Google sent you to my blog but showed me this bad boy when I asked it the same thing you did. And yes, this caption is the official response to EVERY QUESTION THAT FOLLOWS. You're Welcome.

 

Dear People of the Internet,

It seems that many of you end up on my blog when Google is recovering from a late night bender and directs you to a post I wrote that had nothing to do with getting a divorce when you search for enlightenment while pondering if you should, in fact, stay a Mrs. or make a move on the hottie cleaning your pool. I guess that makes me an expert of sorts and you are very probably now telling all of your friends that your ex-husband was the only schmo who never learned that Does This Dress Make Me Look Fat is a hypothetical question that should never be answered truthfully and that Google is now to be thanked for your new found love affair with the pool boy and my blog.

I know. I’m glad I can be here for you, too.

–Signed–

Pauline

 

Do Cats Blink?

Um, unless they’re dead, I would assume so. Then again, I could be wrong. Obviously, I am not an expert.

 

 

Broken Legs or Sprain Ankles of Famous Persons

I’m honored. You might not think I’m famous but Google gets a cookie. Also? I’m slightly disturbed. Judging from the way you phrased this, either you are searching for information on how to break legs because you want to break the legs and/or ankles of famous persons (which means I’m off the hook because I am not because Google totally lied) or you just…never mind. That’s the only explanation I can come up with. Just remember that I am not famous.

And?

Google lies.

 

 

Naked Fitness Chicks which was closely followed by Frowning Fat Chick

Yes, these came from different IP addresses in different countries, so it was just fate that led the pervert and the asshole to my blog AT THE EXACT SAME TIME. And Google? I can’t decide if I want to kiss you or kill you.

 

 

Multiple Women Naked Bodies

Yeah…I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say that this isn’t exactly what you were looking for. Also? Google likes it if you keep things simple. Next time? Just say PORN.

 

How much for a baby finger monkey/pictures of finger monkeys/Platforms for Monkeys?

And many, many, MANY more variations of search terms in which the words “finger monkey” are included. Write one post about how I need a little monkey named Platform so I can tell publishers that I already have one (with a straight face) when they tell me I need one and the whole world goes insane. There was one point in time that I thought I had turned some invisible corner in my mission to become an Unfamous Writer because crazy amounts of hits and visitors were spiking my numbers higher than I had ever seen them. And I felt pretty special until I realized someone pinned the Platform the Secret Agent Monkey post and everyone clicking over was probably all You Mean This ISN’T a Blog Devoted to Tiny Primates that Cost More to Buy than My First Three Cars Combined? Well then, THAT’S Disappointing. And because I can empathize with the shock to the system that must come when words are where only monkeys were expected, I apologize.

Truly.

 

I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead

This one’s only funny because it’s a term I actually use. A lot. And I picked it up from my father who worked two full time jobs for nearly 20 years to support my mother and the five daughters they brought into the world trying to conceive a son. Eventually my mother told my father she was going out for a gallon of milk and returned with her tubes tied and a neutered rescue poodle. He got his boy and my sisters and I got to stop fighting over who got to sleep with the one who still peed the bed because five girls plus two available bedrooms equals very bad math.

Also? He died four years ago and I’m betting this is the longest consecutive number of hours he has ever gone without being shaken from an attempt to sleep. Had he been able to plan ahead, I’m sure the wake would have featured door prizes like T-shirts, fishing caps, and beer koozies boasting the phrase Try Waking Me Up NOW, Fuckers! and even possibly a pillow shaped pinata stuffed with interesting treats like sleeping pills of various strengths. I was at the wake. Trust me…this would have been way more fun.

Also? When I say “I’ll sleep when I’m dead,” I’m actually doing it to honor my dad’s memory.

And to remind myself to make that mental note about placing that bulk order for the T-Shirts…

 

 

 

Okay, so I’m totally aware that all of you with older kids are just itching to say Just Wait Until (Insert Random Milestone Here) while I wax poetic and get all misty-eyed because my little girl took one step further away from me today when she walked out of preschool for the very last time. I get it all the time from a high school friend with a middle schooler on her hands.

