Thursday, 27 October 2011

There are so many effing things wrong with this

I've been driving to work more often lately, rather than taking the bus, since mornings are such giant assholes.  Driving takes less time if I make sure to leave after rush hour, which I can pretty much guarantee, since mornings are such giant assholes. 

I don't even have to pay for parking because nobody makes me.  I never seem to get a ticket.  I do repeatedly get "warnings" but this never translates into actually requiring anything from me, so why in the hell would I ever feel threatened?

The tricky part is that arriving so late to work means that most of the parking spaces are already occupied. But that doesn't really matter either, given that most people just park on the edges of the rows and in the corners anyway.  It's a gravel parking lot - there are no pretty yellow lines or anything. 

But then tonight I was walking to my car and explaining all of this to my boss (who was carrying my huge-ass pumpkin).  "No I don't pay. Yes, they give me warnings. No they never give me tickets."

And then we saw something on my wind shied from the distance, which I assumed was another warning.

Well.  It wasn't. 


A napkin?  Really? 

And I wasn't even blocking anybody! Why are people so uptight?

So, in response, I wrote the following open napkin note to my anonymous office-mate.












Douchebag. 


Wednesday, 26 October 2011

A white tutu, a blow pop, and the scariest things that EVER happened

You guys. Are you aware of what special event is taking place in less than one week?

Yes, yes, you guessed it. I will be shaving my private parts.

No, wait, that's Tuesday nights. My mistake.

Next Monday night will be fun too, however, as it will be HALLOWEEN. The scariest night of the year.

BOO!

See? Scary.

I love Halloween. I even wrote about it on Cheesy Bloggers this week, and I hope all you halloweenies will write about it too. 

The first Halloween I remember took place at 4 years of age. I was the Tooth Fairy. My mom's clever idea I suppose. I had a white tutu and a wand. And I insisted on leaving coins on neighbours' front porches.

Other years I went as an Indian (feathers, not dots - sorry that's rude), a clown, a baby. We used to sucker some lucky parent into driving us around in their minivan to help transport our multiple pillow cases STUFFED with candy.  And these were the old days, folks - the days of can cola and mixed goodie bags. There were no effing fortune cookies and mini playdough cups back then. This was the real shit. The heavy shit.

I used to wake up early on the weekends and creep (very skillfully across the creaky hardwood floor) into the spare bedroom closet where the giant pillow cases were stored to collect a few handfuls of breakfast. I would carry it in the front of my nightie to the basement, watch tv, and stuff my face.

Until one morning Mom called my name. I came bounding up the stairs two at a time without thinking and looked up at mom... with nothing other than a blow pop sticking out of my face. "Gotcha" was the look on her face. "Oh. Shit." was the look on mine.

When I got to 9th grade I was AGHAST that Mom wouldn't let me trick-or-treat with my friends. She said I was too old. WAY TO RUIN MY LIFE, MOM. Instead I ate candy, watched The Simpsons Halloween specials, and handed out treats to little kids. Ever since then I've preferred the handing-out-candy part to the walking-around-in-the-cold part.

I still dress up though - at work. One year I was a terrifying zombie bride, and then Maryann on a 3-hour tour. Last year I followed the yellow brick road in some WICKED ruby red shoes.

I haven't decided this year, but I'm leaning toward garden gnome. Because if you know me, you know that garden gnomes are THE SCARIEST FUCKING THINGS THAT EVER HAPPENED.

Other than that I have no big plans. Maybe another pumpkin carving contest, of which Hubby will fiercely protest and then take tremendously seriously until he wins all the little kiddies' votes and gets to brag about it for years to come.

Welcome to my life.


_

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Day 5 - My Life in Music

Day 5 of my 30 (or 100) Day Blog Challenge is upon us, y'all.  And it's a tricky one. I may have been procrastinating on this one because it seems to require a lot of thought, and I'm pretty lazy. As you know.

So, I decided to just power through and come up with 15 songs that represent my life's soundtrack. Happy listening.

Childhood

The Polka Dot Door
This is a kids' show on TV Ontario which I LOVED. Turns out Hubby's new coworker's father-in-law was the one and only PolkaRoo! Amazing.



