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Staying Within The Lines

16 Sep

Some people just roll on out of bed with a wish for confrontation.

I’m talking about regular people with blatant disregard for the common decency rules of life. Yeah … they’re out there. And I saw one. I took photographic evidence.

But not so much to report anyone, more so to laugh.

You see, about an hour before I saw this dude, I had pulled into a lot and did my very best to park this loaner I was driving into a spot. Now seeing how I’m not used to parking this bad boy Toyota Sienna, it took me about three attempts to completely stay within those double white lines. Yup.  I was putting it in drive and reverse, drive and reverse, and then drive and reverse again, with all eyes from the AARP Crew looking at me from the diner across the way. Just sipping their coffee and staring at me through their bifocals.

My parking job doesn’t have to be perfect and my tires don’t have to be equidistant from the lines on both sides. I just have to be in the slot, I want to give people enough room to open their doors. I just don’t want to be a jackass. That’s it. So after my multiple failed attempts and a triumph that took 5-10 minutes, I moved on and went to run some more errands and that’s when I saw this dude.

image

I mean he wasn’t even close. And you guessed it … it was one of the last spots on the lot.

Now normally things like this really burn me out, but under this new Super-Soul Sunday everyday vibe I’ve been flowing on, I ended up cracking up. This dude did not care. Not one bit.

I mean I’d understand if we were at the ER and it was a life and death situation, but I was at the 99-Cent store, there are plenty of Cup O Noodles.

So when I saw this Volvo, I just paused for a minute and laughed. This dude is living by his own code.

You see out here in the traffic congested city I live in, there are parking rules that people let slide because you know what the drawbacks are, for example an SUV parked in a compact-only spot will probably get his door scratched or dented by the other cars. That’s a given. If you park in someone’s driveway, you might get hit, or towed before you roll out of bed early enough to move your car,  it happens. You take two spots instead of one, you might get a nasty note on your windshield or a confrontation in your future.

People are aware of the consequences. They know. This guy knew, but he didn’t care.

Growing up in this city I take these rules fairly seriously. I don’t want to  be a jackass. So I tend to stay within the lines. The fact that I worked so hard to park my loaner car an hour before and then see this Volvo-driving nut just handle this spot like a dictator cracked me up. I mean who thinks that way. I just had to laugh. I couldn’t react any other way.

Buen Camino my friends.

 

 

 

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You’re Not Alone Out There …

6 Aug

Laundryitis.

I suffer from this.

I never thought I would but I do. So now I’m like an episode of Everybody Loves Raymond.

If you’re not familiar with this syndrome, it may happen to tired moms and dads, or college students. It can happen to anyone really, but the judgement seems to be worse when you’re a mom I guess. You’re supposed to have it all together. At least that’s what Facebook people appear to do … have it together.

But I don’t. I’m a mess in progress.

I suffer from Laundryitis … you know, when you wash your clothes and then take them out of the dryer, and put them in a nice pile. Shirts on one side, pants and shorts on the other. And you tell yourself I’m gonna fold those as soon as I get a minute. You know that elusive minute when you’re a parent. You know when you have that oh-so-famous down time, when you unwind in the quiet of the night. I’ll do it when I’m watching Netflix. And then four days later … they’re still there … on your bed. They may even make the start of the next clothes cycle, where you wash another load and you’re just adding to the pile. It’s happened.

The clothes just lay in the corner, not as smooth as before, a couple of lumps and wrinkles, but no longer in two neat piles. Just one lump some of Costco-Fabric softner-smelling clothes. I bring them down with me every night, but for some reason, they don’t end up getting folded. I lay down for a minute to rest, only to wake up at 1 a.m. and drag myself to bed. I write a post, or edit my book, and lose track of time, or I end up getting lost in some Netflix or Amazon Prime episodic binge adventure.

I’m not really proud of this Laundryitis, but just wanted you to know … those of you hiding in secret … not posting your Devil Wears Prada closet on The Facebook Instagram tip that you’re not alone. It happens, it especially happens to tired moms.

So I think I’m more prone to Laundryitis, in fact I think that if you have a cleaning lady or cleaning crew helping you out, you might not suffer from this. You might have your act together because you clean before the cleaning lady gets there, or she may just do it for you. I don’t know.  Maybe you have a Jetsons futuristic setup.

