Wednesday, October 31, 2012


A small hurrah to say that I got my first porn spam comment this week. That's right, people, I've hit the big time! Nasty folks are trying to get at my reader base, which means it's substantial enough to notice, woohoo (or I've just commented on enough other blogs to become visible...hush now, let Mama enjoy this one...).

And now to our topic of the day. In honor of Halloween I'm opening up my blog to a guest poster who will explain to us his version of the perfect Halloween. Without further ado, I present the Boog and his Boog-o-ween:

Hi guys. It's the Boog. Thanks for reading my mom's blog. I'm still kind of miffed at her for changing the name of the blog from The Boog Abides to Megcentric (um, egotistical much, Mom?), but I guess she had her reasons...

Anyway, I need to talk to all you crazy people about all this Halloween nonsense you're so excited about. Those of you not on the spectrum of awesomeness seem to become afflicted this time each year with a mania for pretending you're NOT my teachers, friends, and neighbors (um, I can see you under that zombie mask) and inviting me to your door only to not let me come inside but rather handing me a piece of candy and sending me on my way. It's tiresome. I'm a live and let live kinda fella, though, so I propose a compromise: I'll let you keep the inexplicable madness that is this holiday if you make the following changes:

1. Rename it Boog-o-ween. Why? Because the Boog is clearly awesomer than whatever the heck Hall-o is.

2. Dispense with the carving of pumpkins. In case you haven't heard, the Boog is allergic to squash. Forcing me to sit through a ritual in which I not only have to touch icky squishy pumpkin guts but have to do it while becoming increasingly itchy is just cruel. Instead, parents may search all over creation for an out-of-season hothouse watermelon. It shall not be carved (gross creepy watermelon innards are not in any way preferable to icky squishy pumpkin guts), but you may leave it in the yard where I will kick it about as a makeshift ball. Watermelon soccer anyone?

3. Costumes. Really?

Explain to me how this is fun. I'm wearing a monkey carcass like a creepy monkey serial killer.

Sigh...if you must have your costumes, fine. I have some stipulations, though: they must never contain a component that goes over the head or face (oh my God, I mean, really you guys, how can you stand having something touching your head all night?!) and they must consist entirely of clothes a normal person would actually wear. Monkey carcass? No way. Doctor's coat? I'll allow it. Oh, also, to the parents of my friends on the spectrum of awesomeness who need to wear the same clothes on the same days every week: for God's sake, let them incorporate their Wednesday shirt into their costume. guys...there's an order to things...we're living in a society here!

4. All creepy-fantastic Halloween music is fantastic and creepy and may be played at any time, and very loudly so I can't hear my sister babbling away at me.

5. Trick-or-treating can stay but y'all need to make some major changes. First of all, as far as I understand your archaic "manners", it is the height of rudeness not to invite someone in when they come to your door. Come on guys, play by your own rules here. So, if I come to your house on Halloween, invite me in. Let me watch your TV and stim on your mini blinds a little. Let's be hospitable, shall we? Also, cut it out with the candy. That crap is full of dairy and dairy can send a Boog to the ER. I am so over that place. The stuff that is dairy-free is troublesomely crunchy or chewy or hard. I will never understand why you people voluntarily torture your palates with those sugary balls of mouth death. Instead, you may offer me one of the following: a date (the fruit not the social outing, although...I am single, ladies), a Larabar, a piece of raw vegan chocolate pie, a dairy-free gluten-free cupcake, or a dairy-free gluten-free sugar cookie. And I am not an animal: please offer the aforementioned treats on a plate at the table (I can't believe I even have to say these things...).

Oky doky, well that about covers my rules for Boog-o-ween. Peace out, Megcentrists, I'll catch you again when it's time for Christmas (a fat, bearded intruder breaks in and leaves you piles of boxes you have to unwrap? Really?).

