Thursday, May 28, 2009

It's Time Once Again for a Gay Ole Time

Guess what?

Wifey Whittah will be here in, like, a day! I will be reunited with my on again, off again wife that prances her ass back to Kansas City from Denver every couple of months to shack up with me for a weekend of mayhem. You can read about more of our adventures here and here.

And, it should be nothing short of our usual ridiculous shenanigans this weekend especially since we've been frequenting and then raving about Missy B's, a local gay bar, lately - guess where wifey wants to go Friday night?

It's a jovial little joint with a couple of floors housing lots of dark corners for skankiness. If you're unprepared to see shirtless men making out, grinding and touching weens in those not so dark corners and out in the open of the dance floor for that matter - you can't handle it.

Part of the reason Kate and I like it is because there is mucho dancing and minimal least for us. In regular bars, it's usually a constant stream of doucherockets walking up to you and saying "cleaver," "witty" and "sweet" things with their rotten Patron and Miller Lite breath blowing in your face in hopes of wooing you into their bed for "the night of your life." In Missy B's, the men want other men and the most interaction they have with women is when they compliment their fierce shoes and sassy dress.

However, sometimes you run into a bi or a straight man in a gay disguise. Last time I was growled at and eye fucked from across the bar the entire night by one of these. Then Kate was humped and groped on the dance floor by another one for a good two minutes before she grabbed onto her fiance Sam and mouthed, "I DON'T THINK HE'S GAY! WHAT DO I DO?"

Sneaky little straight whores. They'll do anything to grind their penis on a chick including pretending to be flexible with their sexuality in the land of gays.

We wandered upstairs for the first time a few weeks ago where we discovered a whole other dance floor complete with stripper poles - occupied by men of course - and tiny, individual pitchers of beer. This was also the place where Sam's hat was removed and his hair was tousled ever so playfully by a male admirer. Sam's a good sport though so he just smiled, declined, explained the whole female fiancee thing and promised that if he ever decided to love takin' it up the poop shoot, he'd give him a call.

Soon after, Kate and I discovered the upstairs bathroom...I mean, it had a toilet, so I guess it could be called that. Although I'm fairly sure it was mainly used as a rendezvous point for those too anxious to wait until they got home and too timid to utilize the dark corners since it was lit with only a blacklight and also came complete with a shower and a large, sinister gargoyle guarding the door.

At one point, while Kate and Andrew waited for Sam and I to come downstairs and join them in the smoking area, Kate heard the *clicky, clicky, clicky* of stiletto heels on the metals stairs above them and naturally assumed it was me coming down the stairs to meet them...imagine her surprise when a big, black drag queen appeared at the bottom of the stairs instead of me.

Plus, towards the end of the night, the DJ always plays the live concert video of Beyonce in a leotard singing "Single Ladies" and you get to hear the collective squeal of delight from a packed dance floor of gay men as they "put yo hands up." If you don't want to witness that nor do you think it's funny, you have no soul.

So, yes, after a classy dinner at Kona complete with sushi and mojitos and perhaps a few other bars in celebration of Wifey Whittah's return, we will be ending our Friday night witnessing live ween on ween groping.

On Saturday while Whittah is busy attending a wedding, Kate, Sam and I will be headed to Rockfest - the annual gathering of Kansas City's white trash with a few non-trashies sprinkled in to enjoy an all day, outdoor multi-stage rock festival. Check out last year's account right here.

I'm sure this year's festivities will be more of the same just with different somewhat crappier bands. I mean, the headliner this year is Korn. Seriously? Do people still like Korn? Did people ever like Korn? Gross.

Needless to say we won't be staying to mosh with the Korn lovers at the end, so I guess that's a difference. Plus this year's event kind of crept up on me leaving me little time to prepare. You see, since you spend all day out in the hot sun, most of the day is spent in a swimsuit and shorts or something similar. However I am still quite pasty and may or may not have a layer of flab that I didn't have last year, which probably just got bigger in the last 12 hours since I enjoy spraying whipped cream straight out of the can into my mouth and nearly devouring an entire bag of Topsy's mixed popcorn in one sitting. Moo, heifer, moo.

