Saturday, March 31, 2007

Second verse, Same as the First

So the school calls yesterday to tell me that Gerbson's dad has requested to withdraw him in order to register him at a different high school, effective Monday. And btw, did I REALLY just drop him off and abandon him????

Good gravy. Clearly, the revisionist history has begun. I expect by Monday, the tale will grow to include guns, knives and lampshades made of human skin.

And yet, maybe this IS what he needs to get himself together? Being out of his current school is an excellent thing - that was going to happen anyway - and away from his current peer group. Many of them seem to be making consistently poor choices and getting themselves into increasingly more serious trouble.

I am having a very, very, very hard time with it. I am having a very hard time with the things my son said to me and the names he called me. I am really having a hard time with the knowledge that both of them are telling people that I threw my son out of the house. And packing his clothes and belongings is so hard.

I want him to come home. But I also want him to go to class, abstain from smoking pot and drinking, and apparently I can't have both. At least, not at this moment.

I am trying to tell myself that maybe this will give him the chance to get his act in gear with a fresh start.

Mostly though, I am trying not to think about it too much because its so damned painful.

* * *

Jacob finally cut his first tooth. To celebrate, he caught his first cold. He is one cuh-ranky baby.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

10 lbs of crazy in a 5 lb bag

Dear heaven. My house hosts more drama than sweeps week on the daytime soaps.

The teenager is currently at his father's house, claiming to all that I have thrown his poor misunderstood self out of the house. Suuurrrre.

The short story is... I found out that he has pretty much skipped THREE ENTIRE WEEKS of classes. Three weeks, people. He was going to school... just didn't go to class once he got there. And then he flat-out lied to my face about it, even when faced with the hard evidence. So then when he figured out that I had him dead-bang... he got belligerent and cocky.

(note to self... figure out how to go back in time, find self as 17 year old, SLAP self and then go apologize to mother for ever being a teenager. Again.)

He got reeeeeeeeeeal cocky. Went-too-far cocky, in fact, and I hauled him up short. That apparently twisted his little pickle and he decided that he would rather live at his father's. And he called his father and told them that I was a crazy bitch and I was throwing him out. And then he threw some clothes in a bag & whaddya know. I drove him over there, hearing all the while what a crazy bitch I was. Also lazy. Also, I am a terrible mother. And did I know I was a crazy bitch?? Because I am a crazy effing bitch.

(Everybody SING!!! Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh gerbson's mom is a bitch, she's a great big bitch, she's the biggest bitch in the whole wide world, on Monday she's a... yeah anyway.)


This? This is why some animals eat their young.

Which reminds me. The night before all the Crazy started happening, I went over to mom's to have coffee. She has a bunch of cats, and the grey tabby, Oblio, is becoming quite the social animal now that the old bully cat is gone. Soooo friendly. He leaped straight into my lap and started rubbing against my face and my neck and my shoulders and Oh! Wasn't this cat happy to see me????

And then. And then. HE BIT MY BOOB. Kind of like honk!! rather than a serious chomp. But still! He bit my boob!!! And there was CAT SPIT on my shirt.

And my mother thought that it was absolutely hysterical and has been telling all the friends and relations. Seriously. I can't even get respect from a neutered CAT. I need to just hang it up.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

When Kicking Butt... Aim For Someone Else

Ohhhhh mama. I came, I saw, I kicked major tuchus. Unfortunately, the glutes that got the most impact... were my own.

As I mentioned, Lunatic Me started my whirlwind at roughly 4am on Sunday morning. I finally waved the white flag and hit the showers (literally. I couldn't lift my arms above my head by then) at 10pm.

But by golly, I went down fighting the good fight. Or the anti-clutter fight. Or something.

And this morning, I was surprised to find THIS:

The one, the only, the Alpha Dude (accept no imitation! No, really... he's a hoopy frood indeed and I am pretty certain he knows HIS towel is.) said: "This gal can take normal every day happenings and present it in such a way that leaves you laughing, feeling her feelings or just sitting there saying, “Huh?” (note from Gerbil: Making People say "Wha?" and "HUH?" is my stock in trade. Bwah hah.). Always a pleasant visit. "

Well, butter my butt and call me a biscuit. Thank you, Alpha Dude!

Now, if you get tagged, you're supposed to write a post with links to 5 blogs that make you Think but have not yet been nominated, link to this post so that people can easily find the exact origin of this prestigious award, and display the 'Thinking Blogger Award' if you want to.

Ok, now this is the hard part. I'm still pretty new to this here Blogging concept and I am still wearing wearing my Blogging Floogles, so to speak. (Floogles. Right. Those inflatable arm bands? Well, when they first came out waaaay back in... gawd. 1970-something or other.... they were called FLOOGLES. I am old. And I remember weird crap. Carry on.) So I am still finding blogs and most of them seem to have been tagged already.

I'd definitely have to pick Velocibadger at Pardon the Egg Salad... not only lots of cool stuff to read on the blog, but she reads just about as much as I do and and I have found a lot of really interesting stuff through her links.

Frannie at the T Family Syndicate. (Remind me to add her to my list over there. I keep forgetting to update it lately. Bad Gerbil.) I enjoy her posts and she is also married to an asian man (although my husband is Korean).

And there's Robbin at My Level of Awareness , which I stumbled on during the Blog Party a few weeks back. She GETS IT. And she gets it and tells it in a way that makes me stop and say "ME TOO!!"

Canape at Don't Take the Repeats. I found her blog through a comment she left on one of my posts. I read her posts and find myself going with her... she's honest and observant and expressive.

Catwoman at Canadian Thoughts in Texas. Dear lord, can she make me giggle. I love her sense of humor.

Picking just 5 was hard. Made easier, however, by the fact that most of the ones I am currently reading have already been tagged!! And if you're visiting my site and I haven't scared hell out of you (yet), drop me a comment or two somewhere so I can visit your blogs as well. Throw a Gerbil a rope, here. Expand my world. I need a road map (along with the two hands and a flashlight.)


In other news, Jacob has begun to deliver editorial commentary on meal selections by way way of GAGGING. A child after my own heart. For example, on the menu last night was Beechnut brand Turkey. He likes Gerber, mind you. But the texture of Beechnut is entirely different... after the 5th spoonful of the Beechnut turkey, he made a face. The 6th spoonful? He rolled it around on his tongue, stuck his turkey-coated tongue out and gagged fit to kill. And then gagged a second time and spit it out onto the tray of the high chair, finishing with a very very dirty look. I soothed his troubled soul with banana/pear/apples and all was right with the world again. Cross THAT one off the list.

And now I'm going to go make some coffee and begin the day. (As opposed to the Beguine. Somebody? Can you explain how to shut the Randomize feature off in my brain? It's giving me a headache.)

Later, Taters.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Housecleaning: Portrait of an American Lunatic

So I fell asleep watching TV. I don't even remember what I was watching but Third Watch was on when I woke up at 4 am because I heard the baby crying. And I was off that bed, down the hall and staring, quite confused, at an empty crib before I woke up enough to remember that Husband and Baby were in MARYLAND and the baby I heard was actually on the TV.

Do not underestimate the power of Mother Hearing.

The adrenaline surge that propelled me down the hall was enough to guarantee that I wasn't getting back to sleep so I made coffee (wisely used the COFFEE MAKER today so as to avoid another scalding) and then got antsy (before the coffee, thankyewverramuch. Lets not forget the ADD.)

