Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Wheat and Buckwheat

"We're not wheat, we're buckwheat. When a storm comes along it flattens ripe wheat because it's dry and can't bend with the wind. But ripe buckwheat's got sap in it and it bends. And when the wind has passed, it springs up almost as straight and strong as before...That, my child, is the secret of the survival."

The above is a quote from "Gone with the Wind," (the book not the film) and it popped into my mind today because it summarizes pretty succinctly, the two kinds of people in world.  The wheat and the buckwheat  (although as a rational human being, I do of course recognize there are more than two types of people).  The adapters and the stoics.  As I deal with all the change my job/move/cat adoption (very stressful)/new car/recent breakup/graduation as ushered into my life, I think it would be prudent to figure out if, at my core, I am at all able to deal with it.   Am I wheat or buckwheat?!

The case for me being buckwheat is that I tend to adapt to my environment.  Like a chameleon or a presidential candidate.  For example, when my family visits South Carolina every year, I start talking with a slightly more pronounced southern twang.  More pronounced than the none I currently have.  It's kind of embarrassing.  I'll pepper in some ya'lls and I'm completely unable to stop.  It's a disease.   Also, it occurs to me that I have picked up a phrase from every single guy I've ever dated.  From "whatever else" to "the way of things".     I even still sometimes ironically say, "throw your 'Sorry' in a sack"  (yeah a boyfriend of mine said that, I don't claim to have great taste).  So imitating a speech pattern is very much a way to adapt and fit in with one's environment.  

That being said... The case for me being wheat is that I am slow to accept change.   Even if I can adapt to the environment to fit in (with a VERY convincing southern accent)--It's really hard for me to get behind the "idea of change".  I was that kid who cried everyday after kindergarten.  And that adult who cried everyday after the first few months of work.  My hair has been roughly the same color and style for the past twenty years.   I'm hesitant to switch to blu-ray.  All these things indicate I'm not a "bender".

I know you are sometimes, dear reader, willing to indulge my contemplative side, but at this point, you may be thinking, "wheat and buckwheat?  Bitch, what the fuck are you talking about?!"  Fair point. Let me explain, and if you still think this is just a stupid entry, read the one about me making a birthday cake.  It's very funny.

The quote actually popped into my head during a tortuously long and pointless meeting today at work.  I looked around and thankfully, there were other bored faces, but some of the hardliners were smiling and lapping up the kool-aid like kids at a 7th birthday party (somehow I feel like that's a mixed metaphor and my high school english teacher wouldn't approve).  As I looked into the eyes of some of the people who actually were getting something out of the mindless drivel that was making me want to puncture my eardrums with a ballpoint pen, I thought, "Thank God I haven't been working here long enough to not find this to be stupid."   Because, my ability to find things stupid is one of my best and favorite qualities.  And then I thought more about the ways in which I have adapted and allowed myself to acclimate to my new working environment.  I use jargon.   I can name obscure facts about our organization that are so trivial they wouldn't even make it on a Jeopardy question.     And I wondered, is it smart to bend or noble to break?   Should you cling to your M. O. or should you allow yourself to turn with the world around you (I think it's worth noting that criminals who shift their M. O. 's are less likely to be caught)?  I don't really have an answer, and with so much change being stirred up in my life these past few months, I wonder if I really have shifted and adapted, or if I'm resisting them curmudgeon-ly. 

While I really don't like the image of myself  breaking in the wind, (or the image of myself breaking wind) I have to say, I might be wheat.   I haven't bent enough to embrace some of the "feelier" aspects of my job, and I'm pretty sure 90% of what I say is offensive to at least half of my coworkers. I just try to fit-in enough not to get fired.   And even that is dicey.    I spent the better part of the meeting today making faces and holding in (ok, not holding in) indignant snorts.  This does not bode well.   So even though I'm miserable at dealing with change or getting people to like me, I hope you can at least respect my conviction.  Because otherwise I am just the worst.   I wanted to make a pun to wrap up this admittedly, lack-luster entry in a snappy, pithy way.  Something which vaguely involved gluten and nut allergies and me being wheat and a cashew.  But I couldn't make it work.   So, once again, in a move that would disgrace Mr. Miller, my english teacher.  I'm going to end just like this.  (ta da!)

