Friday, November 13, 2009

i do my best but i'm made of mistakes

Today someone shared the posters for the new Alice in Wonderland in Google reader, and it reminded me (and I swear this is true) that when I was a child, before I started school, there was a recurring nightmare I only had when I had been read my Little Golden Book version of AiW. In the dream, I was always lost in Wonderland, unable to find my mother, and FREAKING THE FUCK OUT. I was a neurotic child. The only bad dreams I can still remember to this day from when I was 3-4 years old are the ones in which I was without my mother and struggling to do something alone. The other one that stands out in my memory is one in which I was, at 4 years old, driving my mother's burgundy Mercury down the winding country road leading to our house, crying hysterically while being chased by a tiger. The car looked something like this:

Please note that is not our house. I believe it may be a screencap from "Uncle Buck." (Do you remember those pancakes he makes for Macaulay Culkin's birthday? Talk about UNREALISTIC.)


I have avoided writing because I felt like such a Debbie Downer for six weeks or so. I have always been pretty much unable to write without automatically spilling into the kind of self-confession that will automatically inform any casual passerby about nearly every facet about my state of mind. (This made for some regrettable Myspace blogs before I came over here, trust me. Nothing more embarrassing than realizing you have shared anything of import on MYSPACE for God's sakes). So I stayed in a little hole for awhile, crying spontaneously in the car twice a week or so over the baby, the baby, the baby, but then the sun came out and I shook myself off and I'm back in the world of people who enjoy living. For now, anyway. My due date would have been right at Christmas and things will be up in the air until then, and that time will be shitty, I think, and then it will be over. Not really over, but at least the day will be done with, and I'll be very glad when it passes.

Let's talk about something else. I went to a lot of shows in November, and I've been left shaking my head and whimpering under my breath "Never again." Actually, all the shows were awesome in one way or the other, but Neko Case at Minglewood pushed me over the edge as far as general admission rock shows go. The problem is that people are Stupid Inconsiderate Asshole Fuckers. I'm not speaking of people who enjoy the act of anal sex, no no. I'm talking about Assholes who act like Fuckers at shows I paid $28 to attend. Yes ma'am.

I was so, so excited to see Ms. Case, right here in my hometown. So excited that I collaborated with Ashley la Rouge on a small art quilt that we gave to Neko at the end of the show. (More on that later). However, my parade was rained on slightly by the fact that although we had to share the premium space at the foot of the stage with Asshole Fuckers who seemed to be from some bumblefuck rural area outside of Memphis. I think they were rural dipshits due to bits and pieces of conversation I overheard in which the following terms were used: "Black people," "faggot," and "retard." I'm not suggesting that everyone who hails from the country uses such terminology, don't get me wrong. There are fine, fine people from the country who know how to act in a public setting. However, generally the Asshole Fuckers who don't know better are unenlightened about codes of conduct because they've spent the last 20 years of their life in a place where they're surrounded solely by people who share their ethnicity, religion, and prejudices. AND OH GOD IS THAT ANNOYING. Ok, there was a little Anthropology by Amanda (I know what I'm talking about. These are My People). There was one Rural Asshole Fucker (the one standing right by me, of course), who was particularly objectionable. He had long fingernails, which gave me bad flashbacks of the guys my ex hung out with in high school -- they were nice guys but those fingernails are disgusting. Truly. Right before Neko & the band came out, he shouted "Bring that bitch out!" and continued to yell dumbass things throughout the whole thing. And during the entirety of every song he knew the words to, he SANG VERY LOUDLY in an out-of-tune, drunken fashion. It was disgusting.

God, I'm sorry I'm such an old lady, but I just can't do it anymore! I can't! I can't share space with drunken 20 year olds who insist on ruining live music that I care about! Jeeeeeeeeeeeeez. Whew.

Here's the quilt:
(Also, here's a link to a bigger picture because that one is kind of small and shitty). I made the top right and bottom left-hand squares, and Ashley made the others. We were really pleased with it. I shook it at Neko and gave it to her at the end of the set. It was ridiculous because the first time I tried I didn't wave it excitedly enough and she didn't see it, and I got really nervous and my heart started pounding and I was practically shaking. I got that freaked out trying to hand a small piece of fabric to a singer that I like... can you imagine what it would be like if I ever had to go to war, or maybe even be in a car wreck? Jesus Christ.

Monday, October 26, 2009

tain't what you do (it's the way that you do it)

Now, have I been quiet because I haven't had anything to say? Or is it quite the opposite? Do I have TOO much to say? Or maybe it's that I have too much I can't say. That's probably it. Usually it. I find that I haven't written a blog of substance in so long that I have a hard time trusting my own sense of spelling.

October is drawing to a close. I am not scouring thrift stores for costume components; rather, I hate to tell you, I am a bit of a party pooper when it comes to dressing up. I like the idea of it, sure, but I always find myself limited by one thing or another. This year I am going to a show on Halloween night, and feel no pressure to dress up.

Although I've been such an underachiever in keeping up here, luckily I can peek up at the calendar above my computer and give you a pleasant run-down of my month, however.

Friday, October 2: "Brandon 29! GT!" My husband turned 29 (gasp. We are swiftly approaching 30 and, don't get me wrong, I don't think 30's old or anything, but you have to admit... it's sort of a milestone) and to reinforce our own mortality, we stood shoulder-to-shoulder with a crowd of people and saw Girl Talk at Minglewood Hall. Judging by the black "Xs" scrawled on their hands in sharpie, a LOT of the audience was under 21, rather than older. It was the perfect birthday present for B, however, who loves GT soooo much, and beat back flu-like symptoms enough to dance his ass off in the hot sweaty throng of children. He even saw a trio of nineteen-year-olds three-way-kissing, and what better gift can one receive? After shaking our asses as hard as we could, we came back home, where B watched LOST on Hulu and I read my newest cookbook. Postively riotous.

Friday, October 9: "Claire." My 12-year-old niece came and spent the weekend with us. My mom delivered her on Friday, and spent the night. We went to the Farmer's Market and Elmwood Cemetery before she left on Saturday, and after Claire & I went to Graceland and Muddy's to buy cupcakes. We made pizzas that night and her crust was perfect (unlike mine). She saw me drink a beer, and did not seem to be disturbed (no drinking in front of the kiddos at my mom's house, unless you sneak it). We had a really nice time, and after I delivered her back to her mom on Sunday, I went to the Whitton Farms Octoberfeast with Brandon and Liz & co. It was worth every penny, and I have to say that Jill & Keith Forrester should win some sort of "cute farmers" contest. I love them. Their farm was glorious, and the sun came out just long enough to make the day perfect-o.

October 16-18: "Chattanooga." We went to visit our brother & sister-in-law in Chattanooga. We ate too much (of course) and went to a bitching used book store where we spent too much money, and just had a nice chill hang-out weekend with them. Our sis is an artist, and we bought a gorgeous painting from her, which made me really excited. I always see art in other people's homes, and envy it, and since we have a little bit of money right now, we agreed that the only way to aquire art is to start buying it. This was our favorite of all the pieces that she had:

So now I'm kind of caught up, right?

Also... I have to admit that there is a lot that I just don't want to talk about here.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Too Good Not to Post

Ok, I was looking at Ye Olde Google Analytics today and had to share this new collection of search terms entered that brought people to this blog.

