Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Up and Running

Oh my god. It's here. And fully working. And by "it" I obviously mean my website. I still have little things to tweak, like adding my twitter and changing the dotted border around the thumbnails...but it's done. And live.

I will no longer be posting on this here blogger site...please check out my new and improved website here! (www.colleenkatana.com)

Is it weird that I'm physically NERVOUS to be launching this new site?? Because I am. Sweaty and nervous.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Kismet

The music was pounding and so was my head. The alcohol flowing through my veins helped me ignore the pain throbbing against my temple. Setting the glass of red wine back onto the stained tablecloth, I headed toward the dance floor, pulling on the bra part of my strapless bridesmaid gown.

I passed a group of people I had met the night before at the rehearsal dinner and could hear them talking. One girl named Yaz wore a hideously loud dress with large hot pink and yellow Hawaiian flowers plastered around the entirety of it. It was almost as obnoxious as she was. She had dark olive skin and black hair down to her curvy waist. And I’m being quite generous by using the word “curvy.” Many other words come to mind, but I’ll keep this politically correct.

She threw her head back flipping her long hair into my face. I spat it out. It tasted like hairspray.

“This was a nice wedding. Exactly how I’d want mine to be but, you know, without all that religious stuff.” Her nose was high in the air.

Missy nodded uncomfortably, trying to smile. She straightened out her crisp, white wedding gown and said meekly, “Well, uh…I’m religious. So, it’s not exactly silly to me.”

“Well compared to the Muslim religion it is. I just don’t get all of your traditions.
I mean, today really sucked for me, ya know?” she continued, “I just had to wait around while Mattie here took pictures and did all those groomsman things.” She grabbed the lanky groomsman around the waist and pulled him into her. “And I just know he missed me, too.”

Yeah, I thought, like a fratboy misses syphilis.

Hearing Bon Jovi being blared, I ran over to rescue Missy. “C’mon!” I yelled, “It’s our song!” I grabbed her hand and started pulling her to the dance floor, away from Yaz’s passive aggressive insults.

I rolled my eyes, shaking my head as my hips swayed to the music. “Oh my God,” she could barely hear me over the music, “Can you believe her?”

Missy nodded. “I know. It’s like this at every event. She just hates not being the center of attention.”

“Well, so do I. But I think I can take a backseat when it’s someone’s WEDDING day!” I spoke sarcastically and mockingly threw my short hair over my right shoulder in a “diva” like manner.

Just then Yaz entered the dance floor, dragging her boyfriend behind her with her left hand. With the right, she carried a glass of red wine. She walked unsteadily in platform based 4-inch heels. I could tell she was the type who wore heels a lot to impress people, but didn’t actually know how to walk in them. You know the type I’m talking about…they walk toe-to-heel while wearing them instead of heel-to-toe. As she got to the center, she turned to face her boyfriend and lost her balance falling ass first to the floor. With her legs above her head, her dress slipped up around her unmentionables and not only did I get a clear glimpse of her ass crack, but also of her thigh cellulite. It felt like everything was happening in slow motion when she looked up just as the red wine from her drink came splashing down into her face.

Missy ran over out of obligation and I followed closely behind. So to get a good photograph of the moment. She cursed as she stood. “Fuck!” she spat angrily, “Fuck this fucking dance floor to Hell!” She pushed her boyfriend aside and stormed off leaving the rest of us standing there stunned. And me, standing there smiling.

Missy turned to me, eyes wide. “Uh, what do I do now?”

I shrugged. “Dance?”

“Don’t I have to go say something to her?”

“Yeah, I guess that would be the polite thing to do,” I nodded. Missy turned to walk away. “Hey Missy…” I said before she got to far away.

She turned back around to face me. “Yeah?”

“Do Muslims believe in Kismet?”

“I don’t know. Why?”

“Because I think Yaz just met my good friend, Karma. And yes—Karma can be a bitch.”

Monday, September 29, 2008

One of those days...

My alarm didn't go off, a mouse ran across the living room, Luna threw up twice and I ran out of hair gel. It must be Monday.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

A Puppy In Need


My dear friend David is asking...no, scratch that...pleading for people's help. He needs a new home for his 8-year old beautiful dog, Jasmine. This poor dog has a tragic past and so deserves a wonderful, loving home.

Two years ago, David was moving to the city where Jasmine would not have been happy. Being used to farms and space, it would have been a tough transition for her. Reluctantly, he handed her over to his best friend to care for while he was away. Tragically, David's best friend was killed in a car accident at the hands of a drunk driver last year. Since this tragic occurrence, Jasmine has been in and out of the animal hospital and foster homes. She contracted ring worm (which has now been cured) and though she still has patches of fur missing, her face is still as beautiful and sweet as the day I met her.

However, Jasmine, like most dogs, is not perfect. As a result of an abusive foster home, she no longer gets along with other dogs and very young children. Older kids are fine, so long as they are gentle and don't tug her tail and ears and pick at her scars from ringworm. (Yes, the hellion three-year old did this and the parents did nothing to stop her)

But let me also tell you the wonderful things about this dog. I remember Jasmine from college. She is adorable and gentle. Some kind of yellow lab mix (on the smaller side...maybe 45-50lbs). She loves people and is such a calm, sweet dog. She's very low maintenance, especially in the right lifestyle. If I could take her, I would do so in a heartbeat.

So, please, I beg...I plead...does anyone want to give this dog the home, love and life she deserves? Please ask around...ask friends and family. I don't want to see Jasmine live the remainder of her life in a shelter.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Busy as a Beaver

What is that expression about anyway? "Busy as a beaver." Are beavers busy?? Do they have deadlines and doctor's appointments and lunch dates and an unhealthy obsession to watch every week's Grey's Anatomy?

Anyway, things here in KatanaLand have been super busy. I just returned from my best friend's wedding out in Portland and let me tell you...it was a great time. Expensive as hell to get there but so much fun! I love her family so much...they remind me of my own.

So, now I'm back and there will be no more traveling for quite some time. In fact, I managed to get myself a part time job as an editorial assistant for Kensington Books. This job (even though I am only into my second day there) is all that I had hoped it would be. I love publishing even more than I thought I would. Even though it's only been a couple of days, there is no doubt in my mind that this is the correct career path. I sat in on a meeting with all the editors today and it's amazing to me what their thought processes are. Nothing like what I had read or imagined. The reasons for turning down some books are so asinine I can hardly believe it. And at one point they were excited that one author didn't have agent...umm, I thought that was HUGELY taboo. But apparently only for the BAD authors is this taboo.

The hardest part about getting back into a (somewhat consistent) work routine...is this whole getting up early thing. Seriously, who would have thought it would be so difficult to get dressed each morning. It's quite a difference from my normal sweatpants and Old Navy shirt, but I suppose it's time to start being an adult again. I've begun choosing my clothes the night before after a disastrous first day of wearing two different socks. I don't think anyone actually noticed the sock debacle, but even so...it's not something I'm willing to risk again. Tomorrow I will be wearing my satin geometric dress. I think it will help me to stand out at the office--and not only because it's something my crazy Aunt Donna would wear to a wake.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Book Recommendation: The Dangerous Days of Daniel X

The Dangerous Days of Daniel X

Something I hate to admit to my adult friends is that I loved the Harry Potter books. Every last one of them. Yes, I am a 25 year old nerd…I have accepted it, so I suggest that you, dear readers, accept it too.

So, when I received James Patterson’s latest book,
The Dangerous Days of Daniel X to review, I was pretty excited…despite the fact that it’s meant to be a YA Fantasy book. Patterson, being a father himself, wrote the book to inspire young boys to read more. A noble effort on his part, I believe.

The Dangerous Days of Daniel X is about “a boy who has always used his hidden superpowers to survive, but he carries with him a deadly secret and the fate of the world rests on whether he succeeds at his mission”. Now, if you’re anything like me, this quote won’t do a whole lot for you. Essentially, it’s about a boy with serious superpowers who is on a quest to avenge the death of his parents…and save the world while he’s at it.

This book (available here on amazon.com) was a very quick read for me and the number one praise I have for Patterson are the short chapters. In a world of ADD kids, these short chapters make reading easy and enjoyable again. Especially for pre-teen boys, who we all know aren’t typically big readers. It’s definitely the kind of book your son (or daughter) will enjoy but won’t make you cringe while reading it with them.

At times, it was a little cheesy with some dialogue that was hard for me to swallow. Yes, I know I’m an adult and that’s why the use of the word “butt” instead of “ass” feels forced to me. However, I probably wouldn’t feel the same way about the language back when I was 10 years old…nor would I feel it was too tame if I had a 10-year old reading said tame language. Also, some of the supernatural lingo took a while for me to pick up and understand…but again, I blame the fact that I’m an old fart.

These two very small criticisms aside, I still feel strongly that this book was very clever and at times I found it so suspenseful that I didn’t even want to put it down at some chapter breaks! The plot is sharp and the ending was actually unexpected…something I find can be rare in YA books.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Brilliant Costume Ideas

The Boyfriend!: We could dress up as our dogs for Halloween.

Me: Like I'll be Luna and you'll be Red?

The Boyfriend!: Exactly. I'll spend the whole night begging for food and licking my ass.

Me: And I'll constantly follow you, jumping up and biting your neck.

The Boyfriend!: You'll also have to start barking at random things. And chasing non-existent mice.

Me: And I'll attack other people....who are dressed as dogs.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Oirland!

