Friday, May 25, 2012

And then my car exploded. Almost.

....and so I pulled up to my parents' house and turned the car off. It was a nice day and I walked across their lawn.... and noticed smoke. Coming from behind me. So I turned around and saw smoke billowing out of the hood of my car.

So, being 38-years old and a responsible adult with children, I promptly ran to my daddy who was in the garage tinkering with his lawn mower and yelled: DAD! MY CAR'S ON FIRE!! And that's when I noticed that he was actually not my father but a repair man sent to fix the broken piece of crap new lawn mower that my dad just bought. I apologized to the strange man and turned to my dad, who was insisting on hovering over the strange man and yelled: DAD! MY CAR'S ON FIRE!!!

And, well, obviously I do not get my dramatic flair from my father because he just casually looked out towards the street and mumbled something about it probably overheating.


And, being that he was completely embarrassed of my shouting, decided the only way to shut me up would to be to look at my car. Go pop the hood, he directed.


It's not going to blow up. Go pop the hood.

And so I did. Well, at least I mean, I tried. Because who knew car hoods could be so tricky? And in my defense it really is a tricky hood release because there's a button you push down not a latch you push up. See what I mean?

And so my dad actually opened the hood of the car but let's not focus on that point too much.

And that's when we saw oil everywhere. Over everything.

And that's also when my dad pointed to something and said where's the oil cap?

And that's when we noticed it sitting nicely on the battery. (Also covered in oil.)

So there was no fire and no flame and pretty much it was just the oil burning off which stunk pretty bad.

And that's when Big V called.

Hey. Whatcha doin'?

I'm over at my parents. We're currently discussing the fact that you're an idiot.


Um, remember last night when I asked you to check my oil? And you said it was low so you put more oil in it?


Well, was there a particular reason you didn't feel obligated to put the oil cap back on?


Yep. That about sums it up. My dad said you need to come with oil, coolant and some windshield washer fluid because that's low, too, and pray to God this car starts again.

Well, it's not my fault the cap wasn't on.


Remember? I was checking your oil and I fell through the cistern?

Oh my god. You totally didn't fall through. The board broke and your foot went about three inches. The thing is twelve feet deep; you didn't even lose your flip-flop. I'd hardly call that falling through.

...and you were all  freaking out about how dangerous it was and that I needed to fix it right away -

I've been saying that since I moved in five years ago. Who the hell has a cistern in their garage?

Anyway -

It's probably not even a cistern at all. It was probably dug so the creepy owners could throw bodies down there. We really should have the police investigate it before it's filled in.


We can't just cover up dead people and pretend like they're not there.

They do that in cemeteries.

That's not the same thing and you know it. That would only work if we had headstones and the garage is too small for headstones. I'd never be able to fit my car in.

There aren't any bodies... you just think they're there.

Why else would someone dig a twelve foot deep pit in their garage and cover it with a wooden hatch? Trust me. There's dead people down there.

There are no dead people.

How do you know? Have you been in it?

Well, I was almost in it! Which is why you freaked out after I fell through and told me I had to fix the hatch right away and that is exactly why I didn't have time to put that oil cap back on.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Whose Kids Are These Anyway?

The other night Dotter, who is 10, announced that she was going to make cookies. And she was going to take those cookies and deliver them to the people on her list. And all I had to do was drive her to deliver the cookies that she made to the people on that list.

And I immediately thought are you serious? I just spent the entire day working my tail off and I'm tired and I'm hungry and there's forty-seven loads of laundry to do and what the heck is in the toddler's hair?

And then I thought huh. This must be what nice people do. Just decide to do things for others for no other reason than to make people happy.

So, even though I was exhausted and facing an endless mound of dirty clothing, I decided to support Dotter. Because I like nice people. Especially nice people that deliver cookies for no other reason than to make my day a little brighter. And I figured if I supported her now, maybe she'd remember it when she was older and would bring me cookies when I was in the old folks' home.

Dotter made Pink Lemonade Cookies with pink frosting. Then she left the mess for me to clean up and the dirty mixing bowls for me to wash because she was tired. But I didn't even mind because my heart was experiencing this thing called pride. And it felt good. Really good.

