Tuesday, May 26, 2009

in case you can't get enough of the awkward

My friend Erin told me about a web site last week, and thought I should mention it on awkward Tuesday. But I spaced it off until now.

Whoever came up with this site is absolutely brilliant.

First let me paint the picture for you...

It usually happened on a Saturday. Very, very early on a Saturday. Baths would be taken, outfits would be chosen.

It was family picture day.

Mom would go into hair Nazi mode and pull my down-to-my-back hair into the tightest pony tail one could ever concoct. My eyes would peel back toward my forehead as she looped the band tighter and tighter. By the time she was finished, I looked like a Caucasian Asian.

Seriously.

As icing to the cake, Mom was never satisfied with the first attempt, so I got to endure this travesty nine or ten times.

My brother would be shoved into uncomfortable corduroy slacks and, if the day was extra special, bright red suspenders. Mom would wash his hair, but it would never lay down properly, so she spent much of the morning licking her palm and applying her saliva to the back of his head in an attempt to force the offending follicles into submission.

Dad wore his best suit, and inevitably picked the incorrect color shirt. Mom would yell and tell him to change. And request that he get his eyes checked because "That shirt is clearly not blue. It is GREEN! The rest of the family is wearing BLUE!!."

Mom wore eyeliner and heels, and my sister would get to wear blush because it wasn't a school function and no boys would be seeing her. Then she would be told she needn't have a purse in the family photo because nobody else would have a purse in the photo. Yes, we understood that having a purse is exciting and she is almost 10 years old, but the purse was not to appear in the pictures.

She would cry.

Eventually, the fam would pile carefully into the van (Ford Aerostar to be exact) and be instructed to "PLEASE sit very still. And don't touch each other."

Ten minutes later we would arrive at whatever torture chamber of a studio these shoots took place.

Chaos would ensue.

A man that looked an awful lot like an escaped pedophile from Leavenworth would lick his greasy mustache and arrange our family in poses that involved kneeling, leaning and tilting our bodies into positions that no one in their right mind would ever agree to.

Then the photographer would have one-sided conversations with himself that went something like this:

"Little girl in the tight ponytail...yes, you. Can you see me? Your eyes seem a little...never mind, it's because of your hair. Just move your head to the left. NO, not that far. That's your right. The other way. YES! Up a little further. No, down. No, up. THERE!

"Mom, you look lovely. Your shoulder pad is a bit cock-eyed though, can you adjust that? Great. Now place your hand on Dad's shoulder and the other on your daughter? Yes, that's right. No, the daughter with the purse. Oh, we're not going to have the purse? Okay, little girl, you can put your purse over there on the desk. Please don't cry...no one has purses in pictures."

"Okay, Dad, lookin' handsome! Look at this lovely family you have. Can you put your hand on Mom's back? No touching now, this is a family place. Mwuah ha ha ha ha ha!" (wiipes away tear of laughter.)

"Little boy, can you pretend you like your sisters and squeeze in a little tigher? Great. No, there's no need to give rabbit ears. Just smile. Well, that's close. You kind of look angry. Can you do a happy smile?"


"All right, family! Let's do this. Everyone look at Emily, she's the one with the squeaky duck. Everyone look at her and say "Money money money!"

****

Is it coming back to you now? I'm sure it is. If you're breaking out in hives remembering these times with your family, check out this website.

http://awkwardfamilyphotos.com/

The next time I'm at my parents house, I'll dry to drudge up some of our own gems from the back of our photo albums....you can't say you haven't been warned.

color me awkward

Before we get into the awkwardness, I hope you all had a wonderful Memorial weekend. I totally did...and pictures are coming.

Onto business...

During college, I worked as a waitress to keep the bills at bay. I didn't love it, and at the time wondered why I was resorting to a job that made me feel two inches tall and oftentimes paid absolutely nothing.

I now realize that restaurants are, if nothing else, a large breeding ground for awkward moments, and my audience can now benefit and laugh at my experiences.

You're welcome.

The restaurant we're focusing on today is a large restaurant chain called Chili's.

(We've all heard of it, yes? Perhaps eaten there a few times and dined on free chips and salsa and water and then tipped the hard working waitress $1.95? Just making sure we're on the same page.)

My store manager's name was Kasey. He was a younger manager, probably in his late 30's, and he ran a very tight ship.

Kasey was not unlike any other restaurant manager, which basically means he was bipolar.

If you caught him at a good time, he was pleasant, courteous and downright kind. However, if you accidentally ordered a customer a hamburger when they asked for chicken fingers, he would turn into a red-faced monster and start listing all the ways he was going to kill your first-born child. We called it "The Fury" when Kasey got upset like that.

Awesome.

Anyways.

Kasey and I had a decent relationship. He was nice to me for the most part, and always apologized later if he yelled. We flirted occasionally and harmlessly, (it's part of the food industry, people) and I would dare go so far as to say Kasey liked me as a person, not just because I was his employee.

One afternoon, Kasey approached me as I was counting up my (meager) tips from the day:

Kasey: Hey! Is it true you're an interior designer?

Me: Well, I hope so. Otherwise I'm giving a lot of money to KU for nothing. (snorts)

Kasey: Do you ever do side jobs?

Me: Yeah, I've helped a few people out, why? Do you know someone that needs design consulting?

Kasey: (eyebrows raise) Well, yeah. Me.

Me: (Trying not to roll eyes. Friends and co-workers always want your design help. Until they find out you expect to be paid.) Oh! What do you need designed? Are you moving or something?

