Archive for the ‘General Absurdity’ Category

A Lame Photographic Montage Of The Weekend

March 31, 2009


Things I discovered:

  1. Sangria is not a popular gum flavor. Which might explain why it was on sale at Soviet Safeway.
  2. I hereby officially declare that I will put out for any date who takes me to Founding Fathers
  3. Modern dance is very, um… Well, let’s just say it’s not ballet.


Founding Fathers

Moi, Lulu and McFly smiling pretty at Founding Fathers.

Kennedy Center.

Go stand in the rain. I want a picture. You'll thank me when we're 80 and can remember this moment.


Things I discovered:

  1. Contrary to previous speculation, I am not the worst dancer in the Metro Area. It’s actually Brian.
  2. Cab Number One: 22 minutes spent listening to the dispatcher’s detailed explanation of why Cab 84 is “a retard.” As evidence, he cited 84’s inability to locate building entrances, lack of proper radio responses and apparent preference for Pakistani country music. 
  3. Cab Number Two: My second strangest cabbie experience. Ever. Included a drunk driver snacking on ho hos while making a three point turn into oncoming traffic. 
  4. Cab Number Three: If somebody with a nose bleed asks to share a cab to NoVA, don’t do it. Trust me. It won’t end well.
  5. I have developed a vodka immunity.
  6. Delirium fixes that problem.


Yes, I got her the card crown. And I am overly proud of myself.

Yes, I got McFly the card crown. And I am overly proud of myself.

I've succumbed. Footless tights are my new pants.

I've succumbed. Footless tights are my new pants.

The Great 2009 Grind Off.

The Great 2009 Grind Off. I lost.

Entertaining the Bathroom Line.

Entertaining the Bathroom Line.

I even have culinary disasters in restaurants.

I even have culinary disasters in restaurants.


Things I discovered:

  1. It’s not pronounced “Ray-booth.” 
  2. A text recap… Me to Stella: It has come out in our road trip conversation that McFly sees me as an old lady with a collection of lawn ornaments. I am sort of insulted. Stella’s reply to Me: Hahahahahhahhaha. I TOTALLY see it. Me back to Stella: Fuck you. But McFly says holler. 
  3. Rehobothers liberally interpret “ocean front views.” 
  4. Waves are aggressive. 
  5. McFly does not appreciate the genius of Bob Evans. My new goal in life is to rectify this.


Unintentional Detour Number One: the Pentagon. And seeing as we're still in NoVA, this does not bode well for the trip.

Unintentional Detour Number One: the Pentagon. And seeing as we're still in NoVA, this does not bode well for the trip.

Guess I'm screwed.

I'm screwed.

McFly: Which way do we go on US-9? Me: It doesn't say. McFly: Ummm. Right? Me: Commence Unintentional Detour Number Three.

McFly: Which way do we go on US-9? Me: It doesn't say. McFly: Ummm. How about right? Me: Commence Unintentional Detour Number Jillion.



X-rated sandcastles.

X-rated sandcastles.



Grrr! Arrrrgh!

Grrr! Arrrrgh!

Stupid wave.

Stupid wave.

I wanted to bury her. This is what compromise looks like.

I wanted to bury her. This is what compromise looks like.

My Thinking Face.

My Thinking Face.

I wanted to be the man, but I couldn't get his face to open. Thus, I express my feelings accordingly.

I wanted to be the man, but I couldn't get his face to open. Thus, I express my feelings accordingly.

I feel like I'm in an episode of Gilmore Girls.

I feel like I'm in an episode of Gilmore Girls.



I sometimes do strange things.

I sometimes do strange things.

McFly and Me.

McFly and Me.

The Courtesy Tampon Klepto

March 24, 2009

Many moons ago, the Place of Lawyerly Things’ Building Services decided to
go all Tree Hugger and overnight there appeared eco-toilet paper, green-friendly hand soap and courtesy tampons. But the feminine hygiene products weren’t really part of the save the planet initiative. Rather, there’d been repeated requests by a Lawyerly Colleague to have a stash of feminine products available in case of Girly Emergency. She argued that management already provided static cling guard, hairspray, a curling iron and floral-infused lotion in the loungey areas outside the restrooms; tampons were a natural addition to the amenities. After Lawyerly Colleague waged an email campaign as strategic and aggressive as the invasion of Normandy, building services relented and The Ladies got tampons.

