Monday, November 24, 2014

Last year, Thanksgiving fell eight days after my son was born.  After I'd been sliced open from gullet to gills, and sent on my way, I was warned to not do anything too strenuous.  So I cooked the entire meal, by my self.  The Fixer can't cook for shit, and his mom wasn't offering.

I fucking hate you all.

This year, in a strange parallel, on the anniversary of my son's birth and the reception of the largest scar on my body, My Lady Mother (In-Law) had a similar procedure performed.  Only, she had her reproductive organs removed.  I don't know, I had those weird Maiden-Mother-Crone-Cycle-Of-Life trains of thought that day.  Anyhoo, I'm not cooking Thanksgiving dinner this year.  Fuck it.  I could be a dick and insist on how important family celebrations, like this one, are.  Remind her that if I could cook with umpteen staples holding me together, she could manage with a few laparoscopic punctures. 

No laying down on the job!

But I'm a nicer person that that, and Albertson's has deli and sandwich trays starting at $12.99!

Maybe not the best picture to put right under that last one.

Posts are going to be a bit sparse for a while, because, you know, holidays.  And, also, no privacy whatsoever. But I'll try to get one good one in before the New Year.  I also promise to try to learn proper grammar, syntax, and sentence structure. 

I'm lying, of course.  I promise nothing but disappointment.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

In Defiance Of The Great Red Beast

Despite knowing what happens when you post Christmas things before Thanksgiving, I'm gonna do it anyway. I just hope it's not my baby.

I was checking ye olde Facebook when my notifications alerted me to a fantastic post from one of my favorite blogs, Dinosaur Dracula. The guy that runs that blog pretty much lives in my head, where we sit around, drinking Kool Aid and kvelling about all the shit I love. We're probably watching VH1's "I Love The 80s" too. What I'm trying to say is I probably want to make out with him.  I'm just kidding, I only want to make out with The Fixer. And Seth Rogen. And Sarah Silverman. And maybe Adam Richman. And definitely Julie Goldman.

The greatest gift a girl can get on Christmas is an opportunity to smooch a bunch of sexy Jews.

No cutting in line just because it's your birthday.

What was I talking about? Oh yeah. So much joy.  The post concerned something I hadn't  thought about in about 25 years. I've mentioned in passing that my childhood was shit, littered with awesome junk. And the 7UP Christmas calendar was one of the best things. Granted, mine was a hot mess because I used pink glue. Like all smart 8 year  olds, I'd figured out that putting strips of marker-soaked paper in my Elmer's would change its colour. So, globs of pink glue would seep through the cotton balls, causing Santa to look like he was headed to a rave.

That's really all I wanted to say, so I guess we can just file this post under "quickie" or maybe "drive-by."

Drive-by blogging.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

I'm a goddamn genius

So NaNoWriMo is going swimmingly, and by "swimmingly" I mean I wrote a paragraph.  The problem isn't that I don't have ideas or a story to tell, the problem is that I'm a notorious self-saboteur.  Just this week I decided that, due to abject poverty, I was going to make Stinkbug's Christmas gifts.  I'm a pretty crafty kid, and had I made this decision two months ago I would have nothing to blog about right now.  But no.  I'm not making one, but two fairly large projects.  The first is a dragon scarf that was originally intended as a costume, complete with a matching outfit for the dog.  Because people do that.


I'm also doing something so fucking sweet and twee that I expect to be murdered by every Pinteresting mom on the planet for actually doing one of these kinds of projects.  Are you ready to barf?  Seriously, even I'm disgusted with myself.  I'm taking the hospital receiving blanket that Stinkbug was wrapped in when he was born, and turning that mofo into a stuffed teddy bear.  What's worse is that while I'm no stranger to the sewing machine, I've never actually made a stuffed animal.  That I've chosen to make my first attempt at doing so with a treasured keepsake is just galling.  Really.  I'm a fucking idiot.

