THE BONEYARD

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New fallen snow is so pretty before the dogs pee on it.   That’s what I was thinking this morning as I gazed in momentary contentment over the ravine out back.   Then unbidden my eyes fell upon the three by five foot pit just beneath the Sun Room windows.    That hole has been there for almost five years now.   It makes washing the back windows a real adventure.

You’re probably wondering how a three by five death trap ended up behind my house.   It was my idea. When we moved into this house on the ravine I wanted a pond.

“This is a bad idea,” Bob stated, trying to reason with me. “Raccoons will eat the fish. It’ll fill up with leaves in the fall. And this spot is too sunny.   A pond here will be more work than you’ll want to do.”

Bob can be a real buzz kill. I know this so I’m always prepared.

“We’ll dig it deep enough that the fish will have a place to hide and stay cool when the sun is too hot. Plus we’ll fill it with pond plants. It’ll be great! Trust me!”

“Every time you say, “trust me”, chaos breaks out. You super glued a popcicle stick to the dogs nut sac! You…..”

“Whoa! Hold the phone!   I admit I have bad luck with super glue……”

“That poor dog would call it more than bad luck.”

“It was an unfortunate accident. That’s all in the past. This is today. Come on, lets go get some pond building stuff.   You’re gonna love this! I’m so excited! Aren’t you exicted?”

Digging the hole was booger of a job.   I ended up finishing it because Bob digs too slow. He actually stopped digging because it was raining. Can you believe that?   I could have built the frame too but I’m not allowed to handle power tools anymore.   (Minor blunder with the drill) Between the two of us we had that pond up and running in a couple weeks.   It was beautiful and serene, until it wasn’t.

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The first thing that began to run amuk was algae.  I had to climb down into the pond to pull it out. I’d grab handfuls of long green, slimy strings and pitch them off to the side of the pond.   Sometimes only part of the goo would fly out and the rest would slip down my sleeve into my armpit.   Occasionally while I was in there de-sliming,  fish would nibble on my crooked toe.   I guess it looks like a curly worm under water.

While I was still cleaning algae buckets of leaves started finding their way into the pond just as Bob, the naysayer had predicted they would.   I scooped furiously every day for a time so he couldn’t say, “I tried to tell you.”   This a favorite phrase of his and I’d rather jump up and down on a bed of nails than hear it. I’ve become pretty darned creative over the years in hiding lots of stuff. But I tell you truly no one could have kept up with those leaves.

It didn’t take too long to talk Bob into buying some Koi.   I’d read Koi become pretty friendly and live like…forever. So I focused on their longevity when trying to get Bob past the extravagant price tag on these fish. In the end he bought 4 large Koi at a price I refuse to admit to and 4 small ones.   I LOVED those fish.   Koi are like dogs with scales. (I swear, it’s true)   They were always happy to see me, wagging their little fish tails and making kissy faces at me.   These Koi were so tame they ate out of my hand on the first day. I named every one of them.   I’d like to say they came when I called their name but in their defense it’s hard to hear under water.   So in spite of the algae and leaf situation, life was good on, Pam’s Pond, until Walter went missing.

At first I thought, “He’s keeping cool on the bottom somewhere under a rock ledge.”   But in truth, like the other seven, Walter never missed a meal. Still he had to be there, right?   Fish don’t walk. The next day, Stella Gillswinger, went missing too.   Did they elope?   Not bloody likely. Another of Bob’s stupid predictions was coming to pass. Raccoons were, indeed, using our pond as their personal fishing hole. Happily, Bob had no clue two of the large expensive fish he’d paid for, cringing notably as they ran his card, had gone missing. Or that every thing he’d warned me about had come to pass.   It was my job to make sure he remained clueless.

Early that evening I went to the aquarium and bought two of the largest goldfish I could find.   They didn’t remotely resemble Walter or Stella but …come on….Bob can be staring right at a can of tuna in the pantry and still call out, “Are we out of tuna?”   They were fish…close enough.

As I placed the bag with the two imposters into the pond I came upon my first murder victim. She floated there on her side and I didn’t need to poke her to know she was deader than my ability to eat cabbage without farting. Bob was due home any minute. I could “not” let him see the body.   What to do?

