April 23, 2010

Gi-gawk-squawks Are Wrestling Me to the Ground

Ever feel overwhelmed? Like you're treading water and all your seeming A#1 priorities—in the form of gigantic, awkward, squawking birds that peck and nip at each other—are standing on your shoulders, weighing you down and throwing you off balance? And your one saving grace is that you can touch the bottom with your tired, shriveled feet so your head is above water? Barely?

Lots of demands and changes at home and at work are inciting the gi-gawk-squawks on my shoulders to declare war. They're flipping me the proverbial bird and fighting over which one I should feed first, and I've been vacillating between them because the cacophony makes my spine twist in knots, which means I have been getting my share of migraines. And who doesn't love a good migraine? Oh, oh, oh! Count me in! Bastards . . .

All that to say, I'm packing, moving across town, traveling, work-work-working, and becoming a bona fide emptynexter over the next few weeks, so I am forced to take a very brief hiatus. I hope you don't all run off, as I'll have things posted and check in occasionally. Plus, it's only temporary, barely a blip on the radar screen of blogging, right?

Thanks for your support, and I'll see you in a few weeks.

April 18, 2010

Wee Wisdom #9

Miss America's
Poignant Pearl of the Week

On discussing the movie she and I saw together today:
"Dragons aren't scary. You just have to entertame them."

April 13, 2010

Symphony and BBQ

It's Friday night, and I am all dressed up, leaving Planet Earth for a whole 'nother world. Or as the culturally sophisticated call it, the symphony. Oh yes. Contrary to rumors, I am totally cultural. Oh wait, that's gutteral. Whatever. So I have an evening out, thanks to my good friend AM, who's garnered free tix. But first we stop at Ironworks for mouth-watering barbecue and a gallon of tea. That goes together, right? Symphony and BBQ? Plus, the guy behind the counter says I am BEEE-UUU-TEE-FUL. That alone is worth the price of heartburn. 'course, if he could see my unshaved legs (which he can't since I'm wearing black slacks), he might not be so drooly over me.

So we arrive and traipse into the architectural wonder that is the Long Center. I depend on AM to shuttle me through the vastly aging expanse of urbane hobnobbers, but it’s clear that she is as much in foreign territory as I am, and we spin around mumbling, What's with the sequinage? Is there a door around here we should go through? Where's the john?

Eventually, we make it to our seats in the parterre. Without the glasses I lost five years ago during Hurricane Frances, I squint to see the orchestra that occupies the entire stage. I make out only the hefty guy who rises out of the back on cue to clash cymbals. I want his job.

So the first number is the Funeral March. Really? Seems like that should be the big finish when the event is effectively six feet under, doesn't it? Anyway, 15 minutes and only ONE NUMBER LATER, I notice that AM is bobbing her head in time with the music (a Chopin-Stravinsky thing that threatens to stretch long into the night). I think, Man, she is really getting into this. I don’t want to stare at her, but I’m astonished that my whiskey-guzzling, Harley-riding, rock-n-roll buddy is bewitched by orchestral strains. So I peek out the corner of my eyes and, yup, she’s all immersing herself, even going so far as to close her eyes to absorb every strum of strings, toot of horns, and tinkle of piano keys. Or wait . . . her head drops and she catches herself and a minute later, her head drops again, and then . . . THEN? She snores! This performance is better than what I can’t see on stage! I elbow her a good one. She tips her head toward me, peering over her glasses as if to say, Help. Me.

Finally, people clap and everybody rises. I get excited until I realize it's only intermission. What a tease the symphony is! Everybody gets up and COMES BACK! I think surely AM will drag me out, but instead we eat dark canned chocolate that resembles goat turds and laugh at people and sit through the second half—which gets surprisingly energetic and loud—as if they KNOW someone somewhere is nodding off! How do they KNOW!?

