Tag Archives: humor

splatter art with guts and goodness – she’s ALIVE!

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splatter art with guts and goodness – she’s ALIVE!

it’s working. everything i set out to do with this blog is working! heeHEEEE!

now, you might think, what’s working? you blogged some random thoughts, quit over a year ago and haven’t published a thing since. ah! and that’s where you’d be mistaken, friend. (yes, mr. doubty-doubt-yourself demon, i’m talking to you!)

reading my last post made me misty. that was quite some time ago, in quite specific times. despite my absence since and any speculation that might have come from a few of my last public musings, i still have full access to sharp objects including pens, my daughter still has a mother and people are still subject to my words, whether scribbled or babbled, dramatic or droll. i didn’t forget about this space where i left my heart and dreams and attempts at humor across page after page; where every click and every comment from my readers changed my worldview just a little. attempting to contain that expanded worldview within my myopic daily calendar pretty well made my head explode.

and this is what i found squirming amid the bits of grey matter:

hardheadpress.com: a small press with guts and goodness embracing a golden age of publishing 
(my new press!)

and its first successful release by San Francisco author Ezekiel Tyrus:

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already i’ve realized at least 100 tiny dreams i hardly knew i had. the critical reception has been great so far and a groundswell has begun, especially in San Francisco, rippling all the way out to fledgling fanbases in Toronto and greater Ontario. the author and i have a hilarious connection and a now deep relationship. i couldn’t be more proud or feel more lucky to have produced his striking debut. Ezekiel (Zeke) recently hosted a very successful reading at one of my “churches” –  San Francisco’s

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he has several more events scheduled for the Bay area in October and November, with details forthcoming. i’ll go ahead of course and throw in an Amazon link to Eli,Ely for those of you who’d like to skip straight to the shopping cart. e-book readers will have to wait until October, your breathless anticipation is appreciated! feel free to contact me here or email me with inquiries, requests, your outrage at my outrageousness, or anything else you don’t want to leave in the comments section below.

“Like” hardheadpress at https://www.facebook.com/hardheadpress and follow us on Twitter @hardheadpress.com

thank you and the Universal energy that blessed this harvest of ideas and dreams. life is better after 40. no question.

namaste

-aft

 

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you don’t yell at a sleepwalker. he may fall and break his neck – from sunset boulevard

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i think in dramatic words sometimes. above the din of my sarcastic humor and chastising taskmaster is the voice of my internal norma desmond, her tongue lingering on the L’s in romantic, tragic words like languish and lament, and on her lips making O’s in gentle words like repose and opiate. 

languish is a favorite word of mine lately (opiate might be if i could do something other than lament the absence). even as my life blooms with possibilities and positivities, i wake most days to a wilted spirit. many mornings i lay with a single eye open, attempting to motivate myself for a work day. first i navigate my regular monday-through-friday desire to pierce my jugular with a nearby ballpoint. i imagine the gentle return to sleep as blood loss saps the energy already en route to my list-maker and worry wheels. (ok, norma, your toddler would not appreciate the leave-behind of life without mommy….though i suspect she’d be delighted at the opportunity to use an entire box of dora bandaids with no lecture on how many bleeding children in the world can’t afford them.) after wistfully ruling out a dramatic, unexpected suicide after which all my words would be published and celebrated posthumously, i imagine my life without corporate responsibility and the need for 8 billable hours a day. i laugh at the anticipated death of the word deliverables in my life and lexicon. lastly, i drift through a few fanciful ideas, words, projects, plots and characters that i’d rather play with today.

that last part leaves me relatively certain i’m not just a sad sack of lazy. i’ve convinced myself that if i had a different focus, my jugular wouldn’t look so inviting to sharp-ish objects, and my natural spark would keep my smiles and insides warm. i picture a life where i write, read, cook and love my family full-time. in it i get to paint and decorate our new house without so much as a nod to anything but my daughter, my man, my aspirations and a sunny sky. i sort through all of these imaginings before i change my sleepy breathing. finally, i reluctantly rise and pry my mind open enough to make coffee. problem salved.