Eh, who the fuck cares. Did I mention the hotness that inhabits Rockfest? Yeah, I'm good.

Whittah leaves on Monday, so how about Sunday night? Anything goes I guess since I still don't have job. WAH-WAAAAH!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Tard Gardener

I think I was about 5 when I asked my mom if I could plant some flowers in the backyard garden. With Mom in an in-depth phone conversation and all the flowers already planted for the season, she sprinkled some popcorn kernels into my little hands and sent me into the backyard where I dropped the kernels into holes in the dirt I dug with my sandbox shovel.

A few weeks later everybody shit their pants when corn stalks sprung up in the garden. My mother's attempt to silence an impossible request and keep me busy resulted in an unexpected crop in her garden. Yes, my little 5-year-old ass grew popcorn in the backyard. I even brought some ears along with our ghetto ass popcorn popper to show and tell and made popcorn for my kindergarten class. People exclaimed about my green thumb and I was pretty sure from then on I was destined to be a master gardener with the ability to grow anything effortlessly.

Except pretty much every other attempt to grow anything has crashed and burned. My little kid vegetable garden complete with mini soaker hose did produce vegetables...for midgets. The turtle Chia Pet grew more mold than green leaves and every hanging plant I've ever stuck on the balconies of my apartments have croaked long before the summer was over. This is probably due to the preconceived notion that I could grow anything effortlessly...meaning that watering was whenever I remembered. Really? How long have you been reading this blog? I rarely leave the apartment without going back inside because I forgot something. Sometimes I even drive across town before I realize that I've forgotten a crucial item. Such as last week when I went to my parent's house to take pictures for an article I was writing, drove all the way there, then realized I forgot my camera. Now I don't want to be too cliche and say I would forget my ass if it wasn't attached, but I'm not sure how else to get my point across.

Anyway, now that it's warm and everything is blooming, I've been fantasizing about what I will plant in my garden once I save enough money...or realistically...marry a sugar daddy and can afford to own a house - purple Irises and roses and peonies and ivy crawling all over wrought iron benches and swings and trellises...and lawn gnomes. Lots of lawn gnomes with little red pointy hats. Then all I'd have to worry about was keeping it alive...Not the lawn gnomes of course because there's nothing creepier than statues that come to life...

With the donation of some potting soil, a large pot and an example of a cute little herb garden from Mom, after my interview on Thursday morning (yes, I said interview, which went well!) I wandered aimlessly around a make shift greenhouse in the parking lot of a Walgreens, picked out a few little babies, dug around in the dirt for a while and this is what I came up with to try to satisfy my urge to garden:

Chives, mint, basil, cilantro, rosemary and a jalapeno pepper plant. I am determined to make these things grow and keep them alive. I planted them much like I planted the popcorn kernels 21 years ago - clumsily and with little to no knowledge of gardening - just the love of playing in the dirt and planting, so maybe they'll actually take off. Maybe I'll even use them - learn to cook with them perhaps. And, if that doesn't work, just let the boy use them when he cooks dinner or use them for things not involving the evil stove - Chives and basil, good in salads, yes? Mint, can you say mojito? Cilantro and jalapenos, salsa, no cooking required. Rosemary? Um...It smells good? Notice the watering can. Who the hell could forget to water their plants when they have a frog prince watering can? Impossible I tell you. Even for me.

I also picked this lovely hanging plant up while I was there:

I just liked it because the flowers were cute and purple and yellow are so pretty together. The guy who got it down from the pipe it was hanging on for my short ass tried to talk "plant" to me including scientific names and shit and I was all, "yeah, thanks, just as long as I can keep it alive." Then I got it home and actually read the little tags stuck in the dirt. They're petunias of some kind I think and they apparently attract hummingbirds. Ya don't say? I love hummingbirds! They remind me of hanging out at my grandparents house in California watching them visit the feeders just outside the back window. Plus they're the only bird that's not a complete asshole. They're far too busy scrounging for nectar and their beaks are far too long and curved to peck my eyes out. Aww, little tiny bird visitors (yes, there are hummingbirds in Kansas) just as long as the big ass bees and their big ass stingers stay the fuck away.