Friday, November 25, 2011


I understand that for a lot of people Thanksgiving opens up a quagmire of dysfunction.  Since this is my first "adult" holiday season, this is my first time hearing coworkers bemoan having to go the "in-laws" or arguing with their own parents about why they would rather not drive three and a half hours just to be home and listen to why they have disgraced the family.  I, annoyingly, love going home.   I do not worry about having to lie about going to church regularly, or pretend that I don't frequent gay-clubs called the "The Eager Beaver" under the the pseudonym, "Bertha" (that's not a real thing I do, but if I did, I wouldn't have to lie about it, which is really all that matters).   The cool thing about my family is that they are very accepting.  We all curse and during a particularly rambunctious game of "Catchphrase," I might have ordered, "Get your shit together!" to my mom and sister.   My sister talked about some of her past brushes with illegal drugs.  We talked politics AND religion.  And to cap off the family togetherness, I consumed roughly an entire bottle of wine over the course of the Thanksgiving meal.

So Thanksgiving for me is an overwhelmingly pleasant experience because I get to be exactly myself.    There are, however, reasons why I find it to be overwhelmingly unpleasant.  Thanksgiving is the gateway to the "holiday season" which for me is about as much fun as lent (my Protestant boyfriend told me Protestants would not understand this reference in the way Catholics do--basically, in the strictest sense, lent is a time to feel guilty and bad about yourself because you are the reason Jesus had to die, you filthy sinner!)

I made the tragic mistake of visiting a shopping mall the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.   I am American, and thus an excellent consumer, and also slightly shallow--which translated into me buying something from Banana Republic within 2 minutes of me walking into the store (It was on sale!)   As I was checking out, the bespectacled store clerk looked at me with such a look of sadness (and it's hard to be sad when you're wearing such a fabulous Banana Republic cashmere sweater!) I asked if he had to work Black Friday.   He sighed and said, "Yes, I'm supposed to work 8am to 5pm, but I'm sure I won't get home until well after seven."   And I said, "Oh wow, that sounds rough," because I am spoiled enough to have an office job where I don't have to do jack shit until Monday at around 9:30am.   And then he told me that he'd already been in the store for twelve hours that day and his knees were starting to buckle.   I looked around at the soccer moms in the store, arms piled with shopping bags, and I realized how this man had suffered.   Isn't Black Friday the worst?  

Leaving the mall, I was assaulted with Christmas carols, and twinkling Christmas lights, and horrifyingly, Mall Santa (in today's times do we really want to hire an old man who volunteered to bobble children on his lap?).   I was struck with a level of rage and disgust I can only equate to times when I think I have ice cream in my freezer but I open the carton and it's only enough for like, half a spoonful.  That intense kind of rage.   The next day, as I was eating my Thanksgiving dinner I thought of this poor man, leaving his family meal, preparing for a day of implacable customers, re-folding piles of mock turtleneck mohair Henley sweaters (that he had just folded ten minutes ago) and fetching size 2's for size 8 women, just to appease their egos.   At that moment, I was so thankful I don't work retail.   Isn't that the true meaning of this holiday?  Being thankful, even when your life is shitty, because there is some poor bastard out there with a shittier life than you?  I think I saw that on a Hallmark card somewhere.  

So, as we get ready to slide into the Christmas abyss of human misery, I just want to remind you, that no matter how much your life sucks, there is always someone out there who had to work Black Friday.   Or if you had to work Black Friday, there is always someone who had to work Black Friday at Walmart. Or if you work Black Friday at Walmart, some people are homeless.

Happy Thanksgiving!  

Friday, November 18, 2011

The "in" crowd

I've said it once, and I'll say it again--no one ever leaves high school.  Unfortunately, no matter how successful or powerful or happy we become; there is still a small part of us that remembers we weren't invited to so and so's party or that we were always picked last for dodge ball.  Or, I guess, that's what I remember of high school, it's possible what you remember is how popular and good-looking you were.   This also can have consequences.  It's the reason why women in their forties feel empowered to dance on tables at bars--they remember how hot they were in high school.  Unfortunately, while it was cute to be an attention whore (or at least tolerated because you were pretty enough) in high school, after a certain age it just gets to be sad (I'm looking at you Kris Jenner).

Today at work, I overheard some co-workers talking about an anti-bullying program we run.   One of my co-workers said, "I hate to mention stuff like this to kids so young, but I always bring up the little boy in fourth grade who killed himself because he was bullied.  I want them to know their actions have consequences."  High school is now starting in middle school and even elementary school.   I also know this because I was teaching a class for 10-12 year old girls, and one of them called her boyfriend "dark chocolate and beef tenderloin."  Go to your room, young lady.  

