How This Halloween Has Taught Me to Be Less Of An Overachiever

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For the last couple of weeks, I have been totally not feeling it with Halloween. This isn’t normal for me. I’m not like one of those weirdos that obsesses over it all year long, and spends more time and money on decorations and shit than the month’s rent. But I’m still usually pretty gung-ho about it. I start costumes early. I do a lot of Halloween decorating and baking; and we visit pretty much every pumpkin patch with in a 50 mile radius. Twice.

It was around the time that I started suggesting we do something other than a trick or treat marathon this year, and then immediately started trying to come up with excuses for us to just do nothing but dress up, that I realized there was something wrong. More so than my usual “there’s something wrong” as in there’s something wrong in my head. There was something not right about me and Halloween. Something lurking in the inner caverns of my subconscious, just waiting to come out – likely at the worst time possible.

Such is the life of an overachiever. Shoving any reservations or actual desires down as deep as you can, until they come out at the worst time possible. Or in a total meltdown. It happens all the time. I say I’m going to do something, but really don’t want to. I know I don’t want to, but convince myself I do. Then I complain, then I procrastinate and procrastinate, and procrastinate some more. Then I finally do whatever it is I said I would do, crying the whole way through it. And hating myself, more and more each time.

But what is it about Halloween this year that has been making me procrastinate to such a degree that I started trying to come up with reasons why we shouldn’t even go trick or treating at all? What the hell kind of a shithole mother does that?

An overachieving mother that made a commitment to costumes she knew she couldn’t make, that’s what the hell kind of a shithole mother.

Around June, my nine year old got this crazy idea to be peanut butter and jelly this year. I thought it was weird because she doesn’t like peanut butter. And when I asked what kind of jelly, she said “orange marmalade.” Fucking orange marmalade? Bitch, you’ve never even had orange marmalade. (Yes, I did just refer to my nine year old daughter as “bitch.” In a blog, remember. I don’t do it in person. At least where she can hear.)

Regardless of all these logical fallacies, everyone in the family jumped on the peanut butter and jelly bandwagon and suddenly I was making multiple costumes, and being asked to make candy bags that look like bread too. As the life of the overachiever goes, I simply went along with it and started knitting.

524512_695212985993_197672610_nKnitting you ask? Well, when I looked up peanut butter and jelly costumes, all I found were these completely dorky, huge slices of bread that had fake-PB&J crap slathered all over them. That would have been embarrassing. Super duper embarrassing. So I decided I would make jar costumes. Coming out of the top of the jars would be scarves (to keep everyone warm) – which would be made to look like peanut butter or jelly coming out of the jars. It was going to be super cute, except for one problem: I had not a clue in my stupid fucking head how I would do anything beyond the scarves of overflowing condiments.

After I finished the scarves, I didn’t do shit for the costumes until three days ago. I finished them somewhere around July. So July, August, and September, I did nothing. Halloween in my mind didn’t even fucking exist.

1233963_700005776203_2026613288_nThen the questions started. “How are the Halloween costumes going?” “When are you going to work on the Halloween costumes again?” My husband, my dad, my mom … it grew relentless. So I made a bread bucket (because I finally had to admit that I am way too lazy to sew, and don’t have a sewing machine; so bread bags or whatever-the-fuck had been suggested were just totally out of the question). Then I started panicking.

Finally yesterday, I figured that the only way I could do this was to print off large versions of the labels, glue them to cardboard, and then hang them with ribbon. Then the other problem came in, though: the cost of printing was going to be more than buying super expensive, cliched costumes over at the Party Rip Off City. Plus I was going to have to piece together some kind of bottoms, because the jars couldn’t cover the crotch area – obviously – since that would make it tough to walk.

So I gave up. This Halloween taught me to be less of an overachiever. I apologized. I made promises to put together other, easier, costumes. I tried to compensate by decorating the house today with Halloween decorations, even though I said this year would only see a little bit of Fall stuff.