Would you look how inviting this is:

Shit, I don't need a real job! Just call me Lara Stewart. This is like the apartment living version of Martha's Kansas. Now, grow little bitches grow!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The adventures of Tan Man

My apartment pool opened for the season yesterday and my unemployed ass was so excited to be able to spend the day roasting myself, reading inappropriate literature and waiting for the damn phone to ring. However opening day at the pool also happened to fall on cloudy, torrential downpour, tornado day, so I bitch slapped Mother Nature and took a nap during designated pool time instead.

After last night's macho mug beers and dancing with the shirtless gays, I dragged my ass home from Kate's this morning, replaced my pointy stilettos with flip flops, threw giant sunglasses on to cover up the black, smeary mascara eyes and headed outside in my clothes from last night to walk the dog...and that's when I spotted him...the Tan Man.

I knew it was only a matter of time before he reappeared since the pool opened back up yesterday. I only saw him once or twice during the long, cold winter, peeking out of his apartment across the street briefly, then scampering back into his hole like a little, skinny, middle-aged, balding, sun worshipping, hibernating rodent.

I almost missed our daily summer encounters when we would mutter a 'hello' to each other as he strolled his ass to the pool and I strolled little Andy around the block and then went back to work. Every time I managed to squeeze in a little pool time last summer, he was there. I would spot this freakish brown blob as I popped out of my apartment that would morph into this tan as hell man as I walked closer to the pool - in the same chair on the far side of the pool, in the same trunks, in the same position - legs spread eagle, a foot planted on each side of the lawn chair, just baking for HOURS...ALL DAY...EVERY DAY. Seriously, he's the tannest Caucasian man I've ever seen. He must secretly covet my apartment because it's closer to the pool and his blatant lover...the sun.

When I stepped out my front door in my slightly hungover state this morning, I did a double take when he walked by because it had been so long and I didn't recognize him without his brown, leathery exterior. But, there he was in his black Led Zeppelin T-shirt and green bandanna, carrying a boom box with his rather pasty chicken like legs sticking out of his blue trunks. I think I might have also seen a red cape with a Hawaiian Tropic Dark Tanning Oil logo on it tied around his neck and flapping in the breeze behind him, but then again I might have still been buzzed from last night and had a slight hallucination.

Oh, what fun I'll have now, watching Tan Man build a proper base tan and see it progress into full blown, full body melanoma - something I completely missed out on last year, YAY!

People say the first lightening bug sighting means that summer is just around the corner, but in my world, it's the first sighting of the Tan Man.


Friday, May 15, 2009

Puppy Love

I remember the day I picked Andy up from the Humane Society. That hilarious little bastard...he ran out from the back room a.k.a. his prison cell, flipped on his back when the adoption coordinator bent down to give him a pet goodbye and shot a stream of piss about 3 feet into the air.

He then proceeded to fling himself around the car on the drive home as if he had never been in a car before, which could have been almost true. At one point he flew over the back of my head and landed in my lap, surprising the shit out of me and causing me to swerve all over the highway as I struggled to shove his squirrely ass back into the backseat.

Despite the fact that I had just voluntarily and unknowingly adopted a life long pain in the ass with all of his bad behavior and overall asshole-ness, I remember it as one of the happiest times of my life. I was so proud.

And, now that he still pisses all over unsuspecting friends and strangers alike has learned to control his bladder and can still be a total dickhead is so well behaved it's as if Cesar Milan himself trained him, I look back and see that adopting him was one of the best decisions I ever made.

