Monday, November 26, 2007

Beware the Ferrets.

I was talking to a couple of coworkers today about my complete and utter horror of the holidays. It begins right about the time the Halloween sugar high subsides and it ends right about the same time as my New Years hangover.

The reason I mention this is that I started thinking about why I hate and/or am afraid of certain things. I am terrified of spiders. Completely, utterly, incredibly, beyond all sense of reason driven insane at the mere sight of a spider. It doesn't matter the size. Size of a dinner plate or size of a pencil eraser - I am equally convinced they are deadly and out to get me. I have no idea why I am afraid of them. It might have something to do with the grand-daddy longlegs my brother used to throw at me when we were kids. I am not sure therapist never decided.

That reminisence led me to my fear of ferrets. Oh,shut up. They may not have eight legs and venom, but they have those beady little eyes and those little scratchy feet squicks me out. This, however, is one fear I can vividly recall the origin of.

I was about 4 or 5 and my Mom and I stopped at the pet store. I have no idea what we went there for and I don't remember if we actually got what we went to get, but I DO remember the ferrets. They were in these big wire cages on the floor and I thought they were so cute. Like little kitties and I was immediately fascinated by them and I bee-lined for those adorable little creatures because I was FOUR and that's what little kids do and it isn't my fault that the pet store manager (who obviously had no children) put the cages where I could reach them because they were so cute and I really wanted one and "Mommy, can I have one? Huh? 'Cause they are the cutest things ever. Even cuter than my Cabbage Patch Doll and I really want one..."

...AND THEN...


And the ferret did what any animal would do if a small, crunchy, human finger came through the bars of their prison cell....he bit me.

I screamed.
The ferret shrieked the shriek of an animal possessed and bit harder.
I screamed louder and proceeded to yank my finger as I hard as I could trying desperately to get it back.
That, of course, resulted in the ferret having his head bashed against the bars of the cage.

SO - I am screaming and systematically beating the evil ferret senseless and the store manager is yelling at me stop yanking on my finger and killing the merchandise and my Mom is yelling at the store manager to stop yelling at me and scaring the piss out of me because "for Christ sake she is already terrified so stop with the yelling already" and finally the ferret loses consciousness and his grip loosens.

Sweet relief.

Apparently, ferrets get some form of lockjaw when they bite. It is some kind of defense mechanism they can't really control. Precisely why ALL pet store owners should put them well within reach of the patrons most likely to stick their finger through the cage bars...that Ass Goblin pet store owner has earned my eternal wrath.

I didn't get the ferret, but I did get a lollipop and a lifelong fear of those beady-eyed little suckers. I swear this is a true story. Seriously, I couldn't make this stuff up.

I sure hope crazy is the new black. I'd love to be cool again.

What a fun holiday weekend. One of my very, very best friends in the whole world came to spend a few days in Drewville - it's sort of like Margaritaville only with less margarita and more Star Wars figures. Katie is single and childless and there came a moment when I was certain she was going to do bodily harm to me or possibly herself for being dragged into the fray. Drew is a handful and it becomes even more obvious when we have guests...or maybe I just become more aware of it.

Before I met Eric and decided I.Had.To.Procreate. I was the girl voted least likely to be impregnated. It drove me batshit crazy to be around small, sticky, wailing children. I had a very good friend that had four kids and as much as I loved/love those kiddos and as quickly as I would have jumped in front of a bus for those little stinkers I was still regularly driven to the liquer cabinet after mere moments of entering the room with them.

The most amazing thing to me was how my friend could ignore them. Not ignore in an "oh crap I forgot to feed them" kind of way, but more of a "that is the 87th time in five minutes she said that and I can no longer hear her" way. She and I would have a conversation and the entire time one of the kids would be crawling on her, pulling on her clothes, asking her a question, bringing her things to open/close/look at, etc and she never missed a beat in the conversation. In the end it was pointless since I missed the whole conversation because I was too fascinated by the Mom-auto-pilot to hear what she was saying.

