October 29, 2016

That's What I Get

... for trying to make people like me. Lesson learned; don't try to make people like you.

Here's my Facebook post that morning.


I just wanted to show a little school spirit, fit in, for Pink Out. Yeah, after nearly blinding myself with pink false eyelashes and attempting to spray pink stripes into my hair, I now know the meaning of physical comedy. Also, failure.




I was new to the school, I knew no one, I spent most of my time in the library alone, like a hermit and only partially because I like to be alone. Only I decided maybe I wanted to try something new - another lesson learned; don't try something new. 

My moment of opportunity arrives in the form of Pink Out, a breast cancer awareness event where the staff and students wear as much pink as possible. I looked at photos from years past and I'm telling you, it looks like a Pepto Bismol sponsored Halloween. Halloween I can do. So I buy some hot pink "easy application" false eyelashes and a can of pink hair spray paint. 

The morning of Pink Out comes and I sit down to do my hair. How hard can it be? It's spray paint and I've been doing my own hair for a good bit now, I've got this. Ten minutes later my right hand is dripping pink which is confusing being that my right hand is holding the can and therefore zero paint should be there. My ears, neck and both sides of my face are pink. My hair though? Not pink. And now the can is empty. Perfect.

Fine, it's time to put on the "easy application" eyelashes. 

Easy my candy mother truckin' ass! There was a moment I wasn't sure I'd ever be able to see again. Some adhesive had gotten in one eye and I wasn't entirely sure the whole damn thing wasn't lodged in there judging from the inconceivable pain I was experiencing. The adhesive had proven its capability by cementing my other eye shut completely and seemingly irreversibly in a most frightening way.. 

So there I am, flailing around on the floor trying in vain to get up to run to the bathroom but my body won't do that because all of the energy and intelligence is being concentrated on the fight part of that pesky involuntary Fight or Flight response. I'm telling you, I simply cannot remove my hands from my eyes to use them to get up from the floor. My legs are at least trying to run but only succeed in propelling my body in useless circles on the carpet. My hair dryer, brushes, and make-up are being sent airborne into walls and mirrors. Out of my mouth comes a sound not unlike a hysterical Capuchin monkey yet not one of the other three people in this house hears this and comes to my rescue. People, whom I might add, are all supposed to be awake and alert and preparing for their day so I ask you, what the fuck?

Most of the rest is a blur but I managed to get one eye open, one elbow/forearm down on the floor to launch myself and run, pinballing myself between the walls along the way, to the bathroom. Much soap and water was used and in the end I went to school pink, just not the way I intended; My skin and eyes pink from all the scrubbing.

And no, nobody noticed.  I'm still not over it really.  

October 28, 2016

Slingin' Some Ink

Lest you think I only write about homeless animals and my delinquent offspring, I've decided that being a writer might mean I should share other stuff I've written. Now while that thought fills me with a panic normally reserved for terminal illness diagnoses and career ending pink slips, it's time to suck it the hell up and just do it already.

*deep breath*

Here goes...

