Friday, December 31, 2010

When I say hypothetical I usually mean it happened and it's too late to stop me.

Padawan is now Available.

Chanel: Can I ask you a hypothetical question?

Padwan: What?

Chanel: Hypothetically, what would you say if I was walking to work this morning, minding my own business, when I heard this sad, pathetic little sound in the bushes by the sidewalk in front of Target.
And then I stopped to investigate the sound.
And I found this totally cute, adorable, helpless little kitten with his eyes still closed and no mommy around to take care of him...
So I picked him up and took him to work with me and fed him warmed up milk from the employee kitchen.
And then I decided to name him "Beelzebub" or maybe "Figgy Toe Socks" because I was stuck between choosing one of the two names...
And I brought him home.
What would you say?

Padawan: You adopted a cat?!?!

Chanel: Hypothetically. What would you say?
Would you make me send him away?
Would you be angry?
Would you?

Padawan: Gah! Chanel, did you adopt a kitten?

Chanel: Would you be mad?

Padawan: Yes...

Chanel: It's a good thing Sarah wanted a kitty.
But I just couldn't leave him there!
He was helpless and couldn't even see!
And next time I'm bringing him home! It was just luck that Sarah happened to want a kitty! 

Ten minutes later...

Padawan: So...could you send me a picture of the kitten?

Chanel: No, Ed already came and took him back to his and Sarah's house.
He's gone.
But he was really cute.
He was a tuxedo cat with little white sockies on his feet and a white tip on his tale.
His eyes were closed so I don't know what color they were, but I bet they were pretty.
Next time, can I bring the kitty home if I find one?

Padawan: We really don't need a kitten, Chanel. We have a dog.

Chanel: But if it's helpless and alone it would be cruel to leave it to die!

Padawan: If it was a human baby you would leave it there.

Chanel: That's not true! If it was a human baby I would take it to work and call 911.
You don't have to call 911 with kitties! You can just take them home!
If I find another one I'll take it home and if you hate it we can find it a good home!

Padawan: Chanel...

Chanel: It's wrong to let them starve and die!

Padawan: Fine...but if you really wanted to spend another $400 in pet deposits could you just use the money to fix my computer instead of getting a cat?

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The most awesome batteries EVER!!!!!

Yes, I made over my blog yet again. This time I decided to go with a "warm" theme. I was thinking reds and browns when I started, but I somehow wound up with lots of oranges and reddish browns instead. Oh well, I'm sure Picasso intended something else when he wound up with Cubism. Or his Blue Period. 

Yes, I just went there. I totally just compared my blog layout to Picasso's work. 

And isn't it just a Fabulously Neurotic Masterpiece?

I got tired of looking at the blue tree and the blue bubbles. So I went with an orange tree. I guess I like trees. But this one is not a sad, winter tree. It's a warm, happy fall tree. With a bench. Trees are so much better when there's a bench under them. I don't know why. That's just the rule.

Anyway, since we're on the subject of color, I thought I would share a funny story. I'm pretty sure I've mentioned before that Padawan, bless his heart, is colorblind. Not in all things. He just...has a hard time seeing certain colors and separating differences. I might be mistaken, but I believe I've shared the story about the headphones.

But in case I haven't, here it is.

One day I got in the car after work and noticed Padawan had new headphones. When I looked at them closely I realized they were silver and pink. 

"Padawan, why are you wearing pink headphones?"

He looked at me like I was insane. "They're not pink. They're silver."

Cue laughter. He couldn't see the difference between the silver and the pink. He refused to believe until I showed him on the package that it said "slvr/pnk" in the product code. Stubborn, he insisted most people would think they were silver (though I could see from three feet away that they were pink and silver) and it didn't matter. He used them for six months until my dog, who likes the taste of inner ear, found them laying on the floor one day and chewed them up.

Fast forward to last night. Padawan and I decided to take a late night trip to Wal-Mart because Target was closed and it was closer than HEB. Our mission? Chai Latte Concentrate. I've been out for almost a week now, and it's driving me nuts.

Unfortunately, Wal-Mart was sold out of my beloved Tazo Chai Tea Latte Concentrate, and rather than get the bags of it to make it entirely myself (no) or the organic version (which tastes really gritty and costs a dollar more) I decided to just continue on without. After all, I got a gift card for Starbucks for Christmas, so I wouldn't technically be "wasting" money by going to Starbucks in the morning for my latte.

But rather than waste a trip, we decided to wonder around and explore, since there was pretty much nobody else there and the reason we always just hurry up and leave is because I can't stand crowds. Anyway, we wandered towards electronics and we happened to pass a battery display. I was immediately distracted.

It was a wall of pink batteries!!!!!!!!!!!

To the average person, this is irrelevant. To me, this is freaking epically awesome. Pink anything makes me want it. You could show me a pair of pink drumsticks, even though I don't play drums and would never use them, and I'd buy them. Pink batteries? Hell yeah! Pretty and useful!

I grabbed a package and, without thinking, said, "Oh my god! Padawan! Look at these!" And I held them up excitedly and brandished them in a way a five year old would to show off a new toy.

Blank stare. "Um...batteries?"

Shaking them harder. "NO! AWESOME BATTERIES!"

He stared at me a few seconds. "Um...why?"


"They are not!" He grabbed them, looked at them, studied them for a moment. "These are normal silver batteries! Are you just messing with me because of the headphones?"

"What?" Laughter. "I forgot about that. NO! They're seriously pink!" 

"They look silver."

I tried to grab somebody to back me up, but he stopped me. "I believe you. I can see the breast cancer ribbon. Anything with a breast cancer ribbon is pink. You're right."

It's probably not as funny the way I'm writing it. You probably had to be there. 

But seriously. It was funny. Did you see how pink those batteries were?

That's pretty freaking pink. Just sayin'.

P.S. I added a bunch of tags. Just to see what happens. Because...well, what's the point of tags? I'm going to find out. I'm pretty sure.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Padawan and Choo Choo :)

So I don't really have much to say. I just thought I'd share some pictures with you guys of Choo Choo, who I found curled up on Padawan's pillow last night. She has her own doggy bed, of course, and her own chair, and her own pillow to curl up on. But for some reason she felt like sleeping on Padawan's pillow. :)

The first picture was a sneak attack.

Then I did a close up.

The flash woke her up. She peeped at me.

She became fully awake, wondering what the hell I was doing flashing bright lights in her face when she was clearly trying to sleep.

And then she gave me her best, "I'm really irritated by this behavior" look, and I stopped. :)

And then I went and took a picture of Padawan while he was exercising on the Hamster bike in his pajamas, but he got irritated and told me to stop. I only got this one, and it's not even a good one. :(

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Meeting some "Elders" from the Church of Latter Day Saints

About an hour ago, I was hanging up coats in our coat closet when Choo Choo toddled over and wagged her tail the way she does when she thinks she's going out for walkies. It had been a couple of hours, so I thought maybe she was telling me she needed to go again. I put on my parka because it was a balmy 37 degrees outside, put her leash on her, and took her out.

Choo Choo immediately took off at a dead run when we reached the bottom of the stairs. I figured she just really had to potty and was in a hurry to get to her spot. She likes to go in the same areas. Instead, she led me right to two men with backpacks wearing suits and promptly started barking at them. Choo Choo, I think, picks up my moods and since I am instinctively distrustful of all strange men she is as well. She didn't want to stop barking, so I tried to maneuver her in another direction. The two men, however, walked over and asked what kind of dog she was.