Kasey: (laughs) No no. I just moved to my house six months ago. But I need help picking paint colors and furniture for a few rooms. Would you be interested? I would pay you, of course.

Me: Sign me up!
_____

Three weeks later, I arrived at Kasey's house, ready to design.
Because this was my first paying interiors job, I wanted to do everything right. I showed up at Kasey's house with everything but kitchen sink cleaner.

I had fabric, paint swatches, furniture books, magazines, a tape measure, extra pencils, grid paper and a notebook.

Kasey greeted me at the door, and laughed. Apparently he was expecting me to just jot down notes and come with swatches later.

Oh well.

He offered me a beer and I hesitated for a moment. I didn't want clouded judgement while I worked. If this went well, it could lead to other paying jobs.

I took the beer anyway.

I was 22, people. Come on.

For 15 minutes, Kasey gave me the grand tour. It was a pretty typical home for a bachelor. Scarce furnishings, mismatched furniture and lots of posters of various types of vodka. If you didn't include the man-child baseball rooom,(which is an entirely different post altogether) everything looked pretty typical.

Kasey and I settled in the living room and talked briefly about what he wanted to do with the space, what colors he liked, and the time frame he expected. We agreed on a price acceptable for the amount of work I'd be doing, and that was that.

Feeling pretty good, I thanked Kasey for his time and stood to let myself out. But he grabbed my hand, pulled me back on the sofa and said, "Hang on a second."

Trotting down the hall, he disappeared into one of the bedrooms and returned with a deck of cards.

He laid them on the coffee table in front of us.

"Cut the deck", he instructed. Completely clueless as to what was going on, I obliged.

Taking half of the cut deck, he fanned the cards out face down and said, "Pick one."

I did.

"Now," he explained. "If I can guess what that card is, you have to stay and have a few more beers. And I get to see what it's like to kiss you."

Um.....

(I might have missed a few classes on the art of seduction, but I'm quite certain the "pick a caaarrrrrd any caaaarrrrrd" approach is more likely to get you a fist in the mouth than a girl in your bed.)

(Especially if it's your boss.)

I immediately scanned the room for anything I could use as a weapon, knowing I only had tampons and my student ID in my purse.

I was going to have to talk my way out of this without instigating "The Fury" from Kasey.

Me: (scooting as far away as possible) Um, Kasey. You're my manager, I don't think this is quite right.

Kasey: (rolls eyes) C'mon, Kim. How many people do you think listen to that rule? Normally girls are knocking down my office door to get with me. Ya know, when I was a manager in Texas, I once had two of my waitresses....together. I maybe older than you, but trust me, I'll go way beyond what you expect.

Me: Inner monologue: Wow, you just said the magic words! Hearing that you banged two girls at the same time is exactly what I needed to hear to sleep with you!

Kasey: I've also been told I'm an amazing kisser. I've had women offer to kiss me just by hearing me speak. Can you believe that?

Me: (Wondering if he has a secret room with a tiger bedspread and black leather furniture and mirrors on the ceiling) Kasey, I have a boyfriend and you know that. Plus, I don't want to know how you kiss. I think I should get going. I'll still do design work for your house, but that's all.

Kasey: (sighs) All right, all right. I can see this isn't going to happen right now. I probably moved a little too fast. You can go ahead and go, but first give me a good night kiss.

I stood up and left. Quickly.

Once safe in my car, I realized I had left all of my magazines and the paint colors we had decided on for his house in the kitchen.

I drove away anyway.

I never went back to Kasey's house. Though he left me several messages asking when I could get going on the design work, I never responded, and we never talked about it at work.

A few months later, Kasey took a job managing a Chili's at the Lake of the Ozarks. As far as I know, he's still there.

Something tells me that managing a restaurant where the customer base is drunk, sun burnt college girls is right up Kasey's alley.

(Consequently, if any of my children ever asks to work in a restaurant...the answer is NO.)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

skip to the "loo" my darling

One part of my childhood that is impossible to forget is Sunday church. My attendance at that building for over 20 years is responsible for a good chunk of the awkward moments I experienced as an adolescent.

I'll share one of those moments with you today.

I was raised in a family that believed church was extremely important and needed to be attended every single week. Without. Fail.

My parents were very tight with the other members of our church, especially with the Pastor and his wife. I remember my mom always reminding me to be on my best behavior around them because they were our leaders and therefore deserved our utmost respect.

Our church was of the Lutheran denomination. In case you are not aware, in a Lutheran church there are many unspoken rules that everyone obeys, lest they be chastised privately by the rest of the congregation.

One rule that my mom and dad made sure our family adhered to like glue was this:

Always Look Your Best

Despite how it sounds, this did not mean to simply keep your hair combed and have a clean face.

No, No, NO.

This meant so much more.

A child that showed up to church in jeans and a T-shirt (even if they were clean as a whistle) was clearly into "that pot stuff" or listening to "devil heavy metal".

Any child who wore nail polish in any color other than pink, light pink, hot pink or pale pink was destined for prostitution.

As a parent, if you wanted to be sure your kid was talked about behind every closed door and bathroom stall, all you had to do was let him pick his own outfit for church.

My parents thankfully refused to let me make a fool of myself, and dressed me in proper church attire. Skirts, dresses, effing panty hose, black patent leather shoes.

