Tag: annoyance

nothing pisses me off more than mundane annoyances (g2)

During this time, I was hoping the only stress I would be suffering would be gaining mastery of my new job now that I’m solo.

I never seem to get off that easily.

We’re still immersed in summer, which can only be summed up as funky, wet stank. So of course, our AC at home has been hit by lightning.

Then, as Spawn is starting school online, I have a neighbor who decided to play with a chainsaw and tear up some wires along the way.

Problem 1 is denied by the warranty company as an act of God, coverage denied. Fine, I have insurance but I need something in writing as to the problem so they can move forward.

The only thing they send me in writing is some bullshit that the AC wasn’t working before the contract in effect. Excuse me, what the fuck?

I don’t know about the rest of you, maybe it’s because I have no one to allocate some of the bullshit of life too…but I have gone beyond my limit of the incompetence, fraud, swindling, lying, cheating and all out fuckery that corporate America calls “customer service.”

What I’m saying is I want to burn this fucking company to the ground and the idiot handling my case with it.

Its now been almost a month of stank heat and suffering. I had to break down to buy a portable unit to make at least Spawn’s days less like hell. Their the ones suffering the most being at home all day.

Problem 2 is the internet. We didn’t know when we moved in we had a dickhead next door, didn’t notice his tiny penis, big truck, “trespassers will be shot” sign nor the fenced in German Shepard right next to the closest pole for both power and internet. It took four visits and a supervisor call to finally get one of those technical badasses who sees every problem as having a solution.

Now that Chainsaw Charlie is on the scene, we’re back to square one and already had one visit from technician ThumbUpHisAss who blew it off and said to call when the construction was done. What construction, you lazy fuck?

There are so many people out of work, why must dead weight hinder progress from those who can and will do? While those who won’t just waste time and space?

So being able to write means sitting in almost 90 degree room with no internet and no breeze. The storms are still going and I am so pissed I could really make a long list of people I’d love to hurt. I have zero empathy anymore and have lost my faith in karma.

When you’re the common man, the one who has never had the power of a retainer, or even a little bit of influence against large overbloated corporations who believe sending mass amounts of survey links asking to rate their customer service instead of actually providing any, what do you do?

In the grand scheme of things, I know my bitching is petty but at the same time, why does this little shit, this insignificant crap have to be blown to immense proportions just to get basic fucking common sense out these greedy sacks of shit? Provide the service you claim to do, that’s all!

With that in mind, I guess it’s really no wonder why no one can figure out how viruses work or why masks are essential or just even, wash your fucking hands?

We cannot even extend common decency and fairness when paid to.

so the deviant absent parent has reared their drugged up head… (g2)

Spawn has just me.

I have no siblings, a cousin whom I only get along with for three day or less periods, an absent dad I flipped off once over thirty years ago, a dead mom, no living grandparents.

On the other end, there is a shitty biological donor with mental and drug-related problems, one dead sibling, an absent dad, absent half-siblings, a dead mom, no living grandparents.

Don’t get me wrong, if you dig past that, I have a couple aunts and some more cousins, but we don’t see each other much since we aren’t close. I’m the evil black sheep of the family and I’m to be kept away from the straights lest some of my bohemian lifestyle wear off on their offspring.

My BFG is like the only second parent to Spawn. They seem to be kindred souls in many ways, they both have an addiction to bacon and pasta that is unmatched and often, BFG’s presents to Spawn kick mine’s ass. They just “get” my kid.

Spawn’s other donor and I met in art class in high school actually. Then we parted for years because, life, and when I met them again, they were able to put on a reasonable facade of the person they used to be, but the cracks showed up pretty quickly and the whole thing ended.

When Spawn became exclusively mine, legally and otherwise, I figured that the questions about the other donor would be better if I made them up. We split a long time before either of us knew Spawn was a factor and its a miracle they came so healthy.

However, the other donor actually  asked if they could be a part of Spawn’s life. I told them the door was open but if they pulled any shit, I reserved the right to end it immediately.

At first, this was a weekly pick-up from daycare and they would go for a walk at a park or something until dinner. It dwindled over the course of a year or so and then it would be nothing.

Almost annually, usually around their birthday (they couldn’t be bothered to remember Spawn’s), they popped up for a little while, want to see Spawn, then disappear like a bad dream. Once they decided popping pills and driving were a good combination, Spawn was no longer allowed to be alone with them, much less in a car.

I tried very hard to work things in such a way that Spawn had a great memory of their other donor without becoming aware of just how messed up they were.  I would pick them up, schedule a “them” focused day and kind of linger in the background. Spawn had a great time, the other donor earned some points, and I didn’t have to deal with the shit for another year.

Example: Spawn wanted donor to watch them at karate class, I dropped them off, went down the road to run a load of laundry, to come back and find out donor has taken off across the street to a place that, not an hour before, they told me they used to buy drugs.

The last one was about five years ago or so when the other donor, who is currently ordered to pay a pittance in child support (seriously, $40/week is the order, I agreed to whatever would get me out of there fastest since they originally ordered $80) decided that in order to get out of this monetary infringement so they could pool their resources for better prescription drugs, they needed to get married. Apparently, they assumed that being married would automatically grant them half-custody and they would not longer have to pay child support.

So the other donor decided to disappear for a month and brought back a spouse from… god knows where. They lived like a recluse so none of us could figure out where they found this person. The donor has a house (paid for) and car (paid for) they inherited when their mom died, plus some actual monetary inheritance. I don’t know the last time they actually had a job, so I have no clue what the hell they thought they were doing. Usually I get a fat lump check whenever the court threatens to toss them in jail, since they’d already done so once.

The marriage didn’t last a month, despite the fact the spouse was apparently at least slightly crazy too. Friending me and Spawn on facebook and gushing about the “happy family” and “fast friends” they hope will be kind of made my stomach lurch. I ran interference before Spawn saw any of it often.

I watched the crazy sort of run its course, talked to a lawyer, found they didn’t have a leg to stand on, and just waited to let them run it to exhaustion. The only thing I had to say about it was to keep their crap away from me and Spawn. There would be no further visits for now.

This was the catalyst for them to release apparently a lot of pent up vile they have been holding onto against me. They couldn’t have their way, so I was the monster. I won’t get into it too much, it makes me rather ill, but when they decided in their drug-addled brain, to send my grade school kid this long facebook message about how I raped them and that was the only reason they existed,and I also apparently orchestrated the goings-on of the entire world with my genitals, being nothing more than a devious puppet-master.

I saved it. I blocked them, blocked their number, and sent everything to social services and family court, along with my only response. I told them if they thought they had a leg to stand on, they were welcome to take me to court, that they had no visitation rights, I had full custody and they had nothing, including the three bottles of prescriptions meds they ordered online, which I listed by name, by quantity and how many were left during the 10 days they had been in their possession before they had their stomach pumped (I was friends with their mom, and their mom’s best friend. The last time donor went to the ER for a stomach pump, the friend did some housecleaning and gave them to me as a backup plan).

That the true problem could be known quite clearly by simply pulling their medical records for the last twenty years and talking to the only person(s) who would still have anything to do with them, since they only did so in honor of their mother.

I told them if they ever wanted to see Spawn again they would have to submit to a mental exam and a rehab program, and only after an extended time of passing both, with court supervision.

It wasn’t long, a couple months, for the silence to end and I get a text from a number I don’t recognize with an apology.  I respond with “too late” and block that one too. So far, they have tried to reconnect only twice. A few days ago, marks the third. Spawn and I both got a friend request from yet another account they have created, since I blocked all the others. They are convinced I’m just going to forget and forgive just because they play nice for now.

I only know because Spawn asked if I wanted them to block it. Spawn remembers when I told them the donor was no longer to be around us, that they had gone too far but I wanted them to keep the few good memories they had so I would not be getting into the details of why, but to please trust me that I was doing it for good reason. Spawn cried of course, but eventually figured out over the years that I wouldn’t do something like that with half-assed feelings.

Donor gave Spawn a ball once, one they’d shoplifted. Other than that, the other donor spends their time inhaling copious amounts of prescriptions and alcohol,  spewing word salad and trying to pass it off as poetry and making shitty art. Even Spawn said “all there is on their facebook is badly taken photos and crappy poetry.”

The donor’s birthday is a little over a month away. I had always tried to acknowledge the big gift-giving occasions on behalf of Spawn.  Of course, that stopped years ago when I noticed that the reciprocation was never there. As usual, this is a test to see if they can eek back in.  I don’t know if selfish acknowledgement is the only motivation.

I’d like to think there is one tiny speck of humanity in there that realizes Spawn is their only living family left. Unfortunately, my very next thought is the only reason why any of this would matter to this particular piece societal garbage is for what exploiting Spawn would get them. They are a taker, they give nothing.

So my response was simple “pull something like this again and I will involve the police.”

Is it bad to wish they’d just die?

i know it’s thanksgiving, but i’d just like to leave early because i don’t like you. (g2)

Well, per usual I spent Thanksgiving with my cousin’s family. If you have been confused with my family dynamic…. well, join the club. Why should I be the only one? As far as my cousins and I have been able to discern from our earlier generations…

Great Great and Great-grandparents = Embodied heavenly creatures brought forth to make entire childhoods more epic and special than even the most tear-jerking of xmas films. At least per Grand and her kids to some extent.

Dead grandparent = At least somewhat beloved by all four children, especially my mother. Despised by spouse, based on how they were mentioned our entire lives. Only one cousin remembers this person and yes, fondly.

Grand = one of the single most psychotic creatures I have ever had the misfortune to meet, let alone be raised by. When spouse died within a month of their father dying, Grand snapped and seemed to spend their life devoted to the sole destruction of their own family. Their children remember them mostly as “typical” but not “involved.”

Grand and spouse’s four children = four of the most worthless fucking parents, and sometimes people, the world has ever had the disgrace to have on the planet. Not one, as a parent, has been worth a shit. Yes, including my mother. For their children, this ranged from present but withholds love and pride in exchange for preferential treatment (especially competing with their daughter-in-law), too busy picking out the next ex-Mrs. to be bothered being a parent, too busy partying and trying to find Mr. Right in all the Mr. Wrongs, to I’d rather raise the other kids I made instead of my first born but only if it doesn’t interfere with my drinking.

