Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Manic Panic!

Well, not really. But do you remember that brand of nail polish? Are they still in business?

I have been feeling really off today, from wanting to sleep in and stay in bed all day with my head under the covers, to being late for work, to being overly sensitive about just about everything.

Then I remembered: tomorrow would be my great aunt's 83rd birthday.

I've posted about her before, if you care to read more about the greatest woman I have ever met. It is a privilege to share her DNA.

It has been a year and a half - longer actually - after a nasty and quick bout with cancer took her. None of us thought her body would give in while her mind was still sharp. In April, she was feeling like she had flu; in August, she was gone.

I still think, "Oh, I've got to call Aunt Marie..."

I still see neat socks and think about sending them to her.

I still see flowers blooming and want to write her, an amazing gardener, about them.

I still cry and want her shoulder.

She was the only member of my family who had no bad side, who never got angry, who never made me feel bad about myself at any point in my life.

In my most difficult moments I turned to her - older, conservative, unchanging - and she loved me, younger, liberal, swearing, brash, opinionated, ungrateful.

I became grateful. She became one of my best friends.

She has come to me in dreams, several times.

The other night, after a mild anxiety attack about stupid stuff at work, what finally enabled me to sleep was imagining what she'd say if I could talk to her.

I miss the hell out of her, guys.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Because she is awesome

Here is a tribute to my poet friend Sarah, who has two blogs and is the lovely wife of my longtime friend Chella. How's that for linkage?

Anyhow - with permission from Feminist Review, I am posting Sarah's contest-winning poem on my blog...which, oddly enough, was going to be about sexism. She says it so much better than I can.

Dream On: Sarah Thomasin

I dream that no one calls me ‘clever girl’ when I am thirty.
I dream I get respect for something more than being flirty.
I dream my sexuality is beautiful, not dirty.
Dream on.

I dream that I am judged on more than how I do my hair.
I dream that I – not magazines – decide what’s right to wear.
I dream I walk unmocked with my unshaven armpits bare.
Dream on.

I dream that silenced women find their voices can be heard.
I dream no one says feminist like it’s a dirty word.
I dream that sexist language is considered quite absurd.
Dream on.

We dream that we are free to be exactly who we feel
We dream, not of the way things are, but of the best ideal.
We dream, and every time we dream, the dream becomes more real.
Dream on.
Dream on.
Dream on.

-- Sarah Thomasin

Sunday, March 29, 2009

6 random things

I am accepting the tag from Granny Annie, who does not in the least look like any of her chickens! (If you want to find out what that means, visit her blog.)

So here's a random meme - six things random things about me - well, six is one of my lucky numbers, sooooooooooo...

1. I am the only person in my family with my last name. In college, I just decided to change it. I changed my middle name, too, but to another name with the same initial (L.)

2. I tend to wear dark clothes not because I am goth, but because I am a messy eater. White sweater = pasta sauce all over the place.

3. I am an introvert. Big time. No one who first meets me believes this, because I have gotten used to faking it. I am in a position where my name and contact information are all over a web site and promotional materials for work, so I have HAD TO get used to it.

4. I take things personally. I'm trying to learn not to...

5. I hate carrots. I have always hated carrots. Little orange fuckers, you are a waste of space in Thai food and otherwise yummy things. I'm not a rabbit, so why should I eat you?
6. I have an ex that took his own life. It was many years after we stopped seeing each other, but I am still puzzled as to why. He seemed like quite a happy person when I knew him.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Friday funnies

Lesson of the week - and why can I not accept this at age 32? - you cannot please everyone all the time, no matter how well you do, and sometimes people in big positions can act really small.

So to cheer myself up and hopefully share some laughter with the rest of you, here are some random funny tidbits...

If you have never visited Fark, you must! The blurbs written about the strange stories are the funniest, best bits...from that site and from real life, here are some of the more humorous moments of my week:

1. Things I should not be laughing about but just can't help myself: a terrorist accidentally blew up some other terrorists instead of civilians. The question remains: do they still get access to all of those virgins? Or just a kick in the gonads because they accidentally offed the wrong peeps?