"She's a chihuahua," I said. I was immediately suspicious. These were well dressed men, they seemed intelligent enough, and Choo Choo is clearly a chihuahua, and everybody knows a chihuahua when they see one. They're kind of a distinctive, well known breed.

They said she was cute, and proceeded to introduce themselves as "Elder James" and "Elder Jacob" from the something something "Church of Latter Day Saints."

Great. My dog, who is cute and so smart in so many ways, had just led me straight to the path of two young (I don't know why there were "Elders" since they looked about my age) Mormon soul savers on a mission in 37 degree temperatures. And I learned from Daddy many years ago that you should never be rude to people who are trying to help you in their own way, even when you aren't interested in their help. Out of politeness, I stopped to listen.

The inevitable, "Do you believe in Jesus Christ?" followed talk of my dog and comments on my scarf with built in mittens and the weather.

I decided honesty would be good. "No, I really don't."

"Well, do you believe in God?" 

"Sometimes, but I don't give it a name. I sometimes believe in something." 

I suppose that seemed promising to them. Choo Choo was wandering around behind us, occasionally turning to bark at one or the other before returning to exploring her territory. They asked lots of questions.

Do you live here?


With your family?
"No, with my boyfriend and dog."

Does your boyfriend believe in God?

"He believes in absolutely nothing. We're more scientific than religious."

Had we ever been to church?
"We were both raised Southern Baptists."

Was there a reason you stopped believing?
"I told my preacher something had happened, and he didn't believe me. Southern Baptists tend to favor men." Of course, I know the Mormon Church also favors men above women, that men traditionally hold the power in all things familial. And I made it clear I didn't like that.

And they answered with something about how people are not perfect, but God is, and something about how men can become corrupt, and that I could surely find solace in their church. Out came a card (in Spanish, but I had no problem reading it) with a number to call so I could get a Book of Mormon and then they offered to come up and take out my trash (no, thank you) or do my dishes (no, thank you) or help me in any way possible, including cleaning up Choo Choo's poo poo (tempting, but no, thank you.)

I answered with a, "I think your time is better spent trying to save someone else's soul."

Before leaving, they asked me if I was going to call the number.

Well, they were nice young men. They weren't pushy in the way that the usual Christian and Jehovah's Witness and Catholic Missionaries are. (Sorry if I'm insulting you, but I've never had one show up at my door that wasn't really pushy about me being saved. And I was saved before I stopped believing. I just chickened out of being Baptized because I was afraid the priest would drop me in the water and I would drown.) I didn't want them to feel as if they'd wasted their time.

I threw them a bone. "I'd say your odds are about fifty fifty at this point." That seemed to make them happy. 

I came back upstairs, gave Matt the card, and he asked me why it was in Spanish.

"They ran out of English cards." 

And then we laughed and I tucked the card away in my desk because I think throwing it away would be even ruder than just not calling.

Still, they insisted it was Fate that led Choo Choo to wanting to go out for walkies right as they were coming by. I don't really think it was Fate so much as unfortunate timing. Maybe Choo Choo heard them outside talking to someone else and she wanted to investigate. Maybe she couldn't hold in the poo poo any longer. 

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Pictures of my work Christmas tree!

I know you guys are just dying of impatience to see pictures of the new apartment. Or I'm flattering myself and nobody actually cares. Either way, I'm not taking any pictures until everything is unpacked. And everything is unpacked, expect for the books. Several boxes of books are just hanging around, waiting to be unpacked. And they aren't unpacked because my bookshelves finally fell apart and I have to wait for Santa to bring me a new book shelf for Christmas.

I have been assured that I am getting a new one.

So when we have our bookshelves, and I can unpack my books, I will put up pictures. 

In the meantime, you can see pictures of the Christmas tree I keep on my file cabinet at work and the decorations hanging from the ceiling in front of my desk, which I secretly hope will fall on evil customers that give me a hard time, but they never do.

And that is really all I have to say, except that I'm sick and tired of the attitude people keep giving me when I say, "I'm sorry, but we don't sell music CDs here. Just accompaniment CDs," and then they snap at me that it's really stupid, and then they demand to know where they can buy music CDs before calling me absolutely useless when I tell them to try Target because, duh, it's not my job to tell people where to buy things we don't sell. Obviously.

Not that I don't try to be helpful. Target has a music section. They just don't see it that way.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Draco Malfoy (r maybe Harry Potter) shrank Jerkface's key in MY defense.

I will admit that I was a little sad at losing Jerkface as a roommate. *sigh* His stupidity made for such funny blogs. What will I do without his daily actions to use as fodder for writing? I do not know, but I feel like the loss is a small and rather insignificant one. I can always find things to blog about.

However, as a parting gift, Jerkface made one final act of jerkfacishness which I get to use in my last Jerkface blog ever.

In the two years that Padawan and I have been living with Jerkface, we have had to get used to not locking the door. The few times I forgot I wasn't allowed to lock the door Jerkface would call Padawan and bitch and complain until one of us got out of bed (because he always came home at one in the morning while we were sleeping) and let him in. 

Why did we have to let him in? 

Well, I have no idea since we gave him new keys on multiple occasions.

I can only assume that Harry Potter thought a good dose of Muggle Baiting would serve Jerkface right, so he cast a shrinking spell on his keys so that they kept disappearing and he gave them up for lost. If that's the case, Harry Potter, thank you. Or even was probably Draco Malfoy saying thanks for the years of support I gave him because I knew from book one that he was misunderstood and that he would prove himself. So thank you, darling Draco, for coming to my defense.

Anyway, for two years it has been permanently carved into our brains: never lock the door because Jerkface is too stupid to figure out how to keep track of his keys. And never in the entire two years of living together did Jerkface ever feel the need to lock the door. 

We moved out yesterday, and go most of our things, and this afternoon went back for some things in our garage and in the bedroom that we hadn't had the movers get. Padawan went to the garage, I headed upstairs to our apartment. I turned the knob, pushed, and discovered that Jerkface had, for the first time ever, remembered to lock the door. I wans't particularly bothered by this. It's pretty obvious that we've been moving, so it's more likely someone would try to steal from us because in the moving process things are hard to keep track of from the moment they enter the box until they are pulled out at the new place. I thought nothing of it as I knocked on the door. And knocked. And knocked. 

No answer.

Angry at that point because I was pretty sure I didn't even have my key on me anymore, I had to schlump my way down three flights of stairs and walk across the parking lot to our garage to tell Padawan that Jerkface had, for some unfathomable reason, locked us out. Padawan didn't have a key and had to go borrow one from the office, and I finally found mine at the bottom of my purse (a black hole of random things) next to my iPod Shuffle, which I haven't seen since the day I got my Nano right before Padawan returned. I let myself in, started collecting things...

And Jerkface came sauntering out of his bedroom, looking pleased with himself.

He had been home the entire time I'd been banging on the door because he locked us out knowing full well we wouldn't expect the door to be locked because he never locked it, EVER. He was in there and heard every single resounding bang, and he had no answered, had not called out a response, had just sat in his room and smugly gloated at his oh-so-fucking clever joke. 

Ha. Fucking. Ha.

The moral of this story is a nice one, though. During the final gathering process we accidentally picked up Jerkface's internet router, and when Padawan realized we had it he took it back upstairs to return. And somehow he dropped it on the pebbled stairs and it hit, bounced, and rolled down a few before finally stopping with this awesome scraping sound.

