Tuesday, December 29, 2009

We are going to starve. Or live off mini M&M's.

The holidays were lovely- my Scroogey attitude was quickly reversed when I realized I'd be getting gifts.

eek. Gift highlights; A letter written to me from my very favorite blogger/author Stephanie Klein, petitioned by my super sweet man. A month of unlimited yoga, from my parents. The box set of The Tudors (I've been speaking "tudor" for 5 days straight now, "Come hither boy!" and "What say you?" my two favorite phrases.) and plenty of goodies that smell good and make my skin soft.
...now onto bigger issues.

The other night My Love and I got in a quarrel. Just a small one. But the weight of the issue, is grand. Issue: WHAT'S FOR DINNER.

Let's preface this argument with some history: growing up with a Mother who owned a dance studio, she worked from 3pm-10pm....dinner was Taco Bell at eleven o'clock at night, or rubbery chicken that my Dad baked. Or some odd assembly of food that came wrapped in plastic. It wasn't until much later in my adult life that my Mom changed her schedule and started using the cookbooks gathering dust in our junk drawer. I learned how to "fend for myself"....if you will.

My Love's upbringing was different; he came home from school, greeted by a snack. A pb&j, crusts cut off and large glass of milk (he still will not eat anything with an OUNCE of sugar, if it isn't accompanied by milk.) He ate dinner every night with the family at 5pm. In fact, meals were planned....a year in advance at times. Impressive and also never gonna happen in my house. Eggs were on the table every morning, there was always an abundance of Icecream in the freezer and "special" bread in the bread box. AND to wrap it all in a perfectly family bow, there were placemats, seasonal and handmade placemats.

How he's even attracted to me in the slightest is by some act of God. Or confusion and desperation. But, I'd like to think God has something to do with it.

The exchange that made me realize we're going to have to find a solution for this "What's for dinner" madness went like this:

My Love, "Babe.....what are we gonna do for dinner?"

Me, "I don't know. Whatever."

Him, "How aboutttt...Stir Fry?" (first of all, I don't eat STIR FRY unless I'm ordering in and probably a little depressed.) "It's easy; just some veggies, Ground beef, rice, NOODLES and soy sauce."

Me, "Are you serious? You want me to eat rice, noodles AND soy sauce all together, in one meal? Do you want to have sex with a balloon later? I'd be able to float after that meal."

My Love proceeds to give me this dumbfounded look as if he's never heard of the affects of sodium on the human figure. Then the debate goes, well who's cooking this alleged stir fry? In all fairness, he HAS cooked more than I have in this home...but like I said, I'll just eat yogurt and call it a night. We bounce back and forth food options, his all involve some absurd caloric value, while mine carry some monetary value and a waiter.

In the most dramatic fashion, I end up crying with a spoonful of peanut butter in my mouth, as I question my ability to be a good housegirlfriend.

So what do you do about this? No one gives you a manual that says, "Here's how to live with your boyfriend: Chapter two- Change your eating habits and learn to cook, bitch."

When you're living with someone you have to find a compromise with everything; with things you didn't think twice about before. First it's peanut butter, then it's laundry detergent, then it's "I can't dry my clothes with a Downy Ball"....downy ball? Next thing you know you're at Target looking for a Downy Ball. Then there's; do we eat breakfast together every morning, do we decide dinner plans ahead of time?

The IDEA of being that woman who knows how to bake things according to altitude, and who makes a "signature" something that everyone asks for when you attend a party is all a nice IDEA. The idea of being perfect is always nice, it's just not real.

My solution is this; We cook together. TOGETHER. If we make mushy pasta, or overly salted sauce, we do it together. We chop and dice and smell and squeeze to check for ripeness, together. When we fend for ourselves, we decide together that it's a cereal night.

AND if I am going to take on some roll as cook extraordinaire.....

What's YOUR favorite meal to cook?

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The only Nutcracker this Christmas is me.

Well, Happy almost Birthday baby Jesus.

...I see he's picked up on the importance of having a "birthday month."Jesus and I, we're likethis in that regard. AND he has a mascot- talk about making sure that people don't forget your birthday. Get a big old man and plaster him everywhere, on Coca-Cola cans and toilet seat covers....then, have him say he'll be bringing gifts FOR ALL. He's sort of like Oprah, but once a year. Jesus should write a "How-To" book on throwing a month long birthday bash.

I've had sort of a rough December getting into the holiday spirit to be honest- we've been so busy moving, fixing, traveling, working and doing coupley things that I've almost forgotten that this is the time I should be searching racks for ugly Christmas sweaters and eating peppermint flavored things, while listening to the Vienna Boys Choir and amazing synth rock versions of Silver Bells. I haven't done any of those things.......

Usually at this time of year I want to cuddle up into something (that isn't a Snuggie, since I'm against the Snuggie movement....cause I'm all indie like that) and watch The Nutcracker, while shoving my face full of sticks of butter and joy. Butter=joy. I haven't done that...I've been eating normal non-Christmas human food, like eggs and Pb&J. Christmas food is; Cinnamon rolls, 7 sticks of bacon instead of 2 and banana loaf....followed by chocolate milk and mulled wine. In case you missed the memo Jesus totally condones gluttony during birthday month.

I haven't stared up at the Christmas lights hung on my tree and watched them change from green to blue like I used to when I was a kid, until I fell asleep with the lights still plugged and was woken up by my Mother saying something about burning the house down and blah blah.
I haven't made the nativity scene do inappropriate things to each other, or played, "hide the baby Jesus" somewhere amongst the Christmas decorations. I haven't watched Love Actually a hundred thousand times, or put together a janky Gingerbread house, that ended up half-eaten by the time we had company over.

I haven't adopted a family, or cried while listening to one of those radio shows about people's "Christmas Wishes." I haven't gone to any uncomfortable holiday parties where I have to act like I want to carry on a 45 minute conversation with someone about their dog, and the family members they don't like, who are visiting for the holidays.

The whole joy of picking out Christmas presents and wrapping them with paper covered in snowmen and glittery bows hasn't been a reality for me- actually, I'm not giving any Christmas presents at all this year, thanks to being what most would consider "toeing the poverty line." I've written songs for people and offered to bring cheap bottles of wine and baked goods. And obviously, my innate ability to carry-on a good semi-inappropriate, but festive, conversation at a dinner party.... this is a "gift" don't underestimate it's power my friends.

I'm no Bah-Humbug, I just haven't experienced the same excitement that I usually do.....

When you're little every light in the sky looks like a flash of Rudolph's nose. Every ornament you hang has a memory attached to it....and every full skirt with a satin sash at the waistline feels like something Clara would wear while she did Jete's across the stage. With perfectly pink pointe shoes and perfectly bouncy curls falling down her back.

When you're little the stress of Christmas, or not having enough time to get it all done, just doesn't exist to you. It really is sugarplums dancing in your head.......and I really, really miss that.


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The first cohabitation debacle: PEANUT BUTTER

"I brought you your favorite peanut butter hunny!"

.....er....I stare at the peanut butter, it says JIF. Jif? No. No, I'm a Creamy Skippy girl, always have been and always will be. Not the little jar, the BIG jar of Skippy.

Buying the little jar is like slapping the peanut butter God's directly in the face and saying, "I will use you in moderation."


....he can see it on my face, "Isn't this your favorite peanut butter?"

Oh hell. Do I tell the sweet man he made a mistake, or do I live for the rest of our life as a couple hating the peanut butter that he buys, while he celebrates inside for doing such a good deed and being so observant, or so he thinks. Motherfucker. I'll tell him. .....let the wounded puppy face ensue. He took the news better than expected, but dear God, breaking it to him felt like punching a baby in the mouth.

Since we moved in together almost two weeks ago, we've had to adjust to; sharing covers, sharing food, compromising on brands and deciding whether we should be a Shoes-on, or shoes-off sort of house?

Luckily we haven't even had the toilet paper argument yet. We've been stealing it from public bathrooms. Actually, I don't know if that's true. But, a roll at a time miraculously appears on the dispenser, just when we're almost out.... toilet paper angels, I'm convinced. Especially during the holidays, when bathroom trips are more frequent thanks to copious amounts of Eggnog running through my bladder, or holiday party hangovers running liquids up various orifices. It's the angels. Or, My Love and I are running an underground "steal toiletries operation" unbeknownst to each other. Ah, communication- damn you again. We could turn this poaching into a business if we'd just put our heads together.


"Do you NEED to do that when you eat?"
....My Love, "Do what?"
....My Love, "ARE YOU SERIOUS? That bothers you?....."
"Yes, yes it bothers me. You sound like a caveman. You know making that noise actually requires EXTRA EFFORT, why exert yourself ? It's totally unnecessary. "

Then the conversation turns into something like; "you want me to eat like a Nun in a convent." Or,"you're totally fucking crazy"....then I spew into a monologue about how I'd rather him eat everything with the delicacy of placing a communion wafer in his mouth, than hear his mad eating skills in my presence. Communion. Wafer. Just let is dissolve, suck on that chip until it's liquid. Don't blame me, blame the people who taught me manners.

Being in love means that it isn't always warm fuzzies and polite, adoring words. Sometimes we're insensitive towards each other and we say things that are brash and untactful. We say things that hurt, or seem callous but when expressed we mean it with the best intentions. It's not to be mean for the sake of being mean, at least not in my case. My Love certainly hasn't held back some of the truths about myself I'd rather not hear and Lord knows I haven't had a hard time pointing at the unfavorable qualities he posses.

Having someone look over your flaws with a magnifying glass isn't something we'd volunteer for if it were written out so blatantly when we made the choice to stamp a title on our relationship status. That isn't the fun part, but it IS the part that makes it REAL.

It isn't fun to be told you need to "take it down about a thousand notches," or that what you're toiling away at, isn't WORKING. Sometimes, as someones love, spouse, etc. you're the only one who gets to SEE the parts that are messy and disastrous and you're probably the only person who's allowed to have an opinion on it, without being a total ass. The things we don't always want to hear are often the things that are the most important for us to recognize, or GASP, CHANGE. That's the part makes all the gritty stuff and the times when we want to choke each other with a Christmas garland, totally worth it.


Monday, December 14, 2009

I'm that chick that FALLS at the finish line. During the Olympics.

I've never been particularly good at finishing things. Unless someone offers me treats, one for each hand.

I have sort of the "get rich quick" mentality, but with actions. The faster I can get something done, the better. The shortcut, hell yes-step on it! If the project seems endless, I'd rather not even start, so that I don't give myself an aneurysm, or end up feeling like a failure and resort to binge eating Little Debbie cakes in an attempt to "stuff my feelings" of self loathing. Or something equally dramatic and superfluous. If the project doesn't have an end date, or an outcome that it's in my favor, I'd rather put it off. The problem is, half of what I DO doesn't have an end, a start, a timeline or a predictable conclusion.

So when I come home and my entire house looks like an episode of Hoarders, I'd rather sleep in my car than begin the never ending project, that has somehow caused our inheritance of a little mouse....which, for all you people that say "Aw, Stuart" I'd like you to understand that I'd rather have a snake chase me around my home, EVERYDAY, for the rest of my life with venom dripping off of it's teeth.....than have a mouse.... OR, have a tarantula take a swan dive at my face. Those two things would be better, than a fucking mouse.

....I digress. Let me finish my thought since this is after all about FINISHING (anyone thinking sexual thoughts yet? No? just me?). The point is;
If it makes me even the slightest bit uncomfortable, I JUST WON'T FINISH IT.
And when not finishing isn't an option, I throw a tantrum. Or I find a loophole. Since I'm all crafty and determined. Our home is in shambles, there's drapes hanging from strange places, there's furniture balanced like a game of Jenga all over our living room, we have a colony of little people living in our walls (I'll let you decide which of those things is true- the little people thing is totally a possibility; they steal socks and trip people, and live in walls)........so, I sit. I sit and I stare at all the things falling apart and that require nails, measuring tape, more money, or heavy lifting and I think....we're doomed. Totally. fucking. doomed.

But it isn't just my house.....and that's what really bothers me. It isn't just the "things." If the things were all that needed finishing, I'd work around it. You hire people for that shit. loophole, holllla.

The things that I need to finish are the things that MATTER the most to me. They often get the least amount of attention, because I've busied myself with a million other things, or back episodes of Bad Girls Club and coffee dates mid-workday to avoid facing the fear of finishing and failing. Or finishing and realizing that the responsibility of doing GREAT, or not doing anything at all, all falls on my shoulders. All I need are those few extra strides to get there. Having to admit fault to ourselves for not having the things we want is a hard pill to swallow. Or a hard small-sharp-jagged-object-covered in cayenne pepper to swallow.

In the homestretch when everything is just a decision short of being DONE, is when I putter out. It's almost like that burden that weighs you down has become part of the costume, it's easier to keep it, than feel naked without it.

The songs that are half-written, the to-do list of things that could, if achieved, meld the balance between the dream and the reality. The Christmas cards (send me your address if you want one! I'll only show up on your doorstep if there's free booze and cable) the thank you notes, the package sitting by the door ready to send, but without a stamp. The budget plan, the PLAN at all. It isn't the initiative that I lack, or the drive- or even the belief for that matter, but the CLOSE. The touchdown. The home run....and all those other sighs of relief and triumph.

Today, I'm going to FINISH what I START. Even if it's a painfully awkward conversation that I initiate with the checkout girl wearing reindeer antlers. I'm going to wrap up the ends....make them a pretty little bow of holiday cheer and GET 'ER DONE.

What do you need to FINISH?

Monday, December 7, 2009

Fix This Shit Up- A Coldplay Remix

Remember how me and My Love were moving in together? Ya know cohabitation, peeing with the door open, picking paint swatches and burning grilled cheese together? All that lovey shit.

Well, we finally did. Initially after that blog post, we put it off for a few months due to finances, fears, confusion, etc. etc. Then, with a little push from recent events and a dire need for independence and spending money on cleaning supplies and Pinot Grigio- we just said, fuck it (since that's my favorite phrase; When in doubt, say Fuck it!)- let's do it. Here's the catch....we moved into my Granny's apartment, that's attached to her house. It's completely separate from where she lives; it's own entry, kitchen, etc. etc. However, her things, were still in it. Until we came in and performed Operation Fix This Shit Up.

My Grandpa Jerry smokes a few packs a day and has for years, so the smoke, and the former furry Dog that lived there when my Cousin inhabited the place gave the whole apartment a nice blanket of.......grime? and well, fur.

I don't do grime. Let me tell you what I also don't do; WOLF ART. Native American sculptures. Western....anything (unless they're vintage cowboy boots or salsa), dog hair, mess, or sports paraphernalia. I've only acted like a gave a fuck about sports very few times in my life and I believe it was motivated by a reward in beer and jalapeno poppers.

When we moved all of our things in I thought- well, at least I know I'm dying of second hand smoke and not decapitation from a car crash, or melanoma. We've got that covered. Then, because I'm unreasonably impatient, we went to Home Depot painted, shampooed the carpets, washed the walls, put in crown molding, spent a gross amount of money at Hobby Lobby, replaced the curtains, the air filters and spruced the place up like we were Ty Pennington and that irritating team of cry babies with tool belts.

There's something about FIXING things with your love that's incredibly gratifying. Look what we did! It makes you feel like your team effort could certainly win the finale of Amazing Race, or you could make a kick ass winning Trivial Pursuit team. Or find a way to make a multi-room fort. Why we don't these things more often, I have no idea?

It's my first time living with a man, ya know one that isn't related, or temporarily crashing on my couch disguising himself as my friend and thinking of me as his hotel/maid. I've already told him to put down the toilet seat, a million times. He's already told me I'm annoying as "shit" and that I "never take his suggestions" to which I replied, "well, make better suggestions." And all of this....is out of love.

The mundane, the bickering and the feeling of can-you-not-cuddle-me-I'm-trying-to-sleep, are all just truths when someone becomes a part of your life, through and through.

After four days of "Operation Fix This Shit Up" while sitting on our vintage, newly shampooed couch, watching wedding cake show marathons on WEtv, I realized our home is finally a reflection of what we've gone through internally. Peeling back the layers, scrapping clean the tarnished ideas and scars that we've allowed to gather dust and sit there, permeating through every inch of our belief systems about ourselves, love, men, women....life.

When you meet that other person they help, "FIX YOU", they pull out their emotional Clorox wipes and help dust off the parts of you that over time shined a little less....they just needed a little assistance to reveal the natural sparkle. It isn't just carpet and cushions that need a good date with scrubbing bubbles.

We FIXED this home- together. We've fixed each other sometimes together, and other times completely solo, pulling the weight while the other floundered (or went to jail). Our house, our spirit, our love- sparkles and all it needed was a little deep cleaning.


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Remember that time you got ARRESTED? God, this screams CLASSY.

"What do you mean you don't know where he is??"

"Well, we were recording and he just never came back........we think he got arrested."

I don't generally wake up thinking, where is my boyfriend? Who got arrested? and I wonder if this outfit is appropriate for jail visits? It usually goes something like, yogurt or cereal and do I feel skinny today?

The past 48 hours have been pure madness. I wake up to find a Facebook status update from my boyfriends roommate that says, "blah blah, arrested? blah." Since these men have absolutely no way of knowing how to communicate, no one called to fill me in?! that there was a possibility I now had a boyfriend who was an INMATE? WHAT. THE. FUCK. is my life.

At around 3am, my classy man left the recording to studio to run and grab some beer and cigarettes, you know in true rockstar form you don't drink Yerba Matte mid-recording session. 2 minutes out into the drive, he sees the sirens- OH HERE WE GO.........

To say that My Love isn't "good" at remembering "little details" like; court dates, not leaving the house without a cell phone, closing cabinets, or what he's supposed to do for the day- is a massive understatement. He's the definition of, if-my-head-wasn't-screwed-on-I'd-be-headless, he's that guy.

Since The Man is not generally a fan of poor people (us artists, or ahem, delinquents?) My Love hasn't been able to fix this pesky tail light that almost ALWAYS gets him pulled over, but that's just minor- he also hasn't been able to pay his car insurance (insert note where readers start making judgements like, "Girl you better get yo'self a man who has his finances straight." Then you start singing Bills, Bills, Bills. Here here, don't mention it-separate blog entirely)....fast forward, beerless boyfriend is getting thrown in the clinker for missing a previous court date that involved driving without proof of insurance.

I had no knowledge of any of this when I woke up, so Chelsea Talks Smack i.e. Sherlock Holmes drove around looking down ally ways for dead bodies (since, we didn't know for sure if he was arrested or just missing) simultaneously calling jails, "Um, hi- did you arrest a Ryan.....no not Brian, RYAN,.....No not B, RRRRR....the computer crashed? You don't know? What do you mean you don't know? HOW DO YOU NOT KNOW WHO IS IN CUSTODY?" The entire time thinking; I don't do this. This isn't my life. I go to champagne bars.

Not only did I learn that we have an incredibly inefficient system-what the fuck is this, computers crashing? your "One phone calls" not going through? One minute he's shown as an inmate in custody, the next, there's NO SIGN OF HIM!? Ridiculous. We have iPhones that can do everything but bake a cake and vacuum, but we don't have adequate computer systems in detention facilities?! And we make people call COLLECT? It's jail, it isn't the Stone Age.

After talking to about 60 people, running around in my pajamas through various courthouses, Sheriffs offices and jails, avoiding eye contact with the sketchy folks (who could kick my ass) and wondering if I shouldn't have been "repping" blue or red- all the while wearing my NYPD HOODIE from the night before (IRONIC) and getting asked multiple times for my Cadet badge. (I told you I'm a bad ass. Or look like a lesbian. Or a boy.) I found him.

I waited for his trial curled on the bench, all twitchy, shaky and WHY THE FUCK AM I SITTING IN A COURT ROOMy, all I want is a flippin' latte and a boyfriend who pays his bills. The line up looked like this; Wife beater. Robber. Illegal. Definitely on drugs. Drunk Guy. WTF is that sweet innocent baby face doing up there. Another drunk guy. Runaway. Wife Beater. Prostitute. Wife Beater/Shoplifter.

Sweet innocent Love gets up, pleads his case; the outcome- FOUR MORE NIGHTS IN JAIL and a second trial, with a maximum of a year in jail and fines, unless he posts bail. THIS is where I begin to... LOSE MY SHIT COMPLETELY!!!! Long story short....I find myself calling his brother in a panic, sobbing, naturally, since there always has to be one crying person in court rooms, haven't you seen tv? ....the next thing I know, fast forward nearly 10 hours- we're in a bail bonds office.

My bail bondsmen???? DOG THE BOUNTY HUNTERS SISTER. No lie. True-fucking-story. To make it even better, I call my Granny to tell her what's going on and she says, "OHHHHH,.....I know Dog....I used to be his bartender." CLASSIC. Classic. Only I would have a one degree separation from a bail bondsmen.

Nearly 48 hours have gone by and My Love is finally out of the CAN. By the end of the day I had an entire new GARDEN OF STRESS ZITS, the guards knew me and were calling me "Baby" and "Honey Love" which was oddly comforting and I had enough empty I.O.U.'S for My Love to fill out he could make a fucking Bible, in which I would star as the Jesus character, but her name would be, "Best Fucking Woman on the Planet, she will live in a land of getting eternal foot massages without asking."

Needless to say, Jail doesn't look good on me. I mean, I wear floral prints, I have enough glitter eyeliner to paint Colorado and babies smile at me. Strangely enough that makes me sound like a hooker, but on the contrary, jail is not my scene. Or My Love's- he looked like a puppy who got kicked in the face......not cute. Sad. and never happening again.

Now I can say; Remember that time you got thrown in jail? Or, Remember when we went to that bail bonds office and they had a bucket of Tootsie Rolls? Or, Remember when you were in lockdown? Or, At least (insert horrible situation here, i.e. flaming diarhhea or being out of Garlic) isn't as bad as the slammer. Or, baby I kinda wish I left you in the pen.

Any jail stories worth sharing? Bail....or no bail....?!