Things I’ll Miss About Ireland:
1) The way the Irish say words like “Pub” (Poob) and “Pint” (Point) and “Ireland” (Oirland) and “You” (Yeh). So very charming.
2) The beautiful scenery of rolling mountains and rocky coastlines. It was a photographer’s dream. (Photos will be posted soon).
3) Sheep!! Or more accurately Black faced horny rams (that’s their official name). They were everywhere! Chillin in the roads and just hanging out, chewing on some grass. I wanted to take one home…and I did…in the form of a scarf.
4) The town, Carlingford. Greatest little village EVER. Every single citizen of this town was friendly and welcoming. It’s also home to King John’s Castle (You know, King John…from Robin Hood). Apparently, he loved this town as much as we did. Possibly more since he had a castle built there for him to come and visit frequently. But ya know what? If I had tons of money to blow, I would totally build a castle in Carlingford. And I’d call it Commoner Colleen’s Castle. And in a few hundred years, tourists would be snapping pictures of my old castle, marveling at how beautiful it was.
5) The radio station that we could never figure out. We titled it “Random FM.” It played everything from Mozart to an Irish cover of “I Will Survive” to some other Irish song we had never heard before with lyrics like this:
Kick me and lick me and spit on me corpse
Punch me and hunch me over in a hearse…
Well, those aren’t the exact lyrics, but it’s pretty close and absolutely hysterical. The song was stuck in our heads all week.
6) Irish coffee. And NOT the kind with whiskey in it. For some reason, Ireland has the best brewed coffee I’ve ever had. And I’m not talking about espresso or cappuccino or anything. Just a regular cup o’ joe. Every morning it was the part of breakfast I looked forward to the most….and now it’s gone. Since I’ve been home, I’ve attempted to recreate the frothy tan foam that collected on the top of my coffee, but it’s proven impossible. Perhaps with a French Press?
7) The Flake candy bar. Made by Cadbury (Yes, the makers of the eggs)…why the fuck don’t they market these in the US? And why does the chocolate over there taste so much better than Hershey’s? Oh that’s right, because Hershey’s SUCKS.
8) Pear Cider. So delectable. It was my lifesaver since there’s not a whole lot else to do but travel from pub to pub, and I don’t like beer all that much.
9) Rainbows. Yes, the weather was shit for most of our trip, but a couple of times when the rain ceased and the clouds parted, the most glorious rainbows would appear. Unfortunately, there were no pots of gold that I could find. Damn those tricky leprechauns.
10) (Most) Irish men. (Most) are very attractive in burly ways.

Things I Will NOT Miss About Ireland:
1. Lasagne. Last time I checked, Ireland is not known for its Italian cuisine…so why do so many cafés, restaurants and pubs serve it? And no—the lasagne I had did not taste good.
2. The price of, well, EVERYTHING. The Euro to US Dollar ratio is not good people. Want to know what else is not good? The fact that dinner at a pub will easily run you 16-25 Euro. EURO! That essentially means you’re not getting a burger and fries for less than 20 US Dollars. Oh, the insanity.
3. Tiny, curvy roads where people drive like nutcases at 120kpm.
4. Speaking of kilometers….the metric system. I know it makes perfect sense…but I had serious troubles converting metric into something I understood. Damn your totally sensible and easy to learn units of measurement proving how stupid Americans are for creating a system that is WAY more complicated than it needs to be.
5. Potatoes. I actually love potatoes—but not for breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert. Seriously? You’re offering me sweet potato pie after I had the lamb stew casserole topped with mashed potatoes and a side of French fries? Has Ireland never heard of these wonderfully crunchy and delectable things called vegetables?
6. The morbid death of the apostrophe in Ireland. Did St. Patrick chase those out too along with the snakes? (McCarthys, Whelans, Wards, Flannerys…) It seems as though the apostrophe has disappeared from all facets of Irish life.
7. The town of Nenagh where we stopped for lunch briefly. It has all the attractions of a funeral parlor and most certainly less life than one. If there is a bleaker or grimier town in all of Ireland…please let its existence be known to me.
8. The “tour” of the Titanic shipyards in Belfast. Belfast: I love you dearly. You were by far one of my favorite places to visit…but, you’ve had almost a hundred years and the shipyards look like one big island of junk. Turn this site into something worth seeing, PLEASE!
9. The Northern Irish accent. I could not understand a LICK of what they were saying.
10. (Most) Irish women. Let me just thank my mother profusely for not marrying another Irish man (Hi, Mom! Love you!). My genes would have been fucked.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Compromise

Me: Can I pack a few things in your bag?

The Boyfriend!: Depends what...

Me: Mostly things we're sharing. A towel, bar of soap, shampoo...

The Boyfriend!: Sure.

Me: ...make up, curling iron and tampons.

The Boyfriend!: Um, no. I draw the line at tampons.

Me: What? Why?

The Boyfriend!: What will the men at the security checkpoint think!?

Me: Clearly, they'll think you're a homosexual.(sarcasm)

The Boyfriend!: They WILL think I'm gay, won't they?

Me: (sigh) No...they will think you're traveling with a woman. Which you are. So you should probably get used to traveling with tampons.

The Boyfriend!: Fine. But then you're finding space in your own bag for make up and hair stuff.

Me: Deal.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Are Your Balls Bigger Than Your Brain?

Dear large (read: fat) man on the subway,

Why when you're sitting do you have to have your legs spread so wide that your fat ass takes up two seats? Is it so hard to keep your knees together? I notice, this doesn't happen with larger women. Women tend to cross their legs, their ankles, their arms, and hold their purses and bags in their laps...basically bending over backwards to make room for others regardless of what size they are. But you--you fat mother fucker--all you would have to do is close your legs just half as wide as you currently have them spread and that would be enough so that the old woman standing, stretching to hold onto the bar above your lazy head could sit down.

So why don't you? Would that be too taxing for you after a long day of watching the security camera at the Astor Place KMart while eating a McDonald's southern fried chicken sandwich? And please don't feed me this excuse that it's because you have two family jewels that can't be squashed. Men use their balls for SO MANY excuses and I am sick to hell of it. And let's face it, fatass...your balls are probably not even that big. No man's testicles need THAT much room that you are currently giving yours at rush hour on the A train. Now, I'm not saying you have to squeeze your scrotum between your massive thighs until they turn blue. I'm not even asking you to cross your legs...I know you're much too homophobic for that. Just adjust SLIGHTLY so the poor, old woman can sit down.

But no. You won't do that, will you? So, it's left up to me to offer the old woman my seat, three seats away from you, because you're too inconsiderate to move a few inches to the right. I grab my CVS bag full of crap needed for my trip this weekend, my Citarella bag of fresh cheese, my laptop, my purse, my B&H bags of film and stand so that the woman can hobble over and sit. I walk over to you and clear my throat. You don't even look up. I say "Excuse me," and still nothing. I say it again louder...nothing. I refuse to give up. I WILL be sitting down and you WILL be moving over. Give up, already. RELENT. So, I turn, lower my bags to the floor and force my bony ass into the seat, pushing your fleshy thighs out of my way.

I don't care that you smell like a combination of meat, cheese and sweat. I don't care that my shoulders, hips and thighs are pressed against yours. You will learn your lesson. You will learn that next time having a sweet old lady sitting next to you is the better alternative than me, the uber bitch, forcing her way into your personal space. And for the record: when I had to sneeze, though yes I covered my mouth, I still purposefully turned my head in your direction.

Please next time be more conscious of those around you...particularly the elderly and pregnant women.

Thank you,
Colleen

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

On Being a Target

I live in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn. For those who don't know the New York areas well, Bed-Stuy is a primarily black neighborhood that was declared an impact zone in 2005 for having the most number of homicides in New York.

When Sean and I moved here, we didn't think twice about the fact that it was a mostly black neighborhood. It meant nothing to us...we really didn't even notice it until a few months after we moved in. We liked our neighbors--Miss Thelma, the (very) old woman next door who will get mad if we don't sweep our steps often enough. And Joan, the crazy woman a couple doors down who feeds the 30 stray cats in the neighborhood. Even the teenage and pre-teen kids on our block are always very friendly and respectful. We had a game going where the boys would ask me how old I was every night when I came home from work...I would tell them I was 35 with a coy smile. They knew I was lying and would burst out in laughter, yelling:

"No you're not, Miss Colleen!! Tell us! How old are you??"

The bottom line is, Sean and I love our block. However, every day I turn the corner onto Malcolm X Blvd to walk the six blocks to the subway, it's a very different story. The sweet street I live on is suddenly a ghetto with people hanging outside of store fronts drinking beer out of paper bags (nothing new to see when living in New York), but in this neighborhood, the people are much louder and much more confrontational.

It began with nothing too horrible. People calling me "gorgeous" and "hey baby, do you have a boyfriend." I always had my iPod in my ears and could pretend that I either didn't hear them, or sometimes I would just nod and wave in return. Then, the younger kids (high school probably) started following me, walking closely behind me for a block or so. They called me "Katie," I guess what they assumed was a typical "white girl" name. At one point I stopped, turned around and simply asked..."Oh, are you talking to me? Katie's not my name...you must have the wrong person." So then, they started calling me Marcia Brady (which I actually find kind of funny).

The thing I've noticed is that if it's a group of guys, nothing too bad happens. Maybe some of them trying to get my attention, but that's it. If there are girls in the group, or god forbid, a group of only girls, then it's usually much worse.

So, things grew increasingly worse. The innocent "Marcia Brady" calling advanced to kids pulling my hair and then running away as I'm walking. People purposefully bumping into me and pushing me into the street. Usually when I'm with Sean, nothing too bad happens, but one time, kids behind us started following and yelling: "Is that your boyfriend, white girl? Do you fuck him? Do you like it from behind?" That was the first time Sean really saw first hand what I go through on a daily basis....because hearing something like that definitely did not shock me. I was used to it...but he was appalled.

Then the other night, we were coming home. It was about 9:00. We passed a group of girls sitting on their front stoop. We heard one girl say, rather quietly, "white bitch." We ignored it, as we tend to do. Within two minutes, one of the girls was riding a bike (on the sidewalk...a huge pet peeve of mine) and blatantly ran me over with the bike. As in, she was riding straight...there was plenty of room on the sidewalk and as she came up on us, she turned the handlebars and ran directly into me--not Sean--me. I was ok...a few bruises, two broken toenails. But this is pretty much the last straw for me.

