "relationship hiatus" - for various reasons again - this friend holds you for about a good 20 minutes while you let it out. You let the last year out, I guess. I carried on like a blubbering crybaby.

Saturday Afternoon Relationship Avoidance became Saturday Night Relationship Confessional.

Thus Monday and Tuesday (and Sunday for that matter too) were when I held my non-alcoholic pity party. I needed to think long and hard about what I want. Is he all that and a bag of chips? My most inquiring mind wants to know! I DID think so but perhaps he is flawed in the way he handles the stresses in his life - do I really want someone who is going to SHUT THE WORLD OUT and not deal?

So yesterday I looked to the TV for some Relationship Guidance. Ross and Rachel eventually got back together. Right? So I thought it a sign when I saw this show on Style called, Relationship Rehab. Right up my alley! I need some rehabilitating. Some clarity. Except this show is about people who have been dumped by jerks, people not worthy. They dodged the bullet. Now let me just say that I can look back at every one of my relationships and KNOW that I dodged the bullet. And I really knew it then - that is why it was easy for me not to wallow and accept the breakup. I get back on my feet pretty easily. So this show gets these girls a new zest for life, because YOU ARE BETTER OFF. And that is where I got really sad. I seriously thought him to be the "one" and I have NEVER thought that about anyone before. I have loved and I have been loved. Sometimes I have been the Dumper, sometimes the Dumpee. But Peter Pan and I had this whirlwind three month romance. We were having fun! And then all this dropped off this past month - about the time he started to get wrapped up in work - 11 hour days + all weekend. And he kind of just checked out. And I NEVER questioned him. I let him do his thing.

But it all came out last week when he started projecting all that negativity into our relationship and questioning whether we have a "spark" (I hate words like "connection", "chemistry", or "spark" when used in the context of a relationship, BY THE WAY); our "long term compatability" (can you tell he is the Analytical One and I am the Flakey One - so he questions that); and why he is not feeling like this is the "honeymoon phase" anymore (is there a timeframe on this stuff?). I attributed this to: No duh! Your life sucks right now! I could see if I was nagging him about more US time - that might push someone away but I have been the ever patient, supportive, non-confrontational, fun-spirited girlfriend riding this bumpy road out. Unbitterly too, I might add. Never mind that a week before this discussion to "break" took place he was telling me how he has screwed relationships up in the past with the "work thing" and how he doesn't want to screw it up with me. And then he probably snapped at me - which is his whole point.

So a break was instituted - after I suggestd a "break up" because I am not going to sit here and beg someone to like me or convince them of anything. Dude, you have got to want to be here. I am too self-respecting for that. And now here I am - watching relationship shows, reading relationship self-help books and crying, really.

Now I am trying to look at the negative because aren't you supposed to make your pros and cons list of what is good and what is bad? Problem is the "bad" is kind of superficial. Like, for one, he wears sweatpants. Not out in public - because that would be a deal breaker. I have to admit that I have this extreme gross-me-out hatred for sweatpants. The only place they belong is on that KMart shelf - arranged by color because THEN they are part of an installation of color, aesthetically-speaking. Then when you take them out of that color rainbow of fleece - out of their intended context, in my fashion-conscious mind - and put them on your body and "HANG OUT" in them...um....YUCK. Quite simply, YUCK. And they were white! Which is just THE WORST degree of Sweat Pants Wearing Crime one can commit. This first time I saw him in those babies I thought, "Oh no he didn't." And I shielded my eyes from The YUCK. Yet, I never told him, "Dude, lose the sweatpants." I decided THIS was something I could learn to live with.

But if I am looking at the negative, can I now refer to him as The Boyfriend Who Wore White Sweatpants?

The second thing has to do with one of his hobbies. (Which I like about him because he had interests - I don't want all the attention.) One of his hobbies is model airplane building. Which is what a lot of boys did when they were, well, BOYS. But these aren't just sticks and glue. (Or paper which is something I could get into!) We are talking quarter-scale replicas of vintage aircraft that he researches to get an exact replica. Exact. So he puts the little motor in them and remote controls them in the sky and all the little boys come up to him and say, "Cool!" And they cost thousands of dollars individually. AND they have little men (aka dolls!) flying them. I was even going to "geek out" (his word) with him and make a doll for him because he needed one about the size of my cat - so like Mrs. Polly Prissy Pants would do except baby dolls didn't fly these WWI airplanes. Little men did. And they "have to be EXACT." So he didn't like my idea to put a little baby doll in the cockpit. So is THAT what they are talking about when they say I might have dodged the bullet on that one?

Perhaps. So might I refer to him as The Boyfriend With A Little Men Doll Collection?

So I don't know if this relationship is salvageable. We will just see in two weeks. But at least I just cracked myself up. The "break" may be ON but the pity party is OVER.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Work Isn't Working For Me

Yeah, I don’t think I like working.

When I was a wee girl clouded by naivete and visions of sugarplums in my future, I proclaimed, "I will always work! I will keep my last name! I will never be a housewife!" Now that I am a more mature (it's relative) been-there-done-that once-around-the-block kind of girl (and yet, I'm still not "[anyone] from the block") - the novelty has worn thin. I see through that pipe dream. Today I say, "When can I stop working? I will take his name! I will keep a great house and bring him slippers and a cocktail everyday! And I'll still balance the checkbook."

I should have known that work was not all it was cracked up to be when I was 14-15 and decided that NOW would be a good time to get that independent thing rolling. Yes, it all goes back to one hot Florida summer day during my daily bike journey to get the sweet treat when I saw the call of “help wanted.” You know, when ice cream talks...Frankly, this work thing sounded like a great idea to me because it would be money in my pocket - I wouldn't have to ASK for the Jordache, Guess or Esprit. I just didn't realize the, you know, work part of it. To put it in the persona of Will Farrell as George Bush, "Um, you know, uh, uh, work is....work. It's hard..."

Because little did I know that the little Tastee Freeze was run by the Wicked Witch of Dairyland. She was meeaaannnn! I missed that broomstick she rode in on. I mean, when I ordered my daily cone from the lady she was sweet like the ice cream. Birds danced around her head. Who knew she had a sinister side who hoarded all the secrets to the Milkshake Machine from the lay people in the valley yonder. The old lady was on a power trip. Because it went something like this:

Me: I want to work!
Mean Old Lady: You have to work hard brat!
Me: Um, how does this milkshake machine work again?
Mean Old Lady: You dumb idiot, don’t you remember anything? I’m not showing you again, stupid girl.

And so I had to figure it out on my own. Except I never really did. Now, I don't have the transcript of the conversation obviously but that really was the gist of it, I am not kidding about that. She was pretty demeaning. I was practically in tears. And so she would laugh at me. She would watch me and laugh and then finally get all frustrated and grab the container from me. And STILL not show me how it was done. I had ONE shot to learn that milkshake contraption. I don't remember why it was so difficult and I am sure it wasn't but I just wanted another looksie, another tutorial! And she wouldn't give it to me! (Why is that Suicidal Tendencies song going through my head right now? Go back and read the last two sentences then.....Now you got it. Institutionalized. Driving me crazy is right.)