It is now 8am and I have:

  • washed 4 loads of laundry
  • done 1 1/2 loads of dishes
  • Found that someone had broken ANOTHER of the tall drinking glasses (out of 16, I am down to 8. %$#@*!!!)
  • Wondered if I can still locate a matching set of these glasses?
  • Decided that 6am was too early to care
  • Decided to winnow through all fabric in my house
  • bagged 5 large trash bags of stuff to be purged
  • cleaned one bathroom
  • decided all bathrooms need to be bleached
  • discovered I have no bleach
  • made pancakes
  • accidentally grabbed the giant clear plastic bottle of SOY SAUCE instead of the clear plastic bottle of pancake syrup. (Costco strikes again! Do we REALLY need THIS much soy sauce???)
  • cussed
  • Realized the fridge needs a good scrubbing.
  • Spot-treated the living room carpet
  • Spot-treated the dining room carpet
  • Asked myself why I just wasted 15 minutes spot-treating carpets when in 5 years I have not been able to remove the stains left by the previous occupant??

Folks, I am beginning to scare myself but am reluctant to stop now. Imagine what I can accomplish before NOON at this rate. I have already called my dad about bringing over his truck & trailer a little later because we are making a dump run or my name ain't GERBIL. I have been asking for this to happen for months and by golly... I've run out of patience and a forthcoming move is an EXCELLENT reason to get rid of all this crap we don't need. There's a gazillion items that are going to goodwill, and the county dump also has a dropoff point for stuff that's too good to throw away but Goodwill won't take (they're picky here).

Then... I'm going to Home Depot. (If I could possibly paint this entire house this afternoon, I'd do that too. )

It's spring, its time to kick some ass around here.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Who spray-painted our sidewalk?!?

SOMEbody spraypainted something with black paint. Although they put down a piece of newspaper, it was not enough, and there is a nice black spraypainted outline there on the sidewalk... in front of OUR townhouse.

What the heck??? T'wasn't us... we don't even own spray paint. And why OUR sidewalk???

This morning started with a bang. Or a splash, followed by a squeak of shock and surprised pain. Followed by a "Son of a BITCH. "

Ever see one of those Melitta one-cup cone coffee makers? You set the plastic cone thingie on your cup, put the filter & coffee grounds in it, pour boiling water in it and whammo - a single cup of coffee. I've had it for years, works fabulously for making just a single cup. (Duh. That is its purpose after all... I AM Captain Obvious, thankyewverramuch.)

So, its the wee dark hours of the morning & I'm groggier than usual, as the baby woke a few times during the night. Plus, the teenager had Saturday detention, (thanks to forgetting to turn off his cell phone in class & having dumbass friends who call at 10am and teachers don't generally appreciate being interrupted by Young Jeezy ringtones) and I was not looking forward to hearing the complaining about that.

So coffee was DEFINITELY on the agenda.

Too bad grace and coordination weren't. Because I saw the contraption start to tip, and what do I do? Reach out to catch it. Sure enough, 16 ounces of boiling water & coffee grounds spill over my hand and down the front of my Klassy voluminous cotton granny nightgown (hey... the rest of me was amply protected by yards of fabric. So there.) and allllllllllllllllllllllllllll over the counter, the cabinets and the floor.

My first thought, naturally, was "ow. Ow! Hey! OW!" and the second, as I'm running my scalded hand under cold water was "Dammit, I wasted all that COFFEE!!" Yes, I have MY priorities in order, don't I?

And then I marched my coffee-covered self upstairs, where I tried to figure out how to get coffee-encrusted nightgown off without getting grounds in my hair. (wasn't possible). And while I was doing that, I lost my balance and fell over and woke up my husband. And that was the sight that met the poor man - a grumbling, coffee-encrusted, tangled, flailing chick. You know it can only get better.

We signed the new lease today - move-in starts on the 16th. WOOOOOOOOOOOT.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Testosterone Poisoning

Yeah. My older son is entirely black and blue this morning. Apparently, he fought this kid - doesn't know his name, doesn't know where he lives, all he knows is "he had a beef with me last year and we settled it" - last summer for no clear reason other than that teenaged boys can be absolute idiots. (Especially in this neighborhood. Hoo-boy)

And apparently the kid wanted a rematch, so he & his cousin took a little jaunt down to our street yesterday afternoon to confront my son. And like dueling "gentlemen" of yore, they discussed their terms and chose their location (down the hill behind the houses so as not to disturb anyone. Can you believe it??!? Considerate morons.)

Aaaaand the three of them proceeded to fight. My son insists he won (I bet that's what the other two are saying as well.) His arms are swollen and bruised from blocking and he has a huge contusion on his back where one of them kicked him and he's covered with scratches and more bruises. He also insists that he'd be thought of as a GIRL if he hadn't fought.

Uh... wrong answer to the WRONG person there.

And now I'm also ready to kill him because I am hardly trying to raise him to be an uncivilized buffoon, ready to swing a fist any time anyone suggests it. I know he has a brain, I really wish he'd go back to USING it. Or at least... using it more than he currently does. Even I have to admit he didn't ALWAYS use it, as people who have known me for a while can tell you. This kid is infamous for some of his not-thinking escapades...

Wonder what joys will await me when I get home TONIGHT???

But I'm about to fix his wagon, oh yesssss... we're going to my mom's farm for Easter and he's going to pitch in on my aunt's farm while we're there. I do believe there's three chicken & duck houses that will need to be cleaned out and there is NOTHING like shoveling chickenshit for 8 hours to make you hate your life.

Anyway, we dropped of the application for the house yesterday and learned there'd been another one submitted but those folks were rejected. So I am now cautiously optimistic... keep your fingers crossed. We gotta get out of this place.

And the No-Home-Training Trio struck again... as we are returning home from turning in the application, the roommate pulls into the court ahead of us... and parks in my husband's MARKED, reserved space. Naturally, my husband made him move, especially as we were trying to park ourselves!! Apparently, Roommate felt that since he was only going to be there 15 minutes, he shouldn't have to walk the 10 feet from his space.

And then the other two got home at ten and got into another argument outside on the sidewalk. I restrained myself from turning the hose on them.

I thought pregnancy hormones were bad for my attitude... but these three are really doing a number on my sweet & cheerful demeanor.

Ok, not even **I** could say that with a straight face.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

What the Daddy Tomato told the Baby Tomato


Catch up.

Er... right. Ya had to be there. Or here. At any rate, I managed to tell myself for two nights running "must log on and...zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz". I woke up at 5am on the couch andI'm here to tell you that couch hair is scarier than bed hair.

Anyway. We have been pondering the idea of moving. More specifically, I have been ranting at every sign of noise next door that "I can't WAIT to get out of here. Can we move now? I'll live in a box. I don't care! Well, I DO, but I don't want to go to jail for oh, say.... feeding them their stereo. As a suppository. SIDEWAYS."

