Go F Off, Go Fund Me.

My head is going to explode if I see ONE MORE Go Fund Me request on the interwebs. There are approximately 8,435,927 requests for cash daily. Seriously. It’s getting super annoying. EVERYONE has a Go Fund Me for something. Some Go Fund Me requests are legit. Unexpected and tragic expenses warrant a Go Fund Me. Most other things do not. For most of them, I want to say, “Go F yourself!” Here are just a few examples of Go Fund Me posts I have seen on Facebook, along with my silent in my head only responses. I DO filter myself sometimes.

 

My loved one died suddenly and I need help with expenses.

Yes. Unexpected death can bring unexpected expenses. It happened in our family when my little brother died at age 35. My step mother was not prepared for this emotionally or financially. So, someone started a Go Fund Me for her.

 

My loved one died and I want to buy a brick, statue, etc with his or her name on it.

No. What the hell kind of nonsense is this? What is a piece of cement going to do for anyone?

 

My loved one died and I want to donate to a foundation that helps to prevent deaths like this.

Yes. This is actually useful. It could help other families avoid the tragedy you experienced.

 

I want to be a model and need to pay $3, 457 to have professional pictures taken.

Nope. Have your boyfriend take pictures and use Photoshop or iPhoto to edit them. Send them to agents. In other words, do the work yourself.

 

My kid is going to New York City on a field trip and I need $2,459.62 to send her.

Nope. I didn’t get my jollies the night your child was conceived, so I’m not obligated to pay for your kid’s field trips, or anything else. The kids should have a car wash or sell cupcakes to raise money like we did back in the day.

 

My kid is raising money to help other kids with cancer.

Yes. Absolutely. And give your kid a hug from me. Also, you are an amazing parent.

 

I’m writing a book and I want to publish and promote it. Can you help me with some cash? 

Nope. I’m writing a book, too. I would love for other people to fund my creative endeavors. I dream of spending my days writing and napping like Stephen King. You know what I do instead? I work a full time job and a part time job so that my family can eat and stuff. Buck up, drink some coffee, and write in the early morning like I always plan to do but never actually do.

 

I have a cyst in my brain and I need an expensive operation that my insurance won’t cover, or I don’t have insurance.

Yes. This is happening to a friend of mine right now. I will gladly donate to his fund.

 

I’m a musician and I need money to record an album.

Nope. You know how you could get money to record an album? Get a fucking job. It’s what my son and his band mates did.

 

I have cancer and I can’t work. I need help with my medical expenses and my bills.

Yes. No one chooses to have cancer, even if they smoke like a locomotive. Working while that ill can be impossible.

 

My daughter is raising money to donate to our local animal shelter.

Yes. So many animals are homeless because douchenozzles out there insist on buying animals from breeders or breeding their own animals. Stop being a dumbass and get pets spayed and neutered, and adopt from shelters instead of breeders. We don’t need to breed more pets.

Ugh. I am very passionate about animals, as you can tell.

I think you get the point. I’m not going to fund anyone’s creative dreams or useless piece of concrete. I’m not going to help someone else’s kid go on a trip.  I have my own kid that I take care of. I would help a sick friend in need or a foundation that helps people and animals.

 

What about you? Have you contributed to a Go Fund Me? What made you want to contribute? Have you seen any RIDICULOUS Go Fund Mes?

Let me hear from you in the comments section.

 

Messy Marriott, (Scr)Universal, and Darling Disney

My family and I just got back from a tour of most of the theme parks in Orlando. This involved me putting on A LOT of sunscreen, real pants and a bra, and leaving my beloved cats for a week. It is always tough for a hermit to leave home. So, I tried to book a homey hotel room. I failed.

Mythos was the only place we got our money's worth in Scruniversal.

Mythos Restaurant was the only place we got our money’s worth in Scruniversal.

We chose a Marriott Residence Inn because my husband is like a mega platinum Marriott traveler, or whatever they call them. Plus, they had a two-bedroom suite with a pullout couch in the living room (we took our 18 year old son and his girlfriend on the trip). Usually we love Marriott but this one was a train wreck. The stairwell had a melted candy bar on the floor for three consecutive days—and you can imagine what that looked like after three days in the Florida heat. In our room, one toilet didn’t flush properly (even after the maintenance crew came in to fix it), the tub was full of hair from who knows how many people and didn’t drain properly, there was a busted out window screen, and the garbage disposal didn’t work. Our room was only half cleaned at best on most days, and apparently towels and toiletries are on demand items—they took the used ones but didn’t replace with new. And yes, we did leave a tip every day. When we gave the person at the desk our list of complaints he said, “Well, this is a franchise so you can’t expect the same quality. The corporate owned ones are still top notch but the franchises are looking to just cut costs.” For real? Marriott needs to pull the franchise from this dirty place. To their credit, the hotel did comp us two nights—but remember the Hertz commercials with the slogan, “There is Hertz, and there is not exactly”? To quote my husband’s old boss, this was a “not exactly” experience.

One of the other reasons we stayed at the Marriott Residence Inn is because we were going to Disney AND Universal. So, we didn’t want to stay on property at one place or another and selected a hotel that was in between the parks. Both groups of parks have their good and bad sides. Universal has Harry Potter land, so that is why we wanted to go. It also has larger roller coasters, which my husband loves. The down side is that I had to rename them ScrUniversal because they love to screw you over.

Like most Type-A individuals, I booked this theme park vacation MONTHS ahead of time. When I went on line a few months before our trip to purchase Universal tickets, I was THRILLED to get a special deal. I paid for two days in Universal and Islands of Adventure, and got a third day free. This was AWESOME. Except for the fact that I didn’t think to read the fine print.

When we got to Universal on our first day, the ticket and finger print scanner told me our tickets were expired.

WHAT?!

Then, he pointed out the fine print. They had expired a month before. He told us to “Go to guest services and they might just give us a one day pass.”

My head almost exploded. I had paid $750-something (English major, here) for four two-day passes, and they “might just give us a one day pass?” I was going to hurt someone.

So, my husband did all the talking. He is our family spokesperson as I tend to be a wee bit unfiltered and totally too direct. Long story short, after waiting in line for an hour with all of the other people who had been screwed on this buy two get one deal they gave us three day passes for $40 on top of what I had already paid. OK. We were happy to finally get to enter the damn park.

Since we got a late start and didn’t get in until 11:00am or so, all of the rides had at least a 1,387 minute wait. There were signs everywhere announcing that express passes were priced FROM $39.99. So, my husband told us that he would buy express passes for the next day and we could get there early and ride everything without the need to pack a lunch and an air mattress to wait in line.

Guess what? Scruniversal strikes again. Notice how they said express passes were FROM $39.99? That’s because they are NEVER $39.99. On the day my husband tried to buy them they were $99.99 EACH. This does NOT INCLUDE your admission ticket. Bend over. If you want to get on a ride before YOU are 99, it’s going to cost you.

I get that theme parks are a business, and they want to screw grown-ups out of their hard earned money, but when they involve kids, I have a problem. This happens at Ollivander’s Wand Shop in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. When a group enters Ollivander’s a kid is chosen. Well, it’s not always a kid because my son’s 19 year-old girlfriend was a chosen one. That’s how I know what happens. So, the chosen kid is “given” a wand by the actor portraying the shopkeeper. Actually, the kid is told that the “wand chooses the wizard.” Whatever. So, at least five times, the shopkeeper and his assistant tell the kid, “this is your wand.” Then, when the little presentation is over, the kid leaves the room with the wand.