Cousins = the group in which I am in…. we have families, good ones and good friends. For the most part, we all have our heads on pretty solid in spite of at least half of our genetic makeup. However, we are all such different people that had we not shared genetics in even the most minor of way, we’d never speak.

I used to say I was visiting “my closest cousin” or “the cousin to whom I was closest.” I realized over the years that not only was this strictly relative in comparing my relationship with my other cousins, but completely untrue.

We are maybe the two people who might have had more than a passing conversation if we’d met in a waiting room or similar since we are techies. In my family, that’s close. We also have seven years difference in age. He’s the child of the eldest, I’m the child of the youngest. They had 12 years difference.

My cousin and his wife have an awesome kid who is eerily similar to Spawn, interests-wise, despite their six years difference in age. Sadly, they don’t talk to one another. They will both contentedly sit in the same room and play on their phone, computer or draw and not say a word for hours. This makes me sad, but I understand if it doesn’t happen naturally on its own, it will backfire.

My cousin and his wife do very well. They travel quite a bit, spoil their kid rotten and just generally get to do a lot together. I think it’s awesome. Comparatively, I probably make less than a fourth of what they do and we struggle quite a bit. I’m ok with that. The only time I’m not ok with that is when I feel like I’m getting graded for it. This only occurs when I’m visiting them. “Well, you know… you could do X if you just sock a little aside…” Um, no actually I can’t, that ends up lumped into groceries and we need those.

I also get graded on my parenting. Spawn has my level of stubborn when it comes to something they don’t want to do and for the longest time, this mostly focused on putting anything in their mouth that wasn’t pizza, chicken nuggets or french fries. I blame daycare, since they considered mashed potatoes and rice balanced side dishes when served together. Spawn is older now, has made and tasted a quickie version of kimchi even, but if they don’t like it, they’re still not eating it. I don’t have a problem with this.

My cousin’s wife is an awesome cook and I would use these as good reasons for Spawn to try something they “thought” they hated. Spawn would dig in their heels about it not being on that very short list in their head and instead of letting the parent handle it, both my cousin and his wife would gang up on my kid to make them try it. My knee jerk reaction was to do the opposite and let Spawn escape the onslaught.

They didn’t see they were doing anything wrong, but more than once I would have to point out, “I would never have to audacity to parent your kid, it’s not my place. So remember that when the urge strikes you to parent mine.”

The sad thing is this hasn’t happened with just them among my family. It really breaks down your own self worth when you are overstepped because someone thinks they can “handle” your kid better. Is it due to family persistently thinking you are forever 13? Or do they actually see you’re an adult but just think you’re that incompetent?

The whole reason I ever came to this area… I blame first on my mom’s death, the holidays, or those fucking Budweiser holiday commercials… not sure. I sure as hell wasn’t remembering my actual blood relatives when I came up with this idea.

I had a kid on the way and suddenly family took on a very intense meaning. My family was all over 3k miles away, Grand was getting on in years and none of their kids wanted to deal with them.

I would. I’d dealt with their crazy shit most of my life, another 10 years would be nothing to get them out of the solitude they were currently living in. It would give my kid exposure to at least one member of their own family. I was hell bent on making Grand’s twilight years an epic adventure as I learned what it meant to be a parent.

It wasn’t long before, due to Grand and her minions (the three surviving children) I was soundly ousted from that scenario. Grand was packed up and moved off into a house with a friend of the eldest and not long after…. an assisted living facility and then state-funded type you die in.

I’d managed to get some weight and blood sugar meds off Grand just long enough for the eldest to stuff them on a shelf where they put that and more back on. The degeneration was rapid… so so rapid. Within one year there was a walker… and a diaper.

Greed had always been a driving factor for Grand and her eldest was no different… eerily so. The best I could figure is they were under some assumption I had come back to take advantage of Grand and the… wealth? Grand has social security and a mortgage still, in their 80’s. They had lent 25k to the pathetic piece of shit of their youngest son. The same son who told me during that time period “Family decisions will be made by the family… not you.”

Those were our last words.

Example, I took Grand to the grocery store about 2-3 times a week. Grand was addicted to shopping and I noticed they would go up each and every aisle no matter how much they really needed to get. Did you know just doing that, Grand dropped a couple pant sizes in no time?

Grand had an almost desperate need to shove stuff in their cart. Macular degeneration helped a lot during this time period as Grand would focus on one side, while I pulled things out of the cart from the other and put it back. I always made sure there was at least something there to buy for their fix, but it had to stay under 10 bucks total.

With us grocery shopping so often, the food was fresher. Grand loved fruit and I only allowed 3 servings at most per trip, and all had to be different colors. Grand got pissed at me when I wouldn’t let them buy a 10lb bag of oranges (did I mention Grand was diabetic?). I got calls later that I was accused of not feeding Grand.

Whenever I did something that Grand didn’t like, they would start some shit with their kids in order to bully me, I guess? I would take the infant Spawn to visit their other and only living grandmother. Grand told anyone who would listen I was running around with various people, the allusion was that was sleeping around.

I remember one night I had just gotten back to Grand’s about midnight, Spawn conked out in my arms and Grand was rocking away, arms folded, look of disgust mounted on their face. I asked what was wrong. I was told that someone had called Grand to say I’d been out with some member of the opposite sex.

I’d heard shit like this my entire life. I would tell Grand where I was going and give a number, I would come back accused of all sorts of atrocities. This was before caller id, so I had no reason to believe it was wasn’t true. I just could never figure out who the hell looked like me enough or if their friends were just blind and stupid. I didn’t know how to not be defensive growing up, and always felt guilty for nothing.

I quietly walked over to the caller id when Grand refused to tell me who called… there’d been no calls in 27 hours. I asked Grand why they had spent my entire life sitting in that fucking chair coming up with bullshit lies to sling at me for no other reason than their own twisted amusement.

Then I sat down just opposite Grand, got close and said…”If I want to fuck half a dozen people of both genders in front of my infant kid, I’m almost thirty and you cannot do a damn thing to stop it as that is none of your fucking business. Are we understood?”

Grand was pissed, but a small nod told me what I needed. I rose and as I headed to bed I just said “You know, even if that were some sort of weekend hobby I decided to adopt, I still don’t think it would ever make me as shitty a parent as you.”

As time wore on, Grand tried various bullshit in order to regain “control.” With Grand, that’s all it was really about. I wasn’t letting Grand do what they wanted, or control me, so I needed to be disciplined and put in my place.

Thing is, I was the grandchild. Hearing enough various awful things I was apparently doing to Grand was enough to make her surviving children, at least two of them, wonder what the deal was.

The original plan was that Grand and I would me moving in together but there was no way I was moving back to Grand’s house. So in the midst of all of this, on the weekend I was to be moving into the new place (we got Grand up there in advance), I showed up with van full of stuff and find some friend of Grand’s eldest is already living there. I call my cousin to ask what is going on. They have no idea.

I get back in my van, and I head back to Grand’s old house. In three days, I’ve moved to my own place in the next city and I haven’t given anyone the address. I cut off all contact Grand’s kids in the area.

I get calls from Grand begging me to come get them. My paranoid mind is telling me the eldest is recording all of Grand’s conversations, but my logical mind is telling me not even they are that crazy.

They are that crazy.

The eldest proudly declares this when describing a conversation where Grand called their youngest to check on me and then called me to tell me to call the police if they showed up. Seriously.

I tell Grand that they were the catalyst for 99% of this. It sucks that their kids are as stupid and mean as they are, but they should be proud they’d done so well turning them into exactly what they wanted. That being jobless, homeless with an infant was the last situation I wanted to be in and be surrounded by that goon squad. That I didn’t want a damn thing from any of them and I sure as hell wasn’t telling them where I was.

This is also shortly after hearing about how Grand had enlisted the help of their eldest son to take me away from my mom almost 30 years ago. The one time I remember coming near Grand Jr aka the eldest is to pick up the rest of my things that actually did make it up (there’s still more), Spawn is staying with a friend of mine for the day as I will not have them around my kid in case anyone gets any wild ideas for a do-over.

Fast forward to this past holiday. This eldest child of Grand’s I’m civil to out of respect for my cousin. This is the only family he has to invite aside from me and he loves his parent. I get all that. I loved Grand even though I didn’t like them. Unfortunately, the eldest is hellbent on trying to delve right into the past slew of shit I’ve managed to dodge the past ten years.

I don’t want to hear it. I don’t care anymore. Grand had a shitty final ten years and that is on Grand and their kids. I did my best and like all of my life I have never felt a part of this family. I was the unwanted runt Grand brought home, put on a pedestal and proceeded to sink every dime into buying truckloads of unnecessary shit for, making it obvious to every other member of the family who the favored child was, most especially among other grandchildren. Doesn’t help any bonding with your family peers, I can tell you that. I grew up feeling like there was always going to be a sizable bill at the end. That I was expected to make a large income that would enable Grand to have a life they intended to become accustomed.

What a disappointment I must have been.

This eldest went on about how that friend was only staying there until I got there. This stunned me. They asked why I didn’t ask. I told them I did ask, I asked Grand, I asked my cousin when they weren’t available and they were all as clueless as I was.

I was accused of being insanely picky about everything I wanted down to the minor details. I told them that was ridiculous. Sure, I had a lot of things I liked, everybody does, but I wasn’t allowed to be involved in any of the decision-making enough to be accused of being picky. That the entire time any of this was going on, I saw one realtor, who showed us a bunch of overpriced insane shit and next thing I know there just is a place, it’s purchased and their friend is living in it. What I thought didn’t matter and no one asked.

To some degree, it kind of felt like an act and in some other, it seemed like the eldest kind of figured out where they fucked up. I’m sure, if they are like Grand, this will be rewritten in their mind in about a week, much like the “insane demands” I apparently made about… spigots, tiles? I remember a conversation once about things I thought were cool in kitchens. This is the only reference material I can recall on this and it had nothing to do with any places we’d seen. I want a completely stainless steel kitchen with sealed cabinets, a pressure washer and a drain in the floor… because I’m fucking lazy and that sounds awesome. I also want a more awesome chest and thicker hair.

