Friday, December 14, 2007

The Food Chain of Haters

I am a little concerned for the birds who inhabit the trees outside my building. This isn’t the kind of concern I had for the singing birds who lived outside my bedroom window when I shared an apartment with my brother. That kind of concern stemmed more from my desire to kill every last one of them and my fear that even if I managed to peg them all with my brother’s gun, there was some endless supply of night-singing devil birds that would swoop in and take their place. I spent months shoving various ear plugs down my ear canal in the vain hope that it would block the amplified twee-tweeeeeee-tweeing that began every morning at 3am. And then one day I lost my godamned mind and grabbed my brother’s BB gun from his closet and stomped outside in my pink nightgown and flipflops. I only got two (unsuccessfull) shots off before I noticed my neighbor staring at me from her driveway, ushering her children into their oversized Suburban monstrosity. Ushering in the way you usher unsuspecting bank patrons away from the Crazy holding a gun to a tellers head. No sudden movements, don’t break eye contact, keep your voice soothing and low. I gave her my sweetest smile and told her I was just looking for some breakfast.

Those singing birds were the bane of my existence, they were the rat poison in my coffee, the dirty finger in my eye. The current birds haven’t quite made it to that level, but they are quickly moving up the Hater Food Chain. Right below People Who Don’t Understand The Proper Use of the Interstate On Ramp but above Stepping in a Puddle of Cat Vomit with Bare Feet.

I hate that I have such a horrible relationship with these animals, because for the most part I’m a sucker for anything covered in fuzzies. However, I am comforted to know that other people feel just as repulsed by glorified flying insects and once watched a movie where Zoey Daschenel stole my life. Besides her seriously lacking interpersonal skills, she had a collection of singing devil-birds outside her window and even though the movie was terrible, totally without purpose or other redeeming value, there’s a line she utters while taking a swig of beer:

“What kind of devil bird sings at night?”

Exactly. WHAT KIND OF DEVIL BIRD SINGS AT NIGHT. It’s unnatural. And then she tries to shoot one with a BB gun. And I thought, “What the fuck, this has happened to someone else? Someone ELSE shot at the singing devil birds with a BB gun? VALIDATION IS MINE.”

But the current birds don’t sing, at least not where I can hear them. And if I can’t hear them, no one else can. I hear people two blocks away, just because they thought about blinking. So there’s no singing. I can vouch for that. No, these birds have some kind of crazy, chucktastic diet that gives them serious cases of bird-diarrhea. Runny, chucky messes of bird shit. And it’s not like they can crap on the ground. Maybe even on the roof. These are wily little birds and they know, THEY KNOW, how much I hate cleaning off bird crap from my car. So that’s where they go. On my car.

Before you think, meh, whatever, everyone gets birdshit on their car, STOP. Stop thinking. It’s not like that. I washed my car last night because it set in airport long term parking for four days while I was in Phoenix and it was covered in dirt and airplane funk. This morning I go outside and there are twenty-seven (I counted) separate glops of bird excrement on varying parts of my car. As an added bonus, the biggest chunky mess was on the driver side door handle. Tasty snack for later.

And in case you were curious, like me, I’ll save you the trouble: All you ever needed to know about bird shit

Thursday, December 13, 2007

A Lethal Injection of Christmas Cheer

So you might have noticed that I never actually finished that whole Look At Me I’m Dying story. I should point out that the events of that story transpired way back in August, when the weather was still flaming hot and I still had a (relatively) scar-free body. Now it’s December and I keep traveling to places like Minnesota, where the weather actually defies human logic with its inability to rise above Fucking Freezing (actual scientific name) and I have this newfound ability to predict the weather with my abdominal tingling.

Because I’m looking to finish talking about the events of this year by the time this year actually ends, I need to get on the ball and do a sum up. Here goes.

After my mother showed up and reaffirmed my conviction that mothers can hear you when you scream in your head, my dad rolled in roughly three hours later. Timetable: Before the surgery. Or even the mention of any surgery. Still vomiting/dry heaving into popcorn buckets but had acquired a private room so as to remain uncontaminated by the Poop Bomb lady.

Right before my parents left to go back to my apartment for the night, I had a sudden flash of the empty cigarette box lying on my kitchen table. Not because I smoke in my house but because I periodically empty my purse of it’s residual crap and the empty box(es) take up valuable space that could be utilized by FULL cigarette boxes.

Normal people would have a) told their parents about their smoking habit many years ago, or b) would have been busted by their parents many years ago. But I’m the child who was so secretive I somehow managed to keep my eighth grade boyfriend under wraps until I was twenty-five. No reason. Just for giggles. So imagine what I can do with a little tobacco habit.

We had a very awkward non-conversation where I told my dad that he was going to get in my car and it was going to smell like an ashtray in an old McDonald’s bag. I also told him he was going to need to move the three or four Virginia Slim Ultra Light Menthol boxes (empty) that would be scattered on the driver side floorboard. Then I looked at my mom and told her that there were going to be empty boxes on my kitchen table. Maybe some in my bedroom. You never know when or where the urge to clean out your purse will strike you. I wished them both a good night and acknowledged that I’d been smoking, off and on, for around a decade.

Two days later they cut out my gallbladder (such a hideous name for an organ). I stayed in the hospital an extra three or four days because I kept passing little alien zygotes in my urine. Before I left a urologist wrote me a prescription for Flomax, a drug that I later learned is designed for MEN with PROSTATE TROUBLE. As I am not a man and I do not have prostate troubles, this ended up being a bit of a concern. Especially when my vision started to go a few days later and WAIT! Let’s google this drug on the internet! Side effects include loss of vision (sometimes permanent). That sounds fun.

A week after the surgery I was still weak and nauseated and oh-so-miserable. So my mother took me to the ER, where they gave me more drugs. And I spent another week following the doctor’s regimen of pills until I decided that those people were morons and I stopped everything. Morphine, Phenargran, Xanax, Valium, Odansetron, Sucralfate, Flomax and Lexapro. Done.

Now that the surgery story is complete, we can move on.

Points of Mild Interest:

1) I have a new scar on my forehead from where my coworker accidentally shot me in the head with a plastic spring-loaded airplane. See the following conversation:

Boss: Don’t point that at Robin – you know liberals and their gun control laws…

Coworker: Oh whatever, I’ve got it totally under contro—WHAP!


Coworker: Holy crap you’re bleeding!


Coworker: I’m so sorry! It just went off!


And now I’ve got a thin half-inch raised scar on my forehead just above my right eye. Gives me a jaunty, rogue-ish look.

2.) My hair is falling out. HA HA HOW I WISH I WAS KIDDING. Apparently this year isn’t through shoving its unlubed fist up my ass. According to my doctor, this can happen to people after a “body trauma.” In my case, the “body trauma” would be the ill-received gallbladder surgery. Anyway, I was doing okay with it, laughing with Mother Nature as fistfuls of my frizzy mane ended up swimming down the drain or coming out in my brush until one day I realized that my hair was falling out. Don’t ask me why one day it just punched me in the face like that, how on Monday I was all, ha ha! my hair is falling out! and then on Tuesday I was all ohmygod I think I’m having a heart attack, my hair, it is falling out.

I ended up sending my hair dresser a frantic text message begging for a hair appointment the next day. I needed bangs. Big, long bangs to cover up the now visible thinning at my hairline.

She obliged. I now have bangs.

If I put in my jaw splint and fluff up my bangs a little, I find myself looking at the 11-year-old me. Just so we’re clear, the 11-year-old me was tall and chubby with frizzy permed hair, braces and a bit of a lisp. I occasionally had to wear head gear. I was a sexy beast.

Friday, November 02, 2007

No biting, small story interruption

A few Sundays ago I packed up my car and strapped the cats into the backseat and started the verbal “Did you forget anything” check with my mother, just like I always do when I leave their house. The last time I was there I left several vital hair-fixing accoutrements on the bathroom counter, like, just in the middle of the counter. I even looked in the bathroom before I left. Twice. Did I see the giant dryer sitting there on the yellow tile? No.

So my mother is going through our traditional ritual and it suddenly hits me that I’ve left my cell phone and blackberry chargers in my old room and my mother, being helpful, dashes inside to get them. She’s gone longer than I expect and I almost get out of the car to see if she’s gotten distracted by one of the stray mini-lizards that Jack, their cat, likes to bring in for play pretties. Like the rest of the family, he gets bored easily and is too much of a pussy to go in for the bloody kill; therefore he leaves their maimed and sometimes legless bodies to hobble and dart around the house. Kind of disgusting when you think about it, so don’t.

Just as I’m about to unbuckle, she comes out of the house carrying my laptop case, the laptop, the laptop charger and, oh yeah, the two things I remembered forgetting. Those two things in comparison to the laptop are worthless. Imagine me, rolling into work on Monday, looking at my desk and going WHAT THE FUCK, SOMEONE STOLE MY LAPTOP. But I’ve got my cell phone charger, so no worries!

I’d like to say I never forget things but that would be lying and liars go to hell. Probably less of a hell than child molesters but it’s hell nonetheless. And sadly, I can’t say this is an abnormal reaction, the panicking and tearing up of the purse and then coming to the (ridiculous) conclusion that the item(s) in question have been yanked by the Thief Fairy. Just last week I was getting ready for a business trip and was packing up my two laptops when I realized that I couldn’t find my aircard. It had been in my laptop case the week before, where was it now? STOLEN, THAT’S WHERE. So I walk down to my boss’s office and give him my nervous smile, which indicates it’s possible I’ve done something bad. Like letting my aircard get snatched. He comes over to my desk and, while I’m rifling through laptop case number one, he sticks his hand in laptop case number two, coming up with, guess what? An aircard! Voila, its is magic!