Wait. Does the kid actually get a free wand at Scruniversal? Nope. Not so fast, little wizard. The assistant grabs the kid and asks, “Where are your parents?” Then, she informs them that their child’s wand is $47 plus tax.  Now, what parent is going to say no after their little snookums was just told they were the chosen wizard and other such nonsense? My son’s girlfriend bought her wand, and my son bought one, too.

They try to screw you out of your belongings when you use a locker. Instead of having you take a key, or use a pin code, most of Scruniversal’s lockers use those biometric finger print scanners. This is the worst idea ever. Apparently, I would be an awesome KGB double agent, because my fingerprints are unreadable. Every time I used one, and I gave it three tries, I had to get an attendant to open my locker for me. I felt like I was back in middle school trying to get ready for gym class. I got the same panic and pit sweats. There was never a time I COULD open my locker via this magical finger print method. And it wasn’t just me. My son’s girlfriend could not open her locker at the Harry Potter ride. The finger print scanners don’t work for shit, Universal.

The kids loved dinner at the castle.

The kids loved dinner at the castle.

Going to The Magic Kingdom was a welcome escape from the messed up Marriott and Scruniversal. Yes, it was hot, and yes there were tons of people, but Disney is always delightful. This is partially because it is SO CLEAN. After all, they hire people who just sweep and empty garbage, all day long, in costume, and usually while singing. That is some attention to detail right there. That is why it was a surprise to see a Magnum condom wrapper on the ground when we were waiting in line for Splash Mountain. I guess that big drop at the end got someone REALLY excited.

Another thing I LOVE about Disney is that selfie sticks are SO banned.  The mouse clearly does NOT like selfie sticks. There’s a big warning sign on the parking attendant booths.  Then, you receive a flyer with your parking pass. Before you can enter the monorail, you get a thorough selfie stick search. Well, just your bags get searched. It’s not like Goofy is there in a cop uniform with big, rubber, mouse hand gloves yelling “BEND OVER AND SPREAD ‘EM, GARSH DARN IT!! YOU BETTER NOT HAVE A SELFIE STICK UP THERE!!!”   It wouldn’t surprise me though as they are damn serious about the no selfie stick rule. It’s great that they ban these things because they’re annoying. People already stop in the middle of walkways to take pictures of everysinglefuckingthing. It’s best not to encourage them to take MORE pictures.

But there are other things that should be banned:

Double wide strollers – Seriously, if you really must bring two children who cannot walk yet, will likely throw loud, screechy fits, and will never remember this super expensive vacation, at least use a normal, single row double stroller. I can’t tell you how many times I thought I would die or lose an appendage when some Starbucksed-up mom (yes, Starbucks has now invaded even Disney World) pushing two screaming children towards some poor bastard in a Mickey costume almost ran me over to get “Mickey’s” autograph, stop her children from shattering peanut brittle with their voices, or both.

Stopping in the middle of a walkway – People really think there is no one else in the world when they just HAVE to take a picture of a shrub shaped like Jiminy Cricket or a mouse ear shaped balloon. Move over to the side if you have to stop walking. There are other people who are trying to get to their next Fast Pass ride. You can schedule Fast Passes for free, by the way. It’s included with your admission. Are you taking notes, Scruniversal?

The Scooter Brigade – In all of the theme parks we visited, it seemed like at least a third of the visitors were in scooters. Yes, some of them were legitimately handicapped. Others seemed to be handicapped only by their sheer physical size, and hopped their obese bodies right out of their scooters to get on rides. It was so common that I told my husband that they really need to put in a scooter exhibit on “Its a Small World.” They could have little dolls from all over the world singing and scooter dancing to that horrible song that accompanies the ride. He replied, “That would work since I’m not sure if they are embracing cultural diversity or perpetuating racial stereotypes. Also, that song will haunt me in my dreams until 2027.”

We did have some good memories from Disney, like the princess meals we had. I booked dinner at Cinderella’s Castle because I’ve always wanted to eat there and because my son’s girlfriend is into all things Disney princess. I knew she would get a kick out of it, and she did. I have the pictures to prove it.

I love Snow White. I made the husband pose with all of the others.

I love Snow White. I made the husband pose with all of the others.

The next day, when my husband I went to Epcot and the teens spent the day at Hollywood Studios, we had an accidental princess lunch.  I booked lunch in Norway because neither one of us has ever had Norwegian food and my husband likes fish dishes. We have eaten all of the other cuisines in Epcot, so I wanted to book something different. Once we arrived in Norway, and saw the line of little girls in princess dresses, we realized that we were dining with royalty. I made my husband pose with most of the princesses, which they loved. And so did he. The fact that Epcot is not dry like the Magic Kingdom also made us happy. Norwegian food and Disney princesses go well with good wine.

Overall, it was a good trip. I know I have bitched a lot about things, but that is how I amuse myself. We made a lot of good memories, took pictures (minus the selfie stick) and had Mickey waffles for breakfast daily. We also walked 44 miles in six days so it was definitely a vacation where I felt no guilt eating whatever I wanted. However, the next time I go back, I will be springing for a Disney hotel, though. I feel lucky that I didn’t get bed bugs from the nasty Residence Inn.

I want to hear about your most recent vacation. Was it a theme park tour like mine, or did you read on a beach somewhere? Leave me a comment.

 

 

Wimpy Parenting = Wimpy Kids

Fifth grade Lisa did NOT earn participation trophies, or any trophies.

Fifth grade Lisa did NOT earn participation trophies, or any trophies. 

Way back when polyester bell bottoms were all the rage, and remote controls and cable TV had not been invented, I was a shy, chubby fifth grader. I got picked last for kick ball, made fun of because of my mom’s rusted out Chevy, and received a plain sandwich and water when I couldn’t afford lunch at school. I lived.

If I were a fifth grader now, the coach would divide the kids into teams to make sure no one felt ostracized. Any kid caught making fun of my mom’s car would have been given a detention and a how not to be a bully reading list. The lunch lady would have given me the same lunch that everyone else received even if I had not paid for two weeks. In short, the world has gone soft and we are creating adults who cannot deal with reality. Life has changed since the disco era. Now, there is a list of rules we must follow, especially if we have kids, so we don’t offend anyone. Here are a few examples.

INVITATIONS FOR EVERYONE – When I was in fifth grade, I was thrilled to be invited to my friend’s birthday sleep over. After opening my invitation in class, I noticed that about half of the sleepover party girls were also going to a water park with the birthday girl. I asked the birthday girl about this, and she said, “Yeah. My parents said I could only bring five people to the water park. So, you can’t go with us.” I stammered out some version of “Oh, OK” and went back to my desk. I cried when I got home, and I felt a little left out, but I got over it. She couldn’t invite ALL of her friends to the water park. That’s life.

Now, kids have to invite the WHOLE class or they are not allowed to bring invitations to school. This is so no one’s feelings are hurt, and no one feels left out. The bad thing about this is it extends into adulthood. There are now grown women who have meltdowns because they are not invited to a wedding, or party, or bunko game. Everyone thinks no one should ever be left out. That is just not realistic.

