Bus People Chronicles Continued…

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I’m trying to make myself ride the bus more. My regular route with my regular bus people. I was familiar with my regular people. I knew who smelled bad on a hot day, who had the best snacks, who fell asleep and didn’t interrupt my audiobook, and who sat squished up against you given a chance. I had my seat, I had my routine, I knew exactly what would happen and when it would happen.

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Except for the guy peeing on my truck. That I didn’t anticipate.

But, for the most part, my bus route was fairly routine. And now they’re doing away with it. So, new route, new bus, new people, new experiences. Part of my fear with writing is the fact I have no stories to tell that don’t actually happen to me. Or to someone I know. But still, I have no fictional story or characters to develop. I just write what happens. Because it’s generally healthier to laugh at life than to complain. So today, despite the fact it was above 90, we were in the sun the entire ride, crammed in like sardines, and I’m pretty sure the heat was running instead of the AC…I shall tell you the funny. Because there was plenty of funny.

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Side note: this isn’t enough to actually tell much about but is worth noting. A lady in front of me was scrolling through facebook and if I see a meme I have to look. It’s how I’m wired. She had post after post after post talking crap about Jamaican men. I didn’t know that was a thing? But, apparently, it is! It was hysterical. Mostly because I didn’t get it, but still.

My fave people to watch today:

Chapstick Man: A young (20ish) man got on the bus on our ride home. He was dressed in pants and a long sleeve shirt and wasn’t sweating. Which made me envious and suspicious. He was also one of those folks that make too much eye contact and moves in slow motion. A mix of sloth and reptile. You may not know what I’m talking about now but when you see someone it will click. He sat down upfront, so I had a great view, and applied ointment from a little tub. I’m assuming lip balm. Or grease. Either way, he had a routine of drinking water from his water bottle, recapping it slowly while staring at someone and not blinking. Then he’d carefully set his water bottle down, take out his little tub of slime, and while continuing to stare and not blink, he’d smear greasy stuff over the bottom half of his face. The little tub would be capped and carefully placed back in his pocket. He would pick up his water bottle, uncap it, drink water, and the process would repeat until he ran out of water. He became more interesting because of the next individual. I found the perfect representation of his blink:

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Spandex Hides no Sins: An older lady (I’d guess 60s to 70s) got on the bus and sat across from Chapstick boy. He nodded at her while smearing his face for the umpteenth time. That was all the introduction she needed. She started ranting and raving about how people would rather steal than earn an honest living. Thieves were taking over the world. Conmen were buying plots of land in 500-acre increments. Etc. I was beginning to tune her out and get back into my audiobook when she yanked her shirt up over her round belly. I do not have a problem with round belly’s, mine is hardly flat. But I try to cover it. As I was getting over the shock from seeing a lot of very white belly and old lady underboob I glanced over at Chapstick to see the only reaction he had to the new events was one long, slow blink. I glanced back over to Spandex and she was now hauling the top of her strained spandex workout pants (which had seen workouts the way my yoga pants have seen yoga) down over the bottom portion of her gut. And out popped two sequined clutch-type bags.  I had not seen that coming. I did my own long slow blink. She caught them both, quick as a whip, and started rifling through them while still ranting about the sins of the lazy man. She didn’t find what she wanted so she clasped the sparkly bags back against her lower gut, hauled on the spandex until it gave up and covered her girth, and then hauled her shirt back down. Chapstick gave another blink. She continued to rant. He would nod occasionally but never spoke. Just kept drinking water and slathering more grease on. After a while, still ranting, the shirt flipped back up, pants happily rolled down, and out the sparkly bags came again. She dug through for a while, Chapstick nodding and greasing, announced she wasn’t a fool to just hand money away, and packed her bags up. She stood up, yelled at the driver to stop, and barreled over someone trying who had the audacity to try to get on the bus when it stopped. Chapstick waited until she got off the bus to yell “BYE!”. She turned around, glared at him, muttered to herself, and stomped off. He shrugged, got very still, and didn’t move until the next stop where he got off the bus. I assumed that was the end of the oddity. I was so wrong. All examples of her outfit made my head hurt so I’ll spare you those meme’s and gifs. You’re welcome.

