Sunday, November 11, 2012

Lost Gift Cards, Elections Make People Assholes, and Other Fun Tales

I haven't blogged in far too long. So instead of regaling you with every damn thing that's happened, I present you with a series of tales from the last month.

Ahem.



Lost Gift Cards

An as always lovely family member gifted me with 100 smackers from spafinder (dot) com for my birthday back in September and, because I'm much too busy to do lovely things for myself like getting MASSages, they've been sitting on my desk for the last million days.

I had a free day today, so I finally got my ass in gear and made an appointment last week at a spa. I gave them my credit card to hold my appointment and then didn't think anything of it until this morning when I went to grab my gift cards.

Gone. Like, gone. Like, I tore apart my apartment and they were nowhere to be found. Fucking fuckity fuck fuck. The spa was very understanding that I'd be late and I pretty much sobbed all the way to my appointment, telling myself that I didn't want to do it and I couldn't afford it, but I didn't exactly have a choice. I really didn't have a choice. If I canceled, they'd still charge my card, so my choices were to get a massage that I couldn't afford or to pay for a massage I didn't get. Luckily, I'm not dumb so I got the massage.

And it was lovely. Seriously, insanely wonderful. It's ironic, but there's nothing like a massage to ease all your tensions created by getting a massage you can't afford.

I still can't find those damn gift cards. I've now cleaned my whole house and there are only there potential reasons they went missing:

  1. I threw them away. Which I find highly unlikely. I just don't see myself doing that.
  2. They were abducted by aliens with a lot of tension in their backs. Totally possible.
  3. Maintenance at my apartment stole them. Unlikely, but unless they were stolen by aliens, it's the most rational answer I can think of.
It's just money, I know, but I feel like I'm out 200 bucks. $100 that I couldn't afford today and $100 that is probably being spent in a day spa on Venus. Damn Venutians. 



The Saga of the Pet Bed

A month or so ago, I spotted this fluffy, cushy, gray pet bed on sale at the grocery store. Hobbes doesn't have any pet beds, mostly because he prefers to sleep on the bed with me, but with Eminem over a lot, the bed is getting quite full. And I do have this storage basket at the end of my bed, which is perfect for a pet bed and Hobbes could sleep there and feel like he's still on the bed. Plus the gray looks so pretty against my bedspread. 

Ahhhh if life every worked out so perfectly. 

I put Hobbes on it and he jumped off it like it was made of lava. How dare I endanger my cat so! I put catnip on it. No dice. I covered it in treats, which he nimbly grabbed one by one without putting more than one paw on the bed at all times. 

Them Eminem came over and gently patted the bed and told Hobbes to get on it. And the damn cat did. Because that's how much he loves my boyfriend. Luckily for me, it didn't last long and Hobbes wouldn't lie down. 

I tried it with Hobbes again last week, by just patting the bed and telling him to get on it. It worked for a few minutes and he even lay down for a bit, but jumped down the minute I left. He's refused to get on it since. 

I give up. I totally give up. 



Elections Make People Assholes

I'm going to assume you all know that I'm an Obama girl. If you read my Sprocket Ink posts at all, you know I'm a fan of the O man and, thus, was totally celebrating his win last week. As many others were! And many others were not. I totally get that. Had Romney won, I'd have been super pouty and devastated. Such is human nature. 

So of course, Facebook was rife with both sides of that election night coin, as was to be expected. I was all, "Victory!" and "GoooooBAMA!" And others were all like, "It's the end of the world and we're all gonna die!" Or something like that. I'm paraphrasing. 

And I have to say that I love that! That is the fun and power of an election. Emotions run high and people get all passionate. That's politics, baby and I lurve it. 

I did unfriend someone on facebook that night and, I have to say, I don't regret it. It's not what you'd expect either and I'm only sharing this story because of what I learned about myself because of it. 

My friend posted on facebook something to the effect of how shameful it is how we're all behaving, gloating and complaining and it's just an election and how can we possibly put so much trust in power in the hands of one man and we're acting like idiots (this is from memory, mind you). And she told us all to shut up.

And I was mildly offended. But I thought, This girl is my friend and I've known her for years and I'm going to share my perspective and she'll be gracious about it. 

So I wrote (again, from memory) something like, This is how it goes for elections. For me, this is a win and so I'm celebrating. I'm sorry some might see that as gloating, but that's how it goes. 

I honestly think I wrote more than that, but I can't remember. And she replied (and this I remember verbatim): With all due respect, Andrea, that speaks volumes. 

And then my brain exploded. 

I was just so offended, so furious. I didn't care what her politics were or who she voted for or if she thought I was crazy for my politics. But her pride, her condescension, her self-righteousness struck me as offensive. How nice to be so much better than the rest of us! To not behave like idiots over something so trivial as an election. Pathetic little peons. 

That's what I felt she was saying, dripping with condescension  I stared at the "friend" button on her facebook page for some time. I knew it was childish to unfriend someone, something I've never done because of something so seemingly trivial, but was moved to do so instinctually. After too long, I finally did press it and then click that I was sure that I wanted to remove that person as a friend. 

It was a pretty powerful move for something that took such little time, but I knew almost instantly that it's what I wanted. I can't be friends with someone who thinks she (or he) is so much better than I or so much better than everyone else, who can't forgive human nature, who has to tell her friends to shut up when she doesn't approve of them. 

Only inclusive people get to be in my life, people who can accept that we all have differences, even if we fight tooth and nail over them, because that's what is great about friendships, and life, and people, and this country. The dialog, the fight, the celebrating and the sorrow, it's all part of this life and it's how we make it better. 

No, I will not shut up, thanks. Not today. 



A Good Man is Hard to Find

I really wanted to end this with a happy story. Eminem and I went though a little rough patch recently, had a little hiccup, and I honestly didn't know how to deal with it at first, because I've never been to that point in a relationship. Usually, I just get dumped. 

And at the end of the day, with all my shitty past relationships, I don't know that I would appreciate him as much as I do without having been treated so poorly in the past or had my heart broken too many times. Being wounded so often certainly made me scared to stick with it, of course, but he's worth it. The fear of losing him makes me want to work at being good to him just as he's trying to be good to me. 

I told him, half crying, half laughing, that I wouldn't let him go easily. I've dated all the other men in the world. All of them. And he's the only good one. 

I just knew in my gutty gut that he's the best guy I've ever known and so I'd figure it out, we'd figure it out. And we did. We're great. Stronger than we were before, I think, which feels fucking phenomenal and I can't express how fucking happy he makes me. We're both learning how to be with each other and I appreciate every minute. 

He's one in a million, that guy. 


Sunday, October 14, 2012

Check check...is this thing on?

Wellll helloooo there. It's been a gazillion years since we last had a little chit chat. I apologize, I do, but I've just been so durn busy! And I meant to write last weekend. I have a whole catchup to give you plus another Mormon Girl/Atheist Girl post plus adoption craps.

But that was not to be.

Last Sunday was like the perfect day to get everything done. I slept in with the boyfriend, went grocery shopping, cleaned my whole house (except laundry), started painting drawers to a dresser I painted a few weekends ago, and settled in to write.

THEN! dun dun duuuuuuuun...my computer stopped charging suddenly. And this comp is on its last legs, like seriously. Like there might be a little duct tape holding parts together. But I have to coax this baby along until at least next year. Right now all my money is going into this India trip in December so I cannot purchase a new baby right now.

So, hoping it wasn't anything more serious than a dead charger, I left the thing backing up (just in case) and hoofed it to downtown PDX to get a new power adapter. The only annoyance was that the Portland marathon was that day, but parking a little far meant I got my fat ass (more on that later) moving anyway. Anywayyyyyyy, long story short (too late), it was just the charger. The battery is fairly shot too, but I'm not buying a whole new battery for this dying comp so I just have to leave it plugged in for like always.

But! I forgot to mention that I also left wetly painted drawers outside on my porch to dry. And as I got home, I see my hideous asshole upstairs neighbors on their porch grilling. And what did I find all over my drawers? Grill grossness and porch grossness that they'd swept off right onto my stuff. And they knew I'd been painting. So, like any mature non-passive-aggressive person would do, I shouted, "ASSSHOLES!" up at the porch and tried to clean up my drawers and bring them inside.

I would like to state for the record that should they meet their untimely deaths while I live below them, I didn't do it. I am not a killer. But I might celebrate inside just a little.

This is what apartment living does to a person.

So needless to say I was too tired and stressed to do any writing after that.

And the weekend before was my other cousin's wedding. Yes, my cousins (the three of us are like sisters) got married within a couple months of each other. Which, despite being expensive, worked out for me because I was sort of off the hook. I had to go by myself (because Eminem was in Vegas, the brat) and was so dreading all the relatives going, "So are you next? Where's your boyfriend?" And while they did ask about my boyfriend, because they're all weddinged out, they were like, "You're not next right? Tell us you won't get married soon." Awesome.