truth is, i’m not the kind to embrace i’ll-be-happy-when’s, but i’m not thinking so clearly lately. i turn 40 in two months. i’ve been divorced a year this weekend. (this, at least, is offset by cinco de mayo and my new love’s birthday…plus the fact that the word “weekend” applies.) then there is the part where my mom passed away less than six weeks ago, followed closely by my beloved old kitty. maybe someday i’ll blog about what it’s like in the maelstrom of a catholic-military family reunion-funeral. picture way too much alcohol, more proximity than any of us can stand experience regularly, and you get a lot of bittersweet nostalgia plus a giant bag of tempers and tears. i got predictably ill upon my return home and just haven’t felt my Self much since.

but i am working out. sometimes i eat well. i’m here writing words. i’m loving my loving and lovable friends. and i’m trying hard to crawl from languishing to largess in my spirit of accountability and professional pride. i’m using what i know, and i am happy much of the time, despite the morose tone today.

grief is a funny thing. it doesn’t stay separated into nice neat piles based on cause, and it doesn’t respond all that much to logic or efforts to “express it all” so as not to stumble across its remnants later. it also isn’t clear about itself, hiding in clumsiness, self-doubt, old hurts, and sudden loud noises. you can drink all the water you want, eat a field of whole foods, run around the world once a day, journal, pray, numb out…none of it can fill the gaping wound of loss any faster than it could fill the gaping wound of surgery.

i’m sort of dreading mothers’ day this year. i’m excited for the celebration with my tiny daughter, but there is a blurry spot where my focus has been all these years. this year my spirit will celebrate with my mom’s, and that has to be enough…beautifully enough.

that’s one thing i know about this life…that it is enough, beautifully enough, whether we like it or not. when it’s grey inside you, the sun still shines waiting for the return of your toothy smile and easy laughter. when grief is a stifling syrup of breaths and blur, the relief that one day comes is accompanied by new vision and a deeper soul. it’s always enough. many times too much.

i grew up next to sunset boulevard. the tiny one in melbourne beach, florida. perhaps that’s where my norma was born, bound for luxury, luster, lazing and a laugh lines. i’ve already got the last part in place. that’s the best one anyway.

geezers for weezer….or, a music festival with showers and a private loo

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tomorrow morning i leave for the Weezer Cruise. haHA! my first cruise, my first open ocean nighttime sky, my first time in Mexico…certainly not my first float, but you could call it my first boat load of music.

it’s been a long time since i went to a good music festival. i cut my teeth on the first few lollapoloozas and punctuated those experiences with Woodstock 94. that was the one where, unless you pitched your tent near the Port-o-Johns that couldn’t be emptied because people pitched their tents all around a bunch of Port-o-Johns, the chaos was lovely, the music was mostly great and we didn’t burn things down or trample each other. then there were scads of local festivals down south, punk rock matinees at CBGBs up north, all of which got gross enough to feel like camping in a bear carcass.

as i got older, i got pickier about epic music events. i’ve considered the bonaroos and the coachellas, a few one-day festivals here and there, but eventually, despite my passion for live music, the visceral awareness of the inevitable eau de crusty-kids in wet grass is just a buzzkill.

it’s time. this week and weekend i will revive my drive, pack plenty of deoderant and sequester myself on the sea with what i’m hoping will be more than a bunch of 20-something dudes. my boyfriend and i will split the ages just above and below the grand-daddies of the ship, the hosts who will grace rockin’ and rocking main stages and events over the four day cruise. i’ll watch them play tunes i was spinning as a college radio dj in 1991 and beyond. will this be j mascis and dinosaur jr rockin’ the greatest hits tour like the breeders did a few years ago? will fans of the other fledgling bands consist of more than the adult music bloggers who can afford SiriusXM subscriptions and boat fare? it’s all good, i just wonder.

or, will me and my guy be one of “those couples” i used to see at festivals when i was 21? the ones where the kids are all thinkin’ a) awe, the old people are here rockin! b) they must be with the band or festival crew, or c) um, this the “Weezer” cruise…the Geezer cruise leaves after they finish installing hand rails on your slot machine seats. i wonder if they will realize we didn’t have to “find” an 80’s prom night themed outfit…just open a dusty trunk and squeeze into memories with disintegrating zippers. i so wish i had my doc martin maryjane’s or my old catfish-toed chuck taylor high tops to complete the ensemble.