(Ok, my neighbors are annoying but they do not pee on my porch, I will give them that. See That Chick's blog for reference... and a handy lesson in perspective for me. )

So I found a listing yesterday for a single-family house and the price seemed good. Almost TOO good, considering the neighborhood and it was a 4 bedroom house. I immediately called the agent and his assistant and the assistant again and the poor assistant ONE last time to schedule a viewing for last evening. (You may call me a crazy, stalking nutcase, I prefer persistant.) And then changed back into work clothes, jewelry and pantyhose for this occasion. Even added some perfume. Husband was giving me a bemused look and he was probably thinking "hell, she doesn't put this much effort into going to work!". But I certainly don't want to give the agents the impression that I am willing to live - or could be CAPABLE of living in - a cardboard box.

I have these weird paranoid moments sometimes.

At any rate, he was grumbling about an extra 20 minutes on the commute... until he saw the place. Did I mention the golf course?? Did I mention that my husband is a Golf Man (I even see Big Break VI in my SLEEP at this point. Gah. )??? Plus the parks and lakes right there in the development. Very family-friendly. AND... (we keep coming back to this part) the neighbors are far away. Ok, 50 feet or so. That's FAR in comparison to sharing a common wall with the no-home-training trio.

So we will be humbly putting our names in and hoping for the best. Please think good thoughts for a Gerbil. Does a Gerbil not Deserve a Break Today? I certainly hope so.

Also: Under Random Weirdness? Yesterday I was sitting at a red light. It turned green and I started to depress the gas pedal. Clearly I was not fast enough for the late-model Honda behind me, who honked and then zipped around me after we turned. When I stopped beside same car at the next light, I had to do a double take.

I was honked at..... by a NUN. True fact. Nuns got road rage. Or road irritation. Road annoyance?? Whatever. I was too slow for a nun.

And I close with a Very Gerbil Story, which actually happened to my sister.... but its funny.

She has a passel of cats. Big cats, small cats... 4 cats. And they loved these little fur-covered toy mice with the passion that only cats can show when they feel like it. My sister kept them in a quart jar... jar o' mice. And did those cats crowd around when she brought out the jar? Oh yes... the awarding of a Mousie brought on at least an hour of running, batting, leaping, mouse-chasing fun. They were Mousie Junkies.

Anyway. Fast forward to Easter and my sister was hosting a whooooolllllle bunch of guests who'd never been to her house. It was an old farmhouse, mind you, and the cabinets didn't close tightly. This is key.

So all the guests are milling around the living room when the small herd of cats comes thundering down the stairs and through the living room. The oldest cat apparently has a white toy mousie by the tail and the other cats are jealously trying to take it from him. The cats tear into the kitchen and the guests hear my sister shriek and all the cats come running back into the living room, where the prize is summarily dropped onto the rug for all to see.

What the cats have is NOT a toy mousie at all.

It is an OB TAMPON that they have cadged from under the bathroom cabinet and gotten unwrapped. And they are squabbling and chasing each other for possession of it, apparently thinking that it was a rather cottony mousie.

She has yet to hear the end of it.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Day of Rest, my left... er... never mind.

The neighbors apparently own but one CD. It sounds vaguely familiar but I can't place it... I'd LIKE to place it, however... straight up their left nostrils, in turn. Call me a curmudgeon, but I think I ought to be able to sit in my own living room without my back teeth vibrating from THEIR bass. And when you factor in that its the same song, on repeat, for more than 5 hours... I start to feel a little desperate.

I started by throwing a Nike at the wall. Followed by a paperback copy of The Devil Wears Prada and ending with a vigorous pounding, none of which could apparently be heard over their selected piece. I dug out my large portable CD player, set it against the wall and was all ready to strike back with my collection of various recordings by the Academy of St Martin-in-the-Fields (conducted by Sir Neville Marriner), only to find that I'd left the entire CD case at work.

Luckily for all involved, the oblivious trio left about 10 minutes later and have yet to return home. I CANNOT WAIT TO GET OUT OF HERE.

Also, they have apparently opted to stop taking the dog for lengthy walks, and letting her simply relieve herself on the 3 foot by 4 foot front "yard". The only trouble is that A) she's a large rottweiler, B) the yard has a downward slope and C) all the dog crap is rolling down their barren yard when the wind blows and onto the sidewalk. No kidding. We don't have tumbleweeds in these here parts, we got rolling dog crap. Kuh-lassy. And no, they don't clean it up.

The husband's car was pronounced just-this-side-of-clinically-dead, with a transmission that was just about toast and five separate "Bend Over" engine codes popping up. He spent all Saturday at some dealer in Maryland, and I do mean ALL DAY. Left the house at 9am, got home at 10pm. He got the car he wanted, said he got a good deal, but I'm certainly glad I wasn't with him. I hate car shopping. HATE it. I'm not a huge shopper to begin with, but car shopping is the worst. And kind of shopping that takes as long as oh, say... childbirth? No way.

And then I nearly fried my Ameda. If you read the literature on the Purely Yours, it details how at no time does milk ever enter the tubing... except apparently when I'm involved. I was tired and not paying much attention to the dangerous vacuum that was being created... and finally when I did look down, both tubes were busy pumping milk back up out of the bottles and INTO the pump itself. I'm lucky I didn't electrocute myself (and what a way to go THAT would have been!). Always quick on my feet, I yank the power cord out, pull the tubing out and pour at least an ounce and a half of milk straight out onto my lap. I dried and swabbed as best I could and then just... hoped for the best.

Sure enough, the next time I went back to it, it didn't start up. All I could think was "How'm I going to convince my husband that I ruined a $200 piece of equipment with my BOOBS???"

Ever the optimist, I chose DENIAL as my course of action. Three times I tried to start it up and got nothing - not even a sad little whine - for my efforts. Finally, I admit defeat and call my husband to break the bad news... Just as I'm starting to explain that I broke the pump and how, I give it one last try.

And it started up. Go figure. I hemmed, hawed and I think I convinced my husband that I'd totally forgotten why I called, never mind, Jane-You-Ignorant-Slut. The poor man is used to me making no sense whatsoever to begin with so it couldn't have been too hard.

And the poor baby is teething pretty badly, making him grouchy and giving him an upset stomach. As he's got reflux to start with, its kind of like the mentos & diet coke stunt. Only it smells significantly worse. I'm on my 4th load of baby laundry today.

Its a good thing tomorrow's a work day, its probably the only way I'm going to get some rest.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Captain's Log: Stardate... no clue. Whatever.

Eh, I never was a Trekkie anyway although I DID purchase myself a stuffed Tribble at a sci-fi con (BaltiCon maybe?? I don't even remember) that I got dragged to waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay back in the day. I remember being really sulky about going, too, but I was the one who had a working vehicle. (Ok, I'll confess that we did name it the Kobiyashi Datsun because it was a no-win situation that kept changing the conditions on us. Look, some of my friends WERE Trekkies and sometimes that stuff just kind of seeps into your pores. They had to put up with me and my quirks so it all evened out.)

Anyway, where was I? Right. Convention. Anyway, I was really petulant about being at this con and I kept getting hassled by guys who thought they were smoooooooooooooth... their primary means of greeting females being to smack them on the butt. This really just frosted my pickle. There was a mall across the street from the con location and I trotted over to one of those Puppy King stores and purchased a weeny-beeny little kitten harness and leash and put it on my stuffed Tribble and NOW I had an Attack Tribble.

After I bounced the Attack Tribble off a couple of heads, I was left very, very VERY much alone. I probably embarrassed the living daylights out of my friends, too. I don't recall going to another Con after that one.