Especially now when my life seems to be crumbling into a nice, neat pile of sun dried dog shit. My friends and family have been supportive, but there's only so much depressed daughter/sister/friend people can take and it's inevitable that I will still feel hopelessly alone (yeah, yeah, wah, wah, poor me I know...) at times. However, I think Andy has been a saving grace. He's always there, flopping into my lap or curling his body into the tiniest ball possible behind my knees when I sleep. And, he greets me with the perfect amount of excitement - enough to ricochet off my boobs, but not enough to piss all over me. It's much appreciated. Plus, like I said before, he's a good example of how you should live your life...joyously...minus the spontaneous and uncontrollable pissing part.

Yeah, maybe he's just a dog, but he's my 'lil pal and I'm so glad I have him. This is why I've decided to volunteer at the Humane Society of Greater Kansas City. I've thought about it for a long time - ever since I started putting the "Pets of the Week" in the newspaper when I was working my first job out of college as a reporter - and I downloaded and printed a volunteer form a few weeks before I was laid off, but stalled a little bit for one reason or another. Now, I've got all the time in the world.

My little bastard, stumpy tailed Jack Russell has brought me happiness and that place is full of a variety of other little shits that would bring happiness to others. Little (or big) shits that need the help of volunteers to walk, feed, bathe, love and pimp them out to future owners that may or may not even know they want a dog. I could do that and it would be a win-win-win situation. That's building good Karma I tell you. The first step of many towards something better.

However, this gets me thinking about my very first job at a veterinary kennel at 15 when I was literally ankle deep in shit, attacked by a fluffy, white whore of dog, pulled down the hallway by four large dogs and slammed into a wall where a large box fan broke my fall and nearly had my eyes clawed out by a demonic kitty. I lasted three months. Hmmm, this may prove to be a bad idea...

But I figure it will be more rewarding this time since I'll be working for $0 and the satisfaction of helping animals and other people rather than minimum wage in 1998, which was about $0.60 and hour or something and the satisfaction (or lack there of) of having a real job...ha! Right. Of course there's also those 11 years that have passed since that first job and one other important addition/lesson/love...

One day, me and the Dalai Lama...we're gonna be tight.

Monday, May 11, 2009

The life of a forced deadbeat

Today is the three week anniversary of my layoff. I've spent the last three weeks staring at the computer screen until my eyes bleed half the time, then spent the other half of the time staring at the phone, talking to it and asking it very nicely to ring. Then it rings and it's the motherfucking dentist or the laser hair removal people reminding me of my appointment or lack there of and it takes all the strength in my body to refrain from verbally abusing the person on the other end for doing their job. Then I stare at my phone some more, but this time I am far more stern and it sounds more like, "Ring you asshole! And make it somebody good this time!"

The boy sent me an e-mail a few weeks ago that said something along the lines of, "you're defined by the difficult times in your life and one day you'll see that this layoff was the best thing that ever happened to you." I know what he means, but it's extremely difficult to see the good in this right now. Even the most positive of positive people can't be bright, cheery and positive 100 percent of the time. Plus, this incident has made me insane, not like kill people in cold blood insane, but just flying under the radar of the state kind of insane, so does that mean I'm now defined as a crazy bitch?

I mean seriously. I've started talking to my phone. I'm applying for everything short of a junior high school janitor (because, lets face it, I can barely clean my own toilet and I'd constantly be getting detentions for skipping class because the teachers would mistake me for a student disguised as a janitor) and I've gotten nothing. No takers. Nobody wants me. I've applied for, on average, two to three jobs per day, sometimes more, for a solid two weeks. You do the math. NOTHING.

I want to know who the hell is applying for these jobs? Who is my competition? I'm earnestly applying for these jobs that if I got lucky enough to get, I'm pretty sure I would want to stab my eyes out on a daily basis and would drive me to an even greater state of alcoholism because they would suck so bad, but I don't even care because it would be employment. Many of them require a high school diploma or a G.E.D. and the ability to speak, hear, stand and see well. Seriously. That's it. They're basically saying, if you're not mentally retarded and don't have any sort of physical impairment, you're qualified for the job.