The availability of free tampons hardly blipped my radar. Instead of the generic, one-size-fits-all versions that were now available in the bathroom, I continued to be a self-supplier, opting to take advantage of the flow-customization possibilities found within a Tampax variety pack. The Place of Lawyerly Things’ selection came from the Costco of the Building Management World and it struck me as ill-advised to stick a knock-off into my mee maw. After all, those applicators are rough cut. But apparently, Lawyerly Colleague loved the free tampons. In fact, she was such a proponent of the complimentary feminine hygiene products, she asked her admin to appropriate some. Lawyerly Colleague’s intention was have her admin grab a bunch, take them home and stock her bathroom via the freebies. The admin understandably declined to become a tampon klepto, so Lawyerly Colleague turned to her back-up secretary, Wonder Admin.

Lawyerly Colleague (thrusting a brown lunch bag towards Wonder Admin): You can see the Ladies’ Room from your desk. When the janitorial staff restocks the tampons, I want you to fill this up and bring it to me. I need it no later than the 13th.

Wonder Admin (flabbergasted): Uh?

And so Wonder Admin acquired a new job duty. Each month, Lawyerly Colleague would provide a discrete container and Wonder Admin would grudgingly stockpile. She pilfered such large quantities that Lawyerly Colleague began to prepare for a Tampon Apocalypse. Twelve cycles worth were stored in her desk; she put a reserve in her car; and her filing cabinet had such a large hoard that a first-time ovulater would be supplied until menopause. This continued until the fateful day Lawyerly Colleague handed Wonder Admin two sacks to fill. Instead of monitoring the comings and goings of the janitorial staff, Wonder Admin complained to the person she was actually assigned to support and therefore actually responsible to: me.

Wonder Admin (in her Martyr Voice): I refuse to do this anymore. It’s gotta qualify as theft and she can’t make me engage in misdemeanor behavior, right?

Me (having zero idea what she was talking about): Uh?

And that’s when the story came out: Lawyerly Colleague’s Kotex Campaign, her demand that Wonder Admin stock her with contraband tampons, and that Lawyerly Colleague’s tween daughter had recently become A Woman and now needed her own feminine hygiene pipeline. Instead of tampons, Wonder Admin had been told to pillage the courtesy sanitary napkins and that demand had pushed her over the line from Grudging Participant to Oh-Hell-No Righteousness.

Wonder Admin (on a tirade of indignation): I have an MBA. I am a professional. My job description should not include looting industrial strength pads from the Women’s Bathroom. And if it has to, I want a raise.

Doing my best to champion my All Important, Life Saving Admin while navigating the Etiquette Minefield arising from Lawyerly Colleague’s position in the Lawyerly Pecking Order, I went to talk to the Secretarial Supervisor.

Me (having just recapped The Story Of The Office Bathroom Thievery in my best Lawyerly Manner): And finally, there are two less obvious but still significant reasons why this can’t continue. First, Lawyerly Colleague makes enough money to bail out both Dakotas and tampons were not in the bonus structure last time I checked.

Secretarial Supervisor (trying to suppress a chuckle): And the second?

Me (all Angry Feminist): It is shameful that in this day and age, with all our dry weave and ultra-thin technology, a 12-year-old girl is being forced to wear a waddle-inducing pad because her mom is the Tampon Scrooge.

And Wonder Admin never had to steal a courtesy tampon again.

Tips And Advice For Stella, As She Leaves For Iceland

March 23, 2009



Re: Iceland: A Traveler’s Guide By Me

My Dearest Stella:

As your Beloved Friend and General Voice Of Reason, I thought it necessary to share some helpful suggestions before your impending trip to Nordica:

  • Do not walk/fall/trip/otherwise go off the edge of a glacier. It won’t end well.
  • I am under the impression that there are a lot of nude/topless hot springs in Iceland. While you know my policy about States Of Public Undress (i.e. DON’T DO IT), in the context of Naked Old People, I especially advocate avoidance. Nobody needs to see that. Plus, it’s a given that saggy boobs are in our future. Do you really want a preview?
  • You are going to a place that still doesn’t utilize last names. Should you and Mr. Oates have a falling out mid-trip and you decide to enact Relationship Insurance Policy Provision 26, Subsection B (you know, the one that allows you to have a spur-of-the-moment revenge date), please be wary of guys named Sven Son Of Sven (aka Sven Svenson). Especially if you meet two of them within a five mile radius. It could be a Junior/Senior situation and macking on a father-son-combo is just gross, even in a foreign country.
  • Is this the first time you’ll be in close enough quarters that you’ll be forced to shit/fart around Mr. Oates? If so, I recommend constipation. It’s a universal fact that smelly poop is a romance killer.
  • Iceland has no standing army, navy, etc. This bodes well should you or your traveling companion decide to stage an impromptu coup. All you’ll need are sporks and willpower.
  • As much as Mr. Oates is gonna to harass you about it, avoid eating the National Delicacy. Rotted shark meet has gotta be Iceland’s version of Montezuma’s Revenge.
  • Mr. Oates strikes me as the type who’d advocate naming his child after the place of conception. Little Reykjavík will totally get his butt kicked on the playground. To wit, use protection.
  • Speaking of sex, the Mile High Club is overrated. And possibly felonious now that you can’t congregate around airplane bathroom doors. Please note: I am too broke to bail you out at this time. Nor am I familiar with the intricacies of international money wire transfer things. You land in a Nordic Jail, you’re staying.
  • Iceland apparently has twice as many sheep as people. Learn the local word for “bestiality” and if anybody says it around you, run.
  • You’re traveling to a place that is so eco-friendly it probably doesn’t have TP but instead makes do with steam bedays and fresh snow. Plan accordingly.
  • Should you find yourself in an awkward situation with any locals and need a joke to ease the tension, I’ve got one… “What do Icelanders eat for breakfast?” (wait for it… wait for it… WAIT FOR IT!!) “Ice Krispies!” *Rim shot followed by a well-deserved groan*
  • Icelanders consume more Coke per capita than any other nation. Not really a helpful suggestion, but a nifty fact none the less.