In the end, the only one that gave a shit was my mother. She threw herself around. She complained. She obsessed over how it could work – “you could just…” and “why don’t you…” She even cried a little. What she didn’t realize was that I had already started working on the costumes that will actually be worn, that are within my limited D.I.Y-crafting genius. And I started working on them with much more ambition and fervor than the last four months of avoiding the peanut butter and jelly costumes I am just not that accomplished enough to make.

Are you faithful blog followers overachievers at holiday times? Typically, Halloween is only the tip of the iceberg for me; but this newfound sense of “fuck it, I ain’t doing this shit” has me thinking that maybe the holidays will fair more low-key and within reason. I suppose only time will tell…

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You’re Fuckin’ A Right, It’s Fall

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It’s Fall, motherfuckers. Well, it’s been Fall for a few weeks now, but – as usual – I’m behind the game of things.

That’s not true. My Fall shit has been up since around August. It was like 102 degrees out, and I was setting up a scarecrow. I’m just slowing down on all the crafts and the Pinterest projects right now to take a breather, and share the bad-assedness of Fall with you faithful blog followers.

I absolutely am in love with Fall.

Are any of you tired of hearing that from panty-waste women such as myself yet? Oh I just love the smell of falling leaves! Pumpkin season is back! Here are 7,000 photos of my family and me apple picking and getting lost in fucking corn mazes!! Fall is the greatest season EVER!!!

That’s a bit over the top, but I will say that I share the sentiments that Fall is pretty fucking rad. I’m not sure why. It’s possible that it’s because baseball season is coming to an end (being a White Sox fan, I am usually ready for the disappointment to stop), and football/basketball/hockey season begins. But I’m not that much of a sporty, so really I think it’s the sights and smells, the projects and the extra free time. And it’s the undeniable fact that with the beginning of autumn comes the temporary end of summer boob sweat.

My favorite things about Fall (besides the part about boob sweat), in no particular order are:

Gourds and Shit.

Shit like hay bales, scarecrows, sunflowers, and dried out corn.

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Fucking Fires.

October is fire season in California, which means that the highest fire risk is present. A lot of people’s lives are entirely devastated as a result of some sick fuck with a Zippo and a pyromaniacal tendency.

I’m not talking about that kind of fire. I’m talking about fireplaces and campfires. The crackling and the smell is the greatest; even when it’s simulated with potpourri, fake logs, and LED tea lights on my living room coffee table.

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Open Eating Season Begins!!!

That’s the thing that is really spectacular about Fall and Winter: it’s Open Eating Season. In the spring and the summer, we’re always too busy and too hot and sticky, and too self-conscious about the way we look in our jorts and bathing suits, to eat. But with fall comes pumpkin everything. Halloween treats and Halloween candy. Then Thanksgiving and on into the winter season of eating and yuletide, and all that other happy horse shit involving egg nog and calories.

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So sure, it may be tiring to listen to people ramble on and on about how great their Pumpkin Spice Frap at Starbucks was this morning. People are going to totally overdue the pumpkin flavored crazy, which – ironically – rarely has actual pumpkin in it. Yeah, people will start wearing those ugly fucking moon boots again, but it will still be warm enough to pair them with jorts and skeez tops.

But beyond that, Autumn is so awesome. The leaves and the wind and the oranges and browns and reds. The crackling of fires and the gourds and dried out corn. Pumpkin farms, apple picking, and haunted houses. The end of it being warm enough for teenagers to dry hump outdoors in public; and the beginning of sweater season.

You’re fuckin’ a right, it’s Fall.

I’m Over Pumpkin Patches

 

That’s it! I’m fucking over it. I’m over the pumpkins. I’m over hayrides. I’m over corn mazes and train rides and face painting. I’m over the gourds shoved down my pants to look like I’ve got a huge penis.

Okay I’ve never done that. But I’m over it all. I’m over pumpkin patches.

Halloween is my indulgence time, but even this indulgence can go too far. For the last week or so we have been to four – count them, four – pumpkin patches. The Californians don’t do the pumpkin patches too well, so we hit up different ones each year for specific attractions.

I’m fucking over it all.

I’m over the prices

Why in the hell do these places think they have a right to gouge people such as they do? Is it because people like me go back every year and pay despite the fact that what they are offering is a clear rip off?

