Friday, September 28, 2012

Friday Randoms

Today’s Friday Randoms come with a disclaimer, which is this: I OVERHEARD a couple of them, so some of these speakers are not actually me (such as Random One. Sorry to disappoint those of you who are hopeful that I’ll shed my crazy cat lady persona for that of a rational person who is engaged in an actual relationship. )


“This is the song that was playing when I realized I was in love with him.”

“Yeah, I like this song too … WAIT HOLD ON REWIND. This is the song blah blah WHAT?”

“Oh. Hahaha. I didn’t mean to say that out LOUD. That was meant only to happen inside my HEAD. Let’s pretend that’s what happened. Man, I LOVE this song! That’s what we’ll decide I just said.”

“Oh. The 'Alternate Reality That Didn’t Just Happen' level of denial.”

“Do we have a deal?”

“Oh sure. At least until the next non-filtered completely whackadoo thing flies out of your mouth.”

 I turned on the light in my office and I noticed the switch plate was dirty. I guess that happens – they’re kind of like telephone receivers, right? What with all of the touching – but I’d never thought about it before. Or noticed.

Of course, once I noticed, I couldn’t UNNOTICE. Or leave it alone. Which is how I found myself washing all of the switch plates in the house with Method Pink Grapefruit scented cleaner, so they’d be super clean AND smell nice.

I feel like I might be headed for an intervention here.


“People are NOT PUPPIES. You can’t RESCUE them.”

“Well, I mean sometimes you can. That’s kind of what firefighters and stuff do, right?”

“First responders, yeah, okay. But not YOU. YOU are not a firefighter.”

“So I can’t be a firefighter now?”

“You are SO easily distracted. It’s like, one minute we’re having a real conversation and the next you’re all ‘Look! Shiny things!’ And then I can’t even remember what I was trying to talk about.”



I had a k-cup blowout this week.

If you don’t have a Keurig, you have not experienced this. If you DO have a Keurig, you may not have experienced this because you probably have better luck than I do. (You also probably don’t buy discounted K-Cups at the Christmas Tree Shop, because you’re smarter than I am.)

If you’d like to experience the joy of a k-cup blow out, here’s what you should do:

1.       Brew coffee

2.       Take the wet coffee grounds out of the coffee pot.

3.       Dump ¾ of the grounds directly into your coffee.

4.       Dump 1/8 of the grounds into your machine.

5.       Dump the remaining 1/8 of the grounds all over your countertop.

6.       Add some water to the grounds on the countertop, so they are joyfully floating about.

THAT is a what a k-cup blowout is like.

SO FUN AT 5:45 IN THE MORNING. Especially when you need the coffee (which is now undrinkable) to be in your system in order to be able to function enough to deal with the mess.


“See, the thing of it is that there’s NO thing. There’s not a thing. There’s just – I don’t know. Two people who like to drink coffee. That’s all. That’s it. That hardly qualifies as a thing. It’s a Starbucks ad. It’s a coffee commercial. It’s not a thing.”

“It’s a thing.”

“It’s not. That’s like saying that the guy who I pass on the highway all of the time and I have a thing, just because I see him all the time.”

“You should write down his plate number.”

“Which would make me a stalker.  Which IS a thing, but not one I want to be involved with.”


Thursday, September 27, 2012

H2ooooh, I think not

There are so many things in this world that are supposed to be really, REALLY good for me that I simply don't enjoy.

One of those things is water.

I don't like water.

Because -- and here's the part where you're going to decide I'm insane and that you should probably avoid me if you see me on the street -- I don't like the way it tastes.

I know what you're thinking (as you back away slowly from the crazy girl): it's WATER. It doesn't taste like ANYTHING.

But oh, you are so wrong.

It tastes like WATER.  But not GOOD water.

The problem (and did I mention that I'm nuts? Because you're going to think that now, if you didn't already) is this: I've had REALLY good water in my day. Water that tasted like mountain streams and cold winter days and pristine glaciers. Water that was, in fact, delicious and delightful and that I would chug by the icy cold glassful until I had not an ice cream headache, but an ICE headache. This water was AMAZING.

It came from the well at the house I grew up in.

Lest you think my memories of this water's tasty goodness are tainted by nostalgia, I will tell you this: EVERYONE thought the water there was good. The first thing my grampa would do when he came over was have a glass of water because it was so clean, clear, and wonderful.

That water. It tasted like -- well, like health and fabulousness.

And let's face it -- most water doesn't taste like that. I'm not sure what it does taste like -- plastic? Chlorine? Iron? It's not good, whatever it is, and it makes me sad.

But it's WATER, the people insist. It's GOOD FOR YOU. You need to have it.