Anyhoodles, I have suggestions for you, Symphony. You can jazz up your repertoire by making these easy-peasy changes:

  • Two words: light show. Orchestral stuff drags on to infinity and beyond; some psychedelic stimuli would enrapture your audience so they could keep their eyes open. Worked for the '60s. What I remember of it.
  • Two more words: dry ice. Toss water in the vat and voila! London fog. Think of the moody ambiance. I dare say, a death dirge could be cause for celebration.
  • Two last words: KISS tongue. Maestro could totally rouse all the blue-hairs by adding some Gene Simmons action to counteract that penguin get-up.
There you have it, Symphony. You know you wanna!

Oh, when AM and I got back into her car? We cranked up some Stevie Ray. She’s my sweet little baby, She’s my pride and joy! She’s my sweet little baby, and I’m her little lover boy.

Aaaahhh, back on terra firma.

April 9, 2010

Embarrassing Moment #12,363

I wasn't going to say anything, but it happened so long ago that I feel comfortable parting with the story. See, I was the last one to leave my office one evening, and I had stopped into the johnna before the long ride home. I was wearing a cute little sweater dress with black tights and boots. After conducting my business, and by the time I'd gotten myself put back together, including my coat, bags, and purse, something didn't feel quite right.

As a veteran thongster, I can swear on a stack of Dan Brown novels that once I'm in my thong, I don't feel it. Sometimes I have to ask myself, Hey, did you remember to put on panties? But apparently this night, because of the snug fit of my tights and the unusual tugging I'd done to get them up and in place, it felt like somebody was behind me trying to stretch my thong up over my head. Ever done that? Walk up behind somebody, see the elastic band of their undies, and just yank on them till the person squirms? Frankly, there's nothing more gratifying. However, I was on my own here.

I was in a hurry to get home to watch Cougar Town, so I hurried out of the johnna doing a shimmy and shaking thing, trying to reposition the thong via osmosis. I get to our little lobby and hit DOWN to call the elevator. It's so quiet at night on our floor, and kind of creepy when all you can hear are the noises of the building's inner workings—the ticks, the grumblings, the air handlers, etc. And I'm standing there, thinking osmosis is a lame concept and I can't stand one more second of this discomfort cuz the back of my thong could be lodged crackside for eternity. With briefs, you can just tug on the leg band and the annoying clump of fabric between your cheeks is a thing of the past. Not so with a thong—much more complex operation, I assure you. So I drop everything I'm carrying and lift up the back of my dress, grope blindly for the waistband of my tights, and then shove my hand down there—wa-a-a-ay down there. More shimmying and shaking is required, plus a little "spread 'em" action to aid in a successful wedgectomy.

It is at this moment that the elevator dings, signaling the arrival of my ride down. I have time for one last squirm to extricate the recalcitrant thong, when two guys in jeans and tennies appear in the hallway to my right, carrying a ladder and toolboxes. They stop, ten feet from me, stunned and speechless. In one fluid movement, I release the thong, withdraw my hand, and grab my stuff on the floor. I throw myself into the elevator, smack the close-the-damn-door button, and pray the workmen are not going DOWN. After interminable seconds, the doors finally seal me inside—alone—while the muffled sounds of men giggling echo in my brain.

Thus, a proud moment imprints itself into Fragrant Liar's history.

The upside is, I don't think they recognized me. They weren't actually looking at my face.

April 5, 2010

A Senior Moment

Sunday on the way to the airport, my parents and I stopped at Denny’s for breakfast. The back of the menu was the “Senior Menu,” featuring smaller portions specifically for all those tight-wad 55+ peeps regulating their diets. (By the way, aren’t seniors considered to be 65 and over? Why are they pushing me?)

Since a 3-egg omelette from the regular “youthful people” menu seemed too much for me, I thought I’d sneak in an order for the 2-egg omelette off the Senior Menu. I was in the vacation mindset of "Hey, just try and stop me. I want what I want." Ya know?

So I threw it down. And our waitress kept writing and said, “Okay. And for your sides?”