I try so hard not to generalize. I never considered myself to be racist, but I fear that having lived here for a year, I am becoming that which I hate. If I'm in this neighborhood and I see a group of black girls as I'm approaching (I specify their race because in the rare case when there is a white girl or guy in the group, nothing ever happens to me), I now cross the street. I avoid them. If I'm walking past a man dressed in baggy pants and a hoodie pulled up around his face (he can be any race), I will hug my purse tighter to my body. And I hate that I do this...but I need to protect myself first and foremost. These are actions and habits which have been conditioned in me BECAUSE of how I have been treated. I moved here with no judgments about the inhabitants of the neighborhood...and I am leaving hating almost every single person I pass.

Here in this neighborhood, it would be very hard to dispute that there is a definite correlation between race, education and poverty and the actions of the people on this street. I am a target because I am white...and I don't deserve that.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Going to get me some Lucky Charms!

In about a week, Sean and I are jet-setting to Ireland! I am extremely excited about this trip...not only because I have been waiting in anticipation since the day Sean mentioned it as a part of my Christmas and Valentine's Day gifts, but because this is the first time I have ever stepped foot off of American soil.

That's right, I have never been outside of the country. Seems odd, no? Travel is SO important for young people in this country. The cultures you are exposed to and the experiences to be had contribute greatly to creating a culturally sensitive society…something very important and rarely valued in America today. Fewer and fewer young adults are traveling abroad these days due to high gas prices, inflated plane tickets, the value of the Euro, and low entry-level salaries. Regardless, as a result of the reasons listed above, I have never managed to leave the country.

When I mentioned this to the boyfriend! he seemed confused.

Him: But, didn't you go to the Bahamas once?

Me: Yeah...but that doesn't count as an international trip. I was working the whole time and hardly left the boat. Plus, it didn't require a passport.

Him: Neither did Mexico or Canada until just recently, but that would count as an international trip.

Me: Yes, but I haven't even been to Mexico or Canada either...(these points all seem valid in my mind)

Him: But the Bahamas is British territory. Therefore, you technically have left the country.

Me: Ok, maybe TECHNICALLY, but we all know that technicalities don't count.

Him: What? Why don't technicalities count?! They should count the most!

Me: They just don't!! I wasn't exposed to any new cultures! There's no stamp in my passport! It wasn't even a vacation! I could have been in Key West and it would have felt exactly the same!

Him: Fine. I agree that maybe the experience wasn't necessarily an "international" one, but you have technically left the United States.

Me: Fine. (under my breath) But not really...

Him: YES, REALLY!

So what, dear internet, do you think? Is Ireland my first true trip outside of the United States, or does the Bahamas Cruise count as a worldly and international experience?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Adelynn Turned One!






Dear Adelynn,

Happy Birthday, beautiful girl! You’re a whole year old. Just think…only 20 more to go before you can buy vodka ALL BY YOURSELF. Goals are important; remember that.

I just returned from my trip to NC for your birthday party. It was a total blast. There was family and presents and fried chicken and CAKE! Oh, the cake! It was your first taste of sugar and let me tell you, BOY, are you a Katana. You took to that cake like a duck takes to water; diving right in!

I unfortunately have only seen you four times in the first year of your life. I met you for the first time at your baptism when you were about six weeks old. Basically, you were a lump who cried and ate and slept and pooped. Don’t worry, though…you were an adorable little lump. I stayed awake three nights in a row to feed you every 2-3 hours so to give my sister a much needed break. They were easily three of the most horrible nights of my life. But whenever I picked you up from that crib and cradled you while you sucked the bottle’s nipple, I forgot about my exhaustion and became captivated by your little sucking lips and heavy eyelids.

The next time I saw you was at Christmas, at five months old. You were already such a curious little thing. Any time someone walked into the room you HAD to see who was there and fussed until we turned you so that you could see. You liked to watch people and you loved when I blew raspberries on your tummy.

In April when you were about nine months old, your mommy and daddy brought you to visit New York. And me. You were still very curious and such an active baby. You loved playing with all the toys at FAO Schwartz and we bought you three new toys from the store. The first was a little blue elephant. We all thought it was adorable how much you seemed to love this elephant. We couldn’t tear it out of your hands the whole time we were in the store. Any time we tried to show you something else, you gave it a look like, “Yeah, yeah, ok. I see the stuffed dog. Very nice.” But the blue elephant seemed to be IT. Regardless, we bought you a jack in the box Curious George toy and a teddy bear with an FAO Schwartz t-shirt. You showed little to no interest in the teddy bear, but we wanted you to have something with the toy store’s logo. As soon as we got to the hotel and cut the tags off, you no longer had an interest in the elephant. Apparently without the flavor of cardboard and ink, it was a dull toy. The teddy bear, however, has since turned into your absolute favorite toy. His name is Eddie. That’s right, Eddie the Teddy.

Eddie the Teddy is INVALUABLE in your house. You may not know this yet, but you are quite the high maintenance baby. And Eddie is your parents’ savior. He calms your tears and puts you to sleep and when you’re acting fussy, if we hand you Eddie, 9 out of 10 times, you will calm down. This most recent trip for your birthday was quite the eye opener. I love the little person you are becoming. When I first arrived, you went right to my mom—your Oma. Only, you don’t call her Oma; you say “YaYa” because when she says “Yeah, yeah” in conversations it sounds like “Ya, ya…” And she apparently says this a lot. And you love your YaYa. You smile and laugh for her and it takes a good 20 minutes before you’ll leave YaYa’s arms and go to anyone else. It’s as though YOU NEED YOUR YAYA TIME. You finally came to me for the first time since I had last seen you. You gave me a little smile, but then coyly dropped your head into Eddie’s neck. Then, peeking out from behind your teddy, you smiled and laughed.

Your smile, Adelynn, may just be the cutest thing I have ever seen. It’s crooked with teeth sticking out in several directions and your nose scrunches up to your eyebrows. I also love how much you enjoy looking at pictures of yourself. You’ll point to the photos and smile, and look back at all of us saying “Behbeh!” (That’s toddler language for “baby”)

You are learning words and sign language now too. When we are feeding you, we ask you to say and sign “more please” to which you say “Moh, moh” and press your fingertips together. However, if after you’ve asked politely, we don’t give you what you want, you scream. What a temper you have! If you’re not getting your way, we all better just plug our ears because OH MY GOD, THE SCREAMING. I think blood trickled out of my ears once because I wouldn’t allow you to snap my glasses in half. Oh, the injustice. I’m obviously a horrible aunt and totally don’t love you. So, you screamed. And—I’m sorry, did I mention the screaming?

You also love to read books. You can sit with several surrounding you and flip through the pages happily. And since you can’t read yet, of course, the books are usually upside down and the only words you can get out are DOG and DUCK and BABA and DUHDUHDUH! even though the book has no mention of dogs or ducks or duh’s.

This whole weekend, I tried to get you to say my name. I’d sit in your face as you were trying to watch Baby Einstein and I’d say, “Who am I? I’m Aunt Colleen!” over and over and over again until you—yes, you guessed it, screamed. But eventually, you started to get it. And once as we were playing with barnyard magnets, I asked you, “Adelynn, who am I?” And you answered: “Ayn CaCa.” Now…this is pretty close. But I’m really not a fan of being Aunt Poo Poo…so we’re all trying to change this into Aunt CoCo. Because if anyone knows me at all…Aunt Chocolate is WAY more appropriate than Aunt Poo Poo!

The last night I stayed with you this weekend, I woke up at around 2am and snuck into your bedroom to watch you sleep. I watched your chest rise and fall with each breath and loved to hear your life in the air. Adelynn, if there is a God…you are certainly proof that he or she exists.

I love you, baby girl.

Love,
Aunt Coco.

::sigh:: Oh, fine. Aunt Caca.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Halloween In July

Merry is having a contest about supernatural/paranormal/slasher/ghost stories. Pretty much, tell a scary story. Well, Merry, mine is a true story, or at least those who were involved believe it’s true…but not one that I necessarily remember. I was just a baby. But it has been recounted to me numerous times by both my mother and siblings.
_________________________________________________

Sharon Katana tore open yet another brown box labeled “Kitchen Junk.” It was written in messy cursive with a sharpie by her husband. It had been a busy week. In the past ten days she had moved her family and all their belongings to a new city, given birth to her third child, and her husband had started a new job.

This new job was a demanding one. They kept him busy night after night with meetings and welcome parties. And what was worse, they expected her to be at his side for these events. They apparently didn’t care about the fact that she had a newborn hanging off her nipple and barely had the energy to sip her coffee, pack lunch for her seven-year old son, and chase her four-year old daughter all day, let alone attend party after party. “It will calm down soon,” Bob had said as he kissed their newborn’s forehead and rubbed his wife’s shoulders. “I promise.” And with that, he turned to leave for another black tie benefit, thrown by his new office.

Bridget ran after him, her chubby thighs brushing against each other. “Daddy!” She shrieked, her arms extended toward her father. Tears gleamed in her eyes and her bottom lip jutted out, quivering. “Don’t go tonight, daddy! Stay home and read to me!”

Bob bent down and lifted the tiny child into his arms. “Tomorrow night, princess. I promise.” He kissed her cheek with two quick pecks and placed her back to the floor. “Take care of the ladies, while I’m out, Bo!” He called upstairs to his oldest son and Bridget ran up the stairs to join her brother.

“Bye sweetheart,” he kissed his wife on the lips and was quickly out the door.

Later that evening, Sharon rocked her baby, Colleen, while humming her best rendition of Stevie Wonder’s “You Are the Sunshine of my Life”. She saw her tiny daughter’s eyelids flutter within a dream and she slowly stood up to put the baby in her crib and check on the other two. She hadn’t seen them since dinner and the house had been unusually quiet. With Colleen cradled against her breast, she turned off the lights and quietly made her way up the stairs.