First we've got the classics:
animal dicks
animal love nsfw
animals pussy breast milk sex video
beastiality/breast feeding animals

Then it gets personal:
amanda fucking animal

Then there's your random WTF shit:
look hot for high school reunion
ole long dick

orphans at christmas early hallmark
sexylady in zoo
smokey mountian kin vol 3

Eventually we get into WTFF(fuckity fuck) territory:
i must pee when i fuck
is there dog pee in coors light

And sometimes it's even a little bit poetic:
travel because of heartache
utube. ladysex

Friday, September 18, 2009

give me that old fashioned morphine

It is raining in Memphis and it has been all week. We go through a monsoon at least once a season it seems, which is generally OK. I remember the draught that threatened to dry up my mom's spring in 2007, and as a daughter of the rural South, I know that rain is a good thing, but this dump of precipitation is threatening the Cooper Young festival tomorrow, so for now, I say "RAIN! Go! Away!" so that I can stroll around drinking beer out of a plastic cup and looking at arts & crafts which I probably won't buy. I am not completely broke as a joke, but seeing as how I just got a half check the last two pay periods, I will be coasting on fumes as the month runs out. Boy, I hate that. That is what leaving work for two weeks to see cool shit will do to you.

Paychecks. With the same regularity of Memphis monsoons, I experience a crushing disappointment in myself quarterly with this fucking job I hate. I go to work and come home & go to work and come home & go to work and then come home unable to smile or laugh one day. Then I lament loudly, in a really boring fashion, about how much it SUCKS, how STUPID I am to have gotten myself into this position, WHAT ON EARTH will ever change, how I have NO SKILLS, etc. etc. etc. Usually by the next day it is gone, because, well, what's the point.

All of this is accompanied by Brandon's insistance that we don't have to keep doing any of this. We don't have to have an apartment, I don't have to have a 9-5 job; we don't have to live or stay anywhere for longer than we want to. We've seen enough of the world and people thriving in it leading unconventional lives to know that it works. We have this bundle of money in the bank that sits and waits for us to do something with it, and over the last six months we have made all sorts of different plans for it. I am terrified of doing anything; I am terrified of doing nothing.

A few months ago we were going to have a baby, and now we are not, and I can't say that I don't think about it every day. I think about it when I see a fat pregnant stomach; I think about it when I interview women who, in this city where the infant mortality rate is absolutely stunning, have managed to push out 2 or 4 or even 6 babies under a banner of poverty & stress. I wonder why & when & how, and then I just sit quietly with it all. I don't feel depressed by it, I don't get in a really sad mood about it, it's just always there, reminding me that I won't have something that I thought I would.

So I think about having a baby; I think about buying a house in this city that I do really love. I think about putting all our stuff in storage and cutting the strings for awhile. I think about moving to the field behind my mother's house and planting a really huge garden and living out of a camper. And I think and I think and I think...

And then I get up, walk the dog, take a shower & come to work again.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Trips & Travel, Quatro

The drive from the Grand Canyon to Zion was about 5 hours long, which is a breeze on a trip in which you drove as much as we did. The drive took us through the scrubbier beige parts of the desert into my favorite, the red parts (Do these descriptions sound Kindergarten-ish?). It also took us through the Indian reservations, which are just... Oh man. I am not kidding at all when I say that the White Guilt was heavy upon me when we drove through those reservations. There were roadside stands with handpainted signs to attract tourists, one of which said, "NICE INDIANS." This was single-handedly, one of the most depressing things I have ever seen in my life. When I think of what our nation has done to those people, it just makes me want to cry and cry and cry. Even though the nice thing to do would have been to stop and buy something from them, we just couldn't deal with it at all and drove past.

We ate lunch at a pizza buffet in Kanab, UT, that was staffed only with children. (I would prefer to keep this as much a mystery to you guys as it was to us, and offer no explanation. We did not get one.) We ate a lot of pizza, and the bloat and the heat made me sleepy and unenthusiastic. When we arrived at the park, however, the FAB (fuckin awesome beauty) woke my ass up. Behold! Pictures! (Finally, can you believe it? Although these are repeats to my FB friends and readers of GST. Sorry 'bout that.)

This is probably indicative of the first sights I saw when we entered the park. Like I said, I was all full of pizza and slightly grumpy and groggy from the "road soda" I had consumed on the way in, and the sky, the huge fucking boulders, they were pretty cool, but I wasn't threatening to piss & shit myself like I was when I started seeing things like this:

The Virgin River runs right through Zion, and has formed the canyon. Learning how it has done so, and how many years it has taken, makes geology seems really, really fascinating.

Cliffs like the one above were formed from sand dunes that existed where Zion is today thousands of years ago. The sand dunes in Utah were 3,000 feet deep! Or tall! However you want to look at it. One bus driver told us that, in comparison, the dunes in the Sahara are 250 feet high. Doesn't all of this knowledge make you feel just crazy?

Above is the formation known as "The Great White Throne." All of the rock towers had similarly weirdish and/or forbidding names. (Although in Googling for some other names of landmarks at Zion, I am reminded that they were biblical, so maybe my heathen bias is showing... but seriously, "The Altar of Sacrifice"?)

We had all afternoon and most of the next day to explore Zion before heading to Vegas, where we'd catch our flight home Saturday morning. We didn't do anything major the first day, just a couple of short hikes to check things out. On the second day Brandon woke me up not long after the sun rose and we took off to hike the Narrows.

Like I mentioned earlier, the canyon was formed by the Virgin River, which runs right through the park. When you first drive into the park, the canyon is quite wide, but as you drive further into it, the canyon narrows until, at the end of the Riverside trail, it is only passable by foot, through the river itself. Since the high temp that day was 105 degrees, it turned out to be the perfect day to go for a hike up the narrows.

The river only got a little deep in a couple of places, and you can see how deep it got by the watermarks on our shorts. Those are my camp counselor shorts, by the way.

We didn't intend to spend as many hours as we did in the Narrows, but it was so, so gorgeous that we couldn't stop ourselves from going further and further. We hiked in 3 miles, which meant we hiked out 3 miles, and didn't leave the park until late afternoon.

And now for the conclusion of my travelogue.

Las Vegas, NV.

People love Las Vegas, it seems. Flights to the city are cheap, which indicates to me that it's a popular destination. There's a shit-ton of hotels, and gambling, and titties. When we arrived at our hotel, the Sahara (the cheapest on the strip that didn't seem really really manky), I hadn't bathed in 3 days or so, and had spent the same amount of time immersed in the natural grandeur of the American West. I got out of the car while Brandon navigated the valet parking abortion (even though it was free, we parked ourselves. I can walk, you know). It was hot as fuck in Vegas, all that concrete and defeat had sucked any kind of coolness out of the city. I went in the hotel, through the casino, and was greeted by this bizarre assortment of overly groomed girls in short summer dresses, grandmas on oxygen, skeezy dudes of all ages, and, oddly enough, a seemingly high concentration of disabled people. Every kind of disabled you can imagine, they were spending their SSI checks at the Sahara on August 21, 2009. It was so, so weird & depressing, and I started to feel like Hunter S. Thompson in the Fear & Loathing movie when everyone looked like weird dinosaur lizard people. So, after I had eaten my tuna melt in the 24 hour cafe at the Sahara, I said, "Thanks but no thanks, Las Vegas," and went to sleep. Vegas is not my kind of city. I can't understand how it's fun to go on a vacation where the purpose of the whole thing is to lose a bunch of money! I mean, you spend enough money travelling already!

So, all in all, it may have been one of the best trips we have ever taken together. I am not kidding when I say that we didn't have one fight the whole trip. Sure, we got annoyed with each other a few times, but there was never one of those shitty fights that can erupt when you're in a car together for so many hours. We logged more than 2500 miles in 11 days, drank approximately 6 bottles of $2 chuck, ate 6+ fish tacos, and married off our dear brother & got a sister. You can see a shit-ton of pictures on FB, if you're interested.

Personally, I'm just glad I can go back to blogging about real life again.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Trips & Travels, Vol 3

Damn, I didn't mean to have a gap this big in between trip reports, but believe it or not I have been BUSY at work. However, I am determined to get this done, so here we go again.