The farm we went to yesterday was by far the worst. It cost $3 a person to get in, which was good compared to the weekend rate of $12. But I couldn’t help but wonder just what in the fuck I was paying for when nothing was open. So we’re paying to get in and I say “oh, well we’re going to want to do the train and the hayride and the petting zoo, so I guess the 20 ticket package as well as our admission.” You’d think that cashier would have told me that the petting zoo, the hayride, and the train were all closed, effectively wasting my money. Actually, nothing that took tickets was open yesterday, requiring us to go back today (and pay another $3 admission) since those tickets were nonrefundable.

I’m over the Farmer John’s Jons

That’s a port-a-potty.

Let me just say this right now: I have never in my entire life used a port-a-potty until today. Never, in my 30 years have I stooped so low to walk into one of those nasty things, with flies flying all around inside of them, looked down into the toilet to see a mound of piss, shit, paper, and used tampons, and then sat down to add my own human waste to the pile.

Fucking gross.

Today on our way, though, I drank too much Diet Coke, not realizing I’d have to pee so quickly. I couldn’t take it any longer and had to break down after 30 years of non-use.

I showered the minute I got home.

I’m over the other patrons

These pumpkin patches are just like Disneyland – everyone is in their own world and getting their own experience, and not giving a shit about who they step on to get it.

I’ve been stepped on, run into, run over, pushed, and trampled over at every single one of the four pumpkin patches we went to. I’ve been cut in front of. I’ve had to explain why other kids got to eat a King Sized candy bar, while I insisted on apples.

And just when I had realized that I had enough today, I turned around to suggest we leave only to see some lady bending over her kid, her entire ass – I shit you not, the entire thing – hanging out of her pants. I don’t want to see that.

And I’m over the older kids that are there to get some. I don’t know if you’ve ever noticed, but the pumpkin patch seems to be somewhere guys like to take girls on dates. Maybe it’s because they could get lost in the corn maze and do it in between the stalks. Maybe it’s because it’s in every single cliche romantic comedy out there.

In California, no one gives a shit if people see you sucking face or dry humping or grabbing your teenage girlfriend’s naughty parts. Last week I saw two people, that were clearly ditching school, dry humping on the cow train. In fact, I tried to take a photograph but the cow train’s operator asked them to leave the patch to (and I quote) “do your nasty business.”

I’m tired of the false advertising

And it seems like they are all falsely advertising what they offer. The first one we went to said “scariest hay ride you will ever take.” Scary because it was so boring? Scary because you took us in a circle around the parking lot? Yes, the thought of the hole in the ozone above this parking lot from all those cars and this superfluous circular hayride is scary. Yes, indeed. But frightening as in Halloween-scary? I don’t think so.

The place we went to today, hoping desperately for a decent hayride, advertised a great hayride too. This one would have been great – it was 20 minutes long, went all around the farm through sunflower fields, tunnels, and corn stalks. There was just one problem.

There was no fucking hay.

So I’m done with pumpkin patches. Are you? I think I’ve spent a little over $100 at this point. We might get a couple more pumpkins and carve them over the weekend, although I’m not sure I want to do that either. We painted two and they rotted within two days. We carved two more yesterday and they are already smelling up the front porch. I still have to finish Halloween costumes, bake Halloween cookies, and figure out just what in the hell we’re doing on Halloween anyway. So until next year…

6 Halloween Indulgences

There are exactly two weeks left until Halloween. That can mean one thing and one thing only for this lady: Halloween indulgences.

So Halloween is the kick start of the holiday season, it seems. After that it’s like a landslide to New Years. But the one thing that’s different for me than most other people is that it’s the only part of the holiday season that I allow myself indulgences.

I’m not a real holiday person. In fact, I hate the holidays. The family breathing down your neck, making requests of you left and right. The increases in the social calendar obligations. The money. The gratuitous gift giving. Having to clean around the decorations. All the food in excess. The money. The money. The money. And more than anything: the holiday blues. I get them every year and despite my urge to have a Prozac shake every morning until the New Year, I usually just mope my way through it.So Thanksgiving doesn’t see 3,000+ calories for me; in fact, I usually eat salad. Christmas cookies and candy and other assorted food-coma items are not something I partake in often either – I’m not the biggest fan of desserts most of the time.

