December 30, 2009

I Am Totally Dedicated to Teaching You Stuff

December marks my one-year anniversary as your Fragrant Liar. You probably remember fondly my inaugural post. I know! It feels like just yesterday that you all came into my little corner of the world with your cheeks aglow, your mouths agape, and your sensibilities aghast. It's all right. You recovered, didn't you?

I want to say thank you, thank you, thank you for reading, commenting, and supporting this blog. I try hard to teach you guys stuff you can use in real life because the infinite smarts around here flow so freely. I am your one-stop shop. I'm like Fragripedia! Where else can you find all you ever wanted to know about men, women, children, strap-ons, boners, spanx, corsets, strange surgeries, thongs, penises, and assorted other treasures. My peeps, you are the world's coolest beneficiaries! De nada!

Oh, I know some uppity peeps have read my stuff with that WTF-in-the-headlights look, or, horror-struck, tried to escape before I could finagle their naughty inner child out of them. Alas, not everyone can be awe-fabu-wonder-credible, now can they?

But YOU can—you ARE. You who continue to breathe deep, ping a link somewhere, and brave the elements of this blog for a few laughs and to receive the kind of wisdom you just can't get anywhere else—you are my people. You are my inspiration to fire up the laptop. You complete me. You make me want to be a better blogger. I promise to never disappoint.

Wait, what? That totally sounded like a resolution, didn't it? That is so not happenin'! But I'll be back next year. I hope you will join me with your sense of humor and your naughty inner child and be ready to learn something! I am totally dedicated to keeping you guys in the know with real important stuff.

You people are awe-fabu-wonder-credible. (I know you are, but what am I?)

Happy New Year!

December 27, 2009

I Hereby Don't Resolve to Achieve Something

The 2010 New Year is upon us, and everybody in Bloggyville is talking about resolutions. Shyaaaah! Don't you people realize? A New Year's resolution is something that goes in one year and out the other! I have been down this road before, most recently in 2009, and I totally don't remember a thing I vowed to do. Partly, I was medicated. Other partly, I'm a shoot-from-the-hip kind of girl anyway and . . . well, I forget stuff.

So what point is there in setting you people up with expectations I will never meet? I'd be all, "My glorious resolutions are blah, blah, blah," and then go off on a tangent neither of us was expecting, upsetting the delicate balance of our relationship. Like when I say, "I resolve to be less irreverent." Bwaaah-ha-ha! That's totally not happenin', but you get my point that then reverting to frat-boy humor with Penis Week would just make me a big fat, um, liar. Who needs that kind of pressure? I'm entirely too fragile.

I'd rather go with the flow and then switch things up when it feels right or when it feels wrong. I am messy like that. Inadvertently, I may disappoint people. I will totally feel sucky about it, but I'm cool with change. It's accountability that bites me in the ass when I'm just not ready to commit and/or I forget I'm supposed to do something. I would have to guilt myself when I don't spring forth with an exuberant "SCORE!" and even my best friends (those bitches) would gladly buy me a ticket on the Flagellation Freighter.

And frankly, this Christmas I'm just too full of casseroles and cookies to submit myself to the public scrutiny of a failed resolution. Instead, how about if I just let you know if I achieve something -- anything -- if and when I remember. I'll be like your personal reporter, on the scene, the moment I make my parents proud--I swear to you, that has happened before. What it was . . . I forget.

December 22, 2009

Good Enough

Dear Santa,

I've been exceedingly good enough this year. If you insist, I'll tell you why . . .
  • It's really not that bad to cuss habitually. My dad and mom always do it and I don't want to disappoint them by breaking with a beloved family tradition.
  • Always telling the truth is overrated. Little white lies are actually beneficial under opportune circumstances, and saving my own ass is Priority One because, really, this shows that I love myself. It's a proven fact that one must love oneself first in order to love others.
  • Vanity is just part of being a woman. Because of all my nurturing aspects and shit, I take pride in my appearance so I can be a good example for my daughters. How else would they know how much makeup and jewelry to don before they do anything strenuous?
  • Shooting the bird at strangers and loved ones alike is educational. As both a student and teacher of life, I perform a valuable public service with a single mad flourish that says, "You have annoyed me, mofo, boogermuncher, pitsniffer, skidmark, fleabrain, buttdog, punkchild of the universe." In this way, they learn not to make that mistake again, and I learn that imparting my true feelings is the safest way to cleanse myself of nasty toxins.
  • Embarrassing your children builds character. It instills in them a healthy dose of humility and an endearing penchant for storytelling they can share with others year after year. Intrigued therapists will take copious notes until their hands cramp up, and I ask you, how else would they learn to write like real doctors? See? Win-win for everyone!
  • Just saying no is not really selfish. Deny, deny, deny, because people need to become self-reliant. If I loan some chick all my cherished Twilight tomes rather than letting her drive her ass to Barnes & Noble to buy her own damn books, she will never grow as a person. Withholding is its own reward.
For goodness sake, Santa Baby, this is by no means a complete list of the ways I've been good enough all year. But since you're coming to town, and I may be inebriated by the time you get here, I want to make sure there will be no misunderstandings between us on Christmas morning.

In holiday merriment,
Your Fragrant Liar

It's totally pervy that you can see me when I'm sleeping. Dude, you can get your ass arrested for that. However, I am inclined to forgive your creepiness if you could see your way clear to gifting me with a new Lexus IS. If I have to, I'll settle for an ES350. Whaddaya say, big guy? I'll call off the coppers if you'll call up the elves and get them assembling my sleek new wheels.

I don't have a chimney, remember? But I do have a garage, and I will totally kick the kids out of their makeshift gameroom if you don't have enough wrapping paper to cover it. Oh, and I don't want to be any trouble, so no need for a big red bow. Unless you insist.

December 20, 2009

Holiday Head-Shakers

Every holiday around our house inspires some memorable head-shaking that brings to mind lines from favorite Christmas songs. In addition to my brush with zombie rats, plenty of contenders "sleighed" me, like:

  • Our resident angel from on high, Miss America, came down and addressed a sofa full of wassailing out-of-towners. "Want to know what the new baby is doing?" She sighed, screwed up her mouth in disgust, and rolled her eyes. "She's trying to suck on my mom's boob." O come let us adore her . . .
  • The overhead lights in our kitchen went out. The Three Wise Men of the family gathered beneath them as one after the other stood on the island and attempted to remove the frosted plastic cover from the fixture. After much ado, they couldn't remove it. Naturally, this begs the question, how many men does it take to change a light bulb? While These Three Kings took their special gifts to another crib of worship (aka, our garage for beer pong and darts), my daughter TG mounted the island and popped that sucker right out. Joy to the Girls, the boys are dumb.
  • My dad, he with the Santa belly, walked through the living room and sneezed explosively. Ho ho ho, his pants dropped to his ankles. Thankfully, I did not see the South Pole. Jump in bed and cover your head . . .
  • Six-year-old elf extraordinaire, JazzyB, was dissatisfied with our holiday decorations. She took matters into her own hands by completely undressing a dozen Barbies and Kens and lining them up in the manger that is her elfin workshop, depicting her version of the nativity scene. Or an orgy. Or a firing squad. The world in solemn stillness lay . . .
  • Three-year-old drummer boy, Destructo, stood at the toilet peeing while his mother supervised. He looked over his shoulder while pointing to his drumstick. "My peep big," he said. "Right, Mom?" Officially becoming the first woman in his life to protect his holy ego, she replied, "Um, sure, baby." Then he smiled at me, pa rum pum pum pum.
Naturally, this should all be taken as gospel. What memories are you making over at your place?

December 17, 2009

Zombies in the Attic

The other night I awoke at 2:30 to shuffling and scuffling noises, like something or someone stuck in a wall and clawing its way out. Or in the ceiling, dragging its leg along the rafters. My first thought was zombies. I'm told there are no such things as zombies; however, that didn’t stop them from infiltrating my psyche.

