Why do we drive on parkways and park on driveways?

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

In which the S mother returns with a fucking BANG

I shouldn't have answered the door.

When I DID, I was confronted by a tall dude in a dark suit, with some seriously '80's aviators, surrounded by a cloud of Drakkar Noir and sporting a serious case of "I am very Important."

Said Legend in His Own Mind asked for the wee ginger midget by name. Full, legal name.

"What. The fucking. Fuck?" (I actually said this to the man.)

He flashed a badge and indicated that he was investigating a massive case of ID theft and credit fraud, and he wanted to interview his suspect right away, or I would be facing some serious obstruction of justice and accessory charges. Blah blah blah blah.

OK. Settle down there, Beretta. Let me see that ID again. I called the husband, who made a few inquiring phone calls and determined that the guy was a legit Fed.

I examined the badge again, and stepped out on to the front porch to politely explain that he was seriously off on a goose chase, and needed to go investigate his own ass off my property. Cue minor puffery and sputtering.

I leaned in the door and collared OctoBoy, and told him to fetch his sister.

"Ah! She IS here!" he crowed triumphantly.

Out skipped Herself, red ponytail, red glitter shoes and red princess flamenco dance dress, to ask what we needed. Douchebag visibly deflated.

"This is wee Ginger Midget. Say Hi, honey!'

"Hi! I am playing Sasquatch-hunting dancing princess. OctoBoy is being the dragon and Fierce GSD is my pony. Bitey is being the Sasquatch....."on she went.

He politely asked her name, which she gave. He asked her how old she was. She beamed, "FIVE!" and held up the requisite number of fingers. He asked her whet grade she was in, and she babbled about her various Kindergarten adventures without taking a breath for three straight minutes.

She was then free to go Squatchin' with her brother.

He was clearly disappointed and frustrated. I went up to my office and retrieved the Smother File, which has various copies and records, going back at least 20 years, detailing the breadth and depth of my biological mom's financial fuckery, and all the various times she had used SnarkGirl's SSN and mine to obtain credit. The folder is about three inches thick thus far, and I suspect it will be gaining at least another ream of papers soon.

Well, now she's been using Ginger Midget's. To the tune of  about ten grand.

I sent him off with a folder of  contact numbers, previous investigators we have worked with, attorneys and other types, and told him we'd be happy to cooperate.

God fucking damn it.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

People watching...

I spent the last weekend in Atlantic City, NJ. Voluntarily.

See, the Step-gator has her own business, and there was some sort of Expo at the AC Convention Center, and she wanted to go...but she is a nervous driver. She didn't want to go alone, and Dad didn't want to go with her, so she lured me in with promises of a massage at the Red Door Spa and a weekend with no kids.

I am a sucker for these things, so we headed out on Friday. plus, it's nice to just get away and have some mommy time. It is nice to hang out with my mom and be able to talk, joke, laugh and otherwise just be together on an adventure.

The show itself as actually kind of fun (and the vendors gave out a ton of free swag). The buffet food was acceptable, the mojitos were cheap, potent and tasty and the room was nice..

The people watching was the best part, though. Oh. My. Lord. I saw things that made me pray for the meteors to strike the Earth as soon as possible.

  • There was a lot of mutton trussed as lamb. If you're over 50, spandex push-up bustiers and micro-miniskirts are not your friend. I don't care how many lifts, nips, tucks, fat vacuumings or botox injections you've had, you are still going to look like the Crypt-Keeper in drag.
  • Some maxi-dresses are exactly that. If the label (tastefully sticking out of the back of the dress) reads "Omar's House of Circus Tents," don't wear it.
  • Strapless dressed should not be worn with bras that DO have straps.
  • If you're over an A-cup, elastic-bandeau dresses are Not For You. especially if you're drunk enough to step on the leading edge of the dress and pull the front down to your waist. Those were not pink-nosed puppies we saw, they were goddamned pitbulls -- who had obviously been used for dog-fighting.
  • Five-inch heels and cheap alcohol do not mix. All that expensive dental work doesn't stand a chance when you're drunk and trying to walk in your stripper shoes.
  • Gentlemen: skinny jeans look fucking ridiculous. If I can tell whether you dress left or dress right, and as a bonus, can tell if you're a turtle-neck or crew-neck dude below the waist, that's nauseating. If you can['t out your wallet in your pocket, or sit down without causing your dangly bits to be forced back up into your abdominal cavity, your jeans are too tight!
  • There IS such a thing as too much cologne. I was not winking and hyperventilating due to your overwhelming hotness -- my eyes were watering and I was having an asthma attack.
  • No white guy in the world has ever or will ever look good in cornrows.
  • No one wants to see your scrawny pigeon chest, so button up your shirt, Lothario.
The humanity on parade was enough to fuel several dozen Bosch paintings.

