Saturday, January 7, 2012

Sloppy Seconds Saturday

Saturdays are for sloppy seconds. No, not that kind!  Weekends are for friends, and what better way is there to show some love to a fellow writer than to share his or her funniest stuff? This week, my Sloppy Seconds Saturday is devoted to the lovely and talented Amy A. Mullis.

Hip Hop

I’m like Shakira--my hips don’t lie. 

Even when threatened.

However, without much coaxing they’re willing to reveal every bite of doughnut I’ve had in the past ten years. Try to stuff them into a pair of pantyhose and they’ll also let on what happened to the last box of Thin Mints, the banana bread the neighbor brought over, and the six dozen Rudolph cupcakes intended for the third grade Christmas party.

My hips and I have never had a very good relationship. All I long for is to see daylight between my thighs one time before I die. On the other hand my hips fantasize of a day when we can coexist on the buffet deck of the Love Boat without me snarling every time a skinny chick sucks down a milkshake without scraping off the whipped cream.

These days they’re spreading the dream to my chins, who have rebelled and resorted to disguising cookie crumbs in their folds for a late night snack. I’m so nearsighted, I thought it was just stray whiskers. If I ever locate my bifocals, I intend to act sternly in regards to my personal appearance. I may have to read up on excavation techniques.

When I was fifteen, I was all shin bones and shoulder blades. Now I’m fifty and I’ve discovered that love handles are the new hipbones. I used to sing “Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes,” but now I have to admit that my head and toes lost touch long before size 10 became the new obese. My knees are still active, though. They take every opportunity to go out. So these days, I’m more likely to sing “Shake, Rattle, and Roll” and hope I don’t lose anything important when I stand up.

Last week I wanted to buy a pair of hip hugger jeans, but I had two get three estimates on the location of my navel to determine the right size. I was going to wear them with a halter top, just like the old days, but my kids hit me with a restraining order, the entire population of the tri-state area staged an intervention, and the government declared my entire Head to Toe area unsafe. I’m expecting FEMA to approve my application for natural disaster assistance any day now.

In the meantime, I’m investing heavily in Krispy Kreme. Because hips don’t lie, but maybe they can be bribed to keep the sugar coated truth to themselves.


This gem was originally posted on Amy's hilarious blog, Mind over Mullis, on December 7, 2011. I have reposted it with her express permission. Ok, so I resorted to bribery.

Amy is a prize-winning humor writer who was honored by the Erma Bombeck Writing Competition in 2010 for her essay, "The Bra Whisperer." You should read it. Now. And swallow any liquids before you begin. You were warned. 

She is a regular contributor at An Army of Ermas, a place that is near and dear to my heart, and numerous other writerly digs. 

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Things I Love

Today seems like a good day to talk a little about things I love. Although Baby New Year tried his best to hack me off at the knees, I have prevailed. Today is a good day.

In honor of this good day, I shall share one of my favorite things as it applies to January 5, 2012.

These are the most delicious slippers ever imagined. Restoration Hardware calls them foot duvets. Swanky.

If your feet had mouths, they would thank you. They would also look weird, and you might suffocate while wearing slippers. Maybe it's best that the sentiment remains unspoken between you and your tootsies. 

We have established that my house is about as cold as a… oops, there might be children present. My house is cold. My sister gave me the red foot duvets (That's just fun to say) for Christmas last year, and I have praised her name to the rooftops ever since. They even make up for the hair pulling when we were kids, and that's saying a lot. Two days ago, I let Mr. Vagabond try them out. I nearly had to invoke the Headlock of Doom to get them back.

He said: Hey!  They'll be easy for me to slip off at the airport security gate.
She said: Drop the slippers, Buster. 

I ran off with them while he was in the shower. 

If the idea of toasty toes puts a spring in your step, scamper off to Restoration Hardware while these goosedown-filled, plush-lined, microfiber lovelies are still on sale. At $12, they're cheaper than a pair of Dearfoams, and they survive repeated launderings much better.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Surprise! Winter is Here

I planned to update my blog weekly, or thereabouts. Sometimes, life has other plans. Since writing is cathartic, which is a nice way of saying that it keeps me from going fully insane, I thought I'd share a bit of my January 3, 2012, as it has progressed thus far.

Throughout Mr. Vagabond's vacation at home, I've made terrific progress with my resolution to stay up as late as I want and sleep as late as I want. My mother isn't thrilled, since I no longer answer my phone at 7:30 a.m., but that's the pretty much the only downside. 