I’m quite glad that the aircard wasn’t stolen because as it turns out, that trip was canceled twelve hours before my flight, which means I was already packed when my mother called on Tuesday night to tell me my grandmother had gone into renal failure. Now, I’m not going to spend much time on all that because it’s a bit of a downer (Grandmother is dying! Come quick!) and because as it turns out she didn’t die (Grandmother’s not dying! Come quick!) and she’s currently holed up in rehab where her roommate wears socks with ready-made blue holes in the bottom. This is ultimately perplexing to me and I just can’t move on from the scary blue hole socks. If her feet were Mormon, this would make sense. But I didn’t sense any Mormon-ness in her, so, yeah, I don’t really know what to tell you. Grandma’s fine so stop crying.

The aircard was obviously useful because it was how I beamed magic internet particles into my laptop and “worked from home”- if “home” is really 240 miles away. I was working because as it turns out, my vacation hours sit steadily below the USELESS line (less than 10 hours but greater than 3 hours). This was all due to the week-long hospital stay back in August and the ensuing hilarity that made me wish for a bottle of Jack and a straight razor. (note: I THOUGHT I was getting credit for working while my grandmother lay in ICU but as it turns out, I was not. Cruel joke. If you feel like campaigning on my behalf, you can email

It's a biter.

Spend more than a night in a hospital and you come to realize that it’s like existing in a suspended reality where time is marked by the arbitrary delivery of green Jell-o and beef broth. It’s a state of being where, thanks to heavy doses of painkillers, a trip to the bathroom becomes the highlight of your day. I mean, where else would you find a seemingly sane woman relieving her bowels on industrial strength linoleum? And upon witnessing said act, respond with neither alarm nor horror and instead calmly notify the nearest be-scrubbed hospital worker?

But enough of all that. Day Two of my hospital stay was just as eventful as the first twelve hours had been, starting with my trip to the nuclear lab. The test itself wasn’t that bad, just a lot of stillness on a cot mattress with a big black drum placed over my midsection for three hours. A screen to my right showed the little nuclear bits going to work on my innards while I tried not to think about alien babies with exoskeletons and dripping mucus. My reverie was interrupted two hours into the test by my lab technician, who informed me they hadn’t been able to view a certain organ. This calls for a morphine injection, stat!

Now, I’ve had this test twice before and each time I’ve been given a morphine injection. I knew what to expect: a swift tingling in my legs spreading upwards towards my heart and down to my fingernails. I would float for a minute and swing gently back to earth. I would want a cookie afterwards. But this time, sweet jesus. It was like flaming balls of acid rolling along my veins until it settled in my stomach, which immediately revolted. As they were pushing my bed out of the nuclear lab I had a stomach contraction so intense I would later swear that the alien baby was gobbling up my internal organs in preparation for its stunning exit through my navel. It was not pleasant.

Thankfully hospitals are prepared for people who spontaneously dry heave and my lab tech had a popcorn bucket in front of me faster than you can say ‘Shoe Sale.’ I heaved all the way down six or seven indistinguishable corridors, straight back into my now spotless semi-private room, a room I was still sharing with my shitastic cell mate.

After an injection of anti-nausea medicine, things calmed down in the stomach region, at least somewhat. I was able to call my mother and tell her I was STILL in the hospital a whopping twenty-four hours later. I know, I know- twenty-four hours. I should get a medal. But seriously, did they misplace their magical illness detector? What was the holdup on getting my alien baby delivered? Could I not just get a stomach transplant?

I ended the call with my mother ten minutes later because even if she didn’t verbally express her grossed-outedness at my dry heaving on the phone in between sentences, I was having a hard time not being grossed out. There’s nothing so miserable as feeling perpetually nauseated with a stomach that says Fuck You at every available opportunity.

Before I hung up I told my mother that I was fine, no need to come up, I was a big girl, no worries. Inside I was screaming Can’t you fuckers fix this? I want my mommy, godammit! But still, as we get farther and farther away from the era when a sniffle warranted a full day at home with mom and ceaseless delivery of Sprite and Saltines, we feel obliged to exert our independence. I can handle this, don’t worry. It’s just an alien baby. People have those ALL THE TIME.

So I closed my eyes and let two fat self-pity tears trail down my cheeks before I drifted off into Candyland. Three hours later I woke up just as my mother was walking into the room. Apparently there’s some supersonic brain wave detector that lets moms know when their children are lying about needing them. Even if said children are skilled secret-keepers with years as practice.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Count to ten and see if it bites.

Back in the middle of August I was working in the nursery on a Wednesday night when all of a sudden my stomach region gave me the finger and I collapsed to the floor in pain. It might have scared the kids a bit, but not as much if I’d let out the stream of GODDAMNSHITASHOMOTHERFUCKINGCOCKSUCKER THIS HURTS! I don’t have the money to pay for their therapy bills so I managed to keep my mouth shut and just groan with the kind of fervor that hopefully conveyed the above phrase, just, you know, without speaking.

Instead of going to the ER, which I probably should have done, I just kind of ignored it. This is a tradition in my family and why start breaking with tradition now, when I’m so close to 30? We’ve carved out our own breast lumps and sent them off for testing because asking the opinion of the doctor is just like admitting you’re stupid.

The aftershocks were still kicking my ass the next day so I made an appointment with my gastro specialist, a man who is not known for his sympathy or endearing bedside manner. I don’t like him much and I’m pretty sure the feeling is mutual, but that following Monday I found myself sharing breathing space with him, trying my best to convey that the pain? It had had been bad? And I wanted to stab myself? But couldn’t? Because nurseries are traditionally scarce on sharp objects?

He nodded abrubtly and left the room for some “papers,” coming back fifteen minutes later smelling like ink toner and Chinese food. According to him, I had 45 minutes to drive home, feed my cats, pack a bag and get to the hospital because shift change was at 6:30 and I didn’t want to get lost in the shuffle.

And then he turned around and walked out. I told you I didn’t like him, and now you don’t like him either. I hadn’t realized the papers he was referring to were admitting papers and I’m not even sure had he said “I’m going to get your admitting papers” that I would have made a connection between leaving the doctors office and checking into a hospital. Which is apparently not called checking-in, but ‘admitting.’ It’s not the Marriot and I now understand the full truth of that statement.

My first night there I was in a double room, which wasn’t really bothersome because I came prepared with earplugs and a sleeping mask. I’ve been in the ER enough times in my life to remember the BEEP BEEP BEEP MOTHERFUCKING BEEP of the heart monitor and the DRIP DRIP WHOOSH DRIP DRIP WHOREFACE DRIP DRIP of the IV line. Not conducive to sleeping. What I was not prepared for started very early the next morning on the other side of the curtained area. My cell mate decided she would start her day with some sporadic moaning and thrashing, followed by thirty minutes of violent pacing in her two square feet of allotted space. If you’re wondering how pacing can be violent then just continue reading, because I can’t say with certainty that I wouldn’t have paced violently if my body was about to drop a bomb on me. **Editors note: That’s not funny yet, but it will be.

While my cell mate continued her pacing I played with my heart rate- forcing it up, WHEEEEE! forcing it down, WHHOOOoooooo. Up! Wheeee! Down, Whoooo. I can do this with my blood pressure as well. Freaks the fuck outta nurses, let me tell you. On one of my down swings I noticed that the pacing behind the curtain had gotten sporadic. Pace pace pace stop, listen, slither plop. Pace pace pace stop, listen, slither plop. It took me a good sixty seconds to figure out what the stopping and slither plop was all about and I can tell you that I now look back on those sixty seconds with fondness. Those blessed sixty seconds spent wondering what the hell was going on, right before my olfactory glands kicked in and bitch slapped me.

She was dropping a bomb, all right. Big, goopey diarrhea bombs. On the floor. Now, this mental image probably isn’t the best but I need you to understand my absolute horror- She was pacing (pace pace pace), stopping at her desired location (stop), tilting her head to the side (listen), unleashing the viscous mass (slither) and waiting until it hit the floor (plop) before starting the process again.

I decided I was mature enough to keep my cool and crawled silently out of bed, pulling along my IV stand to the bathroom, praying for some nose relief. But no, that’s not how this game was to be played. The bathroom had already been bombed; the pee-catcher propped on the toilet was overflowing with poop, the floor was covered with poop and the sink handles were smeared with, two guesses, ok, I’ll give it to you- poop.

Outside in the hallway I overheard two nurse-like-people passing by and decided I’d give them their morning dose of What The Fuck.

“Excuse me ladies, my roommate seems to have had an accident.”

“We’ll get to it as soon as we change the sheets down the hall.”

“I’m afraid that would be too late. Here in about five minutes the River Styx will hit the threshold and I’m not sure I can keep last nights tasty dinner of Glucose Drip down while it makes its way under my bed.”

This catches their attention.

“Is she peeing on the floor again?”

“Peeing on the floor? Again? No ma’am. She’s shitting on the floor. And hopefully there won’t be an “again.”