Here are some photos I took. I was not the photographer and didn't even take my camera because it's getting serviced, but my aunt had no idea how to use her new point and shoot, so I took it off her hands. Some of these tured out great. It was a nice, little camera!



But I will be shooting a wedding next weekend! Like for strangers, a real wedding gig. It's very exciting and I can't wait to share all the photos with you guys.

Speaking of, when I started this blog and when I started my flickr page, I never had any intentions of working as a photographer. It was just my art and my hobby. But now I think I need to rebrand to something more professional and use my real name. This is scary, especially because of the whole stalker situation I had a couple years back, but I think it's necessary. Thoughts? It means I'd connect this blog with my photography pages and I'd be exposing my real name in this forum.


And the new name (from Crazy Lady Photography) is.....drum roll please.....

Double A Photography

Because my last name starts with an A. What do you think?


I probably won't be starting a new blog just for my photography, but I'm thinking I may do a photography facebook page. What do you guys think? Too much? Not enough? I'll also be working on a logo.

Eek! So much to do!

Aaaaaaaaand....

Halloween is coming up and it's FALL! I love Fall. I love leaves and the weather gets brisk and I can burn pumpkin spice candles. What are you going as for Halloween? I'm not telling what my costume will be, but I'll share photos after! You all know I love making my own costumes and I'm making Eminem dress up with me. It's gonna be awesome!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Mormon Girl/ Atheist Girl

As most of you probably know, I was raised Mormon. And now I'm a half-queer, liberal atheist. So, some things have changed.

Anyway, my history is a tangled knot of complicatedness which forms my very clear ideas about my life and I'm sure someone finds that interesting. At the very least, I always find that people really like it that I'm completely open and honest about my religious upbringing, mostly because Mormons are a secretive bunch and especially now that Bishop Richie Rich is running for president.

With regards to the latter, I always find myself bringing up my background as a way to provide my own context and legitimate knowledge and also because I'd rather we argue the facts and stop talking about magic underwear and secret temple orgies where they slaughter unicorns. At least one part of that is made up. Guess which! (Pst! It's not the unicorns.)

A couple of my friends have expressed the idea that I should write a book on my story, I guess a Mormon girl turned atheist is a unique one? I'd guess it's probably more common than you'd think. It's just no one talks about it. Well, this got me thinking that I do want to talk about it. I want to start writing my story and maybe that turns into a book and maybe it's just a cathartic experience and maybe someone gets some insight into a huge American institution which outsiders still find totally mysterious and weird.

Of course to me, Mormons are still like my dorky big sister. I get to make fun of them and crack jokes about lime jello and CTR rings. But what I don't want to come out of this are the people who just want to make fun of Mormons. Ask me any questions you want. Open up dialog. Criticize what you honestly don't agree with. But I won't tolerate any cruel and attacking comments.

You probably don't know that I get attacking comments already on this blog, mostly because I just delete them. I've also been considering not allowing anonymous comments anymore. To sum up, be nice. It won't hurt you to just be nice.

Here's the first chapter of my story:

Neither of my parents were raised Mormon.

My mom was actually raised Catholic and, until I studied religions in college, my only impressions of the Catholic church were my mom's, which were completely overblown and held on a higher pedestal than any other Catholic I've ever met. This is because whatever my mom does, she does with gusto. She thought the nuns were like the coolest women every to walk the planet and totally wanted to be one. When she was thinking about being baptized into the Mormon church at 19, she evidently went to confession every day for it. But that should explain the kind of Mormon she was. I say was because I'm pretty sure she doesn't leave the house anymore.

My dad, on the other hand, he just kind of goes with the flow. I don't know that he was raised any religion. When my grandma died, she had some kind of Christian funeral, but fuck if I know if it was Methodist or Lutheran or whatever. I'm pretty sure she never went to a church when she was alive. And my grandpa was an abusive alcoholic. My dad started smoking at like 12 or something and he's never had any intention of quitting whatsoever and he'll probably be like George Burns and smoke until he dies at the age of 157. He also has a large cup of coffee every single day, no matter if it's 120 degrees outside, which it gets damn close to where he lives in the desert.

Needless to say, he wasn't exactly a model Mormon. I wouldn't say he was "Jack" Mormon, because he gave up drinking and was baptized when they adopted me in 1980. But he was just bad enough to never have a temple recommend or receive certain levels of the priesthood (this is an area I actually don't have much of a memory about, being a girl I guess). But he has a calling as the choir director and so he goes every week and conducts the music. I also imagine that he still sleeps on the stand, his head bobbing around shamelessly, something I found mortifying as a young teen.

So, no, my parents weren't married in the temple and never got sealed, a fact which my mom tried to make him feel guilty about every single damn day. She did eventually go to the temple on her own, but that was before she was a prescription drug addict.

At this point, I guess I explain why some people go to the temple and some don't. But I think I'll leave that for another day, because I want to stick to my childhood for now.

My parents' marriage, that one tiny detail, was enough to set me enough apart from the rest of the Mormon kids, enough to tell me I just wasn't quite good enough, just didn't "partake in the same blessings." Which taught me pretty early on that there are hierarchies within this culture and, if you start at the bottom, you have to struggle to fit in. I was also an only child, something you can imagine is very odd for Mormons. My best friend, who I met when I was like 14, also came from a different family model and she also felt the sting of being different in the Mormon church.

I can't tell you how many times I was told how special I was. But I didn't want to be special; I wanted to fit in. I never would, so instead I made up for it by, at first, trying to be perfect. Then, when it was clear I wouldn't be perfect (for anyone, but especially my mother), I became a rebel, I got my own ideas and opinions, I questioned everything, and, most of all, I made people laugh. People tend to be less on guard and less disapproving when you're making them laugh. And I think my spunk bought me time to be rebellious and wild while I was questioning everything I'd been told. I really did get away with so much.

But more on that later.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

the epic and severely overdue catchup post

Look at me! Posting on my blog! Hallelujah praise baby jeebus.

Seriously though, I can hardly be blamed for skipping writing for, oh I don't know, a MONTH, because life has been totally insane. Yesterday felt like the first relaxed and free day I've had in a million years.

First, I had that ten days in California, which was so jam packed and whirlwindy that I so needed a vacation when I got home (and more on that trip in a bit). But it was right back to work and then to a work retreat, which I planned and organized and which I'm not complaining about because I love doing that stuff, but was another busy, whirlwindy time.

Brasada Ranch

And I felt like I was battling a bug before that trip and I kept on fighting it on through the whole next two weeks, during which time I helped coordinate an office reorganization (like physical reorganization, like office and cubicles and phone lines and shit) and which I worked on today as well.

Last Thursday was the denouement of sorts of my mystery flu. I woke up Thursday with an insane migraine and it just got worse and worse as the day progressed and I ran around and lugged boxes and shit. By the time I left work, I was dizzy and nauseated and felt like death, pure death. I started feeling a teeny better about 8 or so that night, slept and slept and woke up Friday feeling fantastic.

Soooo clearly I'd excised my demons. I've never had an exorcism, but I'm pretty sure that's what it feels like. Plus, imagine how powerful I am to have done it on myself. All bow to my power.

And like I said, I worked some hours this morning, but I finally have a moment to sit down and write. Ahhhhhh.

So, let me back up. The California trip! I'll just give you some highlights.

First bit of drama was at PDX airport. I had to check a bag, so I decided to just check in at the airport. I go check in, get my boarding pass, kiss my boyfriend goodbye, and get into the long line to security. I get up to the first TSA guard who checks to see if your ID and boarding pass match and he goes, "This isn't your boarding pass." And then I had a heart attack. Turns out, the lady at Alaska switched my boarding pass with some chick named Rachel (which is funny, because that was my name for the two months before I was adopted, though I doubt TSA cares about that). Luckily, one of the guards took pity on my about-to-bawl-if-I-miss-my-flight face and took my to the desk to get my real pass and let me cut back into my place in line. Shout out to the guard at PDX! Sweetheart.

And I made my flight.

You all know I was there for my cousin's wedding right? The best thing was renting this deliciously pretty lens for the trip. I now must make this lens my own. I must. It's my precious and I can feel body deteriorating without it. I hate my other lenses now, my shitty, pathetic lenses. The losers.

Lindsey & John's wedding

So first, I did several things all wrong. I was trying to save money because I'll need some dough when I go to India in December, so I didn't rent a car or get a hotel room. And I know my cousin kept telling me I wasn't a problem and wasn't getting in the way (and, admittedly, I did clean house and make drinks and food, so I think I was a big help), but if I'd sprung for a hotel, I would've been one less body in her house. And I really really really should've found a way to rent a car. It would've been helpful on my cousin, but it would've also given me more freedom and I could've spent more time with other friends and fam. But oh well. Live and learn right?

