Wednesday, August 26, 2009

"Yes, Mother, I'd love to carpool."

So, The Walking Guilt Trip called me today.

Her first words were, "Do you want to carpool this weekend?"

Crap. This weekend. What is this weekend??

I racked my brain, I swear to GOD I racked my brain as hard as I could before I meekly curled myself into the fetal position and whispered, "What is this weekend?" At this point my mind pretty much beats itself, but The Walking Guilt Trip doesn't accept the abuse as true guilt, she prefers to do the dirty work with her own two hands...or her own two lips as the case may be.

"Well, it's fine if you don't want to go. I only asked because you'd said you wanted to go, but there's no reason for you to go if you don't want to. I just thought you'd might like to, but I don't want to force you."

"Go to what, Mom, you still haven't told me where we're supposed to be going?"

"Well, I did tell you, I told you when I asked you if you want to come, but obviously if you don't remember it's not important enough to you. So I'll just go by myself. It will be fine, I'm sure I'll know someone." If this sounds sweet and innocent to you, you're not adding the dripping sarcasm that is vaguely veiled as only a mother with the power to disguise guilt trips can vaguely veil anything.

"I'm sorry Mom, I just can't think of what it was you asked me to do this weekend. When did you ask?"

"I asked at least two months ago, you've had plenty of advance notice. If you planned something else, of course, that's fine, you don't have to go. Don't cancel anything on my behalf, I know you've got more important things to do." First, I'd like to point out that asking a longer time ago does not in fact make it more memorable in my mind. Two months ago in Michigan was practically winter, how am I supposed to think about anything that far away?? I have a two-year old, a husband who's lucky to remember my name, a live-in brother who can't even remember what month it is, and I'm supposed to remember something my mother asked me, in passing, I'm sure, AT LEAST two months ago? AND remember that it's this weekend?

So now, in an attempt to protect my poor brain from overdosing on guilt, I start throwing out things I think she may have mentionned to me a few months ago..., "Is it apple picking time? Do you want to go to that new restaurant that's supposed to be it already open? Did I miss that? Crap, sorry if I did. Was there a car show you wanted to go see? Wait, was that last weekend? Om, never mind. What about the art museum, is that opening back up already? Oh, no, I think I saw people going in there recently, didn't I?"

WRONG strategy.

"Yes, the restaurant opened last month, I already went with Karen since you were so busy, and the car show was a few weeks ago, remember, I brought The Energizer Bunny a little car back? I had to go by myself to that, no one was available that day. I'm not sure what you were doing, but I'm sure you would have called if you'd really wanted to go. And the Art Museum has been open for awhile now, but they already took down their special exhibit. I'm sure it will come back sometime, they usually rotate every few years, I'll just go next time."

I never did figure out what I was supposed to be carpooling to this weekend.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Double-Mint Famous

I left you hanging yesterday, and I know you're concerned. I told you I'd been nominated for TWO (not one, but TWO) awards, and I only expanded upon one of them. I don't want you to die of curiosity, so I'll hurry to get this blog finished up and posted (between "real" work of course...but if it makes you feel better, I don't plan on leaving my desk for'd BETTER love me for this!)

I've decided it isn't in fact that hates me (that would just be silly, now wouldn't it?) but in fact it is my work computer that hates (which makes complete sense) and it is my work computer that is not allowing me to post the damn picture in the MIDDLE of the fricking blog instead of at the top. But whatever. I endeavor to NOT CARE.

AHA!!! I am RIGHT! My laptop let me move the very same picture my work computer refused to let me move!! My work computer DOES hate!! I cannot say I'm surprised, but slightly offended none the less.

So, this award is also from Rick at The Daley Rant because he loooooves me. (It's all right, you don't have to admit it, I already know) Or because he's lazy. But I prefer the former. So, on to the rules

- each Superior Scribbler must nominate 5 Superior Scribblers
I rebel. I'm nominating 3. This is because I decided not to doubly nominate people, or nominate people who had already been nominated and it seems this decreases my pool considerably. So 3 (extremely deserving people, I might add) it is.