Irish: A very sweaty older gentleman (50s to 60s would be my best guess) with a wirey build ran onto the bus after Chapstick left. He had a ton of duffel and grocery bags and it took him a while to get sorted out. I noticed he was talking and assumed he was talking to the driver or had a Bluetooth type device in the ear I couldn’t see. The next time I glanced up he was sitting facing the other direction, there was no device in either ear, and he was still talking. Now, a LOT of people on the bus talk to themselves. But something about the way he was so quiet I couldn’t hear him but gesturing and making adamant facial gestures caught my attention. He began a slow but steady increase in voice. I still couldn’t figure out what he was saying but I could hear the tone of his voice now. He seemed to be arguing with himself. He grabbed a deflated potato chip bag (one of the small sizes like you’d get in a meal from Subway) and unfolded it. He seemed to be gesturing inside it and having an intense, but quiet, debate about the bag and/or it’s contents. He angrily folded up the bag, stuffed it in his pocket, adjusted the sunglasses that he was wearing in front of his eyeglasses (they kept falling off to his increased agitation). Then he raised his fists in a classic put up your dukes pose and started the circling that you see in cartoons. Like this:

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I was scared and fascinated with the idea this guy was going to fight himself. How can you even do that? But his fist circles slowed and he seemed to be calming himself down. He’d start to rile himself up, making animated faces and gestures, then he would start to calm himself down again. He kept up his continuous conversation with himself for the next 40 minutes. When I got off the bus he was still angering himself and then calming himself. It was incredibly bizarre.

I’m going to ride again tomorrow and we shall see what adventures await!

Swollen Face Holes

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Summer lasts much too long. I’ve always thought that. But now that I’m randomly started to break down in my thirties, I’m sure of it. After a random conversation with my mother (who is the only person on the planet patient enough to listen to my whining about this for well over a year now) about my randomly swollen and super freaking itchy bottom lip (everyone likes to look like they’ve been punched) and left ring finger (just…why!?) I figured I should share all my lessons with the world.

Random Things I’ve learned:

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  1. Certain body parts are hard to itch. I’m not one of those people that can ignore an itch. And there is no itch quite like eczema. I routinely tear my skin to shreds. It’s my superpower. However, just because you’ve never had an itch to end all itches on your eyelid or lower lip or fingertip, doesn’t mean they can’t itch. They can. With the power of all the fire ants in the world. And there is literally NO good way to itch these places. When they aren’t itching I know you probably shouldn’t itch them anyway, but when things get really bad I don’t care about should and shouldn’t. I care about tearing off the itchy parts so I can sleep. Go ahead and think of all the really sensitive or oddly shaped parts of your body. Imagine all the mosquitos and fire ants had a convention on that part. And try to figure out how you’d scratch it. Then teach me.

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  1. Doctors get brutal. I have a lovely endocrinologist, sincerely. She’s wicked smart and funny. She’s an exercise nut and looks great. She has been instrumental in helping me feel like I’m finally getting on the right track with my health. I’ve been on several medications that have made me feel SO much better. However, part of what I want, and what she wants, is weight loss. This last appointment she walked in, looked at my chart, and asked how things were. I went on about how much better I felt, that my symptoms were starting to ease off a bit, that I felt like I had some control for the first time in a very long time. She nodded. Looked me dead in the eyes after I just professed my thanks to her for helping me so much. And said, “Yeah, but you haven’t lost any weight at all.” First off, rude. Second off, I was thanking you! I was right in the middle of “you’re the best!” Now, what am I supposed to do? Take that back? “You were the best until you said that, now you’re a butthole.”
  2. No one wants to hear you whine. I mean, no one wanted to when you were a kid either. But you were too stupid to notice your parents were just tuning you out. I want to whine constantly. I want someone to put a cool washcloth on my forehead and “there there” me sometimes. Instead, now that I’m an adult, everyone wants me to use coconut oil or essential oils to cure everything. Foot hurts? Oil up that bad boy! Hair falling out? Essential oils mixed in coconut oil and left on the scalp for 352.3 hours every night will fix you right up! Entire body itching like a demon-possessed mange victim? Peppermint and eucalyptus essential oil mixed into extra virgin NON PRESSED coconut oil, mixed in a quartz bowl that has been charged by a full moon, waller around in your tub until you’re slicked up like a porpoise and frolic around without a care in the world. 1. Coconut oil doesn’t cure much of anything. At all. Sorry. 2. Essential oils stink. Again, I’m sorry, but it needed to be said. 3. Applying stinky oil to my skin does nothing but make me angry, stinky, and itchy. And also prone to slipping and breaking. I’m falling apart. The hips are going next. I just want to whine about the fact it’s impossible to adequately scratch yourself without people on the bus thinking you have a disease. Which you do. But still. You know what I’m saying here.