I didn't last another day. It was a horrible experience and when my dad picked me up that evening I was in tears and I never went back to that horrible place. I had to find my cones somewhere else. I think I moved on to the potato logs at the the store, called The Store, across the street from the Tastee Freeze. I probably rode my 10-speed right past the Tastee Freeze in defiant protest, got a box of potato logs, and sat on the picnic tables of the Tastee Freeze. Something salty that didn't come from a milkshake machine. Or a cow.

So the irony here is even though I was always proclaiming - even as recently as two years ago - the "I must work full-time thing." I don't - and didn't - really work much and I never had a plan TO work. I only worked summers in high school and I never worked in college. I don't remember what my answer was to, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" Maybe I said the usual wee girl answer, "teacher." Heck, I may have said, "Donna Summer." Because who didn't want to be her when they were in grade school? Boys, you can put your hands down now.

See, this is the crux of my whole problem. I could never answer that question of what do you want to be when you grow up because I didn't think in specifics. "Generally, I want to work. Specifically? We will worry about that when the time comes. I'm five, give me my doll." I am kind of a live-in-the-moment live-for-today kind of girl. (But also a past-haunts-me one too, which means I am a ruer.) But NEVER a forward-thinker. And so it took me some time to figure it out. High school? No clue. College? I waited until the end of my sophomore year and then when my parents suggested I should pick a major that I ENJOY, I decided to choose Art. So I was still in the NOW, doing what made me happy NOW, but with no real plan for the future. Once I was at the end of my senior year, I panicked and then a teacher suggested I work in an art library. I thought, "Well,OK. That sounds good to me." And so I went to graduate school with every intention of being an archivist but then switched that to law librarianship somewhere in the middle because the NOW at the time dictated that the only job I could get in DC was in one of the numerous law firms and HERE we are folks. Don't get me wrong I love being a librarian but....it's still work.

So I am on this housewife kick now. Because my passions are ones that grandmas do. And grandmas don't work! I am a grandma trapped in a 30-year old body. The wrinkles, the walker, and the medicine breath hasn't kicked in yet, but I can Bunko, knit, quilt, do needlework, and watercolor. I have thought about parlaying my hobbies into a career but at this point in my life it needs to be done on the side and well, it also takes vision and planning which I AM NOT GOOD AT - in case you haven't been following along.

Then if you turn your hobby into a career, when is work NOT work? Is that what I meant when I was little, "I will work" is "I will craft?" I think I can do that best sitting on my couch with someone else bringing home the bacon.

I think I will housewife cliche my way out of this post, to practice: Today I need to clean the bathrooms, bake chocolate chip cookies, watch Oprah because I need to know what her favorite things are this year, get the oil changed in the car, get the crockpot going for dinner - the neighbors are coming over, buy the mister some new socks - they keep disappearing in the wash, which also reminds me I need to go to the cleaners, the pharmacy, and must not forget to pick Johnny up from soccer practice.

Wow. THAT sounds like work. I think I will just go to work in the library afterall. Never mind.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

People To Hate: The "Enjoy Your Lunch" Police Brigade

This post is brought to you by the Welcome Mat. Nothing says "thanks for your hospitality!" like rubbing your dirty feet all over someone's symbol of welcome.

We have these security guards in the building where I work. It all goes back to 9/11.....no, wait, that is not right, they aren't concerned about our SAFETY - we need guarding from the Big Bad Media. Seems we got in a little bit of trouble with the IRS. Anyway, we have security now and you have to show them your badge every time you make a move. Going to the bathroom! Here's my badge! Going to get some staples for my Swingline! Here's my badge! And what happens when you forget your badge? Well, you can't get in is what happens. UNLESS you call somebody in your department who can come down and vouch for you and escort you around as the Badgeless Dunce and then you have to go all the way back downstairs to show them your badge once you locate it on your desk (or in the bottom of your purse afterall). And only then can you elevate your status to BadgeFULL Dunce.

I think this is overkill. See we have ourselves an overzealous Police Academy dropout. This one particular guard knows me by name - last name even. She calls me Mrs.! And then the one day I forgot my badge she refused my entry. And I should also note that they don't even LOOK AT THE BADGE. My picture is covered with the clip-on thing that I snap over it in order to shield mine and other unsuspecting eyes from the HORROR THAT IS MY PICTURE. Let me just say: Escaped Convict With A Bird's Nest For Hair...And One Eye That Got Shot Out In My Escape. See? That is not me. I have two eyes. And the bird's nest hairstyle is so seven years ago. So you could just flash some white look-alike badge (like, say, the access card to my apartment building) and you are IN. Break on through to the other side, man!

But you want to know what really irks me about the Security Detail? It is really not the badge hounding. It is for the simple fact that they have turned "have a nice day!" and "enjoy your lunch!" into a platitude - overused and abused. Yeah, what prickly pear did I sit on? Because what would be the alternative, right? "Get food poisoning!" "Have a sucky day!" Well, it may just as well be that because I note an underlying sarcasm with each utterance of these niceties - mounting sarcasm. Especially when it is shouted at you when you are - literally - one foot out the door. Yes, this one particular guard goes to excessive lengths to extol the wishes on everybody - you, you, and you - to have a ggrrreat lunch. And don't just have a great lunch NOW, have one everytime I see you. Because the Police Academy XII: Checking Badges cast (she has trained her co-workers now who used to not partake in her "game") now says "enjoy your lunch" ANYTIME you leave the office in between the hours of 11 and 2:30. 11:30 I run to the post office: "Enjoy your lunch!" 12:15 on Tuesday I go to an elementary school to read to a kid: "Enjoy your lunch!" Heading to CVS at three for a snack break: "Have a nice day!" I definitely get "enjoy your lunch" atleast two times a day - on my way out and on my way in.

I wouldn't have a problem if these words were spoken at the APPROPRIATE TIME. Like when I come back into the building - flashing my badge, of course - with a little brown bag in my hand and it is around noontime. At this time, one can safely assume I just bought my lunch. And most likely I am going to be eating it as soon as I get back to my office. "Enjoy your lunch!" to which I happily reply, "Thanks!" And my stomach says, "Gurgle."

And the real reason I have a problem with the frivolous use of "Enjoy your lunch!" and "Have a nice day!"is: Do you just say "thank you" in response every day - which is then sometimes three times a day? And not worry whether they think, "Gee, she sure eats a lot of lunch." Because I have tried the honest route, mumbling, "Well, I'm not going to lunch right now ACTUALLY, but thanks anyway," and frankly THAT just sounds bitchy, right? I don't think there are bigger issues to worry about right now.

I guess I am just mourning the loss of "have a nice day" and "enjoy your lunch" spoken with sincerity. The world COULD be a better place.

"Have a nice day" RIP.