One Sunday I remember very clearly. I had a new dress (well, it was new to me. I was a victim of hand-me-downs.) that was essentially a jumper. It was a pink and black plaid dress that went over top of a blouse. It looked like this, except not stylish.



I loved my jumper dress. Mom of course insisted that I wear panty hose with the dress because that's what ladies do in church.

I didn't have a choice.

That particular Sunday in between church and Sunday school, I went to use the bathroom in my new jumper. I was in a hurry because our church had just bought a new soda machine.

(Seriously, this is a big step in the Lutheran church. It was a huge controversy at the time.)

I wanted to get a soda to help me get through Sunday School, so I quickly used the facilities and walked to the sink to wash my hands.

As I dispensed the soap, I heard snickers and mumbled conversation behind me. I assumed the other girls waiting in line for the toilets were admiring my jumper.

I patted my hands dry on a paper towel and headed for the door. Just then, the Pastor's wife exited one of the stalls. I smiled at her politely over my shoulder (Mom would be so proud) and reached for the door.

I nearly had the door completely open when I was suddenly yanked back inside by the shoulder.

I turned and found the Pastor's wife smiling down at me. She reached around my back and I felt a significant tugging by my butt.

????

"There you go!" she said sweetly. "Don't want to go out there like that! All the boys would be going crazy!"

Apparently, in my hurry to get to the pop machine, I had pulled my underwear and hose up too fast after peeing. I had inadvertently tucked the back my skirt right into my panty hose. My entire tukus, hose and underwear were completely exposed to everyone behind me.

(I could provide some lengthy commentary on the "good Christian girls" that stood behind me at the sink. But that's another post.)

That morning, the Pastor's wife saved me from certain humiliation.

Despite the awkwardness of having an authroity figure other than my mom pull clothing out of my crack, I did from that moment have a deeper respect for the Pastor's wife and am eternally grateful that she helped me out.

(Because really, there's nothing worse than a Lutheran boy getting an unauthorized peek at your goodies.)

(Seriously, after they get a taste, they'll be after you for life. This I can promise you.)

The Pastor's wife has since passed away, but I will always remember her kindness to an awkward little 6th grader, and how she showed me that being a good person has nothing to do with going to church or being a Lutheran or even being married to a Pastor.

It's simply a decision you make.

Monday, May 18, 2009

your reality is my fantasty

Flashback to being 12 years old at the end of May:

School was out. The days were my oyster. I could drink 9 Pepsi's and eat nachos covered in sour cream for breakfast. I could use an ENTIRE STICK of butter in my Kraft macaroni and cheese if my heart desired.

From the hours of 7:30-3:30 I was free. Until Mom came home. And my freedom ended.

But wait...it's summer! I could still stay up late watching my favorite TV shows for hours on end!!!!

I would pop a big bowl of popcorn right after dinner (popcorn is a perfectly acceptable summertime snack) and snuggle on the sofa to watch The Cosby Show, Family Matters, Lois and Clark, Rescue 911, or whatever fave sitcom was slated to be on that night.

The beginning credits would roll. I would perspire with anticipation.

Would Theo Huxtable get grounded tonight? Would Urkel do that thing where he got all hot and got rid of his suspenders? Would Clark finally tell Lois he secretly wore blue tights in a non-homosexual type way and kiss her passionately? Could William Shatner possibly get any more dramatic as narrator for Rescue 911?

The possibilities were endless. The opening credits would fade to black. It was showtime.

But then, something would go horribly wrong. The opening scene of my show would seem awfully familiar. In fact, I knew Tapanga was going to say that to Cory. And I knew Cory was going to say that to Tapanga.

WHAT IS GOING ON? Then I would remember.


Summer = Re-runs.

And my life was hell.

Thankfully, summer television is not as bleak as it once was, because in the year 2000, an amazing idea was born. And they called it Reality Television.

My friends...starting next week, my gluteous (and getting even more maximus by the day) will be parked in front of the television to watch the following summer shows:


  • The Bachelorette - Jillian got dumped as one of the final contenders for Jason's heart. Thankfully, she avoided finding out the hard way what a gigantic d-bag he is. Now she gets to date 30 men simultaneously and try not to look like a hooker as she makes out with at least half of them.

  • So You Think You Can Dance? - A brand new batch of dancing hopefuls will shake their booties and grind their hips for the chance to be marveled as the best dancer in America. Abs will ripple, sparks will fly, and Mary Murphy will make Paula Abdul look like a shy, drug-free, Catholic school girl.

  • Tori and Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood: The real 901210 is over, but watching Tori Spelling and Dean McDermott after they cheated on their spouses and then got married and made babies makes me re-live the good ol' days. Plus, I can identify with Tori. No, not the cheating part. It's more her constant worrying and paranoia that remind me just how crazy Hubs probably thinks knows I am. But still loves me anyway.

  • The Real Housewives of New Jersey: Hate the accents. Love the drama. Seriously, 5 big haired women who boast alleged ties to the mafia, husbands that are only home 3 weeks out of the year, and kids who aspire to be strip club owners? Like I could turn away for a second. Move over New York City Housewives, these gals can out cat-fight even the likes of you.

  • True Blood: Season 2: I would love to watch Sookie Stackhouse get devoured by Bill the Vampire each week...but we don't have HBO. And with my recent unemployment, I doubt we'll be purchasing extra cable stations anytime soon. I will simply have to wait until we visit Hubs' Mom in Iowa, because she will have every episode taped and ready for my viewing. God bless her.

