As a writer I’ve often been told to begin with the end in mind and work back from there. I just wrote that sentence because I have no idea where this post will go. I didn’t have an idea when … Continue reading
Have you ever walked into someone’s home and it looks like the model home of a new neighborhood? Everything is clean and pristine. Floors are waxed, carpet vacuumed, counter tops (granite of course) so shiny they hurt your eyes and … Continue reading
The setting: 1983, Washington Grove Elementary School, third grade. This was a tough year. All of the sudden it became apparent who the smart kids were and where everyone else fit in on the scale of dumb to less dumb. … Continue reading
Happy 1st Blogiversary to me! It was this month almost a year ago to the day that I decided to start sharing some of my deepest and darkest secrets with anyone who would listen. Okay- some of them are not … Continue reading
So lately, I’ve been doing all of this Eastern medicine, reiki, detox, healing crapola, in an attempt to behave like a “normal” human being. And its great. It leaves me feeling incredibly calm and centered. Most of it seems like just laying on a big heating pad while someone waves beads or feathers or something over my head. But, I guess thousands of years of healing tradition must work or why they hell would they still be doing that crap? And it works for me- so there it is.
Anyhoo, the reason I’m telling you all of this is as follow up to yesterday’s blog post, Waterways. I was quite proud of it. I asked my husband about it and he gave his typical man response, “yeah, it was good”. But oh no, every woman knows this brief review of my work will never do. “Don’t you think its good? I mean, like ‘real writing’? It wasn’t humorous and didn’t include any cuss words”, I prompted. “Yeah, it was different than your usual writing..not so frantic…ya know…not crazy” came his supportive reply.
Whoa ho ho!! Back up a minute- NOT CRAZY! Well, my dear sir, you have just thrown down the gauntlet. “Not crazy” will never do in my book. Oh no, I’ve laid awake all night giving my relationship with a water some deep and thoughtful consideration. And my friends, let’s all jump on the USS Crazy Train, shall we?
My life on the water began before I can remember. My dad owned an Aqua Cat. Its like a Hobie Cat but smaller and less popular. In fact, I think we may have owned the only one in existence; because ever since then whenever I’ve told someone we had an Aqua Cat they always correct me and say, “oh, you mean a Hobie Cat”. No dumb ass, an Aqua Cat.
If this is your first time reading my blog, let me give you a little background. My parents were definitely not Ozzie & Harriett. Or y’all probably don’t even know who that is- maybe Ward & June Cleaver? Shit, I don’t know. In short, they were both crazy and split up when I was about 7- the end.
Well, back to the Aqua Cat, in those early years when my parents still tolerated each other, we would often load up the old cat on the trailer and take it to the beach. Now the beach was really just some spot on the Chesapeake Bay where they’d thrown out a bunch of sand- so I guess that qualifies as a beach.
Being the ever thoughtful and responsible parents the planning of picnic items and the like was not tops on their list. We can just pick that shit up on the way out there. So, we would stop by KFC- you youngin’s my not know this but those letters actually stand for something and back then we just called it Kentucky Fried Chicken- ah what simpler times they were. And then we can swing by the beer & wine store on the way and pick up a case of B-bows (translation: Pabst Blue Ribbon) for Dad. In Maryland, not only do you have to sell liquor at liquor stores, you also have to sell Beer & Wine at there own separate stores as well. Why? Who the fuck knows? But, my poor husband got to learn this fact the hard way. The first time he came to visit my family he ran to the store to get some beer. He was gone for over and hour and the store was literally at the end of our street. This was before cell phones and I couldn’t figure out where the hell he was. When he finally got home, he filled me in. I had neglected to tell him this particular little quirk about the Free State and so he’d been driving all over the state from grocery store to convenience store far and wide before he finally asked someone. Oopsy Daisy!
Oh wait, let’s get back to our beach trip. So, dad’s got his case but wait there is also my non-drinking mother and his three CHILDREN with him. Okay- we can stop and pick up a six-pack of coke for all them- that should last us all 8 hours on the beach, right? Thank God, my mother at least brought some sunscreen or sun tan lotion- I don’t think anyone really believed in skin cancer back then so I’m really not sure how much UV protection it provided- but man you’d have a great tan.
So there we’d be at the beach. Dad would off load the trailer. The great thing about an Aqua Cat (no, I’m not mistaken, its not a Hobie Cat, asshole) is that you can launch it directly from the beach. So, once the Cat was off the trailer, the entire family (including little toddler me) would all push the damn thing the million miles from the parking lot across the searing hot sand to the water’s edge. Note, we were at the beach so of course the first thing you do is kick off your shoes- not giving a second thought to the fact that you may develop third degree burns on the bottom of your feet. But, it sure gave us all motivation to get that motherfucking boat to the water as fast as possible so we could cool our heals.
Then we’d all sit down on the 3 towels we’d brought for all 5 of us to sit on. We never had chairs or an actual cooler. Dad would just pick up one of those handy dandy styrofoam coolers at the beer store, so then he could just throw it away at the end of the day. I wonder how many of his coolers are taking up space in a landfill somewhere? Well, at least he can honestly say he’s left his permanent and indelible mark on the world.
