ABOUT ME

About me: My husband Chuck, our six-year-old Junior, our three-year-old Everette and I live in a town in Connecticut I affectionately call Mulletville Lite (aka my childhood hometown). My friends call me Nutjob, and they're right. In my husband's spare time he dresses up as a Viking and chases ghosts (and I'm the nutjob?). When I'm not busy working as a graphic designer, I lie in a ball in the corner.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

I won't lie: I was such a good kisser I sometimes got free Brie




So UnMom told me I must have been a tortured teenager and that’s why she tagged me with the “seven things” teenager edition. Pimples and Golden Anniversary and boys? This is so much more fun than pink slip prattle.

Here we go. Ahem.

1. When I was a sophomore, my first real boyfriend tried to impress me by pretending to be a flame thrower— with a ticky torch. He burned his face and had to be rushed to the ER. When I went to see him he said, “Look away, I’m hideous!” I still laugh when I think about that.

2. I was a cashier at Stop and Shop, and I made out with way too many guys from Dairy.

3. When I was 17 I took someone’s virginity, and I was terribly mean to him afterward.

4. I totally deserved a better sex talk than the one I got. My dad said, “There’s sex, drugs, and rock and roll. Don’t do drugs.” (See #2 and #3.)

5. The person I fought with the most (she once left me on the side of the road) was my Maid of Honor three years ago, and I love her to death.

6. I was in the French Honor Society. I also played the clarinet and the bassoon in band. Hel-lo.

7. I hated my senior prom date. His name was Walt, he had thinning hair, and he popped his zits in the rearview mirror. (No, he wasn’t someone’s cousin; he was a friend of my best friend and it was either him or Ethan from band.)

Ah, high school.

So now I get to tag a bunch of other people, except I'm going to change the meme, because I like to copy UnMom. I still want to know 7 things about these people, but I want to know 7 things about them that very first month they were a new mom. Because I was a schizoid freak and I'd like to know that I wasn't the only woman who hucked the breast pump at her husband and then cackled when he cried.

Mwahahahaaha.

Random Mom


Go Graham Go

Diapers and Wine

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Winona Ryder and I are likethis

I thought yesterday was Wednesday. It sure felt like a Wednesday, hence the premature posting of my lovely grandmother in all her pre-tequila glory.

I also thought I had taken down something I had written as part of the Wordless Wednesday post before anyone saw it, but there was a comment from DysFUNctional Mom that said, “that just sucks” and she wasn’t referring to Granny (really, how could anyone find a 92-year-old about to slam back a shot sucky?).

Nope, DysFUNctional Mom was referring to my now-erased mention of Chuck and the dreaded pink slip.

See, when Chuck told me the news last night—that he may very well get the slip by the end of the month—I decided to mention it here. But the whole time we were lying on the couch afterward, watching The Omen (what better way to quell those financial fears than with a horror movie?), I had that ick feeling. Then I started to hear the dreaded voice (which sounds an awful lot like Winona Ryder in Heathers): “Nice job, Debbie Downer” and “You lewser, people want funny, not funereal.”

What’s more, I worried that Chuck would feel I had violated his privacy. Sharing stories about his unmentionables is one thing; telling the world he’s about to become Mr. Mom is another.

So off I went to un-blog about it. Which you can’t really do, now can you?

Nope.

I know the pink slip news isn’t earth shattering. And it’s not as personal as, say, confessing that I’m having an affair with my transgendered hairdresser who is also the uncle of my illegitimate half-sister who happens to be my ex-girlfriend (don’t lie, you’d read that blog, wouldn’t you?). But having a blog has raised all these questions I wasn’t prepared for. Mainly, what is the point of this blog? To be humorous? To provide a front row glimpse into our hicky lives? To post pictures of my pets in the hopes that someone—anyone—will mail us a Furminator?

I really don’t know.

I thought being a funny mom blogger would be easy. What’s campier than a bumbling new mom and her baby? Well, a lot of things. And you know what? The way we parent isn’t always slapstick. It reveals a lot about who we are, in very intimate ways. Ways that often make me cringe. Ways that often make Chuck cringe.

So yah, if someone could send along that Furminator…

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Oh hell, I'll jump on this one

I don't know who came up with Wordless Wednesday but here's my grandma getting ready to take a shot. Love ya Grandma!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Can we all put down our rubber mallots? Please?

It's October 26. We are still pumpkin-less.

In Mulletville, people not only have pumpkins, they have Martha Stewarted the shit out of them. What happened to crooked eyes and a lopsided mouth being good enough? Now your front step has to be adorned with pumpkins whose facial carvings are whisper thin and catch the cascading fragrance of scented autumn candles. And if passerbys don’t stop and ooh and aahh over your magical use of a specialty knife you might as well go hang your head in shame.

