• GAMES, HEAD AND OTHERWISE

    Friday I got into a heated “discussion” with the boss lady at work. She got on me for not oiling the shredder daily and suggested I create a big red sign (she is partial to signs) to tape to the wall so I won’t forget. I usually try to just be nice and cooperative but that day, I just couldn’t. I said I didn’t think it needed that much oil. She’s the only one who uses it…to shred literally one piece of paper a day. 

     

    All I could think about the whole time she was criticizing me was how much I wish I had stayed home all day to play Rock Band. Because I could easily do that. My brother and I named our band Puppy Breath and we rock the shit. For real. And I need to get some valuable drum time in. But no…like every other lame adult I have a job.

     

    I played the game of LIFE with my brother and his girlfriend. I think they’ve actually changed it up a bit. Like, in the beginning you can choose to go to school but be $100k in debt or you can opt out of school and get a weak ass “career” like an “entertainer” (clearly a euphemism for ESCORT) or a mechanic. The first game I decided to just join the ranks of the working class and not have any school debt. I also decided I would take a female life-partner and lead my alternative lifestyle raising our twins and bringing home the bacon working hard as a grease monkey. And boy howdy, did I get a dose of hard core reality. Lesbians have it rough and I was not able to excel! There were no cruises with Rosie for my pack. But I did (for whatever horrible reason) have to buy awesome seats at a sporting event. And at the end I had to pay $50k for some life-saving surgery and basically retired broke. My wife fell out of the car a few times which I think was some sort of a bad omen.

     

    The second time ‘round I decided to go to school and I came out a teacher. Which sucks because, as in real life, you get paid peanuts. In some reversal of fortune I became the doctor and whooped on everyone mercilessly. I got people to pay for half of my life-saving surgery, took my kids on that cruise, and sued my brother three times. Lesson learned: unfortunately, to win in LIFE, you’ve got to be an asshole.

     

    I saw my granny today who tried to unload a crap-load of very bad harlequin romance novels on me. She used to be hooked up with some scam artists who send you boxes of these terrible books monthly. She finally cancelled but is now trying to catch up with her reading. I picked out two: The Sheikh’s Secret and Having the Frenchman’s Baby. I picked them for their titles and groovy cover illustrations. The sheikh does not look at all ethnic and he’s hugging some blonde lady by a waterfall. They even tell you what Talique’s secret may be: he wants her to be his bride! Oh grandma. I asked her if they ever have unhappy endings and she looked at me like I was the crazy one and said, “NO. THAT’S WHY I BUY THEM! WHO WANTS SAD ENDINGS?” True that.

     

    Just a bit ago I got a strange little text from my friend that read: “I’m meeting my date and if he turns out 2 be a killer his name is John Wang* and his number is xxx-xxxx cell and his home is xxx-xxxx.” I like precautions. But this one seems a little bit after-the-fact. Still, I’m saving this message.

    *Name has been changed to protect the potential killer.

  • Stripper-ific Drunk E-Harmony Messaging and Rejection!

    Remember that old dumb game to derive your stripper name? First pet name + first street you lived on? Mine would be AppleHead College. Which isn’t really going to get me anywhere fast. Anyhow, my boyfriend’s brother found out his best friend’s little sister has an internet porn site. It isn’t a very good one. I guess Marcus found out that this girl has an alias, Candi M., and so, like a good 21st century digital boy, he Googled it and lo and behold. The friend does not know. And Marcus has no intention of telling him because the guy will go all kinds of crazy. I want to anonymously write Candi M. and tell her she might want to consider some kind of artistic director. For example, maybe don’t wear a stained jean jacket while half-naked in the backyard? I might also consider removing the tag from the inside of the see-through undies. That is me, anyhow.

     

    The internet is a crazy, mixed-up place. I think sometimes it can be wonderful and I can find recipes for strawberry jello-and-pretzel salad and reconnect with people who knew me during the banana-clip phase. But you also come across weird things. Dark things. And then there’s that thing about losing touch with human-kind. Many of my friends have gotten signed up with sites like e-Harmony and the like. And then one of them got drunk e-Harmony messaged. What happened to the good old-fashioned drunk dial? I wouldn’t trust myself drunk in front of this thing. I suspect these things do so well because rejection seems slightly less terrible online. We are slowly growing all soft and losing our coping skills.