You think this is bad? Just wait until…

And then I roll my eyes, tell her I’m just going to concentrate on now, because I want to remember the excitement in Buttercup’s eyes as she slipped on her cap and gown for her graduation ceremony and the way she poured her heart into the song her class sang for us sobbing mothers. And the tears and smeared mascara and laughing at myself because I forgot to put tissues in my purse even though every mother at the preschool who had been through the routine before had warned me. I want to remember that, too.

How much she loves her teachers and how she insisted we invite them both to her birthday party because that’s what we do with friends that we love. The progress she’s made throughout the year and how she has blossomed into a confident little spitfire of a girl who is no longer afraid to show the world she is proud of her abilities. Miss Jessica and Miss Monica and the little classroom family that we will miss terribly because they are incredible teachers and mentors and how I want to pack them up and just take them with me.

Eleventeen and Sangwich and maturing into Eleven and Sandwich.

Mama Read Me Another Story and Kiss My Boo Boo Make It Better and even Mama Can You Help Me Wipe My Butt are fading into Mama Can I Read This One To You Tonight and It Doesn’t Hurt It’s Okay Mama and Mama Can You Help Me Wipe My Butt because this is reality, people. Reality means we wash our hands with them after they go potty not because we are trying to show them how to do it properly but because we probably are the ones who did the actual wiping. And that’s okay with us because it’s our baby and our reality and all of the messy bits smushed together make the now that we love that will mesh into the Remember Whens that we will always hold onto.

It’s okay, I tell my friend. I’m not worried about Until. In fact, Until isn’t even on my radar right now. Because now is all about This. All of it.

She walked out of the preschool today a little graduate and a member of the class of 2025, ready to take on Kindergarten when the new school year starts at the end of July. She was in her daddy’s arms, her red-cowboy boots hanging lower on his 6’1” frame than even just a few months ago. And I will remember this moment.

Always.

 

 

I’ll set the stage just to make it easy for y’all. So I’m bone-tired and ready to just drop after a two week spree of absolute fucking insanity, no time to breathe, school ending and related activities, ballet practice and extra studio time for the upcoming recital, and the basics like blinking, breathing, and showering. I’ve just pulled dinner (salmon packets with dill, green onion, salt, pepper, garlic, and wild caught salmon) out of the oven to set next on the table, and am making sure we have a towel in Buttercup’s bag for swim class in an hour.

Walking takes actual thought. I’m cognizant of the fact that I am blinking and am considering putting my eye-lids on a diet. And Buttercup, who was grounded from television for the day by me this morning is now sitting quietly in front of one of her favorite Nick Jr. shows because I’d rather go back on my word right now and be allowed to not think more than I am currently capable of than be forced to converse and answer questions like Mama, do vampires have pet mosquitoes? Because no matter how I answer, she’ll already have decided that they do and I’ll be trying not to burst out laughing imagining Edward walking along with a tiny glittering mosquito on a teeny tiny diamond studded leash.

Considering the fact that I’ve fallen asleep out of sheer exhaustion the last four nights by midnight (which is when I usually start writing for the day), it’s pretty easy to figure out that I’m lucky I’m not getting paid to lose my fucking mind because I’m about to pass GO on three writing deadlines. I’m a former newspaper reporter, people. I might not know where I set my car keys five minutes ago and kill every plant I own because they can’t scream at me to remind me about that watering thing, but I’ll be damned if I miss a deadline.

I’m trying to plan the best way to portion the rest of my day. The next three hours are shot because we leave for swim in a bit and because we live in the sticks, I’ve got a 45-minute drive each way for 30-minutes in the pool, plus me eating dinner after arriving back home and getting Buttercup upstairs to bed. After she’s asleep, there’s the unloading and reloading of the dishwasher, the preparing of The Husband’s lunch cooler, and the Psyching Myself Up to Do Something Productive while wasting time on twitter before I can actually and truly get to work.

But then it will be midnight and I’ll be tired enough to realize I can’t string a coherent sentence together verbally, let alone type one out on a keyboard. So I will go upstairs and pass out knowing I will wake up even more behind than I already am in the morning. There will be a frenzy to get as much done as I can in the morning with the crazy basics in our life before driving Buttercup to school so I can rush off to my first appointment with the OBGYN who is going to tell me if I’m allergic to my lady bits and before hurrying back to pick Buttercup up from my girlfriend’s place in time for her to make it to wherever it is she needs to be by 5:15 p.m.