What's worse is that I'm also working on a new needlework project.  People were rather fond of my "pumpkin spice" themed cross-stitch, so I've decided to try my hand at a holiday Krampus design.  I don't have a picture to post for this, because I'm eyeballing it, so here's a charming illustration of the Christmas Devil--suitable for children!


Speaking of things I make, I have a Zazzle store now.  I figure, hell, I own my own images.  Why not sell a bunch of junk featured said images, see how that goes?  So, if you're looking for somewhat expensive apparel or a, frankly, charming coffee mug, check it out.  Help me feed the Bob The Cat.

Friday, November 7, 2014

The One Where I Wax Poetic About Baby Food...Sorry.

I'm kind of confused.  Baby food is a bajillion dollar industry, but people hate admitting to feeding the stuff to their kids.  Everyone seems desperate to convince us that they slave away, preparing gourmet, organic, all natural, fresh from their own garden meals that they then chuck into the Baby Bullet or food mill.

I feel like that cup with the handles would be ideal for hanging onto a margarita for dear life.

There's nothing wrong with the people who actually do that, but do we all have to get on our interwebz soapboxes and lie?  I mean, seriously.  I feed my kid real food, sometimes, but I feed him Gerber too.  Ok, not Gerber so much, only because Stinkbug is outraged when I try to feed him regular fruits and veggies.  He's a fucking snob.  I suspect he keeps grabbing my glasses, not to chew on, but to wear and tell people he liked things before they were cool.

Goddamn it baby!  Mommy needs those to see!

He only wants the organic pouch stuff, probably because in his diapered Stinkbug soul he knows that shit costs twice as much as the regular Gerbers in the tubs.  And he only wants Plum Organics.  Specifically he wants the fancy, Second Blends World Baby stuff.

I was going to put another hipster baby picture here, but then I ran across the baby with what basically equates a Hitler haircut and I just had to stop.  What was I talking about?

Hey!  Did you know that organic baby junk actually kind of tastes good?  You hit a point where you're up to your elbows in baby food because no one knows how you even  manage to feed yourself, let alone another human being, and the burp cloth is so caked and filthy--as is your t shirt--and in a moment of desperation you lick the banana-zucchini-amaranth glob off your knuckle, and you don't die. 

Now, if only they could cram this into a pouch.

I've been around babies, off and on, pretty much my entire life.  Mom had a few friends that would occasionally crank out a kid or two, or their kids were having kids, or their kid sisters were having kids.  Whatever.  Like many curious kids, I wanted to know what that green gunk they were eating tasted like.  Yeah.  In 1987 or 1988 baby food companies weren't doing children any favors.  Weirdly, around 1990, I developed a taste for the fruit dessert varieties.  I'd beg and plead with my mom to pick up a couple of jars of tutti fruity or custard.

Wait.  We can give them custard?  'Cause, I've got a flat of Snack Pack pudding just taking up space...
 But seriously, those veggie and (shudder) meat jars?

Think happy thoughts.

Baby food has gotten good!  Okay, not the meat ones, still, but that Plum stuff?  It's good!  I could see myself trying to work out a grown-up version of that lentils, apricot, and squash stuff.  I'm still wrapping my mind around the fact that they made a product that makes babies want to eat lentils and kale and stuff!

Don't give me that look Pittsburgh-PBS!

 I really want him to like Earth's Best and Ella's Kitchen too, because I'm a slave to packaging and manipulative marketing, but he only like's Plum.  I just gave him some blackberry-purple carrot-greek yogurt-quinoa stuff that is technically intended for toddlers, but seriously, there is nothing different about what is in that pouch and one of the baby food ones.  I'm all like, what the hell?!  My breakfasts aren't that nice.  Alright, my breakfasts are non-existent.  Six cups of coffee doesn't "count" as breakfast.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

The Mom Part of "Werewolf Mommy"

I don't have a particularly well laid out idea of how this post is going to go, so if it meanders off track, well, don't say I didn't warn you.