My cousin’s wife… I’m not sure if she was trying to be comforting, but it really just pissed me off more. They were saying that not having someone as venomous as Grand around Spawn is something I should be thankful for. That I should be grateful to the their kids for all of it since it meant I was free of it.

But I’m not. They fucking meddled and pushed me to the side and instead of discussing anything with me, they just meddled more and dealt with Grand like baggage. There is no way NOW of knowing how any of it would have turned out. Grand might still be here, as cantankerous and shitty as ever, but on less meds and less weight and busy… I just wanted them busy and active and not sitting in that stupid rocker all day brooding over who they would fuck with next. Sure, it would have been trying for both me and Spawn, but maybe not as much as it was at the start had we all been allies versus enemies. We were just NEVER given that chance.

All of this BS aside, it shit on so many relationships with my family as well, I have nothing but bad feelings from all of that. If I’d known that then what would have occurred, before coming back to this area, I would have never come and probably headed further west and away from them.

THAT I could have been truly thankful for.

Subdiffusion Confusion (G-uno)

He use to always be so comfortable around me. Then one day all the comfort disappeared, it was replaced with an uncomfortable nervousness. I could see in his eyes that he still loved me, but now there was no eye contact, it had been replaced by a look of shame.

He use to love to come to our home, but now he stays away. He had the look of someone filled with guilt. I probably would have never known why if we both hadn’t of run into each other at the long-term facility so often. He is my loved ones brother.

The male in-laws in our family are not as caddy as the women. Kinder, more willing to give getting to know you a chance. The women are more clanish, passive aggressive. My sister-in-law is the worst. A funny thing happens whenever she has spent time with someone in the family who likes me. They suddenly have a change of heart.

I am smart enough to know this, but I refuse to chase after someone who believes what someone else says about another person without asking them their side of things. Also if someone can change someone else’s opinion of you with such ease, then there’s really no point  to trying to reverse their opinion. People believe what they want to believe.

Then one day as we stood face to face at the sign out desk of the long-term facility. I was leaving, as he was coming. I hugged him, and we joked about my MIL being annoyed with me again. Then his whole facial expression changed, he looked down at his feet then back up to my eyes.

With the saddest look he said “You really can’t catch a break can you.” It was a knowing statement, not a question. I searched his eyes. I could see he felt badly for knowing about all the negative crap his nieces, and sisters say about me.

Maybe he felt guilty for listening, or even worse not standing up for me. So I replied “Don’t worry I know, but please keep in mind that while they are all trashing me I am here everyday by their father, and your brother’s side.” 😉


a 2nd computer went down, then we had a flood and shit… perhaps, literally (g2)

So, I’m a bit dizzy at the moment, and I feel like I might keel over every time I bend at the waist, so let’s all be thankful I don’t have to tie my shoes today. Unfortunately, the fair is in town, Spawn will be there and I’m to catch up with them and our respective friends after work.

I want to go home and sleep.

I used to love a constant state of activity. I sought it out. I could not stand any level of boredom.

I hate that shit now.

I want to go home, I want to nap, I want to put on something very soft and warm and I want to make weird noises on the couch while the cats try to alternate between trying to kill me in my sleep and finding my best accumulation of fat to sleep on.

A couple weeks back Spawn’s computer went down. We had a lot of flooding that weekend. The power was iffy, and after about the 6th time of flickering, the power went out for good that night. When it was restored the next morning, the computer would not come up. It was so bad that no tool made for repair was working. Even the installation disk just wanted to give up. The drive was fine, but nothing would touch the files. When work opened again (I did say flooding, right?), I took it to work and see if I could find anything to repair it.

I ran everything I could to repair it, but it looked like half the operating system files were just missing. I’ve never had a disk I couldn’t get to boot  Mercury is still in retrograde at this point (the time I opt out of any repair work) so I’m positive at this point I’m being unduly influenced by it, El Nino and the Blood Supermoon who are all working in cahoots with the Illuminati. Probably. Of course, I also lost the cover to the install disk, so I have no clue what my code is anymore. Most the tools I downloaded to find it, couldn’t.

The downtown and many low points of our city were completely buried under water, including a portion of the sewage plant. We had some coffins making escape attempts, bridges and roads collapsing, trees falling, debris, etc. Spawn and I were lucky, we were on a well, lived on a hill and ended up with a soggy driveway and a bad installation in the aftermath, that was it. All too many completely lost their homes and everything in it. Of the hundred or so co-workers I have, just two were affected. For situations like this, that’s not bad odds, even though it’s terribly shitty for the one experiencing it.

We had a few deaths, but the overwhelmingly rapid and adaptive response time that occurred during and immediately after the floods was enormous. Twitter and Facebook were blowing up with statuses of the conditions in the area, pictures of the wreckage, if people were trapped in particular locations, responses that help would be coming and when, words of encouragement.

When I was a kid, I got to see firsthand the aftermath of a hurricane and my little hometown had no power for weeks. Power was restored this time in days. Businesses that were half-swimming opened up in a week or three later. One Little Caesars opened as immediately as they could and was one of the only places for miles feeding people. A Shoney’s followed suit with a no-menu, breakfast bar only option and bottled water. Sure, it’s still a work in progress and not everything is back to normal. Even Spawn in on delays at school still to compensate for the navigational problems. Ironically, there are a ton of roads just around my area that are completely destroyed.

But it was nice to see the passive-aggressive bullshit put aside and an overwhelming amount of people just asking “What do you need? Where can I get it to you?” and making it happen. The surrounding states? They fucking rock like Elvis. Not even sport rivalry was slowing down the overwhelming amount of generosity and support I witnessed while people went without decent water for almost 2 weeks, but we didn’t lack. Where there was a need, there were plenty trying to fill it. I know it’s twisted, but I appreciate the simplicity of importances that are realized after a catastrophe. I just wish that simplicity lasted.

As for the computer, Spawn helped out at work, I backed as much as I could on my work machine, cut my losses and completely reinstalled the operating system (I found one tool that gave me the code). This time I made sure it was 64-bit. I even went ahead and upgraded Spawn to Windows 10 (making sure to turn off all the Big Brother options, of course. Fuck you, Microsoft, you creepy stalker!). Ironically, things that used to be problems before it crashed, were no longer an issue.

Spawn was just happy to have their machine back and spent the next weekend getting to know the newness. It made me long for mine as well, until I realized more hardware, a custom service rep and an RMA were involved and took a nap instead.

This past weekend a friend and former co-worker we haven’t seen since Spawn was half the size they are now came by in order for me to help them update their resume and catch up. You never really realize sometimes how much you miss someone until they are in your face making you acknowledge it. Spawn was a shock to them, but they managed to catch up like times never changed and we had a great time just talking.

The next day, I planned to go north and nab apples for our annual visit. It was a long drive, the weather was chilly and beautiful, we were there pretty much all day and it was tiring but nice. We enjoyed apple slushies, apple doughnuts, apple bread, apple butter, a half bushel of apples, and Spawn picked out a pumpkin they liked and my usual partner-in-crime and their two kids got about the same and a few more veggies. We had quite a load to haul back home and the kids didn’t last long before they just conked out. It meant the conversation could get more R-rated, which is rare when we hang.

I hate doing any sort of activity on Sundays, I think Sunday is such a jype anyway since it’s technically a weekend day but you still have to go to bed early. It sucks. Sunday should be Saturday, part II and Monday should be Sunday. We already hate it enough already, this would lessen the ire and instill World Peace.. let me know and I’ll tell you where you can send my Nobel.

As tired as I was when we got home, I wasn’t able to sleep, my voice is threatening to give out today and I was already barely holding some sort of funk at bay.

And today… the fair. The screams, ear-blistering music, seizure-inducing lights, the wafts of fried dough, vomit, sugar, piss, diaper, 30 year-old uncleaned ashtray and asphalt nostril-raping passersby with their constant orgy of aromas. The rotund herds of people, mouth agape, wondering where their next fried chocolate bar will come from while they wander right in your pathway like a pack of drunken toddlers on downers, incapable of keeping their focus on the direction in which they are sort of aiming. I’m still trying to figure out what the signal is that makes them wander right from the pages of the People of Wal-Mart and into this place where you can purchase a cup of french fries for $10, or cotton candy aka candyfloss for 15$ and $25 for the small and large bags respectively.

It’s at least not Disney World, but that’s a rant for another day.

I want to go home. I also want a gyro. Maybe an elephant ear, definitely some fries with some vinegar… do they do the fried onions anymore? ooooooh, friend mushrooms…!

Bury The Hatchet? (G-uno)

Burying the hatchet? I’m having a hard time with this concept. My heart says yes, but my brain is screaming not a chance! I was on FB, and I saw a quote that said giving someone too many chances is the equivalent to giving someone the green light to continue to disrespect you. The premise being that if you keep forgiving someone for disrespecting you, they never worry about correcting the behavior because they know there will be no consequence for their behavior.

Then as I scrolled down a little further I saw the quote that said you can’t change the behavior of those around you, but you can change who you choose to be around. At this point I’m asking myself coincidence or signs from the “Universe?” I am more of a signs kind of gal 😉 so of course I continue to scroll a little further.

Then the next quote says choosing to forgive someone does not dismiss their bad behavior, but it does allow you to free yourself from the negativity of the situation. So now I start to believe that the “Universe” has become bored with all it’s other pressing matters, and has decided that messing with my mind is just way too amusing. I know what you’re thinking G-uno is getting stoned, or drinking, I swear I am doing neither.

I was simply using FB like some “Crazy Eight Ball” asking it questions, and then scrolling for an answer. This is what happens when I’m left to my own devices to amuse myself.  All joking aside I am trying to handle my anger from a humorous point of view. Still clinging to the notion that if you live by sword, you will die by the sword.