That is off my chest. Now I can get back to my regularly scheduled program of worrying about things that really matter like when I am going to get my haircut and that zit that mysteriously appeared on my chin.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

The Contents Of My Little Black Book

(Thought I was going to say "backpack", Mav?)

I found this little gem in the bottom of one of my 63 purses. And boy did it bring back memories. It is actually a little black/pink notepad that I scribbled in on a few occasions. It starts around Memorial Day 2004 up through some beach moments this past summer when I started to jot down things we found funny but could never remember. I didn't realize I started a little "drunk stenographer business" this summer as I interviewed Mav or Goose for "items of interest." I got a chuckle out of it as I took a walk down memory lane. So why not publish it?

Drunk Girl Bar Tablet, Original Words and Illustrations by Boa and Friends

Page 1.

A drawing of a cross-type design with the word, independence, coarsely written in it. I think it was an idea for a tattoo. Good thing I didn't follow through with it because according to my drawing - if that is what I had in mind for the tattoo artist to use as reference - I could be walking around with the word "indepence" inked somewhere on my body.

Page 2.

(Dated 10/9/04)

Dear Diary, Today I went to [name of bar] and got drunk.

Page 3.

A self-portrait of my "new haircut" which was the little chin length bob. yuk.

Page 4.

A primitive drawing of a big round circle with a face drawn in it, titled, "Justin." (Hee! Those of you who know J will find the charicature right on.)

Page 5.

Another charicature of my other friend, represented as a big hulking man with muscles, titled, "Bruce Almighty."

Page 6.

The Super Secret Shortcut Directions down to the beach. I ended up amending what was written down for me with - what I felt were - more accurate directions. See, I am a visual person.

Right on 405 became... Right at The Shack
Left on 304... Left in The Middle Of Nowhere

[The rest of these pages I am copying in its true form.]

Page 7.

stepped on girl-mad
so I stepped on her again
Ask 280-lb guy to help me
Laying down
"Baby Doll Get up"
Drives the Wilmington White Trash Truck
He carried her
slimey legs - skirt around waist
Pizza - Mav passed out
Ate Goose's crust

Page 8.

ice cream cones
and teddy grahams

Page 9.

Bizarro Mav World
Getting lost - cops - state fair - cow breaking loose
Dirk Digler - saw "it"
chicken ass whooping
chicken in a holster
thumbing it

Page 10.

hot dog vendor - drive-thru
changing in car (honk, honk)

And there you have it. The first 10 pages of a drunk girl's Diary. I think it is beautiful in all its randomness. Me thinks I will resume to note-taking when moments beg of it. And so if I could do page 11 after the fact, this is what it would say:

Page 11.

Driveby - on the floor
Old man likes Mav
People in Gaithersburg probably prefer carpet
Tear in my beer
Chopped liver - Massage!
Really, really fat girl dancing on bar
We too
Woo hoos
Can't drink on bar - have to be off bar - leave Mav
You are a city girl

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

The Explanation Of The Girl Who Cried Wolf

Apparently I have a history of doing this. I think it proves that I am rather melodramatic.

I remember one time when I was really little - probably 2nd grade or so - and I got so mad because I didn't get my way so I declared in a fit of bratitude (my word - tm that) to my parents, "I am running away. You can't stop me. Did you hear me? I am running away. I will leave this house. You won't see me again. I am running away. OK? Did you hear that? I am running away." They were like, "OK then. Do it already." So you see? I had no choice. I was running away.

So I stormed back to my bedroom and got out my little green butterfly suitcase (that was my grandma's - so thrift-shop-chic and one-of-a-kind). So I took it down from my closet, stalled a little in my room, then resumed to the dramatic display of Running Away As Planned By a 7-Year Old - which is storming rather noisily out of the house in a very visible huff and again reminding them, in case they missed it, "I am running away. Running. Away!" Yeah, and did you notice that I did not pack my suitcase either? That is right. Because, see, my parents were supposed to STOP me before I left the house. So there was no need for a change of clothes or the oreos. They were supposed to say, "Don't go, sweet child. We will let you have your way." But no - and I think I saw a little chuckle in my dad's face. But I dismissed it in my 7 year-old the-world-revolves-around-me fit.

So I set out with my empty suitcase and ran myself away all the way to....the back of the side of the house. See, there were no windows here, yet one could easily find me if one so desired. I thought about this. I thought my plan golden. Until I sat there. And I sat there. And I sat there. Thinking. "Daddy will come look for me. Not Mom. She can hold a grudge. But Daddy is a softie. He doesn't spank." (And, frankly, Daddy always let us have our way.) Alas nobody came for me. I began to think I should have packed the barbies or the matchbox cars. And definitely the oreos because I was getting hungry. But I waited a good long time anyway. Til right about dinnertime. And I couldn't take it anymore. I started to miss my room. Perhaps I learned I didn't need my way. Time made me think rationally (about whatever was so dire at the time). And so I walked back into the house with my head hung low. In defeat. Except my dad greeted me at the door and said, "You are back! We are glad! We have missed you!" Then I didn't feel like I lost my way anymore. I was hungry and I was glad to be IN the house and not around the corner. Years later I found out that my dad kept an eye on my whereabouts. He knew all along that I was camped out on the side of the house.

Actually I think my dad always got a chuckle out of my histrionics. Like the time I was waiting in the car for him for like 20 minutes and finally had enough of The Wait and was ready to scream and holler, "What about me?!" But he met me with laughter because he honestly forgot I was waiting for him and got to talking to his friend. He genuinely thought it funny that he forgot about me but moreso that I waited 20 minutes to remind him. Usually I don't have that kind of patience. His laughter always brought me down to the ground from high horse of melodrama. Then there was the time I was arguing with my mom in all my teenage rebellious rage and calmly told her that "...sometimes you have to take a walk on the wild side." My dad could not contain the laughter. I wasn't even going for laughter, perhaps Lou Reed was left over in my 8-track mind and the tune subconsciously became part of my argument. In any case, my point is, my dad had a way - in just his fun-loving and alway humorous outlook - of making me realize that the drama can - should - be left at the door. Find the humor. Except I keep doing the drama bit. Apparently. My mom always told me that my dad had a way of undersanding me.

All that to say that this isn't new - at the first sign of trouble or disagreement or unease, I tend to panic and assume the worst most of the time. And I bark, harp, or cry for about five minutes and then I get over it. And then I laugh like my dad used to do because, um, drama for all the wrong reasons. Pick your battle? I need to pick my Drama.

This is why I need my sister. We are pretty opposite. But we have always been close. Even when I was the tag-along. Except she never made me feel like a tag-along, come to think of it. Because she is the sweet one - finds the best in people. She is rational. She is positive. Pretty much the opposite of how I operate. When there is a debate to be had, I always cede to her because not only does she have the intellect but she has the tact and grace to appeal and get through to people. She knows how to communicate effectively, is what it is. While I think I have always tended to be more of a visual person. And that is how I express myself. Sister: even-keel. Me: Drama Queen. And it is no wonder that I always look for her opinion in any Drama. And she pretty much nailed it on the head:

"Just my 2 cents-at this point in the relationship don't be afraid to ask for what you want out of it. And if he can't deliver, then that should answer your doubts....The issue at hand is that you don't know what's going on in his head. You can ask for what you need in the relationship without appearing to be a nag."