How 'bout those kids, eh?  They're everywhere I tells ya!  Some are cute and sweet (I was once called beautiful by a 4 year old little boy who came through my check-out lane with his mom).  Some are precocious, with a quick wit that would make Zombie Joan Rivers' head spin.  Some are obnoxious little fucks, and a large part of the reason that I sometimes think some kids should get the shit smacked out of them.  But, regardless of the variety, kids exist and that seems to piss a chunk of the population right the fuck off. 

Believe it or not, this ain't that chunk.

Parenting has become a weird beast, in this age of social media and instant updates on every aspect of our friends' and family's lives.  In many instances a woman's circle of Facebook friends know she's pregnant before the father of the soon-to-be baby.  It's a bold new world and, frankly, it's a little weird and awful.  Did you know about that placenta art is a thing?  I didn't until maybe a year or so ago.  I admit to knowing that some folks make soaps or whatever with placenta, but I blame Practical Magic for that knowledge. 

Then there's poop and naked babies.  I lump these two together because they're just facts of life for parents.  It's never been unheard of for parents to take the "first bath" pictures, or the baby butt picture.  It even sometimes occurs that a child manages a particularly spectacular bowel movement and their parents feel some need to document the event.  I'd judge, but I know men in their late 20s who do the same thing, in the a.m., after a particularly intense bender.  What is new, and terrible, is that we can now share what were once private moments with pretty  much everyone in the entire world. 

Hey kids, did you know that once you post a photo on any social media you've lost control over that image for the rest of the Internet's life?  Even when your privacy settings are set to private?  I had a MySpace account about a thousand years ago, and my profile picture is still floating around out there despite the fact that the account is deactivated and I don't even have that picture in my personal collection anymore.

Now, with the exception of poop because I never want to see poop, I'm not actually against sharing those cute bath pictures, or even the baby butt ones.  If your circle of social media friends are close friends or family, and not Dave from accounting who friended you after a team-build excursion, then there's probably a certain degree of expectation that you share some of those pictures.  I don't.  I'm generally too busy bathing my kid to run off and grab my phone or camera.  Plus, I'm paranoid that if I take even a moment to snap a picture he'll find a way to drown.  And, also, I don't care.  Baths aren't treasured memories, unless by treasured you mean I'll never forget how I somehow ended up more soaked than the kid. 

Of course, then you have the ones that post picture after picture as if that send button were attached to a morphine drip.  The ones that either forgot that Dave from accounting is on their friends list, or simply assume that he is dying to know about every minute aspect of Jr's day to day.  The way I figure it, if he cares that damn much there's a chance he's secretly Jr's dad.  I'm not really writing this about those people though.  There are blogs and humor sites dedicated to this kind of overshare already.  Sites like STFU Parents exist to highlight this new world of bizarre candor and the assumption that everyone wants and appreciates it.  They also skewer the concepts of "tiger moms" and "mama bears" and, I dunno, are there "lion moms"?  The parents who not only think their children hung the moon and stars, but will shank a fucker who tries to explain astronomy or string theory or anything that negates the firmly held belief that their kids are the center of not just their, but everyone's universe.

Have you noticed that I have something to say about the behavior and actions of parents, but very little about the children themselves?  Oh, there are absolutely some horrid kids out there.  Sometimes it's due to bad parenting, sometimes it's because the kid clearly needs a snack or a nap, sometimes it's because horrible people had to come from somewhere.  But I don't actually know one from the other, not without actually knowing the kid and his/her family.  So when a rowdy-as-fuck toddler, up WAY beyond what would be reasonable for a child that young, chucked a bundled silverware place setting at me at a super-douchy hipster restaurant, I was annoyed at said toddler, but super-pissed at their Pabst-swilling fuckknob parents.  Because they saw it happen, and not only didn't do the apology-parent-dance that we all learn to do when our kids are acting like shits to total strangers, but they didn't even retrieve their silverware or acknowledge that it had happened.  The waitress did all that for them, while Handlebar Von Mustache and Lady Ironic Toaster Tattoo looked incredibly put upon that I might not have enjoyed their kid's performance art.

