Tuesday, September 29, 2009

grammar school

So, college is worthless. Four years of English classes and when I tried to spell conniving today, it was so far off, even spell check didn't have any suggestions for me (kniving - which, yeah, now that I think about it, sounds like some sick suicide regimen). Luckily, my college roommate who knows much more about spelling and grammar than I ever will was on Facebook and I quickly chat messaged her for an answer. One of these days, I'm going to talk to her about a way to remember how to spell coincidence because I know I should know it by now.

So if you get out of college and still feel dumb, is that when you enroll in grad school, or is that when you realize, F it, those who want to learn will learn regardless of formal education and get a real job? I interview people all day every day and I can tell you there are tons of peeps going to grad school because they either can't or don't want to get a real job. Enjoy six years of classes and thirty years of debt, dummy! I will go to grad school when someone offers to pay for it. Maybe. If I can't find anything better to do.

I was extremely annoyed today at someone I spoke who hasn't worked in seven years because she "was in school." Yeah, OK. In the last seven years I have: graduated from college, moved eight times (or so), had numerous boyfriends, had a child, got married, held a dozen jobs, bought a house, got a dog, etc, etc. And you're telling me, in all that time, you didn't work a single day? Not even for an hour? No thanks, pass. I don't even want to tell you how many of those jobs I had were while I was in college.

But hey, you say, always giving the benefit of the doubt (don't you hate those people?) maybe she was able to concentrate on her school with all her free time? Doubts it. I saw her resume. Not too impressive lady. Microsoft Excel only has one "l." I doubt you're proficient in it like you say you are. Excell elsewhere, Van Wilder!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Lost and found

Found my debit card. It was between a bunch of career fair business cards in my purse. Sorry Hunter Parrish look alike. I'm glad I only glared at you and didn't scream and curse. Now I must wait 7-10 business days for a new card so I can spend money again. That's what I get for being so volatile.

Who am I kidding about a hiatus from spending money? I found a credit card in my purse, too. Banana Republic has a buy two sale items, get one free sale on. Of course I couldn't say no. Women: you must shop on Sundays when your husband is watching football. If his team wins, he won't care (as much). If they lose (always my scenario), hopefully he'll be too pissed to notice.

I'm off to eat more healthy food for dinner in hopes to one day fit into my new clothes. Gained seven pounds on a one week vacation. Atta girl. Go big or go home.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Starbucks, missing debit card, and a bee

A Saturday morning tradition of mine has been going to get Starbucks and a Winchell's donut (yeah, I know it's spelled "doughnut" but that spelling really bothers me for some reason. I think it's needlessly long for a food with a hole in it). In our new house, it takes an extra twenty minutes to run these two seemingly quick errands, so I haven't been getting my fix.



Today, I decided to break out my old habit again. I went through the Starbucks drive-thru and waited behind a woman who requested "four pumps of vanilla, two pumps of peppermint and three pumps of caramel." I wanted to yell at her she might as well just inject sugar into her body intravenously, but I held back, seeing my own drink came with two pumps of something or other.



I paid the Starbucks man, drove to Winchell's. I rustled around in my fabulous new purse for the debit card I had just paid with, and it was nowhere to be found. I lose things all the time. All the time. But I had literally had this card in my hand two minutes ago and even I could not be capable of losing something so quickly in such a compact car. That Hunter Parrish wanna-be kid must have never returned it to me. I hadn't even noticed because I was in such a rush to roll up my window due to the dangerously close bee.



I returned to Starbucks and talked to the manager. I glared at the young man whom I had paid, assuming him to have already texted my credit card number and expiration date to everyone on his contact list. "I'm sorry, we don't have it," the manager apologized. You might not, I thought maliciously, but that little punk on the headset certainly does.



I came home and immediately told Steve our checking account was about to be cleaned out at Best Buy and we needed to cancel my card. He calmed me down and called the bank and got my card canceled.

I hope somewhere right now the cops are being called on those teenagers trying to install new stereos into their Datsuns with a canceled purple debit card with a flower on it. I also hope I don't find this card tomorrow in the depths of my fabulous new purse.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

wish list

I love buying stuff. But I have to be careful. My husband is a frugal accountant. I would love to go on a giant shopping spree once a season and buy whatever I wanted and then wait until the next season to buy again. Instead, I must buy something here and something there, little things at a time so he never notices a large dent in our account. If I could have my spree, here are the fall '09 items I would quickly pick up:



I have a slight obsession with gray pants. I love a light pattern, too. All in all, these are perfect. 215 Martin grey pinstriped trouser at Banana Republic.