     

    Still, I know the sting of rejection. It happened just last week in tap. We were supposed to all pair up and practice this new move. Everyone but me had a partner—even Unibrow Cosby-sweater—and so this nice old math teacher took pity on me and asked me to join him and his partner and it was nice but I felt so damn dissed! If the mulleted woman with the sports bra and camel toe were there, I’m sure she’d have asked me.

     

    My friend goes on all these service calls to god-forsaken places like Bakersfield. He made friends with some lady named Sunshine who asked him to dinner one night which was great until he realized she wanted a baby-daddy for the three rugrats she had at home. He saw her a week or two ago and she asked him to dinner as usual, but he told her he couldn’t…he had to get home in time to vote. That is a new and original rejection that I think must be used sparingly.

     

    Ugh. So I was sick a bit ago and I mean sick-sick. Like for two weeks. I thought I had the strep and so I went to the doctor who looked at my throat and groaned and took a culture but said it wasn’t strep. “Just some weird viral thing. Swish with this Magic Mouthwash,” (yes, that’s its scientific name) “and don’t eat for a couple days…don’t worry it won’t kill you.” Ouch. It didn’t kill me but it made my throat shed which is something new to me. I don’t honestly care to repeat that again. Pieces of you should not fall off.

     

    So Wayne sent me this link to the 90-day Jane blog (http://90dayjane.blogspot.com/) which is basically a chronicle of the 90 days before this gal Jane offs herself. She hasn’t picked a method yet and she isn’t exactly depressed, but she wants to exercise her right to kill herself if she pleases. My knee-jerk reaction was…what an asshole. Give me a freakin’ break, you lunatic. And then I really gave it thought and decided she was sort of brilliant. Well, assuming this is a social experiment and not really some poor girl’s suicide blog. Because…if you read the comments people leave on her blog (and there are SO many) you’ll see this incredible range of reaction. Of course some are sympathetic. Some want to exploit this by asking for an interview. And others are (big surprise!) hateful and lame and suggest good and creative ways to kill herself. Lots of people suggest she do a shit-load of drugs and have lots of unprotected sex because, well, if you’re already at day 83, what does it matter? I kind of suspect it’s a reflection of the sort of vapid people who troll the internet (and I am guilty as charged) more than anything else. I mean, these people are who make this newsworthy:

  • Gravy, Speed Datin’, and an Asian Girl with an Eye Patch

    So. Sunday was Gravy Day and I think it was perfect because I was busy doing nothing but recovering from Friday and Saturday nights. We all were. Angela was in the kitchen in an apron by the time I reached Sasha’s house and before I even got in the front door I could smell the sausage a-simmering. There’s something so happy about that. And boy, it was so wrong what we were doing: sitting down to eat gravy, but it was that good, mischievous kind of “I-hope-we-don’t-get-caught” feeling—like smoking cigars in high school.

     

    I actually brought the tater tots. Sasha made the biscuits. Angela whipped up some hash browns and later, Michelle brought out a taco salad to “healthy” it up. So, except for some lettuce, our meal was varying shades of brown/gray. And writing this makes me feel a little ill, but at the time it was freakin’ splendid.

    Behold:

     

    I don’t know all these mystical spices crazy Angela used, but I do know sausage and bacon were involved—it is after all an ancient, secret Chinese-Texan recipe. We ate and watched an America’s Next Top Model—an irony that I am only privy to right now. Then we played like hours of video games. We sang karaoke and played Dance Dance Revolution, Guitar Hero and Britney’s Dance Moves. I think we did this to feel better about what we had just done. Eaten sauce for a main course.

     

    Saturday I did buck up and venture out into the Mission. The place we went to for glasses and glasses of wine was good. We all tried to drink our way around the world and hit all the continents/countries on the wine list but I only really went to France and Greece. Every recommendation our little server gave was terrible, but it’s wine and we’re not snobs so we drank it. Plus, we were distracted by our conversations about white water rafting, speed dating, and whether or not one of the girls should meet some possibly gay guy she’d met on the internet. Most of us voted yes, but she backed out anyway.

     

    Incidentally, speed dating sounds terrible. My friend has gone to a couple of these events. She said you basically get a number and travel from seat to seat and have a 3-minute get-to-know-ya conversation with some dude. The three minutes is either too short or far too long. Upon just seeing this person for the first time, you’re supposed to write “Y” or “N” on some form they give you. Then you talk. I guess you’re supposed to keep a tally and at the end you enter all this info into the computer at home and you can see who picked you and whether you denied them which seems kind of mean. Most of them were undatable, she said. And three of them were cross-eyed.