By the way, can anyone tell me exactly how I managed to break one of my toenails while I was sleeping last night???? I often smack into things, bounce off corners, etc, but this little feat escapes even me. You'd kinda think I'd have NOTICED that? Dang.

We went for the MRI last night. You know it was off to a rocking start when we get all the way up to the center in the pouring rain and heavy traffic and find out... THEY SENT ME TO THE WRONG LOCATION. Yes indeedy. I have a 6:45 appointment, it was now 6:37 AND I AM AT THE WRONG CENTER. I am supposed to be out near Fairfax hospital. Damnation and pickles.

I let my husband drive and I just grabbed the "oh-shit" bar and closed my eyes. (I am a really, really bad passenger.) We walked into the correct imaging center at 6:45 precisely on the dot.

They give me this snazzy green hospital gown (except it wraps around again and does not expose your tush to the public. ) and you get to hang out with a bunch of other unhappy looking, green-gown wearing people. So then the nurse comes rushing back, waving my chart. (Guys... fair warning: imminent discussion of Female Matters)

"This says your last menstrual cycle was February 14th!!!" (Well and THANK YOUUUUU for announcing it, Madame Tact)

"Today is March 15!"
"YOU COULD BE PREGNANT!" Popping sounds as all heads snap around to stare at me.
"No... I am definitely not."
"But you could be!!!"
"the answer there is Absolutely Not."
"But... but... Oh. Are you taking the Pill?"

WTF, here? I mean really, WTF??? (Clearly, I am not blessed with nurses who understand the value of DISCRETION. This is almost as bad as the nurse at the OB's office who called me back about some early-pregnancy spotting to schedule an "emergency" appointment and chose to bellow at me "AND ABSOLUTELY NOTHING IS TO GO INTO YOUR VAGINA!!!!!" Did I mention that I was at work at the time? Aaaaaand while not on speakerphone, she bellowed so loud that my co-worker heard her loud and painfully clear?? Allow me to just gift-wrap my dignity and hand it over, huh?)

Anyway, so now the entire room is waiting to hear my preferred method of birth control. You wanna know? You really wanna know?? It's called Having an Eight-Month Old Infant. Women, if you have kids, you know what I mean. I mean COME ON.

So I make the effort to smile at this nurse and say very slowly "I.... am NOT pregnant. My cycle is not 28 days. Its anywhere from 34 to about 43 days. Has been since I was 11. End of Story."

She was persistent, let me give her that. "well, we might not be able to do the tests!"
"Fine. Do a pregnancy test then, but you're wasting your time and mine."
"Um... we don't have them at this location."

I think I must have gotten that Look on my face because she turned red and said "Let me see what the doctor says!!" Oh yes, you just do that. (And I wished, wish, WISHED for my Attack Tribble, because if anyone deserved to be Tribbled at that very moment... it was her.) The doctor must have heard the whole thing, but I hear HIM say "Oh just leave her alone and get the IV started."

The MRI itself was pretty awesome. Ok it was loud. Ok I was in a tube. Ok, I was wearing a flimsy little green hospital gown. BUT. I was laying down and nobody wanted anything from me except to hold my breath a couple of times... for an HOUR. Totally worth it, although the injection of the Contrast stuff annoyed me. Still. Mmmmmm. Best rest I had all week.

And when I went back into the changing room to get dressed, I discovered that the person using the second locker really really really REALLY needed to look into the value of a good deodorant. The little room now had the overpowering smell of armpits. And we are NOT talking "lemony fresh".

We won't have the results back for three or four days. And I have to "pump and dump" for 48 hours because of the Contrast (I don't remember what they shot into me, sorry). It is killing me to watch my Liquid Gold go swirling down the drain, let me tell you.

But since I am dumping... and since I'd already pissed off the pancreas... I soothed my troubled soul with a Five Guys Bacon Cheeseburger when we got home.

And that was, without a doubt, the best fricking bacon cheeseburger I think I've ever had. It ALMOST made up for not getting to give the nurse an Atomic Wedgie. Almost.

Thursday, March 15, 2007


I installed Jacob's new larger carseat on Tuesday. Some bigass brown Eddie Bauer model that I had to get professional help with because apparently I have the upper body strength of a geriatric weasel.

Jacob hates it. HAAAAAAAAAAAAAATES it. Hates it so much that he GROWLS at me, non-stop, from the moment he's strapped into it until we get to our destination and for up to minutes afterward. Growls like one big angry dog. Or a small angry baby. And I, being the Big Bad Mean, Law-Abiding, Sensible Mommy... make him put up with it.

Anyone taking bets on toddlerhood? I think after this week he's plotting a coup.

Back from the Pointless Forest*

I knew my computer was really crappy. (Ok, not as crappy as the TANDY I still own. Tandy, folks. Radio Shack's home brand of antique computer back in the day when a floppy really was floppy and larger than even a supersized Big MacHeartAttack) I don't remember exactly how old this paperweight is - that is the Husband's job, to keep track of All Things Technical Excepting Game Systems - but I don't think I should have tried to log on the other day to find it had only 1% system memory to work with. That's like me on some days.

So, naturally, I complained to the Husband. And naturally, he felt compelled to sit down and spend three hours wrangling with it. And naturally... the whole thing needs to be rebuilt, but we haven't gotten around to it any more than we've gotten around to any largish project that doesn't involve Costco or say... laundry soap. (I suspect that someone's actually smuggling laundry into my house because surely it can't be possible for three adults to produce this much laundry. Unless of course the baby laundry challenged it to a duel. Baby laundry... that's one mean sumthin-or-other)

Whatever. Its working now, more or less, and I can get online on a screen larger than a matchbook.

I could SORT of get online in the last two days because TechnoMan aka my loving Husband, had to renew the cellphone contract and replace his phone, as the battery was truly fried. So, he kindly replaced mine, too, and got me a Motorola Q (akin to a Blackberry.) We had to wait a few extra days for this little gadget, as the Knowledgable Sales Rep was programming it on Saturday, promptly put the battery in backwards (as he was telling my husband never to do that) and apparently toasted the unit and had to order a replacement. Truly... a Gerbil Phone.

It does all kinds of things but I have come to realize that the danged thing is in fact smarter than I am and its pissing me right off. It took me two days to figure out that the volume setting is under PROFILE and not SOUNDS. Sure, it came with an instruction book. And just as surely.... I did not read it. Hey, I'm visually-oriented and learn by screwing things up (aka hands-on experience).

It does access the web but apparently I need a magnifying glass to read most things and the thought of trying to post anything longer than one of my average thoughts was too daunting. And I'll wear my thumbs out on a dual-shock controller, thankyewverramuch.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaand in other news. I allowed the teenager to take his baby brother for a walk yesterday (he's grounded until the cows come home. As I don't have any cows, I expect this will be quite a wait.). It was about 75 degrees out and gorgeous. The baby loves a late afternoon walk, it let the teenager burn off some energy, and he did exactly as specified - no stopping to see anyone, no doing anything but walking with baby. Besides, that gave me time to wash the spinach out of my hair AND my ear. (ust knowing you have pureed spinach in your ear is enough to really bum one out.)

Howevah. The Schadenfreude Fairy gave me a leeeeetle present. My husband came home and said "What is it about a white Mustang? Isn't that someone who's been a problem?" I turned slowly. "Yeessssss, why?"
"Because they're getting arrested at the top of the street."