the coolest thing about the psycho-social aspect of this adventure is that…haHA again!…i don’t give a crap. the self-conscious need to at least blend with the cool kids exited my life some time ago. i’m not single and goofy and shy anymore. i’m even unperturbed at the thought of tooling around the ship in a bathing suit. i’m a cool kid in my own world, where me and my traveler are set to embark, eyes, ears and hearts open, amped to see some great music and sparkling scenery. we are both primed for pleasure. plus with this evolving version of musical mayhem, i’ll be thrilled to take advantage of a refreshing pool, a clean balcony room and a grown up, full-service spa should i need to escape the creeping scent of boy sweat and dreadlock wax…or the din of drunken bunkmates and high seas hookups…or to above-grass accomodations with doors that lock.  there i can also rest my almost geriatric ears between exquisite sets of disabling distortion and furious feedback, pulsing precision and lo-fi licks.

oops, almost forgot…time to chill tonight’s pre-bon voyage champagne! it’s not korbel and it’s not krug…it’s right in the glorious middle, like i am in age, happily and wonderfully good enough. wish me calm seas and competent crew members. plus a constant tropical breeze of orchids and tuberose, salt and tree fruits to freshen the festival air. more the calm seas and competent crew members, though…if you’re prioritizing.

 

a serious aside: my thoughts and heart go out to everyone affected by the Costa Concordia tragedy. avoidable mistakes that can’t be undone are like torture added to grief. reality can be so difficult when acceptance is your only choice. may the sacrifices made here be the last of their kind. 

 

 

 

 

a lesson on shyness, shambles and the pursuit of “Awww”

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a beat writer fan’s cliche…our smoke on the water riff, if you will…where we first alight, find delight and begin our imitations…

“the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones that never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes ‘Awww!'” – j.kerouac

but i’m not here today to imitate, or to ruminate on the futures and fantasies this quote inspired behind my shy, collegiate eyes. i’m not writing with the same “Awww” in my throat as when i scribbled it in paint, dead center, on the black sheet of quotes and trippy things that hung in my early ’90s dorm room of disaffection and flannel.

what interests me this morning is the beginning of that sentence…the part i’ve never seen included with these words out of their context…the part i didn’t paint on my black sheep’s black sheet…

“they danced down the streets like dingledodies, and i shambled after as i’ve been doing all my life after people who interest me, because…”

i’ve always chosen the mad ones. jack described their salience so elegantly, so perfectly analogous to fireworks, like the ones i imagined were for me each july 4th as the nation kicked off its trish birthday festivities in anticipation of the 6th. the mad ones. i’ve hung rapt on their burning words. i’ve wished that my presence would explode like sparkling spiders enough to fill a sky full of stars, or even just a room. i’ve always hoped my blue centerlight would pop one day and the world would say “Awww” at all the love, brilliance, hope and wonder i carry in my heart.

i’ve spent a life shambling. i’ve spent a life feeling the cool cast of a shadow…someone’s shadow, all my days. i’d bet that’s not what people might guess. i’ve learned a lot about how those around me perceived me, my shyness and my life over the years. i was always alarmed and amused when i would learn later about people who were intimidated…the ones who thought i was always outrageous, confident, cool and cold. they were as surprised as i was fascinated when they learned i was a shy, nerdy, soft-hearted dreamer. they don’t know i was the littlest of 7 loud kids. they didn’t guess that i was once the awkward girl at school who got picked on or ignored completely. i went through a lot protecting that dreamer. i kept my tender heart a secret from so many, sometimes on purpose. i’m proud to say she’s made it through with bigger dreams, eyes and sighs than ever.

i used to shamble, but i’m picking up speed.