NO JUDGING – There is this huge “don’t judge anyone” commandment now, and it’s making us stupid. There are grown ups who maintain friendships with people they don’t like just to avoid the “judge” label. It’s also putting kids in danger. If your little snookums has been raised not to think of anyone as “bad” then he’s not going to see a problem with hanging with the drug dealing kid who sets toilet paper fires in middle school.

NO FIREWORKS – OK. Everyone is going to hate me for this, but I’m going to say it anyway. I am grateful for our military, and I feel horrible that some soldiers come home with PTSD. I get how fireworks can be a trigger. But, guess what? The whole world is not going to stop using fireworks because they cause anxiety for some people. Instead, the people who suffer from PTSD should make other plans. Perhaps earplugs, noise reducing headphones, or medication would help during certain holidays.

NO TRIGGERS – The other day I shared what I thought was a funny meme on Facebook. It was a blurry picture of Bill Cosby and it said, “If you see this, it’s too late.” Not five minutes later, I got a comment from someone telling me the picture is a trigger for rape survivors. She was assuming I was NOT a survivor. I told her that I was sorry and I hadn’t though of that. I was first sexually abused at age 2, but I was overpowered by my teen babysitter, not drugged. I left the meme up. If something I see online or on TV makes me think of being sexually abused as a kid, I stop looking at it or watching it. I don’t expect the world to tiptoe around my past.

POTTY MOUTH POLICE – I say fuck like most people say hello. I grew up with a mother who cursed a lot and I spent 10 years as a stand-up comedian. So, I don’t even notice when I say “bad” words. Someone always tells me, though. Look, I get that you might not what your kid to start speaking Sailor because he heard it from me, but that is YOUR responsibility, not mine. When my son was little, I had conversations with him about language that he could use in private and public words. I didn’t expect people in a public place to change their behavior for my child.

I know that it is supposed to take a village to raise a child, but it’s not a village of automatons. People come in all shapes, sizes, sexual orientations, and temperaments. The sooner kids realize that not everyone is going to ensure they live a life of cupcakes and bubble wrap, the sooner they will learn to deal with a variety of people and situations.

So, what do you think? Let me hear from you in the comment section. Are you a helicopter parent, a free-ranger, or somewhere in the middle?

 

Snarky Retort to “Rules for Dating my Daughter”

Normally, I flip through the interwebs casually and inattentively. I read headlines, glance at cat pictures, and roll my eyes at religious and political stuff. Every so often, I see a popular meme that irritates me so much that it jars me from my semi-conscious social media induced zombie state. I know you have probably seen this one, too. It’s everywhere. It’s even on t-shirts. As you can probably tell from looking at the title, it’s the Rules for Dating my Daughter meme that irritates the pacifist right out of me.

Why would this irritate me? It’s funny, right? WRONG. It’s not funny when you have a son. Not one bit. It’s not funny when someone assumes your Star Wars watching, animal loving boy is a threat to anyone. So, Mr. Macho Rules for Dating my Daughter, I’ve got some replies for you.

Get a job.

Why? Are you counting on him to pay your bills while you sit around, pull the bedbugs out of your navel, and write stupid ass rules for dating your daughter? School is his job right now. Obviously, it was never your focus.

Understand I don’t like you.

Understand he probably doesn’t give a shit. Also, understand your snotty little princess might get on my last nerve.

I am everywhere.

That’s an odd statement. Are you on any psychiatric drugs or did you fail basic physics in school? While you are floating around EVERYWHERE, can you tell your daughter to stop leaving hickies on my son?

You hurt her, I hurt you.

First of all, that is a comma splice. You would have learned fancy writing skills in school. Also, DO NOT threaten my son. If you hurt him, I can promise that you will never know what hit you. I will fly at you with some Lifetime movie level shenanigans like the Wicked Witch of the West on Meth riding a Dyson.

Be home 30 minutes early.

Then tell BOTH of them to be home 30 minutes earlier than you originally said. Don’t play games. Just give a damn time.

Get a lawyer.

Why? Dating your daughter is a crime because she is such a special princess? Fuck off.

If you lie to me, I will find out.

How? Did Harry Potter mind reading skills come with your “I am everywhere” starter kit?

She is my princess, not your conquest.

I didn’t know princesses traded in their gowns for shorts that show their labia. My son generally wears pants that cover his genitals. Who is the conquest?

I don’t mind going back to jail.

Really? Is it the food or your big, burly lover that you miss most?

Whatever you do to her, I will do to you.

So, you will buy him jewelry for Christmas? You will take him to the movies every week, and out for ice cream, too? I think you need to think this one through a little.

Really, I’m not sure why any of these “rules” bother me. They were obviously written by a “man” who sits on his porch, polishes his gun, and spits tobacco juice into a Mountain Dew can. In other words, he’s a walking stereotype.

Hey, I’ve got an idea, Mr. Rules. You could maybe get to know my son as a person rather than an imaginary threat. In return, I will stop rolling my eyes whenever your daughter complains of being cold in her denim bikini bottoms. Deal?

 

Murder Mystery Meltdown

On Friday nights, I usually change in to my pajamas at 5, order a pizza, have an extra glass of wine, and watch Shark Tank with my husband. Last Friday was a wee bit different. My good friend M had a couple of extra tickets to the murder mystery dinner here in my hometown. My husband and I like hanging out with M and her husband, so we were glad they invited us. Having never been to a murder mystery dinner, I thought it was a dinner show, meaning I could just sit there, shovel food in my face, and watch the show. It would be kind of like what I do at home in front of the TV only I would have to wear a bra, and not put my feet up. It sounded awesome.

At 43, I have the hearing of a 90 year-old, so before walking into the restaurant, I turned up my hearing aids. I wanted to be able to hear M and hear the show. This was my first mistake. Holy heck. From the time we entered the restaurant until the “crime” was solved, there was constant noise and “information” about the killer. The interaction never stopped.

Once I realized how noisy it would be, I turned DOWN my hearing aids and asked to see the drink menu. I said a silent secular prayer that this was a full liquor bar place and not a beer and wine only place. I did plan to order two glasses at a time if wine was my only option. One glass would not be strong enough for this hermit hell I was in. Beer is just weak bread flavored soda, in my humble opinion.

As an introvert, I lose energy when I am in a crowd of people. It’s almost like my light switch goes off and my ability to interact with people just shuts down. My switch flipped off about an hour before the show was over. I’m sorry, I mean about an hour before the murder was solved.

Not only was there a lot of listening and talking, but there was freaking homework! Seriously. We had to take notes and fill out a worksheet about “clues” and “suspects.” I was not allowed to write, “I don’t care. Can I just have my dessert in peace?” That is not a correct answer. They really wanted us to THINK about what had happened and who had a motive to kill the victim. I hadn’t heard most of what the suspects had said because the sound system seemed to have come from a 1989 K-Mart catalog. It also could have been because I’m hearing impaired.

Not only did I have to strain to listen to suspects, but also I had to talk to strangers. Strangers. I’m still recovering. We were supposed to actually get up from our table and circulate to talk to even more strangers. As the token introverts at the super interactive murder mystery show, M and I declined to do this. Our husbands played the game, though. This gave M and I a chance to catch up.