All right. Last you heard, we were in California witnessing the loving union of our dear brother & sister-in-law. Then we went to sleep, woke up, packed, and once again hit the road. We were heading the Arizona & the Grand Canyon, but first I wanted to go to the Mission at San Juan Capistrano. It is where the swallows return to roost every year, and supposedly "the jewel of the California missions." It was indeed beautiful, and we did what tourists do at such destinations, walked around, gawked, pretended to read the captions at a variety of historical markers, etc. After wards we ate some RFA (really fucking awesome) Mexican food near the mission. The town was very charming and so was the saucy pork I ate with corn tortillas. We swung by Trader Joe's to buy some car-food (I can't even talk about TJ's. I realize that I am 5 years behind on this, but good Lord! I couldn't even believe HOW CHEAP everything was. Food that would be considered swank and therefore expensive in Memphis, TN was amazingly thrifty. Not to mention our dear, dear friend Charles Shaw), then set off into the desert.

The desert was hot and dry. I know I'm blowing your mind here. I am not much of a desert person; some people love it, but there were really only parts of it I found appealing. It seems like every 70 miles or so you pop into a "town" that has a gas station and maybe a few small buildings, and you think "What in the fuck are these people doing out here?" and all of a sudden, even though I haven't even seen it, everything became very The Hills Have Eyes-ish, and I couldn't help but imagine the inhabitants of these outposts, their leathery skin, their desire for rape and flesh-eating. That's very unfair, I realize, and I hope some desert-dweller doesn't happen upon this blog. Sorry guys.

The next day we were visiting the Grand Canyon so we drove through the night until we were in the national forest about 30 minutes outside the GC. We had been schooled by G that camping in national forests is a free-for-all, and we were so tired and chilly that we just slept in the car. My mind raced for about five minutes with thoughts of bloodthirsty hillbillies before I dropped off into an uncomfortable night's sleep. I woke up off and on all night with a kind of anxious tightness in my chest, which I couldn't figure out since I wasn't THAT worried about being hacked to death in my sleep. The next day I figured out that the altitude was to blame, when walking 30 feet had me panting slightly.

OK, so the Grand Canyon. The first sight that greeted me was not the massive, stunning canyon itself, but actually a Japanese man pursuing a squirrel with a potato chip, making kissy noises. Despite the fact that there were only, oh, I don't know, 30 signs in the immediate vicinity asking that no one feed any animals. Past Mr. Japanese Potato Chip Man laid the Grand Canyon... Wow. "Wow" with a period behind it kind of summed up my feelings about it. Yes, it is huge and it's crazy how huge it is, and the colors of the cliffs are really gorgeous, but I wasn't as bowled over as I thought I would be. Maybe it was the haze that hung in the air that prevented us from getting a crisp view, maybe it's the fact that we are inundated with images of the GC all of our lives, but I guess I felt kind of underwhelmed? I know the preceding sentences make me sound like a spoiled bored baby, but don't get me wrong; I'm not trying to take a shit on our beautiful national jewel. For me, I just didn't feel overwhelmed, which is how I expected to feel. Brandon thought that perhaps my feelings would be different if we had the time and stamina to go down to the bottom of the canyon, and I can imagine how that would be so, so different and just BIGGER. We chose a trail to hike, the Bright Angel trail, which only went 1.5 miles down into the canyon. I say only, but when you're coming up that 1.5 miles and you're as physically inept as me, that 1.5 miles is humiliating as fuck. Especially when there are a lot of skinny French people everywhere. I'm not obese, but good Lord, I'm not French either. The most insulting part of the whole thing is that I'm pretty sure they were drinking cream instead of water to stay hydrated, and still they're just so lithe and JUDGEMENTAL.

You don't think I'm being paranoid about the French, do you?

I picked up a fantastic new bathroom book in the gift shop, Over The Edge: Death in the Grand Canyon. If you click that little link, you will see the really fantastic cover, which features both a rainbow AND a skeleton. This book answers the question "How many people have fallen off this shit?" and many, many more. Personally, I think the creepiest stories are ones of people dying from exposure, going off into the canyon terribly unprepared for the heat & dehydration. Although some of the stories of people falling off the rim made me pretty creeped out as well, given Brandon's propensity to leap around on rocks that are high in the air all in the name of photography. As his domestic partner, I certainly don't want to "break" him of anything, but man, oh man, sometimes these vacations that involve high altitudes make me wish I had some of his sperm frozen.

We said goodbye to the Grand Canyon on Thursday morning and headed north to our final destination: Zion National Park. B had gotten his info from his brother, who lived out west for a good while and went to a good number of parks out there; G & almost everyone we talked to agreed that Zion was The Place To Go... and they were totally right.

Ok, I am going to wrap it up in the next entry. Then I will be done talking about our vacation, and I'm sure everyone who did not go on a vacation this summer will be very pleased.

Trips & Travels, Vol II

Ok, I said I'd be back and here I am. Back. As anyone who follows me on Twitter knows, I have been feasting on tomatoes from my mom's garden, cottage cheese, tuna & crackers for lunch today, and all the rest of this week as well. It is the Patsy-Lunch-Special; my mother ate this lunch many, many days of her own boring office job. It's pretty tasty. Also sounds like diet food from the 70s.

I mentioned in the last post that we stayed in a cheap motel on the first night of our PCH adventure; this was not our intention, mind you. Brandon and I are Cheap Ass Travelers; we will only accept The Worst & Thriftiest in terms of lodgings, and we had (sort of) planned to camp out on these first two nights on the road. I had, in fact, reserved campsites at our two post-wedding destinations, but since Brandon seemed to be non-committal in the way of making definite plans, I decided to hold off on reserving anything for our two nights in the Big Sur area. I said to myself "Be cool. Adapt your husband's lassiez-faire attitude! Take that stick out of your ass and GO WITH THE FLOW." Well, what you don't find out when you don't plan is that both the private and public campsites in areas as spiritually rich as the one we were in? Those campsites fill up 6 months in advance. So instead of pitching a tent, we drove inland until we found a little independent crappy (but not scary) motel room. We took possession of a room with two Queen beds with the understanding that we could only use one bed and receive a reduced rate; however, B was so tired that when he got in bed with a dinky plastic cup of Shiraz, he promptly fell asleep, leaving an enormous crimson stain on the blanket and sheets. (Please comment with joke about broken hymen. I am too boring to think of one right now).

So we drove back down the coast the next morning, everything was as beautiful as the day before, plus there was a gathering of folks with classic cars that were driving down CA 1 in spurts that day. I am talking 1930s' Rolls Royces, not 1960s' Mustangs. I kept having the spooky feeling I had somehow been transported into The Great Gatsby, and kept checking the highway for the corpse of Myrtle. All along the cliffs there were gorgeous homes and the mere sight of them made me want to vomit with jealousy. (For some reason, on this trip, beauty kept inspiring me to vomit/piss/shit myself, which B found odd. After reading a Pablo Neruda poem to him in the car, I said "GOD, this just makes me want to murder someone!" which he found equally strange).

We stopped in the woods and sat on lovely, large Adirondack chairs that were in the middle of the Big Sur River, drinking coffee and taking pictures. We hiked on a couple of trails, and on our way down South stopped at the Julia Pfeiffer Burns state park, where there is a waterfall that pours into the ocean. Let me stop right now and reiterate: there is a motherfucking waterfall pouring into the motherfucking ocean. Once again, I fought off the urge to crap myself and soldiered on. We spent that night inside another cheap motel (I believe it was the Holland Inn in Morrow Bay, CA); I remember that this one had a really skanky throw pillow on the bed, and a dramatic picture of a single red rose on the wall, the kind of print that you can win at the fair if you're lucky.