Let me sum that up. Um, I need to talk TO him. And not to my 999 friends. (Who also offered valuable pearls of wisdom and advice which I appreciate and absorbed. Thank you all!) But see, I have to admit I have been brainwashed by relationship self-help books. Yes. There you have it. But let me explain. They were gifted to me. See, I have this friend who lived by these books religously. When we first met we were both in love with The Wrong Guy. We bonded instantly and then The Right Guy finally came along for her and now she is married to him and expecting their first child. She read these books and took the advice to heart and whether that worked or whether it was just the simple fact that this was in fact The Right Guy - he wasn't going anywhere no matter what. Although I am sure if she uttered anything remotely like the girl on the Bachelor last night - "I am ready to reproduce! My eggs are drying up! I am feeling very reproductive with you right now!" - No joke. She said exactly that. - Then I am sure he would have hit the road. However that is just common sense and if you have to read that to know that that is The Most Postively Undoubtedly Wrong Thing To Say, well then you have kind of made your own bed, so to speak. One that you won't be sharing with ANYBODY, rest assured. Punny!

Anyhow, so the books. She passed them down to me one day last year after my last break-up and right before she tied the knot in a very Passing-The-Torch-Share-The-Wisdom-Of-The-Male-Species kind of way. I was going to "love smart!" It sounds so healthy! And so I read them all and I took a chapter from one of the books this weekend. Which said pretty much this little nugget: Men are waffles. You are spaghetti. Everything is interconnected to you - boy-work-boy-eat-boy-eat-work-boy-boy. To Boy he compartmentalizes. Work has nothing to do with you. He can think about work. And not about you. And then you silly, harpy, Boy needs space. Always. Give it to him, you Clinging Vine. Or he will run, run away and never look back. See? He's a rubberband - you need to let him snap back on his own. Eventually his elastic will wear thin. Now go drink with your friends. And leave the Caveman alone.

I didn't turn to my sister who is successfully married. I stuck to the book advice and given my history of Overreacting what do we have but: Boa's First Histrionic Fit of 2006. Straight to video. My dad's not here to hold the cue card that says, "Laugh." So I will just tell you, "Laugh."

Now, after talking to him AFTER the fact, what I should have done - and I am not going to say what HE should have done because that IS one thing I learned in past relationships, that you can't TELL someone how to behave, you can only tell them how you FEEL about this or that or when he/she did/doesn't do that - what I SHOULD have done was called him and talked to him. Make him clarify what "I can't see you because I have to work all weekend" means. Iin a non-confrontational, un-harpy, charming way. To him, of course it meant, just that. But he doesn't realize that if he expands on that with "...because I will be NO FUN and in bad mood and I don't want to take it out on you, hurt your feelings, cause a fight, and frankly I just want to focus here and come back to you next week when I can give 100 per cent" - it would calm my pretty little head way the hell down.

With that, I would have been fine with it before, oh say, I jumped the gun and packed my green butterfly suitcase and took a walk right down to The Corner Of Insecurity And Drivebys. Because, like I said, things have been peachy between us, for the most part. There has been periphal talk of the future and I think that was for his benefit in order to get his own security with me in check before he could take some time out to do his thing. (This month is going to be rough for him.) And not have to worry about how I feel about him. That is why I freaked out because in my mind his actions didn't match up. Girl interrupted? Girl confused!

Bottom line: He didn't think about how his behavior would affect me. Well, I need to share that with him. So it won't happen next time. And if it does, well then those might be cues by way of Emily's Reasons Why Not. (I watched that show last night too. Jury is still out but it is NO Sex and The City.) I won't place demands of Here Is What You Need To Do You Rubberband-Caveman Waffle Person.

Now about the him being so busy and too busy for me and yet still went out. Well that was an out-of-town college roommate who was in town that he caught up with for a short time with on Saturday night. He no more wanted to go out than the man on the moon (who says that?) but knew that it would be the only opportunity to see this person. Wrong or right. I actually understand this for the most part. A few weeks ago I had a friend who was in town and I actually forgot that she was in town until she called me the afternoon of Sunday asking to meet for dinner. I was in one of my moods that night (I have them too!) and I wanted to be by myself but I knew that I had to meet this person because who knew when the next time would be. And I certainly did want to see her. So I sucked it up. Which I think is what he did.

And so I will close the self-help books for now and go with my gut (and my heart) and talk to him a little more. He loves to talk! It is natural to have some insecurity in the beginning of a relationship, isn't it? I think so. And it is working through these moments that build a stronger realtionship. So, we will just have to see how Peter Pan carries himself now that we have talked. And if he thinks THIS is histrionics and wants to take away my voice (which I know in my heart of hearts he wouldn't do), well then, I will just have to pack that little green butterfly suitcase and REALLY run away.

Monday, January 09, 2006

The (Mis)Adventures Of A Jilted And Heartbroken Girl

So it was the first weekend apart that he requested - or did he request a weekend apart? I actually think a more accurate take on it is Setting The Wheels In Motion To Breakup. (Did I say this is truly from left field?) He definitely said, "Stay away. Busy. Don't have time for you." And I obliged...but I thought I would get a check-in phone call atleast once over the weekend. It dictated my whole weekend. It might bring out a little bit of crazy.

Friday night was simple enough. I made a little dinner of salt & pepper krinkle cut french fries and a couple glasses of wine. And chatted on the phone all night with girlfriends analyzing every moment Boyfriend (herinafter known as Peter Pan) and I have spent together. At the end of the night, I saw no signs of pulling away or disinterest on his part (prior to the 1.5.2006 email). So I decided to let it go. Let him have his space.

Then I was awoken rather early on Saturday morning to the sounds of the couple next door getting it on and cooing in moments of pleasure. I wanted none of that. I thought about "reporting" them to the front desk. But it would only come out like this: "Hi Front Desk. Yes this is Girl Who Is On Verge Of Getting Dumped By What She Thought Was A Wonderful Boy And Who Was Doing Everything Right and I'd like to report Too Much Good Time going on next door." So I just moved my slumber to the living room where I don't share a wall with the Lovemakers.

Then Saturday night came and Mav showed up at around 8:00 pm. The night started off innocently enough and just like it always does. "Hi Mav!" "Hi Boa!" and then we laugh. Because that is what we do. I was really, really happy to see my friend. And then I came up with the fabulous idea. It was so fun when I did it high school I thought this could be so much fun again now that I am 30ish.

