Tag Archives: shenanigans

And this is why I don’t leave the house much…

For the past few days I have been incredibly irritable, cranky, sullen, aggravated & sleep-deprived. No, I don’t have a newborn baby that I must care for, instead my body decided to birth the mother of all rashes all over my skin parts. That’s right… I’ve got it:

Poison Ivy.

And it’s EV-ERY-WHERE.

*****

I want to die.

-No. That’s not quite it.

I want to kill myself.

-Hmmm… close, but still, that sentiment isn’t totally fitting.

Ok, got it…

I want the rip the flesh from my body, soak it in acid & bleach, scald it in boiling water, pass it through an industrial strength blow dryer and have it re-attached all while I am under heavy sedation so I can catch up on the COUNTLESS hours I’ve not slept ever since Mount St. Hellish erupted all over my oh-so sensitive limbs.

What probably sucks more than the itching and discomfort and lack of sleep at night is the fact that I have no one but myself to blame for this debacle.

Am I unreasonably susceptible to toxic weeds with poison oils? Why yes, yes, I am.

Have I, in the past, contracted said poison oils simply by washing the clothes of another who came in contact with the plant, although I had not? Damn right I have.

As a child, did I come down with multiple horrific cases of ivy poisoning during summer months, so so SO so bad that I once got it inside my eye, causing my lid to swell to the approximate size of a golf ball, forcing me to spend the following days trying to slide a thin layer of tissue between my swollen lids to collect my miserable, unjustly afflicted, childhood tears? This scenario, sadly, is also all too true.

So then why, when warned of poison leaves in the area, did I not flee? Why did I not wave my middle finger in the general direction of my offenders instead of waving the wand of a weed-killing spray in their face. That same blasted wand that literally managed to blast the irritating oils of its plant host back onto my body and clothing?

Because I am an idiot and an asshole.

At least that’s all I’ve been able to come up with.

*****

Do you want to know an interesting fact that I read about poisonous plants? One of the WORST things you can do is to spray them with weed-killer for the exact reason I mentioned above. It causes teeny-tiny offensive poison particles to become airborne, and for those of us with extreme cases of what I like to call “new-born dermatitis” (Do you get hives from moderate alcohol consumption while sitting in the sun? What about from applying certain types of sun block mixed with chlorinated pool water? Then this is you and your life if screwed…) you are risking not only spraying vicious oils all over your skin but you may also end up ingesting them, thus causing a shit storm of shit you do not want to deal with. Trust.

The worst thing about this particular instance is the fact that I didn’t even know I had poison ivy until about 3 days after it first reared its ugly pimpled head. It wasn’t until I awoke one night last week attempting to saw off my own leg with my ragged fingernails that I realized that what I assumed were above average sized mosquito bites were in fact, much much worse.

The next day I noticed a rash had begun to form and spread and those once large circular “mosquito bite” sized blobs on my legs had begun to transform themselves into things that looked more like red sand tropical islands rather than innocuous rosy-red orbs.

It wasn’t until this past Friday night (mind you I contracted the “sickness” on the previous Sunday afternoon) that I realized I had not only entered my home that Sunday, while covered in the offending oil, sat on the couch (which seconds as our bed), touched numerous household items and the cat, before I realized that I was also sleeping on the same sheets since that day. The same sheets that I’d been rolling around in for the entire week wondering why this shit was spreading all over my body like wildfire.

Needless to say… it was too late. A week since I first noticed the rash I am still accumulating new patches of discomfort. I have washed my sheets & any and all associated materials I may or may not have (can’t risk it) touched since the incident twice over now and I am on my way to get a shot of steroids from my doctor because I have left myself with no other options.

The bee and I have barely said a word to each other in days, mostly due to the fact that my emotional range is either that of a crazed, hypersensitive crying lunatic, weeping at the sign of a new blister or bump or that of an aloof, angry madwoman whose main purpose in life is now to eradicate all toxins from my living space.

*****

I’ve seen a doctor, received a shot of cortisone in my arm and am currently taking steroids despite the fact that I was always told they give men breasts and women mustaches. This was a risk I was mostly willing to take and since I already have both breasts and a mustache. I think I can say I’ve won this round.

