Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Theory of Relativity

Einstein can kiss my ass. I will tell you about the theory of relativity: Your own sense of sexiness or ugliness is directly relative to the looks of your friends.


I have a knack for befriending hot women. I'm not sure why this is. Perhaps I'm a closet lesbian with impeccable taste? Or maybe I'm just a masochist.

You already know about my brilliant, altruistic friend who looks like Sandra Bullock. But I have others. They don't resemble famous people, but most of them are darling and delicious. Inside AND out.

Going out in my twenties consisted primarily of guys approaching me to tell me that my friends are hot. They were afraid to talk to my friends, but nobody's intimidated by the wingwoman. Once in a while, when his BAC reached dangerously high levels and my particular friend was already spoken for that evening, a guy would lurch toward me waggling his eyebrows lasciviously and I would pounce.

As a mature thirty-something, I thought I'd made peace with the fact that I will never, ever look like Kim Kardashian, even if I had her access to mass quantities of QuickTrim, a trainer and a stylist. Besides, it's the inner beauty that matters, right? (100 out of 100 men polled agreed - but they weren't listening to the question because Megan Fox walked by.)

I have to shamefully admit that when I began blogging I was excited to connect with other bloggers - bloggers who, I assumed, were nerdy Plain Janes like me. So imagine my horror to begin connecting with sweet, intelligent bloggers who look like this:

The other half of this face? Had BETTER look like a troll!
So, in the name of my shattered self-esteem, I'm hereby firing all of my friends - both real life and virtual. In the future, if you'd like to befriend me, please be homely, acne-ridden and a size 24 or larger. Thank you in advance.

Meanwhile, if you don't hear from me for a while it's because I'll be attending a Cultivate Your Inner Beauty seminar. Repeatedly.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Monday Marvels

Today there is no list, because I have something else to discuss - and I make the rules here. (It feels splendid to say that - maybe that's why people have children?)

Last week I began begging shamelessly for dollars in the hopes of buying a laptop before my PC-asaurus gasps its final breath. The response has been overwhelming. Not because I'm rolling naked in piles of money, though someday I'm gonna have to do that...just to say I did. (Maybe I'll borrow the bills for it and after my butt sweat taints it, nobody will want their dollars back!)

But I digress.

The response has been overwhelming because the idea that anyone would take the time and dollar out of their day to send me a buck just blows my mind. It's incredibly exciting to see something in the mailbox that doesn't say "balance forward..." On Saturday, I opened the mailbox to find a Laptop Love dollar neatly tucked inside a letter that made me tear up - this was exciting since people have long suspected that I don't actually have a heart.

Speaking of hearts, the dollar that started the seed of this idea was mailed to me by an anonymous angel when I was wrestling with whether to follow my head and take a crap job to just try to stay afloat, or to follow my heart by putting my focus on writing. The bills weren't going away so I took the crap fabulous job (Hi, Boss!) but I'm trying to make sure it doesn't interfere with my true love, vodka writing. Because if we can't be passionate about our life, what's left?
The most supercalifragilisticexpialidocious dollar EVER.
I've found that the people in life who inspire me the most are very passionate or perhaps mildly crazy. Can you be one without the other? I'm not certain, but the voices in my head tell me they often go together.

Today a dear friend called to tell me that she's taken a HUGE plunge. She's walked away from a prestigious position at a stable company she's been with for many years - in a putrid economy - to FOLLOW HER HEART. She knows what God has made her to do and her current career wasn't allowing that part of her to grow.

So now my Laptop Love tally has gone down by one very special dollar, because tonight I'm giving the Follow Your Heart dollar to her. She's my heroin, and yes - I spelled that right. Because sometimes inspiration is my drug of choice.

CommentLuv can Kiss my Big White Butt

So...I tried installing CommentLuv on my blog, which is supposed to make it easier for folks to comment, but instead I was just getting Japanese spam.

I've gone back to the OLD SCHOOL Blogger commenting format, but it won't let me reopen comments on the Catoadstrophe post. If you feel driven to speak of the toad-monster, please do so here.

New blog posts should function as usual. Sorry for the interruption of your daily chance to mock me.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Catoadstrophe

I'm going to have to move.

Not because I've been evicted, though that may happen soon.

Not because I have a better option, because I don't.

But...I CAN'T LIVE LIKE THIS ANY LONGER.

I don't live in a stinkin' pond, so where do all these monsters come from? Last night I sneaked out to have a late-night smoke before bed. Apparently this is God's way of punishing me for my vile habit, because when I finished my cig and turned to go inside, the door was (again) blocked by a rabid toad. I had to leap onto the patio chair and tuck my feet up, choking back tears, for over thirty minutes before he left.

Do these bastards smell my fear?

This has happened before, and it was a learning experience. Here's what I learned:

 - Facebook may tell you that you have hundreds of friends, but guess how many of them will come remove a toad from your doorstep at 2 AM? NONE. That's how many.

 - Toads do not respond to verbal directives such as "GET THE HELL OFF MY FRONT STEP!"

 - They are stubborn and throwing things at them is totally ineffective. Especially when you throw like a girl and generally miss. They just look at you with their smug little beady toad eyes and they croak. I don't know if you knew this, but "Ribbit, ribbit" sounds suspiciously like "Bring it, bring it."

And before any of you make cracks about Prince Charming, let me assure you - my vagina will shrivel from neglect and I will die the lonely life of a spinster before I will ever, ever kiss this motherfucker.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Seven Deadly Sins

Shit. I'm going to hell.

I'm pretty sure that hell is a place full of mosquitoes and toads. A place where Celine Dion and Mariah Carey sing nonstop duets and where bananas are the only available food.

I've committed all seven of the deadly sins. Today.

Wrath
This evening a touchy subject came up in discussion and I realized there are actually a couple of people on earth that I venomously hate. It's frightening to realize that someone holds this kind of power over you; especially when these particular people have pointedly ignored your very existence for 21 years. It's been said that resentment is like taking poison and waiting for the other person to die. I need to plaster a Mr. Yuk sticker to my forehead and call poison control.

Greed
This might be the most shameful one for me to admit, but I am so desperately greedy for money lately it's disgusting. All day I think about money - I want it, I need it, I want it, I need it. The sad thing is I'm not even a money-driven person, but the constant lack is turning me into a monster. Every time I panic over whether I can make rent, I get caught up in these filthy fantasies about having enough money to just never have to stress about it again. Which is really pretty reprehensible - I mean, who promised me an easy ride? Paris Hilton had to earn all of her money independently by working her ass off, as she informed viewers on E! recently.

Sloth
I got up today at the crack of noon, and I was admittedly disgruntled about it. I'm pretty sure that even an actual sloth gets up earlier than that.

Pride
I may need my readers to put me in my place. All this lovely encouragement is starting to make me think I'm pretty hot shit. I think it's time for someone to call me a name again.

Lust
There really isn't a day that goes by without some sort of lustful twinge. Today I got a Laptop Love dollar in the mail (hip, hip HOORAY!) and I was in rapture fantasizing about that new computer smell. I'm not sure it's healthy to be quite so rabid over an inanimate object...especially one that doesn't vibrate.