Then I spoke with my good friend about everything that was going through my mind, and she said with a huge mischievous grin that from where she was sitting she felt that I had two options. “One option was to bury the hatchet, ignoring the repetitive passive aggressive behaviors. The other was to expertly throw the hatchet so close to my SIL’s head that if she treated me that badly again she’d get the idea that we would be burying more than the hatchet.” Oh how I love that friend of mine! 😉

g2, where the friggin hell have you been? oh Kanye, STFU. – g2

I suck right?

Yeah ok, so I’ve been on hiatus longer than I thought. Mostly, we had lightning hit my computer that I normally type from and although it didn’t take me long to order replacement parts, I have not been able to get the new machine up and running. I think I have a dead motherboard, but my stubbornness in admitting that has exceeded the free 30-day return period. In fact, it’s still dysfunctional and I’m having one of those emotional periods where I question my life choices and if my tech skills are even worthy of operating a fork.

It was one of those periods where everything I was trying to fix was turning to shit, no matter how small (mending a pair of Spawn’s pants, I almost stitched the waistline closed). Its usually during these periods when some astrological-loving soul tells me “Oh, Mercury is in retrograde, you stupid twin, it’s no wonder.”

I have never really understood what that means, I just know that for whatever reason it seems like all my daily tasks are under the added pressure of doing them in hardening concrete and later on I find out that particular period of time aligned with such a strange planetary event. Not saying I buy it, but it’s been often enough to raise an eyebrow.

When I have these sluggish periods of incompetency, I know that the only resolution is to walk away. If I don’t, something will get snapped in half, electrocuted or thrown at a wall. I have little patience when little things don’t work out the way even laws of physics tells us they do 100% of the time, but I… apparently my presence alone is enough to make all that fact bullshit optional.

Of course, this particular time that was not the case, I looked it up. Apparently its coming soon, which makes me… oh, so thrilled. Living under a rock seems a bit tempting right now. I’m sure it’d get hit by lightning though.

I tried to keep up posts on my phone. I’m not sure if it’s due to my age, but that didn’t last long. My prior post about needing a good cry?… yeah, wrote that over the course of four days, three weeks ago. I have no clue how to post a draft on the WordPress app either apparently. Computers I get, cellphones… hell no. I don’t know why, but there is something about them that I have a block on. Maybe its my general detestation of phones in general.

Typing paragraphs into a phone is just maddening. I have no idea how the generations after me seem to be able to give a stenographer a run for their money with just thumbs on a glitchy virtual keyboard. How the hell do they do that?!?!? You’d think they would rank supreme if it ever came to finding and manipulating g-spots. Do they have competitions for that? I know they do for the typing, but that other would be interesting.

I managed to finally get one of the many things on my “to fix” list completed yesterday. A video game didn’t like the new video card and monitor settings on Spawn’s machine, and four weeks of troubleshooting were getting me nowhere. I finally had an epiphany… a simple tweak in a file I’d failed to realize might be the issue and voila! That’s usually the sign I need to know I can start fixing bigger problems.

I wonder if begging for mercy would get me a motherboard replacement without the additional expense…

When I am doing the mind-numbing task of:1.change something; 2.start up broken thing and check if fixed; 3. shut down, and start from 1, I usually peruse twitter. I love it. I didn’t think I would. I always thought, “What the hell could someone meaningfully say in 140 characters or less?” The answer is, a LOT. In fact, it made me realize that most of what should be said, could be said with more intensity and less words. As this blog post exemplifies amazingly is that I completely suck at that and will likely never be able to change that.

I didn’t say I was good at twitter, I just said I love it.

Apparently, yesterday was all about the VMA’s. I didn’t watch it, I don’t really care what MTV values since I’ve never forgiven them for making reality TV a thing and most generic popular music simply does not interest me. But twitter being the pulse of current events, regardless of worth, I still managed to figure out that Nicki something and Miley whatever are definitely not ever going to braid each other’s hair anymore, Bieber cried or just jabbed something in his eye and Kanye gave a speech for some sort of BS award that sounded made up and Taylor did not give the speech for him (but should have).

I was bored enough to read the transcript (twitter was kind of dead at that point) and it seemed like the verbal diarrhea that comes from the mentally challenged, insane or excessively high. I couldn’t even tell you what it was about except that he would be running for president in 2020. If Trump were black, he’d be Kanye. I’ve never seen two people with bigger egos based on nothing, yet somehow, they both think the world owes them so much more.

The speech was bad, but I’m torn between it and the comments from the supporters that just gushed over the “clarity”, “emotion”, and “intelligence” of it…. huh? If they had to explain it in a 500-word essay for a passing grade on a graduate course, I doubt they could point out a single coherent thought from the entire thing. Unless the course was political science. You get bonus points for gibberish, from what I understand.

Of course, as I finalized my fixes for Spawn’s video game, my thoughts were less than 140 characters:

Kanye, just shut the fuck up.

why is it when i have an existential crisis i silently brood like a dead barnacle (g2)

I really fucking hate my job. I’m really irritated with my life in general right now. At the back of my mind, I am constantly also telling myself that being able to brood about trivial matters like this is something I should be thankful for, since, as we all know, everything could always be so much worse.

So why is it when I’m most in need of venting about all the shit I’m wanting to rage about, I hole up like a dead barnacle and go radio silent?

Short answer is, I don’t know.

I suspect there is a deep-seeded element that tells me it’s impolite to bitch as often as I have been and I should shut up until I have something more pleasant to say or decide to disclose a humorous moment of my own ridiculousness rather than the trite bullshit I have going on currently. But then I argue again that doing so defeats the entire purpose of raw honesty. That not disclosing my internal struggle goes against the very fabric of this blog, the desire for betterment and peace through unbridled discussion. I’m also a firm believer of karma and feel like putting all the negative shit I’m dealing with in my mind out in the open is somehow creating a surplus of the negative and it will just come back on me tenfold. Then I double back and think that purging the negative is part of the cleansing process and I’m merely breeding new bile by remaining silent.

I’ve got a lot of personalities in my head that just need to shut the fuck up. It staggers me the ability I have to argue myself into absolute circles. Dogs chasing their own ass give up faster than I do. It’s no wonder I’m usually rendered completely immobile whenever I must come to a decision about something in my life. And usually, it seems, no matter what choice I make… it usually works out badly.

Ironically, I am wonderfully proactive and downright pushy when it’s someone else. Why am I like that? I can see the steps to their goals so easily. Three steps this way, one dodge to the left, a trot up and voila.

However when it comes to my own issues, I’m more like:

When I’m trying to figure out the steps to get to where I feel would be a better direction, it always seems to work like:

I know I’m not the only one who has ever felt this way, which is most of the reason I figure I shouldn’t bother people with it. My god, what a fucking idiot I am! Now I have a headache too… wait a sec…

Ok. it’s amazing when you can make a snack out of ibuprofen and zantac.

Let’s get on with it… I’ve been doing pretty much the same essential job type for well over ten years. It’s boring but I’m good at it and it’s the type of job that is needed at just about any mid to large company in some form. It’s your typical 8-5 (when dafuq has it ever been 9, Dolly, when!?). Usually, my job doesn’t bother me. For the peace of mind of a steady paycheck, I go in every day, do my shit and leave. However, I’ve only been with this particular company a couple years. At first, it was good environment-wise, although the benefits are pretty bad. The people I was exposed to were all really awesome and everyone was on their first date behavior. Over time, a few of those outside of my department are showing more and more that they are merely adult-sized children. They accuse my department of incompetence or of just flat-out refusing to do our jobs and when they don’t get the answer they want, they find someone over our heads to complain to in order to make things go their way. Personally, I’ve like to give them all pacifiers this Christmas and toss them in front of a bus.

This company has no value… actually it has negative value. Yes, its making money but it would take just one big lawsuit and the doors would have to shut. I’m not allowed to tell anyone that. When the economy crashed several years ago, my company made deals with every devil that could get them another week of payroll and electricity to stay running. This is the mess that my department has to resolve, without discussing it with anyone outside our department because it would hurt morale.

What about my morale? I find myself wishing for that one big lawsuit to close the doors for good because that is the only thing that brings a smile to my face.

I spend half of my day dealing with people we cannot pay right now, comforting them, assuring them, giving them timeframes and making promises… only to be told I don’t communicate enough, usually by people who aren’t my fucking boss nor in my department, but for some reason I’m supposed to give a shit about their opinion. Their behavior is unfortunately rewarded, so the cycle continues.

I was hired to do quite a lot more than I am currently able to do, because “to communicate more” means I have to take from everything else… even staying late and bringing in Spawn to sometimes help, for free, with the remedial bullshit isn’t helping. When I asked if we could maybe interview a kid I knew as a summer helper, I was redirected to the owner’s useless kid, who the last time was there to help us, worked a solid hour and 45 minutes over three months and spent most of it on their phone.

It finally dawned on me that the only reason I’m really here is to play the punching bag. Much like we vote for a president to take the vast array of PR shit the House and Congress are pulling, I’m the face given for my co-workers to toss pies at in order to feel like they’re effective badasses.

And I cannot do a damn thing about it.

My savings was sucked dry by a car that is getting old and needing more and more work and a piece of shit service guy who couldn’t do his job, over several visits. Spawn is staying home for much of the summer because I just didn’t have it to spend as much on their summer program.

My home is a dump and I often look over my cleaning supplies and wonder what combination might make the whole lot go up in flames.

I want to move.

Can’t afford that either.

I’ve also been throwing money away by just renting these past ten years or so. I could have had a house 1/3 paid off. It just doesn’t end the idiocy I cause in my own life.

I rent because I don’t want to stay in this state. I can’t afford to move. I’m ready to hock, sell, smash or donate most of the stuff in my house. I can feel myself itching to just take off, knowing fucking well that… based on past experience… I will break down in the middle of nowhere with nothing to bail myself out on.

I want to own a coffee shop, preferably one I can live above because I’m just that fucking lazy.

I want to be on the west coast.

I want to dictate my own fucking hours, and make shit that people buy.

I don’t want to be beholden solely on a shitty company for my personal well-being.

And the more I have one soul-crushing birthday weigh in after another, I am constantly reminded of how little I have done with my life, how much potential I will never regain, how meaningless the years have been, how little I’ve put out in the world that I’m proud of outside of my kid… in fact, that’s it.