Now that I am the proud Mama of a very active almost five-year old it seems I have developed that same talent. Only, my powers are weakened when others enter my orbit. I can totally keep track when it is just me and Eric, but I can't seem to stay focused with others. I get distracted because I can see the look on my friend's face as I open the juice, open the wrapper, change the channel, start the movie, pause the movie, tell him where the stuffed horse is and put the cap on the marker. My conversations probably sound like some kind of bizarre performance art and all that is missing is a haze of cigarette smoke and enormous cups of cappuccino.

"Yes, Katie, my job is going great and I really like it there. I said to keep the fingerpaints in the kitchen."

"Oh yeah. Eric is still playing hockey and his team is doing so much better this season. No more caffiene this close to bedtime."

"I really wish you would move here, Katie, because we would have so much fun hanging out together all the time. You are big enough to wipe your own butt."

I think Katie went back to Portland with a newly invigorated love of her childless existence and a strong desire for a long nap. Between the copious amounts we drank during our Alcoholiday and the constant whirlwind that is Drew I am pretty certain we wore poor Katie out.

I do have to say though - I love being a Mom even if it does make my existence a bit crazy. I heard a rumor that crazy is the new black.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Is there a Thanksgiving equivalent to Bah-Humbug?

It is no secret that I am not a fan of the holidays. I would bet money that my friends are totally sick of hearing me talk about how much I don't like the holidays and how I always get all anxious and rude and nasty about this time of year. I know...I know...I am rude and nasty during other times of the year, but the holidays generate a special brand of rude and nasty.

So I am at the bank yesterday depositing a check that is soon to be sucked up by the retail machine that is "the holidays" and the guy helping me says,

"Happy Thanksgiving! Do you have some really great plans for tomorrow?"

"No. I hate Thanksgiving."

"Really? You hate Thanksgiving?" At this point he has ceased to make eye contact.

"Yes. As a matter of fact, there is only one thing I hate more than I hate Thanksgiving."

"What is that?"


It was then that the poor guy behind the counter must have decided I was the anti-Christ because he gingerly placed my receipt on the counter and pulled his hand away and mumbled something like "burn in hell" or "have a nice day" or something like that. Clearly, any direct contact with me would be akin to touching the Devil.

I love scaring the holiday cheer out of unsuspecting strangers. It is the one thing I DO like about the holidays.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

My Kid Beat Up Your Honor Student

The last few weeks have been difficult in the child rearing department. Drew keeps getting into trouble at school for hitting the other kids. Of course, no one seems to be able to determine who started the hitting and Drew insists that it certainly wasn't him because everyone knows he is Gandhi reincarnated and would never in a million years open a can of whup-ass upon his peers because he is all about peace and love and is actually considering a hunger strike until these heinous and false accusations cease.

We went to the grocery store the other day and they have a "playland" where you can leave the kiddos while you shop. Drew loves it there because they have movies and coloring books and lots of toys to play with. When I picked him up after completing my shopping the attendant informed me that Drew and another boy got in trouble for choking each other. Yet again, my stealthy Ninja child managed to avoid detection at the outset and there is no proof of who started it. At that moment I realized that maybe my "let them eat cake" parenting style might not be the best way to go.

Drew is no longer allowed to play his favorite video games. No more World of Warcraft, no more first person shooter games, no more violent video games of any kind. We have even hidden his light sabers in hopes that he will stop taking a whack at everything within arms reach. I guess the fact that Drew always insists on shooting the good guys in all those games should have been a red flag, but honestly I just thought it was funny. Bad Mommy.

We also had to take away a good number of his favorite movies. No more Star Wars movies, no more Transformers, no more War of the Worlds. It was a sad day for the little man. Now he informs everyone who will listen that he is only able to watch Disney movies until he learns not to unleash violence on his friends. I have to tell you that it cracks me up to hear my not-quite-five-year-old use the phrase "unleash violence." I especially love it when he tells complete strangers because as a parent nothing beats watching someone you don't know go through the internal battle over whether or not the authorities should be contacted because clearly if your child says things like "unleash violence" and then giggles you must be a parent in need of intervention.