I have a college degree, and not a B.S. in basket weaving mind you - a good solid degree and three good years of experience. I have writing, communication and computer skills up the fucking wazoo. Are all the doctors, lawyers and rocket scientists snatching up all the secretary, waitress and chimpanzee ass wiping jobs? Probably...Whores.

Perhaps I'm over qualified for some of these things and that's the problem, but goddammit, I might not be "challenged" at some of these places, but I'd be the best damn monkey ass wiper they ever had. Doesn't that count for anything?

One second I'm full of hope and have ideas about going to school for something else and really figuring out what my next step is going to be rather than frantically search for a job I'm going to loathe, then the next second I'm on the couch, alone in my dark apartment, half drunk on a month old bottle of Cabernet, crying into my pint of Ben and Jerry's and blubbering the question, "Can something please just NOT suck right now?"

And to further reiterate my crazy bitch/depressed state, I'd like to share a few activities I've been engaging in while resting my eyes from the computer screen:

- Persuading all of my employed friends to come to the bar at 3 p.m. on a Wednesday
No, just kidding. Yes, this situation has made my schedule quite clear in order to pretend like I'm 21 again and go get bombed every night, but then I remember that most of my people have to work at 8 a.m. and sitting at the bar alone for hours is pathetic however you want to spin it. Plus alcohol costs a lot of money, which I have none of, so there goes my social life unless I want to end up like the homeless and schizo, blue saxophone playing hosebeast on the street corner in Westport sans the saxophone because I don't have one, so then I'd have to just dance or take off my clothes on the street corner to earn my tips, which would land me in jail all the damn time and guess what? They don't serve alcohol in the slammer. Booor-ring.

- Watching horrible TV such as Keeping up with the Kardashians and Jersey Shore.
I don't care what anybody says - Kris Jenner (the mom Kardashian) is fucking hilarious. She is the epitome of crazy bitch, but not like the kind that you stay away from because you fear for your life, but the kind you want to be friends with and go out with on the weekends. I'd call her up and say, "Lets go party in Vegas!" and she's say, "Hell yeah!" then pay for everything. Then Bruce Jenner would rolls his eyes at us and our shenanigans, or as much as he's able to since his face is made of plastic. Then I'd get on the show and be such a trainwreck that they'd give me my own spin off and TA-DA! I'd be employed. BOO-YAH.

Oh, and did you know that everybody in New Jersey looks the exact same and talks the exact same and wears the exact same clothes? And when I say "clothes" I mean a piece of spandex that makes the girls ask each other to monitor each other's cookies so they don't fall out. And believe me, I'm no clothing prude. I'd totally go hang out on the Jersey Shore too except everybody would gasp when I walked into 'da club and say, who's that pale-skinned, black haired, non-fake titted vampire chick? Which would either make all the boys swoon or get me beat up Jersey bitch style because they don't like "different" people around...

- Improving my homemaker skills

Oh yes, behold, the place where the magic happens:

And you say, "what the fuck does she have to do all day besides find a job? Your room should be spotless!" Don't judge assholes. It's a genetic disorder. A disability. I'm not gross...just cluttery. It's not always just like this. Lay off me. Messy rooms are a sign of depression anyway. Notice the vacuum is poised in the ready position. It may even be plugged in, yet has not been turned on because by the time I think, "wow, I need to vacuum," it's after 10 p.m. and I try to not be one of those asshole apartment neighbors that makes a lot of noise at night unless you count making my dog howl at 3 a.m., but that's just because it's sooooo funny when he does it...Also, you likey the sheets? It's the boy's lil business, Twisted Linens, that needs to grow. Give him some love.

- Teaching my niece nuggets of wisdom

Me to Remi: "You really need to enjoy being 2 because it's way better than being 26 and having to work crappy jobs to make ends meet."

Remi: *confused stare*

Me: "...Unless you marry a sugar daddy."

Remi: "No, I Remi. I'm the best girl!"

Well, it looks like we've got a healthy self-esteem covered anyway. We'll continue with the financial lesson later.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have Cheetos and beer to consume, and much burping and figurative ball scratching to engage in...