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Now what does any of this have to do with summer? Which was my first whine of this thing? Summer = sweat and sun. I sweat like a man. It’s super attractive I’m sure, but I break a sweat real freaking quick. And fun fact, sun exposure and sweat make an itchy soul itch that much worse. I’m basically hiding inside trying to avoid sweating at all costs. In Nashville. In August. It’s impossible! Here’s to aging. It’s a blast so far.

The Mondayest Monday to ever Monday. And a Toilet Squirrel.

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I am having one of those days that absolutely everything pisses me off. And I do mean everything. There’s a spider over the sink. I was pissed that he decided to occupy a spot in my house. Then I wondered if I could catch him before Mancandy or Mini candy decided to kill him. Instantaneously I was livid that they would consider killing Fred (he was now named and had a back story without any actual thought on my part). Fun fact, I could not catch Fred as he hasn’t realized I’m a friend. Which, yes, just made me angrier.

The little owl soap dispenser in my bathroom (clearance find at Walmart) keeps oozing soap onto the owls head and turning into greenish-yellow sappy goop. This caused great angst. As did the spots on the mirror I forgot to clean yesterday.

My dog slurping up food, neighbors mowing, people at work existing, the bus driver being snarky, traffic (this one is a legit gripe), student loan debt, being fat, everyone who’s skinny, the fuzzy bathmats I forgot in the dryer, the lamps we have on the tables beside our bed (they’re little lantern style lamps but the glass top instead of shade means they burn your eyes out), the desire to write when I’m angry, being angry, other people for not being angry, anyone else who’s angry, people who want primates as pets, plastic straws in turtle noses, pansies for not lasting all summer, etc.

This day was full of misinformation, sassy people, sweat, and anger. So much anger. I dislike these moods, anger is not my default setting. But, after writing and erasing a bunch, I think it’s my self-defense mechanism. I’ve been easing back into using facebook because I want to ease back into being more involved with rescue. Not on anything near the level I was, I’m not ready for that, but something. I’m excited about a potential opportunity to give back more. I’m excited about programs at work that encourage volunteering and giving back. I was gearing myself up to the uphill battle for progress at work and the fruition of all the plans and patience. I’m ready to try and do more than just exist.

But, being on facebook means the onslaught of suffering and sadness that made me leave. It means the ugliness surrounding the gun debate. All the hate and nastiness people dump into the internet. Along with the pictures of what people can do to animals and each other and pleas for help I can’t give. That old hopeless, dull ache came right back. I don’t think I’m actually angry. I think I’m sad. And it took years to stop being sad all the time. I don’t want to go back to it.

So I’m not sure how to do it. Being sad isn’t funny. The anger is ridiculous and can be amusing, but the sad, hopeless undercurrent isn’t. That’s just where I’m at. But, I’ll borrow some funny from my boss (his antics are the things of legend and we’ve talked about doing a podcast before and I so wish he would because the world needs to know of his ridiculousness.)

He recently moved into a home that has areas needing renovation. One area is the bathroom that was added onto the master suite. The room needs major work on the roof and is basically barricaded off until they have a chance to deal with it.

One day Boss and Lady Boss are in their room. They notice noises coming from the bathroom. The bathroom that is sealed. So. Being the type of guy who investigates weird and or creepy noises, Boss slowly opens the bathroom door. At first, nothing seems amiss. And then, from the toilet, there’s movement. A squirrel slowly pokes his head up over the rim of the toilet and looks at Boss. Boss blinks and looks back. Boss slowly closes the door and tells Lady Boss they have a toilet squirrel.

It was decided that the toilet squirrel couldn’t remain a guest in their bathroom. The Kid Bosses, Lady Boss, and Boss all geared up with gloves, a fishing net, (I’m imagining little kids running around with tennis rackets yelling about toilet squirrels), etc. However, squirrels are fast and humans are less so. It was an enclosed space with little room to maneuver. Unless you are a squirrel. It took a long while with a lot of effort (and bruising I imagine) from the humans. The squirrel was caught. And placed outside. I didn’t have the heart to tell him that it likely ran right back into the house and cowered in its toilet. But imagining him with a net in a small space trying to avoid the germ-carrying toilet squirrel brings me much joy. I hope it does the same for you.

Next episode of stories I stole from my boss: the poop snake.

Cats Ruin Everything…Again

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Happy Wednesday everyone!

Weebles the wonder kit has been in and out of the feline specialist vet’s office because his little ticker is a trouble maker. Our general routine is as follows: I drop him off before I go to work and Mancandy picks him up after he gets off (he leaves earlier than I do and avoids a lot of the incredibly hideous Nashville traffic). On this particular day, I’d been sick all morning and ended up not going into work. We decided to make a joint venture down the road to grab Weebs before the bottom dropped out of an approaching storm.