Yours In Hair Braiding And Other Assorted Girlyness,


PS – I expect a souvenir. Nordic Vodka?

Fire! Or, So Long Security Deposit

March 20, 2009

I can’t cook. And by that, I mean my recent chicken making venture turned out like this:

The aftermath of poultry

The aftermath of poultry

But it’s not like I haven’t attempted to learn. I paid attention in Home Ec. And more recently, I suffered through two Cooking For Singles classes. As I was doggedly signing up for a third, the instructor not-so-subtly suggested my time and energies might be better spent elsewhere. She made it sound like everybody in the class was a budding Betty Crocker while I was more General Kitchen Disaster. Still, I wrote it off. After all, not everybody can aspire to Martha Stewartdom; somebody has to be Imelda Marcos.

I also religiously watch the Food Network, hoping that with enough visual, I might pick up a few tips. But so far, Cooking Osmosis has not occurred. For Christmas, my mom gave me the Southern Living Cookbook, which is apparently the mother equivalent of Cooking For Dummies. I went through it and marked all the recipes that had five steps or less, yet I’ve not been able to make anything that’s not burnt, congealed, or otherwise become inedible. And every person I’ve dated for any length of time has tried (and failed) to teach me culinary basics. Each of them has viewed it as A Challenge. Despite everything, to this day, my culinary repertoire is limited to ordering takeout and Kraft Mac and Cheese with a side of PB and Marshmallow Fluff.

Restaurant Refugee recently claimed that “anybody can cook” and diagnosed my lack of Kitchen Abilities as “too much heat.” He theorized that if I kept my stove’s burner set at medium or below, I’d achieve cooking success. I replied his method only worked for The Patient, and Myers Briggs repeatedly indicated I was not part of that group. As further evidence that my problems extended beyond overly aggressive burner use, I mentioned that I had yet to successfully toast a Hot Pocket. Still, I figured people pay Restaurant Refugee semi-obscene amounts of money to cook fancy 80-course meals involving things like glaze and sauté and flamingo meat; there might be a wee bit of validity to his theory.

Last night I was feeling adventurous, and quasi-domestically-inclined, so I decided to see if Restaurant Refugee had properly diagnosed me, if my cooking improved over reduced heat. But I needed to keep it simple; there had to be something dumbed down enough that even I could cook with minimal char. Requiring inspiration, I googled “easiest recipe in the world.” The Geniuses Of The Webbernets directed me to Easy Recipe World: Because Anyone Can Cook. While I felt that statement was a tad optimistic, I was willing to give Easy Recipes and Restaurant Refugee the benefit of the doubt. I played around the website for about half an hour, but quickly realized that “easy” is relative. Vegetable Schezwan Spaghetti might be straightforward to the Alton Browns of the world, but it was beyond my 101 Skill Level. In desperation, I decided to skip a recipe and just attempt popcorn. With only two ingredients, one pot, and no stirring, I figured I couldn’t screw it up.

Confidentially, I poured the oil, fired up the stove, and put in a test kernel. After it popped, I poured in a few more and waited. And waited. And waited. The low heat thing took For. Ev. Ah. But I had faith in The Wisdom Of Restaurant Refugee. I kept telling myself that his whole damn career was food-centric, that he couldn’t be wrong, and that keeping the stove burner below A Million Degrees was the only way I would be able to take Papa John’s off speed dial. After two centuries hours minutes, the popcorn began to do its thing. I’d seen my father, the reincarnation of Orville Redenbacher, do this a thousand times. In perfect mimicry, I shook around the pot and kept the lid slightly askew. Except my father never had ninety gajillion pieces begin to fly out of the crack between the lid and the pot. And even if it did, it never landed on the electric burner. Nor did an errant kernel mysteriously and inexplicably catch fire.