I still feel like I'm in high school a lot of the time, even though I defiantly declare I am a "grown-ass woman," (because nothing says emotional maturity like stomping your foot and swearing).  I recently have been following the site, "Pintrest," and it basically has the same affect upon me as watching what the popular girls wore in high school.  I see all these trendy pictures of girls in outfits and I covet what they have, and I also delude myself into thinking that a slouchy sweater and leather leggings would be a "good look" for me.   I think insane things like, "maybe I should die my hair red, it looks good on her" and I bemoan the fact that I do not know how to french braid my hair or wear leather to work.    Did I mention I wore sparkly blue eye shadow in middle school? Obviously, I am not immune to peer pressure.

Another, terrible, terrible, thing I do now that reminds me of high school?   I have fixated upon another girl and I am on a desperate quest to prove to myself (and anyone who will listen) how much better I am than her.  I look at her facebook posts and feel compelled to mock them.  Why don't I just delete her from my life and be done with it?  Because that would be a sign of adequate mental health.   I also fixated upon a girl on my cheerleading squad in high school.  Everyone said she was so "nice," but I knew she was actually a venom spewing bitch, and I spent a lot of my time obsessing about how I would expose her true nature.   This didn't work out and she was on prom court, but I heard from a little birdy that she banged an entire fraternity in college, so you know, I'll chalk it up to a win.

Also, I get weird because my coworkers are all "crafty" and "domestic" and they bring in cupcakes shaped like Mt. Rushmore and make canopy beds out of twine and craft glue.   I sometimes forget to buy more toilet paper and use tissues for a few days.  I am not on top of my life.  But the crafty girls are now the popular girls.  And when I move into the next stage of my life, I know there are going to be those "popular" mothers who breastfeed for exactly six months and whose children will know Mandarin Chinese.  I suspect my child will not latch on to my breast and this will make me feel like a bad mother and I will be in playgroup and the other mothers will say, "Annie, really you must breastfeed.  It really even improves your child's IQ" and I will say, "If sucking my tit makes you smart how do you explain my ex boyfriends?"  And there will be shocked silence.   And I will be ostracized.  Some things will never change--I'm just not built for the popular group.  Wasn't in high school--won't be now, in five, ten, or twenty years.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Bah Humbug!

You know how there are tell-tale signs for serial killers; torturing animals, bed wetting, lack of recognition of facial emotions; etc?   Well, for the way people react to my lack of enthusiasm about Christmas you would think "lack of holiday spirit" was  also an indicator.

It's not that I don't like Christmas.  I do.   I love listening to Christmas carols and baking Christmas cookies and watching "Love Actually,"--only I do those things no earlier than the 22nd of December.  News flash people: Christmas is ONE day.  December 25th.    So why are my ears already bleeding from Christmas carols when I try to walk into the Barnes and Noble and buy a memoir about incest?   Why do I see Christmas lights up already?   Thanksgiving hasn't even happened yet, and I don't know about you, but I think that the poor little holiday in which we celebrate stealing land from the Native Americans by eating more in one meal than children in third-world countries get in a week--deserves more than to be bulldozed over on the road to Christmas.

My coworkers are planning a "fun" activity in which we decorate Christmas cookies (like little snowmen and reindeer) for our volunteers the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.  I love baking for Christmas!  With my mom.   A few days before Dec. 25th.  Also it helps when I will get to consume them.   But for my volunteers?  I don't want to give them cookies, and I certainly don't want to waste a day actually making them.  You know what I really want to give my volunteers for Christmas--a wicked case of hemorrhoids--with a note that says, "You've been a pain in my ass.   Now here's a pain in yours." Now of course, my opinion on this makes me unpopular.   And I get a lot of, "but don't you want to spread holiday cheer?"  Not particularly.   Does that make me a bad person?