There was a theme, too. It wasn’t just a murder we were solving; it was a totally awesome, tubular murder from my high school years. That’s right. We were partying like it was 1985. I really enjoyed the 80’s theme, especially the costumes. I wore my cat Swatch (of course I have one), a checkerboard mini skirt, and leggings. Other people dressed in really authentic 80’s attire, including the murderer and her man.

The Murderer and her Beau

The Murderer and her Beau

The murderer was Cindy Leapyear. Get it? Leapyear instead of Lauper. I don’t remember what her motive was or any details because I had stopped paying attention an hour earlier. I think it had something to do with a romantic relationship with another character that looked like Joe Dirt. My husband got a picture of Cindy (not her real name) and her companion, who wore a plastic suit. I hope he had a layer of baby powder under that suit. It did not look comfortable. I spent the evening trying to figure out if he was Michael Jackson or Devo. He did win a prize for his costume, as I told him he would when I first saw him earlier in the evening. Cindy and Devo Jackson gave us permission to use their picture.

So, if you are an extrovert, and you love talking to people and being social, and doing a lot of thinking while you eat dinner, find yourself a murder mystery dinner to attend. If you are an introvert, stay home and watch TV. It won’t talk back to you and you can wear pajamas while you watch.

Gun Shy

 

A million years ago, when I was 28 for the first time, I wrote this short story for a creative writing class I was taking. 

“You just can’t find Hops gun oil anymore,” Frank Theterson mumbled to himself while he sat on a lawn chair in his backyard cleaning his handgun. This was the latest in Frank’s collection, a gift from his son, and his current favorite. It was a Smith and Wesson 686, a Combat Masterpiece. Frank had wanted to buy it for himself at the gun show he and his son had recently attended, but he had talked his father out of it. Now Frank knew why.

Frank carefully removed the lower receiver and placed it on a cloth on the grass next to the upper receiver. He oiled the chamber with the generic gun oil he had picked up from Wal-Mart after finishing his security guard shift at Weston Lakes Community the night before. Frank had started working for Wackenhut security a couple of months ago. He was on the third shift, eleven at night until seven in the morning. Frank volunteered for the shift because all of the other guys were married and had families to go home to. Frank lived alone. The long nights didn’t bother him. It gave him an excuse to drink more coffee and stare at the stars.

Frank rubbed the small amount of corrosion off of the chamber. The gun was in pretty good condition; it wasn’t new but it had been taken care of by its previous owner. As Frank rubbed oil on his bun, he reached down into a brown bag of peanuts, with his non-oily left hand, and threw one at the squirrels who lived in his yard. The four squirrels ran over to the peanut, but the smaller one grabbed it and ran with it in his mouth before any of the others could get there. Frank threw three more peanuts over to the hungry animals. He enjoyed having the squirrel family inhabit his tree. He would sometimes just sit in the yard and watch them chase each other or hide the nuts that Frank gave them. They were like pets to him. If he could have told them apart he would have named them all. He called the small one Sumo. The other three were the same size and color; so, Frank just called them the dancers.

Since his wife died two years ago, Frank had been pretty lonely and had become more comfortable outside with the squirrels than inside the house with Helena’s clothes, knick-knacks and the furniture that they had picked out together. They had only been married five years when Frank found her on the floor in the hallway one morning. A heart attack. She was only 54 years-old. Frank always thought he would go first. He was six years older and overweight. Frank never watched what he ate; he enjoyed his baby-back ribs and steak. Helena was the opposite – always exercising and dieting. She started taking herbal diet pills too, Ephedra or something like that. The doctor said the pills probably caused the heart attack. All of Frank’s friends told him that he should sue, but going to court and talking about Helena every day was more than he could stand right now.

Frank raised the gun and aimed at the house to check the sites. The chamber was empty, so he pulled the trigger. His son had just given him the gun the day before and Chuck knew enough about guns to unload a gun before giving it to somebody. Click. If the gun had been loaded Frank would have just blown away the Tinkerbelle wind chime that Helena had bought in Disney World six months before she died. If he had known he was going to lose her, he would have spent the extra money and gotten a room at the Polynesian Resort instead of the Holiday Inn. Helena had always wanted to stay at the Polynesian and go to a luau with Mickey and Minnie; but, Frank just couldn’t see spending over two hundred bucks a night on a place you just slept in. He wished he could go back and let her have the luau.

Frank held the reassembled gun between his knees, by the handle, and polished the barrel with a felt cloth. He rubbed around the trigger, removing his oily fingerprints from when he had been checking the site.   The gun was now aimed towards his neighbor’s back yard. There was some oil built up on the trigger, so Frank folded the cloth so it was smaller and scrubbed the trigger. Click. He had pulled the trigger by accident while he was cleaning it. He would have taken out a rose bush that time. Nancy Johnson would have been angry. She loved those roses almost as much as she loved Tom, her husband, or Sergeant, the couple’s German shepherd or her children.

The trigger still felt gritty to Frank, so he grabbed a clean cloth and folded it in quarters. He rubbed it against the trigger as hard as he could. Bang! The gun went off! Shit! Frank had thought for sure it was empty. The gun had kicked back, burning Frank’s inner thighs. “Son of a bitch!” Frank yelled, hearing himself as if he were in a tunnel. His ears felt clogged from the noise of the gun going off. He started thinking about how stupid his son had been not to unload the gun and how stupid Frank himself had been not to check the gun. Damn! Thank God it was a weekday. Frank could have shot one of the kids. He felt very relieved.

Frank got up from his lawn chair and brushed off his jeans and grabbed the handkerchief out of his back pocket to wipe the sweat from his forehead. Good thing he hadn’t changed into shorts before going outside, like he usually does; his thighs would have been really burnt then. Frank shook his legs so that his jeans pulled away from his thighs a little. Damn! That hurt, he thought. Frank walked over to the fence separating his yard from the Johnson’s. He wanted to make sure he hadn’t hit a rose of something. The Johnsons weren’t home; like most of Frank’s neighbors, they both worked during the day. Frank also wanted to get the shell. Even though it was empty, he didn’t want the kids to find it. The Johnson kids were still little. Todd was 5 and Mary was 3. Frank didn’t want them to put the shell in their ears or mouth.

Frank looked through the large holes in the chain length fence and looked into the rose bush. “Sergeant!” Frank yelled. The dog was lying under the rose bush. He wasn’t moving. “Sergeant! Get up boy!” Frank yelled. He thought, maybe he was just sleeping and too tired to get up. Then, Frank heard a slight whimper and saw the blood on Sergeant’s neck.

Frank hopped the fence into the Johnson’s back yard. He kneeled next to the rose bush and lifted Sergeant. The dog yelped and tried to nip at Frank’s forearm as he moved him, but the dog was too weak to sink his teeth into Frank. Frank needed to get Sergeant to a vet immediately.