During this conversation we had attracted the attention of three actual nurses who had started making their morning rounds. While catching them up on the situation I happened to raise my right arm to brace myself against the wall. I may not have been as bad off as Ms. Slither Plop, but I wasn’t feeling frisky and standing up plus conversing plus dragging my IV stand around was wearing me out. The fluorescent lights must have caught my arm just right because in my peripheral vision it looked like I had a flesh-colored cantaloupe strapped to my forearm. Right by the IV line. Upon close inspection it turned out that my peripheral vision wasn’t half bad. I DID have a flesh-colored cantaloupe strapped to my forearm.

“Is this a problem?” I asked, pointing to my IV arm.

“Oh, Jesus. How long has it been like that?”

“I don’t know. I’m sure this isn’t supposed to be comfortable but I have a very angry alien baby gestating in my stomach region and I haven’t been keeping track of anything else.”

“Who did your IV last night? My six-year-old daughter could do a better job.”

“That’s nice. Look, now that we’ve started pointing and talking about it, it appears that it really IS painful and I’d like to take it out. I’m not that squeamish- if you want I can just pull out the needle.”

“Uh, no. Let me get Sheila, she can take this out and start you a new line.”

So while I stood in the hallway with a cantaloupe forearm and a roommate with bowels like the Gulf of Mexico, I contemplated my fate. I had been admitted to the hospital, had a sonogram, been given a ridonkulous IV and slept in a room with a woman who has a habit of peeing on the floor. This was not the fluffy cloud where the Carebears live and I was exceptionally tired.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Ding Dang, Ya'll

I had a whole series of posts planned out, and then I got distracted. This is nothing unusual. I get distracted all the time. I get distracted when I’m driving down the road and a pretty cloud floats by. I get distracted when I see ugly shoes. I even get distracted when I’m talking and a random thought creeps in, forcing me to pause and think while my listener waits with bated breath for me to finish. Or they just walk away.

After the administering of drugs I agreed to see the pyschobabblist because a) it was the only way to keep the drugs a-coming and b) I would get to use the following phrase in everyday discourse: “My therapist says….” Even knowing that my therapy experience wasn’t going to be near as exciting or couture-filled as Carrie Bradshaw’s (I don’t see a crazed Bon Jovi seeking therapy in Arkansas, much less being attracted to a girl who doesn’t frost her hair or spray tan), I did see it as an opportunity to finally figure out what happens in a “session.” I have a close friend who swears by her weekly “sessions” and spends a lot of time at the dinner table discussing “break throughs” and “mental blocks.” Most of the time I grit my teeth because these are things I have told her many, many times, but when it comes spewing forth from the mouth of a therapist, someone to whom you sign over your monthly paychecks, I guess it sounds more convincing.

The first session was probably the most involved, what with the seventeen pages of paperwork I had to fill out. How often did I experience anxiety? What were the triggers for the anxiety? What is my relationship like with my parents? How many times a day did I piss? So I ::cough:: took my time ::cough:: and answered the questions to the best of my ability. I told them that going into work everyday was like putting a cheese grater to my face and having to eat a taco salad garnished with the grated bits off my face and drizzled with bird shit. I told them that I had coked up hamsters running my heart rate, that my neck skin was having trouble remaining attached. I even mentioned my brother’s frequent run-ins with the law and that while I appreciated his dedication and single-minded determination to be the drunkest family member, it was STRESSING ME THE FUCK OUT. Smiley face.

The session itself was mostly unremarkable. Things continued fairly smoothly for the first forty minutes- the therapist spent most of her time going over my paper work and making comments about my ability to so graphically describe things. And then she made a mistake. She tried to pull the staring trick, the one where an individual ceases to speak, thereby intending to make the other person uncomfortable enough to open their trap and spill all their secrets. Only I don’t respond well to those kinds of tactics and stared right back. For four and a half minutes. The clock was right beside her head, so I’m fairly sure I have an accurate time measurement of the staring. She finally gave up and slapped her hands on her knees, drew in a deep breath and asked where I’d grown up. Therapist: 0, Robin: 1

During the next session we talked mainly about my health. Her suggestion was to take an aerobic class. I had to explain that aerobics, running or anything overtly physical was on the no-no list. All that bouncing around forces food back up into my esophagus, which allows the acid to burn fun holes on my vocal chords. I probably came off sounding overly critical during this session, mainly because I have three doctors that do nothing but monitor my stomach and esophagus. I get enough shit from them – Take your Nexium! Don’t take your Nexium! Avoid vegetables! Eat vegetables! Eat small meals! Stay away from breads! Eat a Happy Meal and tell me what happens! -- that I have no desire to hear anyone else’s opinion about what they think gastroparesis is and what I can do to cure it. First of all, it CAN’T be cured. Second, you’re trained to treat MENTAL PROBLEMS, not STOMACH PROBLEMS.

I only went back one more time after that- it was just too much stress on an already stress-filled plate. Thankfully, the doctor that actually doles out the drugs agreed to keep writing me prescriptions. Notice how the therapist, the one who listens to patient bullshit, is not the one who gets to hand out the drugs. She just makes a “recommendation” and the doctor nods his head wisely and hands you a prescription. Good times. I totally should have gone to school for that.

Now that that end is all nicely tied up, I can move on to the most exciting development of the summer: How I Amused Myself Whilst Spending 6.5 Days in the Hospital.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

We have a winner

It all started several months ago, when the questionable work environment, the random, incurable health problems and the drunkaholic younger brother insisted on feeding the hamsters that run my heart rate with line after line of cocaine, until the little rodents became so Lindsay-Lohan-ed that not even the threat of a stint in Promises would force them into time-out. It was bearable at first, the cocaine binges coming in spurts, pushing my chest into a jog-esque state. However, things finally culminated with the decidedly unbearable continuous sprints, pushing my heart muscle into an arena I’m quite sure it’s never seen nor felt, not being the kind of body who runs just for the hell of it.

And that’s what it felt like. Like I was running to or from god only knows what, with my body in slow motion. Move hand to keyboard, try not to panic, smile at passing co-worker, try to not panic, hear about brother’s drunken exploits, try not to panic. Until the ‘trying not to panic’ bit morphed into the sudden and abrupt realization that I wasn’t doing a very good job at the not panicking, especially when I couldn’t conceal the violent leg twitching. Always a dead giveaway.

So I packed up my pride and went to the doctor. I sat in the little sterilized room like any other patient, flipping through some inane magazine about hunting dogs, legs twitching, staring at the diagrams of inner ears and holding myself back from picking up the brochure on erectile dysfunction. I guess it was just a leftover curiosity from my youth- always wondering exactly what went on down there. Much as I’m sure men wonder exactly what a uterus does.

And I was fine sitting in that office, a perfectly normal person visiting the doctor to ask for some pills. I was fine right up until the doctor walked in and asked, in his deep and sympathetic voice, “So, how are you?” and immediately burst into tears. Big, gulping, gut wrenching, complete disregard for the mascara tears. In front of a man I had never met. I should have died of embarrassment, but it was like I had immediately been transported back to the age of six, when I’d been careening down Quail Lane Dr. with my three best friends, taking the hill at enormous speeds, laughing at the pure joy of releasing the handle bars when BAM! I crashed straight into a neighbor’s curb, scraping the skin off both knees and elbows. But me? I jumped right back up, no harm done, right? I was a godamn six-year-old badass and nothing was going to stop me from riding home on my now dinged-up bike. So I did, I rode straight home with nary a tear in sight, not until my momma saw my dirt stained face and blood streaked legs and, again with the soft and sympathetic voice, said “Oh, my sweet baby, are you okay?” Tears. Tears, tears and more tears.

Between my hiccupping and snot-wiping, I finally got it all out. I told a single person my stomach-clawing worries and he just sat there and listened. No smug smile, no move for a hug, just listened. Which is good, because I don’t react well to hugs or touching from strangers and while most people can grasp my non-too-subtle vibe, there are those who ignore it anyway. But he continued nodding until I had completely finished, told me I wasn’t crazy like I kept claiming to be and all I needed were a few of these pills.

Pills! Finally! Relief in sight! Though normally I will eschew even the barest of medications, I couldn’t help but wait greedily for my prescriptions. Anything, whatever it takes, just make the coked up hamsters go away.

But there was a catch- he was only a family practitioner, and he wasn’t in the habit of treating mental thingamabobs on a regular basis. So, deep breath, I had to see a psychiatrist. At that moment I wouldn’t have cared if he’d said I needed to have my ear lobes shortened and my pinkie toe removed- I’m an adult, and a reasonably intelligent one at that. I can handle a pyschobabbleist. Just as long as they keep the pills a-coming. I already had my trial tablets in hand with a prescription for a mighty heavy tranquilizer, so I was keen to roll my chubby ass out of the office and straight into Wal-Greens, promising I’d visit his recommended pyschobubble the very next Thursday.

That visit, the one with the pyschotherapydollhead, was quite the adventure.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Waxing On

To say I've been mildly disinterested in the goings-on of daily life would be a mild understatement and if there's anything I abhor, it's a statement that could have been adjectivified to death. And wasn't. It's like leaving a baby to starve. Or eating picked eggs from the gas station.

I can't think of any witty or humorous transitions for the non-post I'm about to compile, so you'll just have to bear with me. Or move along. My apathy level is right on par with that of a coked up hooker and besides, there's only like sixteen of you out there. I know this because I occasionally check my sitemeter, which is how (transition approaching) I came up with the following: A twisted look into what, exactly, leads people to this site. Obviously the Google team and I need to sit down and have a little chat.