The kid my son was buddy-buddy with, who was driving illegally, with an open bottle of tequila on Friday? Yep. Same kid. Getting arrested. Again.

"I let Teenager cross the street in front of me," my husband continued, "he's gonna walk right past it."

I met the boys on their way back in.
"Was that..."
"YES! How'd you hear about it?"
"Your stepdad just told me. Aren't you glad you aren't with him right now?"
"yeah, no kidding. One of the cops was the one who was here when I ran away, too."
"Did he see you?"
"I don't know, but everyone else did. And I was just walking my baby brother, not pissing anyone off, not getting in any trouble."
"That's kind of the idea, goofball."

You really think that kid would get the point by now.

I have my MRI this evening. And I managed to piss off the pancreas again this week... I'm not sure exactly how, but its really getting on my nerves. The side effects ain't exactly a picnic either and I am SO not going there. I'm not expecting anything to show up on the scan, but I'm still pretty grumpy about the idea.

also... its the Ides of March. My most unfavorite day of the year. And also the day I always stop to remember my friend Stephanie and say a little prayer. Its been a long time babe, and I still cry. I'm not mad at you anymore; I know the pain was more than you felt you could bear and you couldn't see any other way out. But it still hurts and I still miss you. Requiescat in pace.

*Three points to anyone named Oblio.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Money Laundering and You.

You'd think I could just wash a load of clothes without incident... but no. It seems that I have washed my husband's checkbook. Heavy duty! Two spin cycles! Cold water rinse!

I will be picking tiny pieces of April Fresh checks out of the wash and the clothes for days to come.

The Best-Laid Plans of Mice and Gerbils.... Spring Cleaning!

So, after the worst of the fury wore off, the embarrassment set in. I shuffled into my kitchen for coffee and CLICK! The little gears in my brain all fell into place and I looked around and realized "awwwww daaaaaaaamn!"

The cop had a conference with me in my kitchen, which looked like... like... well.... like hell. Scary bad. Males leaving things on counters. Males spilling things. Various Costco-Sized containers of Barbeque seasoning (because men GRILL in this house and you must never GRILL without a gallon-sized jug-o-seasoning in case you need to appease the Seasoning Gods, I guess. Face it. Thanks to Costco, we can season the nearest stockyard.) taking up most of the space on the counters. All the empty bottles and cans that rightfully belong in the recycling bin, but hey! If you aren't tripping over them, then you still have space before they have to go out. And lets not forget that if you can compress the trash down into the can so it doesn't spill over, then you definitely don't need to take out the trash...

Ohhhhhh yeah. Now I remember. I ran myself ragged at work and said to myself "I am not going to do anything with this PIT until Saturday. I do not have the energy to face this."

Now, don't get me wrong... the males of the house will clean if you ask them to. But you also have to specify what you want done and sometimes HOW... and since my husband was bathing the baby and getting him ready for bed, I considered that worth more than kitchen time. Geez, its not like we were expecting anyone, right???

Gaaaah. The only problem is that once I get my ass in gear, the ADD kicks in and helpfully points out that when I do the counters, I've got to be sure to clean the cabinets and won;t that special cabinet cleaner be handy??? Oh yes, and the floors.... don't forget the oven door, and what about the side of the refrigerator.... which leads me to the wall... which reminds me that I really wanted to steam clean the living and dining room carpets... which reminds me that I need to Dyson both sets of stairs as well...

Eventually, I wound up having to go to Target for better cleaning supplies & more laundry stuff, which led to Babies R Us 'cause target didn't have Baby Oxyclean ( that stuff is the shiznit for baby poop, I'm telling you)... which reminded me that I needed Earth's Best SPINACH because Jacob loves it, and that can only be found at Safeway....

So uh. Right. My spring cleaning started at 9am this morning, but I've only gotten one load of laundry finished, half the kitchen done and the steam-cleaning helped but didn't work miracles on this cheap carpet. I also discovered that I really really REALLY need to clean out the refrigerator. I'm scared of my refrigerator, folks. I think it growled at me.

So what am I doing instead of finishing the cleaning? I'm on the computer! Yeah! Procastination at its best!

Also... some recent Jacob pictures because I feel like it.

You can see that I've got about a week before he's REALLY on the move..

"Um... that wasn't a fart. Help??"

Saturday, March 10, 2007

This is the real Saturday Post.

Yeah, I feel guilty about a bummerof a post that was supposed to be Fridays but turned into wailing and gnashing of teeth.

So I'll tell you a story. Sadly, this story is also true and gets related to every new secretary at work.

The complex I work in has a number of buildings that are all attached to each other... the buildings are also old and mice and snakes and bugs get in sometimes. The breezeway that leads to the building housing the cafeteria had a smoking section outside the double doors.

So, Tammy & I were heading down to get lunch one day, and she spots a blue-tailed little lizard in the hallway. It must have run in when a smoker opened the door, and now it can't find its way out.

Tammy is saddened - she loves animals - but not so sad she cares to touch it. "It's going to starve and die in here!"

Me? Not much phases ME. I shrug and bend down with a small piece of paper, figuring I'll catch it my hands or on the paper and drop it outside. Simple, right?

"What are you guys doing?" Melanie, another executive secretary is walking towards us, accompanied by my boss.
"She's catching a lizard to put it back outside!" Tammy exclaims.

And at that moment.... I learned that 'leapin' lizards' is NOT just a phrase. That lizard jumped into the sleeve of my Tahari suit and RAN UP MY ARM. I have a lizard somewhere on my bra, I think.... no its up to my shoulder... Oh shit. THERE'S A LIZARD IN MY SUIT.

Did this escape anyone's notice? I should be so lucky.
"Holy shit!" sez Melanie. "Did that thing..."
"Yep." says my boss, "Right up her arm."
"oh GROSS!" squeals Tammy.

With all the dignity that someone who has a reptile in her suit can muster, I excuse myself and step outside. And of course, Sam is out there smoking.
"Hi!" I say brightly, as I step onto the grass and start vigourously shaking my arm. "Howya doing??"

Eventually the lizard falls back out of my sleeve onto the grass and runs away. Sam stares.
"Did..." he says hesitantly. "Did... did you just shake a LIZARD out of your sleeve?"
"Yup! See ya later!"

Try living that one down. I will not be remembered for my professional demeanor or my capable skills. Oh no, I will forever be known as the chick with the lizard in her suit.

I started a post last night...

I started a post last night that was originally titled Teenagers or This is Why Some Animals Eat Their Young.

I've mentioned before that in addition to my 8 month old baby, I also have a 19 year old (not living at home) and a 17 year old. I related some amusing-yet-makes-your-brain hurt moments I've had with my 17 year old son.

For example, he forgot his key the other day. Instead of calling me or calling my mother, who has a spare key and lives just over a mile away, he scaled the neighbor's fence, got their ladder, manuevered it over the fence into our muddy mire of a back year. Then he proceeded to climb in a second floor window, tramp across the house to open the door, return BACK across the house to go back out the window, down the ladder, through the mud, over the fence, yadda yadda yadda.

Did I mention we HAD beige carpets?

