Saturday, August 31, 2013

As promised or at least indicated in the title of this blog, this is a thought right out of the shower. Why is my brain stuck in the 90's? After my evening calorie busting walk, a depreciating naked bounce in the full length mirror and minutely inspecting every bump of cellulite on my body, I got into the shower and let my mind wander. As I was shampooing my hair I started singing Phoebe's shampoo song, the one from Friends; “Lather, rinse repeat, lather, rinse, repeEEt, ohhh, lather rinse repeeHEEET as needed”. My mom will have no idea what I'm talking about, but all of us that sported the “Rachel” will know that “The Rachel” refers to a haircut and will also be able to sing the shampoo song in their heads. My only problem is, my brain seems to have stopped functioning around the middle of the final season of Friends, and never restarted. My brain felt comfortable among the 90's and even into the very first years of the new century, but then it had had enough and decided to walk off and just enjoy the memories. My brain is sitting contentedly somewhere under a shady tree singing Smelly Cat and still crushing on Zach from Saved By The Bell.

It's embarrassing really. I remember as a kid, my mom and I would be going through the Piggly Wiggly and suddenly Frankie Avalon would come on and she would simply HAVE to get down with her bad self. We are talking full on dance moves involving twisting and mashing potatoes and riding ponies and God only knows what else right there in the store isle. Then she does this weird thing with her mouth when you know she's really getting her groove on; it's kind of a pursed lip, duck face thing. Mom's answer to the white man's overbite. I can just picture her and my dad now, in a club in the 70's. Bee Gee's singing, disco ball, flashing lights and dad boogy woogying and biting his lower lip and mom jiving with the really tight duck lips. I'm sure they were adorable. But back to the grocery store... They would eventually have to interrupt the music to announce “clean up in isle four” because in isle four, mom would still be twisting away and I would have shredded my own body into a million pieces rather than deliberately stand there in the isle and let her ruin my life forever. And while I was gnawing my own arm off, trying to make this stop, I would be thinking over and over again “I will NOT do this to my children. I will LOVE them. I will NOT do this to them”.

Well, I was almost right. I have never done the Mashed Potato in any isle of any store. I have however walked like an Egyptian and done the Macarena. But my point is, I remember also solemnly vowing to myself that I would not be one of 'those parents' who couldn't even stay 'with it'. I would listen to rap when I was 83 if that was the cool thing to do. And I almost did it. In fact, one of my three kids still thinks I'm pretty cool and she's a junior in high school.

So that means I've done well, right? Nope. Because no matter how many times I mumble along to songs on the radio, I will always secretly wish it was being performed by Nirvana and I will never be able to understand why they have replaced family sitcoms with reality TV. When I'm in my car and Eminem comes on the radio – yes I still listen to a plain ol' radio in my car, it isn't satellite or anything cool, but when Eminem comes on I'm like “You better mhvmnb yewrsft hmm da MUSIC, you better never let hibn goned, you've only goverone shevt” or something equally incoherent. Whereas I can tell you exactly, word for word all of the things I am too sexy for, including Milan, Japan, my pussy cat, this hat, my love and this song. I know all of the things Meatloaf will do, even though he Won't do That. I have even made my achy breaky heart understand. And when I walk down the store isle with my daughter in tow and one of today's top 40 songs comes on I try not to dance (much) to it because I am aware that I look like a flamingo on Ritalin. (Not my own phrase, but an accurate description of what is going on). Maybe for me, a more accurate description would be “I look like Elaine dancing”, because I clearly remember Seinfeld and any time Elaine danced, it made my day. And while I am buying box sets of the Simpsons and MacGyver, the rest of the world is watching Netflix originals and keeping up with the buck wild pregnant teen moms next door to the bachelor dynasty.

I really meant to keep up though. I meant to stay with it. To know what was up or going down. I even ended up with some peeps and they have nothing to do with marshmallow Easter candy. I had managed to go from living in a house to having a crib and I made peace with being called Phat. But around the time of Apple Bottom jeans and boots with the fur, my brain decamped. I now have no idea what is going on anywhere around me. I don't know the name of that actress in The Hunger Games, I have no idea what my milkshake is or how to prevent it from bringing boys to the yard; in fact, I'm almost certain that's something you should have a doctor take a look at. I honestly have no idea if poppin' tags means buying something or changing the price tags around on things or what it means, really, and I haven't got a clue why mustaches or bacon or zombies are cool.