Search words that have, however unfortunately, led people to birdsovafeather:

Prickly feeling after injecting crystal (My personal opinion? A dirty needle and a raging case of herpes.)

Hi, my name's Max and I'm an adrenaline junkie. I need my adrenaline shot every day. (Starbucks is on every corner, douche.)

Big black jumping roach indoors (Hmm. Pesticide and/or a large shoe should take care of that.)

Is it proper ettyqet {sic} to wear shit hose with brown shoes (I have no idea. But then, I don't own many pairs of hose made out of shit.)

Plunger game. (What the fuck.)

What kind of poison can make a hamster die and bleed out of mouth and nose? (Well, I'd be curious to know if you're trying to kill your pet or just ascertain the manner of death. Either way, it's a hamster. LET IT GO.)

"felt the bump" + "ran over" (So, you had a little accident with your ex-girlfriend, did you? Ran her over in the parking lot? Wanting to know if "feeling the bump" qualifies you for legal ramifications? Now, I know I watch too much CSI, but I'm pretty sure you're fucked.)

llama + "stomach acid" (I have no idea, but I'm pretty sure this person was researching biological weapons.)

8 pills singel doze clamydia {sic} (Obviously our educational system is falling below par. If you can't even spell "single" correctly, I can't imagine how you could keep yourself STD-free.)

fetish of wiping poop (Having wiped a lot of asses in my day, I cannot fathom how this would be appealing on a sexual level.)

Crystal light turns my poop red (Stop drinking red Crystal Light. Problem solved.)

Cutting a cake and screaming out the demons (I think this person might be in need of some serious psychological evaluation.)

I have a marble stuck in my throat (Deary Precious Baby Jesus, please send your army of angels to strike this person dead.)

Can a peanut get stuck in my esophagus? (Yes.)

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Heavy Breathing

Thursday morning we were all slow to get up, especially Kasi, who's reluctance was at least in part due to her "insomniac" status. It is my very humble opinion that a good portion of that non-sleeping can be blamed on someone's mild addiction to Facebook. I am no one to judge because hello, I am totally all over the covert online stalking. Driving past your ex's house is so 1996.

After a quick bite to eat we headed up roads that are commonly known as 'pig trails' in northern Arkansas. I'd been delegated to the driver seat because I am that kid who turns multiple shades of green right before vomiting all over your grey upholstery- and lord knows how hard it is to get that smell out. Best just to let me continue with my controlling personality and let me drive.

After ten minutes of driving up a mountain in a Civic, taking curves at 25mph and staring warilly at the one-foot-high railing, Kasi threw herself without warning onto the front armrest. As it turns out, all three of us are prone to car sickness. And even if we weren't prone to car sickness, those mountain roads would have forced anyone to reconsider the buffalo chicken sandwich they had for lunch.

We stopped at several lookout ponts along the drive, if for nothing else than to put our feet on solid, non-moving ground. Also, the pictures were nice. Even though Kasi delighted in making me nervous by clambering over railings and hanging onto the backs of signs, thus leading to some really unflattering pictures of me, standing with my shoulders up by my ears and eyebrows that fade straight into my hairline.

The whole point of the drive was to stop at Craggy Pointe and do something called 'hiking.' I was promised that the 'hiking' would not involve boulder jumping or climbing or areas without protective railings. Say what you want about me, say that I'm a weeney, that I'm unathletic, that I'm inherently lazy. But just understand that while you are tumbling to your death after a railing gives way, I am probably waiving at the cabana boy for another margarita. And you can't waive at the cabana boy from the bottom of a ravine when your arm is being chewed off by vicious gophers.

The hiking wasn't really that bad, at least not as bad as I'm making it out to be. I did get lots of enouragement from Becca and Kasi, friends who never once rolled their eyes when I told them that we were going to have to stop and rest. Again. Becca kept promising that I would feel such a sense of accomplishment when I reached the top, even pulling out her camera to capture that moment when I finally pulled my ass up the last step. That picture will never see the light of day, a) because I was bracing my upper body on my knees and you can see straight down my shirt and b) you can clearly see the bloody mass of a lung that I lost on the way the way up. I blame the high altitude.

I can't say as I'd hike every day, all day- and I still think people who roll up in the Smokey Mountains for three months of solitary hiking are fucking insane- but I might consider doing it again. For money.

Friday, May 25, 2007

I would just like to know how all five hotels are booked in Timfuckto, TN. The only attraction in this town is the Loretta Lynn Museum and Dude Ranch. Give me break.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

ZerO percent humidity. It's late, don't judge.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Zerp percent humidity leads to good hair days

The interesting thing about today was not the abundance of incense-burning stores, but rather the fact that I walked for seven straight hours- up the hill, down the hill, up the hill again- and never once broke a sweat. Not even like a pre-sweat where you feel the back of your neck getting hot and the hair around your neck (at least mine, anyway) rebels against the smoothing effects of a straightener and ringlets itself out of sheer defiance.

This was a nice change of pace after the 85% humidity of Central Arkansas.

Midway through the day I found myself wandering through a store full of shoes. Shoes on sale. Racks of shoes. On sale. But as much as I love seeing Irish green flats with delicate bows, I have a foot thing. Not like a nasty foot thing, just a foot thing that usually requires a special order. That is, unless I happen to get lucky and some poor shopkeeper has taken pity on the Big Foots with bony heels and narrow widths. Try finding a size 10AAA. Just try.

I'd changed out of my polka dot flats earlier in the day because they were rubbing the ragged cut on my foot that stems from where Butterbean mistook my dangling foot for a ladder. Always the girlscout, I had planned for this event and packed my favorite (and only) pair of black flipflops. These are the same flops I purchased three years ago from the discount bin at Walmart. In those three years they survived several stints as a cat chew toy and that time in Mexico when ::cough:: someone ::cough:: dropped a lit cigarrette while lounging in a beach chair. This person may or may not have been slightly intoxicated. Either way, the heel of the flop has sported a character buiding half-hole since the summer of 2004. It's safe to say that it was time for The Replacements to roll in.

Because I am vacationing in a land where people do not judge you on the basis of your designer jeans but rather the brand name of your polar fleece, every store we visited had multiple selections of "shoes." Some of these "shoes" are made specifically for walking on creek beds. Others are made for rock climbing. And still others are made for the hippies to buy and wear to Phish-esque shows as they normally have to park way far away, and that's a lot of walking for someone so high.

Attempting to aid in my flop relacement, the girls first convinced me to try on a pair of flipflops made by Choco. Every time I heard this I thought of the Choco Taco at Taco Bell and I just couldn't bring myself to pay fifty bucks for something so ugly.

Later I tried on a pair made by Teva. At twenty bucks this was far more reasonable and far less ugly. So I puchased them just as the store was closing, immediately running outside for a ceremonial trashing of the rubber foam that has carried me from Mexico to Dallas and from Dallas to Asheville. They now lie borken-heartedly in a dumpster off Lexington Ave. I will miss them.

Oh My.

I have encountered my very first Granola. She does not wear deoderant, shave her legs, wax her moustache or comb her hair. I am very aware of the deoderant situation because she keeps walking past my seat in the dressing room. Jesus Christ Almighty. We need an intervention.

Tennessee is far too long a state

After twelve hours in a very small Honda Civic, Kasi and I made it to Becca's house. Before we move on, I'd like to point out that her directions to the house included "turn left by the taco stand." This was a moment of clarity for me; we were rolling into a town where the tacos? They are sold out of stands? Not that I would ever eat a taco stand taco, but still. The fact that other people eat taco stand tacos means this place might actually serve BBQ ribs with actual ribs and not vegan tofu rib substitute.

In the car, in one of our many half-delirious conversations, Kasi ended up divulging some pretty interesting factoids. Like how she and Becca had agreed to refer to everything as a "walk." As in, "Hey Robin, let's go take a walk around the mountain park!. Or, "Hey Robin, let's take a walk to that waterfall in the park brochure!". Replace "hike" for every "walk" and you've got the truthfull description of the activity. But knowing my proclivity to veto a hiking excursion, the girls were going to try a little bit of trickery- all in an attempt to get my chubby ass up a mountain.

The thing about hiking is that I don't necessarily hate it. Its just that I have a very literal translation of words, and when someone says "Let's go hiking!" I assume they mean "Let's take up our walking sticks and leap like goats from boulder to boulder!". This literal translation problem is the exact same thing that got me into trouble when my friend Lily suggested we "float" the river. Only "float" really meant "paddle fervently inside a metal Canoe of Death," and did not mean that we were going to float gracefully down the river on a no-paddling-needed flotation device.

I have to admit, the walking trick probably would have worked. But now that I am wise to their ways, they will have to provide physical proof that the "hikes" are free from boulder-jumping. I am, quite obviously, not a goat. Also, shoe-oriented Southern girls have a very hard time reconciling their outfit with sneakers.

Monday, May 21, 2007


The pre-vacation sprint has worn me out.

But! Have had epiphany about the blackberry. I was going to attempt to sever the umbilical cord, the one so firmly connecting me to mobile google-stalking and instant emails. But look! I can email post, which is so very different from my other nefarious activities!

Sigh of relief.

Take those old records off the shelf

In less than 36 hours I will be headed out of a town on an east bound train.
Only the train is my car and the beverage cart is my cooler full of Diet
Pepsi and grapes.

Its been nearly seven years since I took a proper road trip and just as long
since I took a proper vacation. Technically I took a trip to Mexico three
years ago with two guys, which theoretically fits the Vacation description
(no work, abundant beer). However,I don't feel its a vacation if you spend the
majority of your time ducking the pussy being thrown in the vicinity of your
hotel room. I'm not sure if my friends were really that hot or if the equatorial
sun plays tricks on the eyes, but the naked girls that paraded in and out of that
room were enough to force me into a temporary Lysol high. Thus voiding my
vacation experience.

Long story short, I am seriously in need of a change of scenery.

I'm going to be driving with my friend Kasi to visit our friend Becca in
Ashvegas(Asheville), North Carolina. I've yet to figure out why its referred to
as Ashvegas because from what I understand, this is the place where granola comes
to die.

Even though Becca was born and raised in Little Rock, she could not have found
another city so closely matched to her patchouli-wearing lifestyle. For example:
The first time I met her she was wearing a blue potato sack dress, Birkenstocks
and a jingle bell anklet. Those Birkenstocks nearly had to be pried from her
cold dead feet, but Kasi and I put our manicured feet down when Becca considered
fixing the broken straps with duct tape. As someone who takes an inordinate amount
of pride in her shoes, this was just anunacceptable answer to the broken strap
problem. The acceptable answer,obviously, was to buy new shoes.

Later Becca moved on to the closed-toe Birk. I didn't really find this a step up
in shoecouture, however. Just think- instead of letting the foot smell waft around
and dissipate, the closed-toe version was merely bottling it up inside its leather
confines, waiting for an unsuspecting roommate to pick them up and die from
olfactory overload.

I'm picking on Becca's not-so-latent hippie tendencies, just as she would pick on
me formy shoe elitism and heathenistic tendencies. Notice, please, that I said
HEATHENistic and not HEDONistic. I am much to preppy to, you know, act all

My only goal for the next week is to drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway, a road that
took fifty years to build. Last week I watched a special on mountain roads, and the
Blue Ridge Parkway was a main feature on the program. Though the scenes involving
over-the-cliff shots freaked me out, I'm open to stopping and taking some pictures.
Assuming my friends sign a no-pushing contract and I am guaranteed at least fifteen
feet between me and the railing. Those railings are never near high enough for my
paranoid sensibilitites.

Other than avoiding a rocky death, I plan on sleeping late and eating lots of organic
free range chicken with gluten and dairy-free mashed potatoes. I'm only assuming
that this is what granola people eat. Here's hoping its more than just granola because
this kid needs her daily dose of non-vegan entrees.

We plan on having a photo journal of sorts, which will not be near as artistic as the
name implies. I would wager that most of the shots will be coming from the inside of
a moving vehicle. I may or may not post them throughout the week because HELLO,
this is a vacation. But this is 2007, not 1999. I will be traveling with my digital
camera, cell phone, blackberry and laptop. These items are just as necessary as
toothpaste and razors.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Maggot on my sleeve and a Bozo nightmare

My only goal for this weekend is to change the filter on the vacuum cleaner. For the past six months I have ignored the fact that perhaps the vacuum’s lackluster performance could, at least in part, be blamed on the bits of treated paper and plastic that were coated in layers of icky dirt. The same dirt that I do not acknowledge as being a part of my carpet. Theoretically I could wash the filter but I never remember that interesting little fact until I’ve already begun cursing the vacuum for missing that clump of cat hair, right there. Oh, and over there.

Also, the fact that the filter encourages you to wash it with warm soapy water but threatens you with certain death should you NOT LET IT DRY COMPLETELY, well, this just scares me. If I can’t remember to put soap in the dishwasher how am I going to remember to let the filter dry completely before inserting it back in the vacuum?

If I’m honest with myself, the filter changing thing was my goal for last night. I did at least take it out of its package, but the package opening coincided with an episode of ‘Workout’ on Bravo. I haven’t been near a gym in ten months but watching mindless television turned out to be way more interesting than taking apart the vacuum cleaner.

And if I’m even more honest with myself, the filter changing was my goal for Tuesday. The thing about making goals is that if you don’t really feel like accomplishing them, you just mark them off the list and move them a few days away. This is how I manage to be both obsessively organized and astoundingly lazy. And while Tuesday would have seemed like an excellent day for accomplishing tasks, what with my whole day off and all, as it turns out it was not. I was very busy thumbing my nose at the doctor after he told me I was never, ever to eat bread. Like, ever again.

This was disturbing news to me. I mean, bread. BREAD. How can you be so mean to the yeasty goodness? And so I nodded my head in the same way that I used to nod my head at my father when he told me I should practice changing the tires on my car. I am non-verbally telling you that while your idea seems good to you, it seems non-good to me. Therefore I will be ignoring you from now on.

After the visit I drove across town to the Krispy Kreme. I don’t really care for their donuts but their pastries, oh, their pastries. Would you like some pastry stuffed with strawberries and crème? Would you like it topped with drizzly icing? Would you? Well, did you know that they come by the dozen?

I ate three in the time it takes me to drive downtown. And then I spent three hours on my couch bemoaning the fact that my stomach was trying to claw its way out by way of my belly button. And my sternum. And probably my knees. I was miserable and cranky and uncomfortable. It was one thing to ask me, politely, to cut back on the bread. But to issue a decree, a stern one at that- well, my natural inclination was to revert to the mentality of a four-year-old with a really good grasp of the f-word.

I’m not sure how well I’m going to stick to this new order. I feel extreme embarrassment when I order something and ask them to hold the croutons or the tortillas or the side of delicious crunchy bread. I’m utterly paranoid that someone is mentally rolling their eyes at my attempt at fad dieting and I have to stop myself from word vomiting that I’m only doing what the doctor told me to do, SO THERE. I’m also of the opinion that I should be secure in the size and shape of my body, even though I most assuredly am not. But that doesn’t mean that other people need to know I’m moderately insecure. But it’s totally okay for people to know that they don’t make near enough drugs for my Crazy.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Pants on fire

Back in January when my job and my cats and my bleeding esophageal region all decided to bare their vicious teeth and rip the limbs from my body, I thought I could perhaps turn the remnants of my energy into a job search. Washing clothes and scooping cat litter were not important, but labeling manila folders and organizing recommendation letters, resume’s and portfolio information were right up there with breathing.

My mother has always told me that I’m the most sporadically organized person she knows; meaning I have a specific order for plate distribution in the kitchen cabinets but will shove the cheese and the chicken and the grapes all in the same refrigerator bin. I organize my clothes by color and length of sleeve but care nothing about the top shelf of the closet, covered as it is with old Christmas decorations, clean sheets and a tool box. I will also re-make the bed after you, because you have no idea how to do it right.

The job searching turned out to be mildly fruitful with a whopping total of 1.5 job offers. The point five was an offer I knew was coming but couldn’t bear the thought of accepting, so I played my ‘No-Thank-You’ card before she got back to me with the salary information. The second offer came the day after we found out about the severance package, which means I suddenly had images of gold-plated sugar plums dancing in my head. Not really, because the package isn’t as gilded as I’d like to believe, seeing as how I have to stay here until the very end of the transition before I’m rewarded for my ::cough:: loyalty.

During this time frame I probably applied for twenty to twenty-five jobs. Jobs in Arkansas, jobs in Texas, jobs in the farthest, most ass-cold regions of Maine. I even applied for a job in Austria. What? They said they wanted English-speakers. But as the end of January drew near, I became less inclined to reply to emails or phone calls. I’d reached a point of acceptance with my current situation and had decided to give it until July, after the next Big Meeting with Big Information. This would give me a better idea of exactly how long I’ve got, rather than the speculation I’m currently running on.

Then two weeks ago I got a call from an unknown number. It was Jake*, calling from a company that I’d applied to nearly three months before. I’d heard through the grapevine that there’d been a hiring freeze and beyond that, the job application hadn’t registered on my radar. But Jake wanted a pre-interview phone interview- and if you’re confused with that request then trust me, so was I. He wanted to interview me on the phone before he actually INTERVIEWED ME ON THE PHONE. And if they liked me, I might even get a chance to come into the office. Whatever. I’m not in the habit of being outrightly rude. Cranky, maybe, if you cut me off on the interstate. And sure, I’ll give you a glimpse of my finger. But I very rarely flick people’s ears or hang up on callers, an action so unspeakably rude that my Southern sensibilities just bristle at the thought.

After he concluded the interview I rested comfortably in my seat, secure in the knowledge that I definitely wouldn’t be hearing from Jake ever again. He’d wanted me to do things with numbers. Like, add them. And analyze them. Which I could totally do, if the numbers were letters and I had to form words with them.

That afternoon I ambled home from work and decided that I had enough energy to check my sitemeter. I rarely do this, because honestly, who cares? I know that I will always have that one visitor from Tehran with a referring search of “Hot asien slutts,” a string of words that somehow sends them directly to my page. I’ve ceased contemplating how this happens.

Something strange caught my eye during my review of sitemeter- someone had read thirty-three pages of my blog with an IP address leading straight back to Company Blah, the same company that Jake the Phone Interviewer had called from two hours before. And the time stamp? Less than 20 minutes after we hung up the phone.

Maybe I’m being paranoid. It’s possible. But I just never considered the ramifications of pasting my In Living Color Real Name in the upper right hand corner. I wondered for a split second what it would be like to know exactly how crazy your possible employees are. Did he linger over high school stories detailing my ridiculously reject-like experiences? Did he pause over the purse-o-vomit story? Or did he wonder how long I was going to whine about my Weeks of Shittiness, effectively beating a dead horse that everyone had to read about, oh, I don’t know, seventy-five times. Only to say I beat the horse is a bit insulting to the horse, as I not only beat the horse, I drop kicked the horse into a branch shredder, a la’ Fargo. You might say I’m a bit whiny.

I contemplated a) removing this site, b) setting it to private and c) removing my name. But nothing felt right. This blog is far less unprofessional than some of the things people do in their free time. I don’t ACTUALLY beat dead (or living) horses. I don’t throw back a fifth of whiskey every night. I don’t cheat on my taxes. I just run my mouth. A lot. About total shit. Boring, ridiculous and nonsensical shit.


This site is for my amusement only. I have never (now will I ever) indicate the name or location of my employment. I will not talk about a boss’s incompetence or how my VP left a stanker in the restroom. I will, however, write about cat shit and human shit and maybe even some goat shit. I will be long winded.

Please note that I am not serious when I refer to alien transmitters implanted in my esophagus, nor am I inclined to stab people with stilettos. It’s all in good fun, promise.

Robin Holmes

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

I need more drugs for my Crazy

Last weekend I spent my normally Reserved for Sleeping Saturday in the clutches of three children under the age of five, one of which still shits her pants. The whole diaper changing thing isn’t really a deterrent to care-giving because, hello, this is what I do every Wednesday and Sunday. I wipe poop from dirty bottoms. I wipe poop from dirty legs. I wipe poop from the bathroom floor when little Charlie mistakes the toddler toilet for a flesh-eating monster, taking a giant dump on the linoleum instead. But kids go into a different behavioral mode when they know Mommy Dearest is more than a few stairs away. They transform into needy heathen sticky monkeys who will climb your shoulder because that spot, right there? the clean one? the one not covered in Koolaid? LET’S SMEAR OUR LEFTOVER ICECREAM ON IT.

Of course the exasperation all melts away when the little girl who would not. stop. talking. less than thirty seconds before suddenly feels the need to curl contentedly in your lap. And says she loves you. But then she accidentally knees you in the shin and gets your hair caught in her zipper and you remember, with blinding clarity, that raising a child rates right up there with eating a bowl of urine covered earwax.

Later that afternoon, when all three children had finally (finally!) laid down for their afternoon nap, I took the opportunity to enjoy my friend’s snazzy new television and her plethora of channels. It was a nice respite, because for a solid hour I got to watch a program with actual dialogue and cuss words without the lingering fear that someone would turn their innocent eyes in my direction and ask, “Miss Robin, what’s a dildo?” To which I would reply, “An adult tool that leads to certain blindness.”

While I was laying on the couch, my friend’s husband commented on the fact that I had monkey feet. I’m not sure what this means, the monkey feet comment, but I know it doesn’t bother me that much. I mean, if he had said I had a monkey ass we’d be scrapping directly. Word. Those monkey asses leave something to be desired, especially when you get into the whole huge bulbous red ass on the orangutan thing.

The foot comment reminded me of a reader I had about a year ago out of the UK. Apparently he’d stumbled across my blog, followed by my Flickr website, followed by the picture of me showing off my One True Talent: the ability to flip you off with my left foot. My father can also perform this feat due to a nonexistent joint in the middle toe. Though even he admits he’d never fully realized his deformity’s potential until I came along.

My UK reader had a propensity for long winded emails, most revolving around his burning need for my feet and his outstanding career as a podiatrist. This merely cemented my feeling that foot-doctors need to be on medication. Strong, heavy-on-the-sedatives medication. Lucky for me, my UK friend had a whole network of feet-minded individuals and I saw a drastic upswing on my visitor log with a majority coming from the UK. All of them had a referring url of this , which leads straight to my post on ::retching:: corns. The corns I got on my pinkie toe after wearing shoes conducive to ripping someone a new asshole. Also known as the pointy-toe ones.

To say I began to get a bit panicked was a bit of an understatement. I kept seeing the scene in ‘Kiss the Girls’ when the police stumble upon a freezer full of feet. Feet. In a freezer. Freezer-o-Feet. I go out of my way to not acknowledge feet, especially anything associated with Sexy and Feet all in the same thought. I once sat at a dinner table while my friend compared her husband sucking on her toes to a mini-orgasm. I cannot agree or disagree with this statement because should someone come at my foot with an open mouth, I will probably assume that they’re getting ready to bite them off. Also, feet in mouth? Isn’t there a disease called Hoof and Mouth? Same thing, right?

So I kindly (also known as ‘curtly’) responded to the emails from my UK friend, indicating I did not share his foot fetish nor would I be willing to send him additional pictures of my feet. I haven’t heard from him since last August and I can’t say as I’m sad about that. I sincerely hope he’s gotten that whole foot thing under control and, if not, is harassing someone closer to home.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Trying to get to you and that booty

For whatever reason, I quite like the term "international pariah."

Now if only someone *ahem* would feed the pariah some poisoned sardines...

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

I Got Your Hey-Oh

1. I am only somewhat amused by the gleaming white toilet currently adorning my neighbor’s side yard. It’s been a month now and I’m more than tempted to gather up a bag of cat shit and dump it unceremoniously in the bowl. I wonder if my neighbor is confused about the generally accepted functions and locations of a toilet. I mean, maybe they're from the hills of Uzbekistan where a toilet is considered a Tool of Satan. Maybe they like hovering over a hole in ground. Maybe it’s an art installation piece and I’m just too uncultured to appreciate its bold statement about the struggle of humanity against oppressive societal norms. Or maybe they’re just lazy. Total toss-up. Also, the piece of plywood propped up against the toilet tank does nothing to disguise the actual fucking toilet sitting in the yard. The YARD, people.

2. Whenever I go to the grocery store I have to drive past a giant green billboard with JESUS in pristine white letters. It’s always confused me because there is no church affiliation stamp to lead Jesus-seekers to the proper Jesus location. Just Jesus. All the time. I also seem to pass the disgusting foot sore billboard, at least more than I would consider my fair share. I’m all for people getting foot ailments taken care of, but I’m not sure it’s really necessary for me to see a giant gaping quarter-sized crusty hole on the bottom of some customer’s foot. Because, EW.

3. My new work schedule makes every day feel like Saturday. Only I’ve discovered I don’t much like a never-ending Saturday. I get the impression I’ve been sucked into some Groundhog Day-esque time warp. Let’s do the time warp again! God, sorry, total flashback to my college days and dancing to the Rocky Horror Picture Show soundtrack dressed up as Snow White. That whole Snow White thing is a complicated explanation; just rest assured I was a bitchin Snow White. I had chin-length dark hair with pale skin and cartoon-proportioned breasts. Put me in a blue dress and it was like sending out a homing beacon to all the cranky dwarves in the world.

4. I’m pretty sure someone just got shot in the house next door. Only logical explanation, really. I heard a pop, followed by an OH SHIT, followed by a BITCH! followed by the sound of rubber not making good contact with wet pavement followed by police sirens about ten minutes later. The last time I heard someone get shot I was living on the corner of Broadway and 16th. Don’t judge, it was a wicked cute apartment. Anyway, as it happened some young delinquent with robbery (and crack) on the brain decided to break into my neighbor’s restored Victorian house. The delinquent was obviously new to the ‘hood because of all the houses to pick, THIS WAS DEFINITELY NOT THE ONE. The guy gardened with a 22 by his side, for goodness sake. His car was covered with NRA and ‘God Bless George W.’ stickers. Put two and two together and you’ve got a gun-toting right-wing Republican. I recognized him for a man not unlike my father, who told me if someone ever tried to break in our house that I was to aim for the head and drag the body inside the house. Didn’t want the little fuckers suing us after a disabling shot. As for my neighbor, he aimed the gun through his window when he heard the lock being jimmied. He missed the first, second and third time. But then he got good and warmed up, jogged out the front door and shot the would-be deviant as he was running down the street. All in all, it was quite the good time.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition

It’s not to say that I’ve become disenchanted or disillusioned, because that would imply I had grandiose illusions and, um, enchantments to begin with. Is ‘enchantments’ really the word I’m looking for? Because short of stewing toad legs and newt eyes in my spare time, I can’t say as I’ve ever let myself be enchanted by much of anything. I’m nothing if not a realist. Maybe a very optimistic realist, but a realist nonetheless. I’m aware that kittens get run over, puppies are bludgeoned and little old ladies have their life savings stolen by men of ill repute, men who normally lack a full set of teeth. Maybe the grannies relate to their lack of toothedness, I have no idea.

I’ve spent the past few weeks simmering down from my full boil of righteous anger after a boss of mine was treated horribly. This, in turn, means that what little morale we had left around this place has gone directly down the shitter. It’s gone down so far and so hard, not even Heidi Fleiss can relate. Here was a man standing up for us, speaking his mind (as he was encouraged to do) and running our department with the kind of intelligence that makes me struggle with ever referring to myself as a Smart Kid. Then one greasy old cheeseburger of a woman gets her panties in a twist, smiles smugly and says There’s the door, sonny.

It started back in October, when my boss, we’ll call him the Can Can Man, got wind of some change in the air. The change had the kind of odor that accompanies Important Decision Makers within general crumbling companies that are struggling to keep their very large heads above water. This odor is greatly reminiscent of dirty asshole, because more often than not these Important Decision Makers have their heads firmly lodged in someone else’s rectum. And if I had someone’s head lodged up there, I’d have a hard time keeping that particular area clean, too; hence, the smell of dirty asshole. Not pretty flowers, just asshole.