We trucked ourselves back down to Orange County for the beginning of the pre-wedding festivities without incident, having some particularly tasty fish tacos in Santa Barbara on the way down. (Fish tacos may be the culinary highlight of the trip. I love you, fish tacos! You never do me wrong like warm rum in a hot tub!) Somehow, despite the snail-like pace of traffic in Los Angeles, we arrived back at our lovely sis-in-law's family's home right on time. Her family was just as wonderful, hospitable & sweet as our sis-in-law, E, is. They made us feel so welcome and just like we were part of their family, and it made the whole weekend so nice & easy.

Let me pause my already long as hell trip story to explain a little bit about my brother & sister-in-law, G&E. They are just a little bit younger than us, and we all get along really well. They are also big Avett fans so we usually try to go to shows together if it's geographically convenient, and in the past couple of years Brandon has grown really close to his brother, so we try to get together as often as possible. They are both smart, funny, and cute; they're like Brandon and I... only better. By better, I mean that E never says the C word like I do, and G doesn't harshly confront people about politics. Also, they eat less and exercise more than us. However, they love & accept us anyway, and through them I am experiencing the kind of sibling relationships I never even realized I longed for; we are family and we are friends, it's great.

We camped out in a dry creekbed the Friday night before the wedding (which was Monday afternoon) with a big group of G&E's friends, which included a large contingency from Bowling Green, KY, where they both went to college. We drank and ate cookies and saw a tarantula and I introduced the ladies to the amazing P-Style. Thanks to it, I indeed peed in style during all camping excursions. We spent the weekend hanging out with all kinds of friends and family, drinking at night with B's cousins that I was too much of a Frantic Southern Bride to hang out with during out wedding. They are all as cool and weird as I would expect anyone who shares the Dill bloodlines to be.

Monday morning we woke up and B dropped me off at the wedding site, where I helped E's mom & family do wedding prep. I was really happy to do this, because I feel like I have wedding karmic debt to pay off from all the fine ladies that helped my mom and I when we got married. They got married in a park overlooking the ocean; it was a really relaxed & sweet site. E's mom is the workingest work machine that I have ever met and was literally decorating and preparing 35 minutes before the wedding. She had to be shooed down to the hotel, where I watched her fix her hair, get dressed, and sew a panel on her dress in like 20 min. It was awesome.

So then they got married and everyone cried and I was so, so proud of them. I don't know why that's how I felt, I guess it's just so nice to see two people who you know are making the right decision. It's not like that at every wedding you go to, you know? And, as B said in his wedding toast, I think that we're just so excited that they're together and we get to share our lives with them, and someday our kids will grow up together. (I'd like to request a simultaneous awwww right now).

Still to come: canyons, panting, wading, (actual) camping, driving, driving driving!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Trips & travels, Vol. 1

I have been a really terrible blogger lately, just as I was an underachieving diarist in elementary school and awful journal-er in high school (somehow I think those are and should be considered different). However, the good news is that upon my return to this lovely page I have done a lot and have much to report.

So, around 2.5 weeks ago, I straightened up my depressing cubicle, leaving things that people might need in neat, organized piles, and then I drove away from work cackling, since I was to be not only off work but also out of town for the next 15 days. Yes! I hope you know how much I love this feeling. Although airplanes themselves are uncomfortable, making Brandon's leg twitch involuntarily and my hair and face feel greasy, I cannot help but be exhilarated when I am dropped off at the airport. My favorite part is when you ditch your checked luggage and get to wander around buying coffee drinks and/or reading magazines (FOR FREE AND WHAT ARE THEY GOING TO DO ABOUT IT) in the numerous Hudson News stands that dot each and every airport I have visited in the past two weeks, which have been quite a few, actually. I smell a monopoly.

I had been on an airplane not very many times when I met Brandon, but in the past 3 years that we have been together, we have flown this way and that, across oceans and up and down the eastern seaboard several times. I really like it, and when I am in a new place with him, I cannot help but quietly think "Thanks, babe."

Anyway. Let's at least DELAY the corny cheesiness, I may not be able to eradicate it entirely.

So we zipped up to New York for a friend's wedding. The state, not the city, mind you. It was a fast in & out kind of a trip, but invaluable for the simple lesson learned by yours truly: Do Not Get Wasted In A Hot Tub. There are all sort of scientific reasons, as it turns out, but for some reason, although I'm approaching 30 years of life, I had never been informed of the situation. When I woke up on Saturday, I had the worse hangover of the past 2 years at the very least, and although I was greeted when I was finally able to awaken at 1:00 p.m. by ibprofen, biscuits & gravy, and a tall boy Mountain Dew, I felt like hell for the rest of the day. I hate drinking. I love drinking. I hate it. I love it.

Anyway, the wedding was gorgeous, went off without a hitch, and since I was still suffering too much to indulge in the top shelf open bar, I was sober enough to drive everyone back to the other side of the lake in the bride's father's SUV. He is a judge, and I had never driven a judge's car before. It was... uncomfortable.

So we had one full day back in Memphis before we were to leave on our big trip, 11 days out West. B's brother was getting married in Orange County, CA, and we decided to take full advantage of our flight out there, and spend extra time seeing some sights. The last time I had been out to that part of the country, I was too young and trifling to appreciate any of it, and B has been wanting me to go out there with him for forever, so now was the time. We flew into Vegas, spent the night at our new sis-in-law's parents' house, and woke up really early the next morning and drove north to Monterey. Our plan was to drive south on the Pacific Coast Highway back down to the LA area, and we had 2.5 days to do it. Before we left, I had been checking things out, looking at the map, and one day I did a Google Image search for "Big Sur," (because I remembered the Kerouac book) and I came up with this:

So needless to say that I was RFE (really fucking excited). We spent part of the day walking around Monterey, where the water was full of a ton of jellyfish, great big blobby brains with streamers of tentacles hanging off on all sides, eating clam chowder, spying otters, briefly napping on the beach, and discovering the incredible cheapness of wine in California. Then we started our drive down CA 1. We wound out of Monterey, through Carmel, and then the trees cleared, we looked down, and there was the ocean.
And it was really & truly, the most stunning thing I have ever seen.

Seeing that stretch of coast makes me wish I was a much better writer. If I could express myself in a more beautiful way, maybe I could convey to anyone who would read this how much the crashing waves, the craggy cliffs, the blue water, the golden light made me feel. How much it made me feel. Brandon and I drove and stopped and drove and stopped, climbed on the rocks and took pictures, talking about the sealife, the plants, the waves, the tide, and how we felt unable to express the flood of emotions that we were both experiencing. We drove until it got dark, then turned around to find the cheapest motel we could, and then in the morning we did it again, travelling south to the parks around Big Sur, which are nestled in Redwood forests. That's right, you see all that incredible coastal beauty, then drive about 15 minutes to find yourself in Redwood forests. I couldn't believe it. I told B the whole thing made me want to laugh, cry, and piss my pants, all at the same time (sounds a little bit like a mushroom trip).

Unfortunately I have to go back to work now, but I am determined to blog about every part of this before I forget it all. So, installment #2, and hopefully pics to come. You can see B's first gallery of images here -- they're not pretty pictures as much as they are the things he really enjoys shooting.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Can't Title Now, Must Pee

I was just listening to a particular Gillian Welch song, "Wrecking Ball," to be exact, that reminds me of the sore, sensitive end of a relationship that I shall not speak of in any detail. Even though I was the one who weaseled my way out of it, when I hear this song, I always think of a day when I was driving to work (down the highway from Murfreesboro to Smyrna, to be exact), and I heard it and my face crumpled up and approximately 3 hot wet tears escaped down my cheeks. That was pretty much all I could muster; I'm not trying to be cold, but lots of times if I am blue about something, I will have these bouts of near-crying, usually while driving my car. It's just enough crying to make you look ugly, not near enough to make you experience any sort of relief. I can no longer seperate the idea of what I look like when the cry is breaking from this:

Claire Danes, you are an ugly crier.