Buttercup is on the couch putting on her shoes and babbling about how she can’t wait to see her swim teacher, I’ve just auto-started the engine on the Yukon so we don’t bake the moment we drive off, and when I sigh as The Husband walks up to kiss me, he blinks.

“What’s wrong with you?”

“I’m just exhausted.” I yawn.

“You’re tired? Why?”

“I’m too tired to explain,” I say, after deciding killing him would take too much physical effort. “Just read the blog post later.”

“Right,” he says. “I’m assuming this means you don’t want to have another baby?”

The man might enjoy his role as designated asshole in the family a little too much sometimes, but he’s no idiot. Mama’s tapped out and maybe that saying about God only giving us what we can handle has something to do with my ovaries refusing to pony up an egg that is willing to turn itself into a baby.

“You, my dear, are a fucking comic.” I whisper into his ear and kiss him as we leave for swim. “Only if the baby comes out a 16-year old with a driver’s license. I need a break.”

 

*It’s a list post because lists are magical and only require short bursts of thought.

*Don’t blink because you might miss this one.

 

 

 

 

*Because seriously? Short bursts of thought require actual thought and I’m not sure what my head is actually doing qualifies right now.

*In any case, I’m pretty sure that if I had more than one child that their extracurricular activities would be limited to those in which I could stay bra-less and with a water bottle full of vodka flavored orange juice in hand and the remote control in the other to mindlessly help my pretend bunches of kiddos the art of channel surfing because Mommy is Busy Talking to those People Inside of the Computer again and Calling it Woooo-ooorrrrk!

*Which pretty much translates into, ya know, no actual extracurricular activities.

*They’d be bored as hell but I survived my childhood with plenty of permanent emotional damage…

*And therapy has been pretty beneficial so…

*as long as I made sure my multiple imaginary children had therapy slush funds set up in bank accounts they could access at age 18 to cover the cost of medicinally induced happiness, I’m being pretty fucking responsible as a mother.

 

 

*Imaginarily speaking, of course.

*Because as things currently stand with Buttercup’s end of year pre-K activities…

*Like her “promotion” ceremony…

*which couldn’t be called a “graduation” ceremony because the district kindergartners ceremony before moving on to the first grade is already called that so we wouldn’t want to confuse the kids and families who weren’t at the thing where all of us parents were calling it a graduation anyway so FUCK YOU KINDERGARTNERS…

 

*And her first ever ballet recital in a few weeks…

 

 

 

*Which happens to include two practices on Saturdays right now that I happen to keep remembering about five minutes before they start and we?

*Live 15 minutes away…

*Which gives me enough time to run into the studio dragging a wind-blown Buttercup behind me just as the pre-ballet teacher is reminding the responsible parents that tomorrow morning at 8:30 a.m is definitely the same date and time that she has been telling us all since time began so we would be prepared to have our perfectly costumed, make-upped, and coiffed preschool magical garden rosebuds at the studio, smiling and ready to be photographed by a professional with a camera…

*Which totally changes my plan to stay bra-less and jammied at home tomorrow after staying up late to catch up on three writing deadlines, make some headway on project planning for a new site I’m working on, and possibly making some time to do this crazy thing all the kids call Reading for Pleasure because now.

*I’m chugging black coffee to calm the rushing in my head that always comes with the upheaval when plans change unexpectedly because ADHD works like that and eventually I am not acting like a crazed lunatic inside of my own head so I take another swig of iced happiness and get us buckled up in the truck with the air blasting on high because it’s in the mid 90′s and I hate Arizona any time of the year the temperature goes above 75 degrees.

