Thursday, July 28, 2011

What offends me?

I have some colorful friends (online and offline), and from time to time, one of them will say, "I hope I didn't offend you!"

My friends, it is very difficult to offend me. However, I was thinking about it, so here are the top several things to which I take offense.

1. People who waste my time. This especially includes people who ask you the same question 12 different ways, hoping, each time, for a different answer. On a couple of occasions on the phone at work, I have actually had to say, "You can keep asking this question, but I won't have another answer for you."

2. People who talk on and on and on and on...and on, and then talk louder when you try to cut them off, so you end up literally having to walk away to save your sanity. Why is it that these are the same people who never have anything interesting to say?

3. People who are fake.
You know, the ones who will be super nice to your face and then say, "Oooh, she's such a bitch!" behind your back. Funny, that never works in reverse, does it? There are never people who are rude to your face and nice behind your back!

4. People who get offended about nudity but think violence is A-OK.

5. People who think they have a monopoly on knowledge. This includes the guy I had never met before who accosted me at the lake last weekend and basically told me Christians shouldn't feel bad about having lots of possessions, "because the Book of Revelations says that the streets in heaven will be paved with gold!"

6. People who look down on other people simply because of how they were born - race, gender, sexual identity, social class, etc.

7. People who whine, snivel, and bitch about things, but don't take any action to change them. Here's 50 cents, call someone who gives a shit!

8. Guys who talk to my boobs.
I have to say, "They won't talk back to you."

9. Badly made espresso drinks. You know, from mixes instead of syrups. I'm spending a small fortune on this stuff, I'd rather it not taste like mud. Bad espresso drinks are like bad sex and bad pizza: don't bother.

10. You knew this was coming - people who think it's ok to say "Jesus Christ!" or "Oh my God!" but are offended by the word "fuck." Fuck is a very useful word: expletive, noun, adverb, verb, you name it.

Now - dare I ask - what offends you?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Before you judge

Before her death at age 27, British singer Amy Winehouse was often the target of tasteless jokes on late night talk shows.

What hasn't surfaced in too many articles is the fact that she suffered from bipolar disorder, and didn't like the side effects of her meds. So she refused to take them. So she self-medicated, which is probably what led to her death.

This may seem open-and-shut to you. But consider. I work with people who have tried medication after medication, only to have all of them fail. I have met people who have gained 50-100 pounds as a "side effect" of their medication, putting them at risk for diabetes, heart conditions, etc. - not to mention the effect on their self-esteem. It's not so easy to just pop a pill. Even when you find one that works, it won't fix everything.

My heart goes out to Winehouse and her family because, frankly, I put my own family through hell when going through severe depression. I self-medicated with alcohol, and but for their support and a medication that worked (thank God) without serious side effects, I would likely not be here today.

I understand that pain, that depression that seizes you and makes you unable to do the simplest things, like get out of bed - or even want to wake up, ever again.

Mental health care sucks in this country and even in others, mental illness is drastically misunderstood. I am sick and fucking tired of comments people make when a tragedy of this sort happens, connecting mental illness with creative talent.

It doesn't spur the talent, friends. Those of us who are creative will tell you it's hell on Earth trying to create anything when we're down.

Drinking, for me, took the edge off. I was a little more social, a little less unhappy, felt a little less alone. I would always crash - always end up feeling worse the next day.

It has been almost 14 years (I quit drinking, funny enough, right after I turned 21), but I still have dreams every month or two that I screw up and have a rum and coke or whatever, and have to start all over again. That leaves me to wake up in a cold sweat, kissing my toes that it's not real.

So before you judge her - or others who have substance abuse issues - please consider. There may be a very sad reason behind it. And more importantly, they may be forever grateful if you are there when and if they have the strength to move forward.

I know I am.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Coming clean

I was thinking this week that I'd have to go borrow someone's child so I can go see the new Winnie the Pooh movie. C'mon, John Cleese is the narrator and Craig Ferguson is Owl! How could I not see it?

But still, I am embarrassed to go by myself. Mr. RK said, "Perhaps my mother will go with you."

One of my volunteers at work assured me that it's "for children AND adults."

Yeah. Adults that have children!

I have a secret. I love the old-time, sticky-sweet children's cartoons/books. Winnie the Pooh, Little Bear, you know the stuff.

I love it because it's so, well, sweet! Peaceful, sometimes funny, but not in a mean way. Today's kids' books seem to be, for the most part, 1) crass, 2) insulting to the kids' intelligence, and 3) poorly written. Not all, but definitely some.

In fact, the only fiction I am comfortable writing is fiction for children. You may find this funny, given the fact that I talk like a sailor (except around my little siblings.) But I like recreating that kind of sweet happy place. That said, I should get off my ass and start submitting my book, right?

Anyhow, now you know my dark secret. This should be enough sweet stuff to last you with this blog until 2012.