And this lady has noticed, too.

I have been having some pretty decent times lately. This little lady scampered into my life:

She is pretty damned awesome, and growing like a weed. Her name is Lucy, and I am sorry if we are Facebook friends and you are having to see these for the tenth time. I am slacking on my new puppy photography. Everybody is in love with her except for the cats, and they hate my stinkin' guts for bringing her into the house.

I had a lovely weekend with some really good old friends. We drank champagne and talked shit and went swimming, a little bit. The weather has been the most fantastically gorgeous thing that you could ever experience in Memphis, TN in July. I GOT COLD LAST NIGHT. YES, COLD. Keep in mind that we don't have any AC in our bedroom, only a fan. I was very happy that Mr. Dill was back from his bachelor mountain adventure.

Bachelor Mountain Adventure... if this was a reality show, what would the plot be? I imagine a diverse group of bachelors, from overly-groomed & coiffed slicksters with waxed eyebrows (oh God, I cannot handle that shit), to the kind of guys who you bought pot from in college, who only wear band t-shirts and live in houses in which the toilet hadn't been cleaned in 3 years. They're all doing challenges and co-habitating, and then they punch each other.

Excuse me, now I have to go buy tofu for dinner. B is detoxing from Bachelor Mountain Adventure. Apparently, they had beer and red meat for every meal.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

I'm happy just because I found out I am really no one

Do you guys know this Bright Eyes song? It's a real winner.

Last year B discovered this song on a mix CD that wasn't his. It was his brother's and had fallen into his possession somehow. He loved the song and then I heard it and I loved it too. He drove me back and forth across the Mississippi river on the I40 bridge and played it for me. It was like were were teenagers for the 10 or so minutes that it took for us to play it 3x in a row.

P.S. I will give you a kiss on the face if you can tell me who is singing in the background.

The other day I saw a man who I don't see very often, and I was in a weird awkward mood, and when he came to greet me, I thought that he might be going to give me a kiss on the cheek. It seemed very natural, and like that was exactly what he was going to do. But he was not, so then I said, "I thought you were going to give me a kiss on the cheek. Why don't you do that?" and he did. It wasn't very awkward. Maybe I will start the summer of greeting people with a kiss. Maybe we'll all get mono and lose 15 lbs. One can hope.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Check check checking in...

I only have a minute. I am terrifyingly behind at work and trying to get everything approved before next Wednesday. I wanted to say that everyone at my house is feeling better; well, not the cat. He is still hot, fat, and tired. Brandon and I are feeling better in the head and heart, if I may dare speak for him. It was a dark week or so; I laid out of work playing the Sims, watching Intervention, and drinking rum. Oh yes, and feeling very sorry for myself.

However, the clouds are lifting because life has to go on, no matter what. You have to be somewhat philosophical about these things, and tell yourself that although you were happy and excited, it wasn't the right time. And the right time will come, right? As the Avett Brothers said, "To this awful news, try not to hold on / The day will come, the sun will rise, and we'll be fine."

Anyway, I also wanted to try and express to everyone some kind of thanks and gratitude for the overwhelming outpouring of love and affection we received from everybody. It's the terrible times that make you realize what a community is, how much care and concern means, and how important it is to be loved. People brought us booze and pie and hugs and showed us how sad they were for us in so many different ways. Thanks to all of y'all. You have no idea how much it meant, really & truly, all of the messages and comments and everything else.

Friday, June 19, 2009


Inevitably there will be points in which humor arises from sadness. It was 95 degrees outside, and both my husband and I have been too stubborn up to this point to have retrieved the window unit AC from the basement. The cats lie around the house, desperate and dramatic.

One might say, "Spread out like dinner on the grounds."

Please do not call the ASPCA. I know that he is fat. I do not fill his bowl to the brim every day, we dole out carefully measured scoops. He just refuses to run and play, no matter the temperature.

Addendum: Air conditioner was set up, screwed in, plugged up today. Not the most efficient machine in the world, but I feel a little bit less like I'm going to die now. Cat continues to languish in drama.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

sadness so great it has created stanzas (apparently)

disclaimer for disclaimer's sake... I was more than halfway drunk when I wrote this thursday night. I was all the way there, although I considerately washed my broken-out face and brushed my teeth before I went to bed. also, I never ever EVER write poetry. I don't even like poetry very much. I like about 2 poems a year, and I usually hear them on the Writer's Almanac.

in other words... you don't have to read this. It might be embarrassing. BUT I reckon it's authentic so I'm keeping it, goddammit.

halfway drunken thoughts composed at 9:38 pm when the husband's taken to bed (who's to blame him) and you're upset about something that seems to have no end...

shut the fuck up, bloggers
shut up about your ranch
shut up about your fresh fruit granita
and homesewn camisole panty duo
shut up about your trip to london... it's so unauthentic. why don't you go somewhere REAL, like India or Thailand or motherfucking Turkey, even?
shut the fuck up.

shut up about your baby
he's very cute i'm sure
but not everybody wants to hear about it right now
in a house
where it's hot
and the cats are all there is, anymore,
and they're itching and miserable from the greasy flea medicine they've been dosed with
that you've begged them not to lick off each other

why does sadness wake you up
shake you sober
make you get drunk
and then realize that you'll soon be back asleep
with everything still bullshit

shut up about healthcare
and guns
and thugs
and everything you have pretentious ideas about,
in memphis, tn, in your office, at 3 in the afternoon,
but can't actually fathom

i don't want to see the pictures of your trip to
the skate park
gulf shores even (although I laugh about it, and avoid it myself)

this bleeping digital vessel is nothing
but somehow all i have
at 9:43
when i already finished my book today
and nothing waits but sleep and then
too early
too hot
too restless
too everything

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

You have to make decisions when you have a blog. You have to decide how much of yourself you want to expose, and how much you want to keep quiet and hidden. How personal you want things to get. Generally, "in real life," I am someone who is pretty frank with most personal things. But in the blogosphere, it can be different. If my husband and I are fighting, I don't post about that, probably mostly because I am kind of gross and crazy, and I want people to think our relationship is nearly perfect. If I am a little depressed, I don't really post, because have you ever read blogs by people who are depressed a lot, or only write when they are down? It's really boring. And a downer.

Inevitably, however, there come the things that you don't know how to say, but feel like you must anyway. Things like this: We went to the midwife on Tuesday, 6/16. The midwife couldn't find the heartbeat of the baby with the doppler. We decided to go to the ultrasound clinic. At the ultrasound clinic we found out that although I was 12 weeks pregnant, the baby had stopped growing at 8 weeks. We aren't pregnant anymore. We are just waiting for the inevitable to happen. The inevitable being the actual physical miscarriage.

This happens a lot, but, you know, it doesn't get talked about very much, unless you are involved in certain internet communities in which women congregate to spill their guts about their experiences with miscarriage, for the sake of catharsis, and sharing, and building a network of women who know exactly what it feels like and find commisseration helpful.

