Why can’t I watch TV like a normal person?

I’m really scraping the bottom of the idea barrel for this post, but I’m home sick today, bored and have only my cats to entertain me. So I apologize.

I’m in the bathroom when Emo, my cat, starts yowling like she’s being burned alive. This is a regular occurrence (the yowling, not her being burned alive) so I try to ignore her as best I can. But anyone with a vocal cat can tell you there’s a certain point where the human brain cannot ignore this horrible sound anymore.  Don’t believe me? Watch:

Apparently my limit is about 52 seconds.

Anyway, I fling open the door to find her staring at me with a toy mouse head in her mouth. Not taking her eyes off me, she opens her mouth and drops it on the carpet, waiting expectantly.

I can just imagine if I could understand her cat language. For some reason, in my head it translates like this:

Emo: BEHOLD! I HAVE BROUGHT YOU THE HEAD OF A MOUSE. (drops it at my feet)

Me: Great. Thank you. That’s very nice.

Emo: I HOPE YOU HAVE FOUND MY GIFT WORTHY.

Me: I do. Only… why is it just the head?

Why is it looking at me?
Why is it looking at me?

Emo: I don’t know. The body’s around here somewhere. Why, don’t you like it?

Me: I love it. Obviously. So somewhere in my house there’s a headless mouse body?

Emo: Yes.

Me: But you don’t know where.

Emo: Correct.

Me: Great. Can I take my shower now?

Emo: I suppose.

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I’ll be right here if you need me. Always.

I take my shower. I hear her yowling again. I ignore her and turn my music up louder. When I’m done drying off, I open the door to find Emo once again with what appears to be the mouse body, judging by the straggly tail hanging from her mouth.

Emo: I NOW PRESENT YOU WITH THE BODY OF A MOUSE. MY GIFT IS COMPLETE.

Me: Yeah. That’s great. It’s… wait, that’s another mouse head!

Emo: No, it’s not.

Me: Yes it is! (I pick it up and inspect it.) It’s a different mouse with the bottom half of its body torn off. What is wrong with you?

Emo: Do you want my gift or not?

Me: In my house there are two headless mouse bodies.

Emo: Well, technically one is half a headless mouse body.

Me: Please leave me alone.

Emo: No.

I WILL NEVER LEAVE YOU ALONE.
I WILL NEVER LEAVE YOU ALONE. NOR YOU, PRECIOUS MOUSE HEAD.

I think I’m ready to start back to grad school again, what do you guys think?

The Best of the Worst: A Look Back at My 2013

It’s that time of year, folks. Everywhere you look, there’s a list of the Best Such-and-Such of 2013. Well, I thought I’d change things up by making a list of all the mundane non-events in my life this year. So who wants to read the most boring, narcissistic list of 2013? No one? Okay, let’s get to it!

1. I have not finished editing my book

I’ve said for two years now I’ve needed to edit my book. And guess what? I haven’t! In fact, I barely looked at it in 2013. Right now it’s sitting on my flash drive, eating nachos and contributing nothing to the household. Get a job!

2. I haven’t found paid freelance work

I started this blog in order to gain some followers/admirers/people who will throw money at me. So far? I’ve got nothing. Zero. Bupkes. I even pimped out my LinkedIn account, you guys. Pimped. It. Out. Still nada. Of course I haven’t exactly been pitching any ideas to anyone, either. In fact, I haven’t put any effort into it other than bitching about the lack of jobs, really. But shouldn’t that count for something?

3. I started grad school, only to take a break after completing one class

I took one graduate class at Franklin University. (Just a side note that their abbreviation is FU. Ha!) I decided to switch to online classes  since driving to campus every week was too much and  the next class doesn’t start until February. So, to recap: I took one class from the end of August to mid-September then took a break for about 4 months. Because my thinkin’ parts hurt.

But I did get an A- in my first college class in twelve years, so that’s an accomplishment, anyway. But this post is not about accomplishments, so let’s move on.