I have no idea if it will still work, but I hope like hell it's broken and he has to fork up another one hundred dollars to replace it. Not that a hundred dollars makes a difference to him, especially since he was recently made manager and he's making even more money now than he was before, but I still want him to have to pay a little something for what he did.

Reminded? He locked me out and then listened to me when I tried to have him let me in. And don't be fooled. His act of showing his face after the fact was only to smugly show me that it had been no mistake, that he'd intentionally done it, and he was rather proud. Asshat Surpeme, like I always knew, and a Jerkface on top of it all. 

I might have passed being "satisfied" and landed on smug.

There is no satisfaction more satisfactory than the satisfying feeling that comes from standing in the middle of your living room, stripping every article of clothing off of your body, and standing there naked and happy because nobody can stop you.

I am satisfied.

Nope. I am beyond mere satisfaction.

"Dreams are for lesser mortals. She had the stars."

No more dreams. I have achieved my ultimate desire. I have gone beyond mere dreams and grabbed a falling star. 

*lifts up kilt* FREEDOM!!!!!!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Packing never ends, does it?

I thought that Padawan and I had a done a good job of packing almost everything up a little at a time over the last couple of months so that we wouldn't have to spend the entire last day packing. But guess what. We've been packing all day, and there's still more to do.

Granted, I could have had the kitchen stuff packed away two days ago, since we've just been eating take out, but Padawan and I weren't sure which things were Roommate's, and which were ours. So we had to wait for him to get off of his lazy ass and sort through everything last night. Meaning I had the lovely task of packing up more than three fourths of the entire inventory of our kitchen into boxes after wrapping and layering everything with bubble wrap.


I wouldn't say so, no. And I had a freak accident in which I was moving a box into position to have the bottom taped so I could put stuff in it, but I moved it over so quickly that it sent the tape I was planning on using flying off of the counter. This shouldn't have ended badly. It should have just fallen to the floor and made a clattering noise. 

Instead, it conked Choo Choo on the head, right between the eyes, with a loud CRACK! and an even louder YELP! And then when I rushed towards her to pick her up, cuddle her, and apologize she turned around and ran from me, right to Padawan's computer chair where she took shelter from my evil, tape throwing self. I finally did manage to coax her out, but minutes later she shot out the open front door, no leash or collar on, because she thought we were leaving her and she didn't want to stay home. I caught her on the second floor because she finally realized she was cold, barefoot and not enjoying the freezing cold weather anymore than I was because I was also barefoot and freezing.

Then Padawan and I ran out of boxes. We went to pick some up from where I work, and surprise! Christmas Bonus checks were at the store! It was only $130 after taxes, but it was still nice to put it in the bank next to the big check I got yesterday.

Did I mention that thanks to the holidays I got a whopping 22 hours of overtime?

Just imagine how awesome my paycheck was, and about three hundred dollars bigger than everybody else's, too, because I worked more hours than even the manager. Not that it's too surprising. I work more hours than everybody else every single week.

It's helping cushion the move.

Oh, did I mention that Padawan and I took Little Brother to dinner at the Olive Garden last night? We gave him Calamari to try. He liked the first bite, asked what it was, and refused to touch it again when we told him it was fried Octopus. 

I like Calamari. It's one of very few ocean dwelling creatures I will eat, but only so long as it does not resemble in any way the way it did when it was alive. Padawan and I had some fresh Calamari in Corpus a couple of years ago. So fresh that the octopuses had been swimming around in the ocean mere hours before we ate them. Unfortunately, they forgot to chop up on of them, because when I went to pick up a tentacle, I picked up an entire deep fried body, eight legs attached to a head. I immediately felt nauseous and could not eat another bite. How can you eat something that looks like it did in life?

I don't eat shrimp, crab, or lobster for just this reason. They serve it looking like it could jump off the plate and swim away. I have tried lobster, of course, and it was tender and kind of buttery. But never again.

Anyway, I guess I should finish up this rambling break and go finish packing. But I really want a nap. *sad face*

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

I finally named my Kindle.

So I was thinking about what Nikki over at The Loaded Handbag said about using "Rose" rather than pink straight up when thinking of names for Kindle the Second, and I tucked the suggestion into the back of my mind. It sat there patiently, lying in wait like a tiger stalking its prey. We've been packing and saving and getting everything all ready for the move, so naming Kindle wasn't really a priority.

But then this morning, I was minding my own business reading the screen play for Citizen Kane when I happened to look over at Choo Choo, who was rubbing herself on the carpet trying to get dry because I gave her a bath a few minutes before and she was still a little damp, when I saw Kindle sitting there on the bedside table.

BAM! The tiger suggestion pounced. I remembered the suggestion about working in "Rose."
BAM! A new thought bounced into my head, hot on the tiger's tail. Connection to Citizen Kane.

KABOOM! The greatest of the great idea is born! What better name for my Kindle than Rosebud????

Ah, the epic word that spiraled out the entire story of the amazing screen play/movie that I've loved since I first read it for Literary Criticism when I was fifteen years old. Feminine, awesome, and anybody with any taste would understand the reference, Rosebud is obviously perfect.

So....I hereby dub thee, "Rosebud." Thou shalt serve me well. 

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

I get entirely over-excited when I get new office supplies.

There are very few reasons for me to get all excited when I'm at work. 

These reasons are including, but not limited to, the following list:

  1. Huge shipments with lots of bubble wrap.
  2. Huge shipments with lots of rubber bands.
  3. Shiny new guitars that I get to unwrap and hold first, fresh from the manufacturer.
  4. Getting to pick out the new jewelry to go on display.
There are other reasons to be excited, but those four are my number one. Today, however, Manager Man gave me a new reason to be all excited and happy.

New Message Pads.

I know it seems silly. Really, I understand that. But these are the most awesome message pads in the whole freaking world! Especially when you compare them to the message pads we've been using since the beginning of forever that I've seen every single day for the last three years.

This is the message pad style that we have used since the Stone Age. It is basic. It is ugly. It is boring. And until today, I did not think there was an alternative to this basic office staple that every Receptionist needs. It reads as follows:
  1. For:
  2. Date:
  3. Time: AM/PM
  4. From:
  5. Of:
  6. Phone/Mobile
  7. Fax:
  8. Message:
  9. Signed:
And then on the right it says "PHONE CALL" and to the left there is a list of boxes you can check which are relevant to the call.
  1. Telephoned
  2. Returned your call
  3. Please call
  4. Will call again
  5. Came to see you
  6. Wants to see you
As I said. Boring.

Our new messages, however, look like this.

Not only do they look freaking awesome because they look like e-mails, complete with mouse cursor for clicking, but they are self-adhesive so that I can stick them on foreheads, monitors, walls, and anything else I feel like putting the messages on. This will make it a lot easier to make sure messages don't get "accidentally" lost because they "fall" in the trash after I deliver them and then somebody doesn't get called back. I also think that the novelty of the new message pads will make everybody more inclined to look at their messages, if only temporarily.

Yes. I'm excited about this. It's almost as awesome as that time that Dale gave me the "Unattended Children Will Be Given Espresso And A Free Puppy" sign for Christmas last year, and the time that Sara gave me a dry erase board with Michael Scott and the Dunder Mifflin Paper Company logo on the side. It's definitely more awesome than the colorful post its and the multi-colored paper clips.