Sunday, October 28, 2012

A Boog in Motion

The Boog went on a new drug to temporarily manage his seizures (while his other drug steps slowly up to therapeutic levels to avoid side effects) a couple of weeks ago. It's working great! He hasn't had a seizure or any of those all-day puke-fests that generally preceded seizures since. The neurologist was originally a bit reticent to put him on this drug, though, because of possible psychological and behavioral side effects.

When I asked him what he meant by psychological and behavioral side effects, he listed a bunch of scary symptoms such as severe depression, suicidal thoughts (dear God, could there be anything sadder than a suicidal 4 year old?!), aggression and violent behavior and lethargy, and at the end of that list he said, "Oh and he could get a little hyper."

Now that was the understatement of the year.

Thus far, thankfully, we haven't encountered any of the scarier symptoms, but, as one of Rylan's therapists put it, "he's like a cheerful meth addict". He simply has not stopped moving since he started taking this drug. Even in sleep, he's rolling all over the bed and bumping into the wall and falling off the edge. Sleep itself is as brief as it ever has been only now instead of getting up at 3 a.m. and sitting facing the corner laughing to himself like a creepy horror movie kid (true story), he's getting up at 3 a.m. running around the house laughing to himself, throwing toys, ripping up books and chewing on everything in sight.

So...basically he's become a 4 year old boy...or a wild's my understanding that they're essentially the same thing.

See, Boog was never a "boy" in that stereotypical "noise with dirt on it" sense. He was born the world's unhappiest baby and over the next year mellowed out into a slightly grumpy slightly deaf 85 year old man. His favorite activities were sitting quietly while reading books or taking long, slow walks in slightly overcast weather (direct sun was simply too bright in his eyes, while rain made his shoes uncomfortably wet). If asked to list his favorite activities today, I'm pretty sure the list would go a bit like this: Chaos! Mayhem! Bang! Crash! Chew! Bite! Kick! Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhh!

The thing is,'s kind of cute. Even though, as we surveyed the damage from last night's exertions this morning (ripped up notebook! toys thrown everywhere! chewed-up DVD!) Dylan observed, "I've never been afraid he was going to murder us in our sleep until now", his hyperactive behavior is kind of adorable. The only way I can explain this is that Ry has something one might call "the chimp factor". No, I am not comparing my developmentally delayed son's intelligence to that of a chimp (please don't call Dateline). I think it's just a non-verbal big-featured sort of cuteness that remains regardless of the level of mischief (unless a chimp is tearing off your face, I'm pretty sure they're not cute when they're tearing off your face).

For example: Chimp at rest, ADORBS!

Meh, soccer's for humans. I'm just gonna sit.

Chimp about to unleash immeasurable levels of destruction upon the world, ADORBS!

Look at his little suit!!!

They share a certain attitude, too, a sort of "Okay, humans (or adults in Ry's case), I'm going to humor you and play your silly human games, but I have my limits." If chimps and the Boog had a theme it would be "I Would Do Anything for Love, (But I Won't Do That)". I have seen Ry give his therapists the look that chillin' soccer chimp is giving above countless times. It's hilarious at the same time it's frustrating, because it's such a knowing look. It's a "I know exactly what you want from me, but you crazy if you think I'm gonna do it."

Anyway, chimp metaphor aside, the fact remains that no matter what this kid does I am surprised and delighted. Even in the midst of my anger over the fact that he pulled the atomizer off of my perfume bottle and...hid it?...ate it?...liquified it with his brain rays? I was smiling. You just never know what he's going to do. It's a joy to live with that sort of mystery...

...until it eats your face off that is...

See? Couldn't even sit still for the camera!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Meggy the Vampire Slayer

Yesterday evening, Dylan went out to pick up some dinner and some medicine for Ry. Ry and I were snuggling on the couch watching "Angel" (shut up, I don't let the baby watch it, and Ry is surprisingly [or I guess unsurprisingly] unaffected by slightly comic cheesy violence). We had both just started to doze off when I heard a loud banging at my door. I sprang up, completely groggy and fuzzy-brained, but 100% sure I knew what was happening: a vampire was knocking on my door because he wanted to eat my babies.