We walked into the clinic, waited only a couple minutes, and heard Weebles coming down the hallway before we saw him. The vet had taken time to explain that his blood pressure is still too high and if it’s still up when we recheck in a couple weeks he’ll need to be put on medicine. Thankfully his heart rate has calmed down now that we’ve adjusted his thyroid medication and his heart damage appears to be minimal (there’ll be another EKG in December to make sure). He will keep his heart murmur and we’re hoping to keep it from becoming more severe. We’ll just have to see how it goes.

Weebs is, in general, an extremely happy go lucky kid. He’s just too happy about life to really stress or get crabby. But, he’s apparently not thrilled with all the vet trips. We heard Weebles coming down the hallway before we saw him. There was some serious hissing and shit-talking going on. He was not having it. We paid quickly and took our pissy little one out to the vehicle. I usually sit his carrier in the back cargo section of my little SUV so there’s less risk of a turn or sudden stop sending him careening off a raised area (like the back seat).

We hopped in the front and off we zipped. For some reason, the road was backed up turning left (the way we’d normally go home). So, with a spirit of adventure, we turned right. I am a big fan of trying to find new routes home, it helps me get to know my neighborhood and since Nashville is rather large I’m still nowhere near confident of all the little neighborhoods and cut-throughs.

As the bottom dropped out and rain came down in sheets, a smell started wafting my way. I involuntarily gagged and then whirled to Mancandy.

“What did you DO!?!?” I shrieked.

My eyes were starting to water and the smell was increasing in pungency.

“That isn’t me!” He shrieked back.

I had a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach. I remembered the anger-filled kit in the back.

“Maybe it’s just a cat fart” I muttered, blinking furiously.

The smell was somehow hot and sticky. I didn’t know a smell could be sticky.

Weebs has this fun trick where he will get in the litter box and while he has the instinct to cover anything produced in the litter box (by him or someone else, he’s not picky) he can’t figure out how to cover it. He scratches the top of the box, the sides of the box, the wall beside the box, anything but the litter. Then he looks down, the unappealing mass is still uncovered, and he scratches some more.

When I lived in Arizona he would do this for hours. I would go yank him out of the litter box, clean it, and stomp off back to bed only to have him decide scratching the side of the litter box for another couple hours was a fine idea. I love him. I love him dearly. But I have wanted to squish him more times than I can count.

The rain was coming down so hard I couldn’t speed up and we heard scratching in the carrier just like he would do in the litter box. This was no foul fart. This was not a drill. This was a Do Not Pass Go Do Not Collect Two Hundred Dollars Grade A Emergency.

Then he stopped scratching and a wet trumpet-esque explosion of sound reverberated through the SUV.

The smell was beyond description. It hit us in the face like a wet mop. A wet mop soaked in liquid cat dung. It was pungent, rank, sticky, and somehow smelled burnt. Like, burned hot rubber. But caked in ebola poop. You could taste it on the back of your tongue.

My eyes started watering again and Mancandy was trying to roll down the windows without letting the monsoon into the vehicle. I don’t remember the route we took to get back. My nose was breaking and my brain was trying to crawl out of my ears to escape. Weebs was alternating between violently poop splattering and scratching the carrier in confused rage.

I swung the vehicle into the driveway and stabbed the button to open the garage. I could not bring this bomb into the house.  We were clinging to the hope he hadn’t gotten his butt demons on him and the carrier would be the only casualty. We shut the garage door, stood trying to breathe without smelling or tasting, and opened the carrier.

An indignant Weebles stalked out. He turned in a couple circles. He started alligator crawling. And the back half of his underside from belly button to mid-tail, inner thigh to toes, was coated in thick, viscous demon diarrhea.

I do not gag or get grossed out by smells often. This was beyond words.

We gathered water, paper towels, baby wipes, washcloths, and towels. We tried to get him clean quickly. The revenge stew was too thick and sticky. He would need an actual bath. Mancandy grabbed him in a towel and carried him upstairs while I gathered random bath supplies as quickly as possible. Anyone working with cats knows you have a patience supply that is limited in quantity and he was already furious at the vet and confused about his predicament.

The bath that followed was fast, disgusting, and involved a lot of grunting and sweating on the two humans’ parts. Weebs was pissed. Mancandy used a towel to wrap around neck and shoulders and basically immobilize while I used the handheld shower thing and a washcloth of dawn dishwashing liquid and washed all the parts of a cat I tend to leave to their own devices. There was no privacy as he’d mushed the disgusting mess into every crevice on his underside. It was not pretty. He was not happy.  However, the smell was starting to diminish. We might survive.