This is when Driveby #1 happened. (Unless you count the one I did earlier in the day on my way to Target.) (Also, let me just say that he lives right off a major road that really is on the way to Target so all you have to do is cock your head to the right and look up the road to see if car is out front. It was.) But let's go back to the real Planned Driveby #1. The bar we were going to just happened to be right around the corner from his house. We both live in a fairly urban area and less than a mile from each other. So the driveby consisted of going up the busy street. Car was there. Then Mav says, "Let's drive DOWN the street." Me: "Um...Oooo-kayyyy." I was reluctant. So I threw that seat belt off and crammed my 5'7 self down onto the floorboard of her car. I just folded myself right down the middle like a seam and tucked my arms and legs in. Mav thought I only need to lean over. But I disagree. He KNOWS my back. I thought he like it. Anyway, the driveby confirmed: Lights On, Clearly At Home.

At bar, we get pounced on - let me correct that, Mav gets pounced on by two or so guys. One 50 year old and one big Meathead. Mav got her first set of digits for the night. Something about flooring installation. So after some food and a couple drinks it is time to move the party and try out the new bar. But not before we do Driveby #2. It is about 9:15 and this time the driveby revealed: Not Home. Which ended up turning into Driveby #3 because I know where he parks when he goes out, either in Clarendon or when he takes the metro to go downtown. Driveby #3 revealed: A Car! He was out! And I just sink a little deeper into sadness.

We stick to our plan and go into Bar #2. Wherin Mav gets her second set of digits for the night. This guy was actually kind of cute and seemingly nice. Because he complimented me. Which guys when you are hitting on a girl, DO NOT dis the friend. You get on good terms with Friend and Friend will talk you up. He said that Peter Pan would be crazy to ever let me go (or somethng like that). I want Mav to go out with him.

But we finish our one drink there because it is time to go downtown now. But not before we do Driveby #4. Driveby #4 revealed: Car still there. He is still out. So we hit a few more bars downtown before we end up at Coyote Ugly. Yes, Coyote Ugly. I had never been there before but it didn't surprise. It was everything I expected it to be. About a hundred or so guys screaming and ogling, while all the girls in their big boob glory pumped and grinded on the bar for the Male Viewing pleasure.

"Uggghh. Mav, let's go upstairs. This is disgusting."

So we found a place a the bar to saddle up to and the guys were flocking to Mav like bees to honey. Maybe I had a sour puss but nobody was paying me attention. Mav was busy talking. I was busy drinking. Because there was nothing else to do. And my mind was spinning with all kinds of hurt and disappointment and anger. Finally, Mav decided she liked Blue Eyed Smoker and so we hung out with him and his friend for the remainder of the night/early morning. He knew about the Pay Attention to Friend too rule. He was nice. After some drinks, we decided to call it a night.

But not before Mav and I danced on the bar downstairs. ON the bar. My feminist principles said, "I am woman. SEE me roar." Guys hooting and hollering in a drunken state of Female Ogling NOW sounded like a GREAT IDEA. It is actually a funny story and I just don't have the heart to spin it that way right now.

And so I get a ride home from Friend of Blue Eyed Smoker. I kept insisting on taking a cab. This is a stranger who doesn't even live here but is here on a short-term contract up in Maryland. So now he has to take me over the bridge to Virginia. He insisted. All the while he drove me home he kept saying, "You are a city girl. You are a city girl." Whatever that means. But I was already planning Driveby #5. I thought about making him part of it. He doesn't know where he is, I could just take him to my house by way of his house. But I think better of that. He drops me off and I proceed down to my garage to do my own little Driveby #5. Driveby #5 revealed: Home again! It was 3 AM. So he didn't go out drinking because he would have just left his car there overnight and cabbed directly to his house.

So I carried my sorry ass home.

Mav calls me up and we go to breakfast in the morning but not before we recounted the happenings of the night before. The jist of which is Drivebys and Dancing on Bars. We concluded that we were back in beach mode. Or the Mav and Boa, 2006 edition.

I love my girlfriends and Mav is one of the best. I present to you Mav.

Edited to add: We have contact. All is well. He is not breaking up with me.

Friday, January 06, 2006

2005 Playback: Summer (Minus The Beach House)

I am beginning to wonder why I began this project. I don't believe in looking back - or atleast for 2006 that is what I believe. I am bunching all the summer months together because they go together like the Miller Lite and the coosi (seriously, how do you spell that word?). Then I am on to some other things. Because guess what I believe in 2006? Resolutions. This is new for me. Never made one in my life. So I need to tell you about my interview with Dick Clark. Also, I found a new breed of people to hate. My (maybe, almost) future in doll-making. My dilemna of whether or not to attend a wedding in Baton Rouge. I also have some announcements - a new blog! and a congratulations! And something about Peter Pan. Hopefully there will be no boo hooing going on.

But this was a great summer - memories I will have forever, until senility takes over and I'm rolling down my stockings and putting my lipstick on my eyelids. I am breaking the summer into two parts: the Me part and the beachhouse part so I can let the inside jokes fly and bound a copy for Destiny's Child. But first...

The Wedding Incident

Let's start with the "bad". (You know, it's all relative.) And it goes a little something like this..."Love me two times, babe. Once for tomorrow. Once just for today..." Or: "I just got dumped - via email - by a guy who - emphatically (as in no hesitation with the yes) - agreed to go with me [to a wedding]...And now I have to tell everyone that, well, he stood me up. And then you get those words of sympathy "Oh, sorry. He doesn't deserve you. Better you found out now what he is like. You will have fun anyway. Borrow my husband." Thanks. Yes. Yes. Yes. And, uh, no."

Ta da!

Nonetheless, I was in the wedding so obviously had plenty to keep me busy over the weekend. This was the wedding of Marrieds. Except a few girlfriends that I knew. So a gaggle of Single Girls to fight over a bouquet or run from it, which has become the modern day equivalent. ("Am passive. Am independent. See I don't care about a fucking flower. Hey, cute boy, will you send me flowers? Thus, Land of Mixed Signals.") So I cried for like 2 seconds, which is how I usually operate.

But the wedding was lovely and I ended up have a fabulous time. I danced naked on a hotel rooftop with an out of town guest - who was the ONLY single guy in attendance. And he was cute! And we had a lot of fun. And I knew I would never see him again. And, for once, I was fine with that. My, the racy life I sometimes lead. (If only.)

Family Playtime

Every year around the 4th of July which is about the anniversary of my dad's death my mom comes to visit. (My dad is buried in DC.) And it is the only time I can get her up here. She is still not used to traveling on her own. And, really, seeing her drive on the highway, the intense concentration (which, kids at home, I'm not saying you shouldn't concetrate) is like seeing Michael Jackson country line dance. Something is just not right. I mean, he can do it because he is a good dancer but something just doesn't look right about it. Maybe its the hat...but I digress as usual....So this year, she brought my lovely niece who is 7 (six at the time) but really going on 15. I kid you not. But she loves me so. I know because she writes me love notes. When I am there she passes me notes. And when I am not, she sends them in the mail. She says she loves her Ya Ya. And I love, love, love her. So I had a nice visit with them this summer. We went to a baseball game wherein Ticketgate 2005 happened. (By the way, he has still not cashed the check.) We went to the zoo and got to see the pandas - before Baby was born.