Father of Mine by Everclear
My biological father was a useless and evil douchebag. Enough said.



These Boots are Made for Walkin by Nancy Sinatra
Mom and I had to do some ass kicking in those early years.



I'll be Missing You by Puff Daddy
My lovely aunt (more like second mom) died at age 38 of lung cancer. It's been nearly 20 years and I'm not yet over it. DON'T SMOKE.  It's not worth it.




Lean on Me by Bill Withers
I don't know - I just got a good vibe from this song as a kid. My cousin and I used to sing "Pee on me."



Adolescence

Shimmer by Fuel
To this day  my fav song of all time. But it spoke to me in 9th grade especially.



Everything you Want by Vertical Horizon
I had some stupid boyfriends (and some not so bad ones either) - but none of them were Hubby. I didn't know what I wanted until Hubby saved me from myself at age 16.



Here's to the Night by Eve Six
Looking back, high school was not an ideal time in my life.  When I look back I have feelings of anxiousness and insecurity.  However, this song always reminded me that it wasn't all bad.



Ten Glorious Hubby Years

You Belong to Me by Jason Wade (from Lifehouse)
Our song.




I'm Real by JLo with Ja Rule
Our first summer song.



Lullaby by The Dixie Chicks
Our other song - our first wedding dance.



I Will by The Beatles
Our other song - sung to us at our wedding my my QSD (Quasi Step Dad).



The Last Year

Bad Day by Fuel
Blah.



Help by The Beatles
Ever really listened to these lyrics? Yep.



Don't Stop Believin by Journey
But I haven't given up yet.



You should join me in my 30 (or 100) Day Blog Challenge! Even if you skip some days or whatever, I don't care.  Link your posts up here so I can read them!

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

My New Orleans Photo Journal


It took a while to determine what my favourite things about New Orleans were, but then we arrived home to Canada at 1:00am to a rainy 8 degrees it became clearer. 
Palm trees!

Any hot and sunny place in which the temperature goes up to 90; in which I forget what clouds look like; in which I can wear a tank top at night... is MY KINDA PLACE.  When PALM TREES are one of the first things I see coming out of my hotel to cross Canal Street toward the French Quarter?  That's when you know you've got me.  I'm totally hooked. 

When you add a shit-ton of people, music, and restaurants? Well, my glee flies to a whole new level. 

Deep fried & heavily cheesed 
Our first meal started with the requisite cup of gumbo - which was delish.  And then they brought us this meal, and we knew we were in trouble.

Let me tell you, Hubby and I are not vegans or anything, but frig, how can anyone survive eating food like this day after day?! Holy hell.  And on a full stomach of beer and gumbo? You guys. That's tough, y'all.

Balcony view
So after a couple days of clogging our arteries, we wanted to find a better quality dinner that wouldn't cause immediate heart attacks and wouldn't cost a small fortune either.  I think our first mistake was thinking this might be possible at all, let alone in the heart of the French Quarter. Once you add mild alcoholic inebriation to the restaurant search, settling for a good balcony view of Bourbon Street becomes more realistic. 

However, when the drinks were forgotten, and the food was the worst possible shit I've ever put in my mouth, and then the waitress tells us "sorry..." half of Hubby's meal has been "lost in the ether of the kitchen" and she "looked twice, but it just wasn't there" and she doesn't seem to have any intention of replacing it... I start to get testy

So, in my most successful New Orleans moment, I told that absent minded dufus of a waitress - not rudely, but frankly - that in almost 30 years of eating out, a mysteriously missing side dish has never, ever, not been replaced.  Especially when it was shitty food worth less than McDonald's but costing 10 times more.

Hubby's bead hunt.
And after 10 minutes of waiting for the manager who never showed up, I placed a 20 dollar bill on the table and Hubby and I leisurely marched our asses out of the shithole with pride and went out to Bourbon to spend the rest of our hard-earned money elsewhere.  Thankyouverymuch.

Like on beers and beads.  Although the beads are "free" so to speak.


Polly want a beignet?
Besides the constancy of heart-clogging food, the first thing I learned about this great city was this: 

N'awlins is a tip-driven town.