Also, I hate all the consumerism surrounding Christmas.   I have no problem with kids writing letters to Santa Claus and being so excited they pee a little when they see piles of presents underneath a tree.   I do, however, have a problem with stores opening for Black Friday at 10pm on Thursday night (what says holiday spirit more than cheating your employees out of Thanksgiving dinner with their families?!) and with Black Friday in general and with "iPads" as a stocking stuffer. As far as I'm concerned, the best thing about Black Friday is that it acts as a natural selection process because some dummies always die every year from getting hit by a car after they parked on the highway because outlet mall parking was full.  I do not shop on Black Friday.  Nor do I really "shop".  I buy four gifts, only for my immediate family.  And I love doing it--because I don't go into debt in the process nor do I feel pressured or obligated by some cooperate concocted "Magic of Christmas" bullshit. 

So, ok, you can say I'm a Scrooge because I want a haul a dead tree up 5 flights to my apt., nor will I listen to Christmas carols before advent even starts , nor will I buy my acquaintances/coworkers a half-assed "bargain" gift they will throw away anyway.  I will, however, watch "A Christmas Carol" with my Dad on Christmas Eve.  I will help my mom bake and decorate.  I will attend Midnight Mass, and feel the hope and joy of the newly dawning year.  I will also drink lots of wine.  Isn't that the true meaning of the holidays?

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Body Issues and Other Things if You're Male You Probably Don't Want to Read

I know I am around chicks too much.   I know this because I am in the process of applying to Grad Schools, and in the program for which I'm applying there are 74% women and 26% percent men.   And my thought, was not, as you would imagine, "Only 26% percent men,"  it instead was, "Hot damn, that's going to feel like the sausage buffet at Schmidt's!"   There is only ONE man at my office.   The janitor, or as he probably prefers, the facilities manager.   However, one of his main tasks is cleaning the tampons out of the feminine hygiene boxes so it seems like we're just splitting hairs.  

One of the perks of working in an office full of women, is that I never have to feign interest about a football game/UFC Match/Maxim Calendar/E.D. Pill, as I imagine would happen were I conversing with men every morning (which is something I don't do very much, upon further reflection, I doubt they talk about their E.D. at work).  I do however, have to feign interest about babies/Spousal disputes/children in general/periods, so I guess it all evens out.   I generally very much like working with women but one of the things I dislike--all this body image talk.  

Literally every day someone bemoans their fat stomach or flabby thighs (ok, most of the time it's me) but instead of receiving a blank look as I would in a group of males, I am instead fed and encouraged by more  body talk.  It's like, "I will see your cottage cheese ass and raise you a cankle."  I am sick of this.   Mostly because it absolutely helps no one to be encouraged to air their fears of inadequacy.

This weekend, I went out with my friend and even then I could not get away from the same issues that follow me around the water-cooler at work (full disclosure: we do not have a water cooler).  While I was dancing with a real winner in a Kangol Hat, ala L.L. Cool J in 1993, my friend was told by Kangol's friend that he liked her better than me because she was"thick."  He meant this as a compliment. Now while I have to admit my first emotion was blind jealousy and rage (because BOTH of these gentlemen seemed soooo quality), my second was disgust.  Why do men think that's an okay thing to say?   I don't go up to men and say, "I dig your weak pec muscles.  I like that we both have boobs, but mine are still bigger than yours."   Although, I think maybe if I did, that man would probably be flattered, stupidly, so I don't know if I have any more to say on that issue.

"'Why can't we accept the human form as it is?' screams no one." -Tina Fey

Agree.   While I bemoan the expectations of society, I will be the first to take advantage of any mechanism to trick people into thinking I am more attractive. Tina Fey says, "I feel about Photoshop the way some people feel about abortion.  It is appalling and a tragic reflection of the moral decay of our society...unless I need it, in which case, everybody be cool."  I would even go so far as to say you could replace "push-up bras," "spanx," or "extreme waxing," will Photoshop and the same would apply.   I employ one or all of these methods almost every time I get ready for an occasion.  
I often remind myself of the montage scene in "Mrs. Doubtfire,"because I have equal or more trouble than does Robin Williams shaving my legs without nicking them, snapping my bra, putting on my panty-hose, and zipping my dress.   I am the worst at being a woman. 

Thank God I'll hopefully soon be swimming in 26% testosterone.  Giggity.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Love Letters

Recently, I've been thinking of the piece of advice delivered in a commencement speech at M.I.T. by Kurt Vonnegut in 1997,  

"Keep your old love letters. Throw away your old bank statements."