Did I miss the pumpkin party at Martha’s? The one where she convinced everyone and their mother to transform their poor, sweet pumpkins into garish woodland creatures?

I don’t mean to judge, I really don’t. If it brings you joy to Jianzhi your pumpkin then by all means, go ballistic. All I’m saying is, can’t we lower the bar a bit? Can’t we cut up our pumpkins with a good ole steak knife instead of having to bust out the drill with 5/8-inch bit or large hole cutter, string lights, rubber bands, electrical tape, rubber mallet, and wood gouge or linoleum cutter?

When I sat down to write this I actually felt like a lousy parent for not having a pumpkin yet for Junior. But see, he fell asleep today on our drive to the pumpkin patch and we ended up taking a long trip that brought us here:



And instead of measuring symmetrical petals on my pumpkin so it would look like a cabbage rose, I got to do this:



And while Flipper took Junior for a ride, Chuck and I made out like people who have just gotten engaged. Ok, that's not us. It's a random couple who couldn't keep their hands off each other:



In anticipation of the upcoming holidays—which are already being crammed down our throats—I think we should all give ourselves a nice, fat break. Don't you agree?

(If you don't agree with me, to celebrate the commercial success of her freakish need to prettify everything, Miss Stewart is holding a pumpkin carving contest. The prize? Five bat window clings made in China. Go get 'em tiger.)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

I still drive by that farm...sigh



My first pet was a Shetland Sheepdog. I named her Heidi because I had just seen the movie Heidi and I wanted to be Heidi (picture borrowed from marianland.com). I was just seven years old, and I loved that animal like any young girl loves something she’s just named after a Swiss mountain orphan: with all my heart.

But, as they say, all good things must come to an end. One month after we got Heidi, my parents decided she was too much work. I can’t remember, but I am sure I scooped poop—I was so diligent I used to give the neighborhood kids homework assignments when we played school so I could correct them.

Anyway, we gave Heidi back to the farm from which she had come so she could run and chase rabbits and be with her brothers and sisters. Sometimes my father would blow by the farm on the way to Woolworths or Caldor and he would say, “Quick! Look! There’s Heidi!” but somehow I always missed her.

(Do you need a Kleenex yet?)

In what can only be described as Cosmic Canine Coincidence, Chuck also had his childhood dog—a Border Collie named Charlie—wrenched from his juvenile grasp because his parents said the dog was too much work. He studied abroad at 17 and when he came home (after deflowering most of England, I might add), Charlie was gone.

There are some lights at the end of this beastly tunnel, I promise.

First, we have two cats, which our parents have never tried to give away. They behave like dogs, which is good for them because I hate cats. They lick our guests and come when we call them. Sometimes they baby-sit. Our vet has suggested we walk them—they weigh 25 pounds each—but we all know that if I actually did that I’d end up on the front page of the Mulletville Chronicle.



Second, when Junior gets a dog—which would be today if I had my say—he is keeping it forever. I’m talking taxidermy, people. No child should ever have to suffer the injustices inflicted on his parents by their big, bad parents.

This post was written for Parent Bloggers Network as part of a sweepstakes sponsored by Burger King Corp. If I win the $250 gift card to pamper my pets, I’m taking the above pictured mongrel to get a Brazilian wax and a Jenny Craig consultation.

P.S. Cutie Booty Cakes has a much cheerier childhood pet story, if you need the warm and fuzzies.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Y,Y,Y must he enjoy shooting off rabbits so?

I've never understood why farting out loud is funny. I always assumed the inclination to fart aloud and laugh was a learned behavior—something kids (ok, boys) pick up in school or from a parent who employs the much overplayed "pull my finger" trick.

But tonight, for the first time in his little 15-month existence, when Junior passed gas...he laughed. Out loud.

I have now witnessed THE EXACT MOMENT when men begin to find farting humorous. I feel like I just saw the space shuttle take off in person or something.

And now I know: the butt explosion fascination and corresponding laughter? It's chromosomally inborn.

Oh.My.God.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Penance is a dish best served without TP and Urban Dictionary references

Damn this blog and my conscience. I actually had a dream last night that someone left me a comment along the lines of: “I guess you’ll have to accept the consequences when you stand up to give a speech at your brother’s wedding and someone interrupts you with a rendition of the Foodgasm post. You suck.”

Isn’t that awful? All day I plotted ways to push my last post down the page. I would post one-comment posts. Or post extremely large photos of the lovebirds (aka my brother and his fiancee) in the midst of their entwinement, along with fond captions: “They’re so cute” or “Wow, if only Chuck and I could love that hard.”

As you can see, I’ve done neither. But, not to worry, karma took care of things for me. How? I spent the afternoon running around the roof of my office building with toilet paper crammed into my pants because my female friend arrived just as the head maintenance guy was whisking me off to the rooftop so I could get a picture of the foliage for my boss.