Also... I roasted the last of the Costco 4 (chicken, anyone? Can I offer you a sammich???), I figured we'd have at least one of them for supper... While I was on my way home I got a phone call from the boy.
"Mom? Are these chickens for eating?"
"One would hope so, why?"
"I hope its okay if I ate some..."
"Sure, I was going to serve one for dinner, so you can eat some of the other one."
"Oh shit."
"What's wrong?"
"Well, I kinda punished the chicken."
"I ate it."
"All of it?"
"Oookay. Well, we had two."
"Um... "
"You ate BOTH chickens???"

Yes indeed. He ate both whole, roasted chickens. In one sitting. This kid weighs a buck and a quarter soaking wet.

Moments like these make my brain hurt but grateful. We've had a tough year since school began, frankly. It started with having to change his ADD meds and he didn't react well at all. And a group of his "really great friends" started making some stupid, stupid choices such as constantly skipping classes and my son went right along with these choices too.

He started to straighten himself up for a while, even got his first job as a busboy.... then some guys followed him home one early evening and pulled a gun on him in a church parking lot. He actually kept his wits and his mouth shut and the only thing hurt was his pride.

At one point he ran away for a week. At one point I found a twelve-pack of Bud Light. (let's also stop to consider the overwhelming amount of substance abuse on both sides of the family, shall we?) More truancy. More heartache. Counseling, school meetings, substance abuse treatment, you name it.

Well. he actually got into a fistfight with my husband, his stepfather, in November. I got caught in the middle and trampled. My husband got him pinned while I called 911. When the police arrived, he was arrested. Damn. We became an episode of Cops.

Well.... more substance abuse treatment, more counseling, lots of work. And then his doctors had the bright idea to TELL him that any treatment or counseling via Kaiser Permanente is VOLUNTARY on his part. That anyone over 14 can refuse treatment and counseling and no one, including parents, can make him do it. Are you KIDDING me??

So I then started coughing up close to $300 a week for private treatment and counseling, which certainly ate away any savings we had, but what are you going to do? Shrug and decide not to do it??

We've had ups and downs since then... I'll skip the details. I have hit more brick walls than I ever thought could exist. I have met with police, I have met with doctors, I have meet with school officials. And all I could do is wait for him to pretty much hang himself with his own rope.

But just as I was getting ready to post last night's piece, there was a pounding on the door. I open the door and there's a county police officer and.... my son. In handcuffs.



He got picked up with a kid that's really well-known to the local cops - a kid I had to call the cops about a few months back, in fact, because he showed up at my door with three cars full of kids, pounding on my door and screaming threats at 1am. My son says "oh yeah, but we're tight now!" Well isn't THAT special. This kid has no license, they were drinking beer in the car and my son had pot on him. But hey! They're tight.

I'm just as angry as I was last night, but today I think I'm a little clearer with it. I knew this was going to happen, sure. He's a substance abuser and he doesn't WANT to stop. I don't know too many people who quit the first time they got caught. He said the right things, he went through the motions, but he didn't quite mean it.

He said more things last night... he might mean it a little more, but whether he's truly ready? I don't know.

So excuse me please, for not bringing any 'funny' to the table today. I'm still trying to wrap my head around how I got here and why I just can't seem to get out of it if I'm "doing all the right things", as the courts and police and schools and counselors are telling me.

I'm doing all the right things.

But that's not much comfort right now, because those right things don't seem to be working really well.

If you have a spare prayer or thought or even kick in the ass to send my way, I could use 'em. And in the meantime, at least my husband has taken the baby to visit his grandmother this weekend, so perhaps my older son & I can tackle the latest issues.


Thursday, March 8, 2007

Cross-Contamination And You... or: 'Ware The Lunch Lady

Yeah. We have a full-service cafeteria at work that includes a pretty good sandwich bar. There's a humongous internal meeting today and I was strong-arming.... err, persuading managers to post their presentations so I could compile the presentation books.

My co-workers volunteered to bring me a sandwich when they went down to get their lunch. (We have to take turns going to lunch so that the department is covered at all times) I gratefully accepted and continued with the nonsense that is meeting prep.

Now, I am a creature of habit. Foodwise, I am not an adventurous soul and I have a few food allergies besides. So I stick with tried & true and life is happy. They bring me my usual tuna on wheat with lettuce and tomato. Nice boring sammich. Perfect.

I take a bite and notice an odd flavor, like its got mustard or something... I look and find no offending condiments. Huh. However, I got so busy that I finished less than half the sammich and finally just threw it out.

Well, an hour later, I figure out what that odd taste was when my lips started feeling sore. I happen to be allergic to something in the salad dressings they use in the cafeteria. I don't know what the offending ingredient is, but I get what basically looks and feels like a chemical burn on my mouth, and it stays red and sore for a few days until it peels.

I go into the ladies room and... Niiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiice. I look like I'm wearing bright red lipliner. buh-RIGHT red. One might even say it glowed...

Apparently, the cafeteria worker hadn't bothered cleaning either her workspace or her knife after making the sandwiched ordered before mine, and said sandwich was one of the ones that contained dressing. (I suspect the Evil Chicken Caesar... that's one scary sammich, trust me.)

I have to report ny sammich troubles to my manager who, while properly sympathetic to my plight, is perfectly capable of recognizing the ridiculous aspect to it all, and she laughs her ass off. (My boss is actually pretty cool.) I have to send an email to the cafeteria manager, letting him know what had happened as well.

And now I get to attend this big-ass meeting today with a McDonald's Red Upper lip that feels like I branded myself.

I had been telling myself that I really ought to start packing my lunch in the mornings because it would be so much cheaper, but I'm a lazy twit.

Dang. There's just something NOT RIGHT about being laid low by a sandwich.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Why did the THIRD monkey fall out of the tree?

Peer pressure, man.

The Blog Party looked like it might be a cool and fun thing. Or maybe I accidentally od'ed on non-dairy creamer again.

At any rate, join me down the rabbit hole, if you will. The party goes all week... add the link, tell your friends, post a little somethin' somethin' about yourself and enjoy the ride.

Even better? This kinda party doesn't require you to scrub the guest toilet and try and find actual hand towels. I'm SO there.

So anyway, something about me besides what I've yammered on for the whopping couple of weeks I've been doing this??? The short story is that I'm 40, mother of three... a 19 year old girl and 17 year old boy from my first rather short-lived marriage, and now an 8 month old from my second marriage.

This might indicate insanity, or so I have been told numerous times over the last 17 months.

Weird things happen to me. I mean REALLY weird. "Did that just happen??!?" kind of weird. My friends find this to be a source of endless amusement. Apparently I am some kind of universal joke... or an object lesson to others, I'm not sure. Either way, what are you going to do?

I have A.D.D., which I've spent a lifetime self-medicating with coffee. Mmmmmmm. As a result, I have a fine and healthy appreciation for a damn fine cup of joe. (btw, three points if you got the reference). ADD means never having to say anything that makes sense, at least in my house. (The mild touches of OCD are a bitch, though. I couldn't get the CLEAN OCD, oh no. No, **I** get to lose my shit if pictures and such are hanging the least bit askew. )

I guess I'm smart enough but uneducated. I never finished a semester of college and it stings when friends thoughtlessly make derisive comments about people who lack degrees. At some point, I'll make time to attend classes... (I did register for an accounting and a business class last fall and overwhelmingly bad morning sickness laid me low right before finals. )

My family has had more than its fair share of struggles with mental illness. I am the mother of, the sister of and the daughter of bipolars... possibly also granddaughter. We aren't positive on that one. My daughter and sister are both in treatment and for the most part, do very well. This has not always been the case and we have had some absolutely terrifying moments where we came horrifyingly close to losing both of them.