 In a hiccup of technicality, however, Vonnegut never delivered this speech, nor did he write these words.  Actually, the speech was originated by Mary Schmich of The Chicago Tribune, on June 1st, 1997, as a imagined musing of what Vonnegut might say, were he to give such an address.   Ah, the power of misinformation, spurred by the internet.   Regardless, the idea of keeping old love letters is something that occurred to me recently, when my mom produced roughly 5 years of written evidence of our daily correspondence. 

  My mom came up to Dayton this week to take me out to dinner.   In the back of the car, she had with her, a large yellow file folder full of probably 100 sheets of paper.   "Do you know what that is, Annie?" she asked me.   "Those are all the emails you've written me since your freshman year of college."   I didn't at the time have any interest in reading the emails, but my mom mentioned some of the highlights; boys I dated, people who annoyed me, homesickness, professors I liked/disliked, fears about graduation, etc.  The past five years of my life piled up in the back seat, there for anyone to leaf through.

So I got to thinking... while I don't have very many "physical" love letters in my possession, I have email folders full of them.  I could open folders up and find impassioned declarations of love, mundane musings about the events of our days, and "cute" inside jokes, the meanings of which I've probably long since forgotten.  It would be like getting a bird's eye view on the past, something so unfamiliar and alien given today's context it might as well be a trip to an alternate reality.  While part of me is very tempted, again as Liz Lemon would say, "to go to there," and read them, at the same time I think it might make more sense to throw them away like old bank statements, or in a more apt metaphor given the way I manage my bank statements, ignore them and pretend they don't exist.

It's not that I'm afraid to stir up old emotions and miss the person. The worst part of breaking up is never missing the person.   That's part of it, but how many people come and go in someone's life?   Breaking up with a significant other is really no different in that sense, than moving to a new city and leaving behind your friends from the old.   It happens.  People move on.   The worst part of breaking up is mourning the imaginary life you will never have with that person.   And that's what reading the old letters will put into focus again--the trips you were going to take, the holidays you would have shared together, the illusive future when it's you two together against the world like some damn Taylor Swift song.   That's the hard part.  It doesn't matter that the future was never going to unfold that way, or that the person didn't have any of the qualities that you attributed to them--what matters is that, for a moment, or in a letter or for the entire course of the relationship, you believed your own lie.

Is it wierd to any one else that in Taylor Swift's love-fantasy she saw herself as a teen mother?   Anyone?

 Because I am very vain, and also because I would like to think I'm infallible like the Pope, I don't know if I have any desire to remember times when I was duped, and because of this, I don't think I have any desire to keep old love letters.   So I don't know if Vonnegut (Schmich) really had a grasp on that. 

Worth pointing out, I frequently gush and get very excited about things and skip 1000 steps, and when they don't pan out--I shudder when I'm reminded by friends or family about the things I said at the time.    For instance, right after college I was confident I would be in D.C., where I have always wanted to live.   I told everyone and swore up and down, that as soon as I graduated Ohio was ancient history and everyone could, "kiss my grits."  Unfortunately, here I am, not even in Columbus, which at least has nice restaurants, but in Dayton whose only claim to fame is that some brothers from here invented a form of transportation that would one day force me to sit in close quarters with creepy old men and pay 7$ for a beer. 

Basically, even when I don't put it in writing, I have enough to remind me of times when I was stupid enough to get my hopes up and be fooled by something that was never going to pan out.   I don't need written documentation, thanks.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The "Shew" in Cashew

As you may or may not know, "Cashew" is a hilarious little acronym I made up (or maybe heard from a comedian somewhere, I don't know) which means half catholic, half jewish.   Now if you had to look at a family portrait, it probably wouldn't take you a very long time to guess which parent is the "Ca" and which is the "Shew".   My Dad looks like a poster diagram of "The Ideal Aryan" I saw at the Holocaust Museum in D.C.   I was in eighth grade and I seriously gasped and grabbed my dad and squealed, "Bob, that looks just like you!"   And it really, really did.  And that's not the first time my dad was mistaken for someone straight out of the "Vaterland" (Fatherland).  When my parents were on their honeymoon in Paris, a Parisian tour guide politely spoke to my father in German, mistaking him for German tourist.  He looks that German--and the French know what Germans look like, because they've beem invaded/occupied by them twice (HA!)  So of course, he is the very stern Catholic, "Ca" Side.