She could hear whispering coming from the nursery. They know they’re not supposed to be in the baby’s room, Sharon thought, preparing herself to lecture her offspring. She followed the whispers into Colleen’s room and sure enough there were her kids, standing over a broken bassinette. “Bo! Bridget! What did you do?!” She tried to whispered as threateningly as she could without waking the sleeping baby.

“Nothing! We swear!” They each shrieked. “We heard someone singing in here,” Bo continued, “We thought it was you and followed the singing into Colleen’s room. The cradle was already broken!”

“We swear!” Bridget repeated.

Sharon sighed and placed Colleen in her crib. Luckily she had mustered up the strength to put that together earlier today. “Ok, help me clean this up and then let’s all go watch a movie together.” She knew a cry for attention when she saw one and with the guilt of their father’s busy schedule and the demands of having a new baby, she decided to let their actions go unpunished. Just this once.

“Mommy, you should have heard this voice,” Bridget whispered, her eyes wide. “It sounded loud…much louder than you sing.”

“And it didn’t sound like no grown up either,” Bo interrupted.

“Didn’t sound like a grown up, Bo. Not “No grown up.” Sharon scolded. She would not have her kids sounding illiterate.

She looked up to the shelf high above Colleen’s crib where her collection of teddy bears was starting. She had three for her baby, so far. Her breath caught in the back of her throat. All three bears had their heads ripped off. The bodies of the teddy bears were sitting as normal and next to each bear was its decapitated head. She looked at her children, oblivious to the bears. No guilt read across their faces. Besides, the shelf was too high for either of them to reach. She looked at their dog, Bear, laying next to the crib. She found it odd that her dog, usually so lazy, seemed to be in full alert mode. His muscles were tensed despite the fact he was laying and his ears stood straight up from his head staring at the closed window.

A chill ran down her spine despite July’s heat.

* * *

Later that night, all the kids were finally asleep. Plenty of tears and nightmares about some young child singing kept everyone awake. But finally, she lulled everyone into a deep sleep. She tiptoed out of Bridget’s bedroom and crept downstairs. When she reached the bottom step, she froze. Every single light in every room was on. Even rooms that she hadn’t been all day had lights on. Table lamps, floor lamps, the chandelier over their dining room table…all were shining brightly.

“Bob?” She called out praying that she would hear her husband’s voice. No one answered. She knew that 10pm was way too early for him to be home. She’d be lucky if she saw him home before 1am tonight. Slowly, she made her way first to the dining and antique rooms to turn off all those lights. Then, in the kitchen, she shut off the overhead lights…even the oven light was on. Moving into the television room, she switched off those as well, leaving the hallway light on, so to be able to see her way back upstairs. As she turned to head back to bed, she noticed the lights in the laundry room were on and a low, humming buzz was coming from one of the bulbs. Sighing, she walked in and as she put her hand on the switch, she heard a noise. Singing—coming from the garage. A voice just like her children had described. A young girl, singing the Stevie Wonder song she had lulled her daughter to sleep with hours earlier. Only this little girl’s voice was loud. Abrasive even. She sang Stevie Wonder like a gospel hymn out of a Baptist’s church songbook. Sharon flipped the lights off in the laundry room and through the cracks of the door leading to the garage, she could see those lights were on too.

“H-hello?” Sharon’s voice cracked. The singing stopped and the lights in the garage went out.

Within moments she heard the voice right behind her. She could feel the breath on her ear as the voice whispered: Mama?

None of her children called her Mama, ever. It was always Mommy. Tears welled up in her eyes and she ran out of the laundry room, through the living room into the hallway reaching the bottom of the stairs.

Woof Woof Woof! Upstairs, Bear began barking and growling. Sharon ran, taking two steps at a time. When she reached Colleen’s room, her dog was standing on his hind legs barking into the crib. “Bear!” Sharon yelled, no longer caring about waking her sleeping children. She grabbed the dog by the collar and pushed him out of her way. Her baby was lying face down in the crib. She lifted the child who immediately began crying, her face bright red. She looked into the crib and could see indentations where her baby’s face was. As if the back of her head was being pushed into the mattress, suffocating her. A breeze danced around Sharon’s body and she noticed the window was open—not her doing. She held her crying baby and patted Bear’s head. “Good boy, Bear.”

She heard keys in their front door and crept to the top of the stairs. “Bob?”

He peered at her over the banister. “Hi honey,” He called up. “Sweetheart, you left all the lights on down here! Even the garage light!”

* * *

Over the next few months, peculiar things continued to happen. Sharon and her children would hear singing, always in the same voice, repeating whatever song Sharon had sung earlier. Windows would be opened and slammed shut in the middle of the night. Sharon stopped buying Teddy Bears for her kids because they would be mutilated during the nights. Lights were turned on and would flicker at odd moments. And every so often, she would hear Mama being whispered in her ear. Even Bob, who never believed in any sort of ghost or supernatural stories admitted that something odd was happening in their house and with their “electrical system.”

Colleen caught pneumonia from the open windows and while her older children were frightened, no one was so much as Sharon. She feared the nights Bob worked late.

One November night, Bob was working late again. Bridget and Colleen were both asleep and Bear was patrolling between the two rooms. Bo was playing in his bedroom when he called for his mom. “Mom, can you get me a glass of milk?”

“Bo, you’re old enough to get your own milk. I’ll go with you to the kitchen, though.”

“No, that’s ok. I don’t want to disturb Martha again, Mom.”

Sharon’s body stiffened. “Martha?”

“Yeah,” He said, not tearing his eyes away from his Nintendo game, ”She’s our ghost.”
“And you’ve—run into her?”

“Not exactly. I went downstairs once in the middle of the night to look for my birthday presents and all the lights were on. I thought it was weird and then that night I had a dream where Martha talked to me.” He spoke nonchalantly, as if she was a houseguest sleeping on their couch he didn’t want to disturb.

She breathed a sigh of relief that his run in with her wasn’t anything more. “I’ll get your milk, buddy.”

At the bottom of the stairs, she could see all lights were on again and Bridget’s coat was on the floor. She hung it on her daughters small coat rack (one that Bridget could reach, herself) and turned to get the glass of milk. Behind her, she heard the coat fall to the floor. She turned and hung it up again. As soon as she stepped away, it fell to the floor with a rustle. Sharon had had a long day, this was the last thing she needed right now. She stomped over to the coat picked it up and shook it in the air before hanging it roughly back on the coat rack. “So help me if you knock this coat off one more time…” Before she could finish her sentence, the coat dropped to her feet, halting the words within her mouth. The hall lights flickered around her.
She swallowed and goosebumps rose on her arms. “Martha?” Sharon whispered.

Mama?

The breath traveled across her ear and tickled her neck.

Sharon closed her eyes. “No. I’m not your mama, Martha. I’m sorry.”

Mama…

The voice sounded further away. Sharon followed it into the kitchen. “You can be a part of our family. You are welcome in this house, but no more scaring us. No leaving the lights on.”

Mama…

Again, further away. Sharon followed the voice into the family room. “No more opening windows and tearing apart toys.”

Mama…

Further away, still.

Sharon looked out the back window into the yard. It was a clear, calm night. The tire swing circled, gently rocking. In the center of the yard was a foggy patch, which looked slightly blue in hue.

All the lights downstairs shut off.

Later that night as Sharon climbed into bed, she whispered: “Goodnight, Martha.”

Silence.


* * *

Small things happened from time to time. Every now and then, the family would hear something in the garage. Or a light would be left on, but it wasn’t very frequent. Bear relaxed and felt less need to patrol the bedrooms. Colleen’s pneumonia got better and Teddy Bears stopped being ripped apart.

For five years, the Katana’s co-existed with this…spirit? Ghost? Dream? Call it what you like.

Every night as Sharon tucked in her three kids, she would also whisper goodnight to Martha, mentally tucking in the disturbed spirit. Every now and then she would hear “Mama” whispered in her ear, but it was rare.

As Colleen grew, she was the only child who ever called Sharon Mama instead of Mommy and still does to this day.

When Colleen was five years old, a body (skeleton) was found in the woods at the end of their neighborhood. An article was released stating that the victim, Martha Jones, was a girl who used to live in the neighborhood. She was ten years old and had been beaten to death by her stepfather. The article also featured a picture of the girl holding her favorite Teddy Bear and stated that she had finally been buried with her favorite toy, her stuffed teddy bear, named “Bear Bear.”

Two days prior to the article, Bridget was nine, Bo was twelve and Sharon—well, Sharon would never reveal her age—everyone stated how calm and peaceful the house felt. They knew Martha was gone before they knew why.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Ways to Charm Me:

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post about ways to annoy me. I decided to write a not so negative slant in similar form entitled--

Ways to Charm Me:

Deny that you're stoned when you're, like, really really stoned.

Try to defend your wearing socks with sandals. You're cute when you're nerdy.

Understand that the food on your plate will always taste better than the food on my plate.

Nominate Clive Owen for an Academy award. Next step: convince him to do porn.

Trip while walking along down 5th Ave and then immediately look around to see if anyone noticed. THAT’S RIGHT! I NOTICED!

Tell your mother that you learned the word “Fuck” from your Aunt Colleen. Oops.

Imitate the Tom Cruise Risky Business scene, dancing around in your dress shirt and undies while I’m on the phone with my very conservative, very strict, republican father.

Tell me that an octopus has eight testicles instead of tentacles because you’re six and you don’t know any better.

Don’t make fun of me when you catch me almost crying during reruns of Grey’s Anatomy episodes.

Join me in singing 80s power ballads. In the middle of Times Square.

Let me hit the snooze button 12 times in the course of one hour.

Tell me the sloppy brown colored pasta sauce I spent an hour cooking still tastes good even if it looks like puke. You’re such a good liar.

Pretend not to notice when I burn my tongue on my coffee causing some to dribble down my chin.

Friday, July 11, 2008

The Boyfriend! Reads my blog...