It was a wonderful incentive to diet, though!

Friday, March 1, 2013

Burning Ring of Fire

I am a horrible, mean-spirited, evil wench who delights in the suffering of others -- particularly when it is funny as Hell.

Like, say....someone getting a crotchful of jellyfish sting.

Oh, yeah, baby.  Try keeping a straight face and a mellow disposition when someone tells you a story like that. I guarantee you will pop a hernia trying to stifle the from-your-toes belly guffaws that desperately want to erupt.

So, late last summer, the in-laws took their annual month long boating vacation, and toodled on down the Chesapeake until they hit the salt line.  They pulled into hole-in-the-wall marinas, ate crabs, and generally enjoyed being in the middle of nowhere, with nothing to do and no schedule to keep. (As an aside, that sounds great to me, as well -- though minus the boat action. I fucking hate boats.)

On the last day of their sail south, they tossed out the anchor and went for a swim. Unfortunately, there were jellyfish. Lots and lots of jellyfish.

As my MIL was climbing the boat ladder -- an awkward procedure involving hiking your legs up on to the bottom rung while allowing your ass to dangle freely in the water -- she looked between her legs to see, drifting ominously close to her personal regions....a jellyfish.

She panicked and tried to climb faster, but was a bit ungainly and couldn't hoist herself up fast enough as the jellyfish drifted, as git gently puffed by the hand of God Himself, right into her nethers.

The carnage was impressive. Just take a moment to consider all the things you do that involve your sit-upon area, every single day. The area was swollen enough to make pants painful to wear, personal cleansing after potty to be downright tortuous and sitting, walking, standing -- basically anything that cause friction in the groin area -- to be intolerable.

DO you know how sore my whole body was, trying to suppress the hilarity when I heard the story?
DO you think I did so successfully?

Hell, no. I did not. I still laugh until I cry every time I think about it.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Paranoia and Suspicion

Something is afoot.

Given that I am about to suffer a "milestone birthday event,"  I suspect that the husband and various family members are plotting. The nature of said event is of issue: Dad is a notorious prankster and several family members owe me for things I've inflicted upon them.

Let's face it: I've dished out a lot of pranky crap to those around me -- whether on their birthday or no -- and I know that payback is probably a bigger bitch than I am.

God forbid it involves clowns. *shudder*

There have been surreptitious emails and phone calls. Various people have let snippets of info drop.

I'm developing a twitch.

Tripling down on stupid.

Pediem is a prognosticator par excellence. Two days after Miss Drunken Hot Mess got herself bounced from class for shameful inebriation, I got a call from her advisor.

"She wants to drop the class. I looked at her grades; she's got a high B. What gives?"

I related the tale, including the call I made to her ResLife rep*, recommending a spot of alcohol education.

"Ah. That changes things. I'm not signing the slip, then."

Twenty minutes later, the phone rang again.

"She claims none of that happened, and you are lying to cover up the fact that you've been harassing her and making her life Hell. She's gotten her parents involved, as well."

"Fine! I'm formally requesting an Honor Court. There are 24 other students in the class -- one of them her roommate -- who can testify to her condition and behavior, as well as the fact that she has not been singled out for anything in class. If she wants to go for broke, let her."

"Honor Court? Really? If they decide against her, she can be kicked out..."

"Hey, she's damaging my reputation by making baseless accusations to cover up her own misbehavior. I'm not going to bear the consequence for her immaturity and inability to hold her liquor. I'll see her and  her parents and everyone else in the auditorium to discuss it."

A week later, we all sat there - Advisor,  Department Chair, Dean, ResLife Counselor, Roommate and 23 students -- waiting for the circus to start. The clowns finally straggled in with Miss DHM trailing her parents. She looked like a bus had hit her, and her parents looked a fearsome combination of rage, indignation and bewilderment.

The proceedings opened, and her father led with, "My daughter is innocent, this is a ridiculous endeavor, she did nothing wrong, the professor is picking on her..."

The peanut gallery of students engaged in giggling, indignant gestures and eye-rolling. Coughs of "bullshit!" were heard. Even her roommate was seen to mouth, "Are you really going through with this?" to her.

One by one, we all gave our versions of the event in question. Unsurprisingly, 25 of the 26 of us who were present gave an overwhelmingly similar description. Some of them filled in details from the party itself, but everyone agreed: she was drunk and disruptive in class and had been asked to leave politely.

