Wednesday, November 28, 2012

This Is Gross. You Were Warned.

        This is Napoleon.

                A few days ago Napoleon stole a can of peanuts and ate almost the whole thing, and those peanuts are still in my life, and in fact may have caused me to expose myself to my neighbors. Possibly even the neighbor from the standoff/shootout and I don’t want to have to deal with him looking at me like I’m the crazy one.
                The reason the peanuts are still around is because I didn’t bother to pick up the peanut poop because I was busy taking pictures of it, and also I’ve been lax about taking a bag when we’re just going out to the dog run behind the building, because maintenance scoops it. But only every so often.
                So he ate the peanuts, he pooped the peanuts, and the peanuts are still there; and now he wants to eat the peanuts again. He tried to eat the peanuts last night and I managed to shoo him away, luckily he didn’t realize there were peanuts until everyone was pretty much ready to go. But this morning, he remembered. He was on a mission to re-eat the peanuts. But I am smarter than my poopy-peanut eating dog (I thought), and I took a bag to scoop those piles up out of eating range.
                So he’s trying to eat the peanuts and I’m trying to bag them up, but it’s not working that well because they’re not a cohesive unit like most piles of poop, and they’re crumbling apart into individual peanuts every time I grab a pile. This is bad for me, but Napoleon is pleased because even when I get to a pile first, there are inevitably stray peanuts left for him. Now I’m wondering if his plan is to keep eating the peanuts forever, and I’ll forever be trying to snatch the peanuts before he can eat them, but he’ll just keep pooping more and eating those, and this is not how I want to spend eternity.
 Also, I’m not wearing any underwear because I haven’t showered yet, and I just threw something on to walk the dogs, but it was the wrong something. It’s a little dress that’s really a cover up which looks perfectly respectable (seriously, it comes to my knees), as long as I don’t have to squat down, or bend over without my underwear. Unfortunately, I am doing all of these things quickly and repeatedly, and once I actually do a bit of a duck walk because there are two piles very close together and I’m all caught up in the heat of the moment and yes I am victorious, unless you consider shit for dignity a poor trade.
 So I’m racing from pile to pile, almost always a step behind (which is annoying because Napoleon’s legs are like three inches long), and I really want to get the peanuts before he eats any more of them, because they’re poop peanuts now. I mean they look fine. They look exactly like they did before they went in the first time, except now with a little something extra, like maybe they’re wrapped in nougat, but it’s not nougat. It occurs to me to try to bury the piles, but as soon as I’ve buried one (with my foot because of course I’m not prepared with a shovel), I realize that if I bury the poop peanuts they will never be picked up and I will only be creating a fun and rewarding version of hide and seek for Napoleon. Thankfully, the other dogs have no interest in the peanuts.
 Maybe this is all karma, from not picking up the poop in the first place. Maybe it was all nice and gooey and sticking together when it first came out and I would have picked it up in one fell, panty-wearing swoop without exposing anything to the neighbors. I get maybe half the peanuts before giving up, collecting the dogs (Napoleon has to practically be dragged away from the goodies), and slinking back upstairs. So yeah, it’s possible that Napoleon will be eating the same can of peanuts forever. It’s possible that my neighbors have a new familiarity with my junk. (Is it still junk if it’s not a penis?) I don’t know. However, it’s also possible that right now some other dog is down there discovering the peanuts, and that those damned indestructible legumes are on their way into someone else’s life.
Here’s the picture in case you’re wondering if they really still look intact. 

I tweeted this picture when it first happened because I thought that was going to be the end of it, and it was pointed out to me at the time that this was kind of gross. Implied rather, because my friend who brought up the gross factor probably didn’t want to hurt my feelings by pointing out how deranged I am to be posting pictures of my dog’s poop, although it’s barely poop it’s mostly just gently used peanuts. Which is ok. 