Anyhoo, he’d down 6 or 8 beers, ya know, just enough to take your small children out for a sailing excursion on the Bay. Despite being drunk and depriving his children of hydration, he did make us wear life jackets. I don’t even think it was a law back then, so thanks Dad for not letting us drown. We’d set off with the wind in our sails to circle the lighthouse. He loved to joke that sharks were also circling the lighthouse. Yay! We’re inches from the water, hiked way up on one side and he’s making hilarious jokes about Jaws.
So we’d be on our way back to the beach when, shit, the whole damn thing capsized. No, not just one time. This happened every time. Thus, the life preservers. We got really good at uprighting the old Cat. Thank God we had the smaller less popular sister because I don’t think we could have hefted Hobie’s beautiful big ass over.
These beach adventures truly are some of the happiest memories of my childhood- believe it or not. I was with my whole family, on a beach, on the water, in the water, laughing and having fun. So, yeah. Its not nearly as idyllic as the picture I painted yesterday of our current boat outings. But, there is something about the water- that despite our family turmoil- the water made everything okay even for just those few days. Burned feet and all.
I’ve lost my main bra. I don’t know where it is. I’ve looked high and low. This is my basic, nude colored go-to bra. I believe (and hope) most women are like me (or this particular post is going to be especially embarrassing) and really only have 2 or 3 bras that are in the regular rotation. There’s the main one- mine happens to be nude, which by the way is kind of racist, just like band aids and so on- but we’ll save that for another time; and two black ones (and they’re actually black- not African American- just wanted to clarify in case my former statement confused you). Yes, we all own probably 10 or more, but for one reason or another they do not make the cut for everyday wear. Some are for special occasions- they push up so they can fill out one particular outfit- that you wore somewhere to impress someone who really doesn’t matter and therefore spent a fortune on a bra you’re never going to wear again; or they’re too small because you bought them 20 years ago and are denial that your boobs have actually grown with age or they’re lacy and pretty and you thought your husband/boyfriend/”lover” (I hate that term- it sounds so, yuck- ugh- I don’t even want to think about it) would find it sexy- but honestly its way too itchy. Or its a nursing bra and your kids are practically in college- but you still hold on to them just in case of an emergency- you know- a breast feeding emergency- because those happen all the time. Or they’re strapless. Holy Mary, heaven on high, how I hate strapless bras!! If you’re wearing a strapless bra, you’re probably attending an event where alcohol is present and by the end of the evening you’re having such a good time that that so called bra is now a belt and your boobs are just bouncing around to the delight of every drunk old man in sight.
This may be shocking to men (not married men- they are definitely in on the secret)- but stupid, clueless men (wait- isn’t that all of them?- um- excluding my husband of course- sorry honey- but, well… you know) who think women are walking around like Victoria’s Secret models- or the Sears catalog models for that matter, with matching panties and bras for each day of the week. What fools they are. What they don’t know, is that those sweet melons they’ve been eying are actually being held up (most of the time) with a pilly, graying, worn out bra. One of the under wires is probably bent or broken- but these bitches are expensive- so unless the under wire is about to puncture something- that bitch is staying in the line up.
As I type this, I’m starting to feel a bit of dread. Maybe I am the only woman who wears the same 3 bras day in and day out? Maybe everyone else is walking around in matching bras and panties? Fuck, this is why I haven’t written in my blog for a while- I felt I was sharing too much. But, you know what, who the hell cares. I can’t imagine I’m the only one with this particular, shall we say, quirk. I have a “lingerie” (and I use the term loosely) drawer that is jam packed full of Lord knows what- because it certainly isn’t anything I wear on a regular basis. It’s mostly some ugly holiday socks an old aunt thought I would just “love”. I’m not 6 years old. I do not wear Christmas, Halloween, Valentines or any other holiday themed socks. That is unless I’m going to bed and my feet are cold OR I’m wearing tall boots that cover them up and all my other socks are dirty- because laundry is a major pain in the ass.
No, the “lingerie” drawer contains my go-to panties shoved right in the front. And my go to bras? Those 3 sisters live on my bedroom doorknob- where God intended. Except my nude-colored one right now!! I’m really starting to panic- there should be a hotline you can call for times like these- a lost bra crisis center. Someone to talk you off the ledge and tell you its okay- that that beloved ugly ass bra will resurface- probably in your daughter’s dress up box, or in the dog house or under the bed with a thousand dust bunnies. I really should stop typing and look for it- because I’m limiting myself to dark shirts for the rest of my life without it- or until I can save up the 50 billion dollars it costs to buy a new one. But, then I’ll have to stand and look and….well, that’s just exhausting. It’s much easier to just sit here and write about it. Nah…when its ready, it will show up.