- each Superior Scribbler must link to the author and blog that has won the award.
That Girl From Shallotte
Mindful Drivel
Brit Out of Water

- each Superior Scribbler must show the award on their blog (check) and link to this post

- each Superior Scribbler must add his/her name to the Mr. Linky List (check)

- each Superior Scribbler must post these rules on their blog. I'm not entirely sure why, but they're here anyway.

Now, I must say, this one did not command me to actually TELL these people that I nominated them...SOOO tempted not to and wait until they see it for themselves. Visit my blog and THEN you will be worthy!!!

All right fine, I'll tell them. Wouldn't want to upset them, after all...

Thursday, August 20, 2009

It's Okay, You Can Have my Autograph

Dude, I'm famous! Some very important bloggers made up very important awards and I have been nominated. Obviously I am famous. Not only that, I've been nominated for TWO blogging awards!! Take that, Unsupportive Louse, this blogging crap *isn't* just a waste of time! HA!!
Good thing too, 'cause I apparently am trying really hard to get myself fired this morning, so maybe I can use this whole famous thing to make a buck. Or two. I don't know, but I needed the pick-me-up, so thank you very important bloggers for making up very important awards.
To keep you in desperate suspense, as any good writer is prone to do, I will only address one of the awards now. (And well, I am at know, the "real" job..., and did already get a good flogging this morning, I'm not sure how much more I can really handle, so it might be prudent to stick to one for the moment...)

Ok, because knows I'm having a crappy day, it has decided not to let me put the little award picture down here. It has decided it will stay at the top of the blog. So whatever. It'll stay at the top. See if I care.
Now, for my tasks.

1- Thank the person who nominated you. check. You can thank him too, if you'd like, for making your favorite blogger famous and possibly, even you, by association of course.

2- Copy the logo and paste it in your blog. Uh done, but not here, cause life sucks at me. (I don't suck at life, I swear, it just sucks at me)

3- Link to the person who nominated you for this award. Rick at The Daley Rant was crazy enough to nominate me. He also has a cool query letter blog for any aspiring writers out there (and really, aren't we all?)
4- Name seven things about yourself that people might find interesting.
4.1- I haven't eaten lunch yet, but I HAVE eaten two gi-normous cookies. (Despite the fact that I cannot help myself but to eat any and all sugary products placed vageuly near me, I am not yet ginormous myself. I'm trying to stave it off with running and biking...but give it 15 years, I'm still young.)
4.2 - I have insomnia. I blame this on actually being a REAL night person (which is wholly different from you people who *think* you're night people...) who goes to bed early only because I have to get up early. If it were up to me, I'd stay up until 4 every morning and not get up until 11 or 12. Hence, going to be at 10:30 is very difficult for me.
4.3 - I'm addicted to Facebook. Like, for real. I may have checked it three times while writing this blog. So far.
4.4 - Last week I was told by a high school friend on Facebook that I looked like I was still in high school and I'm still giddy about it.
4.5 - When I was little, I wanted to be a psychiatrist, an artist, an author, a teacher and a scientist. All at the same time. I was sure I could swing it. (Science teacher who does a few real experiments on the side, draws while the students are working, writes at night and sees patients on weekends. Duh. And I didn't just make that up now, I really thought it through back then.)
4.6 - I had my whole life planned when I was little, down to marrying someone with the last name West (at age 23, of course) so that I didn't have to change my name or choose my real last name over my step-father's last name (as a middle name) which I knew would upset him. I hate to upset people. My first college boyfriend's last name was West. When I discovered this (on our third date, whatever, it's not like it was a one-night stand, I just didn't know his last name, all right? Get over it.) anyway, when I discovered it, I was sure it was either a sign I should marry him instantly or get the hell out of town as quickly as I could. (In the end, I did neither.)
4.7 - I'm still that insane.
5. Nominate seven "Kreativ" bloggers.
6. Post links to said Kreativ bloggers.
I'm just gonna combine 5 and 6, cause I think they're only split up so previously mentionned Very Important Blogger could have seven rules.
5/6.1 Chief
5/6.2 Azucar (sorry, don't know how to get the accent on the u...)
5/6.3 Kel
5/6.4 Amy
5/6.5 Backpacking Dad (I don't know his name)
5/6.6 Different Girl (also don't know her name)
5/6.7 Kate
7. Comment on Kreativ bloggers blogs so they know they've been nominated.
While I'd prefer for them to have to return to my blog and read it to find out that they've been nominated to be as cool as me, I'll do this, since it's a rule. And I'd hate to break a rule. It might upset someone.
By the way, I spent way more time deciding which 7 to use for this award and which 5 to use for the other award, considering they're Very Important Awards *made up* by Very Important Bloggers.
And, with that in mind, I would like to post a link to a very, very profound comment.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Why I Still Love My Ex

