Say om.

So, yoga.

Yoga is the most consistently inconsistent thing in my life. I’ve done/practiced/looked ridiculous doing yoga since I was about 15 and my boyfriend-at-the-time’s mom got me a pack of classes as a birthday gift. That particular yoga studio gave everyone weird face compresses that smelled like tea tree oil for shavasana/nap time and I’m pretty sure that’s what hooked me.

I’ve had huge gaps in my yoga-ing, like that time in college where I probably attended 4 yoga classes in 4 years, and that’s probably a 50 percent inflation on the actual number of classes and probably I went to zero. Maybe one. I have no idea. It was college. I could’ve done yoga daily, but at the time I liked this thing called vodka, and I worked a lot and spent a lot of late nights writing papers and short stories because I was very confident my personality was going to get me a job, so why not major in English and vodka and I have no idea if I did yoga in college.

Anyway. It all worked out.

Since graduating sixish years ago, I’ve done yoga pretty much all the time, except when I skip a month or two. But that’s it! Just a couple months! I even sometimes manage to find a class when I’m traveling, and I travel all the damn time.

And it’s from this semi-regular thing I do that I’ve realized my brain is almost always spending part of its subconscious capacity mulling over inanities…

I wonder if there’s a poem out there that rhymes “my vagina” with “Indochina.” What would that poem even be about? French interventions?  Is that a politically correct term? Indochina? Is it more or less politically correct than poetically discussing a French intervention of vaginas? Ballyhoo is a weird word, but I wish ducks made ballyhoo noises instead of quacking noises. 

…and the rest of its subconscious capacity thinking about where random people are these days.

What happened to Ben Stein? Did people actually just win all his money and now he’s working in a call center in Boise? Ben Stein should teach yoga. I’d buy his yoga DVD series. Oh man, Win Ben Stein’s Yoga DVD Collection. Ben Stein teaches yoga and if you can successfully hold crow pose, you win his DVDs. Or Ben Stein’s yoga mat. Shoes? Maybe you just take Ben Stein’s keys from the cubby area. Do all yoga places have cubbies instead of lockers? Lots of trust in these places. I don’t think Ben Stein would go for that. People just slowly win all his things. They won all his money for chrissakes and now he’s in Boise doing telesurveys.   

It’s always after thinking about these revelations–and chastising myself because, really, I’m supposed to be shutting my brain the hell up during yoga and if I’m going to be thinking, I should at least be thinking about ways to avoid Ebola or cure the common cold–that I end up wondering why that first yoga studio was the only one to ever give me a shavasana face compress.


A while back, I was handed a freelancer-type person who had contractually agreed to write a bunch of blog posts for my employer. She had only the vaguest comprehension of what we needed and what was expected of her. Part of the agreement was she needed to provide an image with her posts. An image that, of course, she had rights to use. And that made sense. 

She was unexpectedly, horrifically bad. At everything. At writing, at time management, at communication, at providing photos and at understanding that everything on the internet isn’t fair game. After one exasperated phone call where I finally told her to go outside and take the picture with her iPhone, I received a picture of two pigeons eating vomit-covered French fries on a New York City street. 

Her post was on fashion design. And while I could stretch my creative fibers to a place where, yes, a lot of fashion design isn’t much better than soggy puke fries, it really wasn’t appropriate. Also, I couldn’t tell if she was serious or if the photo submission was a hearty, “Hey, go fuck yourself.” 

So I emailed her back, with a measured, “Hey, are those pigeons eating barf on the sidewalk? What does that have to do with your post…?”

A few minutes ticked by, before she uncharacteristically quickly replied, “LOL! I don’t know. I just thought you know PIGEONS BE PIGEONS.”

That was it. That was all she wrote. Dumbfounding. But poetic, in its own limited way.  

Since then, “pigeons be pigeons” has been a rotating phrase that echoes in my head, mostly whenever people do—or say—something painfully, insanely, heartily stupid. 