Then my family all got together for a week at the beach. It was my momma's 60th birthday. I didn't really write about the visit - so no links. But I can't believe I didn't write about the All White Picture. Well, let me push my story-telling bifocals up my nose and draw you a picture...

The White Picture

So my mom's life long dream was to - be an actress? - nope, to have one of those family portraits taken where everyone wears all white shirts and then you can choose denim bottoms or khaki bottoms. Oh my, the debate on The What To Wear On The Bottom that ensued from this. We finally settled on khaki bottoms. Then my mom got upset with me because in a "glaring Act of Rebellion" - I stubbornly whittled my way into a little flowy white skirt - all gauzy and pretty in its white puffery - BUT I methodically chose a khaki belt to tie it all together. So I felt I was complying with the Khaki Rule. Except, Momma didn't see it this way. In hindsight, I guess I was bratty - this was her picture, her dream.

So, yeah, the family is all dressed in their White Picture Taking Duds and we are to meet the photog at the studio. Except a mix-up - the first in many to come. He's not there. The 14-year old son says, "He's off on a shoot." While he is shoving a sanwich in his face.

"Yeah, but we have an appointment." Disappointment overpowering my mom's face.

Son shrugs, "I'll take you to him. Who's car should I get in?"

So we embarked on a road trip with some random 14 year old boy claiming to be a Son of a Photographer. (I think there is a song.) Anyway, we plot our way down the beach to the picture locations, locate the Double-Booked Photographer who shoos us down the beach to another location. Meanwhile the sun is setting. And all is not quiet on the Home Front.

He has us park at a park. Profound! (I like that as a Title actually.) And we cross 6 lanes of U.S. 1 boulevard traffic with a 2- 4- and 6-year old. All dressed the same in our white and khaki combos (and the errant all white dressed middle child). We walk through dunes of sand with prickly foot greeters everywhere and, oh yeah, coyote, or something. At the end of the day, by the time we get to the Picture Spot we had walked a mile. Practically in a cactus patch, is my point. And so, at the spot, lo and behold, what do we have here? Dopppelganger. Because there was a whole other family in their khaki + white combo. Original Family meet Original Family #2. Yeah, except they didn't have anyone in All White With A Khaki Belt.

But the real annoying part of this whole day was now that we have been through this whole ordeal over the last hour or so we now had to wait as the sun sagged ever more downhill - like my smile. So the grump. But this is my mom's life-long dream so "Smile and Say Cheese!" Which finally happened as it was our turn and the thing that brought me back to life was the fact that these photographers were going to have to make little Val, the 2-year old get his pacifier out of his mouth and make that little pie-face smile. Lord they brought out all the stops. Clown faces. Horns. Stuffed animals. The Grown-Up-Make-The-Kid-Laugh-I-Can't-Dance Dance. Which always make me laugh. The laughing at you not with you kind. Because impressions are not peachy right now.

And then my hate continued to grow when they placed us in our spots where we would forever be recorded in a glossy 20x16 Dream Picture of my momma's choosing.

Photographer: "Let's see. Mom you are the center of this family, you go in the....center? Now First Daughter you sit next to mom. Put your husband behind you. And little girl on your lap. Now, Daughter-In-Law, you sit on the other side of mom. Put your husband behind you and daughter on your lap. And grandma why don't you hold grandson."

Grandson: "Mean man. Where's Bear? And don't you dare take this pacifier out of my mouth. I will bite you."

Photographer: "Now, what to do with the other daughter. Yeah, just sit next to daughter-in-law."

So what we had was an assymetrical photo with empty space behind my mom, two pillars of family on either side of her, and then a big blob by the looks of Me to one side. Literally, I think some of my feet are chopped off in the final picture. I literally look like an afterthought, the fuck-up kid in the all-white with no family of my own, just keep pushing her off the side. "There once was this daughter...." So I can ramble and I kid but my point is the picture, I didn't feel to be aesthetically pleasing considering the price and, oh yeah, did I mention that the jackass photographer let the other family - the one before us - lollygag and frollick on the beach in the background to Our picture. Naturally he airbrushes them out, but all the proofs which are my mom's property have little white & khaki people in the background. "Hey, we are all just one big happy family!" We should have borrowed a khaki + white fella to be a stand-in to even out our photo. Inst-family = insta-photo symmetry. Then maybe my feet can make it in the picture.

Yeah, so that is the White Picture. The important part of which is, in the end and a couple thousand dollars later, my mom was pleased. She got her White Picture.

The Pants Incident

Marlene is one of my very bestest friends. I have known her since high school. Junior or senior year, I can't remember. We met in Art Class and she had me at "Cindy Crawford has aids."

Do I need to explain that? Because of course Cindy doesn't have aids. And I don't want to spread any rumours to the contrary. It's a figure of speech. Our own figure. The story goes something like this...This first time we hung out, we were out with a few other girls on a Friday night, looking for boys, probably drinking Mad Dog and Big Gulps, and subsequently getting drunk off three sips or something like that. Because from what I remember we were walking around this park (is that Where the Boys Are - I mean, we live like 5 miles from the beach, isn't that Where The Boys Are?). Anyway, we both had to go to the bathroom and we both confided that we both have weak bladders as in DO-NOT-make-me-laugh under NO circumstance whatsoever because bladder control will escape me on this here Friday night and oh, are there boys over there. So this is the worst thing - which is trying NOT to laugh, when all you can do is laugh. So we are on the ground now, crossing our legs, tears streaming down our faces (and thankfully, not from anywhere else). Then Mar juts up and very seriously and calmly says, "Wait! I have something very serious to say and this will stop the laughing." The giggling stops. Because she does sound serious. "I heard that Cindy Crawford has aids." That did it, a friendship was born. No, we didn't pee our pants that night. But we did in a Wal-Mart all because Marlene said, "Is that Johnnie Oakley." Which, we laugh about to this day, because what is SO funny about that. At the time, it probably had great significance on the Laugh Meter. Obviously. "Hi my name is Lara and I'd like to do a Depends commercial!" Seriously, it hasn't happened since (if you must know). So no Pee-ers Anonymous for us.

Anyway, that is Marlene, that crazy girl, and I went to Chicago to visit her this summer. Our task at hand was shopping and Lollapalooza. Where we got interviewed (by who, I'm not really sure but it was a big production, it looked official, they didn't ask us to take our shirts off).

"And so I am never one to let those inside jokes die. I'll find any opportunity to try it out. Even in the company of.....cameras!....And so after a hair, makeup, and sound check, we were seated in directors' chairs, legs crossed, lip-glossed, and microphone commanding. We were ready to answer some real hardcore questions. Of which we had the serious answers to....Now I am back in DC, settling back into routine. But somebody, please, for the love of Perry, please turn on the AC (100 degress?).....or I may have to take off these pants."