The other thing I should've done was find a way to take my boyfriend with me. Because the last trip down with a guy was so disastrous, I had decided a long ago that I wouldn't take a date to the wedding. But then as Eminem and I were doing great, I realized that I did want everyone to meet him and he won't have another chance for a long while. Plus, I missed him like crazy and I really did need someone there for me, someone to keep me sane when I was getting super stressed out. He was great and was texting me sweetness the whole time. But I really did need him there. But I lived, so, oh well.

I did get to my best friend's house in the desert and got to meet my new nephew Lucas, aka the youngest old man in the whole world with the puffiest, pinchiest cheeks you will ever ever see.

Lucas

I really wish I'd gotten more time with them, but I will get to see them at Christmas. At which point, Lucas will probably be a foot taller and riding a bike and reading and shit. Sigh. Such is life.

I did get to see my dad, though, and I was struck by just how OLD he's gotten in the last year. The man always looked like Einstein, but now he looks like Mark Twain, his hair is so white! He and I also used to make fun of old people who would read all the signs out loud. Yeah, he does that now. He shuffled around the mall with me and he announced all the signs. 50% off sale. Hot Topic. AT&T. Pretty Nail.

This last story I hesitate to share and I'm holding back many of the details until it unfolds. Okay, here goes:

My aunt (the mother of the bride) is alllll about geneology. She's like way into it and has done tons of work on our family. Anyway, so this aunt was giving me a ride and she needed some part on her car, so she and I are sitting in the waiting room of a Subaru (you know, the official state car of Oregon) dealership and chatting as two ladies are wont to do. We got to talking about my biological family (I'm adopted) and I told her how years ago, I found out my parents' names, etc, but never could find any more info. I also haven't opened my records or anything.

So she pulls out her iPad, signs into her Ancestry.com account, types away, and after a little search, finds my mother. Seriously. And right there on the screen is a photo of my biological mom and sister. Right there. And I they looked like me, which is the craziest feeling if you've never ever seen what a blood relative looks like. I'm not sharing that photo yet because I just feel like that's wrong somehow. I'll explain in a sec.

So then it took off from there. Turns out my mom died when I was little, though I don't know why yet and I'm going to order her death certificate to find out. we did a ton of research on my family and I have a notebook full of genealogical history from my mom's side. And then we found my sister, like I have an address and a recent photo of her and everything. From some of the info we found, I think she's aware of me, but the ball is clearly in my court because she'd have no way of know who I am. So, I'm going to write her a letter. I admit that I haven't even started it and while I don't want to waste much time, I do want to write it carefully and find the right words. That's partly why I want to wait to share the photo; I don't want to find her through this blog, because I want to contact her myself.

Here's a baby picture of me instead:



Crazy right? The best way to describe how I'm feeling is cautiously excited. I'm nervous to be sure, but way more curious than anything. Wish me luck!

I'm also coming up on two big events. Next week, I'll turn 32 and Eminem and I will have dated for six months. I'm totally happy about both.

Aaaaand scene.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Lindsey & John: The Wedding

Guess what? I was in California last week for my cousin's wedding. It was an insane whirlwind of a trip, which I'm sure I'll blog about later, but for now, the dessert first!

I have many, many photos of the bridal shower and the wedding prep and rehearsal, but I know what you really want are the wedding photos.

Lindsey & John's wedding

The wedding was small and lovely. Very vintage and beachy and sweet. And everyone cried.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

A Hobbes Story: Scratchy Scratchy

Hobbes

Last year, after Jete´ died, I bought Hobbes a scratch pad because he was scratching everything in sight. The scratch pad is meant to hang from a door handle and, at first, he wanted nothing to do with it.   But when I put it on the floor, the boy fell in love and that scratch pad is now his very favorite thing on the planet.

He not only scratches that thing, he plays with it, he cuddles with it, he practically makes love to the thing.

A couple weeks ago, I hung it up while I was vacuuming and forgot to take it back down. That night, I awoke to the sound of a cat making the most horrendous sounds you could ever imagine a cat could make. These sounds were worse than a female cat in heat. They sounded like he must be dying some horrid death, like it was the end of the world and Hobbes was keening its very end. Turns out, he was upset he couldn't get to his beloved scratch pad.

Then the other day, I was getting dressed and dropped my skirt on top of the scratch pad. Not 15 seconds passed before Hobbes ran over in a panic meowing about the end of the world yet again. You guessed it. He was upset I'd covered his favorite thing. I moved my skirt and he instantly laid on top on the thing, I assume to protect it from further capture or assault.

Again, special needs child, that one.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Men in My Life

Have I mentioned I'm the best daughter ever? I am.

A month ago (ish) was my pop's 65th birthday. To give you a better understanding of my dad, he told me, "I'm a officially old." Yup. That's my dad.

Anyway, that's a big birthday and so I wanted to do something special for him but I live all the way up in Portland and he's in Southern California and I'm now, how you say, rich. He also hates presents. My mother fills their house with enough crap to fill the Louvre so the man doesn't want or need any "stuff."

So I thought and I thought and with the help of a few key people, decided I'd send him a pie. Because he likes pie and it would be an unusual gift and I love the unusual. Still, finding a place that both made pie and would deliver was a challenge and I didn't want to ship one myself because that pie would be decimated, I guarantee it, and I didn't want my dad to get a mangled pile of pie in a Fed-Ex box on his birthday.

As you've probably guessed, I did finally find a bakery in his small town that would make a pie and deliver it for a not small but not exhorbitant fee and had it sent to his work on his birthday (after confirming he'd be working and after calling his lab to make sure all his coworkers knew it was his big SIX FIVE and would embarass him thoroughly.

On the big day, I get a call from him, "Did you send me a pie?" I guess the bakery didn't include the message from me like I'd requested, but I love that he figured out it was me. He also didn't figure out that I was the one who told his coworkers because I guess he yelled at my mom that night. He was telling me what a narc she was the next day to which I had to gleefully and maniacally take the blame.

So many evil laughs were had.

Guess which one is my dad. 

The other day, Eminem and I were driving around Portland and we saw this guy walking on the side of the road. He wasn't limping exactly, more like walking very very carefully and he was carring a sleeping bag.

And Eminem goes, "He's not wearing shoes!" Which explained the careful walking.

And it's not like this guy seemed homeless. He was fairly clean-looking, wearing a T-shirt, jeans, and the bare feet of course. Besides, most homeless that don't find or steal shoes would get big calluses on their feet I would assume. So if this guy was homeless, he was new at it.

So we started trying to figure out this dude's story. Maybe he was camping and was attacked my bears and escaped only with his sleeping bag. Nope, unlikely in the middle of Portland. And then I had it! He cheated on his wife and she threw him out, shoeless, and threw a sleeping bag at him from the upstairs window as a final move. Can't you picture it? It made total sense.

And Eminem goes, "I will always wear socks."

He's lucky he's so cute, I tell ya what.

Nonetheless, as you can imagine, we've been doing really great. I just never thought someone like him existed.

Yesterday, he made me gluten free fried chicken and I was watching him cook (something I've always found so attractive in a man) and thinking about how attentive he is and how conscientious he is of my dietary issues and just how he's so smart and funny and sweet and pretty much totally fucking wonderful, and I started crying.  I was just overwhelmed with happiness. I rarely cry when I'm happy. I really hope he's not reading right now because so far? He's everything I've ever wanted and I can't believe I'm actually saying that and I'm blushing as I type that right now. But I can't help myself. 


I've told you how much I love my cat right? My sweet, dumb Hobbes boy? I do. I love that big lug. But last week I killed him. I had to. The little shit.

I awoke to find that the brat had peed on my couch and a bunch of my clothes, which he's never done before. Needless to say, I was pissed. Literally.

It turned out okay. I washed everything in vinegar and nothing smells, and Hobbes hid from my wrath for a couple days.

But then a week later, I was brushing some fleas off Hobbes (He had an outbreak. I medicated. Is okay now.) as he was on my lap and I guess one must have bit him because he freaked out, tried to roll over quickly to bite it, got his claw caught in the couch, screamed like he was dying, and peed all over me.

Yup. That happened. So now I have a cat that gets scared and pees everywhere. Awesome.

And then today I discovered he'd peed all over my backpack too. Was he scared? Upset at me for spending the night elsewhere last night? I don't fucking know. And what the hell will happen when I travel? Will he pee all over everything? Do I need to cover my whole apartment in plastic? Fucking fuck fuck.

Damn cat. Don't ever tell me I don't know what it's like to have a special needs child. I have Hobbes.

Not a guilty face

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Photo of the Day: Peony

Peony

Remember last week(ish) when I showed you that lovely Chrysanthemum that Eminem brought me? Well here's one of the peonies.

