Herding Unicorns

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Methinks herding unicorns is about as easy as hunting for a job.  As I am currently involved in the latter, I know of what I speak.  My Dad, the man who paid for my college education, suggested I apply to be a greeter at Walmart. While I’m sure Walmart greeting is a lovely occupation, I don’t think the blue apron thing is bulletproof and am far too snarky to smile for eight hours.  Unless the salary is a $500/hour situation.

My French friend, AJ, wants me to teach conversational English.  Bless her heart, she doesn’t know I have been a very bad teacher.  I don’t believe instructing her to say “Hell, no!”, “Are you kidding me?”, “Get lost!” and other pleasantries will be of much help.  At least she will never be bullied.  Could totally teach conversational cursing but don’t think the position exists.  If you’d like to take this course, it’s $500/hour.

You may wonder what my skill set includes. This would be laughing, walking my dog, reading, and eating.  I know, amazing, right?  Seriously, I do have experience in many areas.  Just have to find that golden ticket.  And I will.  Maybe it’s canning cornichons, testing trampolines … the possibilities are endless.  My only prerequisite is a salary.

The very best outcome would be to do what I love while helping as many people as possible. Please do not suggest customer service.

Off to jump in my bed and pull covers over my head.  Because this is such a productive activity and representative of stong motivation and focus. Gah!

Later.

Friendship is a Sticky Wicket

Apparently it’s National Friendship Week.  Next week reserved for red noses. But I digress …

My Dad once said, “If you have a handful of true friends, you are lucky.”  At the time, I thought he was being negative and ridiculous.  Why, I had a million friends (I was young).  Turns out, he was right and I was wrong.  And, surprisingly, I love when I am proven wrong because I learn from it.  And it’s important to me to never stop learning.  I am lucky. I do have a handful of true friends, precious gifts I love and treasure.

Friendship is a sticky wicket. A delicate situation.  I love my friends.  I’m hard to love, so I’m lucky to have any.

imageAnd then there are the others … fabulous and not so much –

  • The Forever Friends – these are the wonderful people I may not see for 10 days, weeks, or years yet we pick up right where we left off  – ahh, beautiful!
  • I Wanna Talk About Me” Friends – we all have them; as long as they are the subject of all conversation, all is well.  Try to get a word in edgewise, like “Oops, I’m bleeding to death” – impossible.  Just gotta love them anyway.  From a distance.
  • Let’s Have Lunch Friends – never happening, don’t kid yourself.  They are really awesome people but chicken salad sandwiches and iced tea are not anywhere in your future.
  • Spill Your Guts/I Don’t Know You Friends – they appear at your door, spill their guts about a situation, situation gets fixed.  Next time they see you, they look right through you.  Pitiful.  Don’t answer door next time.
  • Deep As A Pie Pan Friends – can only talk about parties, travel, clothes, and light fabulousity; requires massive quantities of NoDoz and temporary loss of short-term memory.

So now I’m thinking I really am lucky to have my handful. As for the rest, move along. In the words of my new hero, Mark Manson, “I don’t give a f*&@!”.  (You are thinking this started out so nicely … SURPRISE!).

Off to work out snarkiness … maybe

Later

P.S. Many thanks to bestie Austin Ann for intro to writing of Mark Manson

Here Comes Bride, There Goes Kidney

Really and Not Really!

My youngest, McPaddie, is getting married! Her fiancé is an awesome man; we are all beyond excited. That means we are having a wedding! YIKES.

Fortunately, the big event is a year away. Haven’t broached subject of budget with her dad. While he is totally on board, he has no clue what weddings cost. I’m thinking he’s thinking $7. Am totally Scarlett O’Hara about having that conversation with him. Must contact EMS unit to have on hand when I grow a pair and spit it out. “Tomorrow is another day”.

Meanwhile, this mission requires MAJOR CREATIVITY. A few of the thoughts that have crossed my mind at 3:00 am every morning:

  • Sell a kidney (no, think that’s against the law)
  • Numerous bikini car washes (force future bridesmaids into slave labor)
  • Bake sales (one cookie = $1000)
  • Stand on busy street corner with sign (nope; too hot and I work every day)
  • Call BRAVO and ask Andy Cohen to make a reality series for us (so not happening)
  • Start a new trend: the drive-by wedding (just kidding)

Obviously, I need your help! If you have any ideas – puh-leeze throw them out here. Before throwing, please note: they won’t elope, we will do our best and honor what the bride wants on budget, we know it’s about the ceremony, not the flash.