Then I wonder what the fuck I’m bitching about.

The End Of “Me Time” (G-uno)

“Me Time” is dwindling  down to its last few hours, and the truth is that things did not work out for me the way it usually does. I did manage to get more painting, and cleaning done, but as it turns out it was my own mind that I was unable to clean up. “Me  Time” has always been a time were I am able to get a better grip on all the daily demands of my life. I am usually able to accomplish so many things, leaving me with a renewed sense of feeling that I have what it takes to meet the demands of my everyday life. This was not the case this time.

Instead of feeling motivated I found myself to be more robotic. It was as if my mind understood the concept, but my spirit was unable to align itself with my mind. I am usually able to take such joy in accomplishing things that I know need to be done. The very idea of being able to do these things without the other usual demands of my time is like a small piece of paradise to me. Lately I can’t seem to shake the feeling of being stuck.

Stuck in emotional quicksand. I am not functioning in my life the way I need to be, and the list of things that need to be done keep growing in monumental proportions. My anxiety is growing equally in monumental proportions. I can logically reason within my mind the solutions to fixing the problems I face, but It’s like I’m lifeless, stuck in the center of the quicksand. I keep watching myself sink a little more each day. I just don’t seem to be able to make myself function. I am angry at myself for this lack of spiritual energy.

Last night I sat beside our loved on for hours. I bathed him, changed his bedding, cleaned up his room. Then I just sat there beside him. He is unable to hold a conversation with us these days. I still keep talking, treating him the way I always do. Last night I could not talk to him that way. So instead I just pulled the chair up next to his bed. tucked my socked feet under his covers next to his. I sat with him thinking about everything. He is stuck in his own quicksand.Just like me. I can see his body from the waist up, but I know part of him has been lost beneath the quicksand.

if only i could be heard (g2)

I’ve refrained from discussing something I’ve been dealing with for a few years now… and I really haven’t a damn clue why. Its not like you you guys deal with me every day (you’re welcome), I can spare a blog post to bitch about an issue I have, right? I have a doctor’s appointment this morning and this will be with someone new. Everyone I have been accustomed to dealing with has left to pursue other specialties so now after four and half years, I have to start all this shit from scratch.

Ok, so four and half years ago I went to see my doctor about some hot spots and pain I was getting in my legs after walking a few miles. My doc took some blood tests and I actually had the arteries in my legs scanned. Considering my mom died of “clots,” they didn’t mess around. My blood test came back with elevated cholesterol, but thankfully legs all clear. I was given meds and told to follow up in a few weeks.

At the follow up, I had another blood test, but I also handed over a log of every damn thing I put in my mouth from my last appointment and asked “ok, what do I need to change?” I was told they found no problem with my diet (even with the copious amounts of coffee – yes, decaf… even I play pretend).

It was frustrating, but I had to face the fact that maybe it was time to eliminate the one real vice I still had… smoking. We talked about Chantix, they wrote me a prescription and I got started with the standard three month supply.

I didn’t want to quit. I enjoyed smoking. I could still happily sit in the midst of a pack of smokers, as long as it was outside. I hated that shit on me even when I did smoke. But considering smoking over infinite prescription medications, I just faced the fact it was time to end it. My kid was also very vocal about how much they hated my smoking too. I weened myself off smoking and the meds in a month and half.

The 2nd blood test showed that the cholesterol meds they put me on were successful in bringing down the cholesterol, but it spiked my triglycerides times three. The medication was quickly ceased and I was to start taking fish oil instead.

Over the few months after quitting, I probably slapped on about 10 pounds, but that didn’t bother me. I expected worse and knew I’d eventually knock it back off. I ran most of a 5k my company sponsored us to go on with Spawn right with me. I say “most” because we kept having to stop and wait for the rest of our group. We had a blast.

Then I got tired.

I got the kind of tired where I slept 15 hours and could still sleep another 10 on waking. I had no energy, my brain was in a fog and I had trouble focusing. My doc upped the dosage on my anti-depressants. I didn’t feel depressed though… not the usual self-deprecating apathy that usually marks an onset of depression for me anyway.

The pain got worse.. and it spread.

The second 5k, a few months later than the first, I had to sit down and rest over half a dozen times and I couldn’t run at all. My body felt like it was on fire, I couldn’t catch my breath, everything ached. All the people I used to have to wait on, were waiting on me when I finally finished.

The pain in my legs started to get even worse. It wasn’t just hot spots anymore, it felt like nerves, joints, and slowly… muscles. My back started to feel like it would snap in two. I had to strain just to lift my feet. Try to imagine wearing pants made of thick silicone, at least 4 inches thick, nice and heavy… then walk. Walking across my very small house seemed like a huge feat almost beyond my grasp. I didn’t want to scare my kid, but I sure felt like soon I would simply not be able to make it. The weight of course started sliding on. I usually did 5-6 miles a night. Now I just couldn’t do anything.

My next blood test indicated a flux in my thyroid. I was prescribed the smallest dosage to start. It actually seemed to help.. just a bit. It didn’t eliminate anything, but the volume was turned down some.

More doc visits, the thyroid meds are lowered as my blood indicates it is working “too well.” I’m a bit upset by this considering its the only thing that has seemed to help and I feel like they are taking it away.

My cholesterol is still elevated and I’m asked how I take the fish oil. I explain that I will take an entire handful if I’m sitting down to a burger, but if the fat in my meal is an avocado I don’t take it at all. My doc nods, this is fine to them. My hands and feet are now often swollen and numb, I’m constantly having to shake feeling back into them.

The third and my final participation in a 5k happens a few months after the last one… one in spring, one in summer, and now this in fall. By the time I was a third of way through it, every participant had long gone home. I gave up upset and frustrated with my own body. I wanted to scream.

My doc took a job at a cardiac facility, so now I have to talk to the backup whose addiction to the prescription pad is terrifying. Who gives a refill on a z-pack for fuck’s sake? I usually only deal with them when I know I have a sinus infection and my regular isn’t available.

I’m having to explain all this new shit and the old shit, that seems to be going wrong and I’m trying to explain how serious it is for me considering how much it simply feels like I’m deteriorating. I get dubious looks from the nurse and scrips for pain meds that only seem to make my stomach even more acidic than it has ever been while barely touching the pain. I add pepcid to the list of shit I take a day. Yeah, we’re now up to four pill types now.

I do some research on my own. I try a multitude of different vitamins and minerals and/or combinations. Nothing really seems to make any significant difference. The amount of water retention I end up having to deal with is obscene, water pills only seem to help a little but at this point I will take it.

The backup doc refers me to a rheumatologist…  and then left too. The rheumatologist does not think what I have is arthritis. I told them I agreed. At this point I’m thinking… over four years and no one has been able to help figure out what the fuck is wrong with me… is it because they don’t give a shit and care about their quotas more… or I’m just not severe enough to bother? I’m tired of paying fucking co-pays for incompetence, indifference or both.

My masseuse friend managed to unwind so many knots of muscles I had snarled from having to work 10 times as hard to do a 10th as much as I used to, I could not be more grateful. If I could have jumped around, I would have. Between my chiropractor and friend, I have finally tapped into a little more range of motion.

I am middle aged and I move worse than most people I have seen with walkers in their 80’s. It may not kill me anytime soon, but it lowers my quality of life enough to think death would be a great fucking vacation.

Out of curiosity, I started googling various combinations of what I’d been dealing with… cholesterol, weight, exhaustion,pain,water retention,depression, etc… all these seemingly unrelated items and systems that seemed to be on a downward spiral of failure… 98% of the results I got… thyroid. Yes, there was cancer here and there as well, but mostly thyroid. Did you know symptoms can manifest or worsen when you quite smoking? I didn’t.

How much smarter would a doctor look if he just fucking googled sometimes?

Do I have a family history of thyroid problems? um, just my mother, aunt, one uncle, a grandmother, a great-grandmother… I’m sure if the last uncle lived long enough, he probably would have had it too.

I called the office I go to, explained my irritation and how I was not putting up with another 4 years of this shit. They had two new doctors on staff to replace the ones who left, one who specialized with the endocrine system. I had to take a blood test, again, and get a physical, again. This time, I weened myself off all medications.. no synthroid, not the 4 ibuprofen I’ve been taking daily, the 2 pepcid, the anti-depressants, all of it gone.

Today I will find out the results. I demanded they do a full thyroid panel. Apparently, they don’t do a T3 test without written orders from a doctor but hopefully 2 out of 3 might present a bigger picture. I am not optimistic this one will give any more of a shit than the last one, but I’m also at the point that I don’t really care if I get really ugly either.

In 2010, I took Spawn trick-or-treating in a gorilla suit until they begged me to stop from exhaustion. That is who I am. Not this half mummified walking dead piece of shit I have become. Unfortunately, there seems to be little to nothing I can do on my own to regain my old self. I have to rely on the half-assed expertise of the disinterested out to meet their quota.

Have you guys ever dealt with something like this? If so, what did you do? Are you still dealing with it? How do you continue to function?

its happening again… (g2)

So I deigned to make a post about relationships and now I will get my comeuppance. This is usually when life steps in and goes “oh, liking the Sahara eh? ok…” and slinks off to giggle and plot.

I have a few hundred Facebook friends alone that are just from my school days. That’s not a brag, my graduating class was insanely large and the school even moreso. Most of these people found me. And I have to admit, I had to check my old yearbooks several times to figure out why the hell they were friending me.

It’s amazing considering in high school, I was just “weird.” Right after graduation though, I was “so cool.” I don’t know what the fuck changed, I sure as hell didn’t.

Don’t get me wrong, I had a few close friends and a wide pool of acquaintances. A few of these acquaintances had been in my school life since I was four, so even if we didn’t exactly hang, I would have had their back whenever. It wasn’t until my ten year reunion, I heard one of these souls respond to some observation about me being “funny” and “cool,” with “they’ve always been like that, you just didn’t bother to notice.”

I admit, I got a bit teary… but the beer mugs were excessively large so I was able to hide it behind a large “gulp” and yawn it off. You really never know what people think about you until they aren’t aware you’re listening.