I ask you, is there anything more lovely than a peony? There's a reason that Feng Shui says to place peonies in the love corner of your bedroom. There's a reason that in the Chinese Opera, Peony Pavillion, a young girl falls asleep under peonies and has a dream that drives her to die of lovesickness.

You can have your long-stemmed roses. I'll take peonies, thanks.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Photo of the Day: Chrysanthemum

Chrysanthemum

A few weeks ago, Eminem and I celebrated three whole wonderful months together. Truth be told, I can't believe it's been only three months, but still. It's been lovely and I don't think either of us can believe just how lovely.

Anyway, homeboy brought me my favorite flowers for our date: Peonies and chrysanthemums. Seriously. What man remembers your favorite flowers and then brings you some? What man? I ask you. I'd never before met such a man.

This is one of the chrysanthemums. Is there a cooler flower? I love how explosive it looks while it's petals are soft and almost ethereal in opacity. Next time? The peonies!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

My hair is trying to kill me

This is the tale of a girl and her locks and how they went from wonderful to complete bitches. I have no idea why her hair is plural but that's just how bitchy. 

To be fair, it's not entirely the hair's fault.

Let's start at the beginning. You know how much I love the Aveda Institute. I've been going there for quite a while, paying nada for a great cut and pretty much just loving my hair.

Wait, I should back up.

I've always had great hair. It's super thick, grows fast, and does what I tell it to do. Got it? Great, we can move on.

So my favorite stylist at the AI, Carly (I hope she doesn't mind me mentioning her name, because she was awesome and incredibly talented and I miss her) had the nerve to graduate. I mean, why didn't she ask me? And, as I understand it, she decided to not work in a hair salon after graduation. She's taking time or doing work in a spa or something. I forget, because it doesn't involve me in any way.

This was after she'd cut off all my hair for Locks of Love and now I had short hair and a style to upkeep and no stylist. Carly had recommended me to another girl, whose name I won't mention, but I just wasn't happy with her. She really wasn't great at all.

So that left me stylist-less. So I called one evening and requested a senior student (how I got Carly in the first place, bee tee dubs) and this conversation took place:

Me: Hi, I'd like to make an appointment with a senior student to get a bang trim.
Dude on the phone: Unfortunately, you can't request a senior student.
Me: Well bummer. Because I used to be able to do that.
Punk: That's impossible. We've never allowed that. 
Me: Huh. That's really odd because I did that before.

Douchenozzle: There's no way that's true at least in the past three years. We don't do that.

Me: That's crazy because I know I did that within the last two years because I've only lived in Portland for two years.

Asswad: That really can't have happened, M'AM!

Me: Why are you speaking to me with so much attitude. I'm simply trying to explain to you that someone there did do that in the past...

Stubborn little twat: I'M not getting an attitude. And I'm the supervisor so I'd know. Plus it's JUST a bang trim. It's not that hard.

Me: Oh you're not? Huh. Thanks for informing me. So nice to know you have so much control over your staff. And that's funny because the last girl who trimmed my bangs screwed them up.

Dickshit: M'AM, I'm not getting an attitude.

Me: Well I won't be making an appointment ever again and neither will any of my friends.

Complete asshole fucktard: Awesome! Have a great day!

And I then I combusted.

I did try to get the shit in trouble because there was no need to be such a power monkey rude ass douchenozzle little shit, but apparently he doesn't really have a boss. Isn't that awesome? Needless to say, I can never go back there on principle alone. So now I really don't have a stylist.

Therefore, I haven't had a bang trim in far too long. Luckily I rock the side-swept long bangs.

Then I decided to dye my hair red again. I haven't been red in years and it was time to go back. I dyed it myself, something I've done to my own hair and my friends' hair a gillion times since I was like 18. See, everyone wants me to do their hair because I'm anal retentive and thorough. Also: fearless when it comes to hair.

Anyway, it didn't take. Like, you could kind of tell in the right light, but I wasn't going for subtle. I wanted red! I felt like that scene in Beaches when Hillary spends three hours dying her hair exactly the same color. Hillary says, "It's a subtle difference," and CC says, "I don't think so."

Yeah, that.

So I waited a few weeks and I chose a brighter color and I did it again. And it took at the roots, then it was a deeper, darker red-ish brown on the rest of my head.

After pouting about my once pliant hair, it hit me. Aveda. I had my hair colored a deep chocolate brown at Aveda Institute last winter and that color must be repelling the red. That's why it took at the roots; that's where it had grown out.

Grrrrrr! Aveda!

The color I want is between this:

And this:

So I'm fading out the red with a clarifying shampoo, then after a bit, I'm going to bleach it up a couple shades and try again. It doesn't look awful now that it's faded a bit and I do get compliments. Point is though? I want it how I want it dammit! And it will be the red I want. 

Oh yes it will be.

Oh and tomorrow is my dad's 65th birthday! Happy birthday to my pop. Next time, I'll tell you what I'm doing for his birthday, aka why I'm a super awesome daughter. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Photo of the Day: Lenny

Hobbes

Isn't my Hobbes so sweet. He's such a big dumb lug, sometimes I swear he's the cat incarnation of Lenny from Of Mice and Men. "Hey George. The mouse is soft, George."

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Photo of the Day: Just Coasting

Despite really, really wanting to write a couple posts that are swirling around in my brain, such as how stupid Aveda Institute is or why I can't get my hair to dye the color I want or what an awesome daughter I am or how I'm starting a few super awesome crafty home projects, my brain is not cooperating. No more words will be written today!

There to the fore! I have to decided to bring back Photo of the Day. I don't know why I let it slack off in the first place. Photography is a huge part of this blog after all! You're so welcome.

Please to now be looking at this photo of Haystack Rock I took a couple weekends ago when Eminem and I took a loverly trip to the Oregon coast.

DSC_0180

As an aside, see that little black spot in the water? Yeah, I thought my lens was scratched because I cleaned the lens and look! there that fucker still is. Happy days though, because it turns out the inside of my camera was just dirty. Hooray!


Sunday, June 3, 2012

Me and My Muffin Top

I haven't posted in a while, mostly because I've been busy getting fat.

Don't scoff. It's true. I'm working very hard on my cider belly (that's a beer belly for girls who drink hard cider instead of beer because they're allergic to gluten. it happens.).  It's coming along quite nicely too. Pretty soon people are going to be asking me if I'm pregnant. Nope, I'll say, just fat. And then I'll bask in their embarrassed faces. Because if I'm going to get fat, I'd at least like to enjoy it. 

I really am gaining weight at an astounding pace. I don't look that bad yet. Yet. But that's because I'm pretty damn adept at camouflaging my muffin top and my exponentially growing booty tooch. Also, I'm tall. So I figure I have at least six months before people start actually calling me fat.

The most frustrating part, though, other than the fruitless trips to the gym, is that none of my clothes fit. I have like two pairs of work pants and two pairs of jeans that still fit. They used to be my baggy pants. Now I don't own baggy pants. Everything else is simply bursting off of me. I'm afraid a button will pop off and take out someone's eye and then I'll be embroiled in a lawsuit, all because of my fat.

And it's not like I can afford to buy new clothes. If I were rich, I'd embrace this! I'm say, fuck it, Kirstie Alley, let's buy some new clothes! Excuse to shop! Hell yeah!

Except I can't afford to shop. I really can't. So I've married my leggings and have draped myself in my long dresses and then I just hope I don't get much bigger. I finally understand why my mom wore all those stretch pants.

Or maybe my mysterious windfall will finally come. In that case, bring on the fat. I'll just buy a mansion and fill it with new clothes. Also: food. I think I may know what my problem is.

I did try to give up alcohol for a month, thinking that drinking certainly doesn't help the situation. But then one of my favorite restaurants was closing on Friday and they were doing $1 wine and champagne and so I was forced to drink four glasses of champagne. Forced.

Sigh

I do go to the gym. I do. I go and I swim a thousand laps (not that many, but I do work hard), and then I just get bigger. This may have to also do with my relationship with ice cream. That and maybe I'm just getting old. I remember a time when I could eat a massive burrito right after dance class and I was so teeny tiny that one of my old leotards wouldn't even fit on one thigh now.

Don't you wish all nineteen year olds knew how good they had it?

And sure, all my friends are going through the same thing. We're all old and fat. But I'm like, sister christian, you just had a baby! I don't have that excuse. All I can blame is four glasses of champagne and a steak.

But it was damn delicious. A bundle of bubbly food baby. Wanna feel it kick?

I think I need an abortion

Next week: the battle with my hair and how I now hate Aveda Institute.