4. Still waiting for that thank you, bathroom lady 

5. Eric and Jessie Go to the Poconos

You know how sometimes retro things are good? The Poconos is not one of those things. If I had to choose one word to describe the Poconos it would be swingerish. The whole place stank (figuratively and literally) of swingers. Not sexy swingers. Droopy, elderly swingers.

The carpet in our room had clearly not been updated since the 1980’s and smelled like mildew and regret. The round-shaped bed sat on a raised platform and featured a mirror on the ceiling, because of course it did. Oh, and at night, with a flick of a switch the mirror twinkled with tiny lights that (I guess?) were supposed to be stars.

Sexy stars.
Sexy stars.

The “romance” extended into the bathroom with a red, heart-shaped Jacuzzi tub. But what really made the bathroom extra special was the utilitarian tile, grade-school-sized toilet (visible from the tub for added sexiness!) and astoundingly unflattering fluorescent lighting.

Oh, but they saved the best for last, those saucy Poconosians! If you (somehow) tired of the dingy bathroom, a magical door led you into a room with a tiny swimming pool that was too small to actually swim in. Not that it’s meant for swimming (insert bawdy wink). Now get in there for some kinky water aerobics, you crazy kids! That’s if you don’t gag on the chlorine smell first. Or become disoriented by the inexplicable Roman bath mural on the wall.

I drank cheap wine in a plastic cup, just like the Romans would!
Drink wine in a plastic cup, just like the Romans!

And when you left the room (although why would you want to, amIright?) the staff was ready to assist you in any way by being rude, abrasive, and downright incompetent. The first night of our romantic getaway we arrived at 8p.m. and the dining room was closed. At 8p.m. But surely there was room service available, for couples who couldn’t bear to leave their Den of Venereal Disease, right?

No. No room service. We asked the staggeringly unhelpful man in a sequin vest what we could do for food, seeing as how we just drove 8 hours only to be turned away by a man in a sequin vest.

He suggested the closest town, which was (he said) 10 minutes away. THIRTY MINUTES later, we were still driving in the middle of nowhere. We ended up going through the drive through at McDonald’s for our first romantic dinner together on our anniversary. And that was probably the best meal we ate while in the Poconos.

The one ray of sunshine in that ill-advised trip was the revelation that if my husband and I could still have fun in a sticky shrine to the seventies, we’re clearly the perfect couple. Or swingers.

Happy New Year, everyone!

I take awkward to a new level of awkward

I have woefully neglected my blog this Christmas season. Even my last post was a rerun. What sucks is that I’ve had so many ideas for blog posts but have been too busy to write them down. Which means that my brain is overstuffed, filled to way beyond capacity and due for a meltdown any minute. So really, I’m writing this for my own safety.

How my brain could have exploded, probably.
How my brain would have exploded, probably.

I’ve had several people recently compliment me on my writing and tell me how funny they think I am—which is awesome. I love it. It gives me a warm glow similar to taking that first sip of wine. It makes me feel that all my nitpicky editing and agonizing over the perfect word has actually been worth it.

But then I remember how awkward and weird I am in person and that glow quickly turns to paranoia and self-consciousness. I do that thing where you just say words that don’t make sense just so you’re not standing in silence. But then you realize that what you’re saying is gibberish mixed with gobbly-gook and you say even more stupid things. Until your brain is screaming at you to SHUT UP FOR THE LOVE OF GOD but you can’t. So you finally stop talking but then laugh at things that aren’t funny until eventually whoever you’re talking to backs away, smiling nervously and probably blocking you from all social media like a digital restraining order.

"Maybe if I can't see or hear her she'll actually disappear."
“Maybe if I can’t see or hear her I can pretend this never happened.”

It makes me really wish I could just carry around my laptop so that when people talk to me, I’d write the perfect thing to say and then let them read it. And we’d all have a nice, unawkward chuckle because I’m wayyy better in written form than in actual human form.