MAXSTUDIO 'Hooper' Bootie




Nordstrom 'Eyelash' Tissue-Weight Two Tone Cashmere Wrap



Printed Kelsey ruffle top at J. Crew



Scoopneck Tunic at Ann Taylor Loft



Braided Chain Necklace by Guess



Of course I'd wear a shirt underneath it. VIA Button up trench coat at Victoria's Secret



We all know I have a jeans fetish. 7 For All Mankind® A-Pocket Stretch Jeans from Nordstrom

That was my wish list. Here is what I've actually bought this fall:



Red by Marc Ecko Handbag, Hold On Trapunto Tote from Macy's

(audible sigh)

At least the cashier told me teal was "the color this Fall." She made me feel a tiny bit better about the single bag hanging from my arm.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

packrat

There's an old men's tale that women grow up to be just like their moms. Guys would claim, "don't get married to a girl until you've seen what her mom looks like; she'll look just like that in 20 years." In this respect, I attracted a few guys. Well, maybe it was just my mom that attracted them, but I was closer to their ages. My mom is a very attractive woman. And I certainly hope to look like her at her age. OK, I know that tan will never happen, but maybe I could just keep her long eyelashes.



Here we are. Wow, this picture is eight years old. I must remember to take some more pictures of mom and me.



Here, this is a little newer (only three years old). You can get a look at the whole family in this one.

However, there is a trait of my mom's that I hope not to inherit. It has nothing to do with physical appearance. It's her clutter. My mom has junk everywhere. She has piles and stacks of papers that are yellowing around the edges. She has holiday decorations she never puts up. She keeps all boxes, bows, and ribbons she ever receives so she can reuse them. She has piles of clothes to mend that I wanted back in third grade. She has filled every closet, nook, cranny, and empty room in her house with thirty years of accumulation that she plans to do something with some day.



I can not stand it. I just want to have a giant garage sale and get rid of everything she has that's remotely sellable and take the rest to the Goodwill and the dump. Mom would never go for it. I've proposed it to her many times. I've also mused aloud about a giant bonfire and she was much less than amused. If she had any idea that I was putting this dirty little secret about her on the internet, my phone would be ringing angrily right now. "Holly, take that off the internet! They are projects and I am working on them!"

There are days when I leave mail on the counter, or a pile of receipts in a drawer. I see these tiny molehills and imagine the mountains they could become and think to myself, "oh God, it's starting!" So I try very hard to remain organized.



Here is my belt drawer.



And my makeup drawer. I have created a compartment for everything so everything has a place. If there's no place for something, it's time to get rid of it. I've already begun slipping in this new house with three times the space of our old apartment. I haven't sorted out my clothes in months. I have papers and receipts that need to be sifted through. The other day, I threw away four socks, just to feel like I'm not hoarding anything. I must keep this under control. I must not give into genetics.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Street of dreams

I went to the street of dreams with my sister tonight. It's a Pelesky girls tradition. We've been ogling houses, furniture, and decorations we can't afford since the beginning of time.



OK, twist my arm. I would take this kitchen.



And because I'm feeling generous, I will take this bar for Steve for the basement, too.



I wasn't too impressed with the bedrooms this year. I see better at Furniture Row. Amber mentioned how impractical and pointless these curtains are. I agree completely.



There are very few things in life I wouldn't do for a flat top stove. No, I don't cook anyway, but I do clean the trays and the burners of sizzled up noodles and sauce that goes astray. I hate that I can never get the color back from black to silver no matter how hard I try. No, not even with a Mr. Clean eraser. And the next day, inevitably, something drops into the tray again. Murphy's law of the stove, that's how it runs around here. So yes, I'll take a cooktop, too.



Who has a perpetually set table? Rich people, apparently. If I kept plates out like that, I would have to dust them. I have enough to dust as is with my surplus of dark brown furniture. Which, apparently is in this year according to Street of Dreams.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Monday night football

As I looked around the sports bar tonight, I realized I was the only woman there who wasn't wearing an apron. I'm no sports fanatic, but I would like to think the men don't hate it when I come along. Many women have no idea how to watch football without being annoying. There are ups (at one point tonight I considered naming our unborn daughter "Miami") and there are downs where you best not say, "it's OK." Here are some tips I've learned over the last four (losing) seasons of Miami Dolphins football.