The above statement should be a given, right? But he doesn't usually read, which is totally fine by me. Cause let's face it...he provides a lot of the ammo for that which I write about.

After reading my post about turning 25 and the quarter life crisis I am staring eye to eye with, his only response was: Please don't ever mention your mother's vagina to me again. EVER.

And I was all: What? My MOTHER'S VAGINA? Why don't you want me to mention my MOTHER'S VAGINA? What made you think of my MOTHER'S VAGINA? MOTHER'SVAGINAMOTHER'SVAGINAMOTHER'SVAGINA!!!

And he said: Say it one more time. Seriously, I dare you.

So that night just as he was about to fall asleep, I leaned over and whispered: My mother's vagina...
After which he promptly got up, filled a glass of water and dumped it all over me getting the entire bed soaking wet. It was still totally worth it.

Monday, July 7, 2008

My Personal Prime

First of all, thank you all SO MUCH for the birthday wishes. And as an FYI, along with the eye cream I've been needing, I also discovered a chin hair which I quickly tweezed. I also read online that once a woman turns 25, every year 4 pounds of muscle will transform into fat. For this reason, I am upping the intensity of my daily workouts.

But, I digress. Last week, I met my best friend Eliza and her daughter, Maddie (whom I've talked about many times) for lunch. I had taken a long shower that day, dried my hair, and put on makeup and a dress. I meet the two of them at Liza's office where Maddie was sitting at a little table having a snack. She stopped chewing a gummy bear and with her mouth full of a masticated gel-like teddy bear said: "Aunt Colleen, you look so beautiful!"

I felt very proud of myself. A compliment of that magnitude from Maddie is rather rare and was a definitely better than what I was going for. And what I was going for was just a small step up from my usual look which bears a striking resemblance to the beat up, rusty Chevy sitting on cinder blocks in the front yard next to overgrown bushes and weeds.

I would have been just as happy if she had responded to the site of me by saying: "Aunt Colleen, you don't look like walking death today!"

45 minutes later, we arrived at a little restaurant called Bread which has the most delicious tomato soup I have ever ingested. We all ordered the soup with different sandwiches and when the waitress brought the bowls creamy orange soup with imported grated cheese over top, freshly baked bread in the center and organic basil draping the cheese, Maddie could hardly contain her excitement. Her eyes grew wide and twinkled, the orange color reflecting off the brown in them. She grabbed the spoon and still staring at the bowl of soup, yelled, "IT IS SO BEAUTIFUL!"

The tomato soup qualified for a completely capitalized, italicized beautiful.

I should probably be more upset about the fact that I am not as attractive as a bowl of pureed tomatoes. But I just checked my schedule and realized I won't have time to dwell on this what with my busy week of scratching my butt and growing toenails.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Another Year Under My Belt

I am 25 today. Yes, today is my birthday.

Usually people become reflective around New Year's Eve; I, however, always find my birthday to be a little depressing. I'm always stunned by how fast the years seemed to have passed. I miss the days when birthdays were like Christmas. When I would wake up anticipating my favorite breakfast being made by my parents and themed parties with loads of presents and cake and SUGAR! But sometime after college, all that went away. Birthdays became just another day. Just another day that I still had to go into the office. Just another day that nobody really knew was the day I came head first out of my mother's vagina. And in the uncomfortable event that the topic did come up, it was followed by a half-hearted "Happy birthday. Now, back to these spreadsheets..."

I use eye cream now every day. Not for preventative reasons but because I NEED IT. Oh my God, do you see how monumental that is? And I prefer spending an evening at home playing Scrabble on my computer than an epic night of parties and drinking. And I no longer fit into my favorite pair of Seven Jeans despite the fact that I go to the gym 4 times a week. (I'm not sure I can blame this on the fact that I'm 25, but I'm sure as hell gonna try). And the worst part of everything is...Mean old Ms. Kruger from the second grade? The meanest teacher at Centerville Elementary School? SHE WAS 25!!!!!!!! I am the same age as mean old Ms. Kruger. Pretty soon I'll be married with babies and those babies will be having birthdays and before I know it, my children will be all: "Mom, seriously? Those shoes with that dress? That's soooo 2008."

Friday, June 27, 2008

Dreaming of Fireflies

Tonight I will be babysitting my darling niece, Maddie. Since we're meeting in the city, I'm trying to decide what we should do. Normally, I would take her to my favorite knitting store. She loves playing with the yarn...but the store closes at 8 and we're meeting at 8:30. Then I thought maybe we'd just go home and I could cook for her; make my famous chocolate mousse with steamed milk....buuuut she's allergic to milk. So, then I thought of the perfect plan. One that was so amazing that I knew she'd be excited...ANY 6 year old would be!

Me: (over the phone) Maddie, I have a big plan for us tonight!

Maddie: What? What??!

Me: Well, I thought you and I could go see Wall-E! It's opening night in the theatres!

Maddie: Oh. (total lack of enthusiasm)

Me: What? What's wrong?

Maddie: Well, I really wanted to catch fireflies with you.

Me: (Numbed by how simple and sweet this statement is) I would LOVE that, Mad. We'll see Wall-E another time!

Maddie: Don't worry Aunt Colleen...you can buy me Wall-E for my birfday! I'd rather own it anyway.

Me: Uh, Maddie, I already got you a present. Besides, the movie just came out...it's not going to be on sale for a while.

Maddie: (Pauses to think) Hm, well then you can take me to see it on my birthday! Tonight, there are fireflies that need to be catched!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Ways to Annoy Me

Ways to Annoy Me:

1. Ask me to smell your finger or any other appendage. No explanation needed. (I hope)

2. Degrade the Sacred Oreo by eating it in one big bite. Please, pay the Oreo proper respects and first twist the two ends of chocolate cookie gently apart. Then continue to lick the virginal white cream until it is completely gone. Teeth may be used ever so cautiously to get the last scrapes of cream. Then, and ONLY then, may you eat each side of the cookie separately. Insubordination will not be tolerated.

3. Obliterate the pile of dirt and dog hair I just finished sweeping because you heard a dog bark outside and you MUSTGETTOTHEWINDOWRIGHTTHISSECOND! I am sweeping up YOUR goddamn fur. BOW BEFORE ME.

4. Uncover for the first time and proceed to investigate (Read: “lick”) your unmentionables while I am attempting to give you a bath. Also, playing tug of war with the wash cloth I am trying to wash your belly with. Let go…RELENT!

5. Make the comment: “Childbirth can’t be that painful. Try getting kicked in the nuts. Women just have a lower tolerance for pain.” How about I kick you in the nuts several times over the course of each hour for over 24 hours? After then, we can talk about pain.

6. Eat black licorice then try to give me a kiss. I’d rather kiss my dog after he had an Olympic afternoon of licking his ass.

7. Give me a guilt trip at the grocery store when I want to buy a bag of Vienna Fingers and then eat the entire bag of cookies YOURSELF.

8. Lick up the mouthwash I spilled all over the bathroom floor, then continue to throw it all up making the whole apartment smell like bacteria-killing fluoride minty fresh doggie puke.

9. Press your cold, wet nose against my leg then entire time I am putting on my makeup with a face that says, “Can we go out now? Can we go out now? Can we go out now?”
PS – STOP LICKING YOUR ASS.

10. Pronounce Target like “Ter-Git.” Have you no soul?

11. Get all the questions right on Cash Cab even though you’re not paying attention AND drunk. I realize that Cab Calloway was the obvious answer, but YOU’RE DRUNK. Nothing should be obvious.

12. Sit on top of me, panting, signifying that you want me to walk you thus preventing me from being actually being able to get up and take you on that walk.

13. Tell me we can watch one of MY movies tonight, only to spend the entire movie NOT watching, but playing Risk on your stupid computer.

14. Demonstrate the absorbency of a tampon by plugging up a leak in the side of a boat. That REALLY makes me want to buy your product and stick it in my vagina.

15. Give my dogs a toy that makes a lot of noise. May you contract an organ eating disease and have your guts devoured by rats. LOUD rats!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Could Use a Little Help

Hey everyone...I am in dire need of some business advice. Especially from the professionals out there!

As most of you know, I'm freelancing a lot right now for a few different magazines. One particularly has very odd rules which have been accumulating since the day I signed my contract. I want to know how people think I should handle this:

-They require me to come into the office once a week for eight hours....and not get paid for those hours. (I was ok with this thinking it would be a temporary thing...like, until they got used to me and knew I was doing my job and doing it well. Well, it's not temporary in their minds. They want me to continue coming in for the rest of my life and then sign my first born over to the company.)

-So, while I'm at the office, not getting paid for hours I'm working, (not only writing but doing other random odd jobs that a freelancer shouldn't be doing for a company. In my mind at least) they dictate that I'm not allowed to eat or drink at my laptop which I bring into the office with me every week. I would understand if it was their equipment...but this is my computer. Not to mention, writing is creative process. I NEED MY COFFEE TO BE CREATIVE. In all honesty, I could be around the corner writing and getting MORE work done with a venti caramel frap.

-Also, while at the office, working hours which I am not being paid for, the editor has mandated that everyone MUST take lunch between the hours of 12:30 and 1:30. If you don't leave the office during this time, then you DON'T LEAVE AT ALL. IE - If you don't eat lunch at 12:30, you go hungry. Now...I am turning 25 in a couple of weeks. I really don't need someone telling me when to eat. I am a professional and I should be allowed to eat when hungry. If I have a doctor's appointment, I should be able to go to that without being chastised by a boss who doesn't pay me for the hours I work within the office. Outside of working in the food industry and retail, I never thought it wouldn't matter WHEN I ate my lunch within an office environment. Plus...do I need to remind everyone, yet again, that I'm not being paid for these hours? How in the world can you justify telling people when they can leave when you're not paying them?

