March 29, 2010

Hot DOG!

There's just no denying it. I love a good hotdog. Takes me right back to my childhood and to years past when I took my girls to watch the Albuquerque Dukes play on ball fields that stirred up more earth than a stampede of New Mexico dust devils (back when the Dukes were a Dodgers farm team). It's not commonly known, but other than the carby bun and the lips and assholes, hotdogs are super healthy for you. I mean, about that, I'm willing to suspend disbelief. Or reality. Whatever. Same thing.

So yesterday, while visiting my niece in Houston, I walked in on my niece's husband just as he sat down on the couch to watch NASCAR with five—count 'em, FIVE—hotdogs loaded with chili and cheese. It looked like a Talladega pile-up all over his plate, which he was about to lap up.

I was like, Dude, you hungry? You know that's gonna be bad news later for anyone unlucky enough to be in your—er, air space. Of course, he knew that; and, like a guy, he thought that'd be funny. And as a one-o-the-boys kind of girl, I thought that'd be funny too. Man, did those dogs smell good!

So I went to the stove and loaded up a plump and juicy dog on a bun, with onions and a whipped-cream portion of mustard. No relish, but that's okay cuz relish is totally bad for you. Yum, right? Just in time for the 3-hour drive home with my two daughters and a coupla kids in the back seat.

Heh, heh. THAT was funny.

March 24, 2010

Grind and Rewind, or Just Say No to Recycling

My license to be me is up for renewal. Because, people, I'm tired of tripping through the daily grind that is work, work, work at both my office and home, only to show up the next day to do the exact same thing. It's grind and rewind, ad infinitum. And it sucks hippopotamus butt.

See, a few years ago, I joined the ARMY (Amazing Reluctant Midlife Youngsters) where I gave myself permission to be all I wanna be. But somehow I lost focus. I went AWOL (All Weird, Old, and Lame). Life matters got in the way and dragged me down, and I let them. Cuz, you guessed it, I am way too responsible. I recycled myself dull.

I call this phenomenon: Shit, when did I get so tedious?

So I'm kicking off a campaign in pursuit of renewable energy—you know, on a personal level. Cuz I'm of an age where it's all about me-me-me. You guys can totally handle the planetary stuff. Meanwhile, I want to do things and go places I always dreamed about but didn't because of (a) kids, (b) money, (c) time, and (d) laziness. I've conquered the behemoth that is parenting, and I've ordered special mega-vitamins to combat chronic sloth. Now all I need in massive quantities are time and money. I'm just saying, you can get a whole lot of self-renewing done with no clock and lots of green, can't you?

My plan is specifically—in general—to reinvigorate, rejuvenate, and reinvent. To you, that just means I'm going to do stuff I haven't quite figured out yet, but on which I will think real hard. What I know for sure is that being less responsible and more spontaneous is equivalent to being less filling and tasting great, and therefore a worthy goal. So stay tuned, and just say no to recycling. I'm telling you, it's not healthy.

March 20, 2010

Filter THIS!

I'm just going to apologize right now for when I'm 85 and unfiltered. I want to promise that I will never space, lose, or reject the essential filtering mechanism which prevents us civilized people from saying exactly what we think at the precise moment we're thinking it. See, when those mental strainers are rusty, elderly folks are prone to talking smack about everyone within a 50-foot radius, whether they can see them or not. For example . . .

A working filter should stop this thought from escaping to the mouth:

Michelle "Bombshell" Whatever, your gaudy, over-the-top tatts and disgusting Nazi photos make you worthy of throw-back, throw down, and throw-the-hell-up. You disgust me.
But what would come out instead is:
Nobody's buying that you didn't know he was still married, darlin'.
Or, a working filter should stop this thought from escaping to the mouth:
Jesse, letting your so-not-worth-it kit and caboodle rev out with Ms. Not-All-That Poontang ties you for the year's biggest douchebag, right along with John "Not My Child" Edwards and Tiger "I'd Like to Tee-off in Your Rough" Woods. Pardon me while I throw up.
But what would come out instead is:
Dude, you thought she was better than your wife, Sandra "America's Sweetheart" Bullock? Really?
No, my primo filters would never allow me to say blunt or rude stuff out loud at my young age, no matter how fabulous it would feel. But maybe when I'm 85, the mental sieves will have disintegrated. I totally hope I'm as civilized at 85 as I am now. But I kinda doubt it.