Alright, so I'm bored out of my mind. Still, don't you kind of wish you had a receptionist handing you messages like this? Even just a little?

P.S. I finally got impatient about using the new message pad, so I wrote my own message for Dizzy so that I could say I used the message pad. I discovered something funny on the carbon copy left behind.

It says "You've got a copy!" instead of "You've got a message!"

Yes. I know. I am entirely too amused by this thing. But you have to excitement is making you smile a little, right? If not outright giggle.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Choo Choo on pain medication is funny.

Do you know what I find incredibly funny?
Watching Choo Choo trying to lead a normal life when she's high. 

No, I did not give my dog weed. Jeeze, Padawan and I don't mess with that stuff. I may drink occasionally, and Padawan might like his beer (ew), but we don't mess with illegal substances. Ever. So when I say watching Choo Choo when she's high is funny, I mean it in a, "the doctor gave her such strong painkillers she can't figure out why her tail is following her" kind of way.

Did I mention this? Oh, probably not since this whole thing went down on Tuesday and I spent all of Wednesday doing more packing and poking Choo Choo in the meantime to make sure she hadn't died or something. I guess I should take this back to the beginning.

I was sitting at work on Tuesday, minding my own business and doing absolutely nothing productive. I might have written a blog because I was really pissed at that guy who totally made up a bunch of bullshit about me and him that made no sense. The lies he made up, not my blog. I'm fairly certain that my blog was pretty logical. Or at the very least it was understandable. I mean, it was in English. But that's not the point. 

As I was sitting at my desk, mindlessly playing bubble popper, my phone went off with a text message. Then another. And another. I was bombed with six text messages at the same time. I didn't even have time to open ONE of them before my phone was ringing.  My cell phone, mind you, not my work phone. Although my work phone does get the occasional text message. You can text landlines, you know. I answered my phone, completely baffled, to hear Relly on the other end.

She didn't even give me time to finish saying "hello" before she was shrieking in my ear, "DIDN'T YOU GET OUR MESSAGES!?!?!?!" She sounded hysterical.

"Um, yeah. I just got like a million of them. I was in the process of trying to read them when you called. Is something wrong?"


I swear my heart stopped for a second before sputtering back to life, racing at ten times the normal speed. My heart dropped into my stomach, my blood turned to ice, and all I could think of was the Chihuahua we'd had when I was in high school that had died suddenly one afternoon while playing fetch with my sisters. 

"What's wrong with her?" I barely managed to whisper it.

"I think she broke her leg or something."

I could have killed her. I wanted to reach through the cell phone lines and wrap my hands around her throat and wring her neck for scaring the hell out of me like that. She made me think my dog was either dying a slow, painful, and baffling death or was already dead, and all that was wrong was a hurt leg. Not that I wasn't concerned about that. But when you think your furry child is dying, a broken leg is a lot more palatable.

Forgetting I was at work, I snapped, "Why the fuck did you say it like that? I thought she was dying! What happened to her leg?"

"Sorry, I didn't mean to scare you." And then she launched into this long, rambling, completely useless story about how she'd gone to work and what she'd done with her day before she got to the part that I actually asked about, which was exactly what had happened to my dog, who was staying with my grandparents until moving day next week.

"Well, when we came home  she ran around in circles in the formal living room like always, and then she followed me into the family room and when I sat on the couch she jumped in my lap." That's where she stopped. I love my sister to death, but she has the worst way of relaying  important information I've ever seen in any human being in my whole life. Hands down, no competition. Six year olds are better at telling stories than my twenty three year old sister.

"Well, when did she hurt her leg?" I was quickly losing patience.

"Oh, when she landed on my lap she started yelping really loud and crying and then she rolled off my lap onto the couch and cried by herself. When we tried to touch her paw she snapped at us and cried more. She won't walk around or eat. She won't even get up to go to the bathroom. She peed on Memaw."

Well, I almost laughed at that last bit, but I reigned it in. I considered everything she said, and I recalled how when Choo Choo had been three months old we had accidentally closed the front door on her back leg when she'd made a wild dash to try to go with us to the grocery store. She'd just has a soft tissue sprain but she had screamed and thrashed around until we got to the emergency clinic, and then acted perfectly fine. They gave her painkillers for it. Well, that's what I thought of so I said we'd come get her later that night and take her to see Dr. Kevin Spacey if she was still limping in the morning. (Her doctor's name isn't actually Kevin Spacey. He just looks and sounds exactly like him. Choo Choo and I both like him.)

Between that time and when I got of at eight I received six additional calls informing me that she was really hurt, that she wasn't eating or drinking, that I needed to get out there right then, that they were worried. They were sure it was broken. Couldn't I just leave work early and come get her? I managed to convince them that I couldn't leave work and they finally left me the hell alone. Until eight o'clock when they all started calling and texting to find out if I was on my way. 

When I finally got out there, Choo Choo seemed to entirely forget her hurt leg and jumped out of Memaw's arms to run and greet me. She did not act like she was feeling any pain in the slightest. She didn't act like it anything was wrong with her at all, but my grandmother insisted we still take her to the vet because she was just certain something was wrong with her. Well, I wanted my dog home anyway so we packed her things and brought her home where, as soon as she knew she was with us for a while, she started limping and whining and yelping like they had said she was doing, and she would not eat or drink a thing.

Presumably, the adrenaline rush that she got when she saw me over road the pain, and she didn't start feeling it again until after the excitement of seeing Mommy again had worn off. When I woke up the next morning and reached out to pet her, she yelped so loudly when I touched her shoulder that I immediately picked up my cell and called Dr. Kevil Spacey's office and made the first available appointment, which was four thirty.

During the time between waking up and going to the Vet, I packed more of our belongings for the big move (eight days!!!!!!), but I noticed that Choo Choo wasn't acting like herself. She was laying in the sun in front of the glass doors, not moving or making any noise. I was so worried about her since she wasn't eating or drinking anything that I went over and poked her a couple of times throughout the day, just to make sure she wasn't dead. She didn't like that and growled, but it made me feel better having it confirmed.

When we finally got to Dr. Spacey's she was nervous and adrenaline filled again, so she wasn't acting like she was in pain until the end of the visit, when she finally started limping around. That's when they gave her the first dose of the painkillers, and twenty minutes later...Choo Choo had left the building.

It started with her eyes dilating. Then she started blinking. She tried to navigate the stairs herself when we got home, but she got up two stairs when she noticed her tail. She went up a couple of stairs more, turned back and watched her tail. She wagged it. Her whole head moved to follow the tail.

She was fascinated.

I had to carry her up the rest of the way, and while she was in my arms she kept trying to bite her tail. She wasn't chasing it. She was just...hoping it would move into her mouth.

When we were home she walked around with her head turned back to watch her tail. She cocked her head from side to side, twitched her ears, even growled at her own tail. Then she curled up in a ball and put her tail under her from right paw. When she moved it, she growled.

And I couldn't stop laughing. It was the funniest thing I've ever seen my dog do, and we have to give her the meds every night. So for the next week I will be able to watch my stoned dog do silly things and then giggle over it. It will be a good week. :)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Evidently high school never ends for some people.

So there was this boy that I went to school with from seventh grade until senior graduation. He was one of the cool kids. He liked to tease me and flirt with me in class every once in a while, and I tried to ignore him because he was a big, stupid dunce and I had better taste than to associate with someone who was definitely going to end up driving a bus for a living, but for the most part he ignored my existence. I ignored his existence. It was a good arrangement.