1. Nobody cheers for getting the extra point.

2. Never profess to being a fan of any team other than your man's. Unless you are a part owner and can name every player and corresponding jersey number on the starting lineup and second string, you are immaturely pissing him off.

3. Don't speak to him for three (football) minutes after the other team scores.

4. You can get in someone's face at the bar in cases where some asshole warrants it. Just make sure it's a guy who would never hit a girl, nor get your husband involved.

5. Don't ask questions. Watch and learn.

6. Never say jerseys (even throwbacks) look cute. Football is rough and tumble. I'm also firmly against pink jerseys. There is no NFL team with a team color of pink.

7. If you're watching at home, get him another beer or whatever it is he asks for. These are your possessions in jeopardy; don't gamble.

8. Only a select few people in the world are "true fans" and your man is one of them.

9. You can gawk at cheerleaders together. That is completely acceptable and the guys like to feel unperverted for staring.

10. Touchdowns win games. Not field goals. Don't cheer for settling for three. Unless, of course, your team is undefeated in which case you can throw out these rules and do whatever you want.

11. Don't ever bring up the team's record unless the first number is greater than the second.

12. Hate every other team in his division. Actually, hate every team except his own.

There are so many more, but these should get you through your first game together. And the first game you watch with a sports fanatic could very well make or break your relationship. This is not trivial. Football is life.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Mr. Campbell in 8D

Today on the plane didn't start out well. Steve was feeling terrible and as a result I had to be the responsible one, which would never be my first choice. Given any choice, the word "responsible" would never be used in conjunction with me in any situation.

I gave Steve the window seat (I did it once before in a fit of selflessness and am afraid I gave up my window seat rights forever as a result), so once again I was sitting in the middle seat. Seat E. The rows may vary, but I am always seat E. An elderly gentleman sat next to me in seat D. We were still taxiing (don't bother: I already looked it up--it's the correct spelling) when he laid Question #1. "Are you studying or just reading?" I rolled my eyes in anticipation for a long ride of Q&A with the stranger you'll never see again.

What I wanted to say was, "if you find a class that studies this smut I'm reading, let me know. I'd like some credits for reading these trashy memoirs." But at the same time, I wanted to protect him from the words and sentences my eyes were sending to my mind. I don't know how they handle panic attacks on airplanes but I certainly don't want to be responsible for one. God, that word just keeps appearing today and it puts me on edge.

I'm reading



about a drag queen who is dating a whore and didn't know how to explain it in G-rated terms. I've had all day to ponder this, and I do not think there is a possible way to explain it that wouldn't make heads roll.

"Just reading," I answer sweetly, instinctively pulling the book closer to me, hoping he isn't reading over my shoulder. He is not going to figure out from the cover that the goldfish featured belongs in the drag queen's water-filled, see-through tit, is he? I wonder. Nah. That's a very unlikely conclusion for anyone to draw from an innocent looking gilled-creature.

This man is one of the few people who understands that responses under three words mean the askee doesn't want to be bothered any further. I was so grateful when he smiled at me and returned to his Direct TV in silence. My head was spinning with explanations of why on earth I would ever pick up a book like this and I still hadn't thought of anything better than "the swirls hypnotized me."

112 very intriguing pages later, I realized a plane is much too stuffy of a place to wear a fleece onto. It is very difficult to strip of anything in an 18 inch space. 8D seemed to anticipate the struggle I would have and I quickly felt canned air on my left arm and realized I had been de-sleeved. I wasn't sure if this was creepy or polite, but I nodded in acknowledgment of his action that was still hanging undecidedly in my mind without an adjective.

I assigned "polite" to his action after he proved his good intentions later in the flight. The stewardess rushed past me in her overambitious speed of collecting trash and he grabbed her elbow and pulled her back, forcing her to wait for my trash before he released her arm.

Another stewardess grabbed the intercom and announced the Campbells in seats 8C & 8D were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary. I looked instinctively at my row number to realize that yes, I was sitting next to one of the two celebrities of this flight. I smiled at Mrs. Campbell, across the aisle; The same sweet smile I had given Mr. Campbell in the ground in Seattle.