You faithful blog followers are all probably envisioning that when I say “Halloween indulgences” I’m sitting around, shoveling miniature-sized Three Musketeers bars down my throat, while I pour Pixie Stix in my mouth, like a princess adorned with all the candy jewelry Candyland has to offer.

Sadly, this is just not the case. It would be funny, but like I said: I’m not really into desserty-type stuff most of the time.

Halloween Indulgence 1: New Halloween Decorations

I like Halloween decorations. I don’t mean the ones that are all blood and gore and crap. I also don’t mean overly elaborate ones. I like simple, but cute Halloween decorations that remind me of being a little kid again. Especially The Peanuts Halloween stuff – they just get me every time.

So I buy new Halloween decorations every year. I don’t mean that I throw out the old and bring in the new, I just add to my collection. Fortunately, since I don’t buy that much (maybe one or two things per year), we still don’t have that much. Some indoor skeleton lights. A couple grave stones. Cobwebs. A blue skeleton head. Those types of things. This year I bought an adorable mummy candle holder.

Halloween Indulgence 2: Making Homemade Costumes As An Excuse To …

… sit on my ass. Spend less money on costumes. Control what the costume is going to be. Sit on my ass some more. Go to my knitting/crafting group. Did I mention sit on my ass?

Making homemade Halloween costumes requires that I be in place and left alone for periods of time that I don’t usually get to be in place and left alone. “If you don’t leave me alone, I’ll never get your Halloween costume done!” is the primary reason why I start costumes in July.

Halloween Indulgence 3: Pumpkins and Gourds and Shit

It might be because so many gourds are phallic. It might also be because they are a cheap and easy way to decorate. Yesterday we went to the local pumpkin patch and I bought about forty pumpkins and assorted gourds and corn cobs for $30. Being a shopaholic that is on the way into the holiday blues (often temporarily cured with shopping), this is awesome. I can spend hours drowning my sorrows sifting through bins of shit that looks like a penis without breaking the bank, like clothes or shoe-shopping would.

Seems like a total win to me.

Halloween Indulgence 4: Cheesy Halloween TV Shows and Movies

When I was in high school, my dad and I would watch Mystery Science Theatre 3000 all the time. Since then (we’re talking for about fifteen years, now) I always poke fun at movies while watching them.

Cheesy Halloween TV Shows and Movies are the best for this. Last night I forced everyone to watch The Brain That Wouldn’t Die – a movie from the early 60s about a crazy doctor who gets into a car accident and tries to preserve his fiance’s head while he finds a body to attach it to. Sadly, my husband doesn’t appreciate my humor such as he should, so it usually ends in me sitting and cracking jokes to myself.

Halloween Indulgence 5: Boney With His Massive Invisible Boner

A while back, I introduced you all to Boney with his massive invisible boner. I’m not entirely sure how I came up with this concept. I mean, it’s just a plastic skeleton that I got at Michael’s a few years ago for $10. And despite my previous comment about sifting through a bin of phallic gourds, my mind is rarely anywhere near the gutter (I mean, my idea of sexytime is reading a book in sweatpants).

Nonetheless, Boney with his massive invisible boner becomes my mascot from the time he comes out of storage until November 1st every year.

Halloween Indulgence 6: Dressing Up My Animals

No, I do not mean Pookies or husband. I mean my actual animals.

Before my dog Watson died a few years ago, he got stuck playing dress up. Now that he is gone, I dress up the guinea pig, Agamemnon.

But I don’t just dress him up. I dress him up time after time, and have fashion shows with him in the living room. In the living room covered with penis-shaped gourds, with Boney and his massive invisible boner as the audience. Nothing weird about this at all, right? I make him some popcorn, set up a little runway, and turn up the Right Said Fred “I’m Too Sexy.” It’s very bizarre and I’m pretty sure he hates me at this point; although, he does seem to like it once in a while.

I’ll leave you with the most recent of the guinea pig fashion shows.