Yeah, so the "pants" - you can read the background of that and our interview - if you so desire - here. All because some kid asked if someone was gay because of his purple tight pants. We found this hilarious. Teach the kid that, no that is wrong? Break down the stereotype. Hell no, make a joke about it. All weekend long. And on camera too. And when we went shopping and came home, the boys asked, "did you by pants?" When the sales people asked if we needed help. "do you have anything in a pant?" Waste not want not. The joke was not lost.

The Year of the Vacuum

Just had to say that as an fyi like it's nobody's business, I bought 2 vacuums this year. Seriously, it is like they are disposable razors. This isn't working anymore, throw it out, and start anew.

"In the end, the splurge on The Soap, The Soap, and The Other Soap ended up costing me a vacuum and not the unifying scented soaps, or the economy jug, or the "in season" scents the clerk was pusing. Nope. A vacuum. Or, that is how I rationalized it in my head. That clerk had some all-mighty powers that transcended my "shopping scents." Damn. He's good."

And finally,

The Drunk Dialing Escapade Disguised as the Pants Hemming Project (either way you look at it)

Not much more to say about this that hasn't been said before. But it is never a dull moment with Mav. Needless to say, "Last night, Mav and I discovered that sleeping in your clothes is not just for the beach house anymore. Neither is drunk dialing."

We may have gotten into trouble with the drunk dialing one other time - but that was at the beach and will have to be filed under my next post...

Thursday, January 05, 2006

2005 Playback: Train Wreck In May

Warning: May is a train wreck. Or is it June? Close your eyes. No look! Close your eyes. No look!

But first, I went to a concert. Well, come to think of it - this is part of the train wreck. Because I did get stood up at said concert. Which was weird to say the least. His excuse was weird. He got in too late from a business trip. You know, that proverbial place where they have No Phones. (So many guys go to No Phone Island for business trips. And some just work there all the time. And actually some just live there. Hmm.) So I had to do a little Q&A with myself to answer the question of "Is he into me?" "I like my pastries flakey, not my guys." Yet I was hopeful-delusional-I mean, hopeful? [Delusional. --The Masses] But the show was enjoyed by Me nonetheless. (So don't feel too sorry for me!) And I did know some people there so I was not alone. This was my rock star review of the evening despite being stood up: "A Paul Westerberg show is always unpredictable and always entertaining to say the least.....It was a show teetering on the edge of insanity and sheer brilliance. And that is a fine line. It was rock and roll. Pure and unassuming." [Woo hoo! --Some Rock Chick]

But in the end, STILL, this is what I told myself. I think I told myself that he was sending me mixed signals: "He is interested he just either has too much going on right now or is just always going to be too complicated. Sit back." [Silly girl. Um, he's just not that into you. --Pop Culture]

I kept toying with the idea of doing Match. I remember thinking that I didn't want him to see me online because then he would think I wasn't interested in HIM. Did you read that? I didn't want HIM to think I wasn't interested in HIM. "I started obsessing on the possibility that he has seen my profile online. Not as in posing, or leaked home videos, mind you. But rather innocent hi-I'm-single-looking-for-love-in-cyberspace-tap-tap-is-this-thing-on presence?"

Oh boy. But it wasn't all about the boys in May. There was the Kentucky Derby of course which I always go ga ga over every year so there was a party..."The big hulking horsies. Little tiny wee jockeys. Mint juleps. Seersucker. Cash thrown all around. Giddy. Up. [But] every year, I watch the race with one eye open. Lest one of the horsies collides and falls while they are hoofing it down the track. And for what? More oats in his breakfast than Mr. Ed down the stall?"

And you know what Kentucky Derby parties turn into once you drank from the nectar of the Horse Gods, The Minty Julep? Well the games begin..."Things I lost this weekend....A Ms. Pacman tournament, right after I boasted about my fabulous Ms. Pacman gameability."

And in May, things weren't so hot in the office. Well, in the bathroom to be more specific because I felt the need to share with the Internet our own little Mr. Hanky. [Christmas in May! --Mr. Hanky, the Christmas Poo] "I have a walking Pooh-Ball carousing my office."

"For the most part, I try and keep my contact with bathroom fixtures and walls to a minimum. I am a pro at the Flush The Toilet With The Foot Move, While Drunk. Which turns into Balancing On One Foot, While Drunk. Which can turn into Leaning Against Stall Walls While Zipping Up Clothing, While Drunk."

And then The OC pissed me off - and The OC is supposed to be all good. "...So, so forced. Me, "forcing" myself into my skinny jeans - hopping and stuffing my ass into them (and laying down flat to zip them), has nothing on The OC and Kirsten's Drunken Plunge Into Shameful Intoxification. Bad Kiki, bad." [You didn't like our drunk story line? Wasn't it fresh enough? --Fox Network]

But the girl - as in, The Author - was STILL delusional folks. "I am holding my breath and just kind of wading in still waters. When I come up for air, I will let you know whether I ride the dolphin (no pun intended, really) or jump ship. Or I guess the ship could still leave port without me." [Wasn't the aquatic hyperbole sooo last month? --Cliche Police]

Chugga chugga chugga chugga CHOO CHOO.....

(I'm getting tired.)

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

2005 Playback: April Showers

Carrying on the 2005 Playback Project. Find the rules here.

Ah, April is my birthday month so there may have been some celebrating and - at the same time - some bemoaning of this fact. You can also count on some dating (i.e., some more letdown). But spring is in the air which means summer is around the bend. And I have a feeling there are good times to be had in summer...but I am getting ahead of myself. You know? It's tough to write about the past, when you already know the future - or is it the present?

So I found myself treading water, testing the waters, and swimming in liquid gratification during the Month of April. And just to carry on the Annoying aquatic hyperbole (because: theme!)...put on your life vest because there may some bumpy water ahead. (heh heh)

You say it's your birthday? Well, it's my birthday too!
"While we are not quite at the "39 and Holding," "40 is the New 30," or "I Don't Get ID'd Anymore" age yet, we are creeping up on it." [You turned 34 this year. That is old, geezer. --Reality Police.]

OK. So I am starting to feel like Age is catching up to me. The funny thing is everybody I meet thinks I am much younger than I am. (I think this is based on looks, but I wonder now...) Everybody tells me I look 27 - well, I have been saying that for a couple years now so maybe I look 29 now. My point is I finally know that I can't eat whatever the hell I want. Metabolism is sloooowing down. It has made the pass to the slow lane. So I want to preserve my "good looks" (Thank you, Me!) and this month I found a way: "Cosmetic trickery! The Lip Plumper(tm)! They say it will smooth the wrinkles and create a mild "swelling of the lip tissue" and it doesn't involve painful injections. It's genius really. Because every aging beauty needs big lips. Yes, we are starting small on the body beautification. Baby steps. Next year - maybe Crest Whitestrips?"

So it is funny how I start the month all happy and sane:
"I happily turned that clock forward last weekend. Who needs an extra hour of sleep anway? There are shrubs to be hedged!"

And so there were dates. Some good and some bad...well, they were all pretty bad.