Friday, November 23, 2012

Speaking Of Hell...Highlights I Didn't Predict

4:36        An argument breaks out over where the chairs should be placed around the table. The conflict is particularly heated over a certain corner. We have a volunteer for the crappy seat and violence is averted.
4:40        This may be worse than usual. We think the mashed potatoes have been flung into the sink, but perhaps we were mistaken. At least I hope so, because later we are served mashed potatoes. Ben still hasn’t arrived, and dinner is in twenty minutes. This probably won’t go over well after all the fighting that took place over seating. I’m told that this is a better arrangement than previous years, but I can’t help but notice that this is the first time there has been this much conflict over where chairs should go. Although there’s always some.
4:41        I don’t know why my mom keeps addressing us as ladies and gentlemen, because we’re not.
4:58        I’ve never had to grab my crotch so many times for so innocent a reason.
5:09        Ok, I totally just spit on the table to clean it because it was sticky, but I totally had permission from my sister, and she’s really sane. And it was the patio table not the dining room table.
5:23        There’s a mosquito in my wine. I announce a rescue, and am told I may be bitten. Someone else thinks there’s no hope. He’s wiggling his little wing when I fish him out. The rest of him is kind of plastered to my finger because he’s soaked in wine. At the other end of the table there is sudden discussion of drinking flies that end up in the milk. The mosquito is now wiggling two parts. He’s probably anxious to get away from these insect swilling madmen. I’m trying to dry him so he can fly away. People are sighing at me, because I’m holding up dinner and most of the family thinks I’m insane for wasting time on a mosquito. Also, many of them think he’s diseased, but that’s just an unfortunate prejudice. Now they are listing mosquito diseases. I tell them I’m ashamed. The three year old announces he is done, although most of the family are still attempting to say grace. We manage to free the mosquito from my finger and take him outside.
5:26        Someone can’t find their dinner roll, the one that is on their plate, and I am told that this should not end up in my blog.
7:01        Nana is sleeping in her chair in front of the oven.
7:54        I’m forced under the table by my mother, and not allowed out. My sister joins me in solidarity. Something about latches and table leaves. When people start shoving the table back together, it’s like we’re in the trash compactor scene from Star Wars. We scream and thrash like we’re being crushed, and are soon dragged out by our ankles.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Speaking of Hell...

So, Thanksgiving is tomorrow, and I’m excited. Holidays with my family are extra fun because half of my family is very religious, and the other half is not. And I don’t mean in an, “I believe, but I don’t make it to church more than twice a year,” kind of way, I’m talking actual atheists. The only halfway reasonable people are the token agnostics and the three year old. He’s very non judgmental. And once the alcohol has been flowing for a while we get excitement of (come on, I have to), biblical proportions. Because sooner or later someone will let slip a blasphemous comment, usually unintentionally blasphemous (usually), and suddenly one half of us will announce that the other half of us is going straight to hell. If this happens after we’ve eaten then perhaps the evening just breaks up a bit early, but sometimes it happens before dinner, and that’s when things get really nice and awkward. And this year there will be moonshine.
So the day is going to go something like this. We will arrive at my grandparents’ (aka Nana and Grandpa), sometime in the early afternoon. (By “we” I mostly mean the younger two generations. There are four total.) We will begin drinking immediately. I’ve already mentioned this, but it deserves repeating mostly because I am excited about it; this year we are going to have moonshine. We’ve been sticking to beer and wine the last few years because my grandfather isn’t supposed to drink, so my grandmother hasn’t been keeping liquor in the house, which is such a bummer man, even though they never let us use the good whiskey for whiskey sours anyway. Something about expense and desecration.
So once we’re armed with libations it’s out to the patio, so that the smokers, who are dwindling in number, can indulge. In fact, I believe we’re down to one this year, don’t worry, mostly due to quitting, unless I have a relapse, which is possible (see moonshine), or unless Fun Jon makes an appearance, which is probable (see moonshine), and awesome, because Fun Jon out drinks, out smokes and out blasphemes us all. I’d like to say more about him, but by day he has a business to run, and my nephew to support, and my sister to adore, so his identity must be kept completely secret. Shit, I may have said too…Nah, it’s probably fine.
 Anyway, usually we play board games, loud board games, it’s amazing how much shouting and swearing is required for a game of Cranium. They don’t put that in the instructions. While we are outside shaming Nana with our rowdiness, Grandpa is inside trying to get a drink (only if he’s awake), if not, he’ll try for wine with dinner, but Nana won’t let him, because he’s on prescription medications for being old. Some people are uptight about booze and pills and Nana is one of them. I am not uptight about that at all, but unfortunately I have no reliable way to get prescription medications because I have yet to come across one of those great doctors that prescribe whatever you want. I hope that’s not an urban legend.
Then we’ll have dinner. At dinner there will be conversation. Sometimes it’s normal catching up family stuff. Sometimes, we debate things like what kind of poop would be the least unpalatable to eat. Really and truly. Of course in the scenario you are somehow forced to eat the poop, it’s not recreational poop eating. If you don’t already know, bunny poop is the best, because you can just swallow the little pellets without chewing. Theoretically. As far as I know this has not been tested in the field. Also, full disclosure, we did not reach a consensus on the bunny poop.
 At some point, no matter how those of us who are at all sensitive to conflict try to avoid it, religion will come up. This is when the real fun begins.  There will be some yelling, somebody will cry, and at least one person will be told that they are going to hell. Interestingly, the person who cries is never the person who has just found out about their impending damnation; the crier is usually the person who informed the damned of said damnation, which doesn’t make a lot of sense. Of course I could be underestimating how draining it is to break that kind of news to a loved one.
After that, if everyone hasn’t fled, we adjourn back outside. There will be more alcohol, because by then we really need it. We may play more games, and we may take the opportunity to poke gentle and oh-so-discreet fun at the evening’s combatants. Eventually there will be dessert, lovely dessert, some of it from the store, the best of it made. And that’s it. The sick part is I’m really looking forward to it. And not just for the moonshine.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