i always chased those mad ones because i thought i couldn’t be one…one of the people who interests me. i wasn’t interesting enough to others to interest myself. i wasn’t wild enough, free-spirited enough. i danced on peripheries looking for places to jump into the fun, afraid i wasn’t welcome. i felt like a wallflower but played the role badly enough to confuse all but the most perceptive viewers. i became a great sidekick to the loud and living. together we developed complex worldviews in galaxies all our own with our desires and perceptions as lenses. i gave them all the credit for whatever i found interesting in my life. strange then, that i chose so much solitude, moving and working always in new places, seeking my inner dingledodie and another one to play with.

i chose the mad ones as my mates. each time, i believed i was a partner, a mad one, half of a perfect dingledodie pair. sometimes we exploded, but too close to the ground, setting wild fires and hearts ablaze with romantic and destructive abandon. but most times i became the practical one, the grounded girl, the shambler. in the end i’d find myself shambling after the important details left strewn behind my mad one. i’d spend my energy admiring and shambling into trouble, picking up the pieces of our lives, waiting for that blue centerlight that was the fruition of their dreams, mine somehow now a footnote.

these days i’m free. free from the need or desire for shambling. free from the shyness that kept me from lighting my yellow roman candle for a crowd. i’ve picked a mate who seems inspired by my madness and need to burn, burn, burn and never say a commonplace thing (though i know i do more often than not). he does much of my yawning for me, leads with his mind and heart, lives for passion, expresses himself eloquently and honestly and never shambles. he cools and calms me, even as he stokes the fires in my belly, under my ass and in my most desirous heart. he leaves me space and gives me safety as i tap into the heat and beautiful chaos of my centerlight. it’s frightening. i have so much time and energy to devote to fulfilling all of these promises i’ve made to my Self…my excuses for inaction are now thin at best.

jack was a mad one. he describes himself in this most famous of quotes. i wonder if he ever realized he was exactly what he sought, what he loved. i wonder if he had a day where he woke up and realized the shambling was all in his mind. i wonder if he saw that in his whole life he never yawned or said a commonplace thing. i wonder if he ever anticipated that his beautiful and tragic life and poetry would explode across my mind and heart every time i set feet where he set his, or read words he wrote that feel like mine. i wonder if he ever looked up and realized how many shambled after him.

this is a poignant post for me, lacking the wit i love to wield behind my words. but, it is my most outrageous revelation of this brand new year, one of several i’m sure i will stew on as my clock ticks toward 40…as i realize that i am what i’ve loved…as i become more outrageously me…and share it with outrageous you.

may we all live out loud and with passion, my fellow dingledodies…and the self-awareness to feel it.

an exorcism of apathy and the scream of dying demons

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ah, the scent of freshly mixed compost and self-sabotage. all around me are new leaves, faces turned optimistically upward at a deepening winter sky. they frost the tops of many aged, rotting ones that are decomposing finally into the soil of my habits.

still, amid the clearing and cultivating of so many neglected parts of the garden, there are sections now languishing, no longer loved nor appreciated…no matter even that they are necessary for the care and feeding of my tiny family. it’s a conundrum, a puzzle, flavored with dilemma sprinkles and disregard. mary, mary quite contrary, how does your garden grow? with silvery dreams and frustrated screams, and pretty mistakes all in a row…

pretty, shiny leaves:

my diet has finally come together. i never really made a “decision” to improve it…i’d been trying to do that for years. once upon a time i was an absurdly healthy eater, which made it even funnier and more tragic that once i got pregnant all i wanted was fast food. after delivering my mcdaughter, and through the long, dark latte-with-whip time of my soul, i found i couldn’t force myself to crave brown rice and veggies just because i used to. i began to wonder if i would sink permanently into that vat of transfats, depression and anguish. so it surprised me when the improvements happened naturally, as i watched good cravings stack themselves atop a growing repulsion from junk (coincidentally or not, right after my Reiki treatment a while back. for details see: this train of thought will make all local stops transfers are inevitable at most-stations and its prelude, the hovering of hands…how was your metaphysical today?).

i quit smoking more than 7 months ago, for good…or for as long as my life seems worth living, which i expect will be for quite some time. with a few tragedies under my almost 40 year-old belt, it would take a lot to reduce me to that place. i could imagine what, but i prefer not to. worry is only borrowed trouble.