I think this is why I love fashion and makeup and all that girly stuff so much. Like a magician, I dazzle with my finery so they won’t notice my maniacal jibberjabber. Or people may just think I’m a vacant airhead. Which is a much preferable option than causing them to lock their car doors when they see me in the parking lot, I gotta say.

So my point is, I suppose, that if you ever meet me in person and find yourself wanting to wrap my face in duct tape, don’t worry. I carry an emergency stash just for that purpose. I’ll even help you!

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Happy Holidays, everyone!

Thanksgiving Leftovers

This is an old blog post from fall of ’09. Leftovers from an old blog, if you will. See what I did there? Okay, fine—I’m in the middle of a turkey hangover and didn’t feel like writing a new blog post. Anyway, enjoy.

 This is a tale of the day I decided to take a walk and the disturbing events that transpired as a result. It was a beautiful late afternoon. I walked down down the main road, swinging my arms merrily, with no premonition of what horror would soon befall me. I was ready to turn left at the corner when a neighbor’s bulldog, which had been wandering aimlessly in the yard, saw me and started doing that growly barking thing that dogs do. Still staring at me, he then left the yard and trotted purposefully to where I had stopped short.

I sensed this wasn’t going to be a neighborly chat.  Maybe because his flat eyes had no expression and he was squinting at me like a mob character.

"You disappoint me, my friend."
“I’ll make ya an offer you can’t refuse.”

So I’m standing there, more irritated than afraid, even though at this point the dog is right in front of me and growling.  Every time I’ve been by this house there were always twenty people lounging on the front porch but of course that day there was no one.

I finally spotted movement in the garage and called out impatiently, “Uh, could you call off your dog?”

When I said that, the dog began inching closer to me.  (Still growling, by the way.  When you picture this scene, just picture the dog constantly growling.)

The guy heard me, but took his sweet time until I started getting seriously ticked off. What kind of person just lets their dog accost innocent exercisers?

The dog, probably sensing his owner wasn’t quite done scratching his head over this puzzling conundrum, chose that moment to lunge at my leg.  Luckily, I have long legs and the reflexes of a ninja.  Or maybe I just have long legs and it had the stumpy legs of a bulldog.  Whatever. Luckily, I was able to dance away before any damage was done.  Although it did leave doggy saliva on my cute workout pants.

Unforgivable. Now I’m really steamed. “It just tried to bite me!”

Finally, finally, the owner lopes over and ineffectually makes a grab for the dog.  Oh, and by the way? IT’S NOT EVEN WEARING A COLLAR. Do you know how hard it is to grab a dog that’s not wearing a collar? You could almost see it sneering as it easily backed away out of the owner’s reach.  All it needed was a wife-beater and a cigarette dangling from its jowls.

"Maybe you didn't hear me the first time. I ain't goin' nowheres."
“Maybe you didn’t hear me the first time. I ain’t goin’ nowheres.”

And what do I get from the esteemed owner by way of an apology? This:

DOG OWNER: Huh huh huh. [long pause] Sorry.

Um. What? Your freaking dog just tried to maul me and that’s all I get? Although I think it was really more of an angry hump attempt rather than an attack but still. My leg almost got raped by your dog, pal. And that is NOTHING TO LAUGH ABOUT.

But this was not over, my friend. Not by a long shot.

The next morning I called the county dog warden where I reached an improbably cheerful woman and told her that a neighbor’s uncollared, unleashed dog tried to bite me. (I figured an attempted angry hump wouldn’t impress her so I left that part out.) She said they’d send someone to the house.

I pictured some 7 foot, 300 pound guy coming to the owner’s door and  removing the dog from the house in disgrace. Maybe in handcuffs, with all the other dogs in the neighborhood pointing and laughing. The idea gave me great pleasure.

So after work Eric informs me that the dog warden left a note on our door. What? Did they mix up the address or something? He then says in horror, “You didn’t give them our address, did you?” Like the dude would go up to the owner’s house, point and say, “Hey, the lady who lives in that house said your dog tried to molest her so he must be destroyed. Preferably in front of your children. And I heard her husband say you walk like a woman.” Because dog wardens are troublemaking pot-stirrers, I guess.

