Archive | September, 2011

This Weekend

29 Sep

I’m out of town for the weekend. Did you just hear that? That was the sound of my husband doing the happy dance.

I’m going to Laurel, Mississippi. It’s where I’m from. Here are some fun facts about Laurel:

  • Laurel is the home of Leontyne PriceBlanche Dubois Ralph Boston, Tom Lester (Eb from “Green Acres”),Parker Posey, My Favorite Martian Ray Walston, Marsha Blackburn, Lance Bass, Clinton Portis, and Frank G. Wisner.
  • Lauren Rogers Museum of Art, Mississippi’s oldest museum, is in Laurel. I will kiss your ass in Macy’s window if you can find another museum of this quality in such a small town. AND IT’S FREE. But don’t let that stop you from stuffing a dollar or two in the box. It’s an outstanding museum run by outstanding people and they need all the help they can get.
  • Memphians will recognize Laurel from a trip to Kroger. It’s the home of Sanderson Farms chicken. Chicken that ain’t shot up with anything but yummy.
  • Laurel in in Jones County which seceded from the Confederacy. Or maybe it didn’t. Some dispute that claim.
  • Laurel is called “The City Beautiful”. And it is, indeed, beautiful. Here are some pictures to prove that.
Also, here is a picture of a plastic cow in my parents’ backyard.
Anyway, I’ll be gone a few days.

Elephants Are Morbid: Digital ADHD

29 Sep

(Note: I started writing this on 9/19. Just so you know. Also, I’ve tried errything I know to get the second half of the piece to break into proper paragraphs. It is difficult to read. BUT YOU WILL READ IT AND BY GOD YOU WILL NOT COMPLAIN.)

Blogging has some distinct advantages: I get to choose what I write about. I can write in my sweat pants–and by that, I mean I actually write my rough drafts on the INSIDE of my pants as a political statement about the transitory nature of the pixel vis-a-vis text-based applications and the political landmine that is cotton-based paper products in a post-green consumer society. The complete and total lack of editorial oversight here at Standard Shed Studios makes sentences like that possible. YOU’RE WELCOME.

So, here’s the thing. I was just talking to a friend about this blog she read where the writer was publicizing IP addresses for various reasons. Do not like. In this digital age, that information is really no different from publicizing a physical address. If you’ve got trolls and need to block a fella, do it. No need to talk about it. That person behind that IP address may be  perfectly lovely until he or she gets behind the wall of anonymity the internet ostensibly creates. Like getting in a car. Get me in traffic and I will let loose with a stream of expletives which will melt the rubber off your radials. I’m not an aggressive driver–far from it. It’s because of the cussing. If I didn’t talk to my fellow road-sharers, every time I got in my car it’d be like Death Race 2000 and I’d be Machine Gun Joe. (That one’s for you, THK!) In other words, stay away from Perkins, ma, ’cause Senior Day is triple points.

Point is, my mind works like this:

  • Sit down at desk.
  • Realize I forgot Cheetos. AGAIN.
  • Wonder if they have Zapp’s Cajun Dill Chips at the grocery.
  • Talk myself out of going to see.
  • Start writing stuff. Just stuff. Just getting the fingers working.
  • Twitter feed produces Twitter Feud O’ The Day.
  • Look at NPR feed.
  • Wonder where the saying “memory like an elephant” came from.
  • Learn that elephants mourn and hold elephant funerals.
  • Remember watching that Nature on crows that was cool as hell. Crows hold funerals also.
  • Wonder what would happen if an elephant showed up at a crow wake.
  • Wonder, yet again, why I don’t have a book contract/sitcom.
  • Think about writing a sticom where the sassy neighbor wears a caftan.
  • Realize I’m about to be late for something.
  • Take a sip of what I BELIEVED to be Coke Zero, but is actually CHERRY Coke Zero.
  • Brush my teeth.
  • Run my errands.
  • Finish disgusting cherry Coke because it’s open.
  • Get back home, clean kitchen, iron, remember I have half-written blog post.
     Notice nowhere on that list is fix dinner for husband so he stays big and strong and sexxaay so he can subsidize my writing habit.
Me: Um, sweetie? ‘Member how you said next time I went out of town you were gonna eat nothing but sardines in mustard sauce on white bread?
Him: Yes? Are you going out of town? (He says, trying not to let excitement creep in to his voice)
Me: Well, not exactly, but I did go to Germantown today.
Him: So you’re saying there is no dinner.
Me: Well, I guess if you want to be all technical and whatnot.
     It’s at this point you’re expecting me to go back and tell you what the hell the publicizing the IP thing had to do with anything. The truth is I don’t remember. I’m keeping it in the post because I think it’s important for you to understand what it is like to be me.
     I would like sympathy, please. Smothered in tender kisses and $20 bills.
     I think what I was driving at was that you have to give up a little privacy when you’re playing on the digital playground. And you can’t really complain too much when people you’ve never met in person know as much about you as your OB/GYN. My husband is getting used to total strangers knowing what he had–or didn’t have–for dinner. Or what movies we watched last week. Or how I send him texts telling him he’s the cool, cool breeze that clears away my grumpy and leaves me in a place of simple pleasures and unicorns and bunnies.
     Just kidding, honey! I won’t tell them that!
     If you put me on a project which interests me, I’m on it like mayo on a bologna sammich. Otherwise? Well, why do you think I know elephants mourn? Today I just lack focus. I think I’m suffering from early 21st century postmodern neo-narcissistic existential angst. Everything is making me stabby: Cliff Stearns, Hizzoner The Governor Lite (Thanks for following me on Twitter, yo!) Middle Tennessee, and for some reason the fact that today is National Coffee Day and people keep hawking fair trade coffee.
These things make me happy!!
And this:
Everything I do, I do for you, internet.

