Wednesday, September 29, 2010


I was at a playgroup this morning. My friend watched my two-year-old repeatably attempt to scale  a couch, in efforts to climb upon a counter-top, and perhaps swing, Tarzan-style from the ceiling fan.

She shook her head, and observed, "You know, Nance---your husband is such a mellow guy. I'm really surprised that at least one of your boys isn't like him."

I rolled my eyes, pulled Joel away from the fireplace poker, and replied, "You and me both, sister."

My husband, whose legendary cool makes Barack Obama look like Macho Man Randy Savage, apparently kept all the Chillaxing Genes to himself. My two knuckleheads, as I now call them, believe that life is better as a Mountain Dew commercial minus pesky details like helmets or common sense.

I thought about her comment all day today. I thought about it during preschool pickup, as Joel rode a couch like the late Dennis Hopper in Easy Rider.

I thought about it on the drive home, when I noticed he was missing his glasses. I asked, "Where are your glasses, Joely?" prepared for another rousing game of Find The Eyewear.

"I don't know," he replied. Then, after a few moments, he found them. There were on his forehead, hidden by his mop of frat-boy-after-a-great-night hair.

Don't even get me started on his older brother.  The shenanigans with the Little Tykes car alone causes me to reach for the whiskey.

After pickup, I had to take the knuckleheads to the special store to pick up the super-special pizza dough and olive oil. As we perused the wine aisle, I heard Smashmouth's "Rock Star," playing over the intercom.

"I LOVE this song!" I squeed, and started dancing in the aisle. Hands in the air, like I just don't care and all of that. Owen joined me, doing his patented bend-and-creep-with-devil horns dance move. Joel sat in the cart, shaking his head back and forth.

So where do these boys get it from?

Speaking of my younger knucklehead...there were four amazing entries in the Pontify My Son Contest:


The Blogging Goddess:


My Life in Purple:

All were beyond amazing. Truly. The mind, it is boggled. However, I consulted my team of experts and it was determined to be a two-way tie between...The Blogging Goddess (those shoes!!!) and Salt (the throne!!!).

Salt gets the Eddie Murray bobblehead and The Blogging Goddess and I will negotiate something cool for her prize.

Thank you, everybody for your indulgence. (Get it? Indulgence? Reformation humor! The best!)

Monday, September 27, 2010

Creating a World of Joyful Hearts

On Sunday night, a friend and I sat by the banks of the Patuxent River, drinking red wine and watching the sky bloom into rosy, amber perfection before settling into darkness.

We had one of those conversations that you wish you could put in your pocket--witty, thoughtful, and reflective.

She was discussing the world she wanted for her daughters, and it made me think about the world I want my sons to give her daughters, and in turn, her daughters to give my sons.

In other words, it made me think: How do I raise men who treasure, value, and respect women?

Redefine Strength
Masculine strength is traditionally viewed through the prism of power and physicality. Don't get me wrong---there is nothing wrong with being physically strong. Yet, I try to teach my boys to recognize and admire strength in all its forms.

There is strength in speaking the truth, in proclaiming that it is not okay to use "fag" or "retard" as a pejorative.

There is strength in listening. Instead of thinking of what you're going to say next, be fully present and engaged in conversation.

There is strength in humility. Don't be afraid to admit that you need help, or you do not understand, or if you are afraid. Nothing builds a connection more quickly than simply acknowledging that we are all souls, and we are all on this journey together.

Recognize Our Light
Because we are all souls, we must live lives worthy of that light.

This means love should never hurt. We do not hurt our loved ones with words, our hands, or our bodies. We must never allow contempt to enter a relationship. Yes, people disagree. Yes, there may be anger. But never, ever allow those dark moments to extinguish another light.

This means that we are not better than anybody else. Talk to the waitress, the custodian, and the substitute teacher like you would talk to your grandmother. Say "please" and "thank you." Hold the door open for people, and pick up litter on the side of the road. Give blood. Buy a stranger a cup of coffee.

After all, that's somebody's baby.

Put Your Feet in the Moment
You only get one life. Embrace the miracle of life, fatherhood, friendship, and love.

Embrace the grace which comes from life's stumbles.

Seek the joy in a full moon, a cherry blossom, or a perfect line drive.

And, please. in the midst of all your mother.