Bras are really a thing of mystery for men and women alike. Its only been in the past couple of years that I realized what a difference having a properly fitting bra makes. It truly does do wonders for your figure. So here’s a little inside tip for all you ladies- if you think you’re a B- you’re a C, if you think you’re a C- you’re a D, if you think you’re a D…well you better get yourself over to Penney’s where they have little old ladies who’ve been through some kind of highly classified government bra-fitting training program and will be able to properly size up your giant boobs into a triple F or whatever gargantuan size they are. Speaking of mountainous boobs, every time I do go bra shopping, I feel like the only bras available are either an A cup (why even bother) or some mammoth size I didn’t even know they made. Where are all the ones in between??
On the subject of A cups, I remember reading in Seventeen magazine- when I was 13 or so- because honestly, no 17 year-olds are reading that shit, that if you’re not sure if you should wear a bra or not than you should take the pencil test. Again- who is “not sure”? If you even have to ask that question- then just do us all a favor and put one on for the safety of everyone around you. If you’re not familiar with the test it goes as follows: take said pencil, rest it under your boob, if it falls down- you can go braless, if you can hold the pencil with just your boob- you better bind those suckers up stat- and don’t forget to take the pencil out first. (I know you’re all going to try it right after you read this- its okay- I’ve done it, and yes, I can hold a pencil). Personally, I want to know who, when and where this test was developed? Has the Tea Party investigated to see if any of my hard earned tax dollars were going to research such nonsense? Probably not- humph. And another thing, has anyone ever tried writing with the pencil while its being held up by their boob? Now that, my friend, would be a true talent- far better than any of the shitty flute playing, clogging, cart wheeling, baton twirling crapola you see in the Miss America pageant.
So, on a side note, because you know, I never like to get off topic….I just looked up bra in the thesaurus. Not Roget’s actual book- but you know the one on the next tab over on my browser. For you youngin’s we used to have this here thang called a book. It had two hard things on each side we called the covers, and a whole heap of papers in ‘tween we called pages that had writin’ all over ’em. Some old man named Roget (pronounced ro-shay not ra-jit) knew a whole mess a words that meant the same thang as other words and he done wrote ’em in this here book. It was sorta like Webster’s Dictionary- which you pro’bly never done heard of neither- and so why the hell am I even tryin’ to learn you….and why do I feel the need to describe it like someone from the heels? (that’s hills for the rest of you). Okay- I just like talking in funny accents and writing is just me writing down how I’m talking inside my head- yes I’m crazy. Anyhoo, let’s get off that off topic topic and back to the off topic topic I was on….do you remember what it was? I looked up bra in the thesaurus. And here are some of the words it suggested: undergarment, underpants (really- I think that’s the wrong end), undershirt (okay- I’ll allow it), and my personal favorites: boxers, briefs, BVDs, drawers and loincloth. What the fuck?
Alright, now I’ve got to get back to looking for my main bra. I’ve written about it, I’ve prayed about it, alright, not really- but I just wrote about praying about it so that’s sort of the same thing. Being a good Catholic girl, I think I’ll go dig a hole and bury a statue of St. Anthony the Patron Saint of lost things upside down in the yard. You non-Catholics are all shaking your heads right now- but I’m telling you, thousands of years of superstitious, rituals can’t be wrong- I mean if it didn’t work why do the nuns at the Catholic bookstore sell so many St. Anthony statues? I know, you didn’t even know that they sold them or that burying them upside down would help, did you? Well now you’ve learned two new things today: women wear the same bras all the time and nuns sell statues of St. Anthony. You’re welcome.
Long, long ago…when I was young, naive and didn’t even want children, I remember hearing a pregnant friend of mine, who was also my boss and I thought was soooo much older than me, (in reality she was only about 5 years older than me) saying that her children were not going to be “spaghettio’s children”. I loved that term. And I thought it summed up my holier than thou, save the earth, I’ll be greener than you attitude perfectly. She was so cool, a liberal in our conservative state, a vegetarian, and a feminist when it was not cool to be a feminist. She kept her maiden name and only wore a wedding band, no fancy diamond engagement ring. She had lived in New York, practiced yoga and despite being raised Christian had married a Jewish man and converted. As many of you know, I have always wanted to be Jewish- so she was basically living the life I so wanted to have. And if she is reading this now- she knows exactly who she is- if she doesn’t well than she isn’t as smart as I thought she was.
The thing is, I’m just not cut out for this life. I’m Catholic and though I want to be Jewish, my Catholic guilt will forever keep me entrenched in the cult…until, like my father before me, I decide its all a bunch of bullshit and just go with atheism. I love cheeseburgers, steak, chicken, fish…basically all types of delicious dead animals- so vegetarianism is out. One puzzling enigma I can never seem to get over is people who claim to be vegetarian, except they eat fish. WTF? Since when is fish not meat?? These are what I call, (I know I may be treading in dangerous territory here) “non-vegetarians” – they are stupid people (sorry to actual stupid people- I know you don’t want to be lumped in with the “non-vegetarians”) just trying to put on a cool front and are probably sneaking cheeseburgers on the side. I tried to be a vegetarian in high school- but that only lasted about a week before I discovered that the amount of vegetables I like are rather limited…oh and I was dying for a burger. I like diamonds and shiny things- so an engagement ring was a must. And although I consider myself a liberal democrat, the fact is I live in an extremely conservative state where I must walk a fine line so as not to alienate anyone who could be a potential business ally etc. In fact, my very best friend in the world is a Republican (poor thing), but she and I agree to disagree. If only more people could do that, our country and the world would be a much better place.
