Monthly Archives: June 2006

Hair today, embarassed five minutes from now

I went to the bank to deposit my paycheck yesterday. The bank is a respectable place: people wear suits, make disapproving glances, and handle money. The bank is a place where you should be somber and professional. The bank is not a place to make an idiot out of yourself.

However, if you are me and you are well acquainted with idiocy, especially in inappropriate places, you will sympathize with me and what occurred in the 1st National Bank yesterday.

I got off work at 5:30, so I was cutting it a little close when I waltzed in at 5:45. I knew the bank closed at 6:00, but I also knew I could be a speedy depositer, so I went in anyway. I propped my sunglasses up over my ponytail and was quick like bunny filling out the paperwork.

I went up to the desk and the lady gave me a strange look, which I assumed was because it was so close to the end of their day, so I apologized profusely about being late. Then, several other women stood around while she deposited my money, which I thought was weird, but maybe bank people are really cliquey or they work in small herds, I don’t know, I’m bad at math, which is why I’m a writer.

Several minutes later, I finally left, feeling more self-concious than anyone should feel walking out of a bank. It’s not like I was turned down for a loan or told my house was being reposessed – how dare those mean, suited bank ladies make me feel like this!

Only when I got to the car did I realize what they were staring at: it was a stage five twanger. And it was bad.

If you are not well-versed in hair lingo (as I so clearly am) let me tell you, a twanger is about the worst thing you can have (aside from a mullet). Imagine Alfalfa from “Little Rascals” and you kind of get the idea. However, a twanger doesn’t have to stick straight up, no. A twanger is pretty much a rogue lock of hair that does whatever it chooses, in whichever direction it chooses, which is not only embarassing, it is also quite dangerous. And on this particular day, when I had so nonchalantly propped those sunglasses up on my head, the bangs that are growing out had been pushed up and to the side in such a way that a lock of my hair was sticking out above my ear, perpendicular to my head.

I had a 90 degree angle hair twanger.

I am never going to the bank again.

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Yacht not waterski if you’ve never tried before

My aunt and uncle have a boat and belong to a private lake. The lake is so private only a few boats are ever on it at one time, which means they can feel very bourgeoise without anyone having to see them, which may defeat the purpose, but they’re not the type to flaunt. Talk about the boat like a third child, yes. But flaunt about the lake, no. After all, we’re descended of farmers, flaunting is just not in our nature.

However, sometimes the aunt and uncle take pity on their poor relations, ie, those of us who only have condos in Vail, not boats, and they take us out on the lake. Such was the case today, when, in the great American tradition of Father’s Day, we decided to do what every American family should want to do and go water-skiing, eat ribs and strawberry shortcake, and hang out at the lake.

The key words being that these are things we should all want to do. However, perhaps not all families contain a pasty writer child who burns in the sun, cannot water-ski, and doesn’t really look like she belongs on a boat. Don’t get me wrong, give me enough time and I can assemble one hell of a boating outfit – navy and white stripes, loafers, a fetching head scarf, the whole thing, very Ralph Lauren – but then I’d have to actually go out on the water, and then the ensemble would be shot to hell anyway, so why bother? If I’m actually going to be forced into the water, then a black bikini under my wetsuit will do.

I’m not sure when it became the American dream to go boating and barbecuing all the live long day, but it seems to be a pervasive myth. When I told people I was “going out to the lake” they were very impressed and made envious noises about how fun that would be. What they didn’t know was that “going out on the lake” means cheering for my cousins, who look like they were purchased at Abercrombie Kids, while they wake-board, and then listening to them laugh at me while I attempted to put my water-skis on. This, of course, was only a little overture to how hard they laughed at me when I tried and failed, several times to even get up on the skis. And then, when I finally did get up, they tell me “way to stay up for a whole five seconds!” Annoyingly, the exclamation point was one of sarcasm, not excitement, so I guess it should be a sarcastic point instead.

In the end, I can at least say I went on the boat – apparently, flaunting is in my nature. And come November, I’m going to kick some cousin butt on my snowboard. And when we all go to the condo, you better believe I’m going to laugh when they lock themselves in the bathroom, as they inevitably and annually do.