(Unluckily for me, Stay Free doesn’t have rooftop vending machines, but I was lucky enough to duck into a bathroom pre-flight and grab myself a nice big wad of institutional-sized toilet paper. Ever tried clamoring across a roof with a ball of scratchy paper wedged into your privates? I didn’t think so.)

The best part? While me and Roy were up there and he was looking me over like I was some kind of prissy stuffed suit with a fancy camera, I got all macho and told him that I bet the roof was the perfect place to come and “take a few pulls”—which I later found out means to, um, pleasure oneself. I thought it meant take a few slugs of beer.

Only after Chuck enlightened me could I fully appreciate Roy's cheery change in demeanor.

I think karma should be all set with me for the week, what do you think?

P.S. If you doubt that my boss sent me up to the roof for a photo shoot you might want to read this.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Just what is foodgasm etiquette anyway?

My brother got engaged to Holly—have I mentioned that? Here’s my no-frills assessment of their courtship: They are gross. He’s the jungle gym and she’s the 3-year-old. When I’m around her I have to restrain myself from yelling, “Down, girl, down!”

Imagine my delight when my brother called yesterday and begged me and Chuck to stand in for my mother and step-father, who were supposed to be dining with the lovebirds and her parents at the nearby casino. Was it luck that we live so close to the dining enclave they’d chosen? Or that my father—who is usually busy with golf, bowling, or bird-watching—happened to be free to baby-sit?

Oh yesiree it was.

I was actually curious to see what kind of people had produced such a well-endowed, chirpy girl. Holly has thrown me a few curve balls in the eight months I’ve known her. Her sing-songy voice is beguiling; it distracts from her snarky comments. Like when we were all on the Cape and she kept teasing me about my misplaced drink: “Where’s Mommy’s drink? Where did she put it? Does Mommy need her drink?”

Instead of pushing her into the lobster pit like I wanted to, I sing-songed (sang-singed?) back to her, “MOm-meee is dr-Ink-Ing bE-cAuse she had a lOOooong wE-eeeek and nEveeeer gets to plAA-y anymore.” Why was I explaining a few rum and cokes to a 21-year-old whose laziness destroyed my oven and left my child smelling like a dank alley?

Oh, the pious and hypocritical indignation of youth. I fricken swear.



So there we were, the six of us, at a sushi bar. Me and Chuck, Ted and Holly, and Mrs. J.Jill and Mr. Moustache (I can’t remember their names). On the one side, severe face sucking and whispering. On the other, uneasy voyeurism of said face sucking. In the middle? Chuck asking, “Does anyone want to split a Spicy Tuna roll?”

We all agreed that sharing was ideal, although interpretations varied. Ted and Holly decided to use their faces as smorgasbords. After 10 minutes of shielding himself from the flying saliva— and downing several bottles of sake—Chuck jabbed a roll with his chopstick and unsexily crammed it into my half-open mouth.

“Hranks,” I said.

Then, in a moment that can only be described as horrendously uncomfortable, Mr. Moustache tried to feed Mrs. J.Jill a roll and was denied! Before it reached her lips she giggled, removed the roll from the fork (they didn’t know how to use chopsticks) and plopped it in her mouth. He tried to look nonchalant, but the rejection was all over his face.

I thought of offering my own agape mouth so he wouldn’t feel left out but realized that that would only contribute to the already palpable awkwardness. Although I have to be honest, I did try singing it out in my head, “Ho-Olly, yoUr Daaad just wAnt-ed to have soo-Ooome too-O.”

Yah, it’s gonna be a kick ass wedding.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Is the elusive boobie frog at the crossdressing fair perhaps?

I know everyone has done this, but I haven’t yet and it’s fun. Plus, it’s Sunday night and after getting tagged by On the Verge I’m feeling all kinds of listy (but not listy enough to do two lists. 1) I wouldn't do that to you and 2) then I wouldn't have anything to write about tomorrow).

List 1 (or is it 3? Whatever.)


10 phrases people Googled…only to arrive at The Mullets

1. "Blonde hair made me a slut." Honey, blonde hair didn’t make you a slut.

2. "Boobie frogs." I really hope there isn’t a website devoted to amphibian porn.

3. "Crossdressing renaissance fairs." That’s a whole lotta dress up.

4. "Formulae for three frogs and three red frogs to get to the other side." Other side of what? The road? The Pearly Gates? Why red frogs? I must know!

5. "How high is too high to push a 6 month old in a swing?" I’m so glad I’m not the only neurotic mother who doesn’t know how to use a playground with her newborn.

6. "Pee standing up pete yup feels good frogs." I think LSD might have been involved for that one.

7. "Son dry humping mom." I bet that was one of my neighbors.

