Category Archives: people

Awkward

Today was the day of awkward encounters. Mephy and Gigi finally got fixed. Gigi has been in heat lately so it could no longer be put off. She is been screaming bloody murder in the middle of the night and had to spend several nights this week locked in the bathroom because Mephy kept mounting her. Yeah, that is what I have been coming home to. Kitty incest. Me in the living room: “Ducky, that is Ally’s toy, get off your sister!… Mephy get OFF your sister!!! Oh God…”

When I dropped them off at the Vet this morning it appeared to be dog day. There were several large dogs in the lobby, and several more in the other rooms. I walk in with two kittens. Cue mass simultaneous growling and barking from all corners. It took about 10 minutes before the receptionist could even sign us in. This should have been my first clue that today would be awkward.

Since I was already in the valley and would later join Tanya for our standard 11 a.m. coffee date I figured I would do all my errands there.

The string of awkward encounters all started at Fresh and Easy when a lady asked if I wanted to make a donation to her organization. I politely declined. Usually that is all it takes, however she decided she really wanted a donation and began following me into the parking lot, persisting that it was for a good cause and I really should think about it. I declined several more times. I was trying to load my groceries in the car and she was practically preventing me from doing this. She asked “don’t you want to feed hungry children?” I answered, “what do you think I am trying to do??” She did not appreciate my humor.

Then, I went to the salon to get my monthly eyebrow shaping. The manager came by to ask if it was my first time because I look agitated. I replied “I am about to get hot wax poured on my face, and then let a sixteen year old use sharp metal objects on me within millimeters of my eyes. Wouldn’t you be a little nervous?” She did not appreciate my humor.

After having coffee Tanya and I were about ready to leave Starbucks (we were down the street from a university, which will be important to know in about two seconds), and we were clearly loading up Tanya’s stroller, while I was picking up my purse and sun glasses. A man walks up to our table and is about ready to sit down. Tanya informs him we will be leaving shortly and he can have the table as she is rearranging Westley, and shuffling things around. He says “Oh yes, take your time,” while pulling the chair out and setting his stuff down. Then he asks me if I go to school there and totally encroached on my personal space in the process. I wasn’t about to tell him about graduating, and blah blah blah. No one wants to hear all of that. So I simply reply “no” and begin fidgeting with Tanya’s stroller as if I am actually doing something to it. He seriously stands there staring right at us while Tanya is trying to get her baby comfortable and I am apparently trying to conjure spirits in the undercarriage. Because I was seriously just waving my hands around under there. He seemed very confused while intently staring at us. I briefly explain that Westley is a small human. He is just like us, but small. ┬áHe did not appreciate my humor.

After Starbucks Tanya and I walk to the mall, mainly because Westley was asleep in his stroller, and I happen to be waiting around for kittens to be fixed, so I had nothing better to do. After walking around the mall for a bit we ended up at Charlotte Russe. As I am perusing their racks a woman approaches me and asks if I am familiar with the Mission Hills area. “Well, I know where it is, I can’t say I am very familiar with it.” And then she offers me a job. I have never had great difficulty in the job market, but I have also never had jobs just handed to me by strangers. I politely declined, and (much like the donation lady from earlier), she began persisting that it would be a great opportunity. I didn’t want to get into specifics so I didn’t tell her I had a great job… in fact, two great jobs, so I just kept telling her I am not interested. Just like I have never had jobs handed to me by strangers, I have most certainly never had anyone beg me to take a job. Which of course makes me wonder what kind of shady business she must be running. She insisted I would look great at the front desk. I replied in mock horror, “Are you saying I don’t look good now?” She did not appreciate my humor.

As we were going through the mall, at one point Tanya was in a fitting room. Since this is Southern California and it was practically ninety degrees outside in mid January and we had been walking all this way I was a hot sweaty mess half way through the day, so I ducked into a local bathroom to freshen up. I was in the middle of reapplying some concealer when this lady started getting closer and closer. And I mean in that awkward way where she begins at one end of the sink counter and side steps a few inches every few seconds towards me. I notice in the giant mirror but continue what I was doing. Next thing I know she is right next to me going through my make-up bag. Um, what are you doing lady? I look right at her and said “You know, Macy’s has an entire counter of this stuff.”She turned and walked away. She did not appreciate my humor.

Later in the day when I pick up the kids the lady at daycare informs me that Ally is an extremely defiant child. I reply “well where do you think she gets it from?” She did not appreciate my humor.

In conclusion, today was awkward, and my humor went unappreciated by many. If you have as much chuckled at any point during this post, then I feel accomplished.

 

I Remember

So there is this other thing going on on Facebook that I am totally late for. I have to say, I am very bad at keeping up with trends. Everyone is posting updates asking for their first memories from other people. Basically, what is your first/best/favorite memory of me? I am asking that on here, plus, because I am late, I will post all the ones I missed, or may have missed. I would totally repost this to Facebook, except it would have to be broken up into several bits, and we all know how people love having their feed clogged by my multiple postings. So, despite that probably half of these people don’t read my blog, here is my list of memories of other people.

Tanya: I remember coming to class once, and you were sitting in my chair talking to Ari. I stood there quietly, patiently, waiting for you to leave. You turned, noticed me, and just shrugged. Twenty plus years later… hello.

Stephanie: You were in my English class in middle school. You knew everyone else I knew, and you still do. You were my bridesmaid.

