Monday, March 29, 2010

Narrow Escapes from Dog-Killing

Remember that story in the news a few years ago where a man was so overtaken with road rage that he grabbed a dog from a woman's car and threw it into oncoming traffic, killing it? Well, I'm not saying I agree with his actions or that I would do the same, but I'm also not about to proclaim myself as part of Team Fluffy or whatever the hell that damn dog's name was. (May he/she rest in peace in doggy heaven. Ha! Can't touch me, PETA!)

Like shit, road rage happens. And it happens to the best of us. I have been flipped off by an old man (and for the record, liver spots on your middle finger can happen) and told to "FUCKING YIELD!!!" by a hippie driving a VW bus. Maybe you're thinking, "Gee, you're probably just a bad driver." Well I am. But that has (almost) nothing to do with it. The blind anger one acquires from the pressures of driving - commonly referred to as Road Rage - is non-discriminatory and blame is never self-appointed.

Just the other morning I set out to pick up a friend who lives about a half mile away from me. We had plans for a very important game of paintball. The sun was shinning; birds were singing; if a cartoon Smurf had skipped by me on my way to my car, I probably wouldn't have even thought twice about it. I started the car and began to turn around in the direction of my friend's house. But I couldn't turn around. That's when I noticed a steady stream of spandex-clad runners coming around the corner towards me. A marathon. (I was later informed -by my very unsympathetic friends, I might add - that (duh!) this was Oakland's first marathon in 25 years and had been widely publicized.)

The entire side of the street going in the opposite direction was sectioned off for at least my block so I went around the back, planning to turn onto the street at the next intersection. But my smugness was short-lived when I realized that this entrance was blocked as well. In fact, the entire way to my friend's house was closed.

Feeling slightly less Smurfy, but still in decent spirits, I turned around and began driving in the longer route to my friend's. This route required making a left into downtown. But I couldn't make a left. Anywhere. Desperately, I leaned out my window only to see a line of cars for miles and miles - going straight, not left.

To make things worse, the world outside my vehicle of torture was disgustingly perky. Toned men and women ran jauntily by as families waved and cheered.

"Iwanttomakeafuckingleft." I gritted through my teeth, glaring at a little girl eating an ice cream cone, little shit.

By sheer luck, I had a (somewhat aggressive) friend's DMX cd in my player. I turned it up to full blast, shaking my mom's little old Camry with lyrics like "BITCH!" and "MOTHA FUCKA!" Apparently, DMX doesn't believe in inside voices or the letter "r". I scowled at the good citizens lining the street, probably looking more like a Sour Patch Kid than an intimidating gangsta. One policeman directing traffic looked over his shoulder at me suspiciously. I of course panicked, quickly turning down the volume and suddenly becoming very concerned with an imaginary situation in front of me. Once safely by him, I (cautiously) turned back up the stereo and went back to my scowling. (That's right. Who's gangsta now, biatch?)

Somewhere in my fury, my friend called and we decided it would be much easier for me to pick him up at a BART station on the outskirts of town. (This was after he referred to me as Godzilla.) By that time I reached him, I had calmed down and made it with out killing any one's dog. Yes, the streets were safe from my wrath for one more day.

*Oh. I forgot to mention that, due to my small size, I can hardly see over the dashboard. So, as I cruised menacingly through the streets of Oakland I either a) looked like I was riding really low and dirty b) looked like an angry forehead on top of a steering wheel or c) looked like nothing at all because no one could see me.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Shakespeare Never Got THIS

I just did the dorkiest thing. So I'm sitting on the couch watching Friends re-runs, reading blogs, and browsing job listings (Can you be a rabbi's assistant if you're not Jewish?) when I stumbled upon a comment from Mainland Streel, a wonderfully quirky writer that not only writes a hilarious blog but also (and more importantly) feeds my blog-go (blog-go = your ego in relation to your blog. See what I did there? Thank you very much, Bachelor's in English, my parents can finally be proud. Wait. Never mind. I just re-read it.)

Anyway. Mainland Steel. She's awesome. And not just because she has awarded me with my first ever blog award: THE BEAUTIFUL BLOGGER AWARD! (I added the caps.)

What's the Beautiful Blogger Award? you ask. Well, I'll tell you.