8. "What would it feel like to be a frog?" I hope this person comes back as a frog in his or her next life. The question strikes me as so earnest and yet so…strange.

9. "Where do my boobs come from?" Um, Christina Aguilera had so much she gave you her leftovers.

10. "How to tell gender of your white stumpy tree frog." I can’t believe this person didn’t know this. You check behind the urostyle or just above the astragalus, hello.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

So I may have freaked out for nothing...what else is new?



I don't know why I was so scared of Green Elmo's Thumb. Look how friggen cheery and festive it was. The best part? The music was so loud it drowned out the screamers.

Junior was so well behaved that Chuck wouldn’t give him up! I wanted to hold Junior and let him bob up and down on my lap (he "dances" now). I wanted to squeeze his chunky hands. So, yah, I’ll confess to a moment of complete immaturity: When Chuck pretended he couldn’t hear me asking for Junior because of the music—he was, ahem, sitting next to me—I took a really bad picture of him.



I’ll confess to another moment, this time of complete sappiness. The message of the show—caring about the earth—really got to me. I have always tried to live Green so in some ways I feel like the now en vogue Green Movement isn’t all that much to gyrate about. I’m happy it’s gone mainstream but come on, it’s how we should have been living all along. Too bad companies like Dixie—who tell busy moms they deserve a break and should therefore use paper plates for dining—are still clueless.

I can’t believe I’m quoting Big Bird (my, oh my, how things have changed), but he had the best line of the whole show when he told the kids “it’s not always about you.” I love that. It’s about time someone just came out and said it.

One sunny days gripe: $10 for an Elmo balloon and $7 for a draft beer in a plastic cup? If the show were really about being stewards of the environment, beers would have been served keg-stand style (no waste) and balloons would have been made of a biodegradable material, like hops.

Yah, I know, that’s silly—but so is an unidentifiable red thing with a high, squeaky voice. I mean come on, despite my moments of eco-friendly blubbering I did take a minute to remind myself that human beings do some curious things in the name of entertainment.

And now that we have Junior I fear this is just the beginning.

Green is also for nausea

In exactly two hours we will be at Elmo's Green Thumb. This is the first kids' show we've ever taken Junior to.

And I'm scared. So very scared.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

I've come to some profound conclusions while churning butter

When you have a significant other, you sometimes think he or she is nuts. Maybe you don't understand his predilection for aliens or the color saffron or his annoying habit of dousing everything—even tuna casserole—with hot sauce (I'm speaking hypothetically here).

It’s just the way it is. Sometimes you are able to hide that thought as it crosses your face. Other times? Mmmm, not so much.

Take Chuck last night. We were putting all the comforters I’ve purchased over the years into bags for Goodwill. There were eight bags. At two per bag that’s 16 comforters. He looked at me and asked, "What's with you and blankets?" The missing word? "Wacko."



I decided that in a former life I must have been very, very cold.

I also decided, after cleaning out the kitchen pantry an hour later, that in a former life Chuck must have been Jack from Jack and the Beanstalk. It’s the only explanation for his affinity for gadgets that feature the words “As seen on TV!”

After I finished vacuuming, Junior preened the living room carpet for me. When he found cat fluff balls and pieces of lint I missed, he handed them to me and told me “irty.” In Junior’s former life he must have been a quality control manager or an orangutan.

I was almost done; all I had to do was get Junior ready for bed. (Chuck was doing the dishes—in the words of Billy Jean, “Fair is fair!”) I took Junior's shoes off and saw:



In a former life my mother, Linda, must have suffered from ankle asphyxiation. Otherwise, why would she have done that to Junior’s socks?

I encourage you to try the In a Former Life game. You can try it right here if you'd like. I swear I won't give you the funny freak look.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

If you saw the Great Pumpkin dragging its butt towards your fat kitties you'd bust a gut too

I had the day off yesterday so my friend Amy and I took Junior to Pier One (NPR, if you’re reading this, me and the boy were just pressing our bony noses against the pretty glass).

Ahem. Pier One is a lovely store, but it’s also the least child-friendly store on the planet. The aisles are ridiculously narrow. Fragile ornaments rest on wobbly stands. Long drapes billow underfoot. It’s a nightmare, but I can’t help myself. The store smells and feels like all the things I wish my house could be.

We’d only been in the store a few minutes when an employee dropped a glass vase near the registers. My first thought, which I kept to myself, was, “Serves you right, you precarious placers!” Junior’s first thought, which he shared with the entire store, was a loud “Uh oh.”

There was a cheery round of laughter. Someone said, “How cute.”

Junior, being the attention whore he is, said it again—louder. This time the laughter was a lot less cheery.

“Ok, sweetie,” I said, “everyone heard you.”

“Uh oh.”

“That’s enough.”