I guess if I shopped at IKEA I would totally be on top of this entire situation, you know with the state-of-the-art awesome drawers of organization with potential Jetson possibilities. But I don’t have the IKEA awesomeness in the bedroom.

I’m not that futuristic though … I don’t even have a dishwasher. And I think a dishwasher is important. I think these technological advances in the home economics sector have a cause and effect correlation with Laundryitis. Maybe I wouldn’t be as tired if I could just load it up and press wash, instead of Palmolive all over my hands for hours. I don’t know, I’m no scientist but I see something.

The more help you get, Kenmore or Maytag technology, or IKEA awesomeness, or just another human being, the less likely you are to suffer from Laundyitis and be caught up in your own episode of Everybody Loves Raymond with an Everybody Loves Raymond kind of mom sending you the guilt stare.

But don’t worry … shed the guilt … you’re not alone.

 

Buen Camino my friends …

 

The Kiddie Pool Will Educate You … Properly

12 Jun

No matter how badass you think you are a kiddie pool will humble you … Immediately.

Don’t be lazy.

Bend at the knees, not the waist.

They have a warning label about drowning and diving into it, but nothing at all warning perfectly healthy 40-something year olds who run in Spartan races and triathlons about the dangers of kiddie pools. I mean drowning yeah … That’s serious and should be addressed. But this is important too.

This 20-dollar piece of aquatic plastic from the Do-It-Center sidelined me instantly, and it did not matter that I handled myself with ease in a Muay Thai Boxing gym. This kiddie pool had my number.

There was about two inches of water in the pool and I thought I’d move it over to the side of the patio, just to give it more sun, so my kids would feel the warmth of the rays as they splashed around, you know because I’m an awesome mom who thinks of these things. I thought I’ll move it over before I fill it up completely because it will be too heavy to do so once it’s full. Let me just do it now, while its nearly empty.

But as I learned the hard way once the pool is down … It’s down.

Doesn’t matter what you can bench press or how many push-ups you can do. The kiddie pool will educate you properly.

Kiddie Pool: 1   The Guat:  0.

Apparently once there is water in it, you really shouldn’t move it at all and if you try, don’t even think of just bending over and sliding it down. Don’t. Even. Think about it.

The floor and I have gotten re-acquainted with one another. I learned crawling is a good way to travel, it’s not just for toddlers. And the yoga mat, a Costco-sized bottle of Advil, ice packs, and heat have been my best friends since last Monday.

Seven days.

I was concerned when my investigative results online came up with bulging disc, cervical radiculopathy, and osteoporosis.

It wasn’t either of them, but I’m still out for the count. I stopped using my son’s hockey stick as a cane two days ago, so I suppose that’s an improvement. Plus I had the luxury of getting into a jacuzzi so that voodoo magic helped me out. But I’m still not at %100. Sneezing and coughing prove to be painful reminders of kiddie pools being the boss of me.

I still have a hitch in my get-along. I don’t think I can even do a proper jumping jack. But I can peddle a stationary bike for five minutes without muscle spasms so that’s something.

I knew my back was essential to daily life but not THIS important. I need it for everything. From carring a box of CapriSun juices to parallel parking to waiting in line at the AAA Office to putting on socks, I neeeeeeed my back. It’s up there with breathing.

So now as I’m in recovery mode, and researching chiropractors and acupuncturists, I reflect upon the importance of downward dog, upward dog and any other stretching mechanism that strengthens the back …

Because kiddie pools are no joke for healthy 40-something year olds. They’ll let you know who’s boss. So when you see the warning label, beware of the pool people … Beware.

Buen Camino my friends.

 

 

 

 

 

The 20-Mule Team Saved The Day

8 Feb

They were on their last life line.

I thought they were done for … but they made the ultimate comeback. One by one falling in line giving it everything they got.

Two teams. Multiple efforts. One field. One battle. One winner.

And that was me.

This SuperBowl weekend while everyone was cheering on Lady Gaga and the Falcons to take down Brady and The Patriots, I was involved in my own battle.

The Guat vs. The Ants.