Does this seem very unemotional? I feel odd. We have both gone back and forth between feeling a lot and being very numb. It is hard to lose something you hardly had to begin with; it's easy to keep making yourself remember what you're not going to be experiencing. (This time around, anyway). In grief, I find that sometimes I seem to tend towards... emotionally torturing myself, a bit. Maybe that is an extreme characterization. After my father died, I kept reminding myself of all the weekends I had spent away from home, away from his sickness, getting drunk with my friends, wasting time satisfying myself, trying to have a good time while he was sick and suffering. The same thing happened Tuesday, back at the house that the midwives are using as their office; when we returned, there was a pregnant woman there with her five children, one of which was a baby girl who was maybe a year old. I kept looking at her little arms and hands, and reminding myself that it will be a long time before I have a baby to call me mama, and reach for me, and all that. It's pretty fucked, I guess. It is like sprinkling salt into a wound; when I'm upset I feel like I should make myself feel really really upset, or I'm not having an "authentic experience." Then when it starts it's gets out of control until I'm nearly sick with it.

So that's what happened to me on Tuesday. And I'm not pregnant anymore. And it feels pretty shitty.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

A debate which will rage for months.

I'm making y'all crazy with my prolific-ness, ain't I? You can't believe it. This is a microblog.

We have been talking about baby names, a lot, of course. For some reason we talk about girls' names more than boys' names... it's like we think we are having a girl although there is no kind of evidence to back that up. Also, we don't plan on finding out the sex of the baby before it is born, so we're liable to go through this entire pregnancy with the idea at the back of our minds that we're having a girl, only to have it come out a boy. I don't know why I feel like it's a girl so much; maybe I just can't imagine that a penis growing inside me? Now that I bring it up... it is kind of odd.

That is not the point. The point is that Mr. Dill and I have a major difference in tastes as far as girls' names go. I tend towards more old-fashioned names, or nature-y names. I like flower names; I really like the name "Wren," but he is less than enthusiastic (he says it has something to do with the way my country-ass pronounces it). He likes spunky, boyish names; he has wanted a daughter named "Charlie" for as long as I can remember.

So we'll be having conversations about baby names; I'll sit with the laptop and browse baby name websites, and throw ideas that I like at him, and he'll do the same. Our exchanges often sound like this:

A: "What about Pearl? I kind of like it."
B: (Looking at me aghast) "Pearl is an old woman's name, Amanda."

B: "Roxanna, that's a good name. Roxanna."
A: (Studying his profile intently, while he plays a flash game) "Are you being serious?"
B: "Yeah, Roxanna. What do you think?"
A: "Brandon... Roxanna is a whore's name. We cannot give our daughter a whore's name."

Sometimes a name is declared both old and whorish.

I've just seen a face

I hope that you are ready for a mushy love post. Consider yourself warned.

Sunday was our first wedding anniversary. We spent most of the day at the same place where we were married, my mom's house. You know that already from yesterday's boring post. When I woke up Sunday morning, I told Brandon happy anniversary, and remarked that a year ago I had awoken at around 5:00 AM, completely filled with a superhuman energy that propelled me out into the yard, where I connected a complex series of extension cords that lit the orchard with pretty white lights; then I made and remade some flower arrangements, and spent most of the rest of the day paralyzed in the house because of a carefully arranged hairstyle that, despite a heavy shellac of hairspray, kept me immobilized with the fear that it could be destroyed.

I decided to post these pictures on this mushy entry, rather than any wedding pictures. These are pictures that were taken the day after our first date... so this is July 16, 2006. B had asked me out on a date a few weeks before but we weren't able to get together sooner because of his crazy work schedule. I was living at home with my parents and went to Nashville that weekend, stayed with Wendy and Mark in preparation for hanging out with Brandon. We hung out for the first time in Murfreesboro, in the hovel that B was living in, a terribly hot apartment on the second story of an old house on College St. He told me that he didn't have an air conditioner, little did I know that in fact, the AC unit was in the closet because he was determined not to use it that summer. This was a harbinger of B's extreme attitudes regarding heating and cooling that make my life hot in the summer, cold in the winter to this day.

We (maybe it's just me) look rough as fuck in these pictures because we were up all night the night before, and by the time we were ready to go to sleep, it was about 170 degrees in the hovel. We laid on the floor, too hot to touch one another, and watched Baraka, which was really awesome right up to the point where they chopped all the beaks off the baby chickens. Have you ever seen this film? My favorite part is the monkey in the hot springs, in the snowy mountains. You can see that at around 2:00, here, and I promise, you won't see any debeaked chicks.

God, look at my thigh. I swear to God my thigh was only that skinny for 18 hours, a gift from the Lord in order that the match of Amanda + Brandon could be made. That was the skinniest time of my life, probably due to all the depression and obsession and many nights of "drinking my dinner." I know that liquor is high in calories but when it's all you're consuming, eventually it makes you thin. I think.

I never really believed in soulmates before I met B. I mean, how can you possibly pronounce that in all the zillions of people in all the world, there is one person out there who is your perfect match? I still think this is bullshit. However... I definitely believe that there was a certain set of situations that occurred at the right time for both of us that set our relationship in motion. And, as cheesy as it sounds, I have to call it fate.

The other day I was writing an email to someone that I don't see or communicate with that often, and he had made a compliment to me about our relationship. In response, I told him that it wasn't always easy, but it is always worth it. I know that being together has changed the both of us in so many ways, the way we see ourselves, the way we see the world, and the way we see ourselves living the rest of our lives. We're at this stage of life in which the decisions we make are taking have more and more weight -- having a kid, deciding where we want to settle, and how we want to do it -- and it's really daunting sometimes, to have these decisions to make. But I try not to worry about it because you know, as long as we're together, we can make it all work out. That much has to be true.

"I give you my love, more precious than money
I give you myself before preaching or law;
Will you give me yourself?
Will you come travel with me?
Shall we stick by each other as long as we live?"

That's from Walt Whitman's Song of the Open Road, and we used it as our vows.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

You don't move like no virgin.

We went to church with my mom this weekend, the church that I grew up going to. {Listen, are you ever typing a sentence and see that it is going to end in a preposition, try to stop the freight train explosion of a sentence ended in a preposition, but all the replacements you can come up with ALSO end in prepositions? God I hate that.}

Even though my feelings about organized religion, Christianity in particular, range from ambivalence to fits of violent annoyance, I really do love most of the people who go to church there. It is a tiny church in a white wooden building 15 minutes down the road from where my mom lives. My dad and paternal grandparents are buried there; I have known most of the people who go there since I was an itty bitty thing, and I have to say that a few of them really exemplify that Christians can be really good people who don't use their faith as an excuse for intolerance.

I haven't been to church with her in months because they have a new preacher who literally makes my skin crawl. He just makes me so so uncomfortable, and I find so many things about his personality completely objectionable. Now, for 15 years or so, they had a great preacher down there. He was a professor at a Methodist university in Jackson, and he was very kind and tolerant, obsessed with Apple computer products, and really talked more like a teacher, than a preacher. Not so with this new guy. I could make some kind of list of the things I don't like about him, but honestly a) I have to leave work in 15 minutes and b) the list would sound vague and petty because I have tried to block out any memories I created of him during his last 40 minute sermon. He says the word "God" just like Dennis Quaid as Jerry Lee Lewis in Great Balls of Fire. GAHWD. I fucking love that movie.

"Devil, you gonna git a black eye today!"
"If I'm going to hell, I'm going there playing the piana."

In a week I will have heard the tiny whooshing heartbeat of my unborn child. Weird! Awesome! I. Cannot. Wait.

Monday, June 1, 2009

I'm yawning and snacking at the same time.

I have been pretty terrible at this as of late, huh? I will tell you something I hate more than anything, and that is the bullet list blog. You know, a list of this and that that has not been formatted into paragraphs? Disgusting. But I feel as though I need to do a list like that, because I have a lot to report.

3. We went to New Orleans for Memorial Day weekend. I didn't drink a drop (more on that later). There were a lot of really drunk people there, and not being one of them was... odd. I am pretty positive it saved us a pile of cash, the lack of bar hopping. All the root beer barrels we had at the Green Parrot in Key West really broke the bank on that trip. We did eat a lot, because we're gluttons from hell. We ate things like this, that made us very full and satisfied, while at the same time disgusted with ourselves.