*****

It is now a day after the doctor and the welts have begun to subside but more than that my state of mind is slightly more balanced than it had been. To put things into perspective I have included photographic evidence from the day I first noticed the bumps arise:

I sent this photo in a text to the bee with the light-hearted comment that my “bug bites” resembled two giant nipples. HAHAHA!

That joke proved even less funny after my leg started to look like this:

if possible, please try to ignore the unshaven-ness of my leg. it’s kind of hard to drag a razor over your skin when your legs are covered in festering sores.

In short…

Happy 4th! Stay safe, have fun, and stay the fuck inside.

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Have Job, Will Grumble

Waking up for work in the morning is never an easy thing to do. I think it must be at least 11 times harder when you haven’t done it in 11 months.

After starting a new job earlier this week, I was reminded of that unwelcome gut punched feeling first thing in the morning when you realize you really, REALLY can’t go back to sleep this time. No matter how (very) tired you may still be. No matter how much (5 hours) more you could sleep if given the chance. No matter how much you can think of nothing but doing this:

for the rest of your life. You simply cannot. You must awaken and you MUST get this party started.

The first thought that enters my brain each morning that I wake up at 7:00 am is “Ugh. Seriously?” followed by: “Urrrrgh… this is fucking brutal.” then: “I can’t do this somebody please kill me kill me now.”

What makes it all the worse is the fact that it’s September (BLARF!) and this brings back all sorts of crippling memories from the ghost of 1st week back to school past…

***

It’s the RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RI_[lazy two finger click] of 5:45 am, followed by the RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*RIE*R_[irritated palm slap] of 5:54.

It’s the staring at the ceiling in utter frustration and anger from 5:54 and 6 seconds – 5:57 while slowly facing the reality of the responsibility that awaits you; brushing teeth, getting dressed, walking around places and making sounds come out of your mouth all the while trying to look cool and seem normal enough not to become a social pariah at least for one more day. Truly horrific shit…

***

Finally managing to pull myself off of the mattress is at once one of the simplest and most difficult tasks I will encounter all day. Get past the point of actually laying down and you’re golden. Unfortunately, it’s usually not until around noon before I actually start to feel good about the decision I made this morning. The time leading up to that is pure and total hell full of doubt and remorse and daydreams about sleeping while simultaneously eating, watching television and reading internet gossip. Of course, by 2:00 I can’t help but feel irritated that it’s NOT 5:00 yet so it’s really just a ceaseless nightmare.

At least it is for me. For others, waking up is the least of their problems.

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It’s My Party…

Today marks the 2 year anniversary of this blog.

Yay!

It also happens to be the day that my most favorite of favorites, my stylized songbird and muse, Ms. Amy Winehouse has died.*

*sigh*

Amy was my Elvis. She was my Madonna. She was my living Jeff Buckley because upon first hearing them both I can remember thinking things would never be the same for me and music. Now I can only hope that she and Jeff are somewhere making some other world happy with their sounds because this one has officially been deprived.

I was a little too young to have felt the direct impact when Kurt Cobain died but I liken the feeling I have is similar to the one all his fans felt when they knew he was gone for good. No more music, no more stories, no more knowing that even if they never performed or made an album ever again, that at least they were out there having a life and being their own unique artist and individual just by being alive.

I tried to explain to the bee how I felt, but mainly I just felt stupid. A 28 year old girl, woman, person whatever, feeling shaken and dispossessed by the loss of someone I had a connection to only in my mind.

I half-jokingly referred to my sadness over her abrupt loss as a state of “EverMourn”. As though I would forever be mourning the loss of her. He laughed and said maybe a better name for my situation was to refer to it as “MournHouse”.