It’s supposed to be a seasonal thing where they come for a couple of days during summer, stalk up and then run away and hide in their awesome bachelor pad with their queen. Chillin’ on sugar and sweet nectar water. Seasons meant nothing to them. They were on the year-round system. And nothing seemed to stop them. Not even the power of a ZipLoc Bag. Not. Even.

Windex, bleach, soapy water, and then the kryptonite of all kryptonite for ants and bugs and innocent eyeballs … RAID! Yup RAID! One spray and that’s it paralysis for life. But these bastards were ruthless. These were not your ordinary ants. These were Bionic Ants! Hanging out with Lindsey Wagner and the 6-Million-Dollar Man, and laughing at me as they attacked Cheerios, MiniWheats, Skippy Peanut Butter, Quaker Granola Bars. Things that were still wrapped and boxed, they attacked. They weren’t even going for sugar anymore it was beyond sugar now. They were all up in my Nature’s Own Wheat Bread, and Rold Gold pretzels. So, I resorted to storing things in the fridge, for fear I’d have nothing left. I mean who has to put Wheat Thins in their refrigerator?

Me! Yeah, Me.

So, when I brought home five boxes of Girl Scout Cookies I knew this madness had to end. I asked a few moms if they’d ever encounter such madness and I found answers.

I brought in the secret weapon.

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🙂

Borax! And The 20-Mule Team.

I had no idea of its existence, or of its MacGyveresque properties.

It. Was. On!

I concocted may magic solution of warm water, sugar, and Borax. I soaked cotton balls in that sweet poison and laid them out wherever they roamed. I found them hoarding an unopened and hermitically sealed bag of jelly beans on the third shelf of the pantry, dropped four cotton balls, and walked away.

A couple of hours later they abandoned the jelly beans and were in a cotton ball mosh pit of ecstasy, which for a minute made me doubt the effectiveness of this so called Borax. But I waited and, let Borax handle my business. I waited.

And waited.

I watched Lady Gaga rock that stage at half time and they were still under attack mode.

24 hours. I thought I’d give it 24 hours.

So, when I woke up in the morning, I opened the cupboard, hoping, praying for the destruction of these Ninja Warrior ants. But I saw nothing.

The party was over.

Only two lifeless ant corpses lay motionless on top of those cotton balls.

Fist pump in the air with a resounding YESSSSSSSSSS!!!!! Borax was now my superhero.

Although … I didn’t want to hold up the trophy just yet. I’m a little superstitious … I’ll wait a couple of days before removing my stash from the fridge. Because after all chocolate is chocolate.

Stay tuned.

Better Late Than Never … Ummmm No.

11 Jan

When I saw this … it all made sense.

sweater

🙂

It really did. It hit me, like that a-ha! moment I had when I saw the He’s Just Not That Into You movie and all the stars aligned and I was like yeah. Totally get it now.

But then I started thinking of exigent circumstances. I mean when could you really let it go … that your friend showed up 87 minutes late to a girls night out and you only had two hours because your babysitter holds the key to your life and that’s all you could get.

If you have kids … I get it. Babysitter is late. There’s vomit. There’s not enough Goldfish Crackers to go around. You ran out of wipes. The DVR didn’t record the latest Peppa Pig and you needed to know what happened. I get it. Meltdowns happen and you’re gonna be late. Most parents give themselves a buffer zone because they know this might happen. They just know and there’s a forgiveness clause on that. They’re just happy that they made it out in one piece.

But if that’s not your case, then what the hell is going on?

Just be honest and be like … nah … I kind of don’t want to go. I mean it’ll be a bummer but it’s better than waiting there at the Regal Beagle without Jack or Janet.

But then I thought of intentions. I mean when the idea was brought up to you a couple of days ago you totally wanted to go. You checked your iPhone calendar and knew it was clear and you even did a silent cheer in your head. You were the first one on board.

And then the week hit you hard, work was hard, life was hard, and Friday came  … and you thought … I don’t know.

It just crept into your head.

Doubt.

Is it worth it to leave the house? Is it really? I got Netflix. Cable. HBO. A box of wine. Do I really need to leave?

Then the doubt is fueled.

