Thursday, April 10, 2014


Today is one of those days where nothing on the to-do list is remotely interesting or fun, its all tedious chores that no one wants to do.  This includes having to go to the DMV.  How do you face a day like this?  I just want to go back to bed, but, to add a wrinkle, there are roofers banging around on my roof and jostling my house, so I don't feel like I can go back to bed and watch TV because what if they see me?  They're working their butts off on the roof, and I'm lounging around with the ladies of The View?  Same goes for taking a shower.  I don't want to be naked in my house when there's a bunch of guys going up and down ladders.  What if they punch a big hole in the roof of the bathroom and they're all waving at me in the shower, like, "hello, lady!"

I know this is a first world kind of day, but we first worlders are allowed to whine, a little bit, sometimes, about having to chat with the dishwasher repair man for the third time in three weeks while he tries to get the dishwasher to work.

And the DMV? That shit's not funny.  My front license plate disappeared from my car.  Now, I would be fine cruising around without a front plate, but my recent speeding ticket has made me paranoid, so I have to surrender the remaining license plate, and order a new one.  I wonder how much that's gonna cost me.

Oh, and Tuesday I did online traffic school.  Talk about a pain in the ass. Did you know that they've changed their minds about the 10 and 2 position?  All these years I've been driving recklessly at 10 and 2, and now they tell me is 9 and 3 or 8 and 4 because of the air bags.  I tried driving this way yesterday and, no sir, I did not like it.  It feels wrong.

So that's the short story of my upcoming day.  I also have to clean out the fridge, and I should organize my closet, but I just don't know if I can handle that today.  I'm in no mood.  I hope my dishwasher works and I perk up.  I just can not do any more dishes by hand.  Screw that.

How's your day?  Anything fun I can be jealous of?

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Missing: Bumble Bee Earrings

Rob and I are conducting an experiment.  Leila is sloppy youngster, like most youngsters, and cleaning her room is about the most oppressive thing that can happen to her.  She doesn't put away clean laundry, she doesn't put dirty laundry in the hamper, she leaves her crap all over the house, she loses homework and bike lock keys and her cell phone and her new earrings and all other sundry.  She sleeps under piles of clothes and books, and doesn't seem to mind.

So, Rob says, "I wonder how long it would take her to decide to clean her room on her own if we just didn't bring it up.  Let's find out."  I agreed, so here we are:  I haven't asked her, or bribed her, or insentivized her in any way to clean her room for about a week now.  The rule I have made up in my own mind is that I will take her stuff from around the house and her clean, lovingly folded laundry, put it in her room, and close the door.  If she can't find something, I'll say "I don't know where that is, you should check your room."  I'll let her know on Thursday that laundry day is Friday, and see what she comes up with.  If she runs out of clean underpants, too bad for her.  I'm keeping my mouth shut, and we'll see what happens.

This morning she asked if she could have a friend over this afternoon. I looked at the state of her room and almost said "No, your room's not clean and you wont have any space to hang out." But instead I said "sure."  Maybe her friend will tell her to not be such a slob, but I wont.  I will make her hang out in there, though; why should she enjoy my tidied living space when her room is a sty? She says she's lost her new bumble bee earrings, I'm sure they're buried in that shithole somewhere.  The cell phone is another matter.  She said "you'll probably kill me if I can't find it!" and I said, "no, you just wont have a cell phone anymore, and that will suck for you."

I don't know who this will be harder for, her or me.  Close the door, close the door, close the door...  How long do you think I can hold out?

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Her Menstrual Flower

Before I go any further here, I want you to know that I have permission from my daughter to tell you what I'm about to tell you.  I didn't even ask, she offered, saying "Aren't you gonna write about this in your blog?"  so here I go.

Leila got her period.

It started like this:  A little over a week ago, some girl at school told Leila about a movie called Human Centipede.  I'm not going to describe it, except to warn you that you should only look it up if you have a strong stomach and you think poo is funny, which I do.  Leila does not have a strong stomach, and gets her lack of poo humor from her father, so she came home from school and bawled her eyes out because just the description of the movie was so disgusting and disturbing. She came completely undone.  Then she threw up. Later in the evening, she got over the grossness of the movie by yelling "Bullshit!" in her head whenever she thought about it.  She said it made her feel powerful.  But she still slept in my bed, just in case, and kept on crying.