-And lastly, the editor sent notice to the writers that there were too many grammatical errors in this issue. And that in the next round of articles, we will be docked $25 per mistake. PER. MISTAKE. I only get paid $100 per article. So, you're telling me that if I make 4 mistakes, you will pay me nothing? And, I'm sorry, I was under the impression that it was an editor's job to, oh I don't know...EDIT!

Now, I know I sound like a whiny child here, and if I had a ton of really stupid grammatical errors within my articles, then I would understand an editor coming to me and saying, "Look, Colleen, you really need to check over your articles before sending them in." It's just the way we're all being treated that irks me so much. But all this being said, I revise and edit my articles A LOT. Not to mention none of the editors at the three other magazines I write for have ever had a problem with me or my grammar.

So, all this being said...please enlighten me. Perhaps this IS how the industry works and I am just inexperienced? How should I handle this? Should I terminate my contract? I am seriously stressed out about it...any insight would be SO appreciated.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

I'm One of "Those" People




I attended a party/Q&A last night for the tv show, How I Met Your Mother. It was a great time. Met a really nice man named Nick who works in casting and I also met Neil Patrick Harris whom I am now madly in love with. If only he wasn't gay, I could have his babies. Neil, if you ever need a surrogate or an egg donor...CALL ME. We would make beautiful Aryan babies.

I also met Josh something-or-other who plays Ted on the show. He was very nice and attractive but also extremely tired. I felt bad for all of them. And Allison Hannigan was absolutely lovely and very gracious.

Anyway, that was my evening and it was awesome!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A Pinch of Worry with a Dash of Anxiety

I have always been a worrier. Not quite as much as my sister, but still—I constantly stress myself out about things that I have no control over whatsoever. In the third grade, I used to get so sick with anxiety about the timed spelling tests I took once a week, that the worrying would start the week before, usually the day after I finished the previous test. By the time I put my pencil to the paper and my teacher started her stopwatch, I thought I would be so violently ill that I could barely remember how to spell my name, never mind “motorcycle.” I remember thinking that my future was dependent on whether or not I would ace these tests, and that if I missed one spelling, a series of events would unfold: One, my parents would no longer love me. Two, they would kick me out of the house. Three, I would die homeless.

Example A:

Colleen has a headache. A bad headache.

It must be a tumor.

Colleen is also unemployed and can no longer afford a decent health insurance plan.

Colleen dies homeless and poor from the cost of brain tumor treatments (whatever those are)

This is what I like to call The Cyclone, and I have spent my life taming this storm. I start by checking that everything around me is standard and working and then I start imagining the most tiny thing that could go wrong. It's always something very tiny and insignificant, but by the time I have finished analyzing it in my head it has turned into the Worst Case Scenario: small A leads to small B leads to very awful C jumps straight to homeless and dead. (See Example A)

The boyfriend! got me thinking about why I do this, and at first I thought it might be hereditary. My father and sister are stereotypical A-type personalities. Everything needs a plan. Every plan needs a schedule. And every section of the schedule requires a specific and carefully thought out time slot and escape route. As a kid, I knew our evacuation plan thoroughly. I knew where to meet if a disaster ever hit Lancaster, PA. I knew where the ladder was kept (under my parent’s bed) and what to do in the case we were all trapped in a fire.

But if this incessant worrying IS hereditary, then how do I explain my mother and brother? Because they are the exact opposite. Very “go with the flow” which I can be…but there’s always that voice in the back of my head (which sounds curiously much like my father’s voice) telling me to create a back up plan JUST IN CASE.

So, maybe a little bit of the reason I worry so much is because I am my father's daughter, but I realized that the root of it is a singular feeling that has followed me through my life. This is the feeling of guilt. I have always had a wonderful life in so many ways. I have a fantastic family, I’ve never known what true hunger or danger is and never for a second did I think I'd have to sleep without my blankie. And the thought that other people in the world do not have a warm place to sleep, food on their plates and a DVR to record every episode of The Bachelorette invokes a feeling of guilt. I need to worry about something… anything. I owe it to those who have a harder life. The feeling that because I am very lucky, I need to suffer crippling angst to even the playing field out a little bit.

And of course, the exact opposite rings true as well. I owe it to those who are not as lucky as I am to appreciate the crap out of my life. But it's also this overwhelming feeling that if I am not a stressed out wreck, everything will be taken away from me. And then I realized…that the way in which I worry about things is so mesmerizing that it causes me to walk directly into that which I fear.

Example B:
Colleen's Third Grade Spelling Tests -
I would make myself sick with worry to the point where I wouldn’t even be able to concentrate and on more than one occasion, I failed these tests.

So, I’ve decided that I should start worrying about developing really big breasts or about how to spend the six figure salary I'll be making whenever I get a new job.

For about an hour, I felt totally renewed and I kept smiling when I thought about how much better my life will be without The Cyclone. About how I can channel all the energy that I used to spend worrying into more productive things, like charity work or writing or art or chugging Irish Car Bombs while dancing naked in the house. And I was still feeling this jolt of exhilaration that evening when I walked the dogs to the yard to let them perform their nightly duties, still reeling from the possibilities of what a stress-free life would be like. And as I let the dogs go trampling down the stairs, I noticed our downstairs neighbors left their front doors open.

Do you see where this is going?

Sure enough, within seconds, both dogs were out the front door. All because I was daydreaming about not worrying and I didn’t anticipate this. Had I been in my normal state of mind, I would have been forcing them to walk behind me. I would have gone downstairs PRIOR to opening the dog gate. I wasn’t being responsible. Luckily, for everyone involved, the gate leading to the sidwalk was closed, so both dogs were just mulling around on the front stoop. But it could have been so, so, so much worse.

Bottom line, I’m pretty convinced that this only happened because my head was in Lala Land dreaming of a perfect stress-free existence. Which, this just doesn’t exist (for me). I will never be the person who can split up from a group in a public place and NOT have a set time and place to meet back up. I will never be the person who can walk into a room and not notice where the emergency exits are. And I will always, always be the woman who carries extra tampons with me because YOU JUST NEVER KNOW.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Paging Dr. Shepherd

I know that it is horribly main stream…but I am in love with Patrick Dempsey. Not so much Patrick Dempsey the man, but more Derrick Shepherd, the character he plays on Grey’s Anatomy. The character he becomes on that show is charming, and kind, charismatic, intelligent, a life-saver, benevolent, tender, passionate, and never without perfectly tousled hair and a slightly disheveled demeanor.

Now, I know this man doesn’t really exist. I realize that he is the product of Shondra Rhymes’ imagination and Patrick Dempsey’s “talent” (I put it in quotes because I KNOW you will all pounce on the fact that I think he has talent), but who cares? He is my fantasy to have and dammit, I’m going to make it count!

However, when I’m sitting there on my couch, gazing lovingly at the television while McDreamy saves his most recent patient from the latest organ-eating Venezuelan parasite that has somehow infected all of Seattle, it’s all I can do to not daydream that I am the patient on the hospital bed being poked and proddod…and I tell you what, nothing kills the fantasy more than when my Dempsey-hating boyfriend adds commentary every five seconds, bursting my fantasy bubble.

Him: This show is so terrible. Look at that! A doctor would not pull a nurse into the on-call room while the chief of surgery stands ten feet away!

I’m sucked back to a somewhat reality and all of a sudden Sean is standing in the doorway of my hospital fantasy. I grudgingly wrap myself back up into the hospital gown and blow a kiss to Dr. Shepherd who returns it with a wink and says in a raspy voice, “I’ll give you two a minute.”

Him: Colleen!
Me: Huh?
Him: How can you watch this shit? I love you less now.
Me: Well, no one’s making you sit here and watch. We have two tv’s, you know.

He pauses, not going anywhere. I start to nestle myself back into my fantasy, when…

Him: This guy sucks!
Me: (I sigh) He sure does. (And nibbles…I say in my thoughts)
Him: Look at him! I bet that stubble is makeup… painted on.
Me: Even better…smoother against my skin.
Him: No, seriously, how can you like this guy?
Me: Why does this bother you so much?

And that’s when I knew exactly how to answer. It would most certainly NOT get him to shut up, but I was DVR-ing Grey’s anyway. I could rewatch later. And the reaction that was about to come was going to be priceless….

Me: Seriously? You want to know?

Sean nodded.

Me: He just reminds me so much of you, baby. (I leaned over and rubbed my knuckle against his stubble)
Him: WHAT?!?! How can you even say that!?

I shrugged.

Him: Take it back! We are nothing alike! (He jumped up from the couch, flailing his arms about) This guy is totally vanilla!
Me: Mm, I like vanilla…it’s classic. Though, I also like chocolate (My mind slipped to Taye Diggs, yum).
Him: This is absurd! He doesn’t even stand for anything! I’m like Henry Rollins, and Hugh Jackman, Chris Meloni and Mike Ness all rolled into one!
Me: Who?
Him: Mike Ness!
Me: ….
Him: Social Distortion?
Me: Mm, not ringing any bells.
Him: Why are we even together?

(Another long pause)

Me: Because you remind me of Patrick Dempsey.

The rest of my show was watched in glorious silence, me sporting a smirk, him with a scowl.

My victory was short-lived, though. He managed to get his revenge when he told me that Sarah Silverman was in his top three. Sarah. Silverman. The horse-faced comedian who is whiny and annoying and has GOD AWFULLY large nostrils. Seriously? And these already massive nostrils flare to the size of grapefruits when she laughs at her own jokes…and who ISN'T annoyed by someone who laughs at their own jokes??

Ok, I get it to some extent why a man is attracted to her. She does have a certain something, and she’s intelligent, clever, and (sometimes) funny. But to make her one of your TOP THREE? C’mon…

He has become obsessed with the idea of me having a crush on someone like him. And yet, let’s examine the celebrity crushes he has...are they short, petite, flat-chested girls with rounded features who are categorized not so much "sexy" or "attractive" as “cute”? NO! In fact, they are the absolute opposite…and as much as I would rather slowly char my own flesh over a campfire and eat it between graham crackers and marshmallows than say this next statement…I will admit that both Sarah Silverman and Sheryl Crow bear a striking resemblance to his ex girlfriend!