While my first instinct was to saw eff it and just let the damn kitchen burn, I was pretty sure that would qualify as arson. So, I grabbed a dish towel and attempted to beat out the flaming kernel. Except that little sucker wouldn’t go out. I hit it harder, but all that did was set the towel on fire. Since I am not inclined to hold onto anything flaming, I began Girly Panic Yelping, turned around and dumped the rapidly burning fabric into the sick. Seems some dirty dish, covered in combustion-prone Chinese takeout leftovers, was in the sink. Two seconds after the cloth made contact, flames were shooting a foot into the air, my smoke alarm was blaring at obscene decibels, and Bionic Kitty was confirming her demonic heritage by dancing manically on the counter. Plus, the lone firey kernel on the stove was still blazing. Having recently couch-orgasmed over Dennis “I Make Firepants Look Fine” Leary, I knew fire-extinguishing protocol; I grabbed the sink sprayer, yanked the hose as far as it would go and aimed. Within minutes, I had the sink fire out. Still in full-spray mode, I swiveled and doused the stove. Then, just because I was feeling particularly malicious and angry with the Universe, I took at pot shot at Bionic Kitty.

It seems Restaurant Refugee is wrong. Too much heat is not my problem. And contrary to declarations on the Interwebs, not everybody can cook. But some people? They order Chinese real good.

As Randomly Seen On Florida Avenue On The Way To Brunch

March 3, 2009
Yep. For reals.

Yep. For reals.

A Blog Roast, Or Happy 500th Post!

February 25, 2009

The email that went out…

Dear Seven Loyal Readers:

I just realized that my little piece of the Interwebs has reached 500 blog posts. I’ve been racking my brain, trying to come up with something different to do for the obligatory commemorative entry. Finally, I figured why not some sort of Blog Roast? It seems appropriate. So, here’s my proposal:

If you have time and the inclination, would you please email me something to post? Something along the lines of a humiliating story/a sordid memory/whatever, as long as it pertains to the blog or me or vodka. Or, if you are more of an artsy person, you could send an incriminating photo or doodle. Or if you’re analytical, then may I suggest an estimate of what I’ve spent on shoes since you’ve known me. Really, anything. Anyway, I will then gather everything together, make it somewhat orderly and post the lot.

Thanks for helping me celebrate 500…

The result…

Pithy Comments and Flipilicious are relatively new additions to my Sphere of Love. But we’ve bonded over a shared appreciation of Kristen Bell, CW television shows, and our own boobs. Plus, we’ve all successfully repressed our Crazy Cat Woman tendencies. This was their masterful joint contribution, complete with the links of their choice.

Hey there, K-bell,

Do you mind if I call you that? I mean, I usually refer to you as Kristen “Almost Making Me a Lesbian” Bell, so if you want, I can continue doing so, but I understand how awkward that will be when it changes to Kristen “Made Me a Lesbian” Bell.

Anyway, enough about how hot you are (seriously, are you even human?). My cat convinced me (by covering every square inch of my apartment with vomit after eating my Veronica Mars blow-up doll) that I should stop talking about how much I idolize you and just write you a letter, proposing we meet up sometime. (Side note: That Fuckity Ass Bitchoid also convinced me to return her to the Pet Rescue – I still have my receipt!)

Since I know you’re busy promoting Fanboys, I’ve taken the liberty of giving multiple options for our date sex romp platonic meet-up:

  • Shopping while wearing Crocs,
  • Watching Battlestar Galactica (if you’re friends w/ Katee Sackoff, I’m open to a ménage a trios),
  • Getting you liquored up so I can make my move Drinking copious amounts of Diet Coke
  • Renting a zip car and running over a gay french bulldog Getting an intimate look at DC’s culture while mocking tourists
  • Snuggie Pub Crawl

No matter what activity you choose, it will be time well spent. I was not recently nominated as the expert on personal waxing, hangovers and sex within my friends’ group for naught. I also have a Very Sexy Boob Mole, if you’re into that kind of stuff. I realize you don’t know a whole lot about me, but I assure you, our time together will be blogged/tweeted/facebooked about for years held in the strictest confidence.

Honestly, I’m open to anything – except sushi.


And because the most entertaining minds are always in tandem, Maxie submitted this photographic gem of me and La Bell. Little does she know I intend to make it into a life size cutout.

The only picture taken of Katherine where you can't say she's wearing crocs with her dress. (by Maxie)

The only picture taken of Katherine where you can't say she's wearing crocs with her dress.


My college roomie is the keeper of my deepest, darkest secrets. She’s lucky she only revealed innocuous tidbits in her Roast contribution: my occasional straight-from-the-tub consumption of icing, which is arguably the genesis of my phenomenally-sized ass, and my secret adoration of Lifetime. Apparently, the following words are to be sung to the tune of “Memory.” Yep, from the musical Cats.