My mother on the other hand, is very much the "Shew."  Even though she wasn't raised with any religion and her family tried desperately to supress the Jewish side of their ancrestry (as if they could, one dinnner with my Grandma and the heaping serving of guilt that comes with dessert lets you KNOW there is some jewish mother in there), the Jewish sorority at Miami University (of Ohio) tried to recruit my mom.  So, as German as my dad looks, that's how Jewish my mom looks.  The only discrepancy is that she has bright blue eyes, but everything else is pretty swarthy on her.  I can thank her for my delightful unibrow that shows up if I let my eyebrows roam wild over my face (I affectionately call it Bert, as in Bert and Ernie, just like Liz Lemon in 30 Rock calls her mustache, Tom, as in Tom Sellick). 

Anyway, last night, while my father had dinner with the "Wendy's Outlaws" (we're not even going to address how wierd it is that a group of middleaged men dub themselves cowboys and celebrate the fact by going out for monthly drinks) my mother came down to Dayton to have dinner with me.   Since I want to warm my mom up to the idea that I will not be bringing men home to her any time soon, I invited Sam to come along with us to Thai 9.

Several things happened at dinner.  But even before that, my mother was in rare form because the entire parking lot was jammed.   "Maybe that guys is walking to his car,"  my mom exclaimed excitedly.   "No mom, that guy is homeless."  I pointed out his oversized coat, beard, and lack of teeth.   I guess my poor suburban mom isn't quite accustomed to "urban life" in Dayton.  After, arguing about whether or not the (obviously) homeless guy was walking to his car or not, we finally found a space and parked.  Once inside the restaurant, my mom was very unhappy because the restaurant was Thai and she "Got sick on Pad Thai so I don't want any of that!"  I informed her there were a plethora of other things on the menu, and finally she warmed to the idea of a simple noodle stir-fry with chicken.

During dinner, conversation flowed, as did Sam and I's rantings about our place of work.  A couple of f-bombs were dropped, and my mother, being awesome, didn't even bat an eyelash.  The waiter, visibly winced a couple times when he was pouring water and Sam and I were waxing eloquent (vulgarly).   Eventually, (and mind you, this stuff only happens to me) the waiter, after being asked how far his tattoo went down (by my mother) pulled up a chair and starting chatting.   He told us he was a police offier and my mom looked at him, bold as brass, and said, "that seems like a terrible job,".   These kinds of things embarass me.   Usually, it's poor form to tell someone what they're decided to do with their life is something you find to be stupid.  Whatever.   Anyway, Mitchell sat down and talked with us for about an hour. At the end, Charisse said, "I was hoping to get a date out of it."   Charisse, you're married, I reminded her.   A look of disgust, "Not for me!   For you (unavailable) or Sam (not interested).   Ah I love the yenta-ing ways of my delightful "Shew" mother.

"Matchmaker, Matchmaker, make me a match.."

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

"This Is Going to Be Your Year"

This year on my birthday, a good friend of our family's pulled me aside during the festivities and said, "Annie, this is going to be your year, before your 24th birthday (Sept. 3rd, 2012) God told me he has something special in store for you--and it's what you've been waiting for."  Now, while it might seem odd to you that our family friend referenced God--it isn't, she's a minister and she has a propensity for talking to God.   Now, you can think what you will about that, but I actually took a great amount of comfort in those words.  This year I'm going to have what I've been waiting for.

I guess the only question left is, "what am I waiting for?"   Well I've certainly been waiting to look like Heidi Klum and I've been waiting to finally figure out what it is I'm supposed to do with my life--merely commenting sarcastically on the lives of those around me cannot be my true calling.   So I've been thinking a lot about what our minister friend said to me, and I still don't have an answer.  I  will tell you, however, that thinking about those words gets me through the days when someone screams lewdly at me from a car window as I leave my lunch break destination or a sixth-grade girl who should be worrying about getting Auntie Anne's pretzels tells me her boyfriend (which Lord knows she shouldn't have) is "beef tenderloin".   Beef-fucking Tenderloin (This will be my year.)

While this seems counter-intuitive, the last time I really felt like it was "my year", was my senior year of High School when I quit the cheerleading team.  I know, it shouldn't be a good thing to quit, but I was so damn proud, I even wrote that in my college-entrance essay.   I think I intended it to come off as witty and original, but I'm sure I just sounded like an insane person with a poor work-ethic.  Surely one of the best qualities in someone is their ability to dig in their heels when things get tough?  But as I wrote on my college entrance essay, the theme of which was something I had done that made me proud, I started out by writing, "I'm a quitter, and that's the thing of which I am most proud."  Literal sentence.   Weirdly, MIT turned me down.