After graduation everyone split up and went there separate ways. I got a job after my first semester at college because college isn't cheap and neither is an apartment and rent and bills. He saw me working in the Electronics department a couple of times. He even tried to strike up a conversation, but I was not particularly interested in his sudden attention. Just because I got hot somewhere between graduation and college didn't mean I wanted attention from people I considered a waste of time and space.

I quit working at that hell hole a few months later, and I never saw or heard from him again.

Then, a couple of weeks ago, that friend that was anorexic messaged me on Facebook and we apologized and made up and started talking to each other again. (Didn't you say that would happen one day, Candice?) And she happened to mention that she used to talk to this boy, and he had told her an interesting story. 

When I asked what he'd said, she said, "J told me that you used to work at Wal-Mart and you started hanging out with him and his friends and you guys used to get really high and drunk together."

*record scratch* Excuse me? 

First of all, I did not drink before I was twenty one. I still don't really drink, and I've been legal for over a year! Second, I do not get high. I tried weed once when I was twenty, and I did it in the privacy of my own apartment with two trusted friends who I did not know in high school and had no connection to my adolescent years at all. I did not like it. But I never tried weed while I was working at Wal-Mart. It's like a well known fact that I'm pretty much not into any kind of recreational controlled substances. And Tams and I weren't even friends when he told her that. Why on earth would he have said something like that?

The best thing I could think was that he wanted everyone to think he was so cool he could get the most prissy, prim, and proper girl from high school to party hard with him. That's the only reason I can see behind that. In which case, why didn't he just go ahead and say I slept with him? Wouldn't that have sounded that much better? Then again, maybe he knew nobody was stupid enough to believe that, if they even believed that I partied with him. The guys at my school called me a "padlocked crotch," which is a really stupid way of saying, "She's not interested in sex. Don't even bother with her." 

Great balls of fire, is high school never over? The rumor mill is still running even though I don't talk to most of those people at all anymore! And I despise lies about me floating around. If you're going to tell a story about me, at least make it a true one. Or make it a lie that can't be verified. Isn't that the whole rule behind lying? If you're going to make something up, make sure that they can't follow a path to find the truth. It's common freaking sense. I guess he was halfway clever when he told it to someone he knew I'd had a big falling out with and wasn't likely to talk to about it, but he didn't count on time and distance easing the hurt of years ago so that we would start talking again. 

I have half a mind to send him a message on Facebook (Yup, he's got one) and demand to know what the hell his problem is and then write all over his and his friends' walls saying that he's a liar and a moron and he's so not cool enough for me to talk to him, let alone party with him or his lame little friends. I'm still so mad I feel like steam should be coming out of my ears or something. 

Monday, December 6, 2010

Is saying nothing the same as helping?

A customer came in this morning, and she's left me thinking. She was a nice lady, a little plump with a bright smile and curly hair. She was wearing a pink turtle neck sweater and a jacket. She had two blond little girls with her. She was polite in a way few customers are, and shy. She didn't make eye contact with anyone. She mostly looked at the floor.

And when she turned her face to look at me I noticed she had a large black eye blooming on her face.

I wanted to ask her, but I didn't. I thought that, like my best friend, she might just be accident prone. God only knows how many times I've seen J-Lynn run into a wall or a tree or knock something over that left her with an awful looking bruise that looked like the result of an abusive relationship but was, in fact, a result of simple clumsiness. And when people ask J-Lynn about her bruises she always gets embarrassed. Nobody likes talking about how they are incapable of walking across a smooth floor without doing some sort of harm to themselves. Nobody likes being asked, "Are you being abused by someone?" when they aren't. 

So I decided to keep it to myself. I myself have had a black eye that was the result of a poorly placed box on a stock room shelf that landed on me just the wrong way. A bruised eye doesn't necessarily mean abuse. And she was outside with her children. Wouldn't she want to hide it? Wouldn't her husband, if he was abusive, want her to stay inside until the bruises disappear or make her wear make up to cover it? She might have been wearing make up, but it didn't do a good job of hiding anything if she was. I had all of these reasons to not ask, to not say anything.

And then when she was leaving she swooped down to pick up the younger of the two little girls, and the loose neck of the sweater fell down, and I saw what was unmistakably a bruised throat with finger marks. That was not the result of a simple accident. And it was too late to ask, to offer her a number, to tell her she wasn't alone and there were places that could help her, because she was already out the door and I couldn't chase after her because the phone was ringing and it's my job to answer it. 

My decision to not ask her when I instinctively felt that I should ask will haunt me for the rest of my life. Will I see that same smiling woman's picture on the news one day? Will she be beaten to death, or kill herself to escape a situation that she feels trapped in? And sure, it might just be a horrible accident. But how do you accidentally punch someone in the eye and then choke them?

Of course I could be wrong and it could all have a perfectly logical explanation.

But I'll never really know, will I? 

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Oh Christmas comes but once a year...Thank your lucky stars.

I hate working Sundays. Twice a year our family owned business opens for a series of Sundays to cater to our selfish, screaming, stressed out, angry, and sometimes really cool customers and we, the employees, are left working longer days on top of an extra one.

Calculation? The average employee walks away with ten hours of overtime a week. For me? I get about twelve extra hours a week. And it pays so well in time and a half plus commission. But it's fucking exhausting. I'm about to work my first Sunday (I didn't work last Sunday) today, going in at one for five hours of painting more quilt squares (fifteen to go for blanket number two) and answering asinine questions that I'd really rather ignore.

And people are all, "Aren't you in the spirit of the Holidays?"

The spirit of the Holidays? What the hell is that? The spirit of shopping all day and all night spending money to prove to my loved ones that they're like actually loved? The spirit of paying Master Card and Visa bills for the next ten months to pay for everything you buy? The spirit of stressing yourself out for absolutely no real reason and then having the nerve to blame your stress on everybody else when you could really just relax and say, "Hey, it's the thought that counts. If they don't have it, it's all good." 

I'd rather skip that, thanks.

I don't even like to venture into any retailers on Black Friday. I get home from work and we order a pizza. It's safer for dinner to come to us than to brave the roads full of morons only thinking about buying awesome things for as cheaply as possible. 

It's not that I hate Christmas. I don't. But my favorite part of Christmas is when we all sit at the table and stuff ourself full of good food and try talking over each other and carrying on fifty different conversations all at once while laughing and maybe drinking some wine or beer (for them, not me. I don't do the beer or wine thing. Is it too much to ask for a strawberry margarita on Christmas?) and generally having a good time. And it's pretty fun to model the articles of clothing I generally receive, though the gift isn't the most important thing. It's just funny to form a runway in the formal living room. It's hard to believe coming from the four of us, but if there's one thing all of my sisters and I can do perfectly, it's stomp a runway. Tyra would totally be proud of us if we ever made an appearance on America's Next Top Model.  Sometimes Relly and I joke about going to a Cycle just to show the other girls how it's done. Some of them are really bad runway walkers.

Speaking of Christmas, though, Padawan and I have decided that we're going to buy a Christmas tree for our new apartment and set it up and decorate it and put gifts under it. (I got him an iPhone 4 for Christmas/Birthday but I'm going to buy him a bunch of little things and wrap them, and then some cologne and a mouse thing for his computer because he needs one.) We've also decided we're hiring movers because I'm absolutely the worst help when it comes to moving things. I can't lift heavy things. I have a hard time carrying empty drawers for dressers for crying out loud, and Padawan can't do it all himself. 