(sidebar:  Before anyone gets the idea that I think these two asshats were such because Dad enjoys scarves in the middle of a California heatwave, and Mom's baby registry included a complete Sleeter Kinney discography, it's not that at all.  You know that Cat Whisperer Guy? He's got a doppelganger who lets his kids dress like pirates all day, every day, and that family is kind of awesome.  Of course, his kids are well behaved, and when one does act up they either clean up the mess and/or apologize and take said kid off-stage to deal with whatever underlying issue is at play.)

He might actually be the real Cat Whisperer.  I don't know if Jackson Galaxy has kids.

I know it seems like this is that meandering off point that I mentioned before, but I'm actually getting there.  I just usually take the scenic route.  The point is that I rarely would call even the worst of these kids brats, or worse.  Maybe in a nebulous, "some kids are assholes" kind of way, but rarely a specific child.  And never as a response to the actions of the parents.  I might hate someone's guts and think they should fall into an industrial sized rock tumbler, but I don't hate their kids.  And I certainly don't hate their kids because they, the parents, have differing opinions or a sense of humor that is counter to mine.  But there seems to be a simmering subset of the population who hates kids!  Not the "I don't want kids" or "Some restaurants should ban children after a certain time of day" kind of hatred.  I get that.  Hell, I have a kid and I don't want to be around kids.  I'm referring to those people who hate children to the point that they wish actual harm to them.  They hate parents to the point that it's not enough to say "I hate you," they have to throw in personal attacks on the one person in the equation that doesn't have a say in their role in the world, the kid.  When we started calling people "special snowflakes" it was usually in reference to those twee fucks that think they fart rainbows and have really deep souls and why wouldn't thousand-year-old vampires want to make me one of their own, just because I'm 14 and I drew pentacles all over my notebook only to be asked why I'd drawn a bunch of Stars of David?

There are people who have flocked to a humor site that documents this whole new territory of social media parenting, and the hilarious results, under the banner of "I hate children and parents and everything to do with them!"  They are just appalled that there are parents in the comments sections, laughing with everyone else, because it's called "Shut The Fuck Up PARENTS, so go stuff a pipe bomb up your snatch, you filthy breeder!"  I don't know if these people act like this in real life, I doubt it.  It's just another instance of people on the internet acting like people on the internet.

They seem to have this massive hard-on, believing that every parent is trying to ruin their lives by having kids.  People they have never met decided to have children, and that is really impeding on their lives.  They also seem to have this belief that once someone has had a kid they stop being a human being, but instead some sort of parasitic host looking for others to infect.  People who hate kids are very much under the delusion that there's some kind of conspiracy to force them to give up their brunches and parties and their youth in favor of kids and all the messy accessories that come with them.  While I don't doubt that many of these guys and gals have a family member (or a dozen) and friends that are constantly nudging them in the ribs and asking when they'll become a mommy or daddy, believe me--the rest of us?  We really would prefer you not breed.  Not because you'd be a bad parent, though I've long suspected that those who scream and bitch about other people's horrible children are the ones that somehow spawn perfect babies that speak three languages and have names like Quinoa and Pittsburgh-PBS.  No, we'd all really prefer you not become parents don't want to be parents.

Here's a mind-blower, and I'll probably be dragged out and set on fire by the local PTA for saying so, but being a parent isn't as bad as some of us make it out to be.  No, don't get me wrong!  You definitely lose sleep, and there's poop.  So freaking much poop.  And other gross shit.  And some of your friends may end up becoming more like acquaintances, which can happen because of moving or job changes or lots of other major life changes other than parenthood.  And you're different because life is different.  But it doesn't take a goddess or a rocket scientist or anything else special to be a parent.  We all do what we can, for better or worse, to raise not-assholes.  Some of us will succeed, some of us will fail, and those who fail's kids will flock to humor sites to lambast a segment of humanity for being different or making different life choices despite the author of that site being a member or potential member of that segment.  For all those people who bitch about all parents acting like they deserve a parade for a choice they've made, you should probably come back down to reality and realize that very few actually have that opinion.  They're out there, for sure, but just like the small handful of Ebola cases in the U.S. getting blown way out of proportion, you've decided that a very small percentage of parents represent us all.  Believe me, I hate those mama-bear Facebook posts and "those aren't stretch marks, they're tiger stripes!" memes.  I'm not a mother because I'm amazing, or invincible, or fucking dipped in chocolate and covered in gold leaf.  I had a child because I wanted a child.  I may not have set out to have my son, and once I found out I was going to have a baby I could have gone a couple different routes.  But I decided that I wanted him, and that I (probably) had the tools to raise him.  I lucked out, because I had a choice and I got to want and keep him (which isn't always the case for some women).  I don't shove it down anyone's throat how special or whatever I think I am (I totally am, but for reasons other than my son), so when I crack a joke--probably at your expense--go ahead and think I'm an asshole, but it's a weak piece of shit who has to attack someone's kids because they don't like that person.