Now, I do desperately love my Unsupportive Louse, despite any minor flaws he may, at some inopportune moments, exhibit. The thing is, he’s very different from the previous Mr. Penney…VERY different – macho vs nerdy, clean-shaven vs scruffy, illiterate vs bookwormy, lightweight vs alcoholic, EAE sports player vs role playing gamer. So many important ways that they’re so very different. But really, on almost all counts, the Unsupportive Louse is a better pick, and I’m not just saying that because he might deign to read my measly little blog one of these days, no, it’s really true.

However…the Macho ex-Jerk was far and away (I mean, by like…a billion times) better at communicating. Oh yeah, I know, I went to marriage counseling, I KNOW communicating is one of the MAJOR “needs be” of marriages…the Unsupportive Louse just happens to suck at it. He does try, he really does, but when you start from next to nothing, trying doesn’t get you much better too fast. And the thing is, the Macho ex-Jerk LOOOVED to talk. He was one of those who’d call me on his way home from work (which was a 10 minute drive) because he had SOOO much to talk about (even though he’d called me three times throughout the day), and then he’d still be talking to me as he walked in the door and never stop while he hung up his phone. We talked about anything and everything and anyone and everyone and all their anything and everythings too. Now, I’m not saying we never fought, cause that’d be just one huge f-ing lie, but we’d talk about it afterwards anyway.

So every once in awhile I start to question myself, if I couldn’t make a marriage work with this guy who was GREAT at communicating (though, as it turns out, talking doesn’t necessarily equate to communicating…), why oh why do I ever think I can make it last with one who is just absolutely terrible at it? Which gets me into the what-ifs. What if it was actually all my fault? (which, clearly, it isn’t, since after all, nothing is…but for the sake of argument, I let my brain ramble on occasion.) What if I had realized sooner that he’d stopped talking so much; what if I’d realized that the lack of talking was a sign of distress in the relationship and not just due to the overuse of his cell phone minutes that I bitched him out about a time or two? And what if, on some very critical day six years ago (because this kind of willpower couldn’t have lasted longer than a day), I had decided NOT to be a demanding, obsessive compulsive bitch…would that have changed everything? Would I have never had to go through the devastation and depression of that divorce? And if I hadn’t…would I be happy now?

And now, that’s the key question. Where my what-ifs really get me. Could I have been happy forever with the Macho ex-Jerk if things had just been a little different? Because the thing is, I’m not a quitter. I’d have never left even if I was slit my wrists miserable (and I was close there near the end), but it’s just not my way. I’m damn stubborn when I want to be, and getting divorced?? NOT on my list of things to do. I HATE the fact that I’m divorced. Even though I’m happily married again, I can’t stand anyone knowing this huge failure in my past. Plus, I did actually love the dipshit. So I’d still be there if he hadn’t made his fateful pronouncement one gloomy night…

So my damn overactive brain starts wondering the what-ifs on occasion and my damn overactive guilty conscience (thanks, Mom) starts telling me I’m an ungrateful wife for even considering the what-ifs (because, believe me, I’m much happier now than I ever could have been stuck on Long Island – forgive me if you’re unfortunate enough to live there – with the Macho ex-Jerk for the rest of my life.)