Sunday, May 13, 2012

Random Thoughts of a Crazy Lady

You read that right. Random Thoughts are back! You lucky ducks.

~~~~~~~~~~~

So the other day I was sitting in downtown Portland, enjoying the sun (finally!) and getting the first sunburn of the year (awwyeah!) and avoiding the rats with wings. I mean pigeons. I hate pigeons. Hate them. They're disgusting.

Anyway, it occurred to me that that song in Mary Poppins, Feed the Birds, was about pigeons. That bird woman was feeding the pigeons of London. She was asking kids to give her money to feed the pigeons.

Why were we all so enamored by this? She was a crazy bird lady feeding the disgusting pigeons! London's pigeon problem is probably all her fault. And doesn't this make you question Mary Poppins' sanity? Why did she convince those two kids to give their money to a crazy bird woman instead of investing it in the bank? What the hell was the teaching those kids?

~~~~~~~~~~

Do you want to know the truth? The real reason dancers wear tights? It's not to look pretty and it's not, as we tell you, to keep our muscles warm. It's to hide all the wounds and bruises that dancing causes. It's true. Dance is brutal and they wouldn't want their pretty ballerinas to look all beat up and bruised would they? What kind of message would that send? Therefore? Tights.

In fact, even though I don't dance anymore, my legs still get all bruised up. It's like my legs are magnets for desk corners and random walls that come out of nowhere. I need to start wearing tights again. People must think I'm a masochist. Which I kind of am, I admit.

Next week: dancer's feet!

~~~~~~~~~~

Today is mother's day. I hate mother's day. Just like I hate all family and religious holidays. These days are supposed to be all about making us feel special and included, but they forget all about those who aren't included. Those of us without mothers or fathers or children or who don't practice a certain religion are totally left out and completely screwed.

At least on Christmas, you have to stay home because not one fucking place is open. On mother's day, if you go out and about like a normal person, you get inundated with reminders of your lacking. I swear, if one more person asks me what my big mother's day plans are, I might punch them in the face.

Because it doesn't stop with one question. I say no plans and they ask why and then I have to explain that I don't have kids (why not? oh don't worry! you'll get some!) (barf) or that I don't talk to my mom or sometimes I say that I don't have a mom, which then gets sad faces and sympathy and makes me feel like a jerk for ruining their lovely day. But fuck, they brought it up! Or sometimes they say, Oh everyone has a mom! Or they respond, Oh she's your MOM! Don't you want to call her? As if they know one fucking thing about my life and I really shouldn't have to explain myself to every random fucking stranger.

So in summation: mother's day sucks. I know this is also true for my friends who are step moms are have lost babies or lost mothers. I'm with ya, sisters. I'm with ya. Stay strong and fuck Hallmark.

~~~~~~~~~~

I am brilliant. Most days. Yesterday was not one of those days.

It was a beautiful day. And I really wanted to get outside. I also wanted to swim laps at the gym. So I decide that I'll walk the roughly three miles there. In flip flops. Because I'm a genius.

Also, the day before, I'd spent all day taking photos at a golf tournament and the bottom of my feet had started to get a few blisters that weren't that bad and wouldn't have gotten bad if I hadn't decided to walk three miles in the hot sun in flip flops.

So you can imagine what shape my feet were in by the time I got there.

I did have a good swim, but then I had to make my way home. Luckily, I'm smart enough to take the bus, but that included walking to find a business that would break a bill so I'd have exact change and then hobbling to the bus stop and then home.

I had planned on hiking today, to avoid mother's day, but as you can imagine, my sore soles are in no shape for a hike. At least there are cozy coffee shops with ice tea and rose gluten free cookies and wifi where I can write random blog posts.

There is that. It's brilliant really.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

and verily she wrote a post and verily not one rant was in it

Well, hello, my dear readers old pals old friends. I've missed you. I've been a busy, busy girl you know.

For one, I joined the gym. Again. No, you didn't hallucinate that. Cheapskate that I am, I shelled out the 30 bucks a month and I'm swimming laps almost every day and working off this thick layer of fat I've developed in the last forever months. It feels fucking great. I also hate other swimmers. But are we surprised?

I'm also taking voice lessons, which I have been promising to tell you about and which are hugely therapeutic. I'm getting out all my neuroses there, I swear.

As you may well know if you've been reading for some time, my mother is insane. She was also a stage mom (picture those pageant moms only backstage, grooming their little ones for stardom. Picture Mama Rose from Gypsy only scary. So I've had a huge block about singing for a long time. Finding karaoke was huge for me because it was a place I could sing without any pressure and actually love it. I do love to sing, I do.

So these lessons, with the sweetest most awesome woman you'll ever meet in your whole damn life, feel so incredible. And it turns out I'm a lot better than I thought, even with the bad habits I've picked up over the years and with the learning I have to do. And I have a much bigger range than I thought too and she thinks there's much more in there. And she's always gushing all over me which makes me blush from my toes on up. I don't hate it, not gonna lie.

What else? After my huge early thirties life crisis the other week, I've been really agonizing over what's going on in my life and how I'm getting too old to put off my life's goals anymore and what I'm going to do to make them happen. I can't just let my dreams pass on by, because the next thing I know, I'll be in my sixties and telling some young kids about how I wanted to be a writer one day. But I'm an artist! I'm a photographer. I'm a writer. I need to make art and I need the time and funds to feel fully capable to do so.

With all that in mind, I finally decided to look into MFA in creative nonfiction writing programs. The purpose is this is, one, to get writing full time, two, learn some skills to market myself and maybe even get paid, and, three, to hone my craft. I'm really excited, despite the thought of how I will pay for it and pay for living while I go to school. But, hell, I need to do this. And, no, I'm not leaving Oregon. So it will be a program here.

And as you know, I'm back at Sprocket Ink. My first post was up last week and a new one will be up Monday morning. You definitely need to be reading it. Also, if you haven't liked my facebook page, do that too, as well as Sprocket Ink's page.

Quoi encore? Eminem and I are doing splendidly. I'm completely, effervescently happy with him and I get the impression he'd say the same if he were quite the talker I am. But everything is just easy and breezy and calm and uncomplicated. He's pretty damn great and while I recognize that my instincts suck monkey ass and while my exes don't exactly set the bar too high, I suspect I'm a lucky girl.

Alright, my iced tea is empty and my laptop battery is about to die, so I'll leave you here. Before you go, check out these photos I took a couple weekends back at the Rhododendron Garden in Portland:

Sunday, April 22, 2012

oh, Descartes, you know me so well

Well hello again, dear Internet, old buddy old pal. So much has happened since we last talked that I just don't think I can recap it all. Between a visit to Humboldt to see my pregnant cousin, taking voice lessons, and a whole slew of social-life goodness, I've been a busy chiquita.

So I think I'll skip over most of that. I do promise to get more photos online soon and share them avec vous. Je promet. I do also want to tell you about my voice lessons and how they're changing my life in a very therapeutic way. But for now? I want to share a huge life revelation I had recently. Well, more of an existential crisis that led to some decisions and plans.

Once again, as happens in adulthood and often to me, I've been letting my art slip. Thus is the life of a write slash photographer who sucks and getting herself paid for writing slash photography. Thus is that life because a struggling artist must pay the bills, does she not?

So I have a big girl job. And, don't worry, Boss, I'm not quitting. But I had a huge crisis recently because my creative muscles have been atrophying.

Being creative is one of the most important things for me, to live, to love, to be happy. And I let it go because it was easier that way, because when you're tired from a long day of work, it's easy to let the art go, to just sit and watch TV and put the happy-making things aside. It's easy, but so bad.

I have to be a writer! I have to take photos. I have to make art. I have to. I simply have to.

Then, as serendipity would have it, a few weeks ago my old editor at Sprocket Ink asked me to come back. And it was as if that huge lightbulb in the sky went on and the voices in my head started singing. But I was scared. I was. Of the commitment of it, of having a deadline every single week that I can't blow off. So I told her I'd think about it and then I thought about it and thought about it and thought about it. Which was stupid. Because a girl like me can just think something to death.

Then I had my creative existential crisis and in an impulsive moment of needing something creative to climb into, I told her yes. And then all was well and good in the world. All the wars stopped and the hungry all had food. You're welcome, world.

Just kidding. Or am I?

But for realsies, I'm back at Sprocket Ink! Are you excited? Because I'm excited.

Watch for articles from me soon. BUT, I probably won't be linking up my articles here so if you want to get updates (and of course you do), make sure to like my Facecrack page or Sprocket Ink's page. Or, you know, both! You can also find both of us on Twitter of course.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

there and back again

Oh, Internet. I’ve given up at this point trying to post every week. Every two weeks feels about right with my insane schedule. And I have several posts going in my head all the time, but finding the time to sit down and write them is proving problematic.

And it’s not like my schedule is even that insane. I don’t have kids. I don’t have to cook or clean for anyone but myself. But between how tired I am once I get home from work, social commitments, and trying to have some kind of enjoyable personal time, I just don’t write much. But I think that’s okay for now. I’m navigating this part of my life and I think the best thing is that I’m kind to myself through it. We all know what a perfectionist I can be, perfectionist bordering on masochist. So whatever happens, I just want to be less hard on myself.