  • Wipeout: Just kidding. Does anyone really watch this show? Sooooo stupid, but good if you're looking to laugh at people fall. Their pain equals your pleasure. I get it.

There you have it. My life for the next three months. Tears, fights, dancing, crazy ladies screaming, vampires and babies.

Sounds like a typical Monday night for Hubs.



Friday, May 15, 2009

outgoing mail

Dear Opi Nail Polish:

You are amazing. Not only do you coat my nails with the freshest and most amazing pigments, but you also have one small trait that no one but me could possibly appreciate.

You peel off in one piece.

I am a closet nail polish picker,and this is my coming out letter. And it's all because of you. With you on my nail beds, I can completely pick off three fingernails worth of nail polish on the way to the grocery store, and re-apply in less than five seconds.

With your amazing lifting capabilities, there is no nail polish left behind for me to remove before reapplying.

I love you.

Best,

Kim



Dear Grey's Anatomy:

Apparently you were amazing last night. I'll admit, I stopped watching you for - um, a long time. I got tired of looking at Meredith and her bony shoulder blades that could carve a turkey.

I admit it.

But with all the radio chatter and newspaper headlines this morning, I must have missed something spectacular. And it clearly had nothing to do with Meredith or McDreamy.

Because they are boring.

Guess I'll be heading over to abc.com to catch up to find out who:

a) died
b) came back from the dead
c) raised someone from the dead
d) walked on water

I'm on the edge of my seat.

Your Former Fan,

Kim


Dear Cupcake:

I don't know why you projectile vomited on the kitchen floor last night. It scared me to death. I'm taking you to the vet today, and I know that will make you mad.

I apologize in advance.

Although I am fairly certain this occurrence was the result of consuming your lunch like it was on fire and then lapping up half a cup of water immediately afterward, I still have to take you in to the doc. No amount of looking at me with angry eyes or biting my ankles will change that.

So stop trying.

By the way, thank you for the four new holes you poked in our new bedspread. Every time we see them, we will think of you.

Mwuah, little kitty.

Love,
Mommy


Dear Netflix:

I've had the same three DVD's in my living room for three months. Every time I remember to send them back, I still forget anyway.

Do you have some sort of memory annihilating tractor beam radar signal?

(If so, I need to borrow it to help Hubs forget that I (allegedly) broke the vacuum cleaner and possibly the wiring in our bathroom.)

You're making a killing off of my forgetfulness.

I think I may have to cancel you. But I can't, because, in theory, I can rent Sex and the City and Newlyweds whenever I want!!!

How can I possibly give that up?

(I'll tell you how. One word. Hubs.)

It's Been Nice Knowing You,

Kim

Thursday, May 14, 2009

tmi thursdays: get out of the driver's seat

TMI Thursday

Everyone has moments in their past that are embarassing. It's part of the package when you sign up for life.

You never know when these occurences are coming or how bad they'll be. But when they do happen, most people are smart enough to keep those stories tucked away in the confines of their own brain.

But not me.

Somehow, by telling embarrassing stories about ourselves, it reminds us that we're human. We're vulnerable. We aren't perfect.

Today is TMI Thursday hosted by Lilu. This girl has no qualms about telling it all to whomever wishes to listen. And I love it.

Without further ado, below is my first TMI Thursday story. Because, after all, the more embarrassing things you know about me, the better off you can feel about yourself.

Everyone's a winner.
_____________

I traveled for work (back when I was employed). It came with the job. Generally, during those travels, I was expected to take clients out and entertain. We would have lunch or dinner and a few cocktails. Usually, the evenings were calm, reserved and lovely.

Once in awhile though, things went so very, very wrong.

One evening I met two of my fave clients for dinner. H and J are two young, amazing women that always know how to have a good time. We decided to meet out at a little bistro. Delicious Hummus, fragrant wine, amazing conversation.

The problem is, I have not yet figured out how many glasses of wine I can realistically consume before turning into a stumbling, blubbering, loud-mouthed retard.

(Granted, it would probably help if I counted how many glasses I drink as I order them...but that takes work.)

Generally, I just drink until the conversation dries up. Which is fine if you're out with boring people.

Not so good if the conversation never ends.

On this particular night, H and I ended up talking and enjoying each other's company for many hours. When the night finally ended and I stood up to leave, I discovered the innocent restaurant floor had turned into a treacherous rocky path with unsafe holes and land mines.

(Or at least you would think it had by the way I was walking.)

I eventually made it out to my vehicle while patrons back in the restaurant gossiped about me and wondered how far I would get.

I sat in the driver's seat - and discovered my car had grown a second steering wheel.

No way.

Clearly I would not be driving anytime soon. I called Hubs who did his best not to scream at me. I told him I was going to try and sleep in the back of my van until I could drive.

Stumbling and cursing, I threw myself into the backseat, next to all of my sales materials. Boxes, samples, and more samples surrounded me and actually made for a nice little nest.

I slept.

And slept.

And slept some more.

Two hours later I was awakened by a rather unsettling thought and realization. I needed to puke.

Not later, not in a few minutes...but now.

Unfortunately, my high tech vehicle has automatic doors that require some finesse to open, even on a totally sober day. Confused and inebriated as I was, there was no way I could figure out how to open the door in time to expel the contents of my stomach on the sidewalk.

I was going to have to throw up in my car.

Jayzus.

Flailing my arms around me (the van was totally dark) I searched for the closest thing that could serve as a trash can. My hands closed on one of the boxes that housed many of my sales materials.