So if you see me wandering around, just give me some room. I'm probably imagining I'm bubble boy running from the soup Nazi.

Friday, August 30, 2013

A memory for today

I am just not satisfied with today's earlier post.  My head hurts too bad to think straight, but I'll leave it up anyway.  My ego, however, demands I put something up that really cracks me up.  This post is an old one from a blog I had long ago in a place far away.  But I just ran across it while saving today's post and read it, and it cracked me up.  I usually do entertain myself, but this old post made me laugh.  So, because this is my blog and I can do as I please, I am copying a rerun post because I like to read it.  This was four years ago:

This past weekend my dear brother, Andy and his fiancée, Tiffany, invited me to go camping with them. I am 30 years old and have never actually gone camping, so I excitedly accepted their invitation. After the phone call was over, I skipped cheerfully into my home office, which is where my Eagle scout husband and my two boy scout sons keep their camping gear. I found a black backpack that I recalled seeing going out the door on more than one boy scout camp-out. I grabbed it up and inside was some roll of some plastic stuff; I never did figure out what that was for, so I set it aside. There was a folded up blanket thing that was silver. Who needs something like that on a camping trip, I didn't even know what it was, so I set it aside as well. Then I found an orange thing! People wear these orange things in the woods so they don't get mistaken as deer and shot. Yes, must pack the orange thing, even though it looked kind of small, and I couldn't figure out how to get it on, I packed it, assured that my woodland brother would know what to do with it. I took the orange thing and the backpack into my room and decided right away that the backpack was not going to be big enough so I took it back to the office. Back in my room I pulled out my red rolling carry-on bag with gold Fleur-de-lis on it. This was bigger, and would work well, and BONUS, it rolls, I don't have to carry it! Feeling rather smug about my camping choices thus far, I began to pack. I packed four pairs of panties, because you never know when you will need extra. I was wearing a pair of pants, so I packed only one other pair of Old Navy button-leg pants, and my comfy Old Navy pajama pants with matching pajama shirt. I put in four pair of socks, just in case there was a sock emergency. I packed four shirts because I didn't know what mood I might be in the next day, so I wanted options. The only tennis-like shoe I own are a set of black and white checked Converse sneakers, so I packed those in case my cute flip flops were not enough foot protection. "Oh", I thought to myself, "what if we get attacked by muggers or something?" So into the red and gold fleur-de-lis rolling suitcase went a small, heavy bat shaped tire thumper, a screwdriver with pink, purple, green and yellow flowers on the handle, a pair of pliers (in case I had to pinch someone to death?) and a leather-man tool with three pocket knives in it. I am now armed to battle any force of nature that comes my way. Next, I packed my electric toothbrush, a pouch that had little soap sheets that I bought at some sporting store, Neosporin in a magnetic case that also had a key ring, a hair-pick and broad toothed comb for unruly curly hair, a headband, and two different packs of barrettes (again, so I had choices for hair styling depending on the mood of the next day), Olay SPF 15 rejuvenating cream with a touch of tint and two diet cokes. Here I come nature, stay the hell out of my path or I will be forced to unleash something awesome that I had packed! Next... TO THE KITCHEN. I would pack enough food to make sure that if this trip ended up being more than one night, I at least, would be prepared. Feeling even more smug than before, I packed into one of my Tupperware-like baskets with clear sides (so you could easily see what was in it) with locking blue lid with a handle, a pack of ramen noodles, a package of unopened crackers, a can of peaches and a can of pears, two cans of something called potted meat (chicken flavor), six slices of bread sealed in plastic wrap, a four pack of plastic silverware, a plastic cup, and a granola bar found in the pantry from God knows when. Food is taken care of. I'M not going to starve out there in the wilderness, darn it. I packed my plushy pillow into the suitcase, sat on the case and got that sucker zipped. I still had no place for my warm fuzzy blanket, so I called my Boy scout husband and asked what to do with it. He told me to attach it to the outside of my pack. "Um... ok, how do I do that exactly?" With string, I was informed. I don't have string. Well, I'll just carry it. After all, I can't freeze to death. I was so prepared by now that I was feeling the amount of smugness that the pope must feel after listening to pathetic sinners.