300th Post, Ruined By a Jerkface

Well it’s Happy 300th B(itch)es! I had this great post planned. I was going to do a lot of photos. Funny stuff. A list of confessions. And gunk about anniversaries and getting busy.

Then this total jerkface ruined my mood, so we’re sticking to the theme of B(ITCH)LOG for this one. This will probably be more comical than my list of confessions. And you guys didn’t want to know about how infrequently I shave my legs, or about that time in Cabo I always reference anyway…

This weekend whilst I canned pickles and sun-dried tomatoes and shit, the husband broke out the Halloween decorations to keep little hands busy so they weren’t touching my canned goods. It’s a little premature (Halloween being over a month away) but regardless of that, it was a helpful distraction and – anyway – it’s our home so we can do whatever the fuck we want. You don’t see me complaining to anyone because the neighbor has had fake weapons made out of foil with red marker-blood drawn on them hanging from his window since we moved here. No one’s come up dead so I figure he’s into that freaky, gothic crap. I didn’t storm outside screaming when the guy across the way sat on his porch in his tighty-whiteys scratching his balls and smoking for an hour one day last week.

If I want fucking pumpkins and maize and shit around my house, I’ll fucking have pumpkins and maize and shit around my house. What you do in/on your space is your business. As long as it’s legal and nobody gets hurt, of course.

And anyway, our decorations are relatively modest. There is a little fall display on our kitchen table that I made Saturday (pictured above), which sits at the foot of my large Buddha. (This just inspired my uber-Catholic father to ask if I was presenting offerings to Buddha and, thus, going to hell. That was a fun pseudo-Catholic-joke-gone-wrong on his part.) We have a skeleton in the bathroom that laughs when you flush the toilet. There’s a little, glittery mummy on the breakfast table. Some cobwebs and lights on the indoor trees. And my third-string boyfriend “Boney” (for his massive, invisible boner) hanging from my pot and pan rack.

You can imagine then how I felt when this middle-aged nerd in Harry Caray glasses, with a pot belly hanging over his belt and sweat dripping from his brow, knocked on my fucking door to inform me that our fall decor offended him. Motherfucker said it “offended” his “senses.”

#1: It’s September and the last time I checked there is fall shit everywhere. The only things we have outside are a little skeleton thing that he probably did not see, it is so out of the way; and the scarecrow sitting between our two deck chairs.

#2: Even if Halloween were a fucking millennia away, fall is later this week. Therefore, a scarecrow – unambiguously a fall decoration – is totally acceptable.

#3: If I wanted to plaster my entire front porch with lighted signs that say “Happy Halloween Dickweed in the Harry Caray glasses!!!” with neon orange lights blaring until four o’clock in the morning, it’s my right to do so. I pay rent the same way this dillhole does. I pay my share of the community water bills, likely as high as they are because of this dude’s extra need for summer douching. I have just as much a right to display what I want as he does to display any nerd convention shit he may choose to display on his front porch. My. Fucking. Right.

So I told that jerkface to mind his business and get off my porch.

My retaliation to this anally bleached king of the middle-aged nerds is going to begin tomorrow and not end until Valentine’s Day. From now until then, I will be decorating our apartment prematurely for every holiday I can possibly find decorations for. And I’m doing it big. We’re talking blaring lights. We’re talking shit that talks and scares the crap out of you when you walk by it. We’re talking Christmas before Thanksgiving. Valentine’s Day on January 3rd. I want to blow this middle-aged a-hole back to a time when people minded their own fucking business and just shut the fuck up once in a while.

It’s going to be great.

Happy 300, faithful blog followers! You can see my psychosis and foul-mouthed antics still reign supreme after all this time. I suppose it’s best that I was in true form anyway for this blessed post. Maybe one day in the future I’ll finally do that confessions blog and tell about the scandal in Cabo…

Birthers Gone Wild

My first post on this new blog site was called Birthers, and I have blogged on the topic many times since.  Ultimately, I think that people today have taken having babies (something done for millions of years) to whole new levels of narcissism and stupidity.  It isn’t just the tendency of parents to be obsessive compulsive, and as a result completely uneducated in the decisions they make for their children.  It also isn’t only the breastfeeding dads or the pictures of dirty diapers on Facebook.  The truth is that I think the Birthers have gone wild – in the entire process of birthing; from conception to high school graduation.