I’ve always had an endless fascination with the sixties and the whole counter culture movement. Secretly, I still want to live on a commune, with flowers in my hair, no bra, off the grid, raising chickens, carrying my baby in a sling, and sharing everything with my fellow weirdos. But, I hate birds, so chickens are out and I don’t know shit about farming or weaving shit on looms so my contribution to the commune would be limited. I like camping- which is about as close to living on a commune as I’ll ever get, but only in limited amounts of time, because eventually I have to get back to the 21st century- mostly because I’m a TV addict and I need to catch up on what’s going on with the Amish Mafia or Gator Boys or some other mindless crap.
In reality, I like taking showers. I like wearing a bra- my boobs are way too big to be just swinging around hitting people in the face. And honestly, without a bra holding them up, it gets all sweaty and uncomfortable with them just hanging against my chest. I like living in a house with air conditioning and heating. I like having money to buy things, things that I need or just because I want them. I like owning a car and taking vacations. When I eventually had children, I tried every sling known to man in my desperate attempt to be organic, green and cool- but that shit hurt my back. Not only did those things hurt my back, but they’re super complicated to figure out and I was always afraid I would suffocate the baby. Then I would be brought up on murder charges all because I was too stupid to operate a simple sling. So, even though all the experts were and still are saying the closeness that the sling brings for mother and child is of great benefit….my kids had to ride in the stroller. One more strike against me in my quest for non “spaghettio’s children”.
In college, I so wanted to change the world, but only if it meant I got to carry big signs and sit on the shoulders of hot hippie guys at cool protests where people chanted, passed joints, and sang folk songs on guitar. But, this was the 90’s, as a generation we didn’t have a cause to protest, we had never really experienced war, we were raised under the high rolling Reagan administration and were really more concerned with how big we could get our hair, the cute boys at the fraternity house and accumulating debt on credit cards they gave out like candy on campus to stupid 18 year olds. There were hippies on campus, probably many more at the liberal arts institution I attended than others at that time, but still, try as I might, I was not and never will be hippie material.
In college, I wanted nothing more than to traipse about campus with the hippies, playing hacky sack, smoking weed and following The Dead and Phish every summer. But, hacky sack…well, I’m not good at any sports so even this hippie dippie sport was way out of my league. I didn’t have any money to follow anyone around in the summer…I’m assuming all of these ragged looking hippies secretly had rich, stupid parents financing their escapades. The one hippie thing I did exceedingly well was the weed part. It really doesn’t take much to be good at that and I could still have my nice air conditioned apartment, clean clothes, a job and sort of be a normal part of society. Perhaps if I wasn’t wasting money on weed, I could’ve followed those bands around each summer, but then without weed, what fun would that have been?
Moving right along, I graduated, got married, got a job and followed the straight and narrow. Despite the fact that the first 7 or so years of our marriage was a haze of smoke and alcohol, we had fun and were for the most part responsible. Then we had the novel of idea of having children. I swear we must’ve been drunk when we made this decision. When I found out I was pregnant, I was all at once, happy, sad, eager, scared, basically every emotion all at the same time. At first I thought we would have a natural birth with whale songs playing in the background as the baby so gently slipped from my vagina with rainbows and doves. Then I started reading. Reading every book about pregnancy. Everything was dangerous. Natural child birth held dangers, assisted child birth held dangers, c-sections held dangers- its a wonder any child is born healthy. I also gorged myself on sub sandwiches and Diet Coke, that is until half way through my pregnancy I found out you aren’t supposed to eat deli meats because of listeria (which I didn’t know what that was and am still not sure). But, I couldn’t give up the Diet Coke- sorry kids. And so began motherly guilt. I hadn’t even had the child yet and I was already feeling guilty for my shortcomings. Every mother knows there is no guilt like a mother’s guilt, because you can never do enough, never be there enough, give them too much freedom, never give them enough freedom, never live up to all the pie in the sky ideals “so called” experts tell you you should be doing. I suspect most of these “so called” experts are not parents themselves- because its obvious they don’t know shit about kids.
So when my child was born via emergency c-section, the postpartum depression was overwhelming. Not only had I failed my vision of the perfect child birth complete with saving the placenta to bury under a tree in our back yard- but I also had gone completely insane. I was intent on using cloth diapers- until I changed my first diaper. So that plan went right out the window before we’d even left the hospital. Prior to giving birth, I envisioned myself buying all organic foods and transforming them into all organic baby food. But, A. organic food is fucking expensive, and B. I have a job and don’t have time to be mashing up carrots and shit. Thus, Gerber and I quickly fell in love.
