My Boss has Karaoke in her office

My boss is really fun. She’s full of creative ideas and always has chocolate kicking around her office. There is unflattering speculation regarding her level of productivity. But I have few doubts.

But this Karaoke machine in her office–sober karaoke is therapeutic. Possibly cathartic.

The trick is, I think, turning off your self-censor and feeling okay about public buffoonery, especially if the place you work is unkind to your gender and makes you feel rather demoralized but strong.

In fact, it is just this delicate recipe of conflict that allows me to feel as though Karaoke in the boss’ office is something that I will grow to use as therapy. There is something so freeing and mood-elevating about belting terrible early-90s soul, doing both the boy and girl part badly, in the midst of would-be-business.

I faced the wall and the skinny black window and watched the screen and thought about nothing but me, in the moment, being anything that even resembles competent when it comes to the vocals. Belting, swaying, dancing. My throat got raw.

It was exhilarating like driving too fast crooning loudly to Green Day.

The non-present-just-a-wall-away audience empowered my noise. I let it hang in my throat. It felt rich like stout. Perhaps for the same reason marginalized populations assert their presence with noise, or ruckus, or passive-aggression; I did not apologize for my warbling. I did not even feel shame (once I got started). I just sang. Into the mic with the echo-box built in. With the volume way too high.

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Damnit Jim!

1. I didn’t even need to watch the show, “How to Look Good Naked,” only see the ads to know that it isn’t anything at all how I critiqued it.

2. I am a bad friend who is apparently incapable of making phone calls.

3. I still don’t want to watch “How to Look Good Naked,” but I somehow feel obligated to do so in order to engage intelligently on the matter for the sake of you, Jim, and for the sake of my devoted blog readers (you know who you are).

4. I have better things to use my marvelous brain on.

5. For example: ending sentences prepositions in: edit: “I have better things on which to sic my marvelous brain.” Indeed. Occasion for much more interesting adjectives. Oooh goody.

6. Isn’t that word, sic, interesting?

Being a Grown Up Sucks

Because it means that my life constantly exists on two planes: excellent and nose bleed.

These are the excellent things: I threw my first body shop party solo this evening. I did well, with cards. I am not a script-follower generally. I got a solid, positive, promising lead on some consistent freelance work today. I had two decent prospects at work today. I entered the body shop order in record time, and figured out how to order some stuff I didn’t know how to order before. My sisters’ friends’ mom, Cathy, is a very, very cool woman, and I chatted a bit with her this evening. She is inspirational because she gets paid to do art. My dearest friends in the world, Noelle and Feike, will be visiting next weekend. I have been holding myself to New Year’s resolutions and being proactive in doing things that will make me happier.

These are the things that cause nose bleeds: I am broke. Poorer than I’ve been since moving home. Patience, I keep telling myself, Patience! I need to buy new underwear. My cat, Oolong, is [in heat, retarded, sick???] and she keeps peeing on things. She has been living in the basement for 3 days. I want to take her to the vet, but i can’t afford it. She needs to be fixed. I haven’t had the time to write e-mail or update this thing in 5 to 7 days. All words for numbers ten and under should be spelled out, and I have screwed that up at least 5 times today, once in the e-mail to the promising-freelancing-work-guy. I am terribly sexually frustrated. The laundry is piling up, and I have more food in the fridge than I can consume before it spoils. If only unspoiled food could be traded for cash.

Often, when I am seeing the hardest edges of my adulthood, both planes are going breakneck.

I have no philosophical mental spew to soften these edges. I have no real idea of what to do except for to keep doing.

I get that Beatle’s song, “Help!” for the first time, ever.

Look Good Naked

On the TV Guide Channel, I learn more about the ways in which I am horrified by current TV offerings than I learn about what I want to watch.

My least favorite listing is Look Good Naked. Presumably, this show has a how-to format. I would also suspect that its demographic is heterosexual females aged 18-25. I have this suspicion for a number of reasons. I suppose I could watch it and find out for sure, but I am fairly certain I would be disgusted. I would probably feel bad about myself. It would also take all the fun out of this blog post.

1. Men don’t care how they look naked, their partners will usually accept them unconditionally.
2. If men do care how they look naked, they probably don’t need any tips on the how to.
3. Fact: men have higher metabolism than women, their bodies are designed to retain less fat.
4. I like to hope that people of substance over the age of 25 have realized that looking good naked is at the bottom of the list of necessary attributes in a partner. Or, if it is important, it is less important than it was before the age of 25.
5. There are many, many more depictions of nude or nearly nude women across cultures and publications than there are depictions of nude or nearly nude men, which is how we can guess with fair certainty what exactly they mean by “good.”

Here’s how to look “good” naked if you are a normal heterosexual female ages 18-25.

1. do not, under any circumstances, have a baby.
2. always do it with the lights off.
3. if you must eat, eat only things that say protien, vegetbale, fruit or water on them. No more than 1 lb of food daily, fewer than 500 calories.
4. Drink lots and lots of black coffee.
5. Smoke 4 packs of cigarettes a day.
6. Never engage in activity that may cause bruises, if you do get bruises, you should do it in the basement with the lights off.
7. Wax everything, every 3 days.
8. Save your pennies for 2 words: Gastric Bypass.

Here’s how to look “good” naked if you are a filthy rich heterosexual female ages 18-25.