As the hearing continued, Miss DHM sank lower in her seat. As she sank, you could see her parents' blood pressure rise. The anger shifted from me to her, and it was clear that someone was going to Get It when we left that room.

The Dean had had enough of the bullshit, and called everyone to order. Judgement was rendered: she was full of shit, I was clear, and all the witnesses (myself, the students, Department Head) were dismissed. As the door swing shut, it was her, her parents, the Advisor, the ResLife Rep and the Dean.

Nothing good was going to come of that. The roomie and I hung around in the hall, waiting to see what would shake out, exchanging sympathetic and concerned chatter. Contrary to how she might feel about it, I really did give a shit about her and how she was going to come out of this. Forty-five minutes later, the doors swung open.

The Dean and Advisor stalked out, both looking steamed. The ResLife Rep came out, shaking her head. "What a friggin' dumbass. Looks like you've got a single from here on out." Miss DHM ran out, sobbing. her parents came out last.  Her mother apologized to me, as did her father, and both explained that she would be withdrawing to school to work on her "maturity issues." She just didn't expect that her actions would spiral into such a big deal.


*Dolores, the ResLife Rep, has seen it all. She is a combo of Honey Badger (who doesn't give a shit) and the "Ain't no one got time for that!" lady.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Mother Hen says...

If you show up to a 9:30 AM class reeking of stale alcohol, smoke and questionable life choices, I am going to give you a Look.

That Look will cool several degrees if I notice what appears to be either crusted vomit or "gentleman's relish" in your hair. Ditto the smeared eye makeup, missing earring and what appears to be a hell of a hickey on your clavicle.

If it becomes evident, over the course of the first fifteen minutes of class, that you are still inebriated from the previous night's festivities, due to excessive stumbling, inability to modulate your voice, obnoxious cackling for no apparent reason and falling out of your seat four times in ten minutes, i will not look the other way.;

Yes, I will embarrass you by calling you out to speak to you in the hall.

If you can't focus your eyes, stand up straight or speak without slurring, I'm going to ask you to collect your stuff and leave.

Jesus Haploid Christ. Have some self-respect. Failing that, have some frickin' common sense.

(Not being a complete ogre, I let the roommate out of class to escort said student back to the dorm and babysit. Someone is going to be dreadfully embarrassed to come to class next week, I think.)

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Things have gone Cattywampus.

Her left eye is fogged; as a result her depth perception is for shit. She appears to be part Abyssinian, part tabby and part Dodge Dart.

Guinness, 1991 - 2012

It was May 23, 1991. He was a small handful of tabby fur. Poison-green eyes, brick red nose -- both runny due to a massive respiratory infection. He was maybe six weeks old.

"Look, maybe you can do something for him. We can't keep him. Good luck!"

He got better. He went to college with me. He weathered heartbreaks and hangovers, family drama of all stripes and disasters. His fur was absorbent and could mop up tears easily.

He moved to Florida with me, for grad school. He developed a taste for small green lizards, and horked up lizard parts at inopportune moments (often as a form of social commentary, I am convinced). we rode out a hurricane because no shelter in the area would take pets.

He moved back to PA with me, and was there as I navigated pre-wedding planning and all the drama that goes with it. He stalked the 700 square foot domain of our first shit apartment, and made it clear to the new husband that HE had been in my life first, and as far as he was concerned, the husband was transitory. Shoes were crapped in; butts were placed on pillows. Eventually, detente was achieved, but it took years.

He inspected the new house carefully, discovered the best nooks and crannies to sun in, and terrorized any mice foolish enough to set paw in the house. The dog we bought was thoroughly cowed within 48 hours, as was the proper order of things. When dog #1 passed, dog #2 was similarly trained quickly.

He looked on in bemusement as the first baby came home. With resignation as the second one arrived. with indifference as the third one made an appearance.

As he got older, he spent more time sleeping soundly in the sun, and left the running of the household to the younger cats. As elder statescat, he only weighed in on significant issues, and his judgement was given mighty credence.

November 6, 2012: I came home to find him at the top of the stairs, struggling to move his back end and crying. Though the vet is literally 2 minutes away, it was the longest drive of my life.  The vet kindly told me, with pity in her eyes, that there really was nothing to be done -- there is no cure for old age. Twenty-one is practically Methuselah in cat years.

He purred in my arms as she gave him his last injection, looking up into my eyes with his poison-green ones. He calmly closed them one last time, and the purring slowed, then stopped.

I was lost. I sobbed for a few minutes, cradling my cat, and then gently laid his towel-wrapped form on the table. In the waiting room, a woman I had never met before pulled me into her arms and cried with me, and then walked me to my car.

