Be a Dear and Put Down Mommy's Vibrator: Child rearing at its dirtiest and finest

--Part of the Rossman Universe--

My old friend, Scarlett, has been a mom for quite a while now. She's let me know that apparently the job is slightly harder than I may have initially imagined. Personally I always pictured Peggy Bundy whenever women bitch about motherhood, then I'd always shake my head and think to myself, "Oh, you crazy bitches... Yeah, eating ice-cream bonbons and watching Oprah all day sure is tough! Fuck you!" But after reading through some of Scarlett's diary entries (What? She kind of knew I had access to them!) I've come to realize that motherhood is mostly filled with child snot, dirt, messy meals, and no medals or awards at all. Oh, and it's pretty sick and hilarious. So, after some begging on my end that the world needed to read some more educational shit, Scarlett finally allowed me to post her work [without being sued] to the internet at large. This is Scarlett's life:

Stress Release #12



Once again, on the night before the first day of school, the boy reveals the lunch in his book bag leftover from May. (I know, I should seriously know better by now.) The worst part is, for the past two months, I thought the foul odor from the laundry room was the laundry machine itself and have been bleaching the hell out of it for weeks now. At least the mystery has been solved.


Meanwhile, as no amount of cleaning was going to get rid of the black mold that had taken over said lunch bag, I had to rush to Target (which currently looks like the end of the world if you're in Atlanta) where all the same fools who do all their Christmas shopping on the 24th of December are frantically trying to get clothes, shoes, and supplies for their kids' first day of school tomorrow. I literally got the last boyish/middle schoolish lunch bag available and almost trampled a young kindergarten-aged girl to get to it. (Who actually should have already been in bed for her first day of school tomorrow.)


In hindsight, it would have served him right had I brought home a Barbie or Hello Kitty lunchbox for him.


We're off to another great start. Yipee-Ki-Ya-Mother-F*ckers.



I woke up feeling mildly depressed that I now have a teenage daughter, but then I realized that means my husband now has a teenage daughter and "HAHAHA!" because the joke's on him.




Just heard Stone Temple Pilots.

On the oldies station.

How the fuck is that possible.



Stress Release #11


Last night my husband got out of bed, put the dog in his crate, and climbed back into bed without turning off the lights. So I said, "Hey. You didn't turn off the lights." And he said, "But I put the dog away." "Yeah, but you didn't turn off the lights. Why would you get out of bed and not turn off the lights?" "But I put the dog away. You turn off the lights." "But you were already out of bed." And so it went, back and forth. (Yes, I know. You're jealous of our Friday nights.)


Anyway, finally I said, "You know what? Fine. I actually LIKE sleeping with the lights on. Yep. Betcha' didn't know that about me, huh? In fact, I can sleep ALL night with the lights on." And he said, "Me too." And it turns outs the bastard CAN sleep with the lights on. (Fortunately for me, 2 hours later, the girl came in with a bloody nose, looking for paper towels. I told her to turn the lights off when she left.)



While at Target today, the woman in front of me decided rather than head to the dressing room, she would try on her bra over her shirt while waiting in line to pay for it. Being the conscientious person that I am, I gently tapped her on the shoulder and politely told her this wasn't the appropriate place for that type of thing. Then I directed her to the WalMart down the street.



There was a big brother/sister argument this morning about the girl wearing a bra to school. The boy was emphatic that she didn't need one, the girl was emphatic that her "puberty class" said she did.


The boy: "But it's not a real bra." The girl: "Yes it is." The boy: "No, it's not. And you're not even in any sports right now." I jumped in and asked what that had to do with the price of rice, and he rolled his eyes and replied, "Mooom, it's a training bra. [Emphasis on 'training']. What sport is she in training for?" (And he was completely, completely serious.)



Stress Release #10



Groannnn...We received our annual Christmas card/letter from THAT family. You know, the one who never has a bad year. It read something like this..."1600 - little Timmy's score on this year's SAT; 5- wife completed fifth triathalon this year; 12 - the number of countries we visited this year...blah, blah, blah" If you really want to wish me a Merry Christmas then please tell me "1600 - the amount it cost us to bail little Timmy out of jail for first time; 5 - 5th round of botox for wifey; 12 - number of times bill collectors call a day." Yes, I'm a hater and I'm ok with that. (What do you mean that was your card?)



