Bad Parenting

I am obsessed with my dogs. They are better looking, funnier, and smarter than anything you have in your life. There is a chance everyone feels this way about their pets, and maybe everyone isn’t right– including me. Gasp!

MilaMy dogs are Mila and Magnus, and they have taught me many things. The sappy stuff, like selfless love, patience, and the ability to clean up poop. They have also taught me some less impressive things about myself– mainly that my laziness and inability to say no to my dogs, and mean it, makes me a bad pet parent.

MagnusToday, I had one of those experiences mothers of toddlers talk about while they’re on their third glass of wine. It was an experience I didn’t see coming into my life for quite some time. A stranger was awful and judgmental about my dogs, and by extension, me. I mean, I am not saying he was wrong, but it was embarrassing.

I went home for lunch on Friday afternoon to let the dogs use the bathroom and play. I normally let them play on this large ungated patch of grass in my apartment complex on sunny afternoons because it’s calm and people aren’t coming in and out with their dogs in the middle of the day– except today.

Mila and Magnus are large dogs who are obsessed with small dogs. So, a redheaded freckle-faced man came out of the side door of a building with a white fluffy little cotton ball of a dog. We’ve encountered this dog before. It is as mean as it is cute, and it considers my dogs’ needy playfulness as aggression, so they are not friends.

Mila and Magnus saw this little fluff ball and his ginger handler, ignored all of my commands- which they only do when it’s really important they listen- and sprinted their way across a parking lot. The man picked up his dog as I ran behind mine. As I got closer, Mila and Magnus changed directions and ran into an enclosed dog area.

I sighed and said, “ok, we’ll just go to the gated area.”

I was talking to my dogs– feeling annoyed, but happy that there was no barking and no drama. Then, I heard it:

“They sure do whatever they want, don’t they?”

Ginger said it in such a neutral way, but I couldn’t help but think the dig at my dogs was really just a dig at me. I turned, made eye-contact with him, and debated what to say…

“At least my dogs are friendly.”
“Mind your own business.”
“You sure are a jerk, aren’t you?”

I settled for: “I guess they do.”

He doesn’t know N and I work with the dogs everyday. He doesn’t know Magnus is huge but still a puppy and has a hard time listening. If he knew, would he care? Probably not.

Like I said, he wasn’t wrong. My dogs embarrassed me and that man, all his freckles, and I knew that to be the case. Did he need to point it out?

Either way– Good burn, Ginger, good burn.

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Most things stayed the same

It’s 2015.

I’m not sure how I feel about that. Really, this is a ‘it’s not you, it’s me,’ situation. Odd numbers are creepy, and I don’t know why. The volume is better on an even number, I like to say hello twice, and goodbye twice. My neurosis. I don’t think people notice, but now they might.

I had a wonderful dinner, and fabulous drinks this NYE. Did you know a boozy Arnold Palmer is better with a little sprig of rosemary? Well, it is.

Between researching studies and open records requests, I thought about how much I didn’t want to make any resolutions, and then I thought about how I could be happier with my life. So, I ended up making a resolution of sorts. I hope to be more deliberate with my life in 2015, and beyond.

I’ve been very ‘whatever happens, happens’ the majority of my adult life, and that has served me well when it comes to moving around for work, and not limiting where I might find good opportunities. Yet, it has been a disservice when it comes to other aspects of my life– namely, making plans and never getting around to them. Taking vacations, visiting family, visiting friends, going paddle boarding, volunteering, learning to shoot a gun, watching more plays, more live music, more ballet, doing another Crossfit competition. Most of these things aren’t expensive, I just think about doing them, and then don’t. So, this 2015 I want to do those things I’ve been too lazy to do.

In January N and I are going to watch Book of Mormon in OKC and taking an inversion workshop over the weekend. February, we are catching the ballet, visiting family in March, Hozier in April, and hopefully a, longer than I normally would, vacation in June…

I, like, wrote it down in my calendar, in pen– so, it’s a go. Maybe being more deliberate is a key to feeling increasingly fulfilled. I love my job, but I certainly want my life to be about much more than that.

Anyway, I was bad this morning, and put twice the amount of coffee grounds to make one pot of coffee at work– even though there are signs, many signs, everywhere telling me not to do that. At least the coffee is tastier than ever. You’re welcome World! New year, still me– whatever that means.