Frank backed his Explorer into the Johnson’s driveway and got out of the SUV quickly. He ran back to the yard and picked up Sergeant. The dog felt like he weighed as much as Helena, about 90 pounds. Frank put Sergeant into the cargo bay on a blanket. He wrapped the blanket around him to keep him comfortable. It was still early in the day, so the SUV was not hot yet, but it was kind of warm outside, even for South Florida. Frank hopped back in the front of the Explorer and looked at Sergeant in the rear-view mirror. “You’re gonna be ok, boy. We’ll get you to a doctor,” Frank told Sergeant as he pulled slowly and gently out of the Johnson’s driveway. Frank drove slowly down the street to prevent Sergeant from moving around much.

They arrived at the vet within a few minutes. It was the same vet that Frank used to take his cats to. He wasn’t sure if the Johnsons brought Sergeant here or not; Frank decided to alter his story a little, just in case. He was so afraid to tell his neighbors that he was responsible for this. They would hate him. The Johnsons didn’t believe that civilians should be able to own guns. Frank and Tom had had many debates over the fence in the evenings. Now this.

Someone was coming out with a Dalmatian on a leash when Frank was carrying Sergeant up to the door. The man held the door and Frank stepped in through the open door and went up to the counter. “This dog has been shot. I found him on the side of the road near my house. He needs help now,” Frank told the woman at the counter. The woman yelled to someone in the office behind her, and this woman ran around and opened a door into an examination room, where a vet was waiting. “Put him down here!” the doctor said, pointing to a gurney. Frank put Sergeant down and patted him on the head.

“You’ll be ok, boy,” he said, and then the doctor wheeled Sergeant away. Tears came to Frank’s eyes, and he sat down on a plastic chair in the exam room and started to cry. He could not believe that he had been stupid enough not to check if the gun was loaded or not. Damn it! What would he tell his neighbors? He couldn’t tell them that he had done this, that he had pointed a gun at their yard and fired it. He just couldn’t do it.

Frank looked down at the blood on his shirt. He still had on his Wackenhut shirt. It seemed like a lot of blood. He hoped they could give Sergeant a transfusion or something. He would donate blood to the dog if it would work. Damn it! How could he have done this? He would do anything for a time traveling Delorean right now. What was he thinking? Playing with guns after working all night — that was smart.

Frank buried his face in his hands and started whispering. “Hey, God. It’s me, Frank. I know you haven’t heard from me since Helena was sick, and I know I’m not a regular church goer and stuff, but you gotta help me out here. Well, just — you gotta help Sergeant. Nancy and Tom love that dog so much, and he’s so good with the kids. Please keep him alive, God. I swear I’ll never touch another gun as long as I live, if you just keep Sergeant alive.”

“Sir?” A woman’s voice interrupted Frank’s prayer. “Sorry to interrupt. I just need you to fill out this information sheet for the dog. Bring it to the front counter when you’re done.” The woman handed Frank a clipboard with a white paper and a pen on a chain attached. She walked out of the room, her shoes squeaking with every step.

Frank got up from his chair and grabbed a couple of tissues from the Kleenex box on the counter behind the examining table. He blew his nose a couple of times and then grabbed another tissue, shoving the used one in his pants pocket. Frank wiped his eyes and looked down at the paper and the blue stick pen that was attached to the clipboard. The alcohol and wet dog smell was getting to him. He looked down at the blood on his shirt, and the combination of the blood and the smell made him gag. He dry heaved into the red biohazard waste can next to the counter.

Frank sat back down and wiped his face with another tissue. There was cold sweat all over his face, in his hair and on his arms. He felt chilled, like he was sick. Frank picked up the clipboard and filled out the form quickly so he could go home. He put his name address and phone number. He wanted to have the chance to talk to Nancy and Tom about the accident before they talk to anyone from the vet’s office.

Frank got up from the plastic chair, holding the clipboard with the pen dangling from it. He could feel the air from the ceiling vent blowing on the back of his sweaty shirt and through his moist hair. He still felt shaky and queasy, but he knew he had to check on Sergeant’s progress and he had to get home to tell Nancy and Tom where their dog was.

After hearing that Sergeant was out of surgery and would probably make a full recovery, Frank headed home. As soon as he got into the house, Frank unbuttoned his bloody Wackenhut work shirt, took it off and threw it in the kitchen trash. He put his blood stained undershirt in the garbage too. Next, he grabbed two large black trash bags and went into the guest room. He opened the closet door and grabbed his five handguns, making sure each was unloaded before tossing them all into the trash bag. He tied the bag and put it next to the door. Frank then opened the other trash bag and grabbed his pile of Gun and Ammo and threw them into the bag, too. He grabbed all of his Wackenhut shirts from the closet and threw them in the bag. He even grabbed the one shirt he had in the hamper and tossed that in as well. Frank took off his blue, stained work pants and threw them in, along with the pants from the closet and hamper. Then, he tied the handle ties and placed the bag next to the door, with the other bag. He stopped to look at his wedding picture. Then he grabbed both bags and carried them out of the room to place them in the garage. He put the bag of guns next to the garage door and put the other bag in the trash bin. If Helena were still here he never would have taken a night job or gotten so interested in guns. He would have been working during the day or traveling with her. They had loved to travel.

After throwing the trash bags away, Frank took a shower. He stepped into the shower and turned the water on as hot as he could stand it. Steam filled the bathroom within minutes. Frank grabbed the bar of Irish Spring and lathered his whole body, including his hair, with the green soap. He stood under the hot water until his pale skin was red. He let the water beat his scalp, listening to the pulsating sound with his eyes closed.

When he got out of the shower it was 2:30. Nancy, a school librarian, should be home soon. Tom, a bus driver, got home shortly after her. Frank Figure 3:30 would be a good time to go over and let them know what happened. Frank got dressed and called the veterinarian’s office to check on Sergeant.

After keeping Frank on hold for a few minutes, the receptionist told him that Sergeant was awake and doing well. The bullet did not hit his jugular vein and just went through some fatty tissue and muscle. Sergeant would be sore for a while but he would be ok. Frank was lucky. It could have been so much worse. He had to get rid of those guns. He had heard that the police station would accept them, so he carried the bag out to his truck and put it in the cab. Frank locked the truck door and was about to walk back inside the house when Nancy pulled in to the driveways with Tom right behind her.

Frank walked over to their driveway, being careful not to step on a row of new gardenia plants Nancy had just planted the week before. He folded his arms in front of himself as he approached Nancy’s car, and looked down at his black sneakers.

Nancy got out of her white Ford Focus with her purse and lunch bag in her hand, and walked to the back door to get the kids out. They were in the back seat, smiling at Frank. “Hey, Frank! You’re up early. What’s the occasion?” Nancy always kidded Frank about his odd schedule.

Frank looked up from his shoes to Nancy’s smiling face. “Nancy, I’m afraid there’s been an accident. Sergeant..”

Nancy dropped her bags on the hood of her car and said, “What happened to Sergeant? Oh my God! Is he ok? SERGEANT!!!”

“What’s going on?” Tom said, standing next to Nancy.

“Sergeant’s at the vet’s office. He was shot but now he’s—“

“Shot!! What! Where’s our dog?” Tom demanded.

“Up the street at Coral Springs Animal Hospital. He’s going to be ok.”

Nancy and Tom were in Nancy’s car before Frank finished his last sentence. Frank stood in the driveway for a few minutes and thought about how his oversight had caused so much pain and stress. He walked around the gardenia plants to his own driveway and walked into his house. He sat down on the couch, picked up the phone and called Wackenhut to let them know that he would not be in that night, or ever. Maybe he’d get a job at the grocery store.