Make it stop! I can’t hear shit like that in the middle of the night.

Zombies are not what you want to wake up to, people. Or rats--especially, zombie rats in the excruciating throes of death, or re-enacting some kind of zombie death spiral. I imagined the creature had its foot caught in a trap, unable to escape. Noooooo! Don’t let me bear witness to the injustice! Stop suffering, little zombie rodent, and go to sleep. But ignoring the noises was impossible. How do you not dwell on zombies and rats when you're stuck in a sleep-deprived stupor? Zombies and rats are insistent in the dark.

Pollyanna being my childhood mascot, I invoked her to help me look on the bright side and be glad. Thankfully, Pollyanna is always game (she's very optimistic, but a slut). So she dragged me into a misty forest where we encountered a tribe of muscular, bare-chested male figures, led by a guy named Jacob. We double-teamed him under a new moon. Oh yes . . . we did. Jealous? Jacob had just phased on the fly when the shuffling and scuffling of the zombie rat in the attic demanded attention again.

No, zombie rat! I tossed and turned and wrapped my pillow around my ears. Pollyanna, beefy naked wolfmen, take me back to the forest! The sounds just became more ominous, like those noises that pea-soup-puking Reagan endured, which resulted in her getting a professional exorcism. You know how that satanic shit starts . . . always, noises in the attic.

I heard a mewl. Oh, torturous pain of death! Groggily, I sat up, grappling for my bearings. More shuffling and scuffling in the rafters. I got up and padded into the dark hallway, gaping at the ceiling, listening. Wait. Was that a mewl, or a mew?

To the left of me was the bathroom, and I heard more scuffling from behind the closed door. I turned the knob cautiously. In the dimness, all the drawers were open. WTF? Satan wants my vibrator? I flipped on the light. Like Uncle Buck in Bonnie and Clyde, Matilda rocked aimlessly on all fours, scraping her little cat head against the cabinets--her head was stuck up to her collar inside a Mr. Potato Head! She mewed plaintively, "WTF!" (Obviously, I speak cat.)

As I rifled through the bathtub paraphernalia (where the kids had bathed earlier) in search of plastic eyes, a hat, and a mustache to complete her ensemble, I wondered how long she'd been like that and whether she'd done it to herself. Perhaps it was the zombie rats, or perhaps we will one day soon need the services of an exorcist. In any case, I think this proves that my cat is incredibly intelligent. By sliding the drawers open and shut, she was S-O-S'ing me!

Well, doesn't she look like a genius?

December 13, 2009

Sixty-Two Pricks

No, it's not Penis Week yet, people. Settle down. This is about the pricks that got my back. Sixty-two of 'em. They go by names like Timothy, Hackberry, Juniper, Alternaria, Bermuda, Ragweed, Cocklebur, Candida, and Johnson. I feel so used.

Why did I allow myself to be pricked so many times in one afternoon? Well, to find out just what's making your eyes drip like Niagara and your nasal passages close up like Tiger's wife's knees, you gotta have pricks. (Even though that analogy was tacky, I think Mrs. Woods would agree with me cuz she got the biggest prick of all.) So . . . yeah, sharp, painful pricks to the delicate skin of your very sensitive back, laced with pure itch factor.

No, this is not me.
For each prick, the degree to which the pricked site swells is the degree to which you are allergic and therefore need antihistamines. If the pricked site doesn't show a clear result (by which I mean, if that spot doesn't welt up, glow like a siren, and make you as the prickEE want to claw the eyes out of your prickER), the fun is amped up even more. Nursilla, who is probably a nice person outside of her prick-happiness, injects a more concentrated form of the itch factor into your unsuspecting upper arm. In mine, I got 21, bringing my grand prick total to 83. More pricks than one woman can stand, I assure you. Results are immediate, and once again, I am allergic to everything. Most notably, pricks.

As an aside, this experience has left me twitching and flinching whenever someone invades my personal space from behind. I am not currently accepting any more pricks.

They say if you move to Austin without any allergies, you will acquire them faster than you can say "Ah-choo!" I've been here since '93, so I didn't need a bunch of pricks to tell me I had allergies, but at least now all my pricks have names and I can use protection whenever they come to town.

December 10, 2009

I Have a New Baby

By "I", I mean my daughter TG, but that's not important. I was there, and I helped. Of course, TG did all of the hard work, which included six hours of induced labor, masked by the "tell me when it's over" miracle that is an epidural. Please. People, I had four kids myself, au naturale, which included concentrated breathing techniques and ridiculously contrived panting while aiming projectile obscenities at the rat bastard who'd knocked me up in the first place.

And pushing . . . There's a gift from on high. God, or whoever invented us, had a twisted sense of humor. Let's give women a hole the size of a kumquat and see if they can push a pumpkin through it, shall we? While my sperm filter had allowed gratuitous stuff into the inbox without so much as a cautionary flag, nothing was getting through the outbox. I prayed for C-sections that never came.

So what gives? Our new baby, the Princess Shaboobka, came out in two—count 'em, 2—pushes. Says the doc after push #1: "Oh, I think this one's going to be easy." After push #2: "Oops."

So, bloggy world, here is our precious new Shaboobka at three days old. She's a keeper, isn't she?

December 2, 2009

Name This Tune

People, meet Destructo.
He somehow got it in his head that he's Pavarotti.
Or maybe a long-expired, reincarnated soprano.
Please help us support Destructo's dream of reaching out to the world
via electrical cords.
Can you name this tune?

Want to sing along? Here are the lyrics (far as I can tell):

Oh, cat pee,
Oh, bad cat pee.
Can't tell cats to go outside.
Cuz they cry,
Aaaaaaaaaall the time—
Oh my god—
Go outside.
You cats,

November 29, 2009

Good God, Quit Tempting Me!

I'm not Rachel Ray. The kitchen and I have never been what you might call symbiotic. Still, my kids never starved. Au contraire, because of my short-order skills, they knew restaurant etiquette before they could crawl. Since the kids have grown up and perfected their cooking chops, my skills have simmered to a fine fragrant reduction. Add 3 cups couldn't care less, 2 cups clueless, and one entire carton of cooktard. Throw all that into a 60" baked dish, infused with a little holiday zest, and you get one saucy piehole I like to call ME.

While I didn't inherit the Great Cooks in America gene, I did acquire the Shovel-it-all-in gene, and that makes it particularly hard when it comes to the holidays—which, if you didn't know, is designed solely to make big fat gobblers out of us all. I hesitate to pooh-pooh our Thanksgiving food fest and the whole reason we celebrate it (which is--um, why?), but is there nothing more diet friendly than the celery tray? Between turkey and potatoes smothered in gravy, marshmallows, jellies, breads and rolls, all manner of casseroles, and incredibly edible pies, all your weight loss and maintenance efforts are shot from here to Memorial Day. Who's in charge of this conspiracy?

This T-Day, I called on my dormant inner chef for a healthy alternative. I made our dinner's single diet friendly concoction of green beans almondine, which I scarfed up along with at least one helping of everything else within reach. And I mean everything. My lack of willpower is exceeded only by my disdain for it (That, and my penchant for pies--and the Swiss Alps of whipped cream).

But enough is enough. World, I am on a mission to eat healthy for the next three weeks—until Christmas. I know that's as realistic as Santa dropping a Lexus LS down my chimney (I mean, since I don't have a chimney); but I don't want to feel like a stuck Christmas pig when I hit the holiday parties in my sexy yuletide frock. I don't want my New Year's resolution to be once again "I vow to lose excess baggage in the winter months even though it's fucking cold, and I don't want to take my clothes off, especially to get into workout gear, which is my least favorite outfit, when I'd rather be cuddled up by the fire (if I had one) with a good book and a handsome man."