On a brighter note - Eric and I got a sitter so we can go on a date. With each other. Alone. Whee! Now, anyone who knows us is aware that we go out a fair amount, but it is usually to a party with friends instead of just the two of us. This will actually be exciting to go out and spend some time together. It also means we have to figure out how to carry on a conversation without Drew to help us out. Gee. I sure hope we can manage it.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Off and Away...Flying the a Bit too Friendly Skies

Today begins a week of travel. That may sound fun, and sometimes it is, but for me it ends up being a nightmare of epic proportions. The airlines are on to me and immediately upon seeing my name on a passenger manifest the flight is unceremoniously delayed. It's a conspiracy. I know it.

Today I am off to Las Vegas and I am going to stay at a hotel I haven't stayed at before. Vegas is a regular trip these days since my company has a big client there. This trip we are staying at the Paris Las Vegas. I hope I get a view of the fountains at Bellagio. That would rock...but, since the airlines have a conspiracy going I am sure the hotel mafia is in on it, too. Last time I stayed in a hotel in Vegas we had a view of an alley and the neighboring hotel. Whee! I kept looking out the window in hopes of a peep show from one of the rooms across the way, but yet again...denied.

The rest of the week is comprised of Portland and Seattle. I'll keep you posted on how those two cities treat me. I am sure Seattle will be good to me since I consistently profess my undying love for the lakes, bridges, mountains and yes...even the rain. I can't wait to move back there someday. I am already plotting. Can't you just hear my evil cackle? I've been working on it so you betta recognize.

Can I just pause for a moment to point out that airports crack me up? I especially love how even on airlines with assigned seats the second they call your flight everyone is jumping up and standing in line. Why? Why - I ask again? You have your very own seat. The plane won't leave you. In a very short minute we are all going to be sitting thisclosetogether so why are you leaping up to rush into the cylinder of personal space invasion? We are all going to get there at the same time. I.Guarantee.It. Would I lie? Of course not.

I also love how everyone sits around trying their best to look at everyone else without actually looking at everyone else. That is my favorite part. I amuse myself by looking directly at everyone and when they catch me looking I wink. You can tell a lot about a person just by their reaction to that wink. They guys either look disturbed that I would dare wink or you can see the internal battle start..."Is she flirting? Does she want me to talk to her? Should I wink back? Look away? Fart?"

I also really love the ladies who are decked out in full hair and makeup. Now...the ladies in business suits are exempt from my ridicule because I have been that girl in full hair and make up with a suit because I was traveling for one day of meetings and then right back home. It's the ones in jeans and stiletto boots and enough makeup to outfit an entire cheerleading squad on Homecoming night that really crack me up. If I had my camera I would post a picture of one such creature. The best part about this particular specimen is the fact that she is 50ish and is dressed like a 25-year old tart. I mean come on...I appreciate fighting old age and all that, but there is a more graceful way to fight for Christ's sake. Chiseling off some of that makeup and covering your tits is a fine place to start if you ask me.

Not that you did ask me, but since when do I keep my trap shut about such things? Never. That's when. What makes you think I would start now?

Silly reader.

Besides...I know that you appreciate me in all my smart assedness and you lurv me precisely because I say exactly what I think even if it ends in embarrassment. Specifically if it ends in MY embarrassement.

First leg of trip from Boise to Portland - ON TIME leaving and ON TIME arriving. Whee!!
Second leg of trip from Portland to Seattle - LATE. LATE. LATE. Still in Portland praying to the Gods of the airline for some miracle to take place because I have a dinner meeting at 6:30 and at this rate I am not gonna be there. And I was so looking forward to that steak. Dammit.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

I am WAY too sick for this...

Drew and I are both under the weather today and stayed home. What that basically means is that I feel like crap and I am trying to work from my recliner in the living room while Drew, who had a miracle recovery at noon, is running around the house beating the cats with his light sabers. Do I have to tell you that I have a headache?

Since I am normally at work at this time of day I have been fairly sheltered from the commercials for products aimed at the kid crowd. Today the television has been on in the background all day because I am trying to use it as a hypnosis tool for Drew. I keep hoping that on one of his stealth missions to beat the cats into submission he will be mesmerized by something on the television and will stop running and/or yelling for five seconds. So far the only things that the television has managed to do are 1. keep me from getting work done and 2. create a deep-seated desire to run out and firebomb the toy companies.