I never ran any of the freelancer’s posts or, for that matter, contacted her after the bird-vom picture explanation. She was never going to top that. 

And while a solid portion of my job requires me to read hate-laced, angry comments that demonstrate that many people have no idea what communism, Marxism or fascism are, or comments that are nonsensical and weird and remind me that foil hats are a seemingly attractive option for a select number of people, few people have come close to pigeons.

Until now.

“I’m not a fucking moron. I worked as a head chef in executive resorts and camps for Texas politicians.”

Do dogs dream about Cheetos?

My beloved, wonderful, brilliant, athletic dog Porter had surgery today*.

There are many disgustingly amazing details I’d love to share, but I’ll hold it to one: At one point during the procedure, pus shot out of his eye. He was not having eye surgery. He had five teeth removed.

When I picked him up from the animal hospital, the vet tech was kind enough to prepare me for Porter’s state of being by saying, simply, “When he got in, he was all ‘HELLO! I AM PORTER! PLEASE PLAY WITH ME! HI! HELLO! HELLOOOOOOO!’ and now he’s all, “What’s uuuuuupppppp???? I’m Poooorrrrrrrrttttteeeeerrrr.'”

Yes. My dog was basically a stoned frat boy. He even peed in the bushes! It was just like college! I walked him inside, gave him some food and water, got him into his little bed, and tried to quietly make cookies so he’d have something to eat when he woke up. Something that’s not processed and full of crap. Flamin’ Hot Cheetos are not a food, college! And neither are Milk Bones.

Unfortunately, when he woke up, it was clear peeing in the bushes wasn’t going to hold this guy over until morning, so I promised him a bunch of cookies and got him to come outside with me. Which was not easy. The anesthesia hadn’t *quite* worn off, so getting him to stand was difficult. So, I did what any loving, slightly desperate person would do: I dragged the dog bed to the doorway so he had less ground to cover. Magic! I’m at least 70% sure he thought he was teleporting. If that wasn’t enough to convince him, the elevator was. I mean, come on. Think about how an elevator must seem to a dog normally. Now think about how an elevator would seem to a dog on drugs. Right? Right.

About three minutes into his swerving, swaying, lopsided walk to find an acceptable spot to defile, two heavyset girls approached us and wanted to know if they could sing for me. This is not a common occurrence. I wondered, for a split moment, if they were trying to distract me while someone else tried to steal my drugged-up, elderly dog. He’s a great dog and I am a terrible person and a cynic. I agreed to listen to them sing anyway.

I believe they genuinely wanted an audience. I also believe if anyone had been trying to steal Porter, they may have been discouraged. About halfway through the girls’ song, Porter squatted down and unleashed absolute hell on the sidewalk. To their credit, the girls didn’t skip a beat. They kept right on going as I bent down and attempted to fight the good fight with plastic doggie-doo bags, which mostly looked like smearing shit haphazardly around one large sidewalk square with tiny plastic bags, while holding on to an elderly dog who would straight-up murder a grilled cheese sandwich if someone would just, please, get him a sandwich and then look at his paw because he’d never really looked at his paw before and, man, his paw, man.

I gave up on my turd Monet, stood up, and patiently listened to the last verses of the song while keeping my high-as-shit dog upright. The girls, honestly, weren’t half bad. Unfortunately, clapping for them was out of the question since my hands were full. So I did the next best thing and yelled praises at them before maneuvering Porter back in the direction of the door.

He’s been asleep ever since. Is he going to think that was all just a dream?



*He is not to be confused with my beloved, wonderful, handsome, snuggle-bug dog Walt. Stories like this can’t happen with Walt because he is too busy trying to prove his fervent theory that four out of five people want to pet him. He’s adorable.


It’s my half-birthday. (I’ll pause while you whisper “Happy half-birthday!” at your screen.)

Thank you.

