Sunday, March 30, 2008

In Treatment, Part 1

So last weekend, I had to leave Pigpen in a kennel for the first time. His stay was uneventful but ever since I picked him up, he's been determined to punish me and ensure that not only will I never board him again, but I'll never be allowed to leave the house, not until I run out of Oreo Cakesters or the neighbors complain about the smell, whichever comes first.

The Pig wasn't allowed to visit my fam at Easter because of Molly, the rents' six year old Boston Terrier who hates everything that's not my mother. On a good day, she's on the cobra side of the cuddly continuum (the dog, not my mother). On a bad day, she's Naomi Campbell.

Fig. 1: Molly

Aside from wearing puffy coats and snapping at family members, Molly's hobbies include going mental when she peeps another dog out the window or on television, let alone one who may place a paw on her property. So Pigpen (and my sister's pet which she claims is a dachshund but may actually be a ferret or a large piece of lint) were both sent to camp, like Ernest but with more cognitive ability.

He only spent three nights away but he was a week's worth of pissed. I picked him up on Monday night on my way home but it was Tuesday before he even looked in my direction. I could've been wearing ground beef pants with Snausage stitching and he still would've feigned an interest in investigating the baseboards, staring at the corner, or watching "The King of Queens".

I had to work on Tuesday, so he was alone save for Bunny, his favorite toy (other than the doormat, the one throw pillow not purchased on clearance, and any article of clothing marked 'Dry Clean Only'). I came home exhausted because pretending to like people and acting unconcerned even though I'm cradling their bare, bunioned* foot in my hand (THE VERY SAME HAND I HOLD MY TOOTHBRUSH WITH)** is tiring. Pigpen, however, was not tired. When he'd finished trying to bite the inside of my nose, he and Bunny started Greco-Roman wrestling until one or both of them flopped off the bed. Lather. Rinse. Repeat.

Around 3, when I was still awake and approaching that special kind of delirium when a Diamonique serving platter sounds like a great idea (Only 13 easy payments!) and/or you find yourself agreeing with Nancy Grace, I grabbed Pigpen and Bunny and hauled them both to his crate.

At 3:04, the whimpering started. By 3:06 it had escalated to barking. Loud, full-bodied Boxer barking. At 3:08, my upstairs neighbors were awake, pounding on the floor and quite possibly using expressions that invoked Jesus' full name. I crouched in front of the crate and explained to Pigpen that if he didn't let me sleep, I was selling him to the Korean restaurant on 3rd Street. I patted one of his meaty thighs, snapped off the lights, and stomped back to my room.

I had just drifted off when I heard the noise. It was a brainscrambling high pitched squeal/scream combo platter, similar in intensity to the cries of the feasting vampires from 30 Days of Night and more unsettling than Josh Hartnett's continued employment.

The sound stopped when I flipped the light on and saw Pigpen staring defiantly at me, standing on his puppy bed that fifteen minutes ago had been Tide white but was now Appaloosa-ed with shit. As soon as I walked toward him, he started thrashing around like an extra in a House of Pain video, causing the poop to fly out of the crate, some of it settling on the (white) rug and (white) walls beside it, other bits clinging to the crate's wires like stalactites.

He seemed pleased.

At fifteen till four, I was elbow deep in the guest bathtub, vigorously scrubbing Pigpen and wondering if the Fresh n' Clean Puppy Shampoo would be able to remove the poop stains from my dinosaur pajama pants. Sigh. I really should save them for special occasions. I toweled the Shitmonster off and left him howling in the bedroom while I busied myself cleaning the mess, accompanied by intermittent stops from the angry line dance upstairs.

Whether or not he'd done this on purpose, it had unintended consequences: Bunny. She'd taken some, um, friendly fire and had to be unceremoniously laid to rest. Sorry, Pigpen, but there was no way I was placing that in my washing machine, where I clean pillowcases and washcloths and other things that touch my face and/or butt.

By the time the last inch of floor had been Wetjetted, it was almost six and I had an hour before my alarm started spitting out some soft rock. The silence from the guest room meant that Pigpen was either asleep or he'd managed to Dufresne his way out and was now robbing the Sunoco across the street.

I changed pjs and tucked myself in. 64 minutes later, Dan Fogelberg told me that the Leader of the Band was really tired and I told them both to fuck themselves. I peeled my head off the pillow, went to the guest room, and was slapped awake by the smell. At some point, Pigpen--still sleeping peacefully of course-- had gone all Linda Blair, showering my prefab furniture with a thin veneer of vomit. This, I decided, was not on purpose.

Immediately I called Dr. Parker--his vet--and she agreed that yes, this sounded bad and yes, I needed to bring him in with the quickness. I grabbed Pigpen--sealing off the guest room and silently hoping for a fire--threw him in the car and drove to the clinic. After hearing last night's excrement-filled itinerary, the vet said that Pigpen should be admitted for a number of diagnostic tests.

