Wednesday, February 26, 2014

the facebook post that turned into some weird sort of bloggery

I took a Buzzfeed quiz to figure out what sort of tattoo I should I have.

I trust Buzzfeed and I have faith in the validity of their quizzes. I trust BF quizzes like my mother, a Leo, trusted her daily horoscope, the one printed in the back of the daily paper between the Jumble puzzle and Ask Doctor Donahue.

Buzzfeed really knows the REAL ME, for real.

The real me who needs a tattoo at the age of getting awfully freaking close to 50. Plus my skin is getting that weird dry skin thing going on so that a tattoo will nicely draw attention to my weird old skin.

A tattoo, oh yes. I must have one.

Buzzfeed peered into my very soul and determined based on my Starbucks cup preference and Pixar movie preference that I want need should must have a typography tattoo.

No pictures for me. Forget the Celtic knots,  retro blue birds and cliche butterflies.

Emblazon upon my creepy old lady skin the unambiguous word.

I looked up examples of typography tattoos and found many people have had meaningful sentiments etched into their flesh: sentiments such as "maybe" and "so be it"and "&". Nothing vague there.

Having Poe's "Annabel Lee" tattooed on your back is also a thing. It's going to be awesome to read "Annabel Lee" in its entirety aloud from your very own back whenever you want to...wait.

Uh...

Just look in the mirror and crane your head around  Exorcist style, and then, ah crap, it's...

damn.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

In which we contemplate puberty and other scary things

My son will be turning 11 in April. He's already a giant fellow at 5' 3". He looks soft and round and he is but he's also very strong. One of his favorite games right now is, Can I Pick it Up?

Anyway, I digress. In my family, boys get softer and rounder before they grow into broad shouldered giant manly men. True story.

This morning, my big little boy stared pensively into his cereal bow. I asked him what was up and he said he was worried about going through puberty. I asked it there was something specific about puberty that was troubling him. He told me he didn't want to grow a beard and was afraid to shave for fear he'd cut himself with a razor.

I looked at his sweet smooth face and imagined him with facial hair. Huh. Wow! OH MY GOD. I didn't say that though, because when your kids come to you with this stuff you have to be placid as a pool of water, you have to remain as cool as goddamn cucumber and as you must appear to be as serene as something really seriously fucking serene. It does not matter how freaked out you are on the inside, this shit isn't about you, and you must appear unafraid, unfazed and not bothered.

I focused on staying placid, cool, and serene and explained in my calmest mom voice that when the time came, we could get him an electric razor. His eyes got wide. An electric razor! Holy Crap, Mom! That seems like a really bad idea! Electric razor sounds like a death machine!

He had a good point, so I explained that while an electric razor sounds like some fiendish device with sharp steel blades glinting and winging around on mechanical arms, in reality electric razors are easy to use and are really safe.

I showed him some pictures of electric razors online and made a mental note that when the time came, we'd be shelling out some real money to buy one of these bad boys for our kid. It'll be worth it though, because he will likely shave his arms, his pubes, and the cat. The last thing this kid needs is a sharp blade. An electric razor will ultimately save us lots on medical and vet bills.

Anyway, after seeing the Norelco Senso Touch 3-D,  his mood changed. He went from terrified to thrilled. Bring it, Puberty! An electric razor is a cool looking hand-held gadget that is guaranteed not to cut your face off. Life is good the future looks suture free.

I gave the boy a hug and a kiss and sent the happy lad off to school.

After he left I spent some time staring into my coffee. One day I'll be the mother of a giant hairy man. Damn. Puberty. I hope I'm ready.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

1974



The cool dry slick slide of a garter snake through my hands, the small flat rock as big as my two palms together, set in the woolly green moss in the woods behind the house.

The smell of mud. Rain rolling like warm wax down the living room window.

The ping of  june bugs as they hit the screen door and me in my summer pajamas, fresh from the bath with hair still wet and stuck to my head and neck, sitting at the table playing with clay while my parents sit in the next room watching tv.

The little men who clung to the bathroom fan leering at me with wide eyes from the ceiling while I soaked in my bath.The whirligig of red, blue, and green faces that spun in front of my eyes at night before sleep took me. The murmur of voices that echoed in my ears while the faces spun. The faces only I could see that stared at me from under the paint on walls, the phantom cats, slinking around corners and through doors, so quick, sometimes I was only aware of the movement, or perhaps the flick of a long tail or small quiet black foot. Childhood nightmares of naked rope bound women hanging from hooks on walls or hanging from trees in the forest.

Salt spilled on the kitchen table, a spray of perfect tiny white cubes. Milk like a cloud poured into a cup of black coffee. Purple petunias, sticky velvet, the grain of the wood on the second stair, the taste of the window screen, my tongue against the dusty warm metal for a moment, my spit spanning the spaces between the wires like glass.

Crouching in dad's dark closet between the curve and strum of his guitar and his guns with their hard sharp acrid petroleum smell, the blue-grey terry cloth bathrobe. The waft and waver of cigarette smoke rising like kelp from deep below to the surface drawn toward the heat and light from the globe of a 60 watt incandescent bulb.