Fast forward to today, and my whole fantasy about having non “spaghettio’s children” is a complete, utter and epic failure. I am not a cook. I don’t enjoy cooking and most of my cooking ends in disaster. I also work a full time job and volunteer for everything under the sun because I’m a fucking idiot. So cooking time is limited. Furthermore, my kids hate everything. One day I find something they like, a week later I fix it again and now they refuse to even sit at the same table with it or throw themselves on the floor as if I just threw hot acid on them. We rely heavily on frozen food and restaurants- and since they hate everything that basically means chicken nuggets, tater tots, and canned green beans. And again, even the green beans are a crap shoot. Some days they proclaim it to be their favorite thing in the whole world and the next they act as if I’ve put rat poison on their plates.
Hence, I am not a hippie, not a vegetarian, not Jewish, don’t play hacky sack, live lovingly on the grid, and eat highly processed foods that are full of all kinds of chemicals I’d rather not know about. I do recycle and am all for wind power, gay rights and wish I could afford solar panels on my house- so I guess that’s about as “out there” as I’m going to get. I’d love to compost- but that seems way too time consuming and the garbage disposal is so much more convenient. As much as my young, full of hope self would’ve like, my kids are, in fact, “spaghettio’s kids” but I prefer to call them “tater tots”.
So here it is, 3 am, a week into the 40th year of my life and I’m wide awake. I’m awake for a myriad of reasons, the main one being that I’m not asleep. My mind races about everything. What needs to be done, what I haven’t done, what I should have done, regrets, grudges, shame, what will I do and when the hell am I going back to sleep? Perhaps firing up the old computer and writing at 3am is not the fastest way to get some zzzzs, but I’ve also been reading for the past hour and that shit ain’t helping either.
The past few weeks leading up to the official marking of me as a, horror or horrors, middle aged woman, I received a lot of unsolicited advice from friends of mine in their fifties. All of them seemed to be trying to reassure me that this was not in fact the end of my life. Geez a monetti, if you keep telling me its not that bad- well then it certainly is THAT bad. Lots of the advice sounded like it came straight from a motivational Pinterest pin. “You’ll love your forties”. “You’ll look the best you’ve ever looked”. And my personal favorite, “Forty is the new 20”. Really, 40 is the new 20? I really must take issue with this one- because honestly 40 is not anything like 20.
At 20, I was in college, taking naps in the middle of the day, staying out all night, drinking copious amounts of alcohol, chain smoking cigarettes and well, ahem, other items. I swore I would never work with computers. I would live my life as a performing artist. I did not understand why my college was forcing me to have an e-mail address that consisted of just a bunch of letters and numbers that no one, except maybe Rain Man, could remember- and I was never going to check anyway. I despised the idea of these new fangled cellular phones, because I did not want people to be able to track me down anytime of day. And quite honestly, even though I live and breathe by my phone now- I still don’t like idea that people can track me down anytime. I know I can put it on silent- its permanently on silent- but I’m going to have to check it eventually. If I left the house, I’d simply leave a note for someone telling them where I’d gone- or maybe I wouldn’t and they would just have to wonder- but they certainly couldn’t just call me and find my ass. I am wistful for the days when I just had a phone plugged into the wall and no answering machine. If you called and I wasn’t there than too damn bad for both of us- or perhaps just too damn bad for you…I didn’t want to talk to you anyway. I know this is a cliche attitude we’ve all heard a million times- but we’ve heard it a million times because its fucking true! We’re all too god damned connected.
At 40, I cannot stay out drinking all night long and show up for work at 8 am as if I’ve just had a good 8 hours of beauty rest. I cannot smoke cigarettes- because they’re going to kill me. I’m ten pounds heavier than I was back then (ok, we all know that’s a lie, but that’s the most I’m admitting to). I’m married with two kids, a mortgage, a pile of debt, mental illness (don’t act surprised, we all already know I’m fucking crazy), two email addresses, a plethora of social media accounts, a full time job, and volunteering for WAY too many things all because I’m an idiot who can’t seem to say no to anything. Except PTA…I can’t stand PTA- I know that makes me a terrible parent….but…well sorry- get off my back already. I can’t do everything….and those bitches are downright judgmental (sorry to my wonderful friends who are active in the PTA and make my childens’ school fucking awesome- but all your cute snack making, carnival coordinating and shit just makes me feel like a big fat loser).
Speaking of school, when have we, as a nation, decided that a leprechaun must visit every kindergarten room each St. Patrick’s day and tear shit up, pee green in the toilet and leave coins all over the place?? As if the fucking Elf on the Shelf isn’t bad enough? (see my hilariously funny post about that asshole- you’ll love it). That green bastard didn’t visit anyone when I was a kid. They’re supposed to be sitting at the end of the rainbow guarding their god damned pot of gold- not knocking over chairs and tearing up perfectly good paper in kindergarten class rooms. I love my children’s kindergarten teacher and I know this was not her idea- she’s forced into it because she can’t not do it when every other K class (I’m just going with K now because I’m tired of writing out the whole word) in the world is doing it. Then my child comes home wondering why the hell the leprechaun didn’t stop by our house? And we’re freaking Irish!! We invented this crap and no where in my “how to be Irish handbook” does it say the leprechaun makes visits to your house to spread cheer and glee to children. Isn’t that Santa, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy’s jobs? In fact, St. Patrick’s day really has nothing to do with leprechauns at all. The truth is, according to religious theologians, and as cited in the Bible, and according to a myriad of Vatican resources, it is a high holy feast day that should be celebrated with reverence by knocking off work early and getting shitfaced. And as a good Irish Catholic girl (okay, middle aged woman), I abide by these rules stridently and with my head fully immersed in Guinness.