Anyway, here I am, finally writing. I’ve yet to find a coffee shop in my neighborhood I really like so I’m installed in a Starbucks for the time being. It’s not ideal of course. It’s so corporate and the paper cups just aren’t as conducive to creativity as huge, funky mugs are. Does that make sense? There’s something about a cozy little neighborhood shop with its quirks and oddities that make my brain flow. But oh well. First world problem. Shit, plenty of writers pen their greatest works in annexes and bunkers and shacks. I should stop complaining about the Starbucks.

And, hey, I love how Starbucks is supporting women’s and LGBT rights. So there.

It’s been a crazy time, Internet. First, I had the Black Plague for a whole week. Otherwise known as bronchitis. And it knocked me on the ass. Not being able to breathe properly will do that to you. I finally drug my ass to the doctor, which we know I’m loathe to do because of my hypochondriac, drug addict mother.

When I was a kid, she drug me to the doctor for every damn sniffle, had them put me on antibiotics (the woman knows how to get her way), and kept me home for inordinate amounts of time (and trust me, I would rather have been in school learning and playing with my friends).

So anyway, I go to the doctor and describe my symptoms and tell him I just want to make sure I don’t have the plague. He listens to my lungs and tells me I have bronchitis and then looks at me disapprovingly and tells me it’s viral so I can’t have antibiotics. Like I had asked for them. I hate that fucking look and I get it all the time because of people like my mom who just want their Z Packs so they can get all better. I’m not that way, though. I’d rather my body fight it off if possible, but if I’m sick for a whole week and can’t breathe, I do want to make sure it’s not serious. I don’t really want the drugs, doc! Ugg. Pisses me off.

Fucking doctors. Fucking hypochondriacs.

Then I finally got better and Portland got a little bit of sun for two whole minutes, two whole minutes of glorious, glorious sunshine. I went running and I walked around downtown and it was AHHH! Then it was shit again. Fuck this, weather, Portland. Fuck it. It’s April. I do expect a little rain still because, face it, it’s Portland, but this freezing cold muck is making me insane. We even had snow a couple weeks ago. True story.

snow in March

You’re really testing my love for you, Portland. It’s time for Spring already.

It’s time for ballet flats and lighter jackets and flowy scarves. It’s time to get outside and run and hike and take photos of flowers. I took a chance today and went out to take photos. I got about 10 minutes in and the heavens opened up and dumped the sky upon me. My poor camera just couldn’t brave it.

DSC_0042

Sigh.

I really wish I could afford a weekend in SoCal right now. I’d get to see my friends and fam and get some Vitamin D while I’m at it. But I am going down to Humboldt Easter weekend to see my cousin and her immensely pregnant belly. There will be a photo shoot. Oh yes. Expect lots of photos.

I wasn’t going to share this next bit of news, but I think I have to because it’s just too delicious. I saw my ex last weekend. And while it was only minimally awkward, mostly because he tried to talk to me a couple times and I just didn’t have anything to say to him (I just don’t want to tell him about my life and I couldn’t give a flying fuck about his), I did feel a little good about myself. Like, let’s face it, I looked good. And he, well, he looks...different.

Ahem.

But more than that, he was the same old idiot asshole and, not that I needed any reminding (I honestly have been thanking my stars that ending for quite some time), but every time he’d say something asinine, I’d just feel such a huge wave of disgust. Disgust for him and disgust for myself that I ever found that guy attractive (I wanted to write man, but let’s be honest. He’s not a man). And it just felt like I’d dodged the biggest bullet ever, the bullet of an asshole idiot lush. Just saying.

And the guy who would’ve been my date couldn’t be there and that’s okay I think. I was awesome all on my own and that’s that.

You may at this point be wondering who my date would’ve been. And I confess, I’ve been keeping the best for last, Internet. I’m sure you’ve been wondering about Eminem. And that’s still going. Going really great actually!  It’s nothing like my last relationships. It’s easy and fun and full of butterflies and laughter. I know this probably seems obvious but I forgot what it was like to date someone you just get along with so easily. We just get along so well and make each other laugh and eat lots and lots of really yummy food.

This is the best, people. Of all the things to have in common, I’m so glad we both enjoy food. Seriously. I’m talking about truly enjoying food.

Yesterday, we were eating at this amazing Greek place in NW Portland and as I was eating these melty, zesty, zingy, heavenly potatoes, potatoes that were making my tongue orgasm, I realized that moments like that are just what I love about life and it’s so nice to have someone who gets that and to share that with.

We have a longass list that is still growing of places we want to eat together. It’ll be a miracle if we don’t both get huge. This is another reason I need spring to get here. So I can go running and counteract all the gluttony. That and all the sex. Sex is a great workout.

Any to the way, my point is that it’s so far so good. I’m understandable cautious. I don’t have the greatest track record after all so I’m just taking one day at a time and seeing where it goes. And thus far, it feels really good.

I have a couple cool things in the works for myself, like voice lessons (eek!) and possibly starting yoga again. So stay tuned!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

An Open Letter

Lovely readers, I know I haven't written in a while and I promise I'll get you a life update post soon. But first? I have to say some things. 

Dear GOP, Christian Right, and especially you, Rush Limbaugh,

Aside from being misogynistic pricks, you're behaving completely batshit. And I don't approve. I have several points to make and I need you to shut your never-ending chatter and actually listen.

First of all, stop calling women sluts and whores. It's disgusting enough when you persist with the name-calling in order to avoid any sort of logical rhetoric, but when you attack individual women, especially as representative of blanket female behavior, you really sink into new depths of depravity. You think we're bad? Your behavior trumps any amount of sex we're having, believe me.

But your actual behavior belies your hateful sewage that seems to spill out every time you speak. Because you guys can't seem to get enough of the sexy ladies. So which is it, people? Would you like us to be virgins or whores? Time to choose.

Or maybe it's some adolescent grudge against women because you just couldn't get a girl way back when. Well, it's time to grow up and let that go. We're not the enemy. You're your own enemy.

And don't get me started on you women who hate women. Must I quote Mean Girls? Don't make it okay for men to call us sluts and whores. You're undermining your own sex and putting the hard work of all the strong women before us back 50 to 100 years. What's next? Repeal suffrage?

But back to my sluttiness. It's none of your goddamn business who I have sex with and how often. Just because I get laid does not make me worthy of your derision. Sex is not bad. It's not. No matter how guilty you feel every time you have it (or wish you had it). And you should want me to have access to affordable contraception because I am positive that you don't want to pay for my disability when I contract AIDS (because I couldn't get condoms) or to feed my children that I can't support (condoms or the pill) or, and try not to die of a heart attack, my abortion. Getting me and women everywhere access to these services helps your economy and the oh-so-dreaded government spending. Getting women access to contraception prevents abortions. Why is that so hard to understand?

Moreover, if I get this right, your problem is that you don't want to pay for women's health services (like contraception). You say that if the government pays for it, that makes women prostitutes. Hrm. Setting aside that that is probably the most illogical argument I've heard in a long time (I mean, I can't even make that make some sort of sense), I actually think that the government should start regulating prostitution, get prostitutes tested, provide them with health care and contraception. But I realize that's too much of a stretch for your very closed minds.

But back to the pill and it's contribution to sluts everywhere. You clearly don't understand how the pill works, so let me 'splain it to you. In order for it to work, you have to take it every day. Understand? Every day. You don't just take it when you have sex, you just take it every day. You don't take more when you have sex, you just take it every day. The cost is the same if you have sex once in a year or 365 days. It's the same.

Also, and this is going to blow your mind, say we use your term "slut" to mean women who have sex with different partners. Well, those women might take the pill, but I guaran-fucking-tee that they're using condoms. Why? Because this is 2012 and this is the age of AIDS and no one wants to die. Who doesn't use condoms? People who aren't educated in why and how to use them, people who don't have access to condoms, people who only had abstinence-only education in school? So who is spreading STDs and HIV? That's right, those same people. And when they contract AIDS, who is going to pay for their health care (because they're now not eligible for private insurance and they're probably too sick to work so they're on social security), oh yeah, the government. Which you hate so much, but which seems to pay your paycheck so nicely.

But yeah, most women who just use the pill are actually in committed relationships. So there goes your slut theory. Yet even women in committed relationships need affordable access to contraception. Why, you ask? Because not everyone has your millions. Because not everyone can afford to or wants to feed 12 children because they couldn't get the pill. And don't even suggest that these women are sluts for having sex with their boyfriends or husbands. If you really think that it's reasonable for couples to be celibate except in the effort of procreation, you're really bigger hypocrites than I thought.

And don't get me started on overpopulation. Once again, do you really want more children born onto this planet? Or, better yet, into the system? You don't want to pay for welfare, for food stamps, then get your heads out of your asses and provide contraception.