March 17, 2010

Happy St. Pat's

Happy St. Patty's Day
from Fragrant Liar and our newest family member, Shaboobka.

March 15, 2010

The Beast Invades

H E L P M E.

It’s happened. It’s like Invasion of the Body Snatchers, with a cruel twist. You better sit down.

Sunday morning, my daughter TG donned a cute top that was nevertheless wrinkly. I remarked as much, and she said, in the harried and desperate way that only young mothers of three rambunctious rugrats can, “I know." When I gave her my WTF-you're-wearing-it-anyway? look, she added, "Did you want to iron it for me?”

Iron? Aaaaaaah-ha-ha-ha-ha! I speet on thees archaic beast called the iron. It does not contain push buttons which engage any “do it FOR me” tasks. There is no “GO” button. It does not give me immediate access to friends and family. It does not make my life easier, quicker, better. It does not make me feel in touch with my inner spiritual giant, it does not make me want to dance, and it doesn’t provide even a smidgeon of instant gratification. No, this beast is the equivalent of manual labor. I know. I can't even believe those two words came out of my mouth. I am not about manual anything--not unless it comes with batteries and three speeds.

And yet . . . as my eyes glazed over with sucralose shades of my Mommy Life Past, this foreign word oozed out of my mouth like putrid slime: “Ye-e-e-e-s-s-s-s.”

TG had that shirt over her head and in my face in .000523 seconds flat. “Thanks, Mom.”

And there I was all retro-maternal, wrinkled shirt in hand, heading dazedly downstairs to find the beast and its wobbly metal counterpart on stilts. I’m surprised that in my stupor I didn’t trip and fall, head over heels in a viral spin-out, and sprain my wrist so as to have a convenient excuse for not making good on my offer. Alas, I was THAT overcome and confused with myself. Plus, I couldn’t even remember where I last saw the beast. Didn’t we throw the last one out with the eight-tracks?

Here’s the part that will just make you want to curl into the fetal position, people. After I dutifully ironed my daughter’s quite lovely blouse (notice how it was transformed from an ordinary top), I—I can hardly say it—I got excited at how easily domesticity took shape inside me and then the aliens took over my body completely. It was as if I'd turned into Martha Fucking Stewart! And then . . . and then? I hurried to my closet and pulled out five blouses that I have been wearing with that right-out-of-the-dryer look. And then? I ironed them!!

OMFG! I have been beast-slapped. And all because of Martha, Martha, Martha! Bitch! People, this matter is pressing! What should I do?

Oh, ew. I feel like I've been body-spritzed with starch. Plus, I can't wear those blouses now because . . . they'll get wrinkled!

March 12, 2010

An Unholy Dalliance

Don't go trying to change me. Whoever you are, it's not safe. Others before you have corralled me in the kitchen, finessed me into getting dirty in the garden, and coerced me into coordinating the carpet with the drapes. But in the end, they walked away exasperated and confounded, shaking their heads impotently. Let that be a lesson: No unholy dalliances with domesticity for this princess.

I admit, when pressed, I am an ass, digging my hooves into the ground and tugging in the opposite direction. There's just no reasoning with me when my inner ass rears her, um, head. So whoever you are, I see through you. You're cranking up the heat on me, all the way to eleven, but let me tell you, your efforts to domesticate me are daring and despicable—diabolical even—but dumb.

You see, I am a goddess, but not of the crafty persuasion. Just because you've signed me up for Martha Stewart Living, and just because I've now received two of her propaganda rags in my mailbox, don't think I'm going to be all, “Oh, I can’t wait to grow my own rutabagas.” I don’t even know what those are. You’ll never catch me perfecting a soufflé, a mousse, or a ganache. I mean, that just sounds like something you can transmit. Sorry about that nasty case of ganache, dude. And papier-mâché? Even I know that’s French for chewed-up paper. My sudden concern for hygiene prevents me from touching that.

Oh, Martha, Martha, Martha. How could you let a mystery crusader use you like that? Or perhaps, with your checkered past, you are in on it. OR, could this crusader be someone even more dastardly? Like . . .