Funny, appropriate, and yet just… *deep breath and… SIGH*

So that’s it. It’s my party and I could cry if I wanted but instead I think I’d rather just remember her as she was meant to be and never, ever, ever forget how amazing it was for the short time we had.

artwork by Reece Ward

*If you’re seeing this in your RSS reader or email or whatever thingy or device you use to view infrequently updated websites and you’re thinking “Hmmmm, this news is old…” Congratulations! You would be right. No, I haven’t been living under a rock for the past month, I’m just really really inconsistent when it comes to blogging anymore and generally lazy and wayward. I felt like publishing this now, so I did. My apologies. That is all.

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Pocketful of Meat

Here is a prime example of just how fucking demented I can be while out in public alone:

The other day I went to the deli to buy cold cuts.

You know how some deli workers will present you with a sample of your order and ask if it’s sliced to the thickness of your liking?

Turns out if you plan on ordering a variety of different items and the deli worker offers you a slice of each and you also end up asking him to slice a few items thinner than he first presented you with, and he hands over that sample to you as well, you will end up with a giant mound of meats and cheeses in your hand that you can either jam into your mouth despite having had your fill 2 slices ago and potentially choke on or you can literally sweat it out in your palm…

After gratefully devouring a slice of swiss cheese, roasted chicken, oven gold turkey and a too thick slice of provolone offered, I found myself accumulating more meat than I’ve ever wanted in my hand at one time.

It’s at this point that I began to panic.

I couldn’t find a napkin to stuff all the extraneous meat stuffs into and there wasn’t a trashcan in sight. There was no chance I was going to tell the kind and generous delicatessen worker to take back the slices he had previously offered and dispose of them for me.

And although I’m pretty sure he should have known to cut me off after the 4th or 5th slice, the ball was nonetheless in my court and I did nothing to dissuade him from keepin’ that ol’ meat train a-comin’…

So, I did what any truly brilliant/desperate/cold cut-crazy person in my position would do when faced with the dilemma of man-handling more than one can manage:

I folded up the second slice of provolone, a slice of honey maple ham and a slice of salami (why am i buying this much meat in the first place?) into a misshapen triangle of delicatessen freebies and jammed them into my jacket pocket.

When I got back home I removed the wad from my pocket and threw it to the woods in the hope that a baby deer or a scrawny fox might sniff them out for a late lunch but it failed to change the fact that I managed to walk out of a busy, local establishment with a quarter pound of balled up meat and cheese in my pocket instead of just telling the guy behind the counter: NO.

I believe the truth behind all this madness is simply that, if given the choice, I will almost exclusively choose the more embarrassing option.

*****

It has also come to my attention that I take 18,000 years to complete any one project. I’ve been “trying” to cook lately. It has (surprisingly) been mostly successful. That is to say that the tacos and tater-tot casseroles that I’ve spent far too much time on made have been downright masterful…or something.

I baked cupcakes tonight. From scratch. This was, by and large, a daunting task and one I’ve never even come close to attempting on my own before. Before tonight I wasn’t even sure I knew how to whisk things correctly. After tonight, I’m confident that I don’t.

I only managed to lose control of the whisk and fling melted butter and egg on myself and the side of the mixer once but it also took me almost 15 minutes to set up the mixer in the first place so maybe I shouldn’t be so proud so soon…

Also…

It took me, from first mix to final icing, over 4 hours to complete 12 cupcakes. I think the people on Cupcake Wars have 2 hours to make a thousand so I guess that kills any thought of my going into the competitive baking arena anytime soon.

The point is: cupcakes were made and it was an adventure.

A long, exhausting adventure full of expletives muttered at myself and a plethora of inanimate objects mostly labeled “Kitchen Aid”. An adventure that has now led me towards the greater pursuit and fervent study of whether or not Shiraz is considered a “dessert wine” and if I eat all 12 cupcakes is it OK to wash them down with an entire bottle?

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These pictures would be great if they weren’t so terrible…

Make sure you spare no expense when purchasing otherwise inexpensive yet generally dependable disposable cameras for YOUR informal post-wedding celebratory event.

Otherwise your photos might end up like this*:

ah, yes... it looks like there could be a table there, and wait! some people AT that table, but for the most part... just blackness.

oh, and look... here's a charming shot of the bride and groom about to kiss! oh, wait maybe not. i mainly just see cupcakes.

oh, my. just... *wow*. this is a great one. this photo brings us just *this* much closer to solid proof that (due to unknown causes) a body CAN separate from it head, causing spontaneous floating head-itis**... specifically during informal post-wedding celebratory events.