*We are Southern. That means the weddings in these parts = church ceremony and reception. Reception includes buffet, mucho alcohol, and a great band so you dance your ass off. Just so you know. Oh, and photography. Just blew left side of brain.

You have your assignment. Am off to search for loose change.

Later.

Under My Skin

I’m so peaced out, nothing gets under my skin. Except EVERYTHING. I’ll try to keep this brief.

  • Bad Press = More of the Same: In the olden days (last year), employees of GIANT DELIVERY SERVICES actually brought packages to your door. Numerous news clips over the past few months indicate some employees simply use your address as a target, the package as an arrow. We won’t even talk about the condition of the contents of said package/arrow. One would think GIANT DELIVERY SERVICES would have a chat with their staff, requesting true delivery of packages as opposed to Hail Mary target practice. Not so much. My recent experience:

Thanks, UPS

  • Car Dealership Service Departments: Maybe it’s just me, but I believe these should be renamed “Car Dealership So What Departments”. Living in a huge city, there are often numerous places to have your car “maintained”. Not mine. One dealership-from-hell. The service department is chock full of truly angry people with a collective offensive linebacker mentality when it comes to service. Slam that customer to the ground asap. Should your car need anything, it’s all your fault, not covered under warranty, and that will be 17 grillion dollars plus tax, tip, title, gratuity, and first dibs on future grandchildren to recover your vehicle. See ya never!

All I needed was an oil change 😦

  •  So Where Do I Get My Car Serviced?: Faced with this question yesterday, I went straight to the Wizard a.k.a. Google. Spent the better part of the day doing my research online. Selected the lucky service garage (keyword “loaner car”), rang them up, made my appointment for today. This morning, I packed some supplies (food, water, phone) and headed out to the garage. Which is in another town. I did have a map but am directionally dyslexic; maps serve me as well as Car Dealership So What Departments. One hour later – complete with 456 twists and turns – I’m there! Wherever that is. Everything is going along perfecto until we get to loaner car. Apparently there are just a few from which to choose. And here it comes …. “Can you drive a stick?”. Yes, of course I can drive a stick but haven’t since I was in my teens. “No”. A little bit of hemming and hawing and a big white thing appears in the driveway. I have no idea what it is but it goes forward and backward automatically. So I’m not really ranting about the new service provider, just the fact that I have to leave town to get my car taken care of. Wackadoodledo.
  • Car & Pet Wash: Swear on everything, I saw this place on my way back from wherever my car is. I am so taking photos tomorrow to prove it. In the meantime, I am quite confused how this situation works. Do you multitask by attaching dog to hood of car? That’s unacceptable. Does the cat drive the car, with perfume flowing through the air vents? Have you ever heard of this?

Is it too early to drink?

Later.

Use Your Words

That’s what I’m doing … using your words. Well, sharing your words. Loving:

“If life gives you lemons, keep them. Hey, free lemons!”

“I have a lot of growing up to do. I realized that the other day, in my fort.”

“Imperfection is beauty. Madness is genius. And it’s better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.”

“Time is precious. Waste it wisely.”

“Welcome to today. Another day. Another chance. Feel free to change.”

“Some people just need a high-five. In the face. With a chair.”

“If you can’t convince them, confuse them.”

“Today I will be happier than a bird with a french fry.”

“Work like a captain. Play like a pirate.”

Yo Ho Ho … off to walk the plank!

Later.

Bucket List Antithesis

There’s not a bucket big enough to hold all I want to do. But here are a few things I never want to do again:

  • Get stuck in small space with overserved man who has just inhaled a handful of chocolates: Don’t shake your head and wonder how this happened. It did. And the space was immediately filled with overwhelmingly heinous fumage. Would have fainted dead away, but space too small and I’m too polite (ha!). Had no choice but to stop, drop, and roll into a ditch. Still gagging.
  • Eat green peas and/or liver: More gagging. If I am on a desert island and all there is to eat are green peas and/or liver, I take this back. Note to self: no boat rides.
  • Register for “Do Not Call” lists: What a total waste of time. You crafty telemarketers and your “anonymous” and “private caller” handles! And for the managers of all “Do Not Call” lists, YOU’RE FIRED!
  • Reply to comment, “What country are you from because you don’t look like an American.”: Final answer: “I am a conehead. From France. Merde!
  • Work for people who are missing several teeth in the front of their mouths: If you have a “thriving” business, you can afford to go to the dentist and get some chompers. My experience with you tells me your business is anything but thriving because my paycheck bounced AND you don’t have a mirror. Basta!