How my husband pictured the dog warden. In Eric's defense, this guy is clearly up to no good.
How my husband pictured the dog warden. In Eric’s defense, this guy is clearly up to no good.

Even though I was sure he was just being a paranoid, I called  the dog warden again and was informed they check on both the complainer and the complainee. Okay, whatever. So what happened to the dog? I ask. Waterboarding? A non-stop marathon of The AristicatsWhat?

"NOOOOOOO! I'll be a good dog, I swear!"
“NOOOOOOO! I’ll be a good dog, I swear!”

Do you want to know what happened? The dog warden went by a couple times when no one was home, then when he showed up again a kid answered the door. A kid who claimed he didn’t “know anything about a dog.”

"What dog? I don't know nuthin' about no dog."
“What dog? I don’t know nuthin’ about no dog.”

What kind of kid denies the existence of his own dog?! Let me get a hold of that kid—then we’ll see if his memory improves.  (cracks knuckles) But apparently there’s some law against that or something. Stupid hippies are ruining this country.

Anyway, they can’t give a citation to a minor so that’s it. A crazed dog tries to molest me and gets away with it. This is the direction America is going, people.

However, the kid must have said something to his parents, because while looking out the window one day (not spying on the neighbors), I noticed the Bulldog from Hell on a leash as a woman followed behind picking up doggie poo.  Although I think she should make the dog pick up his own poop as punishment. But one step at a time, my friends. For now, I guess that’s good enough.

When Everyone is Weird, You Become Normal.

It’s so gratifying to finally work in a place where you’re not the only weird one. A place where weird is normal. Ergo, I’m finally normal.

"You can't argue with ergo" ~ this guy
“You can’t argue with ergo.” ~ this guy

Believe it or not, this was not always the case. To make a long, painfully boring story short—but no less painful—my creativeness was once caged up during the workday hours, much like an accident-prone puppy.

My creativity is the CUTEST!
Aww, my creativity is the CUTEST!

I worked okay jobs, it wasn’t like I was a coal miner or anything. Although I did work retail during Christmas season, which is essentially the same thing. But my poor, sad creativity! Whiling away the days staring mournfully out the window and peeing on itself. My creativity is gross sometimes. 

I could only let my creativity roam free when I was off work. Which was really hard for me, as I’ve always been a writer, just like I’ve always been female and super-hot.

Mmm hmmm.
It’s a curse, really.

But girlfriend can’t live on her sweet Dorothy Hamill haircut forever, right? She gots to get paid. And the tiny percentage of my life allotted to writing  just wasn’t doing it for me.

So I finally broke out of the cage, free to pee wherever I wanted. STOP WITH THE PUPPY METAPHOR, JESSIE.

"I'm freeeeee!" ~ my creativity.
“I’m free to peeeee!” ~ my creativity, apparently.

A fellow Ohio University graduate let me know about an open copywriter position, after which I wowed them with my sick writing skillz and sparkling personality. Soon after: boo-ya! I’m a professional writer. (Do people still say “boo-ya?”If I have to ask, then probably not. Moving on.)

I’ve been at my job for two-and-a-half years now (three years in May) and I’m still getting used to my weird ways being the normal way in my department.

It really hits me when we talk to normal people outside our department—people who are not scared of business-y things like percentages, columns and… some other business terminology. Profit margins are a thing, right?

Anyway, we were in this meeting recently where they passed out spreadsheets with the aforementioned business mumbo-jumbo and we all recoiled like they just handed us a basket of snakes.

"Nooooooooooo... anything but Excel!"
“Nooooooooooo… anything but Excel!”

And this was when I had a minor epiphany. I had found my people. For once, it wasn’t just me backing away in horror at the sight of those damn grids, waving my hands and shaking my head as if warding off an evil spirit (which Excel totally is). We did it as a team, gosh darn it. “We’re creatives, don’t show us numbers!”

Numbers are DISGUSTING.
Numbers are DISGUSTING.

The moral of this post, I guess, is that everyone should find their people. Whether you are a numbers person (and therefore in league with the Devil himself) or an artsy person—FIND YOUR PEOPLE. Your work life will improve about a thousand percent.

But don’t quote me on that percentage, because… you know. Numbers.

AHHHHH! It's like looking into hell!
AHHHHH! It’s like looking into hell!

To the woman who did not say thank you when I held the door for her:

Really? Really. REALLY?

You know I saw you see me, right? I saw you see me.

I drew a quick sketch of my facial expression. Why did I draw myself carrying beakers?
Here’s a quick sketch of my baffled disapproval. Although I don’t remember carrying beakers.

In case the incident wasn’t as memorable to you as it was to me, here’s how it went down:

I opened the bathroom door. You were wiping your hands on a paper towel, getting ready to use said paper towel as to not taint your delicate hands on the germy door. To save you the small yet significant inconvenience of opening the door, I held it open for you.

And here is where society as we know it fell apart.

Your eyes slid over in my general direction. I held the door, smiling and waiting. Waiting in vain for a THANK YOU THAT NEVER APPEARED. Because you sailed out the door without so much as a nod.

There I was, smiling like a fool with my folksy, corn-fed Midwestern manners. Wasting valuable face muscles. Face muscles that I could have used to do other things, like chew corn and yell at the Buckeyes.

Corn_3different_types
Because as we all know, us Ohioans eat corn and love OSU football. At the SAME TIME.

And it’s not like the bathroom was wall-to-wall women, bustling with feminine chatter and chaos, and in all the confusion you forgot to say thank you.

No. It was just the two of us, wasn’t it? Two women in an almost empty building, drawn together by biology. We should have been comrades, you and I.  At the very least we should have given each other the “office greeting.” You know what I mean. The generic things you say to an office coworker you don’t know. “Is it Friday yet?” is a popular example.

I literally Googled "Office workers is it Friday yet" and got HUNDREDS of similar images. That's kind of depressing.
I literally Googled “office workers is it Friday yet” and got HUNDREDS of similar images. That’s kind of depressing.

But no. No acknowledgment of the extra seconds and mouth muscles I set aside just so your precious fingers wouldn’t touch the bathroom door. Nothing.

Just the breeze as you kept walking, right past my arm—the arm supporting the door that allowed you to leave the bathroom. Taking with you the tiny, sad remains of polite society and leaving the extinction of human decency in your wake. That’s all.

Oh, and by the way? Those pants were NOT FLATTERING on you.

Pingle out.

320px-SennMicrophone

The sexy ghosts of Halloween past

Well. Today is Halloween. Usually I’m pretty into Halloween, but this year I’ve been feeling kind of meh about it. There are a few reasons for this and you will sit here while I tell you allll about them.

When I was little, obviously I loved Halloween. I enjoyed playing dress-up anyway, so not only did I get to dress up and go out, I showed up at my neighbors’ houses and demanded candy! And they had to give it to me. Take that, GROWN UPS. The day was all about me, my rockin’ witch costume, candy, candy and more mother#$%^ing candy.

Back up off my candy, beeyotch.
Back up off my candy, beeyotch.

But then suddenly I was too old to go out trick or treating. I stayed home (still wore a costume, because hello, have you met me?) and answered the door for all the lucky little ones who still got to go out. My biggest pet peeve was giving candy to kids who were clearly wayyy older than me. The worst part about it was their total lack of effort: they just threw on jeans and their Metallica sweatshirt or whatever, lurking there until I resentfully dropped candy in their pillowcase. Ugh. Freaking teenagers. And now I have two of them!

Then it was on to high school. What sucked about high school (besides everything) was that a lot of kids didn’t want to dress up for Halloween because “dressing up is lame.” Back then I was super-shy (I WAS. No one ever believes me!) but I still rocked a costume. My favorite high school Halloween memory: senior year my friends and I did a group costume as Aladdin and his harem of genies. (Not as slutty as it sounds. The movie Aladdin was very big that year. Yes, I’m old.)