The rest of us got the news at the start of January. Happy New Year, ya’ll! It was a shock to say the least because, hello, we make money. Oodles and oodles of money. The Big Company? Not so much. We’re better and quicker and faster than The Big Company because down here in Aw Shucksville, Arkansas, we don’t fuck around. It’s too hot for all that. Plus, there’s a rule in the handbook about putting your head up where the sun don’t shine. It ain’t sanitary, it ain’t healthy and it sure ain’t conducive to getting your work done and heading on home for a cold beer on the front porch.

The thing about The Decision (the one that puts me out of a job in X amount of months) is it really does look good from a high-level perspective. Can Can Man made a note to point this out because it’s best to understand the rationale THAT PUTS ME OUT OF A JOB. But when the Big Company brings in a third party to run test after test, wouldn’t you think it would be a good idea to utilize that information? The information that says this company right here in Arkansas, whooo-eee do they get their shit done right- ya’lls yankee system ain’t near as fine as what they got right here, and we reckon you’ll lose a bunch of money by trying to reabsorb their business. Can Can Man thought so, too. And he wasn’t shy about saying it.

Ultimately this was his downfall. The Big Company just wasn’t used to hearing such clear, succinct words. After all, it’s rather hard to understand someone when they’re speaking from the general location of your colon. Can Can Man had valid points: why WOULD you destroy a system that generates millions of dollars to put it on your decrepit and function-less one? Why would you ignore processes and procedures that we can prove generate a substantial profit? Why would you ignore study after study after study that says THIS is the better system THIS is the better process and THIS is the better company?

Why? Because someone way up high, someone so high on the food chain they’ve retired their personal ass hat, said so. They deemed it so, and so it shall be.

They said it was Can Can’s fault that we were leaving in droves. They said he should have done more to keep us here until the end. The end where they hand us our meager severance check and we all pray for a job in the middle of this forest called Little Rock. What they didn’t, and don’t, understand was this: He was the reason we stayed as long as we did. He was our morale booster, our rock of knowledge. You don’t find those qualities much nowadays. Mostly you get the Vice President who kiss-assed his way to the top, or the one that knows his job but couldn’t begin to grow appropriate personnel skills.

And so, because I’m too low on the ladder for anyone to really listen to me, here’s what I’ve got to say:

Dear Big Company,
You are very cordially invited to go fuck yourself.
Robin Holmes

Overall I’m just gravely disappointed, and I hate it that I didn’t expect to feel any other way. What little loyalty I had left was destroyed by the treatment of Can Can Man and you can bet I’m going to smile when you fall flat on your ass. Of course, you won’t really fall. You’ll just move your losses here and there, claiming that they’re capital interest or some such flumubbery. That spreadsheet where you showcase your loss-recoup time will casually be thrown in the shredder and you’ll all pinky swear not to tell the board of directors about your giant failure. No one but us slow-brained Arkansans will remember how you made a poor decision and went about that decision’s execution like a two-year-old and a plate of spaghetti.

I wonder how long it will take before I get fired for running my mouth.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Honey put on that party dress

Yesterday morning I drove across town, to the place where hillbillies and the like build plywood houses for refuge against the bustling demonicity of The City, to drop my car off for repairs. I wouldn’t have chosen this particular body shop had it not been for my last experience with bumper replacement. A year and a half ago I let the insurance agent suggest/coerce me into going to XYZ body shop, the body shop that is run by my ex-employer. This wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing, except the last time I saw my old boss I was screaming Fuck You and other obscenities. I also might have mentioned his tight pants, and that he might want to take his miniscule dick that he so loved showing off and put it in his ass. I was having a very bad day. And he deserved it.

There was nothing so awkward as running headlong into the aforementioned previous employer, because even though we both smiled and shook hands, there is no doubt in my mind that while I was thinking Coked up fucktard he was thinking Raging bitchface. I crossed my fingers and prayed that my Honda came back with a recognizable paint color and intact upholstery. It did, but still. I figured it was best to be on the safe side this time around.

Which is how I ended up among the cast of Deliverance in bumfuck Little Rock, waiting patiently in their trailer-turned-waiting room for Enterprise to make good on their commercials. Twenty minutes later I was greeted by Joe, my friendly car rental representative. Joe had obviously had a hard life, one that involved a lack of teeth-brushing and a possible head trauma.

During the fifteen minute drive back into town I was serenaded with none other than Joe’s highly deviated septum. I kept wondering if it was possible that he just couldn’t hear it, that steady stream of whistling air bringing oxygen to his ancient bloodstream and expelling germ-tainted nose breath into the confines of the vehicle. But there was no way possible, no way in hell, that he was oblivious to the ceaseless sound. People thirty miles away were turning their heads to the side and asking each other, “What’s that sound? Is it the wind?” NO. It’s just Joe and his whistling nose.

Joe also liked to make small talk, whereas I am much averse to the stuff. I thought I had finished with my polite overtures when I climbed into the van and nodded politely, asking him about his day. He responded in kind and we settled into, what I thought, was a peaceful silence. It’s a long drive back to town and there’s only so much chitchatting a girl can handle. But Joe wanted to make comments on everything, from the silvery purple color of a Cadillac to the possible conspiracy of five white sedans in a row on the interstate. He intimated that the sedans were probably with the FBI and on their way to some secret rendezvous. Only when Joe said it, it came out as randy-voos.

About halfway through the journey, Joe turned to me and asked if I was sulking. He thought he’d heard me sighing at some point and had probably mistaken my unconscious verbal expression of annoyance with general sulkiness. I haven no idea how he heard it over the 1820 Overture playing steadily from his nostrils, but he merely nodded his head sagely and asked how long she’d been hurt.

It took me a good five seconds to respond. And five seconds is a damn long time for car silence when someone is paying no attention to interstate and waiting breathlessly for your response. Only I hadn’t the damndest of clues what he was talking about. A ‘she’ had been hurt? And I knew about it?

Then I realized he was talking about my car, with its bumper hanging pathetically from the rear driver side. My car was a ‘she.’ This was news. So I told him it had been a week since the accident and ‘she’ would be fine. But of course Joe couldn’t leave it at that, he had to regale me with stories of his vehicularly challenged wife and her propensity to wreck his brand new truck, over and over and over.

To which my only response was, “Perhaps you should stop handing her the keys.”

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Love me, Love me- Go on and love me.

I’m not one of those girl who lights (or even buys) candles. I’ve got a green mottled one that has moved with me since 1999. I know this because, well, I just do. Leave it at that. I always intend to light it, I intend to utilize its forrest-scented-ness, but I end up spraying some febreeze instead. Because spraying a bottle of overpriced smelly water in the air is wicked easier than finding a lighter.

The other day I was shopping with Amanda for some apartment accoutrements. She is moving into a two-bedroom duplex that gives her and her new husband roughly forty times the space of their current living arrangements. No one is happier than Amanda with this development, except for maybe Senora Robin. This is very selfish of me, but the thought of sharing a space the size of my bedroom with another living, breathing, excreting human being makes me want to claw out my eyeballs and serve them as appetizers.

So along with helping pick out curtains and table covers, I was suckered into throwing a super spiffy oven mitt in the buggy. I should have done this a long time ago but I’ve always been relatively content to wad up paper towels to protect my fingers from the oven’s flesh-searing metal. But after a near-miss on Saturday when the pizza pan became unbalanced and almost landed on my delicate and unprotected feet, I decided it was time to take a big girl pill and pony up.

After the kitchen aisle came the candle aisle. I am normally loathe to stop here, a) because the mix of honeysuckle, vanilla, sage, rose and patchouli makes me want to hurl, b) I am indecisive about candle scents- do I really want my house to smell like Jasmine and Honeydew? and c) TWENTY BUCKS FOR A FUCKING CANDLE? ARE YOU HIGH?

But there was a sale aisle, which was right next to the Relaxing Music display, the kind where you get to push the buttons and hear tracks from each CD play somewhat obnoxiously over cheap speakers. Amanda had already gotten onto me for making the oven mitt talk (it looks like a puppet, dammit) so I had to keep my excitement to a minimum. I was busy switching between Inspiring Salsa and Big Band Classics when I noticed a sale shelf of candles.

So I bought one. And now my house smells like cake, just like the ad said it would. I am also very hungry because of said candle.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Wears dark glasses like the cops in Texas

I would show you a picture of the back of my car, the bumper hanging so precariously from its plastic and styrofoam sheath, but I will not. Mainly because that would constitute physical proof of my poor luck, but also because the car is outside (obviously) and I am inside. Also inside is my camera. Hence, due to some very simple logic, I will remain inside.

I started my taxes on Saturday night but they asked such ridiculous questions. It’s worse than filling out the form to give blood. Did you ever have sex with a man who had sex with another man before 1978 in the Congo region of Africa? Did you ever engage in questionable acts with a primate from the Congo region of Africa? Have you ever kissed a transvestite? Similarly, the tax software I use wants to ask silly questions about my personal property taxes, as if I would be so organized as to keep that information. Did I purchase a large item this year, such as an auto, but not a boat or RV or jet ski? Yes I did! I get a tax credit! BUT WAIT. Please enter the selling price of the vehicle minus the sales tax plus the commission, less the depreciation and adding the cost of after-market items. Please put that number HERE in this yellow flashing box. It’s all very simple, didn’t you know.