But I'm not done. Because there's a whole 'nother group of us women who take the pill but not for contraception, who take the pill because it's medically necessary. I am a mess. My ovaries have persistent cysts, my uterus is tipped, and I have Endometriosis. I need the hormones to regulate my body and to help with the pain. So I take the pill (every day, just like we discussed). I have for years. I can't imagine living without it. Does that make me a slut? Does that make me morally questionable? But it's the pill and I bet my bottom dollar that any insurance company just looks at that prescription and doesn't see that it's medically necessary; all it sees is THE PILL. And if we allow insurance companies to not cover what they deem morally questionable, women like me could be screwed (that word choice was deliberate).

Morally questionable. Now it seems like a good idea to you. But what if your insurance company is run by a religion that deems medicine morally questionable, or blood transfusions, or  vaccines? Or, GASP, Viagra? Chew on that for a bit. Then get back to me.

Also: as always, a reminder that while you may think this is a Christian nation, nowhere in the Constitution is there a national religion. In the contrary, we have separation of church and state. So keep your church out of my uterus and my vagina.

I realize this post is going to get a lot of heated comments. I will not be responding to them, however. I've stated my views. Feel free to debate, but please keep it civil.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

In other news

Oh my gourd, Internet, it has been two whole weeks since we last talked and so much has happened! I have no idea where to start so I guarantee this post will be disjointed, rambly, and altogether random.

Let's begin!

A few days ago, I almost died. For reals. And it was so scary that I cannot stop telling the story.

I was walking in a crosswalk in downtown Portland, on a green, clearly having of the right of way, when a big SUV barrels around the corner going pretty fast. Clearly they weren't looking and they weren't going to stop either. I had to run to get out of the way and they missed me by maybe a foot. And they just kept going! Never even paused. Probably never even saw me. If I hadn't been paying attention, I'd be roadkill right now.

On the upside, I am loving my new place! Hobbes is happier there and it's so nice to see him sitting all over the furniture and watching out the windows. I know the tension in my old place affected him too. Bitch roomie did try to fuck up my happiness again but it's all settled now. I don't even want to get into it, suffice to say she's leaving me alone for good and I never want to see or think about her again.

There is one major lesson I got to relearn because of all this though: One's happiness is the most important thing. I'm not talking about making sacrifices or doing what needs to be done, etc etc etc. I'm talking about not putting oneself into situations that are not only happiness suckers but unnecessary and I'm talking about setting aside one's attachment to pride and money and all those other things we place before happiness.

I am confident that had I had to go to court over this drama, I could have made a damn good case and I would have won. But did I want this to drag out months and months? No. I know I didn't have to pay any more money but did it make the problem go away? Yes. Sure, I handled it legally and covered my ass, but when it comes right down to it, money is just money. It's not worth as much as my happiness. And my pride? Not worth as much as my happiness. I don't need to prove I was right. I don't need to win anything. What I needed to do was walk away and put the whole thing behind me. Worth it.

So that's over. Hoorah! Let's all drink to that.

And I got my tax return so I have money again! I may have gone a little crazy at the grocery store buying luxury foods I've been denying myself for the sake of my measly budget. Hey, after weeks of baked potatoes (which I do love) and soup, how can a girl resist ice cream and chips and gluten free cookies? I guarantee it will all be gone in a few more minutes. And then I'll have to buy fat clothes.

Oh and I had the weirdest night the other night. So I'm hanging out at my new fave bar with my new friends and ex new guy is there, which was inevitable and which was also awkward awkward awkward as all holy hell. But that was okay for the most part.

But there's this other guy in the group that I am interested in so he and I are talking and flirting and that's all great. Then the roommate of an ex boyfriend walks in and he and I talk a bit and I'm looking around to make sure that ex isn't there too (wasn't, thank the lard), but it's just a bit weird and coincidental at this point.

THEN, this other guy walks in, a guy I went on a date with forever ago and it was NOT a good date. Like probably on the list of worst dates list ever in the world. But it doesn't end there. Turns out Bad Date is friends with my new friends. But wait. There's more. He comes over to me, sticks out his hand, and goes, "Hi, I'm Bad Date." (See what I did there?). And I go, "I know, we went on a date once.

You should have seen his face. It was like an episode of Friends. You know the one.

And, truthfully, it seemed like he felt really badly for not remembering me and to be fair, I look quite a bit different now. He was like, "I take it it wasn't a good date?" And I was like, "Yeahno." It took him all night to remember and he apologized and we had a good laugh. But holy fuck, people! Really?

So not only were all the men I've ever dated in Portland converging in one bar one night (that could be a good book plot) but one didn't even remember me. Awesome. Thank heaven that HP didn't walk in and complete the circle of awkward. Plus, now I'll have dated like 3 guys in this group. I'm that girl. Oh joy.

And yes, you read that right, I said 3. Which means it's going well with the other guy I was flirting with, who we'll call Eminem (even though he's nothing like Mr. Mathers in any way really). I'm gonna keep this under wraps for a while but I'll just say we had a lot of fun.

Oh and I cut off all my hair! I donated ten whole inches to Locks of Love.

Holding my locks
The stylist was super sweet too. He was like, "some bald kid is gonna look gooood now." Which is so wrong but so funny. I do have lots of hair, or, I did anyway.

Anyway, here's my hair now:


I realize I'm a huge dork. That's why I included an artsy shot too.

So I must stop myself there. How've you been, Internet?

Sunday, February 19, 2012

"moving" on

So much has happened since we last talked, Internet! Let's see. What had happened last? I think it was that my crazy roommate turned off my Internet access and you just don't fuck with a girl's Internet.

After that, things happened really, really fast. After a couple of days of simmering and stewing and salting and then adding a dash of paprika, talking with my landlady, I decided to put in my 30 days notice, repercussions be damned. It was such a toxic situation and it was really eating me alive emotionally and psychologically. So on February 1st, I gave my notice to the apartment management and gave bitch roomie a copy (in an envelope left where she would she would find it, locked myself in my room with a chair against the door, and started to feel the tiniest bit happy.

It was like a tiny sliver of light let itself in. Each day has been exponentially better and better since.

I buckled down, started dating Pad Mapper, and found an apartment pretty damn fast. I had to sell my soul to afford it, not the place itself, which I can technically afford and will be saving tons of gas money because it's uber close to my work now, but just the costs of paying rent in two places, deposit, truck rental, etc.

All my money is gone, yo. But money is just money. Whomever said money can't buy happiness clearly never lived with my roommate. A little money can get you out of all kinds of shitsuck situations.

And I had a small hiccup, as always happens with these things, when the management at the new place ran my background check, the found two bad marks on my credit report (which of course shouldn't be there) and wanted to charge me double the deposit. I was like, UM WHAT NOW? Because my only debt should be my student loans and they can't count that against you unless you've defaulted.

So I ran credit reports from all three reporting services, something I'd just done two years before, aka when I moved from California to Oregon, and what do you know? There were two medical bills from a million years ago, from my hometown, and which I was completely unaware of and didn't show up on my report the last time. And did I mention they sent the bills to my mom's house? My crazy, hoarder mom? So those bills are probably still unopened under piles of piles of whatever the hell it is she piles. Sigh. They were also fairly small originally and I could have paid them easily at the time but right now, in the midst of my moving drama and because they've grown with interest, not so easy.

This is why life is fucked. Even when one tries to manage one's income and life in a semi-normal manner, shit like this pops up and tries to screw it all. You know? When I order a screw driver, this is not what I have in mind.

Never to the less, my new manager was a sweetheart and said if I cleared those off my report though, they could decrease my deposit. So I sold my backup soul and have to get it all paid off this week.

So remember above when I said I'm broke, I really mean it. I'm BROKE! Guess who needs to get her taxes done this week and is hoping for a decent return? This girl!

Anyway, I got into the apartment a week ago and moved everything I could all by my lonesome, including all my books (which are the bulk of my possessions, lemmetellya) and I think I lost 20 pounds last weekend, I swear. Then I pulled out my sleeping bag, my bedding, four pillows, and the pad from an Ikea chair, and made a nest for a bed. I brought Hobbes over and we've been staying here since.

Then I got a truck Saturday (and drove a big truck for the first time ever and I drove it like I boss!) and my very best friend, who has moved me like 3 times in the last 2 years, came over to help, along with my favorite coworker Mike and his girlfriend. And this is the best part and why I love good people. Mike just moved out from Boston not long ago and his grilfriend is in town visiting and she'd just gotten in Friday night at like midnght. So what did they do the next morning? They came over and helped me move. This is also the first time I'd met her. Truly awesome people.

On a side note, that new guy I've been dating, the one I met on that one random night? Yeah he said he was gonna help, which he offered to do and I didn't even ask, bee tee dubs, and then just completely flaked out. I got a text from him at like 5 pm or something saying sorry he flaked. Um, yeah. A little late now, buddy. Too bad too. I liked him, but darn it if I also like a little thing like courtesy and respect. Imagine that.