Quick as a drunken flash, I dumped the contents from the box and lowered my head inside.

Classy.

I would have sneakily tossed the box out of the van and left it for an unsuspecting homeless person to find, but I was terrified a cop would drive by and witness a 28-year-old drunk girl in business attire and bed head tossing a box of vomit out of the back of her vehicle.

So I just left it there.

And slept some more.

Eventually, I woke up and was sober enough to get to my hotel. Upon arriving, I did a sweep of the parking lot and found a dumpster nearby. I threw up my throw up box into the dumpster and headed to my room.

And swore never to drink again.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

this is how we (don't) do it

Author's Note: If you're just stumbling upon this article, you'll be happy to know that since writing it, I did find employment and am now back again in the happy land of  Paycheck Ville.

(I'm convinced it's because I took my own advice, which you'll be reading in about three seconds. Oh yes, I'm that good.)

****** 

Losing your job is no fun. In fact, it can be downright depressing. As you all know, I have recently joined the realms of THE UNEMPLOYED.

(Isn't it weird how "unemployed" sounds like a horrible viral disease you could pick up in a public restroom?)

Having lost my job, I seem to have also lost my will to live.  Well okay, not really, but I am rather upset for approximately 18 hours a day.  In an effort to pull me out of my newly found funk, Hubs sent me this article to help feel better.


In case you're in unemployment haze and can't summon the energy to click, I will summarize. (I'm such an enabler.) The article covers how to bounce back when you find yourself bounced out of your job. Personally, I found it very helpful, insightful and inspirational. But I have something better.


I'm here to tell you what not to do.




Kim's List of Things NOT To Do When You Lose Your Job


DO NOT: Ask your refrigerator for advice

Being unemployed allows you time. Bunches of it. Time which you ironically used to day dream about when you were employed. Now, that extra time somehow manages to easily be filled with Bon Bon's, Dr. Pepper, nachos, burritos, Hot Pockets and the occasional triple meat pizza. But know this: turning to your refrigerator for comfort will ultimately leave you up a creek when it comes time for interviews. Your "Hire Me Now" interview pants will swiftly turn into, "I Look Like a Baby Walrus Wrapped in a Rubber Band" interview pants.

No bueno.

2. DO NOT: Turn on the television until at least 3:00 pm

Daytime television will suck you in with promises of exciting soap opera tragedies and amazing weekday movies. But inevitably, the daytime selections will hold you hostage on your couch until your Hubs comes home from a long day at the office to find you in your dinosaur pajamas with three empty pints of Ben and Jerry's on the floor (see #1).

Lifetime Television is especially dangerous. Meredith Baxter is re-employment kryptonite.

Television from 3:00 on is fine.

(Because I love Ellen. And Oprah. And sometimes they have segments on getting hired. So it's okay.)

3. DO NOT: Look at emails/documents/materials from your past job.

At least for awhile. Seriously, it's the emotional equivalent of looking at old pictures of you and your boyfriend right after a break-up. The wounds are still too fresh. Stay away from those things that remind you of happier days until you've had time to adjust. (Unless you need to do something like look up insurance info or something. Then you can let it slide.)

4. DO NOT: Watch any movies that portray your dream job.

Again, learn from my mistakes.   The day I was laid off, I decided to watch Sex and The City: The Movie.

Big mistake.

Watching Carrie Bradshaw parade around in Manolo's while boasting an amazing writing career left me looking up "How to Tie An Extremely Effective Noose" articles on-line.

There's nothing wrong with focusing on what you want to do next. In fact, it's healthy to have a goal and begin taking steps toward it. However, watching someone else (especially a fictional someone else) that already has everything you want is downright depressing.

5. DO NOT: Think about what you're missing out on.

For some, this will be the easiest rule to follow. If you hated your job often made mental lists of how to end your bosses life, looking back at your ex-employer might be the motivation you need to move onward and upward. But if you truly loved your job a la moi, thinking about the good times salt in an open wound.

(Refer back to #1, salt is BAD.)


I want nothing more than to pick up right where I left off and keep on working. But I can't. Sitting around and thinking about the fun I'm no longer having is the hardest thing NOT to do.

But I'm trying.

I find that I'm keeping busy by continuously scouting job web-sites and applying for everything I see.

While possibly watching Sex and the City" the Movie.

And maybe eating Bon Bon's.

And occasionally checking out "My Husband's Double Life" on Lifetime.

And sometimes looking at emails from my past clientele.

Hey people, I just give out the advice. I never said I follow it.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

in other news...

I lost my job.

Well, that's not entirely accurate. I didn't LOSE it. I know exactly where it is. I just can't have it anymore.

Ironic, isn't it?

Hence the break in blogging last week. Sorry, bloggies, I just couldn't get up the will power to do anything but be depressed.

(Hubs may have had to
watch me wallow in self pity for a solid 48 hours. What a champ.)

(However, my mother-in-law bought Hubs and I Dave Matthews Band tickets for September. WOOOT!)

I will say this, though. I find myself handling it well. Mostly because I know it's not entirely my fault. The economy sucks, and my job was to sell stuff that generally gets sold when the economy is awesome.

You do the math.

The worst part is, of course, that I totally loved my job. Seriously. And I was pretty good at it, if I may pat myself on the back for a minute.

The best part of my job was the people. My clients were/are some of the coolest people roaming the earth. They made me feel better when I was down, they could all drink me under the table and they were always glad to see me.

And now I can't see them again for awhile.