Never called her that name yet,
Sounds so grown-up and formal,
“Kate” forever to me.
I remember, unending tubs of chocolate icing,
Cakeless icing, purity.

Lifetime movies all Sunday,
It was pure girly heaven
Got up only to pee.
Countless hours, her with vodka, Captain for me,
College apartment, so shady.


When I tell people I have internet friends, they usually look at me funny. But after they meet LiLu, they totally get it.

Within moments of meeting Katherine, I immediately knew we would be friends. This was not ONLY because within about 5 minutes, I was basically sitting on her lap at a crowded table of bloggers while we gossiped about things of a sordid nature. I also liked her shoes.

I keed, I keed. But I was also right. Over the past months, Katertot and I have been through a lot together. Mostly highs, some definite lows, but we’ve successfully drunk our way through it all. Wait, I mean, held each other. Yeah, that’s it.

Because she makes me laugh, every day, on and off her blog. Because she is trouble with a capital T (and my middle name is Danger). Because she is the kind of person I know I can (read: have) call at 2 a.m., crying, and she’ll not only answer but actually make me feel better. Because when we’re together, it looks like this:

The Dynamic Duo. And the Sexy Boob Mole.

The Dynamic Duo. And the Sexy Boob Mole.

I heart you, Katertot. Congrats on 500. But mostly, congrats on being my friend. Wait, that came out wrong. What I meant to say was LOVE YOU, hooker!


Back in my Ohio Days, there was a six month period where I was unable to drive. No, Interwebs, I did not get a DUI. At least that would have been a story. I’ve always secretly wanted to get booked… The car-ban was health related. Anyhoodles, about three months into my home boundedness, I bribed a Lawyerly Place Partner In Crime to drive me to work every morning. It was self-preservation; if I listened to any more of my father’s books on tape, there was going to be an Incident. Susan and I were friends, but our shared rides took it to an entirely new level. Especially when we realized we both obsess over Lindsey Buckingham in questionable and slightly stalkerish ways. This gem is titled, “Are you there God? It’s me, Suz.”

Ever since Katherine left my passenger seat, I have to live with this empty feeling in my car. Sure, I can fart freely (and trust me, I do) and get an extra 15 minutes of sleep, but it’s just not the same as having KJ’s wit and wisdom at my disposal. My chauffeuring abilities are probably, like, total crap now too.

God, every day I have to live with the idea that now there is no one to dress up like a burrito with on Halloween for a free meal, no one to make a Bob Evans‘ run for, and no one to invite me to inappropriate parties at their apartment. It just isn’t fair, God! KJ always had the best spreads.

I’ve tried to make friends with the other girls here, but they just don’t get it. Sometimes I think they will be like KJ because they like Star Trek and online dating, but then they just end up being total LOSERS, God. I know that I shouldn’t judge, but these people…they have the ability to drink, but they choose not to engage. They just don’t! Can you believe it?! They can forget being invited to my post-giving-birth happy hour, that’s for sure!

My grandpapa taught me that there is always a silver lining…and I suppose in some ways there are. If KJ hadn’t dumped Ohio, she probably wouldn’t be writing in her blog as much or as hilariously. She would probably still be walking to the Winking Lizard every day to feel cool, risking life and limb by making a mad dash across Bethel Road only to be mutilated into a big pile of goop by a Tim Hortons‘ truck…but I digress, God.

In my heart, I know that moving to D.C. and leaving me here alone at The First Place of Lawyerly Things was what’s best for KJ…but I can’t help but think what about me? I hope you can forgive me for being so selfish, God, but just look at how happy we were together…we even wore the same clothes! Sigh.



Until next time,



Stella…What can I say about Stella? She pimps my blog, provides me with vodka on an as-needed basis, and threatens my exes with sorta scary forms of retribution. She’s like Carrie, Charlotte, Samantha and Miranda united into one wondrous being. Stells, someecard says it best.

A haiku

Vodka and boobies
Bridget Jones, eat your heart out
With a twist of geek


Laina and Jill were 2/5ths of the reason I managed to stay sane during law school, especially when they talked about the Rule Against Perpetuities. (The other 3/5ths were Anona, Kelly, and vodka.) The Terrible Two are the kind of friends I can talk to every day or not for six months, but it doesn’t matter. Either one would happily give me a kidney (God knows I’m going to need it), a come-to-Jesus, or the bra off her boobs. And I’d do the same for them. They’re calling this one, “Laina’s 23rd Birthday, Or The Time We Managed To Get Katherine To Leave The Outer belt, Or Katherine Pets A Baby Chicken.” I think the ridiculously long title is a quiet jab at some of my stunners…