*Blaring, rip-roaring record scratch!*

Whoa! Whoa! Whoa! Smack the foul buzzer! WTF happened to “May I see your ID please?” What about “I’m sorry, youngun, but that menu is for seniors only!?” No “Are you kidding me? You can’t POSSIBLY be a senior!?”

Again I say, WTF? Talk about your Grand Slam! Why, I oughtta . . .

Next thing, she’ll be remarking all innocent-like, “You two could pass for sisters!” While my mother is absolutely beautiful, she’s SEVENTY-FIVE! And I am . . . YOUNGER!

But no, this waitress wench, with nary a faint glimmer of customer service skills, was more concerned about side dishes. Why, in the sheer insanity of the moment, I forgot what toast was!

With her beady eyes boring into me, I felt like taking my teeth out and spitting them at her! Naturally, I don’t actually have dentures, but my Dad would have let me borrow his. Probably.

April 2, 2010

Yap Yippity Doo-Da

Greetings from sunny Florida. I hopped on a plane last Tuesday to surprise my mother for her 75th birthday. She was surprised alright. She cried when she saw me, and it was a sweet and touching reunion. Which lasted all of five minutes. After that, it was Fergie, Fergie, Fergie.

For the record, my name is not Fergie. Fergie is a silver and brown, tube-shaped, silky-haired DOG—my parents' 18-month-old Yappie. Let me tell you, it's a sad comment on family relations when you, the number one child in EVERY way imaginable, are treated like spam in deference to THE DOG.

My mother rejoices in saying, "Oh look!" as her precious yapping machine hops around my feet. "She wants you to pay attention to her!" She and Dad are aglow.

The bark-o-meter peaks at a level even wolves consider shrill, with reverb off the walls. Of course, this is the benefit of aging. Your hearing goes, which spares your eardrums from your dog's yap-yippity-doo-da. However, since I am but their human offspring, my intact eardrums verge on bursting.

Dad sheds a wistful tear as he coos, "Aaww, look at that. She's talking to you!"

It's as if the dog is Helen Keller eking out her first word. "Waaaa!"

I get down to Fergie's eye level to make sure we're communicating. "Two can play at that game," I say. "Have you SEEN me roll over and shake? You have much to learn, Yaphopper." Our ears perk up, our heads cock sideways, and our noses twitch while our individual wills clash in a Close Encounter of the Turd Kind.

Later . . . "Oh, look, she's on the dining room table!" Mom beams, enchanted by the divinity in motion that is THE DOG. On the table. Where we eat!

When Fergie leaves a reeking tootsie roll on the carpet, my mother is only vaguely annoyed. "Fergie!" she snaps. With her hands on her hips, she adds, "Oh, we-e-e-e-ll." After which, her pooping prodigy gets swooped up into a hug. A HUG!

Could it get any worse?

Oh yes! It could! She squeals and coos and fawns all over the dog. Kiss, kiss, kiss, kiss, kiss. She was never that enamored with her flesh-and-blood grandchildren! Then my mother, who in an earlier life was known from Arizona to Texas as "The General," baby-talks gleefully: "Isn't her just the cutest thing?"

Listen, when we were kids, any pet who dared to crap in the house was booted out, destined to spend life outside with horned toads, snakes, and occasionally my dad. That kind of disrespect for domestic property amounted to an international incident that Mama Salla did NOT tolerate.

Now? (sigh) I guess a good poop only is as revered as its architect. A Fergie poop is akin to Frank Lloyd Wright's—a modern movement that invites the outdoors in.

Thing is, the Silver Turd gets it that her sudden position at the zenith of the inheritance ladder is assured with every revoltingly cute thing she does. So she continues to manipulate my parents' affections. Obviously, she is evil incarnate.

This Easter, I'll be filling up a basket with gaudy-colored eggs to hide. You know how there's always an egg or two you never find? Frankly, I wonder if Fergie would fit in a basket . . .