The smile said I'm pleased to see there are people who are still able to be genuinely courteous and kind in spite of all the chaos around them. That all those years of people treating him aloofly or rudely has not wearied Mr. Campbell into the same behavior. That all the terrible tragedies he has lived through himself have not calloused him into pessimism.

I smiled because we all hold our secrets, and occasionally, one slips out. It slithers right past you while you watch, and you see nothing more of it until another person acknowledges it. And the secrets of people we sit next to are not always bad or evil or malicious. Sometimes, they bring a nice cool breeze and a smile.

He who is of calm and happy nature will hardly feel the pressure of age, but to him who is of an opposite disposition youth and age are equally a burden. - Plato

Friday, September 18, 2009

a night without armor

I love poems. I love knowing the deepest part of a person that is exposed through their poetry. I do not discriminate. I like all poets. Famous or not. You will laugh when you hear who one of my favorite poets is. Think of a pretty blond with crooked teeth. No, not the vampire from True Blood. I'm not into unrealistic fiction. It's Jewel.



And here is why I love her:

I look at Young Girls Now


I look at young girls now
in their tight crushed velour
skin tight sky blue
hip huggers with the baby doll
tank tops
and I think
I've been there.
God, have I been there.

Sixteen years old and
wrestling with an overwhelming
newfound sexuality.
Parading it in all its
raw and awkward charm.

I had a pair of vintage
burgundy velvet short-
shorts that laced up
the sides
from the 1920s
and I wore them
with a tight leotard
and a plastic faux pearl
choker

showing off all my lanky
leggy blossoming
youth on the verge
of womanhood for all the
free world to see
with no idea how to keep
a secret, especially my own.



Or:

Dionne & I


We looked in the fridge only to see moldy Kraft singles
and some eye cream. That eye cream was our pride and
joy, so extravagant and luxurious, it made us feel rich.
the cracked walls of the bathroom fading away into the
small lights of her tiny vanity mirror.

We may have had no food, but we knew the eye cream was
all we needed--we were both young, with pretty faces and a
lot of faith in the system.
Some men would take us out.

Or:

Spoiled


I am perhaps
unfaithful
to those who
are outside my
own flesh.

I can not help
it, I am an
opportunist--
each pretty
face should
come with a straw
so that I may
slurp up the perfect moments
without them getting
stuck between my teeth.

And finally:

I Don't Suppose Raindrops

I don't suppose raindrops
will ever replace
the sound of small feet

nor sunflowers
their tiny crowns

all the dust has gathered itself
and settled on
your heart
and there is no correct combination

no key

no question

that will deliver them
once more
to your side

for she has already decided:
no answers will
be given

Thursday, September 17, 2009

life or something like it

Do you ever imagine a life different than the one you have?

I do.

Not wishing or hoping, just wondering.

Had I not ended up with Steve, I don't imagine things would be any better: I only imagine much worse. Like three kids in a two-bedroom apartment. Or maybe a nice house but neglected and alone. Or maybe living by myself, forgetting what bills are due when with massive amounts of debt.

I imagine still being a waitress, still getting wasted every night, only older, this time a bit more pathetic.

I imagine discontentment.

And these musings remind me that I am content. That I was happy to be at the Puyallup Fair today holding the hand of the man I love. That although I wasn't able to plan out my life to a tee, the way things fell into place worked out well for me.

I think it's harmless to wonder. Sometimes, like today, it's even beneficial.

Monday, September 14, 2009

home sweet home

So nice to feel like a part of my family's lives again. To know little idiosyncrasies about each other again. Like Chad laughing at how frazzled I get when Sonic the Hedgehog goes underwater and I have to find a giant bubble to prevent drowning. Like mom knowing what kind of hard-to-find soup I like to eat (Campbell's Mega Noodle). Like knowing dad keeps a giant spotlight in his bedroom in case hoodlums run through his backyard trying to steal his riding lawn mower.

So much hasn't changed around this house - only additions to junk piles. One thing has changed, pleasantly: they have the internet. I thought this vacation would be like Walden: no interruptions from the outside world. Luckily, I was wrong. I love being interrupted by the pressing nature of needing to see what's new online. Steve loves the blare of the television. They do have channels on one tv. Very few channels though, and not ESPN much to his dismay. Please don't say the words "Ohio State game" to him, as it's still a sore spot that he didn't watch it.