Off to mind my own business.

What are your “never agains”?

Later.

Here’s to You, and You, and You

Just getting it off my chesticles:

  • To 32-year-old civil rights lawyer with really long hair: love your job, long hair is cool, dancing at event is fun but anything else, NO CAN DO! Not a fan of Harold and Maude situations. Give Demi Moore a jingle when she gets to feeling better. Caio!
  • To woman who asks me my name despite the fact we’ve met 346 times: none of your business, obviously. Get off the meds, you’ve lost whatever mind you had.
  • To the waiter from hell on his first night: bless your heart. You got a 20% tip because we felt sorry for you. Please, in the name of all diners, seek a new occupation. Art school? Banjo player in Vegas? Anything BUT waiting tables.  Thank you.
  • To the woman who thinks she knows it all: oh no you don’t! Go to the hardware store, buy some duct tape and put it over your mouth. Then go to the compassion store and clear the shelves. Haven’t the faintest where you can get a conscience, but wouldn’t be a bad idea to look into that, either.
  • To my dog: yes, I love you to the moon and back. I take better care of you than I do myself.  But you must stop creeping around eating God knows what in the middle of the night. Waking up to the sound of gagging does not put a festive spin on the day. Thank you.
  • To the woman who used to tidy up my house and empty my liquor cabinet: all is forgiven, it is a heinous job. I would get drunk, too, but alas … you drank me dry. Nevermind.
  • To all the nice friends we ran into at the “no one goes there” restaurant: that was not me in the baseball cap. Evil twin. Swear.
  • To Amazon, Kindle, Nook and other businesses selling/delivering books to iPad, etc.: stop blaming “the publishers” for the inflated book prices. You could do something about this if you wanted to, but you know how lazy we are. Stop It. While the product is convenient, it is usually riddled with weirdo spaces and funky words. STOP IT. Note to self: get up and go to the bookstore. Stop the madness. You should be ashamed of yourself. I am. Over.
  • To the Food Channel: I became an addict a few days after 9/11 … because your spot was all happiness and recipes and a total escape. Please lose “Fat Chef”. No disrespect meant to the plight of the obese but sad doesn’t look good on you. Make a deal with Lifetime or Bravo. Thank you.

Enough ranting.

Off to find my happy pants!

Later.

Self-Medicating with Words

I will go to great lengths to make a day that feels “less than” feel “more than”. Today, I’m rolling around in the following quotes:

  • “If you think you are too small to make a difference, you’ve never been in a tent with a mosquito.” Regina Brett
  • “What motivates you more: a correction or a compliment?” Jenny Dintzler
  • “Things that matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least.” Goethe
  • “A belief has no power other than what you give it.”
  • “Happiness happens when you least inspect it.”
  • “Stay open all hours for miracles.”
  • “We are born at peace.”
  • “Happiness doesn’t always make you happy.” Gretchen Rubin
  • “It is better to sleep on what you intend doing than to stay awake over what you’ve done.”
  • “I’ll sing for my supper but I won’t audition.” Kaminsky & Penney
  • “Change happens slowly, then all at once.”
  • “What looks like an anchor may be wings.”
  • “Instead of treating people the way you want to be treated, treat people the way they want to be treated.” Regina Brett
  • “None of us have a crystal ball. We may feel like things are hard and we are stuck with a lemon today. But tomorrow could bring many beautiful things if our hearts are open and willing.” Divorced Girl/Vibrant Nation
  • “If you see a red flag, don’t try to make it magenta. What you see is the way it is. Believe it and act accordingly.” Magnolia Miller
  • “The best test of a person’s character is how he/she treats those with less power … the way you act when you can’t be held accountable, how you treat those who can do nothing for you.”
  • “All you need is love.” The Beatles

Now.

Later.

Now and Later.

Plastic Surgeon FREAKED Me Out

I went to see the best plastic surgeon in town … on a lark. If you had access to my bank statements, you’d know it was a lark. I’m a cat, curious and skittish. But more curious. And I wanted to see what this man would say to me. He’s known for “Sleeping Beauties”, performing facial surgery on women who, when recovered, look like they’ve had the best rest ever. And they don’t have those crazy Jack Nicholson eyebrows – the first tipoff that somebody’s been under the knife.

Made a consultation appointment and appeared at the correct time. After very little paperwork, I was ushered into surgeon’s office. He was nice. But he’s in his seventies and had no grey hair and very few wrinkles. Oh yeah, he’s a plastic surgeon. And here’s how it went:

Doc: “What are you here for?”