Alright, I know that as usual I’ve gotten way off topic here- so let’s get back on track. Forty is NOT twenty. It is TWENTY + TWENTY. My ass is tired. I work a full time job and take care of my children. And I don’t want this to turn into a big old fight between working mothers and stay home moms- because yes I’ve seen the bumper sticker, “Every mom is a working mom”. And its true, every mom is a working mom and it is a full time job. But, if you’re a mom with a job outside the home- well then you’re a person working TWO full time jobs. And that’s fucking exhausting. And I don’t like to hear about how women who “choose” to stay home do so because they value their children more than a career or some such bullshit. I would love to have the “choice” to stay home. I cannot count the number of times I’ve dropped my children off at day care and sat in the parking lot crying my eyes out because I DO NOT HAVE THE LUXURY OF CHOICE. I do love my children more than my career- but staying home ain’t the hand I’ve been played. So, if I want to bitch about having too much to fucking do and can’t make cutesy snacks and come to every goddamned PTA meeting- its because I’m working TWO FULL TIMES JOBS!!!! (motherfuckers) Again, sorry to my wonderful friends who are stay-at-home moms- you’re total rock stars and I’m jealous as hell.
Okay- again back to being 40. It is definitely not the new 20. But, I do find I am much more comfortable with who I am and care less about what people think of me. That’s part of why I started writing this blog. I was tired of hiding what I really thought for the sake of someone else. Here I can write about my life, insult, cuss, and be my true self (who apparently has a major potty mouth). Who am I kidding? I still give a giant shit about what people think. I’m still crushed with every rejection. I’m still scared every time I publish a blog post at what people will think, if they’ll hate me, if they’ll decide I’m unworthy- you know, the regular. I still am unhappy with my 125 pound frame (shut the fuck up right now…its true, it says so on my driver’s license). I still cry when someone I thought was a friend turns their back on me. A friend of mine was just telling me that if people do that then they’re not good enough to be my friend in the first place- but it still fucking hurts. But, I’m striving to love myself more and appreciate each moment. (Alright, now I’m starting to cry- fuck, why the hell am I awake??). I love my stretch marks and scars and see them as proof of a life where I’ve taken risks- lots of them- and I’ve survived.
And hopefully, my stay-home mom friends and PTA rock stars will not hate me. I’m 40, I’m tired and I can’t sleep. Cut me some fucking slack.
Let’s face it…all Lean Cuisines, no matter the “flavor”, all smell the same cooking in the microwave. No matter where you are… at home or in the office you can identify from one wiff, that it is indeed a Lean Cuisine. It doesn’t matter what you’re cooking, the classic French Bread Frozen Pizza or the Butternut Squash Ravioli, it all smells the same. No run of the mill low cal frozen dish here…but the premier, crème de la crème of frozen diet letdowns: Lean Cuisine. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love Lean Cuisine. I eat it all the time. I’ve just decided that it is so much better when I add my own little twist. And then I’m still eating well, because it’s a Lean Cuisine! But, it tastes much better thanks to all the fattening, heavenly crap that I put on top.
I’ll get on to my killer recipe in a skinny minute, but I must preface it by saying Lean Cuisine is my favorite of all the “table for one” frozen dishes. I’m sure I’ve tried them all. Nothing says depression, more than a single serving of bland, tasteless diet frozen food. They make it look so delicious on the box, golden brown, on a beautiful plate complete with parsley garnish. You follow the instructions thoroughly in feverish anticipation of that beautiful dish that will also make you skinny.
First, remove frozen dinner from box. Done. Next, cut one slit about 2 inches long in the plastic film covering frozen loneliness dinner to vent. (This part is tricky because I’m never sure if my slit is exactly 2 inches- too small? Too long? Maybe this is what it feels like to be a guy?). Step 2 Done. Step 3: Microwave entrée for 3.5 minutes at 25%. (Shit, how the hell am I supposed to program the fucking Microwave for 25%?? Screw it, I’ll just combine it with Step 4). Step 4: Rotate frozen loneliness dish. Wear protective hand wear as the gourmet delight may be hot. Continue microwaving on 2 minutes. (Okay- so that combined with Step 3 should equal about 5 minutes on high?). Step 3 & 4 Done. Step 5: Remove Film. Stir so-called vegetables. Return to microwave on high for 2 minutes. Let stand in microwave for one minute after cooking. Enjoy!