     

    Speaking of…Mario and Grover were walking around outside of the Girl’s Night Out bar and they saw amazing things. First was an Asian girl with an eye patch and a white beret. This to me is killer. She has stolen my look for ’08. I’m only partly joking. I like eye patches. Then they saw a bum with a mullet playing a guitar and singing the Spiderman theme song for an audience of…wait for it…other bums. Grover also got his nose smooshed by a crazy pool playing Indian dude in the bar who said, “You have a sexy nose…no, no, no, no.” Some people have all the luck.

  • R.I.P. Eddie “Bozo” Miller, It’s All Gravy, and the Tenderloin Revisited

    I like to troll the obits sometimes for interesting stories.  I’m not really all that morbid—I just think sometimes they can be very interesting.  A couple of weeks ago there was a picture of a man with an eye patch and I was compelled to read his very long entry all about his affinity for the sea and making model ships in bottles.  It could not have been more perfect.  Today I happened to see a short news story about how Eddie “Bozo” Miller died at age 89.  That is a fairly long life for a man “known for his amazing capacity for food consumption.”  Apparently he ate 27 2-pound chickens in one sitting as part of a bet. 

     

    This past week I got an Evite from my friend asking me to come over and eat some country gravy.  This is the first time I’ve ever gotten an invitation like this and so I had to reply “yes.”  I think I said I’d wear my stretchy pants and possibly a scrunchie and my fake Uggs.  I want to be comfy as I eat this gravy which I’ve only had once before but I do know is amazing.  The other girls plan on eating it like soup which I find very disturbing.  Shouldn’t it be like…on something?  It is a sauce after all.  I was told I could bring biscuits if I must.

     

    I had a terrible semi-drunken dream last night.  I was in a large, beautiful house in, I think, India and somehow a toucan got in and before I knew it, it was eating the baby parrot I loved so much. I kept screaming, “No, not the baby!  Eat the mom instead!”  I also had lots of dreams about swarms of ants and I really hated it. 

     

    Tonight is Girl’s Night Out in the Mission.  For the longest I boycotted the Mission, or the “Mish” as I heard it called by disgusting non-native hipsters, because well, I didn’t feel cool enough.  I still don’t.  And then I think….wait a sec.  I was born here.  I know what the Mission was like before the dot-com invasion.  I know that Taqueria Cancun does not necessarily have the bomb-est burritos.  So, funk all that noise—I have some native rights here, don’t I?

     

    Maybe what I need to do is explore some different part of the City.  The Marina is out.  The Sunset’s too far out.  Downtown can be overwhelming.  SOMA?  I can learn to like the Tenderloin, I suppose.  The TL and I have an interesting relationship.  Mostly I hate it, but it does provide some amusement.  Mario gets mad when I walk down Hyde from his.  He walked with me the other day and, despite my assertion that it is relatively safe (especially when raining), we saw just oodles of crackheads looking for their next hop fix.  I saw nuns, too, so that made me feel okay.  Anyhow, I got a semi-anonymous email from someone in the Tenderloin that reads:

     

    Subject:  Hello from Kiyoshi in the Tenderloin

     

    You look like someone I know. I am sitting here in my new apartment looking down at the city and doing searches on my space for tenderloin girl. lol

    My name is kiyoshi and if you want to chat let me know. My myspace profile has nothing, I am 30 and I make music and I played where is my mind by the pixies for a talent show when I was in the tenth grade. I plyed drums and this girl sang. My friend byron was on guitar. Many acid trips later I became a producer. Well I hope you dont know anyone I know. If you do then fuck off I never even knew you.

     

    I don’t even know when it was that I became a freak-magnet, but I suspect it was long ago because I barely batted an eyelash. 

  • Teeny Weenies, the Heart of a Warrior and Getting Foked!

    New Year’s Day was Oshogatsu, a freakin’ delicious but labor intensive day of sushi-making and consuming.  The fear in the hearts of sweet little old Japanese grandmothers everywhere is that this traditional will soon be lost.  No one knows how to make traditional sushi anymore.  Seriously, when did all these super freaky rolls start hitting the big time?  Like, why put corn chips in a roll?  Really?  Or fried chicken fingers or gobs of pink mayo.  Do not misunderstand me here.  I love all that shit.  But sushi has lost its way.  It’s become some weird, bastardized fat-American concoction.  For shame.

