• 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.



    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.

  • 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:


    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.



  • 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.

  • Drunks, Baby Jessica–Holler at Me Girl, and Inventions

    We haven’t had much luck with our temp service.  Last time they sent us a very slow typist with bad breath.  She was a bitch as well.  Not soon after that, we were sent an alcoholic John Denver look alike named John.  I didn’t notice it the first day he worked, but the second day he reeked like the reekiest shitter in the smelliest bar.  Not too unlike R Bar.  I thought I was making it up so I walked out of the office and then back in again a few times and each time I was hit with a wall of funk.  And he moaned and coughed and burped throughout the day.  I counted as he got up to get about 7 glasses of water.  He only peed once.  What can I say, it’s a small office after all.  Plus I had no real amusement since my usual office-mate Esteban was gone to New York to have strange, older adult debaucheries.


    I contemplated telling but I felt like a snitch.  And in our line of work, snitches is bitches.  For real.  But I hit some limit (I think it may have been the moaning)  and told the attorney “the temp is drunk.”  He said he thought he’d smelled it the other day but wasn’t sure.  Then he told the office manager who told me she thought she’d smelled him last month when he’d worked at the office.  AND I caught him on MySpace.  I think he may have been trolling for lovely young men.  I sound so hateful and I’m really not.  It was actually really terrible.  The kind of terrible that you kind of have to laugh at.


    The other day Grammy’s attorney told her something like, “did you know that the way cat’s can tell if they’ll fit someplace is with their whiskers?”,  and then proceeded to tell her about the science of whiskers in relation to fatness.  “It’s too bad Baby Jessica didn’t have whiskers, huh?”  That totally didn’t get the response Grammy was hoping for.  Then we got to thinking about this Baby Jessica girl.  What the hell ever happened to her?  She’s like 20-something now.  I wonder if you ever shed that crummy image as that poor dumb baby who fell down a well and got stuck.  Everytime I close my eyes and think of Baby J, I see that dirty little baby with a bandaged forehead.  I think she had casts as well. 


    I did a little poking around on the internet and found a virtual online SHRINE to Baby Jessica, the sweet little baby who united a town, and warmed the hearts of the nation.  And you know it had to have been made years after this thing happened since the internet wasn’t invented until Baby J was at least in Jr. high.  I wonder if she is on MySpace.  I want her to be my friend.  I want to ask her about her life, and she’d better be doing something fabulous after all the trouble the townspeople went through.


    Speaking of inventions, I was having drinks with my cougar-friend and she turned to me out of nowhere and said, “I have an excellent idea for an invention!”  Inventions are great, don’t get me wrong, but for some reason, I always find myself on the verge of peeing in my pants when people start to describe them.  Because usually, they get super excited and you want to be nice about it, but the inventions are crazy.  I mean, sometimes a genius invention gets invented–like the iron lung or pre-cooked pound bags of bacon—but usually inventors are crazy people who invent crap you don’t really need.  Like any annoying exercise equipment or things like Zima or Beanie Babies.  So all of this is running through my head and she says, “you know when you go to the doctor and they tell you to get undressed,” this was already hilarious, “and they do not have hangars for you?  Well, what if you could sort of—I don’t even know how you could do this, but, what if you could carry your own special hanger with a pouch for your panties?”  I honestly don’t really see this as a problem that needs to be solved.  “I just put my clothes on the chair with the rest of my stuff.”  “WHAT?!  Do you know what kinds of FILTH and GERMS are on those chairs?!”  So this conversation went on and on and she determined that there is a real need for this type of thing and she could make a million dollars with this grand idea and I will be sorry when she does and she can finally retire and not worry about having to cougarize any young prospects.  That might be nice for a change.    

  • Crabs Happen

    I had to have some blood drawn at the doctor’s the other day.  It’s a real pain in the ass because you have to wait for all the old people ahead of you to pull out their IDs, argue, refuse to pay and misunderstand everything they’re told.  I waited and went around to the lab and waited and then got seated and waited some more.  The phlebotomist was busy with another patient and I could hear him, humming away and suddenly I started to think about how gnarly the series finale of M*A*S*H was.  The chicken was a baby?!


    I realized the phlebotomist was humming the theme song.  “M*A*S*H, huh?”  “‘Suicide is Painless.'”  Yikes.   “Well, good, I know I’m not crazy.”  “Neither am I!”  His response was weird and then I got to thinking, he’s new here, what if he’s a psycho and instead of just drawing my blood, he gave me some weird blood-borne virus?  It could happen. 


