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ABOUT ME

About me: I'm a 40-something mother to a pickle party of a family. My husband Chuck, our tween Junior, our 6-year-old Everett, our toddler Cam, 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?). I'm a freelance graphic designer and writer.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

It's hard to pick up dudes when you reek of Noxzema, unless it reminds them of their Bengay

When I was 16, my family drove from Connecticut to Florida in a GMC Jimmy. It was spring break. We brought Granny, who was a cranky SOB, and my friend Holly, who was able to tan. My eight-year-old brother, Ted, was along for the ride; between his armpit farts and Granny’s loose butt cheeks, I wanted to disappear into a Delaware truck stop and never look back.

We drove to Coral Springs, a town my mother had promised was a mecca of hot young surfers—surfers who were just waiting for two chicks from Connecticut to arrive. Bullshit! The only locals waiting for us were 85 year olds. I needed a prom date. But not that desperately.

Florida was not my friend. I tried to tan alongside Holly, but I burnt so badly my nightly routine consisted of slugging Benadryl and coating myself in Noxzema. By day two, I was ready to go home.

Day two.

When the week was finally over, I did a dance of joy. I was tired and fried to a crisp. When everyone awoke I was already sitting by the Jimmy. Had I only known what awaited…

Holly had bought a poufy prom dress and the store had packaged it in a long box that resembled a coffin. The “way back” of the Jimmy, where Holly and I sat, was covered in beach sand, which stuck to my Noxzema-coated limbs. And Granny, who’d complained that her walker pushed against her fragile legs on the ride down, insisted we put the walker elsewhere. Mmmmhmmm.

For 24 hours, I shared this space with Holly:



Sunburned. Covered in sand. Suffocating under a walker and a prom dress. I didn’t think it could get worse. Alas, still on the itinerary: 12 hours (okay, one) sitting at a Georgia rest area waiting for my brother—who’d lived on ice cream and macaroni and cheese all week—as he tried to, you know, go.

Granny was pissed. She didn’t say it, but I know she was thinking, “I can’t believe we’re sitting here waiting for that asshole to pinch a loaf.” We all were.

So, 18 years later—EIGHTEEN YEARS?????—the sunburn has faded (mostly) and the sand has washed away. I’m still scarred, but I want you to have some fun in the sand. Please, someone should.

I’m giving away one Naturally Playful sandbox. The item is provided by AllChildrensFurniture.com, which has a wide selection of kids furniture (seriously, they have race car beds, toy chests and cute little tables).

All you have to do is leave me a comment (if you're just leaving a comment to leave me a comment let me know, okay?).

One comment per person. Comments close at midnight on May 31, EST. Open to U.S. residents only.

33 comments:

Jill said...

I am pregnant with #4... your roadtrip agony just makes me wonder how much they will all hate my husband and me in 10 years when we drag them from place to place. LOL (Note to self: pack lots of fruit!)

Not that it's any consolation as a teenager... but take comfort that pasty white skin = no wrinkles and skin cancer when you get older!!

feefifoto said...

Whoa. you make it so appealing, how can I resist? Count me in.

kyooty said...

OK count me out but I had to comment because OMG! that's just too vivid a memory.

Amy B said...

Great post! I would love to be the lucky winner of that cool sandbox, I have been looking to buy one for my daughter.

Gina said...

I'd enjoy the cross country slaughter - I rarely get interesting company.

Suzi said...

Don't include me on the give away, but I had to say that it brought back memories of spring break my freshman year. San Diego/Los Angeles on the beach covered in chicken pox. 15 years old thinking I was cool, which clearly I wasn't, and listening to The Beastie Boys over and over and over....Good Times.

Dto3 said...

Screw it - I know I'm not going to win, but here's my address anyway:
2468 Appreciate Way
Dorespect, ME 90210

Delia said...

My what memories that post brings to my mind. Almost made me remember the first night in my first apartment and I'm walking out of the bathroom after taking a shower. My face is covered in Noxzema, my hair up in a towel, and me in a granny gown. I was 18. The hot neighbor guy was sitting on my couch waiting to meet me. Thanks to my roommate for letting him in!

Cool sandbox too!

Roshni Mitra Chintalapati said...

your diagram of poor Ms Mullet is so exactly like something my son would draw that I am actually feeling bad for you now! The expression of Ms Mullet is really heart-rending.

Michele P. said...