     

    So I try to watch and learn.  Little Granny Kimi is depending on me.  Mind you, there are a lot of distractions.  This is the only time of year I see certain very eccentric members of my family.  My cousin, who rarely comes home, was in rare form.  He showed me his Zippo with the kanji for “Honor” on the front.  I was like, “dude, I didn’t know you smoked!”  And he said, “Oh no.  Not me.  But like they say, ‘it’s always good to be prepared’.”  He always talks in cliché.   It’s unbelievable.  He will hold entire conversations without using a single original statement.  “I picked this one because my other choice was ‘Luck’ and you know what they say about Luck—‘it’s a flimsy ally.’”  I should also mention he is a collector of weapons and a believer in the Force.  He talked to my brother about his most favorite Star Wars video games.  He’s one of the nicest guys I know.

     

    Some of the other kooks in the family are just plain whacked.  But they give me such great material.  It’s all up there in my head.  One day to be memorialized.  Like today.  My mother’s cousin (I just make it simple and call him uncle) is also a strong believer in the Force.  He’s one of those people who leers at you creepily, just waiting for you to say something he might have an opinion about.  And he’ll give it shamelessly.    Jerk squad.  He caught me unawares and chewed my ear off for about 20 minutes about corporations who have far too many VPs.  I don’t even know how we got on that topic.

     

    I was trying hard to play good hostess and walked on into the living room with a tray of  Lil’ Smokies in BBQ sauce and said, “Teeny Weenie anyone?”  “Yeah thanks, but I have one right here.”  Points at crotch.  Yikes.  My 7-foot-tall physical therapist uncle.  Rough crowd.

     

    Thinking about my cousin the Honorable Warrior made me think about a fellow Warrior of note—the Ultimate Warrior.  Yes, the WWF Ultimate Warrior.  I was way into wrestling as a kid.  I even went to a couple matches at the Cow Palace and lost my purse and $5 once.  Anyhow, my friend Andrew told me all about how the Ultimate Warrior wrote a comic book called…what else…WARRIOR.  By all accounts it was ridiculous and a huge failure.  He’d introduce characters that you never saw again.  None of the books picked up where the last one left off.  It centered around the state of Destrucity which was not only a physical place but a state of being as well.  Awesome.  Very deep.  An excellent and informative article can be found at http://www.i-mockery.com/minimocks/warrior-xmas/.  The whole point of this, aside from thinking about all the Warriors I know and am related to, is that in one issue the Warrior talks about getting foked.  There’s an editor’s note at the bottom of the page which reads something like “Foked = focused.”  I am all about getting foked.  Seriously, I have a serious foke-deficiency.  I need to make up word like that.

  • Stakin’ out the Pervs, Bacon, and the Edge of the Yoniverse

    When I was a little younger and less, oh I don’t know, voracious, my friend Margs and I came up with a list of fat girl qualities.  It went like, “You know you’re a fat girl when you…” and for some reason the only one that really stands out is “…pick a crumb off your shirt and eat it.”  Margs came up with that one.  We laughed about it for days.  I think we were talking about it as we were eating M&M cookies from the Castro Safeway.  We used to buy them and drive around Golden Gate Park at night looking for pervs.  That sounds so sickening and creepy, but we pretended we were on stakeouts and it was kind of fun.  We were bored, what can I say??  And we did spot a few.

     

    So anyhow, today I came up with a new one.  “You know you’re a fat girl when you are overwhelmed when the package you open from your boyfriend’s parents is a three pound slab of bacon!”  I kid you not.  It was freakin’ moving.  I got wind this “present” was coming but I wasn’t prepared for feeling so overwhelmed.  So I had to call them and say thanks and I felt like a total tard for going on about this bacon like I did.  Mar’s mom told me it was my Christmas present and I thought that was sweet.  It really is the simple things.

     

    It’s nice when you find others who are as passionate about lovely food as you are.  Today Romeo actually said, “I love lentil soup. I want to take it behind a middle school and get it pregnant.”  Damn.  He is so dead-on.  I don’t even think I could top that if I tried.  It happens a lot.

     

    Today I got a call from my off-duty coworker.  He told me his friend, this girl who frequently dresses up like a mermaid, completed her very epic vagina painting.  He’d told me about it a while ago.  I guess she took a photo of it and had been rendering it for some time.  He emailed it to me but warned that it might be too large and could crash my computer.  Jesus.  So, I opened it at work anyway.  It was large, I guess.  There were stars and other galactic things shooting out of it.  It was groovy.  There were some Buddhist monks collaged in too.  She called it her “Yoniverse.”  My coworker told me that this painting is surely going to open doors for this girl.  A Goddess friend of his is already lined up for her own Yoniverse painting.  I think she means to customize each yoni to really reflect the person it belongs to. 

     

    I wonder if this is going to be lucrative.  I told my mom about it and she wondered about the medium the girl was using.  “Body paint?”, she asked.  I had to explain that it was not a yoni print, but a yoni painting.  I still don’t think she’s so clear on the concept.

  • Hysterical Blindness and Interesting Undies

    My brother’s taking some lovely do-gooder conservation class at Cal which teaches all about the many wonders of the natural world and how we are destroying basically everything. He has to give group presentations in this class. This last group he got saddled with a blind girl. Before you call me a blind basher, just listen. I’m not like an acquaintance of mine who used to play chicken with blind people walking down the street just to make sure they weren’t lying. This girl in this group of my brother’s seems to be having a hard time with her disability. She has a helper…her mom. She’s also got a Napoleon Dynamite voice and she’ll say things like, “Mom, give me my walking stick–I don’t want to fall down–LIKE LAST TIME!” or “No mom, I don’t ‘see what you mean’–I’M BLIND!

    My brother thinks her mother does her classwork for her. They recently had to turn in a group paper and she had to write a couple pages about the conservation plan for a plant called Gooch’s Lousewort and another called Paul’s Pondweed. I wish I studied shit like this in college. She turned in 4 lines. Each line contained about 5 words. Words that didn’t make much sense. It went something like:

    We must protect Gooch’s Lousewort and Paul’s Pondweed. They are endangered. Cows often graze on these plants. They eat them, too.

    So, as you can see, this wasn’t very much help. It isn’t like I’m being an ass about her being blind. Point is, dammit, you’re in college. Pull some weight and maybe try a little? She has to give a speech and her mom is going to design some special bumpy cards she can use in case she loses her place. Ingenious.

    I read a story in the paper today all about the Nutty Buddy–an athletic cup that comes in various sizes: the Hammer, the Boss, the Hog and for the extra-specially endowed, the Mongo. The Mongo sounds awesome. Here’s a link to some demo:

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6C9aiWr0Vfg&rel=1]

    That Mark Littell is a real hick. He just had to ask that poor high school girl if those baseballs were hard. Yikes. And by the way, why is this news?

    While we’re on the topic of crotches, Mario was walking down the street just the other day when two cougars passed by wearing short fur coats and fur-lined boots and mini skirts. Hotness.

    Cougar A: Did I tell you I got some cashmere panties?? Cougar B: No. Cougar A: They’re really soft. Cougar B: Don’t they make your vagina sweat?

    I love public conversations. It’s right up there with the time I heard a woman ask her elderly mom if she had to poop in the mall.

  • With a Thickness and Beaver Bashing 101

    The other day my friend Kristen and I talked about her night in the Haight and how some dude tried to holler at her.  This conversation literally took about an hour what with the research and all:

     

    Kristen: “ooohhh gurl….you thick, you make the black girls jealous! You got a black girls ass! I wanted to tell him white girls aren’t so fond of being called “thick”

    KatherineHAHAHAHAHAHAdude.  come onyou are no way thickyou got a booty but you’re itty bitty

    Kristen: I know! Booty yes, calling me thick!  I just laughed though,   and then I got a few feet farther, another OG…”girl you a superstar” .  Few blocks farther a minivan pulled over asking if I had weed.  it was quite an experience crossing through lower haight.

    Katherine: damn. sounds freakin sweet

    Kristen:  did you know thick means curvy?

    Katherine: hmmmmm

    Kristen: thats what Wayne says

    Katherine: ive always heard it mean well…thick and curvylike thick is goodbut thick doesn’t really describe you because you’re not chubby!!!!

    Kristen: he’s telling me beyonce is thick.