Everyone here wants my money and they will do near anything to get it.  They may get naked and stand outside a strip club to lure me in.  They may play me a Canadian tune on the guitar. They may dress like the Swamp Monster and charge me for a photo.  They may even walk around talking to a parrot.  Maybe.

Ride me.
And if I'm really lucky, they may just offer me a ride behind a mule. Um, thanks?

The second thing I learned in New Orleans?  When you allow me WANDER THE STREETS WITH BEER IN MY HAND, I'm most likely gonna be up for sharing my money. 

Sure! Want a dollar for your mule?  Here you go! Want 30 bucks for 3 minutes of pure casino exhilaration? Sure! I've got it right here! You can have it! No, I don't mind. Who needs 30 bucks? Not me! 

This is what you call ladylike.

Unless it's for beers. I need money for my beers.

Yes, I need one for each hand. 

And yes I need a paper bag for the beer bottle, because without concealing it, it would be WAY too obvious that I've been drinking. I don't like to be too obvious.

Because I'm a lady.

You heard me...  LADY.
Besides the street beers and the penis beads, I think another favourite thing about New Orleans was the alligators. 

Man, our swamp tour was wicked cool.  Captain Lewis just drove us out into the muddy waters and riled us up some giant gators.  I think jacqui would be jealous.  As she should be! That was one awesome trip.

Crazy mofo

On top of how cool gator hunting was, this is where I achieved my next greatest New Orleans success

On the way back through the swamp, I spied - yes, little old me - out of the corner of my eye, a GIANT GATOR sunning himself on the shore.  I waved at Cap'n Lewis and he slowed the boat, turned us around, and we got one last peak at the Louisiana swamp king before he took off into the water.  Crazy mofo. 

The giant gator, and Hubby too of course. 

Also a crazy mofo
Oh, and the cute orangutan who was carrying around her cute baby.  Except she wasn't as much of a crazy mofo as she was a super hot mom just rocking it out in the zoo.  Who, by the way, was also asking for money - ahem, I mean food.  Asking for food
Super hot mom







Speaking of crazy mofos, if you have not seen Bourbon Street you have not seen crazy.  Crazy goes to a entire new world on Bourbon.  So much crazy that not even I can keep up. 

But don't think I didn't try. 

Bourbon Street was my ultimate favourite thing about New Orleans.  "Loser lapping" up and down Bourbon with beers in both hands, beads around my neck, live music pumping out of every bar, and the sweet smell of piss, garbage, and vomit on every corner is my idea of FUN. 

And who's that on the right?
And on Bourbon, my friends, is where I achieved my final New Orleans success

These people were such crazy mofos that they'd never resist a high five, right?  Right.

I managed 50+ high fives in 15 minutes and I have never needed to wash my hands more desperately been so pleased with myself.  Bourbon's where it's at, y'all. 


Oooooooooo... ghostly.
After all that craziness we weren't sure what would become of us.  The last day got really humid and we weren't sure if we'd ever be able to eat or drink again.  We thought we might end up in one of these spooky-ass tombs. 

Even if we did die from high intake of to-go beers, fried foods, and live bands, it would've been a very worthy death. 

I wouldn't really mind dying in any smelly city if the streets were even half as charming with old plaster and black balconies; if the souvenirs were even half as tempting; or if the if the locals were even half as sweet and grateful to tourists. 

It really was something special.  You should go. 

Monday, 17 October 2011

From the N'awlins Airport

How the heck are y'all doin?! 

Hubby'n'me is jus' sittin and waitin in the airport in N'awlins, Loosiana, ready to head on home to Canada.  Our trip was ahright ahright! It was jus' so nice to get away. 

I got all kinds a fun stories to tell y'all when I get home, but for now I got jus' one cute pic to share.  ("Take ya time, baby! Take ya time!)

Uh huh, that's a little ol' gator.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

I very nearly punched her in the face

Hubby and I are leaving for New Orleans tomorrow and I really feel like I've not done enough preparation.

We have our flights and our hotel booked.  And that's it.  Normally we at least have a couple tickets to a show or tour, but not this time.  This time I just plan to get off the plane, get to my hotel, and do nothing but whatever my little heart desires at any particular moment. 

Today (my vacation day after Thanksgiving but before we leave) I had a whole list of things to accomplish.  Productivity is my middle name, after all. 