**spontaneous floating head-itis can also cause momentary facial blurring which can be very useful if you plan on commiting any major crimes and wish to evade security cams or police survelliance.

 

and finally…

the very best and worst? photo of the bunch:
at least it had some color…

*it also helps to have significant sunlight. or some other kind of light. just light. in general.

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Waterworld. Except subtract the part about water. And don’t expect any Kevin Costner references either…

Since Saturday morning we’ve been praying to the gods of water and early springtime thaw in the hope that one of them might hear us and grant us a taste of modern civility, in the form of luscious, glittering, watery water flowing from the taps once more.

Considering we’ve had a foot or more of snow on the ground for the last month, finding our pipes frozen was likely to have happened. I probably should have been expecting something regardless since I also managed to get two flat tires on two different occasions just since the new year, which leads me to ask:

For who?

For ME?! (presses hands to chest)

Oh, no… (fans hand out as though to say: I simply COULDN’T)

I mean…

I simply COULDN’T.

It wouldn’t be fair to all the other, less fortunate car tires with fully inflated rubber housing…

It seems only fitting that we should top it off with this now.

I mean, it’s not the WORST thing that could happen with the house. No, because the WORST thing that could happen probably-already happened to us last year. And it’s still nowhere near as bad as that time when we had crickets in our bed. Because I’m still not OK with what happened there…

I’ve been fine with not being able to do the dishes or brush my teeth using running water. I’ve learned to “spot clean” myself with baby wipes and de-crust dirty silverware with the leg of my sweatpants.

It’s been a lot like camping. Only a lot less fun.

I even figured out a way to make coffee!

Part one:

Collect some snow.

Part two:

Wait for it to melt.

Part three:

Make coffee?

Because of its “nature-y” ingredients I’ve taken to calling it Winter’s Blend…

But this post isn’t supposed to be about the merits of making snow coffee. It’s about how much it sucks using the toilet when you don’t have any running water.

It’s also been a really long time since we’ve had a proper discussion involving poop on this blog so here you go:

Saturday, 11:30 PM

me: *tummy gurgles* Oh. Um. Yeah...

I think I need to, you know, “go”. Don’t mind me, I’ll be right back…

the bee: Wait. Where are you going?

m: To the BATHroom. I have to “go”. You know, like “go” go.

b: Yeah, I get it but you can’t “go” in there.

m: (squints eyes, furrows brow) Whadaya MEAN I can’t go in there? Where am I supposed to go?!

b: My mom’s house, for one. If you run you could be inside in 10 seconds.

m: Excuse me, but I am NOT going over to your mom’s at midnight just to have to explain the reason for my visit is because I need to “drop something off”. UGGGGH! Embarrassing much?

b: Well, you can’t “go” in our toilet if we can’t flush.

m: (drops to knees and shakes fists) You can take away my toilet, bee… but you can’t take away my priiiiiiiide!!!

b: Oh, please… I’ve known you to use a trash can if you rea-

m: (lightbulb illuminates above head, eyes widen and finger points upward in excited victory)

*door slam*

b: (faces bathroom in disgust and horror)

*shouts* Just make sure you take it out when you’re done! *under breath* …you filthy animal.

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I can cook. Just not very well.

me: Oh, thank GOD you’re here.

the bee: What happened?

m: I think I may have ruined the chicken.

b: What makes you say that?

m: I’m not sure if I cooked it long enough.

b: How long did you cook it for?

m: About 15 minutes, but it feels raw to me.

b: Should we really be feeling it?

m: I think so.

b: Well, when you cut it open is the chicken pink or is it white inside?

m: It’s white but I tried some and it felt like raw in my throat.

b: *raises a concerned and skeptical eyebrow*

m: Should it be white on the outside too? Because it doesn’t look very appetizing…

b: Steff, it’s fine. It looks exactly the same as when I cook the chicken.

m: You’re just saying that. I won’t believe you til you try it.