Today’s Mood

28 Sep

I Never Thought I’d Hear Myself Say That

27 Sep

You know how when you’re a grown up and you say something and then you freeze because, holy crap, that’s something a grown up would say? You know what I mean? You reach adulthood the first time you say, “Her mother let her leave the house like that?” Double bonus points are awarded if you’re using spit to wipe schmutz off someone when you say it. Triple if you’re also wearing a pair of smart slacks.

Week before last, I used the words adorable and darling to describe fake, wallpapered pumpkins. I’ve admonished the undergarment choices (or lack thereof) of perfect strangers. When my husband complained of late-night-ice-cream-induced heartburn, I muttered something about rich food. Who does that? Other than women who play bridge every Tuesday, I mean.

My friend and I have this routine about the importance of clothes Fitting In The Shoulders. For the Geritol Set, all other fit issues can be fixed with the right seamstress, but not if the item doesn’t have good fit through the shoulders. We are also partial to clothes you “just throw on”. Oh, this? I just threw it on. Just pulled it right out of the dryer and threw it on. Being the kind of person I am–one with an aversion to both pants and irons–I like the kind of outfit a gal on the go can just throw on. Even if it makes me need to eat dinner at 4:30.

Anyway, this morning I was bemoaning the fact that Nancy Grace’s breasts were clogging up my Twitter feed.

I’m not a fan of Nancy Grace or her boobs. I will tell you if she ever says, “I’ve got more talent in my left boob than SoAndSo,” you need to listen up, brother. ‘Cause there could be a lot lurking inside them mammaries.  Point is, before the proliferation of social media, I never thought Nancy Grace’s boobs would inhabit my world. But she’s on that dance show and supposedly she got all jiggy with it last night and BOOM! She fell out her dress.

Which reminds me of a story…

My Adorable Husband was once called to assist with a customer issue back when he worked retail. It was in the jewelry department. There was a couple there who were, um, on the larger side. So the couple’s going off on him and the whole time, her boob is flopped out of her shirt and onto the counter. AH is trying to resolve the issue, stay cool, and NOT STARE AT THE GIANT BOOB ON THE COUNTER because the mister half of the couple was a big fella. And a little pissy. I believe he ended up giving them a lifetime supply of smokey topaz cocktail rings just to get them out of the store.

Point is, here are some things I’ve said recently that I never thought I’d hear myself say:

  • I’m still waiting. On the plus side, I’m making that bubble pop game my bitch.
  • I would like to eat my weight in Cheetos, M&Ms, and zinfandel.
  • Why, yes, yes, I did just spend 30 min. making a picture of Pimp Spiro Agnew.
  • Meant to type vaccinated, typed cacciatore instead. Shut up. I really did. And I don’t even like cacciatore.
  • It’s a tiny cake wearing panties. How could you not be all over that?
  • Proof my honey is stressed out: I asked him to do me a solid and he DID NOT wiggle his eyebrows at me.
  • How do you get cinnamon roll icing out from between the keys of your computer keyboard? I’m asking for a friend.
And along those lines…
Here’s a reprint of a list of tweets I’m happy were not my last words:
  1. I actually laughed so hard I leaked.
  2. Just realized when I get cranked up, my use of “dude” and “freaking” increases dramatically. This does not apply to my use of “asshat”.
  3. The decision to eat THEN ride might have been a bad one. #biscuitbelly
  4. Pot roast, bitchez
  5. The house just shook and power flickered. Anyone in [neighborhood redacted] have this?
  6. No more foods with “Buffalo” in the name for breakfast.
  7. Who forgets they have cookies? Me. I do. I HAVE COOKIES!
  8. I got 99 problems, and Tiger Woods’ penis ain’t one.
  9. See what happens when I don’t Twitter for a while? I miss awesome ideas like filling Swiffer w/ salsa!!
  10. Coffee and Cheez-Its: Breakfast of champions or pathetic cry for help? Discuss.
  11. Where are the pictures of flaming snowball farts? Nowhere.
  12. I will, by the power of Greyskull, write something tomorrow even if it’s a treatise on unicorn farts. You have been warned.
  13. And then did I “enjoy” using moist wipes to “feel extra clean”?
  14. Tonight, I will get knocked up with a food baby whose baby daddy is nachos.
  15. I did not understand the screaming chickens. Don’t they know they don’t have to be cut open to retrieve the eggs?
And some that would have been helpful if they were:
  1. @****** HOLY SHIT! What great birth control that was! Thanks!
  2. OK, y’all. I’m making a drinking game out of these Olympics somehow. If you don’t hear from me tomorrow, you’ll know I figured out how.
  3. In between Jon Stewart and Ricky Gervais. That’s how I want to die. Right there.

But Where’s The Ring?

26 Sep

I’ve loved reading the comments on the Champagnetoast piece from last week. It might surprise you to know I’m not a fan of the wedding. I know. I hide it well. I’m a fan of marriage. [SANCTIMONIOUS PONTIFICATION ALERT] I think people should be able to get married if they want. Regardless of whether it’s a combination of Her and Him, Him and Him, or Her and Her. As I’ve said before, my marriage has more to fear from a late-night bean burrito than two dudes wanting to advance The Gay Agenda by being legally bound to be the other’s date for extremely boring company Christmas parties. That’s just how I roll.

I was a, ah, more mature bride. I was 33-ish when my honey and I married. We did not really date. We just sort of started doing things together and BOOM. About three years later we were watching the AFC playoffs and I said we needed to decide what we wanted to do because my lease was almost up on my apartment. He took a swig of his beer, looked at me with those beautiful brown eyes and said, “Well, I guess we need to look for a house.”

Has there ever been a more romantic proposal?

Later in the week, I talked to my mom and said I thought I was getting married, but wasn’t sure when. She said she was open the weekend after Easter. A few weeks later, we visited his parents and told them we thought we’d decided to get married, but weren’t sure when. We were both in retail so we thought maybe the following September or something. Before the holiday ban on vacations. His dad wondered why we were waiting. We knew we wanted to marry, we knew we didn’t want a wedding, why wait? I told him my mom said she was open the weekend after Easter. He got out his calendar, said they were open that weekend, penciled us in, and we were officially engaged.

We discussed eloping. The thought of a bunch of people watching me marry was, what’s the word? Creepy. Those vows (we’d decided to be married by a minister) are personal. We then realized we really wanted our parents and his children there. So that was it. Nine people. On a Friday evening in April, two sets of parents, the kids, The Adorable Couple, and the minister gathered at the front of the sanctuary. I wore–get this–PANTS. It was one of the few times in my life I had exactly the outfit I wanted. I did, however, forget my shoes. I got these awesome shoes and I left them at home. I blistered the paint from the walls of the church bathroom when I realized that. My mom had gotten me some flowers from the grocery store. Left them at home too. We took some pictures, but we forgot to turn on the lights. All our pictures look as if we got married in a dark, deep cave.

I have no idea what our vows were. I cried like a baby through the whole thing. I might have promised him unlimited salad and breadsticks. Not a clue. We were in and out in thirty minutes and on to Folk’s Folly for giant steaks and red wine. I firmly believe a marriage should start with a belly full of steak and wine.

The next morning we left for North Carolina. We were there a few days then came back to Memphis for a Bob Dylan concert. It was a good way to start a marriage.

We did not get a lot of flack about not having a “real” wedding. When I told people I was getting married, they would automatically look for the engagement ring I didn’t have, but there weren’t a lot of comments about how it didn’t exist. What got people was that we didn’t want gifts.

We were older. He’d been married before. We had stuff. But he worked for Macy’s and it was gently suggested that he get his fiance’s ass into the store and register. I had worked there at one time (that was how we met), so I knew a lot of the staff. They decided we needed a shower. We asked them not to do that, but then we realized it had very little to do with us. They wanted an excuse for a party. It was actually fun. They didn’t make us play stupid games and we got to drink.

It was also the party where a woman drank dish soap.