“Uh oh.”

“Junior, shut it.”

“Uh oh. Uh oh. Uh oh.”

Because I’m a new mom and I’m terrified that someone will make a snarky comment about my child, which will mean I will have to punch said person’s light out, I made a beeline for the door. Junior, meanwhile, kept yammering on.

“Uh oh. Uh oh. Uh oh.”

“I swear I’m gonna—”

When we passed the employee who had dropped the vase, she stopped sweeping and looked at Junior.

“Now you’re just making me feel bad,” she told him. He did that weird eye squint he does when he’s not sure which of the seven words he’s learned is appropriate, then decided not to say anything.

On the car ride home he flailed and grunted in the back like a bronco with hot sauce in its ass, even though Amy and I so very graciously sang him 20 rounds of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star—and we have great voices! Album-worthy voices!

As Junior nears his 15 month milestone, I’ve come to the conclusion that mothering—thus far anyway—means:

1) never feeling like you know what’s going on

2) not being sure if you’re going to like the fact that your kid is a smart ass chatterbox

3) laughing wickedly as your kid drags himself across the living room floor in the puffy orange blob of a pumpkin costume you got him for Halloween and thinking Oh my God, how did I ever live without him?



P.S. I got the Halloween costume at Marshall's for half the price of the other store. They're not paying me to say this but they're having a shoe giveaway. Maybe they thought I needed some new shoes.

Monday, October 13, 2008

It's the cutest thing: Our goat loves Car Talk!

Dear NPR,

When you sent me your first fundraising letter asking me to continue my generous support, I really, really wanted to but the $3.75 left over from my paycheck fell through the hole in my pocket. Sorry.

The second letter from you came at a great time—right on payday. I was all set to continue my generous support but low and behold, our ’91 Geo needed new tires, struts, an engine, and a timing belt. Oh yah, and the cardboard in my kid’s shoes was wearing thin so we had to get him new ones. I’m sure you understand why we couldn’t send you any money that time either.

Your third letter was pretty urgent, I’m guessing, what with all the italicized words and the use of CAPITALS and BOLD lettering. I was really struck when you USED ALL THREE. But the thing is, that month was bad too. We couldn’t afford groceries anymore so we went and got ourselves a goat and some llamas. I was thinking I could milk ’em, shave ’em and weave ’em but I couldn’t find shears or a loom at the Goodwill.

I got your fourth letter today—the one saying that our generous annual support has lapsed and that we’re no longer on your active contributor list. Ouch. If I could afford a belt to hold up my pants your letter would hurt just below that. I’m touched that the loss of our support pains you. It’s funny, actually, that you ask in the letter if there’s a problem you can easily resolve for us...because you can.

It’s called “I’d like last year’s donation back.” Your $100 reimbursement of my donation is vital to all aspects of my household. You can make my livelihood possible. I urge you to send our money back so that I may include your name on our active Christmas card list. Thank you in advance for your support of my efforts to feed and clothe my family.

Sincerely,
The Mullets

P.S. For your convenience, I’ve enclosed a self-addressed envelope. Sorry there’s no stamp. The goat ate it.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Now that's he's awake he can recycle all those beer cans thank you very much

Chuck’s brother, Matt, was supposed to come pumpkin picking with us yesterday. When he didn’t show, I understood. What 21-year-old guy wants to watch two yokels chase a fat toddler around a hick pumpkin patch? Turns out he didn’t make it because his alarm, which was set for 11 a.m., never went off and he slept until four.

He finally did make it up—at 11 p.m. Chuck and I were passed out on the couch. Matt wanted us to have some beers with him. He teased us for being old farts. Chuck, like any good brother, took the bait; I went to bed.

Is it wrong that when I brought Junior downstairs at 7 a.m. and we passed Matt, who was sound asleep on the couch, I experienced immense pleasure when Junior started yelling, “hi-ey, hi-ey” and Matt let out an exhausted moan?

Is it wrong that when Junior started shrieking because I didn’t give him his Cheerios fast enough I, um, waited a little longer so Matt could experience a toddler’s greedy wrath in all its nails-on-a-chalkboard entirety?

And finally, is it wrong that I felt giddy and vindicated when Matt stumbled into the kitchen minutes later, eyes bloodshot, and begged for coffee?

Really, is that one of the unspoken delights of parenthood—that we enjoy watching childless people who still live carefree lives suffer a little too sometimes?