After scrubbing and prodding and scrubbing again and rinsing like a crazed person (leaving soap on skin creates dry skin and a lot of itching. I did not want to have to repeat this process and was determined to make sure he was clean and free of soap) we were making headway. Water went everywhere. The bathroom will never be the same. But we got all of the gunk off of Weebs, got him toweled down and cuddled up close for a heartbeat, then came to our senses and stuck him in the laundry room with the litter box in case he had more evil to expel.

I ran down to clean out the kennel. I could not believe the sheer volume of demon droppings in there. He’s a good size cat but he’s not the size of a german shepherd and I think he could have given one a run for its money. I decided the best way to handle this was to take the carrier apart. I had to pull my shirt up over my nose while I worked and eventually just stood out in the pouring rain while working because it helped mask some of the smell.

I got the carrier apart and took the pieces into the yard. After grabbing the hose I squatted down, sprayed, and nearly took a faceful of diarrhea. When I say I almost took a face full of projectile poop I honestly mean it. I barely ducked out of the way in time. And if I’d been splattered in that mess I would have had to go lay down in the road until someone ran over me.

As it was I got the carrier cleaned out (using much more caution about angles and velocity. I felt like I was playing pool with higher consequences and melted pool balls) and back in the garage. Weebs stopped pooping his rage and life went back to our version of normal.

However, one ray of sunshine came from this escapade. The next morning I was leaving to go to work. As I backed out of the driveway one of our other cats, a snotty jerk cat, was flouncing across the lawn like the snotty jerk that he is. He suddenly slammed on the brakes and sniffed the ground. His expression of puzzlement transformed violently into the face of repulsion, and he arched his back, hackles raised into spikes, snarled, then turned tail and vaulted across the yard.

I was completely confused until realizing he’d stepped where I’d been spraying out the carrier the night before. Weebs was so gross he made other cats run away in horror. I ended up laughing until I snorted on my way to work and thoroughly enjoyed telling Mancandy about snotty jerk’s unexpected run-in with horror.

That was the rainbow after our poop storm. We’re quite sure our noses are permanently broken. And now we’ve all learned that the most disgusting bodily functions can smell burnt and sticky. You’re welcome.

PS. This is the face he had for the rest of the day after his bath. I think he melted his own brain.

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Butt Faces

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For those unaware, Mancandy is conservative. In some ways, he’s a redneck trapped in a Midwesterner. He says organization hilariously (think Organ-I-zation), and I’m pretty sure he’d say pop instead of coke if left to his own devices. To be fair, I’m a Yankee trapped in a southerner. I love boiled peanuts and crawfish and the angrier I get the thicker the accent gets, but I don’t go to church and don’t own a dress and tend to agree with those on the left more often than those on the right. I don’t have a problem with contradictions or depth of character, I enjoy it. But, occasionally I do want to beat him with his own arms. More on that in a minute.

The Mancandy family also leans conservative, especially his mother. She is very much a fox news sort, while my mom is much more of an MSNBC type. Again, I don’t mind people having different opinions. Most of my friends and extended family are conservative. Mother O’Candy is extremely hardcore to the right. I suppose the fact Mancandy and I are a unit (a rather odd unit, but still) meant she assumed we shared similar political and religious ideology. I politely declined invitations to church without explanation and whenever politics is brought up, I stay quiet. I don’t particularly like to fight, especially when it will change nothing, so I try to avoid political battles whenever possible. Also, I can’t fight. My sister got that talent, she’d quick as a whip and flings insults with casual grace and speed. I resort to “well your face looks like a butt” immediately and it goes downhill from there.

I was added to the Candy family group chat last holiday season. It started as a way for everyone to coordinate during a difficult time. It has become a way for the Candy family to talk to an audience. Brother Candy’s fiancé is also added to this group. We hardly ever participate. It’s usually strictly a Candy affair. I’ve wondered why they don’t just text each other directly but didn’t want to actually participate in the conversation that would guarantee, so I just muted the group. The inability to remove yourself from group texts is sincerely one of the most annoying things in the universe. Right below mosquitos and fire ants.

Part of the reason I muted the conversation is that every political hot button topic is brought up. For instance, immigration was brought up in the form of “When will those bleeding heart liberals learn….etc.” When fired up, the comments may range from that tone to more aggressive or openly hostile terminology to discuss those of my ilk. I have never responded because even though it’s highly offensive at times and often inaccurate assumptions and gross generalizations to boot, the statements are made under the assumption it’s a group in which it is safe to blow off steam. I’ve stayed quiet in the group text and in my home whenever these rants occur. For years I’ve stayed quiet.