Me: “Well, you have an excellent reputation and I’ve admired your work. Am not loving the fine lines around my mouth and wanted to know what you would do?” (Why does he keep putting his left hand under his desk?)

Doc: “Well, you have a long neck so I would do a neck somethingorother and then a midline facelift. You don’t need body work.” (How would you know? I’m fully clothed sitting across the desk from you.)

Me: “My neck? Facelift? Draw me a picture.” (And stop putting your hand under the desk)

He proceeded to draw the scariest picture of the side of a head with stitches and scars everywhere. Enough!

Me: “That looks terrifying, not to mention the recovery would be heinous.”

Doc: “I’ll throw in the upper eyelids for $1000.”

Me: “Upper eyelids … I don’t even wear mascara. What? Forget the eyes, how much for the stuff you suggested?”

Doc: “blablablablablabla”.

Me: “So you’re talking $20,000 walking? Are you f-ing kidding me? No offense, and I realize it’s your job, but ARE YOU KIDDING ME?”

Doc: “No, and you’ll probably need tweaking in about eight years. Show me your stomach.”

Like a moron, I pulled up my shirt and showed him my stomach. What in the living hell did a midline facelift+ have to do with my stomach? I must be on Candid Camera.

Me: “Thank you for your time. You’ve confirmed my intention to age gracefully = no knives near me unless eating. But good luck – for every one of me, there’s ten you”ll “fix”. Yeah, you!”

And for the record, Dr. Demento, keep your hands where I can see’em AND hahaha, my stomach is none of your business, surgically speaking.

Oh, and if I decide to take him up on his offer in the next year, my consultation fee will be deducted from the 20K. I have happily eaten $75 with my own knife and fork.

Later.

*Unlike Nora Ephron, I feel great about my neck!

Stop Being A Mother?

I am a mother.

Mercifully, I still have my own mother in a time when the majority of my friends have lost theirs. My mom and I have most certainly had our differences over the years. Big emphasis on differences. But she’s still my mom, and I know that she has always done the best she could to be a good mother. And no matter what my age, I will always be her child.

Many times, I’ve wanted to yell and scream at her, especially when she tells me what I should and shouldn’t do. But I’ve lived long enough to know that she just wants to help, and what sounds hurtful and critical is not meant that way at all. She wants to be relevant in my life, she wants me to be the best person I can be. So, I must let my interpretations of what I think she is saying fall through my mental sieve, and love her. It’s just the way it works for me. Time and experience, wasted anger and rage, have taught me to be the daughter of the woman who would give her life for me. At the end of the day, it’s all about respect. And the fact that my dad would probably whoop the living hell out of me, even at this late stage of the game, if I treated her with any disrespect.

My two daughters are the two best people I know. We get sideways sometimes. I’ll have an issue with one, and after exhausting the topic and getting nowhere, I’ll talk to the other about what I can do – or not do. Mothers are like that; we want our chicks to thrive in the best possible circumstances. And I’ve made more than my share of mistakes, unwarranted comments and offered advice has been misunderstood as hurtful criticism. This part of the mother job is the hardest. And that is an understatement.

Both of my daughters are adults. They are living adult lives. Yesterday, my youngest daughter and I got into it via text; she lives in another city and is making big decisions about the next few years of her life. I wanted to find out where she was in the decision process. Long story short – it ended badly. My opinions weren’t wanted, and I made it worse by pushing and pushing and pushing. Driving home from work, I felt like my skin was going to fall off, I was boiling inside. She was the one who, as a toddler, would press her face against the window and cry hysterically when I had to leave for work. She was the one who would throw up whenever I left town. But she’s an adult now. I forgot.

I’d invited my eldest daughter over for dinner last night. I was still in a swivet when I got home and the story of the day spilled out. She said, “Mom, you’ve got to let her go.” I’d never thought about it that way, but she’s right. The lessons always come from the most surprising places … and circumstances.

So, no matter what, I will always be here for both of them. For the tearful phone calls, for the requests for advice, to feed them when they are hungry, hug them when they are sad, laugh with them when we are amused, help them whenever necessary. Yes, I have to let them go. Hard but doable. This “freeing” process is going to take much discipline on my part. But I’m going to give it my best. I’m quite clear what letting them go doesn’t mean.

I will never stop being their mother. No matter what. Ever.

Be happy. Your choice.

Later.