2. As we're getting ready to land the plane, stow your belongings, restore all tray tables and seats to their upright positions...and put your dick back in your pants. Yes, even if you are a merengue singer named Elvis. Scarlet rightly pointed out, "What do you expect from a guy who sings 'Suavemente'?"

3. Our intern at work has been working for a corporation that has started treating people poorly. She doesn't get it, because she works hard, and said she has "only decaf'd someone once." Um, what? Apparently, if a barista pisses you off, you don't get your caffeine. Baristas at a cafe in downtown Portland apparently served nothing but decaf for THREE WHOLE MONTHS when management pissed them off!

4. And this is really priceless - a friend (who will remain unnamed because she blogs and doesn't want her kids to read it) went for coffee with a guy this morning who dazzled her with the following conversation bits of information:

Guy: I haven't been checked for a long time.
My friend (understanding and totally disgusted): What do you have, rabies?
Guy: And I do mushrooms and smoke pot.
My friend: Uh, that's a dealbreaker.
Guy: Can we just have meaningless sex?
My friend: Um. No.
Guy: But the bathroom's right over there!

We wonder if this was the same guy who solicited my husband for sex at our walk event last year, which had port-a-potties...

I would not, COULD NOT make this up!

Happy Friday...

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Blogorama...hear me roar...er, meow.

So I have had so much stuff on my mind that I wanted to post about...I'll just post it all! Well, short versions...

Scarlet - I love how you asked for my address to send a "note" and also sent a fantastic candle...which looks expensive and now I feel guilty...but I love it! How did you know I love candles?

Speaking of secrets...Pheromone Girl's post got me thinking. How many secrets do we have? I suppose I have a lot but not consciously. I just don't spill my guts to just anyone.

Then I started to think about women and anger - and Brittany's post about angst continued that train of thought.

Adrienne Rich wrote that women writers should theoretically be writing about anger all the time, because we have so much sexist crap to deal with. What do you think?

I think society for the most part is still scared to hear a woman roar.

And back to Scarlet and PG, who have both blown me away by thanking me for "being me." Which is a relatively new experience because most of my life I've been told that I need to tone it down, stop swearing so much, be less intense...by men, mainly. Well, fuck that.

So I'll close with something I blurted out once that I am SO GLAD I said.

Guy I've dated a couple of times: "You shouldn't swear so much."
Me: "Why, does it offend you?"
Guy: "No, but it's just not very lady-like."
Me: "Fuck you!"

I called him later and apologized, but fortunately, I had put him off already :)

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Stay tuned...

Can't type much because of a carpal tunnel flare-up.

I mentioned this to Mike D today, when I called him to say happy b.day, and he said, "Well, you should stop jerking off so much!"

Thanks for the laugh...happy birthday, Mike!

I'll be writing more when I am able. In the meantime, stop by his blog and tell him happy b.day if you have a chance.

Friday, March 20, 2009

When I grow up...

So, I mistakenly thought it would be easy (and be able to undo) to change to "layout" format on this blog.

I spent the better part of half an hour trying to replace your lovely blog links because blogger deleted them! So if I have missed anyone, please post and let me know...it's not intentional :)

And after all of the bitching that I've had to listen to at work this week, I did get some nice compliments. One of them was from one of our members who is a gorgeous older woman whose son has acute schizophrenia. She is involved in all kinds of fundraising for services in the rural areas here, and is a retired actress.

She is gracious enough to host a difficult person at her table at our event next week, even though they dislike each other.

"I suppose a lot of people might not like things that I say or do," she said. "But you know what? I'm nearly 78 and I've been this way my entire life, and I'm not about to change now!"

I haven't heard any complaints about her. I told her that I want to be just like her when I grow up!

PS Happy b.day tomorrow, Chella! And isn't she sweet? She used b.day money to donate to my organization.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Warning: complaints and lots of swearing.

Sorry, it's just got to be purged...inevitably, you have a couple of great days and then you have one that irritates you. Or things add up that irritate you.

1. The people who have pissed me off, or who are related to or otherwise connected to people who have pissed me off, that I feel like I can't write about in case they read this. I haven't even given the blog address to some of you! How the hell did you find this? What the fuck am I supposed to do? Create a new blog that only I can read? I can call it smutkitty or something like that, and no one living in the Northwest will be allowed to read it.

2. The nagging bitch who wouldn't let me off the phone for an hour - an hour! - yesterday blaming everyone and everything and telling me how much everyone sucks at my organization. And get this - she went on for 55 minutes about how her time had been wasted! Hellooooooooo! What the fuck do you think you're doing with my time?

3. The fucking sanitary napkin (isn't that an oxymoron anyway?) people who have adopted the slogan, "have a happy period." Fuck you, it's never a happy period! Using your fucking pink and purple font will NOT make it happier. And I have to see your ad online why? Who are you, the Britney Spears of menstruation?

4. The rain and wind most of this week. You're bad for my hair and I hate you.

5. The idiots who don't understand what "RSVP by Monday" means. After many reminders you call and say, "Hmm, and I might bring guests, I don't know." Guess what, fuckface - the caterer DOES have to know! Go ahead and show up and eat the extra napkins.

6. The cunt who e-mailed me and cc'd my boss and said it was "a waste of time and money" to have A VOLUNTEER e-mail her and ask if she's coming to the event. Get a clue, bitch. VOLUNTEER means he did something UNPAID! Nothing wasted except his effort on your small brain.

6. The former boss of mine who is a complete chickenshit asshole and I can't even get into it here why I feel this way, or I'll get pissed off all over again. (J, it's not you, you are awesome!)

7. The Goodnight Moon book. I have always hated you. FYI.

Is something pissing you off? Inquiring minds want to know!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Still mouthing off by accident

I am going to have to fire my little social editor for falling down on the job again.

Well, she's not all bad - when was the last time you heard of anyone making an insurance benefits administrator laugh?

Open enrollment - what the hell does that mean anyway? There's only one insurance company to choose from!

Anyway - I decided $6 per month was a small price to pay for life insurance, in case a piano falls on my head or something like that.

Benefits administrator: "And the benefit doubles to $__ if you die in an accident."

I think I blinked.

Me: "As opposed to on purpose?"

Benefits administrator: "Bwahahahahahahahahahaha!"

Clears throat.

"Um, no. As opposed to...if you...die of cancer."


Both of us: "Hahahahahahahaha!"

Darth, it was so tasteless and inappropriate that I thought of you.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Don't piss on my enthusiasm

I suppose that's the Riot Kitty way of saying, "Don't rain on my parade..." But 1) I live in the Pacific NW and there's nearly always rain, and 2) I don't like parades (it's part of not liking big crowds.)

So those of you who read this regularly know that my job has gone through some ups and downs. I have spent the better part of my time there doing damage control for my predecessor, and then for the previous executive director.

Fortunately, things are looking up. Yes, we are still struggling, like many nonprofits in this economy. However, in several areas we're also kicking ass. The event I am in charge of - a big fundraising, stigma-busting walk that seeks to draw attention to the importance of mental health care - now has more teams signed up than any of our national organization's spring walks, including NYC! (This is a big deal because our entire state has less than half of the population of NYC, you see.)

And the best part - people are excited. They are happy to get involved, inquiring about volunteer opportunities...there is a palpable enthusiasm.

Much of this is do to our new executive director (the one who lets me swear and wear jeans.) He is passionate about our mission and compassionate when it comes to other people, but not a wuss.

Anyway - why does this make me happy? Because when I took over this job last spring, worse than the bitching and moaning I kept hearing, and the apologies I kept having to make, was the constant thrum of voices telling me I should keep my expectations low.

Lots of people who had been involved with both the walk and the organization for years told me stuff like this:

"Keep your expectations low."
"I wouldn't expect much."
"People have lost their interest in the walk."


At the time, I said, "You wanna bet?", while thinking, "Up yours. Just you wait and see."

It's one thing to vent; it's another to try to squelch the enthusiasm and efforts of another person.

I am sure that all of you have run into people like this, and here's my comment to you: They suck.

Just because they aren't gutsy or ambitious enough to have dreams and plans as big as yours doesn't mean they should piss on your enthusiasm.

Along those lines, here are a couple of fantastic quotes from great achievers:

"Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can somehow become great."
- Mark Twain


"The greater danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it."
- Michelangelo

I suppose he could have called it quits instead of painting the Sistine Chapel.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

And now for something completely different

Mr RK said, "That's too warm and cuddly for your blog!"

To which I reply, "Phhhhhhhhpppppppppppptttttttttt."

*Ninja edit: they are called Red Pandas.*

Apparently they don't like people - however, my stepmom's mom saw them on her trip to China and said they were quite friendly!
How can you NOT smile and say, "AWWWWWWWWWWW!"

If you don't, you're a hard-hearted bastard, what can I say.
Apparently they walk about with their tongues out just like this.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

We interrupt your regularly scheduled blog viewing...

I have had to enable comment moderation because of a troll.

I hate to have to do this. I have left up other comments of his that were not hateful. This isn't about deleting stuff I disagree with; it's about not allowing mean things in this place.

This blog exists in part to make other people laugh, ergo, make them - I hope - a little bit happy.

If you are a hard-core right-winger and you want to express yourself - no problem! You insult me and my blog buddies and spew = not allowed. Hopefully he'll slither back under the rock where he came from...

Monday, March 09, 2009

Why I hate winter.

You know why it's called "Old Man Winter" - winter is like an annoying, rude old codger who won't shut up or lay off. Just as you think you've gotten rid of him...Pow! Back he comes to indefinitely annoy the shit out of you.

There is a reason I no longer live on the East Coast: I hate winter.

The past two days, we've had snow and hail. I live in a "banana belt" part of the Pacific Northwest (meaning the idiot who named it, thinking we were part of the "warm" area, needs to have a banana shoved up his ass.) Translation: it's not supposed to fucking snow here in March!

I am tired, which makes me crankier than usual. (Stop snickering!)

So why do I hate winter? Let me count the ways...or the whys.

1. It's cold.
2. This means I can't wear sandals. I hate wearing socks.
3. It's too cold to enjoy ice cream.
4. When a few flakes of snow fall, all hell breaks loose - and people in this area can't drive to save their lives to begin with.
5. More than likely, it's grey.
6. If it's not grey, it's cold enough that you're freezing your ass off.
7. I like iced coffee. I still get it when it's cold. The difference between ordering an iced coffee in winter and ordering it any other time of year? "Heeeeeeeeeey, ICED COFFEE? It's COLD!" No shit.
8. It doesn't apply to me - this was a guest suggestion - shrinkage. The guest shall remain nameless.
9. I am not a polar bear.
10. Geez, isn't 9 enough reasons? What do you want from my life?!

Sunday, March 08, 2009

In praise of being a bad kitty.

Time for the Scary Clown Award!!!*

The Scary Clown Award is given to blogs which display a great sense of humor...and attitude.

I got this awesome prize from my pal Fireblossom. (Note: we have both been in recovery for more than 10 years, have both lived in San Antonio, and we are both writers. And based on the playlist on her blog, we have similar tastes in music...she's just much hipper and cooler than I am.)
Here are the rules. She request that you please follow them carefully.

1. There are no rules. Wear it with pride!

I nominate:

Darth Weasel
Word Geek

*I would like to note that I do not like clowns - they make me sad - and scary clowns give me the willies. So I have substituted a picture of a not-so-scary squirrel instead.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

What (do) I know (?)

Joey made up his own meme!

As with Scarlet, I got a shout-out on the post...and for all of you who think I just sit around and say "fuck!" all day - well, I say other stuff, too...as you'll find out if you read on.

First - here are the meme rules:

1. You've got to post a link from the person who tagged you.

2. List 8 things that you know about on your chosen subject. You get to choose the subject.
3. You don't have to tag anyone but you can if you want. If you do, let them know on their blog that they've been tagged.
4. List the rules.

I have no use for rules. Do whatever you like - I tag

Grannie Annie
Political Morsels
Mike D

So now for the good stuff!

Eight rules about what not to say in public - or, what should not be missed by your little internal social editor:

1. When a 22-year-old, churchgoing, recent college graduate tells you he has a "bag of tricks" for your ESL class, do NOT say, "Did it come from Spartacus?" (Tip for non-Portlanders: that is a sex shop with some quality leather items.)

2. When going to the free health clinic in college to get free condoms with two of your female friends, and hearing that they only have four, do NOT say, "Well, maybe one of us will get lucky twice!"

3. When you are a reporter, walking into an editorial board meeting with several higher-ups from a regional government office, and you notice that one of your sources has a new haircut, do NOT say, "Ed! I haven't seen you with your new hair!"

4. When you see your friend's friend wearing jeans that have a huge hole near the crotch - and I mean HUGE, because you can see what color his boxers are - and you're on the East Coast and it's mid-December, and below freezing out, do NOT say, "Shit! Doesn't your dick get cold in those pants?"

5. When asked not to swear so much (in a newsroom of all places!) and you accidentally say, "Fuck," do NOT apologize by saying, "Oh shit, sorry!"

6. When getting a ticket, and finding yourself unable to talk or plead your way out of it, do NOT say to the cop, "I know why you have parking ticket duty - you must have FUCKED UP somehow to get assigned to this job!"

7. When sitting on a plane from Newark, do NOT sneer and mention "fucking New Yorkers" to when chatting with your seatmate, who happens to be one. Of course you don't know this ahead of time, because he has no accent...fucking New Yorker.

8. When getting in trouble with HR for saying "fuck" too much in the newsroom, do NOT, in front of the HR manager, your editor, and your publisher, say the following: "I think 'fuck' is a lot less offensive than 'God damn,' or 'Jesus Christ.' But I'll stop saying 'fuck' so much if you think it's offensive. However, everyone in the newsroom says 'fuck.'"

It's all true, unfortunately...I said all of these things. Fortunately, I now work in an office where I have to compete with my boss to say "fuck" more than he does.


Monday, March 02, 2009

How do you mac in the animal kingdom?

Frequently, Mr. Riot Kitty's sense of humor sends me into fits of giggles.

The other day he asked, "So how do you hit on someone, if you're a member of the animal kingdom?"

Food for thought. As much as I want to pull out my hair when communication with other humans becomes difficult, and as much as I sometimes think, "Wouldn't it be easier if we just didn't SPEAK at all?" - this is an area where I think something would be lacking without words.

*Note: I've had a Looooooooooooooong, difficult day and I asked Mr. RK, "Will people think I'm nuts if I post this?"

His reply: "Maybe, but it won't change their opinion of you!"

So here goes.

But if they could speak...

Bad boy rabbit to girl rabbit: "Let's go fuck like humans!"

Boy porcupine to girl porcupine, on the subject of wanting to start a family: "I think for both of our sakes, let's do in-vitro."

Amoebas must have the easiest time; Mr RK says their favorite pick-up line is, "Hey...I look good today!" Or, "I'm too sexy for my cell."

While we're on the subject of animals, if toes are called piggies, what are fingers called? Aardvarks? (Also from Mr RK!)

And if you really want to see something perverse, check out his blog.