Especially when you have a stalker. Who, by the way, I still bump into from time to time. "I shrugged it off as drunk - I know drunk - I have compassion for drunk....And, by the way, silly boy, it takes way more than three beers and a shot of whiskey to get me 'liquored up and in bed'."

"Golly, I was having a fine time so bartender pour me another Belvedere Soda and another and another and another and another. Oops...hiccup...giggle...giggle...time to stop, time to go home." [Always stop at the Giggly Hiccup Dance. --Old Wise One.]

"And so, what is the one thing you should probably never ask a guy on a date? If he would like to lay on the kitchen floor with you? Yes. That would be it. You know what I did? I asked him if he would lay on the kitchen floor with me." [And all your friends said that line would never work...who knew some Guy would actually find it "charming". Just wait for September. --The Future.]

You see where this is going? Only I don't in April so for the month of April - I am OBLIVIOUS. [He's gay! --Mav] I am confused as to why he won't find this cute and charming?!?

"In the morning, I woke up with a skinned knee, a bruise on my hip bone, and only one eye washed of make up. And I'm sure my hair was all over the place. I chuckled to myself thinking lucky for him he only got to see last night's act."

"But I did manage to spill beer all down my arm, in front of him. Something to do with not having enough hands to open a gift, open a card, and hold a beer. I guess the right thing would be to put the beer down on the bar. But, that would get in the way of actually drinking and opening and talking - which I so can do simultaneously. So the beer just poured out like a stream of water from a hose, all down my arm."

So, in the end - April? The message of which is, gosh, you are clutzy, or drunk, or nervous, or trying too hard, but you are not sitting home alone. Key! You are eating out alone. It's a good place to be right now. Even if you don't quite realize it yet...: "Eating alone is lonely. Eating out in public alone is humbling....And yet, I politely order my food. I don't want any funky kitchen scrap or bodily excretion ending up in my food on account of some sassy attitude. It's key. Restaurant staff can treat me like shit, I am always going to treat them like gold." [Rule 101 of Table For One.]

I know you didn't ask, but to be continued...

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

2005 Playback: A March Of Madness

I've seen this "meme" floating around in various forms. One says to take the first sentence from the first entry of each month and copy and paste. Another says to take the last sentence. The general idea is that this would be a summary of your year. I decided to read back through every one of my posts and select sentences I liked or that had some significance for that month. It is kind of hard for me to pick just the beginning sentence, or the last sentence, or just one sentence in particular because - let's face it - I hardly write in complete sentences. The grammar police are on to me. And instead of just re-gurgitating, I decided to make this an exercise. I will recycle the old content with new commentary to give it new life and try and make this a semi-cohesive post while I reflect on the past year. This might get all piebald on me. Strap in.

The story begins in March....

Because March was the birth of the blog! And the demise of a "relationship" that lasted six loooong years - too long. Relationship is what we call it. It was on and off - a friends-lovers-confidantes-punching bag kind of thing. Nobody really understood it. I think we did. But it ended rather bizarrely. The ingredients of which are: One Non-Committal guy, a desperate haggard mom, visions of money bags, years of Guilt, lots of miles between, kids!, unaccepting family, and a quick wedding (that hasn't happened yet). The Mud Pie is not complete. But what I think of his Hell is my Paradise. Because it didn't take long to figure out that Letting Go was a blessing in disguise. I probably cried for like 3 threeks. Then I put the wheels in motion to Trucking On.

And it went something like this:

"I have had this Old Worn Shoe for the past six years........This week I opened my closet to put on Old Worn Shoe, but it was gone." [Who really needs old worn shoes anyway - high time to upgrade! --Jimmy Choo] [Who is Jimmy Choo? We love you! --DSW Shoe Warehouse]

See? I was "dumped" for an ex-girlfriend. Ouch. But how do you get over getting dumped? Well, it might look something like this your first couple weeks: "Spending all day Saturday in a bar where people are dressed as Guinness bottles and cans.....At what point in the day did I lose all feeling in my ass?"

At about this time, you come up with some real insightful observations: "The Dive Bar is the heart of a real drinking culture."

And of course there is no substitute for retail therapy: "Because you can never have enough, I bought new blue jeans!"

Then you try and throw yourself into your hobbies, your interests, a blog(?): "I was an Art History major in college so occasionally it creeps back into my life.....If I were ever brave and cool enough to own a snake, I am sure I would name him Modigliani." [Artsy-fartsy, I try. Brave-hearted, I'll never be. Perhaps a goldfish named Sausage would be more my speed.]

So you are keeping yourself busy and avoiding Him but it is March. And in March The Cold will not go away. And frankly you are tired of it at this point. My feeling is if you get The Bitter Cold - you should have some snow with it. It's like beer in a can and a coosy (sp?) - it just makes it a tad more enjoyable. If anything for show. But alas, the snow never came...."I even went out this year and bought snow-appropriate trend-wagon Uggs in anticipation of burying my luxury-wrapped sausages deep within your fluffy, powdered purity. Instead all I got were puddles and my Uggs are like, "fashion victim." It's like driving an SUV in the city. Utilitarian? I think not. Aesthetics."

And look at this, sometimes I actually sound like I have had therapy: "I know change isn't going to happen unless you drag your pity-ass off the couch and do something about it. So I have put those wheels in motion.....I am "dating" again....And I won't look back because I know from experience that in order to move on permanently, you have to move on emotionally."

But then again, I become all school girl lovesick, instead of patient [Spoiler: Rampant theme this year.] And in March, I encountered my first (proverbial) frog of the year: "Like the skeptical fan from the sideline, declaring "it's over" when the other team has a substantial lead over your team. You throw the towel in. You call it for what it is. Impending defeat. So I am going to call this game right now.The sexy-but-not-obviously-or-conceitingly-sexy boy I met on Friday night - and who gave me one of the best kisses of my life by the way - will not call." [Girl, so not the best kiss. --Hindsight.]

And then I get all anlaytical about "What Is Wrong With Me"...boiled down to one very over-rated technology: "I hate the phone. The phone surely hates me. It is the bane of all my relationships. Since this is a blame-seeking culture, I am placing the blame on the demise of any potential relationship on my lack of Phone Presence. I don't have it. In fact, the next time some guy asks me for my phone number, I am giving him a friend's number, so that she can mediate the Call That Will Inevitably Bust All Hope."

"I needed another martini to stay in the game or my mind was taking a long walk off a short pier. I needed to blame it on alcohol." [The Calling Card of Drunks-R-U. --Anonymous]

But I think I found some peace at some point this month: "...so I put away the martini shaker, grabbed my quilt, and laid down on the bathroom floor. For that moment there were birds singing in my head. One was dancing, one was finishing the vacuuming, and one was in the corner drinking."

Oh yeah, and this was my Skinny Month....good times...
"So maybe I will just roam the Easter candy aisle instead and remember what that chocolate bunny tasted like. Because memory is still always sweeter than the candy will ever be."

So this is what March looked like. The message of which is, let go, drink, buy yourself another pair of $160 blue jeans, and bank on the men you meet this month to never call you back.

But you are back in the saddle....