The Children in Iraq Weep for You

 

If my son actually read my blog he would be rolling his eyes right now. I say this to him over and over, every time he complains about something asinine, like having to mow the lawn or, gasp, clean up after himself. Let’s face it, as ‘Muricans, we all have our little first world problems. For example, your day might be ruined if your gel nails chip after only one week. They’re supposed to last at least two weeks!  Or, perish the thought; your wifi might be slow. Time Warner is the devil; amiright?   Your child might throw a tantrum because you bought the wrong cereal. How dare you get store brand trash with no toy? Have you ever said, “There are hungry kids who would love to eat Walmart brand Fruit Loops”? If so, you will understand what made me start talking about the children in Iraq.

We’ve all been there. The struggle is real. I started saying “The children in Iraq weep for you” when my son was 8. Let me take you back to September 10, 2005, otherwise known as my birthday. Yes, my birthday is the day before 9/11. In 2005, it was also a week and change after Hurricane Katrina. I know it’s not all about me, but can my birthday get a fucking break please?

Anyway, that year, my husband and I decided to celebrate my birthday on the 9th because it was a Friday and it had been a LONG workweek. So, my husband brought home a cake and prepared dinner. Before dinner, our son asked if he could spend the night at a friend’s house. We told him that he could go, but we were still going to celebrate my birthday without him. He skipped off to his friend’s house down the street. I blew out my candles, and the husband and I ate cake. Life went on.

TIMEUntil the next day when our sleepy, cranky, 8 year-old came home. He stumbled in the door like he had been on a drinking binge during rush week on fraternity row. My husband told him to go take a shower because he was taking him shopping for a birthday gift for me. (Guys, why do you always wait until the last minute? Seriously, why?) At this point, our son asked if we had already “sung happy birthday and had cake.” I told him yes. Then, my almost as tall as me third grader had a toddler level melt down.

“WHY DIDN’T YOU WAIT FOR ME???” He screamed and cried.

“We told you we were going to celebrate my birthday. You opted to leave anyway.” I remained calm, even though I wanted to smack him.

The boy continued screaming and crying. I bit my lips together and wondered why my birthday always had to be fucked up by something. I rolled my eyes and looked around the room, trying not to yell back at him.

That’s when I saw the Time Magazine on the couch. There was a picture of two women floating in the flooded aftermath of Hurricane Katrina on the cover. I picked up the magazine and flipped through to find more such pictures.

I held up the magazine to my son, showing him a picture of a little girl who was crying and standing on a roof, clinging to her teddy bear and a fire fighter. “See this,” I asked him.

He stopped crying and looked. “Yeah?” he questioned.

“Do you know why that little girl is crying?” I asked calmly.

“No.”

At this point the spirit of Sam Kinison took over my body. “SHE’S CRYING BECAUSE HER FATHER DIED IN HURRICANE KATRINA! THAT IS WHY WE CRY. WE DON’T CRY OVER BIRTHDAY CAKE!!!” I took a deep breath and turned the page. (Yes, I did receive my mother of the year award. Why do you ask?)

The boy stared at me from across the room, and somehow knew it was time to get it together. I went through a few more pictures of hurricane destruction with him. With every picture, I emphasized that THIS is why we cry. We don’t cry over CAKE.

Finally, at the end of my Kinison like rant, I told him that the children in Iraq, who lived in destroyed villages because bombs were dropped on them, did indeed weep for him because he missed out on cake. The boy quietly walked out of the room and went to take his shower then.

Since that day, over the years, whenever the boy, or anyone that I am close to, including myself, has complained about some first world problem, I have told them that the children in Iraq just weep for them. I’ve also used the phrase in a few blogs; here are some examples.

I’m not trying to be an insensitive asshole by talking about the children of Iraq. I’m just trying to put things into perspective. If you compare your life here in ‘Murica to living in Iraq, you live like royalty, and you should shut the hell up about your crappy cell phone service with AT&T.

So, during this July 4th weekend, as we celebrate our Independence from England, I want you to really be thankful for living in a building with a roof and climate control, for having clean clothes, for eating non spoiled food, and for being free. Because even if you hate your shitty office job, or you despise doing yard work, or you are overwhelmed with your parenting duties, you are free. So, quit your bitching, enjoy the fireworks, and don’t make me go all Sam Kinison on you.

 

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The Children in Iraq Weep for You by Lisa R. Petty is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License

A Tale of Two Fathers

Now, don’t go getting too excited. This is not a story about how I was raised by a nice gay couple. Nope. I was born way back in the 70’s. Two men were not allowed to get married and adopt a baby. This was REALLY frowned upon back in the polyester and disco era. The only two men who could openly live together back then were Burt and Ernie, and they had separate beds even if they were in a one-bedroom apartment. Nope. This is a story of the two fatherly type men in my life – my never around biological father and my fantastic stepfather.

This is where I get my sarcasm and my tendency for high blood sugar.

This is where I get my sarcasm and my tendency for high blood sugar.

Like everyone else on the planet, I have a biological father. I mean, duh, we all need TWO parents in order to become a person, right? But I use the word “parent” very lightly when it comes to my father. Really, “sperm donor who cheated on my mom and left for good when she was 7 months pregnant” is more accurate. Yep. My mom finally had enough of her husband’s Mad Men level philandering and kicked his ass out when she was full of pregnancy hormones. He left, taking both cars with him. Asshole.

I saw my father about five or ten times in my life. When I was first born he told everyone that I “looked Asian” and that I couldn’t possibly be his kid because my mom was a big ole cheater.   Not true. Then, as I grew older, I began to look EXACTLY like my paternal grandmother, his mama. So, he could no longer deny that I was his. He did, however, continue to deny to pay child support, but I digress.

I don't have any pictures of me WITH my father, but he did take this picture of me at the park, hanging with a duck.

I don’t have any pictures of me WITH my father, but he did take this picture of me at the park, hanging with a duck.

The few times that I did talk to my dad as a kid, I liked him. My mom always told me what a crappy husband he was, and I knew that he rarely visited me, but I still liked him when I did see him. We seemed to share a dry, sarcastic sense of humor. He was intelligent, musical, and a little mystical at times. He read my Tarot cards and told me stories about the ghosts that haunted his house. I found him fascinating and like all kids of divorce, I used to wish that my parents would be back together. It never happened.

The last time I talked to my father was horrible. I was 14 and my mother had just married my stepfather. I was excited because my stepfather was going to adopt me and then I would have the same last name as him and my mom. We were going to be like a “normal” family. Growing up as the lone custodial child of a single mom (my brother lived with my father), I was always chasing “normal.” So, I was THRILLED that my stepfather was going to adopt me.   I told my father the good news over the phone one night. He got angry and said, “Well then you’re not my daughter anymore.” He hung up. I never talked to him again. He died the next year, at age 49, of a heart attack in a Denny’s parking lot. I was 15.

At first it hurt to lose my father, even though I barely knew him. All of the future “should have beens” came rushing through my mind. He should have been there to see me graduate from high school, and college, too. He should have been there to walk me down the aisle when I got married, both times. He should have taken me on vacations to spend time with his parents and his sister and her kids. To this day, I really don’t know his entire side of the family. I thought we had years ahead of us to work through our fucked up father daughter relationship. We didn’t. To this day, I will not let someone leave or hang up the phone if they are angry with me.