It almost makes me want to come home and confess a newfound love for Clay Aiken. But even I won’t stoop that low…

Friday, May 16, 2008

My New Job

http://washingtondc.craigslist.org/doc/vol/677350090.html

Partner Needed to Travel Back in Time. NOT A JOKE. (Alexandria, VA)
Reply to: comm-677350090@craigslist.org
Date: 2008-05-12, 9:43AM EDT

I am looking for a partner to travel back in time with me. This is NOT A JOKE. I have done this before. Your gender is not important, but you must have your own weapons. Contact me immediately.
______________________________________

Thanks to Moonrat, I saw this CraigsList ad, attempting to enlist people for time travel. Because I’m self-loathing and irrationally mean sometimes, I responded to it.

My letter in response:

Dear Time Traveler,

I am considering joining you on this quest. I am a currently unemployed 24 year old female, 5’1, 110 lbs. I have no weapons to bring, but my last name is Katana and if we were to make a detour to 1991, I could grab the Katana swords my family had hanging over our fireplace (unfortunately in 1992, my brother and I broke these swords when we were pretending to duel…and apparently we did not do such a good job with the pretending part). And really…what is more intimidating to those in the past than a Katana with a Katana? We’ll be unstoppable. But in the case that this is not good enough for you, or if you consider me with a sword as intimidating as an ant with a toothpick, let me assure you that I do know how to fire a rifle, thanks to my boyfriend’s father, New England’s hillbilly woods, and about half a bottle of Grey Goose vodka. Will there be vodka on this trip? It helps my aim.

I was also wondering what era we were traveling to? Are we talking prehistoric times here or will I perhaps find myself in the center of a Gettysburg battlefield? This would greatly affect my choice of whether or not I participate. If I had my choice, I would like to travel back to the 50s or 40s…the clothes were pretty back then and it would be awesome to bring back some true vintage hats and dresses!

And my last question for you…I just finished reading The Time Traveler’s Wife. In this book, the protagonist always ends up naked after every time travel experience. This will be a deal breaker for me. While I do consider myself pretty fit, I am still extremely modest and in no way would ever be caught naked in public.

Please clear up these things for me and I look forward to hearing more about this trip.

Thanks,
Colleen

Thursday, May 15, 2008

The First Time I Was Dumped (Part Two)

It was another gray, overcast day. The snow that melted last night was replaced by a fresh new dusting. Another school day cancelled. I celebrated by microwaving tomato soup with extra cheese and watching Matlock. Yes, Matlock. I embrace the fact that I have a tendency to act like an 80-year-old woman.

I slurped the creamy soup and watched as this charming, old man solved murder after murder. In the middle of my third episode of the day, the doorbell rang, throwing our two dogs into a chorus of barking. The leather of my dad’s recliner buckled beneath my hands as I pushed myself up, using the armrests as leverage. Feet dragging sluggishly behind the rest of my body, I slowly made my way to the front door.

I peeked out the window, expecting the UPS man or someone unimportant, and standing there, in a state of perfection, was Mario. I immediately woke up, my eyes wide with fear. I backed away from the door slowly. On one hand, I wanted to answer and see what he was visiting for, but on the other hand, I was still in my Winnie the Pooh pajamas with no makeup and my hair in a messy ponytail.

My back hit the bathroom doorknob and I hopped in, remembering that my mom kept a stash of makeup in our downstairs bathroom for emergencies just like this (Ok, maybe not for emergencies just like this…but in the case that she had unexpected company). The doorbell rang again sending the dogs into yet another fit.

Shit!
I furiously applied foundation to my blotchy skin. “Uhhh, I’ll be…I’ll be there in a minute!!!!” Oh God….don’t leave, don’t leave, don’t leave….

I swept blush over my cheeks, dabbed some gloss on my lips and rushed from the bathroom to the front door.

“I’m coming!!!!!!!!” The dogs chased behind me excitedly like I had salami in my pajama pockets. I swung the door open, my chest rising and falling rapidly. My cheeks were naturally flushed from the excitement and when I quickly stole a glance in the mirror I cursed myself for putting on blush. My entire face was a salmon shade of pink.

“Oh, hey Mario, what’s up?” I shrugged one shoulder nonchalantly and did my best not to sound out of breath.

“Hey Col-Leen. Where were you? Running a marathon?”

“Oh. Haha, um, no. I was…outside with the dogs.”

“But your dogs were in here.” His eyes narrowed at me. “I heard them barking.”

“Right. That’s what I meant. I was in here with the dogs.”

“Then what took so long to answer?”

“I was, uh, in the bathroom.”

“You were in the bathroom? With the dogs?”

“Yeah.” There was a long pause and we stared at each other, saying nothing for what seemed like hours. His face twisted, the wrinkles on his forehead revealing how confused he was. “They, uh, follow me in there sometimes. You know, dogs follow their noses, and, um….” Oh God. Shut the hell up, Colleen. Just change the subject. Anything is better than this. “Um, so, what are you doing here?”

He smiled. He knew I turned into a babbling idiot around him and he enjoyed it. Jerk. He spoke through a suppressed laugh and tried to make it sound like he was clearing his throat. “Well, no one’s heard from you all week. I thought maybe you wanted to grab lunch or something.”

“I already ate.” I cringed. Idiot. When Mario invites you to lunch, you accept. You eat two lunches. You eat 10 lunches if necessary. “But, I could go for some ice cream.”

“It’s freezing out, though.”

“Oh. Right.” I thought for a minute. “But at least it won’t melt on us.”

He laughed. “Well, can I come in while we make a decision? It really is cold out here.”

I stepped aside and let him in. Even Mario’s walk was unique. It was confident, but not overly cocky. He swaggered in through our front doorway, but not so much that he looked like a James Dean wannabe. His heather gray, cable knit turtleneck and his black pants made him look like he should have been performing spoken word at the local coffee shop. All he needed was a beret to complete the outfit. His hair, now dyed black, contrasted with his pale skin.

Immediately upon entering, my dogs were all over him, sniffing his crotch and jumping up in excitement. We walked into the kitchen and continued chatting, sitting across the counter from each other. The conversation hit a lull and I saw curiosity flicker in Mario’s eyes. He played with a penny that was on our white countertop with his index finger. Sliding it in circles, he looked down, then back at me. “Have you been crying, Colleen?”

My throat tightened. He didn’t say my name in the silly way he usually did. What did he already know? What rumors are already flying around about me even with school not being in session? Or did I just not use enough concealer when I was throwing makeup on my face before? My eyes drifted away from his and over his shoulder to our kitchen window. I stared for what felt like an eternity at the fat, cotton snowflakes dropping from the sky. “It’s snowing again.”

“Yeah?” Mario turned to look out the window. “Wow, it really is snowing, isn’t it?”

“Let’s go play in it.” My eyes lit up and I stared at him like an eager puppy waiting for food to drop on the floor.

“But there’s only two inches on the ground.”

“And that’s two inches more than North Carolina usually has! C’mon!” Before he could protest again, I grabbed his hand and dragged him out through my back door. We ran around throwing snowballs at each other and attempting to build snowmen and forts. There was not enough snow to build either and the result was several blobs of snow throughout my backyard. Every now and then, he’d stop and stare at me smiling for just a moment more than what I would consider normal.

Eventually, we both fell on our backs into the powdery snow. Our heads were next to each other’s and our bodies fanned out creating the letter V. We were out of breath and laughing. I turned my head to the left to look at him. His cheeks and lips were red, as though he had just finished eating a cherry popsicle. His breathing slowed down and began returning to normal. My own heart rate calmed as well.

I was smiling. I was smiling my first genuine smile in about a week. The cold air stung my lungs as I inhaled and my smile faded. “Ian and I broke up.” The words came out for a reason unknown to me.

Mario continued to look up at the sky. “I know.”

“Actually, I’m lying. Ian dumped me.”

“I know that, too.”

I didn't ask how he knew; I didn't have to. The lump in my throat decided to make another guest appearance. I closed my eyes and my eyelashes became moist with tears. My contacts were cold against my eyelids and one fat tear rolled down the side of my face, past my temple and landed in the snow, burning one perfect, tiny hole all the way to the grass. When I opened my eyes, Mario was on his side, propped up on an elbow watching me.

I watched him watch me.

He leaned in and softly pressed his lips to mine. My top lip nestled into the nook between his top and bottom and he gently rested a hand on my waist. I could barely feel it through my thick winter coat, but I knew it was there. I’m not sure if he intended it to be a “friends” kiss, but it quickly went from being G-rated to PG-13. My lips parted into his and the kiss grew firmer. As it ended, I tried to pull away, but he didn’t let me. Pulling me closer into him, he kissed my forehead. I buried my face in his chest, silent tears falling from my eyes again. His arms tightened around me and after a couple minutes my whimpers started to subside.

With my face still against his body, I relived our moment, Mario’s and mine. That was a good kiss. I mean, it was a really good kiss. Way better than any kiss Ian ever gave me, and definitely not the kind that should make someone cry. I sniffled and in the pit of my stomach, felt one sole butterfly flitting around, bouncing off my stomach lining. Giggles bubbled up from somewhere deep inside of me. At first, it was a soft laugh. Mario’s body grew tense around mine, unsure of what was happening. My laughter grew louder and louder until I had to pull away from his grasp because I couldn’t breathe. Pulling my knees to my chest, I gulped in the cold winter air and continued laughing in a way that someone watching standup comedy would. Confused, Mario started laughing too, because—let’s face it, what else could he do?

* * *

Some kisses are good. Some are great. Some are bad. Others are so terrible that you would do better to suck on a cold, wet noodle for a couple minutes. This kiss was defining; it taught me that there would be many more to come, and that with every heartbreak, there is a new experience to be had. That was the only kiss that Mario and I ever had in ten years of knowing each other.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The Randomness that is Me

I have been tagged by Merry of Mom and More.