I gave up finishing that project because I have a mind to become a fugitive from the law. I will wear dark jeans and learn to live off the land. I will lure fat squirrels into my lair and roast their pitiful bodies over bic lighters. I will rob convenience stores for Dr. Peppers and Oatmeal Crème Pies.

Randomly, I am thinking of getting a new phone. I have been thinking of getting a new phone for a year now but it’s such a grand commitment. I become overwhelmed by all the features and options and buttons. What if I purchase this one but realize three months from now that I really should have gotten the one with mp3 capabilities? What if I realize I needed unlimited internet access? So I’ve decided that my current function-less phone and I are just stuck, stuck together like Dolly Parton’s breasts. I will upgrade only when the current model truly fails to deliver. Presently it is only cranky and I cannot in good conscience put it out to pasture.

Anyway. It’s been a long time since I updated this poor thing, hasn’t it? I reread some of the crap from the past few months and realized I had to cut myself off. It was for the benefit of mankind, really.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

I've got skills, just ask me

Before I get to the reason for my lethargic depression, I thought I’d make an attempt at pushing myself out the relentless need to stay in bed and read trashy novels by pinpointing the things I normally would have written about. Things that take normal people three sentences to accomplish but in my overly-verbose case, take forty-five paragraphs. I think I’ll start with the mysterious case of my magical healing powers:

Saturday morning I was awakened by Kimberly peeping her blonde head inside my bedroom and pitifully calling my name. We’d made an attempt at killing our mutual depression by walking downtown and tossing back glass after glass of cranberry juice and vodka. Then we ate an entire pizza, after which we deemed ourselves properly refueled and continued with the vodka concoctions. It was all in good fun until the next morning, when the effects of throwing down like a college student were clearly and painfully felt in our non-college student bodies. Kimberly slept in the guest bedroom until the early morning sun refused to abate, deciding the recovery process was best completed in the confines of her king-size bed and ample cereal selection.

I sleepily followed her to the door and locked it behind her. I was already up, so I decided that at least fifteen minutes of productiveness was in order. I focused my attention on the dishes from the 2am eggroll snack scattered across the kitchen.

When I was finished rinsing the last of the dishes, I reached across the sink to turn off the hot water. Only it didn’t turn off, not all the way. I was left with a steamy stream that was far greater than a trickle but less than a gush. I pounded and pushed and pleaded, all to no avail. The water continued to flow and I had a sudden image of next month’s electric bill, my ensuing bankruptcy and swirling demise into Crazy Destitute Cat Lady status.

All day long the water poured straight down the drain. It continued on through Sunday, paying no attention to the wealth of tools I half-heartedly waived in its direction. By Monday I was frustrated with my landlord’s lack of activity and his obvious disregard for my hot showers, showers that had become lukewarm at best. And so I did what any woman would do. I stared down the ornery faucet, stomped my foot and screamed in frustration.

That’s when it stopped. It slowed to a gentle stream, then to a trickle, coming to a complete and utter halt within seconds of my hissy fit. I cautiously approached the sink, reaching over to turn the hot water back on. Hot water gushed forth. Then I held my breath and turned the knob to the off position. Hot water stopped. No drip. No trickle.


Moving along…

On Tuesday I got up in what has, of late, become my normal routine. I hit snooze for forty-five minutes before finally rolling out of bed and stumbling into the bathroom. I appraised the hair situation. Definitely in need of a wash. Full shower, conditioning and shaving was in order.

About a year ago I purchased one of those new-fangled vibrating razors. I’m a sucker for new shaving devices simply because my skin can sense a razor when I’m twenty feet away. It can sense it and it’s not happy. The skin expresses it’s unhappiness by screaming in pain and erupting into red fire. Therefore, I’m highly choosy with said razors.

The vibrating one seemed like an excellent idea. I mean, hello, it vibrates the hairs right up into the razor’s path. Surely this will be wicked awesome. Unfortunately, it was no different from a regular three-blade razor. I kept it anyway and used it on the no-way-no-how-vibrate setting because the little moisturizing strips were kind of nifty.

I wish I could somehow make this the enticing part of the post, the part where you visualize me in the shower, but in truth I’m as far from appealing in the shower as watching Donald Trump masturbate. Okay, obviously I’m more appealing than the Trump bit, but you get the point. I’m normally sleepy and cranky and unhappy that I have to rush through my routine because of my ancient water-heater. I have nine minutes to accomplish what should take normal women with ass loads of hair and body parts at least fifteen. Sort of like speed-dating, only naked and alone in your shower with shampoo, conditioner, exfoliator and razors to choose from.

After I finished shaving I placed the razor back in the shower caddy and rinsed the conditioner from my hair. I turned off the water and stepped out of the shower. But something was amiss. There was a strange noise coming from the bathtub. A noise that screams angry gremlins jumping around or, for the less imaginatively inclined, what could very easily be air in the pipes. It was loud and obnoxious but I was already late for work, so I made a mental note to call the landlord if the situation had not resolved itself by evening.

When I came home that night, I could hear the crazy noise from the hallway. Concerned that something had seriously malfunctioned in my absence, I warily walked into the bathroom expecting to see shattered tile and sewage. Instead, it was clean and white, just as I’d left it. I resigned myself to calling my landlord and began removing all the pretty bottles from the edge of tub, thinking that I could never be so lucky to get a hot, manly plumber that would appreciate my display. With my luck, I’d get a tubby, gelatinous mass of a plumber with low-rise dickies and a thin t-shirt. (All the better to showcase the man titties, m’dear.)

As I got to the shower caddy, I struggled a bit trying to lift it up and over the shower head. I finally succeeded and placed it in the sink. It was then that I noticed that the abrasive noise had mysteriously subsided to a dull hum.

Strange, I thought.

I stepped into the bathtub and placed my ear against the tile wall. Nothing. I leaned up and listened carefully to the showerhead. Nothing.

I stepped back out of the tub, my eyes going to the shower caddy resting in the sink. The noise, it had moved.

You know what’s coming so I won’t even try to deny it. I’d somehow managed to inadvertently turn on the vibrating razor, which succeeded in sending vibrations straight through the metal caddy, right into the metal pipes within the wall.


And finally…

There’s nothing like spending money when you know you don’t have it. I purchased an electric blanket on Tuesday night and I can liken the sensation of sliding into a pre-warmed and deliciously cozy bed to having someone handing you a check for a million dollars. No shit.

Now, to the real story….

My lethargic depression, which has manifested itself in many delightful ways, was caused by a rumor, a confirmation of a rumor with no additional information, and finally the Rumor herself appearing in person to deliver the news.

The company I work for is part of another company, which is, in turn, part of another company. It’s all a bunch of strategery, as George W. would say. The fun part begins when the big company has lots of big-minded and big-idea-ed individuals who make a decision and decide that come hell or high water, their decision will be carried out.

I’m being laid off.

This is oh so cliché, but it was the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back.

Dead cats, bleeding esophageal lesions, compulsive vomiting, alien transmitters, nose catheters, poking and prodding and needle-happy nurses had only primed me for the news. Before I could emit my stomach contacts, I grabbed my first cigarette in two years, pulled the smoke in my lungs and waited for the blessed relief of nicotine to hit my bloodstream.

The thing is, and please feel free to groan, I quite like my job. I won’t say I love it, because that seems to invite all kinds of eye-rolling. But in truth, I kind of do. I appreciate that my bosses know more than I do. I love that everyone stopped by to hug me after Llama died. I like that I have never been micromanaged. I love that some of these people have turned into my best friends. I enjoy the work I do, the products I work with, the random bits of knowledge I add to the pile everyday.

In one fell swoop, my five-year plan was crushed all to hell. And that pisses me off. More than anything, it pisses me off that I finally find the place I like to be, the place where getting up in the morning doesn’t make me want to stab myself in the eye with a dull spoon, and some ill-educated loony-toon had to go and fuck it up.

I don’t want another job. I want this one, dammit.
On the somewhat-of-a-plus side, I will have a job for around ten months. And then I will get a severance package. And then I’m going to take one very long vacation. So no need to start sending me your canned goods quite yet. If a food drive is ever in order, rest assured I’ll let you know.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Insert Applicable Title Here

Hi, My name is Melodramatic. What’s yours?

I’m a little annoyed with my Whiny Self, not only because I’m a terrible whiner but because it takes a lot of effort to be this depressing. And if there’s one thing I don’t have at this particular moment, it’s the desire to expend any effort whatsoever.

So in lieu of bitching about my current situation (due to that pesky unlubed legal fist and all), I’m going to talk about cute boys.

Here is one:

Dear Jeremy Piven:

First, you should know that your hairline in the movie PCU circa 1994 is very different from your current hairline. Normally men continue to lose hair, but you have mastered the male hair loss gene and actually REGROWN hair on your head. I commend you for this, I really do. Just know that I love you in spite of your current strange, artificial mop. Though in the above picture you look wicked hot and I would totally make out with you.

Here is another one:

Dear Robert Downey, Jr:

You have a bit of a drug problem. For whatever reason, I find this attractive. Possibly because it causes your normal rapid-fire wit to explode into unknown territory. Also, I bet you’re a hell of a compulsive cleaner and there’s nothing more appealing than a man who will assist me in all-night cleaning fests. I would bear your children if I was into that whole caring for another being for the rest of your natural born life thing.

All my lust,