(Unless I just show up at their offices psycho-stalker like. It's a possibility.)

But, in the end, I learned more in the 18 months at my company than I learned in every other job I ever had before. That's a whole lotta learnin'.

I am a teensy weensy bit mad. Or maybe just hurt. I thought I had done enough to earn my stay for just a little while longer. But, I was apparently mistaken.

I'll eventually get over it. I left on really good terms with my company, and who knows? Maybe someday I'll be there again when things pick back up. Stranger things have happened.

To get my mind off it, I'll go get my hair done.

I'm gonna wash that job right outta my hair...

the awkwardness is moving, but not leaving!

Tova (who I send you to every week) is taking a bit of a hiatus from blogging to focus on work, her Hubs and other stuff.

(How dare she? And leave all this glory behind? Just kidding, she'll be back all in due time.)

That being said, today will be my last Totally Awkward Tuesday post for awhile.

Chill.

Don't rip your hair out and scream just yet. I'm still going to share my personal awful moments...it will just be on on Thursdays. I'll be joining a collective TMI Thursdays from Lilu over at her blog.

But that's for later, let's focus on today's awkwardness, shall we?
Off we go...

This moment was not ever publicly awkward...until now. I will, of course, keep the names private to protect the innocent.

(Or, in this case, not so innocent.)

I had a boyfriend while in college. He lived at home my freshman year and I would come to visit him there on weekends. He had a sister. She was a fantastic girl (and still is, I would assume) and I got along with her just swimmingly.

I'd like to think I was a good influence on her, as I was a bit of a prude and she was rather...curious...about things way beyond her years.

When I reached the ripe old and wise age of 21, she was 16. One weekend, Ex and I were hanging out in his parents basement, drinking beer and watching movies. I was somewhat inebriated.

Ex's Lil Sis arrived home from going to the movies with her friends. She was all lollipops and popcorn and cute as can be. She came downstairs to join me and Ex.

At some point, Ex left to do something non-interesting like go pee. Lil Sis quickly informed me that she had an important question. She wanted to know if I was a virgin.

Um.....

My answer was as honest and as appropriate as I could make it. I mean, she was 16. Is this something you talk about with a 16-year old?

I told Lil Sis that no, I was no longer a virgin but that I had waited until I was much, much older to experience that activity. I explained that if she was thinking about going down that path, she should really, really, really think about it and maybe wait until I was completely sober to consult me on such an important subject.

She thanked me and admitted that she looked up to me. She wanted my opinion on the s-e-x subject rather than all of her friends. (Who, by the way, were apparently doing things I didn't even dream about until I was in my mid-20's.)

Anyways.

Fast forward a year or so.

I came to Ex's house for the weekend (again). He wanted to go out with some buddies that night, and I opted to stay behind.

Ex's Dad was out on the town with friends, so I was all alone in the house. Eventually, I decided to just go to bed. I went into the guest room, put head to pillow and was out like a light.

Until...

At around 1:00 am, I was woken by the sounds of Lil Sis and her boyfriend coming into the house. I was groggy and tired and immediately tried to go back to sleep.

But I couldn't. Because I started hearing noises.

Kissing.

Movement.

More kissing.

Was that a moan???

I started freaking out. WHY would Lil Sis and boyfriend be making out when they know I'm only two rooms away?? And then it hit me.

They didn't know I was there.

Ex's car wasn't in the driveway when they came home, so they assumed I was with him.

They thought they were alone.

For the next 7-8 minutes (Lil Sis's boyfriend was clearly not experienced enough to last much longer) I was subjected to my Lil Sis and her boyfriend in flagrante delicto.

Ew. Ew. Ew.

And the whole Put-Your-Pillow-Over-Your-Ears move DID NOT WORK. I heard everything.

Several times I considered jumping out from the bedroom with my hands over my eyes screaming,

"I'M IN THE GUEST ROOM! PLEASE STOP FOR THE LOVE OF GOD!!!"

In the end I just waited for them to, um, finish. I eventually fell back asleep.

Like I said, this moment was solely awkward for me because I'm the only one who knew it happened. To my knowledge, Lil Sis still doesn't know that I am not only aware that she decided to refrain from being a virgin, but also witnessed the auditory confirmation of her adult-world status.

Awkward? Yes. Scarred for life? No.

That's reserved for when you hear your parents.



Friday, May 8, 2009

pardon the interruption

I've neglected to post anything this week, and all I can say is, I've been learning really, really important and valuable life lessons that will someday make sense.

But they just don't right now.

And may not for several years.

Because I'm not ready to be chipper and clever quite yet, I will instead graciously thank one of my fellow blogers for giving me an award.

Lady Jane was kind enough to bestow a bloggie award to me like, forever ago. And I've been too lazy to put it up. So here it is! Go see Lady Jane's blog, she's hilarious and always puts a smile on my face.




I am supposed to give this to fifteen other bloggers. But I'm just not into it today. Sorry. Therefore, if you're on my blogroll, I bestow this Lovely Blog Award blessing upon you.

Go in peace.
I'll be back to my old self after this weekend. Hopefully.
Happy Mother's Day to all the mommies out there, especially mine. Cuz, ya know, I love you lots and stuff.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

in over my awkward head

I had a huge crush in 9th grade. Well, I had several. But this. This was not the crush that comes when you see the guy in the hall and your heart goes pitter- patter. No, no, no. This was an all day, all night, full blown, I'll-Never-Get-Over-You Four Alarm crush.