I ran over to the windows and shut and locked them and closed the blinds, cursing myself for leaving us so exposed to the creatures of the night. I snuck over to the door where I heard one vampire yell to another, "I don't think anybody's home". So there were two bloodthirsty demons in my yard. Uh oh. The vampire at the door yelled back, "No, I saw someone close the windows." Double drat. Why couldn't I have left well enough alone? Now the vampires knew I was home.

I began to look around for a weapon. Damn it, where were all our crucifixes?! Or is it crucifices? I don't know, but I sure wished I was a good Catholic right about then. I wondered if a Bible has a similar effect as I eyed the one on our bookshelf and decided if worst came to worst perhaps I could bludgeon them with it.

I was just considering whether I had the strength to break off two of the chair legs to use as crude wooden stakes when the first vampire banged on the door again. That's when I remembered something that would save my babies from becoming an all-you-can-eat smorgasbord of cuteness: vampires can't come into your house unless you invite them. "Sweet!" I thought, "We're saved!"

"Who is it?" I yelled through the door in my most threatening and slayery voice.

"We're with a church group, ma'am," hollered back the vampire.

Ha! Nice try, vampire.

"No thank you!" I growled back, peering through the peephole. It was then that I noticed that this vampire was quite old...mid 70s at least...and didn't appear to have any fangs. Still, I couldn't take any chances.

"Okay, I'll just leave this flyer in your door, then. Have a nice night, ma'am."

It wasn't until he was halfway down the driveway that I fully woke up and realized:

1. He wasn't a vampire.
2. He was an apparently sweet old man going around inviting people to a prayer group and I was just about to stake him with a chair leg.
3. Vampires don't exist.

And this is why I'm not allowed to read or watch anything violent in the evenings.

You take the big bad ones, Buffy. Leave the old men from church groups to me.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Adventures in Spatial Reasoning

I drove Dylan to work this morning and on the way, I noticed we were low on gas, so we stopped at a gas station. As I pulled in, I noticed that all of the easy to access pumps (i.e. pumps I could drive right up to) were taken and so I stopped behind a car to wait.

Dylan: What are you doing?

Me: Waiting for an empty pump.

Dylan:...there's one right there...(pointing to the pump ahead of the car in front of me)

Me: That one doesn't count.

Dylan: What? It's free.

Me: No, I mean, I can't get in there.

Dylan: Just pull ahead of the car and back up.

Me: Okay...(I pulled ahead of the car rather crookedly and then stopped)

Dylan: What are you doing?

Me: Trying to figure out how to back up.

Dylan: (in an I-can't-believe-I-married-this-idiot voice) Put. the car. in. reverse.

Me: Duh! I'm not an idiot. But I'm going to have to turn the wheel and I'm trying to remember which way.

I started to back up and realized I was turning the wrong direction and about to hit the car next to me and stopped.

Me: Okay, see? Can't be done. Let's just wait.

Dylan: Oh my God. Here.

He grabbed the wheel and turned it hard in the other direction. I backed up. Lo and behold, we lined up with the pump.

Dylan: How do you even drive?

Me: See, I told you. This is exactly why I don't drive on the freeway.

Dylan: That has nothing to do with backing up. If you're backing up on the freeway, you're doing it wrong!

Me: No, I mean...okay you know how you're tone deaf.

Dylan: (glaring) Yeah.

Me: Okay, so I' blind. No matter how many times I see someone else make maneuvers through space I can't replicate them, just like you sound like Chewbacca when you're trying to sing lullabies.

Dylan: ...

Me: So, say I'm trying to merge onto the freeway. I'm just as likely to end up careening into the oncoming lanes or Dukes-of-Hazzarding it off the side of the ramp into the McDonald's across the way.

Dylan: ...

Me: That might be funny, actually. I wonder if you get points if you make it cleanly through one of the golden arches, hehe.

Dylan: Please don't drive me to work ever again.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Only in Dreams...