Here are some of the things I've tried adding to water to make it something I could possibly enjoy:

*oranges (I know this is weird, but if lemons and limes are acceptable than oranges should be invited to the party. I'm just saying.)
*LOTS of ice (if it's cold enough, maybe my taste buds will freeze?)
*cucumber slices
*Rosemary (yeaaah. Nooooo.)
*diet powdered drink mix (I KNOW THIS IS BAD SHUT IT)

None of them have really worked out as water drinking inducements. Not even the powdered diet drink mix because, though it is oh so deliciously yummy, it makes me feel guilty for knowingly sending a whole bunch of chemicals, which cannot be good for me, down my yapper.

(Not to mention that I know there are many MANY places in this world that don't have access to ANY clean water, and here I am bitching that I don't like it. I'm a bad person. A bad,guilty person. So I'm going to suggest you go here to check out some ways in which you can see how you can help those in need of clean water to ease some of my guilt and sorrow for being a shallow doofus. OH AND LOOK I LEARNED HOW TO MAKE A LINK YAY ME!)

Of course, not drinking the water is bad for me too, right?

So I'm throwing it out there to anyone who wants to chime in: HELP ME FIND A WAY TO ENJOY WATER. PLEASE.

(And please tell me if drinking coffee and tea count as water. Because if they do, I'm WAAAY over my 8 glasses a day.)

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


"You know how sometimes someone says something to you and it's just not what you want to hear?"



"Wait. You're not going to tell me what it was?"

"I don't want to."

"You have to. You can't just introduce that and not say."

"Can't I?"


"Why? You asked me why I seem grumpy, and that was my answer: Sometimes people say things to you and they're not what you want to hear. And the result is mild grumpiness."

"Wait. So. Was it a solicited comment? Because if you ask someone something and they give you an answer and it's not what you want, you can't really be grumpy about it. Because you asked."

"Agreed. Although sometimes the truth does NOT set you free. Sometimes it makes you grouchy. But no. It was not solicited."





"Are you kidding me? You know you're going to tell me."

"It's just..."


"So I was shopping, doing my thing? And the lady at the register is ringing me up and she cards me. Which, yay, because you know how that is."

"At our age? YES I DO."

"And she looks at the photo, and she looks at me, and she looks at the photo, and then she says --"

"Your license photo is SO BAD."

"GOD. Tell me about it."

"But anyway."

"Right, so then she says, 'You've either lost a TON of weight, or that haircut is SUPER flattering, because you look SO MUCH BETTER in person.'"

"That's it?"

"Well, I didn't want to tell you."

"But. Huh."

"It was the way she said it. All snarky, like, 'Your license picture makes you look SO FAT.' You know, it's not flattering, but it's not like Ahab and the crew are hunting me down, you know?"

"I guess?"

"It just seemed rude. And mean, in a 'look at me I'm trying to be nice' way. I mean, I make fun of my own photo ALL OF THE TIME but that's DIFFERENT."

"You know you're ... a little oversensitive."

"YES. That's why I didn't want to TELL you. Because it's stupid."

"It's not stupid."

"It IS stupid. And I think that's why I'm grumpy! Not because she said it, but because it made me grumpy."

"It's like the circle of life. Only with CRANKINESS."

"Is everything a Disney movie with you?"

"Hakuna Matata, baby."

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Living In America

I was sitting at my desk yesterday, thinking about politics.

Here's what I do, if you're wondering: I run an inspection company. Half of the house works with banks and finance companies to help businesses to get new equipment. I've seen it all. Restaurant equipment, vehicles, computers, software, yellow iron, manufacturing equipment, medical equipment. I've seen a custom-built reverse osmosis sytem and crematories, pedicure chairs and paint booths, and the interior of more Subway franchises than one human being should ever have to see. I've overseen inspections in all of the lower 48, Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico for companies investing in new equipment to keep their businesses running and to help them grow.

It's cool.

Unfortunately, I've also had to oversee inspections for equipment that is being repossessed. We're often hired as "lookers" -- it becomes our job when an account is in default to go out and try to find the equipment, or the borrower, and to determine how hard it would be to get the equipment out. We go to businesses who are in default and try to get them in touch with their lender so they can make payment arrangements -- it's easy for us, since we have someone on the ground pretty much everywhere.

This is NOT so fun.

The other half of the house works with insurance companies, completing inspections for a variety of types of coverages. For many of our clients, we perform commercial general liability inspections. A lot of those have to take place at job sites... and a lot of the customers don't have job sites right now.

However, because of this, I know things about this country. I know what people are buying and who's going into default. I know which industries are busy, and which ones are struggling. I know which franchises are the most likely to go under, and which ones are booming.

I also know this: Lots of people in this country are working their asses off.

And they still have hope.

Hope is actually what I see in every single job that comes across my desk. Hope for the future. Hope for expansion. Hope for success. Hope that if I just keep at it, if I continue to work hard, I can build something amazing. I also see backbone -- people who refuse to give up, who won't quit, even when the odds are stacked against them.

The thing I don't see, though, is a belief in our political system. No one really believes that their politicans are working for them. There is very little positive political discourse in this country, from the television ads where pundits and politicos bash each other at every opportunity to the diner counters over coffee. The negativity in the political ads is generally grosser and directed at someone or something specific; the negativity at the breakfast counter is mostly directed at a system which no longer seems accessible to the working or middle class American, who seems resigned to the fact that in November we might possibly meet the new boss, who won't be that much different from the old boss.*

Our elections have become a situation where most Americans believe that they are choosing the lesser of two evils, but less evil is still, last I checked, kind of evil and not REALLY what people want.

So what does the average American -- the working class (who doesn't get that much lip service, now that I think about it -- and what's with that?) and the middle class -- do about it?

From here? It looks like they keep hoping. Hoping that someday they'll be heard or represented. Hoping that the people who can afford to run for office (which, let's face it, is not the average American) will do right by them.

I love hope, and don't want to knock it. But what this job has taught me is that hope is a weak creature. It needs that backbone to go with it. The companies that I work with, the ones who are growing and who have stayed viable when the economy tanked? They were the ones that hoped and hustled.

If we want our political system to work for us, as Americans? Then we need to attach our hope to more work. It's like dieting. No one gets thinner through HOPING the weight will go away. You have to DO something. No business ever magically just became successful. Someone was behind the scenes, working and selling, making it happen. And no major political change was ever achieved merely by casting a vote, I don't think. It's easy to believe that the branches of government have a responsibility to Americans, but not very many people seem to understand that Americans also have a responsibility to their government that goes beyond voting and extends to making sure that government is actually working on their behalf.

Because isn't that the beauty of America? Isn't that what we want? To have a voice and use a voice? To have hope for change and to create that change, generate and inspire it, and to bring it forward?

I want to believe that Americans -- all of them, the ones I agree with and the ones I don't, the ones that are wealthy and the ones who are broke, the ones who are educated and the ones who are not -- can all agree that in order for our system to work properly, it has to be invested in every bit as much as a business. It requires attention and effort. Hope and backbone.

If there's one thing I know for sure, it's that we're a nation of thinkers and doers.

I think we could get this done, too.

*I don't personally agree with that, which probably doesn't surprise you. I'm a fan of the old boss.

Monday, September 24, 2012


... or, you know, not so much.

I had a moment over the weekend when I realized something about myself. And that something was not pretty.

I thought: We accept the love we think we deserve.*

And THEN I thought: Oh man. I am such a bitch.

Because the truth is that for the past several years ... since, say, 2007? ... I have not believed that I deserved any love. None. Not a bit. My family was allowed to love me, and my friends were allowed to love me, but as far as relationships go? Um, NO THANK YOU.

And I KNEW this about myself (okay, maybe not on the most conscious level, but still). I knew it.

I let myself go out with a couple of fellas anyway. Nice ones, ones who wanted to give me flowers and take me places and who generally treated me quite well. I told myself that I didn't WANT to be treated well. I didn't want to be responsible for anyone else's happiness. I didn't want the things that they really wanted to give me. To be fair and honest, part of this was a result of the fact that some of them wanted to "rescue" me (Oh, and one of them was married, which he revealed a little later in the game than was cool) and I'm not a woman who dreams of rescuing. I have a swiss army knife, folks. I can rescue myself.


To continue with the fairness and honesty, there was no way I could be in a relationship with these individuals -- who were good people, I might add, and who were very very nice -- because it's true that we accept the love that we think we deserve.

And when we don't think we deserve love, we don't accept it when it's offered.

Which leads me back to the "OMG I AM A SHE-DEVIL, AND NOT THE FUN KIND" moment.

It wasn't pretty.

 It's wonderful, I think, when moments of epiphany result in thoughts like "Oh, I'm much more amazing than I originally thought!" or "The world is a BEAUTIFUL place and I can't even stand this much joy!" It sucks when your moment of epiphany results in the realization that YOU kind of suck. No one likes to be in the midst of plucking her eyebrows (which I was, which my eyebrow girl is going to be SO MAD at me for) when she realizes that the biggest reason as to why all of her relationships fail is staring back at her in the mirror, brow bone a-smarting, eyes startled.

"Ooops" doesn't begin to cover it.

"I am an asshole, albeit an unintentional one" does kind of begin to cover it, though it still doesn't convey the sense of "oh boy, I have been such a jerk" that I was feeling. Because, like (almost) everyone else, I didn't set out with the intention to hurt anyone.

That miiiiight, however, have been accomplished in my poor, pathetic execution.

My bad (she said, wincing).

The beauty of revelations, though, is that they can help you to propel yourself forward. You can ask questions like, Why WOULDN'T I deserve the best? Why SHOULDN'T someone love me? I am freaking FABULOUS, DAMMIT! I not only deserve but demand that people appreciate and love me. SO THERE.

Although, if you see me out with some unfortunate soul, you should probably take the time to have a moment of pity for that person. Lord knows, I'm kind of crazy.

But at this point, it's mostly the fun kind.


*This is from The Perks of Being a Wallflower. READ IT. I'm just saying.**

**I should probably add that I got in trouble for teaching this book. So you should get your hands on it fast quick and in a hurry, because those are the best kinds of books.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Friday Randoms

1.       People keep asking me what I want in life, but in a judgey way, as if to say what I have right now CLEARLY doesn’t work (when sometimes it kind of does) so I’ve gotten used to answering the question from one pointedly pissy perspective.


But then someone asked me the same question last weekend, from a place that wasn’t judgemental, but genuinely interested  – “What do you want?” -- and I think I fumbled it. What I should have said was this: I want to be happy, and I FINALLY get that the stuff that has been so stupidly consuming and seems so important isn’t, not really, not when it comes down to it; I also want my friends to be happy. Oh, and I’d like to spend more time with my kind inquisitor, who didn’t seem to mind when I answered the question in a way that was NOT AT ALL how it was meant, I don’t think.  Anyway.


2.       “I call them the Stormtroopers.”


“You could just as easily call them ‘The Big Smelly Dumb Boys Who Live Upstairs’ – it’s longer, but MUCH more descriptive.”


“I didn’t KNOW that they are smelly.”


“Well, now you do.”


3.       I don’t often wish for a significant other –we’ve covered this ground, no? --  “Oh, heavens, why am I aloooonnneeee” – but there are moments when I have to acknowledge that a partner-type (or heck, even a roommate) would be SUPER handy. Such as when one has a sinus infection and is a bit wobbly, and yet has to stand on a chair to change a lightbulb. Or in the instance of large spiders which require some kind of eradication.  I’m self-sufficient, but sometimes a girl could use a hand, you know what I mean?


4.       “I don’t know why more people don’t understand spontaneous public dancing.”




“Why is everyone else so UPTIGHT?”


“Or conversely, what’s wrong with us that we lack dignity and pride?”


“No, it’s them.”


“You’re right, it’s them. Clearly.”


5.       Speaking of being happy (see Random #1) – I don’t really know why I started this blog, except that I like to write and felt like I might have something to say.  I keep at it, though, because it makes me happy. I don’t know why y’all read it, but I hope that there’s something in it that brings you even a little bit of the joy that writing it brings to me.  Thanks for hanging around here. You people are AWESOME.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Internal Dialogue. With Cat.

Begin Scene

Alarm goes off.

Me: Oh oh.

Brain: What?

Me: I am SICK.

Brain, suspicious: Are you SURE?

Me, trying to breathe, wheezing: Yeah, I’m pretty sure.

Brain, still not buying it: You were sick yesterday.

Me: I KNOW. I had a fever and everything. I HAVE A SINUS INFECTION. Hater.

Brain, put out: Whatever.

Me: I think I have to call in.

Brain: Uh. You did that YESTERDAY.


Brain, incredulous: Dude. Really? You work from HOME.

Me, whimpering a little: But I can’t talk. And I feel really bad. And why is it 456811564 degrees in here? It’s so HOT.

Brain: It IS warm. WAIT, don’t distract me. You have to go to work.

Me: But I don’t wannnnaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.

Brain: ANNNDD … now you’re whining.


Brain: Please feed her before she starts chewing on our hair.

Me: Okay. But I’ll have to stand up.

Brain: Yeah?

Me: Are you ready for that?

Brain: Whatever, we do that EVERY DAY – Woooooooaaaaaahhhhh there, Yellie, you lay right back down!

Me: Not feeling so well?

Brain, startled and upset: Everything went all wonky!

Me, sarcastically: Really. I’m SO SURPRISED.

Brain: You’re SICK.

Me: You don’t say.

Brain: We need to figure out a way to feed the cat that doesn’t involve STANDING. And then let work know we’ll be out.

Me: I’ll get right on that.

Brain, relieved: Thank you!

Me: You’re welcome.


Me: Okay. Bossypants.

Brain: Now please. Let’s figure out this cat thing. Because she’s eating our hair.

Cat: Mrrrwwwpp!


End Scene

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Wednesday Wisdom

I'm sick, which is annoying. But I came across this in my travels this week, and it is NOT annoying. And who better to share it with than you, Dear Readers?
”Life is so generous a giver but we, judging its gifts by their covering, cast them away as ugly or heavy or hard. Remove the covering and you will find beneath it a living splendor, woven of love, by wisdom, with power. Welcome it, grasp it, and you touch the angel’s hand that brings it to you. Everything we call a trial or a sorrow or a duty, believe me that angel’s hand is there, and the wonder of an overshadowing presence. Life is so full of meaning and purpose, so full of beauty beneath its covering, that you will find earth but cloaks your heaven. Courage then to claim, that is all.” – Fra Giovanni

Have a healthy day!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

For You

Hey, you!

Yes. You. Stop looking around to see who I’m talking to. I’m talking to YOU.

You’re amazing.

I don’t know why you don’t get that you’re amazing. In fact, it kind of annoys me. Let me point this out to you: everyone who knows you loves you.

Here’s why:

You are brilliant.

When you allow yourself to, you shine.

You are kind.

You are funny.

You have a generous heart.

You’re not perfect. Don’t get me wrong. You can be stubborn, argumentative, sarcastic. Grouchy, even. Just like all of the rest of us.

Oh, and you don’t get that you’re awesome.


I don’t think you hear it enough, so I wanted to tell you:

You’re awesome and you are amazing and you are loved.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Living On a Prayer

Anne Lamott writes in Traveling Mercies that the best prayers she knows are “Help me help me help me” and “Thank you thank you thank you." Both are nicer than holding God -- or anyone else -- hostage to your desires.
Five years ago, I had a religious epiphany:

I’d been praying wrong.

To be clear, no one TOLD me I was praying wrong.  It’s not as though there was a formula and I was following it incorrectly.  I wasn’t attending church, either, so no one observed me praying and gave me some pointers on my poor form. It was more of a nagging sensation, a thought that kept repeating: I think I’m doing this wrong.

What I was doing, you see, was asking for outcomes. Things that I wanted, like God was Santa Claus and I was compiling a list: Make my husband want to stay. Fix my friend who is sick. Make my job better.

Dear God, I want I want I want.

For the record, when I was younger and attending church, we were taught to go to God and ask Him for things. If we didn’t get the things we asked for, the explanation was generally this: Well, it wasn’t God’s will.

I found this to be a very inadequate explanation.

Why would you teach me to rely on God and ask for things – not selfish things, like a pony, but healing and helping and hoping – and then tell me that it was TOTALLY SENSIBLE if the Big Guy didn’t come through? THIS WAS NOT OKAY! This was why I didn’t ask actual, physical PEOPLE for things – they let you down! They back out at the last minute! It’s better to do for yourself than to count on other people!

(It should probably be noted that I have an exceptionally wide independent streak.)

But I kept DOING it – the praying and asking Santa God – and then finding that well, He might not be into what I was asking for:

Husbands would leave.

Friends would die.

My job would suck.

Even though I asked for something else entirely.

As you can imagine, this caused some issues with an already damaged faith. For a while, I decided that screw it, I was done. Someone ELSE could talk to the Big Cheese. I was through.

What eventually happened was this: stripped of regular religious instruction and affiliation to any one denomination, I started to think about the issue of “God’s Will” more from a perspective of fate. It’s not my fate to still be married to my ex husband. It was someone’s destiny to have to pass away when she did. It necessary to have the sucktastic job in order to move to the next step in my career. These things had to happen.

So what was the point in praying for them NOT to?

I was doing it wrong.  My prayers to Santa God were incorrect. I was asking for the wrong kinds of things.

When I pray now, I don’t pray for outcomes. The outcomes will be what they are based on whatever you want to call it – you can call it fate, or the will of the Almighty, or karma, or whatever you want. And maybe, you don’t pray to a defined God. Maybe you don’t even believe in God.  Perhaps you find yourself looking anyway, asking the universe or Allah or whoever or whatever you have faith in, talking to that energy or spirit or deity, conversing and communing. I call it prayer. You can call it whatever you want.

Just don’t treat it like it’s Santa Claus.

What I do instead is this: I pray for understanding. I pray for grace in difficult situations. I ask for courage. I hang on to my hope that I can make a difference. I don’t depend on God to fix things. I depend on myself to behave the best I can – even when it’s hard, even when it makes me sad – knowing I’m doing all I can.
Sometimes, I even succeed. 


Friday, September 14, 2012

Five Friday Randoms

1. The spray nozzle that is attached to my kitchen sink? For the past two years I thought it was brown. Which was weird, because nothing else in that kitchen is brown, but ... it was brown.

Yeah. I soaked it in vinegar this week?


Which, awesome. But also? YUUUUUUCCCCCKKKKKKKK.

2. Actual conversation:

"I don't know why I never thought of putting you and X together! It's GENIUS!"

"Um, because I find him intimidating? He scares me? I go out of my way to avoid him because he's so intense?"


"Although, that probably does mean I should marry him."

3. Another actual conversation:

"You know your cat is, like, the center of your entire life."

"You say that like it's a problem."

"You don't think it's a problem?"

"Well... Nope."

4. I keep getting letters in the mail from various auto dealerships about my car. I've owned cars before and never had this happen -- for some strange reason, no one was particularly interested in getting their hands on my Dodge Colts (plural, because I owned two in succession), Dodge Neon, or Chevy Cavalier, but the people want the Wascally Wabbit for their very own. Good luck, suckers. The 2008 VW Rabbit is mine until the doors fall off. (A friend assures me that this can't actually happen, but this is someone who's never actually witnessed my driving.)

5. It's fall. I suppose this means that soon I will have to start wearing shoes.


Thursday, September 13, 2012

Scaling Back, Part Two

In case you were wondering, here’s what might happen if you toss out your scale after spending about 36 years weighing yourself every day, sometimes more than once:

You may become a little unhinged.

You may, in fact, spend the first two days in the throes of a panic attack. Not a big one, mind you, but one that is bad enough that you are uncomfortable and feel like you are going to jump out of your skin at any moment.

You may suddenly feel very far away from your body, as though the thing that tethered you to it – a series of numbers appearing in a window every day – has vanished, and so has the string that connected your soul to your own physicality.

You may spend one day not eating, out of the fear that you will gain weight and not know it.

You may spend another day eating EVERYTHING, because you can gain weight and not know it.

You may suddenly become obsessed with how your pants fit. Are they tighter than they were yesterday? Not as tight? WHAT IS THE DEAL WITH THESE PANTS?

Your morning ritual may seem incomplete, as though you are forgetting to do something. You may keep thinking, “Oh, but I need to weigh in” before you realize that you can’t weigh in. No matter how much you want to.

You may consider purchasing another bathroom scale. You know, “just to have”.

You may have moments of joy  --“WOOOHOOO I’M FREE AT LAST!”  -- followed by moments of despair --“DEAR GOD, I WANT BACK IN MY CAGE!” – followed by indifference: “SO WHAT? NO ONE CARES.”


You may start to listen to your body and judge its worth by how it feels, and what it’s doing, rather than by a number. You may look at yourself in the morning – bleary eyed and sleepy – and discover that you are, in fact, just you. No more and no less. You are you right now and you will be you two minutes from now and thirty minutes after that and none of that has anything to do with a number on a scale. You don’t need the number to tell you who you are.

You may occasionally wish you knew what you weighed. But mostly, you may be happy that you don’t. You may find that it doesn’t matter at all. You will still have the ability to dance and sing and laugh, and you may find yourself doing it more often.


If you tossed your scale.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Hustle and Flow

I’m a hustler.

Not the Usher kind, like “I’m a hustler, baby!” because  that, I can assure you, I am NOT.*

I’m a hustler of the Little League variety, when your little legs were running to first base and the coach was yelling at you to “HUSTLE! HUSTLE!”

That kind. The busy, bustling kind. The don’t stop swimming or you’ll drown kind. I feel like I’m all forward motion and a million things to do and holy SHIT how did today run out of minutes when I’m not DONE yet.

Which, I might mention, is why this post is late.


Here’s what I’ve noticed about my brand of hustler. We get stuff DONE. (Except the occasionally late blog post!) But we can also get a little bit tired. And when we get tired? We either get silly  or cranky or sometimes, in a delicious sarcasm smoothie, a bit of both.

But we don’t stop.

Because we can’t.

I honestly don’t know what I think would happen if I slowed it down, but I’m pretty sure it would be terrible. So I don’t do it. Even my vacations are a study in too much activity and constant movement.

“You’re not good at relaxing,” people say to me, like a joke. “Nope!” I say back, always cheerfully, jacked up on 17 cups of coffee and a diet coke, with a book in one hand and my cell phone in my other hand and a to do list before me. “Not even a little!”

And in my head, I can hear my coach: “Hustle, Yellie, Hustle!”
And I think, "It's the only thing I know how to do." 

*I suspect Usher Raymond isn’t either, when it comes to it. He doesn’t seem very gangsta, yo.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Only Thing Stronger Than Hate...

... is love. It's a good day to remember that.

(as always, here's your link if the embed doesn't work:

Monday, September 10, 2012

Home Is Where ... My Butt is Staying

This is going to be the year of no travel.

This is disappointing for oh so many reasons. It’s disappointing because I thought I was going to see my sister’s family in May and it’s so not happening. It’s disappointing because my folks live in North Carolina and I won’t make it down there. It’s disappointing because my best friend and I wanted to plan a Vegas weekend (Oh Vegas. Will I never be in you?) and it’s also not happening.

Rawr. (Which in this case, is NOT dinosaur for “I love you” but rather is dinosaur for “I’m SO SAD RIGHT NOW!”)

My year of travellessocity is not a result of being banned by the Homeland Security or anything. In fact, airlines LOVE me. I obey all of the rules! I volunteer or even pay extra for the emergency seats because I’m good in a calamity! I don’t pretend full size luggage is a carry on! I’m quiet! I don’t get drunk! I don’t kick the seat in front of me and I’m very tolerant of screaming babies!

No, my year of the staycation is a direct result of lack of funds.

Well, kind of.