Ta-da! Yes. I know. And it comes with these rules:

1. Thank the person who gave you this award.

2. Share 7 things about yourself.

3. Pass the award along to 5 bloggers you recently discovered and you think are fantastic!

4. Contact the bloggers you picked and let them know about the award.

So, thank you, Mainland Steel. I wish you health, happiness, and lots of bloggers. Oh. The dorky thing I did...When I read that I got an award I actually threw my hands up to my face and went, "Oooooh!" like one of those little cartoon girls from the 50's, except instead of wearing a cute little dress and corkscrew curls I'm wearing a toothpaste-stained sweatshirt and my Don King-bed hair. But I digress. On to rule #2...

...7 things:

1. I'm really short, so when I tell people my height I round up and then round up again (and sometimes again). In reality, I'm almost 4'11", which (of course) rounds up to 4'11", which rounds up to 4'11 1/2" (obviously), which (depending on who I'm talking to) rounds out to an even 5'.

2. When I was about 8, I auditioned for a local production of Annie. When I was about 18, my mom told me that when I would practice The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow, she didn't have the heart to tell me that I had a horrible voice.

3. In college I accidentally stabbed myself in the eye with my tweezers and had to go to the emergency room. And I had to wear a temporary eye patch.

4. I eat brown sugar by the spoonful.

5. Sesame Street irritated me when I was a little kid. I much preferred the mature company of Mr. Rogers. I know. I was a snotty, little shit.

6. I still have to use my fingers when doing addition in my head.

7. I used to have a Furby, and my favorite thing to do would be to put him in the backseat of my car. Whenever I'd drive around, I could hear him making noises and it would entertain me to no end. He sounded like a munchkin on a roller-coaster.

Now. Time to pass the torch...

Sassy at The Sassy Curmudgeon. Her blog is THE SHIT. I'm sure she already has a ton of these, but she's the first blog I started to follow, and her sass and creativity inspire me.

Kate at I Am the Worst Blogger. Kate is awesome because she posts hilarious Internet clips. She's like that friend that keeps sending those damn chain emails about friendship and if you don't email this to 489 people you'll never have any friends. Except she's totally awesome. She also has this really cool link that will take you to one of her older blogs at random. Also, she was my very first follower that was not already someone that I knew and jui-guilt-suied into joining.

My Inflammatory Writ. This girl is a beautiful writer. Sometimes her posts are funny, sometimes they're poetic, sometimes thought-provoking. Love her.

Lucky Punk at Lucky Punk. She's funny and edgy. When I read her blog I wear a leather jacket because she's so bad ass.

Allie at Hyperbole and A Half. Following this blog reminds me how to spell "hyperbole". She's hilarious and needs her own show.

Okay. Done. My right ass cheek is asleep so I have to get up from the couch.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Ball-Scratching: A Contemplation

I don't have balls, and I have nothing against those who do, but what I do not understand is why those that do feel the need to scratch them in public. I mean REALLY all-up-in-there, poison-ivy kind of scratching.

Just the other day, I was walking home. I was waiting on the corner (yeah, very funny) at an intersection waiting for the light to change. Directly across from me stood a young man, decently dressed. It's important for me to mention that he was decently dressed so it is not confused that he a) was wearing an overcoat and ONLY an overcoat b) was wearing Tevas and a shirt that read: F.B.I.: Female Body Inspector or c) a garbage bag.

So we're standing there. The street was empty and there wasn't really anyone else around so I know he can see me, right? And - despite what is commonly learned in standard Peek-A-Boo drills and assuming his social awareness extends beyond that of a 2 year-old - he knows I can see him, right?

Decently Dressed Young Man then reaches into his pants, grabs a big wad of ballage, and scratches himself. And it wasn't for just a second. No. It was like he was re-arranging furniture in there or something. Then, when his right hand got tired, he switched! Inappropriate AND lazy! Man, if you're gonna have the balls to scratch your balls in public, at least build some stamina. You know people are gonna stare at you, so be impressive!

Oh yes, I stared. And I'm one of those people whose face reflects exactly what she's thinking. If someone had been watching me, I'm sure they would have thought I was trying to convert Mandarin to Russian in my head. (Or maybe they would have just thought I was a pervert watching some guy scratch himself.) My expression probably followed along something similar to this timeline: curiosity to inquisition to recognition to "What the fuck?!" to disgust to unimpressed (at the stamina, among other things) to "I'm soooo going to blog about this."
Finally, the little tweet, tweet of the pedestrian signal snapped me out of my little, ball-scratching world. We crossed paths, avoiding eye contact, and (me) making SURE to avoid any hand contact.