I got out of the “my father died” funk when I realized he really wasn’t ever a father to me. Now, my stepfather, on the other hand, was a father to me. Not only did he teach me how to cook, clean, and not be an asshole, the man taught me that he had my back, right from the beginning.

This is where I get my ability to make lasagna and clean a kitchen floor on my hands and knees.

This is where I get my ability to make lasagna and clean a kitchen floor on my hands and knees.

Before my mom even married my stepdad, he was there for me. Since he was 19 years older than my mom and already retired, he took me to the orthodontist and other appointments when mom was working. So, during these drives in his 1977 HUGE green Lincoln Town Car, we had some good talks. One time, I told him about a boy at school who was picking on me. This boy was calling me “pig lips.” I never really thought much about my lips one way or another, but once this jackwagon pointed out that my lips took up half my face, I spent most of the time trying to pucker inward and hide the majority of my huge lips. My stepdad set me straight.

One day, he sat me down on the couch and put a pile of fashion magazines on the coffee table. He flipped through them and said, “Look at all of these gills (he was from Boston and didn’t pronounce his R’s). They get shots in their lips to make them fullah,” he informed me.

“Well they’re stupid!” I said with all of the seriousness an embarrassed 13 year-old girl can muster.

He didn’t stop; he kept flipping through the magazines, pointing out the “gills” with full mouths, and telling me I had what women paid plastic surgeons to get. It took me years to believe him. Now that I’m in my 40’s, I’m glad for my pig lips because they look a lot less pruny than skinny lips.

One of the best things my stepdad ever did was teach me how to drink. He had a very liberal policy on alcohol. He figured if you don’t make it a “big no no” then kids wouldn’t want it so much. I think he’s right about that. My stepdad bought me my first drink at one of those private clubs in Boston (I don’t remember if it was the Elks, the Eagles, or what, but you know what I mean). I was 15 and he had just picked me up from the airport. I had flown up to meet him in Boston, where he was visiting family. My mom was going to fly up in a few days. On the way home from the airport, he had to stop by this lodge of sorts and talk to a friend. My guess is it had something to do with betting on something as the man’s only vice was gambling. So, we sat down at the bar to wait for his friend and my stepdad asked me what I wanted to drink.

“A screwdriver,” I said, being sarcastic and not really knowing what the hell a screwdriver was.

He ordered it for me, and the bartender actually gave it to me. I drank it. Now, this was not the first time I ever drank alcohol. It was the 80’s and there were these things called wine coolers that high school kids could somehow get from stores who sold to teens. I’ve got lots of stories about wine coolers, but that is for another blog.

After that, my dad let me have drinks here and there. On New Year’s Day when I was 17, I came home from a sleep over with my friends. I told my parents about how one of my friends had drunk too much and barfed. I had not had any alcohol at all, so I held her hair. My dad immediately went into a lecture on “how to drink.” Here are his rules:

  • Stay away from the “dahk” stuff. (Dark stuff — Whiskey, dark rum, etc)
  • Stay away from the sweet stuff. (No froo froo drinks)
  • Don’t Mix. (That one is pretty self-explanatory. Stick with the same drink.)
  • Pace “yahself. Just keep a little buzz.” (Don’t over do it.)
  • Have some “watah.” (Stay hydrated.)

The man was right. I got all the way through college and young adulthood without barfing from drinking. I was 31 the first time I puked from alcohol, and that was the first of only three times. The three times that I have gotten sick from booze have been because I broke one or more of the drinking rules.

My son with grandpa.

My son with grandpa.

My stepdad was not only a great father to me, but he was an amazing grandfather during the short time that he was in my son’s life. After my son was born, I went back to school to get my Master’s degree. My mom and my stepdad babysat my son. They took him everywhere with him, to the mall, to the grocery store, everywhere. My stepdad even let my son “help” him build a trellis. Unfortunately, my son’s time with my stepdad was too short. He died when my son was 3.

Father’s Day is always kind of tough for me because I don’t really have a father anymore. I do have lots of wonderful men in my life who are fathers. First of all, there’s my husband, who, like my stepdad, took on the role of stepfather to my son. Then, there’s my son’s biological father who has maintained a good relationship with our son even though we live several states away. He also always paid child support, unlike my father. Last but not least, there is my father-in-law, who is a kind, warm, and friendly man. He would have to be; he raised my wonderful husband.

 So, we’ve talked about me enough. What are you up to on this sappy Hallmark card holiday weekend? Leave me a comment. I love hearing from you.

D and C Lessons Learned

Last week, Monday was more craptastic than usual. Instead of going to work, I had to go to the outpatient surgery center for a D and C. Contrary to what your grandmother may have told you, that does not really stand for dusting and cleaning. It should be called a VUS (violent uterine scraping). While it did SUCK, I was happy to have a day off of work. I got to sleep until 10:00am on a Monday, so that was kind of cool. I forced myself to sleep in so that I didn’t have to kill a pet or family member during a fit of hanger. I had my last drink of water and my last bite of food at 11:45pm on Sunday night and I wasn’t allowed to eat or drink again until after my dreaded procedure. By the time I woke up at 10, I was a little irritable, as I already knew I would be. In addition to this little lesson, I also learned a few more things before, during, and after my D and C. It’s your lucky day because I will share them with you, just in case you or someone you have to co-habitat with needs a little tidying up in the baby holder.

Stay the hell off of Web MD. Seriously. No looking up your symptoms before the procedure itself. No matter what you read you will have cancer or some sort of rare parasite that will eat your blood vessels and make you speak Swahili.

Bitch session boards blow. Every asshole with a negative story is out there, posting it on multiple discussion boards. When I looked up Depo Provera, a treatment my doctor recommends for my condition, I found 5,678,932 posts about becoming fat and crazy. People blamed everything on Depo. I was waiting for some whacko to say, “I grew a rectal unicorn horn 13 seconds after my first shot. This makes sitting on my husband’s lap a felony in 37 states.” Let’s face it; people love to bitch online. Not many people want to post when all is normal and fine.

You are a pissing queen. Yes, you will likely need to abstain from food and water for 12 hours before your procedure. That won’t stop them from asking you for a urine sample to do a pregnancy test. They ALWAYS ask you to pee in a cup. You could be missing an arm and a leg, and somehow manage to crawl into the ER, leaving a trail of blood from the car to the sign in desk, and the nurse would say, “OK, we will be happy to stop that bleeding as soon as we get a urine sample.”

Fasting is not a good diet plan. There are people out there who fast to lose weight. Those people are morons. You know what I did as soon as I was allowed to eat 16 hours after my last meal? I ATE like a pig. And I kept eating, FOR DAYS, because I was STARVING.

The pussy parlor is closed. Don’t bother styling your pubes, or shaving them all off, or applying rhinestones to your outer labia, or anything vag beauty related. Your surgeon and the staff have seen it all, and legally they are not allowed to Instagram your nether regions. You will be on a gurney, not a shiny pole or a .com.