Mancandy ruined it. This annoyed me because 1. I obviously didn’t want to make a thing out of it and 2. If I had decided to make a thing of it I had a glorious conversation ending rant ready to roll out. I had the element of surprise and the boon of choosing time and place. I’d carefully constructed my future performance to be classy, elegant, cold, and perfectly timed to show the hubris and arrogance of many of their comments. I was prepared and often rehearsed my future takedown mentally while ignoring more of the same types of rhetoric.

And he ruined it. That day he was the ruiner of all things good in the world.  And I couldn’t beat him to death with his own arms because he was honestly trying to help. Granted, he did it in the same way we explain to children that calling the fat kid fat isn’t very nice. With that sing-song tone and gently chiding manner. I was in the kitchen, loading the dishwasher with Mancandy while he and Mother O’Candy talked. I ignored the political discussion until I heard my name. I tuned back in to hear him say, in that god awful tone of voice, “Kristin doesn’t really think the same way we do about politics. She tends to agree with the democrats.”

The silence was deafening. My beautiful element of surprise was gone. I stared at him while holding a dirty plate and dripping dirty gunk on my feet. He happily ignored me and jabbered on, something along the lines of “she’s a dummy but she’s my dummy and sometimes she’d funny and she cooks better than I do so…what can you do?” Now at this point, he would object and say he said nothing of the sort. And to be fair, he didn’t. But it was damn well implied.

The betrayal ran to my soul. He’d taken away the one defense mechanism I had. The knowledge I could challenge it all out of left field (ha, the left charging in out of the left) and choose the time in which I did so was everything. The one subject I was not likely to continue to stay quiet on was the Me Too movement. It’s too personal. I have left the house in the past to get away, but I wanted to use that topic as my pièce de résistance when it was time to strike, should I decide to do so. I had a script. Dammit.

I don’t remember what else was said. I have no idea how long it took me to realize my feet needed to be scrubbed clean of plate gunk. But I am sad I didn’t get to have the last word. And also begrudgingly grateful Mancandy kept me from having to engage his people in battle.

But I’m still mad.

And his face looks like a butt.

Swamp Monster Sunday

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As a certified swamp monster, I have funky skin and features and…well….I’m just an odd duck. So, the fact I have – in my mid-thirties mind you – fallen in love with makeup (especially colorful eyeshadow) is just the weirdest damn thing ever and mildly embarrassing.

I work for the state of TN and as such, I’m supposed to look like a professional human. Swamp monsters with colorful sparkly glitter smeared all over their faces are not encouraged. So, I bought a few really bright, really fun palettes with all these dazzling awesome colors…and have absolutely no reason to smear them all over my face. It’s been bugging me. I’m too old for this; I don’t even know what I’m doing or how to apply makeup, but I am right this moment resisting the urge to buy a palette of nothing but yellow eye shadow. Do I EVER wear that color? No. Would it likely make me look jaundiced and even less attractive? Likely. But my brain has never been a fan of logic, so I just want it. Here’s a picture of it (That I stole from ColourPop’s website. Not sure if I’m allowed to do that, blogging rules are not well explained, but it’s free advertising and I own nothing of value….so let’s just cross our fingers and hope).

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As part of the swamp monster package, I am also the owner of a weird body. It’s overly large, pale, ungainly, and uncoordinated.  I have been telling myself I’d lose weight (and become hot in the process….which is COMPLETELY different from losing weight….but I digress) since around the first time I heard someone refer to someone else as fat. My earliest memories are disliking how much bigger I was than the other kids, I towered over them and outweighed them and had to wear a training bra at like…6. Since my weird body decided to malfunction regularly and I go to various specialists quite often, my endocrinologist is extremely interested in things like…my BMI, my proportions, my insulin levels, my exercise routine (I lied and said I had one of those), etc. I really do want to be healthy. So, I actually have to get an exercise routine (ick). And maintain it. And not eat my feelings. And other people’s feelings.

So. I tell you all of that to tell you that I woke up intending to do none of the things I have done today. I woke up and just wanted coffee. That’s it. But, once I got up and got moving, I wanted to puzzle. Mancandy and I are working on a puzzle because we’re old and that’s what old, boring, antisocial people do. We puzzle and we drink coffee (our version of drinking and knowing things).

Mancandy was not in a puzzling mood. I found that annoying, but it’s hard to motivate someone to puzzle.

“Please come sit with me and be as frustrated and annoyed with 87616814 pieces of cardboard that have various portions of leaves that are all the same color.”