With that said, I stayed at the ten year reunion for exactly one hour and quickly left. I didn’t go to the twenty year or any others in-between. I hadn’t been to my hometown in eight of those ten years when I did go. Most of those who went to reunions were not people I wanted to reunite with.

I will say it was a former classmate with whom my kid shares genetics. It was also another classmate I told to fuck off when they tried to break into my bubble. I dated maybe one classmate while I was actually in school and if I hadn’t just said that, no one would have known. Not even Grand or my mother.

So a few days I get a private message out of the blue from the person I used to run the bookstore with in high school. We’re not sure why it was called a “bookstore,” there weren’t any books. We sold gym uniforms, paper, pencils, folders and some generic supplies to the kids.  We did this through all four lunch periods, then went to our regular classes. It was basically two hours of freaking socializing. I have no idea why the two of us were selected to run it, but we loved it… so we made damn sure we never got in trouble. My co-conspirator er bookstore manager, well they were the epitome of slut. I usually had to hear about their latest escapades and they took great relish in the next conquest.

Now, they were attractive and the opposite sex, we even had a lot to talk about when it came to books, movies and music which is one of the bigger turn-ons I have, but we were happily just friends. People who came to know both of us (we met solely from running the bookstore) occasionally asked why we never dated, but it was all more sibling-like. I think my comeback occasionally was “there’s not enough high power antibiotics for me to touch that” or they would say “I have issues with Satanic goat rituals on the Sabbath and they refuse to move it to like, a Friday.”

When they were doing a show, I showed up with a posse to fill the crowd and often got the place hopping. We started doing what friends did. When we graduated, I had no doubt they would go off and do awesome things. All the bs aside, they were very smart, well-read and talented.

They fucked off in college so much that over twenty years later they are little more than a middle aged jobless bar whore.

They found me again on Facebook and from the pictures, they were just… the phrase that comes to mind is “rode hard and put up wet” and I would add “every day for thirty damn years.” The best I could tell is they were with someone who paid the bills and spent much of their time as a useless accessory. It was so sad.

We chatted, kind of did the reader’s digest of our happenings. I could tell they were glossing over a lot of shit, but at least owned their stupid shit. Once caught up, our communication dwindled to little more than liking statuses.

Then a few days ago…. it was the same conversations of yore about movies and music but it got more in-depth, more philosophical. A couple hours later, not only are they giving me their Netflix login information so I can “check it out” but I’m having to explain to them that, due to the fact I’m a parent now, my summer months are booked up with camp schedules when they want me to run off to the next state and go to a concert with them in a couple months. I even send a snapshot of my calendar to prove this point.

I admit, I flirt out of habit. I don’t mean to… its more I’m over-sharing stuff I shouldn’t because I have no real filter, stuff many people interpret as a come-on, but hell this person should be used to me being me by now. I realize when they are giving me their cellphone number and message me almost the minute I walk in the door form work…. fuck, apparently they don’t have the meal ticket anymore and now they are sussing out their present acquaintances for the ones they haven’t fucked or fucked over.

It certainly explained the excessive excitement they had while we were chatting and I said something they agreed with. Sadly, the one I told to fuck off kind of popped up the same way. This really isn’t a cycle I want to get stuck in.

nothing turns me off faster than christian sex talk (g2)

I don’t know why I do this to myself, but I was reading this article about Louisiana trying to find a balance between religious freedom and gay marriage. Of course, they are trying to condense both into one law…The problem I see right off is that basically it seems to say “sure we’ll let gays marry, but in turn we won’t hold anyone responsible for their actions when based on ‘religious reasons.'”

Please tell me I’m not the only one who sees the loophole for abuse here. Its not even a matter of businesses denying service to gay patrons… we’re talking the south. This is where a black man was killed by being drug behind a vehicle, not just in the 50’s… but as recently as 1998. In Mississippi (shocker) lynch mobs are still a thing… female ones… How’s that for progress in sexism?


This is like giving license to backwoods, inbred fuckheads to harass, assault, beat, and kill anyone else they don’t agree with for… religious reasons.

‘Religious reasons’ in the south generally boils down to some stranger believing they have the right to dictate another stranger’s preferences or choices because they deem themselves more devout than the one being judged. It also includes the one who wants to do all this dictating being bitterly offended by someone who has absolutely no fucking direct contact or influence on their personal life. Example:

Bubba-Jay, most likely first cousins with his third wife, Beulah (mother of welfare kids 5-8), both from Bumfuck, Loussippisaw for 15 generations… sit down to their TV dinners and the magic picture box and listen to a guy named Gebidiah (the G makes it look more French) in another city in Loussippisaw talk about how he and his partner of fifteen years want to be recognized in the eyes of the law by getting married.

Not God, the law. Marriage, in and of itself, is a contract… falls under tort law. Nothing more. Anything aside from this one point is mythical unicorn farts. It means nothing, Its not a religious question.

But dammit, Bubba-Jay is raging pissed about all this. Maybe he can’t read good, but he can throw down some serious “Thuh Good Book” blurbs because he’s had this shit beaten into his head since he was a baby and having to convulse out the demons and prove his purity through snake wrangling.

He probably didn’t hear it from his preacher/pastor or actually read or research any of it himself ever, but that don’t mean no never mind. He is a devout child of Gawd, his King James (the sexist bigot that he is…and just a translator, subject to um… INTERPRETATION) bible among his most prized possessions.

B-J has never been so raging mad. He feels like the sanctity of all that is healthy and precious in this world is being challenged by this loathsome thought of letting two people of the same gender, that are of legal age and sound mind, to be able to sign a damn piece of paper that says their shit is mutually owned by both of them.

Those motherfuckers.

Now how does any of this affect the daily life of Bubba-Jay?

It wouldn’t. So what does B-J fear about it so much?

Maybe Bubba-Jay, like so many others of the devout flock, feel this is a slippery slope to a world where marrying that sheep he committed an unspeakable act (or 87) with during one (or 10) especially lonely winters, might actually one day be legal.

Or even scarier, maybe Bubba-Jay is scared that gay marriage will lessen the stigma that might allow his 8-year-old, Kleetus, to be legally married off to his 27-year-old unmarried second cousin, twice-removed from his step-brother’s aunt’s side who has a really bad habit of constantly following the kid around.  In B-J’s mind, pedophilia is all the fault of gays, anything… like facts… that would tell him that most pedophiles are white males, heterosexual, many in normal relationships with normal intelligence who usually prey on members of their own family or close social circles… would just seem like homosexual propaganda. Or aliens.

You know how those aliens like to probe the fuck out of the south right?

Tinfoil hat anyone?

So let’s sum this up. if Gebidiah has never met B-J and they will likely never cross paths even though they live in the same state, in what way would G’s marriage adversely affect B-J’s life?

It wouldn’t.

It would be more beneficial to society as a whole had Bubba-Jay got his ass sterilized from the very beginning, since stupidity affects all of us. There is nothing more destructive than an ignorant, idiotic, violently and crazily obsessed person who wields religion as weapon to regulate others. But that destructive force is breeding and teaching that hate to their next batch of offspring.

There’s been no wars fought over gayness.

It’s the same with abortion. I have known, seen and understood many of the times when abortion is considered an option, though less so followed through. There was a very brief consideration of the same when it came to Spawn. It’s not a fucking easy thing to do at all and I’m glad we didn’t go through with it, but some of the bullshit videos and propaganda the religious acquaintances on my social media try to spread around are such obvious demonizations created by a group of people who are completely out of touch with how to empathize with others or understand anyone outside of their own situations. They look as out of touch with reality to me as Gwyneth Paltrow giving suggestions on being frugal and creative.

But god, I love when the religious devout, the loudmouths, the ones most assured of their own grandeur… talk sex. Just peruse the comments on that first article to understand what I mean, I undoubtedly hear it every time there is a religious argument. Sanctity, union, wholesome, traditional, grass roots….

They sound like the most boring fuckers I’ve ever heard in my entire life.

Fornicate…. what the hell is that? Sounds like something you smear on an STD.

I get they are trying to make it sound so damn holy and spiritual but all I can picture is:

Don’t laugh, if I don’t laugh he’ll finish and
leave. Dude, really?

Or even better

Wrap it up
If you can’t find the words… find a light up sign to make your point.

I tried to find one of an equally bored man but the below is as close as I got.

So, you wanna fornicate in the sanctity of my private chamber under the blessed eyes of the Lord?

Really? That killed the mood for you? I cannot fathom why.

weakness as strength and shoving it right in your face (g2)

The above video is by Emilie Autumn. I’ve never heard of this musician before my kid ended up with a custom Sim on their video game (Sims 3) called the same which they had downloaded just because of the unique look of her. After a bit of googling, I found out she is a musician and dug them up on Spotify. Through my googling I found out she was a survivor of abuse, rape and assault, and had a pretty rough case of bipolar disorder which included auditory hallucinations. She apparently can visualize written music because of coping mechanisms she developed to keep the hallucinations under control.

I’m in a very musically submersive mood lately. Not that I’m not always listening to something, but sometimes I will drown in it. This is apparently one of those times.

My first impression of her music was Amanda Fucking Palmer had a lovechild with Maggie Estep in a Victorian Cabaret, her songs were riddled with storyline and tongue in cheek blasting on a lot of women’s issues as well as society’s complete inability to deal with mental health. Through listening to her latest album, which you can hear on Spotify at least, I realized just how right she was and my god, how beautiful she puts it out there and serves it to us, all the while never backing down from being just as shocking and blunt as she wants to be.

Amanda Palmer is a survivor of past assault… Siouxsie Sioux too. These people too and these (from WordPress, no less), and here’s a list of over a hundred songs that relate to abuse, assault and/or rape. And these are just the famous ones, I would not doubt if everyone knows of at least 5 other people who have been victims of some type of abuse/assault, or possibly were yourselves.

Why? What the hell is wrong with people?