He was my best friend since fourth grade. The first pieces of gravel had just begun to fall from my cheek as I lifted my head when Miller Manheim's body slammed down with a blunt thud next to me. There was no time for the gravel to free itself from Miller's fat face before he was wrenched onto his back and pummeled by the hands of my defender. I didn't get a good look at the white knight before he was dragged from the fray to be unfairly judged and his punishment swiftly and harshly carried out far away from the eyes of any witnesses. It was all incredibly dramatic in my preadolescent mind, you see.
I was escorted to the nurse by the very adults who had only minutes earlier told me that Miller Manheim was a nice young man who would never beat up a girl and I shouldn't overreact. Even at nine years old I knew that Miller Manheim was the only son of Richard Manheim, the richest man in our small town, and wife #4 who worked in our school library and he wouldn't be disciplined for any infraction large or small. My parents called them Mr and Mrs Asshole and I liked that. I wasn't allowed to say it but I thought it a lot and snickered to myself when Mrs Asshole scolded me for talking in the library. I took great joy in calling her an asshole in my head and comfort from knowing I couldn't be punished for it. It was the little things for me, even as a kid.
Miller was most likely gingerly carried via stretcher in a neck brace to the back of a private ambulance and then raced with lights and sirens to his pediatrician in a bigger city an hour away to be extensively x-rayed, scanned and MRI'd in a valiant effort to guarantee the Manheim name would survive to bully another generation. Again with the dramatics but it could have happened that way.
It was the next day when I met him; my defender. He came into our classroom with the principal and was introduced as our newest student. He had a proper name, of course, but he was Knight to me. Much taller than the other boys in our class, he had short cropped dirty blonde hair and was wearing khaki pants with dress shoes and a polo. Other boys our age had floppy mops of hair that fell into their eyes and donned basketball shorts and T-shirts day in and day out. I instinctively knew his mother hadn't made him dress this way. He simply was who he was and as his eyes swept the room it was clear he didn't give a shit what any of us thought about him either. I liked him.
He took the seat behind me and as he settled his things on his desk he whispered, "Your face looks better than his does, Red." I had seen Miller in the cafeteria that morning and he only had a slightly swollen lip. My mirror showed the whole left side of my face full of scrapes and tiny cuts so I knew what he said was a lie but I appreciated it anyway.
Four years later Miller Manheim's reign of terror came to an end. Our school yard scuffle had long been forgotten, buried underneath scores of other incidents featuring Miller as the aggressor. His bully reputation was catapulted by a term of juvenile probation in the 6th grade. Turns out if the son of the richest man fucks with the son of the immensely popular sheriff, all that money doesn't buy as much favor as it might have had the victim been, say, me or Knight.
Miller just never made it home from school one day. He never made it to school either but that wasn't unusual so the school didn't throw up any flags over it. His parents didn't miss him until well into the night and by then he'd been gone for hours and hours. Everyone thought he'd "turn up". Miller didn't turn up. Not for years anyway. His absence from our town took the form of a comfortable quiet that everyone tried to pretend was really sad. The adults were better at putting on that aspect of the show. We kids were just able to breathe easy, safe at least for now from Miller fucking Manheim and we enjoyed it.
From the night he disappeared to the morning his remains were found in a drainage ditch half a decade later and all throughout the gossip fueled investigation into his murder, Knight and I never once spoke of it. It was only when surrounded by others and the conversation had turned to the missing and eventually murdered Miller Manheim did I look at him and he look at me and we both broke eye contact quickly because I knew he knew that I knew. Miller may or may not have been the first but there would be more.
It was about a year before Miller vanished when Knight found me in the hallway picking up my books and papers. Miller had sent them flying out of my arms two seconds before the bell rang. I was so damn mad I was crying and Knight helped me pick everything up. As we worked he told me about two sisters who had went to his elementary school in Chicago. The younger girl was a vicious little bully, her big sister seemingly unable to do anything but go along with whatever her sister did. They'd both just up and disappeared one day. He said he couldn't remember for sure but he thought they had been on their way to school and no one realized they were missing for hours.
I peppered him with questions; Had he known them well? Kind of. Not really. Did he live close? Same low income housing stretched across three city blocks. Were they ever found? Yeah but they were dead long before they were found. In a drainage ditch. Said he thought a body in a drainage ditch would be found quickly but that wasn't what happened.
I kept asking questions and Knight kept answering. Who found them? A group of boys from the complex, good friends of his. How did they die? Stabbed. Closed caskets a necessity. Did he go to the funerals? His mother had made him. Who did it? No one knew for sure.
I had a sense that Knight knew a lot about what had happened but I watched him and his face betrayed no sinister knowledge. It was just... a sense I had about him. I didn't think of the sisters again until Miller was found. In a drainage ditch. Then I remembered.

October 19, 2016

Who Put My Kids On TV?

Jeeesus, y'all, this presidential debate is killin' me. As a mom, I want to put these two in a get-along-shirt. 

Take a second to appreciate that image. I'll wait.

It's very gratifying, isn't it? I know! You're welcome.

I sit here imagining how I'd parent Donald and Hillary and then I realize I am, kinda. I mean Aidan and Asher act roughly the same way those two do and I'm the equivalent of Chris Wallace in their lives. They interrupt each other all. the. time. Aidan blames Asher for shit he couldn't even possibly be responsible for. When Asher is losing an argument he resorts to name calling and tantrum throwing. They'll both turn on me viciously for interfering in one of their battles and they've both been known to flat out fold up their arms, glare at one another and refuse to admit fault in any form.