Envy
Today I caught myself staring at my brother's girlfriend and thinking I hate Indians. Why, you ask? Their food is marvelous. Their culture is fascinating, and Bollywood music is quite catchy. But I hate them a little bit...for their golden skin. The envy is actually palpable at times - such as when it's 90 degrees and her nut-brown legs are bare and cool in her little skirt, but I'm dying of heat because I have to keep my doughy white legs covered for my own safety and the eyes of others. (And P.S. - why are Michelin Man thighs so cute on babies but not on me!?)

Gluttony
At my aunt's house tonight, there was this awesome wild rice pilaf. I may or may not have had two three servings. No wonder my waist is spreading like herpes in a whorehouse.

And now I have to hit the sack - sinning this much in one day is exhausting!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Funny has Left the Building

I try to laugh every single day. When I began my blog, it was really just on online journal that somehow turned into a comedy routine. I believe in finding ways to laugh every day.

But today I can't write a funny post for you, so if that's all you're looking for, please come back tomorrow.

This morning at 5:30 AM, my family drove to Iowa for a funeral. We watched my cousin Seth and his wife Sonya bury their baby boy Zion. Have you ever seen a casket smaller than a piece of carry-on luggage? I pray you never have to.

There was a balloon release. Not environmentally friendly (sorry, birds - sorry, Carly), but a sweet childlike way to say goodbye to a tiny child.



Zion's Balloons
At the burial, my other cousin's baby began to fuss, so I cuddled her and walked away from the crowd. I was afraid that hearing baby Brooklyn crying would eviscerate Sonya as she said goodbye to her son. Her second son. Because her first son, Elijah? His headstone stands right next to Zion's freshly dug grave.

Their little girl is named Grace. She's two. She pointed at Elijah's headstone and informed us that it's her brother. Then she pointed at the casket and told us that's 'another brother'. She asked Sonya if they could take the new brother home, but all she was able to do was bend over and kiss Zion's tiny casket and wave bye-bye.

Through all the tears, though, there were tiny miracles. Seeing family there to (literally) hold Seth and Sonya up. Hugging and kissing Brooklyn's fat little cheeks. Seeing a devastated mother and father who still found the strength to praise a God that they believe is good, even while He's taking away their second son.

I don't care who or what you pray to. God, Allah, Buddha, the sea, the sky, a bottle of Grey Goose. But please take a moment to say a prayer of thanks for the miracles in your life. They are what we need to remember in order to carry us through days like these.

On the way home tonight, I found a tin box imprinted with a sacred heart. My paintings always include hearts and I collect stone hearts and other heart baubles. So I believe that tin box was waiting there for me to find it, just a gentle reminder that there is always love to be found. Somewhere.

My humor will continue its regularly scheduled programming tomorrow. For tonight, I just want to tell all of the people who've touched my life that I love you. You know who you are.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

FAIL! Leg - 1, Tricia - 0

Today I was high on life. Floating along like a helium balloon. The trouble with being high on life and floating along like a helium balloon is that it only takes one person with a teeny tiny little pin to deflate you.

Allow me to back this azz up a moment.

In 2006 I suffered a mountain climbing drunken bar injury to my knee. For two years I hobbled back and forth to various doctors being diagnosed, misdiagnosed and rediagnosed. I underwent surgery and PT and casting and crutches and canes. (Incidentally, a single girl with a limp and a cane = HOT date.)

I walked pretty awkwardly during these two years. My brother likened me to a duck and would walk behind me in public, quacking. I walked so badly, in fact, that retarded people mocked me. I kid you not. My brother and I walked past a mentally challenged individual who shrieked at the top of his lungs "HEY LADY! You don't walk really good! You should see a doctor!"

By the way, you have reached a whole new level of uncool when the retarded people are making fun of you.

Fast forward two years to when the decision was made to saw my leg in half through the femur and realign the whole thing using a handful of clearance hardware from Home Depot. After this second and far more brutal surgery I had to relearn how to sit, stand, bathe myself, dress myself, stand up and eventually walk. (Surprisingly, a single girl with a walker = no dates.)

I'm now approaching the two-year anniversary of the reassembly of my leg. It's as healed as it's ever gonna be. Aside from its weather forecasting abilities, popcorn-popping joint sound effects and flareups of stabbing pain, it's pretty much a normal leg - and I pretty much walk like a normal person.

Or so I thought.

I ran into a (not retarded) girl today that I haven't seen in over a year. As I floated gracefully toward her down my helium-boosted catwalk, she cocked her head and stared at me. And said...

"Damn, girl. You still walk like that!? When's it gonna get better."

POP! There went my balloon.

FAIL!
Leg - 1
Tricia - 0

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

More Whoring

Well, we've already established that I'm a whore. This came to light earlier in the week, and as I listened to people's comments about it on Blogger and in the Real World (my real world, not the MTV version in the fancy house), I got to thinking.

What would you pay a whore?

A lovely fan sent me a dollar bill a few weeks ago with a Post-It note attached telling me to follow my heart. (My heart says she rocks, BTW.)

Then yesterday, I was presented a check in the amount of $23.16 for my blogging. Check out my FAQ page for details and an itemized breakdown. This big spender suggested that I ought put my whorishness to good use in the name of saving up to buy the laptop I've been lusting for - hopefully before my current PC gasps its final breath.

At first I figured this idea was kind of crazy. Then I realized it is crazy. And then I realized that I'm crazy, so who the hell cares!? So I ask you - if you find yourself reading my blog and it makes you laugh, consider sending me a buck. If I have three readers, this could buy me an iced coffee. If I have 500 readers, this could buy me that friggin' laptop - just think of the smut I could write if I was mobile blogging while people-watching.
I realize a prettier picture would've been a wiser marketing tool...but this is what I look like when I'm broke.
I contemplated the pros and cons of such solicitous behavior and here's what I've deduced:

PROS
Someone could send me a dollar
Multiple people could send me dollars
Even if nobody sends me a dollar, it will make checking the mail more fun

CONS
People could call me names  (They already do, so this is a moot point)
A stalker could come to my house (But that would be good blogging material)

Times are tough, right? We're all just scraping by. You need that dollar toward your electric bill. Or your kid's antibiotics. But let me ask you this - if you send that dollar to the electric company, are you making anyone's dream come true? I think not. And antibiotics? Pfft. The kid'll probably get over whatever the hell he's got in a week or two anyhow - tell him to suck it up and stop being a nancy.

So consider using that dollar* to perform a random act of kindness and help make a dream come true. It's my very own Make-A-Wish foundation, except I'm not a cute dying child with saucer eyes so I don't have much leverage here. All I can promise you in return is that I will continue to humiliate myself in the name of humor. And I'll keep a tally on my blog so you can monitor my progress with bated breath (if your life is even more empty and hollow than mine).

Laughing Toward a Laptop bucks can be sent to:

Tricia Lorntson**
1217 Wagon Wheel Road
Hopkins, MN 55343

*OK, it's really $1.43 since you'll have to buy a stamp. Damn postal service.