I told her that sounded really expensive. She didn't disagree.

I was given a stack of paperwork to fill out and told that they would need to keep him overnight, that I should plan on returning around noon the next day. That gave me approximately 30 hours to myself. To sleep. To incinerate my guest bed. To move to another state.

I checked in with her several times during the day, each call adding another line item to the bill. Pigpen was getting a battery of tests... x-rays, IVs, and quite possibly liposuction. She suggested a stool sample but responded with silence when I asked if I could save $40 and just bring her my pajama pants. I knew that all of this was necessary, but at the same time, I work part-time. Selling running shoes. I probably bank less than the 8 year old Asians who stitch them together.

My last anytime minutes of the day were spent on the phone learning that Pigpen was going to be OK. He didn't have any chronic diseases. No blockages, nothing permanent. This was huge. I was bracing myself for the announcement that he was going to require a colon transplant. All systems were go for him to come home the next day.

I drove to the clinic early on Thursday and was immediately intercepted by one of the other vets. She introduced herself, shaking my hand and her head as she said "Wow, that Pigpen's always in trouble isn't he?"

That can't be good.

"Dr. Parker was getting ready to call you--", she began before being called to help with a leaf-covered cat that was trying to cough up a Kia.

I was guided to an exam room. Dr. Parker came in alone. Without Pigpen.

"Did you get my message?" she asked. I said I hadn't. She gave me a tight-lipped smile and said "We are so sorry." She paused for effect. She paused too long. "But he did get a bath this morning."

I waited.

"We tried to call you. Nothing like this has ever happened here, I assure you, but we'll need to keep him another day".

To be continued...

No, he's not dead.

*No one finds it amusing if you refer to their foot deformities as "Fun-ions".
**My boss met with me last week to stress his concern that I'm not being 'intimate' enough with the customers' feet. Right now, I struggle to be cordial to them.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Dreadlocked

I swore I never would.
But last night I did.
I voted.
Damn you, Jason Castro with your guitar and blue eyes and perma-stoner expression.
Damn you for making me drink love's bong water.

I sincerely hope my single texted vote helps him beat Kristy Lee Cook, because she is like a Wal-Mart brought to life.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Dr. Phil Haiku #41-45

On Monday's episode...
Disgraced New York gov
My biggest question: Did she
Spitzer or swallow?

Spent eighty grand on
Hookers. Too much! I would have
Done it for Fritos.

On Tuesday's episode...
She says that she is
A "love junkie". That's a nice
Way of saying "Whore".

Phil says she's playing
The love lottery. Make your own
'Scratch off' joke here.

On Wednesday's episode...
A model's perfect
Husband turns bad. Just like in
The Lifetime movies.

He thinks the Bible
Will help. Until he gets mad
And throws it at her.

On Thursday's episode...
Dad stays drunk, his teen
Daughter runs house. Hasselhoff
School of Parenting

Phil tells him his brain
Is toxic. That isn't going
To stop the zombies.

On Friday's episode...
Fifty and still thinks
He'll be a rock star. But so
Does Uncle Jesse.

She chews her dog's food,
Feeds it from her mouth. Also
May lick its weiner.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

I-77

Yesterday I was in the car long enough to drive to Mercury, swinging through my sister Runtie's southern city to pick her up on the way to our parents' place on the coast. I still can't feel my legs and seriously considered ramming a Ford Focus just so I could steal their beaded seat cover.

The Runtie-centric highlights of the drive:

1) I had to stop at Exxon for some food and fuel and, much to my delight, they had a coffee bar featuring tiny, individually wrapped caffeine pods you could drop into your styrofoam cup of Kind of Hazelnut-ish Sludge. I plopped four of them into the keg-sized cup I'd just poured, despite the handwritten warning beside the bin warning you to stop at two. When I happily told Runtie that I'd be both awake and unable to blink for the remaining four hours of the trip, she responded with "OK, the good news? You won't fall asleep until next Easter. The bad news? Your babies will be born with antlers".

2) Backstory: My love of the Grateful Dead is no big secret, so yesterday I kept the Sirius locked on Channel 32, the official Dead station. At one point, I couldn't read the track information on the radio since the caffeine had dilated my pupils to the size of the Cadbury creme eggs we'd also purchased at the Exxon*.

Me: I think this is from Jerry's diabetic coma period. Can you read the display?
Runtie: Sure. It says "This fucking sucks".

The entire Money family rolled in safely, some of us more jittery than others. I'll try to post again this weekend, including a Lent recap noting my lingering bitterness that the meatless Friday mandate prevented me from enjoying a Taquito-wrapped hotdog from the gas station. I hope Jesus took note.