i recently hired a giant personal trainer dude to come to my house and abuse me. i found him on craigslist, he’s legit, and posted the only ad i saw with rates for someone on a smaller budget than Jennifer Aniston or anyone in my landlord’s neighborhood. it was as though the Universe herself had been waiting these last 20 years for me to get off the bench and back in the game….i felt her pat me on the butt in encouragement as i rose and began to pluck the splinters out of my flabby cheeks. (for the record – skinny is a “shape” but not the same shape as “in shape.”)

my romantic life is a dream…my friendships are growing…my daughter is a magical delight to me, attitude and all….

new, purty leaves.

browning, curling, dangling leaves:

professionally i feel paralyzed. my 9-5er fruit is rotting on its branches. i’m letting the pieces fall. i’m eating what i’m lucky enough to salvage. i’m here now trying to get my appetite back for that work, for that success, for what i’ve promised to do and for what i’ve done for the last 12 years.

guilt from that negligence is stifling my freedom to pursue my best road out of the corporate cult. as a result, i write less, feeling that i should devote more time to my paid work, and i balk when i have the energy to work on my website and copywriting business knowing that i haven’t met other obligations. i’m as afraid of success there as i am of failure.

so my “work sector” is frozen. it almost looks stable, except that i know it’s ready to shatter, or soon melt into a crushing, freezing sludge of embarassment. sometimes i can imagine my 2012 turning into a new york city snow dump in april….with my daughter and i struggling to find food morsels and a hand up out of the muck.

then there is my battle of evermore, where i fight administrivia with the dull blade and plastic stones of procrastination. i catch up sometimes, but here i am today…ready to call verizon wielding my overdue payment, ready to slay the disconnect notice i received this week, or at least poke at it hard and run away. for logistical and technical reasons, not financial, i find myself in this position with them several times a year.  that’s just the first detail monster in a corp of oppressors…my weak efforts to bludgeon a list of simple things leaves me anxious on days like this. time to sharpen my to-do list of doom. sigh.

today the Universe (and Brain Mysteries) captured these ruminations and turned them onto a book i now desperately want to read: What Makes Your Brain Happy and Why You Should Do the Opposite by David DiSalvo. brain science is so cool, and apparently this a useful summation of new discoveries about our how minds function for and against us. self-sabotage seems to be a uniquely human pursuit, like golf, culinary arts or a house with bedroom-level laundry facilities. readers describe the “takeaways” from this one as “resonating,” “practical,” and “enduring.” i want to learn my way out of self-sabotage. i want to turn a leaf on the procrastination pile. i want convergence of this love and light and all of these desires. i want a consistent, authentic life where the path i seek is lined with provisions for my beloved charges.

alas, i sit here planning to change some things…neh…planning to read about changing some things…about changing this one thing to match the other changes i’ve made. i’m impatient with being patient with myself…i can hear the whip cracking in the distance…or maybe that’s my soul gettin’ crackin’ on all this desire.

brick by brick, my citizens, brick by brick, says the Emperor Hadrian of Rome…to the citizens of my brainspace, both the demons and disciples of Love…and to you my gentle readers. namaste.

 

 

 

 

 

put this antique on the roadshow…a life less lustrous

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it is nighttime, not typically the right time for my write time, but this first day of a brand new year begs for words to greet it. tiny christmas lights twinkle their last wishes my way as i finally sit down and start to play with my words. mmm, words…they tickle and comfort me with soft ideas and breathy inspiration, so close to my heart they change its rhythm sometimes. so special is the feeling, that most of my reflections on the passing of 2011 fall on how i found my words again.

my writer’s mind started this day by reading again a “note” i posted the same day last year. i was in a similar mood. new year’s day seems to find me pensive if not a little melancholy…i’m noticing a trend. i wonder if it’s always been that way.

at that time, i timidly published those private thoughts on facebook, shared among friends, and was humbled and warmed by the responses. i had no idea why i would make public what amounted to a typical, front porch, rocking chair-style journal entry. i quiver a little now at the implications of that morning and of those words i released into this balance of electricity and magnetism we call life.