My little niece Saryn isn't so little anymore. She loves giving hugs and trying to kiss Steve (he pulls away every time, shyly; I guess the only girl he'll let kiss him is me). Today Joel turned 21. All of us kids are officially adults. I'm not sure that my parents will ever acknowledge it. There are pictures of us in our Christmas outfits every year at Kinderphoto lining the stairwell. Chad and I are always smiling. Amber is pouting. Joel looks bored. OK, so a few things have changed around here: us. But every time we're together, we remember our former selves: the ones when we became friends and bonded over our shared family name. And time won't change that. It will just remind us how long and through what we've remained friends.

Friday, September 11, 2009

W & 7, impatience, talons

I am of a firm conviction that alphabet letters and numbers under ten should be only one syllable. We teach these sequences to small children; they shouldn’t be too complicated to say in their entirety or pronounce. For this reason, I have a big problem with the letter “W.” Can we call it “dub?” I am also not fond of seven, but that’s a much smaller battle.

I have been working two jobs this week and having trouble keeping them straight. I have to think for about five seconds when answering the phone of where I am and what my greeting is. I keep mixing up the words “claimant” and “candidate.” The worst part is the voicemail. I hate listening to menu options. I’m that person who pushes buttons anticipating what they will ask instead of waiting to hear the automated voice tell me what to press. Sure, sometimes I end up with Spanish options as a result, but I believe in educating myself anyway. To delete my voicemails, I can never remember if it’s two, seven (ugh), or *three. This kicks me back to the beginning of the menu usually which further irritates me. Further proof that the impatient have only themselves to blame for their frustration.

My husband has giant toenails. I am not hyperbolizing here, they are massive. All he would have to do to maintain their human size is clip them once a week. Even once every two weeks would suffice for me. Keeping short toenails is not a priority for him (priorities are as follows in this order: beer, sports, mowing the lawn, Tucker, me). As a result, about once every week or so I wake up in middle of the night having a dream I was stabbed in the leg. In reality, it’s just Steve’s talons ripping off my skin as he moves in his sleep. I do accept his flaws along with his perfections, but this one is becoming dangerous.

What are your significant other’s flaws? Do they cause you any bodily harm?

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Not today

Not today.
I won't do it.
I won't blog.

I'm tired (exhausted, really).
I haven't showered in two days.
I've worked far too much and relaxed far too little.

I just need to walk by the computer.
Don't sit in that chair.
You haven't missed anything on the world wide web today.
Don't even look inside the door frame because you might be beckoned by the floating screen saver.

I am a strong woman.
I don't give into temptation.

I am weak.
I am all talk and no follow through.
I will write a blog of short sentences about not blogging and it won't count.

Maybe today is the day those strange IP addresses comment.
Perhaps today I will discover the identities of my twelve to sixteen readers.
In that case, I need to leave a post to be commented on.

Comment about how ridiculous this blog is and what a waste of time it is.
You won't find me disagreeing.
I'm the one who needs to shower and climb into bed.

If only the soft glow of the computer didn't hypnotize me and lull me to this seat.

I will happily go into work unshowered again for some solicited comments.
They aren't surprised by my hygiene anymore.

I am surprised by my lack of willpower.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

anticipating the new, even if it's old

What is worse than the anticipation of a vacation? The counting down of hours and saying, "a week from now I will be doing __________." That was always one of my favorite things to say. I love to recount events in times of weeks, months, and years. I say it after the event, noting the time that has passed. "A week ago exactly we were driving to Grandpa's house." Reminding myself and my siblings that there will be or once was a moment better than this one.

A week from today I will ask my niece if she remembers who I am (probably not). A week from today I will buy my little brother a beer (legally). A week from today my husband and I will squeeze onto a tiny twin mattress and fall asleep spooning, the only possible way to get two full-grown adults on my childhood bed. A week from today I will worry that Tucker misses us and ask Steve what he thinks Tucker is doing that second. A week from today I will anticipate coming home. A week from today I will remind myself that my home is no longer the same one as my parents'.