Oh. My. Gawd. All I wanted for Christmas was to start a nice little family tradition that involved going to a nearby church's Christmas Festival, enjoy some classic Christmas songs, maybe drive around after to see some tacky Christmas lights, and the whole damn family revolted. I mean RE-FUCKING-VOLTED. You would have thought I had announced we were going to skip Christmas altogether instead of just going to an hour and a half Christmas show.


Now, let me just put things into perspective. I don't go to church, nor did I grow up going to church. In fact, I'm pretty certain I can count on my hands the number of times I've even set foot in a church. One of those times was when I was getting married, and I was seriously concerned I was going to be struck down at the altar by a bolt of lightening. When I was thirteen years old, I remember playing tennis with a friend when it came up that my family didn't go to church, and she said, "But you still go on Christmas and Easter, right?" And I said, "Nope." Well, I could still hear my "Nope" echoing on the courts as her tennis racket fell out of her hands while her mouth hung straight open. The look on her face made me worried that the earth was about to crack open and suck me straight down to Hell right then and there.


Fast forward twelve years to twenty-five year old me. I was at work when I asked a co-worker what Good Friday was, and she of course said, "Good Friday is the day Jesus died." And I said (now mind you, I was a twenty-five year old college graduate who'd pretty much gotten A's all her life) said, "What? Then what's Easter?" And of course she said, "That's when Jesus rose from the dead." And I yelled across a highly professional office, during work hours, "Jesus rose from the dead?! Jesus Christ, that's a fucking miracle!!!" So you see, I'm going to Hell.


I tell you all that just so you can better put the situtation into context in that it's not as though I'm constantly asking my family to go to a church service with me, but last year, a friend had invited me to her church's Christmas play that she and her family were a part of, and when I left, I thought to myself, "Hmmm, this would make for a nice little family tradition during the holidays." I'm not really open to going to church regularly, but perhaps baby steps. A little exposure. Get comfortable with it. If only I could go back in time and bitch slap my own damn self for even thinking the thought.


The night of the play, during dinner, I reminded everyone they'd need to change out of their sweatshirts and jeans because we were heading over to the church for the play. Now, despite the fact that the play was on the calendar, and everyone had been reminded of it probably four times already throughout the day, they looked at me as though I had grown a second head. Husband included. Then the silence was interrupted by the immediate sobs coming from my ten year old daughter who insisted I had ruined her life because she was missing the sleepover at Rebecca's house. "Who the hell is Rebecca?" I asked. "She's (sob, sob, sob) one of Sophia's friends (gasp, sob, snort) and she invited me to spend the n-n-niiight tonight, and now I'll never be invited to another sleepover ever againnnn!" (Giant wail.) I looked to my husband for help who said, "Well maybe we can drop you off after the play, honey." "Hey, if she's not going, I'm not going either!" interjected my eight year old son. Ohmygod, my husband is such a traitor. Once again he swoops in as the nice guy trying to appease everyone, leaving me holding the bitch card. "What?" I said. "No. It'll be like 9:30/10:00 by the time it's over, we're not dropping you off at a stranger's house. No. No, no, no. We're going to the play. As a family. It's going to be an evening full of holiday cheer, and we're all going to have a jolly good time, damnit. Now go get dressed!"


"Well," says my bastard husband, "I don't see how we're going to have time to change. Especially you. You always take forever. It's probably better to not even go than to show up late in the middle of a church event." I was seriously going to hurt him. Aside from the fact that I had already purposely changed my clothes and done my hair and makeup before dinner, now he was playing the passive aggressive card. "I. literally. have. to. put. on. my. shoes." I gritted out between my teeth. Then I reminded him that if he didn't want to go, he shouldn't have agreed to it last week, blah, blah, blah ending with "and you're vulnerable in your sleep." "Fine," he said, "But I'm just letting you know. I'm already exhausted after work this week, so don't be mad at me if you hear me snoring." Grrrrrrrr....these people were ruining my Christmas tradition before we even got out of the house.


Finally, everyone was in the car, and mind you, the bitch fest has not stopped once since the announcement at dinner to get ready. My daughter is still crying, my son is still complaining, and my husband is still being a passive aggressive dick. "Mooom, she hit me in the shoulder!" "No I didn't! I slapped him on the neck!" "Look at this jackwagon, trying to cut us off! That's right, fuckstick, I'm talking to you. Jesus Christ, what a fucking douchbag!' (That was my husband.) The vision of us all driving merrily to the church, listening to and singing Christmas tunes was slowly (all right, quickly) being flushed down the toilet. It took us forty-five minutes to go 1.3 miles. (Did I mention it's a very popular Christmas Festival in the community?) That's forty-five minutes of pure, pent-up family hostility just stewing and boiling in the ol' family van, and it was all directed at moi. Oh, Joy to the World.