We took her list and the total number of cookies she made and figured out how many cookies went into each ziplock bag. *bonus: she was doing math!

And then I told Big V that he was in charge of putting the toddler to bed because we had deliveries to make! With the exception of two stops, Dotter did all the hopping out, doorbell ringing and explaining. It made my heart swell. We went to a neighbor's house, a cousin's house, an Uncle she barely ever sees, a piano teacher, a friend from school.... eight stops in all.

"I think they were all really happy, Mom," she beamed as we drove home.

Oh, you do my heart good! "So, what do those cookies taste like anyway? I couldn't taste them because they have gluten in them. What were they like?"

"They're really hard. I thought they'd be soft but they're not. We should do this again!"

Right after I get done apologizing for everyone's chipped teeth....

Monday, May 21, 2012

And, this, Ladies and Gentlemen, is my life. Go ahead and be jealous.

So, I was reading outside and heard a noise coming from inside the house and figured I ought to investigate. It sounded like... a motor, whirring. I followed the sound and it takes me down to the basement. I'm a few steps from the bottom when I see the guest bedroom door open and the light on.

There's Big V, standing in the doorway, vacuuming his penis.

In his defense, he was fully clothed, standing next to a plugged in Kirby, using the hose in a sweeping motion across the front of his shorts like he was trying to vacuum off cat hair or something.

After a few minutes he catches me staring at him.

"What?" he asks, continuing to vacuum himself as if this is the most natural thing in the world.

"You're standing in an empty room vacuuming your junk and you're asking me 'what?'"

"I had to vacuum up the cornstarch."


He switched the vacuum off and started winding up the cord.

"Remember last night when I came home and said I was super chafed from playing in that softball tournament all day and all that sweating? And you told me to shut up and just use cornstarch and stop talking about it because it was grossing you out?" he explained.


" yeah... so why are you down here? In the bedroom in the basement? Why didn't you do that in the bathroom?"

"Oh. I had to lay down and come at it from an angle."

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

If You See A Spot On Your Nose

If you see a spot on your nose you'll probably call the dermatologist.

The nurse will hand you a gown and tell you to take off all your clothes but you'll be cold so you'll keep your socks on.

Then the dermatologist will come in, take one look at you and say, "Oh, I do not like that at all!" before she even officially starts the exam.

Then she'll repeat it three times while you're standing in front of her, naked, while she looks over your entire body with a magnifying glass.

Then you'll feel awkward as she slips your socks off so she can look between your toes.

Then you'll apologize for having your socks still on and get bright red when it suddenly dawns on you that no one has ever slipped your socks off before and then you'll keep talking because when you feel socially awkward of course it makes total sense to you to say If I'd known you were inspecting me this thoroughly I would've taken out my toe jam. And my belly button lint.

And then you'll stand there praying for lightening to strike you because the awkward silence is deafening and the nonresponse is humiliating.

Then you'll be told that you have to have the spots removed: two on your nose and one on your right butt cheek.

But they'll wait with the butt cheek because the spot on your nose is concerning and it needs to be removed right away.

Then they'll tell you that the other room is better equipped for this type of procedure so could you please move.

And you'll hobble down the hall carrying your purse and your clothes (hoping you don't drop your bra or panties) while trying to keep the back of the gown from flopping open and also attempting to maintain some sense of decorum.

After you're settled in the new room they'll give you a shot in your nose.

And it'll hurt like hell.

But you won't cry because you're in too much shock.

Then they'll press on the side of your nose with a medical cookie cutter leaving you with a gaping wound that is bleeding profusely.

And then you'll have to lay still while they stitch you up.

And you'll probably think I never want to do this ever again right before remembering you have another spot on the other side of your nose that has to be removed so you actually will be doing that again.

And then you'll get another shot in your nose.

And it'll hurt like hell.

But worse than that will be when they attempt to take your skin off and you realize that you're not actually numb yet.

So you'll get another shot.

And that'll hurt like hell.

And then they'll try to take your skin again but surprise! you're still not numb.

So they'll come at you with another needle.

And you will curse them because it still won't work.

And then you will cry.

And the doctor will suggest doing this another time.

And then you'll shock yourself with your hearty like hell we'll do this again response.