The only thing worse than the anticipation of a vacation is the anxiety of putting in your two weeks' notice. It's not that I'm not a veteran at this, I've done it many times. But it doesn't get easier. I hate to think of what a bind I'm leaving my boss in (somehow, I always flatter myself into believing I'm irreplaceable). But regardless, I did it. I quit unemployment insurance today. And now, I anticipate seeing the same names from the unemployment claims on the resumes I will see as a recruiter. I love this job. I'm ecstatic that my hard work paid off. I will come back from vacation refreshed, missing home, and eager to start my new old job again. You never really leave as long as your heart is still there.

Monday, September 7, 2009

there-ness

I like nothing more than to be present for the little events in one's life that don't get the recognition they deserve. When people think of events that matter in a person's life, they think of something like a wedding. I would rather be the first phone call (or even text) when they become engaged though than just another guest at a giant wedding. I would rather be there during the anticipation of the phone call on whether or not they accepted your offer than for a housewarming party.

Matt and Melinda were over at our house after they put an offer down on their's. I remember the anticipation of our phone call like it were yesterday and seeing it happening for someone else made me happy I was a part of it. What makes you a part of someone's life? Is it being there for the big events: the weddings, graduations and birthdays? (Or does that make you a relative?) Or is being a vital, irreplacable fixture to someone mean being there when no one is taking pictures and everything isn't smiles and giggles?

Those people who show up for events every half year or so only hear the cliff notes version of our lives; the glossed over part containing, "we're doing good, working, bought a house, maybe planning to have kids one day." Those people who know you know the anxiety you felt about putting in your two weeks' notice, or just how pissed you were when your car broke down or how worked up you got over who won a reality show. And I like to be that person. I love to see humans in their natural state, not as an observer, but as a participant in their lives. A good life means a few people also want to be a part of your's.

I believe that when all is said and done, all you can do is show up for someone in crisis, which seems so inadequate. But when you do, it can radically change everything. Your there-ness...can be life-giving, because often everyone else is in hiding...your being there says that just for this moment, this one tiny piece of the world is OK, or is at least better. - Anne Lamott, Traveling Mercies

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Hair products, dresses, fitting in

Maybe this isn't common, maybe it was just me since I was so uncool, but I have always idolized girls. Girls that are more popular than me, prettier than me, have better clothes than I do. Girls like this are not hard to find, in fact, it's hard to find a girl that doesn't fit the bill. Although, I must say, moving to Nebraska has done wonders for my self-esteem.

If there was a girl who I would prefer to be over myself, everything she did was justified. She didn't get her hair redyed after three months and her roots were growing out? All of a sudden, I didn't need to dye my hair, either. If she cut up t-shirts to make them sluttier, so did I. I was always striving to be different than myself, more like someone else.

There was a girl I idolized not long ago. It was sad, really, now that I'm nearing thirty that this was still taking place. I loved all her clothes. She made me want to use hair products (which I never use). All of a sudden, I wasn't feminine enough and thought of changing up my look. I even considered buying a dress (but it never went that far). It didn't matter what I wore, I still thought her clothes looked better than mine.

The other day, I was walking through the mayhem that is Marshall's to get to the back wall of home accessories. On my way through the screaming kids and flying clothes, I saw a dress that belongs to the girl previously known as my idol of all things feminine. There it hung: limp on its hanger, wrinkled, and looking cheap. I smiled in spite of myself. Glad I never did spring for a dress. It's not my style. And it's refreshing to know that I know what is. I am no longer defined by someone else.

weekend getaway

My sister came over and decided she wanted to get away tomorrow evening for her long weekend. She bought a book, and we looked for Bed & Breakfasts online. She found one she liked, I think probably because the description said it was the perfect place to curl up with a good book. Here is where she'll arrive tomorrow, in her white summer dress, the day before labor day, with a book under her arm:



When you're single, you can do that. You can drive off for a weekend and stay in some strange room with probably way too many flowers wallpapered everywhere. You can pick up a book, not because it's on a reading list, but because it's pink with swirly writing and grabbed your attention because at the time you were craving a cupcake. Domestic life is much more scheduled, and very contrived. Everything is done with a plan, mapped out. I actually fold my clothes when I pack now. Yeah, I pack now. Hard to believe. Long weekends are chores, trips to Ace Hardware and exercise.