So I woke up at 8, and then dozed until after 10.  Then I watched Ellen. Then I made the best possible use of my time and rolled all my coins - successfully adding $57 to my New Orleans slush fund.  I bet you're day wasn't that productive. 

Oh, but it doesn't end there.  I showered, did my nails, and put some laundry in.  Then I actually left the house (which had been becoming less and less likely as the time went on), went to the bank (struggling to carry all my coin rolls), and loaded my wallet with US cash. 

Then I decided that I'd been so uber-productive that I could afford a few minutes for a quick tour of the shopping mall.  But my good mood was effectively destroyed by a douche canoe salesgirl who I very nearly punched directly in the face. 

I walked into a men's clothing store to look at a winter coat for Hubby.  The little bitch approached me almost immediately. 

Salesgirl, in her best obnoxious and whiny salesgirl voice: Let me guess! You're shopping for your... mmm.... boyfriend!

Me, avoiding eye contact and grumbling: HUSBAND.  Thanks.

Salesgirl: Oh wow, I would never have guessed that. Heeehehehee.  How old are you?!

Me, about to LOSE MY SHIT, looking straight at her:  How old are YOU?

Salesgirl, unaffected by my attitude and as annoyingly perky as ever: I'm 25!

Me, quietly, while looking through the coats: Well, I'm 28. (The only time you'll ever catch me adding 4 months to my age, just to make my point.)

Salesgirl: Oh wow! You don't look that old at all! I just can't believe that!

Me, with my nasty-ass attitude:  I don't know if that's a good thing.

Salesgirl, not catching on to my piss-offed-ness: Sure it is! That way, when you're like, 40, you'll only look 25! I wish I had your genes!

Then she proceeded to tell me about their sales promotion and I continued to ignore her, leaving the store with a pissy look on my face and shaking my head. 

What the hell!? Would you ever just ask your customer how old they are?! Would you even bother guessing who your customer is shopping for?  What an idiot.  I hated this girl from the first moment her snotty little 25 year old face starting bee-bopping over toward me. 

I manged to shake off her ignorance, and went to get groceries.  I then made spaghetti for myself, Hubby, and our house guest.  We're leaving for Hubby's concert momentarily.

I have a shit-ton of laundry and packing to do tomorrow morning before we head to the airport, but I'm still super excited. 

I may post from New Orleans, at least maybe some pics, so stay tuned!

_

Monday, 10 October 2011

My new bugga-boo

My dear friends over at Motherhood Uncovered just launched their new website and I'm lucky enough  to take part. (Yes, I know I'm not a mother, but they say it doesn't matter.) My first Motherhood Uncovered post is republished here, for you to enjoy.

Please hop over there and check it out - it's really remarkable how well they've done.  This is one of my fav posts so far.

BUT BEFORE YOU DO! Please read my post about World Mental Health Day

*******

You may or may not know that I’ve been waging an angry war against nasty-ass Depression.

It’s been ugly, but my friend Mr. Drugs and I are holding our own. Even when we can’t rally against our enemies we just bunker down and avoid the weapons being hurled at our heads.

In a manner of speaking.

In another manner of speaking, my A-hole enemies haunt me every day. I’m constantly on guard. I walk around with one of those medieval shields and a giant lance just waiting for something to pummel me.

Full disclosure? Protecting myself all day is effing exhausting. And on top of it, I spend most of my time feeling ashamed, thinking about how I feel less and less like “myself” with every passing moment – more like a weaker me; a failure, an embarrassment.

I know damn well that I’m not supposed to think that. It’s silly. Laughable even. I’m supposed to tell that little jerk inside my head to shut his dirty mouth. But full, FULL disclosure? It’s remarkably difficult to dig UP out of that hole. Which, in turn, makes me feel like I’m failing at fixing myself – an even heavier hit to the gut.

So this is my new bugga-boo. My new pet peeve.

I am going to take everything I have and WIN this war. And then, THEN, I am going to bust through that tall, dark and ugly wall of Stigma that holds me back and throw every busted brick at every douchey person who gets in my way. I do not want to feel like a pathetic loser anymore.

And I’m asking for your help. Help me break the silence around mental illness. Help me kick Stigma’s rotten ass.