I was so angry with my family, I couldn't even see straight. I stomped into the church, sat down, and didn't even look at them the whole time. I didn't want to claim them, I was so upset with each of them. But then, with just the finale yet to come, my entire family stands up in the middle of the aisle and not so sublty starts "Pssst-ing" me. "Hey, mom," I hear. "Pssst. Come on. Let's go." says one of the kids. "Yeah, let's get out of here before we're stuck in traffic." That would be my husband chiming in. Ohmygod, I couldn't ignore them. They were getting louder and gaining more attention. "Dear Jesus, if you can grant me the power of invisibility, for just five minutes, I promise to never, ever bring my family to church again. Pleeeeeeeeze? Thank you. Amen." It didn't work. I slunk out of the church totally humiliated and beyond pissed that I had missed the best part of the show.


Needles to say, there was no hot cocoa or looking at tacky Christmas lights afterwards. Instead, we drove home, not talking to each other, and then I sent everyone straight to bed. Husband included. Hey, he was the one who claimed he was so tired, he wasn't going to make it through the show, I reminded him. "Oh yeah." he mumbled. "You coming?" "Uh, not on your life." I spent the better part of the night on Amazon trying to figure out how to get a truckload of coal scheduled to be delivered to my house on Christmas morning.


When my husband found me sleeping on the couch the next morning, he woke me up and said, "You know what? The show last night was really nice. We should make it a tradition."


"Hallelujah. Holy shit. Where's the Tylenol?" (I couldn't have said it better myself, Clark.)


Stress Release #9


When I was 6 years old, my father told me babies came from belly buttons. Then he ran. A few years later, my mother called me out of my room and said, "Now I want you to know... if you ever have ANY questions about ANYTHING, you can always come to me." I have to say, it was a good decade later before I even realized that that was "the" talk. In fact, my parents and I have yet, to this day, discussed where babies come from. Ever. And I always swore I would never do that to my children. But now that the time has come, I've not only forgiven my parents for their cowardice, but I'm actually beginning to think they may have had the right idea.


It all started a few nights ago when I heard A LOT of giggling coming from upstairs. Not one to miss out on a good time, I raced upstairs to find two little ones giggling like crazy with covers up to their eyes and one rattled father who sure seemed like he was looking for an exit sign above the door. When I asked said father what was going on, he kind of mumbled, "I'll tell you later" out of the corner of his mouth. But "I'll tell you later" has never worked well for me, so I kept pushing and he kept saying (ventriloquist style) "Later." Finally he sighed in defeat and told me our 9 year old daughter had been asking if he thought Obama would have any more kids, since he only has daughters. (Why this topic would be on her radar is completely beyond me other than she's a kid and kids are always thinking the most random thoughts.) Anyway, when he told her he'd be surprised if they chose to have any more children, she immediately zeroed in on the word "choose." "Wait. What do you mean choose? How do you CHOOSE to have a baby?" Up until this point in time, both kids just accepted that when people get married, they magically have a baby. (Despite the fact that their Aunt Kellie was How babby is madepregnant well before her wedding...thankfully that did not compute for them. Bullet dodged.) Anyway, my husband told the kids if they wanted to know about how to have a baby, they could talk about it another time but it was getting late and they needed to go to sleep. (Pussy.) To which the 9 year old exclaimed, "Wait! I get it!" (Giggle, giggle, giggle.) She then turns to her 7 year old brother and says, "Have you heard of sex?" The 7 year old then slaps his hand over his mouth, eyes bugging out of his head, and falls into uncontrollable laughter. Then he says, "Wait, wait, wait. So Dad... that means you had to have sex with Mom two times because you have two kids!" (Giggle, giggle, giggle.) And his sister chimes in with, "Ewwww!!! I just thought of the gross part!" And that's when her father passed out.


