at least tears have flavor

In the story that is my life, I am being inundated with plot twists of the sort perpetrated by people who get paid an awful lot to be not particularly good writers.

Shall we start with the fact that I’m basically eating food that only tastes “okay” to me (because the stuff that tastes good is unhealthy), and working out regularly … and have GAINED TEN POUNDS?

I feel like hitting someone. I just haven’t yet worked out whose fault this is.

Match this up with trying to improve my mind but feeling stupider every day, and trying to save money only to have to cough it up for another bill, and I’m feeling incredibly craptastic at the moment.

Why don’t I just go ahead and get really fucking fat and go on welfare? That’s where I’m going to wind up anyway if these trends continue.

Because, if I give up, the terrorists win.

If you need me, I’ll be hiding under a rock, pretending celery is pretzels, and trying to learn Spanish.

(Oh, by the way, before you tell me that depriving myself is wrong — if I hadn’t, I’d have gained closer to thirty or forty pounds. So I still can’t have a cupcake.)


drinking: ice water, when I want beer
listening to: nothing
tired of: life, but not ready for the alternative

backhanded thanks

Stuff I’m planning to do today, not in any particular order:

  • Die in a happy food coma
  • Overdose on carbs
  • Eat
  • Cook

Okay; rather, not in that particular order.

I would like to take this time to break down some of the traditional blessings for which people give thanks at this time of year, because I don’t want to be that cliched person on Facebook, and if you are that cliched person on Facebook, really, I expect more creativity from you. You’ve had an entire year to think about it.

Which is not to say I’m not thankful for all the usual stuff; only that I care enough about you guys not to make you read it here when you’re already seeing it everywhere else.

I want this blog to be sort of the equivalent of the radio station that steadfastly continues to pump out heavy metal when every other station is blaring Christmas carols; although, in its defense, the other metal station has limited its Christmas selection to Bob Rivers’ Twisted Christmas CD, and Cheech and Chong performing that sentimental classic Santa and His Old Lady.


I’m thankful, not for my education, but for the fact that I was raised to use the brain the good Lowered (or the Mom, depending on whom you ask) gave me.

I’m thankful, not for my job, but for the fact that, where I currently work, I have colleagues who not only don’t consider me a budgetary constraint, they crack up if I say things like “Kevin Clash just gave a whole new meaning to ‘Tickle me, Elmo.'”

I’m also thankful that I’ll never have to leave my job on account of having (allegedly) Clashed with a minor, by the way.

I’m thankful, not for my improved health, but for the fact that I ran into a boy I hadn’t seen for several months, and not only did he call me “skinny Minnie,” he sort of gave me the impression that, although we both know full well that I am married and so is he, flirting would have been the order of the day had that not been true.

Which means, therefore, that I’m not only thankful for new jeans, I’m thankful to be able to fit into them.

Speaking of not being thankful for my health as such, I am fairly thankful that, while I am not winning the Biggest Loser initiative at work, I am at least contributing my fair share of points to our group total, which has us in second place, and, in our defense, the team in first place has one of those doucherockets who tries to intimidate people into not recording their water intake and number of steps, so he can scoff up all the points.

Sorry, dude — when the website didn’t work yesterday, that does not mean I’m not allowed to log yesterday’s workout today. If I have to rely on that faulty code to get credit for good behavior, I might just as well sit on my fat arse eating Chee-tos on the days the page crashes.

I’m not at all grateful for needing to have good willpower, and I’m not wholly grateful for having improved my willpower, but I am extremely proud of myself for having ordered a salad instead of french fries yesterday.

Speaking of salad, incidentally, I’m not even the slightest bit thankful for the salad, but I’m thankful for my excellent reflexes, as in, when we were buying bottled dressing the other day and That Man of Mine picked up a bottle of ranch and asked, “Where is Hidden Valley, anyway?” my brain wanted to say, “I think it’s in California somewhere,” but my quick mouth said, in an ominous tone of voice, “Nobody knows …”

I’m not so much thankful for my new Android as I am thankful for the ability, for the first time in years, to read a really substantial book without my neck or wrists making me want to quit before the story gets good.