i’ve often claimed i was a writer, the declaration always carrying the casual, apologetic tone of weekend artists and idols.  i hadn’t earned the right to describe it as more than a hobby, often started, often stopped. i still haven’t. i’m still scared i never will. and so i was afraid to talk about how i was feeling, that my words were coming back to me, flirting with me, teasing me…that it felt like they were coming back to stay, maybe to change my life.

but seven months after describing what i could only hope was an awakening and not just another lucid dream, i started this blog. during those seven months, all filled up with other kinds of living, i almost let it happen again…the steam evaporate from my passionate breaths and dreams. but something tugged at my focus, sending reminders on airplanes to denver, pulling my emotions to the surface on the surface streets of jack and dean’s LoDo, painting rainbows over mountains and monuments like a child in a coloring book. the awakening continued.

i write. i can say that now, at the beginning of 2012, without the internal wince of a fearful fraud.

woven throughout my post last year is a desire to break through my apathy. i desperately wanted to give some things to myself in 2011. i was hoping i could find the “discipline” or “motivation,” to make and break some habits, imagining what it would look like when i got everything right. the fantasy view. knowing how my soul rebels against the words “discipline” and “motivation,” i pushed a prayer out there with a promise to myself to keep down the  “shoulds,”  embrace when possible the “coulds,” and not worry so much about making them “dids.”

looking back today was a spiritual moment. i had prophesied my year and then fulfilled it. i didn’t do it with resolutions. i didn’t do it with promises. i gently gave myself the right, not the obligation, to keep trying…to know we never really get it right…to be happy that i’m doing my best, even when my best doesn’t impress me very much.

i spent 2011 making and breaking habits i’d struggled with for years, decades, a lifetime in some cases. i was afraid to mention a single one loudly for fear i would flag again and shrink further from those who had encouraged me.  the jinx i would deliver myself was ever-impending and inevitable. i preferred to try and fail in private…no need for the world to know the weakness of my follow through.

but i did mention it…in  some detail, out here for the world to see, and on display in my physical world too…and the jinx never came. my cautious, intentional steps toward things i finally really wanted continued, even as i sensed the heights i was reaching, even as i lost touch sometimes with the earth beneath my feat. and feet.

i grew to love 2011. i imagine it will always be a favorite, despite its pits and zits. it’s in the record books for me. it started with such a lackluster opening act, but at the time, i wasn’t really interested in lustrous things anyway.  i wanted to see everything at its rawest, most naked…where i could trust it and my own perceptions. i knew that recently, as the luster had worn from some of my treasures, i found i’d been fooled by a more than a few.

sometimes your favorite things turn out to be pretty unspectacular, even ugly, when all the sparkly parts are gone.

sometimes under a little patina you find a masterpiece aging with its own tasteful hue. and that was me. my life in 2011. i found the masterpiece under all of the shiny tragedy and fantasy.

and i found out that sometimes luster can be restored. a little can be nice.

i started it all by putting it out there on facebook. my private words and thoughts. i only apologized a few times for doing it, and i will only apologize once here. i still don’t know what i’m doing. but i’m doing. and i’m less and less afraid to do it out loud…to live my outrageous life as outrageous me.

i kissed 2012’s arrival much more sweetly than 2011’s.  last year was like a rocket launch with all of that potential energy on the launchpad, not much movement at first…then slowly it rises…until it inconspicuously hits cruising speeds that barely translate in the earthly mind. and that all fits neatly into my lustrous little world view. 2012 sounds so space age to me. i think i’m cruising for a while, with some good systems go.

i’ll see you same time, same place next year, alphabet. you and me…we’re good together. and to my friends and readers, happy new year…again.

bah-humblog – 12 reasons the 12 days make nice people curse

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i know that part of my grump is that i haven’t found (or made) time to write much here this december. i’ve got a bag of excuses…er…reasons, but the ultimate result is that i get cranky at the world and physics for denying me peaceful blog-writing mornings. and, no, it’s not my fault for over-committing…it’s everyone else’s fault for scheduling stuff i have to do in addition to what i want to do.