This post was written in support of a non-profit called The Joyful Heart Foundation, which was founded in 2004 by Mariska Hargitay, who plays Detective Olivia Benson on “Law & Order: SVU.”  Mariska started getting fan mail from rape survivors and was moved to create a foundation to help heal the victims of crimes dramatized on her show.  Joyful Heart’s initial and primary mission is to help victims of sexual assault mend their minds, bodies and spirits and reclaim their lives.

Today, the foundation is also at the forefront of an effort to end a disheartening backlog of tens of thousands of rape kits in labs across the country, a backlog that contributes to a rapist’s 80 percent chance of getting away with his crime.  The backlog and its detrimental effects will be the topic of an SVU episode on Wednesday, September 29th.

Please click here to read other writers' vision for their children's futures in support of this cause.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Red Writing Hood: Ad patres

This week's Red Writing Hood Challenge is an opportunity to attempt poetry. The topic is "Where I'm From" and it follows a template. It's like Mad-Libs, minus the poop jokes. As always, comments and feedback are most valued!


Ad patres

I am sidewalk chalk, the Crayola gasp of discovery. 

I am the dusty stucco parade of houses, the false lawns in a thirsty land.

I am the ocotillo, her prickly tentacles bewitching and true. 

I am scribbled margins and restless dreams; new houses and shadowy men.  I am dreaming Marion, knitting her black afghan in the shadows..

"Be the hands that are missing," they say. "Remember that you represent our household," they chide. 

The sublime grace of the Frozen Chosen.

The sun cracks the desert floor like a piecrust, but I am the prairie's relentless chill. I am tamales and green jello-- big sky and big shoulders.
I am my grandmother's education, cut short and tied like sausages. I am the square carpenter's pencils, these stern lead fence-posts. I am the evening snoozes in the armchairs, the silent, ponderous yearnings. 

I am their perfect, singular bubble. Drifting, iridescent, and full, they watch me, whispering their hopes into the wind.

I  float, as soft as a dream, until I meet them in the sky.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

I Only Get to Do this Once

My oldest is going to be five in February, and hasn't napped with any frequency for almost a year.

I chose to ignore this fact and call two to three hours a day "quiet time." I banished him to his room with some books and toys, and told him that he couldn't come out until his little brother woke up from his nap.

This worked out marvelously for about a year. Baby slept. Oldest learned self-regulation. I got to write.

Alas, though, times have changed. For a variety of reasons too tedious to explain, Owen is now downstairs with me during Joel's nap-time. It was time.

I tired to write while he was downstairs for a couple of days. I couldn't concentrate.This may explain the preponderance of posts involving the Pope.

I found myself pecking at a screen while my son played by himself in the backyard. It was a breathtaking fall day---just a hint of chill in the air, sunshine, glorious light.

And here I was, answering emails and checking my Facebook account.

Such a waste. I will never have that afternoon again.

So, things are going to change. The computer will remain off during the day. After they go to bed, I will have a conversation with my husband before I log in. I will write at the end of the day, and I will probably post far less frequently.

I only get to do this once. If I'm going to write my life, I had better start living it.


That being said...I am the featured writer for the Red Dress Club. This is a wonderful group of women writers.

Their weekly red writing hood challenges have really kick-started my fiction. Please consider joining them on Friday. Also, go ahead and click over to read my profile. I won't mind that one bit.

Never Underestimate the Power of Creativity

The Pontify-my-Son contest has blown my mind thus far.
(See yesterday's post for background. )
Amazing entry #1 by Salt:

Amazing Enrty #2 by The Blogging Goddess:

Amazing entry #3 by my cousin, dek:

Seriously...the world is FULL of awesome. 

Contest closes tomorrow night, so you can still enter.

Winner gets either a can of Old Bay or an Eddie Murray bobblehead...or something else if you're not interested in a Maryland-themed prize.

I will have my husband and my non-blogging girlfriends determine the winner. It will be seriously challenging. For realz.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Pope. Popeity Pope Pope.

In the lobby of Owen's preschool, there are several framed photographs of the Popes throughout the ages.

Without fail, each day, Joel will point to the pictures and say, "Who Dat?"

"That's the Pope, honey," I say.

He'll immediately point to another picture, "Who Dat?"

"Another Pope."

And on and on it goes.