A week later I picked up a box that was much too small to hold an animal who had been such a large part of my life and my heart. I swore that I would never, ever let an animal get that tied up in my heart again, and that I would never subject myself to that kind of heartbreak.

January 12, 2013: she was a small bundle of tabby and white fur, one eye permanently clouded white by an untreated infection. Her oine copper eye glared with "fuck you!" as she thrust her paw between the cage bars to grab my upper arm with her claws....

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Underwear stickers

We have been lucky in that sibling rivalry has not been a giant issue amongst the three goblins. Each has their own sphere on interest and circle of friends. There are a few overlaps, but for the most part, they all do their own thing. However, with two daughters, that is bound to change.

About a month ago, the wee ginger beastie howled her way through the living room, tears squirting out of her eyes, snot blowing out her nose...one continuous wail of despair that sounded like all the souls in Hell were being flayed alive, doused in brine and set alight. The noise went right to the base of your skull and wrapped around your brain stem, directing your body to do whatever must be done to shut that Christing noise UP before a blood vessel popped.

Shocked and alarmed, eldest daughter and I rushed to the source. We checked for blood, broken bones, anything physical that could explain the unholy caterwauling. Finally, she made it clear that the problem was thus:

Glasses-wearing Snark Girl had received stickers, and the ginger biscuit had gotten none. The humanity! With that nugget of information disclosed, the cacophony started again,

Meanwhile, eldest daughter and I were gaping at each other.

"Did I give you any stickers?
"No....not that I remember?"
"Uh, what the heck??"

We turned back to the wee beastie, denying any inequity in sticker distribution.

She shot to her feet in righteous anger, stormed up to Snark Girl's room, rummaged around and hurtled herself back down the stairs to hurl the objects of jealousy and contention on the living room floor:

...a handful of brightly wrapped pantiliners.

"THESE stickers! UNDERWEAR stickers! She gets pretty underwear stickers and I don't get any and it's not faaaaaiiiiiir!"

Whereupon the Satanic wailing and waterworks started up again. There was no convincing her that she had not been slighted.

The next day, I went out and bought several packages of Sandylion stickers, which were accepted as no more than she was due....with a suspicious sniffle and a fierce glare.

She still has not forgiven us.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Harumpf. (Oh, Hi there! Long time no see...)

Balancing 1 husband,  2 jobs, 3 pets (and 3 children) and countless assorted freshmen and douchebags...wait. Freshmen and douchebags? I repeat myself.

 So, I acquired a second job back in late August, which played havoc with scheduling, free time, personal obligations and other such nonsense. Hence the long absence. I am going to try to be a bit more responsible in blogging from here on out. Promise.

In addition to trying to hammer writing skills into college students who are still in the larval stage, I started working in an elementary school library. k through 8th grade. It's done wonders for helping me come up with creative alternatives to cursing.

See, the (very elderly and extraordinarily crabby) nun that was running the library hit the unpadded kneelers a few too many times and ended up with a double knee replacement. The Pope himself had to force her into retirement, leaving no one to read stories to children using puppets and goofy voices.

That simply would not do.

As I volunteered fairly regularly and subbed for Sister on multiple occasions -- and because I apparently have "SUCKER" tattooed on my forehead in ink that is only visible to nuns -- I was asked to step in. Because the same order runs both the uni and the school, everyone was more than willing to schedule around college classes and elementary obligations and suddenly...BOOM!

Basically full-to-overflowing commode of commitments, and nary a plunger in sight.The last 7 months in a nutshell:

"Fuck summer classes. I'm not teaching shit. I may quit altogether!" (Can you say 'burnout?')

"Shit. I am bored. Not bored enough to teach Summer I or II, but...I might miss it a bit."

"Whoa. Budget's tight."

"Three overloaded classes for fall? Extra pay? Hell, yes!"

"Library job? Nah, I have...wait. You talked to the Dean already? Two days on campus, three at the elementary school? Done deal? Both Sisters signed the papers already? Huh?"


"Ugh. I forgod liddle kids gib me germs and I'b had a code for four months."

"Hi, library supply depot? Lick my 'taint. These are not the book covers I ordered. Also, throw another copy of 'The pout-pout Fish'  in our box."

"The amazing thing is there's little to no difference in teaching kindergarteners and college freshmen."

"This crop of paper cuts is from research papers. This set is from covering books."

"NO OVERDUES. Papers or books, doesn't matter."

"Thank God and Baby Jesus for Christmas break. And booze."

 "Wait. I go back tomorrow? Fuuuuuuck."

That about covers it. Obviously it was an eventful fall, and I'll play catch-up with more substantial blog posts later.

Happy new year!