My will has been shaky in November, but I hereby resolve that you people will not be able to tempt me with candied trail mix, honey-roasted nuts, warm chewy cookies, decadent fudge, toffee Florentines, pumpkin lattes, or any other wicked seasonal confection.

Seriously, you turkeys, give a girl a break!

November 24, 2009


Brace yourself. This will come as an unbelievable and devastating shock. Maybe you better sit down. Okay, so, well, here it is: I am a loser.

See, I've never won anything—at least not since 1966, when at the age of eleven I participated in a cake walk at Campbell Hill Elementary in Seattle. Then, in a parade not unlike the Bunny Hop, I promenaded around a big circle of chalk-drawn squares and happened to land on a square with the right number scrawled inside.

Voila! they said. You are the proud owner of a cake. A sugary pink, three-layer, cherry monstrosity, which I promptly devoured ALL BY MYSELF. I have no clue if it was any good because I pretty much inhaled it.

Perhaps that was the game turner. Perhaps my assigned Fickle Finger of Fate or my Personal Brand of Karma said, That's it, Mo-Folina, you are not ever winning anything again, since you have brought shame upon the person who made the only thing you ever won by selfishly vacuuming it up in one fell swoop ALL BY YOURSELF.

As an aside, back then I was a stick who could eat any amount of food and never gain an ounce. Even I hate me now.

Back to Bad Luck Betty . . . This good luck drought singlehandedly explains my inability to win the Lotto and therefore retire while I'm still young and sweet.

To recap, since 1966, I haven't won a fucking thing.

That is, until this week. After repeatedly entering my bloggy buddies' giveaways over the last year and NEVER winning so much as a feminine hygiene product, I am the proud owner of a sweet little makeup bag, handmade by Crystal at Chaya's Corner. I didn't even have to promenade for it. Thanks, Crystal!

And now that my luck has changed, I think I need a trip to the corner store.
Go here to see Crystal's Etsy Shop and all the cool things she makes.

November 22, 2009

Fickle? Kinda. Not really. Well, okay.

As a public service, I want to enlighten those in the dark.

In general, girls are fickle. We get only a little less fickle as we age. Having been around the block a time or twenty, we are certainly more resolute about some things, but now we deliberately reserve the right to change our minds—because we can—and we will even verbalize this caveat at opportune moments.

"Oh, man I want that black car—it's aaaall shiny and sleek. I mean, I would look HAWT in it. Gotta be mine! UNLESS something totally weird makes the deal unworkable. In which case, I want that little red one. It's aaaaall shiny and sleek."
We want to do or have something really badly, until we don’t. And as we get older we develop the wherewithal to analyze and explain our changes of heart with the folksy eloquence of a Palin ghostwriter so it doesn’t seem that we’re inherently befuddled, just in touch with our base. It’s no wonder guys can’t keep up.

Before my 20s, my fickleness showed up in crushes. I was infamous for putting boys through the Bubble Gum Test. How fast can you chew ‘em up and spit ‘em out?

Case in point #1: Really cute 16-year-old Dale. The day we’d established our mutual crushes, he later took off his jacket, and I discovered he was wearing the very same striped, purple, gold, and red cable sweater I was. It was the ‘70s—we strived for androgyny, but still . . . Kinda girly, dude. So he walked me home from school wearing his twin sweater, which slip-stitched its way into my psyche like a fat ball of yarn poked through with bamboo knitting needles. By the time we got to my house and he’d kissed me (with his mouth over my entire face), I had let loose my quick-change artiste. Chew, chew, chew, spit!

Case in point #2: Greg, the foxy senior on whom I had a life-altering crush, who finally gave me a second look after a lot of fawning and flirting on my part. We convinced him to ditch school with us for an impromptu trip out to Lake Pleasant. It was winter; we had no swimsuits. The potential lurked for skinny dipping. My evil plan was working perfectly. Until I decided my nipples would be bigger than my boobs in that cold. But Greg kicked off his shoes, dropped his shirt and jeans, and ran into the icy waters in only his boxers. All eyes were glued on him. Look at that physique! How macho to brave the elements! And he’s interested in ME! Then he came out of the lake in a hurry, visibly chilled, with little Bojangles popping his head in and out of that little boxer flap with every step over the rocks. Holy crap! Chew, chew, chew, spit!

I really wanted to write this for some time, but then I changed my mind for reasons I can't explain; and then I just said, WTF, go ahead, Princess. People need to KNOW this shit. So there you go. Consider yourself publicly served.

November 16, 2009

Hold It!

Raise your hand if when you sneeze, you also pee yourself a little. Don't be shy. It happens. Guys included. This convulsive expulsion bursts out at over 47 mph (or 75 km). At that speed, if you didn't release a little pee, you might spurt around the room like a balloon. Conservatively, at least 33.3% of all females who sneeze—or cough or laugh or do aerobics or, my favorite, jump on trampolines—leak a tad. Dude, party's over.

FYI Kegelmeisters, your beloved kegel can only do so much. I personally perfected the Squeeze-n-Sneeze. Cross your knees, brace yourself, and then ACHOO! But everybody knows what you're doing, right? Don't answer that.

Recently I went to a doc for a urodynamics test. This is THE worst test you can undergo ever. EVER. One word, people: cath (short for catheter, which can no longer be uttered in my presence without me shriveling up and whimpering in a corner). You get a cath up the old U-ha and suddenly you're in your tech's face spitting: "Kill me now, or get that mo-fo outta me before I kill you." I mean, I'm just guessing. Ahem, as a result of that torture, my doc decided I was a candidate for the bladder sling. He said, "Why don't you try a pessary first, though, before we go the surgical route?" And I thought he was my advocate.

See, a pessary is a flat, circular, spacecraft-hard plastic device about two inches in diameter, with holes. Think giant white button, circa 1950. Think Frisbee inside your tummy control pantyhose. Think flying saucer embedded inside the Holland Tunnel. A pessary sits horizontally inside the hoo-ha. Its position keeps the urethra in place so you don't leak when you sneeze. Sounds like a reasonable solution, right? Except for a little thing called logistics.

Issue One: blind installation. It’s not like you’ve got a telescope that sees around corners.
Issue Two: we’re talkin’ deep into the jungle, people. Remember when you lost your earring down the drain? Did sticking your fingers down into that little hole really work? Could you have used a Nifty Nabber for gripping that sucker?
Issue Three: navigating tender vajajay tissue with fingernails, especially acrylics. Does this really need explanation?

After only 48 hours, I tossed my pessary into a drawer.

TG texted me two weeks later: Hey, what's that thing that looks like a button in your room?
Me: No clue.
TG: Kids are playing with it.
Me: Still don't know.
TG: They're tossing it around like it's a Frisbee.
Me: Nope, don't have a—wait, looks like a little disc, with holes? White? Hard plastic?
TG: Yeah.
Me: You don't want to know what that is.
TG: Destructo had it in his mouth.
Me: Um, how about those Cowboys?

I knew then what I had to do. To protect the nanababies from future trauma--the kind that can only come from their mom telling all their friends that they once chewed on a Feminine Frisbee, I signed up for the bladder sling. That's what I've been up to the last week and why I haven’t blogged. When I heal in six weeks, I'll let you know if the Squeeze-n-Sneeze will be part of my repertoire ever again. The Feminine Frisbee will not.

November 5, 2009

The Point

One reason I write this blog is to make a point about being me. Oh, yes. There is a point. You see, I am an, um, older woman. Not so old as to have AARP on speed dial, but old enough that my offspring have offspring. (I warned them, but they insisted on having sex, so now there are kids everywhere.)