1. Hire a personal trainer.
2. Hire Oprah’s cook.

Here’s how to look good naked if you are me,

1. be me
2. don’t worry about it
3. have pride in your stretch marks and hips
4. eat well

But here’s the thing.

Looking good naked is totally subjective.

The TV program Look Good Naked is one of the many symptoms of the ways in which we have committed, as Americans, to a particularly unhealthy desire for sameness, narrow ideas of attractiveness and resisting individual thought.

I Bought Shitting Tea!

I was at the grocery store with Pearl, right? And anybody who knows knows that shopping with a 2-year-old should get people nominated for Peace prizes–the 2-year-old and her intense social and physical discovery, the umpteen million shoppers who believe that they would do a better job being a parent to your child than you’re doing, the dimwit 13-year-old cashiers and the Senior Bagging Clerks.

So I find myself in the tea/coffee Aisle. My colleague, bastard-who-did-not-create-myspace-url, has been talking up tea. But the tea at work is the dime-store variety and frankly, I am a bit of a snob. Coffee is drugs, and I’ll drink tepid bathwater if somebody writes coffee on it, but tea–tea is like English or something, right? Should be savoured (see what I did there?) and enjouyed (again, less artfully). And I’m thinking, gee. I could go for some decent fruity tea for work. I wonder what’s on sale!

Why I didn’t just stick with Stash, I shall never understand. Oh wait. It’s because I’m a cheap-ass single mother with too much to do and not enough time.

There’s a beautiful red box. It has a marvelous Eastern pattern on the front. It says, “licorice,” “individually wrapped,” and the best, “slimming.” The combination feels right and a tantrum and 15 minutes later, I own the beautiful red box. [Is it a coincidence, I wonder, that I purchased 2 red shirts and a red scarf at the Old Navy a short 2 hours later?]

I am feeling rather proud of the purchase, I am thinking, “even with my toddler, I make savvy and attractive impulse buys!” Wrong. For so many reasons.

I get home and the toddler monster is napping. I think I shall have a cup of tea. A trial run.

I read the box. I notice that the fine print looks awfully fine.

As it turns out, the tea is an “intestinal cleanser” made as a “dietary aid” during “weight loss programs.”

I thought slimming was a word to get monkeys to buy stuff like coffee is a word that gets me to drink stuff. Slimming always has fine print, like, must do 500 50 lb curls daily in order for this to actually do any slimming. Right?

Not only does the tea seem to intend to deliver exactly what it’s promised, there are about 4 box-sides worth of instructions. I am too afraid for the trail run. All I wanted was pomegranate or raspberry. Licorice sounded good, too!

Don’t drink more than 16 ounces of this tea daily.
Don’t use if pregnant or nursing.
Don’t consume next to a fella named Ron.
Brew two minutes during initial doses. Eventually work up to personal taste.

I’m not making this up. (except maybe for ron.)

I took the pretty red box to work anyway.

I made a cup of tea.

I did not, as is my tradition, allow the bag to steep during the entire tea consumption. I brewed it fewer than 2 minutes.

The tea tasted a bit like warm dirt.

The tea did, in fact, make me shit.

A lot.

It also gave me gas.

Moral: check tea boxes more carefully in future. Understand implicit oxymoron in “savvy impulse buy.”

This Dream I had

First, the major players:
1. A boy I know, have slept with and know I shouldn’t talk to anymore. We’ll call him Dilbert.
2. His Girlfriend. We’ll call her Angie.
3. A boy I know, have not slept with, and to whom am not sure I should have stopped talking. We’ll call him Aaron.

Cameos:
1. My dad. We’ll call him my dad.
2. A swell girlfriend of mine.

So Dilbert, Angie and I are conversating. That’s right, conversating. As one often does in dreams. Angie is cool. She is talking about Dilbert’s later-life circumcision (In life, Dilbert is Jewish). She says, “oh, he needed it. Like drawers need bottoms.” I am listening with earnest intention.

Spontaneously, Dlibert breaks up with Angie and announces that he would like to do it with me. I argue and resist, since Dilbert has behaved so badly. And I am–in real life and the dream–in utter conflict over whether or not I should like him. at all. even as a friend.

My swell girlfriend calls and tells me that her physician has told her that she has every kind of flu virus in her body, and that that is very unusual, but he has not prescribed medication.

Then as suddenly as the conversation about Dilbert’s circumcision began, Dilbert and I are having [very good] sex. (In real life, Dilbert is not much of a lover.) But the whole time, I am–aware of conflict and irony in a dream in ways I have never been before–pretending that Dilbert is actually Aaron. In my dream, that is how I explain the sudden transformation of Dilbert’s skills in lovemaking. Aaron is almost certainly a very good lover.

This is when my dad appears. Somehow, there is nothing at all perverted about his appearance, just odd. He comes into the room where Dilbert and I are screwing and asks me to make him a hot sauce cocktail with the two bottles of hot sauce he’s brought with him. He says, “take your time.” He says, “don’t mind me,” and means it.

Then Dilbert begins to interview me about Aaron after my dad disappears. He tells me that he loves me because I love someone who isn’t him. He asks a thousand questions that I am happy–and even more greatly aroused–to answer.

I wake up just after Aaron, as a floating head, has appeared to Dilbert (Aaron has no awareness of my presence or of the nudity) and Dilbert asks him if he loves me.

Aaron, of course, does not answer before I wake.

And now I puzzle over whether or not to break my fast from him and tell him about this bizarre dream. I think I shall’nt, for I fear rejection, and his fear.