I ran for the net, netted her lifeless corpse, and lobbed her off the side of the deck into the seventy-foot deep ravine behind our house. Only she didn’t lob, she fell straight down onto the ledge behind the deck, her body clearly visible from Bob’s favorite yard chair if he just chose to look down.

For the next several weeks I was a lobbing fool.   The ledge under our deck had become a bone yard. Dead fish hung from bushes like Christmas ornaments.   One even managed to land in a tree branch overhanging the barbecue grill. No matter how hard I swung that net I could not get them to fly far or straight enough to make the drop into the ravine.   A couple times I came close but they hit a tree and bounced back.

Then eureka! I had it! The long handled pool skimmer would be a much better tool for catapulting dead fish! It took three tries before I finally got a good swing off because that skimmer handle was so long it kept hanging up on deck chairs and side tables.   And once…somehow….it knocked my MILs yorkie into the pond.   (I needed to get that fish out of sight, like NOW so I admit the decision of which to do first, resuce or fling took longer than it should have) But fortunately on that third try    BAM!  I’m telling you, that fish flew like she had wings!   Only somehow….don’t ask me….it disappeared before I completed my swing.   The damnable fish had flown backwards.

I looked everywhere for that for the missing body.   Even though I didn’t hear a splash I still checked the pond because, yes, I was “that” desperate.   I had to get the dog out anyway so it was sensible.    Bob’s so far unspoken, “I tried to tell you,” echoed over and over in my head.   I “had” to find that fish!   Looking heavenward I began to pray for a little fish finding guidance.   The Lord works in mysterious ways because there hanging ever so slightly over the gutter was a blue and white fish tail.

“Yeegads! I’ve roofed it!”

The back deck already smelled like dead fish.   So far I’d been able to convince Bob that the pond just smelled fishy.   He wrinkled his nose and bought an outdoor fan.   I guess it never occurred to him to look over the side of the deck.   But a fish hanging off the edge of the roof right next to our son’s bedroom window might prove to be problematic. I had to get that sucker down or this would become another one of the dinner stories Bob shared with our friends, like the mouse fiasco.   (we’ll get to that later)

Fortunately the section of roof I needed to reach was perfectly flat.    No one was home so I went upstairs, removed the screen and crawled out.   Piece of cake!   I didn’t realize how big that fish had gotten until I picked it up.   Not only did it require two hands but because it was so slippery I had to hug it to my chest to keep from dropping it.   All of this was fine with me until I got to the window and realized I couldn’t hold the fish with both hands and climb back through the window.   I’m 5’2” which basically means I’m a human weeble.   I have short legs that barely get my butt high enough to sit in a chair.   No way was I able to toss a leg over the window sill while holding a dead fish between my chesticles with both hands. I did the only thing I could. I tossed the fish through the open window and climbed in behind it.

The dogs had been standing at the foot of the stairs waiting for me to come back down.  As I leaned down to retrieve the former pond resident, I heard eight paws scrabbling across the kitchen floor, sliding and bumping into things in their extreme excitement.   Bob was home.   “Hey girl!” he called out to me.   “Where are you?”

“I’ll be down in a second,” I shouted back, shoving the dead fish under Jake’s bed then rushing over to close the open window and replace the screen.

“Did you buy fish today?”

OMG!   I’d forgotten about the bagged fish floating on the pond!

“What? I can’t hear you. Wait till I come down,” I called back, buying time to think of an answer.

I waited for Bob to go back to our room to change his clothes then grabbed the fish and raced down the stairs planning to toss the blasted thing into the trash outside and be done with it.   But as I raced round the corner from the foyer to the kitchen the fish slipped out of my hands and our Golden Retriever, Lucy, followed closely by her side-kick, Lola, grabbed it and ran.

“Drop it!” I hissed.

I tried to sneak up on her but she saw me, flipped directions and ran toward the bedroom where Bob was changing out of his work clothes.

“Lucy! Lola! Get back here! Come! “ I squeaked, chasing after them, hoping to head them off before they made it to the bedroom.

“PAM!”

Ugh oh.

“The dogs have one of your fish!”

“WHAT???   NOOOOO!”   I exclaimed as I entered the bedroom.   “Well, that’s it then.   We can’t keep that pond if our own dogs are gonna be killing the fish.” I turned and cast the most dramatically disappointed expression I could muster at the two tail wagers. “How could you?”