Then: college. And, as every college student eventually discovers, I found the best Halloween treat since mini-Hershey bars—alcohol!

Ah, youth.

It was roughly a decade of costumed debauchery, and I’m not too boringly adult to admit that I miss it.

But now that I’m old and staid (shut up, you guys), you know what I miss? Taking my stepsons out trick or treating. As I have mentioned previously, they are both in high school now, and yes, that’s just as awful as it sounds. I miss them when they looked like this:

Exactly like this.
Exactly like this.

Now, when I think back to how they wore those masks approximately 12 seconds before they began whining, it’s funny instead of infuriating. “It’s hot. I can’t see. It’s itchy. I can’t breathe!” Gahhhhh. Why do kids ALWAYS pick out the costume with a mask/something to carry/both? And why do costume-makers hate parents?

But I miss watching them trot up to our neighbors and chorus, “Trick or treat!” And they even remembered to say thank you, most of the time. They weren’t like those rude kids who just grunt and thrust their plastic pumpkin at you. You gotta work for that candy, kid. Dance for me! DANCE, I SAY!

Oh, gawd. Stop. STOP DANCING.
Oh, gawd. Stop. STOP DANCING.

So now I’m in this weird phase in my life where I still enjoy Halloween but my “Halloween plans” go like this:

ME: Huh. There’s a Halloween party at The Lodge on Saturday. (a local bar/restaurant)

ERIC: That sounds fun.

ME: Yeah. It does. We should go.

ERIC: We should.

[silence]

And that’s as far as it got! The day of the party we got all involved with the kids…. we had just went out of town the weekend before… Eric didn’t sleep well… we had church in the morning… you could almost hear the fizzle as life just let the air out of our big plans.

But that’s fine. Because we had a good night with the kids and I don’t regret not going to that party at all. Ish.

So instead of going out this year I thought I’d trot out the sexy ghosts of Halloween past. (That costumed debauchery I mentioned earlier? There’s evidence. You’re welcome, Internet.)

photo 5

19-year old me and my BFF dressed as Marcia Brady and a gypsy, respectively. (Or NOT so respectively, amIright?) Much Zima and other disgusting alcohol was consumed this night. So much that a group of us made a trip to Kroger to get more… while dressed in costume. We’re lucky we didn’t get arrested. (We had a DD, don’t worry. He was dressed as Phantom of the Opera, but for that part of the evening he was Phantom of the Overly Crowded Toyota Corolla.)

photo 3

Screen Shot 2013-10-31 at 11.42.47 AM

My God, LOOK AT MY ABS. Look at them. This is 22 (?) year old me with my boss at Sunglass Hut on “Malloween.” (Where parents bring their kids to the mall for trick or treat. I’m not sure why I felt I had to explain that.)  We had so many dads bringing their kids over that we ran out of candy. Sigh.

photo 4

25-ish old me dressed as an angel (ha!) with friends. Recognize the pregnant chic dressed as a prostitute? Yep, my bestie from the first picture! That baby in her belly? She’s about to turn 11 in a few months.  Fun fact: since she was pregnant and couldn’t drink, her hubby thoughtfully got TWICE as drunk and puked all over himself. Memories!

photo 3 copy

This is actually the same Halloween, different day. Actually I think the party above was the weekend before Halloween and this is on Halloween night. Can’t wear the same costume twice, duh. The scary looking person next to me (not Winnie the Pooh) is the one and only picture I kept of my ex-husband. Bonus! Fun fact #2: He had already been out for hours by the time that picture was taken, and was so drunk that we left shortly thereafter. I’ll just leave you to draw your own conclusions why that marriage didn’t last.

photo 4 copy

Eric and I are at a themed Halloween party—the theme was Movie Characters so he went as Maximus from Gladiator and I’m Roller Girl from Boogie Nights. Yes, I wore those skates all night and NO I did not fall down.

photo 2 copy

photo 1 copy

29-year old me as a Goth Fairy. This is one of my favorite costumes. So fun! I bought fake eyelashes and fake tattoos, borrowed the wings and the outfit is mine. Cheap + adorbs. My favorite combination, other than chocolate and peppermint. Which totally beats chocolate and peanut butter no matter WHAT MY HUSBAND SAYS.