As my Mega-meditation guru gig didn't really pan out the way I'd hoped (still waiting on that $19.95 y'all owe me...), I figured I'd branch out a bit. I shall now interpret dreams.

"But Meg," you might ask, "are you qualified to interpret dreams? Have you been trained in Jungian methods?"

To this, I reply, "I don't need training. I have God-given talent! Plus Jung was a total weirdo."

Just to give you a taste of my genius, the other night I had a dream that this guy who was really mean to Dylan in college (I'll call him Jerkface) was sitting on an enormous toilet in the middle of the lobby of a bank screaming, "I have a giant hemorrhoid!!!" When I awoke, I put my breathtaking powers of interpretation to work and the meaning of the dream became instantly clear: Jerkface is a giant ass. Just try and tell me I'm wrong about that. His name is Jerkface, for God's sake.

It's nice that he always wears that name tag so we don't forget...

Still not convinced? All right, I shall now proceed to shock and delight you with my interpretations of dreams several friends described to me.

Q: Dear Meg,

I once dreamt that I had a bunch of drugs in my trunk and when the nun who used to teach CCD classes wanted to look in my trunk I tried to slam it on her head and then shoved her . . . soooooo odd!

What do you think that means?

Nun Kicker

A: Dear Nun Kicker,

You hate nuns and secretly want to become a drug trafficker.


Q: Dear Meg,

I had a dream that the L&D unit where I work was a kids' funhouse with a ball pit and slides.

What do you think that means?

Nurse of Funkytown

A: Dear Nurse of Funkytown,

It is your destiny to create a new natural birthing method. Practitioners must play on a specially-designed laboring woman playground while in labor. Right as the baby crowns, they must slide down the "Birth Canal" (a slide lubricated with 6 tubes of KY and a carton's worth of egg whites) and land in the "Pit of Gross" (a ball pit in which the balls are designed to resemble chunks of afterbirth).

You will be wildly successful.


Q: Dear Meg,

The other night I dreamed that I was sleeping and my BFF came into my room, opened up my C-section scar and implanted 30 alligator eggs into it. I woke up and went to see my obstetrician and he was so not concerned.

What do you think that means?

Gator Mama

A: Dear Gator Mama,

You need to get a new obstetrician. And a new best friend.

Also, if you feel the urge to slither around in the mud and eat manflesh, find a reputable surgeon (or veterinarian) immediately.


Q: Dear Meg,

Last night I had this dream that Robert Downey Jr. was outside of my house begging me to open the door. Of course I opened the door in a very flirty way...but then he just ran in and hid behind my sofa and wouldn't come out.

What do you think that means?

Hot for Iron Man

A: Dear Hot for Iron Man,

You are too sexy for Robert Downey, Jr. Tonight try dreaming about Clive Owen. You might have better luck.


Q: Dear Meg,

I once had a dream where my friend Christy Awesomesauce came over with her family to my house to take me shopping and I was still in bed so the entire family came upstairs to get me but there was a car in the hallway in front of my door and I said they couldn't come in because of the car. All the kids got in the car while Mr. Awesomesauce took it apart. I also remember an Awesomesauce family picture on my wall behind the car. Then I got up and when I was getting ready in the bathroom, I was suddenly in the Awesomesauce house bathroom instead and it got swarmed with bats and Christy, Mr. Awesomesauce, and I started an epic battle and won against the bats. We never made it shopping.

What do you think that means?

On Her Seventh Cup of Coffee

A: Dear On Her Seventh Cup of Coffee,

Your brain is a frightening maze of nonsense.


Well, I think I've pretty much proven that I'm amazing at dream interpretation. Yep, I'm gonna be rich.

Oh, Nun Kicker, Nurse of Funkytown, Gator Mama, Hot for Iron Man, and On Her Seventh Cup of Coffee, that'll be $19.95, ladies. You're welcome.