Anyway...the reason I've not been blogging is because I've been taking quilt squares to work because I have to get them done so Mom can sew them all together and stuff them. But Brat has decided she ALSO wants a quilt. She wants different piggies painted on hers. And if we make one for Brat then we'll have to make one for Wheat, because she can't stand her twin getting something she didn't. So we'll have to make one with kitties for Wheat. Gah. This is what happens when you decide to do something totally awesome for a couple of people. :)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

I revel in my delight: the intoxication of revenge well served.

What did I do with my day?

Well, let's was a very productive day. I woke up at nine this morning and hopped in the shower. Of course, I blared my shower playlist on the iPod dock. Do you know what makes revenge perfect? When the first song is Seether's "Fake It" and I get to scream, "Oh whoa oh, you're such a fuckin' hypocrite!" at the top of my lungs knowing Jerkface has just had a rude awakening and he can hear me and he knows I'm singing that line for him.

Message delivered? I think so.

What else? Oh, yeah. I played a girl power playlist consisting of thirty seven angry female vocalists with a couple of girl pop love songs while I did laundry. And I ripped open boxes and moved things around and loudly pulled packing tape out to re-tape some things. 

Did I mention the part where I just had to vacuum the bedroom, the living room, and the hallway right outside of Jerkface's door? No? Well, I did that too. Then I moved on to clean the kitchen. Do you know how many pots and pans we have in our cabinets? Twenty six. It took me fifteen minutes of banging them around loudly before I found the way they all fit perfectly together for re-entry to the cabinet. Oh, I might have accidentally slammed that cabinet shut. Twice.

And then of course I had to rearrange all of the other cabinets. I can't imagine it was pleasant to hear the glass clinking in combination with my girl anthems and my own singing added in. Then again, I've got a fairly lovely singing voice. Still, it was ten in the morning. I might have disturbed somebody's sleep. Especially when you consider that I had to slam every single cabinet door shut when I was finished. I might have dropped a few things, too, followed by some good natured swearing. 

Oh, and after I cleaned off the table in the dining room I realized I'd forgotten to vacuum under the table and chairs. Oops. Had to do that again, and since it had been so long I thought it was probably best to go over it slowly, and then a second time just to make sure I got it all. And because I was doing laundry between everything else, I had to keep going in and out of the bedroom. I might have shut the door a little too loudly a few times. I hope it didn't disturb anyone. 

Jerkface finally got fed up and left at about twelve thirty. I threw a bright smile at him when he was leaving. He looked quite chipper. After that I turned off the music and got to work on one of the quilts my mom and I are making for T-man's little boys. T-man is a man who dated Relly in high school and she broke his heart to he married someone else and had two kids with her, but then she cheated on him while he was in Iraq and so now he's divorced and he and Relly are acting like a happy married couple taking care of his kids together. Anyway, T-man has been a friend of the family for years, and he always stops by on Christmas. So we're making Double L (what I'm calling his boys because both of their names start with "L") Alphabet Quilts. They're two and three years old, so they'll appreciate them. I'm in charge of painting the pictures. Here's a picture of a couple of squares I did today.

You wouldn't believe how long it takes to paint these things. Cute though, aren't they? I'm a little proud of them. Mom's going to do all of the sewing. I can sew, of course, but I don't actually have a sewing machine because...well, who the hell has a sewing machine anymore? I don't sew on a regular basis, though I do embroider from time to time. Hey! Don't judge me! I like to do old fashioned things sometimes! When's the last time YOU made a quilt? I thought so.

Anyway, I'm feeling all smug about my revenge.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

I think it sounds fun to wake up naked in the woods with a chicken in my hands.

I think I might turn into a werewolf on the next full moon. Padawan doesn't believe me. That's his mistake. He will be the first person I bite in my new wolf form. And I will be a terrifying werewolf, not a giant teddy bear thing that looks like a wolf puppy that ate a bag of Miracle-Gro.

I mean a vicious, human eating monstrosity from the horror tales of old that didn't end with a werewolf falling in love and turning over a new leaf or find a cure...

Why will I be a werewolf? Because of THIS thing: ----> Alright, so I wrapped it up in a lot of bandages because frankly I'm paranoid about infection, and I could have sworn it looked red and puffy this morning, and I didn't want to get gangrene, so I doused it in a second helping of peroxide and slathered it with Neosporin before I wrapped it up.

I didn't actually consider taking a picture of it when it happened because it was bleeding, and looking at blood grosses me out, especially when it's my own blood, even in a picture. Though I guess it would have been wise to do because then you could see with your own eyes the mark of the wolf on my arm.

Yup. That's right. I have claw marks wrapped around my delicate little wrist, and they're probably going to leave scars unless I turn into a werewolf and my skin regenerates into pure perfection. Which I'm just vain enough to wish for because I can't stand having scars on any part of my body, especially parts of my body that can easily be viewed. Such as my wrist. (I did just try to pull up the bandages to take a picture for you guys anyway, but when I tried to pull it up it hurt my skin and I didn't want to pull it again because I'm not really what you could call pain tolerant and I knew I'd start crying if I kept it up. I'll have to clean it again tomorrow so then I'll take a picture. Unless it's infected, then I'll take myself to a hospital and beg them to save my arm before they have to amputate.)

Anyway, so what happened was this: last night Padawan and I ventured forth to the far away land of Lago Vista to take my darling Choo Choo to my grandparents' house, where she will be staying for the next nineteen days until we move to our new apartment. (It's all for the best, really. It's impossible to get any packing done with her running under my feet or grabbing onto my jeans.) Little did I know, my younger sister's puppy, Kira, had grown another ten pounds since the last time I saw her. Which isn't really a problem if she was a normal dog that understood her size problem.

Unfortunately for me, Kira thinks she's a small dog like Choo Choo, so when Choo Choo jumps up on my lap, Kira thinks she's just as entitled. Kira is a wolf/doberman mix. She's four months old and weighs a whopping forty pounds and she's still growing. She's huge and she won't hold still long enough for us to trim her nails, so she's got giant wolf paws with sharp wolf claws which are perfectly shaped for digging into soft flesh.

When she jumped up on me, her claws caught my arms and raked around. I'm not sure who made the louder noise: me when I screamed bloody murder, or Choo Choo and Kira when they howled in response to my shrieks of pain. I might have added something to the effect of, "Kira, if you ever do that again I'm going to box your ears so hard your brain is going to bleed!"

Not that she understood the threat. And anyway, I'm pretty sure her behavior last night while I was trying to eat dinner indicates she knows I'm full of hot air and I wouldn't so much as slap her nose, let alone smack her hard enough to hurt her. It's not just that I don't really believe in hitting animals as a form of discipline, it's also that she's a freaking wolf breed and she could jump on me and swallow me whole if she felt so inclined. I'm not particularly inclined to hit things that could kill me.

But it's the wolf part that makes me think I'm probably going to turn into a werewolf. That's they way it happens in books and movies: you get bitten or scratched by a wolf and then you become one. So awesome! I hope I can remember the things I do in my werewolf body because they'd probably make for far more interesting blogs than I'm ordinarily capable of writing. I'd be like a guest blogger on my own blog: Tales from the Wolf. That might be fun.

Now I'm going to be severely disappointed if I don't turn into a werewolf for the full moon next month. I'm all looking forward to it and it's infinite possibilities of awesomeness now. Balls.