So they try to numb you one last time.

And it either works or you just passed out from the pain but suddenly it's done.

And you're light headed but alive.

But then they might have trouble stopping the bleeding with this one.

So they'll try to cauterize it.

Which is a fancy word for burn the hell out of your face.

And the smell will make you sick but you won't notice that until after the nurse peels you off the ceiling because holy hell you felt that, too, and you'll know that electrocautery is nothing to mess around with.

But that still doesn't stop the bleeding and you'll hear them use words like unusual and abnormal and concerned.

Then they'll pour some chemical on the bleeding wound and you're immediately transported back to your childhood when your masochistic mother poured iodine and peroxide on every open wound you ever had, but you've got to admit the bubbling from the peroxide was pretty cool.

Finally, right before you pass out, they'll slap a bandage on your nose and tell you to call if it doesn't stop bleeding in an hour.

On your way out you'll think to ask, "so, they'll test this? For what exactly?"

And your doctor will reply with, "Worse case scenario, melanoma but we'll be able to tell what stage it's at when the results come back and be able to come up with a treatment plan, so I don't want you to worry. Make sure you make an appointment to have those stitches removed in a week."

Then you'll call your sister on the ride home and force her to listen to all the gory details even though it kind of makes her sick to her stomach but she'll be cool and keep your kid overnight so you can sleep with a package of frozen peas on your beak.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

A Series of Perfectly Normal Texts Between Sisters

SISTER:  Alex wants you to see how he likes to read....

ME: Which is ironic because I read the SAME WAY! (Also I think I may need someone to call an ambulance.) 

SISTER: This is so funny!! Everyone is laughing. And the Teen Bean was so confused about what was going on in this picture. Hahahaha!

ME:  I don't know why it's funny. Big V just shook his head and LEFT ME HERE and now I can't feel my left leg. Or my spleen. I'll probably be paralyzed and horribly disfigured just because I tried to one-up an uber-flexible kid. Damn this getting older crap.

ME:  Also, I should note Big V didn't even ask me why I wanted him to take a picture of me reading all bent up like that. It's like he expects this.

SISTER:  LOL! I totally just snorted when I read this. And if I read it to explain the snort, [my husband] will look at me like I am not okay.

ME:  Oh, sure. That sounds just like you -- pretend to be the "normal" one just to make me look crazy, even though you totally started it. Just like that epic food fight or the time you gave the goats spa treatments.

SISTER:  Alex says: "oh, look what I started."  

(I think he was refrencing the fact that now the Teen Bean was reading all bent up, too, not the fact that he
somehow caused our old childhood memories that included Pork & Beans stuck to the kitchen ceiling and goats running through the house smothered in Salon Selectives Moisture Renewal hair conditioner to be brought up, because I'm pretty sure my sister would never tell any of her kids these stories. Probably because they actually have goats now and she wouldn't want Karma to give her a smackdown via her children, and her goats. Which is the exact same reason why I don't have any goats. Or Pork & Beans.)

ME:  Wait. Is she doing that utilizing her core muscles? I pulled the muscles in my torso. All of them. She shouldn't be allowed to play.

ME: This is how Smokey reads. She's not very flexible. 

And then I totally had to stop texting because when I was attempting to get the cat to bend up like the rest of us she totally freaked out and scratched out my corneas with her razor sharp talons. And by scratched out my corneas I mean looked at me with enormous amounts of disdain and also sighed. Also I had to stop texting because my sister never replied back. Probably because she was out with her goats to see if she could get a picture of them reading all bendy.

UPDATED:After I posted a link to my Facebook, my sister left me this message:
This seemed like a much more normal conversation before you made it available to your FB community.

To which I responded with:
We're like an example of how to encourage reading and become a literary family. They'll probably use us on posters at schools all across America. The only thing that would make this better is if we got a picture of Mom reading. Maybe with the help of the boys we could rig her up... then it would be like "Woah! 3 Generations Reading! Let's give this family an AWARD!"