So, because my birthday-birthday falls in the summer, I was never able to pass out treats to my grade school classes on my birthday. Unfortunate. Both for me, because I never got that one day of much-craved adoration and fawning and, thus, craved it incessantly the other 364 days of the year, and for my classmates because my mom is an excellent treat-baker and they had to put up with my attention-seeking behavior that likely would’ve been mitigated by being able to pass out ice cream cone cupcakes and rake in praise on my mom’s behalf. Or, I don’t know. Maybe. It’s a theory.

My school’s answer to summer birthday kids was to have them celebrate/bring in treats on their half-birthdays.

Perfect for the assholes who were six-and-a-half on February 12th. My “birthday” treats were mixed into a diabetic swimming pool of candy hearts, chocolates and cartoon-emblazoned cards wrapped around more sugar. It’s a little mortifying to look back and realize how bitter I was, at such a young age, over such a lovely holiday filled with happiness and balloons and bacon made into heart shapes and chocolate-covered everything, simply because I wasn’t the focus.

So, now, because I am a mature, wizened adult, I embrace Valentine’s Day for all the opportunities it gives me to make treats and show love for people I care about. And, also, because I realize having a summer birthday when you work full-time, year-round, is no different than having an October birthday or an April birthday, and as an adult you are only completely screwed out of birthday acknowledgement if your birthday falls on a national holiday and/or between Christmas and New Years when everyone is gone.



Much has happened since I last posted. Apologies. Most notably: I quit my job, broke my hair dryer, started a new job and moved. (Not in that order.) Consider yourself updated.

But today, I’m here to talk about dicks.

Since I worked from home for the better part of the last two years, I was tenderly sheltered in my cryogenic bubble and left to forget about some of the less excellent parts of society. I also lost a heap of social skills and learned to communicate telepathically with the dogs. I think! Also: 26 pairs of black yoga pants. (Give or take.)

Now that I’m putting on my Adult Office-Appropriate Garments and riding the Metro every morning, I’m realizing there are a lot of people out there who should probably work from home.

And dicks.

By “dicks,” I’m not referring to abrasive individuals. Or sporting goods stores, though there are way too many Dick’s in the world for my personal comfort level.

I mean male human genitals.

Week one of non-cyrogenic living, I had a dude sit down next to me for the commute and factually inform me to not pay any mind to the ice pack on his crotch because he’d just had a vasectomy. I found my words long enough to tell him he could probably have just set his bag on top of the ice pack and I wouldn’t have noticed. But, seriously?! Even if I had noticed, I wasn’t going to be sitting there assuming he had a disorder/superpower making him the testicular equivalent to restaurant-grade food lamps.

I almost had a dick-less week two. And then, I walked out the door to my apartment building and was met with something I can only describe through my internal dialogue, all of which occurred in less than 8 seconds:

Oh, great. A guy peeing.

…wait. IS he peeing? He’s not…surely he’s not…um…wait.

(Sniffs the air.)

That dude is high as a kite. And…not peeing. 



He’s having a Lightsaber battle with his shadow.

Week three, it was hot. Hot enough, apparently, for white linen pants with no underwear. Or so thought the dude swaggling all over the Metro car.

You know what happens when you wear white linen pants with no underwear and sweat profusely on public transit? You look like Burt Reynolds trying to eat a greasy sandwich.

And that’s where I’m leaving this somewhat untriumhpant return. Also, it’s week four, so if I see any dicks between now and tomorrow evening, you’ll hear about it.

Holiday Shopping, or Why Does the Target Parking Lot Require Military-Like Strategy?

A firm believer in coupons and sales, holiday shopping gives me ample opportunities to see how many discounts I can combine to get that originally-priced-at-$40 item for less than $10. And then I do a little victory dance/yelp and scare all the children being dragged around Macy’s at nine o’clock on a Saturday night and parents give me the look and I give them the look right back because shouldn’t your kids be watching cartoons and not screaming in the women’s pajamas section at nine o’clock on a Saturday? Exactly.