Jesus Christ, that is a lot of instructions! I might as well be cooking if I have to do all this rotating and film removing and shit. The whole “remove from box” part- is why I love America. We are so dumb, you have to tell us to take the crap we’re going to nuke out of the flipping box. I also love America for being the home of the free and the brave, the crazy, the sane, the rich, the poor, the disenfranchised, the franchised, reality television, public television, hot dogs and hamburgers, IROC Zs, all the Back to the Future movies and Chevy Chase. I’m sure there’s more, but that sentence had long past the run-on statute of limitations. Oh and I’m writing about Lean Cuisine. Ok- next blog entry will be about zesting up your Memorial Day festivity- which you’ll probably be doing by yourself- with an all American tribute Lean Cuisine Recipe!
So you’re really starting to wonder about the Lean Cuisine recipe du jour? It’s really quite simple. And genius is born from stupidity. Is that a quote from someone? If it isn’t, it should be. I’m not really sure if it’s a compliment or an insult- but it does sound profound. Anyhoo, I learned all my cooking secrets from no one else than dear, old Mom. To say she was a whiz in the kitchen is like saying Stephen Hawking is an awesome figure skater. Some people hate “diet” food, but that’s the only kind of food she served- and if it could just be microwaved or heated up as is- all the better.
Mom was always on a diet- probably is now- I don’t know. I try not to get that “engaged” on the phone. She may think we’re pals and want to talk every day. As it is, I have her convinced that we have to rush the conversation since its, “long distance and all”.
But I digress, we’re here for cooking tips! So you too can take your depressing dish of microwavable loneliness and jazz it up! One of my personal favorites: Santa Fe Style Rice and Beans by none other than Lean Cuisine. Apart from not resembling anything on the box and tasting a lot like the actual box, the best thing I could say is the low calorie count was right. But, really, how do I know it’s really right? Can I test that? Aren’t we just using the honor system and hoping they tell us the truth? Shit, we may be on to a major conspiracy by frozen depression delights to keep us ensnared in their wicked web of frozen diet cuisine addiction.
Alright- here goes. Just to recap, the Santa Fe Style Rice and Beans- follow all microwaving instructions thoroughly as demonstrated previously. Gaze upon the pile of mush that comes out in the half melted cooking container and take in all its glory. Because, gurl, it is about to get a whole lot better! Step 1: Walk to the refrigerator. Step 2: Retrieve Sour Cream. Step 3: Get a big spoon. Step 4: Take a huge, spoonful of that creamy goodness and plop it right in the middle of that bland, cardboard tasting so called food. Step 5: Stir that shit up and throw some s&p in already. Step 6: Truly enjoy because when someone asks what you had for lunch you can honestly tell them you ate a Lean Cuisine. And then act all passive aggressive, high and mighty about how you’re sticking to a diet. Recipe: Complete!
I’ve never seen Top Gun. I know…its completely unbelievable that any American in my generation has not seen this cinematic “masterpiece”, but its true. And I never want to see it and you can’t make me. Yes, I’ve seen bits and pieces. And that is all I need to see to know that I don’t want to waste part of my life sitting through another Tom Cruise crapfest.
I can hear you gasping in shock that I just said “Tom Cruise crapfest”. But its true. In my humble opinion, (which I know doesn’t count for shit) he is the most overrated, overpaid, untalented actor of our generation. Whenever I tell someone that I don’t like Tom Cruise, they look at me in disbelief; as if I’ve just said the world is flat and unicorns are real and can shoot lucky charms out of their asses. Look, its not like I’m being racist or antisemitic or hurting anyone (except maybe Tom Cruise), I just don’t find him attractive in the slightest and the mere sight of him makes me want to vomit.
I recently discussed my dislike for America’s sweetheart with a friend of mine and he asked, “you didn’t like Risky Business?” Well, I guess there is an exception to the rule. But that was also the first Rated R movie, I’d ever seen and it had boobies and whores in it and I was only like 8 years old, so yeah, I liked it. I haven’t seen it in 30 years- so if I watched it today, my opinion might change. But then again, who doesn’t enjoy a movie with boobies and whores? And why was I watching such a racy movie at 8? Because my Dad was in charge, he had the Betamax and was drunk all the time- so we pretty much got to choose whatever movie we wanted. Again, no sympathy for drunk dad stuff here- its okay- really. I got to watch rated R movies at 8 and then write meaningless blogs about them 30 years later…so, thanks Dad.
To be fair, I’ve tried to weigh out all of the Tom Cruise movies I’ve seen and figure out if there is one that stands out. The only one that comes to mind is The Outsiders. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend you run to your nearest Erol’s video (oh, they’re out of business), Hollywood Video- oops them too, how about Blockbuster? They at least still have those little kiosks- okay their shit kiosks are nearly invisible compared to Redbox- oh who are we kidding you can probably just find it on Netflix. That’s what I hear all the young knickerbockers are using today. Everyone keeps telling me, “oh its so easy, you can just hook it up through the Wii”. I can’t fucking figure that shit out. Anyone who wants to come over and achieve this “simple” task for me is welcome to…but my life is busy writing extremely important blog entries about how I dislike Tom Cruise- so I really don’t have time.