I think we have all come to understand that rape is not about sex, but about power. I’ve never understood why there was so much fear of (mostly) women that rape was the main go-to men used against them. I’m not going to get into the politics of female-on-male rape, but I would like to point out that men and women both have reflex biological reactions to tactile stimuli, none of which indicates “consent.” If we didn’t have these responses, sex would not be very pleasant for the times we do consent. Not even if someone was walking down the street completely naked are they “asking for it,” and if a victim is acting “too normal” its probably because, like most us, we want our lives back to where they were before trauma.

But what if you have a mental disability or behavioral disability that makes it difficult for you to interact with others or communicate fully? If you don’t tell those close to you, they probably won’t be close for very long, but what about work and or dating relationships? If you do tell them, do you risk the chance they might objectify you and feel that anything you say has no value since you’re “crazy”?

I already have an epic truckload of issues with the mental health field and its current level of capability. I also have a problem with the level of stigma that is created in which people are only defined by their most prominent weakness. “Oh they were depressed… that’s definitely why they killed their entire family, case closed.” I don’t know about you but when I am in the height of my depression, I can barely come off the couch. It’s usually my overall apathy that tells me I need to get my meds adjusted.

I think the mental health field is about the same level as, historically, the medical field was when leeches and bloodletting were the main go-to for… well, everything. Combined with our bad habit of objectifying someone with a special hurdle in the russian roulette that is genetics & heavy dose of environment, you have a recipe for a lot of problems with assault and rape. Who is going to believe the freak, right?

Personally, the kind of person who would think like that, who would take advantage of that type of situation… they need the special needle…quickly. You’d euthanize a rabid dog, I find no difference here… except the dog couldn’t help it, we just can’t cure it. Actually, can we keep the dog and just eliminate the twisted as fuck human?

The sad part is proving it. The only ones they victimize are the ones who long stopped bothering to say anything because no one listens anyway, their words have no merit. Makes us pretty fucked up as a society, doesn’t it?

But Emilie drags her pain and her weaknesses and everything ever done to her right in the middle of the room and makes you look at it, refuses to let you turn away and makes a bitter joke of it to make you face it and see it all for the truth behind the lies. She, like Amanda and Siouxsie wear their past like armor and use it to toss a giant middle finger at anyone who thinks they should behave “more like a victim” to be credible.

It reminds us the problem doesn’t lie with disability or trauma. It lies with our treatment of those who have suffered, those who have a disability and most especially those who have dealt with both… we all matter, no matter what your unique color or flavor may be, we are humans, the most complex of animals, we just need to stop behaving otherwise.

The Baby’s Rabbit Revenge (G-uno)

The Baby is “Little Man’s” three year-old brother otherwise known as “The King” due to his extraordinary command of his household. He is small in stature and large in personality, and he rules his kingdom with an iron will. When you first see “The Baby” you find yourself admiring his soft features. You can easily be fooled into dropping all your defenses as you are lulled in by his intense blue eyes. A smile so sweet it renders you completely ill-equipped to fathom the iron will that resides inside of him. He is very easy on the eyes, and just like “Little Man” he oozes charm.

I started out as “Little Man’s” superhero activity assistant. His superpower is Autism. I am proud to say that he has mastered all of his therapies, and is currently thriving in a mainstream private school. The Baby who is equally as intelligent as his brother, has experienced some  developmental difficulties, and is particularly delayed with his speech. So it is my job to take him to speech therapy.

“The King,” and I have a great relationship, he finds my ability to understand him very useful. I seem to easily understand his desires with much less prompting than most. This ability saves the short-tempered king a great deal of time, and frustration when he wants to convey his desires. He is quite proficient at making his point, and extremely intolerant of those who don’t comply with his royal commands.

“The King” hates speech therapy! His therapist did not initially bond with his need to rule the kingdom. She seemed to find his personality much less than charismatic, often saying to me that he reminded her of her baby sister. It was quite apparent to me that she was not a fan of being a royal subject. “The King” was equally displeased with her disdain for his royal rule. I’m pleased that both have grown in their appreciation for one another over the last few months, but there are still those occasional moments when the clash of their equally strong wills arise!

Yesterday was one of those dreaded days. The Baby was definitely not himself when I picked him up from preschool. He seemed distracted not his usual engaging self. When we arrived at therapy his therapist was eager to share her newest Easter Rabbit game. This consisted of a cut-out rabbit with a very large opening where the mouth is, so each time a word on a flashcard is pronounced correctly a small colorful plastic carrot can be fed to the rabbit as a reward.

I should tell you that the baby has a fascination with colorful plastic toy foods. If he likes something in particular he will hold on to the desired object without ever putting it down. So his therapist knew he would like the carrots. She was in a much more playful mood than “The King,” and was trying very hard to make this new game fun for him. She also enjoys teasing his iron will a bit, and she tried to coax him into relinquishing one of the carrots from his hand to feed to the rabbit. “The King” is iron in his will not to give the carrot to the rabbit, and his therapist was highly amused by his responses.

“The King” however was not amused by her attempts, and was not at all happy with her enjoyment of his unrelenting iron will. I could see his face growing more and more agitated, something his therapist seemed to ignore as she continued to exercise her iron will. Then she decided to make the large open-mouthed rabbit hop towards him to feign that it was going to eat the highly coveted carrot he held tightly in his hand. Yep that was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

“The Baby” who is tired of this taunting, in a flash raises his other iron fist, and slams it down on top of the rabbit’s head! He demolishes the rabbit in one swipe! I watched the therapist’s face transform from smiling amusement to complete surprise. Her brand new rabbit was flattened. I then look at “The Baby’s” face. He was staring at her with a look of well are you happy now? Then in a royal like fashion he hands her the coveted carrot, climbs down from his chair, and walks towards the door. He looks over at me very nonchalantly, points to the door, and  then turns around looks at his therapist and says bye.

I stood up fully understanding his royal decree, looked at his still silent therapist, and said good-bye. Sometimes a little king just has to remind his royal subjects just who really is running the royal kingdom. 😉

Big Brother’s Revenge (G-uno)

Being the oldest child in any household is a tough road to hoe. Being “The Big Brother” to “Little Man,” and “The Baby” is a completely different bucket of worms! Especially while Mom is recovering from some pretty major surgery. Mom is the key to making her household work, and “Big Brother’s” more sympathetic parent in the home. Mom is often the voice of reason when “Big Brother,” and Dad butt heads. She has a gentle way of prompting her boys to have some understanding of each others point of view.

Unfortunately Mom is unable to work her usual magic right now. Dad who is a good father, great support, and good provider is at his wit’s end! The lesson to all of Mom’s boys is that while Mom makes running her home, and handling her boys look effortless, it is a job that requires skills they simply do not possess. I feel sorry for Dad, he is worried about his wife, his children (the middle & youngest child have special needs), and the household finances have been stretched beyond their limits. Dad is very intelligent, and has had a huge dose of what life would be like if the heart of his family did not exist.  He loves his wife immensely so the sobering thought that he could have been left behind without her has definitely impacted him deeply.

The problem is that “Big Brother” has had a similar realization, and is dealing with all of this from the perspective of a 9-year-old boy. He has no idea the pressure his father is under, and has come to the conclusion that Dad is at fault for all the current chaos in the home. Dad has formed his own conclusion as well regarding “Big Brother.” He feels that his son is deliberately making every single task in the home more difficult. He feels that he is severely lacking in both motivation, and responsibility regarding both school, and his home life. So Dad has decided to take a firm stand with “Big Brother,”and “Big Brother” has decided to take a stand with Dad!

Now keep in mind all of this tension, and disruption in the home has completely turned “Little Man’s world upside down! The key to dealing with his particular form of Autism is having a consistently calm daily routine. “The Baby” who also has very unique special needs can not understand any of the changes in his life. Especially the fact that his mother is unable to hold him. So “Little Man,”and “The Baby” are both acting out in major ways. Poor Mom is in pain from her surgery. Having all of her boys melt down in their own individual ways is not exactly the best environment to heal. She is keenly aware that “Big Brother” has decided to wage war on Dad.

I tried to gently suggest to Dad that taking the approach of making “Big Brother,” my partner in reaching certain required goals has always been a very successful way of motivating him. He is an “old soul” in a child’s body. As the oldest child with two younger special needs siblings he has been required to behave in a more than age appropriate mature manner. So he becomes quite resentful when he is suddenly demoted back to being his actual age.

Dad dismisses my suggestion for the more hard-line approach, and tells “Big Brother” that he will go to school, and he will not open his sass mouth for any reason. He goes on further to say you will not do one single thing unless your teachers tell you to do so, asking “Big Brother” to repeat his directions back to him to ensure he has a complete understanding!  “Big Brother” follows his Dad’s exact direction. Dad looks at me with a look that relays this is how we handle “Big Brother.” So then I gather the other two boys delivering each one to their separate schools while Dad heads off to work.

One hour later I receive a call from Dad. He is completely enraged sitting in the principal’s office at “Big Brother’s” school. Apparently “Big Brother” had followed Dad’s exact direction not to open his sass mouth for any reason, which made it impossible for “Big Brother” to tell his teacher he could not get up from his chair to go to his next class because she had not given him the exact direction to stand up from his chair and walk to his next class. 😉

“they” do not exist (g2)

I hate talking about sexism and racism. Hate it. Why? Because it stirs up a range of shit that really should not be an issue at this point in time. We should have grown the fuck up by now and move on. Let’s deal with the hungry, our addiction to fossil fuels, accessible education for everyone, or getting our planet into better condition. ANYTHING other than trying to shit on one another because of where or how we were born.

I’m all for learning from past mistakes, but don’t browbeat people under the assumption they still think this way. Nitpicking the shit out of someone else’s terminology because they’re trying to communicate a thought, also an irritation. Did you know that “hispanic” is considered less PR than “latino”? Well, according to a college class on cultural diversity I took some time ago, it is… but it depends on where you go, and then the person… until basically you have no way to communicate a damn thing without pissing someone off. What’s the point of communicating at all then?