I Don't Want Anyone to Die Because of This

I almost just killed a bunch of people because I’m tired and I don’t feel like getting up in the morning. In my defense I also have cramps, but that’s no justification. However, it would totally have been an accident.
I spend Thursdays with my nephew which is generally awesome. But in spite of the awesome, sometimes when Thursday rolls around, I’m fucking tired. I know I should seize the day, and treasure every moment, because soon he’s going to be older and way too cool to hang out with his aunt, unless it’s his other aunt who’s only like seven years older than he is, but definitely not the aunt who’s like twenty years older than he is, ok thirty years older, ok anyone who is doing math in their head right now, just stop it. (Hi Z! Love you, love our days together, don’t take this personally, fuck it you can’t read yet, so you probably won’t ever read this, unless someday when I’m dead, you want to know a little more about me because you didn’t know me very well, since you spent all your time hanging out with your young, fun aunt.) I mean, they’ll probably be going to the same parties or something.
 I know. It’s admirable that I’m secure enough to admit that I feel threatened by a twelve year old girl. It’s just that I feel a little possessive sometimes. Even though I know I don’t have first claim and I’m totally fine with that. Obviously, the people who chipped in the raw materials get first dibs, that’s just how it works. Plus there’s the whole issue of me being tired on my one day a week, so if I had all the days, every day of every week… just… wow...
Anyway, I think we’ve mined that tangent, which brings us to where I kill people with my mind. Unfortunately, it’s not in an amazing River Tam kind of way. So the night before Zander day (yes that’s what I call it, he obviously calls it “Anne day”), I was tired and I was wishing I didn’t have to get up the next morning, then I thought, what if my wish comes true in some sort of drastic, horrible, monkey’s paw fashion. What if in like half an hour, I find out that everyone was killed on the freeway on the way home from Disneyland, and by the way, the other aunt was with them at Disneyland so it would really be a two birds monkey’s paw, so now four people are dead because I wished it, because that’s the only way I wouldn’t have to get up in the morning. Except it’s not the only way, and I don’t know why the monkey’s paw can’t see that, and of course, I didn’t actually wish all the deaths. Not any of the deaths. The imaginary deaths.
 I mean my sister could have gotten a sore throat or something and stayed home from work, not that I’m wishing a sore throat on my sister, that would also be horrible, although obviously not as horrible as the freeway thing. Except, I wonder if the sore throat would be worse on some level if I had actively wished it on her. Probably not, because it’s hard to top death. Plus she’d opt for the sore throat. Definitely. Although to clarify, I do not wish her or anyone else a sore throat. Or death.
That’s not true. I might wish sore throats on some people. 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

If You Can Read This...

To the man standing behind me in the checkout line at Ralphs, I wasn’t moving up to give you room to move up, I was trying to get away from you. If my ponytail is swinging in the wind of your breath, you are way too close. Please develop a sense of personal space, if not for yourself then for me. I’ve always thought of you and others of your ilk (because it is so super fun to use the word ilk), as evil, inconsiderate, serial killers, but it finally occurred to me that you just don’t get it. You have no idea that you’re making me (and others, lots of others, I can’t be the only one), crazy.
To the people who like to come up behind me in the bread aisle, please don’t hover. I glance back and you’re pretending to look at bread, but you are so abnormally close that I know something else is going on. There’s just no legitimate reason to peruse groceries over someone else’s shoulder. And you’re breathing all over me and my potential bread. And now my insides are screaming and my own breathing is a little off kilter, but at least I’m keeping it to myself, and part of me is sure you’re back there arranging your garrote, so of course, I can’t even focus enough to decide what kind of bread to get, which shouldn’t be that hard because I have three bucks, so I’m getting the bread that costs less than that. But I’m kind of panicking, so I leave without the bread and have to go back when you’re gone, or I grab the bread that I don’t want (the four dollar bread), and have to take it back when you’re gone.
To the guy who touched the seat of my bike when you were making room for yours, it was like being felt up by a stranger, and not in a good way, and yes, I know the difference. Not really, of course I don’t, that would be so slutty. Unless I was drunk.  Or on the subway. I wonder if you ever think of me.
To the person who once sat next to me in a movie theater during a matinee when there were like five people in the entire place, what the fuck were you thinking? Why would you even want to share an armrest with a complete stranger when there are thousands of unoccupied armrests for the taking? What sick joy do you take in struggling to maintain your fair share of armrest, while avoiding that other person’s arm, always aware that the two are a tiny shift away from shameful contact? And contact can’t happen. Because then there’s the waiting, arm touching arm, until someone can move away casually, because if anyone yanks their arm away, they might as well stand up and scream that the other person is repulsive, which is what I want to do, not because it’s true, but because I’m totally freaked out by random contact with strangers, especially when I’ve been obsessing about it through seven previews. On top of that, I’m holding in all my anguish because I’m worried it would be hurtful. There’s just no way to concentrate on a movie with all that going on. This is why I still don’t understand the Matrix. Never sit next to a stranger if there is some other option. Obviously. Because that happened like twenty years ago and I still think of you whenever I go to a matinee, so thanks for the trauma.
I get that this is me. (And lots of other nice people.) In my head I understand that we all have a right to be in the bread aisle at the same time, even though there’s really not room, and I was there first. And guy from Ralphs? Maybe someone was standing too close to you, and you were just trying to split the difference, so I forgive you. This time. See how rational? I get that other people can stand shoulder to shoulder, side by side, top to bottom, front to back, and now I’m thinking of a particularly uncomfortable family photo. Not mine. It’s in one of those books. It’s not that I don’t love my fellow humans. It’s not. IT’S NOT. I’d just prefer to love them from afar, with no touching. Unless I’m drunk.
Also, the family photo thing reminded me of the family at Disneyland who were all wearing the same shirt, the only similarity being that these behaviors are equally incomprehensible to me. Their shirt was bright yellow and had their last name printed on the back, at least I assume it was their last name, but you can’t really ask because it would be rude and uncomfortable, and if I was going to talk to a strange family at Disneyland wearing matching shirts it wouldn’t be to ask if that was their last name printed on the shirts, it would be to ask, “WTF is up with the matching shirts?” Is it a form of bonding, that you may love each other all the more? Is it in case you don’t recognize your family, like if someone gets amnesia in the middle of the park? If that’s the case I don’t think a lot of people would have the presence of mind to check the back of their shirt for a last name, and I’m including myself. Is it to label themselves as a group to the rest of us, so no one bitches when the stragglers come blundering through the 45 minute line to catch up with the others? Actually, that one makes sense, so I’m quitting here. I didn’t mean to go on so much about the ugly family shirts. Oh yeah, they were spectacularly ugly. Not one of them is going to look good in the vacation pictures. But in their defense, not one of them stood inappropriately close to me.