**Yes, this is my real address, so please don't come hide in my bushes with your night-vision goggles. Trust me, there's nothing there you want to see. And also, we have guard cats who will lick your face like a kibble if we give them the secret command.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Want Monster

I WANT IT!
The Want Monster is a sneaky son of a gun. He creeps up behind you and attacks without warning - and all of a sudden, YOU WANT IT. When the Want Monster bites, he doesn't just nip. He gobbles and feeds and suckles until you're aching with the need for...well, whatever the hell it is you want now.

Sometimes the Want Monster helpfully enlightens you to things you didn't even know you wanted. And the trouble is, he's always hungry. Once he bites you, you are absolutely certain that if only you had that one thing, that one little thing you want, your life would be complete. Until, of course, the bastard bites you again five minutes later.

Here are some of the more vicious of the most recent attacks I've suffered at the claws of the Want Monster:

I WANNA LAPTOP!
Ever since I realized my PC is dying a slow, painful death, I've realized how desperately I WANT a laptop. I have heady fantasies about mobile blogging from a cozy chair in the coffee shop. Well, guess what? I make my fucking coffee at home because I can't afford to GO to the coffee shop...and my home computer isn't dead yet, so what's the problem? But...but...but - I WANT IT!

I WANNA GO ON VACATION!
My brother went on vacation. And some guy I work with went on vacation. And my friend's hairstylist's cousin is going on vacation. I WANNA GO on vacation! I never get to go on vacation! Oh, in February? That road trip I took for sixteen days? Well....OK, yeah...I guess that was a vacation...but that was then and this is now. I WANNA VACATION!

I WANNA PET HIM!
I WANNA PET THAT FOX!
I never even knew I wanted to pet a fox. But there's one that hangs out in our parking lot at work sometimes and he's pretty brave. I've gotten within six feet of him and suddenly it hit me - I WANNA PET HIM! Never mind the risks of contracting rabies or being mauled. He's sooooooooo close - and yet so far away. I. Just. Wanna. Pet. Him. Just once.

I WANNA GET LASER HAIR REMOVAL!
Ever since I heard that a couple of my friends got laser hair removal on their you-know-whats, I WANT IT. I think about it no fewer than 10 times a day. WTF? Cuz guess what? I never thought about my kitty before. And nobody sees my kitty. So who gives a shit? I DO, now! Because I WANT IT!

See how fast this MONSTER eats you alive!?
So tell me, what's your Want Monster craving these days?

Monday, August 23, 2010

Monday Marvels

The Top Ten Reasons to Marvel over Monday, August 23rd
10. I'm grateful that my brother is not going to be home tonight. I don't know WTF he's been eating the past couple of days but it's doing nuclear things to his intestinal tract and my nasal passages.

9. I'm thankful that the food shelf my parents' kitchen was open this weekend and I had a chance to load up on groceries.

8. I'm happy to hear that Heidi Montag will be suing Spencer Pratt for the book he's writing about her, because I'm assuming this means someone has taught her how to read.

7. I'm thrilled that my fortune says that Lady Luck will be visiting me soon. Hopefully it's not to just box me in the ear and run away cackling.

6. My little pseudo-sister is engaged. I'm very grateful that despite the questionable role model services that Carrie and I have provided, she's grown into an intelligent young woman who knows a keeper when she finds him and puts roofies in his drink.
We two innies helped raise those two outies and they came out OK anyhow.
5. At the engagement party on Saturday, I was holding Dirty Harry in one arm whilst with my other hand I was removing from the oven a pan of bacon-wrapped weenies in caramelized brown sugar. Dirty Harry barfed. I'm thankful he just barfed all over me because it would've been tragic if those delectable weenies had been ruined.
Oh, yeah. It's all fun and games - until he pukes on you.
4. I'm proud of all my friends who walked the 3-Day this weekend to raise money to fight breast cancer, and I'm grateful that they did it so I could remain horizontal on the couch where I (and my boobs) belong.

3. My jeans makers are super thankful that Pizza Luce has opened a new location and we're within the delivery radius - they can now do a case study on the strength of the seams in their pants.

2. I'm relieved that I wasn't beaten to death with rocks and PowerBars when I lit up a cigarette while watching the Ragnar Relay this weekend (a 202-mile relay race for endurance runners). We dirty smokers are always ostracized these days, but imagine being the only addict amidst the glistening, sweaty, toned athletes. (Just for the record, I stepped off to the side and hid behind a tree so as not to blow lung cancer germs at the runners.)

And the number one reason to marvel over Monday, August 23rd?

1. I'm grateful that my mom has finally joined Facebook. Now I never have to speak to her on the telephone again, just as I behave with the rest of my friends. Yay, virtual relationships!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

I'm a STUPID Whore

I love the interactive aspect of blogging. It's highly encouraging to hear that some people pee their pants a bit when reading my blog. Sometimes when 'I Wonder' about things, people clue me in - such as explaining to me why an erection lasting longer than four hours is more of a problem for the man than for his wife.

And sometimes people just call me names, such as the anonymous reader who informed me that I sound like a whore. I checked online to see if this is true, and I'm devastated to see the official definition:

whore   /hɔr, hoʊr or, often, hʊər/ [hawr, hohr or, often, hoor]
–noun
1. a woman who engages in promiscuous sexual intercourse, usually for money; prostitute; harlot; strumpet

Whores are supposed to get paid! All this time I've been writing about breast cancer and spider bites and colonoscopies and I should have been charging you. No wonder I'm broke - clearly I have NO business sense. You've been getting all this promiscuous sexual writing intercourse for free!

So from here on out, if you'd like to read about my boobs, my butt cheek, my colon or my ovaries, I'm going to need payment in advance. Please make out your checks to:

Tershbango the Whore
Don't act like you don't want it!

I'm super excited - now that I realize I'm providing a billable service, I'll soon be able to buy that laptop I've been having wet dreams about!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

I Love My Boobs

The Top Ten Reasons I Love My Boobs

1. They cushion my landing when I trip and fall.

2. They make my waist look smaller less beastly.

3. My cleavage doubles as a money clip.

4. They alert me to cold fronts in case I'm unsure of the weather.

5. They catch all my crumbs so I have something to snack on later.

6. They are the only part of my body that people appreciate for being large.

7. I could stash drugs underneath them. I mean, I could. But of course I wouldn't.

8. They prove the law of gravity in case I'm ever doubting physics.

9. Someday they will keep my belly button warm.

10. THEY ARE CANCER-FREE.

To all of my strong, amazing, boobalicious girlfriends who are walking 60 MILES this weekend to raise money for breast cancer research, my boobs and I salute you!

GO, GIRLS, GO!!






Friday, August 20, 2010

I Wonder...

...why I can't see a morbidly obese couple without wondering how they throw down? You know - I mean, logistically. How does that work?

...why people will pay Lindsay Lohan  a million dollars for an interview about her traumatic two weeks in jail? Dude - I'll go to jail for a hundred dollars - and I'll even drop the soap.

...why you can legally shoot a tranquilizer gun at a bear but not a small child? Bears don't shriek as obnoxiously and they are generally parented better.

...how many teeth I need to lose in order to win the Powerball?