i’ve been rather grumpy all season as i navigate a metro exploding with %$@&# cheerful holiday traffic and mirthy #%$@?! shoppers. this happens to me often here in the DC area. i’ve lived a lot of places, including NYC, and never had such difficulty simply moving about the county…or my neighborhood…as i do in this region. it is virtually paralyzed with self-entitlement.

so on the one hand, i giggle at my christmas decorations and the gifts i’ll wrap for littlebean. she’s finally old enough to have santa intrigue and it’s getting fun. we drive around after daycare, just as it gets dark, looking at festive lights plus santa flying an inflatable “hoppa-hopter” next to a charlie-brown/snoopy blowup doll…er…inflatable decoration. her excitement is infectiously simple. on the other hand, my disgust is palpable and my lip curls as it tries to wrangle curses against humanity back into my mouth before littlebean or santa call me out on the whole “kindness” thing.

so here are 12 things that suck the joy right out of joyous this season, leaving me only with -ous, which, all by itself and hanging on to that “o,” is worth less than that lump of coal santa illegally mined for me and smuggled around customs with the help of his evil elf cartel. by the way, has anyone checked that guy’s tourist visa lately? what makes him so special that border patrol just stands and smiles at those reindeer leaping effortlessly over every entry point? can he still deliver to arizona, or is that now an asterisk in his terms and conditions? (better known as Clause’s Clauses. nerd flag – contracting humor).

  1. elves on shelves. i will buy one and post pictures of it doing silly things right after i finish reading the Twilight trilogy. (i’m ok with you guys that post the really twisted ones…not like “whisky elf,” more twisted…like “homophobes-gone-wild elf.”)
  2. people who are offended by the phrase Happy Holidays
  3. drivers who do 60 in the shopping center parking lot because their spot proximity and shopping urgency are clearly more important than the health of their souls or the more “pedestrian” lives of others.
  4. the “pedestrian” girl on her phone who stopped mid-crosswalk, close enough to touch the passing…FIRETRUCK, lights flashing, sirens wailing…after it slowed down and gunned the engine a few times in efforts to suggest that she back the #@?* up! 
  5. people who keep talking nasty politics out of one side of their mouths while chirping merrily about good king wenceslas and his alms to the poor out of the other.
  6. the argument between the shopper coming in through double doors and a be-wheelchaired old lady’s caretaker trying to exit with her charge. hey, caretaker lady, you both set off the automatic doors at the same time…shopper lady politely said, “excuse me” and stepped to one side as she entered. i’m sorry that no one set up a parade route with cones and cops to celebrate your attitude or trip to the car.
  7. the fact that three vendors from whom i tried to order my perfect new tree-topper cancelled only a few hours later after realizing they were out of stock. that sounds so lame…a tree topper obsession and complaint from someone who throws up a little in her mouth at “christmas all year” stores. (sheepishly) it was a really cool and funky tree topper that would have matched my cool and funky purple and amber chandelier, ok?
  8. the fact that regular stores don’t carry skydiving ornaments
  9. that there are no “free gifts” available were i to purchase myself some department store make-up…only “sales” on holiday gift packages full of crap i don’t want. (ok, that sounds SO high maintenance. department store make-up. ha. but if you are strategic, you can cheap out compared to a drugstore. oooh-  there’s a blog post to get me Freshly Pressed…Beauty Bargains: 5 ways to get department store make-up at drugstore prices!! i might even make Yahoo Shine!)
  10. trying to split a toddler’s christmas for the first time between two loving parents whose love for each other wasn’t enough.
  11. the memory of the last two holiday seasons that we celebrated in a our own vacuum of sorrow and pain
  12. the attack tree i bought by accident and had to decorate with long sleeves and yard gloves. tip: if you’d like to keep pets and children far from your christmas tree, go for the Colorado Blue Spruce. and a bottle of bactine.

there, maybe by sharing some of this rant, the season will quit chapping my ass. or maybe i need to put on the assless leather chaps from my mardi gras costume. i remember being in a really good mood in those chaps. hmmm. a perfect new actionfiguretrish holiday tradition.

my kid is SO gonna be the one with the weird, embarrassing mom.