Traffic. There might be traffic. I think there’s an accident. Exhaustion. I feel pretty exhausted right now, the Friday night exhaustion that hits you in your 40s or late 30s that never seemed to appear in your 20s. Then you feel the love of your Old Navy pajamas and they feel so right. And then you think, do I even have gas in the car? Do I have cash in my wallet? I mean if you have to go to the bank, or put gas in the car, forget it. That might just kill the whole outing all together.

There are just too many hurdles and you begin to bargain with yourself about whether you reeeeeeaaaaally need to go. You say you’ll feel better once you get there, you always do, it’s just the “getting there” part that is sucking right now.

Ultimately guilt sets in and you muster up enough Maybelline and Red Bull to get you out of the house. You stroll on in with some excuse about traffic and grab a drink while your buddies are already into the good part of the conversation. They see you stroll in and you think they bought your traffic excuse, but they know … they know … because they were just on the same freeway and they know you have the speed through traffic app on your phone.

So if you don’t want this sweater as your next gift, think long and hard before committing to your next date, outing, hanging out session, or shenanigan. Or maybe you should just say no from the start, and then when Friday comes around, you change your mind if you want. You can totally show up and surprise them because even if you are late, they’ll be glad to see you.

Buen Camino my friends.

 

I’m Gonna Need Some Chocolate For This …

22 Oct

Did I tell you I’m being sued?

Close to $10,000.

Yup.

I’ve never personally been witness to such blatant in-your-face lies and deception. I mean I’ve seen them on soap operas, with that tan-tan-taaaaaaaan music and flaring nostrils. But when it happened to me there was no such music.

Frustration and profanity were present, but no music.

There was a car accident, well I don’t even know if I can call it that, more of a fender bender where nothing happened to my car, not even a scratch on the bumper, but her bumper was dented. There was no broken glass, no air bags being deployed, no fake screeching halts, and no big loud booms. Probably a clink seeing how we both started from stop signs and couldn’t have been going faster than five miles per hour.

Anyhow I was not aware that people can sue you up to two years after a fender bender if they don’t like what the insurance company is offering. And apparently fixing the car was not sufficient and settling for around $5,000 was not enough.

I. Can’t. Even.

Two years afterwards she is claiming pain … and suffering. She filed a day before the deadline.

And so I found myself being served with papers to appear in court.

I know I can’t use the LIAR, LIAR, PANTS ON FIRE defense, but it is so exasperating dealing with such a shady and deceitful chick who will scam the system. I had no idea they existed outside of telenovelas.

And you know, I’m trying to find the funny in this situation but all I seem to find is profanity.

Then I remembered Mike.

Mike Birbiglia sums it up awesomely in his stand-up comedy The Accident Report, where the blatant errors and incompetence of the police officer and the at-fault drunk driver would leave you at a loss for words. But Mike … He just knocks down the absurdity of the entire situation with ultimate comedy.

 

 

I wish I had that gift, but turns out all I’m trying to do is breathe over here. Mike would know what to say. He’s awesome and I wish he could spin my incident into this hilarious bit, but I don’t even have a police report to debunk, because that’s how minor this fender thing was, the damage was so minimal that police presence was not needed, or required. Not by a long shot.

But I’m sure Mike could debunk this just based on the facts.

Mike would definitely know what to say. He’d find the funny. I’m still trying.

But until then I’m gonna need some chocolate … Inside a pint of Ben&Jerry’s.

 

 

 

Josh and Paul Helped Me Find My Switch

28 Mar

Sometimes it just doesn’t happen for me naturally. I’m used to the energy just flowing out of me, but sometimes I can’t find it. The colors get muted. The lights go out. It doesn’t happen and it’s hard.

I suffer from emotional hangovers, just like everyone else,and when that happens I’ve got to work at it. I feel so much I get lost in emotion and trying to find the funny seems impossible when I can’t find my laugh. Sometimes it even causes writing sabbaticals, but I’ve found that Josh and Paul helped me get back on track.

When I can’t find the laughter I look for it outside. Josh Gad and Paul Rudd helped me break through the clouds.

 

 

After piercing through, I remembered … I don’t live there … I have these dark moments, but I don’t live there. Laughter broke the spell and I found pieces of me trickling back into place.

I flipped the switch and found the trust. I trusted that I was better than the moment I was stuck in, and I was able to turn it around.