Sunday, October 14, 2012


Most of you know I’m a bit of a health nut. I read all the major fitness magazines and plan my life accordingly. I exercise. I eat my vegetables. I even pay more for the veggies that aren’t covered in toxic chemicals. I do yoga once or twice a week. I drink enough water to drown a cat in. The one recommendation contained in those sacred tomes that I haven’t been able to stick to (other than the “spice up your love life” section, that is. I keep a shaker of cayenne pepper next to the bed. What’s spicier than that?) is meditation.

I have tried, oh Lord knows how hard I’ve tried, to get into meditating, but it’s just so…boring…and when it’s not boring, it’s…ahem…a bit cheesy for my taste. Also, it takes up a lot of time. I squeeze my weekly schedule tight enough to nearly draw blood just to fit a decent amount of exercise time in. A daily meditation practice would require giving up something essential like eating, or laundry, or playing the Sims.

And yet, the guilt I have over not doing something I’m “supposed to” haunts me. I’ll sit down to a plate of spinach and white beans and think, “Yeah, good try, slacker. Too bad your blood pressure is going to skyrocket until your head pops up and floats away on the breeze like a bloated stress balloon because your lazy ass won’t take the time to connect with your heart chakra.” I run 3 miles while all the while thinking, “You should be exploring your oneness with the Universe right about now. How do you think the Universe feels? You never call. You never write.”

After much (okay a little) thought, I’ve come up with the perfect solution: I’m going to create my own branch of meditation. Since I am the creator and high master guru of this new form of meditation, I hereby solemnly decree that Mega-meditation may be practiced while showering, changing diapers, writing, watching TV, or driving the car. It also may be practiced with eyes open, but that’s a personal choice…though highly recommended whilst driving or plucking one’s eyebrows.

Here’s an example of a Mega-meditation for your reading pleasure:

Close your eyes…unless you’re driving alone, then keep them open. If you’re driving with a competent person over the age of 12 in the passenger seat, close them and instruct your passenger to guide you safely through traffic while you listen to me and relax. If you crash, your passenger clearly wasn’t trying hard enough. You heard me, Passenger, get your head out of your tookus and pay attention.

Where was I? Oh yes, you’re feeling very calm…very peaceful. Ignore the DMV lady screaming at you that you’re next in line. You don’t need that driver’s license anyway. You probably have a helpful passenger who guides you places anyway. You heard me, Passenger: look sharp.

You’re laying on a beach…if you hate beaches, turn this off and go jump off a building. There’s no hope for you. The beach is exactly the right temperature. That’s right, it’s 80 degrees and sunny. If you’d like it slightly cooler, that’s okay. If you’d like it warmer, turn this off and move to Florida.

You’re wearing a bathing suit that is so flattering all of your body flaws melt away into the sand. Look, there goes your cellulite running down into the waves. A crab has picked up that wart that usually perches atop your nose. Perhaps he’ll make a den out of it. You are a great friend of man and beast alike. You feel smug and satisfied. You probably drove to the beach in a Prius.

There are no seagulls or other seabirds to poop upon your head or make off with your Cheetos. There are no screaming brats to heap sand upon you or incessantly babble at you to come look at their sand castle. You are completely alone except for the one person you’d most like to be on the beach with who is laying on the towel next to you, rubbing your now-perfect legs with suntan lotion and telling you how beautiful you are.

If you picked this guy, you’re absolutely right:

Hey baby, wanna sharpen my sword?

If you picked this guy, you’ve made the generic choice, but I’ll let you stay:

Hey girl, why don't I rub your back and you can tell me all about your book club meeting last week?

If you picked this guy, turn this off now. You're clearly 12 years old and thus have no stress. Shut up and go do your homework:
But I sparkle in the sunlight...

You are drinking the most delicious alcoholic drink you’ve ever tasted. It also has no calories, but isn’t laden with artificial sweeteners, either. It contains all your daily need of vitamins and minerals and won’t give you a hangover or leave you puking in the sand while Ryan Gosling holds your hair, either, no matter how much you drink. Shut up, it’s magic.