I WAKE UP EVERY MORNING WITH A TONGUE IN MY EAR

I know what you’re thinking.   You’re thinking something along the lines of, “Atta girl!”    No.   The Powers That Be did not suddenly decide to smile upon me giving me romantic tongue in the ear or even a foot rub (which in my humble opinion is way better than anything but a good neck rub.)   The tongue in my ear belongs to my dog, Chaotic Chloe Wigglebottom.   And her idea of morning is sometime before the sun actually makes an appearance.   Which means it is most definitely NOT my idea of morning.   This is prime sleeping time.   At the age of 64 I’ve earned it.   But just try to sleep with a tongue in your ear.    Go ahead.   I’ll wait.    Here look at this while you’re drifting off to dream land.

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So…how’d it go?

What do mean your dog wouldn’t stick her tongue in your ear to wake you up?   How is that possible?   Ok, never mind.   Let’s move on.

Here’s a sample of how the rest of my day goes.

Leave extremely comfy pillow….squeeze  through narrow hall with 2 fat Golden Retrievers.  After being bounced wall to wall like a human ping pong ball by afore mentioned hounds, arrive at front door.   “Go potty outside.”    Lola goes.   Chloe runs out then runs back in because Bob over adjusted our screen door so it stays open for approximately the amount of  time it takes for paint to dry.   We have literally had UPS and other delivery guys pushing the door trying to get it to close before Crazy Chloe can get out help them back to their truck.  (having a 70 pound dog leaning on you while you try to walk can be difficult.   It’s akin to having one leg a foot shorter than the other in that you will tend to lean way over to the side where the dog isn’t)   Sadly to date, no one has been able to push that screen door closed.   It simply can’t be done.   My advice to delivery fellas is bring your wife’s pot roast…let the dogs smell it…then toss it over the courtyard wall in the opposite direction of where you want to go.   That’ll buy you approximately 3 minutes depending on the size of the roast.   But I digress because as we all know,  A.D.D. is a bitch.

Once the dogs are finally both outside I feed, Webster, the African Gray parrot from hell…turn on the coffee pot…kibble the dog bowls and grab and nice bowl of Lucy Charms.   (they’re magically delicious until Chloe finishes her kibble, tosses her front legs on my lap and slams her head into my bowl.   (this happens every morning and I know it looks bad for me because….Hey…I knew it was coming and I still have blue diamonds and pink stars in my lap every day   All I can say is…sleep deprivation does not make for good mental clarity.

After all the early morning crap I head to the shower where some article of clothing I need is always missing.   Today I walked all over the place searching for the plaid flannel shirt I wear over my t-shirt when I’m painting.    I could not find it to save my life so I chose a different shirt.   As luck would have it …turns out I was wearing my plaid flannel shirt.  I dunno.  Don’t ask.

Chloe likes to jump and chase things.   In an effort to curb her car and people chasing (we have an invisible fence so she doesn’t get far) I made the mistake of buying her a frisbee.   One frisbee wasn’t enough because she wouldn’t bring it back so I got another one.   Now all day long she’s at my feet whimpering and pawing with both frisbees in tow.   “Let’s play.   Can we please play?   I really wanna play.   No, seriously, I REALLY wanna chase the frisbee.   RIGHT NOW!”

“I’m busy.   Let me paint my background then we’ll go out while it’s drying.”

“um, no.   That doesn’t work for me.   Let go now.   I’M LOSING MY MIND HERE.!   LET’S PLAY FRISBEE!  PLEASE!”

Throwing the frisbee for Chloe is like going on that show, “American Ninja Warrior”, only you’re not there cuz you wanna be and there is absolutely no prize if you get through the obstacle course in one piece.   Which, you won’t.      Chloe is all….HOP HOP HOP….”THROW IT…THROW IT NOW….HERE JUST GIVE IT TO ME….OK THEN…THROW IT….NO….GIVE IT TO ME.

“Sit.”

“Ok.   I’m sitting.  Throw it!   THROW IT!   PLEEEEASE…my lips are shaking!    THROW IT THROW IT THROW IT!   For the love of milk bones, throw it now!”

The day goes on and on, exactly the same.   I keep trying to write, clean, or paint but some living creature in my house will “always” have other ideas for me.   Some day you’ll see my picture on a milk carton.   And I swear to you, if you find me and tell anyone, I will hunt you down.