I happen to live in one of those states where segregation wasn’t so long ago and for some, it still weighs very heavily on their memories. I consider myself lucky that I did not come up in that time period, but I see the aftermath everywhere. Where I went to school, the ethnic minority was actually the majority of the students attending. Spawn has the same type of ratio at their school. Race just didn’t become an issue until our prior generations starting putting in their two cents. You had past generations that were used to or pissed off about things being the way “it used to be” and both wanted nothing more than to bitch about it constantly.

Now understand, even reading about happenings of the heavily racist periods of the American South makes me sick to my stomach to even be part of the human race. We should NEVER have been this way and considered ourselves anything above savages that should have been put down.

However, I also think that dwelling on the shitty parts not only elongates the healing process, but pretty much makes all chances of recovery worse, if not impossible. Fully understand it, mourn it, pick up the pieces and do fucking better, but let it go. Harping on this shit is doing nothing but making all of us anxious, depressed, withdrawn, medicated and venomous.

Is anyone else tired of the fucking annual events that people seem hell bent on having every September 11th? Isn’t 13 years enough to stop sensationalizing the shit and move on? It sucked, it really really sucked. Why are we continuing to harp on it though? That doesn’t honor them, that just enables a pity party for those left.

With that said, I was in a mixed group of people once and one in particular… I guess felt his “good ol’ boy” mentality would fall on a few supportive ears. He ran a management company that generally catered to lower income residents. Lower income in the South is still predominantly ethnic. His comments centered around drug use, criminal activity, monetary and domestic issues “they” caused.

“Whose “they?,” I ask.

He’s uncomfortable. With some dancing around the subject, he finally comes to say that usually it is the ethnic groups, specifically black, who cause him the most amount of issues. I point out that even though segregation is no longer an issue, a vast majority of all minorities are still in the lowest portion in terms of income, residence, access to medical care, etc so it really would not be odd that that would be higher than average, statistically speaking, but doubtful they were the only ones to have those issues.

He grasps on the one thing I hear come from just about every white racist mouth here… “exploitation of the welfare system,” “government assistance,” “living on the taxpayer’s dime” etc. I retorted that it was complete bullshit if he thought the welfare system was so robust anyone could live large on it. Generally speaking, even with the most assistance given, no one could pay any amount of rent with it, let alone any other expenses and there was a time limit on how long you could remain on it, let alone getting on it in the first place. I cited some places he could read more about it. He scoffed.

He then diverts to the hostilities that come from the more unproductive sides of the ethnic group, the pitiful few loudmouth douchebags who unfortunately get pinned as the “stereotype” of blacks in the south. Those in gangs, or wish to be, drug dealing, etc (you know, the ones that exist in just about every race, but that just doesn’t register).

I asked him if he wanted things to change. He said “of course.”

I told him “then stop using the word ‘they’.” “They” do not exist.

The minute he separates himself from those around them, he becomes part of the problem. He counters that “they” should be the ones to improve since “they” made him think this way. I asked him why he would give any unnamed, blank, ambiguous group of people the power to wire how he thought about anything or anyone.

If everyone goes around thinking that everyone else just needs to be nicer to them first, then nothing will ever change. If you want to live in a neighborhood where everyone waves to one another, then raise your fucking arm and wave first.

By the same token, the minute we judge people on a completely irrelevant point, we lose. Assholes and saints come as varied as a 64 box of crayons and then some and the true assholes are the ones who let a very narrow view of society embitter their judgement so much, they feel righteous in using “they.”

Racism or Preference? (G-uno)

So yesterday my neighbor called me a racist! I was so stunned by her words that I would have to equate the feeling to having been slapped in the face. It took me a few seconds before I was able to respond. I have a great deal of respect for her opinion on a wide variety of subjects so I  stood there considering if there was any validity to what she had said.

I live in a neighborhood where neighbors still chat with one another. Especially those of us who have been here for over 20 years, and have raised our families together. It’s very common for us to be out working in our yards and to take a moment to stop and talk about how things have been going. I will admit to you that there are many new neighbors who I have not really taken the time to get to know. Yesterday’s chat started out with another neighbors health issues, and knowing that I spend a great deal of time dealing with doctors my neighbor asked me to recommend a doctor who I thought would be most suitable for her very reluctant husband.

I recommended one of my most favorite” Dr. G.” She looked at me, and commented that the last doctor I had recommended to her was also from India. I smiled, and told her that my primary, obstetrics/gynecologist, and my gastrologist were all from India. She then asked me if I had purposely chosen Indian physicians? Smiling again I told her that I did actually have a preference for Indian doctors, Indian people and most definitely Indian food. She asked why Indian doctors? I told her that in my experience doctors from India practice medicine from the standpoint of including not only the physical aspect of a person, but also their spiritual health. I find them to be much warmer, more personal in their bedside manner. Her face wrinkled sternly and she said “That’s a very racist thing to say!”

As I stated earlier I was very stunned by her accusation, and it took me a bit to respond. I finally said “No not racism just a personal preference!” I asked her if she was still seeing the primary I had recommended and she said “Yes I am.”  So then I asked her why? She said that she felt he was a very good doctor.” I asked her if she liked his bedside manner?” This time her tone was a little more sharp “Yes, I like his bedside manner, but not just because he is from India!” So then I replied “Oh I know that you just prefer the way he practices medicine.” 😉

family face-time (g2)

My family is pretty damn entertaining.

I tend to forget this in the year of not really spending time together, though I know not why. My family is one of those odd ones that has a high ratio of left-handed people, red-headed people, ADD and its ilk, high IQs and almost all smartasses. They are pretty hilarious. Though, whenever we socialize with family, my kid becomes mute. I’m not sure why. More on that another time.

My family has spent most of the last 30-40 years on shaky ground. Apparently, before I was born, the grandparent who died was the one who was the real glue of the family. The grand who raised me pretty made it their life mission to instill as much hate, doubt, hostility, rumors and bullshit among their kids and grandchildren. I vaguely remember a Christmas or two when it was all of us in a very tiny living room laughing, fighting, opening presents, and generally doing what families do, but it died pretty quick after that.

Aunts, uncles, mom, cousins all just got more and more distant from one another as the years wore on. The only family members I did manage to maintain contact with, though rare and sporadic, were my cousins. We seemed to see all the bullshit happening and just didn’t understand why our parentals just seemed to get sucked into grand’s bullshit over and over. This aunt doesn’t talk to this uncle, the uncles are not on good terms, mom refuses to be in the same room with this other uncle… and on and on. Of course, I say we stay in contact but its mostly keep up to date on one another’s Facebook postings. I cannot remember the last time we were all in a room together, but I’m pretty sure it was before puberty.

It was 30+ layers of bitterness and bullshit we’ll probably never really be able to completely uncover. Grand’s eldest was basically their twin, which means they didn’t care for their eldest much since they hated the things about their eldest child they really hated about themselves. I suspect there was also a level of jealousy there as their eldest got a college degree while grand had no such thing (different era, different goals). I refer to the eldest as TAIWASAPD (The aunt I wish a slow and painful death), or simply “Junior”.

My mom was the youngest and a good dozen years or so from the first, so they didn’t really know one another too well. However, me and the TAIWASAPD’s kid got along much like siblings. Especially since many summers he stayed with me and grand. We were both loners, artistic types, loved music, we bottled everything up, we didn’t talk to anyone about anything that was troubling us annnnnd of course, we fought like hell.

I was the younger of the two so it was always my cousin who got in trouble, since he “should know better.” I instigated about 99.9% of it, but it was usually he who paid the piper for it. I was especially adept at the “I’m not touching you, I’m not touching you” taunt in which my fingers would linger just a half-centimeter above the skin of his arm moving up and down as quickly and annoyingly as possible, usually in the back of the car on long road trips. His plea of “make them stop ‘not touching me’!!!!” was generally ignored, so it went on until he just had it, pinned me down and starting slinging. Then it was on. That’s normally when the parentals would deign to involve themselves.

I’m pretty sure we got hit with a brush more than once, since it gave them those extra few inches they needed to get to our legs in the backseat (I kind of miss the size of cars back then).

Now, neither of us was innocent. I was pinned down and had my forehead drooled on more than I can count. I had my shoes hooked onto the ceiling fan (I was too short to reach at the time). I am pretty sure I knocked my cousin out once by clocking his head on the corner of a drawer, but I didn’t realize that until years later. His favorite thing in the world was to play opossum and grab you when you got too close. So for the next couple hours he was out, I would fly down the stairs, peek, sneak across the room, kick him and then fly back up like my ass was on fire. I just KNEW he was faking. I’ve had my hand stuffed down the dish disposal and pinned there while he threatened to turn it on. To this day, he still swears that one never happened.

It was with this cousin that we discovered the beauty and the horror that is the combination of Jolt cola (“All the sugar and twice the caffeine” anyone?) and Sour Cream & Onion popcorn. We were enjoying a rare moment of quietly watching a movie when this waft of stench eked across our noses. The next ten minutes was spent accusing the other of an SBD (silent but deadly). When one of us happened to belch during the argument, we figured out what the stench was. Apparently the combination of these items allows the consumer to belch some of the foulest gases that have ever crawled out of a person’s face. It is an eau de toilette aroma of old lady fart, 3 year old daily used gym socks, and a sewage plant on a hot summer day right after the halftime session of a football game. Yeah, you’re welcome.

We spent the next 30 minutes after that trying to belch in one another’s face. I’m pretty sure we came to a draw due to light-headed nausea and I still have no idea what movie we were watching or if we ever finished it.

Now that we’re grown…. well, we still talk smack, but we do it over beers. We have kids of our own and as close as we were and are, we kind of painfully watch as our own two very similar children sit in a room together in silence. Neither one will instigate a conversation. I’ve been told by both on different occasions “they looked at me funny so I don’t think they like me.” You’d think one was copying the interests of the other they have so much in common, but then you realize they don’t talk about anything they are interested in when they are around one another. Neither is active on Facebook, they don’t email one another and even when we have gone on shared vacations, they just don’t interact with one another much. I know forcing it would backfire and the best friendships happen organically, but for me, its sad. I want badly to undo the damage grand left behind and I think every missed relationship can be traced back to them somehow as the core problem. Possibly unrealistic, but I cannot help but feel like they are still winning, even if they aren’t around anymore.