Recently I had the wonderful fortune of remembering all over precisely why I still love the Macho ex-Jerk so much.

The Macho ex-Jerk’s best friend, the best man at our wedding, the only guy to do more than slap him on the back when he told him we were getting married, the guy close enough to him that they both asked each other to check up on their wives while they were sent to die in Afghanistan (don't worry, they didn't die), the guy who actually teared up at our goodbye party… just had a baby. Let me add here that he totally cussed the Macho ex-Jerk out for his dumbassed-ness when we were separated, and TOTALLY chose me when we divorced (you KNOW you have to split up your friends in the divorce papers as well as the towels, the photo albums, the gigantic plastic souvenir cups, the toothpaste...)

So, MeJ’s best friend had a baby who came 8 weeks early and weighs only 2lbs13oz, is doing well considering, but they’re asking for everyone’s thoughts etc. (And by the way, he e-mailed me to tell me, because I still have custody of his friendship, even if I no longer have the towels, photo albums, toothpaste or gigantic plastic souvenir cups.) I think to myself, perhaps the Macho ex-Jerk would like to know this, would like to send his wishes. So I forward the e-mail. What a nice person I am. I’ve done my good deed of the day. I pat myself on the back and begin to think some what-ifs just to get a healthy dose of guilt.

Macho ex-Jerk e-mails back, (and I quote)

“That’s nice. We don’t talk anymore.”

Because I can’t handle such a stupid response, and certainly can’t let sleeping dogs lie, I write back
“Uh, duh, that’s the point, I thought you might like to send your regards to your BEST FRIEND. Fuckhead.”

“I’m glad he’s doing well, but I’ve moved on in my life.”

Yes, and moving on definitely means you can’t be a nice person for three goddamn seconds and send well wishes to the best friend you ever had when his first child is in danger of DYING*. And all because he told you you were a dipshit for divorcing your gorgeous, intelligent, far too good for you wife five years ago. (And since MeJ’s best friend is now my property, I know from him that this is indeed the only rift that caused their best friendship to completely crumble.) What an asswipe.

And this makes me realize what a good man the Unsupportive Louse truly is, who would not only never be stupid enough to divorce his gorgeous, intelligent, maybe not quite too good for him wife, he would also never give up his best friend in the divorce (unless, of course, I really wanted her) and even if he did, he’d never be so much of a dick as to ignore the peril of her as yet unborn children. Which is why I love the Macho ex-Jerk so – he’s able to remind me how much better my life is now and how absolutely miserable I would have been if all the “what ifs” were “indeed trues.”

*Author' note - Baby is actually doing great, not dying, just a bit of overdramatism. I'm sure you're not used to it, since it so infrequently occurs in my blogs.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

OCD - Obsessive Compulsive Dogsitting

We’ve been dogsitting for some friends…we’ll call them Mr. Communicative and Mrs. Cleanly (I’m actually laughing out loud as I type that…even though I’ve known I was going to type it...)

Anyway, Mr. Communicative and Mrs. Cleanly’s house…well, let’s just say Mrs. Cleanly is ironic. Very, very, very ironic.

But as I’m looking around at the disaster that is their home, I think…my God, this could happen to anyone! One day the shirt you throw at the laundry basket tumbles off the top of the pile, the next day the closest door won’t close, and then suddenly half the room is full of clothes. So many clothes that even when you do a load or two, you’re overwhelmed and can’t even convince yourself to finish folding them all. Or maybe you don’t have time to because your two-year old is being anything but helpful and quite enjoying strewing the newly cleaned clothes around the remaining uncluttered sections of floor. So you stop. And then they’re covered with dog hair and wrinkled and pretty much dirty again anyway.