Yesterday, during lunch, Joel was saying "Poop! Poop!"

I frowned and said, "Honey, no potty talk at the table."

Owen, who often translates for his brother, said, "No Mommy, Joel is talking about the Pope."

I turned to Joel and asked, "Is that true, honey?"

He nodded his head vigorously, delighted to be understood.

Owen added in, "Joely wants to be Pope!"

I said, "Is that true, Joely?"

Again, smiles and vigourous head nodding.

I said, "Well, I have honestly never considered that idea. Ever. At all."

Besides the pesky detail that we aren't Catholic, I just cannot imagine my child hanging out in the Vatican, or waving from a Popemobile. I certainly wouldn't kiss his ring.

I mean, I know where that hand as been.

Owen said, "If Joel is going to be Pope, he's gotta learn to play piano!"

Naturally. All the best Popes---Pope Elton John comes to mind---have tickled the ivories.

I suppose that's another roadblock towards Joel's Papacy.

Well, I suppose a mother can imagine. I mean, somebody rocked all those pontiffs to sleep.

For all those Photoshop experts out there, I throw down this challenge: Deck out my son in Papal Regalia. If you can include the pointy hat, that would be stellar.

The person who creates the most fantastic image of my son as pope will win an Eddie Murray Bobblehead. I won it at an Orioles game years ago, and it's probably worth some money. If you don't want that, I will send you a can of Old Bay.

The contest closes Wednesday night. Here's your subject. Have at it:

Friday, September 17, 2010

Red Writing Hood: Gaping Hole

Those dastardly ladies at the red dress club thought it would be fun to toy with me this week.

The Red Writing Hood challenge is:

Write a morality tale based on forgiveness but written with the fantasy genre in mind - create a whole new world comprised of supernatural phenomenon.

Seriously? Fantasy is not my friend.

That is, with the possible exception of  Orlando Bloom. He can be my friend anytime.

Gaping Hole 

"Look," I said, pacing back and forth,  "I've been a tooth fairy for three years. I've done bicuspids. Molars. Lateral incisors. I think I know what I'm talking about."

Sprite pushed down his glasses, placed his quill on his mushroom desk, and smiled softly. "Drake, nobody is questioning your talents. You  have harvested more teeth than any other fairy in the glen. You're good. Thanks to you, we had a record harvest of dentine and cementine."

He chuckled softly to himself. "Yet...I can't help but  remember your first trip out..."

Ah, this again. I forced my lips into a smile, and played along:  "I really thought I had found treasure in that glass. I was sure-"

"You were sure that plastic teeth soaking in green salts were going to make you King of the Fairies!' He laughed openly now, his gossamer wings shaking as he gasped out the words, "You said, 'We're rich, Uncle Sprite! We're rich!'"

I sat down on the acorn chair across from his desk. "What can I say? Rookie mistake."

He winked, and leaned forward, "My boy, those false teeth couldn't power a dandelion, let alone the entire glen! So, remember that, Mr.I-Know-What-I'm-Talking-About. "

I laughed, mainly for his benefit. Clearing my throat, I stated, "I believe I've more than made up for it." I ticked off each point with my finger, "Who tipped you off about the Osmond Family? Gary Busey? Hilary Swank? The National Hockey League?"

He nodded, "Yes, my boy. Thanks to Busey alone, we were able to power up the entire Redwood District. You've always had good instincts. It does, after all, run, in the family."

I stood up, puffed myself up to my full six inches. "You know, I have more ideas. Well beyond finding celebrities with unfortunate teeth. We could really take this to the next level! We've already started with harvesting the seems logical that we would harvest the..."

Sprite held up a hand, "Don't say it. Just--"

"I'm not finished!" I said, "All those teeth...all that potential power...just sitting there..wasting away. I can't believe we are talking about this again! Or more specifically, not talking about it again."

I ran my fingers through my hair, gestured towards the bar, "Do you mind?"

Sprite opened his hands, "By all means, son." I poured myself a nectar, drank it in one swift gulp.

The familiar liquid softness did nothing to slow the pounding of my heart, the energy pulsing from my head to my wingtips. "Will you just consider the idea?"