You are reading a delightful book that is written in a style that is neither too challenging nor too juvenile for your taste. The heroine is a badass woman accomplished in both intellectual and physical pursuits and her boobs are not unrealistically big nor is her waist unrealistically thin. The hero is a secure and confident man who is proud of the heroine’s success and neither threatened by her power nor freeloading off of her. If you picked 50 Shades of Grey, turn this off RIGHT NOW and go get someone smart to explain to you why you’re wrong.

You set down your book and Mr. Sexy goes to work on your shoulders. You relax. You’re drifting off into a deep and peaceful sleep…


You are now completely relaxed. That will be $19.95. You’re welcome.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Phoning it In: Books Edition

My week: (very, very, very welcome) houseguests, daycare kiddo, a 4th birthday celebration for my little dude, a wicked head cold, lotsa therapy appointments and a seizuring (seizing?) kid who got an epilepsy diagnosis necessitating further medical research and a bunch of product comparison shopping.

You know what that means, right?

Cheat blog!

Being completely brain dead at this point in the week, I googled "fun questions", and discovered a list of "10 fun questions to ask your friends about books". While I dispute the premise that these questions are necessarily "fun", I like books...and I have a captive now you get to read my rambling unedited thoughts about literature. You're welcome.

Oh, and I'm only answering the first 5 so as to save the last 5 for another brain dead week. Hopefully that week will come sometime faaaaaaar into the future, because if I have another week like this one, I'm pretty sure my brain is going to shut down for good in protest.

1. Has reading a book ever changed your life? Which one and why, if yes?

Man, way to bring out the big guns right off the bat, Internet! Let's see... Allende's The House of the Spirits may not have changed my life, but it definitely changed my view of what was possible in literature and it shaped my writing immensely. I read it when I was 15, and before that time, I would have told you that you can either write fantasy or you can write reality. Allende was my introduction to the style of "magical realism", a place I have been happily living in both in and off the page since then. I'm not crazy. I promise. Life is just a bit more fun when you paint it with brighter colors.

2. Do you prefer to read fiction or nonfiction? Explain your choice.

I'm definitely a fiction gal...which is odd because I prefer to write nonfiction overall. In the past couple of years though, I've really gotten into humorous essays (i.e. David Sedaris), and Mary Roach. I was going to attempt to describe what Mary Roach writes, but it's mildly impossible. Humorously gross but informative science for a lay audience? Anyway, she rocks.

As to why I generally prefer fiction? Let's face it. Nonfiction can be boring and depressing, because it's real life! Who wants to stick to the facts anyway? Bo-ring.

3. If you could be a character in any novel you’ve ever read, who would you be and why?

Dude, I would so be Nancy Drew. Why? She has a seemingly endless supply of smart sweater sets, her daddy is loaded and buys her a brand spankin' new convertible every time she's driven off into a ditch by a sinister-looking black van, she's totally invincible as she has never once gotten a concussion despite being repeatedly hit over the head and locked in closets and basements and she enjoys the reputation of being a problem-solving supergenius while dealing with the stupidest and most obvious criminals ever to grace a page.

4. Has reading a book ever made you cry? Which one and why?

I've read a lot of tearjerkers in my time, but the first book to make me cry was Where the Red Fern Grows. RIP Old Dan and Little Ann.

5. How many books do you read each year?

This number used to be in the hundreds, but it's dwindled some since I had kids. I probably average a book or two a month now unless I'm really hooked on a series, and then I'll read faster.

Oky doky! Thanks for putting up with the cheat blogs, folks! My life should (fingers crossed) be slowing down a bit next week and I'll have more time to devote to crafting blogs worthy of my amazing audience!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Comoedia Domesticis

Pre-blog disclaimer: No, I don't know if I used the Latin correctly in the title and no I don't care. Take it up with Google translator, smartypants friends.

We had kind of a scary start to our weekend, but you know what? I'm tired of talking about the scary. So, instead, I'm going to discuss the slightly funny and thoroughly gross. You're welcome.