(Unless someone else showed interest, then I was good to go.)

He rode my bus (yes, I rode the bus in junior high. You can get over it now)and he was probably the most charming guy I had ever met. Unfortunately for me, I seemed to be stuck in the dreadful "Friend Zone" with Chum. (This is what my friend and I maturely named him at that time.)

The "Friend Zone" was quite familiar to me growing up. The majority of my relationships with guys were on a really intense, but very love-less friendship level. They asked me for advice about girls, told me I was cool - and also that they thought of me like a little sister.

(FYI - boys don't kiss their sisters. In most states.)


Anyways, Chum had never actually told me he only saw me as a sister, so I held out some hope for him. By some miracle, I ended up in Science with him in 9th grade. We sat next to each other at an intimate table for 4. The other people at the table were one weird girl with a mullet and one of Chum's friends that also happened to ride our bus. So, aside from the weird girl, our table was like a little bus tour.

So cute. And meant to be. Clearly.

One day, as we sat in Science pretending to listen to the teacher, Chum decided to ask me a question.

Chum: Hey, Kim. What are your favorite bands? I've got a bunch of CD's if you want to borrow some.

Me:
(oh my God, this is it - we are totally falling in love right now.) Um, I dunno. I love Dave Matthew's Band, Self, Our Lady Peace, Toadies, Flaming Lips.

Chum: (raises eyebrows) Wow, I like all those, too! That's so awesome.

Me: Thanks, Chum. I do my best. (lightly slaps his shoulder. Cause that's what clueless girls do.)


Chum's friend looks back and forth between us. He looks angry.

Chum's Friend: (smirking) So, you and Chum really have a lot in common. That's cool. I bet you like all the exact same bands. But you don't like Chum that way, do you?

Me: (Yes. Completely.) Uhhh - no! I mean, c'mon, we're friends! He's my buuuudy! Right, Chum? (slaps his shoulder again. Omg, I touched him twice.)

Chum: (awkwardly) Well, yeah. I guess. I mean. Yeah.

Chum's Friend: Right, right. So, hey Kim, have you ever heard of the Electric Beatles?

(crickets)

Me: (Crap, I have never even come close to hearing of that band. Do I lie? Obviously Chum likes them if Friend is asking. SHIT! Lie, Kim. Just lie your ass off.) Definitely! I've heard some of their stuff.

Chum: (glaring at Friend and speaking softly) Kim, seriously.

Me: (waves arms like a crazy person) No, no! I have! This summer one of my friends introduced me to them. I don't know their stuff like, really well, but I'd know it if I heard it.

Chum's Friend: (chuckles) Sweet! Maybe they'll come to town this summer and we can all go.

Me: (jaw on the floor) Wow, yeah. That would be amazing. Chum, would you want to go?

Chum: (frowning and further glaring at Friend) Yeah. Sure. It'd be great.
_____

Fast forward three weeks later. I had gotten in so far over my head on lying about the effing Electric Beatles that it had taken over my life. Chum's stupid friend had drawn up a logo on a piece of paper and I had memorized it and drawn it all over my notebooks. I even brought up the Electric Beatles in conversations with other people.

("You mean you haven't heard of the Electric Beatles? Oh my God, they are amazing! Me and Chum talk about them in Science all the time.)

For awhile, I seemed to be getting away with it. (This was before the days of Google, people.) And the best part was, Chum and I had something to consistently talk about. 

Until it all fell apart. 

One day in Science, Chum wasn't there. He had the flu or something. I was stuck with Stupid Friend, and doing my darnedest to ignore everything he said. He got irritated - and decided it was time to humiliate me.

Chum's Friend: So, did you hear the Electric Beatles are coming this summer?

Me: NO way! Oh my gosh!

Chum's Friend: Yeah, and they're going to ask Chum to play the drums for them, too. 

Me: (confused) Wait, what? What do you mean?

Chum's Friend: Well, it's just a story, right? I mean, you know there's no Electric Beatles, don't you?

Me: (Oh, holy mother funky butt-lovin.)
___

I just sat there, stunned. I was an awkward 15-year-old girl who just found out she'd been totally and completely HAD. There were no Electric Beatles. There was no logo. There were no songs.

Now Chum knew I had lied to look good around him. And more importantly, he knew I wanted to be more than just a friend.
The next day in Science, Chum was there. No one said anything at the table (except weird-hair girl asked for a pencil) but we all knew what had happened.

Chum and I never got together. It didn't matter anyway, the relationship would have been built on a throne of lies and embarrassment for me. He did take me to and from school a few times in high school, and we traded CD's with each other often in those next few years. I'm pretty sure I still hit him every chance I got, too.

I'll never know if the Electric Beatles ruined my chances with him. But at least he knows I would have said anything to make him think more of me. And that would make anyone feel good.

Incidentally, I have no idea what happened to Chum's stupid friend. My hope is karma bit him in the ass and he turned out to be a total loser playing guitar for a terrible band called the Electric Beatles.

(Update: There is now a band called the Electric Beatles, and they are a tribute band to the actual Beatles. Chum's loser friend does not play guitar for them.)

Monday, May 4, 2009

oh, brother

I had a post all lined up for today. It mostly consisted of complaining about things around our house that have failed to work over the weekend.

Our vacuum cleaner smells like doo doo, the outlets in our bathroom don't work, the refrigerator is making ridiculously loud humming noise...etc, etc.