These days I share a home with my daughter, her husband, and their rugrats. I work a full-time J.O.B., and my true passion as a writer is realized whenever I choose the risky behavior of getting myself in flow (Settle down, I operate in private and wash my hands afterward). I am the grateful beneficiary of fabulous friends and family who love and support me, not to mention the hundreds of dedicated Fragrant Liar readers and followers. I'm healthy in mind and body, wealthy in vitality and spirit, and wise in experience and common sense (shut up). I'm single—okay, divorced—but in a relationship (refer to surprise FaceBook announcement). While I am unique, I am not uncommon.

Therein springs the point.

We of this day and age are redefining what it means to be in so-called midlife, propelled by necessity to think not only outside the box (not that box, Otin), but outside the bedroom (okay, maybe that box). We want to replenish, rejuvenate, and rethink where we're headed and how many peeps we're taking with us. Our new wealth of connections in cyberspace have emboldened us.

Less than a hundred years ago, our mommy/nana counterparts were on their last ovary. They were overworked, weathered, and worn out by now. If they were unmarried, they were spinsters or widows. Current midlifers have shifted the tectonic plates of tradition, as has every generation, but now the pace of change seems exponential because technology allows us to communicate on a scale we never could have realized back when we were stretching a string between two empty Alpo cans. I'd like to thank the first geeky people who came up with bloggy theorem, but I don't know any. They did this.

I am a revealer. I share with you the details that inform my life, including the entertaining and embarrassing bits—voluntarily, which does strain my credibility, I know. However, my choice of self expression says loudly that no one pigeonholes me (not that pigeonhole, Otin). I speak candidly here because I am "out there," unafraid and unapologetic. (Mostly.) Judge all you want, people.

See, women of my day and age don't wait in rockers with curlers in their hair for the young'ns to visit anymore—although I am in the market for a recliner with a convenient holder for snackage and drinkage and garbage so I don't have to miss a moment of my fave shows.* And kiddos? Call first, will ya? No, we modern midlifers move and shake, even if solely for our own benefit. We seek purpose and fulfillment. We value quality of life and the chance to keep learning and growing. We revel in camaraderie and acceptance of who we are. We choose to not be invisible. We demand that our voices matter.

And that's the point.
*If I didn't want to get out and have fun so much, I might invent a pleasant catheter experience so my feet never had to hit the floor. Oh, and have you seen the recliner that pops you upright with the press of a button? One second you're in repose, then BOING! you're dancing with Gilles! That one's got my name on it.

November 2, 2009

Wicked Red and the Wolf

So this is Wicked Red Riding Hood and her Wolf.

Grrrrr . . .

Hope y'all had as much fun as we did, traipsing through the dark, on the hunt for tricks and treats . . .

October 30, 2009


Tomorrow is Halloween. Much as I had my heart set on going pirate this year, something a little more wicked this way comes. I want to improve on my Goody-Two-Shoes persona. Heh.

So what sort of wicked shall I be? Here are your clues:

  • I’m a real family girl.
  • I love vermillion.
  • I hang out in dark and dank woodlands. Alone.
  • The man I’m attracted to is quite big and bad. But I ain’t a-scared.
  • My, but I am fascinated by his big . . . teeth.
Heh, heh. Real hard, huh? Pics to come after the scary event, and you can judge for yourself just how wicked I turn out to be. Or maybe I’ll let Mr. Fine tell you how wicked I was – if that wolf is still alive after I’m through with him. His bark doesn’t scare me in the least. And I kinda like his bite.

What will you be this year? Not Goody Two Shoes, I hope.

October 28, 2009


I needed an undergarment for my new sweater dress which hugs my curves a little too well. However, it was Sunday night when I decided this, and in Marshall’s all I could find was Spanx.

First off, this “shaper” on the hanger looks like a body bandage for a two-year-old, though the tag said it was LARGE. It fits me from boobage to mid thighs. I did look stylin’ in my sweater dress, and I wore the ensemble, including black bootery, all day. However, a lot of tugging occurred, as my Lycra contraption rolled up from the bottom and down from the top. I gave in by early afternoon and let the girls free, since they have little tolerance for compression at a hundred-thousand pounds per cup. And may I say, an elastic band under the boobcage gives you a real appreciation for rodeo broncs, all cinched up while they buck around the arena. Still, I survived my discomfort for the sake of looking HAWT.

Later that evening, in my closet, I tried to take off the Spanx. You might think:  "easy peasy." But you would be wrong. Perhaps it was the route I took. The over-the-head route. I had grabbed the hem and pulled it all the way up, over my head, at which point I realized, with my arms pinned across my chest, elbows akimbo, and Lycra stretched as taut as a Bay Bridge cable, I had effectively strait-jacketed myself. That's because wearing Spanx is like stuffing yourself into an elf’s condom. Unless you can shrivel up on demand, you're a captive little fucker.

So I stumbled around my closet, in a wrestling match with my Spanx, and gave myself a full nelson. Extremely disoriented, I tripped over my boots and flailed around on the floor. I paused in my hapless exertion to enjoy a moment of debilitating terror, wherein I imagined I might die and no one would find me till the next day when my putrefying scent would overpower the catbox. That, or being so tightly encased, if the thing hardened, I might actually emerge with wings and a penchant for light bulbs.

Fifteen minutes later, I managed a Houdini-esque escape by dislocating both shoulders and using my rabid spittle as a lube. I staggered to the shower, exhausted, out of breath, my hair electrified, and I stood under the water in a dazelike Goldie Hawn in Overboard after her nightmare with a chainsaw. Buh, buh, buh, buh.

Tragically, my cat Matilda saw the whole thing. Next morning, she hunkered down and growled as I waved the spanx in her face in an effort to desensitize her. When I left her, she was mumbling incoherently about throwing herself in front of a car.

Heed my warnings, people. Spanx should be worn at your own risk. I’m in recovery now, wearing slacks too sizes too big and a bulky sweater that leaves me shapeless. Ramping up for:  Spanx vs. Me, Round 2.

October 26, 2009

How to Freak Out Your Kid

As a single mom of four adult daughters, I have to say there are few greater giggles in life than seeing the looks on their faces when I do things they're not expecting. And trust me, it's not hard to get a BIG rise out of them.

This particular “look” came from my eldest last Friday evening as I raced out of the house for my weekend getaway at a B&B with Mr. Fine. An astonished mix of disgust and horror came over TG's face when she saw me joyfully dangling the shiny handcuffs that her little Destructo had discovered while pillaging my jewelry box.

“Hey, thanks, buddy!" I shouted. "Good idea! See you guys Monday!”

Horror and disgust.


October 23, 2009

Wee Wisdom #6

Miss America’s Poignant Pearl of the Week:

"You know, if you believe in yourself, that’s true."

October 21, 2009

Deal Makers

I previously published a Deal Breakers post wherein I laid out the characteristics I simply won't tolerate in a man/partner/sex god. Since then, I've been asked many times what the Deal Makers would be. So here they are, in no particular order, if any guy can measure up:

  1. Intelligent. He must get my Spockiavellian logic—and my jokes.
  2. Flutter-worthy. I must get flutters in my stomach when I know I get to see him.
  3. Sexy. He must make me wonder what's goin' on under those jeans—without trying—and he must only have eyes for me.
  4. Pet-lover. Must love dogs, but more importantly, must love cats.
  5. Financially stable. Must have his own bank account. One with something in it. Oh, and a little extra to fly me to exotic locales around the world. And Phoenix. And the moon.
  6. Foodie. He must love to cook. I gotta eat, people.
  7. Humor. He must laugh hysterically, or at least enthusiastically, at my irreverence, and he must never diss it by calling it "baudy." Although, I do like baudy. Nasty is a fun word too. And vagina. Don't you love those words? And he's got to be able to give it back to me. No shrinking irises. Make me laugh, dude.
  8. Travel bug. He must have a "let's get outta here" button, as I am bored of staying home.
  9. Family guy. He must have been there, done that with the young family and the exes. He must feel at ease with all manner of rugrats, including the rowdier ones, like my precious Destructo. I have graduated from sippy cups to wine tastings, but family is True North.
  10. Standup guy. This applies to being who he says he is and walking the talk. Also, I like it when a guy pretends he's on stage and tries to make me laugh. Oh wait, that's #7, Humor. Okay then, I'll go with Standup and Strip. Stripping is good on stage. With or without bump-and-grind music, handcuffs, and tear-away leathers; I'm not picky.
  11. Playful. He must be quick and easy with a smile. He must not be afraid of pillow fights, too cool to dance in the rain (naked, if required by me), or too timid for Spin the Bottle.
  12. Affectionate. In private or in public. No exceptions. If I want a kiss while standing in the grocery line holding a cucumber, I want a kiss! And it better be a pirate kiss too. He must like to hold my hand, just because.
  13. Supportive. I have dreams, people. He must want me to succeed. He must be happy to encourage me to shoot for the stars, despite that they're a long way off, and he must make sure I have plenty of sustenance for the trip (see #6, Foodie).
  14. Tolerant. Yes, I admit. I have quirks. He must be totally enamored with me so he can man-up when I get huffy and cuss (or shoot the bird) in public, which is like almost fucking never, but it could happen and then he would have to abandon his shock and embarrassment and say, "It's okay, baby, your mouth is beautiful and you still rock my world." See how that works?
  15. Adoration. Yes, he must enthusiastically adore every nook and cranny of my glorious fanny, and all my other glorious stuff. But more importantly, he must really, really like me even when I'm not so likeable. Aaaah-ha-ha-ha-ha! As if I'm not a total freakin' saint! Am I right?
  16. Honest. He must be the man he says he is and always tell the truth. He must also be savvy enough to lie to me about my butt or my double chin when that is what I need to hear.
  17. Inspirational. He must inspire trust and optimism and hope for a dreamy future. I don't mind seeing god once in a while, like during sex, but I'm not going to church for that stuff.
  18. A rock. I must feel safe and secure with him. He must protect me from big, hairy, scary monsters. Although I'm a big girl with, shall we say, sass and attitude, he must still have my back.
  19. Self-possessed. He must know who he is and be comfortable in his own skin. Plus, he must accept who I am, and not want to change me or force any sort of religulosity on me. I am a heathen till the end. That probably comes as a shock to you.
  20. Rockin'. Yeah, I said rockin'. He must rock my world with his awesomeness.
I'm sure I left out some other stuff that would be kinda nice to get all rolled up in this one package, but as it is, this is a tough list to ace for any guy. Unless he's Mr. Perfect. You out there, dude?

October 19, 2009

WTF Wednesday: Butt Hole What?

If you haven't already heard, let me be the first to break it to you. Somebody in Conisbrough, South Yorkshire, England, a very long time ago named one of their streets Butt Hole Road. I kid you not. Cheeky, eh? According to Wikipedia, the name is thought to be referring to a container for holding water, a water butt. In the U.S., we call them rain barrels. Not nearly so funny. Why can't we be more like the Brits?

Apparently, families living on Butt Hole Road didn't think it was funny after facing problems getting their deliveries because the delivery companies thought it was a hoax. Being the butt of all the jokes isn't easy. Then those crazy tourists showed up, exposing themselves while standing next to the road sign -- totally tawdry and disgusting, wouldn't you agree?

And it was hard for the people who lived there to tell anyone their address. Can't you hear the conversations?

~ I live at 1313 buttholeroad.
~ I'm sorry, sir, can you spell that?
~ Do I have to?
~ Sir, do you want your package?
~ (sigh) B-U-T-T . . . H-O-L-E . . R-O-A-D.
~ BWAAAHHH-ha-ha-ha-ha!
~ (sigh)
So here's a picture of me back in 2003, in front of the Butt Hole Road sign. I'm sitting on the pavement, and, well, I'm naked. I'm not showing you the naked butt part. But this is truly a moment in time I'll never forget. And neither will the residents of Butt Hole Road. Right guys? Tell the truth. But don't tell my mum, eh?

Sorry, Robert Earl Keen, the road doesn't go on forever, and the party sometimes ends. Cuz the residents of Butt Hole Road got their wish and changed their street name to [ta da!] Archer Way, since it's just down the way from a 930-year-old castle.

I know!


October 15, 2009


One highly anticipated trip to Phoenix to see your beloved sister who's also your BFF:

Taking along your new guy and exposing him to the family who knows a thousand incriminating factoids about you -- and they ain't afraid to use 'em:

Realizing your new guy won't hesitate to punk you in front of your own family -- WTF?

Some things money can't buy. For me, it's a boyfriend with an audacious sense of humor and the cojones to use it.

October 5, 2009

Ahead of My Time

This is me at 17, just before my high school graduation ceremony. Note the exquisite babydoll dress, which I made myself, because I was crafty once upon a time.

Of course, my mother may have supervised and she may have cussed her way through the harder parts, since the fabric was slick as gooseshit (beloved family expression) and didn’t cooperate, and sometimes even the voice of experience struggles to make the magic happen. Ten years were shaved off my mother’s life after the thrill of sewing with satin and silk (plus her voice of experience said something about not being able to stand seeing me in that "fucking thing" afterwards), but then she quit smoking and added a few years back on, so odds are she will still be around to drop it like it's hot on the front porch with me. Right, Ma?

Notice also the length of the exquisite babydoll dress. In a super mini, if you bend over even just a little, the mystery is over. Indisputable fact. No, I’m not namin’ names of those suddenly in the know (like Heathen). But it was 1973. Minis were all the rage and we didn't give a shit about mystery (unless we're talkin' Kolchak in the Nightstalker), especially if it had anything to do with Watergate or Deep Throat. Plus, we could only laugh at every mention of Deep Throat, cuz maturity was for nerds. But just so that history won’t repeat itself, I should inform the modern masses: if you have to drone on and on that you are not a crook? You are one.

Note also the blue eye shadow and the long, wavy hair. Was I rockin’ it or what? Well, except for the pantyhose. I guess you saw the sheen on my thighs? Pantyhose has thankfully gone the way of the 8-track player (although who didn’t love the Doobie Brothers singing China Grove or Jesus is Just Alright on 8-track? Bitchin, man!). But let the record show, I’m Xtremely distraught that after all this time no substitution for pantyhose has been invented. In cold weather, what woman wants to go out bare legged, especially in a mini? People, we can send a freakin' multi-billion-dollar camera to Saturn's rings, but we can't come up with a workable alternative to hosiery? Pathetic.

All this to say, fads go around and then roll back around when designers can say, "Hey, look, something totally never done before!" Babydolls, minis, rainbow eye shadows, wavy hair, and platform shoes (no you can't see them, but they're there!) – all back in vogue. I was so freakin' ahead of my time back then.

October 1, 2009

The Sag Zone

I just turned f-f-f-fifty-four. Thirty years ago, I looked at my current age as far off in the future, in a land far, far away where gravity was of infinitesimal consequence. Time was something alien and against my primal mantra of I am young, I am invincible, I am the skinny girl with perky breasts. In fact, I thought getting this age only happened to other people, like my parents and ex-presidents and despicable bosses who deserved it. But not me. No, this number does not fit me.

Of course, there are signs that things aren't what they used to be. Where the firm muscles of my arms, torso, hips, and thighs used to broadcast my youthful vitality and catch-worthiness, I am now faced with the voice of Rod Serling, broadcasting that I have crossed over into . . . The Sag Zone. (If you're not old enough to remember Rod Serling, screw you.) The fast-firing synapses of my brain, which once kept my cranial performance and databanks in peak condition so that I could leap complex problems in a single bound and photographically recall who said what about whom and in what tone during a late-night drinking binge and still recall the details three months later, had vaccinated me against making such statements as:

  • It's past my bedtime;
  • Just one more and then cut me off; or
  • But you don't even know him!
These days as I prepare to speak, my measureless experiences crowd into my frontal lobe, jockeying for position to blast off my tongue first. Pick me, pick me, they clamor. And I reply tacitly, First come, first served. One thought breaks through the throng and lines up on the launching pad that is my tongue. It's coming . . . it's coming . . . Wait for it. It's . . . it's . . . gone. I am flustered and humbled by the ever-insidious brain fart.