Though he did not want to puzzle at that exact moment, he claimed he would want to puzzle soon. That statement made zero sense to me, but I shrugged and tried to figure out what I wanted to do with my beautiful precious time off. I thought of all my pretty, shiny, colorful eye shadows just sitting here while I slather myself in boring colors day in and day out. I decided to play.

The Blue Moon palette was the first thing I saw, so it’s what I decided to smear upon my face hole flaps.

Blue moon

I meant to take a picture to show you how unskilled I am at this. But, I didn’t. I’m going to insert a picture from Pinterest showing what this might look like were I talented. It’s not at all what it looked like, but whatever. It’s my story. Enjoy this much better representation of blue eyeshadow. This is not me (so obviously not me that it’s funny to write it, but please don’t sue me if this IS you, because I’m super jealous and also I don’t have anything worth suing to take).

BM Look

Instead, I went downstairs and announced extremely loudly, “I’m blue and bold, bitches, lets puzzle!”

I found this to be a funny statement. I usually crack myself up. Unfortunately, I had not looked to be sure Mancandy was awake. He was not. But he jolted awake at my declaration and restrained what looked like a fairly strong urge to throttle me. He also looked at my face, which was 1/3 bright blue, and just said: “oh my”. I felt like I should probably be offended by this, but chose not to be. Mostly because he says stuff that could be insulting all the time and I don’t have the time it would take to be offended.

We puzzled for a while. I got 5 pieces into the puzzle and felt remarkably accomplished. Set low goals and you’ll never be disappointed, my friends. We decided we should move the elliptical machine my boss gave us (yay boss!) into the air-conditioned part of the house. As obviously that was the only thing holding me back. So we did. And then he announced he was going to mow.

I hate that moment. I feel like I should do something equally horrible, but I don’t want to do any horrible things. So I declared I would work out. While he mowed. And then I realized I’d said it out loud, the elliptical was inside, and I actually had to do it now. Dread set in.

So I worked out. Put on a sports bra and athletic shoes and everything. I don’t understand these people that say, oh yes, the endorphins, it is a rush, working out is fun, blah blah. I apparently don’t possess endorphins. I spent every single minute of the time I spent on the elliptical screaming internally that I was not allowed to stop yet.

Fun fact, the elliptical is third hand and I am grateful to have it, but it squeaks like you’re skinning something alive. So the longer I worked out, the louder and more aggressive the skinning of the thing became. The cats were horrified. They may be scarred for life. The dog equated skinning alive with thunderstorms and fireworks and started panting and stress whining as if to duet the shrieking machine. So the entire time I’m on the damn thing the dog is singing along to this really annoying shriek squeak, and the cats are running around trying to escape the demonic noise but unable to find a place to do so.

Within 4 seconds I was drenched in sweat. Not just a little glisten, no ma’am and/or sir! I take sweating seriously. So my shirt is stuck to me and my sparkly blue face now has rivulets of blue running down it and on down my neck. It looked like I was painting some sort of river scene across my face, but in my typical “enthusiasm makes up for lack of talent” way. I stopped when I was pretty sure I’d just have to fall sideways off of the machine because I had jelly for legs and was gasping so hard I thought I might pass out. Probably 4 minutes in. No, it was more than that, but not as long as it should have been.

I sat down on the tile floor (likely leaving an impressive butt outline in sweat) to cool my rumpus and contemplated puking. When that didn’t sound like fun anymore I got up and started up the stairs. That was a mistake as I likely can’t go back down now. I’ll just live up here. Please fling food up occasionally. This will be my new diet plan.

I shambled my sweaty, miserable, gasping, slightly nauseous self into the bathroom. Stripped down. Turned on the shower. Turned around to set my hair tie down by the sink and accidentally looked into the mirror.

I looked like I’d eaten a smurf alive…aggressively….in a very messy fashion. My hair was plastered to my sweaty skull and there was blue smeared all over my face. I don’t even know how it was possible to be that gross, but I managed.

A shower has never been so lovely. And now I have to look forward to doing that same thing over and over and over until I’m less horrible at it. Dying young is kind of looking mildly appealing. But that doctor will get to hear all about the “exercise routine” I’m working on.

Just need some W-D 40. Or the cats may not survive it any better than I do.

 

Cracker Barrel and Confession Time

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Hello, good people of the blog world! It’s been a hot minute! I had an experience that made me realize some unflattering things, and also… a confession.