Fast forward to the next day, my daughter has still not dropped the subject. So many questions still on her mind (SO many damn questions). Anyway, now it's dawned on her that one of my friends who is set to deliver next month is not married. Well, "I just don't get how Ms. Holly is pregnant. I mean did she have a boyfriend or something?" So in an attempt to explain in-vitro fertilization, I had to remind her how a man has sperm, a woman has eggs, and when they come together, yadda, yadda, etc. "But," I said, " because Ms. Holly really wanted to have a baby and had no one in her life at the moment to give her any sperm, she went to the doctor's office and paid money-" And my daughter completely interrupted me mid-sentence and yelled, "Ms. Holly paid the doctor to have sex with her?!!" Oh yeah. You know that rumor is just waiting to happen at this point. (And the questions are STILL coming...) I haven't had sex on the brain this much since, well ever. I'm a woman. I don't really think about sex that much. I'm exhausted.



It's late March and I just found two broken Christmas ornaments carefully hidden behind a picture frame. On one hand, how clever of them... Apparently they knew it'd be months before I got around to dusting. On the other hand, the fact that neither of them realized the trash can would be the most secure way of eliminating any incriminating evidence means we probably don't have to worry about saving money for any Ivy League schools. 


Maybe it was my husband...


Stress Release #8


Whoever came up with Elf on the Shelf is the devil. Oh sure, it sounds adorable: Santa sends each family its own little Elf to act as a scout and record who's been naughty and who's been nice. Then every night he magically flies back to the North Pole to report back to Santa, and every morning he returns to a new hiding place. BUT, if anyone touches or moves him, all his magic will disappear, and he will no longer be able to fly back and forth to the North Pole. A positively charming Christmas tradition, don't you think?


Charming my ass. The only reason an Elf even ever came to visit us in the first place is because the rest of the neighborhood jumped on the bandwagon, completely forcing my hand, because my kids believed Santa didn't think they were special enough to have their own damn Elf. (Brilliant marketing, I might add. Almost as brilliant as the person who came up with the idea that little girls should sell cookies every year. Legalized child labor is marketing genius at its best, but I digress.) Not that letting the kids believe Santa didn't love them wasn't a tempting route, but in the end I couldn't watch them suffer (well, not ANOTHER season at least). So, against my better judgment, I brought home an Elf. The kids named him Zack, after Zack Effron. (Cannot make it up, people.)


Elfs need love tooAnyway, right away I was in trouble, because only a few nights into it, I had forgotten to move him to a new spot. When I stumbled downstairs at the crack ass of dawn to find the kids DEVASTATED that Zack had not changed places and obviously not flown back to talk to Santa the night before, I felt like the worst mother in the world. I mean, they. were. CRUSHED. So naturally, I did what any good mother would do. First I panicked, and then I channeled Chris Farley from "Tommy Boy" and said, "Ewwwww....what'd YOU doooooo?" My 5 year old son, apparently racked with guilt, broke into sobs and admitted he had touched him the day before. Hot damn, I was off the hook! And yeah, I get that that means I won't be getting the Mother of the Year award I was promised, but I'm OK with that. (I figure everyone ends up on a couch someday paying someone to listen to their problems anyway, and who does everyone always blame? Their mother. So, really, what do I have to lose?)


Now, I have friends and neighbors who come up with really elaborate things their Elf does while he visits. Some leave notes (little, tiny ones) every night, and others leave little, tiny footprints all over. Charming. But the friends I love/hate the most are the ones who really go above and beyond with their Elves, pretending that they're "naughty" and get into all sorts of trouble when everyone goes to sleep. One such friend took toilet paper and strung her entire main floor with it one night. Another friend's children ran downstairs to find their Elf had turned their kitchen table upside down and put Burger King hamburgers on all the upturned legs for breakfast. This was just on a regular school morning. Damn overachievers putting the pressure on us average parents who barely remember to move him to a new spot each night. Most nights, I have to wake up around 2 AM to do the "Panic Move." Most everyone who owns an Elf is familiar with the "2 AM Panic Move" (aforementioned overachievers aside, but they can just suck it). And let me tell you, after you pull three or four nights in a row of the "2 AM Panic Move" with children waking up at 5:30 because they're as excited about finding him as they are about Christmas morning itself, you're exhausted. I might as well have a newborn in the house for all the sleep this little bastard is costing me.


And he is a little bastard. Even a friend I've known for almost 20 years, who I've never, EVER heard so much as the word "darn" come out of her mouth, referred to him as "that fucking Elf." Oh yeah, he's that evil. Bottom line, the Elf sucks. (Mall Santa swallows.)