Saturday, October 11, 2008

People who drive SUVs should not have "Thoreau" bumper stickers and other global warming musings

I'm so confused. The birds are chirping. Junior's wearing a short-sleeved shirt. People are walking the streets in shorts. I have a bizarre craving to do some spring cleaning. I'm not complaining, I swear, but if weren't for the red, yellows, and oranges outside the window you'd think spring was just around the corner. Instead, this is:



Snow and ice! Naked trees! St. Bernards rescuing skiers. (That's not my dog but I wish it were. As soon as Junior can say the word "dog" we are getting one.) For now, I'll have to settle for pumpkins. I can't wait to let Junior play in all the pumpkin goo. In his bathing suit.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Life has again proven that enormous jugs get you special treatment

While I’m relieved to have been tagged by Jay because it gets me off the hook of having to come up with something to write about, I’m no dummy. He tagged me because of my boobs. They are fabulous, aren’t they? And that’s after Junior! Is it any wonder I’ve gotten calls from Playboy and Maxim?

Too bad I’m missing all those teeth.

Anyway, here are six things you don’t know about me. Should you care? Frankly, I’m not sure.

1. I've been trying to find my gym teacher for 24 years. In third grade I stole a necklace from my gym teacher, Mr. McKirnen. He had taken it off and put it on the mat, and I slipped it into my pocket. When he realized it was missing he told all the boys to empty their pockets. He never questioned the girls because he said, “Girls don’t steal.” I’ll never forget this one kid, Kurt. He had turned the pockets of his Boy Scout outfit inside out and was on the verge of tears because the gym teacher kept hammering him with questions. I still have that necklace and I still feel like shit whenever I think about it. I wish I had been caught. I also wish I could find Mr. McKirnen so I could give him his necklace back. (P.S. I'm sorry Kurt! You were such a cute Boy Scout!)

2. My scar isn’t from a Sand Shark bite. I have a long, jagged scar on my knee from surgery I had as a kid (I had a huge, precancerous mole removed—huge). For most of my life I’ve told people I was bitten by a shark (can you blame me?). At my old job I made the mistake of telling the man who wrote the company newsletter and guess what was in the next issue? A little Q&A box with the question, “Who from marketing has survived a shark attack?” After that I was hounded with questions, particularly from a woman who had survived something traumatic and wanted to know if I was afraid of swimming in the ocean? Clearly she was looking for me to say something inspirational. I told her I didn’t want to let fear run my life so I swam as much as I could (conquer your fear, etc.) and while I was saying it, I felt cheesy. I don’t think you should let fear run your life, but I felt like a poser.

3. I’ve never really liked kids. Their noses run and they yell and talk back and they’re greedy. When I was pregnant, people called me the Anti Pregnant Woman (are you really surprised?). I didn’t like being pregnant and I didn’t want to talk about being pregnant. When I was 37 weeks my OB actually asked me, “You realize you’re pregnant, right?” because during my check ups I’d try to talk about other stuff, like gardening. Since having Junior I’ve softened but if you had to choose between Billy Bob from “Bad Santa” and me to teach your fifth grader, he’d be a much better choice.

4. I’ve cried during the Hills. Wait—don’t go! I didn’t cry because of the ridiculous drama. One night, when Junior was six months old, he had finally fallen asleep and I finally had some time to zone out and there it was on MTV. One of the girls—fine, LC— was in Paris and she was having the time of her life and it got me thinking about all the international travel I used to do for my last job (the shark bite place) and how free and glamorous I used to feel. LC even went to one of the bars I went to. It really hit me how much my life had changed post-Junior. I was a world traveler turned Mulletville inhabitant. My suitcase used to hold a camera and foreign street maps; now I had a diaper bag stocked with pureed peas and Burt's Bees butt cream. So yah, I cried a little.

5. I’m a reformed snooper. Once, way back when, Chuck and I took a break. We had been close to getting married. I could tell my mom wasn’t taking the news well but she wouldn’t talk to me about it so I read her journal. I know, it was shitty of me, but I wanted to know how she really felt. I stopped when I read “they would have had beautiful babies together.” From the safety of the present I can be breezy and say it all worked out; from the sadness of that moment I’ll say that I will never forget seeing those words on the page.

6. I eavesdrop. The last time my dad was over—yep, that time—he was in the kitchen holding Junior and he didn’t think anyone was listening but I was standing in the doorway. He leaned close and he whispered in Junior’s ear, “You don’t even know it yet, but you have the best mom in the world.” I stepped into the hallway and thought holy shit, I’m going to remember that for the rest of my life.

There you have it. I’ve been a thief, a liar, a kid hater, a connoisseur of junk TV, a snoop, and an eavesdropper. Since it's a holiday weekend and everyone needs a break, I'm not going to tag anyone. Your prize for making it through my six teats—I mean, treats?

A shot of my hooters the day we brought Junior home from the hospital. Crazy how my stomach went flat the very same day, huh? I must be a celebrity mom or something!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Look at my boobs, part deux

Before I begin, I’d like to thank the hundreds upon hundreds of faithful readers who sent encouraging emails promising that the rest of the week would be better. Clearly, you really care. Although, I am disappointed that after having birthed more than 100 posts my top-viewed post is “look at my boobs.”