The day didn’t end up being a ten, but it was better and I was looking for better.

Buen Camino, my friends. Hoping your day gets better, and hoping that laughter helps make it happen.

 

 

Duuuude I’ve Finally Found The Words To Replace Profanity … Maybe

28 Oct
:)

🙂

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My Anti-Dentite Moment

13 Oct

I’d never been in a state of hilarity, disgust, fear, and anxiety all at once. Those tend to hit me one at a time. But nothing like a visit to the dentist to just bring out the best in you.

I didn’t hate him, but I sure didn’t love him. I don’t think anybody loves him. I mean he’s got root canals for crying out loud. Drilling at the vary root of it, the most painful, uncomfortable and exposed nerve possible. And at the end of it it’s not just your tooth that hurts…your whole freakin’ face hurts, and all you can do is move in slow motion for about a week.

But it doesn’t stop there … no.

They try to put television now to distract you from the pain of it all, but sometimes they put stuff that just adds to the pain, like the stupid Kardashians. Watching them hurts my brain … and if you do watch them it’s all good for you … but don’t tell me. I still want to think highly of you.

However this visit to the dentist had nothing to do with root canals or that talentless family. Nope. This was something much worse. I’d imagine much more painful if I’d gone through with it.

Although my dentist assures me it’s a necessary procedure if I don’t want my mouth to cave in or whatever in 20 years. But I’m up in the air about it. I wonder what Ferris Bueller would do?

You see there I was enjoying the sounds of the Showcase Showdown and Drew Carey on The Price is Right, when my dentist paused.

Hmph.

antidentite

Anti-Dentite Moment

He told me to give him a minute and then another chick entered the room. They both examined me, with that the miniature Captain Hook hook and the tiny mirror. They nodded in agreement and then he took off his mask.

You’re gums are receding. They’re in bad shape.

I had no idea they could do that, but apparently I’m an angry brusher. I was told I could no longer scrub my teeth like I was at a car wash, I needed to be doing it in a gentler manner, which was weird because I never thought of myself as an angry brusher, I just wanted my teeth to be clean.

All right sounds good doc, I’ll take it easy on the brushing. Am I all done?

Not quite.

You see because you grind your teeth at night and because the recession is so severe…you see here and here and on the other side there…the nerve is almost exposed…you see that? You feel that? That increases your sensitivity.

Yeah I guess I see.

Well we need to cover that up. There are two options.

He went on to tell me about the seriousness of it all, and suggested surgery. It was the only way to fix it. And I agreed. Totally … until he got into specifics.

You see this procedure would entail cutting the roof of my mouth and placing that extra gum piece on the side where my gums were down to the nerve. They would then stitch me up and wait a couple of weeks after I healed before cutting the other side of the roof of my mouth, grab some more Guat cells and replace the other side.

Now I don’t know if you’ve ever burned the roof of your mouth with a hot cheese pizza, but that tends to hurt for hours, I can’t imagine how having stitches on the roof would feel.

Dreamy I bet.

Option II

I could just get some tissue stuff they had there. Benefits are that healing time is reduced and no stitches on the roof.

Bonus! Right?

So what do you make this tissue stuff out of?

Wasn’t sure what kind of technology was going to be up in my mouth. But apparently it wasn’t Flubber or some other advanced form of tissue.

It was cadaver tissue.

You know the kind that dead people hang onto when they pass on.

Yeah. I’d have someone else’s gums in my mouth.

Dude.

Duuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuude.

And it was right there and then that I lost it, right on that leathery Lazy Boy type of chair, with that chick from Iowa losing her Showcase Showdown. I lost it.

Disgust, fear, anxiety and hilarity all rolled up in one.

I laughed. I cracked up. I couldn’t stop.

The doctor didn’t know what to do, he looked confused and just smiled.

I’m gonna need a minute to mull that over I said in between laughs.

After about five minutes of gut busting laughter I left the office and told him I’d give him my answer next week.

It’s been about two weeks now.

I’m thinking dentures might not be that bad.

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I Love His Thoughts On Gluten

26 Aug
Heck yeah I bought it!

Heck yeah I bought it.

Chocolate And Comedy?

Dude.

I should have bought more than just one.

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