First I give my brother the orange thing because we don't want to get shot. He looked it over, handed it to Tiffany, she looked it over and we all decided it must be some kind of face mask. Upon further inspection Andy found the tag and I had brought along a dog vest. Well, we could still hang it in the tree so no one shoots in this general direction, right? My well thought out question only brought well meant laughter my way from my brother and his fiancée. I'm sure they meant it in the nicest way possible. Andy unloaded my bucket of food and held it up and stared at me. "What?" I asked thinking he was about to compliment me on my food packing. He laughed and told me we were only staying one night, how was I supposed to cook the ramen noodles, and how was I going to open any of the cans as I had packed no can opener. Together he and Tiffany laughed at me. I was ok with that, after all, they needed to bond, this would be good for them; I was willing to oblige. Then he held up my warm fuzzy blanket and asked if I had really only brought one blanket. Well, of course I did, I didn't have room for more and this blanket was really warm. He told me it was going to be thirty degrees that night. I assured him it would be fine. Andy and Tiffany exchanged well meant looks and laughed another well meant laugh.


I had eaten (off of a wild stick) a hotdog and a s'more. Suddenly my tummy gave me the rumble that meant I was about to rid my body of a hotdog and s'more. "Uh, Andy," I said "I need to do a number two". "Well, go that way (pointing to the absolute dark away from our campsite), I don't want to see you do it", he told me. "But it's dark out there" I smartly pointed out. I was told to just go. So I grabbed my toilet paper and went to a spot right in front of his truck and over just enough where no one could see what I had done in the morning. Well, cold air and stage fright took over and my body sealed itself so shut that nothing could have left or entered my body at any point. So, I pulled my pants back on, kept my toilet paper and walked back to camp. I sat in front of the fire a little while longer and digestion took over and insisted I try to do another number two. SO, I walked back to my spot, held myself up with my cane, and tried to relax. Finally nature took it's course and I managed to "let it loose". The only problem was that my body weight, being over 200 pounds was trying to stay up on leg muscles that had atrophied a bit due to a stroke and were burning at the weight they were trying to hold up. I finally finished my business and triumphantly went back to camp announcing I had made poo in the woods and didn't even get anything on myself. I was so proud. Proud people are often struck with something bad by God. Six diet cokes later, I really had to do a number one. I was taken to a tree that I could lean against, was told to "pop a squat" and handle my business. No one showed me how to pop a squat. "I am not popping this squat properly", I thought as pee flowed from me all down my right leg and into my shoe and down my left leg and into my other shoe. The problem was that I had had to force myself to relax again and in such a state, I couldn't close the floodgates. I stood there peeing all over myself for about two or three minutes. Finally finishing, I screamed for Andy to bring me new pants and socks and underwear (I chose him because Tiffany had already gone to bed). Laughing another well meant laugh, he brought those things to me as I changed butt naked in the wild; only before changing, I had to wash myself off with paper towels and ice water directly from the cooler, in thirty degree temperatures.


At about two or three in the morning, Andy and I decided to crawl into the tent. Imagine if you will a big fat woman crawling through a tent door onto a squishy blowup mattress. Now imagine this scene except that the left half of this woman's body won't coordinate the way it used to and has little muscle strength left. I was starting to feel that all this laughter wasn't quite as well meant as I had wanted to believe. Let me just get through this part fast. My blanket let me down in the fact that it is no match whatsoever for thirty degree weather, so it left me fighting all night for some of Andy and Tiffany's four or five blankets which they were not wont to share. Occasionally I slept on this really uncomfortable bar under the tent that turned out to be my own cane, which I could have removed at any time, and my feet got so cold I was sure I would have to have some toes removed the next day.
So, all in all, camping was pretty good because no one shot us. Otherwise, no one ate my food, we didn't even have a dog to put the orange dog jacket on, I peed all over myself, everyone laughed at me, I froze to death and probably ended up with e-coli or something from eating off of wild sticks.