Stress Release #7


Today's Meals-on-Wheels conversation with 82 year old Mrs. Roper — who, mind you, has only ever spoken to me once in 4 years — lasted an hour and a half, and ranged from everyone she has ever known who is now dead, to her childhood school days, to her parents, to her husband, which led to the most unfortunate topic of "intercourse" (her word, not mine), "all that semen", and "constant messy clean up". And no matter how the voice in my head willed her to change subjects, she simply. wouldn't. drop. the topic. In the end, I played stupid, told her I was a virgin, and got the hell out of dodge. And now I'm supposed to somehow fall asleep tonight. Shudder.

We went camping with the cub scouts again this weekend. It was horrid. Simply horrid. (Except the kids had a fantastic time so it wasn't a total waste.)


To start with, Friday I went to the hair salon for a keratin treatment. I know men don't know what this is, but it's a treatment that is supposed to make your hair look smoother and shinier for 3-5 months. Backing up the truck just a moment, I have never spent real money on my hair. For 12 years I've reminded Brian how much I've saved him b/c he doesn't know what it's like to be married to someone who spends buckets of money on her hair/nails/tan(would if I could)/facial, etc. every week. Seriously, many women I know spend over $200 every 6 weeks to color their hair. [Note from the Rossman: Holy shit! Really, ladies? Christ, why not just save that money up and get a tit job instead? Something EVERYBODY'LL enjoy!]


Add that up over 12 years, and I've decided it's finally time to do something, but I haven't yet been brave enough to color it (reddish hair is harder to color b/c it just often looks so fake/purple) so I splurged on this. Don't judge me, but after tip, I spent $300 on it. Strangely, the husband hasn't once asked how much it costs. This is surprising b/c throughout our entire marriage he has asked me how much I spent on "that stick of chewing gum" or "those socks" which always, always leads to me yelling the same thing, "How dare you question me! I've never once, ONCE mispent our money. I don't question..." and so on and so forth. So it's very ironic he hasn't asked.


OK. I've said all that to get to the point. Which is, after the treatment she tells me I can't wash it until Tuesday (gross) which I knew upfront, but she continues to say I can't even get it wet, wear a hat, or tuck it behind my ears. Now I'm in trouble, b/c I assumed I'd be camping with a ballcap to hide the said nasty hair, but more than that I know it's supposed to rain throughout the campout. And somehow, I don't want the husband to know exactly how important it is to me to keep the hair dry.


So now I've arrived at the campout with my hair already looking as though I've spent a week in the woods and I can't put a hat on to hide it. (Perhaps not a big deal to guys, but internally, I'm very upset.) Then the rain comes. I can't put a hat on. I have an umbrella and a hooded sweatshirt on that's way too hot for the weather. Now I look like a double idiot. Meanwhile, I have a really bad sinus/headcold and the husband tried to get me to stay home, but I didn't want to miss all the "fun" memories.


So, when nighttime comes, it's apparent to me that 1.) even though I thought I knew the pack's well-known snorer's tent, he must have brought a new one b/c I set up our tent right beside it, and 2.) I cannot breathe flat on my back at this point. So I leave the tent, and trek to the car where I attempt to sleep sitting straight up in the thunderstorm where at least my hair is dry and I can breathe - barely. The sun finally comes up and I jam the key in the ignition thinking we're getting a start on getting the hell out of here and my car alarm goes off. Twice. I woke up all 300 campers. And they were not pleased. Then I had to pack up the car in the rain, meanwhile secretly trying to keep my hair dry. I know there are real problems in the world, but still.


Ever since we've been home, I've been in bed sick as a dog, finally better tonight. The good news is I've been in bed sleeping and reading ""The Hunger Games" Trilogy which is totally addicting even if it's for teens. [Note from the Rossman: Seriously, read this series to your 6 - 12 year old. They'll love you for it!] Sad to say one has to be sick in bed to get to have a lazy day or two, but it's been wonderful even if I felt like shit. Tomorrow I get to have my my hair washed and it better have been worth it. To say I look like ass right now would be putting it mildly. Plus, I just feel disgusting. Blech. Again, I know there are real problems in the world, yada, yada, yada. Kiss my ass.

The dog to your left ate a bar of soap last night. And a bag of razors the night before that , and my favorite pair of underwear the night before that. Oh, and let's not forget last week when he ate the husband's dinner off his plate literally 5 minutes before he came home from work. What I'm trying to say is, the dog to your left is free. I'll even pay the shipping costs or hand deliver him myself.