76620_1220801576949_3415578_n

74491_1220817457346_8160132_n

This was the last time Eric and I went out for Halloween and I had to almost physically drag him out. Since I’m a bunny I wanted him to dress as a magician. CUTE, RIGHT? But he “couldn’t find a costume,” meaning “If I don’t have costume, maybe she won’t make me go out.” Ha, think again, Pingle! So he had to throw something together last minute and he came up with, um… what he’s wearing above. I think he is supposed to be “Sith Lord working at the Death Star on Casual Friday.” So. Yeah.

And, you can’t tell from the pics above, but I’m wearing super-sweet white go-go boots, which I originally bought for an office Halloween costume:

photo 1

Groovy, right? I wish I could wear those boots every day. EVERY DAY.

Happy Halloween, y’all.

Warning: Random ramblings ahead

This post is mostly just an excuse to not do homework. Please enjoy my ramblings, brought to you by the gods of procrastination.

War of the Dip 2

Last week, Eric and I were arguing (again) about The Dip. He had just got back from the store and was making yet another batch. I told him before he left that we already had cream cheese and butter in the fridge (the main ingredients in this super-healthy snack).

He was in the middle of making it when he suddenly exclaimed, “This is mixing like paste!” He tasted it and made a face. “It tastes weird!”

He then accused me of sabotaging his precious dip with substandard butter. “This isn’t the butter I usually use.”

I squinted at it. “I didn’t buy that. I always buy the store brand.”

We then had a long, pointless argument about where this butter came from. He claimed I bought it; I said no way could I have bought it because I always buy the store brand. He always buys the name brand, ergo the gross butter must belong to him. He was about to retort when he looked at butter package and said accusingly, “It’s expired!”

“I don’t know!” I said defensively. “I thought you’d just bought it, I didn’t even look.”

“I DIDN’T BUY THIS BUTTER.”

And around we went again. Of course by this point we descended into ridiculous insults wherein he claimed my baking sucks because I use generic butter.

Sputtering, I responded with, “The only thing that sucks around here is you, because you’re a sucker for wasting money on name brand butter!”

He came to halt and repeated slowly, “‘The only thing that sucks around here is you because you’re a sucker.'”

I had to laugh. “Shut up! It makes sense.”

That’s marriage, folks. No need for a winner, we resolve our debates with laughter. Although clearly I won.

(In case you’re wondering, he ended up making another trip to the store to get his precious name brand butter and declared the next batch of dip as the best one yet. Tastes the same to me.)

P.S. or Why I need meds to get through life

Actual conversation I had with the Starbucks barista in my office (yes, there’s a Starbucks in my office. I know, right?):

It was the end of the day on Friday so the pastry options were slim pickins’. Then I spotted a lone slice of raspberry swirl pound cake. My mouth filled with saliva.

Me: May I have that lonesome little raspberry swirl pound cake?
Her: You sure can.
Me: Yay! It looks so sad and lonely. It needs to be in my mouth.
IT NEEDS TO BE IN MY MOUTH.
I should just not talk to people.

The War of The Dip

Hey, remember how I said I’d try to keep up with my blog? Neither do I, because GRAD SCHOOL IS INSANE, YO. I have no memory of anything anymore, because my brain has exceeded its limit. It’s overflowing with information and if I don’t empty it soon… well.

This.
This.

I really need to make more of an effort to get back to writing non-college-y stuff because clearly I’m losing my mind. The perfect segue to this story…

So my husband just had a birthday. He wanted a quiet birthday weekend because, you know, he’s old now. But then something happened.

Let me tell you the back story first: a few years ago Baby Mama unknowingly started a downward spiral of events in my house when she gave Eric her recipe for a chocolate chip cream cheese dip. I’m not sure of the exact recipe, but it’s mostly made of cream cheese and the Tooth Fairy’s tears. It’s the most fattening, delicious, sugary dip you’ve ever regretted eating.