And the day you’d thrown that first shirt that overflowed the laundry basket was the day of your child’s birthday party, and at that party he received such an inordinate number of gifts that you literally don’t have room to store them all in your home, and your living space is quickly being encroached upon by toys that are actually “away.” Not to mention the toys that are quickly and easily dumped by joyous hands: blocks, cars, balls…everywhere.

And while you’re busy worrying about the tragedy that is your laundry situation, suddenly the kitchen rebels from lack of attention and the dishes overflow the sinks, the counters are covered with food stains, the stove is protesting by flinging grease and garbage, paraphernalia, crap piles any open space. (The easiest thing to do in this instance is blame your husband, of course, and try to convince HIM to clean it, thus washing your hands of the situation altogether...)

And suddenly your house looks just like theirs. And then maybe some evil “friend” will write a nasty blog to nationally publish your disgrace as a housekeeper too.

Needless to say, I came home from feeding the dogs and began organizing toys, scrubbing counters, cleaning the stove, polishing the table, swiffer-ing the floor, and yelling at the Unsupportive Louse for letting things get SO out of control. (After all, it is CLEARLY his fault.) He raised his eyebrows at me and went back to his video game.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Quote of the Week

My favorite quote of the week – The Mooch asks “Where’s The Walking Guilt Trip?”

I answer “Omm…she’s laying out on the dock…been there for awhile…she kinda looks dead.”

The Princess - “Think we should make sure she’s okay?”

Me - “I don’t know, she’s probably fine.”

The Mooch – “She already paid?”

Me - “Yup.”

The Mooch – “I’m sure she’s fine.”

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Please Excuse My Absence

The Unsupportive Louse and I took the Energizer Bunny (after a full day of jumping off the dock, throwing rocks, swimming, building a bonfire and roasting marshmallows, an hour and a half past his bedtime, our two year old says, "No mommy, no nigh' nigh'. I go 'wimming.") to a cabin on a lake close to Lake Michigan this past week, with my mother (The Walking Guilt Trip - never had a guilty conscience? Don't believe that my sweet little mother could give you one? I DARE you to try to avoid one. Double dog dare you.), my brother (The Mooch - we'll just say something seems to come up quite frequentlywhen the rent is due...) and my half-sister* (The Princess - it's not her fault, would you NOT accept being lavished with gifts? No, you'd probaly greedily take any gifts sent your way, and the more gifts you got, the more used to getting gifts you'd become.).

Top 10 Things I learned at the lake:

1. Teaching a two-year old to skim rocks is really just teaching a two year old that it’s okay to throw rocks.

2. I hate the TV…hate, hate, hate the TV. (Now, I knew previously that I didn’t like having the TV on all the time; would prefer to do something productive or exercise-y…but now I know that I HATE having the TV on in the background constantly. I hate thinking whatever the chauvinistic doctor on MASH said is more important than what I’m saying.)

3. The water in the lake will stay the same temperature two days in a row, but will feel shockingly colder when it’s 83 degrees and breezy than it did when it was 61 degrees and raining.

4. It is smart not to dive into a lake while wearing a bikini, with mother, brother, sister, and two year old watching. No worries about the husband watching.

5. When I am with my siblings and my mother, I will always revert to pre-pubescent behavior. It does not matter how old I will get, how many children I have or how mature I become in my “normal” life.

6. It would be stupid, ridiculously, undeniably stupid, to forget to bring bug spray (or DEET as you non-California types call it) to a cabin by a tiny inland lake. Stupid.

7. Black labs are thieves.

8. It is best to go skinny-dipping when you are certain no one is watching.

9. Leeches come in many sizes. They are not all huge “as seen on TV.” And the microscopic ones can make it pretty much anywhere.

10. You can’t catch fish if you’re terrified of worms.

*growing up, she was my sister, now she is my half-sister. The change occurred when her father realized that I since I had moved far away (to NY with the ex) and was all but out of my sister’s life, he no longer needed to pay me any attention and my sister determined he was right, he is, after all, not my father. She also loved my first husband. When we divorced, I think the other half of her went with him.