Recently I’ve been taking night walks (no dogs) and it’s very peaceful.   Often the skunk who lives under my shed joins me.   He doesn’t pee on me and I don’t hassle him.   We just walk, quietly reflecting on how weird our lives are some days.

Then I go home, go to bed, and sleep like a dead person until I wake up with a tongue in my ear….again.

LISTEN UP CUZ “WE THE PEOPLE” HAVE DEMANDS (and a great reality TV idea)

ALL PERSONS ELECTED AND HOPING TO BE ELECTED TO POLITICAL POSITIONS IN THESE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA…

We the people have decided that before you will be permitted to represent us and our families you must first live for a period of no less then “1 year” as an average 65 and older couple in this country. You will be permitted no additional funds, perks, or favors. Your yearly income will be based on the overall average of all retired and partially retired Americans living in this country today. (more than fair, I promise) You will pay the same exorbitant drug prices and be routinely screwed by your insurance company. You will clean your own homes, tend your own yards, and wash your own cars. Additionally you will walk your dog. (do NOT forget to carry the little blue bag when you do as you are also absolutely responsible for scooping up). We also expect…nay demand…that you make all your own phone calls to insurance, cable, and every other pain in the neck company employing scripted representatives who do absolutely nothing for you. One year of your current bank account will be donated to the federal deficit. (no problem because you’re now on the new living plan we have given you which matches ours….pretty much… so you won’t be needing yours.

If….Dear Server of the Public…you still wish to run for or maintain political office we will be out here in the real world awaiting you with open arms.

PS. For myself I’d really, really, love it if we could also film you 24/7 just to see how well you’re making the adjustment from your life to ours. But….that’s just me. Still, you might wanna consider. I mean….it would keep you in front of the cameras, right?

WILL YOU BE REMEMBERED?

The rumor that I was raised by monkeys is totally false.     I know it adds up.   Sometimes I even believe it but…no.   I was raised by a single mother.   Looking back I’m beginning to understand that having  me as a daughter may have been the single most challenging job of her life.   Things ran amuk very early on.   She couldn’t afford childcare and by the ages of 7 and 4 my sister and I had run through any relative living close enough to care for us.    I don’t know if we were too much of a pain in the sit-upon or if most likely tossing two more kids into someone’s daily household for “that” many hours 6 days a week is way too much to ask.   I would imagine a bit of both.  The important thing here is by the age of 7…. I was the boss in our house.    The top dog.   Numero Uno.   My Mother worked what they called a split-trick which meant she left at 10am and often didn’t get back home until 1 or 2 am.   Having “me” in charge and her gone so much of the time resulted in numerous unfortunate incidents.

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Back in the day we had milkmen who delivered fresh milk to your door in a glass bottle.  (yes, really!)   Mr.  Jenks (I thought it sounded like a cat’s name too)  was our milkman and I adored him.   He called me, “Little Miss”, he had the best laugh ever and he “always” brought a tray of cupcakes and other yummy pastries for me to choose from when he brought our milk.   The days when Mr.  Jenks, the milkman came were the best ever.   Until the day my Mother answered the door and he handed her a sheet of paper.

While I was giving Mr. Jenks his hello hug,  Mom was looking at that sheet of paper in the same way she looked at me when I filled our bathtub with catfish from the ravine.   (In my defense.  It had flooded and I was trying to save their lives.   I could NOT have known Mom was going to come home early and try take a shower)

“What is this?” she asked, Jenks who was distractedly tugging my ponytail.

“I’m sorry?”

“This bill.   It’s too much.”

As he explained what the bill was for (not only milk but a variety of cakes, doughnuts, and snack pies), my Mother’s eyes began to fill with tears.   “I can’t pay this.   I don’t have it.”   (Back in the day there were NO credit cards people.   For real.   I swear.)   “I can give you”…..she scrambled around in her purse to fish out a couple more dollars…”Can I pay you a little each week?    I’m sorry this is my fault.   They’re just little girls.   They didn’t know.   And my oldest, ” she said looking directly at me…”lives in her own world.”   (true dat, Mom)

So my Mother was crying, I was flabbergasted and still did NOT understand what had gone so wrong but the milkman…….

Once during that summer a kid punched me in the stomach with the end of a wooden baseball bat.   It simultaneously  knocked the air right outa me and sent me into a total state of shock.   I think how I felt best describes the look on old, Mr. Jenks face.    His big happy smile drooped.   His eyes got red and watery and he stopped tugging my pony tail, instead placing his big hand gently on the side of my bewildered face.