Mr. Wallace and I should have coffee some day while the kiddos have a playdate. I think we'd have a lot in common. 


October 13, 2016

That's Not How It Goes

The Brute has a way with words. One day he was wrestling around with the boys which led to one of them getting hurt and running away crying, the Brute calling out after him, "You mess with the horns you get the whole bull!"

I tell him, "Honey, that's not how it goes. It's 'mess with the bull you get the horns'. 

He, of course, argues claiming "That makes no sense. The horns are just a small part, the big ass bull is the scary part."

Eventually I gave up and now he says it all the time. Even in front of other people. 

October 5, 2016

Cox Made Me Do It

If I go absolutely bat shit crazy, it's all Cox Communication's fault. 

Oh my fucking gawd, y'all! 

We returned our cable modem because we bought our own. Turn in their modem, cancel the monthly rental fee, manage our own modem. Should be pretty simple, right? 

You wish. Again, you don't care but we wish.

Within an hour I have this pop up on my browser. Interrupting some hard core Pinteresting, I might add. 
I shoot off a text to the Brute who tells me to call them and tell them he hopes they die. That's his kneejerk reaction to anyone and anything that pisses him off. Before I call them he tells me to be sure to tell them he hopes they die. I promise to do so and I make the call. 

This is the point when a real person gets on the phone. 
23 mother trucking minutes!

And it takes them to this point 
to tell me "I'd just wait and see if you actually get charged and call us back if you do."

But before we come to that highly detailed, expert advice I learned a lot. Mostly that Cox Cable's system is about as reliable as Asher brushing his teeth without being told six thousand times. 

That's a whole other blog post. 

So, as you can see, this notice tells us that we have terminated our phone service and therefore will be charged a monthly rental fee for the modem. Only we didn't have phone service and therefore did not cancel any phone service. I tell the guy we have never had phone service with Cox and also we just turned in their modem so wtf are you even talking about right now?!?! 

Me, being the customer who uses or does not use the service might know whether I do or do not have it. Or so you'd think. He clicks around and grunts and hmmms and tells me that I've had this service for 11 years and that the first work order for service was in 2002. 

Which is 14 years ago, not 11. 

Finally he says "I don't see a work order for phone service so you're correct on that." 

Oh, I'm correct on that now?  How so? Because your system says so? You mean the same system that says I've had this account, started in 2002, for 11 years? Let me convey to you the faith I have in that system.

Only I can't, it's that bad.

So now we get to wait for the next bill to see if we get charged for service we do not have and then if we have, which we undoubtedly will, we'll call back, stay on hold for another 23 minutes, and hopefully at 36 minutes it will be fixed.

Except it won't be. Not really.

Wash, rinse, repeat...

October 3, 2016

A Grocery Store I Don't Loathe

I hate the grocery store. And by hate, I mean I will do some highly immoral shit to avoid it. But! Whole Foods, man! And here's why...

They have a freaking bar in there! Beer! Wine! Why have I not been in there before? I'd have gone daily had I known. Why would a secret like this be kept from me? I'm wrecked over it.

October 1, 2016

Status Updates Inspired by My Guys

Asher, 2009
"Mama, yook, pank-a-but!"And then he whacks me in the head. "Foddy, Mama.

Aidan, 2009
"Firstaball, I need a toaster for to make some-a peanut butter samich."

Asher and Aidan 2009
Aidan is seriously crying like the world is ending because Asher took the newspaper with the weather report away from him. I keep looking for hidden cameras because really?

Aidan, 2011
Aidan apparently showed off his vocabulary and spelling skills today at school. He wrote 'ass' in chalk on the playground. So proud.

Aidan, 2013
Aidan actually uttered the words "folding clothes is woman's work". Is this kid for real???

Aidan, 2014
"What!?!? Why does he get off scoot free and I have to vacuum everything?"

Brute and Asher, 2015
Brute - "What's up with Huck Finn here?"
Asher - "I'm not a dolphin or a hook face!"