Also, we met up with Megan and Shane, who are Memphis-Americans (I have robbed that term from Toby, by the way) that we have never met in Memphis; we rode the streetcar a lot, I lost $5 in a slot machine, Brandon found out too late that he could not order a sandwich at the Cafe Du Monde, we saw some nice jazz at the Rock and Bowl, went for walks in the Garden District and Audobon Park, and, yes, laid up in the hotel room watching cable, drinking gin (B) and napping (me).

2. We had a pretty fine potluck in which Brandon took some of the finest party pics I have seen in quite some time. The theme was "Summertime" and the food was very nice and Liz came, which made me very very happy!

1. Ok, on with the show. The big news: We are going to have a little baby Dilbro at the end of the year! Yep, that is right, we decided to make the big leap into parenthood. I think turning 28 made the tick tock of my clock go bang bang bang and I decided it was time to shit or get off the pot. We made the baby in the normal way, as in we took off our pants and looked each other in the eyes tenderly. I have to say that sex without a net for me was pretty mystical and now feels even moreso since I have the knowledge that everything went to work as it was intended and we created a teeny spark of mushy human life that is growing bigger everyday. According to, it's now the size of a kumquat, which looks like this:

Crazy shit, huh? We are terribly excited and I am ready to get a nice round belly. I am 10 weeks along as of this weekend and I am already ready to meet this weird, tall person. However, I can wait, and in the meantime I am giving the little booger lots of water, veggies, cookies, fried chicken, yogurt, tofu, cheese, cereal, and fish oil capsules, which are apparently very good for its brain. Although my boobs are a size bigger and I have to take a nap 5 days a week when I get home, the whole thing is still just *brimming* with unreality, and in two weeks I will be very glad when we return to the midwife and get to hear the heartbeat for the first time.

Ok, now I have to do an interview and have a snack. I'm fucking starving.

Friday, May 8, 2009

you thought that you could outrun sorrow

I have been running back and forth ferrying clients from the waiting room to my desk, my desk back out to the waiting room like a crazy person all morning. With the sun emerges all the people who need to recertify their Food Stamp cases do as well; what you may not realize is that people who ride the bus or have unreliable transportation do not keep appointments on rainy days. I learned this some time ago, and when I wake up to thunder and lightning my first thought is no longer "O Goddamn, I wish I could stay in bed all day," but "Yay, I will have so many no-shows and can catch up on work hardcore." Needless to say, the rainyness of this week has had me spoiled. Not to mention the fact that I called out of work Tuesday based primarily on the uneasy night's sleep I had, which was most notably punctuated at around 3:00 AM by a dream in which my bed and home were completely infested with a particular species of black ticks that had a white dot on their backs. I awoke from this dream scratching my arms and legs and chest and neck frantically, and immediately took the cat into the bathroom to inspect him for fleas. I found none. I believe this dream was a message that I need to buy Frontline for my cats.

But it costs $60 every other month!

But you need to buy it. Or else you'll get fleas. Like you did last summer.

(The sound of hysterical crying)

I have been abstaining from coffee in the morning, which may explain my notable absence from LTA as well as Twitter. When I'm not unbelivably jacked up on caffeine, I find myself with notably less to say.

After several tragic and annoying debacles, nearly every one of our precious tomato/zucchini/pepper/basil seedlings were destroyed. This culminated in our landlord somehow chopping the tender top off every potted plant on our front walk with brutal, careless weed whacking. But you know what I said? I said "FUCK THIS NOISE. YOU CAN KILL ALL MY PLANTS, LANDLORD, NEIGHBOR'S DOG, REGULARLY FLOODED FLOWERBED IN THE BACKYARD, BUT YOU'LL NEVER KILL MY DESIRE TO GROW THINGS." And I went to the nursery and I got an orange pepper plant and a Green Zebra tomato and another heirloom variety, and then I went to Home Depot and I bought some ridiculously large pots because Martha said that when you're growing vegetables in pots, they have to be at least 15 gallons, and I planted them. And I think they're growing. I can't say for sure.

This weekend will be full of fun because Brandon's brother and his fiancee (God, I hate that word I hate that word) are coming to town, and we wish to squire them around and show them why we love Memphis. We're going to the farmer's market and the symphony (free tickets) and maybe to Mud Island. Hoping to hook up with Bette since she'll be in town for Bands Not Bombs. So, Go Away Rain! You can come back on Monday and give me a vacation from interviews.

One more thing: I have been using Tom's of Maine apricot-scented deodrant, and I find that at the beginning of the day, my pits smell like apricot. The middle of the day? Apricot flavored BO. By the end of the day, straight up BO. Which is kind of fine with me, because I think we Americans are an oversanitized lot, and I'm not one to squelch the natural workings of my body. But it is pretty funny to smell like a piece of rotting fruit by 3:00 every day.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

MZM 09

Another week, another post with pictures where my words should be.

Last Friday we went to the third annual Memphis Zombie Massacre downtown. Last year I was knee-deep in wedding preparations and couldn't make it. Since my husband is an avowed zombie enthusiast, and I am a fan of odd social happenings that are seemingly pointless, nonetheless compelling, we met at Handy Park after work and stood in line for a couple of hours in order to get zombiefied.

I haven't heard any kind of count, but I know there were at least a couple of hundred people there. Here's some highlights.

This guy was offering a zombie cure of some sort. It was odd because I recognized him from his blog, which I had just discovered that very day. I think he's pretty hilarious, and as I later told Lindsey, anyone who executes an idea like that must be at least one quarter amazing

Do you know what the deal is with this whole thing? You can either go dressed as a zombie or in old ratty street clothes with a duct tape X on them. When the zombies see folks marked with the X, they attack them and they get zombiefied. Which is incredibly fucking creepy the first few times you see it:

This zombie was my favorite. I was near him during nearly the entire thing, and he never broke character once. I was lying. This zombie is really my favorite.

I'll close with the loveliest of all images: Undead Lovin'.

Even more pics here & here, if you haven't seen enough fake blood and wounds yet.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Nothing that this world could bring would hold me back from you

Hey y'all. I have just been dry as a creek bed as far as blogs go. When I post I want to be funny or entertaining. Not boring or bitchy. Even though life's been just fine, I haven't had shit to say as of late. I am pretty sure I will be back, though. I'm just super busy at work these days, spending my days interviewing 6-10 clients per day and working working working to keep up with their cases. But I wanted to pop in and post this exciting and bloody picture to whet your appetite for more of my keen wit.

Lovely, huh? Yeah, we went to Chattanooga this weekend to have family time with B's brother and soon-to-be-wife. We try to visit them somewhat often because we all love each other and get along well, and since the timing was perfect, a few months back I got us all tickets to go see The Avett Brothers at the Tivoli theatre in downtown Chattanooga. I am sure that I have mentioned before that TAB are my favorite band. I am as emotionally and sentimentally involved with them as I have ever been with any current band, and this show was the ninth, count em, ninth time I've seen them. Pretty cool. I know I've bitched about going to shows before, and dear Bette sums a lot of my complaints up in this post, but shows like the one this past Saturday are what keep me buying overpriced tickets and putting hundreds of miles on my small rollerskate-like car. It was gorgeous and worth every penny and every mile; they played nearly every song I ever want to hear, and I want y'all to play this song. I preach these boys to anyone who will listen; I hope you can love it a tenth as much as I do.

But my knee, right? What the fuck am I even talking about anymore? Jesus, the structure of this is giving every English teacher I've ever had a headache. They don't know why, but they have one.