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Corporate retail whoredom as birth control

I work in corporate retail. Just for the summer, because as much fun as it is to fold pants and pick up after grown people in fitting rooms, I have bigger and better things to do, like get married and become a trophy wife.

But some trophy wives should really employ nannies, or quit with all the sex, because my new number one gripe about working as a retail whore is the children. Which is strange, because I work in a store that sells adult clothing. Yes, there is a kids section, but why are all the children in MY section? Why are all the children pulling the magnetic appendages off the mannequins, hitting themselves in the face, and then blaming me? Why are some people even allowed to procreate at all?

I think every adult should have to take a parenting class, and then do a trial run with some test children (never mind where these children will come from, we’ll cross that bridge later) and if they don’t pass, they should be sterilized. Or at least, have to shadow some gold-star parents until they know what to do. Because I have seen some very unruly rugrats, and if the children whose parents shop in my store are any indication, the apocolypse should be coming any day now. And when that day comes, America is definitely going to have to develop it’s own, non-British version of “Super Nanny” with more spanking.

And if you think I’m kidding about any of this, the next time your kid smacks himself in the face with a plastic leg, you remember this and start planning that vasectomy!

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In praise of my everything

“My women friends, they’re all my sisters, all my mothers, all my husbands, they are all my everything. It’s hard to find a man who can measure up to any of them.”
-Jennifer Aniston

If anyone found out how wise Jennifer Aniston truly was, she could have made a living giving friendly advice, instead just being a Friend. Luckily for me, she found a way to put into words what is very hard to say, especially when you’re in a committed relationship. With several other women.

While it’s true that I am single by traditional definition, I feel very much spoken for, and to deny the relationship that I am in would be worse than infidelity – it would be a lie. Because even though I do not have a male significant other, I have others who are significant, and we have a relationship that is more real, more sane, and way more healthy than any other traditional relationship I’ve ever been in.

I consider myself lucky enough to have friends who respect me. Despite the fact that I make jokes when uncomfortable, give generally bad advice, and am the worst bartender alive, they don’t try to make me anyone that I am not, because who I am is enough for them.

I am lucky enough to have friends who support me. Whether it’s reading this blog, letting me drag them to press conferences, or talking about THAT boy again, they are always there with a listening ear, a beautiful smile, and a shoulder shrug, because sometimes it’s all they can offer. And it’s enough.

I am lucky enough to have friends who never go away, even when I want them to. It’s easy to want to retreat into a corner and try to deal with it myself – I am the queen of alone time. And it’s not so easy when they haul me out of the corner, ask the tough questions, and get angry, especially not when I deserve it. But my friends are strong women, not easily intimidated and not scared of what’s hard or uncomfortable, even if I am.

My friends are my everything, the family I chose. We’ve been through breakdowns, break-ups, boys and Breckenridge, cancer and car trouble, fights and fiestas, and oh! the dreaded hangovers… They helped me remember my locker combination and held me when I cried. They will stand next to me at my wedding, help me raise a child, and look the other way when I fart in the nursing home.

You know who you are, and you know what you mean to me. I’m counting on you fix me when I break, catch me when I fall, and change the world like I know you’re going to do.

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The Buckets

My little brother had his graduation party on Saturday afternoon. Well, it officially started on Saturday afternoon. It unofficially started the day he was born, and we’ve spent 18 years building up to the day where we’d have to put on a party that is good enough for he-who-is-holier-than-the-golden-calf. I know they love him more. It’s fine. I’m not bitter. At all.

Anyway, after much partying and congratulating, the last people left at 6:00 p.m., which was six and a half hours from the start of the party. As a normally non-social person, I had to lie on the floor for awhile to recover. And then, it was time for a little something my neighborhood likes to call “beerthirty” (or would it be beer:30 p.m.?) alternately known as “gutter beer” depending on where you’re drinking. As we were drinking on the back porch, I felt a little more classy about the inevitable outcome: getting drunk with my parents.

It all started with Mike’s Hard Lemonade, and ended with shots of hard alcohol. I have never been in such close proximity to my childhood bedroom AND so tipsy in my life. And so white trash feeling. It’s only a matter of time before I’m cooking Hot Pockets and watching NASCAR.

There was also mention of Ma and Pa Kettle and some family named Clampett. I don’t know who my parents were talking about, but if our neighbors are The Kettles, would that make us The Buckets?

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