He frowned, his eyes dark unrepentant caverns. "No, Drake. No I will not. We are fairies. We are not monsters. It's a---"

I pointed a finger in his face, my voice steely, "I know, I know, it's a business. We take the teeth when they don't see, we pay them a handsome fee. GROW UP, Sprite!"

I turned my back to him, my fingernails cutting into the palms of my hands, "They don't need them all, anyway," I mumbled. "Just a quick yank, a bit of blood, and the toothy riches could be ours."

I felt his rooty knarl of a hand rest on my shoulder, "You have had so much taken from you," he whispered. "I haven't forgotten. First your father's accident.. And then her. I'm so, so sorry that she never came back."

Mom. She left for England years ago. Seeking riches, seeking teeth. Plenty of both there. 

I turned to him, and whispered, "It's just not right." I bowed my head. "It's just not right at all."

He held me and said, "You're right. It isn't right." He pressed his forehead against mine and whispered, not unkindly, "But, my boy, learn from her mistakes.You can't take things from people. You can't take away a childhood. You can't take a living tooth.  It always, always leaves a gaping hole."

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Most Pointless Build Up to a Cookie Recipe Ever

After yesterday's insomnia post, I decided to drink a purely medicinal glass on Pinot Grigio (Mommy's Time Out, if you're curious) before bed.

I woke up nine hours later, fresh as a daisy, and channeling my inner Miley Cyrus. I was both shaking my hips and nodding my head like yeah. Good thing that Britney song wasn't on, or I could have injured myself.

(Thanks, MamaPop, incidentally, for bringing that song back from the dead for me.)

We had a busy day today.

I decorated for the Fall Holidays:



Other highlights include Owen eating a carrot: 

Also, me pretending to eat his carrot, much to his amusement and my dorkosity:

Joel felt compelled to share that he was enjoying his peanut butter:

He also ate my face.

As you can imagine, all this pouring candy corn into jars and taking blurry pictures with a cell phone can take the Miley right out of a girl.

So, I did not make delicious cookies, as I had planned. Trust me, they are really good. Have I let you down yet?

Don't answer that.

Awesome Cream Cheese Cookies
1/4 cup margarine or butter
1 package of cream cheese
1 egg yolk
1/4 teaspoon of vanilla
1 package of yellow or chocolate cake mix.

Cream butter and cream cheese. Blend in egg yolk and vanilla. Add cake mix (just the dry cake mix) and cover and chill for approximately thirty minutes. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Roll dough into balls and roll in sugar. Flatten on ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 8-20 minutes.

They are to die for. Check in with adrienzgirl if you want to see other delicious cookie recipes.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Insomnia Fails

Every night, while my husband blissfully slumbers, I lay awake.

I won't bore you with the details. Instead, I will bore you with my coping strategies.

Coping Strategy #1: Extreme Home Makeover

When sleep alludes me, I pretend that I have an unlimited amount of money and resources, and mentally remodel my home.

Step one is always knocking out this wall. I picture myself swinging the sledgehammer, like a pint-size John Henry. I hear the crack of the drywall, and my imaginary self barely breaks a sweat.

But then it derails. Where would I put the blue Hoosier cabinet? It simply doesn't work in a living room! Perhaps we would need to tear out ALL of the cabinetry! And add a garage...and a sunroom....and a walk-in pantry!

We would have to get new carpet---or better yet---hardwood! We would have to rewire....where would we put the furniture? And we would have to paint! God, what color should we paint? Do we need a chair rail? Crown molding?

And what the hell would we put on the walls? How do people know how to do this? Bunch of show-offs, if you ask me.

And why do we live in a 1200 square foot house anyway? How the hell are two teenage boys going to live here someday? Why can't we have nice things? And where is my VERN YIP, damnit!

Somehow, this is all my husband's fault. I am wide awake, heart pounding, furious that he is wasting valuable painting time by three in the morning.

Coping Strategy #2: I Become Pretty

When you're tired, you're not at the best place emotionally. Therefore, what better time to imagine unlimited money and resources for a full plastic surgery Mommy Makeover?

I think of this:

And this:

And just like that...the woman who believes that that there is nothing lovelier than a face with character imagines carving herself into something like this:

There's no sleeping after that.

Coping Strategy #3: I Think About the Blog
This is dangerous territory indeed. I imagine possible posts. At the time, they seem brilliant. Surely, THIS POST will be the breakthrough which will lead me  to the book deal and the booking on Fresh Air with Terry Gross.

Sometimes, I actually get up and write them. This results in nonsense like Magic Juice and Dibs and Drabs.

At othertimes, I writes notes to myself. I stumble out of bed the next day to see snippets like "Talking Sex Toy" or "Big Lebowski Sweater" scribbled on the backs of grocery lists.

Rarely is the reality as good as the idea seemed the night before.

Occasionally, in these wee hours of the morning, I imagine that I got a comment right at that moment. The idea nibbles at my craninum. I attempt to ignore it until, finally, I hoist myself up to feed the beast.

Usually, I'm right. There's a comment. You would think such validation would lull me to dreamland.

Instead, I sit in my bed and think, "Maybe I got another comment."

Clearly, I need help.

I am running into doorjams and forgetting to turn on the microwave.

So, Internet, how do you go to sleep? My strategies are big fat fails, and if this keeps up, I really will look like Gary Busey.

Monday, September 13, 2010

My Clean Slate

Owen finally started preschool today. It was about a week later than everybody else. It makes sense, since it's a Catholic school.

They're always a bit behind the times.

I kid.

It's a wonderful place, with caring teachers, big jars of tempura paint, and kid-size nooks and crannies. For three days a week, Owen gets to live in a larger world, one that belongs solely to him.

I wasn't prepared to feel any emotion about this. It's the same school, with most of the same friends as last year. It's preschool, for Pete's sake. 

But--My God--where is my baby?

He already looks like the man he will be someday. The soft cheeks, the dimpled elbows--they belong to the son of my memories.

I thought he was so big when he was two---the age Joel is right now.

I didn't know that he could be so protective. 

Or such a caring, trusted friend.
I watch my inquisitive first-born discover his world, and kiss him goodbye.

When I pick him up three hours later, I ask, "Which friend did you like seeing the most?"

He replies, "You, Mommy."

When Owen was just a distant hope, I taped this poem to the wall by my desk at work.

Every time I read it, I dreamed of being a mother:


by Sylvia Plath

Clownlike, happiest on your hands,   
Feet to the stars, and moon-skulled,   
Gilled like a fish. A common-sense   
Thumbs-down on the dodo’s mode.   
Wrapped up in yourself like a spool,   
Trawling your dark as owls do.   
Mute as a turnip from the Fourth   
Of July to All Fools’ Day,
O high-riser, my little loaf.

Vague as fog and looked for like mail.   
Farther off than Australia.
Bent-backed Atlas, our traveled prawn.   
Snug as a bud and at home   
Like a sprat in a pickle jug.   
A creel of eels, all ripples.   
Jumpy as a Mexican bean.   
Right, like a well-done sum.   
A clean slate, with your own face on.

My Owen. My son.  My beautiful clean slate.

Friday, September 10, 2010

I'm Guest Posting Today!

You meet a lot of special people through the blog world. One of the most special is my friend Erin at The Mother Load.

She's funny. Caring. Sensitive. Honest.

She's also a powerful writer.

When she asked me to do a guest post about my "blogging philosophy" I was honored. Please click over to read my thoughts, and then stick around to learn more about Erin. You'll be glad you did.

Clickity. Clickity.

*Comments Off*

Thursday, September 9, 2010

The Ron to My Barcardi

I opened my mailbox today, and got a letter from my friend, Jamie. Inside was a picture of our two sons, hiding under a slide. She wrote, "I'm pretty sure they were up to something..."

If anybody would know, it would be her.

I've known Jamie for almost five years now. I wouldn't say she's my BFF, because I don't say things like "BFF."  If I started talking like that, I think she would cut me.

Instead, I will simply say this: She is the chip to my queso, the Ron to my Barcardi, and the George to my Wheezy. I am my funniest, my kindest, and my most real self when we're together.

Jamie is from Pittsburgh, and is thus bilingual: "Hey, yinz jags goin' dahn a' Mon n'at? Jeet jet? Wanna ahrn and sum chip chop ham?"  I have no idea what the hell that means, but if I ever make it to Pittsburgh, she's coming with me. The place is clearly bursting with Steelers fans and lunatics. Perhaps that's redundant. 

Jamie has used her natural charms and talent for years. Before I knew her, she traveled extensively. She sang "Danny Boy" on stage in Galloway, Ireland. The patrons threw garbage at her. While living in Hawaii, she swallowed an entire squid whole to prove that white girls can swallow disgusting things, too. (Wait--that came out wrong.)

When she inexplicably took piano as an elective in college, she could never figure out how to read music. So, she did not turn on her electric piano during class. Thus, an always flawless performance. On the days of performance tests, she would go to class early and make small marks on the teacher's piano so she would know where to put her fingers.

My dear friend is working on becoming the Angelina Jolie of our local county. She is (so far)  the mother of three. Their most recent edition is a five-year old boy adopted from China. He has some serious bowel issues, and presently has a ileostomy bag. She is considering getting family T-shirts that say "Shit happens." Or, if that doesn't work, she may just pawn off their incontinent, fifteen year old dog as his "Service Animal." This puts all the poop issues in one place---the public schools, of course. 

Actually, Jamie is a dedicated public school employee. After teaching elementary special education for years, she has recently moved to high school. She explained, "One difference between teaching elementary school & high school... I now have to monitor my words in vain attempts to avoid the retort: "That's what she said..." 

Jamie's life is crazy busy--three kids, full-time work, the incontinent dog, soccer practice, volunteer work, and oh yes, the training for her first 5K. Her long-time friend, upon hearing that Jamie had decided to take this on, stated "I would expect you to say you were going to a Plushie convention before hearing you would do a 5K." 

Despite all that is on her plate, she still invites me to her table. Quite literally. The girl is always feeding me. I've shared Easter dinners and Christmas Eve suppers with her family. She is the one that organizes brunch, cookouts, and picnics. There is always room for more. She even makes her special jug-wine and fruit cocktail sangria. Just for me.

My friend is not a huggy, let's-talk-about-our feelings kinda gal. But I know, as I know that I am sitting at my table right now, that she loves me and I love her. I know that in this life, there are few people that make you a better person. 

And she is one of them. That I know for sure. 

This is an entry for the World's Greatest BFF Contest hosted by Friends You Love. 


Tuesday, September 7, 2010


Joel has discovered the word "mine." This is right on target for a two year old, and especially unsurprising for a second born.

He has had items of great importance--bottles, pointy sharp tacks, pharmaceuticals---ripped out of his hands with no regard to his own desires to drink, electrocute himself, or trip the light fantastic.

I imagine him in bed, late and night, stroking his chin and mumbling, "There will be a reckoning for this. Oh, yes!" 

Thus far, his nefarious revenge plot mostly involves the redneck battle cry of "MAH TRUCK!!" It doesn't matter if it is toy or real, it is MAH TRUCK and one best recognize, bi-otch.

Sometimes he mistakes the "T" in truck for "F." Hilarity ensues.

When he is not claiming the trucks in the world, he is getting fabulous. Owen was never one for dress-up. In fact, any attempts to do so were met with wailing and finger-pointing.

As you can imagine, Halloween is awesome.

Joel, on the other hand, changes his clothing two or more times a day. I watch him, feeling like a duck who hatched a flamingo: "I don't know what to do with you, but aren't you fun to watch?"

Here's typical Joel couture. Part of him "making it work" is to have Lightening McQueen be the classic staple of all outfits.  I can't explain the pose, however.

Another treasured item is the apron, which he always dons when playing at his toy kitchen.

And then, there's this. My sweet boy, emerging from his baby cocoon with gusto, but with quiet moments of grace as well.

He sits at the table for sometimes a half hour at a time, drawing.
He talks to himself as he creates, saying, "Momma, Dadda, Ow-Woo!" He points to the scribble which represents each person, and smiles to himself. Even when in his own world, he is still firmly in ours.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Red Writing Hood: Slumber Party

This week's Red Writing Hood Challenge is to write from the perspective of a broken inanimate object.

I welcome your thoughts and comments. FYI, this post has adult content. You've been warned.

Slumber Party 
As soon as I saw her, I knew I needed to take her home. I think it was her eyes--a cloudy, tide-pool green. I wanted to probe deeply, and discover her secrets.

This is what I do. 

I've been working the Slumber Party circuit for awhile. You know the scene, right? It's an oh-so-daring alternative to a Tupperware party. The yentas drink their Green Appletinis, tee-hee their way through party games, and buy toys like yours truly.

Yes, technically, I am a toy. But I'm definitely not for the kiddos.

With six levels of power, twirling shaft beads, and a remote control, I am the Long Distance Dolphin. Perhaps you've heard of me.

I saw her approach the table. Her face was flushed from her second drink. She wore black yoga pants, and her work badge hung limply on a lanyard around her neck. She needed to reapply her lipstick.

She picked up a Pocket Rocket, smiled to herself, and placed it back down. She scanned the edible underwear and the hot-and-cold massage oil. She picked up a best-seller, the butt plug with the magnetic attachment. Supposedly, it works quite well during the spin cycle. "Oh my GOD!" she shrieked, nudging her friend. "Holy Shit!"

She picked me up, "Look, Suzanne!" she said, reading from my package,  "108 patterns of erotic enjoyment...all at my fingertips! And...wait, " she laughed out loud, a spontaneous spasm of mirth, "It has a REMOTE CONTROL!" Her laughter heightened, wave after wave, until she bent forward, unable to speak. Unable to do anything but enjoy the sensation.  She wiped her tears, her shaking slowly giving way to slow, steady breaths.

I wanted to light up a cigarette. If I only had arms.

"Buy it!" her friend said, "You need this! Just think of the, Girl Scout Meetings," the two shrieked together, doubled over once again.

I love it when they do it twice.

My green-eyed friend tipped back her drink, swallowed hard, and placed me in her bag. "Tonight, I'm riding the dolphin."

My pleasure, I thought.

The house was dark as she walked inside. She strutted into the kitchen, flipped her hair, and cooed, "Hey Derek."

He didn't look up from the glow of the computer, "Hold on, honey, I'm almost done with this post."

She sat down at the kitchen table. "What are you writing about?"

He sighed, "I'm trying to write a review of Guitar Hero: Primus Edition, if you must know."  He looked her up and down, "How was your candle party?"

"Well," she said, licking her lips, "It actually wasn't a---"

He shut the laptop with a thump, "Whatever, honey. Just don't spend too much money on crap we don't need." He scratched his ear, then sat up. "Oh, Barbara, I got something for you!"

"What that?" she asked. She walked behind him, rubbed his shoulders.

He brushed her off, and handed her a magazine. "You know how you've said you wanted to lose some weight? I brought you some inspiration." He handed her the Victoria's Secret catalog. She said nothing.

He grinned, "You can thank me later." He grunted, stood up, and headed to the bathroom. "Gotta make some turtle soup." He turned around, "On second thought, could you hand me that catalog?"

"Charming," she muttered to herself, as his footsteps echoed down the hallway. She slumped into a chair. "God, I'm so stupid. So, so, stupid."

She sat for a moment, her face a flat, watery stone. Then, she walked to her bedroom and placed me in her nightstand drawer.

I rest here today. Unused. My batteries drain.  Her light slowly dims to nothing.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Bringing out the Fun in Fascism

I caught this shot of Joel the other day.

Because I blog, I'm always looking for cheap gags witty observations to share.

Flipping though my camera phone,  I said to Paul, "Are you thinking what I'm thinking?"

"No," he replied. "Whatever it is, I am not."

I barrelled on, "You don't think he looks like Kim Jong Il in this picture?"

My husband shook his head. "Really, Nancy? You're comparing our son to a dictator?"

"Yes really! I shall call him Joel Jong Il. That's comedy, right there!" I smiled to myself, imagining the comments pouring, like a bubbling stream of validation. 

We sat together in amiable silence for a moment. "Paul?"

He looked up from his phone, "Yes, dear?"  

"Would it be in bad taste to dress Owen up like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad?"

He half smiled. "And how would you plan on doing that?"

I knew the answer to this one. "Button up shirt. Coffee ground beard." 

"Nancy," he said, as kindly as he could, "Dressing our children up as dictators? As bad, bad men?  That's just really, really weird."

I pictured Owen with that coffee ground beard. "You don't think it would be funny?"

"No. Would it be funny to dress the boys up like Hitler or Mussolini?" 

I frowned, "That's totally different."  

He stood up, placed his dirty plate in the sink, and said, "No, honey. It's not different at all." 

Well. So much for comedy gold.

Have you ever mistaken a clump of poop for comedy gold?