Before I managed to clear my congested head enough to get out of bed this morning I turned on the tv in the bedroom for Drew to watch. It buys me a few extra minutes to finish whatever dream I might have been having before shuffling into the shower.
These days the dreams consist of me somewhere quiet...preferably warm...and occasionally David Aebischer is there wearing goalie gear and a smile...but, I digress.

My point is that I was lying there trying to hang on to a few more seconds of Hot Goalie and a commercial crept into my consciousness. A commercial for Bratz.

I know that girls have played with dolls since the dawn of time, but since when did we start manufacturing, marketing and selling prostitute dolls? Have you seen these things? It's truly disturbing that someone thought these things up, sold the idea to someone else, got the money to make them and then someone actually looked at it and went, "Hey!!! This is the perfect thing for my 8-year old daughter because I am really sick of that whole third grade thing and wish she would just hurry up and start looking like a tramp already."

It was bad enough when we were giving little girls baby dolls that cried and peed and burped. I confusing is that? Starting when girls are practically babies themselves society begins teaching them to take care of babies and be all maternal and then society issues a mass gasp when young girls get pregnant and have babies. Yeah - I know you are thinking I am all "women are oppressed," but I'm not. Honest. I just wish dolls didn't have to cry and pee. It's fifteen kinds of creepy.

Now, instead of teaching them to be maternal we are teaching them to be little hookers. Whee! These freakin' dolls have on the entire Maybelline makeup line applied via trowel and dress with almost as much class as Britney.

Low cut blouse? Check.
Push-up bra? Check.
Ass cheeks peeking out bottom of skirt? Check.
Stripper heels? Check.
Giant bug-like sunglasses? Check.

Next thing you know they will start selling Bratz dolls with ripped fishnets and a pack of Marlboro Reds. Let's take a look at some examples.

This particular Bratz must have had a long night on the corner and really just wants to kick those Payless Shoes buy-one-trashy-pair-get-one-free high heels off and smoke her crack in peace because, Damn! She worked hard for the 20 bucks to buy that rock so just step off.

I am not exactly sure what this Bratz is supposed to be. I think this could be Dominatrix Bratz or Call Girl Bratz as opposed to the aforementioned Prostitute Bratz. She doesn't look quite as...ahem...tired as the Bratz in that last picture. She must have the cash for the good kind of pre-trick "pick me up"...sniff...if you know what I...sniff...mean....sniff.

So, now I am on copious amounts of cold medicine, trying to work, keep the cats from meeting an untimely death AND trying to erase images of Bratz dolls coming to life and taking over the world like some kind of scantily-clad, un-dead army of vapid souls.

Oh, wait. That already happened...I think they call them "the Class of 2010." I think I need to just go back to sleep and see if I can find David Aebischer.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Halloween and Rubber Ducks

I am finally posting Halloween pictures. I am sorry for the delay. I have been trying to think of some funny moment from Halloween night, but nothing comes to mind. I have no funny at the moment. Friday night I slept wrong on my neck and now, two days later, I still can't look to my left. Drew is having a field day with that. He keeps misbehaving, but only on my left. It's driving me insane.

As if being virtually crippled isn't enough - now I have a cold. It has been threatening me for days and yesterday it kicked in with gusto. I feel very edgy and the fact that I keep getting taunted from my left by a small, blurry child is not helping my mood any. The next time he runs by giggling at my failed attempt to look and the resulting profanity I might trip him. I think this is some form of training, but I am not real sure who is the trainer and who is the trainee.

Despite the icky cold, we spent last night and today painting the guest room. It looks like we slaughtered a large animal of some kind in there. I hope that it looks better once it dries completely and we get it all put back together. I decided a few weeks ago that we needed to move it from upstairs to downstairs so that our poor guests didn't have to sleep 20 feet from our bedroom. It makes you feel like you have to be uncomfortably quiet. Granted, they will probably have nightmares and will fear for their lives in the Room of Death, but at least they can scream freely.

The upside to my weekend? I got a rubber duck. A pink one. As if that wasn't cool enough? It lights up! Whee!