Anyhoo, back to The Outsiders. This truly is a cinematic masterpiece about gangs in the 50’s or 60’s or I don’t know sometime back then when there were greasers, gangs and switchblades- sort of like West Side Story but way tougher- and no dancing or musical numbers….alright its really nothing like West Side Story- but still really good. The reason I think this is my favorite Tom Cruise movie is because most people can’t even remember that he was in it- because he was a minor character and completely sucked balls.
The real stars of the movie were the teen heartthrobs, Ralph Macchio and C. Thomas Howell. You all know good ol’ Ralph from Karate Kid. But, his role as Johnny in The Outsiders is truly one of his finest and most memorable performances. I’ll never forget him laying face down on the table in the hospital after being mortally burned saving kids from a house fire. I decided then and there, that I would never be brave enough to rescue anyone, kids, dogs, cats, the pope…okay, maybe my own kids…from a burning house- but that’s it! C. Thomas Howell played Ponyboy. Why he had to have “C” in front of his name, I’ll never know. Was there another famous actor that we were supposed to get him confused with? If so, he certainly was not featured in the pages of Tiger Beat or Teen Beat or any other serious piece of journalism that ended in the word Beat.
Speaking of C. Thomas Howell, you may also remember him from the blockbuster hit Soul Man, quite possibly one of the most racist movies of the 80’s. I’d say of all time, but hey, let’s not forget all that shit that came before the civil rights movement, and the 70’s black exploitation films, so relatively speaking, it wasn’t that bad- but racist all the same. The premise was that this rich white boy could not get into Harvard or some other Ivy league school- I really can’t remember because, again, its been like 30 years since I saw this shitfest. Moving along, for some reason the only way he could get in was to pretend he was black. I guess this was supposed to be an anti affirmative action movie? Or maybe it was supposed to be the comedic version of Black Like Me? I have no fucking clue what the writers, producers, directors….well anyone involved in this movie was thinking. So, C.’s (I’m guessing that’s what all his friends call him for short- because C. Thomas is kind of a pain in the ass to say all the time), as I was saying C’s character literally paints his face and body a really poor shade of brown and puts on an afro wig that looks like it came straight from those pop-up Halloween stores. Magically, everyone in the movie is completely fooled and thinks he is actually black. As you can imagine, hilarity ensues by heightening black stereotypes about watermelon, pimps and fried chicken until young C. finds the error of his ways by falling in love with a black chick. So then, all us white people who are watching the movie (because I think black people were smart enough to stay away from this racist shit flick- but I’m not sure- I’m not black, so I can’t really speak for an entire people) are supposed to realize the error of our ways and leave the theatre and embrace every black person we see and sing Kum ba yah or some shit.
Anyhoo, this post is is supposed to be about why I hate Tom Cruise and not why Soul Man is a racist movie. So let’s get back on topic. Honestly, I haven’t seen that many Tom Cruise films, but that’s because they usually involve race cars, or hanging off cliffs or some other stupid thing that I’m not interested in. So I guess, its more of a personal type of dislike than one based on any kind of real facts. Okay, I know, my whole argument sucks. But, shit, this is America and if I don’t want to like someone, I’m allowed. So all you Tom Cruise loving idiots can go suck it.
He really sealed the deal for me when he went after poor Brooke Shields. This was about the same time he went completely nutso and was jumping on the couch on Oprah and squealing in delight like a 13 year old girl over his new love Katie whatever her name is. So back to Brooke, she had written this self-help type book- I don’t know, again I haven’t read it. I know you think I have lots of opinions about things I know nothing about. But so do all those political pundits on Fox News and lots of dumb ass (sorry to my dumb ass friends that watch that “unbiased” shit) people listen to them and take them seriously, so there.
At any rate, Brooke’s book was about her struggle with postpartum depression. I’ve always been fascinated with the word postpartum. When you break it up it is post, part, um. So is that like after you part with ’em? Clearly, this term was thought up by a man. I’ve had two babies and suffered serious “after you part ’em” depression, and I can tell you you don’t feel like you’re parting with ’em. Its more like “you’re completely overwhelmed with ’em and don’t know what the fuck you’re doing and are crying every second of the day for no reason” depression.
Apparently, he suddenly became an expert on postpartum depression and thought Brooke was completely irresponsible for telling people she took anti-depressants to help herself overcome this shit hole and be a better mother. According to Dr. Tom and his crazy ass science fiction religion (no offense to those of you that believe all that crap about space people and shit- I’m pretty much skeptical of all religions including my own) you’re supposed to just “think positive” and then everything will start coming up rainbows and kittens and crap. Well, Tommy boy, I’ve tried all that “thinking positive shit” and no rainbows or kittens are popping up so you can hop on you’re little space ship and get the fuck out of here.
In conclusion (that’s the term my 5th grade teacher always taught us to use to wind up an essay), I know, my argument that he’s a bad actor based on the fact that I haven’t seen most of his movies is not very strong or even a little strong. I’m willing to admit its more about how everyone seems to love him, he gets paid millions of dollars and is a crazy fucking lunatic who grates my nerves. But, hey, I’m entitled to my opinion.
And, I really would like to get on this Netflix thingamabob because the old Betamax has kind of been on the fritz. But, even if I get Netflix, I’m still not watching Top Gun.