Or not. See, it's common practice to call it a brain fart, but it's really this: I am so inundated with broad-spectrum knowledge that my advanced intellectual facilities are nearing capacity. Without a back door to push out the inconsequential and traumatic (which prevents us from witnessing excess brain seepage from our geriatrics' ears), I am forced to zip-drive the trivia into a warehouse somewhere around my hippocampus where its retrieval could take days—even weeks—much like rummaging through attic boxes for one's first shooting-the-bird photo. (Yes, I started early, but in my defense, I'd been mimicking my father.)

Now where was I? Oh yes. For me, it's all about the number. When you say you're over fifty, people regard you with a piteous gaze. They try to assuage your assumed bruised ego with commentary like: But you look so much younger! Well, at least I can be thankful for good manners. If only this could be said of one's family. When mine became aware of my fiftieth birthday, it was like I had a big, waxy Number Fifty birthday candle melting all over my head, flaming everyone with the inside information that I had reached a cultural milestone. At forty, I got those black Over the Hill balloons and greeting cards depicting my nipples dangling around my ankles. That was child's play compared to the ridicule I endured my fiftieth year as the recipient of a wall-to-wall Grim Reaper banner.

I guess it might have been easier to accept my age gracefully if I hadn't been throwing myself on the ground, kicking and screaming; but I had just realized I would now be required to check off the 50-65 age box on the forms in my doctor's office—or worse, the 50+ box, a group encompassing me and all those on the cusp of fossilization.

Fifty is the new forty (or thirty!), some say. In fact, this decade is a huge disconnect between who I am, what I look like, and how I process fiber. I feel the same as I did at 29. No, I'm not kidding. The biggest difference is that I'm smarter. People, I regularly wax wisdom all over the place, as you know. I just have trouble remembering . . . uh, wait. What was I saying?

Oh yes. My age cannot possibly reveal the person I am, inside or out. The numbers do sometimes lie, or at least mislead. I'm still fun and fabulous, vibrant and vital, sexy and sentient. After all, I'm only f-f-f-fifty-four.

September 28, 2009

Happy Birthday to Me

That sneaky Mr. Fine uncovered what I really, really wanted for my birthday -- which is tomorrow (there's still time to shop, people!) -- and pretty much thought there was no way to get it, and . . . he got it for me! Peeps, I am going to see JOURNEY! Waaaa-hoooo!

Don't stop believin' . . . Hold on to that feelin' . . .

Is Mr. Fine awesome or what? (He also gave me a 10-Euro bill, which I think means I'm goin' somewhere . . .)

Okay, so sure we still lo-o-o-ove Steve Perry, right? He's THE one and only, for christ's sake. But Filipino Arnel Pineda rocks the house, people! Seriously.
And guess who's opening? Anybody remember Night Ranger? So cool. I . . . can't . . . wait!

To hear the resurrected Journey, go here:

September 26, 2009

Wee Wisdom #5

Can you say ATTITUDE?
Left to right:
Baby Bandit, Sparkplug, Miss America, the Pistol, and Destructo.

Like Miss America, my Florida nephew, the Sparkplug, just started Kindergarten. That leaves his little brothers Baby Bandit and the Pistol at home without him during the day for the first time ever in their miniscule history. This new reality came as a shock to the 4-year-old Pistol, middle child and suddenly top dog over his very mischievous 3-year-old brother. Only a few hours into his reign, the Pistol was beside himself. He whined plaintively: "I'm stressing out! I miss Sparkplug, and I just can't deal with Bandit by myself."

This is Miss America the morning of her first day at Kindergarten. I blinked back tears as I snapped this shot. Her mother could cry just thinking about it, so it was up to Miss America's father to ferry her to class.

Miss America's Poignant Pearl of the Week:

On looking into the mirror at herself while trying on some new jeans for school:

"I have a glorious butt."

My, my. Where does she get it?

September 21, 2009


There are consequences
for shutting down,
for closing off.
The moment you open up again,
to acknowledge your loneliness,
to give yourself permission to let in someone new,
to love again . . .
That's the moment
your past confronts you,
cascades over you
in icy, whitecapped rapids,
And you don't even know
you can't
the incessant
of your mossy, roughened edges.

Now I've found you,
allowed you one step forward,
turned you around,
sent you away,
pulled you back in curious,
untrustable gestures that belied my turmoil.
Yet more and more
I want to open up to you
like honeysuckle.
Orange, vibrant, pliable.
Thriving from my honeybee's attentions,
cocooned in each new morning's warmth.

I see the lies I told myself,
the fires I smothered
that I should have walked through,
emerging singed and sooted, raw and achy,
regenerating from the inside out
like the chrysalis.
But there's no going back.
So forgive me,
one more moment
to finish letting go,
saying goodbye,
releasing blame,
before I come to you
for your sweetness.

September 17, 2009

Mammoslams and Density Gams

Dear Esteemed Radiologists,

I want to thank you sincerely for the fine work you perform on women everyday. Your high-tech detection devices and keen "hey-what's-that?" skillz are invaluable. When I was in there getting my mammogram -- one of my most anticipated pasttimes cuz Radiology is now like a destination -- I noticed you did away with the frumpy, stiff dressing gowns of my great great grandmother's generation and instead opted for the more modern "mini cape" and its single set of neck snaps.

I have to say that the mini cape makes me feel more like a crusader in need of someone to rescue but with the constant threat of my boobs showing the instant there is a well-aimed burst of air conditioning. One good gust and weeeee! Suddenly you're Marilyn Monroe from your barenaked chest to your clavicle. I realize this apparel allows easier access to the boobery as I turn left, lift and plant, watch the vice grips flatten my mams into doughy sugar cookies, grimace and hold my breath (snap the fucking image already), shed tears and cry out for my mama. Or a double-barrel shotgun. So I don't want to get all up in the tech's grille about that. She's just doing her job, right?

But what I really take issue with are the paper pants. Who the hell's idea was that? I want you to know that I came into the place at 110 pounds. As instructed, I removed my slacks and slid into the industrial blue paper pants for my trip to the bone density table and gained an instant 300 pounds. See for yourself.
I almost passed out. No wonder there are no mirrors in the changing rooms.

But seriously, there's no way that tech could have known if I had somebody else in there with me, a la He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named (pre-corporeal Lord Voldemort), or not. What if that wasn't my real hip you scanned, Missy? What then? And what's wrong with designer paperpants? I have a size, people. I see it in every department store, and it belongs to me. It completes me. This one size fits all mentality, oh revered body scanners, is a load of crap. And, really, how much did this atrocity cost my medical provider?

So thanks ever so much for that cheap shot to my ego. I went home and promptly swallowed a gallon of Rocky Road, a dozen Little Debbies (sorry, Michel, your package will be late), and one gigantor Cinnabon slathered with a pound of real butter and drizzled caramel because I figured I was a lost cause anyway. Thence was supplanted a ton of freakish and unholy Catholic guilt.

And even though you stiffed me out of my rubber-soled, one-size-fits-all tube socks, and you've made me a bigger person, I'll be back in two years. I hope you're happy.