I was all ready to bust out the whiniest post you've ever read. But then, I got an email from my brother, and my whole sour puss post went bye bye.

My bro emailed to let me know he wrote a blog post about me today.
After reading it, I don't really know what to say.

(But I love to talk so I'll find something to say.)

Bro and I have always had a somewhat tumultuous relationship. He's three years my junior and growing up, we didn't always get along.

(Okay, even as grown ups we don't always get along.)

Until today, I was fairly certain he thought of me as a female Lucifer in heels. I mean, come on, we're brother and sister. Our relationship hasn't always been unicorns and rainbows.

There have been times that we aren't so fond of each other.

("You dropped my $12 lipstick in the toilet after you PEED!??? OH MY GOD, I am so telling Mom and you are never going to be allowed to pee again!"

Then again, there are times when we really, really like each other.

(Like on childhood family vacations when a creepy guy is checking me out at Mount Rushmore and Bro pretends to be my boyfriend for nine seconds (No, nothing gross. Arm across the shoulder, that's it.) and I swear my eternal gratitude to him.)

(Naturally ten minutes later I tell him he smells and I hate him.)

Bro and I have always done bang up jobs of getting on each other's nerves. So, as a general rule, I naturally assume Bro thinks of me as a part of his life dealt with on holidays. And maybe he and his wife secretly cast evil spells on me in their basement for all the times I pulled his hair and called him a Nintendo Addict.

Today I discovered I was wrong.

The following is the post my bro left on his blog this morning:

I know that the none of you that follow this blog are used to hearing me bitch and moan about the level of apathy towards respecting one's fellow man that general society has. However today, I've been going over some old photos of memorable events. This has made me draw the conclusion that I am NOT the sum of my experiences. But rather the sum of my experiences plus the guidance of many.

Today I want to thank one such person who has offered me guidance (although she might not know it.)

My sister, Kim.

Kim has always been a nearly perfect example of what I am not.

She's trendy, I'm not.

She's phenomenal (or so I think) with money. I still struggle but am getting better at money management with my wife.

She always has the right thing to say in a conversation. I put my foot in my mouth 90% of the time, and annoy people the other 10%.

You get the picture.

But Kim has always been this shining example of how I want to be. She always has this aura of confidence that makes all her choices and problems seem so easy to handle. You could say that she has an unnatural way of dealing with life, as it seems that nothing really bothers her, and I know this is quite the contrary for me.

As long as I can remember I wanted to have the same personality traits as my sister, and it was because of her I was able to throw off an apathetic attitude I had when I was younger and embrace what I needed to do to live successfully.

Now chances are I will never be as successful as my sister (what with her graduating college and all) but I know that I can always be successful for me and mine. Whether she knows it or not, she inadvertently motivated me to be a better person in my life and what do I have to show for it?

A beautiful wife.
A job I love.
A relationship with my mother and father (which used to be quite rocky).
And sometimes...just sometimes...I get to throw a good zinger in a conversation that makes everyone laugh.

Kim, you have been an absolutely wonderful sister, you are a still a shining example to me, and you will forever be my friend. I constantly look forward to thanksgivings and Christmas's, July 4th's and Memorial days.

I offer you a salute for always knowing what the right thing to do was and doing it, no matter the difficulty and I just wanted you to know, that having you as my sister has made me a much better man, and hopefully, brother.

Love you Kim.

After reading this, I have to say...my brother has a really, really warped view of how great I am.

As I read this post, several times I thought to myself, "I'm sorry, wait, is he talking about me?"

I mean, seriously.

I do not, in the least, know the right things to say in a conversation. I can't even count the number of times I've said something brilliant like:

"Have you seen Jill's hair today? Is it orange or tangerine?" only to find Jill standing right behind me.

Yes, for my job, I have to talk like I know my ass from an ant hill, but I am by no means phenomenal at it. In fact, most days I feel insecure and scared about the words coming out of my mouth.

I trip. I mumble. I say "povely lattern" instead of "lovely pattern." All. The. Time.

And as for my bro thinking I handle things well, and don't let things bother me?

HELLO!!!!! I think Bro needs to have a chat with Hubs, and he can easily put this misconception to rest. In a snap.

(Seriously, Hubs has wanted me to be put on meds for quite some time for my obsessive worrying and lack of grace under pressure.)

It's amazing to me that my brother compares himself to me in this way. Because I am really not that great.

I know it may sound like I am not appreciative of what my brother wrote, and that couldn't be further from the truth.

I am floored by his blog post. I am humbled by it. I feel very lucky to have a brother who would take the time to write something like this.

It just makes me realize that no matter how stupid or insecure you feel on any given day, someone out there may just think better of you than you do yourself.

Someone may be counting on you to keep your head high.

Someone may be looking up to you, even though you feel 3" high.

Someone may think you're pretty damn great.

(Obviously I know Hubs does. But he married me, so he HAS to think these things. Or I'll stab him.)

My brother doesn't have to respect me or give me any kind of credit for the person he's turned out to be.

But he does anyway.

I know that Bro is successful and a great husband because that's what he has inside of him. It has nothing to do with me.

(Well, maybe pulling his hair as a young child contributed to him wanting to be a cop with a gun and handcuff power, but that's simply conjecture.)

At the end of the day, I really have nothing to do with my brother's success. It's all him.

However, knowing he thinks I helped in any way makes me feel pretty special and appreciated.

I'll take that as a pick-me-up anytime. Especially on Monday.

Love you too, Bro.