As you all may very well know, Katherine used to live in Columbus, O-H-I-O. And that wonderful city is encircled by an outer belt, known as I-270. During her tenure in C-bus, one of the quirkiest things we noticed about Katherine was she had little problem going outside the confines of I-270. After her post complaining about living outside the NoVA divide, it was clear to us that DC has not yet broken her geographic-phobia. But we digress…

How The Trip Done Got Planned, by Jill

In 2004, Katherine was suffering through her third year of law school, along with Laina. I had graduated a year earlier and had moved to Jackson, Ohio. At the time of our story, Laina was way pregnant and about to celebrate the big 2-3. I thought we should do something special before Laina got sucked into the Baby Abyss but she was being all responsible about things like fetal alcohol syndrome, so drinking was out.With margaritas and alcoholic debauchery were off the table, I figured we should eat. Laina had a thing for this little Mexican restaurant in Jackson and I figured that was a place we could afford to feed her preggo appetites. Initially, Katherine refused to go, citing I-270 restrictions. But then I mentioned the place had fried ice cream and she became putty.

We conspired to bring Laina to Jackson, have dinner at the Mexican place, and then hang out. By way of information, Jackson is only 77.1 miles, or 1 hour 34 minutes, from Columbus. It’s pretty easy to get to. But I know Katherine and how she gets lost. Plus, Katherine could count her excursions outside the outer belt on one hand. So, in preparation for the big adventure, I customized her directions complete with arrows, several maps, and pictures of relevant signage. I hoped it was enough for Katherine to get Laina to Jackson without a four hour tour of Southeast Ohio.

The Trip Itself, by Laina

So, Katherine comes to get me for an “outing.” I think we’re going to the mall but as we walked to her car, she tells me that I’m actually being kidnapped for a Day of Adventure. Since that was before you heard about all those crazy women cutting babies out of pregnant women, I figured I was good. So we set out. Mind you, she’d already left her geographic comfort zone to pick me up in New Albany (for you non-Ohioans, that’s about 15 minutes from downtown Columbus, but still outside that magical I-270 beltway). She hit the highway, pulled out a ten page sheet of directions and then started heading south. Knowing Katherine always, always, always gets lost, I figured I might want to navigate, and began asking questions. (Note by Katherine: A. Freaking. Lot. Of. Questions. She was unrelenting and wasn’t happy with, “For the love of Baby Jesus, SHUT UP! It’s a surprise.”) Finally she fessed up that we were going to Jackson, meeting Jill, and eating. See, good friends know that a pregnant lady’s world revolves around food.

After repeated “OMFG this is a long way away”s and “Jesus, are we there yet”s and “This is why I never leave the outer belt”s from Katherine, several direction fiascoes that resulted in me franticly calling to Jill so she could demand I navigate, and three pee stops (and I was eight months pregnant!) we finally arrived at Toro Loco. I then proceeded to eat so much Mexican I thought I would explode. Or possibly brain damage my child with my distended stomach.

(Note by Katherine: Oh no you don’t, Laina. We are not glossing over the feat that was your caloric intake. Interwebs, listen to this: Laina ate an appetizer, more chips and salsa than the Tostitos factory produces each Monday, a big glob of cheese in a tortilla with an extra side of rice, fried ice cream, and my fajitas leftovers. On the way home, the Human Black Hole demanded we stop TWICE for more food. This sounds impressive until you’ve seen Preggers Laina eat a Cinnabun. Also, I would like to mention that Laina was forced to wear a sombrero while the waitress sang “Happy Birthday” in a Spanglish. I have pictures, which I am willing to sell. Plus, Laina got mad at me for commenting on the restaurant’s disproportionately high people-to-mullet-ratio.)

And back to Jill

So after Toro Loco, things got a little, um, loco. You see Jackson is kind of a small town. While it is the biggest city (Note by Katherine: she uses that term way too loosely) in Jackson County, Ohio, it’s really dinky compared to the meganess of Columbus. Basically the joke is when someone asks what you’re doing on Saturday night, the automatic answer is going to “the Wal-mart.” The Wal-mart is the center of all things cultural in Jackson. It’s also the primary shopping option. (Note by Katherine: aside from Tractor Supply.) (Note from Jill: We’re getting to that). (Note from Katherine: They sell clothes. I’m just saying.) I’m still unsure why local custom dictates we put “the” before “Wal-mart,” but when in Rome… Anywho, in order to entertain the pregNATE lady and do a little after lunch walk stretchy-stretch, Laina and I decided to show Katherine the sights. (Note by Katherine: Again, that’s a loose use. If I recall correctly, Jackson has like two traffic lights and a hill.)

Laina explains about Tractor Supply Company

First of all, I want to note I love you, Jill, but I have been trying for four years to teach you that it’s pregNANT.