The rules:

a. Link to the person who tagged you.
b. Post the rules on your blog.
c. Write six random things about yourself.
d. Tag six random people at the end of your post by linking to their blogs.
e. Let each person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment at their blog.
f. Let your tagger know when your entry is up.

Ok...I'm not really tagging anyone here because pretty much everyone I know on blogspot has been tagged already. I'd really rather not highlight what a loser I am by not even having six people to tag....so, if you haven't already done this, consider yourself TAGGED.

Six Things About Me:

I get bored blow-drying my hair. I have A LOT of hair and it takes a very long time to dry. It’s not thick hair, there’s just a lot of it. And it’s naturally wavy…and by wavy, I mean it’s a freaking rat’s nest when I wake up in the mornings. I have contemplated shaving my head, but I know for a fact that my skull is very bumpy. I would not be an attractive bald woman, like Natalie Portman.

I have a serious obsession with home décor shopping – particularly quirky antiques and bohemian styled decorations. I can’t see an antique store without feeling a tug at the pit of my stomach. MUST. STOP. BUY. ANTIQUES. It’s a sickness, really. I also can’t pass by Anthropologie without stopping…because, have you BEEN to that store? It’s amazingly bohemian and though extremely overpriced, worth every inflated penny.

I am recently unemployed. Recently meaning “as of last Wednesday.” So far, it’s been great. Everyone should try to get ‘laid off’….not to be confused with ‘fired.’ Fired implies you did something wrong…my company simply downsized and could no longer afford me. This way, I can collect unemployment and write my next book.

I love the name Norah. I know most of you will probably cringe at this old fashioned name, but I think it’s wonderfully classic. My daughter will be named Norah. If you don’t like it…that’s fine. But you still have to buy me a baby shower gift. (Other names I love: Autumn, Claire, Amelia, BOYS: Noah, Ashlin)

I have a very eccentric family. My father is a brilliant and goofy (and also brilliantly goofy) man who received his MBA from the University of Michigan after having served as a Lieutenant in Korea during the Vietnam War. My mother is a nurse who never believed in the idea of marriage and felt that it sealed a woman’s fate as a second class citizen (the idea being that a piece of paper ultimately defines your relationship…not the idea of being with one person forever) and only married my father because she loved him dearly and knew it was what he needed and wanted. My brother is a kooky dispatcher for the Greensboro Police Department…he went to Catholic high school where he sold Playboys out of his locker, stole Hershey Kisses off of Sister Mary Francine’s desk, and single handedly caught and testified in court our priest who was embezzling money from the school. My sister was the overachiever. There was never a time I remember her NOT having a 4.0 and I recall on more than one occasion, her coming home in tears, panicking over the fact that she had not gotten a perfect score on a test. She loosened up after she met her (now) husband, and got her first enema. (kidding, kidding…she’d kill me if she ever read that)

My favorite shirt in the whole wide world is a long sleeved peasant shirt that has embroidered flowers and coffee cups above the right breast. Then, in embroidered lettering, it reads “I Really Need a Fucking Coffee.” It’s brilliant and sums up exactly how I feel every morning. I wore it to work on Tuesday…at any other job, this may have been the reason I had been let go. However, since my ex boss got high at our last Christmas party, I somehow doubt this.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Maple Candy and Pinot Grigio

I am photographing a friend's wedding in Vermont this weekend. Where most people would groan at the thought of doing such a favor, I love it. It keeps my mind off of things in my own life, gives me a sense of purpose for being around (IE - makes me feel important), offers a great gift for the bride and groom,and as cheesy as it may sound...I feel connected to their day...like, I know they'll look back on their photos and at some moment they'll think of me. Selfish? Yeah....but I don't care. Afterall, that's what being selfish is all about. Not. Caring.

So, the boyfriend! and I packed up our gear - me, equipped with a duffle bag of clothes, a hanging garment bag, laptop, camera case, tripod, purse and tote bag full of books and knitting. The boyfried! had one backpack. For the entire weekend.

The Boyfriend!: Really? 7 bags for one weekend?
Me: I really don't see the problem here. Three of these are work related. And this is a quasi work related trip.
The Boyfriend!: Ok, but that still leaves 4 bags. 4! Do you really need this? (He holds up the tote bag full of fun stuff to do)
Me: That's my fun bag. I need that to keep me occupied on the trip.
The Boyfriend!: But it's going to be a busy weekend.
Me: We're bringing the bag of fun! Trust me, I'll need it.

He rolled his eyes and reluctantly tossed it into the truck. It rained the entire drive, but we finally arrived in Chester, Vermont this evening around 5:00. We pulled into the charming Fullerton Inn - a cozy and classy lodge which features understated theme rooms. Ours is the Rose Room, I believe. This essentially means the entire room is pink with a pink bedspread, floral paintings on the wall and rose covered tapestries and shower curtain. In the lobby is a warm den with comfy couches and a table equipped with a giant checker board so you can pretend to be smart and cultured. Oh wait...that's chess. Well, the checkers are there for the children, I guess. Sean and I decided to stop into the bar before heading up to our room. Two men, whom I can only assume were guests at the Inn as well, were arguing over what to watch on television. After a minute or so of watching this display, with no bartender around to fix me my double "whatever he's having" drink, we decided to drink later and unpack first. Upon entering the room, I discovered why the argument was so detrimental. The rooms at the Inn have no television. NO TELEVISIONS.

I was so looking forward to a weekend of relaxation without the stress of dogs to walk and feed and medicate and strangle. And even when I'm reading...I always need back up noise. This room did not even have an alarm clock radio. Just the heinous BEEP BEEP BEEP alarm clock.

Me: What are we going to do!?
The Boyfriend!: Well, I suppose we could do something other than watch tv. Like read.
Me: What are the chances they have wifi here?
The Boyfriend!: The giant checker board downstairs is missing two pieces. What do you think?

Well, all I can say is...thank God for my BAG OF FUN!!!!!!!! Tonight would have been a total bust minus my knitting and books and laptop! Take that Boyfriend!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

You Know You're Famous When You Get Hate Mail...

For those who didn't see Anonymous' comment, posted yesterday April 28, 2008 at 4:17pm, let me post it again:

"you know, i was gonna just send an email to say that you must be the result of incest..but that really is tangential isn't it. my goodness, this is really immature, no?

all in all, women like you seriously have no business having dogs at this juncture. i'm sure you love your dog, but dogs need more than love. they need happy, mature parents."

Well, Anonymous, I was going to respond to this last night, but the boyfriend! convinced me to instead take a moment, go grab a beer and play him in a game of pool. And I agreed that this was a good idea. Besides, if we can't find a cue to play with, we could always grab the one stuck up your ass. There may even be two in there if we're lucky.

And the more I thought about your comment, the more asinine it sounded to me. And the more asinine it sounded to me, the less I wanted to dignify it with a response.

Or maybe it's just my inability to respond because I'm so high from all that cocaine I just snorted off of Red's snout.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Like Nails on a Hardwood Floor Chalkboard

Yesterday, Red woke up at 6:00 just to let us know that he was in a bad mood and had no one to share it with. We had been out late the night before, absurdly partaking in activities involving beer and wine, which would require much more than your typical eight hours of sleep to recover from and therefore were unprepared for the assault of a cold wet nose snarfing in my face. Yes, snarfing. Don’t tell me you don’t know what I’m talking about? It’s the act of putting your nose in someone’s face and exhaling through your nostrils. If you’re successful, snot and watery discharge will spray all over your victim’s face. The assailant is typically that of the canine family.

So anyway, Red woke up. And when I yelled at him to go back to sleep, this apparently translated from English to Dog-ese as, “Pace around from the bedroom to the living room impatiently.” Red has very long toenails. And we have hardwood floors with no carpeting. The combination is less than desirable. So now, I kept hearing Click-clack, click-clack, click-clack, click-clack. Pause. Click-clack, click-clack, click-clack, click-clack. Over and over again until I felt the dire need to stick a pencil straight up my nose and give myself a lobotomy.

He's being dropped off at the Humane Society tomorrow. (kidding, kidding)

PS – I have been tagged to do a 6 Random Things About Me type of post by Merry. It is coming soon! Don’t be too excited, people.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Heinous.

**Warning...the links below have gruesome/graphic images of a starving dog.

From what I can tell by researching different articles on the so-called "artist" Guillermo Vargas Habacuc, most claims and petitions against him are valid.

Habacuc allegedly hired children to catch a feral dog. It is said that he tied the dog to a short leash at a gallery for several days, with no food and water until it died. There are pictures to support this evidence. Many people visited and watched this dog die.

The Central American Biennial, a prestigious exhibition, somehow concluded that this heinous act as art, and Habacuc has been invited to repeat his "exhibit" at the Biennial of 2008 in Honduras.

Habacuc has claimed that what he "was attempting to prove was that those who saw the suffering of the dog just walked on by and that if it had been left on the street to die, no-one would have even known of its existence," according to EuroWeekly.

It was also reported that the dog did not die, but escaped, and that it had been fed by Habacuc and was only tied up during the gallery opening times. There is obviously no way to confirm this statement.

What is apparent to me is the fact that this display was an act of cruelty. Whether it's considered "artful" or not is besides the point...it is first and foremost cruel and intended to generate pain and suffering on an innocent animal.

Furthermore, Vargas' claim that if this animal "had been left on the street to die, no-one would have even known of its existence" is completely untrue. Not everyone is so heartless and savage as yourself, Guillermo. At the very least, when the creature was abandoned, he was given a chance. A chance to scrounge for food and drink from a dirty puddle. The chance to stretch his legs and exercise. The chance that someone with a heart would have taken him in to become a member of their family.

He cannot repeat this act. His participation in the 2008 Biennial must be stopped. Please visit this site or this site to sign the petition against this.