b: Ok. (Takes bite and chews for an inordinate amount of time to eat a reasonably sized piece of chicken)

*gulps* It’s… good.

m: *waves arms in a defeated and hysterical manner* Oh my GOD! Somehow I’ve managed to make it both raw and overcooked. I’ve ruined dinner! It’s a disaster.

and poison!

b: You just need to relax. This is not a disaster and it’s not poison. It’s chicken.

m: *mumbles under breath* poison chicken…

b: *sideways glance*

m: Well?

b: Maybe…

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Filed under (me), home, just a thought..., the bee

I went to BlogHer and all I got was…

a(n all TOO) close encounter with irritable bowel syndrome, an inflated inferiority complex and my period.

Before I get into the moment by moment break down of my conference experience I think I should first preface this post by saying any and all general negativity derived cannot really be blamed on any one or thing other than myself.

This experience taught me, if nothing else, that I am not a particularly good social networker, either on or offline and although I think I might possibly one day be an a’ight blogger, I will never be anything close to an “elite” persona because it’s just. not. me.

I am pretty sure my perspective of the conference was different from that of most attendees. I didn’t stay at the hotel or attend any of the keynotes or parties. 

Because of this?

I’m pretty sure I missed out on a large chunk of the experience. Again, nobody’s fault but my own. From the beginning I wasn’t really interested in attending parties or the immersing myself in the overwhelming social aspect of this event.

In retrospect, I guess that was my first mistake since so much of BlogHer is about hobnobbing and gettin’ down during off-hours.

*sigh*

Let’s do this shall we?

I start Friday morning off fairly well. I get up, have my coffee, get dressed and I’m actually out the door ahead of schedule!

We-ow!

My main goal is to attend all the available sessions so I can gain as much how-to-be a better blogger tids and bits as logistically possible.

There is a welcome breakfast followed by something called “Speed Dating, BlogHer-style” that I’m not all that keen on making it to NYC in time for. Knowing what I know now, my lack of interest in activities such as these should have probably been an early sign to me that I wasn’t going to get as much from this conference as countless others BUT I’m stubborn, so on we go…

Everything is going according to plan, I’m in the car driving up the turnpike, listening to a little Rilo Kiley for inspiration and good vibes when ALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL of a sudden… my innards start shouting Mayday! and I have nary a floatation device at hand.

If you know what I’m saying…

I’m talking this is the WORST and I do mean The. Worst. stomach pains I’ve ever had so far away from a toilet in-my-entire-life. I don’t have much recourse here but to take deep breaths and pray to a god I’m not so sure gives a shit about my GI problems.

The severe pains persist all the way through the Lincoln Tunnel up into Manhattan.

Have I mentioned that at this point I have fallen a bit off course and I’m now stuck in traffic on a street I shouldn’t have turned down in the first place?

Because I am.

So I get to the Hilton with some time to spare and I ruuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuun to the bathroom where next to nothing happens. That’s right. Next to nothing. Let’s leave it at that. So whatever, I’m still on schedule and I didn’t crap my pants.

The first session is O.K. Kind of vague and over-generalized and initiate my feelings of inferiority in this particular atmosphere.  It’s at this point where I first start to fear that: I do not belong.

Lunch feels like something out of the first day of highschool; shuffling my way into a large room cautiously glancing about for the sight of a familiar, or at least non-hostile, face.

I begin to feel as I often do when stressed and unsure: not hungry.

After lunch, or as I had – half of a 1/5 of a sandwich and 2 pieces of watermelon, I skip outside to partake in an activity often used as a crutch, security blanket or just plain god-awful but for whatever reason, unavoidable, addiction: smoking. I’m not proud to say that I still use cigarettes as a social tool but I never said I was perfect. Anyway, thank GOD for smoking because that’s where I start to feel the natural ease of fraternization return.

I often use the term organic when referring to situations that unfold in a natural, unforced way. I hate being fake or feeling fake or pressured to “perform” in order to adapt myself to large social settings.  I’m not in the business of getting people to like me under false pretense. I am who I am and unfortunately (for me) that means I’m not all that marketable, at least not to those who aren’t willing to break through my crunchy exterior and the find the warm and gooey mess that lurks beneath my crackly shell.