I was especially surprised to see the mall here had people directing drivers/traffic and suggesting areas to park. It was great: I turned into the parking lot, was pointed towards an open spot, and had the added benefit of knowing there were people out there watching and paying at least a little bit of attention. Even though I received a hot pink can of pocket-sized Mace for Thanksgiving, a little extra peace of mind is more than welcome. Not that I usually feel threatened or insecure. I’m pretty sure my 3 weeks of martial arts in 2004 and the subsequent self-defense classes provided by my employer, combined with my misguided sense of I could totally kick their ass but just to be safe I’m going to be a total paranoid wreck and IS THAT GUY FOLLOWING M–oh, never mind, that’s his car, keep me in a protective bubble.

Basically, what I’m saying here is that holiday shopping was going well. And then I got to Target.

First of all, Target is located next to PetSmart. And PetSmart was having a giant, fluffy, adorable Adoption Drive with the local shelter. Puppies with festive bandanas around their necks? Old, extremely adorable dogs with festive bandanas around their necks? Middle-aged and really well-behaved dogs with festive bandanas around their necks? All of them, swoon-worthy. For everyone. It’s the bandanas. They make any dog 1,700 times more snuggle-able. Instantly. Which basically means the parking lot was a shit show. Besides the fact that I–and everyone in a vehicle around me–had a sixteen second moment of panic and pause every time there was a speed bump, even though they were all clearly marked with signage and painted bright yellow, there was rubbernecking in the worst way in every single aisle of the parking lot, because the PetSmart/local shelter people aren’t dummies and spread those dogs out to cover a ridiculously huge amount of space. This, of course, coupling with the general “It’s the month of December and you’re in a Target parking lot” insanity.

I ended up parking in the grocery store parking lot, a 5-minute walk away. Arguably not the worst decision I’ll make during this holiday season, especially if I keep baking and eating cookies, but when I was done fighting my way through crowds of disgruntled parents dragging their sobbing, “BUT I WANT A PUPPY” wailing children past the scented candle aisle, it made for a long, heavy exit.

If only I could apply my couponing/discounting strategies to maneuvering a parking lot. Maybe I’ll take up Risk-playing and studying The Battle of Tippecanoe for ideas for shopping in 2012…

Full of flavor and calcium.

“Coming in 2008! Check back for the delicious taste of roasted garlic cheddar.”
-The Easy Cheese section of Nabisco’s website. Now. Right now.
In 2011.

And, yes. I Googled Easy Cheese as soon as I walked in the door tonight. I needed to make sure it actually existed, and wasn’t the product of NyQuil and pad Thai.

Can you imagine how Easy Cheese was pitched? Because, I mean, it’s imitation cheese. In a can. It provides spurts of medium-density fluorescent orange paste that tastes like morning breath smells after a night of binge eating dairy. (I’m aware this is also what certain real, less amusing, more expensive cheeses smell and taste like, but that’s beside the point.) I mean, at some point, someone, somewhere, was like, “You know what sucks about cheese? It takes so much effort to get it into decorative shapes on your crackers and baked potatoes…UNTIL NOW.”

I begrudgingly admit there was a time in my life where I’d have been willing to sprain the shit out of my index finger to get the last bit of neon “Cheese” out of the can.

Then I realized Easy Cheese wasn’t actually easier than a hunk of cheese + a knife, especially when I considered the amount of time I’d spent picking dried bits of Easy Cheese out of the squirting mechanism so it would actually work. I didn’t give a crap about avoiding fake food until a few years later, so I can’t chalk my consumer outrage up to the apocarotenal coloring or any other questionable-sounding ingredient. Mostly, I was a lazy teenager and pissed that Easy Cheese was such a time-waster.

That’s not to say I don’t think Easy Cheese technology doesn’t have a place.

I had a brilliant idea–the product of NyQuil and pad Thai:  An Easy Cheese/Silly String hybrid product that would shoot string cheese out with excessive force. It would be somewhat edible, but mostly dangerous, and could probably take the paint off a car.

So. What are you wearing?