And please don't have kids.  Unless you want to have kids.  But definitely don't be a dick.

Wil Wheaton is watching you.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Weak Willed

I kept saying I'd do an unboxing video of Horror Block, and it even came on Halloween.  But....

I couldn't resist.  I didn't even wait for The Fixer to get out of the bathroom, I wanted to open it so bad!  I'd already watched an unboxing, so I knew what was in it.  That was probably half of the problem.  I knew, mostly, what I was getting and I was totally excited.  If you're dying for a video, you can search on YouTube.  Lots of people do them, it's kind of fun to be honest.  But for those of you who can appreciate some descriptive writing, I'll just tell you about what came in the box.

First out was a t-shirt.  It featured a black, white, and red print of Jason Voorhees, which The Fixer claimed on the grounds that I got the kitten skull shirt.  I reminded him that he just got a bazillion t-shirts for his birthday and a condition of my not stealing the fuck out of this one would be that he cleaned out all the shirts he doesn't wear anymore.  So, essentially, I got him to clean something by bribing him with something that was technically his already. 

Next was an individual serving sized box of  "cereal" that was, in fact, the packaging for Cereal Killers sticker cards.  I super love these because they're a throw back to monster cards and Garbage Pail Kids cards, of which I had a crap-ton when I was a kid.  I ended up losing them, and a ton of other cards (Addams Family movie cards spring to mind), when I moved out of state in the eighth grade.  It was a fun/sad coincidence because my friend Tara and I were talking about Garbage Pail Kids that day.  Needless to say, she's super jealous.

There was a Funko reaction figure included, with a 50/50 chance of getting Sam from Trick 'r Treat or Jason Voorhees--a nice tie in with the shirt.  I ended up getting Sam, which I'm happy with.  It serves to remind The Fixer, everyday, that he's never seen Trick 'r Treat and that his life simply won't be complete until he does.

Let's see, what else?  Oh!  Instead of Rue Morgue, there was an issue of Fangoria.  I'm cool with that.  Sort of wanted the Rue Morgue, but I've bought my fair share of Fangoria.  We also got a nifty clay zombie kit.  I don't remember the brand, not because there's anything wrong with this item, but because it fell slightly outside of my interests.  Sort of.  I use clay, but usually polymer clay that you bake.  The kit was an air dry kit, and I've never actually used air dry clay.  I've been known to use polymer to make accessories for crocheted dolls, so chances are that between The Fixer and myself we'll find something to make. 

Like a scythe.

Coolest of all was an actual Blu-Ray disc of Puppet Master!  I hadn't seen this film in a long time, and it'll be just a little while longer because I don't have a Blu-Ray player.  But it's one I dig, so yay for me.  Plus, again, it's a film that The Fixer hasn't seen.  I'm starting to suspect that he's led a sheltered existence. Or his mom didn't own and operate a video store.  I thought moms just did that sort of thing.

Sorry again for the lack of video.  And the lack of photos, for that matter.  I'm weak AND I'm lazy.  I'll do better next time, which won't be for a few months.  Birthdays and Holidays have conspired to come together all at the same time of year and ruin me financially. 

Oh!  And, completely unrelated, but: