Damn, Those Genes Look Good On You!

"You're starting to suspect that the story of how Mommy and Daddy met actually involved fewer rainbows and unicorns and more booze and Camaros."

A small number of you may have noticed there was never a follow-up to my sectioned post regarding my recent trip "home". This is largely due to my inability to quite reconcile all that took place the remainder of the visit. It left me with feelings of sorrow and loneliness and I suppose I somehow think time will heal those wounds. Nonetheless, all was not lost.

I had previously found a great deal of entertainment in the tales of my dear Dziadek (my paternal grandfather). For various reasons, some of which have been shared with me over the years, many of his children were not nearly as fond of him as I. But there are always vastly differing emotions gathered from assorted points-of-view as well as personal experiences. My intent was surely never to argue with any of those. In my own dealings with him and the stories he told me of his childhood, I felt an undeniable sense of pride and more often than not, amusement. One source of such joy lay in the simple fact that we seemingly had/have quite a lot in common.

On this recent trip "home", it was discovered that hours upon hours of recordings exist from my father's final few visits with Dziadek before his passing. I experienced a once-in-a-lifetime chance to look back upon faded photographs of both my father and grandfather as children combined with those of relatives I wouldn't necessarily recognize in a crowd of two. Old, crumbling letters, yearbooks, portraits and quite simply history. Amazing how across such an expansive passing of time, little has in fact changed. The voice recordings are of particular interest as I barely KNEW the man I feel such a connection towards.

This all leads me to place a greater value upon the preservation of memories for those down the genealogical road. References to my "craftiness" have little to do with some mythical notion of scrapbooking passions and I rarely take the time to organize the captured moments of days gone by as it is. As the antithesis of a packrat, I have no doubt long-since tossed old yearbooks or childhood photos and such - but I do now appreciate a sense of altering those habits going forward. What is junk to one can easily equate to the treasures of another. Something as simple as the handwriting on an old envelope. All too easy to overlook personal touches in the ever-advancing age of technology - I just hope I can somehow pass down an impression other than "cyber attention whore" with a bit of effort! ;)

From Out Of The Woodwork....

"You are shocked and embarrassed when police tell you that "Manwiches" should be made from a canned-beef mix."

I was quite pleasantly surprised this past weekend to not only learn we HAD neighbors, but that these same neighbors were additionally friendly drinkin' folk! Despite my tendencies to remain blissfully locked within the sanctity of my shade-drawn habitat, I was inspired to do the unthinkable: Open the garage during a time I wasn't heading directly to or from the car. I just opened it. I sat in my garage and left it open. Much to my amazement, people began gathering. Seemingly from out of nowhere! Aside from our friend two doors down, I didn't recognize a single face. We have been in this house approaching 5 years now. Yeah.



It seems there was this bustling little community just beyond our front door. Come to find out, many of them had moved in shortly before or after we did. I further discovered many of them had children of the same ages as my midgets! Who the hell knew? Oh right - people who don't dart out to retrieve the mail in a panic during the middle of the night...

I'm unable to pinpoint when I became so entirely withdrawn - if memory serves me, which it certainly RARELY DOES - I could even recall one or two times I was weeding or accomplishing another such project where I would have been out of my comfort zone and in direct view of these creatures. Then again, given the caliber of some of our visitors, I can't blame them in the least for keeping a respectable distance. We must have appeared to be some strange concoction of The Radley household and The Klopeks! Those who know me would possibly respond with showers of praise... Mission accomplished, no?



Well, not necessarily. I had an admittedly lonely childhood as my parents had achieved a level of fear from all our curiously god-fearing neighbors. I had neglected to make a conscious decision in ensuring my own boys were equally ostracized. I was always under the impression I wasn't making a completely terrible impression - after all, I was careful not to utilize my broom for my daily commute, and I even recently began incorporating color into my strange wardrobe! If that's not a worthy attempt at social contact, I'm unsure what IS!



Perhaps I could blame My Big Bag Of Man Candy? To the untrained eye, he can appear a fearful sort of gent.... While on one of our dates early on, I was quietly pulled aside by the management of a certain establishment to see if I needed "assistance" - It seems the perception was that this biker-looking "brute" had kidnapped Yours Truly. I still have a hearty chuckle at that memory! No, that couldn't be the cause... beyond the foreboding exterior, he is a doll with a heart of gold. I mentioned the friend two houses down - he and my 'Ol Man were thick as thieves within minutes of meeting!

Lacking anyone else to pin the blame to akin to a badge of honor, it looks like this was all my own design. And yet, as this plan unraveled before my eyes, I was filled with a sense of.... how you say?.... Ah yes, "community"! This all resulted in delightful, if not slightly hazy and alcohol-filled, memories. One could say I was downright dazzled at this group's ability to hang. The nights went on til well past the witching hour and by 6am the next day, we'd all be at it again. With no pressing errands or other tasks, it was simply delectable basking in the warmth of late Spring and Jack Daniels. For once in recent history, all the sounds of joy and sarcastic banter were resonating around me as opposed to out a distant window. It was a taste of what is apparently to come and I was able to raise my glass to that with minimal effort.



I will refrain from addressing my current mental capabilities :) Cheers!

A Corroded Key

"You're the envy of all your friends, but only because they're tasteless masochists."

I had originally intended to provide a thorough play-by-play on a certain graduation that took place yesterday afternoon - but as there exists grainy footage of such that can be viewed at a later date, I shall refrain. Rather, the events of the evening that followed sparked renewed happiness and clarity in Miss Ninja Kitty. That evening was my muse.

Beyond the influence of entirely too much wine (is there such a thing!? If you have the tolerance of a newborn - Yes. Yes there is.), I was dazzled by the conversation which took place. It was a long overdue emotional trip that offered not only explanation, but a new perception on the events that shaped the people my mother and I are today. If it were not for my innate curiosity and determination to ask the correct questions, the door to this realm may well have remained forever locked. 

Specifics of the content of this conversation will remain ours and ours alone. If you know anything about me and my gift of gab, you know the significance of that statement. However, there is one discovery that I shall share as no damage or betrayal results from such. I discovered last night the magnitude of sacrifices my mother made in her own life and to her own happiness which directly resulted in all the freedoms, fabulous personality quirks and any confidence I possess and further exhibit today. That last part was particularly revealing as I had spent the greater part of my life believing the poisonous notion that she had somehow held me back in this regard. It wasn't so much that I harbored any resentment for this... Rather, my hypersensitive interpretations of our previous interactions led me to the conclusion that I had a small level of confidence IN SPITE OF rather than DUE TO all of this.

I now stand (or sit, as the case may be) before you an immensely humbled, enriched and fortunate woman. I imagine it rivaling the emotions surrounding the days following a near death experience. This can mostly be attributed to my flair for the dramatic. Nonetheless, this feeling approaches the sensation of every last one of my nerve endings bursting like a metaphorical sparkler. ALIVE! Well.... without the accompanying cannibalism, of course *snicker*.

When I got off the phone with my mom this morning, I gathered this experience had been quite mutually beneficial. There were tears and apologies of the imagined burden she had caused me by letting down her guard and filling me with all the pain and brutal honesty she had kept bottled up for far too many years. I was on the verge of shocked laughter as she clearly didn't realize what she had released me from. A smile danced across my lips as I heard through the unnecessary apologies that for the first time in decades, she slept. Through the night. Without any "helpers". No more nightmares. So much that had been feasting away at her soul was now the mere faint ghost of a predator.

There are no words in any language that could begin to capture the thanks I wish to express to her. But I shall make it my mission to try anyway. I love you, Mom.

If It's Too Good To Be True...

" Your old solution isn't going to work on your new problem. Try drinking twice as much of it. "

On the way to god-knows-where last night, I wandered by the illuminated screen of the TV in our room and became instantly hypnotized. An infomercial. But not just any infomercial (as pretty well 99.9% of the damn things are nowadays with the passing of Billy Mays) - one for precisely the product I was unaware I needed! A magical paint sprayer. I have no doubts this was pissed upon by the gods as the demonstration happening before my very eyes was downright astonishing!.... Plus I still have two or three painting projects I really need to get on before what's left of my hypothetical motivation vanishes.



As I type this, I have no less than two browsers in the background containing shopping carts from two As Seen On TV sites with products it just so happens I am in desperate need of. So why can't I commit to pressing "send"? Am I so entirely jaded on the promises of strangers despite their honest declarations of complete satisfaction? Perhaps the shipping seems all too unreasonable given the invoices I browse monthly for my company's FedEx account. Surely these global masters of merchandising have similar corporate dollar-volume-discount contracts? Ahhh... then there's the learned talent of closing aforementioned browser and hoping for a discount if I promise to come back....



I was reading, just this morning, that these products generate billions in profit each year. Billions. Even those of us who have a hell of a time paying a utility bill are somehow able to shell out money in the hopes of some level of happiness or convenience. It makes me curious if these masterminds of marketing are overlooking the obvious benefits of branching out into the religious cult arena. Or perhaps they are one and the same?

The dilemma surrounds notions that those such as Ninja Kitty really have a perceived NEED for a handful of these items. A NEED to believe that a solution exists for an affordable sum. For the love of Pete, who the hell bothers to even address a specific problem through invention if for no other reason than fraud? Quite frankly, it breaks my heart. I'm troubled that such evil exists as to form a business with the ultimate mission of providing false hopes to damaged goods. I won't even get started on the pure bullshit that is Publisher's Clearing House! Our friendship is currently quite on hold!



Back to the subject at hand, I actually procured a product based on the recommendation of a kind woman who clearly saw pain painted upon my face. One who took just enough pity to divulge a dirty little secret to this product's success. And you know what? It worked! I kid you not. It further has worked for those few I have unabashedly shared the information with. And as luck would have it - as the news spreads, the demand grows. There was plenty of supply in the beginning, but now thanks to customs implications, one feels they are bordering on treason to continue with the purchase. It has become a burden of the black market variety. Is there no justice? Why impose frivolous regulations on that which delivers something other than grief for those who had almost lost all hope?



I am jaded, indeed. As I now fully believe that nothing worth procuring can be procured with the slightest of ease. Nothing truly legitimate in it's promise would so much as be broadcast across normal channels. So who the hell do I have to kill around here to find China's equivalent of the products sitting in my bloody respective carts? *sigh*

A Brief Rant Of The Male Variety

"The men from the recliner company will stop laughing just long enough to claim they've never seen anyone lose a leg in one of their products before. "

A song just happened to pop up on the 'ol iPod that reminded me of a post I had previously began, only to abandon in favor of drug-induced ramblings: "You Think You're A Man". Although I'm not the drag queen I aspire to be, I can't help but love this song. And I can't help but instantly think of one of my self-entertaining pet peeves. I was recently advised that those 70lb pipsqueaks flitting about in far-too-tight "skinny jeans", girlish hoodies and Robert-Smith-Wanna-Be shoes are the "New Metal". How bloody long have I been asleep in my cave that THIS was allowed to happen? Lemmy would be rolling in his goddamned grave... if he were, in fact, deceased.

This brings about a larger pet peeve: Manchildren. I'm not talking your run-of-the-mill immature spouse, brother, coworker, what-have-you.... Rather, the overgrown boys who strut around and take on an air of confidence akin to the proverbial Napoleon complex which the vertically challenged so naturally possess. How is it healthy, let alone remotely attractive, for a grown "man" to strive for their high school weight (unless, of course, you are of Scandinavian descent and you were over 200lbs by age 15)? Similar to the debate some mature men endearingly enter into regarding women with curves vs. size 0 daisy-duke-sporting-dimwits, I'm sending an official "shout out" and "HELL YES" to all the real men out there.

Insecurities exist along all points of the gender spectrum, and I have been personally exposed to men... aforementioned REAL MEN.... who have *gasp!* gained weight from high school and are actually self-conscious about sporting XL, XXL or better size clothes. So I say this: If the mention of the words "Six Pack" sooner make your mouth water for a FULL CALORIE beer than instantly remind you to hit the gym.... if you have some padding AND personality. If you are entirely unable to feasibly share clothes with your tween: Congratulate yourself, Sir, because you are a real man, and there are plenty of eligible and glamorous ladies out there who wouldn't hesitate to inappropriately whistle at you walking down the street.

Just Sayin'! Oh.... and MEOW ;)

Recognizable, Yet Unfamiliar: Scene 1

"Your fear of being assassinated is groundless. Important figures are assassinated; you will be beaten to death with a rake behind the Safeway. "

It seems I'm recovering nicely, or perhaps defiantly, after a whirlwind trip down memory lane. Incidentally, I'm also precisely where I thought I'd be whether or not The Rapture had actually taken place. This pleases me on too many levels! (For the rest of you, have no fear, the jackass has "amended" the date... you know, with 100% accuracy again.) Going back "home" after almost a decade away was quite sobering. As such, I was required to counter that emotion with the aid of many bottles of wine, a few beers, and roughly 6 or so cups of coffee each day.



It all began far too early on a lovely Friday morning. My gift of procrastination dictated I was not to finish packing until the 11th hour - hell, I didn't actually BEGIN packing until about 20 minutes prior to that... But much to my amazement, all went smoothly. It was my 4 year old's first time on an airplane, which signals the first time through what is normally the hell of security. Somehow, the stars aligned just so, allowing every last detail to go off without a hitch. In fact, I have never had such a pleasant journey through the full body scanner! The normally surly folks of the TSA were clearly dazzled with my redhead -  he was even wallpapered with "Honorary Junior TSA" stickers by the time we made it through. What I wasn't expecting was how I had overlooked the world through the eyes of a child. It never occurred to me that the poor thing had never so much as set eyes on an escalator! (No, we really don't get out much) By the time we encountered the moving sidewalk, I was almost as giddy as he! The flight was perfection, and I'm rather positive kiddo doesn't grasp the importance of that statement as he was saved from being knocked out with the handy frying pan I planted in my carry-on just in case!



Upon landing, it hit me. A momentary rush of all I left behind and never intended on looking back upon. The smells, the sights - all very recognizable, even with all that had changed (which was a ton!). Each road we turned on, each step I took after that - an associated memory. Yet so distant, it was as though these were vague memories of another life or timeline. Hazy and disassociated. There was no real emotional response. Good, bad or indifferent. Just memories. I had to laugh as the moment we crossed the threshold into my brother's place, Van instantly made himself at home then suddenly declared: "I've got to get out of this state!". I understood that sentiment all too well through the chuckles.

From there, it felt as though we hit the ground running. I had purposely avoided committing to overwhelming plans, but traveling with an uncoordinated midget always adds a bit of spice to each. Even so, the next evening, my heart was swelling with love and appreciation for the two plans of earlier that day. The first, to visit one of the most incredible women I've ever encountered. My "second mom". A woman who has endured more pain and turmoil than most could fathom, yet remains an optimistic - deliciously sassy - and classy lady. This same stunning lady has finally found her ultimate soulmate and an accompanying sense of calm and peace, despite ongoing health concerns. Her husband was nothing short of an angel. I beamed at the sight of these two holding hands and snuggling. Glowing at each other's mere touch like adoring teenagers. The care he exhibited in watching her gingerly move about the room. Talk of taking another cruise when she gets through the next round of chemo. Nothing could possibly tarnish their happiness, and I wouldn't hesitate in taking out anything that tried! All my wishes for her that she would find the unconditional love and happiness she so richly deserved were realized before my eyes.



The second plan of the day - to finally meet My La and her family (or most of them) in person. We had only previously spoken through written correspondence, and I fell in love with her instantly. The moment I pulled up in the borrowed car to where we had agreed upon meeting - it was like I had known her for multiple lifetimes. Her boys were absolutely gorgeous, and I could see why: STUNNING. Without missing a beat, I found myself gabbing obnoxiously with this blonde bombshell of a woman. Words can't even approach the beauty she exudes, and she has the rare gift of a fabulous personality to boot! Two words: Total package! But sorry, gentlemen, she is quite happily taken, or frankly I would have abducted her myself! After consuming far too much coffee, we went off to my favorite park to let the boys frolic in the duck shit of a flooded pond. We laughed and shared so many stories as though we were 8 year olds at a slumber party. I could not have envisioned a more perfect end to a perfect day. My only regrets: that it had to end and there are so many geographical miles between us. I was simply dazzled beyond my already quite high expectations.



When kiddo and I returned to our hilariously shady hotel (which was due to something other than the towering trees surrounding it), I made myself another pot of coffee and basked in the sounds of the rushing river below the balcony.  Van settled nicely into his new "favorite home" watching videos and eating cookies then finally dozing off. I wasn't entirely ready to watch that day come to a close.



For all the nervous dread and anxiety swirling around going back to that city - I am entirely grateful I didn't allow that to stop me from boarding that plane. These new, marvelous memories were able to wash away the old, tainted ones. The clean slate I had always gone off in search of simply didn't matter anymore. A chapter of my life had finally closed and that wasn't even to be the end of the journey.

Trix Are For Kids... No Darling, Those Aren't Trix

" You will discover an unfortunate downside to eating too many of those scrumptious, non-fat sleeping pills."

Despite my best (so yes, I pretty well didn't even try) efforts to avoid obsessing over all my various horoscopes, I got quite a kick out of the other-worldly information received yesterday. There's something so delightfully arrogant about picking out all the bits and pieces you think hit the nail on the head. After all, doesn't everyone love hearing how they're destined for greatness for no reason beyond being born on a certain day? Never mind that there are only a few million people in the world who share that honor.....



Regardless - In the name of humility, I was even willing to read the "bad" parts so that I could proudly claim ownership to all of it. Additionally, I figured that would make it slightly more legitimate.*** Not a bad plan, eh? Well this particular combination of entertaining nonsense was actually bordering on spooky. Granted, I already established I'm flexible - I'm a regular Gumby when it suits me. So it's possible I am simply altering myself like liquid latex to fit the form. Still, if I hadn't gone through free, no-obligation channels, I might have even been inspired to pay for it! Almost.... :



"You live like a gypsy without any roots. You have trouble finding a medium between getting stuck and going completely wild: As a result, you are in danger of succumbing to some form of overindulgence, with food, sex, alcohol, drugs or another vice. " 

In my defense, I finally overcame the "food" portion of that.... well.... thanks to the drugs.... Umm.... Moving right along, it was actually almost comforting to find an explanation for all the madness. "By "explanation", does she really mean "scapegoat"?".... Glad you asked! YES!!! I have spent the greater portion of my life seeking the approval of others. It is quite possibly one of my greatest... well.... weaknesses.... Now check THIS shit out: "As a child you were likely dominated and restricted from expressing your needs. The result is that you suppress your own wants in order to please others. This challenge, felt to an extreme, may paralyze you from being aware that your desires are valid and deserve to be met."



So where is all this going? Pure, unadulterated justification for my dependence on pills. Huh? I didn't stutter. I have found that my neighborhood drugstore stocks an over-the-counter solution in a bottle for damn near every desire that sparks my fancy. And for the rest, there's always Amazon. Or that weird, ***"Legitimate" website based in China who sends suspicious packages to me once every few months with "gift" notated on the contents box of the customs form. Some would see red flags a-plenty when a website is literally wallpapered with the word  "Legitimate" in glittery graphics. Those same people simply have no sense of adventure.



Between my dangers of succumbing to pills (and other such vices), and my paralyzation of clearly valid needs: Ninja Kitty is the direct result of fate. The end product of years worth of intervention of the astrological variety. As such, I will no longer make any apology for my habit of popping whatever I can find laying around in the midst of boredom. If it's expired? Hot damn! Even better! It's had that much more time and mystical influence to become a super species of botanical genius!

Ah yes, I forgot to mention that I also bloody well rock. In addition to my dependence on gelcaps of delectability, I am also a legend in my spare time: "Style-wise, you require a flamboyantly colorful, ever-changing wardrobe. There's no sense in spending a fortune on clothes, since your tastes and appearance are always evolving. You can rock the daring, edgy looks better than anyone."



Thinking of having me committed yet? Bring it. I'm sure if I look hard enough, I will find some shady palm reader willing to back up my assertion that I am actually the reincarnation of Houdini and those silly shackles are mere child's play. The world is my oyster...or crab as the case may be.... and I clearly have been wasting my talents on the likes of reality for far too long ;)

I'll See Your 5 And Raise You 10-Life...

" When your doctor prescribed Magnitor, you thought it was an anti-depressant, not a mutant 500-foot lizard-gorilla creature with nuclear vision. "

What with The Rapture approaching rapidly according to several completely biased and unreliable sites, I muse about where I am in my life and what I have left to do. To be honest, these thoughts have less to do with concerns of the apocalypse and more to do with a bullshit task placed on all of us at work - With little to no real thought or preparation, go ahead and sum up your dreams & aspirations for the next 1-3 years, as well as 5 years out.

Your typical HR nonsense - a bit of a jolly little game to screw with the heads of employees whose combined morale has long since sailed off into the sewage system. I rattled off a few obligatory "goals", made it look pretty with sprinklings of buzzwords and catchphrases and sent it on it's way. It took everything I had not to crudely scrawl out "My only goal is to stay employed long enough to pay the bills until I win the lottery or get hit by a beer truck". Although it was a toss-up between that and "5 Year Goal: Thai Hooker".

Once the task at hand is satisfied, off I go into my thoughts of "Sweet merciful jesus - where do I REALLY think I'll be (or hope to be) in 5 years???" Hell - even 1 year of planning would give me a delightful sense of having the slightest bit of perceived control. I'm relatively shell-shocked, as it is, to look back upon all that's happened between running away from home and the present. I could swear I wrote in blood somewhere that I wasn't planning on getting married, having kids, or selling my soul to work for the government. Huh. Ain't that some shit? And don't misunderstand - the marriage and kiddo part bloody well rocks. If it weren't for them, it is entirely possible I WOULD be a Thai Hooker by now.... Or at least in a low-end institution - maybe even of the maximum-security variety. In Detroit. Yikes. Left to my own devices, I rather suck!... I'm really hoping no one ever bothered to retrieve the DNA off that promise written in Type O Positive.....

Strange... when I added the horoscope at the top, I had initially planned on going off on an entirely different tangent. Yes. I guess not that strange. This is my compilation of ramblings, so I suppose I can do whatever I damn well please, no? Once in awhile, I revisit a moment in time when my uncle (you remember him... the one stuck in 1952 or so?) announced to my mom that I should go back to school and that he would foot the bill. The only catch? He insists I go to CalTech because he feels that would quite simply be best - why settle, right? I'm all for being lavished with the attention of those few lunatics who have no question of my perceived brilliance, but this one possibly took the cake. In the same breath - I actually.... for the moment.... stand behind my decision to leave one year shy of a degree.

So what is in the stars for Ninja Kitty? That's the beauty of it. I'm flexible. I strive not to regret the past and I honestly don't easily cave to the future expectations of those who don't truly know me. The world is continually changing before our very eyes. It is wholly possible that this coming Saturday, dozens of blow-up dolls will be released from the back door of a van that has just been in an accident signaling The Rapture is, in fact, upon us (***For My Dee :)***). It is also possible that this coming Saturday will simply go as initially planned and I be visiting my dear friend and second mom who is going through a bout with Cancer. Following that, it is possible that I will be meeting an amazing and beautiful woman and her family for the first time. Someone I feel I've known for a lifetime despite never seeing her in person. We will let our boys play in the park and follow it up with a spectacular dinner at a kickass diner up one of the canyons.

If one is too busy fretting about all the future holds, it will be all too easy to miss what is going on around you. I am most certainly as guilty of this as anyone. But I try. I try to take a step back or out or up in the sky even. Something to remove my true self from the self that loathes itself and suffers at the hand of all it's own insecurities. Earlier in the day, I was quite down. Weepy. A bit cough-y and phlegm-y too... Maybe even thirsty.... Anyhoo - I was in a selfish moment of misery. Somehow, against the odds, I am now sitting here with a grin across my lips. It's raining. I'm content. And I don't give a damn where I am in 5 years, as long as my family and extended family of friends are healthy, safe and happy. A gal has every right to dream, no?

A Good 'Ol Fashioned Freak-Out

"Being in a relationship means having to make certain sacrifices. Keep slaying those goats to prevent your husband from leaving you."

Do you ever have one of those days where Patsy Cline's "Crazy" takes on a whole new meaning? Ahhh... but do you have that variety of day with such frequency that your loved ones have come to view it with the same feigned shock as displayed towards the sun rising and setting each day? *beaming* My reputation precedes me once again!

I previously mentioned that my l'il redhead and I will be traveling "home" this coming weekend. The mission? To fly one way to retrieve my fabulous mom who will be driving down from the NW to meet at that rendezvous point. From there we can help her drive back this way for The King's upcoming graduation. As is par for the course anytime any family member visits, I go into that dark, chaotic place full of shame and embarrassment at not keeping the caliber of house that could pass the white glove test. Ridiculous enough as my family claims they understand what with the age of the midgets, plus they are just visiting to see US not our zoo habitat.



I call shenanigans. Oh sure, they'll smile while gritting their teeth and silently judging - trying to nonchalantly pull out the vacuum when I turn the other way. VACUUMS ARE LOUD, GODDAMNIT!!! I'M NOT A COMPLETE MORON!!!!! "Oh Honey, You can be so silly - I'm just going to get these few spots that you may have missed while trying to be the Domestic Goddess we all know you're not". My mom, in particular, is the Queen Supreme of Covert Hostility. It's clearly genetic, as my grandma possessed the gift of insulting with the sweetest of smiles as well.


Yesterday, I was outside, taking in the fresh air (and possibly a menthol or two) and mentally running down the list of all I still had to clean/organize/disinfect/hide/toss/bury and realizing the sands in the hourglass were quickly running out. This was immediately followed by thoughts of how quickly the likes of my 'Ol Man and The Good Doctor, who are both remaining behind for this journey, are likely to undo any progress over the weekend while we're gone.

I'll be honest, yes, I had an instantaneous meltdown - but no, it wasn't the first of the day. As I was just about to weep, my 'Ol Man called from work to check up on his Lovely Lunatic - he could instantly hear the distress in my voice and asked what was going on. As the emotional vomiting commenced, he couldn't help but chuckle.... The chuckle grew steadily into an outright guffaw..... I do believe he even put me on speakerphone at one point so his friends could bask in the glory that is Little Orphan Clinically Nuts! "Are you laughing at me?" "What? No, Darling! There's no need to stress out, you're just having your mental few weeks of the month".



And there it was.

I had surpassed your common, everyday, run-of-the-mill Raving Bitch and achieved a level few of us banshees could so much as fathom! SUCK IT, BITCHES!!!! I AM THE MUTHAFUKIN' MASTER!!!!!!!!!!! HA! I can only imagine that most husbands would quite possibly find themselves in the doghouse for making such a bold statement - but this broad finds the brutal honesty delectably refreshing. It seems I have met my match. The one person on this planet who can not only handle my complete and utter instability, but embrace it and even present it to his friends as the resulting "Trophy Wife". I am the white tiger to his less-than-flamboyant Siegfried!!!!! (After all, as it turned out, Roy was no match for Kitty Kitty).



At the end of the day, I really have no reason to complain. Don't kid yourself, that's not about to stop me. But I do see the silver lining in the Charlie Brownesque dark cloud I like to imagine following me around, and that will forever bring a smile to my devious lips!

Until The Next Meltdown,
-Miss Annie V.

Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

"Fortune will smile upon you this week, only it'll do so in that shitty, passive-aggressive way Fortune has of smilingyou know the kind where you can tell it's just being polite, but that, really, it doesn't give a damn about how you're actually doing. Ugh, seriously, fuck Fortune. "

*snicker* This horoscope pretty well sums up a typical day in the life of Yours Truly. I'm quite convinced that I have driven more people away after confrontations involving the spoils of an argument I had in my head. Given a free moment, I can over think something to death - given so much as a moment AFTER that, I voice it. One would assume I had undergone surgery to permanently insert a foot in my mouth.



In any given day, I can think of AT LEAST 5 instances where I wish I could throw some sort of magical lasso around the words that escaped my mouth or that e-mail I inadvertently sent. Perhaps that should be the superhero power I pray to random woodland imps for. I'm not really sure why I'm under the impression woodland imps have the authority to make that sort of thing happen... and there it is again. I over think and over analyze even the most pitiful shit! WHY!? And why can't I restrain myself from telling the world about it? On the bright side, most of the world is still oblivious to all the ramblings that escape my lips and/or fingers. As for the rest, they've either accepted and embraced my lunacy or have learned to graciously tune it out.



I remember coming home from school one day... I was probably around 6 or 7....before I was even across that threshold to the house, I was ready to share every last detail of the oh-so-exciting life of an elementary school twit. Before I could verbally vomit on anyone who met my gaze, my dad was standing there with a gentle smile and a present for me. (***Note from the Author: This was to be the first in a long line of self-help/self-improvement books not-so-subtly gifted to Ninja Kitty***)



"Gabby".

It was actually a really brilliant read - and with supplemental literature to a similar effect, I began to get the hint. The premise of this particular story revolved around a fuzzy little rotund creature who had succeeded in annoying everyone around her until she found herself very rejected, sad and ultimately alone. One day, she encountered a kind, gentle snake who had tasted her tears from afar and was drawn to Gabby's sorrow. The snake laid out a plan for the poor, pitiful creature: Each day, Gabby would see all she can see and experience all there was to experience. This was to be accomplished in silent observation - metaphorically filling her pail with the liquid of life. Each evening, Gabby would return to the blind snake and empty the pail into her well so the snake could "see" all the world had to offer. It was a beneficial situation for each and Gabby learned to take in everything around her with new appreciation and patience. To do more than listen - to actually hear.



In so much as recalling this book, I am filled with the warm glow of embracing a lesson long ago learned and since forgotten. I suppose this blogishness has become my well. I would surely benefit from refraining from spilling the contents of that bucket all over the place on the journey home each evening. I am actually quietly giggling right now at the sudden epiphany that took place throughout my ramblings. After all, much of my insecurities of alienation are a direct result of saying too much to those I encounter each day. Often, there is a need to keep that wall in place to minimize the fragility of complete honesty. The more exposure I not only allow upon myself, but almost guarantee in everyday interactions, the more intense and numerous aforementioned insecurities.

There are no unreal expectations that a change will be immediate. Yet the goal is attainable and offers the hopes of being beneficial. So there you have it. Another day in the life of that silly head of mine.

Still Searching For Answers....

I apologize to all for the last post as it seems I sparked some bits of concern here and there. I'm still trying to work out some inner demons... laboring to untangle the chaos in my wee skull. The following lyrics have been dancing about and seem to sum up many of the notions as of late (although they are certainly possibly as cryptic). I shall leave it at that and continue with something far more upbeat in the near future.



"At the top of the stairs is a locked room
My secret chamber that no outsider views
For entry is forbidden prohibited
Behind this door is my other self
Not a picture in a frame nor a fresh disguise
But my other self
Immobile inert and sanguine
My narcissus kisses exhale crimson breath
And pump ruby to the lip
I stand before myself not Jekyll nor Hyde
Not sibling nor twin separated at birth
I stand before myself unaccountable
I dreamt that I had feet of clay
I dreamt I crossed the seven seas
And when I woke not knowing
I knew I led the double life
All I ever needed is twice removed
I spit in my bile in an airless temper
In this vacuum a vampire reversed
This one who breathes life into me
And even dull mirrors reflect the tarnished twosome
I stand before myself not another me
Not Döppleganger nor witless clone
I stand before myself unrepentant
I dreamt of sin and aftermath
I dreamt of centuries laid bare
And when I woke not knowing
I knew I led the double life "

~Siouxsie & The Banshees: The Double Life~

"There is nothing more helpless and irresponsible than a man in the depths of an ether binge." - Hunter S. Thompson

That said, I'm curious if my pillow was, perhaps, laundered in ether prior to last night. The events of the week leading up to this moment have left me somewhat numb. Even as I type, my boys are a small ways away - shrieking incoherently at each other one moment, then laughing maniacally the next (I'm pretty sure one of them just launched a remote and/or the cat across the living room at one of my favorite pictures). A normal mother would probably have intervened long before now - maybe disciplined the wee beasts or sent them to separate corners for a time out. I'm sure I'll unleash my death metal voice momentarily long enough to finish a thought.... and back.

I found myself staring in the ceiling in disbelief through the night. Once again, I was in the bunk bed with The Miniature One after a particularly rough evening. As I lay there, I would be occasionally entranced by his breathing patterns - The Muppet snoring - His little cricket feet... Just like his Papa... Always moving. Between these trances, so many thoughts running through what's left of my mind. This time, they were more unusual, though. More... organized. As though I were getting all my mental affairs in order before doing something drastic. A conveyor belt would present each new thought with polite consideration of my traumatized state. It didn't feel so much as though I were actually registering each thought - rather taking a sort of inventory and promptly sending each on it's way to be catalogued. Almost self-impressed with the level of organization I could be capable of with a bit of exertion.

Awhile back, I had an experience akin to a recurring dream. Deja vu of the most frightening variety. Before this moment, the last such occurrence was during my senior year of high school. The memory of it...so vivid, it sends chills dancing across my flesh as I consider whether my mind would ever win this bizarre battle against itself. Before I continue, I feel I must make something abundantly clear. I do not wish to end my time on this planet. I have no aspirations to make the 9 o'clock news, nor would I ever do anything to intentionally cause pain to my family or those I love.

When this experience came crashing over me with the same awesome force of an ocean wave, I was driving at night across an overpass. I have crossed this same overpass countless times without so much as a second thought. In fact, I used to drive that route every morning on my way to work, and again on auto-pilot each evening. This time was so very different. It was longer.... more ominous... the condition of the road itself had changed - as though I could feel the texture of the asphalt reverberating through my body. Altering my blood flow.

I momentarily flashed back to that magical nighttime kayak adventure while I was in Puerto Rico the previous September. As I was driving, all the roughness of the road very suddenly smoothed - smoothed to the water beneath the mangroves. The canopy of twisted branches barely visible through the darkness. The sounds of the sea water sloshing off the oar with each successive stroke... those were the only sounds between an almost deafening silence. This bridge went on for what seemed like days. My mind racing between the here and now, and that kayak. In one final moment, I remember the lagoon - the destination of that voyage. So dark. But as you let your fingertips caress the water just outside the boat, all the luminescent algae would light up .... millions of them so that the water sparkled and glowed ever-so-briefly. In that exact point in time, I inexplicably felt the car pulling to the right. My mind racing through the motions of driving off that bridge to my death.

The muscles in my arms had won this battle. I found myself at the opposite end of the overpass - Safe and alive. Tears streaming down my cheeks as I fought to catch my breath. As I awoke from this horrible dreamlike state, Deep Blue Day was softly playing through the car's speakers.

Yesterday, before I attempted to go to sleep..... I had a brief hiccup of a memory - the memory that I actually had been having these recurring dreams of sorts far more frequently. Only they had taken a different turn. And by "frequent", I mean approaching the level of hourly. I can only imagine in some sort of defense/survival attempt, my mind has been furiously toiling to keep these subdued and hidden in shadow. Yet my mind is clearly engaged in debate with itself as it failed to keep the flashlight from flickering on upon this revelation.

How does one so much as begin to prepare for the descent into madness? Is vigilant/analytical thought any sort of armor? I have had casual fears of notions of being a prisoner in my own mind. It's become far more commonplace or at least more common in my conscious awareness what with literally millions of sources of information streaming in any given second. Is it, perhaps, best to shut the outside world off? Roll the dice on the odds that the poison is from an outside influence? It seems I have yet another journey ahead of me. Additionally seems this time I may truly need the luck I have previously requested under better circumstance.

Atari Envy

"A bargain struck with a small-time demon will result in your playing a high-stakes game of Skee-Ball this week for possession of your immortal soul."

It would be quite the understatement to observe that I'm predictably "behind the times". This is true for everything from technology to the latest fads. Although it suits my alien presence on this planet perfectly, sometimes I can be a bit self-conscious about it (shocking, I know).


Yesterday, I had kidnapped a dear friend of mine to run a quick errand. After all, said errand would never have been accomplished if I was forced to face the public all by my lonesome. I additionally subjected the poor Beauty to my music. Much to her delight, there were sprinklings of great 80's songs in there. We enthusiastically agreed that 80's music, as a whole, was far more brilliant than most of the shit out these days... This led to further musings about how we now, rather officially, sound just like our parents and I'm sure their parents before them. Suddenly she shot me one of those "Shit, I wish I could kill you with no more than a glance" sort of looks.... "You were just a fucking kid in the 80's!!!!!" Yes, well, add another one to the list, then.



Growing up with two older brothers, 4 years and 8 years older than me, respectively, I was always under the impression I was pretty "hip" on all the coolest trends, catchphrases, technology and current events. The sheer fact that I just uttered the word "hip" when not referring to a body part pretty well qualifies for a "Nuff said" response. I didn't seem to register the notion that the things that were in style for their respective age groups were already on the cusp of archaic and foreign for my own generation. As I swam cluelessly into my teen years, and then into some form of adolescence, I held fast to the dream that all those things I missed the trolley on would someday come circling around again. To date, I'm somewhere in the neighborhood of 2-out-of-57 on those odds. Ah well, I shall celebrate those same two with obnoxious "told ya so" arrogance!

One shining example of all of this was the arrival of an Atari at the house of one our family's friends' (my parents liked convincing us we could never own such a thing, even though I can't put a finger on one single piece of logic that was ever provided). The Atari - What an awesome goddamned creation. I will forever maintain that this hunk of plastic provided more hours of unadulterated entertainment than any other gaming device will ever hope to. Graphics? Who needs them? The more pitiful and pixellated the two-tone images on the screen, the better. It's probable that my lack of quick comprehension only fuels my awe with such a simple design of pure genius. Plus, those game cartridges totally doubled as weapons. I mean seriously. Holy fucking shit. BRILLIANCE.



When my friends would get the latest and greatest toys on the market - that exclusive object of marketing savvy every kid is throwing an unreasonable temper tantrum (and their poor, suckers-for-parents are engaging in riots) in the hopes of finding under the Xmas tree - I would get the unusual.... ummm.... "Hey Mom, what exactly IS this?" From my parents' recent trip to Denmark. Don't get me wrong, I have an extraordinary appreciation for their sense of adventure NOW - but back then, I felt just that much more... well.... odd. When my friends were rocking out to NKOTB, I was accompanying my parents to a Simon & Garfunkel concert held at the local arboretum. Shit, am I really STILL shocked I've never been able to relate? *snicker*

Fast forward a few decades, and little has changed. Strange how the one thing that brought on this train of thought in the first place was a friend's blog referring to Facebook. I was on that once. I farmed, after the rest of the world grew tired of farming. I hunted for treasure, long after the thrill was gone. I posted status updates about things that happened a week ago, which in the age of constantly-streaming-by-the-moment-reports may as well be an era or two back. It seems I am simply determined to remain hopelessly irrelevant and stuck on some alien timeline. That weird kid who no one WANTS to invite to their birthday party, but their parents said they had to because the rest of the class was invited and it would be rude not to.



Ahhh, but there is a silver lining, it seems. You see, I'm not the only one who had malfunctioning landing gear and ended up in the wrong end of the cosmos. Here and there, I encounter individuals, unexpectedly, who "get me". Those who never need any explanation or clarification. Those who accept me, not despite, but BECAUSE of all my faults. Tis a marvelous thing, indeed! It also certainly helps my case that words like "Retro" and "Vintage" are no longer isolated mutterings of some crazy broad who notoriously hoards cats and worships all things polyester.



All this said, I raise my glass in celebration of all us lunatics, out there in the world, who are JUST clever enough to evade the Nurse Ratcheds of the world! Cheers, My Pets!

A Motorcycle Built For Two

"You will fall into a pattern of self-destructive behavior this week when you discover how much fun that sort of thing is. "

It's curious how you can stumble upon a random contraption of metal, grease and leather and suddenly wonder how in the world you existed without it. Especially when that same contraption is somehow stunning and tough at the same time. I had always admired motorcycles from afar, taking great delight in the unique ways people would customize them as a sort of living, purring work of art. I took even greater delight in the unique characters riding them.




Many years ago, I had read Hunter S. Thompson's book on the Hell's Angels (titled the very same) with a furious degree of intrigue. Despite a vivid, brutal and often horrifying picture being painted, I couldn't help but find a level of romance between the lines. The sheer freedom of the open road - the power, authority and ominous presence of these aggressive, dirty beasts. Untamed by humanity or laws. Violent and misunderstood all at once. Gypsies.


Perhaps this counter-culture is a manifestation of everything I believe the darkest parts of my own self are compiled of. It was never a fascination of money, status or brand. No, it was something far more raw and haunting than that. The reality is that I'm still unsure where I fit in or what defines me from one moment to the next. That which inspires me is greatly varied, and my experiences tell me that none of these inspirations were ever destined to mesh. As each of my puzzle pieces is dissected, one can find a niche, of sorts, that celebrates each. Yet beneath that group is the bubbling decay of exclusiveness and clique-caliber membership. One must be a "purist" to call oneself a fan. Knowledge and demonstration of every defining detail down to the smallest level must be achieved or you face ultimate rejection. It seems the rules of High School spill shamelessly over into adulthood.


I make no apologies for the fact that I cannot be pinned down to one style, interest or genre. I cannot change my unpredictability nor would I necessarily want to. A potpourri of personalities and passions. Bits and pieces of comprehension or insight...simply never enough to experience a sense of belonging. I even face daily fluctuations of sensitivity towards so much as a desire to belong. My guess is that this sensitivity is borne of always viewing the world from outside that window. The loneliness that can often accompany it.

Last night, we welcomed the addition of a motorcycle to our simple family. With that, an overwhelming motivation to study, create and absorb all it has to offer. I will never fit into the world of bikers and mechanics. I have no desire to suddenly pop in on rallies or exhibitions. I don't look like a pinup, nor would I fit in with the bleach blond tanned Mamas of North Dakota. Merely a simple gal with a sparkle in her eye and a deep level of respect for the danger this beast is capable of. The road ahead beckons both literally and figuratively.


Escape From The Crayola Factory

"Following 43 years of uncertainty and confusion, things will finally start making sense around August when you decide to purchase a wall calendar. "

Some days, the term "Bimbo" just doesn't quite capture the essence of the person standing before you. It's additionally frightening when this same person holds a position of dangerous authority/responsibility in a company. You know the type - you can be talking to them about something exceedingly simple and out of the corner of your eye, you would swear a bubble or two just floated by.... a sign there is something altogether more hilariously entertaining than hot air going on between those ears. The deer in the headlight gaze, the exuded bewilderment in response to what you've just said.... The uncomfortable silence, interrupted finally by an awkward giggle.



I imagine this creature, this remarkable specimen who somehow survived well into adulthood despite being the creation of an unchlorinated gene pool, having all sorts of magical nonsense happening in place of a brain.... Sidewalk chalk residue, puffy stickers, butterfly stencils and perhaps even bits of aromatic play-dough all swarming around inside her skull. I glance down in sheer amazement at the absence of velcro-fastened shoes.