Is it just me, or has there been a steady uptick in the number of “This is what I wore today” style blogs? I’ve managed to stumble upon many of them in the recent past and developed an increasingly fierce complex based around my lack of high-heels, patterned stockings and navel-grazing necklaces.

This will never be a style blog, mainly because it’s none of your business if I’m wearing the same tank top for the third day in a row and I happen to like these Gulden’s Spicy Brown Mustard stains, they’re charming and add character, thank you very much, and also because I have the personal style of someone who would welcome adult-sized Garanimals with open arms. Working from home may be the best/worst thing that’s ever happened to my wardrobe.

I spent most of high school wearing ill-fitting jeans and solid-colored t-shirts or sweaters because it’s safe and I’m lazy, but also because the one time I branched out of my comfort zone, I decided a taupe neck scarf was the way to go.

Here’s all the style advice I ever needed, and the only style advice I will ever give:

The cool kids will not invite you to their parties if you wear taupe neck scarves in public.

Dan Rottenberg can go fuck himself.

Earlier in the month, Dan Rottenberg, a veteran journalist/editor, provided women everywhere with some suggestions to help us avoid being raped, apparently inspired by the brutal sexual assault of CBS News reporter Lara Logan that took place earlier this year, and her attire in a photo taken at a 2008 awards show, which happened to show some cleavage.

Rottenberg apparently wants us to forget she was brutalized while in Tahrir Square, covering Mubarak’s ousting and people in the crowd were accusing her of being an Israeli spy. For good measure, let’s also forget when she was attacked in Egypt she was wearing a jacket, a sweater, a shirt and pants. Not a v-neck or anything that showed off her biscuits.

From Rottenberg’s editor’s letter:

Earth to liberated women: When you display legs, thighs or cleavage, some liberated men will see it as a sign that you feel good about yourself and your sexuality. But most men will see it as a sign that you want to get laid.

Basically, it’s the blame the victim dog & pony show rapists have been using since fishnet stockings and makeup were first mass-produced. Why are women raped? Because of what we wear, of course. To avoid being attacked, ladies, we must all invest heavily in puce turtlenecks and mom jeans. Anything else is a fairly clear indicator that we want to get laid. Or raped. Whatever. It’s easy to commingle “sex” and “sexual assault” when you’re an active member of the “blame the victim” fan club.

Rottenberg goes on to say drama is very high on the hierarchy of needs for males and  “conquering an unwilling sex partner is about as much drama as a man can find without shooting a gun.” No, seriously. He wrote that. Normalizing the urge to rape is a foolish, irresponsible, assholeist thing to do, and if I had a penis, I would be offended by that statement.

Last I checked, most men are not simply wandering around looking for some unassuming young lass to tritz by in a halter top and yoga pants or whathaveyou so he can drag her into an alley and gang rape her with six-to-ten of his closest friends. Or, y’know, whatever it is rapists do these days while they’re taking advantage of women.

The incredibly (eye roll) helpful (eye roll) suggestions Rottenberg provides women includes the gem “Don’t trust your male friends.” Really. Really? “Sorry, guys. Staying in tonight. Can’t trust y’all to keep that sex weapon concealed. But have fun on the rape hunt!”

Arguably, I am most upset by this guy because, as a journalist, he shouldn’t be this irresponsible with what he writes. He shouldn’t start his post off with a three-year-old picture of a sexual assault victim and use her attire in that three-year-old picture to justify her recent attack–especially when she wasn’t wearing anything mildly suggestive when attacked. He shouldn’t sit around firing off editorials that normalize the desire to rape women. He should probably refrain from offending just about everyone by saying women are responsible for attacks against them because men are not to be trusted and everyone should just know better.

And, if Dan Rottenberg seriously believes he needs drama and, as far as drama goes, “conquering an unwilling sex partner” is the next-best-thing to shootin’, I hope he can suppress his urges long enough to take an extended hunting trip with someone with worse aim than Dick Cheney.