“I pay my bills, sir.   I can promise you I will make good on the debt.”

“What debt?” he asked her, taking the sheet of paper from her hands.

From then on Mr. Jenks delivered the milk and “gave” me and my sister a choice of any one delicacy on his tray.   He never charged my mother a penny for the cakes.   Just the milk.

My Mom told the story of our milkman’s great kindness right up until the final days of her life.   She never forgot him.   We never forgot him.   And I like to think he never forgot us.   I don’t know where he is now since I was 7 and he was so much older.   But in my mind it gives me peace to see him somewhere on a porch swing with a glass of lemonade and a beautiful breeze.

So I ask you again.   Will you be remembered?   Will any of us?   It’s not how much money we leave behind or what great successes we’ve had that will live on in another person’s heart.   It’s something far more valuable and so much easier to give.   So simple, in fact, we often overlook it in our quest to seek out all those things that one day won’t matter at all.

HELP! EVIL CIRCUS CLOWNS HAVE SENT A FLY TO KILL ME!

HELP! EVIL CIRCUS CLOWNS SENT A “FLY” TO KILL ME

Nemesis

We have “a” fly. And I am absolutely certain it’s a demon sent by evil circus clowns to drive me stark, raving mad! I know what you’re thinking….just kill it, right? Not so easy with a devil fly sent by evil circus clowns. So far I have hit myself in the face with a rolled up newspaper, stubbed my fungus toe, and slipped on the wet bathroom floor trying to stomp it. I think my tailbone is bruised.

Yesterday after I put dinner in the oven, I came back here to sweep and mop. A half hour later I went into the kitchen to check on dinner. The oven was off! I turned it back on and came back here to finish my post. When I didn’t smell dinner cooking I returned once more to the oven to see why dinner wasn’t cooking. It was off AGAIN! I turned it back on and started my work in the kitchen. In just a few minutes the (we’ll still call it a fly but you KNOW it’s more than that) landed on the off button. Chloe immediately jumped up to try and catch it. Her paw came down square on the off knob and the fly flew up to the range hood to watch me turn the blasted thing back on again. He was laughing. I’M NOT CRAZY! He was laughing I tell you.

I figured the damnable thing would die from old age by now but it’s been 5 days of him buzzing in my ears at night and landing on my plate when I’m eating. Anything he can do to annoy me he does. It always ends the same. I hunt him, weapon in hand, until “I” get hurt. And it’s not just me. Nobody has been able to kill this thing. Apparently his bitty little fly brain is more developed than ours. And we can’t spray him because it would be bad for Webster. I’m tempted to try and torch him with my grill lighter. I just hope I don’t burn the hair offa my head in the process.

MIND OVER BLADDER

The older I get the less my various body parts want to do anything.    When I first get up from a seated position it takes my back a full thirty seconds to realize we’re standing and straighten itself out.    Of course it’s not “all” my backs fault.   What’s the back supposed to do when it has two feet under it going,  “Is she gaining more weight?   Oh we are NOT gonna carry these thighs all the way into the kitchen. ”   So it’s no real surprise that my bladder has begun to refuse to hold more than a glass of water before she’s all …..”AN ENTIRE GLASS OF WATER?   IS SHE KIDDING ME WITH THIS?”    And of all the rebellious body parts I have the bladder is causing me the most grief.   Why?   Because when it comes to public restrooms….God hates me.   Nothing…nothing…ever goes well for me in a public toilet.

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We’ll skip over the time I was using one of the outdoor toilets at the Arts Festival and the first man in a long line of people waiting opened the door to find me sitting there with my chin in my hands.   “That” was a festive moment for the crowd.  Almost as festive as the time a lady literally got down on her hands and knees to look under my stall door to see if someone was in there or the door had accidentally been locked from the inside.   Apparently my feet blended in with the floor too much to be noticeable.   Really?    We will also jump over the time a sweet old lady stepped in front of me at the mall and said,  “Excuse me, dear.   You have toilet paper caught in your underpants.    I looked back and sure enough what must have been an extra, extra,  long roll of  butt tissue had attached itself to my ass and trailed behind me past three stores and coffee shop.   