Monday, November 29, 2010

The gloves are coming off, Jerkface. I'm DONE.

I've been such a good, quiet roommate these last few weeks preparing for our big move. I've been trying extra hard to stay out of Jerkface's way, to make the last months easier on everybody. I've even gone out of my way to say goodbye or hello to Jerkface when he is coming or going and I happen to see him.

I've been the model of friendly roommate behavior.

Apparently it's just not enough, though. Apparently, some Asshat Supreme's are just too jerkfacey to understand when someone is making a genuine effort to not cause problems. I haven't even touched the thermostat in weeks, even thought it's been in the thirties and he STILL turns the AC on, and I stopped running up the electric bill months ago.

Well, fuck all of that. The gloves are coming off after this latest in Jerkface News. After I left for work this morning, Jerkface had the nerve, the audacity, to stomp around the kitchen slamming things for ten minutes. When Padawan asked him what was wrong, do you know what he said?
Chanel was slamming dishes and cabinets and the door this morning and woke me up. She's too noisy. 
Excuse me? 

Let me clarify: I had my coffee cup already sitting out this morning. I did not need to go in the cabinets for the coffee mug. As for slamming dishes? What dishes? I rinsed my mug out and put it in the dishwasher. The only noise I made was opening and closing the refrigerator once, and opening and closing the microwave twice. And correct me if I'm wrong, but there's really no fucking way to keep a microwave from making a noise when you close it. It's just not possible. You have to push it at the end to close it, and when it closes it makes a loud fucking noise. 

And I'm being too noisy with cabinets I didn't touch and dishes I didn't bother with? He's fucking out of his mind insane. And he's even more crazy if he thinks this is going to be the end of it. Because Padawan, in an effort to make peace, has asked me to turn the door knobs on any door I'm shutting before I close it so it won't make a click, and he's asking me to hold the cabinets until they are closed before letting go. And for me to try to find a quieter way to make my breakfast.

Breakfast is a Chai Latte made in the fucking microwave! There is no quieter way to fucking make my breakfast! As for trying to remember to turn the knobs before closing they are both out of their fucking minds. Half the time I forget to close the doors anyway and have to go back and shut them. I'd prefer to leave the doors open, to be honest. I'm going in and out of the bedroom and bathroom so many times it's a hassle to close and open them repeatedly. 

I'm not about to try to remember to turn fucking knobs before closing doors. I can't even remember to close the doors! Half the time I don't even close the front door all the way and have to go back and pull it too again.  I'm not about to add yet ANOTHER thing to the list of things I have to do properly in the morning. Besides, he couldn't remember his fucking promise to not touch the damn AC during the daylight hours over the summer, even though it made me miserable, why the fuck should I care about making his sleepy time better for him? I can promise you, he's not a nicer person when he's well rested. He's a Jerkface almost all of the time. There's no advantage in not interfering with his sleep.

But at least when I make noise, which is rare, it's a fucking accident. Most of the time. Padawan has pretty much broken me of my slamming the bathroom door in his face when I'm pissed at him habit. Jerkface if different. He's twenty five years old and he's going around slamming things because he's pissed off at me and he knows I'm not even there. What the fuck is the point of being mad at somebody and showing it if they aren't there to see it? The point was utterly lost on me. And if I had been home I would have popped my head out and said, "Shut the fuck up! You're an adult!" or something to that effect. Maybe without the swearing.

The part that gets me most about this whole thing, though, is that Padawan was home this morning and he's not shy about letting me know when I'm being too loud in the mornings. He jumps down my throat when I'm unnecessarily noisy because he doesn't want to disturb Jerkface. Padawan did not once ask me to keep it down this morning because I was silent as the fucking grave, and yet he's trying to humor that bastard by asking me to turn the damn knobs. 

This, I feel, is a betrayal. I've been really good about not throwing or slamming things when I'm mad. I haven't done it in something like six months. Maybe since May. That's more than six months, even. And nobody even appreciates this because apparently my best efforts of being easy to live with are just not good enough for Jerkface. 

Well fuck. That. 

He wants to complain about me being noisy? I'll give him fucking noise. I'll turn on my iPod every morning, sing along obnoxiously, especially in the kitchen. I will open and close every cabinet in the kitchen, the fridge and freezer, even the fucking pantry. I will open and close the microwave three or four times. I will open and close the bedroom door until I'm fucking sick to death of doing it. I will turn on the dishwasher, the ice maker, the washer and dryer, and I'll turn the fucking heater on for good measure just to spite him. I am so fucking sick of him going behind my back, never to my face. This is the same man who got mad at me for tripping as I was leaving my room and accidentally slamming the door in the middle of the fucking afternoon when he wasn't even sleeping. I'm tired of walking on eggshells just to have yet another complaint added to my list of grievances against Jerkface.

What about my list of grievances? What about my fucking needs? Don't I have a basic human right to be comfortable in my own fucking home? It's bad enough that my oldest friend from way before puberty was insulted and turned out of an apartment I pay one third of the rent for, but now I'm personally being attacked as well? This is the final straw! We've got twenty days left and I'm coming from a "No Holds Barred" system of reasoning. If he thought life sucked before I was royally pissed, he's going to really see how much fun sucking I can do in a single damn morning. 

Just watch and see if I don't.

After such a long absence you're probably expecting something more profound. My apologies.

I've been gone for a while. Sorry about that...if anybody noticed or cared. I just didn't know what to say after I finished saying what I needed to say. Does that make sense? Well, it made sense in my head.

Anyway, I haven't only been gone because I've been stuck in an Emo cycle of down swinging emotional nonsense. I've also been dedicating myself to my newest fan fiction, which is surprisingly rising in popularity. Would you guys believe that in the world of Harry Potter Fan Fiction I am famous? Twenty thousand readers at last count for my various stories that have been selected favorites, and the highest honor of all: Favorite Author of three thousand individuals. 

I can't help feeling proud. I'm a geek at heart and I love to have people loving what I write, even if Fan Fiction is considered bottom of the barrel writing. And a lot of it is. Some of it is so awfully written, so grammatically incorrect, so nonsensical or perverted I find myself wondering how people have the nerve to write such trash, let alone publish it. Furthermore, I wonder why on earth it was approved for validation. Because nothing you write on HPFF gets published without someone on the team reading and validating it, unless you're a Trusted Author. And you can't be a Trusted Author if your work is badly written, badly plotted, or full of grammar mistakes.  So I find myself confused as to how some of the drivel that passes as a story on the internet manages to get fans. I can't read more than three sentences of most of it.

Anyway, I wasn't planning on ranting about fan fiction today. I wasn't even going to bore you with the tales of my Thanksgiving, except to say that Padawan's grandmother thought I was Little Sister because the last time she saw me I was blond.

Nope, I just wanted to share a little story from yesterday. I was sitting in the living room mindlessly surfing the Internet while Padawan took a nap in the relative warmth of the bedroom, when out of the corner of my eye I saw movement in a place there should have been no movement. Our balcony.

Padawan, Jerkface, and I live on the third floor of our building. There are no trees within thirty feet of our building, and no drainpipes by our apartment. Movement is very odd out there. And Choo Choo, who had been sitting in my lap at the time, noticed as well, so we both turned to look.