Yours in diagnostics,
Fragrant Liar

September 15, 2009

Galveston and the Hazards of Travel

This is the beach at Galveston Island, where I've been for the last few days. Well, I haven't exactly been on the beach watching guys surf the whole time -- oops, did I say hunky guys were lolling about on their surf boards and taunting me with their eight-packs and beach boy good looks? No? That's good. Cuz I wouldn't want anyone to think I wasn't busy being an industrious conference worker. In fact, I was at the hotel across from the beach 99.9% of the time. You're looking at the .1% of freewheeling craziness I enjoyed. Hey, I like to let my freak flag fly.

This is the view from my room on the 15th floor of the San Luis Resort at sundown. One year ago, Hurricane Ike roared through the Gulf and devastated the island. A whole lot of rebuilding has been going on ever since, but many people lost everything. I met some of them. These folks are resilient and determined to come back even better than before. I know they will. It's not the Caribbean, but it's still beeeuuuuuuteeeeful, isn't it?

You know what the worst part is about traveling and staying in gorgeous hotels? Besides nothing . . . No, seriously, it's coming home. Take this evening when I came in. I dropped the luggage and made an immediate pit stop in el bano. I was surprised when I rose from the porcelain throne at how eerily quiet things were. Weird, I thought. Scary weird. Then I went to the sink. I held my hands under the faucet for like ten full seconds, maybe forty, while I pondered whether or not I had marbled cheese in my fridge for quickie consumption. Then . . .

WTF? Why isn't the water coming on? Why didn't the toilet flush? Where's the automatic hand dryer that blows your skin back like Tom Cruise's face on the high-speed train in Mission Impossible?

And that's when I realized -- I gotta do this shit myself? What is the world coming to when I have to handle my own levers? That's just uncivilized.

September 12, 2009

G-A-S Spells Gas

When I was five, I spelled my first word. Back then, few kids went to Kindergarten, so I learned about letters and sounds on my own. I was pretty proud of myself when I took my carefully crayoned word in to my father, who was doing his business on the toilet.

Unfazed at my interruption, he said, "Do you know what it spells? G-A-S. That spells gas."

The irony of that moment did not occur to me until just now. (Anyone who read my post, Canning the Muse, will now understand the historical significance.) That aside, GAS was officially my first word, and I got a lot of mileage out of it. I easily remembered the letters' names and the sounds they made, and from that point my older cousins could no longer spell all the sneaky things they were up to. As in, "Hurry, hide the P-O-R-N-O." Cuz I'd just head to the kitchen and say, "Grandma, what's porno?" And the whole world would light up. As an aside, that's how I learned the valuable skill of flustering the shit out of relatives.

By the time I entered first grade, I was ahead of most kids (nobody could lasso syllables like me: "Por-no. Hey, that's two syllables!") And within a year, I was writing stories. My first one, scrawled on a yellow-lined tablet while sitting in my grandfather's real estate office, was about pigs that could fly. Why yes, this is THE story that spawned the internationally famous saying. My mother still has the original, so I can prove it. (You do still have that, right Mom?)

It wasn't until after I got married and began popping out babies that I tried serious fiction (pregnancy at the rate of wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am will inspire you to make shit up in your mind just to get away for awhile). With four kids, a full-time job, and despite an absent and volatile husband, I stole an hour here and there and before long realized that writing was my true calling.
Which brings me to the point of this post. Here I sit, broken-hearted, came to share, and instead I martyred. I'm staring at colored folders containing six plotted novels in various stages of writing or rewriting, completely out of G-A-S. I'm not blocked; my muse is on strike, and I don't know why.
On this perfect rainy writing day, for all I've accomplished at my true calling, I might as well be watching P-O-R-N-O.

September 9, 2009


Happy birthday to my firstborn, TG, Miss America's mom, who turned 31 today!

Did you know this is an incredibly unique and crazy day? I mean, besides popping out almost seven pounds of baby girl 31 years ago, as of 7:20 this morning. (OMG, squeezing a watermelon out a hole the size of a kiwi . . . still makes me feel like passing out. I remember saying to the doc, "Uh-uh, I'm going home now"). So, back to unique and crazy. Apparently any grade-schooler can tell you that the number 9 has extraordinarily magical and brain-numbing properties, like this:

The sum of the two digits resulting from 9, multiplied by any other single digit number will equal nine.

What? Oh, yes. It's true. If you're having trouble making friends, you might want to try this because you will be like a god and people will reward you with statues. Like Pythagorus (don't try to say that too fast if you have a speech impediment -- I about bit my tongue off). No really, people will flock to you. Or is that birds? Anyway, let's find a random example. Oh, here's one. Today's date: 09/09/09. Translated to the math continuum or the consortium or the conundrum (is one of those close?), that's 9 + 9 + 9 which equals 27, right? Now add the answer, one digit at a time. Here, I'll help you: 2 + 7 = 9.

I know! Right? Wait now. Hold that excitement for the big guns. 'kay? Let's look at something else totally sort of random like 9 x 62. That equals 558 (Someone told me the answer; she was 5.) I don't have a chalkboard, so you're on the honor system. You're doing this with me, right? Break it down to the lowest number possible, a little dancey kind of jig that goes like this: 558, or 5 + 5 + 8 = 18. No, that's not 9. You people are so impatient. If you keep going down, adding the single digits together, you get this: 18, or 1 + 8 = 9.

OMFG! It's freakin' 9 again. How'd they do that? Not quite as exhilarating as 99 bottles of beer on the wall (unless you've tried that in a single night -- no, I don't have pictures), but certainly just as thought provoking, wouldn't you say? I have a brand new and fascinating appreciation of numbers now. Well, the 9 anyway. I can take or leave the rest.

And now I'll leave you with one last, incredible tidbit -- yes, that was an oxymoron for all you oxymoronics (that's oxy drug of choice + moron = your name here). Ready? September 9 happens to be the 252nd day of the year. So guess what? 2 + 5 + 2 = __. Don't make me tell you!

I wonder what happens when you turn 999 upside down? Of course, I could be getting into geometry with that one or some kind of spiritual PLANE. Am I getting smarter by the second, or what?

I have to go lay down now. I must reserve some energy for cake.

Happy birthday, TG! I love you more!

September 7, 2009

Vajayjay to Staycay

What a week. Nestled for five days in the vajayjay of Texas to work a conference, followed by a four-day tech hiatus (and by that I mean no computers, no blog, and no brain drain), and I'm now in staycation status – kind of like stasis but without all the excitement. Okay, that's not quite true (hello-o-o, Fragrant LIAR). I did some fun stuff, spent time with great old friends and contemplated new ones. But mostly I was content to vedge.

Speaking of TRUE, while in the vajayjay, I was determined to catch my favorite guilty pleasure, courtesy of the Gaylord Hotel's HBO, but it turns out their HBO was the "family" channel version. Family? WTF!? Screw family. And isn't "HBO Family" some kind of perverse oxymoron? I want to see vamp sex. For free! Not a disappointment I'll take to the grave, but truly biting.

Besides, I stay in fancy schmancy hotels for the stuff I DON'T get at home, like room service ten times my per diem, wake-up calls that shoot you upright out of bed wondering where the fire is, and total respect from people who think I'm important and call me Your Honor. Never mind that I have to pay out the wazoo for everything from soup to nuts. There's always that per diem reimbursement, pats on the back from the boss, and generous thanks from the truly fine people we serve during conference, including the occasional small contingent of eye candy and potential toothachery which I am loathe to discuss with total strangers in a public forum (hey, email me . . .).

Did I mention that the Gaylord is the size of a continent? Bridging the distance from my room to the convention center was like trekking from Calcutta to Khartoum, on foot. Oh but for a friendly camel with a comfy hump and an in-flight movie.

Since I was deprived of my True Blood fix, upon returning home I hit Blockbuster and rented the first season DVDs (talk about blood sucking; they drain you by the episode). All family members under the age of consensual vampire sex have been relegated to the upstairs shelter wherein Hannah Montana and Sponge Bob rule. Popcorn and red licorice at the ready, I'm headed for Bon Temps.