I’m not nearly as thankful for That New Job of That Man of Mine as I am for the steady hours and the movie passes, but I’m okay with that.

I’m also okay with saying that, cliched as it may be, I’m really thankful for my friends and family, because without them, the rest of it is all bullshit anyway.


drinking: ice water
listening to: Arlo Guthrie, Alice’s Restaurant, of course
today’s salad: spinach, bosc pears, gorgonzola, balsamic, and pecans, because some people don’t want them no walnuts

old job

Today I’ll talk about my last job, which has been on my mind all day because the friend I visited yesterday still works there.

I worked for this company for two and a half years. It was a help desk technician job and I got it by a fluke. The company is family-owned and was run by a nice lady with no computer skills but great people skills, and her husband who had great computer skills and no people skills. I hadn’t finished school yet and so I applied there for a position as a receptionist, but the lady (good people skills and no computer skills, remember) was so impressed by me that she hired me as a technician. Her husband (good computer skills and no people skills, remember) can’t have been thrilled by this, but I didn’t want to cause trouble, so I really dug in and applied myself ferociously.

When I started that job, it was hard work (especially since I had no experience) but I enjoyed it because I knew if it got too tough, the boss-lady was on my side. Gradually I got to where I felt confident and I knew what I was doing, but the work was so grueling that the only thing making me stay was that I liked the boss-lady.

The husband, once I got used to him, was actually an okay guy. He was fantastically knowledgeable and liked to teach, so I learned a lot from him. He was also a wicked workaholic, so I kind of thought in the back of my mind that eventually, he would drop dead at his computer and the boss-lady would have to fly solo, which would mean she’d need to rely on those of us with computer skills to help out. Think of the possibilities. Not that I actually wanted the guy to drop dead, but if it did happen, I knew my coworkers and I could handle it.

This was the kind of job I could have stayed at forever. Two things happened to change my mind.

The first was The Daughter. She was not terribly smart, but she was in law school when I started working there (if you memorize enough stuff, you can pass your exams without being terribly smart; you’ll forget it all after you graduate, but they won’t take back your diploma, so it’s all good). About a year later, she passed the bar (again, memorization is the key) but instead of going to work as a lawyer, she decided to come work for Mom and Pop’s company.

I believe I’ve made it clear that boss-lady had people skills but no computer skills and boss-man was vice versa. The Daughter had NEITHER. But, again, this was something I put up with because as hard as the work was, I liked the job and the company.

Then the second thing happened. My theory about the boss-man working himself to death didn’t extend as far as figuring, hey, if he’s working that hard, maybe she is too. The boss-lady had a stroke and was pronounced brain dead. She was 53.

I was devastated, and it didn’t help that The Daughter left her mother on life-support for a whole week because she was SURE the woman would come back to life for HER. By the end of the week, I was completely drained. When they finally pulled the plug, I didn’t have any sadness left … till after the funeral and back into the work routine.

If The Daughter had just picked up where her mother had left off, even without the people skills, I probably could have handled it. Unfortunately, it soon became plain that she was collecting a nice paycheck for bringing her two smelly, yappy little dogs-who-bark-whenever-the-phones-ring-which-is-a-lot-because-it’s-a-computer-company-plus-when-they-get-scared-they-pee, and for being on the phone with the contractors who were building her mother’s mausoleum, which was not going as fast as she wanted, so she yelled and used bad language a lot. It was embarrassing to have clients asking me who the loudmouth in the background was and having to explain it was the owner’s daughter.

Meanwhile, the work was still grueling, but I no longer had anyone on my side. So I quit, but my friend stayed, and she’s still suffering the slings and arrows of The Daughter and the smelly, yappy little dogs-who-bark-whenever-the-phones-ring-which-is-a-lot-because-it’s-a-computer-company-plus-when-they-get-scared-they-pee.