So, back to our story. Katherine looks out the window of Toro Loco, glances across the street and says all innocently, “What’s Tractor Supply Company? Do they sell tractor parts?” Jill and I laugh (Note by Katherine: totally at my expense; and yes they do sell tractor parts, so it’s not a stupid question, thank you very much, bitches.) and tell her that it’s a farm supply store, which actually used to be called “Farm and Fleet.” Katherine mumbled something about “being open to cultures and mullets.” But I know she was actually hiding her elation. Today, Katherine will do crazy stuff so she can write about it on her blog. But that’s just an excuse. Really, she just likes anything novel, potentially humiliating, or with free liquor. TSC met the novel requirement, if at a low level… So, it didn’t take a lot of arm twisting before we set off across the street to TSC.

BABY CHICKENS!!!!!!! by Jill

We actually drove across the street to TSC, it would be a dangerous walk, especially with a waddling preggo. (By the way Laina, you can get one of those “slow moving” triangle signs at TSC). Anyhoodles, we walk into TSC and Katherine’s senses were overwhelmed with the non-city smells. Katherine described it as “Manurery” and “Slightly too natural.” Oh, the sweet smell of feed and chain saw oil…We start walking around the store and pursuing the isles. At this time in her life, one of Katherine’s various money making ventures was the sale of sex toys in the home party setting. Kinda like Pampered Chef or Mary Kay for the Va-Jay-Jay. So her great knowledge of vibrating products led to many interesting questions regarding the various implements in the TSC. (Note by Katherine: Jill contributed. I am not the only one who thought the E-Z Nurse Screw Cap Nipple resembled a 14th Century butt plug.)

Damn. I’ve got to stop with the tangents… So along with seeing the implements and smelling the smells, Katherine also noticed new-to-her sound. She turns to me and whispers, “Are those the baby chickens?” There was awe. There was excitement. There was disbelief. Looking at her face, you’d have thought she just witnessed the birth of Christ. So I explain to her yes, those are baby chickens. They are actually called “chicks.” That yes, you can buy chickens because, yes, they are in fact for sale, and yes, they are “actual farm grade poultry,” and yes, they will eventually lay eggs because all eggs do not actually come from Trader Joe’s, and yes, these eggs would qualify as organic. After the 50 questions, Katherine decides she must see the chicks NOW. She sprints towards the sound, which is coming from a big water container and peered in. Little, fuzzy, yellow chicks. It was her personal Christmas.

For ten minutes, I watched as Katherine was absurdely amused by a bunch of chicks in a big water tub. Eventually, she demanded to touch them. By this time, was Preggo gettingbored with us and the chicks. When you leave the outer belt, this stuff is slightly less novel, so she wondered off. I stayed with Katherine; mainly to laugh when she got pecked and when the chick she was holding dived down her shirt. But main reason in staying was to explain the downfalls of Pet Chick Ownership to Katherine. She was determined to leave TSC with at least one of those chicks, but she’d have preferred several. If I recall, her master plan was to dye them pastel colors and give them away as Easter gifts. Anyway, while I was busily reminding Katherine that Columbus was not zoned for livestock, we heard this odd pregnate huffing and puffing, moaning and groaning, and then our names being called in despiration.

Back to Laina, the Baby Chick Killer

Yes, I have seen chicks before. In fact, I had a traumatic experience regarding an accidental chick homicide of one when I was a small child. So, I was not interested in a possible repeat of The Baby Chick Killing. With nothing better to do, I wandered off… Then, from nowhere, I found that among its many other wonders, TSC sells rail buggies!!!!!! (Interwebs, this is AWESOME! Who could be anything but excited about a rail buggy???)

A rail buggy in its natural habitat

A rail buggy in its natural habitat

I’ve always wanted to ride in one and sitting in one, getting a feel for it, was about as close as I was going to get until I paid off my student loans. So, forgetting that I was 60 lbs heavier than usual (all of you just shut up, you’ll be pregnant one day and unable to resist the lure of Taco Bell or Ben and Jerry’s), I lowered myself into the rail buggy. It was super cool for about 30 seconds, until my short attention span kicked in, and I tried to get out. Which brings us to Jill’s point of view…I was NOT huffing and puffing, more yelling for help.

Katherine had to cut her baby chick adventure short so they could rescue my fat ass from the rail buggy. (Note by Katherine: It took both of us to pull her out. Seriously. It was like The Three Stooges, but with women.) On the way home, Katherine asked me about three times why we wouldn’t let her buy a baby chicks and when they weren’t cute anymore, why she couldn’t give it to me to live out on my “farm” (to be clear, I lived in a house with a normal yard, like anybody else; but anything outside I-270 is soybeans in the eyes of K.). And that, Interwebs, is the one and only time Katherine left I-270 until 2006.