August 29, 2009

Fraggin' It

It's been a hectic and somewhat stressful week, y'all. So all I have time for are Fragrant Fragments. To wit:

I am in the fertile vajayjay of Northern Texas this week, a little hotspot otherwise known as Grapevine, nestled between two thick thighs we call Dallas and Fort Worth. I'm working a conference here -- on call 24/7, I'm told by our outgoing diva, but you can bet I'll be taking time for myself here and there, including watching a little True Blood on HBO in my room. Hello, Vampire Bill, she says in that smoky, sultry way she has when alone to contemplate the merits of blood sucking sexual acts. Oh yes, there are merits. There must be. Sookie likes it.

Mr. Fine took me to see Star Trek on Thursday. I had been wanting to see it but thought its time had come and gone in theaters. Apparently everybody else thought so too, as we were the ONLY two peeps in the place. I was not disappointed. In the flick either. Heh, heh. Just kidding. But, really. Have you SEEN Captain James Tiberius Kirk in all his fiery, testosterone-filled youth? HAWT, people. HAWT.

The big surprise? Eric Bana as the evil-doing Nero. I can only ever see Senor Banadinovich as Hector in Troy. Hubba hubba. I don't like him as the over-tatted bad guy. In Star Trek, he of course is outsmarted in a very Kirkvirile-yet-Spockiavellian way. I must have this DVD when it comes out.

Okay, out the door I go to that big vajayjay to the north, which is really wine country stuck between cowpoke and shopping meccas -- none of which I'll get to enjoy, I'm sure.

Well, frag it.

August 27, 2009

128 Sticks of Butter

Okay, my peeps, one of my dearest friends and her husband are on a DIET. Man, that's my least favorite four-letter word ever. Well, not EVER; there is one worse word and not even I can manage to get it out of my sailor's mouth – which is really saying something (but not quite). All right, that one time was an accident, but four beers can do that to me. Plus I'm totally not responsible for my actions when my salsa partner is kidnapped mid-chacha. Cumbia this, chica!

Where was I?

Oh yeah, Michelle and Mike are chronicling their weight loss progress for all the world to see on a blog called 128 Sticks of Butter. The best thing about this blog? The writing. Sure, it's entertaining and you want to cheer them into melting off the poundage, but Michelle is an accomplished writer with a great sense of humor. And hey, she gets MY quirky humor – a questionable attribute at best, but redeeming nonetheless in my eyes.

See, Michelle and I have been good friends for about ten years now, and she has seen me through good times and bad. Bad as in royal pain, what were you thinking, you have lost it! Like when my tiara fell off and it wasn't so good to be queen anymore when I beat feet for a new village. Meh, it was only temporary cuz I got a new tiara which is quite shiny and bejeweled (and dare I say mystical if one has imbibed beyond the legal limit), and while not always used for altruistic purposes, I'm sure having more fun with it. The tiara, people -- catch up! Point is, Michelle was there for me. And I'm pretty sure she always will be.

So go check her out, and tell her Fragrant Liar sent ya. And if you could mention that I'd like some of her Etsy stuff for my birthday, that could be cool. Cuz she rocks the crafty world too.

August 24, 2009

Unplugged and Poontangery

Sometimes I'm so engaged in all the spaces and places my thoughts occupy AT ONE TIME (kinda like Sybil, but without the horn rims) that the feeling of overwhelm has an HOV Lane toward my discombobulated cerebral cortex. My usual response is to disengage, to unplug myself from the most system-shocking outlets. That's what I did this last week so I could relax, reflect, and repump the well.

I am an expert in the art of unplugging. Yesterday, I stretched out lazily on the couch in my PJs and watched movies—ALL DAY—while everybody else went to the circus. I hung out with a calico cat stretched across me and a few dozen friends under the cinematic umbrellas of Cinderella Man, Benjamin Button, and Harry Potter (times 2). Oh yeah, we're like THIS!

All that to say, sorry for my absence. But a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do. No stilettos involved, sad to say. But Saturday I did manage to hit an old haunt with a new friend, nurse a Corona with lime, cringe at some bad karaoke, and knock in some tricky shots during a rusty few hours of Eight-ball. It was kind of nice to plug back into that scene for a change.

While I was away from you, Disa came by and sifted through my posts. I just wanted to be sure I acknowledged her for the sweet sentiments she left me. You might appreciate this one:

disa said...


Of course, that's just paraphrasing.

In her comments, Disa leaves me linky invitations to check out her porn stash. And gosh, I'm totally flattered cuz I'm one heckuva porn hound, as everyone knows. But as I mentioned earlier, I'm also easily unplugged these days. Sybil, remember? Oh, and Disa, don't let me forget to say thanks for your kindness on my most personal post about my sister who died last year -- oh, and my Father's Day tribute to the most important man in my life. Your cryptic sentiments showed just the right sympathy in tone and nuance, delivered in the special way that only you can. I love how you're there for me. But, Disa, I hope you understand when I say, no matter how many times you visit me, I will be just too unpumped to partake in the poontangery. But I sure appreciate you thinking of me.

Hope everybody is well out there. I'll be around to see you!

August 17, 2009

Sorry, Mr. Prime Minister

People, I have tried to curb my enthusiasm, but it’s proving impossible. My beloved Bro-in-law advises me to let my date do most of the talking because, he says, guys like to have your rapt attention and know you’re interested in them.

Hey, I’m with the guy, right? Isn’t that proof enough? But okay, I figure Bro may be onto something since he does have all the requisite male parts – I assume. So there I go trying to shut up and listen up with Mr. Fine and meanwhile my brain is quietly quivering to a cacophonous crescendo. It is saying, “Hey, me too! Oh, oh, oh, I have a story about that, and it’s got all kinds of dark and twisty turns that you just will not believe, and should I grace you with it (any split millisecond now) you will like me mucho mas or naturally be so incomprehensibly impressed you must call TV and radio stations -- or at least write a glowing review in the Statesman.” And pretty soon my brain is bulging with all this earth-shattering stuff, and the pressure builds to the breaking point and something’s gotta give, and post haste the gates burst open and out it all cascades, just like Niagara, and there he goes like a little raft, over the edge and down into the swirling conversational vortex over which I have co-opped ultimate power and from which he may never be extricated but for that one gasp of air that begs more than says, “I have to go.”

This is when I most feel like Natalie (Martine McCutcheon) in Love Actually when she’s just met her boss, the new prime minister (Hugh Grant), and after shaking his hand:

PM: Hello, Natalie.
Natalie: Hello, David. I mean, sir. Shit, I can't believe I've just said that. And now I've gone and said "shit". Twice. I'm so sorry, sir.
PM: It’s all right. You could've said "fuck" and we'd have been in real trouble.
Natalie: Thank you, sir. I had a premonition I was gonna fuck up on my first day. Oh, piss it!
Chief of Staff Annie: Right ... let's fix the country, shall we?
PM walks away, then turns back to see Natalie suffering regret.
Staffer Pat to Natalie: It's all right.
Natalie: Did you see what I did?
Pat: Yes, I did.
Natalie: I just went "blurh" (gesturing that a bunch of horrid crap just came tumbling out of her mouth).
That was me. Minus the horrid part, I think. (sigh) See David and Natalie here.

So it looks like I am doomed, and short of an intervention, anyone who wants to hang with me will have to be okay with a wacky chatterbox. Oh, and Bro also quoted me some scripture about how the most unruly part of the body is the tongue. I just had to laugh. I don’t even LIKE scripture.
Just to clarify, peeps, somehow Mr. Fine is not deterred by my blathering. In fact, he says he likes it. Ha! That is what he says NOW...

Wee Wisdom #4

Miss America's Poignant Pearl of the Week:

"Everyone likes me.
Except for anyone who doesn't."