I walked the rest of the way home like a little snob. I had just had an interview that seemed to go pretty well, so I added a little swagger to my stride. Whenever I'm dressed in business attire and walking downtown, I like to pretend I'm very important. Nevermind the fact that it was the middle of the afternoon and I was walking home and not to Starbucks on my lunch break and I was surrounded by joggers and moms with strollers.

My mind wandered about human behavior and why particular humans seem to have no distintion between private behavior and public behavior. Drawing an analogy of the picking-your-nose-in-the-car syndrome, I was feeling quite proud of myself. I got home, threw my stuff down, and checked my business-savy self out in the mirror - to realize that the crotch of my pants had slouched down creating a faux weiner. Yes. Gross. I turned to the side. Hmmmm. Business-savy? No. Hot shit? No. Expert on managing private parts (real or fake) in public? No.

Moral of the story: Let he who has not sinned cast the first stone because you might have a fake penis.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

I used to be a crack whore.

I was looking for jobs this morning, when all of a sudden my computer forced me to where I had to watch a mandatory episode of Modern Family. In the Delgado-Pritchett storyline, Manny's father comes for a visit. There's a semi-endearing scene (I say "semi" as a compliment. The show is hilarious and never ventures into Full House-let's-learn-a-lesson-about-love-and-ignore-the-fact-that-the-living-situation-with-"Uncle"-Joey-is-weird. Side note: Totally watched Full House as a kid, but maybe Danny Tanner should add Megan's Law as a favorite on his Mac. Just sayin'.)

So. This semi-endearing scene. Jay and Manny's father are playing pool, and Jay mentions how he used to ride motorcycles and used to play baseball.

"Used to," Manny's father says. "Saddest phrase in any language."

For a sappy moment, I thought to my little gullible self, Wow. He is so right. People should never give up. They should always continue to do what they love. Why, Oprah, why?!

But then I thought of more endings to the phrase "used to."

"I used to be a crack whore."

"I used to shit myself as a baby."

"I used to drink Listerine when there was no alcohol in the house and then dance naked to Debbie Gibson on my balcony."

See? All "used to"s aren't sad. (Que bittersweet piano music.) In conclusion, DJ, it's good to continue loving your sisters, but you should really stop hanging out with that skank Kimmy Gibbler. She's only gonna bring you down.

Aaaand scene.

Monday, March 8, 2010

The Power of Sparkly, Part 1

I have never had, and never will have, sexy bedroom hair. This morning I woke up just in time to move my car before street cleaning. After throwing on some sweats and a hoodie, I glanced in the mirror only to find someone had placed an image of an electrocuted porcupine on the glass. Oh wait, it was my reflection.

You know those bitc-I mean, models in the Pantene commercials with the slow-motion shiny hair? If you're not Stevie Wonder playing the piano, why do you feel the need to toss your head around like that anyway? I mean, I'm not jealous; I'm just sayin'. Anyway, I don't have hair like that. And I used to think no one that didn't have a Matel logo on their ass had hair like that until I became friends with a girl who did (have hair like that, not the butt logo - well, at least I'm assuming). So this girl and I train martial arts together, and all through class she looks like some bad-ass Disney princess, while I look more like Buckwheat's older sister (still bad-ass though, of course). But I can't say anything negative about her because she's probably one of the sweetest girls ever. Love you B!

This wasn't even my point. My point is that this morning I discovered my hair's kryptonite. It's not a hat, it's not a gel, it's... a sparkly.

sparkly [spahr-klee] noun -item that sparkles, provoking the
viewer to breathe aloud,"Oooooooh!"
i.e., For Christmas my boyfriend gave me a sparkly and I
lived happily ever after.

In blogs to come I will explore the many powers of a sparkly, but this blog in particular is devoted to how sparklies battle that beast that is often my hair. Back to this morning...

With no time to tame the beast before the parking ticket fairy came around, I had to think fast. I had tied my hair into a messy bun. On some girls this offers a cute, tousled look. On me, it looked like my head had been squeezed out of a turkey baster. Suddenly, something shiny caught my eye. Enter sparkly in the form of gaudy rhinestone earrings. I put them on. Well, hel-lo. Instantly, the power of sparkly detracted all attention away from my Don King pouf. If I could keep all eyes on my sparklies, my hair was just a blurry backdrop.