In my essay, I went on to explain, that when I quit the cheerleading team, I realized that I was actually doing something really gutsy, in that I realized it was only to uphold some bizarre notion of who I was supposed to be--and that it was making me miserable.  I also threw in a little "Big Fat Greek Wedding" action, saying I had always wished I was someone who could sit with the popular girls at their lunch table in the elementary school cafetorium, chic with a wonder bread sandwich, instead of being the "smart kid" in the corner reading young adult fiction about the Holocaust and pounding a fluffer-nutter bagel.   Those were not my years.

Since my senior year of high school, however, I've continued to quit a lot of things, one of the most important being that I stopped trying to be popular and blonde (two things I will never be) and instead settled into being the sarcastic asshole with brown hair (brown--why don't we call it yellow-hair instead of blonde? They already have too much going for them, let's level this semantical playing field) and a mouth that would make John McEnroe blush (actual thing I said to my parents at dinner when recounting a girl pointing out her Coach bag to me, "Oooh cool, you have a Coach purse?  What do you want me to do, lick your twat?").

I had a beer with my friend tonight, and she has decided to be a quitter too, and thank God, because really that's the only way I think this will be her year.   But I'm confident it will be.

So, I'm re-reading this, and while it is sort of a departure for me to write about anything but Kardashians or why I can't cook, or my funny thoughts on weird people I meet--(I feel a little bit like getting this personal is like stripping naked in the middle of the shopping mall) I wanted to affirm to myself that this will be my year.   And I think it will "the year" for a lot of other people in my life.  Here's to the quitters--it's our year.  

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

D. I. V. O. R. C. E.

Ok, you get 1,000 points if you recognize the Dolly Parton song title refernece, if you don't, no worries, it just means you're not a middle-aged woman like I am.

So in one of the most shocking bits of news I've ever heard, Kim Kardiashian and that smug-looking no-name dude she married are splitting up!   Now, I am not a huge fan of the Karashians, but this shakes me to my core.  I called my parents (happily married for 33 years) after hearing the news just to make sure their union was in tact--I mean, if Kim Kardashian can't make it work after a mere two months...what can I believe in anymore?!

Just kidding.   I totally called this.  So did everyone else in the world.   Clues?  Well, the E! Special "Kim's Fairytale Wedding," is probably Exhibit A.   Oh, and the fact that there was an E! Special.   But, if you haven't watched it--I envy your ignorance.  I watched it just this weekend in Baltimore, and let me say, I felt significantly stupider afterwards.  But, I also feel like if I were a divorce attourney I would have started making some courting phone calls to the K-dash clan immeadiately after viewing it.

  Highlights include Kim rolling her eyes and saying, "Tots," when her future groom asked if she was excited about getting married.   I can muster up a little more enthusiasm for my morning egg-white sandwhich from Tim Hortons.   Other clues?   The groom's declaration that he felt like a "road block" in the way of Kim's perfect wedding.  Which, I have to say, is very perceptive for a guy who looks like he might get confused following an episode of Law and Order.  Also perceptive, when Kim said she didn't come from "Yee-haw, Minnesota," as did her hubby (which is cute, because assumably that means she got it confused with Alabama, Texas, or Kentucky, all of which are border states) he snapped back, "Four years ago you were folding clothes in the Valley!"  Burn. 

So let me just say this--are we still concerned about the institution of marriage being depreciated by gay couples?   Really?!  I think Kim's ridiculous Princess Jasmine head-piece is about a thousand times more damaging to the sanctity of marriage.  Which is not even to address the deeper issue, that people feel their personal relationships can in anyway be affected by anyone else's--yeah, the fact that Sir Paul got remarried is really messing up my relationships.  C'mon. Although I will say, I spend a lot of time with couples in my life, especially since most of my work friends are married, and I see how this can seem like an indication that nothing lasts anymore.  Oh wait, no it's completely not, because amazingly, none of them have divorced because Senorita Sex-Tape did.  So, while I acknowledge that in writing a blog I am actually bringing yet more attention to this turn of events, can we all just cluck our teeth and say a collective, "we told you so, Kim" because I really just am over pretending to be surprised or distraught about this. 

That head thing looks ok...
But, uh oh, Kim... looks like someone else is wearing your outfit!