* The refreshments purchased on the drive included Oreo Cakesters (now available in a travel pack!), Nerds ropes, gummy worms, gummy burgers, generic Twizzlers, caramel cremes, and enough Mountain Dew Code Red to make it burn when I pee.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Employment, Day One

"I'm looking for something I can put all of this shit in," the spandex-wearing woman said, emptying the contents of an Old Navy tote bag on the counter. She quickly arranged the items according to size, separating her car keys and asthma inhaler from the can of Raid and the two knives, one sheathed and the other naked, showing off its serrated body for the cash register.

"Um. You carry a knife--knives--when you run?" my coworker asked, a valid question and one that I--the brand new, box fresh associate--was afraid to ask, secretly hoping she wouldn't stab him before I learned how to get my discount.

"Oh yeah. Got to. Otherwise the wild hogs 'll get me." I made a joke about how we'd all like to stab Tim Allen and her eyebrows quickly fell into each other, covering the tiny patch of neutral ground between them. She looked at me disgustedly, because apparently my Saint Binford blaspheming was as unwanted as, say, regular dental checkups or a G.E.D.

My coworker--we'll call him Pete because he looks vaguely Big Pete-ish--directed her towards a rack of lightweight nylon backpacks. She picked one off the wall and unzipped it far enough to drop the knife sheath inside before trying it on. "This feels all right," she said, spinning in circles in front of the mirror, stopping to slowly aim the Raid at her own reflection.

"You kind of look like Rambo", Pete offered. "You ever watch those movies?"

"Nope. I don't much like violence. I'll take the satchel," she said, wriggling out of the pack, her words struggling under the weight of her accent.

"We do have a smaller canister of insect repellent, if you're interested," Pete suggested, as I made a mental note that you even upsell to the unhinged ones. "It should take care of bees, wasps, and mosquitos".

"What about dogs?" she asked, casually flipping the Raid can from hand to hand.

"Yes, it should keep the bugs off your dog too."

"No, I meant will it get rid of dogs," she said, staring at Pete's face like it was a particularly challenging Wheel of Fortune puzzle. "My neighbor's dog always gets in my business when I'm trying to run and otherwise."

I missed Pete's reply since I was busy wondering if her 'business comma otherwise' involved a bathtub full of hydrogen peroxide and Sudafed. Cut to me immediately dropping the box of insoles I'd been carrying and the sound of ten pounds of Superfeet sending her scurrying in my direction. I hurriedly tried to corral them all before arranging them on the waterfall display, the name for the store fixture I'd previously referred to as "the Liberace" because of its shiny silver balls*.

She stood right behind me, singing along with "Kokomo" as it leaked out of the local radio. Coming from her, that "bodies in the sand" line sounded less tropically appealing and more like a scene that should be blocked off with police tape. "So...Employee", she said sounding out the syllables of my unpersonalized name tag, "You carry any protection with you on your runs?"

"Only my diaphragm," I wanted to say, but instead silently shook my head, trying to keep an armful of arch supports between us, hoping that they were Super enough to protect my vital organs.

"I'll need your autograph on this receipt," Pete yelled and she stomped across the store. She signed her name hard enough to tear the paper, pocketed the pen, and threw her tote bag at the trash can. It missed. "Good luck with the knives".

She stopped with one hand on the door, stared at us and said "Oh, I could just as easily carry a gun, but with them, there's a second of thinkin' before you pull that trigger. Knives don't need no thinkin'".

The door clicked shut as Pete put the pieces of her receipt in the register, turned to me and said, "Normally, you'd introduce the customer to the frequent buyer program. But I'm not sure we'd like her to become a regular."

"Not until she shanks Tim Allen anyway," I replied, slipping another pair of size 10s onto the waterfall. "Or even Martin Lawrence." Pete disappeared into the back and the store was quiet, save for the Beach Boys' ill-prepared Caribbean itinerary. My day had begun. I'll never forget my first.

* I was quickly corrected and I think there was some concern that I'd even consider the metallic composition of Liberace's scrote. Sorry, but I'd be disappointed to learn that he hadn't actually adorned them in some way.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Foot Fetish

So here's some news...tomorrow is my first day of part-time unemployment. Starting at nine in the a.m., I'll be spending twenty hours a week working as an associate* at Slappytown's finest running store. I'll finally be getting paid (by the hour!) to talk incessantly about marathons, dress like Paulie Bleeker, and handle people's feet--things that I've foolishly spent the past year doing for free.

Also, by writing "shoe sales" on my resume, I finally have something in common with both Al Bundy and John Wayne Gacy, other than irrational nostalgia for high school and a love of greasepaint.

Hopefully this will work out (HA! I kill me!) so I can finally share some stories that don't involve daytime TV and/or sobbing, and/or how many gas station hot dogs I've eaten this week.**

* There's no 'i' in 'team' but there's an 'i' in 'associate'. Also, an 'ass'. I noted this on my application.
** Three. All from Exxon, where the extra x stands for extra time praying for death.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Dr. Phil Haiku #36-40

On Monday's episode...
Sixteen and married.
High school dropout from the South.
Stereotypes work.

Says she makes adult
Decisions. Most adults choose
To have two eyebrows.

On Tuesday's episode...
Do we really need
Paparazzi? Yes! To show
How stars are like us!

Phil says paps photo
Him too. Only for Star's "Best
Beach Bodies" issue.

On Wednesday's episode...
She hasn't had an
Orgasm in ten years. Must
Be dating my ex.

He had heart attack
During sex. Maybe the bag
Slipped off his wife's head.

She has sex six times
A day. Normal? If she works
In a brothel, yes.

Audience member
Asks how to tighten her vag.
Stop having children.

On Thursday's episode...
Paternity tests!
Sorry Phil. Only Maury
Says "Not the father".

I should send my birth
Control pills to these women.
I don't need them. Weep.

On Friday's episode...
Girls kicked off Southwest
Flight. Say they were too pretty.
Right. Pretty bitchy.

Eighth grader started
A "No Cussing" club. What a
Fucking dumb idea.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Wookin' Pa Nub

So yeah, I'm still single. It's been ages since I shared my bed with anything but my dog, my stuffed dinosaur, and an ever-growing colony of dust mites. And this makes me anxious. I'm tiptoeing toward 29* and my romance Magic 8 Ball continuously comes up "Very Doubtful" followed by "As I See It, Soup for One".

Yes, I got a marriage proposal last week, but it was from a man wearing a rain coat and carrying a box of kittens as he staggered down the Spruce Street sidewalk. "Marry me, baby! I wanna marry yoooou!" he shouted in my general direction. I thanked him for the sentiment and kept walking toward my true love, Samuel "Sammie" Flatbread, Esq.**

"Aww baby, why don't you think I'd be a good man?" he asked, as several spectators crossed to the other side of the road. "Because of the human shit on your pants," I wanted to say. Instead I simply picked up my pace.

"Your loss, sweetie," he shouted at the back of my head. "Wanna buy a cat?"

Sigh. I used to believe in love and relationships and all that. I had my share of Clooney-encrusted dreams featuring an outlandish wedding at our palatial Lake Como estate and a garage full of cars named for dead matadors, but those expectations have been trimmed back a bit. Now I'd settle for a timeshare in Gatlinburg and my own box of Triscuits.

That said, I just spent an embarrassing amount of time Nancy Drewing the online dating sites--match.com and eHarmony--nosing around, scoping it out, and wondering how there were 32 pages of eligible men in my zip code.

Full Disclosure: I've always kicked it Enid-style by dating men who were older than me because I like obscure 1960s bands and also brittle bones. For this little experiment, I kept the age range between 25-45, safely under the speed limit for the conditions. 'Cause if you're 50 and still debating whether to add 'thunderstorms' or 'fiber supplements' to your list of turn-ons, I'm not sure I want you playing Captain to my Tennille.

The first two pics I clicked were guys I've seen at the Y. They were immediately discounted, one because he has a lazy eye and the other because he sweats profusely. I checked another profile, a dude whose relationship status was listed as "recently separated". Very recently, apparently, since all of his pictures featured her sweater-covered shoulder or her disembodied arm snaking around his waist. Sigh Redux.

After twenty minutes, I got restless and started eliminating potential exes for the most subjective of reasons like:

--Anyone Whose Screen Name Included the Numbers 420, 69, or Any Other Digits Frequently Featured on Posters From Spencer Gifts. My apologies, GoodDad666, because while your name was definitely the most disturbing on a number of levels, I'm not interested in raising your Beezelbabies.

--Any Form of "Dad", "Daddy", or "Pop Pop": If you ticked the "I have children" box, I carefully selected "close window".

--Men Named Slowgrinder, Pupettmaster, and Angeltamer: Self-explanatory, although I did want to message the latter to inquire whether his profession involved a chair, a whip, and a top hat.

--Anyone With Misspelled Words In Their Profile: You again, Pupettmaster. I was intrigued by your pecs and your "protien diet" and sincerely regret that we won't be able to share "frozin yogart", cause that's my favorite too. I'm sorry. Your abs said Abercrombie but your spelling screamed Sylvan Learning Center.

Coming in a close second was the gentleman who said "Im a deep talker and thinker so if this interest you more hollar back" Right. Don't hollar at me, I'll hollar at you.

--Any Occupation Involving the Words "Groomer", "Pest", or Sounded Made Up: I know what "Freelancer" means, matrixfan. It means you have a B.A, a Monster.com profile, and a weekly unemployment check. I've been 'freelancing' for a year. I'm also calling shenanigans on the 'Upholstery Engineer' who just as easily could have written "Stanley Steemer".

--Miscellaneous Things That Will Prevent You From Ever, Um, Embedding My Widget: Starring The Guy who said the last thing he read was "the menu at Cracker Barrel"; Featuring The President of a Non-Profit whose default picture was him wearing a fanny pack and standing in front of the White House and Very Special Guests Anyone who prominently listed their income as "Over $150,000" because you're obviously liars.

It took almost an hour, but I managed to disqualify everyone. I don't expect that Pupettmaster is dripping tears into his protien shayke or anything, because I can only imagine how many problems he would have with my profile, assuming someone could read it to him.

See, I'm admittedly NOT a Nancy Drew. At best, I'm some ungodly hybrid of her undateable best friends, probably the gangly one who always ended up unconscious under an overturned jalopy. My default photo makes me look like I'm missing a handful of chromosomes, and my likes (disappointing others, bread, my own face) and dislikes (parasites, spinal injuries, recycling) will probably only add additional chapters to The Mystery of the Moss Covered Mommyparts.

I honestly almost orphaned the eHarmony questionaire because it was triple the size of my attention span and chock full of queries like "On a scale from 1-7, how important is your match's endocrine system?" But I powered through and as a reward, eHarmony called me a bitch.

I can't say that this was the best way to spend my evening, not when that bag of gummy worms isn't going to eat itself. I didn't wink, poke, message or otherwise contact anyone. Now I just hope I can find that guy with the kittens.

* I'll only have one 29. I refuse to be one of those women who smiles and insists she's "29" while she's picking up prescriptions for her glaucoma.
** Quizno's: Mmmmm! Intestinal Distress!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Careless Whisper

As you know, I spend huge chunks of my day giving to others eating candy and drawing pictures of sea monsters. Other than that (and making sure that the house is always tidy, in case Hugh Laurie would swing by for Uncrustables and sex), the only thing on my agenda is to catch Nat Geo's daily airing of "The Dog Whisperer".

The more I watch that show, the more I'm convinced that Cesar Millan is some kind of camp shirt-wearing wizard. Somehow within the time wedged between two Avodart commercials* he can transform a destructive beast who has eaten enough end tables to shit out an Ashley Furniture showroom into a submissive, respectful pet who not only ignores the sofa but has also prepared the evening meal. From scratch.

The downside to prolonged D-Whisp viewing is that it makes me feel increasingly like the Lynne Spears of Dog Moms, watching helplessly as Pigpen tears through my home haphazardly, leaving a trail of teethmarks in his wake. I have tried Cesar's Shhht! (TM) sound on multiple occasions and Pigpen usually responds by burying his teeth in my knuckles while demanding that I buy him a pack of Camels and a four wheeler.

The results are always the same and dedicated viewers (The Cesarians? The Millanaires? The Single Woman at Home on a Friday Night Watching the New Episode and Sobbing Uncontrollably, Coating Her Chicken Pot Pie With a Thin Layer of Tears?) will note that the beleaguered humans baked into each episode usually fall into one of these categories:

1) The Family Who Brought This On Themselves: Including my favorite subgenre, the people whose solution to training difficulties is to overwhelm the dog with rewards. The pup pissed on Aunt Evelyn? Give him a treat while you Lysol her legs! He aerated the ottoman with his front paws? Treat! Little Mittens killed a drifter? Have a Nylabone while Momma wipes this blood off her Precious Moments.

2) The People Who Wou--Wait, Is That A Fountain?: At least once an ep, Cesar rolls his Jeep Liberty into the drive of some hot address in the 310** and I inevitably stop giving a shit about Baxter the Pug's leash issues and focus instead on the marble floors, the swans, and whether Baxter's daddy is wearing a wedding band. The disturbing part? The swankest cribs are always inhabited by people who don't seem to have jobs.

I KNOW. I'm unemployed too, but I'm also lucky enough to have a landlord who popped me out of her uterus. If my parents didn't let me pay the rent with popsicle sticks and pieces of Laffy Taffy, Pigpen and I would be huddled together for warmth in the Wendy's parking lot, wondering if their fish filet was still considered "premium" after gestating in the dumpster for two days.

3) The Lesbians: Join us for another chapter from the continuing saga of "Cuddles Has Two Mommies".

While I'm not quite ready to dial up the D-O-Double G Whisperer, my li'l Puppy Genius spent this morning eating a zipper*** and trying to pick up a sunbeam with his teeth. My biggest complaint is the way he continues to slamdance into my neighbors like an overzealous Screaming Trees fan, causing some people in the building to give us the stinkyeye and others to avoid us altogether.

Over the weekend, he threw himself into one woman on the elevator, causing her still-steaming mochaccino to rain down all over her white coat. I apologized profusely and offered to write her a check for her dry cleaning (even though it would bounce like fucking Gusto Gummi) but I was secretly delighted by the possible demise of her redonkulous knee-high fuzzy fur boots which made her look look like she'd just shoved each foot through an Ewok's skull.

Maybe I'm the one who needs a good Whisperin'.

Regardless, Cesar's Way hasn't exactly gotten it done, so now whenever The Pig crosses a line, I respond by shaming him. That's right.

He's going to wear that Thriller tee and sit in the corner thinking about what he has done. Until then, he can forget about that four-wheeler.

*WOMEN SHOULD NOT HANDLE AVODART. WOMEN SHOULD AVOID STARING DIRECTLY AT AVODART. AVODART MAY SUDDENLY ACCELERATE TO DANGEROUS SPEEDS.
**Rocks his khakis with a cuff and a crease? Check. Love for the streets reppin' 2-1-3? Nope.
*** Ensuring that I'll spend two days Temperance Brennan-ing his buttnuggets and hoping to find that missing piece of YKK-stamped metal.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Dr. Phil Haiku #31-35

On Monday's episode:
The Bishop says "Be
Abstinent!". What he means is
"Be unpopular!"

Your virginity
Means you're pure. It could also
Mean that you're ugly.

He says not to give
Condoms to teens. Hope their schools
Have day-care centers.

On Tuesday's episode...
"The Dr. Phil House"
These couples should be eaten
By scorpions. Ugh.

None of them should get
Married. But all of them should
Be spayed or neutered.

Failed country singer.
Long on hair, short on talent
That could be a song!

On Wednesday's episode...
Identity thief
He should have also stolen
A clean pair of pants

I may try this crime.
From now on, I'd like you all
To call me Oprah.

On Thursday's episode...
She dressed too sexy
For Southwest Airlines. But just
Right for Greyhound Bus.

The offensive part?
She's thirty and still shopping
At Hollister. Ew.

Screaming toddler kicked
Off plane. This never happens
If they're beside me.

Parents and plane could
Have compromised. Put the kid
In overhead bin.

On Friday's episode...
More sex offenders.
In my head, all of them look
Like Steve Buscemi.

Online map will show
If one lives on your street. So
Don't trick or treat there.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

5:17

Blogger has been muy hateful today, postponing today's updates.
In the meantime, my sister Runtie is in town, leading to exchanges like this:
Me: Too bad you gave up chocolate for Jesus.
Runtie: Why?
Me: Because we could've eaten brownie batter for dinner.
Runtie: Oh, that's cool. I quit Lent yesterday.

UPDATE: Runtie will be here until Monday morning. We've read every publication available for purchase in the grocery store checkout line and have consumed enough sugar to give ourselves diabetes.
Also, this:
Me: [reading Glamour survey aloud] What celebrity's style do you want to copy?
Runtie: Ted Kaczynski. Because I like hoodies.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

The Final 12

Tonight's Idol made me a sad panda. Actually, I'm an entire sad zoological park, due to the premature departure of my personal fave, Danny Noriega. He looked like what would happen if Hot Topic was ever allowed to have sex with Wet Seal.

The one highlight of the show was when the camera cut to David Archuleta's father, Larry the Cable Guy.

I'll vote for your son if you pinky swear that to spare us the indignity of Delta Farce 2: The Legend of Curly's Gold.

Finally, after watching her alternately sob and shimmy through the program, I'm convinced that Paula is just a shopping cart full of soda cans away from being the crazy lady who hangs out between the pumps at the Gashopper, eating things out of the dumpster and throwing pennies at passing cars.

J-Moneycrest, out.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

(Im)perfect Timing

[Actual conversation, approximately 6:14 p.m. EST]
Dad: Hello?
Me: Hey Dad, what's up?
Dad: Just got home from work. Speaking of work...
Me: [singing] We're gonna keep on, keep on, keep on moving... Random question. What kind of food do you guys feed your dog?
Dad: Oh, the usual. Truffles. Gnocchi. Coq au Vin.
Me: Only the best for her, the Grand Poobah of Upper Buttsniff.
Dad: Why?
Me: I wondered if you'd ever given her Beneful. I had a coupon for it and Pigpen seems to like it.
Dad: Hang on, let me ask your mother.
Me: Oh shit. Abort! Abort!
Dad: What?
Me: Nevermind. He just threw up.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

What Can Brown...

My local NBC affiliate just interrupted Oprah's hard-hitting look at constipated truck drivers (no foolin')* to showcase the local radar, which is currently a haphazard mess of color, like someone dropkicked Punky Brewster directly onto SuperDoppler 12.

I knew that we'd be spending the day listening to the bleeps of the the weather ticker techno, so I broke free from my busy morning of making bread pancakes** to take Pigpen for an early walk. We hadn't even gotten past the parking lot before he started making out with a packet of Arby's Horsey Sauce that had been splattered all over the pavement, a tiny condiment crime scene. While I gave his leash a two-handed tug and made a mental note to stop letting him lick my mouth--probably a good practice even when he hasn't been eating garbage-- the UPS truck rumbled into the lot. I waved to the driver while wondering what it would be like to slip into the same single-color uniform every day, even though you could select from a variety of "Choose Your Own Burnt Umber Adventure" seasonal variations. On the one hand, it wouldn't show gravy stains. On the other, it makes you look like a pinecone.

I was actually expecting a delivery today. After Sunday's sixteener, my sneaks were officially retired, since they'd reached that worn out, blown out stage where they had all of the cushioning of a swoosh-stickered George Foreman grill. So I sat them down and softly told them about the special farm, then coolly tossed them into the back of my closet with the other things I'll probably never use again, like my interview suit or my vagina.

Enter Zappos dot com, who not only carried my shoe but placed a blinking ONLY THREE PAIR LEFT! graphic beside my size, ensuring that I'd click "add to cart" before any other size 8 overpronater could snatch them away. Zappos immediately sent me a politely worded email beginning with "Good News!" (a phrase I assumed would be followed by "Your credit card wasn't declined this time!") telling me that because I am a special little snowflake, they'd given me free overnight shipping. Oh, Zappos. You tell that to all the girls.

I finished wiping Pigpen's face on my sleeve, dragged him around the block where he liberally sampled from each flower bed buffet, and arrived back home expecting to find the corrugated cardboard baby that had been dropped on my doorstep. But there was nothing. No box, no shoes, no baby. No Stairway! Denied! There wasn't even a brown and yellow check yes-or-no style note saying that they'd attempted delivery.

Maybe Zappos had changed his little automated mind. Maybe I wasn't a special snowflake and was in fact a toxic droplet of acid rain who didn't warrant the overnight upgrade. I raced to the computer and feverishly typed in my tracking number, staring intensely at the screen like Sandra Bullock at her most Net-tastic. I was rewarded with this:


Nice work, Josh, you brown shirted bastard.

He didn't attempt to deliver it. He didn't even get out of the truck, a douchetacular decision since there isn't even a DOOR blocking his transition from driver's seat to driveway.

Now, I know this UPS guy. He knows my name, my address, the jagged peaks of my EKG-style signature. Not only does he visit my apartment more frequently than anyone but Domino's and Crushing Disappointment, we also see each other regularly at the YMCA where he rocks a pair of Eric Dickerson-era rec specs as he splashes through his own sweat puddles on the squash court. I pass him in the lobby, glance at his spandex-covered crotch and always make the same inappropriate 'package handling' joke to myself. So obviously he could've shouted at me and I would have rushed the back of his truck like he was Frank Lucas handing out holiday turkeys.

Instead, I had to go closet spelunking, rescuing my scorned sneakers for the afternoon's brutal seven miler. They responded by shredding my shins like an unwanted credit card offer.

What can brown do for me? Jack shit.
Draw that on your dry erase, you smug neckless spokesman.

* Saying "I shit you not"--while appropriately descriptive--would've just been tacky
** Recipe: Take slice of bread, mash flat with massive hardcover Jamie Oliver cookbook, add syrup, eat.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Workout Summary #3

Time Spent Running: 2 hours, 9 minutes, 13 seconds
Miles Run: 16
Pace Per Mile: 8:04
Snickers Bars Consumed: 1
Times Your Arch Nemesis Passed You: 1
Why Were You So Much Slower This Week?: Because running effing hurts, Douchebucket.
Show Me On the Doll Where It Hurts: [places entire doll in mouth]
Will You Please Stop Crying?: Maybe. After I finish this box of Oreo Cakesters.
Please Don't Get Cakester On the Doll: Mffmmrfph.

Last week, I watched my future first husband Simon Cowell on Regis & Kelly* (don't hate, yo) and he made a comment about how people genuinely don't like it when other people succeed and how their friends' fabulous lives actually make them unhappy. The vajority of the crowd clucked their disappointment, but I'd be willing to bet that any one of them would cut a bitch for this season's Liz Claiborne separates.

I totally agreed with Si-Co, after temporarily suspending my disbelief that a dude who cleared $45 mill last year would knot his Calvins if his neighbor has nicer topiary. But for me (Total 2007 Earnings: $801, not counting the Applebee's gift card) it's so true. Ignoring financial or relationship successes, I get stabby when I see people at the grocery store who can afford to buy what they want and don't have to fill their cart with battered cans from the Botulism Bin.

The same goes for running. At races, I automatically despise any girls who break the tape before me, even though I've only been running since I graduated from college and needed a new hobby that didn't involve blackouts, petty theft, or hooking up with boys of questionable sexuality.** So I laced up some sneakers and from the first time those Pumas kissed the pavement, I thought I was supposed to be Uta Pippig without the half-baked asserole splashing out of my shorts.

Enter yesterday's sub-prime 16 miler. I'd struggled more than usual, maybe because the temperature was global-warmily above av, because my knees had been grinding themselves into a fine powder with every step, and/or because Food Lion's limp grey Markdown Meats aren't the optimal pre-run meal. So I reach my eight mile turnaround point and I'm standing there sobbing and shoving a Snickers bar into my gob, when my Arch Nemesis comes prancing by, shiny ponytail bobbing behind her like a loyal pet.

My Arch Nemesis is the girl who always beats me, who always has beaten me, and who will continue to do so unless she is sucked into the pit of Sarlaac during the next Miles for Smiles 10K.*** After every race, I stand there in a damp gymnasium baring my teeth at her between bites of bagel and wondering why I'm eternally her runner-up, the Oates to her Hall, the Nash to her Crosby, Stills, and Young, the Kirkland Signature to her brand name products.

Not only is she a scholarship athlete, she's successful, attractive, and a genuinely nice person which makes it so much worse. A typical day for her involves volunteering at the Rescue Mission, donating her kidneys again, personally testing toys for lead-based paint, and hand-carving prosthetic limbs to give to armless children so they can hold hands while she sings songs that she's written about Jesus and kindness. Meanwhile, I rip the coupons out of my neighbor's paper, frequently double park, and laugh when I see old people fall on the ice. Karma (x5) chameleon, I guess.

There was one race when I thought I'd managed to outrun her. I'd passed every mile marker without staring at her back and I was sure that this was it, my win, my first-time first-place. But no, actually she was just so fucking far ahead of me that by the time I fell across the finish line, she had already accepted her medal and was happily handing out handfuls of her bone marrow.

Back to yesterday when I was standing there with nougat-caked teeth, watching her wave as she danced past. Making it worse, I was dressed like Hangin' Tough-era Jordan Knight, what with my vest/no shirt ensemble. WAIT, LET ME EXPLAIN. I like to run in a vest so I can cram the pockets full of necessities like my iPod and inhaler, car keys and condoms and all that but it was so Marchtastically warm, I stripped down to a sports bra, peeling my tee off and leaving it in the bait shop...which doesn't make it sound any less canoe-trip-down-the-Cahulawassee-River creepy.

I finished my Snickers, stuffed the wrapper in my vest pocket, and dejectedly trotted back home, secure in the knowledge that Simon would probably hate her too.

* While I watched the show, I was Monster-dot-comming a job as a cemetery groundskeeper. I sincerely hope I get an interview, even though my only qualifications are a Scooby Doo box set and well-concealed surprise that it isn't actually spelled "Sematary".
** If he owns a velvet duvet cover and Beatrix Potter wallpaper, you're setting yourself up for disappointment.
*** Assuming the race is held on Tatooine next year and not in that neighborhood that smells like sawdust.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Dr. Phil Haiku #26-30

On Monday's episode...
She's anorexic
But still less creepy-looking
Than Posh Spice Beckham

If she gets better
She could date Harrison Ford.
He likes hollow eyes.

On Tuesday's episode...
Scammed by her online
Boyfriend. And by whoever
Did her dental work.

He wasn't really
A fighter pilot. Or a
Nigerian prince.

She broke up with him.
He was sad, but hopes they'll
Always be PayPals.*

On Wednesday's episode...
He's cheating with girls
He meets on MySpace. Thanks for
The add! And the sex.

They sent him lots of
Suggestive emails. So he
Filled their inboxes.

Camera only
Shows black audience members
When there are black guests

On Thursday's episode...
I forgot to set
My DVR. But somehow
I'm OK with that.

On Friday's episode...
Bad news: Kidnapped by
Mennonites; Good news: She learned
How to churn butter.

No TV, no booze,
No sex. Mennonites live like
They've all been grounded.

This episode will
Probably become a FOX
Reality show

Author's note: Next week, we'll go back to the daily-ish Phil. This week was just chock full, what with my thriving social life and demanding job frequent napping and afternoon crying jags. I commend anyone who actually relived all five of these episodes without having an aneurysm.

*Yes this is the worst joke I've ever written.