So, if America would like to give us an award I would be more than happy to write an acceptance speech. Also, I would totally have a giveaway so one of my awesome readers could win the chance to accompany me to the fancy-schmancy dinner that would obviously be held in our family's honor. Because something tells me Big V will probably just want to stay home and watch sports. Because he never reads. Especially directions. But don't get me started because that always leads to the dysfunctional automatic garage door opener he installed which actually isn't very automatic at all.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The One in Which I Explain How a Pimped Out Frog Saves me from Murderers

I sleep with an eye mask. You know, like a grown-up version of a Pin the Tail on the Donkey blindfold but way less sexier. My two plain black ones (the ones they give you on airplanes) both broke, so now I'm using one of the kids' and it has this creepy pimped out frog on it. It kind of scares Big V when he rolls over and gets greeted by a wide-eyed gangster amphibian.

I didn't always wear one. In fact, if you know me at all you'd probably be shocked to learn that I purposely put something around my head that could easily symbolize the choking hands of a sociopath. Albeit a sociopath with bad aim, since, really, the point is to choke the life out of me while I sleep, not play a rousing game of Guess Who? Except now that I think of it that's exactly what a sociopath would do because sociopaths are notoriously slow and calculating (probably because they have bad aim) and creepy. And everyone knows there's nothing's creepier than laying there with a strangers hands over your eyes.

I used to sleep with the light on. The closet light, with both doors wide open. Because my room was at the back of the house... the rear... the side of the house where all the murderers hide lying in wait. And there was a tv antenna attached to the roof right outside my bedroom window. Like a giant ladder leading directly to my innocent teenaged body. It'd be super easy for someone to climb the ladder, abduct me, and carry me out the back yard, through the forest, down the cliff and into the raging river, thus causing the bloodhounds to lose my scent. I'm sure some smart ass I'm related to is going to point out that it was actually a mildly sloping hill, a few trees, and a small creek, but to that I say it's not your body about to be hacked into millions of pieces.

And so I slept with the light on because that way the killer would be all oh, look! Easy access to a second story window! Oh, wait. The light's on. Shit. Guess I'd better move on to another house. And it totally worked, too, because I'm still here.

So, now you're probably wondering why, if that life saving tactic was so successful, I'm now choosing to wear an eye mask that makes everything absolutely, one hundred percent pitch black.

Because I watched some stupid movie where the freaking crazy guy paints his body to blend into the brick wall and no one could see him because he blended into the freaking wall that's why! Do you understand what I'm saying to you? Someone could be in my house and I could walk right past them and not even know they were there because they would have masterfully painted their entire body to look like my surroundings, which is the main reason I keep moving the furniture around. To keep them on their toes.

So, knowing this - knowing that some deranged lunatic could be in my house and I could easily walk past them and not see them - I have decided to heighten some of my senses by limiting one of them. You hear all the time how someone goes blind and suddenly they have this amazing sense of smell or super human sense of hearing. Which, by the way, I'm totally banking on an increased sense of hearing because I don't really want to have to go licking my way around the house to find out if there's a Murderer in Waiting. Know what I mean? With my newly heightened senses (thanks to my proactive restriction of sight via the froggy eye mask) I'll be able to hear their subtle movements, soft feet against the floor, the sound of their slow methodic breathing  - which probably smells like hot dogs. And I'll be able to smell their sweat. And their breath (especially if it smells like hot dogs).

Now, I haven't actually thought all the way through the scenario to what I would do once I found them but I like to think I'd be vicious. Or at the very least just still able to scream loudly enough to wake Big V (who sleeps through everything; even that time we had a police squad running through our yard shining flood lights in our bedroom windows).

Oh, and since I know you were wondering, I had no idea what the movie was but I knew you'd want to know so I googled creep paints himself to look like bricks and sure enough, there it was: When a Stranger Calls Back. And don't get all salty because I didn't link a video. There is no way I'm looking that shit up. I'm busy digging out the number of my therapist; I'm not going to be able to sleep for weeks.

Monday, May 7, 2012

I love my friends.

Actual Facebook Status:
"I have to go clean out my belly button now." (my little girl is taking after her bigger sister...well, and her mother, but let's not dwell on that.)

Illustrated by Becca: (Yes, another one. How awesome is she?!)

The One in which I take my Father for his Covid Vaccine

I got a voicemail the other day from the hospital saying ‘since you’re the contact on record we just want you to know your Dad can get a Cov...