I did lose a friend to suicide, too. March 15th, the Ides of March, is the anniversary of her death. I miss her still.

If you couldn't guess, yes, I have gerbils... my very spoiled little rodent boys. I do love me some rodents, oh yes! And my oldest, Indiana Scones, is so tame, he likes to ride around on my shoulder. I also have a clanned pair - Bran Stoker and Jonas Salt. (My gerbs always have food-related puns for their names. The naming of a new gerbil pup is a huge mental effort as we try to top past names.)

I am a Game Geek. I have multiple game systems in my house and my video game collection outstrips that of my teenaged son. I rarely get to play, but sometimes I do like to handle stress with Playstation Therapy: pop in a disk, blow something up, feel MUCH better.

I am afraid of water. I can swim, and I'll swim some in a pool, but I truly hate being in a river or lake. A drunken neighbor kid came very close to drowning me when I was in junior high and to this day I avoid the water pretty much altogether.

I am afraid of the dark but only IN a house. When I was a kid, we had this psycho black cat (named Lucifer, naturally). One minute he was purring and rubbing against you, the next minute he was trying to rip your face off. And he liked to hide and leap out at you in the dark. That cat had been dead for ten years and I was still sleeping with a light on so I could see him coming! He also loved water. LOVED it. He'd sit in the fish tank. Wouldn't bother the fish, he just wanted to be in the water. A friend once spent the night - I think we were about ten - and she STILL talks about having to get up in the night to use the bathroom and having the cat scare the lights out of her. He was sitting IN the toilet with only his head sticking out.

And with that, I bid you adieu for the night... I have a date with my Ameda. Moooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo.

Door to Door Deer Meat???

Now I have seen everything. Two enterprising gentlemen with a professional-looking cooler contraption on the back of a pickup truck (graphics and all, but I couldn't read it) were going door to door in my suburban townhouse development, hawking venison.

I have nothing much against people who eat venison... I for one will NEVER touch it again after last May's Incident (had to evict the tenant up in New York. I wound up on CIPRO after cleaning up what was basically a biohazard. I still have nightmares about The Leg Pile. Yep. Just what it sounds like.) but this struck me as really bizarre.

"Hey! Y'know, the DC suburbs are really an untapped market. People would just clamor for venison if they could just get it..."

Aside from the fact that buying deer meat from the back of a truck isn't exactly Food Safety At Its Finest, how the heck do you decide on a neighborhood to start with??

Even weirder, I have to be indebted to the chick next door, she of the strangled-goat shrieking and wall-pounding... as I was sitting on the couch with the baby, listening to Deer Meat Man make his pitch to the neighbor and then say "well thanks anyway. Hey, is your neighbor home?"
"Oh they're vegetarians!"

Wha? I am not, although I have no problem with BEING vegetarian, I definitely count as an omnivore. Was she straight-up lying? Or just whacked? Either way, the Venison Venture skipped me altogether.


Monday, March 5, 2007

Being a parent means....

Being a parent means you get to experience the very outside edges of human emotion. Sometimes it doesn't even have to be YOUR kid...

The other day, I got to experience a moment of terror the likes of which I hadn't touched in years. I was on my way to my sitter's house to pick up the baby. She lives at the end of a court and there are often two little boys kicking a ball back and forth to each other in the street, so I am careful to go verrrrrrrrrry slowly.

Sure enough, as I pulled in, there they were. I slow even further, signal to pull over to the curb and make eye contact with one of them. Suddenly, their baby brother appeared from behind a parked car not even three feet away and ran at the grill of my car with his arms outstretched. This child was so young, I almost couldn't see him. I slammed on my brakes and he was still running and reached out to slap both hands down onto my car.

If I had been going the posted speed limit in this area, I would have crushed this child - this BABY - to death. If it had been last week when there was still ice on this street, I most likely would have still slid right into him. If I had been paying attention to anything but the fact that I knew there were kids in the area... if I had been changing radio stations... I was careful and I was attentive and I DIDN'T kill someone else's baby.

But knowing that I could have? It made me want to vomit.

I got out of the car and the child's father was washing his van in his driveway, completely oblivious to what had happened. "Did you SEE that???" I yelled at him. "Your son ran right AT my car! I could have killed him!"

And... he shrugged. HE SHRUGGED. I was stunned. How can you shrug??? I don't get it.

Worse? He shrugged it off in front of his children, who had seen the whole thing. They saw their little brother run at my car, they saw the crazy lady get out and yell at their dad... and what must it be like to watch your dad act like he didn't care that your baby brother could have gotten run down?

Man. Sometimes life gets on my nerves, but I am counting my every blessing. I could be THAT man.

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Adding Insult to Injury

As if this morning's Laundry Incident wasn't enough damage to my dignity... Jacob has a new trick. After his breakfast, he had this intense look on his face and grabbed at my shirt. "MMMMMMMMMM!" he insisted. "Bah-bah-bah MMMMMMMMMMMMMM!!!!"

(note: He says "mmmm" when he's hungry. As in "Mmm-mmm-mmm, isn't this strained whatever-it-is GOOD? Mmmmmm." It's a good thing I didn't sing In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida while I feed him, Lord knows what he'd have come up with. )

Anyway, I naturally assumed he wanted to nurse, so we settle back and Assume the Position. Jacob latches, pauses, pulls his head back to critically examine the Goods and then thoughtfully opens his mouth again.... nurse? oh no. He instead decides to use the breast as a kazoo.

After five minutes of Boob Kazoo, I offer him a bottle instead, which he wolfed down.*

This scene has repeated itself all day long. Apparently I am no longer viewed as The Milk Bar, I am now Jacob's One Boob Band.

And again, this causes my husband great amusement indeed.

*lest anyone worry that it is time to wean, Jacob is a NICU grad who didn't even get the hang of nursing until he was about 6 1/2 months old. Me and my Ameda Purely Yours have a love/hate relationship in support of Jacob's nutritional needs. Moo.

Don't You Hate it when Your Mother is Right? Or... Laundry can be hazardous - exercise caution!

When I was a kid, my mother always insisted on us getting dressed as soon as possible, definitely before 9am on weekends. I find myself unable to send Jacob to the sitters in the morning in footed rompers because they resemble his pajamas way too much and then I feel ridiculously Bad Mommy about the whole thing.

Look, everyone has their hang-ups, mine apparently is PAJAMAS. Whatever.

Anyway, I went against my own hang-ups this morning. I was tired. I was feeling lazy. Dagnabbit, I was going to prance around in my long blue cotton nightgown as long as I pleased. Ok, prance isn't right. SHUFFLE. That's more like it, especially since I only downed half of my coffee.

Besides, the shirt I wanted to wear was still in the dryer. This eventually became enough incentive to go down to the basement to fold the dry load. I folded the load and sorted it into appropriate baskets for distribution, moved the load of washed baby things to the dryer and began filling the washer in preparation for the next load.