And what was the point of all this, besides sharing the IMPORTANT INFORMATION that Katherine USED TO SELL SEX TOYS? Well, to demonstrate how easily she can be bribed with things that are sugar-filled or fuzzy (knowledge that often comes in handy, Interwebs). And also, this was the only story she’d let us tell. She vetoed all the ones from law school, citing “ethical considerations.”

The end.

P.S. Katherine did make a second trip to Jackson in ’06. She was overwhelmed by the number of silk-screened shirts in the local sports bar. (Note by Katherine: And also in ’06, I visited Laina in even-more-small-town Ohio. The directions included “turn right at the big tree” and “follow the dirt road past the people who don’t have electricity.” I vowed never to go back again.)

Where I Triumph Over A Retail Employee

February 24, 2009

About once every six months or so, I have a bra that abruptly goes on strike; it simply refuses to lift and separate, the magical cupping ability dematerializes, and I’m left with unexpected boob-sag. This morning, I knew I was wearing a lingerie time bomb when my underwire somehow sifted and forcefully contorted my entire left breast. At first, my boobie was merely facing due east, but then it morphed into a vaguely elliptical and oddly extended version of its natural self. It was all very tribal. Plus, I was pretty sure the sudden Africanistic-realignment indicated an impending bra fail. Sure enough, just before lunch, the underwire broke through the actual bra fabric and began migrating towards my armpit. It felt like the boob equivalent of a wedgie. But with chafing. I had an afternoon client meeting and I suspected that repeatedly reaching into my shirt to shift my boob away from the pokey wire would be frowned upon by Lawyerly Big Boss. In an effort to forestall accusations of office masturbation, I made an emergency lunch run to Victoria’s Secret.

Initially, the bra buying mission was straight forward. I went in, grabbed a Body Bare from the drawer labeled with my size, and purchased. Then I asked the cashier if I could pop back to the dressing room and switch out my undergarments. In no uncertain terms, the cashier told me that wasn’t happening. But somebody higher up the retail food chain was standing next to her; that person, having heard my request, gave me permission. As I scurried to the fitting rooms, I could hear the clerk getting a lecture on “reasonable requests” and “appropriate customer service.” Anyway, once I was in a stall decked out like a high-class French bordello, I took the tags off my new underwire-secure bra and started to suit up. Except when I closed the hooks, the thing was so tight it cut off all circulation below the braline. And after I put the straps over my arms, I realized my gargantuan tatas weren’t filling out the cups. Clearly, this thing didn’t fit properly.

Off it came and I checked the size tag: 32DD. About four inches too small and one “D” too big. Sighing, I put on my unsupportive, original bra and went back to the checkout. I explained to the snarky salesgirl that the bra had been mis-stocked, therefore I had mistakenly purchased lingerie which was aerodynamically designed for Barbie, but I still had the tag and would like to make a switch for an actual human sized version. The salesperson sneered at me and refused to take the bra back, citing the tag-less nature of the undergarment. With a sign, I pointed to the tag reattachment gun thingy sitting between us on the counter.

Me (just short of eye rolling): I work part-time in retail. I know what that device is for.

Salesperson (in a snotty tone that conveyed her new-found love of rules, even the stupid ones): We don’t take back items with no tags.

Me (knowing that smacking her outside the head would get me nowhere, so trying reason instead): Since you rang me out, I’m sure you are aware of the time line at issue. But just in case, let me recap: I purchased this three minutes ago, I had the thing on for less than ten seconds, it never left the store, I have the tags and you have the tag reattachment device two inches from your hand. I’m pretty sure the item is still sanitary and suitable for resale. So, would please let me do an exchange?

Salesperson (reveling in her retail power): No.

Me (eyeing the tag reattacher): OK, fine. But in the alternative, would you please do me a favor and close your eyes for the count of 30?

Salesperson (all suspicious): Why?

Me (about to request managerial intervention): Two reasons. First, because there is an obvious solution to this which does not involve me berating you at a loud volume or telling your manager what I think of you right now. And second, because I asked nicely.

Shockingly, she shut her eyes. Shaking my head at the absurdity of the entire situation, I reached out my hand, grabbed the re-tagger and restored the Barbie bra to its original tagged form.

Salesperson (eyes still shut but counting at warp speed): 27…28…29…30.

Me (as soon as she opened her eyes): Hello! I would like to exchange this bra for a more appropriately sized version. As you can see, the tags are on it, I have the receipt and I have a chest that’s not a 32DD. Would you like me to provide proof of US Citizenship and two forms of picture I.D. as well?

If the manager hadn’t walked up at that exact second, I suspect the salesgirl would have told me exactly where to shove the Barbie bra. Probably with illustrative diagrams.