I exited the building. I entered the public streets of Oakland. I moved my car. I evaded a ticket.

And I looked fucking fabulous. Thank you, Sparkly.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Sociable Jesus!

A few years ago, some friends and I were all sitting around a booth in a restaurant. Everyone was laughing and having a good time, everyone except for...let's call him K. K and E were a couple. K and E were fighting. K was not laughing or having a good time, but was moping over his tuna melt.

Suddenly, fed up with K's sulky behavior, E snapped across the table, "Be sociable, Jesus!"

An awkward silence was attempted before someone snorted, "Who's Sociable Jesus?" (Did I mention we were drinking?) This comment, of course, caused the entire table - including K, a.k.a. Sociable Jesus, - to erupt into asshole-volume laughter. And that was the night that sweet baby Sociable Jesus was born.

From that moment on, it was our favorite inside joke.

"Having a party? Don't forget to invite Sociable Jesus!"

"Feeling blue? Sociable Jesus has your back!"

"Who's that at the bar? It's Sociable Jesus!"

You get the idea. I imagined dropping out of college and buying a screen printer. I could start with T-shirts featuring a grinning, cartoon-esque Jesus with shrugged shoulders and turned-up palms, as if saying, "Don't worry, be happy! Sociable Jesus is here!" He would be superimposed onto a bright yellow sunburst, and over the top would read the exclamation, "Sociable Jesus!" Sometimes he could be holding a frothy beer or he could be customized to wear your favorite football team's jersey. Once the idea caught on, I could branch out into hats, key chains, and beach towels.

Eventually Sociable Jesus would be sold to Saturday Night Live as an animated sketch, complete with a sit-com laugh track. Whenever he entered a scene, one of the other characters would announce, "Hey, everybody. It's Sociable Jesus!" There would be an applause and Jesus would "yuck, yuck, yuck" and offer some bonehead advice in a voice crossed between Goofy and Ryan Seacrest.

Well I did not quit college, which, as you can see, has obviously paid off as I'm an unemployed sales clerk writing this in my robe at 2pm on a Wednesday. But the Sociable Jesus dream lives on! One day you'll be at Wal-Mart and you'll see the What Would Sociable Jesus Do? board game. Until then, I call it! Mine!

Oh, and God bless.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Two Wrongs Don't Make a Right. But a Few...

I must admit that I feel slightly guilty about my last post. No, that's not right. I feel slightly worried people will just think I'm a giant ass who uses a child's physical pain to her own benefit. See? Honesty.

The truth is that I feel (slightly) justified at my capitalizing. You know when you say or do something stupid and your friends tease you and ask, "Were you dropped on your head as a baby?" Well, my answer is, "Yes, in fact I was." This response is usually followed by averted eyes and snorts of disbelief, which fade into an uncomfortable silence as they think to themselves, Well that explains the whole eating off the floor deal. No. It does not explain the whole eating off the floor deal. What explains the whole eating off the floor deal is that sometimes I'm just really hungry because I have a fast metabolism and the floor's usually clean anyway and if I happen to drop something, what's wrong with picking it right back up and eating it?


Yes, I was dropped on my head as a baby and I'm not going to say it's better than it sounds because it's actually worse than it sounds. I believe the word "flung" is more accurate. See, my dad liked to play this game with me where he would hold me by the ankles and spin me around and around like a propeller. Yeah, it's all fun and games until your two year-old goes flying head first into the piano. And that's exactly what happened. The velocity that had built up from my spinning (take that, junior year physics!) caused my darling father (hey Dad! OMG, shout out!) to loose his grip and I went shooting off into orbit. I have a very vague memory of coming to on the couch with my mother's face an inch from mine.

"Oh, oh! She's waking up," she was saying into the phone. "Yes, doctor, her eyes do look a little dilated."

Long story short, I went to the emergency room, got checked out, and everything was fine.
A few years later, I was at a park with my older brother playing on the merry-go-round. My hand must have slipped from the rail because the next thing I knew I was waking up on the sidewalk with my brother leaning over me."

"Oh, oh! She's waking up," he was saying to the gathering circle of kids. "You better not tell Mom or I'll kill you."

It's these childhood moments that make me feel justified to finding humor in, say, a kid running into a metal parking permit dispenser. And I'm sure there's probably more, I just - for some reason - can't remember.