...what would happen to my groin if I tried that yoga pose that my friend can do so gracefully?

...if girls have groins? Or is a groin part of the nut sack?

...if the bill collectors will be able to find me if I dress in camo?

...why corn makes you crap kernels but asparagus makes you pee vinegar?

...why the cast of Jersey Shore is paid more than most brain surgeons?

...why it's the man who is supposed to go to the doctor for an erection lasting longer than four hours? His poor wife is the one I'd be worried about.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Horribly Wonderful Friends

When you're small, your relationships are geographically dictated. Katie lived across the street, ergo we were best friends. She trumped me in the Cabbage Patch but I had more My Little Ponys. We ate popsicles and ran through the sprinkler. I snitched a Playboy from my dad and educated her on boobs. Her older brother super-glued our hands together and educated us on gullibility.

My parents moved me 15 miles away, though, when I was ten; my relationship with Katie was torn apart. We couldn't make the long-distance thing work, even with our banana-seat bikes. Twenty years later we reconnected on Facebook and excitedly learned that even though we're not bound by a shared sidewalk anymore, we want to be friends.

Except that I hate her just a little bit. In that green-headed monster kind of way. In that girl-crush kind of way. In that way where you really want to dislike someone because they seem so perfect, but you simply can't - because they are fucking warm and lovely and humble as well.

Katie is a brilliantly smart mechanical engineer.

And an accomplished yoga teacher.

And an independent world traveler.

And she uses all of her vacation time to teach English in third-world countries.

Do you hate her yet?

Just a little bit?

No?

What if I told you she's the poster child for work-life balance?

Seriously.

THE POSTER CHILD. Her company, with its katrillion employees, selected her to be their model of balance for a line of corporate brochures. They want their other katrillion employees to emulate her inner peace.

Now do you hate her a little?

Really?

Here's the inspirational work-life picture:
(Whatever, I still had more My Little Ponys.)
Oh, sorry - did I forget to mention that she's also a DEAD RINGER for SANDRA BULLOCK?



Dear God,

You aren't fair.

Love,
Tricia
P.S. Couldn't you have just made her ugly on the outside or something?

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Broke-Ass Broke

Just how broke was the person who decided that a packet of ramen noodles serves two people? Be honest - if you're eating ramen, it's not with a side of sirloin and some steamed vegetables - you're just eating the @#%*$ noodles.

Let's review the levels of broke as I understand them:

Teresa Guidice Broke - this socialite recently filed bankruptcy to give herself and hubs a 'fresh start'. Days later, she went on a $60,000* shopping spree to assuage the painful pang of having to auction off all her designer belongings as part of the bankruptcy agreement. (By the way, if I bump into her? I have a solid left hook with her name on it.)

American Entitlement Broke - this level includes anyone in debt. Perhaps the debt is strapped over their shoulder in the form of a Gucci purse, or maybe the husband vrooms off to work in his V-8 powered debt.

College Broke - this is where you bunk four guys to a closet and live off Spaghetti-Os and pizza. But you're young and dumb, so you're content as long as you can scrounge enough change from the couch cushions for your malt liquor.

Waiting for the Utilities to be Shut Off Broke - this is where you stop answering the phone since it's only going to be a bill collector you can't pay or your mother berating you for not being able to pay the bills.

Selling the Biznatch Broke - the time has come...sex for money. The only silver lining at this point is that there are still cretins out there who will toss you a fiver for a handjob in the parking lot.

Splitting Ramen Broke - this, I imagine, comes after the bankruptcy while you're living under the overpass. You probably have to share your ramen otherwise the other guy under the bridge will steal the fillings from your teeth while you sleep to try to pawn them.

Bug-Eatin' Broke - this is the broke that even I won't make fun of, because I believe that if I mock the truly, desperately needy, God will strike me down to a place where I must panhandle from them.

*I haven't determined exactly where on the spectrum I fall. I haven't resorted to backseat BJs** but I would need all the cash that bitch Teresa and her crazy hairline spent on her shopping spree in order to work my way up to a zero. At that point I could move into my parents' basement, where I clearly belong. Forever.

**Check back next week, pigs.

Another Diagnosis

I'm an insomniac, and this time I don't need a quiz to prove it.

Google Health describes insomnia as follows: insomnia is difficulty getting to sleep or staying asleep, or having nonrefreshing sleep for at least one month. I describe insomnia as follows: finally succumbing to a fitful sleep at 1:00 AM and then realizing at 5:00 AM that I am still exhausted but wide awake.

Yes, I know that mothers and/or women with real jobs who actually style their hair before work call this morning. I call this bullshit.

My alarm doesn't go off for two more hours, but at this point the likelihood of my falling back into slumber is near about the likelihood that John Mayer was dreaming about me this evening, too. But come 10:00 AM? When you walk by my office door? That's not a foghorn you'll be hearing. That will be me, hopefully dreaming about someone as hot as John but a bit less of a certifiable douchebag. Don't tell my boss - she frowns upon napping at work.

This is precisely the reason I need to be a writer, at home - so I can wear my ducky pajamas and take a siesta after lunch. Which sounds suspiciously like kindergarten, but with a coffee cup instead of the juice box and a paycheck in place of  the crayons.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

My Diagnosis

With the help of a handy little online quiz, I just diagnosed myself with bipolar disorder. See for yourself.

1. Are there times where you are more talkative or speak much faster than usual?
YES - generally after snorting an 8-ball or mainlining espresso.

2. Are there times when you are much more active or did many more things than usual?
YES - I'm much more active when Jersey Shore isn't on and sometimes I get wild bursts of energy and feel compelled to ride my bike to the ice cream shop.

3. Do you get into moods where you feel very speeded up or irritable?
YES - but usually only if I'm on speed or someone is irritating me.

4. Have there been times when you have felt both high (elated) and low (depressed) at the same time?
YES - this is called payday.

5. Are there times when you are much more interested in sex than usual?
YES - I am much more interested in sex when Jason Batemen or Mark Wahlberg is in the room.

6. Does your self-confidence range from great self-doubt to equally great overconfidence?
YES - I doubt myself horribly when at the Hawaiian Tropic pageant but I feel MAD SEXY when I'm at the State Fair. I also feel quite confident when hanging with my friend Stoli.

7. Have there been GREAT variations in the quantity or quality of your work?
YES - the quality of my work is in direct proportion to whether or not I give a shit.

8. Do you ever get VERY angry or hostile for no apparent reason?
YES - when they won't serve me Chicken McNuggets at 10:30 AM and when old people are blocking the aisle with their carts at the grocery store. But let's be honest, those are legitimate reasons.

9. Do you have periods of mental dullness and other periods of very creative thinking?
YES - I call them workweeks and weekends.

10. Are you at times greatly interested in being with people and at other times just want to be left alone with your thoughts?
YES - I like being with people sometimes, but I prefer to be all alone when I'm pooping.

11. Do you have periods of great optimism and other periods of equally great pessimism?
YES - after I buy the Powerball ticket and after they draw the numbers.

12. Have you had periods of tearfulness and crying and other times when you laugh and joke excessively?
YES - I cried a LOT after the surgeon cut my femur in half and I laugh excessively and inappropriately at the following picture - every single time.


So I now know that I am severely bipolar, which leaves me with just one question: if I can diagnose myself online, shouldn't I be able to prescribe to myself online?

Monday, August 16, 2010

Monday Marvels

The Top Ten Reasons to Marvel over Monday, August 16th

10. I'm grateful for black men. Without them, there would be nobody to appreciate the current size of my butt.

9. I'm thankful that Neil has a job interview today, because God knows I can't afford the ramen on my own anymore. I'm gonna need to start stealing his.

8. I'm happy because in Minnesota we get precisely four days per year as lovely outside as these past two days have been. Now I can wait in delicious anticipation for the other two.

7. I'm grateful that the rain has abated, which has sent the toads into hiding where they belong. Forever.

6. I'm thankful that my parents blessed me with such a lovely complexion. I go outside for an hour or two and turn a lovely golden ruby shade of tan sunburn.

Ravishing, yes?

5. I'm pleased that I ruined my iPod last week, because otherwise I may have missed the opportunity to hear Katy Perry's California Gurls 744 times on the radio.

4. I'm continuously amazed at the way Monday always remembers to show up, even when I forget to send the invitation.

3. I'm grateful to whomever invented coffee-flavored ice cream and I'd like to reward them with a sticky, sloppy coffee-flavored kiss.

2. I'm thankful that I got to spend time with my girlfriend yesterday, who has teenage children. Which reminded me how thankful I am that I do NOT have children, teenage or otherwise. In fact, most people should be thankful that I do not have children. Trust me on this one.

And the number one reason to marvel over Monday, August 16th?

1. I'm unbelievably, stupendously grateful that my butt no longer itches.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Kittens & Candy

Our townhouse has only one window on the ground floor that even opens, and there's no screen because this place is a dump. The cats have a kitty post that sits by the window so they can gaze longingly at the outdoors and freedom.

I came downstairs after cleaning napping and my brother informed me that all the little neighbor kids who are running around playing outside were peering in the window to see the cats. He assumed they wanted to pet the kitties so he opened the screen-less window and the kids flocked to him like he was an ice cream truck.

Me: You're thirty.

Neil: Yep.

Me: You're a thirty-year-old man.

Neil: Yep

Me: You're a thirty-year-old man leaning out the window dangling a cat in front of small children? Hmm. Wonder what the neighbors thought of that?

Neil: Oh....SHIT!

After we commenced laughing our fool heads off it struck me just how sad this really is. When I was small there was an elderly couple who lived a few doors down who loved children. If I walked by, he would open the door and toss out handfuls of candy and announce it was 'raining'. Sometimes I'd go sit in their kitchen and color while she baked cookies. It was sweet and wholesome and only trauma that ever ensued was the crash that followed my sugar high.

But if I saw my (imaginary) child headed into some old man's house for candy, I'd kick that codger in the geriatric nutsack and run away with my kid tucked under my arm like a football.

Sometimes this world just makes me want to cry, and even the kittens and candy don't make it better.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Eat Pray Barf

READ IT!
I've been violated by a chick flick.

Haters have referred to Elizabeth Gilbert's 2006 memoir Eat Pray Love as the self-indulgent travels of an unstable narcissist. I refer to this book as a sacred classic, not unlike a bible or Shel Silverstein's The Giving Tree.

I adored the book. The painful transformation of a woman from clinical depression into a spirit of passion and independence resonated with me, and anyone who says they haven't hungered for God (or spirituality, if you prefer) is either lying or very, very empty. Gilbert's writing is lush and rich and the book is a naked examination of the shifting of her entire belief system and consequently, her world. You may call this narcissistic if you like, I call it necessary to live life wholly.

Now, I went to the theatre with moderate expectations as most books that have spoken to me profoundly are not translated well to the big screen. But it was far, far worse than I'd hoped. Instead of ripe berries drizzled in cream - decadently delicious but still inherently nourishing - I got cotton candy; too sticky sweet, and it left me feeling empty and a bit nauseated.

The movie took all of the substance from Gilbert's story and spun it in sugar. Her battle with depression was trivialized into a mere moment of sniveling on screen. Her search for God was overshadowed by jewel toned saris and henna tattoos. And the love she ultimately found in the book came across as a shallow romp with a swarthy foreigner in Bali.

Now I feel I must go eat something nutrient-rich, pray that I can forget the entire movie and barf to purge myself of the saccharine.

Then I will reread her lovely book to remind myself to never stop searching for my right path.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Lucky 13

A quick update on my butt. A butt-date, if you will - though that sounds alarmingly like something that would require eight shots of Grey Goose and a generous dollop of Astro-Glide. The spider bite still hurts/itches and I'm still walking around scratching/slapping my derriere like a monkey/stripper.

I promise, this is the last butt picture forever a long time.
So now it's Friday the 13th, and I would argue that my week hasn't been particularly at all lucky. Between the headaches, the spilled coffee, the ruined iPod and the Spider Incident, I'm ready for a new week to begin.

Some might call me superstitious, and I might even have seven dream catchers hanging from my ceiling. It's possible that I've saved every (good) fortune from every cookie I've ever gobbled. I may, in fact, have a New Orleans voodoo doll for finding Mr. Right. And a lucky penny. And lucky rocks. And a lucky nail blessed by an evangelist. And a magic fortune cookie shaped 8-ball until I allegedly shook it so hard it broke.

I may have prayed to God, Buddha(s), Allah, the Dalai Lama, Oprah and Vince Vaughn this morning. Who wants to take chances, right? I merely asked to get through this day, Friday the 13th, without further incident.

My prayers have been answered. I've in no way hurt, maimed, humiliated or further indebted myself today.

And with that? I'm wrapping myself in bubble wrap, strapping on a helmet and going to bed.

Good night.
Sleep tight.
Don't let the bed bugs spiders bite.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

My Butt Itches

So there I was...standing at work talking to client, when it felt like I got zapped in the badonkadonk with a teeny tiny taser. Then suddenly my butt itched. Like, mad itching. Like, how-do-I-politely-scratch-my-ass-in-front-of-a-client itching.

I excused myself to go investigate and my vast medical knowledge led me to suspect I'd been bitten by a spider. WebMD confirmed.

When I told my boss about it, she suggested that perhaps it was a mouse. Um....huh. I'd like to believe I'd notice a mouse in my pants. So I'm still going with a spider bite.

It hurts. It itches. And my butt is HOT. Not hot like a Kardashian butt - more like I'm running a butt fever.

All day I walked around trying to keep my hand out of my pants, but the call was too strong. I didn't want to scratch it raw, and someone told me that slapping stops an itch. So I stood there slapping my own ass like a plus-size stripper while thanking God that I have an office now, and not a cubicle.

That's all, really. There's no conclusion or moral to this story. I'm home now, and my butt still itches.

If I have to be miserable, you are going to suffer along with me.
I think I'd like a refund on this week and I'm guessing after seeing this, you'd like a refund as well.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Reason # 94,758 to Wear a Condom

I'm never having children. Those ungrateful bastards suck you dry - breast, soul and wallet. And the worst part? It never...ends.

My parents sold their car and needed to deliver it to someone in Foley, MN tonight. Foley is about an hour and a half outside Minneapolis located between bumblefuck and some cows. Now, I knew my mom is not a fan of driving and has been having a crappy week at work, so I offered to meet my dad in Foley and drive him home after he sold the car.

I spent at least a minute and a half congratulating myself for being such a good daughter when it hit me. This may actually be the first thing I've done for them since I brought home a handcrafted macaroni necklace when I was five.

Let's recap a smattering of what they've done for me in recent years (loooong after I've been 'raised' and gone):

 - They've purchased groceries for me when my broke ass can't afford them...

 - Before a road trip I took this spring, my dad took my car in for an inspection to ensure it was safe to make the drive, and my mother repainted my townhouse while I was vacationing.

 - After a brutal orthopedic surgery, my dad set his alarm to get up three times a night to stuff pain pills down my gullet. (Incidentally, this wasn't an entirely selfless act - we all lost if the Oxycontin wore off...)

 - After the same surgery, my mother had to shower me for several weeks. Not only did she have to see my naked keister, but she had to hose it down while being barraged with expletives as I hollered like a psycho about the indignity of the situation.

 - When I was over served at the bar and cabbed home, I called my dad the next day to inform him that he'd need to bring me back to retrieve my car. His response? "Why didn't you call me last night instead of wasting money on a cab?" Then my folks took me out for a hangover breakfast. And paid for it.

Let me take a moment to inform you, dear readers, that I am THIRTY-THREE YEARS OLD. So in summation, you too can invest three of the best decades of your life raising children. The ROI? Someday, far far down the line, your blessed offspring might give you a ride somewhere.

Kinda makes you wanna go have unprotected sex, no?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

FAIL! Life - 1, Tricia - 0

Elderly people walking down the street holding hands make me smile. Elderly people behind the wheel of a car do NOT make me smile.

We've started brewing our cold press coffee at home because both my brother and I are BROKE. This seemed like an ingenious way to save money - until Grandpa Joe drifted obliviously into my lane on the highway this morning and I had to slam on my brakes to avoid vehicular homicide.

32 ounces of cold press coffee went airborne, soaking the upholstery, the carpet and my iPod.

Let's review the math:

Dollars saved today by bringing my own coffee (with a non-locking lid):  $3.31

Cost to detail the inside of my car*: $119.95

Cost to replace iPod**: $150.00

Cost to go to Caribou AFTER mopping out my car: $3.31

The look on Grandpa Joe's face as I bludgeoned him to death with my empty coffee mug: PRICELESS

LIFE - 1
TRICIA - 0

*Did I mention there was cream in the coffee? And that it's going to be 95 degrees outside today!?

**A moot point, since the iPod won't be replaced - a girl who can't afford coffee can't afford a new iPod...

Monday, August 9, 2010

Monday Marvels

The Top Ten Reasons to Marvel over Monday, August 9th

10. I'm thankful that it's a widely known fact that recovery is a lifelong quest. This means that, because I titled my blog Confessions of a Recovering Cynic, it will be generally accepted that sometimes I will relapse into full-on cynicism.

9. I'm happy that the only work pants I can squeeze my ass into these days are made of a synthetic material with a bit of stretch - because black polyester feels AWESOME when it's 150 degrees outside.

8. I'm grateful that while I was navigating the mountain of paperwork on my desk this morning, Neil texted me a picture from Colorado where he and Reena were navigating the cotton-candy clouds on the gorgeous, jaw-dropping mountaintop.

7. I'm thankful that the mailman didn't stop by with collection notices today for my unpaid medical bills. He's probably loading the U-haul to save himself extra trips.

6. I'm super inspired by the fact that I'm finally starting to generate a little bit of business at work. Now, if I simply sell three times what I sold today every day, I *might* make as much as I made on unemployment whilst sleeping in and writing contentedly.

5. I'm grateful that my eyeballs didn't actually pop out of my head yesterday from the pressure of my headache. I'm not such a looker now, but things could always be worse.


4. I'm thankful for the two minutes of elation I felt today when I was notified that John Grisham was following me on Twitter. I shouldn't have investigated further and learned that it's just some random person with the same name.

3. I'm grateful that I have nowhere to go after dark these days, as the humidity has incited a toad revival and they've been holding their fat, ugly bastard gatherings on my patio at night - and it's too hot to wear steel-toed boots and night-vision goggles.

2. I'm happy to report that I've made it all the way to item #2 without my computer locking up and crashing. Maybe this a-hole of a system has a few weeks left in it, after all.

And the number one reason to marvel over Monday, August 9th?

1. I'm thankful that all things shall pass eventually, including this cranky mood - likely with the assistance of some Tampax and chocolate.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Out of the Mouths of Babes

I have a headache today that has finally been downgraded from blinding to pounding. It, and the heat, are preventing me from having any original thoughts, so I present for you instead some of the most hilarious and mortifying things to come out of the mouths of kids I know.

* * * * *

Kid (age 3) to his mother: "Do you have a bone in your penis, Mom?"
My friend: "I don't have a penis, but no - penises don't have bones."
Kid: "My penis has a bone. I can feel it."

* * * * *

Kid (age 4) to me, sighing contentedly while we're snuggling: "You're so much squishier to lay on than my mom, Twissa."

* * * * *

I am 33 years old, and my cousin's 4-year-old hands me a sheet of stickers.

Kid: "These are for you and your son."
Me: "My son?"
Kid, pointing at my 29-year-old brother: "Yeah. Your son."

* * * * *

4-year-old is inspecting the groceries of the obese, nappy-haired black woman wearing a housecoat and standing in line in front of them at the grocery store.

Kid: "Mom, look! Look what the bear has in her cart!"

* * * * *

Kid is at urgent care for an ear infection or something similar and, while making conversation, the doctor asks the kid how he got the scrape on his knee (something that happened at daycare when neither parent was present).

Kid (age 4) to doctor, matter-of-factly: "Mine daddy pushed me in the street."

* * * * *

Heavy woman rides her bike past my friend and her child at the park, and the woman smiles - probably thinking to herself how cute my friend's kid is.

3-year-old to his mother, loudly: "Mom! That fat guy smiled at me!"

* * * * *

My cousin, as a small child, goes and asks her dad for something.

Dad: "Go ask your mother."
My cousin: "Him already telled me no."

* * * * *

And one of my personal favorites of all time:

4-year-old kid to me: "You have a big butt."
Mother to kid: "That's not nice! Tell Tricia you're sorry!"
Kid (grudgingly): "I'm sorry you have a big butt, Twissa..."

Saturday, August 7, 2010

FAIL! Boyfriend - 1, Tricia - 0

After last night's debacle with the Fatty Catty, I was intent on getting a sound night's sleep tonight. I lured the cats into another room with treats and then raced into my bedroom slamming the door behind me.

Ah, solitude. I hopped into bed with My Boyfriend and snuggled up.

My Boyfriend is a fuzzy old body pillow, named for his blessed abilities to provide comfort and cuddles without ever impeding on my life by speaking. He's been beaten into shape and fits me perfectly. The appropriate mate for me, I've always figured.

Live boyfriends have informed me that I'm not a cute, peaceful sleeper. I'm a 'have-nightmares-and-thrash-whilst-snoring-like-a-farm-animal' kind of sleeper. So in the throes of the latest nightmare tonight, I pushed My Boyfriend away violently...and right into the 32-oz glass of water on my nightstand.

I can sleep through a fire alarm.

I can sleep through a tornado, fireworks or an assault rifle.

I cannot sleep through a 32-oz tsunami.

I shot out of bed, trying to rescue the critical family members (my Blackberry and my birth control pills*) before they drowned and gingerly mopped all the water off the electrical appliances (the lamp and alarm clock, you pig - the B.O.B. doesn't need to be hardwired to an outlet).

Anyway, so here I sit at almost 3:00 AM. Awake again. Realizing that I can't even make a relationship work with my fake boyfriend.

FAIL!
Boyfriend - 1
Tricia - 0


*These are taken in the spirit of positive thinking...plus, you can never be TOO careful when you really do not want children.

Friday, August 6, 2010

FAIL! Bailey - 1, Tricia - 0

Every night there is an epic battle in my bedroom.

I have a king-sized bed. I repeat, a KING-SIZED bed. That? Is a large bed. With multiple pillows.

And every night, Bailey (Neil's cat #2, also known as Fatty Catty) parks herself on my pillow - curled lovingly (but sort of grossly) around my head.

A little close for comfort, but still inherently sweet.
Generally, Bailey worms herself closer throughout the night, as I inch away while I slumber. This ultimately results in me waking up curled into myself like a shrimp, with no pillow and an aching neck - while Bailey sprawls luxuriously across my entire pillow.

Sidebar: why don't I use one of the other pillows, you ask? It's a matter of principle. I shouldn't have to bend to the will of a cat, the cat should bend to my will.

So, anyway - I wake up contorted and pillow-less.

But lately, Bailey has been taking her cuddling to a whole new level - and frankly, I'm feeling violated.

Tonight I woke up to what felt like a steam bath...on my eyelids. (Nothing like hot, damp kitty breath in your face at 3:45 AM.)


   Note the paw holding my head down while she breathes directly into my nose.
There is a reason for the old adage dogs have owners and cats have staff. At this point, you'd assume I hurled the cat across the room and went back to sleep.

Lounging triumphantly on her throne
But you'd be wrong. Because here I am, a single woman, blogging about a cat* at 4:00 AM...while she snoozes victoriously, in my king-sized bed...alone.

BAILEY: 1
TRICIA: 0

*And yes, I am well aware of the spinster cat-lady jokes just bubbling up on your tongue. I'd like to remind you, though, that I have no cats - I have a brother who lives with me who has cats. That's a small but critical clarification.
For further information regarding the cats and their lack of boundaries, click here.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Why I Don't Read the News

I try to avoid reading the news (excluding the hard news coverage in USWeekly, of course). While some might argue that this makes me ignorant, I argue that it makes me happier. A happier me = a happier you, because when I get belligerent, those around me suffer in spades. Sometimes, though, the news infiltrates my safe places (like Facebook).

Two examples, just today:

7-Year Old Girl's Lemonade Stand Shut Down by the Health Department
Our government releases trashy cokeheads like Lindsay Lohan due to overcrowding in the jails. Pedophiles and gangs roam our streets offering kittens, candy and eternal brotherhood. But I, for one, will sleep more soundly tonight knowing this hoodlum has been shut down. Undoubtedly, she was lacing the lemonade with roofies and laundering her profits to fund an underground My Little Pony-fighting ring.

Ohio Woman Learns of Husband's Other Wife through Facebook Wedding Album
This is roughly as tragic as the stories that surface each year lamenting the fact that someone drowned in Minnesota while driving their 2-ton truck onto the 'ice' of a lake in October or April. If your husband is greedy enough to want two wives (and really, who does?) AND dumb enough to allow his new wife to tag him in their wedding photos, I call the discovery of this information a blessing. Dump this douchebag and start pillaging your list of Facebook friends to look for your next ex.

And with that, dear readers, I hop down from my soapbox to go immerse myself in intellectually stimulating news regarding whether the Kardashians are indeed in Miami, and if Ochocinco has found a connection on so many levels on his titillating show, The Ultimate Catch.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The School of Hard Knocks

School, schmool. What I've learned, I've learned in life. On the downside, there is no graduation date. On the upside, you can fail repeatedly without standing out as noticeably larger than all your classmates who weren't held back. There are tests almost daily, and the homework never ends. Here's a smattering of what I learned today.

I've learned I *never* think about my toes...until I stub the bejesus outta one, and then suddenly I can think of nothing but my toes.
Turn away, all you foot fetishists! This could be as traumatic for you as it was for me.

I've learned that the zit on my forehead lasted longer than Bristol Palin's engagement. And was probably less humiliating.

I've learned you can make suicide pasta out of dang near anything in your cupboard and it's edible. My lunch today consisted of cold noodles with V-8, corn, olives and water chestnuts for the sauce.

I've learned that if I don't have anything nice to say, I shouldn't say anything. So I'm not saying anything.
    I'm still TOTALLY not saying anything.
I've learned that love can sometimes be found in unexpected places. I refer to the picture below, not the picture above - just to clarify.
    Just try to tell me you aren't smiling at this.
I've learned that the Toddy cold press coffee system is an ineffective way to save money, as I'm now drinking 32 oz of iced coffee per day, rather than the 20 oz hits the dealers at Caribou dole out.

I've learned that I have to pee approximately 32 times after drinking 32 oz of iced coffee.

I've learned it's inevitable that if someone is standing nearby to bear witness when I am parking, I will hit the curb. Every. Single. Time.

I've learned that if this stupid #($#%ing computer crashes one more @*$%ing time on me while I'm writing a #(%ing blog entry, I'm gonna $)_%*#ing explode into a fit of #($*ing rage!

I've learned that 'things happen for a reason', so perhaps God is striking down my computer in an effort to tell me to GET THE HELL OFF BLOGGER for the night before I bore everyone to tears.

I'll show YOU how to REBOOT, you @$%)er!


Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The REAL Bachelorette

Screw Ali and Jillian. If ABC wanted some real drama, they'd cast me as the new Bachelorette (albeit perhaps after a Heidi Montag-style makeover). Here are some brief recaps of my contestants* past:

The Toad Whisperer
After discovering my raging case of bufonophobia, the Toad Whisperer romantically stepped in to woo me by leaving various toads on my doorstep, my patio and my car when I'm not home. To date, the collection has grown to roughly 19 ceramic, glass and stone toads, the pinnacle being the pair of 100-lb toad gargoyles hauled onto my patio one night while I slumbered. Luckily, he also plied me with morphine and valium, which generally counteracts the bufonophobia, but you're seeing the cause for concern here, no?

Project Rehab
A delicious specimen of tattooed Jason Batemen look-a-likeness, Project Rehab was a fine contender when he was sober. However, after a couple of months of coffee and convo, he was ready to take our relationship to the next level and show me his relapses - relapses that included flinging himself out of my moving vehicle after I peeled him off the pavement to drive him to rehab.

Also featured were such highlights as me helping the doctors pin him to the bed while he seizured from withdrawals, and a poignant proposal for my hand in marriage (from his ICU bed, roughly twelve hours after his blood-alcohol had been measured at .43.) For those of you who aren't swell at math, suffice to say most people die before being able to reach this level of intoxication. You could have slit his wrist and drunk a Listerine martini from it.

The Cougar Cub
I took a brief tour of Cougar Town and had a fling with a 21-year-old. It was fun until social services and his mother intervened. Now there's some BS about forms I have to fill out every time I move or something, but I didn't jot down all the details. Plus, it was awkward - my having wrinkles and his going through puberty, you know?

Mr. Manners
This fine gentlemen displayed such excellent manners on dates one and two that I went back for round three. En route to meet him, though, I was informed that he needed to reschedule because...wait for it...his (eight-year-old) kid had peed on himself. Ummmm....OK. We rescheduled for the next week, confirmed again prior to meeting and then he simply stood me up and left me sitting there alone. I was concerned for his safety and picturing him lying in a ditch until I got home and saw that I'd been 'unfriended' on Facebook. Point taken. Must we go to extremes of pee tales and Houdini acts?

*Sadly, my friends and family will be happy to provide written verification that these are all true stories.

*Sadly, further, there are many more stories like these - but if I gave it all away here, what would be left for the final rose ceremony!? I'll be standing by waiting for ABC's call.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Monday Marvels

Editor's note: Monday Marvels started when I began my blog, as a way to take something shitty (Mondays) and remind myself of all the things I'm grateful for. I recognize the difference between wants and needs (aren't you proud, Mom? It only took 33 years!) and I realize that I have everything I need. So today's Monday Marvels is about wants, and it's written from that elusive perspective - the future. Hopefully the near future.

The Top Ten Reasons to Marvel over a Monday Sometime in the Future

10. I'm grateful that my condo in Reykjavik allows me quick and easy access to the Blue Lagoon. It's so relaxing to sink into the warm, bubbly water after a long day writing and drinking coffee.

9. I'm thankful that my laptop is waterproof, so if I don't feel like getting OUT of the Blue Lagoon, I can continue to write with pruny toes. (And also? This laptop doesn't crash on me in the middle of my blog entries like that crappy computer I was using back in August of 2010 always did.)

8. I'm grateful for my homey condo in Seattle with the Bollywood furnishings and the pimped out art studio to come home to when Iceland gets too dark and cold; and when I get too skinny from refusing to eat the fermented shark they serve in Reykjavik.

7. I'm thankful that my folks have finally been able to retire. It makes it so much easier for them to fly out and visit me in Seattle.

6. I'm grateful for my adorable little niece and I'm glad that Neil and Reena let me spoil her rotten.

5. I'm thankful that my book advance was hefty enough that I can pick up the tab for all my friends when we hit the town, and that I can pay a stranger's tab from time to time without telling them.

4. I'm grateful that my new puppy is a French bulldog and, like me, his heart explodes and he dies if he gets too much exercise.
My soul mate, Killer.

3. I'm deeply thankful to be blessed with enough resources that when a friend is in need, I can step in immediately. It was horrible back when I heard about people's medical struggles or layoffs and how they couldn't keep up with the bills rolling in.

2. I'm grateful that my thighs are perfectly toned from the frequent bouts of acrobatic sex my husband Jorge requires.

Meet Jorge. He didn't want me to show his face. He's a bit shy.

And the number one reason to marvel over this Monday yet to come?

1. I'm thankful that I'm so busy preparing for my book release party.There will be champagne, Indian food and a chocolate fountain big enough to bathe in (though I won't, because now that it's the future I have self-control). Oh, yeah - I'll be there, signing my new bestseller!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

"Working" in Wisconsin

I'm not sure whether my naivete is in regards to cabin life in general, or Wisconsin in particular. But I was told we were going to Wisconsin to work. So I packed my grubby clothes...and no alcohol. (Because we were going to be working, and also because I wasn't drinking until my birthday this weekend.)

Here is how one works in Wisconsin.

FRIDAY
6:00 PM: Arrive in Hayward, crack beer.

6:15 PM: Eat dinner, drink some more beer.

7:00 PM: Go to local bar to stop in and say hi. Figure may as well have delicious Bloody Mary while saying hi, so that vocal cords do not become dried out.

SATURDAY
1:00 AM: Bar is shooing us out the door, as they've heard us say hi a sufficient number of times.

1:15 AM: Shovel snacks in face while congratulating ourselves on a productive evening. Pass out.

11:00 AM: Wake up to begin working. Insert instructional DVD on concrete staining.

11:01 AM: Wonder why they don't use hot shirtless men in their training videos so more women would tackle DIY projects.

11:05 AM: Decide Bloody Mary will make training video more interesting.

11:30 AM: Preparation, including the donning of paper spacesuits to prevent stain dripping on our (stylish, expensive) sweatpants.

11:35 AM: Having spacesuit dance party.

11:40 AM: Heather tears crotch seam of her spacesuit during spectacular dance move.

11:45 AM: Realize spacesuits are hot as shit. Remove.

11:50 AM: Apply first coat of concrete stain. Applaud our artistic abilities.

12:00 NOON: Take break for an hour, have Bloody Marys. After all, first coat must dry.

1:00 PM: Apply second color of stain, which warrants further applause and a celebratory beer while we take another break for an hour.

2:30 PM: Give stain extra time to dry while we drink more beer. All this hard work is dehydrating us so it's important to consume additional liquids. Apply third color of stain.

3:30 PM: Our Forewoman (Heather's mom) decides we've worked enough for one day. We shower. (Yep, all together, boys - isn't that what you always picture when you think of girls weekend?)

4:30 PM: Hearty dinner of fine Midwestern steaks at the fancy restaurant in town (flannel-covered bar stools and fake flowers on romantically set tables), as we've burned many calories working.

6:00 PM: Stop by Woodhaven Resort to have one - steaks have made us thirsty.

10:00 PM: Many cocktails later, throw down a pudding shot and leave. (Pudding shot is not considered alcohol, is merely considered dessert.)

10:15 PM:  Build bonfire. Eat s'mores, as pudding shot was not considered dessert, it was just considered alcohol.

11:30 PM: Go to bed after once more regaling ourselves with tales of our heroic efforts.

SUNDAY
10:30 AM: Wake up and apply final coat of sealer to floor*.

10:45 AM: Eat a lot, pack up and head home.

5:00 PM: Arrive home and realize I'm ready to go back to work.

*Incidentally, the floor turned out just lovely - marbleized in shades of rust and gold. I tried to take a photo but the pictures didn't do justice to the fine craftsladyship involved. The photo did, however, reflect the overhead lighting in the shape of a heart. This delighted me, as nearly every time I paint a heart ends up involved in the picture. So it seemed fitting...a stamp of approval of our hard weekend at work.

We HEART Hayward, Wisconsin!
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