There was a very sweet woman who was not normally a drinker. Apparently, she’d gone into the kitchen to refill her wine. She picked up a bottle, not really paying attention, and poured it into her glass. After a FEW sips, she realized it was not wine. The hostess kept her dish soap in a wine bottle.You’d have thought the syrupy consistency and the yellow color would have clued her in. Yeah. That poor lady was farting lemon-fresh bubbles for a week.

I think we didn’t get a lot of flack about our wedding choices because we were older. I didn’t change my name and got not ONE PEEP about it. We had also decided not to live together before we got married and NO ONE commented on that–positively or negatively. There are a couple of people who make comments about our lack of festivities. One friend refers to our “stealth wedding”. There’s one person who still brings up the fact we didn’t have guests at our wedding as proof of our evil agenda for world domination. Other than that, people seemed content to let us be. Which is weird. Because have I mentioned I’m southern?

I’d love to hear more of your anti-wedding stories. Was there a particularly awful wedding you attended? Did you make your momma cry by being married by a midget Elvis impersonator? Was there a wedding registry to rival that of a Kardashian’s? Do you regret anything you did or didn’t do for your wedding?


23 Sep

It’s such a beautiful day. I hate to ruin it by bitching. HA! Gotcha! Not really.

The champagne toast. What’s up with that?

A champagne toast is popular with people who throw a wedding reception and only pop for booze for the toast to The Adorable Couple. If you see or hear the words “champagne toast” anywhere in the description of the reception, here’s what’s going to happen…

The bride (in a strapless dress a size too small because she lost her freaking mind planning the wedding) and the groom (in a rented tux with some ridiculous vest like made of camouflage or something) will go stand in front of their cakes. Plural. Because now you have to have a wedding cake that’s nothing but fondant and cardboard and then you have to have a groom’s cake which will attempt to be humorous, but will not be, NOR will it be as freaking awesome as the armadillo cake in Steel Magnolias because after twenty-something years, that’s been done to death.

The Adorable Couple will then be handed their champagne glasses. Now, this is important. These glasses will come from the “bridal china” section of the department store where they registered. The will probably be etched with initials and the wedding date. Possibly, if you’re lucky, they will have some sort of champagne-flute-corsage attached to the stem. Possibly they will come with a holder filled with sand so you can keep your flutes, uh, sandy for the rest of your marriage. Like such…

Now, the bride, grasping her precious flute in a French-manicured-with-rhinestone-accents-hand,

will try not to cry while her daddy quotes from that creepy song about butterfly kisses.

The groom is busy thinking about how he’s going to take the garter off, but GET THIS! He’s going to pretend when he puts his hands up her skirt, THAT SOMETHING BIT HIM! HAHAHAHAHA! Oh, vagina dentata jokes! How we laughed! Also, her garter will be camouflage to coordinate with his tux. DUH.

You’ll be standing there with your punch containing NO hooch, BUT it will contain orange sherbet. Now, that right there is awesome punch. I don’t care who you are, any time ginger ale and sherbet is combined, it’s a party.

You got to the designated Champagnetoast Viewing Area by being corralled by a very zealous maid of honor, who ran around yelling, “Y’ALL COME ON FOR THE CHAMPAGNETOAST! MISTEELYNNAPRILMODINEMARIE AND JOSHCONNERCARTERWEBSTER ARE ‘BOUT TO HAVE THE CHAMPAGNETOAST!!”

They will then  toast and–wait for it–STUFF CAKE IN EACH OTHER’S FACE!! Isn’t that the damn funniest? Misteelynnaprilmodinemarie’s Aunt Glossie (don’t ask) tells you that Joshconnercarterwebster has been planning for THREE months that he’s gonna stuff that cake right in her mouth and smear it all over her face!

It is at this point, thinking what that could mean for the wedding night, that you slink out, call your best girlfriend, and arrange to meet for martinis.

You totally miss the Removing Of The Garter and The Tossing Of The Bouquet. Well, the bouquet for tossing. The bride has two. Her bouquet will be preserved and set in A Place Of Honor so she can see it every day, and in ten years, she’ll still be gazing upon it wondering why she dropped out of dental hygienist school to marry that jackass Joshconnercarterwebster whose idea of foreplay is poking her and asking if she’s awake. No, she could be providing for herself, learning a foreign language, or drinking champagne. But no. She wanted a wedding, not a marriage. And that’s what she got.

My point is this. “Champagne toast” is a stupid term. Do you pour champagne on toast and let it turn to mush? Like when you’re sick? Maybe you have a cold and you’re really fancy, so you have champagne-toast instead of milk-toast? Seems soggy. And a waste of good booze.

Whatever. I hate that term.

Today’s Mood: From Summer to Fall

23 Sep