At the risk of generalizing/stereotyping, I shall share a brief story with you. Back when I was a kiddo, I was working at a national-chain bookstore. I encountered my fair share of weirdos and goofs, but I was altogether unprepared for the experience I was about to stumble upon. A gal I went to high school with, who shall remain nameless, came briskly walking in. A look of urgency if not general panic on her pretty painted face. She was a slender blonde gal who's sole reason for being was to ultimately win a beauty pageant. I'm not sure she had even narrowed it down to one. I'm also unsure if she figured there was no purpose in life beyond that moment, so she had somehow arranged to spontaneously combust once the tiara was placed atop her head...... I'm genuinely enjoying that visual, by the by :).



I observed one employee after another speaking with her for only moments before turning around and walking away in utter disgust. Now I was downright intrigued. I casually walked over to greet her and find the reason behind her gracing us w/ her aspiring pageant queen presence. "Oh thank god you're here!" She exclaims - "I need a book". "Ummm, OK, do you know either the name of the book or the author? Maybe the subject of the book?" She laughs in disbelief. "No, Silly! OK, so it's like this big *makes general measurements with her hands* by like this big *more hand waving*.... I think".... "OH! And it's purple!!!!!" I had to smile at how completely pleased she was with herself for remembering that last part. In fact, the notion that she had linked needing this vaguely sized purple book and a bookstore was really rather a feat! *sigh* It was a long afternoon. We had narrowed this imaginary prize down to a more manageable level of being "about $15" and "I think it may be like a coffee table book". She eventually left with my suggestion of a gift certificate in hand.



I'm not sure whatever became of that girl. It's possible some prince snapped such a total package up so she could be a kept woman... She may have even gone on to breed and release her lovely little offerings into the world. What a sparkly thought that is!

So back to "Bubbles". It would be grand to say that I wasn't completely prepared for dealing with the likes of her. But Purple Book Pageant Queen was only one in a sea of nitwits along the journey. On one side, it's easy to simply pity naivete - or to laugh in a fit of mockery. But there is a far larger issue at play, here. How is it possible that many such cases are able to flit through life blissfully unaware of their ignorance? I can't imagine never seeking answers or truly not possessing the interest to even ask the questions in the first place. It seems like it would be an incredibly shallow and lonely existence. To not grasp the subject of conversations around you - the laughter at your expense. A position of little to no respect.  Then again, I am by no means the epitome of intelligence. Perhaps I am actually surrounded by the same laughter I imagine aimed at someone else.

The stark difference is that I'm very in tune with my shortcomings and the tasks I must take on to overcome those. I'd like to think I aspire to learn more and welcome new experiences with open arms and an open mind. Yet, is it possible these creatures of simplicity have fallen into a state of the happiness the rest of us chase? For the most part, they do not exhibit feelings of stress or woe - concern or strife. They are just as serene and carefree as the bubbles floating off in the breeze. Perhaps they are the next stage of evolution? I'm having a difficult time wrapping my head around that one - but stranger things have happened..... Now where did I put those crayons?

A Shivering, Fuzzy Mess Hiding Behind The Toilet

"Remember: There's nothing you can't change if you just put your mind to it, and no mind you can't change if you just put your fists to it."

No, I'm not referring to some icky out-of-control dust bunny resulting from years of household neglect. The sentiment refers to the Lhasa my mom used to own (R.I.P., Gizzle). Any time this furry little sister of mine would feel overwhelmed or stressed (so, yeah, pretty well anytime a piece of furniture was moved so much as an inch or someone knocked at a neighboring door), she would retreat behind the toilet in the master bathroom.... a shivering, fuzzy mess. Apparently this is somewhat par for the course for this particular breed. Given that, it's possible I'm part Lhasa (and yes, most of them look just like "Gizmo").



This past weekend, I was thrown into a social situation... mentally stripped of my comfort zone. The culprit? My l'il redhead's football game. I made it explicitly clear if I coughed up the money and gave the whole thing my thumbs up, I was not to be subjected to actually bringing him to any of his games. It is not that I don't support HIS social/physical/mental development - I just prefer to casually observe all of this without actually participating. A week beforehand, The Mr. had arranged for a small pack of his friends to come out and help him in constructing a ginormous shed in our backyard. "Oh well, then Van can just skip next Saturday's game then. No biggie".  Yeah, no. It was "picture day" and The Mr. didn't think it wise to allow our son to skip it because of Mama's silly "little" issues.

Kitty has an intense social phobia and an even more intense fear of entering any situation unprepared. The latter is so intense that my 'Ol Man had to at least drive up to the field separately to make sure I knew where in the hell we were supposed to go. As I pulled into the parking lot, my palms were instantly sweating and my heart, racing. Cars. Everywhere. People. EVERYWHERE!!!! Why in the hell didn't I pop one (or a dozen) of my beta blockers before leaving the house!? Furthermore, why didn't I get loaded, as planned, and take a cab up there? I clearly have no shame as I would have been unaffected by reeking of booze at 9:45am on a Saturday. The Mr. smiled and honked as he drove off back to the safety of our home. The bastard.



It was awful. AWFUL. I do not exaggerate - everyone there looked perfectly at home amongst the hoards of people, noise, heat and *shudder* children shuffling this way and that. All I could do beyond forcing a small grin as my son hugged me and ran to meet his team is repeatedly vomit in my mouth. I immediately retreated to the furthest corner of the field and curled up in a fetal position on the grass. After about 3 minutes or so, I texted my husband warning him I would be in need of therapy by the time this was all over to which he replied "LOL". There's absolutely nothing fucking "LOL" about putting me in this situation. It wasn't enough that time was moving backwards as snot-nosed little brats were wandering up to me asking where their mom/dad/the bathrooms/their coach/their dog was...As I gazed off in the distance, there was my l'il guy looking absolutely MISERABLE.

My inner dialogue was debating whether I was perhaps projecting the misery on him - but my heart was aching for him. His coach asked him no less than 5 times what his name was and then he would just stand there in silent horror as all the older kids ran circles around him, repeatedly yanking his flags off just to be shitheads (after all, the poor kid didn't even have the damn ball!). I had selfishly told him upon arriving that if he wanted to leave, we didn't have to tell Papa - we could just escape and heal over ice cream. But he was a trooper. He stuck with it for 1 hour and 52 minutes (but who's counting, right?). By that point, every muscle in my body had seized up in terror and I fully believe my ears were packed full of blood.



The remainder of the weekend was a complete haze - mostly because I did proceed to get entirely smashed in a feeble attempt at recovering. I maintained JUST enough composure to make it through Mother's Day/My Wee One's 2nd birthday with a small level of dignity. And yet, that 1 hour and 52 minutes will forever haunt me.

There really should be a series of Public Service Announcements (it would help if they feature G.I. Joe, Adam West or someone of equal caliber) explaining that social phobias are more than proverbial Tic-Tacs as compared to other diseases. The degree of mine may not be as extreme as most - I'm somewhat able to function working outside my home and occasionally handling quick outings to a grocery store (so long as I'm escorted by someone I trust in case I get the urge to disappear off into the ventilation system). Bars? I have relatively no issues with. My only request is that they be dark, dingy, mostly unoccupied, and that should I need to "break the seal", I don't have to walk past more than exactly 2 patrons.



As I face the upcoming plans to fly out of Denver International Airport (after quite possibly enduring a 1-1/2 hour public shuttle ride up there), I'm beginning to question whether there is enough Valium on the planet to survive it. Should you see me there during this unreasonable mission, it's probably best to avoid eye contact and allow me to move about like a shadow in the night. And now I must go wash my hands for the 6th time this morning as my palms are sweating once again.

*shiver*

Like Mama, Like Kitty

"You are labeled a menace to children this week when you invent a simple rubberband-powered pistol that fires crayons at 10,000 feet per second. "

I thought it appropriate, given the upcoming Hallmark/Floral-Industry holiday, to dedicate this one to My Mama. OK, confession time: That sounds like a delightful sentiment, but it's actually total coincidence. I just happened to have had a bloody hilarious conversation with my mom this morning.

It's no secret I'm a sleep-deprived and short-tempered mess. As such, the moment I answered her daily phone call, I was out the gate on my latest rant about The King and The Good Doctor. I'm amused by the manner with which I talk about my "darlings" to grandma. I'm guessing most kids out there choose to believe their parents would never chip away that marble pedestal they imagine they sit upon in their grandparents' respective eyes.... *maniacal laughter* Ahhh, children can be so naive, no?



As usual, I totally blamed them both for my lack of sleep (as well as my exponential increase in flavoring every sentence with colorful language). We had quite the hearty chuckle as we fed off each other's snarkiness while imagining crating them both and storing them in the crawlspace until more of a level of independence had been exhibited.... Yes, it went into far more detail, but we wouldn't want Social Services to start snooping around, now, would we?

I notified her that my habit of routinely dosing them both was beginning to be in vain as their l'il systems were becoming immune to my trickery. Without missing a beat, she advised I call their pediatrician to procure the sort of sedatives that could knock out a rhino. If he refused, she saw no reason for delaying a prompt trip across the border for some back-alley Valium. In the midst of this otherwise unhealthy line of debate, I couldn't help but beam. I was dreaming up some messed up shit in retaliation for having to be a responsible parent and she was agreeing with me every step of the way. Here and there she would even throw in her own memories of the mean/strange/illegal punishments she dreamt up for my brothers and I when we were too young to fight back. Curiously enough, I had mentally blocked out about 80% of these tales..... No matter, this was a good 'ol fashioned bonding moment for us: Two crazy broads who never should have been allowed to breed!



But you know? For all the things I could rant about - after all, if you leave us in the same room long enough, one of us is bound to come out either sobbingly drunk or the sole survivor - I love that woman more than life itself. To this day, I can close my eyes and imagine holding her hand when I was a pipsqueak - the smell of the elegant perfume she wore. I can remember the fabulously witty tongue-lashings she'd give those nosey assholes at the wineries when they'd question her decision to let me have a taste (or half-glass) of the stuff at the ripe age of 5 or 6. I remember crying on her shoulder when telling her about the (first and certainly not last) bully at school who called me Miss Piggy.... the texture of that royal blue velvety robe she'd wear....how comforting it felt against my tear-stained cheeks. The amazing sparkle in her eyes when she'd listen to ABBA for the millionth time. Her infectious laugh and delicate feminine features I always hoped I'd someday inherit (no such luck to date). I ached so deeply for her when she received the phone call that her father had died. And the sadness in her eyes when she'd stare blankly out the window - knowing her marriage of 25 years was over. More recently, I remember curling up on the couch of her new home - It was one of those winter nights where the humidity of the NW gives you chills down to your bones - We sat in front of her fireplace getting blissfully tanked on the finest wine and talking all through the night like the best of friends.




Loads of ups and downs. We have had our struggles, and sweet merciful jesus we can both be so goddamned stubborn. But I have learned so much from her. Odd that now she thinks to come to me for advice (We can go ahead and blame a bad batch of grapes somewhere along the way for that one!)... She and I are worlds apart in so many ways, but similar in just as many. Of course, I only aspire to be as beautiful, feisty and brilliant as she (after all, she's my very own Betty White!). Tonight, on my way home, I think I shall pick up a bottle of vino in her honor and give her another call to remind her how much I love her. I also think I'll go ahead and postpone the news that her little girl now (for the last 4 or so years) smokes. Wouldn't wanna ruin the moment, right? :)

Nightmarish Nonsense

" The stars are serious this time: If they ever catch you with those fucking tea leaves again, you can kiss the last 15 years goodbye. "

In the name of pure habit, I routinely scour my horoscopes from assorted sources. OK, so it's probably only partially habit... the other contributing factor is that I have very limited cell phone data reception when I'm hiding out in my garage - and really, the hourly weather forecast can only entertain me for so long... Anyhoo, for the last few days, my MSN horoscope has been curiously eluding to a revealing dream I (not to mention every other Cancer on the planet) was to have. Further, as this dream was destined to hold the answer to all of life's mysteries, it was suggested I jot down the contents of such upon waking. The emphasis placed on this pending event was really rather intriguing as normally the damn things are all over the map and couldn't be more off-base.



So each subsequent night this week, I was armed with a pen and the knowledge I would only have a limited window of opportunity to actually get enough sleep that would enable a dream or two. Yes, yes, I'm well aware they happen in a matter of mere seconds, but I know myself enough to know if I don't get a hell of a lot of sleep, I don't ever go into a deep enough trance to generate one. Or if I do... well never mind that - just trust me on this one.

Finally last night - it happened. Oh, but this was no dream - this was the muthafuckin' queen of traumatizing nightmares, seasoned with goddamned fire & brimstone.... At one moment, acts of the most vengeful god imaginable... A roof crumbling under the weight of torrential hurricanes and the blinding strobe-light lightning overhead - visions of crushed corpses and recorded calls for help looping over and again in the distance as projected through an archaic megaphone....In no more than an instant, I'm running down the sterile white hallways of a sanitarium or morgue....naked, soaked in blood from head to toe, frigidly cold and terrified - slipping on the polished surface and unable to scream.... Suddenly standing beside myself as I'm curled up in a corner, still amidst a horrifying pool of that blood... A ritualistic gathering of faceless people in the next room...A room adorned by purple silk banners and thousands of candles with faint scents of disgustingly sweet incense...This went on and on... I repeatedly woke up throughout the night, drenched in sweat and shaking uncontrollably, but I'd quickly drift right back where the "story" left off. My alarm clock could not have gone off soon enough for my liking!



WHAT THE FUCK!? This piece of shit encounter holds the answers to all the nagging questions in my head? Granted, I hold a deep-seeded love of horror movies and a thrill borne of chaos, but even I'm not that fucking sick!

In a state of utter shell shock, I stumble out to the garage... hands trembling to where lighting my cigarette is a challenge all it's own... I pull up this morning's horoscope on autopilot and this is what meets my gaze: "Start today on the right foot by projecting a positive mood and healthy mindset, Cancer...Attitude is everything.." I'm pretty sure my response was unleashed out loud: "FUCK YOU, MSN!!!!! FUCK YOU AND YOUR COMPLETE MIND-FUCKING LOAD OF HORSE-SHIT!!!!!" I feel like I was mentally, emotionally and spiritually raped by a 500HP chainsaw and the no-talent-ass-clown-of-an-author is going to spew this lightheartedly judgemental garbage? If it's attitude you want, this broad is ready to dance!

Well, I'm finally calming down nicely, no thanks to the four (and counting) cups of coffee consumed. I've additionally made a resolution to take an extended vacation from the likes of all things zodiac. In the meantime, if I'm three sheets to the wind by noon? Totally not my fault. It will be the direct result of having to look nervously over my shoulder all day to ensure that zero answers were just revealed!


Kitty

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Damn, Those Genes Look Good On You!

"You're starting to suspect that the story of how Mommy and Daddy met actually involved fewer rainbows and unicorns and more booze and Camaros."

A small number of you may have noticed there was never a follow-up to my sectioned post regarding my recent trip "home". This is largely due to my inability to quite reconcile all that took place the remainder of the visit. It left me with feelings of sorrow and loneliness and I suppose I somehow think time will heal those wounds. Nonetheless, all was not lost.

I had previously found a great deal of entertainment in the tales of my dear Dziadek (my paternal grandfather). For various reasons, some of which have been shared with me over the years, many of his children were not nearly as fond of him as I. But there are always vastly differing emotions gathered from assorted points-of-view as well as personal experiences. My intent was surely never to argue with any of those. In my own dealings with him and the stories he told me of his childhood, I felt an undeniable sense of pride and more often than not, amusement. One source of such joy lay in the simple fact that we seemingly had/have quite a lot in common.

On this recent trip "home", it was discovered that hours upon hours of recordings exist from my father's final few visits with Dziadek before his passing. I experienced a once-in-a-lifetime chance to look back upon faded photographs of both my father and grandfather as children combined with those of relatives I wouldn't necessarily recognize in a crowd of two. Old, crumbling letters, yearbooks, portraits and quite simply history. Amazing how across such an expansive passing of time, little has in fact changed. The voice recordings are of particular interest as I barely KNEW the man I feel such a connection towards.

This all leads me to place a greater value upon the preservation of memories for those down the genealogical road. References to my "craftiness" have little to do with some mythical notion of scrapbooking passions and I rarely take the time to organize the captured moments of days gone by as it is. As the antithesis of a packrat, I have no doubt long-since tossed old yearbooks or childhood photos and such - but I do now appreciate a sense of altering those habits going forward. What is junk to one can easily equate to the treasures of another. Something as simple as the handwriting on an old envelope. All too easy to overlook personal touches in the ever-advancing age of technology - I just hope I can somehow pass down an impression other than "cyber attention whore" with a bit of effort! ;)

From Out Of The Woodwork....

"You are shocked and embarrassed when police tell you that "Manwiches" should be made from a canned-beef mix."

I was quite pleasantly surprised this past weekend to not only learn we HAD neighbors, but that these same neighbors were additionally friendly drinkin' folk! Despite my tendencies to remain blissfully locked within the sanctity of my shade-drawn habitat, I was inspired to do the unthinkable: Open the garage during a time I wasn't heading directly to or from the car. I just opened it. I sat in my garage and left it open. Much to my amazement, people began gathering. Seemingly from out of nowhere! Aside from our friend two doors down, I didn't recognize a single face. We have been in this house approaching 5 years now. Yeah.



It seems there was this bustling little community just beyond our front door. Come to find out, many of them had moved in shortly before or after we did. I further discovered many of them had children of the same ages as my midgets! Who the hell knew? Oh right - people who don't dart out to retrieve the mail in a panic during the middle of the night...

I'm unable to pinpoint when I became so entirely withdrawn - if memory serves me, which it certainly RARELY DOES - I could even recall one or two times I was weeding or accomplishing another such project where I would have been out of my comfort zone and in direct view of these creatures. Then again, given the caliber of some of our visitors, I can't blame them in the least for keeping a respectable distance. We must have appeared to be some strange concoction of The Radley household and The Klopeks! Those who know me would possibly respond with showers of praise... Mission accomplished, no?



Well, not necessarily. I had an admittedly lonely childhood as my parents had achieved a level of fear from all our curiously god-fearing neighbors. I had neglected to make a conscious decision in ensuring my own boys were equally ostracized. I was always under the impression I wasn't making a completely terrible impression - after all, I was careful not to utilize my broom for my daily commute, and I even recently began incorporating color into my strange wardrobe! If that's not a worthy attempt at social contact, I'm unsure what IS!



Perhaps I could blame My Big Bag Of Man Candy? To the untrained eye, he can appear a fearful sort of gent.... While on one of our dates early on, I was quietly pulled aside by the management of a certain establishment to see if I needed "assistance" - It seems the perception was that this biker-looking "brute" had kidnapped Yours Truly. I still have a hearty chuckle at that memory! No, that couldn't be the cause... beyond the foreboding exterior, he is a doll with a heart of gold. I mentioned the friend two houses down - he and my 'Ol Man were thick as thieves within minutes of meeting!

Lacking anyone else to pin the blame to akin to a badge of honor, it looks like this was all my own design. And yet, as this plan unraveled before my eyes, I was filled with a sense of.... how you say?.... Ah yes, "community"! This all resulted in delightful, if not slightly hazy and alcohol-filled, memories. One could say I was downright dazzled at this group's ability to hang. The nights went on til well past the witching hour and by 6am the next day, we'd all be at it again. With no pressing errands or other tasks, it was simply delectable basking in the warmth of late Spring and Jack Daniels. For once in recent history, all the sounds of joy and sarcastic banter were resonating around me as opposed to out a distant window. It was a taste of what is apparently to come and I was able to raise my glass to that with minimal effort.



I will refrain from addressing my current mental capabilities :) Cheers!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

A Corroded Key

"You're the envy of all your friends, but only because they're tasteless masochists."

I had originally intended to provide a thorough play-by-play on a certain graduation that took place yesterday afternoon - but as there exists grainy footage of such that can be viewed at a later date, I shall refrain. Rather, the events of the evening that followed sparked renewed happiness and clarity in Miss Ninja Kitty. That evening was my muse.

Beyond the influence of entirely too much wine (is there such a thing!? If you have the tolerance of a newborn - Yes. Yes there is.), I was dazzled by the conversation which took place. It was a long overdue emotional trip that offered not only explanation, but a new perception on the events that shaped the people my mother and I are today. If it were not for my innate curiosity and determination to ask the correct questions, the door to this realm may well have remained forever locked. 

Specifics of the content of this conversation will remain ours and ours alone. If you know anything about me and my gift of gab, you know the significance of that statement. However, there is one discovery that I shall share as no damage or betrayal results from such. I discovered last night the magnitude of sacrifices my mother made in her own life and to her own happiness which directly resulted in all the freedoms, fabulous personality quirks and any confidence I possess and further exhibit today. That last part was particularly revealing as I had spent the greater part of my life believing the poisonous notion that she had somehow held me back in this regard. It wasn't so much that I harbored any resentment for this... Rather, my hypersensitive interpretations of our previous interactions led me to the conclusion that I had a small level of confidence IN SPITE OF rather than DUE TO all of this.

I now stand (or sit, as the case may be) before you an immensely humbled, enriched and fortunate woman. I imagine it rivaling the emotions surrounding the days following a near death experience. This can mostly be attributed to my flair for the dramatic. Nonetheless, this feeling approaches the sensation of every last one of my nerve endings bursting like a metaphorical sparkler. ALIVE! Well.... without the accompanying cannibalism, of course *snicker*.

When I got off the phone with my mom this morning, I gathered this experience had been quite mutually beneficial. There were tears and apologies of the imagined burden she had caused me by letting down her guard and filling me with all the pain and brutal honesty she had kept bottled up for far too many years. I was on the verge of shocked laughter as she clearly didn't realize what she had released me from. A smile danced across my lips as I heard through the unnecessary apologies that for the first time in decades, she slept. Through the night. Without any "helpers". No more nightmares. So much that had been feasting away at her soul was now the mere faint ghost of a predator.

There are no words in any language that could begin to capture the thanks I wish to express to her. But I shall make it my mission to try anyway. I love you, Mom.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

If It's Too Good To Be True...

" Your old solution isn't going to work on your new problem. Try drinking twice as much of it. "

On the way to god-knows-where last night, I wandered by the illuminated screen of the TV in our room and became instantly hypnotized. An infomercial. But not just any infomercial (as pretty well 99.9% of the damn things are nowadays with the passing of Billy Mays) - one for precisely the product I was unaware I needed! A magical paint sprayer. I have no doubts this was pissed upon by the gods as the demonstration happening before my very eyes was downright astonishing!.... Plus I still have two or three painting projects I really need to get on before what's left of my hypothetical motivation vanishes.



As I type this, I have no less than two browsers in the background containing shopping carts from two As Seen On TV sites with products it just so happens I am in desperate need of. So why can't I commit to pressing "send"? Am I so entirely jaded on the promises of strangers despite their honest declarations of complete satisfaction? Perhaps the shipping seems all too unreasonable given the invoices I browse monthly for my company's FedEx account. Surely these global masters of merchandising have similar corporate dollar-volume-discount contracts? Ahhh... then there's the learned talent of closing aforementioned browser and hoping for a discount if I promise to come back....



I was reading, just this morning, that these products generate billions in profit each year. Billions. Even those of us who have a hell of a time paying a utility bill are somehow able to shell out money in the hopes of some level of happiness or convenience. It makes me curious if these masterminds of marketing are overlooking the obvious benefits of branching out into the religious cult arena. Or perhaps they are one and the same?

The dilemma surrounds notions that those such as Ninja Kitty really have a perceived NEED for a handful of these items. A NEED to believe that a solution exists for an affordable sum. For the love of Pete, who the hell bothers to even address a specific problem through invention if for no other reason than fraud? Quite frankly, it breaks my heart. I'm troubled that such evil exists as to form a business with the ultimate mission of providing false hopes to damaged goods. I won't even get started on the pure bullshit that is Publisher's Clearing House! Our friendship is currently quite on hold!



Back to the subject at hand, I actually procured a product based on the recommendation of a kind woman who clearly saw pain painted upon my face. One who took just enough pity to divulge a dirty little secret to this product's success. And you know what? It worked! I kid you not. It further has worked for those few I have unabashedly shared the information with. And as luck would have it - as the news spreads, the demand grows. There was plenty of supply in the beginning, but now thanks to customs implications, one feels they are bordering on treason to continue with the purchase. It has become a burden of the black market variety. Is there no justice? Why impose frivolous regulations on that which delivers something other than grief for those who had almost lost all hope?



I am jaded, indeed. As I now fully believe that nothing worth procuring can be procured with the slightest of ease. Nothing truly legitimate in it's promise would so much as be broadcast across normal channels. So who the hell do I have to kill around here to find China's equivalent of the products sitting in my bloody respective carts? *sigh*

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

A Brief Rant Of The Male Variety

"The men from the recliner company will stop laughing just long enough to claim they've never seen anyone lose a leg in one of their products before. "

A song just happened to pop up on the 'ol iPod that reminded me of a post I had previously began, only to abandon in favor of drug-induced ramblings: "You Think You're A Man". Although I'm not the drag queen I aspire to be, I can't help but love this song. And I can't help but instantly think of one of my self-entertaining pet peeves. I was recently advised that those 70lb pipsqueaks flitting about in far-too-tight "skinny jeans", girlish hoodies and Robert-Smith-Wanna-Be shoes are the "New Metal". How bloody long have I been asleep in my cave that THIS was allowed to happen? Lemmy would be rolling in his goddamned grave... if he were, in fact, deceased.

This brings about a larger pet peeve: Manchildren. I'm not talking your run-of-the-mill immature spouse, brother, coworker, what-have-you.... Rather, the overgrown boys who strut around and take on an air of confidence akin to the proverbial Napoleon complex which the vertically challenged so naturally possess. How is it healthy, let alone remotely attractive, for a grown "man" to strive for their high school weight (unless, of course, you are of Scandinavian descent and you were over 200lbs by age 15)? Similar to the debate some mature men endearingly enter into regarding women with curves vs. size 0 daisy-duke-sporting-dimwits, I'm sending an official "shout out" and "HELL YES" to all the real men out there.

Insecurities exist along all points of the gender spectrum, and I have been personally exposed to men... aforementioned REAL MEN.... who have *gasp!* gained weight from high school and are actually self-conscious about sporting XL, XXL or better size clothes. So I say this: If the mention of the words "Six Pack" sooner make your mouth water for a FULL CALORIE beer than instantly remind you to hit the gym.... if you have some padding AND personality. If you are entirely unable to feasibly share clothes with your tween: Congratulate yourself, Sir, because you are a real man, and there are plenty of eligible and glamorous ladies out there who wouldn't hesitate to inappropriately whistle at you walking down the street.

Just Sayin'! Oh.... and MEOW ;)

Recognizable, Yet Unfamiliar: Scene 1

"Your fear of being assassinated is groundless. Important figures are assassinated; you will be beaten to death with a rake behind the Safeway. "

It seems I'm recovering nicely, or perhaps defiantly, after a whirlwind trip down memory lane. Incidentally, I'm also precisely where I thought I'd be whether or not The Rapture had actually taken place. This pleases me on too many levels! (For the rest of you, have no fear, the jackass has "amended" the date... you know, with 100% accuracy again.) Going back "home" after almost a decade away was quite sobering. As such, I was required to counter that emotion with the aid of many bottles of wine, a few beers, and roughly 6 or so cups of coffee each day.



It all began far too early on a lovely Friday morning. My gift of procrastination dictated I was not to finish packing until the 11th hour - hell, I didn't actually BEGIN packing until about 20 minutes prior to that... But much to my amazement, all went smoothly. It was my 4 year old's first time on an airplane, which signals the first time through what is normally the hell of security. Somehow, the stars aligned just so, allowing every last detail to go off without a hitch. In fact, I have never had such a pleasant journey through the full body scanner! The normally surly folks of the TSA were clearly dazzled with my redhead -  he was even wallpapered with "Honorary Junior TSA" stickers by the time we made it through. What I wasn't expecting was how I had overlooked the world through the eyes of a child. It never occurred to me that the poor thing had never so much as set eyes on an escalator! (No, we really don't get out much) By the time we encountered the moving sidewalk, I was almost as giddy as he! The flight was perfection, and I'm rather positive kiddo doesn't grasp the importance of that statement as he was saved from being knocked out with the handy frying pan I planted in my carry-on just in case!



Upon landing, it hit me. A momentary rush of all I left behind and never intended on looking back upon. The smells, the sights - all very recognizable, even with all that had changed (which was a ton!). Each road we turned on, each step I took after that - an associated memory. Yet so distant, it was as though these were vague memories of another life or timeline. Hazy and disassociated. There was no real emotional response. Good, bad or indifferent. Just memories. I had to laugh as the moment we crossed the threshold into my brother's place, Van instantly made himself at home then suddenly declared: "I've got to get out of this state!". I understood that sentiment all too well through the chuckles.

From there, it felt as though we hit the ground running. I had purposely avoided committing to overwhelming plans, but traveling with an uncoordinated midget always adds a bit of spice to each. Even so, the next evening, my heart was swelling with love and appreciation for the two plans of earlier that day. The first, to visit one of the most incredible women I've ever encountered. My "second mom". A woman who has endured more pain and turmoil than most could fathom, yet remains an optimistic - deliciously sassy - and classy lady. This same stunning lady has finally found her ultimate soulmate and an accompanying sense of calm and peace, despite ongoing health concerns. Her husband was nothing short of an angel. I beamed at the sight of these two holding hands and snuggling. Glowing at each other's mere touch like adoring teenagers. The care he exhibited in watching her gingerly move about the room. Talk of taking another cruise when she gets through the next round of chemo. Nothing could possibly tarnish their happiness, and I wouldn't hesitate in taking out anything that tried! All my wishes for her that she would find the unconditional love and happiness she so richly deserved were realized before my eyes.



The second plan of the day - to finally meet My La and her family (or most of them) in person. We had only previously spoken through written correspondence, and I fell in love with her instantly. The moment I pulled up in the borrowed car to where we had agreed upon meeting - it was like I had known her for multiple lifetimes. Her boys were absolutely gorgeous, and I could see why: STUNNING. Without missing a beat, I found myself gabbing obnoxiously with this blonde bombshell of a woman. Words can't even approach the beauty she exudes, and she has the rare gift of a fabulous personality to boot! Two words: Total package! But sorry, gentlemen, she is quite happily taken, or frankly I would have abducted her myself! After consuming far too much coffee, we went off to my favorite park to let the boys frolic in the duck shit of a flooded pond. We laughed and shared so many stories as though we were 8 year olds at a slumber party. I could not have envisioned a more perfect end to a perfect day. My only regrets: that it had to end and there are so many geographical miles between us. I was simply dazzled beyond my already quite high expectations.



When kiddo and I returned to our hilariously shady hotel (which was due to something other than the towering trees surrounding it), I made myself another pot of coffee and basked in the sounds of the rushing river below the balcony.  Van settled nicely into his new "favorite home" watching videos and eating cookies then finally dozing off. I wasn't entirely ready to watch that day come to a close.



For all the nervous dread and anxiety swirling around going back to that city - I am entirely grateful I didn't allow that to stop me from boarding that plane. These new, marvelous memories were able to wash away the old, tainted ones. The clean slate I had always gone off in search of simply didn't matter anymore. A chapter of my life had finally closed and that wasn't even to be the end of the journey.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Trix Are For Kids... No Darling, Those Aren't Trix

" You will discover an unfortunate downside to eating too many of those scrumptious, non-fat sleeping pills."

Despite my best (so yes, I pretty well didn't even try) efforts to avoid obsessing over all my various horoscopes, I got quite a kick out of the other-worldly information received yesterday. There's something so delightfully arrogant about picking out all the bits and pieces you think hit the nail on the head. After all, doesn't everyone love hearing how they're destined for greatness for no reason beyond being born on a certain day? Never mind that there are only a few million people in the world who share that honor.....



Regardless - In the name of humility, I was even willing to read the "bad" parts so that I could proudly claim ownership to all of it. Additionally, I figured that would make it slightly more legitimate.*** Not a bad plan, eh? Well this particular combination of entertaining nonsense was actually bordering on spooky. Granted, I already established I'm flexible - I'm a regular Gumby when it suits me. So it's possible I am simply altering myself like liquid latex to fit the form. Still, if I hadn't gone through free, no-obligation channels, I might have even been inspired to pay for it! Almost.... :



"You live like a gypsy without any roots. You have trouble finding a medium between getting stuck and going completely wild: As a result, you are in danger of succumbing to some form of overindulgence, with food, sex, alcohol, drugs or another vice. " 

In my defense, I finally overcame the "food" portion of that.... well.... thanks to the drugs.... Umm.... Moving right along, it was actually almost comforting to find an explanation for all the madness. "By "explanation", does she really mean "scapegoat"?".... Glad you asked! YES!!! I have spent the greater portion of my life seeking the approval of others. It is quite possibly one of my greatest... well.... weaknesses.... Now check THIS shit out: "As a child you were likely dominated and restricted from expressing your needs. The result is that you suppress your own wants in order to please others. This challenge, felt to an extreme, may paralyze you from being aware that your desires are valid and deserve to be met."



So where is all this going? Pure, unadulterated justification for my dependence on pills. Huh? I didn't stutter. I have found that my neighborhood drugstore stocks an over-the-counter solution in a bottle for damn near every desire that sparks my fancy. And for the rest, there's always Amazon. Or that weird, ***"Legitimate" website based in China who sends suspicious packages to me once every few months with "gift" notated on the contents box of the customs form. Some would see red flags a-plenty when a website is literally wallpapered with the word  "Legitimate" in glittery graphics. Those same people simply have no sense of adventure.



Between my dangers of succumbing to pills (and other such vices), and my paralyzation of clearly valid needs: Ninja Kitty is the direct result of fate. The end product of years worth of intervention of the astrological variety. As such, I will no longer make any apology for my habit of popping whatever I can find laying around in the midst of boredom. If it's expired? Hot damn! Even better! It's had that much more time and mystical influence to become a super species of botanical genius!

Ah yes, I forgot to mention that I also bloody well rock. In addition to my dependence on gelcaps of delectability, I am also a legend in my spare time: "Style-wise, you require a flamboyantly colorful, ever-changing wardrobe. There's no sense in spending a fortune on clothes, since your tastes and appearance are always evolving. You can rock the daring, edgy looks better than anyone."



Thinking of having me committed yet? Bring it. I'm sure if I look hard enough, I will find some shady palm reader willing to back up my assertion that I am actually the reincarnation of Houdini and those silly shackles are mere child's play. The world is my oyster...or crab as the case may be.... and I clearly have been wasting my talents on the likes of reality for far too long ;)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

I'll See Your 5 And Raise You 10-Life...

" When your doctor prescribed Magnitor, you thought it was an anti-depressant, not a mutant 500-foot lizard-gorilla creature with nuclear vision. "

What with The Rapture approaching rapidly according to several completely biased and unreliable sites, I muse about where I am in my life and what I have left to do. To be honest, these thoughts have less to do with concerns of the apocalypse and more to do with a bullshit task placed on all of us at work - With little to no real thought or preparation, go ahead and sum up your dreams & aspirations for the next 1-3 years, as well as 5 years out.

Your typical HR nonsense - a bit of a jolly little game to screw with the heads of employees whose combined morale has long since sailed off into the sewage system. I rattled off a few obligatory "goals", made it look pretty with sprinklings of buzzwords and catchphrases and sent it on it's way. It took everything I had not to crudely scrawl out "My only goal is to stay employed long enough to pay the bills until I win the lottery or get hit by a beer truck". Although it was a toss-up between that and "5 Year Goal: Thai Hooker".

Once the task at hand is satisfied, off I go into my thoughts of "Sweet merciful jesus - where do I REALLY think I'll be (or hope to be) in 5 years???" Hell - even 1 year of planning would give me a delightful sense of having the slightest bit of perceived control. I'm relatively shell-shocked, as it is, to look back upon all that's happened between running away from home and the present. I could swear I wrote in blood somewhere that I wasn't planning on getting married, having kids, or selling my soul to work for the government. Huh. Ain't that some shit? And don't misunderstand - the marriage and kiddo part bloody well rocks. If it weren't for them, it is entirely possible I WOULD be a Thai Hooker by now.... Or at least in a low-end institution - maybe even of the maximum-security variety. In Detroit. Yikes. Left to my own devices, I rather suck!... I'm really hoping no one ever bothered to retrieve the DNA off that promise written in Type O Positive.....

Strange... when I added the horoscope at the top, I had initially planned on going off on an entirely different tangent. Yes. I guess not that strange. This is my compilation of ramblings, so I suppose I can do whatever I damn well please, no? Once in awhile, I revisit a moment in time when my uncle (you remember him... the one stuck in 1952 or so?) announced to my mom that I should go back to school and that he would foot the bill. The only catch? He insists I go to CalTech because he feels that would quite simply be best - why settle, right? I'm all for being lavished with the attention of those few lunatics who have no question of my perceived brilliance, but this one possibly took the cake. In the same breath - I actually.... for the moment.... stand behind my decision to leave one year shy of a degree.

So what is in the stars for Ninja Kitty? That's the beauty of it. I'm flexible. I strive not to regret the past and I honestly don't easily cave to the future expectations of those who don't truly know me. The world is continually changing before our very eyes. It is wholly possible that this coming Saturday, dozens of blow-up dolls will be released from the back door of a van that has just been in an accident signaling The Rapture is, in fact, upon us (***For My Dee :)***). It is also possible that this coming Saturday will simply go as initially planned and I be visiting my dear friend and second mom who is going through a bout with Cancer. Following that, it is possible that I will be meeting an amazing and beautiful woman and her family for the first time. Someone I feel I've known for a lifetime despite never seeing her in person. We will let our boys play in the park and follow it up with a spectacular dinner at a kickass diner up one of the canyons.

If one is too busy fretting about all the future holds, it will be all too easy to miss what is going on around you. I am most certainly as guilty of this as anyone. But I try. I try to take a step back or out or up in the sky even. Something to remove my true self from the self that loathes itself and suffers at the hand of all it's own insecurities. Earlier in the day, I was quite down. Weepy. A bit cough-y and phlegm-y too... Maybe even thirsty.... Anyhoo - I was in a selfish moment of misery. Somehow, against the odds, I am now sitting here with a grin across my lips. It's raining. I'm content. And I don't give a damn where I am in 5 years, as long as my family and extended family of friends are healthy, safe and happy. A gal has every right to dream, no?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

A Good 'Ol Fashioned Freak-Out

"Being in a relationship means having to make certain sacrifices. Keep slaying those goats to prevent your husband from leaving you."

Do you ever have one of those days where Patsy Cline's "Crazy" takes on a whole new meaning? Ahhh... but do you have that variety of day with such frequency that your loved ones have come to view it with the same feigned shock as displayed towards the sun rising and setting each day? *beaming* My reputation precedes me once again!

I previously mentioned that my l'il redhead and I will be traveling "home" this coming weekend. The mission? To fly one way to retrieve my fabulous mom who will be driving down from the NW to meet at that rendezvous point. From there we can help her drive back this way for The King's upcoming graduation. As is par for the course anytime any family member visits, I go into that dark, chaotic place full of shame and embarrassment at not keeping the caliber of house that could pass the white glove test. Ridiculous enough as my family claims they understand what with the age of the midgets, plus they are just visiting to see US not our zoo habitat.



I call shenanigans. Oh sure, they'll smile while gritting their teeth and silently judging - trying to nonchalantly pull out the vacuum when I turn the other way. VACUUMS ARE LOUD, GODDAMNIT!!! I'M NOT A COMPLETE MORON!!!!! "Oh Honey, You can be so silly - I'm just going to get these few spots that you may have missed while trying to be the Domestic Goddess we all know you're not". My mom, in particular, is the Queen Supreme of Covert Hostility. It's clearly genetic, as my grandma possessed the gift of insulting with the sweetest of smiles as well.


Yesterday, I was outside, taking in the fresh air (and possibly a menthol or two) and mentally running down the list of all I still had to clean/organize/disinfect/hide/toss/bury and realizing the sands in the hourglass were quickly running out. This was immediately followed by thoughts of how quickly the likes of my 'Ol Man and The Good Doctor, who are both remaining behind for this journey, are likely to undo any progress over the weekend while we're gone.

I'll be honest, yes, I had an instantaneous meltdown - but no, it wasn't the first of the day. As I was just about to weep, my 'Ol Man called from work to check up on his Lovely Lunatic - he could instantly hear the distress in my voice and asked what was going on. As the emotional vomiting commenced, he couldn't help but chuckle.... The chuckle grew steadily into an outright guffaw..... I do believe he even put me on speakerphone at one point so his friends could bask in the glory that is Little Orphan Clinically Nuts! "Are you laughing at me?" "What? No, Darling! There's no need to stress out, you're just having your mental few weeks of the month".



And there it was.

I had surpassed your common, everyday, run-of-the-mill Raving Bitch and achieved a level few of us banshees could so much as fathom! SUCK IT, BITCHES!!!! I AM THE MUTHAFUKIN' MASTER!!!!!!!!!!! HA! I can only imagine that most husbands would quite possibly find themselves in the doghouse for making such a bold statement - but this broad finds the brutal honesty delectably refreshing. It seems I have met my match. The one person on this planet who can not only handle my complete and utter instability, but embrace it and even present it to his friends as the resulting "Trophy Wife". I am the white tiger to his less-than-flamboyant Siegfried!!!!! (After all, as it turned out, Roy was no match for Kitty Kitty).



At the end of the day, I really have no reason to complain. Don't kid yourself, that's not about to stop me. But I do see the silver lining in the Charlie Brownesque dark cloud I like to imagine following me around, and that will forever bring a smile to my devious lips!

Until The Next Meltdown,
-Miss Annie V.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

"Fortune will smile upon you this week, only it'll do so in that shitty, passive-aggressive way Fortune has of smilingyou know the kind where you can tell it's just being polite, but that, really, it doesn't give a damn about how you're actually doing. Ugh, seriously, fuck Fortune. "

*snicker* This horoscope pretty well sums up a typical day in the life of Yours Truly. I'm quite convinced that I have driven more people away after confrontations involving the spoils of an argument I had in my head. Given a free moment, I can over think something to death - given so much as a moment AFTER that, I voice it. One would assume I had undergone surgery to permanently insert a foot in my mouth.



In any given day, I can think of AT LEAST 5 instances where I wish I could throw some sort of magical lasso around the words that escaped my mouth or that e-mail I inadvertently sent. Perhaps that should be the superhero power I pray to random woodland imps for. I'm not really sure why I'm under the impression woodland imps have the authority to make that sort of thing happen... and there it is again. I over think and over analyze even the most pitiful shit! WHY!? And why can't I restrain myself from telling the world about it? On the bright side, most of the world is still oblivious to all the ramblings that escape my lips and/or fingers. As for the rest, they've either accepted and embraced my lunacy or have learned to graciously tune it out.



I remember coming home from school one day... I was probably around 6 or 7....before I was even across that threshold to the house, I was ready to share every last detail of the oh-so-exciting life of an elementary school twit. Before I could verbally vomit on anyone who met my gaze, my dad was standing there with a gentle smile and a present for me. (***Note from the Author: This was to be the first in a long line of self-help/self-improvement books not-so-subtly gifted to Ninja Kitty***)



"Gabby".

It was actually a really brilliant read - and with supplemental literature to a similar effect, I began to get the hint. The premise of this particular story revolved around a fuzzy little rotund creature who had succeeded in annoying everyone around her until she found herself very rejected, sad and ultimately alone. One day, she encountered a kind, gentle snake who had tasted her tears from afar and was drawn to Gabby's sorrow. The snake laid out a plan for the poor, pitiful creature: Each day, Gabby would see all she can see and experience all there was to experience. This was to be accomplished in silent observation - metaphorically filling her pail with the liquid of life. Each evening, Gabby would return to the blind snake and empty the pail into her well so the snake could "see" all the world had to offer. It was a beneficial situation for each and Gabby learned to take in everything around her with new appreciation and patience. To do more than listen - to actually hear.



In so much as recalling this book, I am filled with the warm glow of embracing a lesson long ago learned and since forgotten. I suppose this blogishness has become my well. I would surely benefit from refraining from spilling the contents of that bucket all over the place on the journey home each evening. I am actually quietly giggling right now at the sudden epiphany that took place throughout my ramblings. After all, much of my insecurities of alienation are a direct result of saying too much to those I encounter each day. Often, there is a need to keep that wall in place to minimize the fragility of complete honesty. The more exposure I not only allow upon myself, but almost guarantee in everyday interactions, the more intense and numerous aforementioned insecurities.

There are no unreal expectations that a change will be immediate. Yet the goal is attainable and offers the hopes of being beneficial. So there you have it. Another day in the life of that silly head of mine.

Still Searching For Answers....

I apologize to all for the last post as it seems I sparked some bits of concern here and there. I'm still trying to work out some inner demons... laboring to untangle the chaos in my wee skull. The following lyrics have been dancing about and seem to sum up many of the notions as of late (although they are certainly possibly as cryptic). I shall leave it at that and continue with something far more upbeat in the near future.



"At the top of the stairs is a locked room
My secret chamber that no outsider views
For entry is forbidden prohibited
Behind this door is my other self
Not a picture in a frame nor a fresh disguise
But my other self
Immobile inert and sanguine
My narcissus kisses exhale crimson breath
And pump ruby to the lip
I stand before myself not Jekyll nor Hyde
Not sibling nor twin separated at birth
I stand before myself unaccountable
I dreamt that I had feet of clay
I dreamt I crossed the seven seas
And when I woke not knowing
I knew I led the double life
All I ever needed is twice removed
I spit in my bile in an airless temper
In this vacuum a vampire reversed
This one who breathes life into me
And even dull mirrors reflect the tarnished twosome
I stand before myself not another me
Not Döppleganger nor witless clone
I stand before myself unrepentant
I dreamt of sin and aftermath
I dreamt of centuries laid bare
And when I woke not knowing
I knew I led the double life "

~Siouxsie & The Banshees: The Double Life~

Saturday, May 14, 2011

"There is nothing more helpless and irresponsible than a man in the depths of an ether binge." - Hunter S. Thompson

That said, I'm curious if my pillow was, perhaps, laundered in ether prior to last night. The events of the week leading up to this moment have left me somewhat numb. Even as I type, my boys are a small ways away - shrieking incoherently at each other one moment, then laughing maniacally the next (I'm pretty sure one of them just launched a remote and/or the cat across the living room at one of my favorite pictures). A normal mother would probably have intervened long before now - maybe disciplined the wee beasts or sent them to separate corners for a time out. I'm sure I'll unleash my death metal voice momentarily long enough to finish a thought.... and back.

I found myself staring in the ceiling in disbelief through the night. Once again, I was in the bunk bed with The Miniature One after a particularly rough evening. As I lay there, I would be occasionally entranced by his breathing patterns - The Muppet snoring - His little cricket feet... Just like his Papa... Always moving. Between these trances, so many thoughts running through what's left of my mind. This time, they were more unusual, though. More... organized. As though I were getting all my mental affairs in order before doing something drastic. A conveyor belt would present each new thought with polite consideration of my traumatized state. It didn't feel so much as though I were actually registering each thought - rather taking a sort of inventory and promptly sending each on it's way to be catalogued. Almost self-impressed with the level of organization I could be capable of with a bit of exertion.

Awhile back, I had an experience akin to a recurring dream. Deja vu of the most frightening variety. Before this moment, the last such occurrence was during my senior year of high school. The memory of it...so vivid, it sends chills dancing across my flesh as I consider whether my mind would ever win this bizarre battle against itself. Before I continue, I feel I must make something abundantly clear. I do not wish to end my time on this planet. I have no aspirations to make the 9 o'clock news, nor would I ever do anything to intentionally cause pain to my family or those I love.

When this experience came crashing over me with the same awesome force of an ocean wave, I was driving at night across an overpass. I have crossed this same overpass countless times without so much as a second thought. In fact, I used to drive that route every morning on my way to work, and again on auto-pilot each evening. This time was so very different. It was longer.... more ominous... the condition of the road itself had changed - as though I could feel the texture of the asphalt reverberating through my body. Altering my blood flow.

I momentarily flashed back to that magical nighttime kayak adventure while I was in Puerto Rico the previous September. As I was driving, all the roughness of the road very suddenly smoothed - smoothed to the water beneath the mangroves. The canopy of twisted branches barely visible through the darkness. The sounds of the sea water sloshing off the oar with each successive stroke... those were the only sounds between an almost deafening silence. This bridge went on for what seemed like days. My mind racing between the here and now, and that kayak. In one final moment, I remember the lagoon - the destination of that voyage. So dark. But as you let your fingertips caress the water just outside the boat, all the luminescent algae would light up .... millions of them so that the water sparkled and glowed ever-so-briefly. In that exact point in time, I inexplicably felt the car pulling to the right. My mind racing through the motions of driving off that bridge to my death.

The muscles in my arms had won this battle. I found myself at the opposite end of the overpass - Safe and alive. Tears streaming down my cheeks as I fought to catch my breath. As I awoke from this horrible dreamlike state, Deep Blue Day was softly playing through the car's speakers.

Yesterday, before I attempted to go to sleep..... I had a brief hiccup of a memory - the memory that I actually had been having these recurring dreams of sorts far more frequently. Only they had taken a different turn. And by "frequent", I mean approaching the level of hourly. I can only imagine in some sort of defense/survival attempt, my mind has been furiously toiling to keep these subdued and hidden in shadow. Yet my mind is clearly engaged in debate with itself as it failed to keep the flashlight from flickering on upon this revelation.

How does one so much as begin to prepare for the descent into madness? Is vigilant/analytical thought any sort of armor? I have had casual fears of notions of being a prisoner in my own mind. It's become far more commonplace or at least more common in my conscious awareness what with literally millions of sources of information streaming in any given second. Is it, perhaps, best to shut the outside world off? Roll the dice on the odds that the poison is from an outside influence? It seems I have yet another journey ahead of me. Additionally seems this time I may truly need the luck I have previously requested under better circumstance.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Atari Envy

"A bargain struck with a small-time demon will result in your playing a high-stakes game of Skee-Ball this week for possession of your immortal soul."

It would be quite the understatement to observe that I'm predictably "behind the times". This is true for everything from technology to the latest fads. Although it suits my alien presence on this planet perfectly, sometimes I can be a bit self-conscious about it (shocking, I know).


Yesterday, I had kidnapped a dear friend of mine to run a quick errand. After all, said errand would never have been accomplished if I was forced to face the public all by my lonesome. I additionally subjected the poor Beauty to my music. Much to her delight, there were sprinklings of great 80's songs in there. We enthusiastically agreed that 80's music, as a whole, was far more brilliant than most of the shit out these days... This led to further musings about how we now, rather officially, sound just like our parents and I'm sure their parents before them. Suddenly she shot me one of those "Shit, I wish I could kill you with no more than a glance" sort of looks.... "You were just a fucking kid in the 80's!!!!!" Yes, well, add another one to the list, then.



Growing up with two older brothers, 4 years and 8 years older than me, respectively, I was always under the impression I was pretty "hip" on all the coolest trends, catchphrases, technology and current events. The sheer fact that I just uttered the word "hip" when not referring to a body part pretty well qualifies for a "Nuff said" response. I didn't seem to register the notion that the things that were in style for their respective age groups were already on the cusp of archaic and foreign for my own generation. As I swam cluelessly into my teen years, and then into some form of adolescence, I held fast to the dream that all those things I missed the trolley on would someday come circling around again. To date, I'm somewhere in the neighborhood of 2-out-of-57 on those odds. Ah well, I shall celebrate those same two with obnoxious "told ya so" arrogance!

One shining example of all of this was the arrival of an Atari at the house of one our family's friends' (my parents liked convincing us we could never own such a thing, even though I can't put a finger on one single piece of logic that was ever provided). The Atari - What an awesome goddamned creation. I will forever maintain that this hunk of plastic provided more hours of unadulterated entertainment than any other gaming device will ever hope to. Graphics? Who needs them? The more pitiful and pixellated the two-tone images on the screen, the better. It's probable that my lack of quick comprehension only fuels my awe with such a simple design of pure genius. Plus, those game cartridges totally doubled as weapons. I mean seriously. Holy fucking shit. BRILLIANCE.



When my friends would get the latest and greatest toys on the market - that exclusive object of marketing savvy every kid is throwing an unreasonable temper tantrum (and their poor, suckers-for-parents are engaging in riots) in the hopes of finding under the Xmas tree - I would get the unusual.... ummm.... "Hey Mom, what exactly IS this?" From my parents' recent trip to Denmark. Don't get me wrong, I have an extraordinary appreciation for their sense of adventure NOW - but back then, I felt just that much more... well.... odd. When my friends were rocking out to NKOTB, I was accompanying my parents to a Simon & Garfunkel concert held at the local arboretum. Shit, am I really STILL shocked I've never been able to relate? *snicker*

Fast forward a few decades, and little has changed. Strange how the one thing that brought on this train of thought in the first place was a friend's blog referring to Facebook. I was on that once. I farmed, after the rest of the world grew tired of farming. I hunted for treasure, long after the thrill was gone. I posted status updates about things that happened a week ago, which in the age of constantly-streaming-by-the-moment-reports may as well be an era or two back. It seems I am simply determined to remain hopelessly irrelevant and stuck on some alien timeline. That weird kid who no one WANTS to invite to their birthday party, but their parents said they had to because the rest of the class was invited and it would be rude not to.



Ahhh, but there is a silver lining, it seems. You see, I'm not the only one who had malfunctioning landing gear and ended up in the wrong end of the cosmos. Here and there, I encounter individuals, unexpectedly, who "get me". Those who never need any explanation or clarification. Those who accept me, not despite, but BECAUSE of all my faults. Tis a marvelous thing, indeed! It also certainly helps my case that words like "Retro" and "Vintage" are no longer isolated mutterings of some crazy broad who notoriously hoards cats and worships all things polyester.



All this said, I raise my glass in celebration of all us lunatics, out there in the world, who are JUST clever enough to evade the Nurse Ratcheds of the world! Cheers, My Pets!

A Motorcycle Built For Two

"You will fall into a pattern of self-destructive behavior this week when you discover how much fun that sort of thing is. "

It's curious how you can stumble upon a random contraption of metal, grease and leather and suddenly wonder how in the world you existed without it. Especially when that same contraption is somehow stunning and tough at the same time. I had always admired motorcycles from afar, taking great delight in the unique ways people would customize them as a sort of living, purring work of art. I took even greater delight in the unique characters riding them.




Many years ago, I had read Hunter S. Thompson's book on the Hell's Angels (titled the very same) with a furious degree of intrigue. Despite a vivid, brutal and often horrifying picture being painted, I couldn't help but find a level of romance between the lines. The sheer freedom of the open road - the power, authority and ominous presence of these aggressive, dirty beasts. Untamed by humanity or laws. Violent and misunderstood all at once. Gypsies.


Perhaps this counter-culture is a manifestation of everything I believe the darkest parts of my own self are compiled of. It was never a fascination of money, status or brand. No, it was something far more raw and haunting than that. The reality is that I'm still unsure where I fit in or what defines me from one moment to the next. That which inspires me is greatly varied, and my experiences tell me that none of these inspirations were ever destined to mesh. As each of my puzzle pieces is dissected, one can find a niche, of sorts, that celebrates each. Yet beneath that group is the bubbling decay of exclusiveness and clique-caliber membership. One must be a "purist" to call oneself a fan. Knowledge and demonstration of every defining detail down to the smallest level must be achieved or you face ultimate rejection. It seems the rules of High School spill shamelessly over into adulthood.


I make no apologies for the fact that I cannot be pinned down to one style, interest or genre. I cannot change my unpredictability nor would I necessarily want to. A potpourri of personalities and passions. Bits and pieces of comprehension or insight...simply never enough to experience a sense of belonging. I even face daily fluctuations of sensitivity towards so much as a desire to belong. My guess is that this sensitivity is borne of always viewing the world from outside that window. The loneliness that can often accompany it.

Last night, we welcomed the addition of a motorcycle to our simple family. With that, an overwhelming motivation to study, create and absorb all it has to offer. I will never fit into the world of bikers and mechanics. I have no desire to suddenly pop in on rallies or exhibitions. I don't look like a pinup, nor would I fit in with the bleach blond tanned Mamas of North Dakota. Merely a simple gal with a sparkle in her eye and a deep level of respect for the danger this beast is capable of. The road ahead beckons both literally and figuratively.


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Escape From The Crayola Factory

"Following 43 years of uncertainty and confusion, things will finally start making sense around August when you decide to purchase a wall calendar. "

Some days, the term "Bimbo" just doesn't quite capture the essence of the person standing before you. It's additionally frightening when this same person holds a position of dangerous authority/responsibility in a company. You know the type - you can be talking to them about something exceedingly simple and out of the corner of your eye, you would swear a bubble or two just floated by.... a sign there is something altogether more hilariously entertaining than hot air going on between those ears. The deer in the headlight gaze, the exuded bewilderment in response to what you've just said.... The uncomfortable silence, interrupted finally by an awkward giggle.



I imagine this creature, this remarkable specimen who somehow survived well into adulthood despite being the creation of an unchlorinated gene pool, having all sorts of magical nonsense happening in place of a brain.... Sidewalk chalk residue, puffy stickers, butterfly stencils and perhaps even bits of aromatic play-dough all swarming around inside her skull. I glance down in sheer amazement at the absence of velcro-fastened shoes.

At the risk of generalizing/stereotyping, I shall share a brief story with you. Back when I was a kiddo, I was working at a national-chain bookstore. I encountered my fair share of weirdos and goofs, but I was altogether unprepared for the experience I was about to stumble upon. A gal I went to high school with, who shall remain nameless, came briskly walking in. A look of urgency if not general panic on her pretty painted face. She was a slender blonde gal who's sole reason for being was to ultimately win a beauty pageant. I'm not sure she had even narrowed it down to one. I'm also unsure if she figured there was no purpose in life beyond that moment, so she had somehow arranged to spontaneously combust once the tiara was placed atop her head...... I'm genuinely enjoying that visual, by the by :).



I observed one employee after another speaking with her for only moments before turning around and walking away in utter disgust. Now I was downright intrigued. I casually walked over to greet her and find the reason behind her gracing us w/ her aspiring pageant queen presence. "Oh thank god you're here!" She exclaims - "I need a book". "Ummm, OK, do you know either the name of the book or the author? Maybe the subject of the book?" She laughs in disbelief. "No, Silly! OK, so it's like this big *makes general measurements with her hands* by like this big *more hand waving*.... I think".... "OH! And it's purple!!!!!" I had to smile at how completely pleased she was with herself for remembering that last part. In fact, the notion that she had linked needing this vaguely sized purple book and a bookstore was really rather a feat! *sigh* It was a long afternoon. We had narrowed this imaginary prize down to a more manageable level of being "about $15" and "I think it may be like a coffee table book". She eventually left with my suggestion of a gift certificate in hand.



I'm not sure whatever became of that girl. It's possible some prince snapped such a total package up so she could be a kept woman... She may have even gone on to breed and release her lovely little offerings into the world. What a sparkly thought that is!

So back to "Bubbles". It would be grand to say that I wasn't completely prepared for dealing with the likes of her. But Purple Book Pageant Queen was only one in a sea of nitwits along the journey. On one side, it's easy to simply pity naivete - or to laugh in a fit of mockery. But there is a far larger issue at play, here. How is it possible that many such cases are able to flit through life blissfully unaware of their ignorance? I can't imagine never seeking answers or truly not possessing the interest to even ask the questions in the first place. It seems like it would be an incredibly shallow and lonely existence. To not grasp the subject of conversations around you - the laughter at your expense. A position of little to no respect.  Then again, I am by no means the epitome of intelligence. Perhaps I am actually surrounded by the same laughter I imagine aimed at someone else.

The stark difference is that I'm very in tune with my shortcomings and the tasks I must take on to overcome those. I'd like to think I aspire to learn more and welcome new experiences with open arms and an open mind. Yet, is it possible these creatures of simplicity have fallen into a state of the happiness the rest of us chase? For the most part, they do not exhibit feelings of stress or woe - concern or strife. They are just as serene and carefree as the bubbles floating off in the breeze. Perhaps they are the next stage of evolution? I'm having a difficult time wrapping my head around that one - but stranger things have happened..... Now where did I put those crayons?

Monday, May 9, 2011

A Shivering, Fuzzy Mess Hiding Behind The Toilet

"Remember: There's nothing you can't change if you just put your mind to it, and no mind you can't change if you just put your fists to it."

No, I'm not referring to some icky out-of-control dust bunny resulting from years of household neglect. The sentiment refers to the Lhasa my mom used to own (R.I.P., Gizzle). Any time this furry little sister of mine would feel overwhelmed or stressed (so, yeah, pretty well anytime a piece of furniture was moved so much as an inch or someone knocked at a neighboring door), she would retreat behind the toilet in the master bathroom.... a shivering, fuzzy mess. Apparently this is somewhat par for the course for this particular breed. Given that, it's possible I'm part Lhasa (and yes, most of them look just like "Gizmo").



This past weekend, I was thrown into a social situation... mentally stripped of my comfort zone. The culprit? My l'il redhead's football game. I made it explicitly clear if I coughed up the money and gave the whole thing my thumbs up, I was not to be subjected to actually bringing him to any of his games. It is not that I don't support HIS social/physical/mental development - I just prefer to casually observe all of this without actually participating. A week beforehand, The Mr. had arranged for a small pack of his friends to come out and help him in constructing a ginormous shed in our backyard. "Oh well, then Van can just skip next Saturday's game then. No biggie".  Yeah, no. It was "picture day" and The Mr. didn't think it wise to allow our son to skip it because of Mama's silly "little" issues.

Kitty has an intense social phobia and an even more intense fear of entering any situation unprepared. The latter is so intense that my 'Ol Man had to at least drive up to the field separately to make sure I knew where in the hell we were supposed to go. As I pulled into the parking lot, my palms were instantly sweating and my heart, racing. Cars. Everywhere. People. EVERYWHERE!!!! Why in the hell didn't I pop one (or a dozen) of my beta blockers before leaving the house!? Furthermore, why didn't I get loaded, as planned, and take a cab up there? I clearly have no shame as I would have been unaffected by reeking of booze at 9:45am on a Saturday. The Mr. smiled and honked as he drove off back to the safety of our home. The bastard.



It was awful. AWFUL. I do not exaggerate - everyone there looked perfectly at home amongst the hoards of people, noise, heat and *shudder* children shuffling this way and that. All I could do beyond forcing a small grin as my son hugged me and ran to meet his team is repeatedly vomit in my mouth. I immediately retreated to the furthest corner of the field and curled up in a fetal position on the grass. After about 3 minutes or so, I texted my husband warning him I would be in need of therapy by the time this was all over to which he replied "LOL". There's absolutely nothing fucking "LOL" about putting me in this situation. It wasn't enough that time was moving backwards as snot-nosed little brats were wandering up to me asking where their mom/dad/the bathrooms/their coach/their dog was...As I gazed off in the distance, there was my l'il guy looking absolutely MISERABLE.

My inner dialogue was debating whether I was perhaps projecting the misery on him - but my heart was aching for him. His coach asked him no less than 5 times what his name was and then he would just stand there in silent horror as all the older kids ran circles around him, repeatedly yanking his flags off just to be shitheads (after all, the poor kid didn't even have the damn ball!). I had selfishly told him upon arriving that if he wanted to leave, we didn't have to tell Papa - we could just escape and heal over ice cream. But he was a trooper. He stuck with it for 1 hour and 52 minutes (but who's counting, right?). By that point, every muscle in my body had seized up in terror and I fully believe my ears were packed full of blood.



The remainder of the weekend was a complete haze - mostly because I did proceed to get entirely smashed in a feeble attempt at recovering. I maintained JUST enough composure to make it through Mother's Day/My Wee One's 2nd birthday with a small level of dignity. And yet, that 1 hour and 52 minutes will forever haunt me.

There really should be a series of Public Service Announcements (it would help if they feature G.I. Joe, Adam West or someone of equal caliber) explaining that social phobias are more than proverbial Tic-Tacs as compared to other diseases. The degree of mine may not be as extreme as most - I'm somewhat able to function working outside my home and occasionally handling quick outings to a grocery store (so long as I'm escorted by someone I trust in case I get the urge to disappear off into the ventilation system). Bars? I have relatively no issues with. My only request is that they be dark, dingy, mostly unoccupied, and that should I need to "break the seal", I don't have to walk past more than exactly 2 patrons.



As I face the upcoming plans to fly out of Denver International Airport (after quite possibly enduring a 1-1/2 hour public shuttle ride up there), I'm beginning to question whether there is enough Valium on the planet to survive it. Should you see me there during this unreasonable mission, it's probably best to avoid eye contact and allow me to move about like a shadow in the night. And now I must go wash my hands for the 6th time this morning as my palms are sweating once again.

*shiver*

Friday, May 6, 2011

Like Mama, Like Kitty

"You are labeled a menace to children this week when you invent a simple rubberband-powered pistol that fires crayons at 10,000 feet per second. "

I thought it appropriate, given the upcoming Hallmark/Floral-Industry holiday, to dedicate this one to My Mama. OK, confession time: That sounds like a delightful sentiment, but it's actually total coincidence. I just happened to have had a bloody hilarious conversation with my mom this morning.

It's no secret I'm a sleep-deprived and short-tempered mess. As such, the moment I answered her daily phone call, I was out the gate on my latest rant about The King and The Good Doctor. I'm amused by the manner with which I talk about my "darlings" to grandma. I'm guessing most kids out there choose to believe their parents would never chip away that marble pedestal they imagine they sit upon in their grandparents' respective eyes.... *maniacal laughter* Ahhh, children can be so naive, no?



As usual, I totally blamed them both for my lack of sleep (as well as my exponential increase in flavoring every sentence with colorful language). We had quite the hearty chuckle as we fed off each other's snarkiness while imagining crating them both and storing them in the crawlspace until more of a level of independence had been exhibited.... Yes, it went into far more detail, but we wouldn't want Social Services to start snooping around, now, would we?

I notified her that my habit of routinely dosing them both was beginning to be in vain as their l'il systems were becoming immune to my trickery. Without missing a beat, she advised I call their pediatrician to procure the sort of sedatives that could knock out a rhino. If he refused, she saw no reason for delaying a prompt trip across the border for some back-alley Valium. In the midst of this otherwise unhealthy line of debate, I couldn't help but beam. I was dreaming up some messed up shit in retaliation for having to be a responsible parent and she was agreeing with me every step of the way. Here and there she would even throw in her own memories of the mean/strange/illegal punishments she dreamt up for my brothers and I when we were too young to fight back. Curiously enough, I had mentally blocked out about 80% of these tales..... No matter, this was a good 'ol fashioned bonding moment for us: Two crazy broads who never should have been allowed to breed!



But you know? For all the things I could rant about - after all, if you leave us in the same room long enough, one of us is bound to come out either sobbingly drunk or the sole survivor - I love that woman more than life itself. To this day, I can close my eyes and imagine holding her hand when I was a pipsqueak - the smell of the elegant perfume she wore. I can remember the fabulously witty tongue-lashings she'd give those nosey assholes at the wineries when they'd question her decision to let me have a taste (or half-glass) of the stuff at the ripe age of 5 or 6. I remember crying on her shoulder when telling her about the (first and certainly not last) bully at school who called me Miss Piggy.... the texture of that royal blue velvety robe she'd wear....how comforting it felt against my tear-stained cheeks. The amazing sparkle in her eyes when she'd listen to ABBA for the millionth time. Her infectious laugh and delicate feminine features I always hoped I'd someday inherit (no such luck to date). I ached so deeply for her when she received the phone call that her father had died. And the sadness in her eyes when she'd stare blankly out the window - knowing her marriage of 25 years was over. More recently, I remember curling up on the couch of her new home - It was one of those winter nights where the humidity of the NW gives you chills down to your bones - We sat in front of her fireplace getting blissfully tanked on the finest wine and talking all through the night like the best of friends.




Loads of ups and downs. We have had our struggles, and sweet merciful jesus we can both be so goddamned stubborn. But I have learned so much from her. Odd that now she thinks to come to me for advice (We can go ahead and blame a bad batch of grapes somewhere along the way for that one!)... She and I are worlds apart in so many ways, but similar in just as many. Of course, I only aspire to be as beautiful, feisty and brilliant as she (after all, she's my very own Betty White!). Tonight, on my way home, I think I shall pick up a bottle of vino in her honor and give her another call to remind her how much I love her. I also think I'll go ahead and postpone the news that her little girl now (for the last 4 or so years) smokes. Wouldn't wanna ruin the moment, right? :)

Nightmarish Nonsense

" The stars are serious this time: If they ever catch you with those fucking tea leaves again, you can kiss the last 15 years goodbye. "

In the name of pure habit, I routinely scour my horoscopes from assorted sources. OK, so it's probably only partially habit... the other contributing factor is that I have very limited cell phone data reception when I'm hiding out in my garage - and really, the hourly weather forecast can only entertain me for so long... Anyhoo, for the last few days, my MSN horoscope has been curiously eluding to a revealing dream I (not to mention every other Cancer on the planet) was to have. Further, as this dream was destined to hold the answer to all of life's mysteries, it was suggested I jot down the contents of such upon waking. The emphasis placed on this pending event was really rather intriguing as normally the damn things are all over the map and couldn't be more off-base.



So each subsequent night this week, I was armed with a pen and the knowledge I would only have a limited window of opportunity to actually get enough sleep that would enable a dream or two. Yes, yes, I'm well aware they happen in a matter of mere seconds, but I know myself enough to know if I don't get a hell of a lot of sleep, I don't ever go into a deep enough trance to generate one. Or if I do... well never mind that - just trust me on this one.

Finally last night - it happened. Oh, but this was no dream - this was the muthafuckin' queen of traumatizing nightmares, seasoned with goddamned fire & brimstone.... At one moment, acts of the most vengeful god imaginable... A roof crumbling under the weight of torrential hurricanes and the blinding strobe-light lightning overhead - visions of crushed corpses and recorded calls for help looping over and again in the distance as projected through an archaic megaphone....In no more than an instant, I'm running down the sterile white hallways of a sanitarium or morgue....naked, soaked in blood from head to toe, frigidly cold and terrified - slipping on the polished surface and unable to scream.... Suddenly standing beside myself as I'm curled up in a corner, still amidst a horrifying pool of that blood... A ritualistic gathering of faceless people in the next room...A room adorned by purple silk banners and thousands of candles with faint scents of disgustingly sweet incense...This went on and on... I repeatedly woke up throughout the night, drenched in sweat and shaking uncontrollably, but I'd quickly drift right back where the "story" left off. My alarm clock could not have gone off soon enough for my liking!



WHAT THE FUCK!? This piece of shit encounter holds the answers to all the nagging questions in my head? Granted, I hold a deep-seeded love of horror movies and a thrill borne of chaos, but even I'm not that fucking sick!

In a state of utter shell shock, I stumble out to the garage... hands trembling to where lighting my cigarette is a challenge all it's own... I pull up this morning's horoscope on autopilot and this is what meets my gaze: "Start today on the right foot by projecting a positive mood and healthy mindset, Cancer...Attitude is everything.." I'm pretty sure my response was unleashed out loud: "FUCK YOU, MSN!!!!! FUCK YOU AND YOUR COMPLETE MIND-FUCKING LOAD OF HORSE-SHIT!!!!!" I feel like I was mentally, emotionally and spiritually raped by a 500HP chainsaw and the no-talent-ass-clown-of-an-author is going to spew this lightheartedly judgemental garbage? If it's attitude you want, this broad is ready to dance!

Well, I'm finally calming down nicely, no thanks to the four (and counting) cups of coffee consumed. I've additionally made a resolution to take an extended vacation from the likes of all things zodiac. In the meantime, if I'm three sheets to the wind by noon? Totally not my fault. It will be the direct result of having to look nervously over my shoulder all day to ensure that zero answers were just revealed!