Just Laugh

2014 in review

This little report is neat. I’m glad I moved to WordPress. Anyway, to all my pretty friends and pretty strangers all over the world, a big hug and a big thank you for reading my rambles. I hope you never lose interest or that I write more interesting things– either way, stay with me in 2015. On an unrelated note, as I was writing this a piece of toast I was eating fell in the trash. The trash was empty with a fresh bag, and I thought about picking it out and eating it anyway– but I didn’t. I am a better adult with each passing day. Enjoy champagne and good times, and I’ll do the same.

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here's an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 850 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 14 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Sorry, I was busy eating

I ate a breakfast taco the other day, but instead of a tortilla there was a waffle. I know right, I’m a freaking animal, but I mean, look:

Waffle Taco

I remember pretty harshly judging anyone that would eat that gross waffle taco from Taco Bell, and I stand by that– mostly because I think my food doesn’t look gross, and also, I am a horrible horrible hypocrite. The OKC food scene has been neat. I’m really digging this waffley heaven called Waffle Champion. The name is really great because it makes me feel like such a winner even though I’m eating a giant waffle taco, followed by a sweet dessert waffle, and a bottle of wine. It was brunch, after all. The restaurant sells boxed water, like water in a box, and it’s expensive. That makes me feel like I’m a budding environmentalist, without actually having to buy it. Hey, I’m not made of money. My budget is stretched pretty thin after my $140/month Crossfit membership, so I can look hot, and my waffle obsession, so I can ruin everything.

I know this probably sounds ridiculous right about now, but I haven’t spent the last couple of months just eating. I’ve done other cool things, I’m pretty sure. High fives all around, pretty faces

Failed Sports Fan: Baseball and Tattoos

    I’m the worst sports fan, as in, I’m not a sports fan at all, but I like to pretend sometimes, and it doesn’t always come off the right way. You need to know that about me before we go watch, well, I guess the Thunder, since that’s what’s cool where I live.
    I can certainly get caught up in the excitement of a football game, I mean, I’m not an animal, but I do need to force myself to pay attention. Case in point, I went to a baseball game a few weeks ago, and what I remember about the outing is unusual. Like most things, I like the idea of a baseball game better than the actual game, but it had been almost a year since I’d been to one, so I forgot.
Logo I borrowed from the interwebs.

Logo I borrowed from the interwebs.

    The Oklahoma City Red Hawks are a minor league baseball team, and I hear they are pretty good, but I was sitting around a bunch of fans, so take that with a grain of salt. I had a good time at the game, eat all the nachos, and even cheered at mostly the right times. I have this bad habit that will eventually get me in trouble, though. I have a tendency to cheer for the other team if they do something especially cool, so I’m waiting for the day someone’s beer ends up on my head.
    Anyway, I don’t know how it happens, but I end up obsessing about things other than the game. Like, right now, a month after the fact, I keep thinking about this woman I saw there. She was sitting to my right four rows up. How I noticed her in the first place, I don’t know. She was about my height, in her 50s, with brown hair, and quite a bit over weight. She was wearing a sleeveless shirt and cargo shorts. She looked like a an average American mother with adult children. Except for one spectacular thing; she had a large tattoo on the outside of her forearm. It was a bright royal blue dragon, and took up her entire outer-forearm.
Visual approximation of tattoo. Thanks Internet.

Visual approximation of tattoo. Thanks Internet.

    I thought it might be fake, but after sneaking several peeks, and maybe an outright stare, I’ve decided it was very real. It looked new, too. So, this wasn’t something she did as a crazy kid, but something she did like a couple of months ago.
    So many questions!
    I find the stories behind tattoos so interesting, and I wanted to hear hers. I’ve had people tell me there is no story behind their tattoos, but I call b.s. You don’t decide to get something permanent on your body for zero reason.
    I thought about the different reasons people have given me for their tattoos. Maybe she wanted a change? Maybe she’s just really into dragons? Maybe she has a friend that wanted to practice and she let them practice on her? Maybe she beat cancer, and felt super mighty– like a dragon. I guess, I’ll never know.
    I know the reason I got my first tattoo is hilarious, and a little stupid, but I remember it fondly.
    Speaking of remembering… remember how this post was about sports? I’m pretty sure the Red Hawks won.

That’s Sea Law

Sometimes things don’t work out the way you thought they would, and that’s how I went from living in Germany to clinging to an aluminum rod and trying to keep down my lunch on a 37-foot sailboat in the Gulf of Mexico.

I’m a journalist, but I put that part of myself on hold, and did other fun stuff for the last year. Now I’m back in a newsroom– or will be tomorrow. Before I moved to OKC, N and I visited his dad and his dad’s sailboat. I get horribly seasick all the time every time, but I’m on this ‘try new things’ ridiculous kick and I convinced myself this time would be different. It wasn’t.