The next morning, the crying was back, as was the anxious stomach, and the lack of appetite.  She picked at some food, and mostly made it through the day, but she continued to cry - no wait - howl, every afternoon.  I kept her home from school one day because she threw up in the morning and I thought she might be sick, but she wasn't.  The crying went on for 6 days.  She alternated between not knowing why she was crying, and coming up with reasons like: she doesn't want me to ever die; she doesn't ever want to grow up and move out; one day her grandparents will be dead; what if she has an ulcer?  She just about broke my heart.

Then she called me at school on Wednesday and said "I got IT" and I prayed that the crying would be over.

Now, getting away from the crying for a second, I have been planning how to celebrate her first period and usher her into young womanhood (ew) since before she was born.  My mom's words of wisdom to me on that January 23, 1983 were "Shit.  Do you know what to do?  Ok, let me know if you need any help."  and that was it.  No ritual, no nothing, so I always planned to do the opposite.  (Rob brought her a pink rose, and she called it her menstrual flower, hence the title of this post. Then he walked around singing "Girl, you'll be a woman soon" by Neil Diamond)

I took Leila out of school the following day (I know, bad school district citizen) and we started by sleeping in, then I took her to get her first mani pedi (which she was so excited about, but then got nervous because she didn't know what to do and couldn't understand the manicurist, and then she realized its all really boring) then we went to lunch, and then we went shopping.  When the ladies at the store asked her if it was a school holiday, she told them we had taken the day off because she had "just started her menstrual cycle."  And she told everyone who would listen that she had PMS.

Then she cried all the way home, like the pinky-toe piggy.  And I'm not talking about gentle weeping, I'm talking screaming, howling, bawling.  I made up stories about the guy at In 'n' Out Burger who had sold us our milkshakes to make her laugh (Seth, the In 'n' Out chipmunk man with back acne and super long armpit hair) and that would work for a few seconds, and then she would cry that we were being so mean to Seth.  I told her that if, when I died, and they wanted to name a freeway after me, they should name it the Douchebag Memorial Freeway.  She thought this was funny, and then cried some more. She cried for another day or two, and then she felt like herself again.  Phew.

The period itself was wholly uneventful.  It came and went, and we haven't seen it since.  But we did buy, like, 10 pair of underpants, just to be on the safe side.

So that was that.  Years of planning, and it was a success.  Except for the crying.  She's back to normal now, and I lied and told her she shouldn't expect to cry for a week every time she gets her period.  That ought to hold her for a while.  So I guess the next milestone is what? drivers license? first kiss?  I'm ready!!!

(if you would like to read about how Leila learned what a period is, go here.)

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Hello Russia!

I had two comments on my last post.  I haven't gotten a comment in ages, so I was moved to look at my reader stats to see if anyone had searched on "Dog butt" or "itchy butt" and found my blog by accident.  That does not seem to be the case.  Nonetheless, I welcome all readers with itchy butted dogs!

The update is that the home cooked diet is not helping, even though I switched to London Broil.  I know it can't make that much of a difference in only a few weeks, but what I did find is that the home cooked diet is a pain in my ass.  Also, I spoke to the vet, and they are really not advocates of home cooked diets except in extreme cases of older dogs who can't tolerate anything else.  So I'm switching to perscription venison.

Who the hell knows, right?  Maybe my dog needs anti anxiety meds and grilled cheese?  That sounds like an excellent meal to me!

In other news, I'm on a diet too, just like my dog, except that I do not have an itchy butt.  Anymore.  I lost 2.6 pounds in the last week.  Only 48 to go!  I'm a little bit obsessed with how many calories are in everything, but I did eat pizza last night and I didn't worry about it.  It felt so good to just eat with my mouth and feel sated, and drink wine.  God I love eating and drinking.  They're my favorite.  I would rather eat and drink than do anything else.  But today I'm back on the wagon.