P.S. Jenny, if you're reading this, you might want to cover your eyes...or at least have a bucket handy, hehe.

On Friday morning, I had a full house. I started watching a sweet little 1 yr. old fella I'll call S this week and both of my kids were there, of course, so that's 4 of us. I invited my neighbor Jenny and her daughter A over, and Jenny's pregnant so we're basically up to 6 1/2. I was also expecting my in-laws, who were visiting but staying at a hotel, to drop by any second, so we'd be up to 8 1/2. My house is 1060 sq. ft., so that's roughly 125 sq. ft. per person, which sounds like a lot until you take into account that I have unaffectionately nicknamed the back of my house "The Pits of Despair" and access to the pits is strictly verboten unless you sign a waiver releasing me from any liability when my piles of laundry eat you or you fall down the showerhole in the redneck bathroom. So, it's really more like 100 sq. ft. a person, except that all 4 of the children attempt to occupy the 2 sq. ft. that contains the miniature rocking chair at the same time...which should make the house seem larger but actually makes it seem smaller...I digress...

Anyway, Ry had been laying in his room all morning, very sleepy and grouchy. He had an ABA appointment at 11:30 that his grandparents were going to take him to, so after I let Jenny and her lil' one in, I went to Ry's room to bring him out and get his shoes on and such. He looked half-asleep and was acting a little strange, but I was distracted by S and Pippa playing Toddler Russian Roulette with the cat (this is a game that consists of the two of them taking turns poking grumpy ol' Tobi in the belly to see which of them she'll attack is fun for no one...) so I didn't think much of it. I had just set him down in the living room when he started to cough. I said, "Oh Ry, you're not going to --" and then he threw up all over his clothes, shoes, the floor and my legs and feet.

That one small act of digestive upset had a localized butterfly effect. Chaos and mayhem ensued. The dog immediately started barking and ran over to see what tasty treats that nice boy had just left for her. Pippa ran over to save her "bruh-bruh" from the evil puking demons. S and A ran in to see what all the ruckus was about. Poor Jenny's super-powered pregnant nose kicked in and she started gagging and my in-laws began knocking at the door. 8 1/2 people spurred into action by one little vomit.

I went into octopus mode trying to simultaneously shelter the vomit from the grossgrossgrossygross dog and her nefarious gastronomic schemes, distract S, A, and Pippa from investigating the puddle of unidentified substance, assure Pippa that "bruh-bruh" was okay and did not need her Legos shoved into his mouth to make him feel better, apologize profusely to Jenny for the digestive fireworks and offer her any refreshments that might ease her nausea, clean up the puke, get Ry undressed and into the tub, and answer the door. Needless to say I failed at at least half of these tasks: the in-laws stood on the step for a good 5 minutes wondering what the heck was going on, Jenny ended up having to run to the toilet to throw up only she tried to go to the redneck bathroom and I had to yell, "No no! There's no toilet back there!", and poor Ry lay on the ground covered in vomit and calmly waiting for someone to come take care of him.

After all the dust cleared and I reflected upon the situation, I couldn't help but laugh. What a ridiculous, chaotic, lovely imperfect mess my life is. I don't care that it's garden-flag-platitude level of cheesy to say this, I'm saying it anyway: I wouldn't change it for the world.

Okay...maybe if I could, I'd choose a life with a little less vomit...

Grape-juice-mouth and frizzy hair and utter delight: that's how we roll

Thursday, October 4, 2012


Alrighty! Before I get to the topic at hand today, I wanted to give the correct answer to the riddle I posed in the last blog. Kristen McD got the exact right answer: all stories are true, but I am the loser who talked to imaginary people until she was 15 and thought an albino alligator was trying to eat her soul. One of my roommates from college was the unfortunate sushi barfer (in her defense, she was sick and we were the total jerkfaces peer-pressuring her into another glass of sake). (Pretend) cookies to those who got the correct answer and bless those of you who thought I couldn't possibly be dorky enough to carry around a notebook with the details of my imaginary families in it. Sadly, I'd probably still be doing it if the Sims hadn't been invented.