It was my first time on a sailboat and I planned to take cool pictures in my swimsuit and Ray-Bans, sunning myself by the sails. Instagram was going to get slammed with pictures of my face! Actually, I only managed to take one crooked blurry photo of the sails.

Do you know how hard it is to look cool while trying not to puke? Harder still to take good pictures. Apparently, I only succeeded in looking angry, but I always look angry, so whatever. The sunglasses did help fool everyone into thinking I was totally not about to blow chunks.

N’s dad started talking to me about how the helmsman has to keep the wind on his/her face while steering the boat, that the boat should be steered like a car with a loose steering wheel, and that sailboats have the right of way because… I don’t know…it’s sea law or something. I thought he was just making conversation, so I was all, “Yeah…Sure… Obviously… I totally get it.”

Mistake.

Moments later he said, “Ok, we’ll put the sails up you man the boat,” and walked away.

I just clung to this steering wheel the size of my body, and kept repeating, “Face, wind, loose steering wheels, don’t puke, don’t die, don’t knock these guys off the boat, I have the right of way.”

It went exactly as well as that time I played the guitar, that is to say, not well. Be glad you weren’t with me, or maybe be sad. It really depends on how much you trust me to keep you alive while I’m panicking.

I ended up driving in a circle. Seriously. N and his dad got hit on their faces with the sails because I couldn’t go in a straight line, but I didn’t crash or tip over, so… I’m basically a sailor now, no big deal.

I wasn’t the only one having a tough time. N got sea sick too, but he played it off better, or maybe his sunglasses covered more of his face.

He had a lot of fun working the sails and yelled,”I am like an expert sailor…”

Moments later he went to sit down, lost his footing, and broke some thermometer or something. He appropriately yelled, “I belong on the land.”

After a couple of hours we were sailing back to shore, and I was happy I never actually lost it. Then N said he saw a dolphin and he and his dad decide to explore.

What fresh hell is this! I tried to melt his face off with my death stare, especially because this supposed dolphin never reappeared.

Don’t feel too bad for me though, my father-in-law had offered me some sea sickness medication before we sailed way, and I was too cool to take it.

Sailing is fun. I know because I managed to have a great time in spite of my horrible sea sickness. Next time I’ll just take the damned pill.

IMG_1709-0.JPG

Of Course

Could Kill Me, Apparently

Could Kill Me, Apparently

I had an allergic reaction. It was…bad, terrifying, and at the end funny.

I tried to type this a few days ago so I could write: ‘My eyes are swollen shut, and the reason is stupid.’ I couldn’t do that, though, because my eyes were, in fact, swollen shut, so I couldn’t see. Right now my eyes are no longer swollen shut; they are still pretty puffy, and the reason behind that is still stupid.

As a kid I had allergies that manifested in the most annoying ways. No itchy eyes or runny nose for me. I’d get blisters on my eyelid and under my eye about the size of dimes. Normally I’d take allergy medication, put a cold compress on my eyes, and a couple of hours later I’d be good. That happened much less often once I became an adult, and completely stopped about two years ago, until last weekend.

I was doing yard work. I got fancy and helped mow some grass. I felt like a real cool kid when I got my hands on the weed whacker and I didn’t lose any toes or kill the dog. It was because of all that excitement that I didn’t notice my eyes were very itchy. I touched my face and felt two little blisters under each eye, so I ran in to the house, washed my face, popped an antihistamine, and avoided scratching. Ten minutes later, the itchiness wasn’t subsiding, so I walk into the bathroom and looked in the mirror. It looked like I had been punched in both eyes.

I realized that whatever gave me the allergic reaction was probably still all over my clothes and hair, so I quickly jump into the shower. The whole time I’m trying my best to keep cool, but that was difficult to do after realizing that I was having to widen my eyes as much as possible so that I could see at all. As I was showering I noticed an extremely swollen lymph node under my right arm surrounded with blisters…sexy right?

I don’t generally panic until it’s absolutely necessary, so I stood there in the shower barely able to see squinting at my arm, trying to decide if that was going to be the moment I’d panic. I’ve never gone into anaphylactic shock, but I figured since I didn’t think my throat was closing I was probably fine?

Turns out I was sort of fine, but leaving the house was not an option for three days. That’s how long it took to start looking normal-ish.

I’ve been working hard to be stronger and faster, but apparently I can be taken out by a few blades of grass and a dusting of pollen— of course.