Ok, my busted ass knee: earlier on Saturday, my brother-in-law drove us up Signal Mountain so that we could take a casual little hike. I have to explain that my BIL, G, is very outdoorsy and fit and active. Now, I'm not a total obese shut-in, but I get a little... pant-y when walking up hill for long stretches. Know what I'm saying? So for nearly the extent of our relationship, I have been a little afraid of the day that G realized that I am LAZY and DECIDELY NOT FIT. (Although I am sure he already knows this, he hasn't yet heard the panting). So it was a bizarre twist of events when, nearly as soon as we started our walk on the trail, I tripped and went flying leg-first into this little buddy:

The only fucking sharp rock in the entire vicinity. That is the precious denim from my jeans that got ripped open on the rock. My leg feels a lot better now, a few days later, but we had to go back and I had to drink vodka with cream soda out of a mason jar while my wonderful husband carefully picked dirt out of the bigass hole and flushed it with water and peroxide. Then I had to go to the show with my sore swollen old lady leg and deal with the silent taunts of 17-year-old hardbodies. Fuck you, high schoolers of Chattanooga. Usually I can climb stairs JUST FINE thank you.

A balloon just popped somewhere in my office and I swear to God I heard someone hit the decks.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

You can call me "Perky Dumplin"

Last night I when I got home from LT's, Brandon and Alpha were talking in the living room and I took to the bedroom with the laptop with the idea that I'd check my e-mail/google reader real quick and then read. (Yeah right. I never get on the internet real quick.) I saw that Chrystal, my BFF from high school, had a new post and when I started reading it, I began laughing. Quietly at first, then louder and louder. It was a kind of laughter reminiscent of hiccups, rising in small unpredictable bursts, and growing with intensity until I had to go read the entry aloud to the boys in the other room. They thought it was funny, but not as funny as I did, since I have met Mama Ann and heard various accounts of her through the years that I'd define as "tragically hilarious." The blog post reminded me of why Chrystal was my best friend all the way through high school, because she was the most hilarious person I knew, and could tickle my funny bone relentlessly. She was so ballsy about it, and the best evidence I can think of would be the time in which she drove her ex's huge truck into a old car that his parents owned, several times, just to entertain the both of us. I think this incident might have made me pee in my britches a little bit.

We've been taking a lot of walks in the afternoon on days when the weather's lovely. Yesterday was the kind of day that makes living in the South so satisfying. Maybe it would be more appropriate to say it was the kind of day that makes living satisfying, but something about the route we took felt so deliciously Memphis to me. We scrambled up the rise to the train tracks right around Central & Cooper and were happily surprised to come across thick curtains of blooming wisteria, which is heady with the most amazing perfume this time of year. We were right around the area where Brandon took this picture a couple of weeks ago:

There are similar pix from the same day here, if you're interested.

Because I was ingrained with a healthy (unhealthy?) sense of fear by my parents, at first when B suggested walking along the tracks, I was skeptical of imminent death by trains and homicidal bums. I couldn't help but remember the opening of Fried Green Tomatoes, in which Buddy's shoe becomes stuck in the tracks and he meets his maker at the tender age of 17. However, like the many times when my dear husband's lack of fear has trumped my overly cautious nature, we strolled leisurely along without incident and had a lovely time.

Reviewing yesterday, I think it was nearly the perfect spring day. Sunshine, simple delicious food, a reminder of the intellectual & comical prowess of women I am lucky enough to know, and spiritual & physical communion with my dear, dear partner.

Signed, Mary Sunshine

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Ree. Dick. You. Lus.

Keywords that brought people to my blog... thanks, Google Analytics. Now I've got approximately 22% less faith in humanity.

a lady pilot who does not have her two hands
animals making love with each other
daddy you're mean but i love you anyway
eaten alive by animals
fuck lady pilot video
fucking sexy lady with zoo animals
hot lady pilots
how can you whitten my clitoris and labia
how to say heartache in spanish
long ow ow
nsfw animals
ole long wer are you
rape scene of animal and father with daughter
really tall animals
reasons its good to be tall
sexes in tall animals
vedio "breastfeeding puppy"
woman breast feeding puppy video

I guess this blog has a strong beastiality/incest vibe.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Why can't I ever get my sugar?

Everyone reading this will be glad to know that I have moved to a new desk at work and am now in the part of our building that can be called cozy. In fact, yesterday afternoon, after I got settled in, if I had wanted to, I could have described the climate in my cube as "stuffy," but after bringing a space heater back from my lunchbreak with me last week, I didn't dare breathe a word of complaint.

By the way, do y'all know where I work? I mean, I'm pretty sure you know what I do, but do you know precisely where I drive to every day to do my clickity-clackity?

That's right, my humble office is right next to the Crystal Palace. WHICH WAS FEATURED IN HUSTLE N FLOW. Yes. We rented the movie not long after we moved here, because I had never seen it, and I was pretty excited for about 30 seconds. I have no idea if the parking lot is as jumpin' on the weekends as the film makes it look, but this guy's Flickr caption is funny and makes it seem like it could be true.

(I just reread this paragraph and I'm pretty sure I have written about this before. I'm like a senile grandmother in the fact that I repeat all my stories over and over again all the time. But I'm pretty sure that last time I didn't go to the trouble of stealing a picture from someone's Flickr to illustrate my point, so Goddammit, I'm letting it ride. Just like a granny does.)

The wedding this weekend was just smashing. The combination of Matt (gosh he looks so attractive in those photos it causes me to feel embarrassed)+ Kerry (the cutest person alive, I'm pretty sure)+ Earnestine & Hazel's really could not be beat though, you know? They had sausage from the Rendezvous. Vivian, one of the people who reopened E&H in the mid-nineties was upstairs telling stories about Ray Charles fucking whores and lots of other incredibly interesting things that I was a tad too buzzed to pay the appropriate amount of attention to. All of my favorite Memphis family of friends were there, except for David and Amy, who are in Goddamned Hawaii. There was a moment late in the evening when Ben made me dance with him and it was a little bit like some mid-nineties teen comedy in which a ugly duckling blossoms into a swan. Except every time I make a 180 degree turn on the dance floor I lose all focus of what my body was doing in the moment before. It is my personal dance reset button. Plus, at the end of the night, when legendary Nate, the upstairs bartender, was going to work, I shook his hand.

I'm sure anyone who looks in on this beastly thing from time to time remembers just a few weeks ago when I was whining and complaining about my job. I hated doing it, but it felt like it had to be done, or else I was going to go batshit ratshit crazy. When that was going on, I decided I needed a creative little project to take my mind off my troubles, so I started working on a zine. I had never made one before, just been the recipient of ones made by cooler friends. So I typed and cut and glued and now it's very nearly done, I just have to stick in a couple of more things and make a trip to Kinko's. As a reward for the pain and boredom you must have felt when reading a middle-class white woman's woes over a career she chose for herself, I am offering you, dear reader, one free cooking zine entitled "Beans & Cornbread," to be delivered to your home via USPS. All you have to do is send me a little email with yr name and address to, and I myself will incur the expense of copying and mailing a copy of the little booger into your open arms. I know that sometimes people charge like $2 for a zine, but who's gonna buy a zine from me? It's not like I'm Kathleen Hanna or something!

I fear this last comment has showed my age a bit. Oh well, I wasn't fooling anyone anyway, was I? By the way, my friend used to be pen pals with Kathleen and the letter she'd received from her would always be written in crayon. Bitchin.

I am off to work some more, and also to listen to some Bikini Kill. I will close with a Youtube video of the BK song "Carnival," one of my favorites of all time. The first mix CD I ever made for B Dill had this song on it, and I think I got cool points for it. The opening of this song is possibly the most compelling thing I've ever heard, lyrically. Heh heh heh. NSFW (the song, not the video).


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