Try not to take that last part too literally…

I did meet one person who seemed up to the challenge of my (apparently) prickly personality though I doubt I made a huge splash with most of the other folks at the conference. I’ve always been that person who is often pigeonholed as snobby or aloof when really I just hate small talk. Is that SO wrong?

Ugh. It is isn’t it?

So, instead of fitting in or making friends right off the bat, I usually come off as a strange awkward alien or I just make unintentional enemies. The honest to god truth is that of the (very few) people I am still friends with since my childhood I can’t think of a single one who upon first knowing me who just did NOT like me. Then again, I am a shitty friend so, I guess I fooled THEM!

foolish, FOOLISH, sucka...

So day one is over and I leave feeling at least a little better now that I had found ONE person who seemed to not want to flee in terror from my presence. I get seriously lost on my way back to the Lincoln Tunnel due to my having absolutely NO sense of direction (thanks, Dad!). I finally make it home, just a lot later than I should have.

Day two’s drive is EXPONENTIALLY better than day one, with no almost-exploding-bowel-syndrome or inconvenient slow-motion tours down 7th Ave.

On a Friday.

During rush hour.

Because that was fun.

I meet up with my new friend for a smoke before the first sessions of the day and already feel better than I did the day before.

*objects in this picture are not as close as they seem. (i'm pretty sure my camera was on 20x zoom or, as I like to call it, super-stealth-stalk-mode a.k.a. i'm way too embarrassing to actually go up to her and ask for a real picture so this will have to do)

I attend the session with Jenny the Bloggess, mainly because I think she’s cute and hilarious and a complete and total inspiration to me as both a blogger and a humorist and she proves to be all that and more. She is probably even more cute and funny in person even though I never thought it humanly possible or particularly fair to the rest of us. There are numerous times she has the crowd lol-ing in their seats and at one point I’m thinking someone might misconstrue the literal SCREAMS of laughter for screams of slaughter.

Apparently no one else was all that concerned…

As far as day two of the conference, this is the highlight of my day. Aside from lunch, that is. The rest of the sessions leave me feeling *kind of* depressed. I begin to feel more and more out of my element as the day wears on and being that it’s the bee’s birthday my mind is most definitely elsewhere.

I swear that in writing about this experience it was not my goal to bad-mouth or bash BlogHer. It just wasn’t really the right fit for ME. Had I been a bit more immersed in “the scene” or been a mom, or more of a business oriented woman of tomorrow, it may have been more impactful. In a good way. Instead I just felt like I didn’t belong. It wasn’t until Saturday afternoon that I discovered this thing called “Birds of a Feather” where you sign up on a list to sit with/meet like-minded bloggers.

Had I known about this sooner, I probably would have exchanged a lot more business cards…

All in all it was a learning experience and I did walk away with a lot more knowledge than I had to begin with but more than anything I learned that I just don’t belong with the BlogHer crowd. In a few years time? Perhaps. I think I would benefit from a smaller blogging offline network, one where I wouldn’t feel like SUCH a small fish in an all-encompassing ocean of internet experience and clique-ish-ness.

Ohhhhhhhhhhhh yeah. I went there…

I want to wrap this up by saying that in almost every way BlogHer lived up to the expectations I set around it before I ever set foot in the Hilton. I knew it would be clique-y and miles above my head technically and professionally. The problem that I had was BlogHer didn’t exceed my expectations, which I had so hoped it would and probably all of us hope will happen no matter what situation we’re thrown into.

And, yet again, whose fault is this?

***please point fingers in direction of computer screen***

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The (mis)Adventures of Lenny & Lloyd: Lloyd’s Dilemma

if  you can’t read/see the images just click on the pictures…

For the first in the Lenny & Lloyd series, click here.

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The (mis)Adventures of Lenny & Lloyd: Part the First (or the Last depending on how well this one goes)

if  you can’t read/see the images just click on the pictures…

Lenny & Lloyd go to the beach:

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