PS The cat in this lolcat looks just like our Earl Grey. But if we had even presented him with a Tigger outfit, he would definitely have killed us, just with his glare.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Dumb things I have done this week

1. Walked into my office, glanced at a card with my name on it on my desk, and asked, "Is that for me?"

2. Decided that I was too tired after a day of work + three hours of volunteer meetings to put away the lingerie that was hanging out to dry. Sure enough, the maintenance guy came by today. (This has happened before.)

3. Believed the weather forecast - twice - when it was supposed to be warm and sunny. And dressed accordingly. Turns out it was 60 and pouring. Silly me, it's only July.

4. Scheduled an afternoon of tennis, going with aforementioned forecast. And then scheduled another one. I believe the words are "epic fail."

5. Said, "I'm sorry" when hearing that an acquaintance had broken up with a partner of 2 1/2 years. Because then I got to listen to everything that was wrong with that relationship. Next time, I'm just going to say, "Great!"

6. Thought I could handle more than one mocha today without bouncing off of the walls. (Now I have bruises.)

7. Tried to figure out how to use the "share" feature on our Facebook page at work, unsuccessfully. I'm from Silicon Valley and I can't figure this out! I should hang my head in shame.

Theoretically these lists come in themes of 10, but the week's not over yet. Give me time :)

Friday, July 15, 2011

Freaky Friday

I've had a bit of blogger's block (that's writer's block, but only when it comes to blogging) and then I realized that some really weird shit has happened this week.

So guess what the topic of today's post is?

Some of the freaky things that happened:

1. Mr. RK came home with a box full of shark's teeth that a coworker found in a rural area about 20 miles from here, that used to be underwater. She literally just came up to him and said, "Here, have these."

2. I have less fingernail material than I did at this time yesterday. This was unintentional but totally my fault. Tip for the uninitiated: DO NOT, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, TRY TO REMOVE YOUR SHELLAC MANICURE AT HOME.

3. One day after several days of vacation, I get sick enough to miss work.

4. The day after that (today), I find out my review is coming up. Someone has a sick sense of humor.

5. One of my colleagues got bitten by a dog - the same dog - twice in two days. It's an "emotional support animal" that one of her employees insists on bringing to work. And even after it bit my friend, the employee didn't see why there was a problem with her bringing it to work. Hence the second bite. The dog is now banned, but the employee does not understand why. I am not making this up.

Mr. RK suggested that she bite the dog. She said she is thinking about it.

I'd be more tempted to bite the owner.

6. And this one is just embarrassing - remember how, when I had lunch with someone a couple of weeks ago, I thought he said, "I got laid last night?" when he said he was doing Jenny Craig and got weighed last night? We met for dinner and I asked him, joking, "So! Did you get laid last night?"

Guess who forgot the lunch episode and didn't get the joke?

Any strange stuff happening in your neck of the woods?

Monday, July 11, 2011

Things I have learned this week: visiting brother edition

Things I have learned about being a 15-year-old boy:

1. Hot dogs never get old.
2. Everything is innuendo, even when it isn't.
3. Vegetables? What are they?
4. Comics rule.
5. So does technology. Especially if it is made by Apple and begins with "i."
6. If your sister has a 24-year-old friend, and offers to let you tag along for coffee, the answer is yes!
7. Brushing your teeth is about as appealing as eating moss.
8. So is putting underwear and socks in the wash when laundry is done.
9. Mochas are life, the rest are just details.
10. Sugar is a food group. So is caffeine.

Well...I couldn't help spoiling him.

Fortunately he and Mr. RK get along really well, too.

I asked him, "What would you have done if I had married a total douchebag?"

"I'd ask him to be gone when I visit."

Friday, July 08, 2011

A guest post

My friend G suggested that my little bro, who is visiting for a few days (he is 15 going on 40) write a guest post about all of the wicked happenings here.

He resisted. Because he does not know how to type. Actually he is illiterate.

Just kidding. He told me to write that.

So here is his post, which I have extracted with the threat of no more mochas or comics unless he wrote it.

Things I have observed in Portland
By: Blake (Me.)

1. People need their guacamole. See a previous post.

2. All cats are misogynists. (i.e Riot Kitty)

3. The world does not explode when you say onomatopoeia.

4. It is very easy to say onomatopoeia 3 times fast.

5. I have committed heresy to the church of the cat.

6. Some people don't like Matthew Vaughn.

7. I can watch anything but porn.

8. Riot Kitty will vomit on me if I say "anything is fine" one more time.

9. Life is like a Katy Perry music video.

10. I am illiterate.

11. I have the sex appeal of a car accident. Also of a chair.

12. I like barney. He does not deserve to be capitalized.

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

What I really wanted to tell someone today, but couldn't

How is it that people who talk way, way, WAY too much - and are older than the age of 12 - don't realize it?

Hasn't anyone told them before?

I had to (politely) interrupt a volunteer at work today who was telling me (as she usually does) an exorbitantly long story that was totally unrelated to work.

She promptly had a meltdown and cried and said I was being mean.

I took her aside and then she apologized and said she was just anxious about a medical procedure she was having tomorrow.

Then, when I left for lunch, she proceeded to retell the entire story to another volunteer.

What am I missing?