*I need to rush to Target right after the second ballet lesson to buy my little rosebud some ultra-hold heir gel and bobby pins and new not dirty pink tights and body glitter and hooker red lipstick and thick rubber bands to secure the world’s strongest ballet bun and WHY THE HELL DON’T THEY CARRY HAIR NETS FOR DANCERS AT TARGET so it’s time to rush off to that Sally Beauty Supply on the way home…

*Where I get to rush through a crazed multi-tasking To Do List Mania of running the bath so Buttercup can climb in and play with some bubbles while I get the cod blackening and the cauliflower mashed into mock mashed potatoes because that’s how I roll now and Oh Shit! I can’t unload and reload the dishwasher because the stuff in there never got washed because I forgot to turn the damned thing on five hours ago which works out wonderfully with a brand new sinkful of dirty dishes just sitting there taunting me with their See? You can try, but at the end of the day you just aren’t as fast as we are-edness. …

*I could scream but that would put me even more behind on my List of Things to Do before I commit myself to a padded room with an internet connection that only locks and unlocks from the inside.

*I’ll give you a minute to figure that one 0ut, People Without Children.

*Like those three writing deadlines I need to be working on.

*Yes, right now, instead of writing this.

*And thank you for listening because I’m pretty sure y’all just saved me a 45-minute drive and a $25 copay to see my therapist whom I am not entirely sure even like and you got to laugh in all of the appropriate places while reading this and are probably now telling all of your friends who will tell of their friends and so on and so forth about this brilliantly hilarious post they read on this blog by this writer and I’ll be catapulted to instant overnight fame and you and your friends will feel directly responsible and then this single chain of events can be referred to as the biggest win-win of the millennium, probably.

*No, no, you don’t have to thank me. I did this for you, truthfully. But please, don’t let me interrupt you while you do that telling all of your friends about me thing so we can get this ball rolling.

*I’m going to get Buttercup into bed so she can fall asleep an hour after I tell her she has to go to sleep so I can drag her Not Gonna Be Happy Ass outta bed in the morning at 5 a.m. so I can turn her into a an adorable little harlot in my borrowed Russian Red  before the sun even rises and rush her off to the studio in time for the dance recital photos.

 

 

 

 

*Don’t worry. I won’t be late. Considering I won’t be sleeping, most likely, on account of those three writing deadlines I told you about.

*That I was supposed to start when I turned on my Mac and THIS happened instead.

*And DEAR GOD, STOP TRYING TO NOT BLINK because you look ridiculous.

*The end.

 

 

It’s strange how the timing on this one worked out. But the timing could not have been more perfect for me to finally have what has got to be the most bad-ass blog post title ever. Then again, I received pretty high praise from readers on the Love, Assholes, and My Grandpa one, so I guess it’s kind of a toss up.

Either way, I’ve got a zombie to tell you about and a dead father to remember.

There’s this poem I wrote years ago. If I remember correctly, it was for a creative writing course in college and the class was silent for just a moment longer than a heartbeat after I finished reading. Zombie is not meant to be a comfortable read or to create images of beauty; rather, it’s a very real and very gritty moment that many who have ever suffered from bulimia can (sadly) relate to.

Until very recently, Zombie was in a binder with old papers until I decided to do something more with it. So I transcribed it into a Word Document, hit save, and sent my words off to the editor at Voxx Poetica. My poem appeared on Voxx almost two months ago and I just now realized it had actually been published. Thank you to Voxx for a moment to connect with others who understand and the opportunity to explain the inner-workings of the head of an eating disordered teenager to those who don’t.

Because I tend to schedule my blog posts based on the incredibly scientific When I Remember to Do it method, my plan to share my Voxx publication news with you today just now happens to coincide with dead dads, the daughters of all ages who are grieving them, and the woman who is building working to build a community of solace for those who find themselves wondering where to turn. I first met my friend Mary of Mama Mary Show a few years ago at the Phoenix Bloggy Bootcamp conference and got to see her again at Blogher 10 just a few months later. I don’t remember how we started talking about it, but we connected when we shared with each other the pain of losing our fathers decades before we had expected to deal with this kind of grief.

Mary’s goal was to publish a book and start a new web site on which contributing writers could connect, share, and heal. And I’m honored to be featured as part of the official launch of the Dead Dad’s Club.

Every time someone else thinks my words worthy of their space is a day to celebrate. Every day I am brave enough to share again is a day to smile. I survived me. And I’ll never delete my my father’s phone number from my contact list.

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