Mom? MOM?

[Cue Psycho music.]

Holy herb garden, Batman! Who else could supply my home address for a shipping label? And frankly, who else has so much to gain by my domestic conversion? She loves it when I get all up into her crafty homemaker shit. Oh, Mother, how could you?

Know this, Mama Salla. Those dastardly pink roses on the cover of March and those impressively painted, but sinister, April Easter eggs will not break my resolve to be woefully inadequate!


P.S. Seriously. Who signed me up for this? Mr. Ex-Boyfriend?

March 9, 2010

Popped Comments

Have you ever noticed how posting and getting comments are like roasting popcorn? Sure you have!

First you pour a cup of your finest kernels into a lovely pan, which is already seasoned and smokin' hot. Then you shake it and listen as the steamy pop, pop, pop fills the airwaves. Little explosions proliferate into a feverish crescendo—the equivalent of a mini Fourth of July celebration—and even those die-hard straggler kernels leave a smoky thrill of excitement in your nostrils. And then you eat every single bite, with robust thanks to the popcorn gods.

The result? A big bunch of puffed up joy and instant gratification. Not that you are all puffy and crunchy or anything.

Mmmmmmmmmm, have y'all tried Coppola's Shiraz? YumMEE! Especially superb with popcorn. Y'all.


Looking for a great giveaway? Just pull up one of your barstools and head over to injaynesworld.

March 7, 2010

I Love Oscar

To be honest, I'm hooked on the Oscars because of all the foo-foo glamour. I'm all about seeing my choice of favorite movies validated but, even more, I like to judge the stars in their natural habitat, the red carpet, and see who rocked it and who didn't. I myself am wearing jeans, a t-shirt, and barbecue sauce while watching the spectacle, so I am technically looking up at them, not down. This is one time it's okay to be judgey. Am I right?

Now that the Oscars are over, I'm giving big props to the Bigelow chick who won Best Director for The Hurt Locker, because not only was she the first woman ever to win the Oscar for best director, but she also rocked the stage in that satiny, pewter, figure-flattering frock (say that three times fast). And how great is it that she won this prize over her famous EX? That's an In-your-face-sucker! moment, isn't it? Bet she raised her fist to Cameron and shouted, "Avatard!"

Although my new fave movie of all-time, Cameron's Avatar (seen twice in 3D and plan to see it again before it's out of theaters), didn't win best picture, I still think it's the most uplifting, invigorating, full-body thrill ride in a chair you can have. With or without a friend--er, I mean, popcorn.

Did you pick any winners?

March 3, 2010

Meditationally Challenged

I've been trying my hand at meditation. Sometimes it works, and I feel really relaxed afterward. Other times, like at the end of the day, my mind is a buzzsaw vibrating at max speed. So even though I'm focusing on my mantras, per my dear friend Braja of Lost and Found in India, my thoughts meander wildly and I have trouble reining them in. If you haven't visited Braja, by the way, you really must. She's an inspiration. Anyway, I'm exposing myself (heh, heh, I said exposing myself) to the blogosphere, allowing you intimate access to the meditations of Fragrant Liar. Light up the incense, people, breathe deep, and listen . . .

O-o-o-o-o-ohm, o-o-o-o-ohm. (I sound all guru-ey.)