A couple of days ago while I was fondling strawberries my bladder called up, “YO!   I’m gonna need to eliminate that sweet tea you had…like…NOW!”   So I parked my cart and headed for the restroom because …well,  only an utter fool would try to outwit a rebel bladder.    Important note here….my bladder wants what it wants until you sit down and make it possible.   Then she’s all, “Ohhhh, I dunno.   Let’s wait a couple minutes.”    Which is how I ended up still sitting there when the “Uhhhhh-Oooooh”, lady came in.

Let me preface by saying it is not uncommon to hear a toot or two in the ladies bathroom.   And though occasionally it can be nasally challenging I am not appalled or shocked by such things.   But this day….oh this day was different.    From the moment she sat in the stall next to me I found myself feeling slighting curious because her shoes didn’t match…meaning she was wearing one blue tennis shoe and one white loafer.   No, I am not making this up.   I was just asking myself how a person ends up in two totally different shoes when I heard the first fart.   Normal except, no it wasn’t at all.   Because right after the rectal oration,  she exclaimed, “uhhhhh-ohhhh”.   Who does that?  Understand…the “uhhhh-ohhhhhhh” was clearly an expression of surprised pleasure.  After that there was literally a series of ….brrrrrt…phtttt followed by a  high pitched, “uhhhhhh-ohhhhhhhh.”   Every toot got more vicious and each time the  “uhhhhh-ohhhh”  got higher in tone and more satisfied.

The sounds coming from that stall were so unique that I began to search the ceiling and walls for a hidden camera.   When I didn’t find one I felt an immediate need to flee.    But my bladder was all….”Oh ….my GOD…impatient much?”    The voice inside my head screamed back at her….”work damn you, work!”   Meanwhile next door all hell was breaking loose.   Now the woman was using words like, “oh, finally.   It’s about time.   Where ARE you?”

Where is it?   Seriously?  You don’t know?

I had just decided to leave with or without my bladder’s permission when I heard, “Ok, I’ll call you later.   Bye.”   She was on the phone???    And then….brrrrrrt….phtttt…..”Uhhhhhhh-ohhhhhhh!”   And that’s when another lady entered the restroom.   After listening for a couple minutes what do you think she did?   Go ahead, guess.  That’s right!  She came to “my” stall and asked if I was having a problem.

I have decided from now on it’s, mind over bladder.   I am absolutely,  positively, NEVER NEVER NEVER, using a public restroom again.   There’s some kinda curse on me.  I just know it.   Some horrible hoo doo curse that causes everything to turn to shit any time I step inside a public restroom.   Or…..maybe it just applies to the women’s restroom?   Sayyyyyy, what if I disguised myself as a man?

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THERE’S A CONDOM FOR THAT. DID YA KNOW IT?

CONDOMS THAT TELL YOU IF YOU’VE DIPPED INTO UNHEALTHY TERRITORY. No I am not making it up. Word has it they are working on making condoms that light up if you poked something you shouldn’t have. Annnnd, even better….they turn colors depending on what STD little Willie or Sue has picked up. The problem as I see it here is….say, you stick your toe in the water and when you come out to dry, it’s glowing green? What do you do in that moment? What….do…you…do? Spray yourself with hand sanitizer? Call 911? Curse your foul luck? Cuz you aren’t gonna know UNTIL, you’ve been there and “done that”. Pun totally intended.
Oh sure you can seek medical attention to try and treat that nasty case of herpes but wouldn’t it be better to not poke your toe in the water until you’re more familiar with it?
I just don’t see me in a world where people in romantically lit rooms are suddenly shouting…”OH MY GAWD, I’M GLOWING….YOU BITCH!”
You’re welcome, you all.                     TuesNews

LADY! UNHAND MY WHATCHA-MA-CALL-IT!

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You know that feeling when you KNOW you left your cart by …oh say…the weinies…then come back and it’s gone missing?   At first you ask yourself, “Did I just think I left it here but really I left it by the buns?”   But deep down you know.   Oh, yes.   You know it was the weinies.   And somebody took it.    Well, this happens to me all the time.   So I go up and down every isle searching for my cart and usually find it sitting abandoned in another part of the store.   And the person who took it is never there.   But last week I at long last I managed to catch my cart napper before she made her escape.    I was so excited I ran toward her calling out, “LADY!   HEY LADY!  THAT’S MY…..”   and I could NOT remember the word for cart.   My brain was literally hurting from the effort.  I needed this word, fast.   Preferably before she looked behind her to see who was running down the isle screeching like a loon.   The voice inside my head was screaming….”don’t turn around yet, lady.  Not yet.   Not yet.   I’m thinking.   Gimme a minute.”    She turned.   And I must say at first I found her to be an impressively tall woman until I saw her beard.