    Katherine: hmmmmmi guess sometimes she isi always just think thick means you’re solid and you got t&amucho t&a

    Kristen: me too.  I imagine like….hmm, J LO but maybe not even.  Janet when she’s bigger I always thought thick meant meaty.  Wayne is like you gotta have meat to have curves

    Katherine: maybe we should start a websiteam i thick or not?

    Kristen: That would be fun.  It would be interesting to get everyone’s take on what is thick

    Katherine: i agreeim also going to have to blog about you getting called thick in the haight

    Kristen: Go right ahead.  ok, according to Urban dictionary thick is: 1. nice ass, nice legs, not skinny, with meat on your bones. thickness is the shit.   2. A woman with a perfect body, filled-in in places that are, by nature, designed to attract the opposite sex, such as the thighs, the hips, the breasts, and the most lovely part of all, the booty.

    Katherine: damn.  i think i want to be thick now

    Kristen: ha and 3. in England this means a person is stupid.e.g ‘1+4 isn’t 6,don’t be so thick’ ‘are you thick! don’t put your finger there’. originally thick head,or fat head but thick sounds better. if your an american in england, calling a girl thick will not go down well.it will mean that you think she is a dumb arse.   I like this definition: “A female or even a male who has a very nice curvy shape. Or a nice way of some mean person saying someone is fat without offending them. More than likely it is a girl who has nicely sized hips, thighs, legs, breasts, and booty. But what the misunderstanding is that they have all these things and a small waist… that’s not always the case. Someone can be a size 16 and be thick while another person can be that size and be fat. It mostly depends on a girl’s height. Get That Right, A’ight?!!”

     Yes.  People actually have conversations like that.  And yes, we have these conversations on company time.  We use the internet to research topics such as thickness, slab bacon, and the most effective way to skin a squirrel.  This was the only crummy diagram I could find.  I got too lazy:

    I think in some survivalist guides you can find much more helpful diagrams.  I know my US Army Survival Manual is extremely detailed.  There are lists of ways to kill lots of different animals.  For opossums it says: “Catch by tail; club when possible.”  The worst I think might be the poor beaver: “Wait for the beaver to come on land, then club it, drop kick it, hit it with a rock, or catch it by the tail.  It is a sturdy animal, so if you catch it by the tail, swing it in a pendulum motion until it begins to relax, then swing it against a tree or the ground or use a noose to kill it…”  I swear that is what it says.  Clearly this has been time-tested and studied for efficacy.

    At one point I wanted to be able to survive in the wild.  I don’t know that I’d have the heart to.

     

     

  • Just Saying No and Saintly Aspirations…or How Catholic School Traumatized Me Part I

    Why is it so hard to say ‘no’ to certain things?  I don’t have a hard time telling people ‘no’ when it comes to things like, ‘hey, wanna go all the way?’ or ‘do you need a receipt?’ ‘would you like some fresh ground black pepper?’ or ‘are those real?’. 

    But then last Saturday some Jehovah’s Witnesses saw me through the front door my brother left open and instead of telling them (as is always my plan) that I am a high ranking member of the Church of Satan or some kind of severe sexual deviant and please leave me alone, I got roped into talking to them and even took one of their warning pamphlets full of scary comics.  They must like illustrations for some reason.  When I was a kid at catholic school they gave us this comic book about some girl they wanted to make into a saint for some reason.  Laura Vicuna, I think she was called.  She was Chilean and lived on some ranch with her mom who was sort of slutty and was living in sin with some abusive rancher guy.   I guess Laura kept telling her mom to quit her wicked, sexy ways and find god but she refused and the mean, evil old rancher guy beat Laura to death when she was sick with a cold.  Hard core, right?  We were kids for crying out loud.   So, for this she was nominated for sainthood. 

    Oh, saints.  Talk about people who have a hard time saying no.  Mostly to pain.  One time my pop took my to church on one of the holy days before Easter and all they did was read aloud all the horrendous ways different saints died.  It was almost comical because a lot of them died in very original and creative ways.  Falling off rocks and roofs—ripping out their own eyes and other horrible tortures.  One of the star saints in the parish was this little masochistic boy who would put sharp rocks in his shoes because, he thought, if Jesus could die for my sins, the least I can do is feel a little pain.  Damn.  Really?  I just Googled ‘saint deaths weird’ and St. Mungo popped up.  He didn’t die in a weird way but his name is weird enough and when he got old he supposedly had to hold his limp, saggy chin up with a bandage.  Anyhow, that was a boring church visit.

    I got a call from my friend Manellie from high school.  She told me she finally graduated from medical school in the Bahamas and did I want to come to her party?  As nice as she is, I know the only reason she invited me was because she had dialed my phone number by accident and got nervous and didn’t know what else to talk about.  She casually mentioned she’d had a kid last year.  Then she asked if I still kept in touch with Shizu and could I please tell her that Manellie says “hi” and then insisted I tell her that she thanks her for raising her awareness and consciousness and that she still boycotted things like grapes because of her.  She wanted me to stress that. 

     Getting a medical degree and having a baby are fine accomplishments.  I always feel weird when people tell me these things because I feel like a super rough sketch of what I’m supposed to be.  So, the more I thought about it, the less enticing this party seemed.  Babies.  Doctors.  Husbands.  Lawyers.  I found myself having to say yes.  And then I thought on it some more and took the weak-ass, lame way out and texted her my apologies and I think she hates my guts now.   I say no at all the wrong times.

  • Bra Party Etiquette and Saluting Men of Genius

        Last Saturday my ma and I piled into the family car and headed to her friend Betty’s house for a good old fashioned bra party.  Yep.  You sit around drinking wine and wait for your turn to be fitted for The Perfect Bra.  Sounds great right?  So, like, first you have to sit through a presentation about who developed this company and why and what products they have.  I guess they are really proud that Oprah wears their sports bra.  They passed it around for all to see—a massive, oppressive, elastic suit of armor for the bigger gal.  There wasn’t much room for boobage, but I guess at least you can rest assured those babies aren’t going anywhere.

     

                They make you take a couple foil sticky stars—the kind your teacher gives you for being real sweet in the first grade—and stick them to your shirt so we can all see where your nipples are.  I got handed the sticker sheet first.  I hate to admit it, but I had to look.  I had some idea and all, but I wanted to be really accurate.  Exercises such as these make for some very awkward moments.  Most of the women there had a hard time with star placement.  Some of those stars were riding mighty low.  One woman had a hard time because she only had one breast after her mastectomy.  And everyone’s stars kept falling off.

                When it’s your turn you head to the bedroom and the fitter takes your measurements and gives you a few to try.  She then comes in and looks at you.  She taps her chin and really considers whether too much spillage is occurring.  Maybe the bra is just too big.  She helps you adjust the boob just so for the perfect fit and then asks you how many you want.  The fitter took this opportunity to ask me all about my mom being sick, which is always such a cherished conversation.  Especially with total strangers. Who are looking at me in my bra and trying to sell me microfiber thongs in the 4-pack.  I think I changed the subject and, just so I could get out of there, I bought two very expensive bras I’m not even sure I liked.  She said they gave good lift. 

                Throughout the afternoon she’d send certain women down to show us their newly improved racks.  Most of their stars appeared to have sunk to their tummies.  It was truly mind-blowing. 

     

                We have come to the section of the blog where I have decided to honor men and women of genius.  Genius honestly abounds—we just don’t readily acknowledge it.  And maybe that really just points to deficiencies within each and every one of us.  Take my uncle Gummo* for example.  He is allergic to Windex.  I mean, he had very bad Windex-poisoning which involved tingly hands, nausea, and general yuckiness.  I didn’t know this was possible until my brother told me he got a Gummo lecture about using non-organic household cleaners instead of expensive spray orange oil.  My brother also got scolded for using some kind of nasty spray bug killer to massacre hundreds of god’s creatures.  Gummo, I am happy to report, has invented an eco-friendly ant trap.  And for that reason, I honor him here. 

     

        To make your very own eco-friendly ant trap you must first take an empty plastic salsa container and you cut a little hole in the top.  Then you stir up some honey and boric acid.  And there, my friend, you have it.  It completely doesn’t work but maybe these things just take time. 

     

        The other man of genius I want to honor is my cousin, Numbnut*.  He is a self-proclaimed genius.  He recently told my grandma that he is a genius.  I’ve determined that we have to amend of our traditional notions of genius.  Sometimes genius means getting into half a dozen car crashes (sometimes with and sometimes without insurance), “surprise” babies, and dropping out of state college to sell steak knives.  I think sometimes people are just too smart to live normal lives.  My grandma said he looked at her after telling her all about his supreme intellect like he thought she should give him some money.

     

    If only I had me some smarts.

     

    *Names have been changed to protect geniuses.