    On my way home from the doctor’s I got stuck behind some slow pickup truck bearing the bumper stickers “Real Men Love Jesus” and “I Pray, Get Over It!”.  He was an angry, masculine Christian, so what?  So he drove like a freakin’ idiot.  And he didn’t see me tailgating him like an asshole madwoman for like a mile.  And then I couldn’t take it anymore and I honked and the angry Christian whipped around and gave me the freakiest, most hate-filled stare I’ve ever gotten–swear.  It was like Satanas himself was givin’ me the old hairy eyeball.  So, the only thing I could come up with was flipping him the Bird with a fierceness!  This only made him angrier and his Christian girlfriend got in on the act and stared me down and I kept on honking and then I thought, now what awesomely witty thing can I scream out the window as I pass them by?  “Stop praying and start driving?”  Hella weak.  And when the time came for me to put them straight, all I could say was, “why don’t you learn to drive asshole!”  Super weak.    


    Speaking of weak, I was shopping in a weak store called Rave or something turbo-teen like that, and this Indian man was in there with his kids and his (very obvious) new girlfriend picking out clothes for her.  This always bothers me.  He even stuck his head in the dressing room to make sure the crap he picked fit properly.  He picked such winners as skin tight white lace-up jeans and a crocheted halter.  Hoo-chi-fy your life!


    My ex-law firm has collectively adopted a baby.  This concept is new to me.  I think it might be similar to maybe sponsoring a race car?  Or maybe a spot of rainforest.  Maybe it’s like when you and a group of friends go in on something really cool like a Wii or maybe a cute little puppy and then you fight over who gets to take it home.  Only with a kid, you know no one is going to reserve him during his icky, asshole teenage years.  It might be more of a punishment for poor attorney performance.


    Yesterday was as perfect a day as they come in San Francisco and so Mar and I took a drive out to Pacifica Pier—the scene of the infamous seagull on my thigh attack—and we watched Filipino kids fishing for crabs.  They’d lower down this netty thing loaded with fishy bait and wait for crabs to happen.  They really just wasted their time and fishy bait since, just below them, was a super fat seal chillin like a vato.  They’d notice he’d eaten their bait and set another crab trap and lower it down only to forget about the seal and so on.  It was the greatest thing I’ve seen.


    It has replaced the vision of the crow flying at me and Mar with a rat in his mouth.  Then he dropped it over the railing onto the freeway.  That was the number one greatest thing I’d seen for a very long time.

  • Strangers with Candy

    Did you know that Smokey Robinson has his own line of frozen dinners? I didn’t either. Not only is he an accomplished song writer and singer with groovy green eyes, but he has now joined the ranks of Mama Celeste, Marie Callendar and Linda McCartney. Good job, I say.


     I keep a little notebook full of ideas for blogs and “to-dos” and thangs. But sometimes I just list off a bunch of random bits that, a month and a half later, make no sense. Here’s what I’ve got for 3/5/07: breaching whales, mall horror, cow birds, and Mexican kidnapping.  Also on 3/5/07, ” ‘White Boy’ flossing his teeth with Marianna’s hair.” That I do remember. My friend Wayne suggested we head to The Holding Co. for goodbye drinks for a friend of ours because, “nothing ever happens there.” It just so happens that was wrong and we encountered a slew of crazy characters including one who reminded me of White Boy from “I Love New York”. If you don’t know who this is, you will. I sense star power. So, this crazy White Boy comes in the bar swinging a trophy over his head, his tie undone and his shirt untucked. I think he came and sat at our table because he saw Wayne—the only black guy around for probably 5 blocks. I think the first thing he said when he plopped down drunk as hell was, “I’m the ghetto-est white guy you ever met.” And then he told us he was from Vallejo, so automatically, we gave him some ghetto points.


    As is the custom, Marianna got accosted by this crazy drunk and he actually flossed his teeth with her hair. Accidentally. And when he pulled away he said, “Damn, I think there’s a piece of meat in your hair!” Are you freakin’ kidding me? Who the hell does this happen to?  I forgot to mention that as he was talking to us at, his gum fell out of his mouth and on to the table. He picked it up and flung it over his shoulder and it almost hit a waitress. I think the excitement of winning the coveted office trophy got to him. I can’t even imagine what it was for.


    Right. And the next note-to-self entry would be 4/1/07. “St. Stupid’s Day.” Right! So, I was hanging out with Jim at the beach and we were watching this angry man angrily fly his kite. She thought the kite might have been an extension of his penis in some way and he was demonstrating how adept he was at using it. He was an exhibitionist, she said. I didn’t really get that. But it gave me the lamest idea. I texted Mario to tell him “With Lisa (Jim) at the hospital. Will call you.” Of course he called me worried and I made up this story that Lisa got stoned at the beach and walked too close to a maniac flying his kite and the kite string…it cut a slice of her face off! It was a terrible April Fool’s Day.


    The thing is that weird things do happen and Jimbo does often get herself into weird situations like getting skunked or losing her phone on the sidewalk or getting forced to feed feral cats by a feral cat enthusiast.  The other day she was trying to feed the meter and somehow this was confusing because she was trying to stuff quarters into the keyhole of her car door.  The one thing about Jim that is amazing is her unrivalled driving skills as I really appreciate someone who can smoke a bowl while avoiding a cop and getting us to “Strangers with Candy—the Movie” on time.


    Unfortunately her car is the Doggie-Deathmobile.  Mar and I got in the other day and there was an inch-thick layer of dirty dog pelt covering the whole interior.  There was mud too.  And I began to die and I think that’s when I lost my sense of smell again.  For a while she used to glitterize her car and would glue weird funny little shrines all over the inside and when we’d drive with the windows open the glitter would kick up and we’d come out looking shiny as hell.  It is a weird world—Jim says we’re like the girls in “Beautiful Creatures” only slightly less homicidal. 


    The last few words in my little notebook?  “Lunging madwoman, ugly art, an unfortunate man.”  I think I know what I was referring to, but I’ll save that for another day.

  • The Cruelty of Nature

    Nature can be cruel. I inherited three birds from The Genie a few years ago. They were his mom’s birds and he hates the idea of animals in cages so he decided he’d let them fly free—only they have clipped wings so, really, they’d just be doomed. I took these rowdy birds and they ended up killing my poor canary by stressing him out. There’s a lone, angry female love bird and there were two budgies. I came home one day and the prettier of the two was lying stiff as plaster on the bottom of the cage. I think the other two jerks had stressed him out as well. Bird hearts are very fragile.

    It’s amazing that this bitchy love bird has lived without a mate—I think they usually die when their mate dies. She still nests and lays pitiful empty eggs. The other day I caught the budgie and the love bird trying to mate. I guess it has finally come to this—I guess we all do unfortunate things when we get lonely.

    Speaking of, every time I visit my grandmothers—who are so clearly hard-up for some serious company—I get to learn things about them that really pushes the limits of what I consider disturbing. In this way, I have really learned tolerance. I have also learned of neat things I have to look forward to as a very old person. And I have learned that my grannies are neat but really weird. Yesterday my grandmother told my brother about a time when she was nursing and milk poured out of her nipples like waterfalls. This is the same granny who told me she often wondered whether old people got white pubes. This grandmother has taught me honesty.

    The other grandmother is constantly embattled. Cost Co. recently over-charged her account by something like $8.00. She got my grandfather to drive her over so she could yell at them. But the whole way over she sort of cried to herself—whimpers, I guess. And then when they got there, she got her game face on and yelled in broken english until they reimbursed her. This grandmother also likes tests of endurance. She is constantly falling down. She fell down the stairs recently. All the way from the top to the bottom and hit her head all along the way. Amazingly, she didn’t break a single bone, but did manage to snag prescription pain killers. In addition to her tests of will and endurance, she likes to test her memory. Apparently she hides things from herself and others—like keys and important papers—and then tries to remember where she’s put them. My grandfather recently found a key hidden under an apple. My grandmother is brave.

    I am not brave. I’m actually kind of dumb sometimes. This stems from uber-boredness I sometimes experience in those periods of time between my really awesome and fun times. You know, lulls. So, I decided recently to glue fake nails on so I could pretend to look really cha-cha and like I don’t work with my hands. But I have really narrow nail beds and so the nails all sort of looked too big and then I painted them and they only looked worse. So, before my tax appointment I decided to take them off. The instructions tell you to submerge your nails in acetone until the nails “melts” off. I didn’t have that kind of time. So, I pried and bit and did everything I could before I had to make that damn appointment. This was a very bad idea. I ended up with half-melty nails and I’d have to shake this guy’s hand and talk taxes and I decided to wear some knit gloves to hide my monstrous hands. I felt like a damn leper! I ended up taking off one of the gloves because it was a hot day and I lost it. This hand was covered in black fuzz. Sometimes there is just no winning.

  • Good-for-nothing cats, goddesses and headsets, and feeling awful grateful for my senses

    Last night I had the dreamiest dream. I was dating Johnny Depp. He was way into me and I was the belle of the Hollywood ball! And then Harry Dean Stanton’s kid fell off some platform we were all on. We were standing in line for something. Julia Roberts was behind me. Anyhow, Harry Dean Stanton didn’t seem too phased that his kid had died. His wife didn’t either. She turned to leave and gave me a “Hollywood kiss” which basically involved her aggressively air kissing me until I had a bruise on my lip. And right as Johnny was about to tell me something really important, Kiki ran across my legs and jolted me wide awake! Cats are good for nothing but ruining perfectly sexy moments.

    I have to just note quickly before I forget, that lovely and interesting people (read: freaks!) abound not only in the City, but in the areas outside of the San Francisco Bay Area at large. See, I’m thinking of two recent incidents in particular. Or maybe three, if I count today. Mar and I popped into some breakfast joint in St. Helena not too long ago and sat next to some crunchy-granola types who sat and read the paper and commented on the amusing stories of hard-knock life on the mean streets of wine country. The chick ordered some egg white omelet and fruit salad and hash browns (because, like drinking Diet Pepsi with your #7 Taco Bell value meal, one good meal item offsets all the other crap) and when it came, she actually paused to say, “thank you goddess for this food.” She made the guy pause, too. For some reason this annoyed me to no end. Give me a freakin’ break already! This goddess thing has gone too far. A couple of years ago, I met Grammy’s newlywed friends from L.A. This was the first time anyone was meeting her friend’s wife and we all collectively wondered where the hell one finds a woman like that. She told me that I needed to channel the goddess power within and go to my boss and work and ask for, no–DEMAND!!– a telephone headset, goddammit!…because I am deserving. I don’t know.


    And then this guy wants Mar to give him a tattoo, but first, could they both participate in a ceremony? Tattoos are more than just art—they are spiritual! He was almost militant in his 400 words-or-less explanation of what tattoos mean to him. Mar was going to erase the email but I had to know what all was involved in said ceremony. Candle lighting. Chanting. Nothing too involved. And we began to understand why this guy hadn’t found a tattooist yet.

    The third story involves more of a conventional-type freak so I am even loathe to explain, but as I was walking to my BART today, I had to pass the Art Institute and some obvious fashion students. You can always tell a fashion student in that crummy neighborhood especially—all the chicks look like really futuristic whores. And the whori-er of the two proclaims: “I have been eye-fucked the SHIT out of today!” Which just really resonated with me. Believe me, it isn’t hard to get looks in that neighborhood—especially if you have your teeth and matching shoes. The alternatives are hardly alternatives at all.

    So this eye-fucking business reminded me of this discussion I had with my co-worker not too long ago about poor Helen Keller. Did you know she wanted a boyfriend more than anything else? Maybe not anything, but dammit, I swear, you can’t see, you can’t hear, you at least have your sense of touch. She apparently had a love affair with some guy named Peter Fagan (yes, I did Google all of this), and they were even going to get married but her bitch of a mother wouldn’t allow it. For crying out loud—that’s just plain mean. My friend Kristin doesn’t think she’d have been much fun in bed…I quite disagree. I bet she was a powerhouse of fun. And I don’t mean any disrespect—I just think she’d have been amenable to certain things others might not. Also, she probably had a highly developed tactile ability. And taste and smell as well! All was not lost.

    I am grateful for my senses. They allow me to do things like take a City College swing dance class. It’s taught by a wonderful gay guy and his partner. AND you are allowed, regardless of sex, to decide whether you want to be a leader or a follower—terms that I find kinda lame especially since I am the latter. So, there are a couple guys that follow and one lesbian lady leader. She’s actually really good. You have to rotate so you dance with a variety of people and get a real feel for what it’s like out there on the swing dancing circuit where all skill levels meet on the dance floor. We got good enough to learn the “barn dance”–a nice slice of Americana—and I think I whooped it up a little too vigorously because today I had to wear my trusty jumbo back brace and walk around Civic Center feeling fat and disabled. At least my shoes matched.