It seems as if these Birthers – the narcissistic newbie parents that truly believe they are the first people ever to have children – actually get some rise out of being so pompous and obsessed with their job as parents.  You can see it in the way they judge others for parenting in a different style than theirs, or in the way their lives become 100% focused on their child.  I used to have pregnant friends for whom pregnancy was just another thing in the day – now that baby belly is the center for which all things revolve.  You can see it in the monthly baby belly pics posted on Facebook or TwitPics.  And while I can consider that you are (literally) carrying the little tike with you 24/7, and it is a major life thing that is coming down the pipeline (so to speak), it would be a pretty major thing on your mind quite often; however, there are still things to life besides having those babies.

But I think what has happened is our entire culture has become so obsessed over almost every thing we do that these Birthers now have their non-stop talk of birthing and rearing as an outlet to truly express just how much they get off on the entire process.  Whereas before, being a parent was another thing in the list of what we did as human beings, the Birthers have let birthing define their very essence.  Of course, then, it’s no-holds-barred in a world where everything revolves around the process of conceiving, delivering, and raising children.  Coupled with the redefinition (read: loss) of privacy and we are now all inundated with the things put out there by the people for whom babies are the center of the universe.

Today I went on Facebook and saw that one of my friends had gone into labor.  She posted frequent updates through the course of the experience and it bothered me how extremely personal the update the comments that followed were.  While I scrolled through the comments to get to the bottom to post my simple “congratulations,” I was reminded of that episode of I Love Lucy when Lucy has the baby and you see nothing except Ricky pacing around the waiting room.  There was no detail about her epidural; no discussion about squeezing anything from Lucy’s hoo-haa – just Ricky pacing around the waiting room, I think smoking a cigarette.  I’m not suggesting that the process of giving birth is something to hide or to be ashamed of, I’m simply saying that it is an intensely personal thing that is not always a cutesy “hee hee, hoo hoo.”

To put it a little more bluntly, if someone wants to spread their vag and everything that comes out of it around for the public to see, the least they could do is consider how that makes the rest of us feel.

Another example of how the Birthers have gone wild is in their ridiculous characterization of what it is to give birth.  Halloween is just around the corner and people are going above and beyond the call of traditional pumpkin carving to come up with the most unique pumpkins they can.  Along with this obsession over birthing, the Birthers have taken to putting that obsession in their Halloween decor.  When I started seeing some of the absurd things the Birthers had come up with was when I actually accepted that the Birthers have gone completely wild.  Consider these three pumpkin sculptures – each of which appear to have gone viral on Facebook; each of which get more and more graphic as you go down the line:

It seems that the graphic sharing of the process of giving birth has transcended to an all new level with these pumpkins.  And I thought the daily updates on Facebook and personal blog posts, or the countless graphic videos on YouTube, were bad enough.  As I said, giving birth to a child is an extremely personal, (and for many people) a private thing.  Additionally, it’s a beautiful thing – absolutely astonishing.  That another human being can come of tiny specs of D.N.A. is – in itself – awe inspiring.  To devalue such a mysterious and often miraculous thing with sharing every single detail – from the fertility treatments to the end of bottle feeding – is (in a way) disrespectful of the wondrous experience of bringing life into this world.  Worse, to put it on a pumpkin – to debase an experience that is different and unique for literally every woman (or couple) out there, is a little insulting.  As a woman, I am disgusted that someone would carve a vagina with a baby coming through it onto the side of a pumpkin.  It was bad enough when the Birthers acted as though they were the first people on the planet to have a baby; and it was certainly horrific when men began trying to induce lactation to breastfeed.  I still don’t want to see photographs of your child’s dirty diapers, just as I don’t want to hear all the details of your baby moving down through your birth canal.  To the Birthers Gone Wild:  stop turning the experience of having children into such a joke.  Your antics, your stupidity, and now your pumpkins.