Maybe start with a joke.

“I start volunteering as a mentor soon.   Just don’t tell them I was recently suicidal.”

“I told Hubby I could either help him with the dishes or I could go pick up my crazy pills.  It was his decision to make… very. carefully.”

Maybe start mentioning it in conversation. Not with the random guy on the bus, necessarily, but with a friend or a coworker.

“I was late for work this morning (not because I had a headache but) because I’m facing some Depression and it was hard to get going.”

“Sometimes I feel like I can’t deal, but then I [fill in life-saving mantra here] and it gets a little better.”

Finally, talk to loved ones. Even if they don’t get it, they’ll at least listen, and maybe even offer you a book or a meditation CD (which will be infinitely unhelpful, but the sentiment is there).

And the best part? Most everyone you talk to will be able to relate.

“Oh yeah, I took a year off from school because I couldn’t handle it.”

“Oh yeah, my mom took a leave of absence from work when her parents died.”

“Oh yeah, my sister used to cut herself/binge and purge/cry herself to sleep every night.”


This is out there, guys. It’s out there, and the more we’re silent about it the greater chance it has of winning. And I simply cannot live with that.

So today, on World Mental Health Day, tell someone how you’re feeling. Or ask someone how they’re feeling. Or tweet something heartfelt. Or wear a shirt that says “I’m with Crazy -->;” for Christ sakes. 

But whatever you do, please speak up.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Day 4 - The Habit Scale (updated)

I'm pleased to welcome you to Day 4 of my 30 (or 100) Day Blog Challenge.  Link up your blog challenge posts at the bottom so I can read them!

I'm supposed to tell you about a habit I wish I didn't have.  There happen to be several habits I actually kinda wish I did have, like smoking crack and robbing banks, because I think I'd seem way more badass.  But that's not what I'm being asked about.

I do have a shit-ton of brutal habits, but I like to think of them as a series - a scale, if you will - that is very effective in eliminating self-judgement. 

Observe:

First, at the broadest, most forgiving end of the Habit Scale, are the habits that are birthed out of necessity rather than preference.  Things you do because you must in order to maintain a certain stability of mind, but that you nevertheless wish you didn't. 

  • Sleeping in.  Getting up in the morning is a slow and cruel form of torture, when burying my head and ignoring the world would be so. much. fucking. easier. On a bad day it takes hours.  Every morning is s fresh battle with Asshole Depression, and my greatest line of defense is to take my damn time and preserve my energy. Regardless, I wish I didn't sleep in. 
You can't control things like this.  Let it go. 


Second, there are a few stages in the middle range of the Habit Scale, but the lines are blurry.  It's hard to tell what you can get away with in this mid-section.  It's where most of the nasty little habits exist, but where you haven't yet decided if you've crossed the line out of selfishness to where you truly wish you didn't do them.  For these habits, you're still in the "I could quit, I just don't wanna" stage. 

  • Eating junk food.  I love junk food and I see no need to quit eating it.
  • Picking.  There are few things more satisfying than picking a scab, or a hangnail, or a nailpolish chip and I have no intention of trying to stop.
  • Making no effort whatsoever to plan dinner before the time at which I would like to eat it. I like the spontaneity of my meals, and until I have hungry children waiting for food, I will keep doing this.
If you really care about any of these, do something about it.  If not, let it go.


Finally, all your least-defensible habits live on the weaker end of the Habit Scale. What makes them the least defensible?  Well, if they make you a hypocrite, I'd say that's the number one tell-tale sign.  Or, more generally, if you feel like shit about yourself. 

  • Like being late. I think being late is so rude, and yet I am always running a least a few minutes behind schedule.  Not because I want to, just because I can't seem to help it. I don't even have a good excuse. 
  • Spending money I don't have.  I've gotten really good at this lately, and I assume I'll get even better on our trip to New Orleans next week. 
It's harder to argue that you shouldn't stop doing something if it annoys even you.  These ones, you should try to work on. If you feel like it. Probably.


I hope you've learned something here today.  I've prepared a diagram of the Habit Scale, for future reference.  Please consult it regularly to determine what you actually have to change about yourself.  I think you'll find it's very little.