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna

Why do they call the race for president a “presidential” campaign, for senator a senatorial campaign, but for governor a gubernatorial campaign? Are governors goobers? I mean, Rick Perry IS about the biggest goober in the Redneck union, so that does make perfect sense. And what’s with secession? Oh, I'm meditating. Yeah yeah, I can do this.
Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
If I eat those peanut butter crackies in the kitchen, for sure I’m going to have to do more freakin’ planks. Probably 50 of those suckers. Last time I could only do 20 without wheezing and popping a vein in my forehead. Hello-o-o-o . . . Meditation? Chanting?
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Sounds like hairy llama, hairy llama. I hardly think the inventors of this little ditty had pack beasts in mind. I mean, really. Good god, focus, will you?
Rama Rama Hare Hare
Llama, llama, hairy, hairy. Oh. My. God. Oh. My. GOD! Start the hell over!
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
Pûpû hinuhinu, Pûpû hinuhinu e, O ke kahakai kahakai e, E Pûpû hinuhinu e. I wonder if Pseudo knows that one. How come I still remember this Hawaiian shit from 6th grade?
Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
I kinda like that name for a girl. Krishna. Thank gawd I can’t have anymore kids. Save myself from the droopy poopy diapers. Gag me. With a spoon. Remember that Robin Hood movie where the Sheriff of Nottingham says he's going to cut out Robin's heart out with a spoon? Because it's DULL and it'll hurt more? Heh, heh. I love that guy. Um . . . oh yeah.
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Sounds like . . . Ooo-eee ooo-ah-ah, Rama lama ding dong. No, no! Hare Rama! Yeah, yeah, went to vote and picked Obama, make your bed and kiss your mama. Aye aye aye!
Rama Rama Hare Hare
It's kind of like ramekin. What's a ramekin again? Oh yeah, that funky little custard bowl. Mmmm, custard. And coffee. And . . . ah geez. Good thing Braja can’t hear me.
Eh? Please tell me I'm not hopeless and Braja's wisdom will help me learn how to do this right. Otherwise, it's drugs for me.

March 1, 2010

Having My Cake

I'm listening to myself. It's not as easy as one might think, since the gray matter is more of a verdant sage and regularly gallivants all over the place. I'm a gregarious sort—kind of odd for a writer, I guess, but I balance my solitary and social lives. Yet even when I insist my mind be contemplative, the verdant sage can shush me in deference to her interest du jour. That can be anything from "Where do I fit in the universe?" to "What will that hunky guy on Grey's Anatomy do next?" Plenty to visualize and distract there!

Where was I, McSteamy? Oh, yeah, my mind and my heart are in touch and in sync, so my soul is happy. They know what I need and what I don't. Occasionally the two tussle over something that looks more appetizing than it is, but only to the degree that each wants to be heard and held in equal esteem—not unlike a romantic relationship. Mind and Heart trust each other—advantageous since they plan on sinking as one with the ship. Body is cool, but she's pissed that Mind and Heart are giggling at her muffin top. They're trying to include her more, but she's a groaner and they'd rather she take it to the gym. Soul is turning a blind eye on that one.

So, I've been listening to Mind and Heart especially closely the last few days. Listening for cracks in logic, for whispers of disquietude, for magical thinking or rebellion without cause. I'm reaffirmed that I'm clear on who I am, where I've been, and, insofar as one can predict the future, where I'm headed—with or without another life partner. For that is the issue. Needing a partner is different from just wanting one; and the fact is I've been on my own enough to know I sometimes don’t want one, and I definitely don't need one.

In the last week I've realized that some people who really do love me are nevertheless looking at me through a lens that shows all my exes hanging like 50-pound dumbbells around my neck. They have lost sight of me and seem to see my experiences as the encapsulation of me. They are fearful of my decisions, which speaks to a lack of faith in me. And that sucks. Heart is in a tizzy over it, so Mind is doing all the heavy lifting right now, reminding me that these loved ones just want the best for me. Soul is incredibly grateful that they care, but then she retreats to a neutral corner to find zen and says, Whatever.

By the standards of the culture I was born into, the rule is one cake per person. A second, maybe. But going back for thirds? Are you kidding? Think of what you're putting your body through and, gosh, there must be something deeply wrong if you couldn't even finish the first two! Don't dare broach a fourth because that's just like hanging out at the all-you-can-eat-buffet and wouldn't you rather just not eat for awhile? Learn to be happy and content without cake?

I've had three cakes and a few cookies over the years. They were all delish but in the end gave me excruciating heartburn for which there was no cure. For a variety of reasons that only someone who has walked in my shoes and ingested the kind of cakes I have could understand, I chose to give them up. Cue disposal. Still with me in this metaphorical batter? Some day, I'd like a new cake, extra creamy and with nuts. But my life will be complete without cake because I am indeed happy with myself by myself. Loved ones across the planet may now rest.

Ah geez, Body is making a big stink about getting something to eat—for reals. Mind and Heart are way ahead of her, so off we go with Soul's blessing. Naturally, they giggle mercilessly cuz Body is bringing up the rear. Shhh, she'll hear you!