“You’re not a lady!”

“I’m sorry?”

“Nothing.  Um….I know this seems crazy but I left my cart over there by the wieners and you took it.”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“That stuff in the cart isn’t yours.  It’s mine.”

“I think you’ve made a mistake.   This is my cart.”

Ok, now he was just being obstinate.   “That is NOT your cart, fella!   See those rolls and that …giant pack of bologna???   Ok you must have added that but the zucchini and oranges are mine for sure.  Look in the whatcha-ma-call it.   I have two thank you cards in there.  Go ahead.  Look.”

“This IS my cart, Ma’am.   But if you want it I can go get another one.”

I could tell the rest of this story but ….I just can’t.   Bottom line…it wasn’t my cart.   My cart was in the produce isle next to the potatoes.    And I hope you all have learned something from this!

WE ARE WATCHING. PLEASE STOP TRYING TO SQUEEZE YOUR FAT ASS INTO OUR PETITE JEANS.

My body is like a ball of yeast dough that’s been rising for the past 63 years.   It gets bigger and bigger and when I move it flops into any open area available without my knowledge or consent.    This is NOT my body.    It’s not even body shaped.   I look like a beach ball with a head and sneakers.   Sneakers that are a size 6 extra wide with a pair of arch support insoles because NOW I have bunions and my arches have gone missing.   I’m guessing they got fed up with carrying around the ever shifting mountain of body weight and and said, “Oh HELL no!  We’re outa here!”

Slowly over the years I have become a “special needs” clothing and shoes shopper.   My blouses must have three-quarter length sleeves so my arm flags can’t escape and knock something over when I wave hello or the wind is blowing.   Additionally, said blouse, must be long enough to conceal frontal butt…a.k.a. mid-life chocolate lovers belly.   But not too long because I’m five foot two inches and have no legs to speak of.   Pants must be short legged with lots of thigh breathing space and preferably have a draw string or some elastic in the back.   They must be slimming to the eye but maintain tummy expandability for those bloated gassy days when I eat cheap Mexican food or any type of cabbage product.   Any shoes I wear must be designed as if they were being created for a freakishly large goose.  I submit you would find very little difference between my footprint and that of any water foul.   Consequently,  shopping has become a migraine waiting to happen.

A few years ago I was trying on pants in one of those curtained dressing rooms.   You know the ones where lots of folks go into one big room, step inside a cubicle made of fabric hanging on a rod and pray a stiff breeze doesn’t blow what little is left of their dignity to hell?   The sales girl had suggested I would look really cute in this particular pair of pants that just happened to be two sizes smaller than what I wore.   When I told her they were the wrong size she said, “Oh they’re made really big.  I’m sure these will fit you.”    She was wrong.   I wiggled and sweated and pulled till my arm muscles were sore and could only get them half way up my thighs.  So back off they came….only ….no they didn’t.   They literally would not come up or go down.  I’m telling you, I was EXHAUSTED!   So I did what I always do and leaned against the wall for support.   And fell through the cloth door into the middle of the dressing area at the feet of three ladies who were here visiting from Georgia.   I laid there for a minute staring at the ceiling.   I don’t remember thinking anything at all other than, “Lord in Heaven it feels good to lay down.”

“Sugah, are you ok?”  The twenty-something tight body asked.

Oh, dear Gawd in Heaven, make it stop.

In the end it took two of the three of them to help me get the pants back off.   And that’s when I began on-line shopping.   Which I’ve been doing for the past few years.   On-line shopping has been nice but over time I’ve found I need more categories to narrow my search down to anything remotely reasonable.   And now they want me to measure myself to more accurately select size.   Have you measured your butt in inches lately?   Don’t.   It’s traumatic and will send you flying to the Nutella for a spoon of, “Woe is me.”

I am down to one bra that kinda fits but not really.   I’ve grown out of all but two pair of pants (only I dropped ice cream sprinkles in the car so now one pair has yellow, orange, and pinks spots on the crotch…which I guess means technically I have one pair of pants).   And I dunno…is that a sentence?