Today, as my way of appeasing your cravings for words and breasts (hopefully in that order), I’ve given you a little of both. Do you like how that works?



Anyway. The nanny’s tardiness as of late has been stressing me—so badly that by the time she arrives I am sweating profusely and suffering from terrible heartburn (are you having trouble concentrating?). Handing your kid off to a nanny is hard enough without covering what time he woke, what he ate for breakfast, when he last pooed, what kind of mood he’s in, and 100 other various things while you’re racing towards your car.

Yesterday, be still my fragile ticker, she was on time. Why? Because I finally asked her to be.

It sounds so simple, doesn’t it?

What you don’t know is that for the last week I have been pestering Chuck with my incessant questions: Should I say something about her being late? Should he? Should Junior? He kept telling me I was being ridiculous but, to be perfectly honest, I was scared. You know how when you complain to a waiter that your soup is cold and he smiles nicely and says it's not problem but it really is a problem and he and the cook laugh and spit and Lord knows what else in your soup back in the kitchen because you had to open your big mouth? I was worried it would be like that.

Or worse.

What if she pinched Junior hard on his fat arms? Made him sit in the litter box? You know, sneaky mean things. You just don’t know these days.

All day at work I sweated and downed Tums. And then I heard Chuck’s sweet—although mildly patronizing—voice: “Trust someone until they give you a reason not to.”

Grammar aside, he’s got a point. It’s a much better outlook, and it doesn’t leave you mentally exhausted. Think about it for a minute while you gaze lovingly upon the ample bosom below.



All set?

When I got home I found that Diana had spent the afternoon coloring with the boys. She had even saved Junior’s “drawing” and labeled it “Jager,” along with the date. She had also taken the boys on a long walk and couldn’t wait to tell me how they’d held hands and giggled for most of it.

Chuck was right! It is better to trust and relax than obsess and panic. And as soon as I get Junior’s drawing back from the handwriting analysis people I’m going to tell him so.

(About the boob thing, I don't feel too bad. This blogger's most popular post was about butts. Can we manage to get out of the gutter for like 0.2 seconds?)

Monday, October 6, 2008

If yogurt makes you happy in your special place you might want to try match.com

I hate Mondays.

Every Monday, one of my co-workers brings in the leftovers of what she baked over the weekend. It sits on the edge of her desk and every time you walk by she says hopefully, “I made cucumber zucchini mango melt aren’t you going to try some?”

If you don’t stop and take a bite she stares forlornly at the fax machine. By four o’clock you are so tired of her dejected gaze that you finally take a taste and by then whatever has been sitting on her desk has now been sitting there for close to seven hours and tastes a bazillion times worse than if you’d just broken down and tasted it at nine in the morning.

I really resent the forced feedings. And poor Keith Gordon! He’s on the skinny side, you know, so if he doesn’t stop more than once she acts like he’s a babe rejecting Mother Earth’s teat.

Today I grudgingly took a bite of her Equal-grapefruit-soy-loaf then hurried off to a meeting, only to find that another co-worker had brought in Chobani Greek yogurt and likened it to finding Sri Lanka (her orgasmic exclamations were really unsuitable for 9:15 a.m.; if you're going to squeal breathlessly it should really be after 3).

To shut her up, I ate the damn yogurt. And I did not experience Nirvana. I did, however, experience complete disgust when a coworker from IT who couldn't find any spoons reached into my empty Chobani container and brought my used spoon to his mouth. He didn’t ask, nor did he refrain from licking it clean.

We are not cats, people. And if he read my blog he’d know that sharing spoons, even in reverse, makes me want to shower incessantly.

If I hadn’t been so nauseous from the soy-loaf nugget I’d just washed down with Cho-gurt I might have cared that the table of eyewitnesses now probably think me and the IT guy are splendoring in the grass.

Go ahead and tell me Tuesday’s gonna be better.

I dare you.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

I'm getting a real sense of how this mom thing is going to go down

My mom babysat last night so Chuck and I could go out with some friends. Junior spent the night at her house. When I called this morning to arrange for Junior's pick-up she said,"There's something I need to tell you. Please don't be mad."

"Go ahead..."

"He woke up at nine."

Oh, Junior, your father and I are happy for 7:20 a.m.

You are on thin ice.

Friday, October 3, 2008

In Mama's Mulletville, you'll get hair and buck teeth if I damn well feel like it

Chuck liked the new header I designed but he had some questions, like where was his mullet?

I love that my husband wants me to draw a mullet on his head.

Tragically, I had to tell him that he doesn't have hair. In real life or in Mulletville.

Then he wanted to know where his crown was? I told him that I gave myself a crown. It’s my blog and I’m my own frog prince.