And there, sitting on the other side of the sliding glass door was a cheeky little squirrel, shaking its tale and chattering at Choo Choo, who immediately rushed to the door and started shaking her tale and whining because she wanted to go play with the furry animal that was about her size. I was so amused by the communication between the two of them that I had to take a picture. Unfortunately the squirrel moved away from the door and to the other side of the railing when I came up, and I only had my camera phone on me at the time.

But I still got pictures of the interlude they carried on through the glass.

It was so entirely cute and adorable and I really, REALLY wanted to open the door for Choo Choo to go outside to see what would happen. But I knew that if I opened the door the noise and vibration would scare the poor squirrel away and then Choo Choo would be sad. So I just took pictures and tried to get Padawan to get up to come watch, but he was entirely too engrossed in staying warm and cozy in the bed to come out and watch Choo Choo and Squirrel play through the glass. But that's pretty much all I had to say. Disappointed? 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

This is why I forgive Daddy.

My youngest sister, Wheat, and Daddy have officially given up on trying to have a father/daughter relationship. I'm pretty sure message in my father's last text indicated that he no longer considers her a daughter, and since she stopped called him Dad three years ago, I'm confused as to why she's upset about this. But she's basically made it clear that she expects me to stop talking to him at all for this. And Padawan is frankly confused as to why on earth I'm not pissed at Daddy for never visiting, for hardly calling, for not sending presents.

And the answer is simple: it's not because I've always been a Daddy's Girl. It's not because I'm not angry that he left us with Mom, even though I understand exactly why he had to. It's not because he was the only person who ever bothered defending me from my Mother in my childhood when she would scream at me for anything and everything that went wrong, even when it was clearly not my fault.

It's because Daddy saved me.

I know that sounds strange...but let me see if I can get this down properly.

When I was ten, Daddy left us. We didn't know he'd left: we assumed that we would follow after Christmas, like it had been planned. We didn't realize that Mom had decided not to follow Daddy, that they had agreed it was best to just give up their marriage because, quite frankly, it was failing fast. We didn't know that I had been the source of the argument that had marked the end of their marriage. I didn't know that Mom was waiting for any chance she could take to get rid of me, because she blamed me. (I'm not just saying that because I believe it: I'm saying it because Mom admitted it a few years ago, and she's very sorry for how all of this happened, and she'd do it all differently if she could. So for those of you who are mothers and believe that no mother could ever be so cruel, you have to keep in my mind that my mother is severely bi-polar, and we've NEVER gotten along well, and this is how it REALLY was.)

Shortly after Daddy left and before we realized he was gone for good, I threatened a serious suicide. I was ten years old, lonely in a house full of sisters and a mother who did not understand me, emotionally destroyed by a tragedy I don't ever talk about, I had no real friends I could talk to because I didn't like children and couldn't trust adults, I was miserable, and I had recently seen Romeo & Juliette on TV and saw Juliette stab herself. Suicide seemed like a pretty good idea. I'm not sure I really understood the concept of Death too well then. 

But after it happened (I wasn't harmed) Mom realized she had the perfect way to get rid of me. The very next day she had me admitted to a children's psychiatric ward, insisting that she believed I was a danger to myself and to my sisters and even to her. I was left there under promises of being able to go home every night after therapy. I didn't realize she intended me to stay there until she never showed up that night, and then my psychiatrist told me that I had to stay in the hospital until I was better because Mom was afraid of me.

I'd never in my life demonstrated a violent tendency towards anybody but myself, and even that was only the  one time. I could not understand how my mother had led these people to believe I was a danger to anyone other than myself. I don't even understand how they managed to believe I was still a danger to anyone after a month of seeing me sit quietly in a corner and read, only speaking in group therapy because they told me if I didn't participate in Group I would never get to leave.

I was in there for two months with absolutely no hope of being let out, because every time my family therapy came up, only my mother was there, and she painted a picture of me that was such a gross exaggeration of my behavior that I felt lonely and unloved and betrayed. When I argued anything she said, when I gave MY version of how life was at home, about how I was always the scapegoat even when I hadn't been in the room when something happened, or how my mother would scream at me and call me names and of COURSE I yelled back because nobody likes to be treated like that, Mom would call me a liar. And there was nobody there to defend me, nobody there to say, "No, she's not lying."

And one day, when I was on my way to family therapy, there he was when I went into the room, looking more pissed off than I had ever seen him in my entire life. When the therapist asked him for a description of my behavior, he painted such a different a portrait of me that it sounded like my parents had been talking about a completely different child. And since both of my parents were home by the time I got home from school and neither of them worked on weekends, it was entirely impossible that I was showing different sides of myself to different parents. And when my Mom actually had the nerve to say that, "Of course he thinks she's perfect. She's always been his favorite. He only sees what he wants to see!" he turned around and gave her a verbal lashing like I've never heard an adult give to another in my life, in real life or the movies.

When he finished with her, he turned to the therapist and said, "I don't know what the hell is wrong with you people. Has she demonstrated any of the behavior her mother has described in the two months that she's been here? Has she been violent or aggressive towards the other children?" Of course the therapist had to answer in the negative, because I was a fine example of model behavior. "Then clearly you can see she doesn't belong here!"

And I never spent another night in that mental facility. He packed my things and signed the paperwork pulling me out because he was my parent, too, and legally was just as capable of pulling me from the hospital as my mother. The entire way home Daddy screamed at Mom, demanding to know why she hadn't told him where she'd sent me, why she'd lied about where I'd been when he'd called, how she'd had the nerve to send me away.

She only said that after my suicide threat, she didn't think she could handle me, and thought I was better off away from her and my sisters where people who knew what to do could take care of me. She didn't explain why she didn't tell him where I was, but she asked how he'd found out.

"Tom called me and tore me a new one last night for letting you keep her in that place for so long! Of course I felt like a damn fool when I said I had no idea what the hell he was talking about, because as far as I knew Chanel was always over at his house or a friend's house when I called! I should have known you were full of shit when you said she went to spend the night with a school friend! She doesn't like her classmates!"

And then I understood everything. I understood that Mom had kept my hospitalization a secret from him. I understood that Uncle Tom knew that I didn't belong in there when he visited me two days before. I understood that Daddy had flown down to save me within hours of finding out where I was. And I knew that my Mom and I would never have a healthy relationship because she resented me and blamed me for the final argument that had marked the beginning of a long battle for divorce.

That's what I mean when I say that Daddy saved me. He flew down and pulled me out of a hell I hadn't belonged in. It was his greatest, most memorable act that he gave in my defense. And so in the years that followed, when he called less and less, and visited less and less, and sent presents less and less, and started to forget birthdays, I would not hold it against him, because he saved me.

And maybe he has a new family and calls less than he used to, and maybe he forgot my birthday this year, and maybe he didn't come visit this past summer like he promised he would, but it doesn't matter enough to make me hate him. I have no problem telling him that I'm angry with him, that he's let me down or hurt my feelings. I never try to hide my feelings from him. But I love him, and I always will. I will always see him as I did that day  when I wandered in for family therapy and found him sitting in wait, an avenging angel waiting to deliver me from evil.

Maybe it doesn't make sense. Padawan doesn't understand, but then again, Padawan has the world's most caring, sweet mother, and his father died when he was eighteen, but he was sure of both of his parents' love and care. Maybe only someone who has ever spent time in a mental facility against their will could understand how horrifying it is, even when you receive "the best care the state has to offer." While you're there, you're just hoping for a get out of jail free card, because no matter how sick you are, there's always someone sicker sitting next to you that scares you. 

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