First, the new love of my life. I’m addicted to cracker barrel. I don’t know why I never appreciated them before, but since this rediscovery, I want to eat there 24/7. I also got a bright pink flamingo tumbler that says “Fairest of the Flock”. I don’t know why I thought it was the cutest thing I’d ever seen, but I really love it. I don’t know what’s happening to me.

More importantly, the real reason I wanted to write, confession time. I have a new boss. He’s already one of my favorite people and I am so very glad I decided to annoy him into hiring me. He is funny to the point I routinely end up yelling at him to shut up so I don’t pee on myself. I don’t yell it to be funny, I’m dead serious. There are also consistent episodes of laughter to the point I’m wheezing and crying and making that weird snarly face I can’t stop when I’ve laughed until my body is revolting. If he continues to do that while I’m driving we both might die. In that case, you fine folks know why.

We decided we had taken enough of the BS work had been handing out about 2 o’clock one afternoon. A coffee run was decided upon and since we work in downtown Nashville, there were plenty of options. Unfortunately, now that summer is upon us and we both live the sweat life, it will limit our wanderings. But, this fine day, we were not yet drenched in sweat and wanting to find something so delicious we no longer felt negative emotions.

Dunkin Donuts was decided upon as they have new ice cream flavored frozen chocolate beverages. Diabetes in a cup.

Important to note is the fact my new bossfriend is visually impaired. He is legally blind and while he has some peripheral sight the center of his vision is completely dark. He’s extremely adept at working around the limitations his disability imposes and I frequently forget it exists. Mostly I just keep an eye out to let him know when it’s best to cross the street (although Nashville is pretty progressive and does have visual and auditory indicators, drivers don’t always pay attention and right on red is hard on those using auditory indicators) and occasionally warn him about gross stuff on the sidewalk he probably doesn’t want to step in. I wouldn’t normally mention any of this but it plays an integral part in this story.

So. Diabetes in a cup was in our future and we were excited. We debated the flavors we wanted, the size we should get (as if we were going to get anything other than the biggest one), how much we were anticipating the cold beverage as we walked more than a few feet, etc. I tried, and failed, to describe the construction on a nearby building and we were both confused about exactly which building it was by the time we got to Dunkin Donuts inside the bus barn. We climbed the stairs, excitedly entered the air conditioning and oddball collection of folks inside the tiny entranceway, and debated the fatty factor of buying muffins AND giant buckets of diabetes.

The individuals working were new and one shift manager type individual was desperately trying to help take orders, make orders, work the cash register, and change out machines/products. She was a workhorse and deserves much more money than I’m sure she’s getting paid. We waited for our drinks and my new bossfriend described his time working in a coffee shop and then eventually managing a coffee shop, pointing out similarities and differences, and while we both agreed it was simpler than what we do now, we both have no interest in going back to food service.

We eventually got our beverages and I got a coffee cake muffin as I had no plans for lunch and figured that made up for it. Don’t judge me. As we walked out into the bright sunlight bossfriend stumbled on the first stair, grabbed the railing, and swung into a tight circle slamming into the handrail. He also made a Woooohoooooewwwwwoooooo sound in a much higher pitch than normal.

This all happened quickly but I had plenty of time to instinctively reach out to help. I could have dropped my drink or my muffin and grabbed for him.

I did neither of those things. My brain’s first instinct was to hold tight to my beverage and muffin. I DID NOT TRY TO HELP SOMEONE WITH A VISUAL IMPAIRMENT NOT FALL DOWN A FLIGHT OF STAIRS!

I’m not proud of this. I was quite startled that in a moment in which I could have helped someone I genuinely like, I stood there staring because those coffee cake muffins are so dang tasty I couldn’t drop it.

He yelled “I hate when I do that! It’s not even because I’m blind it’s because I’m stupid and fat and didn’t bother to drop my drink to grab the railing better!”

And then we both laughed till I was in danger of peeing my pants, discussed how gross and sad we are internally, and marched back up the hill to work.

This doesn’t have an actual point, it’s just the moment I came upon the knowledge I’m not as noble as I like to think I am. Which is sad. But also funny in a really pitiful way. And also, if you have a Dunkin Donuts near you, grab a coffee cake muffin and a banana split frozen chocolate drink. You’re welcome.

PS. We ate at Cracker Barrel for lunch yesterday. Aaaaaand we’re going back today. I know I should consider this is an issue, but I’m just excited and happy about it. Mancandy is as excited about Cracker Barrel as I am, true love right there folks.

PPS. The antics around here have been wild. There will be more postage in the near future. Having a teenager move in has created an interesting new dynamic and I have to give him a nickname now. Feel free to make suggestions. As all the children are generally referred to as mini candies I need a way to indicate the one that lives here now.