I don't miss being single. I love my husband and have become rather dependent on him. But I do miss spontaneity. A small price to pay though for a house and a dog and a man who loves me. Amber told me we could open up a bed and breakfast here, and serve toaster strudels for breakfast and instead of reading by a fireplace, our guests would be forced to hear the sports game du jour blaring from the television set. Not a bad idea, I thought. I know quite a few people who would prefer that to some wallpaper and birdhouses any day. In the mean time, I will read my books with my iPod in, always trying to drown out the sound of a referee's whistle.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Working hard is hardly working

To work, I wear high heels every day. I straighten my hair, put on slacks that I have unwrinkled in the dryer. I put in some earrings and curl my eyelashes. And then, the second I get home from work, I peel off the slacks and trade them in for some sweatpants. I take off all my jewelry and put my hair up. In ten seconds flat, I can morph from the professional in slacks to the professional slacker. And oh how I love the latter.

In all honesty, I am somewhat jealous of those "Failure to Launch" type guys who sponge off their parents and laze around all day playing Xbox. Although I wouldn't play Xbox, I would read, do puzzles, go buy things for our house, write. I would frame pictures and maybe even scrapbook. I would buy lemonade from the kids down the street and stop and chat with the neighbors on a breezy day. I would purchase endless items off eBay that we didn't really need but I thought was a decent deal.

People always tell me they can't picture me without a job. I'm such a hard worker and so productive that it just would never happen. Well I can picture it, and the picture is sweet. I would still be productive, just around the house with the chores and fixing things and I would send in poetry more often and read more books.

We call them deadbeats, these people who don't work for "The Man" and don't have bills, but perhaps we should call them offbeats instead. They are modern day Henry David Thoreaus, reflecting on simple living and philosophizing the true meaning of life. They march to the beat of their own drums.

Sometimes we collide, me the professional and me the slacker. While I'm working double what I have to and trying to be recognized, my slacker self is saying "go unnoticed and give the Man a nice punch in the gut from me." Somehow the professional wins out, but only because she's the one wearing the complete, untorn pants in the relationship. And the slacker wimpers that yet another 40 hours has elapsed from the life that could have been.


If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. ~Henry David Thoreau

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Sweet September



Ah, September 1st. I awoke to a definite nip in the air and put on my fuzziest sweat pants and a fleece the second I stepped out of the shower. I dreamed last night that it was snowing and roused myself only long enough to snuggle farther down into the covers and allow Tucker in. Until the snow arrives, I will relish in the ten days or so we will get of fall weather. I have traded my cold Starbucks beverages in for hot ones (why yes, a white chocolate mocha sounds delightful).

I raked leaves on Sunday so Steve could mow the lawn. Tucker loved the large pile I created and insisted on trampling through it. I tried to shoo him away but ended up laughing because he looked so confused. I also painted an accent wall in a nice fall red. We'll see if I regret that when spring comes around. The paint man told me it looked like blood and laughed nervously. Why is he so aware of the precise hue of blood?

The good shows are coming back on tv, we are traveling to visit family, another three-day weekend...there is nothing too shabby about September. Today I came home from work and didn't curse my car because of it's lack of air conditioning. I did, however, curse the many school buses on the way to work that tack an extra five minutes onto my commute. I will love school when I have kids and can use that as an excuse to only work part-time. Until then, get out of my way. This might be your job, Mr. Bus Driver, but I'm trying to get to mine so I can keep it, so move it.

Oh wait, this post was about how happy I am with the change of seasons. This fall, I am looking forward to: seeing my brothers. To going to the Puyallup fair. To Biggest Loser and Project Runway. To wearing my Banana Republic navy blue trench coat that really doesn't match anything. To buying new boots. To light scarves. To a new batch of sweater vests. To Steve's birthday ice cream cake. To running our six miles around Wehrspann lake in record time. To finally having trick-or-treaters. To my new king size bed. To painting even more rooms.

This fall, I hope: to get more poetry published. To spend more time reading and less watching "Big Brother after dark." To lose ten pounds. To learn. To be a better wife. To make some new friends. To bake cookies. To go to Worlds of Fun with my sister again. To tolerate my daily commute. To spend less money on myself and more on gifts. To appreciate what I have and forget about what I don't.

Bittersweet *Autumn. The mellow, messy, leaf-kicking, perfect pause between the opposing miseries of summer and winter.
~Carol Bishop Hipps



*The word here is actually October, but I thought Autumn worked better with my post. Perhaps I'll try it again next month so I can use the quote correctly.