Where was I?   Oh, the only shirts I’m wearing these days have slogans on them or they’re hospital scrubs.   This is a record.  I have never porked up so much I couldn’t  fit into my shirts before.   There should be some kind of award for that.   Ice cream maybe?   So today I sucked it up, grabbed the bottle of excedrin and set out for the mall.   You can’t hide forever, right?   I gathered up a cart full of pants, shirts, bras and shuffled into the dressing room.   As soon as I started taking my clothes off and saw that lonely worn out pink bra with the torn strap, my granny panties with the elastic coming through, and those massive rolls of chicken white skin I knew….nothing else I would see today would be as bad as this.    I stood there staring in utter disbelief.  I tried to manually push my stomach back into my body.   I made disgusted faces at myself.   Then I glanced up and saw the sign.   “THIS DRESSING ROOM IS BEING MONITORED”.    What?   Wait….what?    “MOTHER FUCKER!”

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ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE

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The following events are true.   Or not.

It all started when I woke up in a too quiet hospital that smelled like fried liver and old sneakers.  No idea why I was there, couldn’t remember a thing,  but I was hungry and I had to pee.  So I pressed the button to call the nurse.   You’d think there would be some get well gifts in the room since I am a really popular person but the only thing in there with me was a vase of dried up, dead flowers.   Maybe they’d recently moved me to someone else’s room and hadn’t transferred all my gifts over yet?

Fifteen minutes passed and the nurse still hadn’t responded to my call-light.   I knew the hospital staff was right outside the door because I could hear them moaning about how hard they worked.   Well, I assumed that’s what it was about.   This is the trouble with the world today, nobody enunciates anymore.

“HELLO?   HELL-OOOOOO?    WHAT’S TAKING SO LONG?   SERIOUSLY!   YOU GUYS MOVE LIKE DEAD PEOPLE!   C’MON!”

You’ve heard that old saying, “If you want something done, get outa the bed and do it yourself”?   Obviously it was a situation like this that gave birth to that expression.   As luck would have it the second I stood up and headed for the bathroom the nurse shuffled in.

“Whoa!   OH! I’m so sorry did I say that out loud? It wasn’t because of your…um…skin problem.   Really, I hardly noticed it. You just startled me, that’s all.   Hey your skin cream is dripping off your chin right there.”   I pointed helpfully.

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I guess my apology wasn’t accepted because nurse drippy face shuffled over and started poking and clawing at me.

“Stop that!”   I used my authoritative voice.  It always works on my dogs.  But she kept pulling at me until she tore my hospital gown

“I’m not kidding!   You better stop or you’ll be sorry!”

She lunged again!  “I’ll hit you back.   I will,”  I squeaked.

Then suddenly,  Miss Congeniality tries to take a bite outa’ my neck!   “Oh no you did NOT just do that!”   She had gone too far.   I gave her a good smack on the arm. “How do you like it?”

Note to self: Never annoy someone with a bad skin condition because they will NOT let that shit go.    She kept grabbing at me and I kept slapping her hand away.   It must have gone on for five minutes before I finally thumped her in the head with my IV pole.

I’ve been on the road for a month now.   It was two weeks before I found out the mass majority of humanity wasn’t suffering from severe acne.   Which, in my opinion is way more logical than a Zombie Apocalypse.   But that’s just me.

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My new friend, Darryl, is teaching me how to catch squirrels for dinner.   It’s sweet of him but kind of dumb too because all the houses are like… totally vacant.   Most of the pantries are stocked.   Zombies don’t care for regular food. They prefer people, or animals. (I wish they ate mosquitos but whatever)  As far as I can tell Darryl and I are the proud owners of a kazillion boxes of cereal.   Cereal is much easier to eat, and way less hairy than Squirrels.     We even found a cow for milk!   But the damnable Zombies ate her while we were out ….you guessed it…hunting for more squirrels.   Eventually Darryl and I will have to have a sit down.

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Ok, I gotta scoot.   Darryl has a bee in his bonnet.  Keeps hollerin’ something about a horde of zombies moving in.   He can be a bit of a drama queen sometimes.   Once…when we were under attack…he was all like….”Look where you’re shooting, dumbass!”   I mean, seriously, is the end of the world any excuse for bad manners?

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