Drain Bamage

Hello out there!  I considered not writing today because I have a migraine headache specially designed for me by Satan.  However, two things changed my mind.  First, I have made a solemn vow to write and keep up this blog on a daily basis until my attention wanders or I am in any danger of improving my writing skills.  Second, I read a news article that just begged to be discussed.  So, I put my big girl panties on as well as my anti-glare glasses and I sat down to stare wide eyed at the brightest computer screen ever invented.  Fortunately, after taking a migraine pill and two nausea pills I am still capable of seeing tiny black dots floating around and big flashes of white light when I blink so I know that I haven't died.  That's always welcome news. I am also totally unable to retain inside my head what I have just written down, so today's post may wander off anywhere.  You will never get back the time you spend reading this, I just thought it was fair to tell you.

Today I have had the good fortune to run across an NBC News Health report. This report is titled Head injuries clearly linked to brain damage. I am frankly stunned. Just imagine, if you run headfirst into a brick wall, they will now be able to clearly link the resulting brain damage to you having just dashed your head against a brick wall. I'm not even kidding. The article states “knocks on the head have long been suspected of causing long-term brain damage in professional sports.” This report goes on to tell us “It was only common wisdom and rumor until a few years ago... research shows that the repeated concussions can cause permanent brain damage”. Well, now it is no longer a rumor. It isn't an old wives tale, it is a scientifically proven fact. There are probably charts involved. Unfortunately, there is bad news for those of us who want to keep our brains undamaged. Brain expert Dr. Bert Vargas of the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Arizona says “I don't think anyone has truly been able to work out the exact process through which that (damage) happens”. Well that's just peachy. Now I don't know what to do. The above quote was by a educated man; a doctor who works at the Mayo Clinic and neither he or his colleagues can conclusively figure out the link between bashing one's head into something solid and brain damage. They don't understand the process. Well, that is just fantastic, because now this article has given me a direct warning about my brain. They have warned me against head injuries and concussions, but no one knows why. That seems to be the extent of their knowledge on the subject. Well, Doctor Man, I am just a average citizen. I did not go to medical school. Do you know what I did with my college time? I got an English degree, and probably only because they felt sorry for me. So with no medical knowledge of my own, I am left with the burden of this information and I have no idea what to do with it. I don't know if I should, maybe help them out a little bit, you know, see what kind of research I can come up with. Maybe these scientists simply gave us this information so they won't be held responsible for anything in the future. Remember how mom used to say “Fine, go swimming before 30 minutes is up. Fine, eat and swim. But when you get a stomach cramp, don't come running to me, I don't want to hear it!” Now, mom had no idea why you would get a stomach cramp if you only waited 24 minutes, but she warned you. Perhaps that is what the scientists are doing. They are warning us: don't injure your head, and by all means avoid concussions. If we don't pay attention to these findings and we fail to take the advice of these wise mother-scientists, we will get brain damage. They don't know how or why, but they told us. The rest is up to us, they've done all they can do.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

My first

So, I decided to start blogging again because I have that kind of time on my hands.  I went to my old BlogSpot and this showed up and I have no idea where in the cyber universe my old blog went.  It's probably out looking for that blanket I lost when we moved.  Anyway, not a problem, I'll just start over.  Fresh start, new blog, new ways to crack myself up, because believe it or not, I'm generally the only one who laughs at my jokes.  Don't get me wrong, people laugh at me, but I'm starting to realize it isn't with me.  So, for entertainment purposes I shall write my blog. When I'm in the shower, I always have amazing thoughts and profound insights that could fix all the world's problems which I promptly forget once my foot hits that white fuzzy bath mat, which is why I named my blog Thoughts from the Shower. 

I don't like to go outside too much. It's hot and sticky, or cold and wet, and neither one appeals to me. The sun makes my vampire senses tingle and I begin to burn. I am a burning vampire, I adamantly refuse to sparkle. Therefore, I pay to have my enormous lawn mowed every summer. However, my lawnmower-girl decided she needed a college education and left me. I do have children, but parents are no longer allowed to boss their kids around and make them do chores. As a result, I ended up mowing the lawn the other day. I can only assume that the following conversation I had in my head was due to too much sun exposure.
I picture John Cleese and Susan Sullivan at breakfast having this conversation:

Rich People Having Breakfast

(This was all done in a British accent in my head, if you would care to read it that way.)