Stress Release #6


What's worse? That I told my husband to go upstairs and start without me, or that he did?

I'm helping out with the boy's summer camp this year, because I'm insane and can't say "no" when people ask for favors. Day two: 9:01 a.m. -- Father asks how his son's behavior was the day before and then casually mentions he has Asperger's. No. Shit. I hardly noticed. (I could have used that little bit of info, however, beforehand; in particularly before we had hit the shooting range.) 9:02 a.m. -- A different boy proudly announces he threw up 3 times at breakfast. My fingers are crossed that I, too, can start vomiting in the next couple hours so I don't have to go back tomorrow.



Stress Release #5


My husband is many things good and wonderful, but handy is not one of them. In fact, I come from a long line of unhandy men. I can remember my dad having 9 different screws left over after putting together the family's first gas grill and shrugging his shoulders as though it was no big deal. I also remember the time he nearly chopped his hand off when he was (drum roll please...) using the ax as a hammer. Or how about the time he tried to install my Garfield phone and instead of a phone, I got a 12 foot hole in my bedroom wall? The point is, one would think I'm used to not having anyone around who can fix things. But it still irritates the hell out of me. Probably the same way it irritates the hell out of my husband that I can't cook worth shit. Oh yeah, and I don't put out like I used to either.


Anyway, about two weeks ago, the kitchen disposal stopped working. But my husband insisted I not call a plumber because he might be able to fix it. Just not tonight. Maybe over the weekend. (Wait. You thought I meant this weekend? I meant next weekend.) So meanwhile, while I'm waiting for my husband to not fix the disposal, the entire house starts smelling like ass. Knock down, drag out, can't-have-small-children-over the-dogs-can't-stop-whimpering ass.


FINALLY, my husband (probably because he simply couldn't take the smell anymore) attempts to check out the disposal. "My hand is too big," he says. "I'm gonna' need you to put your hand down there and feel around." To which I lost it. I don't know if it was the smell that pushed me over the edge or simply the fact that I had spent two weeks with it knowing he wasn't going to be able to fix it anyway, but I lost it. We're talking, I flat out lost my shit.


Now, for those of you who have been married for some time, there are moments through the years when you simply lose it. And it's never over a big thing. It's always over something stupid and your losing it is always completely disproportional to the situation at hand. The person who does the losing makes an irrational ass of themselves and it becomes marriage legend. The incident becomes forever etched into your marriage as the time you blah, blah, blah, fill in the blank. For example, this will forever be known as the "Disposal Outburst of 2010." (We have others, like the Blizzard of '99, the infamous Disney Lunch of '05, and let's not forget the entire month of December 2008.)

"THERE IS NO WAY IN HELL I AM PUTTING MY HAND DOWN THERE!!!" I yelled. Yes, it was followed by a string of expletives. Yes, there was jumping around on my part. And yes, my head did spin around. Twice. "That is NOT part of my job description," I declared. "The only thing I NEED to do is call the plumber!"


The next day, Donald was at my door. Yes, I'm on a first name basis with my plumber. Yes, his real name is actually Donald. He's been to my house so often in the past 10 months that I wouldn't be surprised if the neighbors are talking. He even sent me a Christmas card. We're talking a personal card — not a company card.


Anyway, Donald heads straight to the kitchen, shines a light in the disposal and almost immediately says, "I see your problem."


Me: "Really? Great!"


Donald: "Yep." Then he says, and I shit you not, "My hand is too big. I'm gonna' need you to put your hand down there and..."


I pulled out a 1986 quarter. He charged me $164. My hand still smells like ass.

Stress Release #4


I HATE telemarketers with a passion. Hate 'em, hate 'em, hate 'em. I hate them so much that I have actually been known to fuck with them when they call. Sometimes I'll just repeat everything they say as though I'm in kindergarten. For example:


Them: "Is Ms. Scarlett there?"

Me: "Is Ms. Scarlett there?"

Them: "Excuse me?"

Me: "Excuse me?"

Them: "Hello?"

Me: "Hello?"

Them: "Is your mother home?"