Afternoons CAN be a delight. I used to always schedule procedures for the early morning hours because of the dreaded fasting. I might have mentioned that I tend to get a little hangry. My D and C was scheduled for 1:30 in the afternoon. I dreaded it because I thought I would starve to death. The time actually worked out well because my blood sugar was so low by the time we got to the surgery center that I didn’t have the energy to be nervous.

Let the nerves flow. Sometimes, you’re just going to shake like a fish with Parkinsons, and that’s fine. (Cranky people, it’s OK. Michael J. Fox would totally laugh at that if he read my blog.) Dr. Feelgood the anesthesiologist will give you a happy shot and it will all fade away.

It ain’t tequila, toots. You may be able to do shots with the fellas and not barf, but you will slur and repeat yourself and stumble from anesthesia. You will also not be able to spell or punctuate properly. Don’t write anything for at least 5 days. Just don’t. No one is stronger than whatever is in that mask and IV combo.

Accidents happen. The couch is your friend. Just stay there. Hold a cat if it helps to keep you seated. Stairs are not your friend. Stay away from them.

The Poo Choo Choo derails. I have IBS and I usually poop 4 times a day. Seriously, I am the type of person who gets the runs if it is 5 degrees too hot outside or my internet goes out. So, constipation is not usually an issue. Not usually. When I have surgery, my system just SHUTS DOWN. When this happened last week, I drank a big glass of gritty Miralax and that did absolutely NOTHING. So, I called in the troops. I sent my husband out to buy liquid glycerin suppositories. In case you are lucky enough to not be familiar with them, glycerin suppositories are like dynamite for your ass.  You might as well yell “FIRE IN THE HOLE!” when you insert one. And you should really insert these on your own, while you are no more than 14 centimeters from the throne. You do NOT WANT TO walk after using them. They work. QUICKLY.

Thank you for reading this. As you can tell, I’m still a little loopy from that mask/IV cocktail on Monday. I understand if you want to stop following my blog now. I usually don’t write about uterine scrapings and poop on the same day. Hey, at least there aren’t pictures. Seriously, I need to read this piece again and again since I’m one of those lucky women who needs a “dusting and cleaning” every 4 years or so. Good times.

 Leave me a comment. Tell me about your awesome medical experiences. After what I shared with you, you should have no shame about anything, really.

 

 

 

 

Your Worst Best Friend Ever

See how good my friend looks here?  And she is holding my cat bff.

See how good my friend looks standing next to me here? And she is holding my cat bff. I love this picture. 

I know I am a self-described hermit, but lately, I have felt a little lonely. DON’T TELL ANYONE THIS. You will ruin my image. Anyway, yes, this cat-loving loner has felt the need for more human companionship. Sure, I live with the boy and the husband, and they are both my best friends, but there are times when a strange, awkward woman needs to talk to another strange, awkward woman. And that is where friends come in.

I have friends, just not a lot of them. After sitting here alone on many Saturdays, I have asked myself, “Self, why do you not have more friends? You’re charming, and you don’t have any noticeably strong odors. Why are you not out more?” After a lot of thinking, and a pot of coffee, I have discovered the reason. It’s because I suck as a BFF. It’s true. Read on.

I moved without telling my friends once. Yep. I was so upset while going through my divorce that I moved two hours away and didn’t tell most people. When I’m down in the dumps or going through drama, I don’t really talk to people. So, I didn’t mention the move to another county. Oops.

I don’t want to talk about feelings. When I am upset, I write, or I exercise, or I talk to my husband or son. I will never call you crying in the wee hours of the morning. I expect the same respect for sleep from you.

I turn my phone off at night. See above. I am allergic to midnight drama. Unless my husband or son is out, my phone is off at night.

I never talk on the phone. If you need to call me, it better be urgent and you had better text me first, or else I will look at my caller ID and step the fuck away from my phone if it is not my son, my husband or my mother.

I would rather hang with the fellas than the girls. I’m not talking about going out with random guys. If you have read about my childhood, you know that men scare me. What I mean here is that I would so much rather be home, in my jammies, and watching a movie with my husband or my son. They are my fellas. Girls’ night out just sounds hellish. And since it likely requires real pants and a bra, it sounds plain old uncomfortable.

I roll my eyes at vaguebooking. If you want to get all teen-girl emotional on Facebook, I will add you to my restricted list. I prefer straightforward communication. Don’t hint at any issues you have with me; just tell me.

I have nothing bad to say about my husband. Seriously. Sure we have our ups and downs, but I am not going to bash him to you. I prefer to do that shit straight to his face. And it makes me uncomfortable when you bash your husband. I might consider him a friend, too.

I don’t care about shopping. I buy most things online. I loathe the mall and I don’t want to share a dressing room with you and try on skinny jeans.

I prefer to do most things alone. I bought my wedding dress alone. See above. I don’t like shopping, so I like to get it done quickly when it is necessary. If I had shopped for my dress with someone, I would have had to hear her opinions and try different things. This way, I bought the dress I liked and then I ate lunch. Done.

I would rather have scotch than wine. It seems to be fashionable for moms, and women in general, to love wine. I don’t hate wine, but I would rather have hard liquor any day.

I don’t share your love of chocolate. The good news is that I will likely give you any chocolate I have unless it is GOOD dark chocolate or a Reese’s cup. Then, you’re on your own.

I won’t come to your Botox/MaryKay/Avon party. I’m just not that vain. I wash my face and put on moisturizer, and that is about it. I do get my Elvis Presley sideburns waxed, but that is so I don’t get mistaken for a really short cross-dresser. I live in the Midwest where people aren’t so tolerant of such things.

I will never hold your hair while you puke. Hell, I don’t even want to be in the same building with you if you are puking. That shit could be contagious.

I go to the spa alone or with my husband. I wear hearing aids, so I don’t really hear well. I don’t want to try to have a chitchat session over running water and other assorted salon background noise. My husband either talks louder to me or happily chats away with his spa person while I give mine one word (hopefully correct) answers until she stops chatting.

Right now you’re probably wondering how in the hell I have any friends at all. I wonder this myself. After all, I do have the emotional availability of Sheldon Cooper. Why do some people like me and want to spend time with me? I can’t be sure, but here are a few guesses.

People think I’m funny. Most people, aside from Sheldon Cooper, like to laugh. So, they are attracted to funny people.

I’m short and stubby, so most people look good standing next to me, especially if we are photographed together. I can make anyone look like a long, lean super model.

I’m stupidly generous. I will buy you lunch for any old reason, and I will never forget your birthday. This is why my husband is now in charge of the money. You may have missed your window on this one.

I will tell you the truth. If you ask for my opinion, you better want an honest answer because that is what you will get.

I can keep it together in tough situations. I’m usually not a crier. I fight tears through a combination of holding my breath and visualizing kittens. When I do cry it is usually due to fever related illness or scary doctor visits.

Having said that, I would accompany you to your scary doctor visits. I know what it is like to fear things like “biopsies” and “procedures.” I will hold your hand through scariness even if you break it. I’m tough like that.

Yep, I can see why I hang out with cats most of the time. As a super best friend, I flat out suck, but I do make a good horrible best friend. Everyone needs one of those to make them appreciate their BEST friends, right?

So, what about you? Do you have ONE best friend? If so, who is that person? What makes you a good or bad friend?

 

 

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