Today I want to talk about obsession. No, not the unfortunately-named perfume (anyone who actually wants to inspire obsession with a scent has never had their hair sniffed by a consumptive-sounding stranger on a bus). I'm talking about something some might call hobbyism...if your hobby was a lizard that suddenly grew 50 feet over night and started breathing fire, that is.

My family all seem rather prone to this disease of hobbies. My dad converted half of our garage into a fish nursery where he bred guppies for awhile (raised by a man who bred guppies as a hobby, married to a man who breeds beetles for a living, paging Dr. Freud). He also belonged to a model trains group and right before I left for college he was on a bird kick during which, as far as I could tell, he just bought disgusting looking lumps of suet covered in birdseed and left them out to see what they attracted (I'm pretty sure possums weren't on his bird sighting wish list...). He's not the only hobbyist in my family, though. I have gone entire weeks at my parents' house without seeing my middle sister for more than a few minutes here and there because she was up in her room the whole time playing World of Warcraft for 16 hours straight, coming downstairs only to grab another Pepsi and frozen burrito. My youngest sister trumped us all by purchasing a set of dolls that she sewed clothes for, made houses for and carried around with her everywhere. They had to sit at the table with us at restaurants and they were involved in scandalous relationships with her best friend's dolls. She was roughly 14 or 15 at the time...see I'm not the only dork in my family (sorry Adrienne, you are now entitled to tell one embarrassing story about me to anyone who will listen. Next time I have a job interview, I'll give you the hiring manager's number and you can tell them about the time I...well I'll leave the details up to you)!

My obsessions all tend to revolve around stories - either making them, reading them, or watching them. This is the reason I enjoy the Sims so much: all you're doing when you play the Sims is creating characters and then living out their life stories. It's like writing but without the alcoholism and despair. In fact, I know a hobby has reached obsession level when I find myself making Sims based on characters in a book, TV series or movie I am currently enjoying. I have, in the past, made Sims based on characters from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Passions, Battlestar Galactica, The Hunger Games, Lord of the Rings, Gilmore Girls, Pride and Prejudice, The Office, and Firefly. The Sims I am currently playing with (when I get a spare moment which is rare) are based on characters from George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series (AKA the books "Game of Thrones" is based on).

I'm not quite sure why I'm so obsessed with this series. I spend hours pulling it to pieces with Dylan. I critique Martin's unrealistic female characters (they all seem to be hyper-aware of the position of their breasts at any given time), his meandering plot lines, his obvious borrowing from other works in the fantasy genre and yet I just cannot put it down! The obsession began with the TV series. It's a bloody and confusing show so I'm not exactly sure why I was hooked after the first episode...

...might have something to do with this guy...

That's right, baby, work that leather tunicky thing

...or the fact that one of the main characters is a petite but kickass female with a fiery and fierce possessiveness over her "children" (AKA Daenerys and her dragons). It might just have come along at a time when I was desperate for a new story to follow having been somewhat at loose ends since I finished The Hunger Games. Regardless of the reason, it's safe to say I'm completely obsessed. In my defense Dylan is, too. I refused to leave Ry's bedside at the hospital and he accused me of Catelyn Stark-ing it...which is a reference you'll only get if you're a total dork like on...

I have recently decided, however, that my obsession must end before 9 p.m. Every night this week, I've gone to bed and dreamt I was fighting in some battle and getting my arm chopped off or someone was stabbing my children in front of me. Last night I had a night terror in which I actually saw an armored knight standing over my bed about to swing a sword down upon me. Perhaps one so afflicted with nightmares and night terrors as myself should find a kinder, gentler series to obsess about...and maybe I'll soon take up some such milk-toast-y series written for women in the age when men were very concerned about our uteruses becoming excited and addling our brains...

...but I gotta finish this one first...

...and there's one more after this...and then two more promised as long as George R.R. Martin can stave off the ol' heart disease...