My husband gets on these weird snack phases, and as I’ve mentioned before, he’s very protective of his food. So he was making this dip for himself, buying chocolate animal crackers to go with the dip (animal crackers are essential to this treat, apparently) and this became his new snack.

For months this went on. I cannot emphasize enough how fattening this dip is. First of all, a batch of it is meant for like, a large gathering of people, not one single, insane man. Because the other thing about it was, he would not share it. He’d give me and the boys a measly little taste every once in a while, but he watched our every bite.

We even caught him hiding it in the very back of the refrigerator, all wrapped in aluminum foil like some ridiculous dessert camouflage, meant to throw us off. But he wasn’t counting on this former reader of Nancy Drew, no sir. I spied the empty cream cheese packaging, the mixing attachments in the dishwasher and the not-quite-cleaned out mixing bowls. I wasn’t born yesterday, Mr. Pingle.

I really want to put an inappropriate joke here, but I'll restrain myself.
I really want to put an inappropriate joke here about Nancy and Ned, but I’ll restrain myself.

“You hid the dip in the back of the refrigerator?” I screeched. Both boys perked their ears and swiveled their heads first toward me, then Eric. We all stared at him, waiting.

“Uhhh…” he protested unconvincingly.

It was a dark day in the Pingle household.

He eventually weaned himself off  (after several interventions), and things settled down.

Well, I hate to tell you but The Dip is back.

It started up again a few weeks ago. The ingredients suddenly appeared in the refrigerator. Animal crackers showed up in the pantry.

The weekend after his birthday a bowl of dip beckoned enticingly from the fridge. I was alone and it was that time of day when it’s too early for dinner but well past lunch. I helped myself to some of the dip to tide me over until dinner.

Later that night Eric opened the refrigerator. “Who ate all my dip?” he roared.

All your dip? I barely had any!” I said.

“You had a lot.”

“Did not.”

“Did too.”

Pictured: Marriage.
Pictured: Marriage.

“There is plenty left! For one normal person, anyway. Maybe not enough for one ridiculous man,” I huffed.

Later, he set the empty (empty!) bowl in the sink. “That was disappointing,” he sniffed.

He would not shut up about it for the rest of the night. And there was enough dip for four people in that bowl, you guys. He’s insane. Insane.

And he’s allll mine. Happy Birthday, Mr. Pingle.

Writing about writing

You guys, I’m starting grad school in two weeks. Two weeks. Where has this summer gone? I should have my book finished by now… it was on my summer checklist and everything. Well, less a checklist and more a note to myself that read, “Finish your book, idiot.”

Also, the entire point of birthing this website was so I would have a full-grown freelance career. But what did I end up with? A blog that spends the entire day picking its nose, taking up Internet space and contributing nothing to the household.

Get a job, blog.
Get a job, blog.

Maybe if I actually, you know, looked for freelance work, this blog would get up off the couch and do something for me. I have a couple articles I began writing that I could pitch… but have I completed those either? I think we all know the answer to that.

SIGH. Will I have time to keep up this blog? I hope so. The thing is, my “writing brain” is always on. I basically have a whirring disco ball full of bumbling characters that have no idea how to function in this imaginary world I’ve stuck them in. Ideas from my blog run into magazine article ideas and later meet up for drinks with movie ideas and then maybe hook up later with book ideas. It’s like an orgy in my head, man. And it never shuts off. It’s like the all-orgy channel.

Okay, that metaphor just went to a weird place. The point I’m laboring to make is if I don’t get those ideas out, they stay stuck in my brain. That’s how people go crazy, probably.

Wait, what am I doing? Dammit, I’m a writer, not a doctor!
Wait, what am I doing? Dammit, I’m a writer, not a doctor!

So for my own safety, I should probably keep writing. That’s a tagline for writers, right?

Writing: It gets the crazy out.

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Well… mostly.