And look at me demanding to be treated well! See, a girl can get out of a toxic, destructive relationship and still reclaim a modicum of respect for herself. Proud of me? You should be.

Oh and I almost skipped a good part! The ex is out of town I guess so I went out to the old bar Friday night and met up with my (our, his) old friends and had a blast. I missed them all a ton more than I realized I guess. Anyway, it was great to see them and they were super sweet.

Back to the story (sorry this post is so rambly), I got all my furniture in yesterday and then unpacked until I passed out. I was really nice to sleep in my bed again, but in a place all my own where I feel safe emotionally. And it was completely delicious waking up this morning. I feel free. Ahhhhh!

I still have to go back and clean, but eh, whatevs. Worth it.

Did I mention my new place has a pool? I'm gonna be so popular this summer.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Photo of the Day: Just Hobbes



SO much is going on right now, all good thing, but I hardly have time to think let alone write a long post. But one will be coming. Some day. I promise.

In the meantime, please to enjoy this gorgeous photo I took of my Hobbes the other day. It's just been so damn sunny in Portland, what else could I do but subject my boy to yet another photo shoot?

Sunday, January 29, 2012

happy-like

In the wake of a shitty week, I still have things that are making me happy.

In no particular order:

Rainy Portland Sunday mornings spent sleeping-in in my cozy, warm bed, dreaming of the night before and unreservedly fantasizing.

Great dates. With thus far great guys. Who are smart and too handsome to be so humble and great kissers too. And who are seemingly too well suited to me to be real.

Pizza places that serve gluten free pizza by the slice and have wifi. Oh, and a great happy hour every day of the week. Instant happiness.

Really sweet bartenders who remember my name and shave money off my tab. See also: finding new karaoke bars where I am destined to become a regular.

Cucumber white tea. A revelation that is.

Random strangers who hold the door open for me.

My best friends and family who even when only available by text or facebook, always boost my ego and send me endless love and support.

Great coworkers (and a great boss) who take me out for drinks when I'm stressed out about going home.

Hard cider. It's a gluten free salvation.

Nice dudes who, when like an idiot I drop my camera and break my flash, get it fixed for me without my even asking.

Did I mention the gluten free pizza?

Hoping I see said great guy again soon.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Mean Girls and other tales

Well, Internet, it seems I'm never meant to have an easy time of it. That sounds incredibly defeatist and incredibly selfish and I hate to play the martyr but it's been a struggle. This had been an especially hard week in regards to my living situation.

I keep trying to gain perspective, to remind myself that plenty of people live in worse situations, live in hiding, live in war zones, live on the streets. Plenty of people have it worse off but I've reached the point that that doesn't really help me feel better.

I can't even discuss all the details or go through how all this happened, partly because I'm so damned furious and upset and frustrated that I can't even discuss it without just exploding with emotion (and maybe I'll share more when I've got a little more distance from the situation), and partly because I don't even know how it happened.

One day my roommate just decided she hated me and so I just stayed out of her way and kept to myself, my tactic being: don't engage. But that didn't work for her. So I have been feeling pretty trapped. She won't leave me alone, she won't let me leave, and so I've pretty much reached my limits of tolerance. Sans any physical threat, I feel bullied. I haven't felt this picked on since I was 12 years old, I swear. 

But, as my bully in the 7th grade will probably tell you, I do have the capacity for abuse and bullying, BUT, I have a limit that I can take and then I just snap. You know how, in A Christmas Story, Ralphie finally snaps and beats up his bully?


That's how I felt in the 7th grade when Dionne told the whole school I stuffed my bra and they all called me Charmin and then I kicked her ass. And that's how I feel right now. Only I probably won't beat her up unless she hits me first.

I was pretty much at my last straw this week anyway. Then I came home to a note last night announcing she'd canceled our internet service and she'd taken the modem and was signing up for her own internet and I'd be on my own.

THAT pissed me off. She knows how much I rely on the internet. I watch my TV shows online. I write my blog. I can do social media from my phone but without wifi, I use too much data that way to afford it.She knew, however much she protests this, that she was screwing me over. That I'd come home on a Friday, ready for a weekend, to no internet and be fucked.

THEN! Then I took a deep breath and tried to just sign up for my own service. But because of a ton of red tape and shit that I won't even get into, I can't get signed up for internet, not at least for a couple weeks. I'm fucked. I tried to do hotspot on my phone but can't. I looked into a hotspot service but it's insanely expensive. So I'm fucked. Completely fucked.

And that was my last limit.  But I am done with being a doormat. Done. She can kiss my motherfucking non-white-girl-ass. If she thought that would motivate me to not be a bad roommate, she's delusional because I have no concern for her whatsoever anymore. I'm not going top be spiteful or plan revenge (though I have a few ideas lemmetellya) but I'm just not going to go out of my way to be the quiet, conscientious roommate I am. She has no idea how good she had it before.

And I have a few cards in my back pocket that I haven't played yet. Hopefully I'll have good news for y'all soon.

In case you're wondering, I'm writing this from a coffee shop. Which is okay for the short term, and I hope they don't catch me downloading tv shows. Evil laugh.

And maybe this is motivation to go to the gym more and not go home at least. Look at me, still trying to find a bright side.

In other news: I have a date tonight with that guy from last weekend. Send good vibes our way that he's as awesome as I suspect. I'm very hopeful about this one. If I find my way to a coffee shop tomorrow, I'll give you all an update.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

This is a story that should be told from the beginning

I had a whole different blog post planned for this weekend. But then Life, that scamp, threw another wrench in my plans. Well played, Life. Well played.

Wait. I should back up.

I had planned on blogging about 2 things.

One, I've been having a really rough time in my living situation, which I've kept mum about for the last month or so because I was afraid of crazy bitch backlash, but I was feeling like I didn't let it out I might just explode. But for now, that post will have to happen another day.

Two, I've been feeling really good about completing my breakup recovery, but also feeling like I need some time to myself before really dating again. Truth is, even though I do want a positive, serious relationship which will lead to things like marriage, family, blah blah blah, I'm pretty terrified of getting sucked into another toxic relationship. And that's a good fear, methinks. I don't want to just jump into something blindly without doing a little work on why I let the last tool suck the life out of me.

Therefore I was fully prepared to take myself off the relationship market (though not the sex market. I'm not that much of a masochist anymore) for an indeterminate amount of time.

Cut to last night. Because of the aforementioned shit storm of a cold war at my house, I really wanted to get out of the house and have a little fun. But everyone I know was busy or not returning any of my advances (hehehe). And I may not have mentioned this, but I don't go to my old fave karaoke bar anymore. I'm fine with that. So many people have told me that's dumb because if I like the place, I shouldn't give it up because of one toolbag fucktard. But I really don't want to see the ex in anyway and I wouldn't have any fun there now, so why would I do that to myself in the name of taking a stand or something? I wouldn't have fun so why go?

I thought I'd go out on my own, which is something I never do because while I like doing things on my own, I'm always afraid of becoming that girl in the Date Rape song by Sublime. I am the product of my generation after all.

Anyway, there used to be this awesome lesbian slash karaoke bar by my old house, but last I heard it had changed ownership and names. Still, I thought maybe I'd venture over and see if the place was still cool and lesbian and maybe even sing a little karaoke, which, as you might have gathered, I totally missed. I do love my karaoke and have yet to find a new karaoke home.

But alas! I get to the bar and it's closed. Like gone. Like I'm pretty sure homeless people squat there now. Bum to the mer.

So I drive around for a bit, trying to figure out where to go. I decide to drive back toward my house in an area where I know quite a few bars are and I decide to stop at one I'd been to maybe once forever ago. But it's slightly familiar and I know they serve cider so it's the winner.

I take the only free bar stool and order a Strongbow (which are STRONG and therefore live up to the name and so are alright in my book) and proceed to just chill. Next to me is this very drunk, very loud dude who is reminding me so very much of my ex. Which doesn't bode well for him because I'm pretty sure he's interested in me.

But it turns out that he's there with a whole group of friends and, the next thing I know, I'm bonding with the lone girl in the group and she so gets me and then we're migrating to a karaoke bar down the street and I'm having a blast and I really like this new bar and I sing a couple songs and I'm talking all night to this really cute, sweet, smart, polite guy in their group (who is so unlike my ex in all the best ways) who I start to really like and we exchange phone numbers and he walks me to my car and gives me the best kiss I've had in a long, long, long time.

And I drove home on a cloud. Not literally because it wasn't that foggy last night. I had butterflies for the first time in a couple years. And who knows? Maybe this guy won't call. But I made new friends and found a new bar. And maybe he will call and maybe something great will come out of it. I just know I'm excited and I missed that feeling.

Well played, Life. 
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