He did need some kind of head dressing though. So yah, I did him up Viking style.

While we’re on the subject of hair, or lack thereof, I took Junior to the park yesterday after work. We were talking to the ducks (Junior does this kind of throat honk that's really cute) when a bald dude walked by. Junior stopped and very seriously whispered “Dada.”

Outwardly, I had a good laugh but inside I was seething. The little shit says “Dada” nonstop. He also says “whoah,” “boom,” “buh-bye,” “illy” (for kitty), "baby," "out," and “hi-ey.” The one word he has yet to utter?

“Mama.”

But I’m not bitter. I definitely have not considered drawing my frog child with snaggled teeth, a crater-like head, and minscule eyes, like this:



Nope, because a mother’s love is never, ever petty.

Did you hear that Junior? Did you just hear what mama said? Mammamamamaamamamamamama.

Little peckerhead.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

If the cats do it first then I'll definitely follow suit, I swear

The eerie thing about blogging is how aware you become of themes in your life, depending on the week. This week's theme seems to be "Who the hell am I?"

For instance, this morning there was a message in my inbox from Mr. New Boy. It read, "I found an old picture of you."

The following image was attached.



Yes, yes, I deserved that after telling him he looked like Keith Gordon. But it's clearly not who I am. I'm much cuter.

Message number two was from Chuck:

"The &**#ing DMV wouldn't let me register the $%#^ing new plates for the car because your %%^&ing last name doesn't match mine and the %^#&ing guy didn't believe you were my wife."

And here we are. The name changing issue again rears its ugly head.

Sometimes I wish my last name had been Snuffleofagusapelouski. Or Guggeinhickup. Then I would have loathed it and gleefully adopted my husband's last name. Instead I have spent 33 years very content with my name. And my dear husband, who is secure in his masculinity—blah blah, barbells and beer—hasn’t asked me to change it.

Until now.

Lately it's becoming apparent that life would be a lot easier if I did change it. Like when I make doctor's appointments for Junior and the doctor can't find his chart because it's under a different name. Or like when my dad writes me a check for Junior's birthday and he makes it out to my "married" name when he knows very well that I haven't changed my name but he's old fashioned and wants to slight my decision.

I don't know what to do. Hyphenation isn't an option. I think if you're going to go ahead and do it, you should go ahead and do it. With gusto!

Which leads me to Chuck's last name. It has plenty of gusto. It's rather, um, festive. It's the kind of name that appears on bar signage. That drunk people yell out. The kind of party name that makes a very serious first name for your child a necessity.

So there you have it. I don’t have big ass hair but my last name could soon be all the party I need.

Sigh.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

If you're going to say someone resembles a movie star, you should probably pick someone attractive

I'm sure I've mentioned that my office is a wee bit saturated with estrogen? Well, we have a new employee at work. And I'm happy to report that he's a man.

Clap, clap.

Well, kind of—he's only 20. So I guess he's not a manly man, but he hath brought with him many of the gender's trappings: unsavory cologne, slouchy pants, and white socks with black sneakers. (For those of you who wear great cologne, snug pants, and sexy brown loafers, call me: 1-800-MA-LIKEY).

Mr. New Boy sits right outside my office door and after a few hours of squinting at him I realized exactly who he reminded me of.

"You look just like the guy from the Legend of Billy Jean!"

"Who's Billy Jean?"

"You've never seen the Legend of Billy Jean? It's an 80s classic."

To which he said—are you ready?—"Nothing good came out of the eighties."

Sputter! Gasp! Whaaaaaaaat?

Was it possible he had never heard of leg warmers? Madonna? Thriller? MTV? Fricken' Boy George? The 80s were, like, one of the best decades ever. What about The Breakfast Club? Tie-dye jeans? Socks rolled over your pants?

How could he say that about my beloved 80s? Especially since the residents of Mulletville religiously pay homage to the decade with their big hair and stonewashed jeans! He's surrounded by tributes to the 80s every day for fuck's sake.

"It's a good movie," I said. "Some old guy tries to steal from Billy Jean because she's hot so she runs away with her friends and becomes famous. You should rent it."

Nothing.

"Here, I'll show you who I mean." I made him Google the movie. Then we Googled Keith Gordon. Then we experienced an awkward silence as several unflattering pictures of Keith Gordon came up. Like...



And...



Even better...



"I think I was thinking of someone else," I lied. "You really don't look like him at all."

"He's bald."

"He wasn't when he was in Billy Jean. And he was cool in Christine."

"What's that?"

See, until he asked that I felt kind of bad. But I decided that after he's taken an 80s refresher course and can tell his Thompson Twins from his John Cusack I'll pick a more attractive doppleganger for him.

Until then, I'm sticking with Arnie.

Did I miss anything else from the 80s?