Today I woke at approximately noon to learn that the living room was 36 degrees. Fahrenheit! Gypsy and Sinner were curled together in a big blonde and black, furry ball on the sofa. If you know anything about my dogs, you know that this was a rare scene, indeed. Sinner may despise Gypsy, but she ain't stupid. Gypsy is big. And warm. As I opened the foyer doors, they both glared at me as if to say, "Look who has arrived from her cozy warm bed to mingle with the commoners." Ok, maybe Sinner's glare said that. Gypsy's expression was more like, "Huh?" *adjust, stretch, yawn, ZZzzzzzzzz*

Although I had yet to make coffee, I was clear-headed enough to know that seeing my own breath in the living room was not a good sign. I soon discovered that someone had flipped the wrong button on the radiator last night. I'm not one to point fingers, but she was wearing two pairs of socks, fuzzy pajama pants, a pink and white baseball jersey and her favorite Finding Forrester cardigan. Ok, fine; it was me. I put it on a timer instead of upping the thermostat. Because I am smart like that.

I see a lot of hats in my immediate future. 

Unfortunately, a living room that was comparable to Antarctica wasn't the pinnacle of what I learned this morning… er, afternoon. 

When I reached the usual first destination that one visits upon waking each day, I noticed an extension cord -not- plugged into the outlet above the vanity. This was not a good sign. There is one reason, and only one reason, why that particular extension cord is ever plugged in. It powers the heated water pipe wrap under the house. When it's not plugged in . . . well, you get the idea.

Long story short, too late:  Today, we have no water. Well, I suppose we do have water, but in its solid state, it's of no use for things like showers, cooking and generally going about the day. 

Wait.  No water means no coffee. 

Quick-like, I ran out to the little Mom & Pop grocery store and returned triumphantly with two gallons of water. If you ever want to gain a full understanding of how much water you use in an average day, pour it from gallon jugs. After filling the coffee pot, the dogs' water bowls and the pot to make chicken and dumplings, there was nary a drop left. I brushed my teeth with Listerine. Mmmmm. Spicy!

So January 2012 has started off with a bang. I foresee $600 electric bills, skyrocketing water bills (we have to let it drip to prevent another freezing episode) and lots of warm hats. I suppose it's a good time to start my annual Spring Countdown. 

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Out with the Old...

So it's January 1, 2012. My second home, the Internet, is brimming with advice, resolutions, 2011 recaps and myriad reasons why 2012 really needs to get its act together fast. If not, we're all doomed to another year of financial woes, protests and general malaise until we find ourselves drafting our 2013 resolutions, which will assuredly mirror our 2012 resolutions, unless we get off our rears and do something about it. Baby New Year seems to kick Father Time in the shins each chance he gets. I, for one, am growing weary of that cranky, diapered kid. But that's just me.

Not to be outdone by the rest of the world, I, too, have a few resolutions. Far be it from me to rock the boat.

  1. Drink more coffee.
  2. Sleep as late as I want, stay up as late as I want and stop worrying about whether it's ok.
  3. Stop worrying in general.
  4. Decorate for each major holiday.
  5. Travel more.
  6. Be less cranky.
My husband, whom I lovingly refer to as Mr. Vagabond, particularly likes No. 6. We'll see how that works out.

Now, on the surface, these resolutions might seem a bit odd. That's ok; so am I. I have an irrational propensity toward many unusual things.

Why would I strive to drink more coffee? Because I like coffee, even though my friend and digital broheim, Adam, seems to think I am off my nut. He's from Newfoundland by way of the UK. I try to overlook his lack of appreciation for coffee. He's a good chap otherwise.

Working toward weird hours also seems an unlikely goal, but it makes sense in my world. During normal working hours, if those exist, people do the weirdest things. Like call my cell. Or knock on my door. Or ask me to do things. I am a writer, so I need a little peace and quiet, dagonnit. Keeping odd hours might help.

Letting go of all the worrying is something many of us want, need or even crave. When you think about it, how much worry in your life is thrust upon you by someone else's idea of who or what you ought to be?

Decorating for each major holiday. This one is near and dear to my heart, even if Mr. Vagabond couldn't care less. And really, he couldn't. I love pretty things. I love being around pretty things. I touch the glossy pages of decorating magazines with a longing that fills me to the brim. Unfortunately, each holiday comes and goes with barely more than a figurine on the piano to herald the upcoming event. I would like to change this. I might need to hire someone. Ok, several someones.

Traveling more. Now, this one is doable. Totally. To this point, if you have been so kind as to read my ramblings, you might be wondering why or how my significant other, Mr. Vagabond, arrived at such a moniker. For the past fourteen years, give or take, his work carries him across this great country. In fact, it is no understatement to say that he spends more time traveling than he does at home. Although I drudged through college, I can't seem to hold a regular job like a normal person. The upside to this is my schedule, or lack thereof, allows me to travel with my Vagabond. It's fun. I like it. A lot.

This is my "On Vacation" face. It's nicer than my regular face.

As for my last resolution, this one will take some work. Zoloft helps. I don't know where this cranky 43-year-old woman came from, but I am about to toss her out the window along with Baby New Year.

May your 2012 be everything you want, nothing that you don't, and may you have a fifth of bourbon and something breakable within arm's reach for the times when you'd rather just run away. Oh. By the way, I'm Carolee. I run this madhouse.