Friday, May 8, 2009


I hate Wal-Mart mostly because every time I walk in there, I'm the only one in the store that bathes on a regular basis.

Shit, I could skip a shower for three days, run a couple of miles, then roll around in a shit covered cow pasture and not smell as bad as some of those people in there. I realize that most of them are obviously strapped for cash since they're buying their stylin' stretchy Jordache jeans and their future fiancee's "diamond" engagement ring there, but seriously? Toss some fucking Lever 2000 in the shopping cart with your Spam and oversized $3.99 Tweety Bird t-shirt. You can spare the few extra dollars. You stink!

I haven't been there in many moons since I switched to Target long ago, but for some reason my mom insisted she needed to go there instead.

At one point while staring longingly at all the ice cream (Mmmm yeah), I passed by a rather large man and his family and immediately smelled a mixture of horse stable, hairy man armpits and rotten produce. He seriously stunk up the entire freaking aisle so much so that after they had moved on, my mom joined me from another aisle to stare at the ice cream, crinkled up her nose and said, "ew it fricken stinks!" without even knowing fat man and the fam had been in the aisle earlier. Then she proceeded to exclaim about how she was "nauseous...seriously I'm going to vomit," while making gaggy, vomit noises.

I'm like, "I know mom, it was that guy! This is part of the reason I don't come to Wal-Mart."

I just don't understand how people don't know they stink...BAD. I mean, the dude's daughter was there. Isn't it part of a family member's duty to let their flesh and blood know that they are smelling up an entire aisle of the grocery store? I suppose daughter was also rather large so perhaps she was also contributing to the rancidness. Are they all just used to the stench and think it's normal?

"Why can't people just bathe?" I asked Mom in the car on the way home.

Mom's response, in a completely non-joking, serious, matter-of-fact tone: "Well, that guy was so big, he probably can't reach all the smell in all the rolls."

...and now I'm the one making the gaggy, vomiting noises...

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Damn Dentist

I'd like to know why my dentist office is stalking me.

Apparently dentist office is equivalent to, say, a psychotic, possessive boyfriend and canceling a dentist appointment is equivalent to breaking up with said dentist office. Calling to follow up and leaving a message asking if I want to reschedule ONCE is sufficient, but FOUR phone calls?

Yeah, sure, it starts with phone calls, but soon I'll start noticing a shadowy figure lurking in the bushes outside my window with binoculars. And, then I'll come home late after a night out, pull back the shower curtain to take a nice, relaxing shower and there beady serial killer eyed dentist office will be wearing my underwear and holding one of my large, dull knives because you know, I'm not one for keeping up with the maintenance of my utensils since the kitchen and I don't exactly get along.

I have bigger fish to fry right now such as finding employment so I don't have to move back in with my parents (oh dear lord NOOOO! Not that my parents aren't wonderful, but seriously? How many times can I fail at life and crawl back to mommy and daddy? I'm going to be the 40-year-old still living in my parents' basement...). Every time dentist office called, which usually woke me up, I'd roll my eyes and ignore it. There's no reason for me to waste my time and call the damn dentist office back to say, I'll call ya back when I have insurance again, but thanks for your concern. Your weird, stalkery, overbearing concern...

Now since I've been applying for jobs, a strange number popped up on my phone yesterday and I of course answered it. Except it was bastard dentist office tricking me and calling me from another number.

"Lara? You still need a clean-ing," the snotty receptionist said in a condescending and annoyed tone.

"Yeah, I lost my job and I don't have insurance right now, so when I work it out, I'll call you," I said.


Oh no you just di-ent biotch. Now not only is the dentist office stalking me, but they've also hired a sullen teenager as a receptionist. It's like, if I wait 8 or 9 months as opposed to the standard 6 months for a teeth cleaning, my fucking teeth are not going to rot out of my head. And, why the hell do they care so much? They're my damn teeth.