My year of no travel is my gift to myself. Oh sure, it’s a CRAPPY gift. But we all know that travel is expensive.  Between airfare and getting to the airport and then the actual travel bit itself and taking care of Beansie etc? It’s a pricey proposition.

The year of no travel means – the money stays in my bank account.

And then is used to repair my frail finances.

You might be thinking “Wow. You’re putting MONEY ahead of your FAMILY. You … suck at life.”

Which, okay, I can understand why you might feel that way.

But I also know that my family worries about me, up here in New Hampshire on my ownsome, and I want to get myself into a position where they don’t HAVE to. That’s the point. That’s the plan.

Plus, it’s not like I WANT to go a year without seeing people or having fun. That’s not my GOAL. (That would be a really sad goal. “This year, I’d like to have as little fun as possible. AWESOME! WHEEEEE!”)

My goal is to take care of myself. It turns out that sometimes, taking care of yourself means doing things that you don’t want to do… but doing it anyway, because it’s important.

A whole year. At home. With Beansie Boo and my photos of trips gone by.

Who wants to hang out during my staycations? You’ll know where to find me!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Holy Sheet

Today is my ex-husband’s birthday. I wouldn’t remark on this, but I was thinking of him the other day because… well, because despite his faults (please note my heroic effort not to make a snarky comment here. YAY ME!) he also had a super power. This one amazing, inexplicable ability.

He could … and I’m not even kidding here … fold a fitted sheet.

He’s the only person I’ve ever known with this ability. He claimed he learned it while in the Marines, which is funny to me.










Marines, schmarines, I say. It was an innate super power, like Superman’s ability to fly. Here’s how I know: I couldn’t learn to do it. I worked retail for years and am a CHAMPION folder. (Sad, sad, fact: sometimes I board-fold my t-shirts in the privacy of my own home, just because they look so flat and perfect that way. Yes, I know I have issues.) However, every time I try to fold a fitted sheet, it looks like I wadded it up into a ball. It’s like a fabric origami project gone horribly, horribly wrong.

I’ve tried to learn. I’ve watched the Martha Stewart “fold a flatted sheet” tutorial many times. Oh, so many times. Martha and my ex are apparently from the same planet that causes its inhabitants to be born with this gift (or it may be a genetic mutation. I haven’t ruled that out) because they both make it look so easy, so SIMPLE. Grab this corner, fold in that direction, snap out, refold. Flat, perfectly folded fitted sheet.

Yeah, right.

Sometimes I don’t even try. I fold the flat sheet, I fold the pillowcases, and then I just jam the wadded up fitted sheet on top of them in a lump of defeat. It offends my sensibility (did I mention the board folding?) but what’s a girl to do? THEY DON’T FOLD NEATLY.

At least, not for me. They did for the sheet whisperer.

It’s nice, though, to remember that everyone has one redeeming quality. Maybe especially when a relationship goes so bad that it resembles Dante’s seventh circle of hell, it can be worthwhile to try to find that little nugget of something that is nice to remember. “Yeah, it ended badly, but MAN could he fold a fitted sheet. It was MAGICAL.”

(I still think he might be an alien, though. Him and Martha. You just never know.)

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Three Cheers for Charlene!

Today is my mom’s birthday.

I was about to say that my mom is awesome and then say something about how we’re a lot alike, but then I realized that is a backhanded way of saying I’m  awesome, which is kind of conceited, don’t you think?

However, my mom? Awesome.

And it’s true that we’re a lot alike.  We look alike. We finish each other’s sentences. We love the same places, the same music, and many of the same foods.

Heck, we work together. It’s not the first time we’ve worked together, either. I’ve been my mom’s boss more than once.  (She's ALWAYS the boss of me, she'll tell you. It's kind of true.)
My mom helped me to become a person who loves music, and art, and writing. She taught me that I was valuable, that I should believe in myself, that I am capable. She believes that I am beautiful, so sometimes I believe it. She taught me how to be strong. How to have courage. How to have faith.
My mom, man. She's pretty freaking amazing.

She's also my favorite person on this earth. She just is. There’s no one I’d rather hear the words “I’m proud of you” from; no one I’d rather make laugh; no one I’d rather sing along in the car with; and no one I’m more worried about disappointing. My mom is a rock star.

So if you know my mom, wish her a happy birthday. And tell her she’s awesome. It will embarrass her, but it’s true.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Hellllllloooooo, Jerry

A while back (which is code for, um, sometime last summer but I’m not sure when) I looked into becoming a part of a couple of blogging networks. I like writing, I thought, and I keep plugging away at this little venture (with the occasional vacation) and it might be nice to explore other opportunities – where oh where could this take me?

Turns out, nowhere. REJECTED. It was like a high school dance all over again. All of the other blogs were slow dancing with each other, and I was sitting in a chair by the wall, telling myself that I TOTALLY didn’t care.

It was a lie then and it’s a lie now. The difference is that back then I meekly accepted my fate. Now, however, I don’t have to. So I asked: I’d like to use this as a learning opportunity, so if you could let me know why my blog can’t be included in your network, that would be greatly helpful to me as I move forward. Thanks.

The overwhelming response was: Well, your blog isn’t about anything, really. It’s not about parenting and it’s not about marriage and it’s not about dating. It’s sometimes political, but it’s not about politics. It’s sometimes about things, but it has no theme. It’s not ABOUT anything.

This, of course, made me think of Seinfeld. “It’s a blog about NOTHING!”

Except, of course, that it’s kind of about my life.  Which is apparently lacking in a theme. I guess that if I wanted it to have a theme, a central idea that all of the posts swirl around, that would be do-able.

Do-able, but boring as hell for me, and probably for you to read. Oh goody, another blog about body image. Or loss. Or … WHATEVER. Dull. Dull as toast. Dry, characterless toast.

So I’m putting it out there to you, dear reader folk. Do you want a theme? Do you want to have an idea of what you’ll see here on any given day? Or do you like the randomness? I’m curious because, if people like the random, then what would be the point to insisting on a theme? That seems silly to me.

In the meantime, you won’t see any badges indicating that I belong to any networks. No blogging conferences for me, no bloggy fame or fortune. No book deal and no quitting my day job. Just the continual daily natterings for your day.

It works for me. I hope it’s working for you as well.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Measuring Systems

I was on the Sky Ride at Canobie Lake Park this summer with one of my dearest friends and having an unexpectedly serious discussion while simultaneously trying to keep my flip flops from falling off and landing on the heads of the unsuspecting park attendees below.

She’s a mom and a homeowner and has her stuff TOGETHER.

I am … me.

However, as we slowly cruised over the trees and pathways in our carriage, she also proved to be a major champion of my me-ness as I tried to explain why, at 36, I feel like I don’t  have a handle on life.

“WHATEVER,” she said, “You’re doing fine.  You can date – or not. You can change jobs or not. You can rent or not. It’s only up to you. “

Basically, she said, if I don’t like the system that people – including me – are using to measure what I’m doing with my life, I should try out a new system. Go metric, if you will.

“You’re right,” I said. My right flip flop dangled dangerously.

“Of course I am,” she said. “Do you want to go ride a roller coaster now?”

“Yes, please!”

I’m mentioning it now because I’d like to make a formal declaration of a change of measuring system.

As such:

If I am making changes as regards to my life, and I ask for advice, I would LOVE to hear what you think.  The unsolicited commentary, however, is no fun. Let me ask you: the next time you go out for drinks with your friends, think about how awesome it would be if they all ganged up on you to list the things that they thought you could be doing better.

It would make you want to drown yourself in a scorpion bowl. TRUST ME ON THIS ONE.

I am not shy about asking people what they think. Believe me, I know a lot of intelligent people. I respect them. I frequently request their perspective on situations, and appreciate that they all want the best for me.

I love them for that.

But I’m starting not to love the constant barrage, of being told what I NEED – MUST! RIGHT NOW! – to do.

Please allow me to list them:

1.       You need to dress like a grown up. Here’s the deal: I’m an adult.  If I want to wear some sort of snarky t-shirt and a hoodie every day in my WORK FROM HOME job, I will. And that WILL be dressing like an adult, because I’m an adult and that’s how I’m dressed. If I worked in an office, I would clearly conform to their dress codes. I GET IT.

2.        You need to get out more.  I go out when I want to go out. If I don’t have every minute of my life scheduled? I’m okay with that. 

3.       You need to be dating. I’m so tired of this. If I meet someone (YOU NEED TO GO OUT MORE) and am interested, and the Someone is interested(YOU NEED TO DRESS LIKE A GROWN UP)? Then perhaps I will date.  Otherwise? I like being single. All of the closet space is mine. The entire bed is mine. You know who I have to check in with? No one. EVER. Um, that doesn’t exactly suck.

4.       You need to go back to school/decide what you want to be when you grow up/career career career. I do need to do some career related things. I’m doing them. I’m not necessarily talking about them, but I’m DOING them. Here’s why I don’t want to talk about them: when I’m done spending 11 plus hours a day at work? I don’t want to talk about work. If I DO want to talk about work, then I’ll talk about it. And we can discuss it. But can we not have a lecture, please? It’s not enjoyable, and if you think I’m stressed out now, check my blood pressure after you get done telling me all of the stuff you think I should be doing instead. (Hint: it won’t be lower.)

Look, my life isn’t perfect. As it turns out, no one’s is. I’m working really hard to make some positive, long overdue changes and I’m EXCITED about them.  I will ask for help. I will listen to advice. I will know that all of the above come from a place of love and good intent.  But I’m probably not  using your measuring system for what it means for me to be a success. It turns out that it doesn’t work for me.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some snarky t-shirts to fold and put away.