Arianna: You sat behind me in homeroom in middle school. I didn’t know that years later I would still be going to your family Christmas party and driving four hundred miles to help you move. I also remember the trip to San Francisco together six years ago. You sat beside me feeding me powdered donuts so I wouldn’t fall asleep at the wheel. I was driving Stephanie’s car.

Cam: I met you at Maury’s house. You were there, I was confused, but little did I know you were more confused than me. We have had an interesting relationship. You, too, were my bridesmaid. And I was your maid of honor.

S: You quoted Coleridge to me, and taught me Catch 22. I graded your papers when you were too tired, and gave all of your students very good grades.

B: You and your sister taught me how to build a coy pond. I wasn’t listening, but was fascinated by the pretty pictures.

Arick: You proposed to me in the midnight line to Harry Potter. I was pregnant with your daughter.

Casey: You were about to move in with my best friend. I was skeptical about your abilities, but really I was jealous that you were taking her away from me. Now we are planning a lunch to discuss our short stories, and we get along just fine. It only took over a decade.

Sean: We were walking across a parking lot and you found a Hello Kitty charm, picked it up and gave it to me. Twelve years later I still have it. It is on my black purse. I don’t wear it often, but when I do, I think of you.

M: You told me I reminded you of Lady Macbeth. I liked that, and hope I still do. We sat at the Coffee Bean for over three hours talking and laughing.

Allie: We worked a shift together at the mall many years ago. I thought you were strange, you thought I was strange, and now we spend special events together.

Hannah: I met you in theory class. We didn’t really talk, but then in Victorian Lit we became friends, and have kept it up.

Mary: I met you at a party, and you said we would be friends. I didn’t fight you on it. So far so good.

Julian: I remember you sitting in your apartment, listening to Rush and trying to finish your dissertation while I was in the kitchen trying to reorganize your Ikea utensils. And then if I remember correctly you baked me a chocolate cake that night. I think. That part is a little fuzzy.

Trish: I met you in my first year of college. You taught me to smoke during finals week behind Royce Hall, and I nearly choked my first time. You would sit with me at Northern Lights and watch me hand write my papers before typing them up because you thought it was inspirational.

George: In high school we would sing B-52 songs at lunch, and you would take pictures of me that I would later get developed at Thrifty’s. I still have a couple of them.

Jason: I don’t know why, but one of my memories of you is at your house as your mom was teaching me how to wash dishes properly, telling me that unless I wear gloves I will ruin my soft hands. I think I still have one of the skirts she sewed for me.

David: I remember when you and Jason broke up for the first time and you were in quite a state. I came over and you turned your garden hose on me. I can’t for the life of me remember what we argued about, but I remember getting wet. I think it was years before I went to your house again. It’s good to know we are still friends fifteen years later.

Ian: I met you at Tanya’s wedding. You and Jason made a very cute couple, and you were the only one who got me to dance.

Aaron: My favorite memory of you is my most recent when we met for drinks in Emmeryville last time I drove up north. Those little sausage things we ordered were delicious!

James: I remember the first time you introduced me to your family as your girlfriend because you were too scared to tell anyone you were into men. I have been attending your family functions for thirteen years as your girlfriend. I think they are expecting us to get married soon.

Henry: That time I told you your coffee was heavenly and I didn’t care that you were gay. I told you I wanted to marry you for your coffee and that James would totally understand. I am sorry, I was drunk on amazing French pressed caffeine. I guess we could just be friends.

Ashlyn: We were out in a parking lot, talking. It was the first time we really talked, outside of socially mandated niceties, and it was good.

I am probably leaving a bunch of people out. I am sorry, but I can’t possibly mention every person I know. However, if you *really* want me to tell you one of my first/best memories of you, then email me, and I will do so.

Walking Around

My children are not trained for the city. On Sunday, after coming back from Portland I took them out for errands, and we stopped by the Grove because these days all they want to do is ride the trolley. Between CVS and the grocery store and everything else the poor little things almost got run over in the CVS parking lot, overrun by hoards of people at the Grove, and got lost at the grocery store.

I realize this is my fault for not having exposed them to this sooner, but I had no idea how different the environment would be for them. As we walked between K-Mart and CVS they seemed oblivious to the parking lot full of cars, traffic jams down every lane, and the fact that unlike in the valley these people aren’t driving five miles an hour, nor is half the lot deserted.

I have always been a walker, and if a destination is within a couple of miles, I would walk, kids with me. In the city everyone else walks too, and stopping in the middle of the street or dallying along will get you trampled. Ducky got knocked over several times.

This is not the first time they have been to this part of town, and we have been making it our weekend routine lately, but they are not picking up the pace fast enough. Nor do they understand my agitation as they get swept away from me by mobs of people, stepping off the sidewalk into the street, and refusing to hold my hand until they feel lost and start calling out for me while I frantically run around after them. It is not so much that they don’t understand the city, but that they don’t understand the danger for small children in the city.

I know they are young, but every day I see other children their age, and younger, apt at navigating the streets, clinging to their mothers, and unperturbed by their atmosphere. My little ones behave as if they are country bumpkins come to the city for the first time. As adorable as it may sound, for a mother this is rather terrifying.

And to think, Los Angeles isn’t even as hectic as most other cities. In New York I would probably manage to lose them in less than twenty four hours.