“Jefferey, the lawn needs mowing again, I can see those little yellow flowers.”

“Oh Tabby, don't we have a servant we beat for that” Ha ha!

“Jefferey, you can't say you beat the servants now, it isn't done”.

“It was only in jest darling. We have those riding crops, and... well you know...”

“Yes, but you can't joke about that now, Jeffery.”

“How odd. Well, we pay someone to take care of that don't we?”

“I don't think we can joke about that either.”

“I wasn't joking, Tabby, I really think we do.”

“I meant about paying them. I don't think we can joke about that.”

“But we do pay them. I'm sure of it. We give them money.”

“Yes, but darling, surely that isn't paying them. From what I understand they are given, there is no way one can live on that. I think they are simply people who enjoy the outdoors and make sport of taking our money when they would be outside anyhow. It's some sort of odd game, I'm certain.”

“Should we continue it?”

“Everyone does, and I really don't see any harm in it. Just leave it alone Jeffery.”

“By all means darling.”

A long pause ensues wherein you only hear the tink of a fork lightly touching china and the shake of Jeffery's newspaper. He's reading the financial section. He has no idea what he's looking at.

A huge Golden Retriever comes wandering into the room.

“Hello, Goldie, say hello to mummy!”

“Jeffery, please don't address the dog to me.”

“Dear, Goldie's neckerchief is very centered on her neck. I prefer it at an askew angle. Makes her look jaunty. It says 'I'm fun', don't you think?”

“The groomer handles that Jeffery.”

“Will you ask the groomer to make her neckerchief more jaunty in the future then?”

“Yes dear, I'll see to it.”

“Very good.”

The dog lays down in a corner and goes to sleep.

“Dear, the chocolate man who runs the country says he is fixing a recession or something.”

“Jeffery, don't call them chocolate.”

“Why not, that is precisely the color he is. He looks exactly like one of those chocolates I've seen you set out when your mother comes to visit.”

“Yes, but you cannot call him chocolate. He'll find it offensive.”


“Yes, dear.”

“Do you know they don't taste of chocolate?”


“The chocolate people.”

“Jeffery, why...”

A long silence ensues.

“Why what darling?”

“Jeffery, why would you know what anyone tastes like?”

“Oh! That!”


“Well, when I was a small boy, I had a nurse. She was chocolate. Only, I licked her once and she didn't taste of chocolate at all. Come to think of it, she tasted a bit like soap. I always liked the taste of soap.”


“Yes dear?”

“Do you eat the soap?”

“No, of course not darling, but occasionally it will get into one's mouth, in the shower perhaps, and you know, I don't find it an unpleasant experience.”


“Yes dear?”

“Please don't mention being in the shower at the breakfast table.”

“So sorry dear.”

Tabby rolls her eyes.

“Do we know any, dear?”

“Know any what, Jeffery?”

“Chocolate people?”

“Jeffery, no we don't, but I'm sure we have friends that do. And you must stop calling them chocolate!”

“What do you call them to distinguish them from ourselves?”

“You call them African-Americans.”

“Oh! That's good then. African-Americans. Sounds exotic, don't you think?”

While Jeffery rolls this term around on his tongue like wine, Tabby samples her egg, finds it runny and sets the plate aside.


“Yes, Jeffery.”

“What if the African-American chocolate person, lived in say, Brazil? Had always lived in Brazil and had never lived anywhere else. Now, say we, living in America, must refer to this person without the benefit of having a name for him. Would we still call him an African-American? Or would we refer to him as an African-Brazilian? Or perhaps an African-American-Brazilian? And if he had say, a Chinese mother, but still looked chocolate, then how would one address the problem? I don't see any easy solution to that quandary at all. It would seem so confusing to me that by the time I had finished working out the problem, I would have forgotten what the problem was all together and then would be at great pains to go back through my thought process to find what the original question had been. I can see it taking up a vast quantity of my day in fact. And I know if I were in any danger of bringing the question and the answer close together in my head, that danger would no doubt be averted by some relative dropping by or one of my associates calling for some absurd reason, and then all of my time and effort would have been for nothing. Nothing, dear.”


“Yes dear?”

“Please go away.”
And that my friends, is my brain.  We both apologize.