And it can go on and on like that depending on the caller's tenacity and/or I.Q. I've also been known to turn the tables on them by answering the phone with "Do you have time for a 3 minute survey on... (fill in whatever turns your crank here)?" Or, on a boring day, I simply make it sound like we have a very bad connection. BUT, the most effective, the absolute fastest way to get your name off their list is to simply pant into the phone. No joke. Unfortunately for me, two tiny problems have resulted. 1.) I've recently caught a live one who's on to me and now calls me back several times a day only to "pant" back at me, and 2). I overheard my daughter tell a friend that her mom pants on the phone a lot while she's at school. Beware the power of Karma...

Stress Release #3


"Sometimes you wanna go, where everybody knows your naaame... (bum, buM, bUM, BUM) and they're always glad you caaame..." Yeah, well, unfortunately for me that place would be the grocery store. Or the dry cleaners. Pick your poison. And now I can't even go there anymore. The cleaners, I mean. And I really love my dry cleaner, Mr. Hyong. I love that if I'm walking by the store, he'll run out to say hello to me. I love that he always greets me with a little bow at the drive thru saying, "Ahhh... Ms. Scarlett. How nice to see you today. Your phone number is still xxx-xxxx, right?" And let's just say I still owe him a super, sloppy wet kiss for the fact that he managed to get an entire glass of red wine out of my CREAM colored wool blazer that I had only worn ONCE. But what I love most about him is that he never allows me to help him carry anything to the car.


"No, you just sit!" he'll say. "Relax!" To put it simply, the man makes me feel like a queen. Sometimes, I close my eyes and pretend I'm some super hot Hollywood starlet (ok, so I have a really big imagination, but go with me) who's being pampered by everyone hired to wait on me while he's frantically digging around for my stuff in the back of the store. Well, that's exactly what I was doing recently, when a sharp 'Tap!' 'Tap!' 'Tap!' on my car window pulled me away from my daydream (Patrick Dempsey had just jogged by, hot and sweaty of course, and had stopped to commiserate with me about how hard it is to find good help in this town). Startled, I rolled down the driver's window only to have Mr. Hyong thrust his arm through it, his thumb and forefinger pinched together with some sort of fabric dangling from them in front of me. I couldn't quite focus on... OH MY GOD! Wait. That's my favorite thong! Shit! I hate when my lady stuff gets lost in the dry cleaning pile at home. Not too big of a deal except for the fact that he had carried it to the car as though it were the world's dirtiest diaper — arm held out as far as possible from his body — and just dropped it directly in my lap.


"For Fuck's Sake, Mr. Hyong!" I yelled. "Couldn't you have at least put it on a hanger with some plastic and slid it between some suits? I think that's my neighbor's car behind me in line!" I point, Mr. Drummond waves.


..................Giant Awkward Pause.............................
.........................Still Awkward...............................................

Followed By More Awkward.....................................................


All right. So I didn't really yell that. But I sure as hell thought it, and the awkward silence most definitely happened. Soon after I mumbled something along the lines of "thanks" and then squealed out of the parking lot like a bat out of hell, kids wailing because I left before he could hand them their lollipops. I think I paid him, but I'm not sure. And now I only have one place that knows my name.

Stress Release #2


Holy Hell. The dog has apparently eaten a tub of butter and a bag of marshmallows. Suffice it to say his stomach is currently making noises that no stomach should make. (I'm scared.)

I drove by the hospital yesterday to which Timmy said, "That's where I was born, right Mom? I was in your tummy there. But, I didn't come out of your tummy. I came out somewhere else." Lots of giggles from the backseat followed by a long pause. Then... "I'd tell you, Mom, but I don't think you could handle it." I almost ran into oncoming traffic.

I'm taking Timmy to have his ankle x-rayed. Part of me is hoping it's broken if we're going to take the time and money to have someone look at it, but I'm thinking it's not. So hard to tell with little ones when they're really hurting vs. just milking it. Sigh. 


Yes, when I was little I broke my wrist, but my parents didn't take me to see a doctor for two weeks. So that memory (and yes, I still hold it over them), combined with the fact that he woke up crying in the middle of the night about it, prompted me to take him in. But...nothing! (Just a day in various waiting rooms and a big bill coming my way...) :) 



Stress Release #1


I've finally thrown out (I mean, donated) the 6 bridesmaid dresses hanging in my closet. (Not YOURS, of course. Everyone else's. Yours was my favorite.)

Traffic court today :(


Survived - pleaded 'nolo'. Sadly, had to speed over there so as not to be late. Sigh. 

Dugout seats on opening day for the Atlanta Braves: WIN! Trying to explain to Timmy why he can't wear his Cubs hat: FAIL.



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