This post is not funny at all.  Not every one is a winner, I guess, but I did want to say hello to those two commenters, and encourage anyone else out there to comment.  All you russians looking for porn that show up on my stats all the time, say hello!

Friday, March 14, 2014

I've Become on of Those People

So, my dog.  He's the itchiest little guy you ever met.  His little butt is completely raw from dragging it on the carpet, and I don't even want to think about the microbes living in the carpet now.  Ew.

I've tried everything.  I spent a fortune having him allergy tested, and he's not allergic to anything.  I've changed his diet, put him on expensive prescription food, and nothing helps.  So yesterday, I took the plunge:  He is now on what is called a Home Cooked Diet.  I poached him some skinless chicken breasts and thighs, baked him a potato, and steamed him some carrots, and that's now his food for the next week.  No salt, no additives, just a little fish oil for his skin.

I had a colleague years ago who used to boil a chicken once a week for her dog and I thought she was crazy.  Who would do this?  Its a dog, for pete's sake!  But here I am, boiling chicken for my dog.  And it was organic, too.  I like supporting that kind of agriculture, but I have to admit I feel really stupid buying my precious pooch organic chicken and potatoes.  He can't believe his luck.  Although, he would be happy with a bowl of treats from the litter box.  He's not very discerning.
He's really lucky he's so cute.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Ricard Mantalban is a Liar

My creative energies have really been going elsewhere, and this blog is so neglected!  Sorry faithful readers, if there are any of you left out there.

School has been awesome.  I love it.  I do not mind the 87 mile round trip, and all I want to do today is homework, but I have to grocery shop.  I can't wait until Leila has a drivers license and I can send her to the Safeway.  I hate that place.  It saps my chi.

Yesterday I learned all about leather in my materials class.  Interesting, but it did put me off leather a little bit.  When you really think about the fact that its animal skin, and that they peel it in two, its just kind of gross.  Like Silence of the Lambs.  At the break, I showed my age by asking my teacher what "Fine Corinthian Leather" was.  He did not know, and assumed it was leather from Corinth.  Oddly, there is a wikipedia entry for Corinthian leather, even mentioning Ricardo Mantalban (if you're even 10 years younger than I, you wont know what the hell I'm talking about) and it says that "Fine Corinthian Leather" was a marketing name made up by ad advertising agency for Lincoln luxury cars, and that the leather on the seats is actually from New Jersey.  How's that for taking the romance out of your Lincoln? Ricardo Mantalban: Made of Lies.

Part of the homework that I will do today is to go through magazines and cut stuff out.  I've been hoarding design magazines, and just subscribed to about 50 of them.  I hope I don't burn out on this.  I should really pace myself.  It would be really ugly to OD on Veranda and Elle Decor.  All those paper cuts.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Pink Mildew Redux

What I really want to do today is my homework.  I want to type up my class notes (per the teacher's instruction, she's a little anal) and read my text book.  But I have work to do today, and a messy house, and my allergies are acting up, so instead of doing what I need to do OR what I want to do, I'll write to you.

I love school.  It feels almost frivolous to spend 2 hours talking about masonry, and rip pages out of magazines and scour Pinterest.  Its also nice to be out of my house for an entire day.  I know that sounds weird to people who are a lot busier than I am, but its true.

I got new white towels for Christmas, part of my goal of making my home a little more like a hotel and a little less like a garbage dump, and the bright white of the towels points out how dingy all the other white in my bathroom is.  Walls, tiles, grout, yuck.  I need to do some serious cleaning in there.

WAIT!  I have to tell you something!  Since the inception of this blog, I've complained about the pink mildew in the shower, and how its relentless and haunts me, and is impossible to conquer.  Well, I have conquered it!  Here's what you do.  You get one of these (mine is not as fancy):
And you fill it with water and a few drops of dish soap.  You leave it in the shower, and while you're in there, you do a little scrubbin'.  It totally works!   I also learned that you're not supposed to use vinegar on your grout, which I have been doing for years, and now my grout looks awful.  I've actually tried to regrout it, and I discovered that I hate grouting more than almost anything.  Thank you, Pinterest, for educating me on these household secrets.