I just about peed myself laughing reading your description of your road trip from hell. I burn as well, and I know it is not a fun thing-I drove to FL once too, with first hubby. It was not a fun trip, we stayed at his granny's house-which she'd closed up for the summer-and it was full of fleas, so I got eaten alive. He refused to listen to the locals about fishing, and ended up having a poisonous catfish barb enter his hand...and poison him. 3 $1000 IV's of anti venom later we were able to come home to Maine. Somewhere, along the way I saw the light...and ended up getting a divorce shortly after lol. Geez...and I thought bad road trips only happened to me! Count me in for your giveaway, I enjoyed reading your post!

Steph K said...

You are great! My kids think I'm nuts as I sit here grinning while reading your blog. Count me in on the drawing. We were just beginning to plan a sandbox yesterday. :)

Keely said...

I'm just leaving you a comment cause I'm Canadian and don't qualify. I'd just like to say - um, you sure know how to sell something.

I never want to look at sand again.

Jenera said...

Oh, please enter me in the giveaway!

I'm dreading family vacations once the boys get older. I just they keep the whole 'love riding in the car' thing going.

mo.stoneskin said...

Hey you got something against us Brits?

;op

Love the diagram, it is brilliant.

Brandy said...

Thank you for sharing your miserable story as a lead in to a sandbox. lol.

harrietv said...

Just a comment (or two):

1. Jill is right about not tanning. Your young skin will last a whole lot longer, and at 65 you'll be grateful.

2. Should you get sunburned again, try milk of magnesia instead of Noxzema. It soothes and doesn't smell, unless you buy the mint-flavored.

Stacie's Madness said...

*not an entry*

omfg, what a lead into your giveaway, you crack me up.

Otter Thomas said...

The neighborhood cats could probably use somewhere to poop so sign me up.

Mrsbear said...

Can't I just send you my sandbox instead?

this is not an entryFor the record, my kids really dig *hehe* their sandbox, it's only me who loathes scrubbing the grainy stuff out of their hair. ;)

I so didn't miss the days of peeling off my charred skin, back when sunblock was optional.

Pricilla said...

I spit my coffee at the monitor. Not good for a goat.

The sandbox would make a lovely gift for the publicist's nephews, though so please count her in for your giveaway.

Thank you so much!

blognut said...

I totally remember those roadtrips, and I regularly subject my children to them, too.

As for the sandbox, that sounds cool, but DON'T be sending me one of those.

Have a great weekend!

GreenJello said...

That is a freaking awesome sandbox.

And I remember using Noxzema for sunburns... it felt good going on, but never seemed to do anything as far as healing the darn things.

Anne said...

I don't tan either. I go from ghostly white, to red to peeling to ghostly white. I would love a sandbox. Do you think I can put it next to a bucket of water and convince my kids that they are at the beach?

The Mother said...

Maybe this is why I hate swimsuits, to this day?

Even when I had a body that looked decent in one, I was covered in that white zinc paste that passed for sunscreen all those years ago. Beached whale just isn't appealing.

Kate said...

Ugh, the thought of sand sticking to noxema slathered stinging red skin makes me cringe. Poor, poor you. (I bet your prom dress was lovely though.)

Jeanne said...

Noxema on sunburn? I guess you didn't have your hair shirt with you.

I'm in on the sandbox -- I've got a grandkid or two (okay, seven) that might enjoy it.

Lori said...

I doubt the 85 year old hotties could smell the Noxzema...We are fans of the sand so a sandbox would be great.
lkziegler[at]gmail[dot]com

Holly said...

Oh, pick me! Pick me!! bertandholly (at) yahoo (dot) com.

Kris said...

I deserve the sandbox cause I had a somewhat similar wonderful Florida vacation. Only mine was about 25 yrs ago. I got so sunburned. Mom sprayed solarcaine all over it. I wish she'd have used Noxema cause it turns out I was terribly allergic to solarcaine. Then my sis came down with sun poisoning too. We spent more time inside at the hosp than outside in the Florida sun.
I feel for you. Those Florida trips have scared us for life - literally.

Eternal Lizdom said...

I'm leaving a comment that is just a comment about wanting that sandbox so I guess it's just a comment that is a comment on my wanting to enter a comment for a chance to win.

Nissa said...

I'd love that sandbox...well, wait, my little girl would. :)

I *do* love your blog but I'm a lurker and not usually a commenter. Unless it's real life and then I tend to comment relentlessly and that's about as far away from lurking as one can get. :)

Mary@Holy Mackerel said...

I've done the sunburn/sand routine. No thanks.

Just commenting. No wanty new sandbox. I already have a turtle one that I actually want to get rid of...

Anonymous said...

So funny!

We would love to win a sandbox for our two kids. I emailed my email address. Thanks!