I wanted to wash a dark load, but there wasn't QUITE enough for a full load already down in the basement. When we bought the washer and dryer, we purchased a set that could handle the laundry needs of teenagers. These aren't quite industrial-sized, but I can wash one heckuva load. Two thumbs up...

I figure I'll carry my loaded basket upstairs and bring down more stuff for this next load. Now, here's where things got a little dicey. Bearing in mind that this is a Supersize Your Laundry washer, naturally the basket was full. And heavy. And then I got the brilliant idea to set it into an empty basket that I would use to carry the other stuff downstairs. (Sure, I could have just put all the clothes and towels away and used THAT basket. But that makes SENSE. So of course... that didn't occur to me.)

I'm short, too, so I have to reach up to drop the heavy basket down into the empty one.

At least ONE mother out there can see exactly where this is going, can't you? Exactly. Because I am still in my nightgown, things are relaxed. To quote Batty from the Fern Gully movie "I'm back and I'm flappin' free!!!"

Yes, I managed to get my own breast pinched between the two baskets. Specifically, the nip. And I mentioned that other basket was heavy?? My mouth fell open in disbelieving shock from the pain of having a tender part not only pinched, but stretched and contorted in ways no human bits really ought to find themselves.

Do I life up the basket to free myself? Hells no. My immediate reflex action was to hurl myself backward, away from the pain. So uh... I think I probably looked like Rubber Boob Woman, there. I popped myself free and immediately checked to be sure all parts were still attached. Then I very gingerly picked up the basket and went upstairs to seek sympathy from my husband.

Well, all I did was make him giggle. (I really should have expected that. Anything to do with boobs or farts makes him giggle. No wonder kids love him. He's like the world's biggest 10 year old)

And then I remembered a story my mom once told me about catching her own boob in a pantry door when my sister was a baby. And now I think I see where her rule about getting dressed probably came from.

Friday, March 2, 2007

Life as a Gerbil or: WTF Just Happened??? Storytime with the Rodent.

People who know me well can tell you that sometimes the ODDEST crap happens to me. Truly. It's like I'm playing a supporting role in some universal sitcom or perhaps I'm really mean to serve as a universal Object Lesson to Others.

Because I have had exactly 4 swallows of champagne (yes, I AM a Capricorn and it wasn't an expensive Chandon, but it was on sale and I like it and therefore I shall drink it. I can pretend to be spoiled if I so choose. Nyah.) and have been thinking about my friend who just quit smoking, which makes me think of MY smoking days, and gets me feeling a little nostalgic, so I will tell the Story of the Dead Pigeon.

(I am not drunk. Not even buzzed. I heard that. I have A.D.D and am the walking definition of Random. So there.)

Anyway, once upon a time and crap like that.... I went out on my lunch break and decided that I absolutely HAD to have some McDonald's french fries. (I loooooove McDonald's fries, especially because they're kind of mooshy. Mooshy, greasy fries ROCK in my book. ) As the nearest McDs was a couple of miles away, I had to drive. No sweat there... I recall that it was a glorious day. Warm, not too humid, just fabulous. And there I am, looking polished in my suit, in my (then) brand-new Camry... I am one put-together suburbanite. Rock ON with my bad self. (BWAH hah)

Errr anyway. I lit up. I smoked, primarily in my car. (although ONLY if I was alone.) It was a huge psychological crutch for handling stress and I loooooooooooooooooooooved it. Mmmm. That first inhalation was bliss. Bliss, I tell you, even if it tasted like burning shithouse wallpaper. That's addiction.

So uh, yeah. I coasted down the overpass and slid into the turning lane to Huntington Avenue, I've got some Trance playing, and I am enjoying the HELL out of that cigarette. I'd been telling myself I really needed to quit. I understand how MUCH I needed to ditch this habit, but I just wasn't ready to let go yet.

Now... God moves in mysterious ways. I get this. But apparently He isn't all that interested in subtleties with me. I'm a little slow, you understand. I need a road map AND a flashlight.*

So there I am, feeling all right with the world... I turn left , the car moves past the possibly homeless man** standing there with his "god bless" sign and WHAMMO!!!! A pigeon flies smack into the upper left corner of my windshield. That's pretty startling but it wasn't enough, oh noooo. It was not yet A Gerbil Moment.

The speed limit on Huntington is pretty low... 25, I think. That pigeon - excuse me, EXpigeon because after flying headfirst into my windshield it was like the famed parrot of Monty Python's sketches. It was NOT pining for any fjords, it was really most sincerely dead - after impact, that pigeon tumbled, it rolled, it gently fell off the edge of my windshield.

And with my window all the way open and me leaning all satisfied and content there, what do you think happened?

Oh yes.

That pigeon rolled right off the windshield, tumbled into the window and hit me in the everloving HEAD.

Now that will get your attention.

Shocked, horrified and disbelieving, I looked in the rearview to see the homeless guy doubled over, laughing his ASS off. Dude, more power to you. And what the hell???? Truly, something that would ONLY happen to me. I slunk back to work, feeling embarrassed because who gets beaned by dead pigeons????

Only me.

Only me.

Now, obviously, if I hadn't been smoking, the window wouldn't have been open and the pigeon would still be dead, but would have rolled off the car harmlessly and NOT beaned me in the side of the head.

**Sadly, this particular area was famous for people masquerading as homeless and panhandling in the median, raking in enough money in two weeks time to pay their rent. THAT's messed up. Seriously.

My Husband and Costco or... A Chicken in Every Pot

My husband loves Costco. LOVES Costco. Like many people out there with half a brain, he loves to save money on necessary purchases. Costco is a wonderful place for this and I've benefitted greatly as a result. For example, the man bought me a Dyson vacuum for an anniversary.

(Let me just say that I was thrilled with this. Really. I did a little dance right there in the living room. And then I had to fight my teenager over who was going to use it first. What can I say, we're really weird.)

Costco is faaaaaaaaaaaaabulous for baby-related necessities, too. Being able to score more than 200 diapers for $30 or less makes me fall to my knees and give thanks. And their meat is just awesome.

However, the man's love of a bargain is also paired with random moments of impulse purchasing, which occasionally presents a challenge.

I have four whole fresh chickens currently sitting in my refrigerator. Why? It was Buy One, Get One Free. And said chickens came in a 2-pack. He COULDN'T pass that up. He placed the poultry onto the counter and beamed like a little kid at Christmas. I just stared.

What the hell am I going to do with 4 fresh 8-lb chickens??? I have a freezer not much bigger than the 20 year old microwave - two chickens will fit IF I take everything else out, including the hard-won stash of frozen milk, which will be needed in two weeks anyway. And that will still leave me with two chickens. Thatsalottabird.

I admit I was little irked, since I'd just had to throw out my incredible homemade chicken soup (chicken, potatoes, celery, spaetzle & carrots) that I'd made because nobody "felt like leftovers". Same with the meat pie that they claim to loooooooooove. (this is actually unusual behavior. Normally everything gets devoured). So now I have to cook up 4 chickens.

Add to this the fact that both my husband and older son aren't even going to BE here this weekend, my daughter will be working all weekend and is a vegetarian anyway and Jacob doesn't even have teeth. So I guess that means I'm gonna get to eat chicken.


Do you think Homeland Security would consider poultry suspicious???

Scratch that. If you hear news reports of random chicken abandonment in the area... it wasn't me. Really.