I've had problems with this dentist office before, and even though I had every intention of returning there when all of my insurance woes were worked out, I've now changed my mind. Sorry dentist office, I thought of reconciling, but now you've pushed me too far. I break up. Deal with it.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Lessons from little ones

When it rains, it pours and what I mean by that is, when one part of your life decides to take a giant shit on you, it's inevitable that others will soon follow suite and also decide to drop trou and squeeze out Cleveland Steamers all over you. While I'm not a fan of being drenched in shat, I suppose it takes a shitstorm every once in a while to make you re-evaluate your life and make changes whether it be physical aspects or within yourself.

I hate to jinx it, but things are starting to look up. I haven't burst into tears for any given reason in a whole 48 hours, I'm starting to build a future career plan and act on it and aliens have yet to abduct me and implant a large anal probe in me - I'd say that's pretty good progress.

When life is a whore, you must remember this one thing - be happy with what you have. Find something, ANYTHING that makes the corners of your mouth turn up the slightest bit and hang onto it. There has to be something. Or you could always look to others for inspiration.

Take my niece Remi for instance. My mom and I were going to lunch last week and happened to pass by my sister on her way to the mall for a lunch date with one of her friends. We popped in after lunch to visit and watch Remi play on the little indoor playground. I mentioned something about the crazy huge gumball machine, which got my mom digging for quarters and caught Remi's attention who then screamed "I WANT A PINK ONE!"

Wild eyed, she beelined for the gumball machine, blond curly pigtails bouncing and tiny bare feet slapping against the tile floor (yeah, I know, barefoot in the mall. My mom was all pushing antibacterial wipes on my sister and exclaiming about "all the Swine Flu," but what are you going to do? She's 2 and hates shoes. Oh child, if you're truly related to me, that is going to change so quickly...). Oh her way, she turned around to scream about pink gumballs again, then nearly had a small, standing seizure when she got to the machine, then another one when the gumballs started their swirling, musical path through the machine. She screeched with delight as she watched them make their way down, then had another seizure when they landed at the bottom. I pulled them out, handed them over and before I knew it, I had a red gumball shoved in my face and a teeny little girl insistently screaming, "BITE IT! BITE IT!" at me. I was already cracking up from her reaction to a gumball machine and this made me not only confused, but nearly fall over with laughter.

Apparently I didn't know the protocol for preventing a child from choking on a gumball - biting it in half then giving it to them piece by piece. She just gave me this look like, 'why the hell won't you bite the gumball lady? Do you have something against it?' As if it was a perfectly logical request that everybody knew about. Whatever kid, what do I look like? A mommy? I'm just a lowly auntie, I don't know these things. Mema quickly took over before I could recover to prevent Remi's head from exploding from excitement.

Perhaps I'll just live my life through the eyes of a two-year-old from now on. It seems much more fun than through the jaded eyes of a 26-year-old.

OK, and how about my little shit of a dog Andy? Yeah, he may be a little dickhead (who I had to run after AGAIN today for probably a mile and on our way back home, he decided to roll in a succulent pile of shit, which forced me to bathe him...bastard), but he is the most joyous creature I've ever encountered. Everything is fucking awesome in his world. He's all,

"Oh my god! Food! YAAAY! Oh holy shit! People I've never seen, but people nonetheless! YAAAAY grass to shit on! Oh my god, a piece of rope! Walking around! A leaf just blew by! Did you see that?! Lets bark at it, YAAAY!"

Seriously, the dog loves everything with the exception of plastic bags hanging in trees and plastic, glowy Santas. Living your life through the eyes of a spoiled and extraordinarily spirited Jack Russell Terrier - now that would be ideal.

Yeah, I just compared my niece to my dog, but hey, what's cuter than babies and dogs? That's right - not a damn thing.

In other words, I'm enjoying the small things, living one day at a time, slowly figuring it out and breathing - all sans straight jacket, which at this time last week, I was fairly certain I wouldn't be able to make it through this without one of those coming into play.

Out with the psycho, in with sane...ish. ; )

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