Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Part Seven.

This is Part Eleventy-Million of the story of our trip to Costa Rica. Here are Parts One, Two, Three, Four, Five, and Six.

So, here it is Tuesday morning, Saint Patrick's Day. I am writhing around in bed. No more waterpoop; apparently Costa Rican prescription diarrhea medicine corks that shit right up. But I'm still having the bad cramps and the sweats. I am writhing around, twisting up in the mosquito net, and Jason comes in and gingerly says, "Uh, so, Kristi and Chris are hiking to the waterfalls." We look at each other. I say, "Okay." We look at each other. I writhe a little. He says, "Um, so, do you want to go?" FOR GOD'S SAKES, JASON. NO HIKING. I DON'T WANT TO HIKE. I HAVE NEVER CLAIMED TO WANT TO HIKE. I HAVE NEVER SUGGESTED THAT I MIGHT WANT TO HIKE. I HAVE NEVER LIED TO ANYONE AND SAID "Oh, I like hiking."

Point is, I don't want to hike and I tell him so. Kristi and Chris leave, and I decide that I cannot spend another day in bed waiting to feel better. I get out of bed and sit on the porch and watch Jason draw and play solitaire while I sweat and cramp.

Kristi and Chris come back from the waterfalls with tails of almost dying, having scaled a sheer flat rock face that someone lied and called a "mountain". Kristi and Chris are pretty adventurous so I have to tell you, it surprises me when they come back sweaty and shaky and dirty, telling us that they both got so scared that they were shaking and weren't sure what to do and got lost and were having to leap and grab and pray that roots would hold until they got to the top, where Kristi realizes that the camera is gone. Apparently her purse wasn't zipped and their camera is gone, killing forever any hopes of my ever laying eyes on this terrible climb that they've endeavored 'cause I SHO AIN'T EVER GOING UP THERE MYSELF.

We decide to go sit in the pool for a while. Sitting there, the cool water makes me feel a little better, and suddenly I make a decision which I announce: "Well, I guess I'm just going to see if the beer can heal me, since I didn't have any yesterday and I'm still not well." Chris likes this idea, has been suggesting it all along, and walks down to the house to get us all beers. We float around and drink a couple of beers. I sincerely feel better. Kristi's rash sincerely doesn't feel better. It has spread from her arms to her chest, stomach, and thighs. She still fears that it's a flesh-eating bacteria. She goes to the main house and asks the owners; they say it's probably nothing serious, but go to the Clinico.

Chris and Kristi head to the Clinico in Cobano. She sees a doctor in the pharmacy (I didn't know they did that!) who speaks English (I didn't know they did that!) and who gives her a skin cream and some Allegra and is able to tell her what she is getting and how to use it and what it does (I didn't know they did that!). She comes back, slathers on her cream and pops an Allegra, and gets back in the pool with us. We spend most of the afternoon floating around, feeling better all around, drinking beers.

Was this when we played Euchre? I know we played at some point on the porch. I think this is when. We played Euchre and continued to drink. Later Chris and Jason cook dinner: by now we've been living on a steady diet of gallo pinto- beans, rice, plantains, and any combination of onions, avocado, tomatos, hot sauce, and salsa. At this point I haven't eaten a meal since Sunday night on account of my intestinal distress. I push my food around while everyone else eats. My stomach starts to feel gross, and I give up on the eating. We sit up and play Spades for a while. Around 10pm, I give up entirely and go to bed feeling grody.

The next morning we get up early, pack up, and catch our shuttle back to San Jose. We have to do all that traveling in reverse: head to Paquera, take the ferry, then catch our shuttle from Puntarenas to Hostel Pangea in San Jose. Apparently Kristi's cream has made her sensitive to sunlight and her arms are covered in blisters. It's a pretty hot, sweaty trip, but we make it, and we're STARVING. We go to the Banco and get some cash, then head back to Hostel Pangea for casados.

This is the first meal I have eaten since Sunday dinner. It's Wednesday Lunch. I effectively didn't eat for about two-and-a-half days. I am ravenous. We drink beers and eat lunch and check into our rooms for a little rest. We go walking in San Jose and buy souveniers and meet the funniest, nicest Costa Rican lady ever. She says things like, "Fuckin' damnit!" and "fuckin' shit yeah!" while she tells us how much she likes Americans and how she traveled across the U.S. from California to New York (or was it the other way around?) and how Alabama has the best fried chicken. She said we need to come back to Costa Rica and bring all our kids and stay at her house "and we'll eat some fuckin' fried chicken!"

That night we sit at the bar at Hostel Pangea and eat the tastiest nachos I've ever had and drink Imperial and relax. Some of Kristi and Chris' law school friends have just gotten back from Jaco or Manuel Antonio or some place and tell us about getting pick-pocketed by gangs of hookers and harrassed by policemen (they have to bribe them to stay out of trouble) and going deep-sea fishing. At some point one of the girls says something like, "Well of course we had air conditioning. We had to have air conditioning."

WE DID NOT HAVE AIR CONDITIONING. NOW GET THE FUCK AWAY FROM MY TABLE.

The next morning, Thursday morning, we head to the San Jose air port and fly home without incident. And that's the story of Costa Rica, in only seven parts.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Part Six.

That's right, I am still not done telling the story of Costa Rica. Here are Parts One, Two, Three, Four and Five. And there's more to come after this.

So I wake up Monday morning around 6am and go to the bathroom and have loud, unadulterated, grotesque waterpoop.

HA! Did you think you'd be reading about someone else's bowel movements today? If the answer is "no", you clearly are a new reader. Thanks for your patronage!

Anyway, I think, "Aw, diarrhea, this sucks. Oh well." I somehow didn't realize that the waterpoop was nature's signal to drag the dull-as-fuck Casa Colores kitchen machete across my throat and get it over with. I go back to the bed and start to sweat. Then I start to cramp. Then I sweat AND cramp. Then I sweat AND cramp AND waterpoop (in the bathroom, not in the bed) all at the same time. Then I hyperventilate and force Jason to stay with me at the house instead of going to do anything fun, anything besides laying next to me while I roll around in the bed tooting at will. BECAUSE IT MADE ME FEEL BETTER TO TOOT AND IT MADE ME CRAMP WORSE TO HOLD IT IN.

Marriage: Suck It Up, Fuckers.

ANYWAYS, I cramp and sweat and waterpoop and toot all morning. The cramps are really intense, so much so that I have to walk around and take deep breaths akin to those of a woman in labor BUT I HAVE NO EPIDURAL, I'VE NEVER DONE THIS WITHOUT THE DRUGS, JESUS. Finally around one o'clock (count 'em, that's seven hours of cramping and waterpooping) Jason asks if I think I should go to the doctor.

We're in Montezuma, Costa Rica: a place where, according to the internets, they're "building an atm", and we're pondering going to the doctor. The cramps have overridden my brain and we walk up to the main house and ask the owners where the closest/best/most likely to understand gringo doctor is. They tell us to go to Cobano, home of the MegaSuper. Chris agrees to drive us on account of Jason has the stage fright about driving the truck. Kristi is taking a nap because her rash is acting up (for God's sakes, you can't take us anywhere), so Chris lets her know we're leaving and we go.

It is fucking hot and there isn't an air conditioner within a bajillion mile radius of us, and we bump along to Cobano where we find the Clinico and go inside. It is somewhat crowded with native Costa Ricans, pregnant ladies and nice young men and no one looks sick.

Enter Buffy: writhing, breathing heavy, sweating, rolling around in the floor leaking waterpoop. They recoil just a little. The lady at the front desk doesn't speak any English. Except she's a liar because when I stand there and start to cry she says exasperatedly, "DOCTOR?" I say, "Si, I need a doctor." She takes my passport and looks at her little book and says, "dos" and holds up two fingers. Luckily Chris speaks the Spanish kind of ("Dos beeros, por favor!") and is there to be like, "Two." So I give her a wilty gracias and take a seat. Where I writhe and sweat and double over and moan. Then I have to get someone to tell me where the bathroom is ("Bano?") so's I can go waterpoop all over their hotass bathroom.

So finally the nurse calls me back and mother mercy, her little room is so air conditioned, so cool and dim and quiet that I almost offer her all my money just to let me hang out back there for an hour or two. I ask her if she speaks English (I say "Habla Englais?" which is TOTALLY INCORRECT, fucking Spanish classes were like, 11 years ago, I totally looked at the nurse and said, "He/she/it speaks English?"), and she smiles [at my stupidity] and says yes. So I say, "I'm having really bad cramps and diarrhea." She looks at me for a minute, after that bitch in the front being all "DOCTOR" I don't know if I can trust these people, and she nods and writes some stuff down and tells me to go back to the waiting room.

I go back out and almost immediately the doctor calls me back. The best is that I don't even recognize my name in that heavy accent, and some random guy next to me sort of nudged me and pointed at the doctor. Apparently they were all very aware who the sick white girl with the sick white girl name was. So I go back there and sweet, sweet Mary, his room was all air-conditioned and dim and cool, too. I said "Habla Englais?" (God, what a fucking moron I am) and he smiles and shakes his head. And we sit there staring at each other.

So, genius that I am, I say very slowly, "Okay, I'm having really baaaad craaaaamps," at this point I'm pressing my hands into my lower abdomen, "and diaaaarrheeeeaaaah." and here I lean over and wave my hand around behind my ass.

I wonder why other countries think Americans are such stupid assholes?

So he has me lay on the table and he pokes my tummy and squeezes my arms and legs for a while, and then says a whole bunch of shit I don't understand, hands me a piece of paper, and sends me on my way. He had said "farmacia" several times so I go straight to the farmacia (which is also inside the Clinico) and try to hand them my little sheet. They point me back to the liar up front, who crossly takes my sheet and stops acknowledging my presence.

Then some nice lady leads me back to the back of the building to the billing lady. BOY, WAS SHE GLAD TO SEE ME. Not really, she didn't speak English and was very snippy and didn't like me at all. Finally I figured out that they only take colones, so off to the Banco we go where we navigate through hoardes of uzy-toting, smiling and friendly policemen to change some dollars for colones, then back to the Clinico where I pay and get my medicine and we head back to the house. I continue to cramp and writhe for the remainder of the day, and I wait until that evening to take any of the medicine and even then I only use some of it because I can't read what it is or what it does and God knows I am entirely too anal and obsessive to just start popping random Costa Rican pills without even knowing what they made of. So, you know, a whole day of illness and a few hours at the doctor: time well spent, right?

Incidentally when we get back to the house Kristi comes out onto the porch sweating her ass off, and we all kind of stop and look at her and she's like, "Y'ALL TOOK BOTH OF THE GODDAMN LIGHTERS AND THE DECK OF CARDS." Apparently when she awoke from her nap she thought, "I guess I'll play solitaire and smoke cigarettes until they get back." (Keep in mind that she is in the middle of the fucking jungle on top of a mountain in super heat with no tv, so company, no radio, no car, no books, no nothing.) No no no NO, this can't HAPPEN. Upon realizing that Chris had taken both (he didn't know Jason had the only other lighter and he thought he and Jason would play cards in the waiting room at the Clinico- who IS this guy?) Kristi proceeded to WALK DOWN THE AFOREMENTIONED, GOD-FORSAKEN HILL to buy a lighter in Montezuma and then WALK BACK UP THE GODDAMNED HILL AGAIN with her shiny new red Costa Rican Bic. She had the courtesy and foresight to leave a note just in case we got back while she was gone; it said, "I walked down to get a lighter, ASSHOLES. Be back soon. Love, Kristi" She told us that it was by sheer rage alone that she made it back up the hill.

But what about Kristi's rash? What happens with that? Do I wake up well and refreshed? More tomorrow.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Part Five.

So this is even more of the story of our trip to Costa Rica. Here are Parts One, Two, Three, and Four. This is Part Five. And we're only starting the fourth day of the trip!

We wake up Saturday morning and go to a farmer's market in the park in Montezuma and buy things like cherry tomatos, pineapple, cheese, and lettuce. Jason and I head back to the house and hit the pool, while Kristi and Chris head to Cobano and the MegaSuper (their "big box" grocery store). They come home bearing rum, papaya, mango, bananas, and avocados, and we have a nice lunch of sandwiches and fruit rummy smoothies.

That evening we get dolled up and go to Chico's Bar in Montezuma, hoping mainly to have a good time, but also to maybe see Joaquin and Casey again. By now we've figured out that Montezuma consists of about two small blocks of mostly restaurants, and Chico's is the only disco in town. We see fire dancers in the street; the boy who made our necklaces is one of them. We go out and dance the night away. We decide to roam the streets in search of our famous friends and step out to policemen everywhere, carrying huge guns and blocking off the street. We ask if we can get out to go home. They politely escort us out. I guess we were all in agreement that they didn't need a bunch of gringos gumming up the works of whatever the hell they were doing. I have had too many margaritas and I pass out when we get home.

Sunday morning Jason goes for a walk and unwittingly tries to thumb a right from Casey Affleck. Apparently Casey Affleck doesn't pick up hitchhikers.

We decide to visit Rainsong, a wildlife sanctuary in Cabuya. We were told it was a five minute drive from Montezuma. We set out, Kristi and I bouncing around in the back of the truck, and drive. And drive. And drive. After about 20 minutes of driving, we stop for directions. Yes, we're going the right way. Kristi has figured out that the loud banging of the rear hatch isn't so bad if we prop our feet against it. We keep going for about 5 more minutes 'til we find it. We go in and play with baby squirrels, a friendly ant eater, a sleepy kinkajou, a lonely howler monkey named Mona Lisa, and lots of other animals.

We leave and decide to eat lunch in Cabuya, a tiny town with one restaurant. Jason and I order mahi mahi, and Kristi and Chris order sushi. They have one waitress serving the whole place, and one large table keeps ordering beers, and the waitress has to go across the street (to someone's house? a market?) to get the beers every time they order them. At one point she goes to get them four more beers, and as soon as she gets back they say, "Oh, wait, we need one more!" and she goes across again to get one more beer. This is the kind of job that I would have no-call no-showed when I was her age (maybe 18). It takes FOREVER for the sushi to come. It comes, and then we leave.

Back to the house. Swimming and naps. Kristi has a nasty rash on her arms, red and bumpy and hot and itchy. She worries that it's a flesh-eating bacteria. She takes two Claritin and drinks beer until she sings a song about her butt and goes to bed.

The next day is the worst, hardest, hottest, scariest of the whole trip for me. What happens? Tune in Monday.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Part Four.

This is the story of our trip to Costa Rica. Part One is here, Part Two is here, and Part Three is here.

Jason drives us down the hill, and we're all clutching and screaming because apparently first gear is really loose, and ALL the gears are really hard to find, and the stick will pop out of gear at any given moment. Kristi and Chris are bumping around in the back, seatless. Jason manages to get us down and park, and declares that he will not drive that truck again.

We had a nice, calm, quiet dinner and then walked around Montezuma a bit. We came across a table of really beautiful hemp jewelry that Kristi and I both liked. The fellow selling them was a tiny, skinny boy with dreadlocks to his waist. He proceeded to talk to us in Spanish, all in Spanish, and somehow we picked up quite a bit of it. His jewelry is all totally unique, and you'll never never ("Nunca, nunca!") see anything else like it in the world. Each one is totally individual and no two of his necklaces are alike. The necklase that Kristi likes took him three days to make. The one that I like is the "purest stone".

He made the mistake once of letting someone take pictures of his work, and the next thing he knew he was in Mexico and saw a girl wearing a necklace that someone had copied from him. He stopped her and said, "That's my work." She said no, she bought it from someone else. He said, "Yes, that's my work." She said no; he said emphatically YES ("SIIII."). So now no pictures are allowed.

Kristi and I both fall under his spell and buy necklaces. We stand outside the market where Jason and Chris are buying beer.

We're standing there waiting, and I glance into the street and see a boy walking towards us and think, "Wow, that boy looks like Casey Affleck." Something makes me double-take, and IT IS CASEY AFFLECK. WALKING PAST ME IN MONTEZUMA BEACH, COSTA RICA. He passes and I grab Kristi's shoulders and say, "DO YOU KNOW WHO JUST WALKED PAST US? RIGHT THERE, THAT'S CASEY AFFLECK." Kristi says something hilarious like, "I don't think I've seen him in anything," and then Jason and Chris come out and I tell them the same thing. Jason immediately says, "Oh, where's Joaquin Phoenix?" About three seconds later, Kristi's eyes get really big, and she starts jerking her head towards the market that we're still standing around in front of, and there walks Joaquin Phoenix into the market, where he proceeds to start shaking hands with and hugging all the people who work there. We're pretty sure that he heard everything that we were saying about Casey and him. He has one stupid dreadlock sticking out of the back of his head (I love you, Joaquin, but it's stupid). He looks CRAZY. Even Puffy can't deny it.

And guess what? For this particular outing, this one fucking time, we left our cameras in the safe at the house. WE WERE PHOTOGRAPHERS WITH NO CAMERAS STANDING TEN FEET AWAY FROM JOAQUIN PHOENIX AND CASEY AFFLECK.

So I'm standing there trying to figure out how to approach them, and Jason and Kristi decide we need to go because it's pointless for us to stand around in the road staring. I kick them in the balls and then tackle Casey Affleck and lick his face, and then I spray Joaquin with Lysol. NO, WAIT, I whine about it a little and follow them to the truck and we go home and drink beer and FREAK OUT on the front porch about seeing famous people. And I'm like, "200 CIGARETTES CASEY I LOVE YOU and Joaquin I WAS IN LOVE WITH YOUR BROTHER AND I CRIED WHEN HE DIED. And also I hear Space Camp is pretty good."

Then we plan how we're totally going to see them the next night and we're totally going to party with them and take their pictures and hang with them and they'll come back to our house and drink our beer and play cards with us.

Does it happen? More tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Part Three.

This is the story of our trip to Costa Rica. Part Two is here and Part One is here.

So we're riding further and further into the jungle, into nowhere, dust and hot sun and our cab driver giving us a thumbs-up with some huge, ruby ring on his finger, when we see the sign for Casa Colores where we're staying. He drives us right up to the door, helps us unload our luggage, and hands our hostess a card.

Our hostess walks us up to our house (no air conditioning) and shows us around the property, including the pool and the breezy, shady cabana with a fridge full of water, soda, and beer. The owner looks at our clothes (jeans, t-shirts and sneakers) and says we better change, because it's very hot. NO SHIT. As we knod, sweat drips off our chins. She tells us that she doesn't recommend walking to Montezuma because of the heat, dust, and degree of incline.

We unpack and settle in and sweat, sweat, sweat. We shower and change and decide to walk down to Montezuma in spite of the owner's warnings. Clearly we know better than a lady who lives there.

We proceed to walk down the steepest, hottest, dustiest hill I have ever encountered in my whole life. There is one stretch of silt where your entire foot will sink down into the dirt. By the time we get into Montezuma we are totally soaked with sweat and covered in dirt and I am seeing stars from the heat.

We eat supper and have a few drinks, then go to the supermarket and buy some food and beer. We are at a loss about how to get back up the hill with all our crap, and I've decreed that I shall not walk up or down the hill ever again. We go to a tourist information spot and ask if they can call us a cab, and the girl there calls one of her friends to take us up. The fellow pulls up within about a minute of being called, and silently drives us up the hill for a couple of dollars. I take aspirin and throw myself into the pool in protest. Actually we all sit at the pool and drink beer until bedtime. I sleep better than I've slept in ages.

The next day we wake up and head to the pool. We're drinking beer by 11. Kristi and Chris rent a car from the owners of Casa Colores. It's a manual shift Suzuki Samurai with windows that won't roll up, no radio, no air conditioner and no backseat. The first time we take it out, Jason drives us in the dark down the treacherous mountain to get dinner in Montezuma.

Does he kill us? NEARLY. More tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Part Two.

This is Part Two of our trip to Costa Rica. Part One is here.

So we're standing at the bus terminal with all our luggage with no clue what to do. This Costa Rican cab driver who barely speaks English starts shaking us down to take us to Puntarenas for $100. We are hesitant, and he finally says $80, and we take it (keep in mind it's a two-hour drive). The four of us and our five suitcases squeeze into his tiny red car and take off for Puntarenas. He is playing a mix cd that is all American 70's and 80's music and includes Journey's Faithfully and Billy Idol's Eyes Without a Face. He drives like a mad man to try and get us to the nine o'clock ferry. I fall asleep about half-way there. When I wake up we're pulling up to the ferry terminal as the ferry is pulling away. They tell me that the only reason we missed it is because some bitch on a scooter was driving really slowly and wouldn't let us pass.

So there we are, standing in the middle of the street with five suitcases, and the cab driver points out a restaurant where the food is supposed to be good. We drag all our shit up the long, metal staircase and take a seat in a lovely, open-air place that overlooks the water. The next ferry leaves at twelve, so we have a few hours to kill. We order gallo pinto with juevos, with sour cream, or with beef in sauce, and the waiter suggested we use this sauce. It is GOOD STUFF. We eat slowly and drink hot, strong coffee and smoke cigarettes until twelve.

It is HOT on the ferry, espcecially after dragging all those suitcases up the black, metal stairs. We sit inside and rest. I realize that I still get a little seasick, and curse everyone who ever told me that really big boats don't rock. YES THEY DO.

We get to Paquera and it is HOT. Dripping sweat. A swarthy little man tells us he'll take us to Montezuma for $50. He points at his SUV and says, "That's me." We take him up on it.

He proceeds to take us on one of the wildest rides I've ever been on (from this Wikitravel article: Driving in Costa Rica is, by American standards, dangerous. Costa Rica has one of the highest deaths by car accidents in the world.). He drives very fast on small dirt roads, passing people and honking and giving them dirty looks. He keeps giving us the thumbs-up and saying, "Montezuma! Pura Vida!" (from this article: Costa Ricans use the phrase to express a philosophy of strong community, perseverance, good spirits, enjoying life slowly, celebrating good fortune, whether small or large.)
He turns off the main road onto a red clay road that is so bumpy, so much like off-roading, and Kristi says, "Um, is this a short cut?" He replies, "Si. SHORT CUT." When we discuss it later, we realize that we were all thinking the same thing: he was taking us out into the woods to rob us and maybe kill us.

What happens next? More tomorrow.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Part One.

Crazy morning.

We're back from Costa Rica! It was a pretty wild trip.

San Jose is bizarre, with crazy drivers and scary policemen and cold winds at night and really tasty casados. We stay there the first and last nights at Hostel Pangea, a fucking awesome place with a rooftop bar and restaurant that is cheap and really good. They also have complimentary music at night- apparently there is either a tiny odd venue or someone's practice space very close to the window of our room and we are treated to free, shitty reggae. This particular hostel also has a lot of safety features, because apparently San Jose is somewhat unsafe. Bueno!

The real excitement starts the second morning when we all get up early to take a shuttle to the bus station, where we we are supposed to catch a bus that will take us all the way to Montezuma beach, where we were staying for the bulk of our trip. Apparently the internet can't be relied upon for totally up-to-date information like bus schedules, because our bus leaves an hour before we get there. So we're standing around at a bus station, which is really just a metal shed with a bunch of buses parked outside, and we can't decide what to do.

You see, it's a two-hour drive to Puntarenas, where we're supposed to catch a ferry and ride it for an hour over to Paquera and then it's another hour's drive to Montezuma. In other words, we have a long way to go and not much clue how to get there, since we have missed our planned mode of transport, the bus. So we're four gringos, standing there with five huge suitcases, surrounded by native Costa Ricans who are looking at us like we're crazy gringos with a bunch of suitcases at this tiny bus station that might as well have chickens pecking around in front.

What do we do? More tomorrow.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Did y'all know that I used to work in a library? I worked in a couple of libraries, actually.

Anyway, I discovered these Dispatches from a fellow who works in a public library on McSweeney's, and this one here hit the nail on the head. I'm going to try and remember some good library stories and post them here as they come to me.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

I'm burnin' up, burnin' up for your love.

I haven't always loved hot foods. In fact, up until I was about 22 I never ate spicy stuff- no hot sauce, no jalapenos, only mild salsa, etc.

Then I was at my Aunt CJ's house in Pensacola and she was making nachos for everybody, and she said, "You want jalapenos?" My friend piped up and said, "No, she doesn't eat spicy stuff." I don't know why, I don't know what changed, but I immediately said, "YES, I DO WANT JALAPENOS. I LIKE THEM." And it wasn't a matter of proving anything to either of them. I just suddenly liked the jalapenos.

Since then my love of spicy things has grown exponentially. Some times I crave jalapenos so much that I try to think of something to eat them with. I like hot salsa, hot sauce, spicy foods, all kinds of peppers.

Point is, I just discovered this website, and I'm intrigued.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Jeepers creepers.

In honor of the fact that I am currently sleeping in a place where they advertise BIG ASS MOSQUITO NETS ON EVERY SINGLE BED!, I figured I'd write a buggy post. Prepare to get the heeby jeebies.

My mom once woke up in the middle of the night with an intense pain on her throat, and when she moved her hand to her throat she felt something fat and long and warm on her neck- she said it felt like a "big, fat finger" there. She grabbed it and slung it and lept out of bed, turned on the light, woke my dad up. They searched and couldn't find anything anywhere, but she had a big red mark on her throat. The next morning when she was making her bed she moved her pillow and there was a fat, dead centipede.

One of my friends recently told me a story about her brother getting his morning cup of coffee and then feeling something odd in his mouth when he took a big gulp. Apparently there was a big, fat roach in the cup and he poured his coffee over it without even realizing it.

My sister ate a dead roach out of the window sill when she was a toddler. My mom saw what she was doing just a moment too late to stop her.

When I was a kid I was sitting on my bed, eating a piece of pizza and watching tv when a fatass roach fell off the ceiling and onto my pizza that I was just about to shove into my mouth.

When I was a college freshman I moved to an apartment in Montevallo. One night I discovered a large cockroach in the apartment. When I tried to capture it with a jar and a postcard I discovered that it really liked to fly through the air AFTER ME, like chasing me through the house as I screamed my head off. I finally caught it and put it outside. The next day I came home from class and that EXACT SAME STALKING CHASING COCKROACH was in my apartment again. I had a terrible fever and a bad bladder infection so after trying to catch it and being chased by it for about 30 minutes I gave up and drove the hour-long drive back to Leeds to spend the night at my mom's because I was too scared of the roach. The next day I caught it under a jar and left it. I would talk to it every day when I came home from class. After a few days it died. I didn't feel bad.

And finally, true story: Jason busted his knuckle once punching a cockroach in the face.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Kiss him, he's Irish!

Happy St. Patrick's Day! Know that we are on the beach right now trying to think of something green to drink. Jason is wearing a green speedo and thinking of you.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Please, please go read the story about this girl.

Friday, March 13, 2009

A List of Five Things that Society At-Large Likes, Yet I Don’t Get:

1. The Simpsons. Seriously, I have never been a fan. Bart is obnoxious. I've been using that "ducks in long pants" line for a few weeks now, but I got it from Chris, not from the Simpsons. It was funnier when I thought Chris made it up.

2. Sushi. I like seafood, but something about the raw seafood taste and the seaweed is just too much for me. Bleh.

3. Low-rise jeans. Gross. I am just not built for low-rise. I can't stand the feeling that my crack is showing at all times.

4. Thong underwear. Double-gross. I can't walk from the feeling that something is up my butt. Pair the thong with the low-rise jean and I will actually throw up on you.

5. Watching videos on Youtube. I just don't have the patience. People email videos to me; I never watch them. I'll start one and then get irritable and stop it and walk away. No idea why I'm like this.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Say, did you know that a disease is ravaging the tasmanian devil population? Check it out.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Contact!

On my way to Costa Rica!

I've actually scheduled some posts to publish while I'm gone, so don't stop reading. Just know that I'm okay; I'm on a beach somewhere watching Jason and Chris trying to surf, looking fabulous with Kristi in our sweet-ass dresses that we bought to lounge on the beach and drink pina coladas in.

I hope to bring back fun souveniers and rad pictures to show you guys what cool-asses we are. In the meantime, y'all ponder ducks in long pants.

Monday, March 09, 2009

I do not kid.

Things purchased specifically for my trip to Costa Rica (for real):

- New bathing suit- my old bathing suit was purchased on clearance from Wal-Mart four years ago. It was time for a new one.

- Pepto Bismol tablets

- Sunscreen

- Lovely backpack

- Antibacterial hand wipes

- Tiny box of q-tips

- New undies

- Huge, floppy hat

- Haircut

- Two pairs cargo shorts for Jason, plus a pair of trunks

- Shirts, dresses, and shorts, oh my!

- Gallon-sized ziplock bags

- Aloe vera

- Two pairs large, ridiculous sunglasses

- Straw fedora

Friday, March 06, 2009

25 Things.

John tagged me to do this one on Facebook, but I can only do Facebook on my phone, so I deemed it too annoying to work on except to do it here. There's your explanation.

1. I am afraid of the dark. I have always been afraid of the dark. I frequently think I see things or hear things when the lights are out. If Jason isn't in bed yet, I don't turn the light out.

2. I am terrified of ending up alone. I imagine that one day Jason will leave me, and all my friends will be gone by then because I'm so annoying/unfunny/needy/crazy/bitchy/Mexicanfoody/drinky.

3. I eat a lot of Mexican food. What's startling is that I crave Mexican food for pretty much every meal. I dream about cheese dip and a nice taco salad with jalapenos. Jason likes Mexican food okay, but he also has a sensitive stomach so Mexican can mean some interesting bathroom experiences for him for a couple of days afterwards. Still, he'll eat Mexican food with me almost any time I ask. Now we have a child that when I pick him up from daycare will BEG AND PLEAD, "Can't we PLEEEEEEEEEASE go to the messican restaurant?" The staff at the local place knows his name. They also know my voice when I call to order take-out.

4. I have too many clothes. Seriously, I have jeans that I'm too big for AND jeans that I'm too small for. I keep both just in case I gain OR lose weight. Doc Martens that I bought nine years ago? Got 'em. 30 pairs of flip flops, tons of flats, boots that my dad bought me when I was 21: yes, yes, yes. A few things that didn't even quite fit right when I bought them but were on such a good sale and were a style that I really liked but I've still never worn them because THEY NEVER QUITE FIT RIGHT: yes. New stuff on the way: fuck me, yes.

5. I really, really don't like some of the most popular funny movies in recent history, such as Space Balls, Home Alone, Caddyshack, and all those Naked Gun movies. I'm just not usually a big fan of slapstick, goofy stuff. I say this, and yet I LOVE 40 Year Old Virgin, Bring It On, and Wedding Crashers. I don't know.

6. At work, out of about ten bathroom stalls, there is one particular stall that I always choose to go to for number two. It is not the very first one or the very last one.

7. I think perhaps I am a mediocre mom. I don't like germs, I don't like going to the park, I don't like arguing with a midget, I don't like getting kicked in the boob. I hope that what I lack in squee-ness I make up for in super-coolness and intense, loving hugs. There's one thing: I will always let Reed sit in my lap, and I am always up for a snuggle.

8. I am totally obsessed with small electronic items. When Palm first popped up I wanted one, like REALLY wanted one, thought about it all the time. Then it was the Razr, then an iPhone, then a Blackberry. Laptops, stuff for the camera, iPods, these are a few of my favorite things.

9. My most feared illness is anything that makes my stomach feel bad or, PLEASE GOD NO, makes me throw up. I don't like getting any kind of illness (of course), but I can stand a cold, can tolerate diarrhea, can muddle through aches and pains. But if my stomach feels bad or if I'm throwing up, I am a mess, a big baby, a whiny pool of KILL ME NOW that stays in bed and lies very still and covers her eyes with a cool rag and wants complete silence.

10. I really, really like sleeping, resting, and hanging around in bed. There are days in which, if I had a nanny for Reed and no job to go to, I could stay in bed all day long. What time I go to bed at night makes no difference; I can go to sleep at 9pm and still want to stay in bed until 12 or 1 the next afternoon.

11. I really love my friends. The love that I feel for my friends is exactly the same love that I feel for my family. I once had a boyfriend who got mad at me because I spent so much time with my friends, and I explained to him that the intensity and commitment that he felt about going to band practice (several times a week) was the same intensity and commitment I felt about spending time with my best friends. He claimed he understood, but I'm pretty sure that that situation played a large part in our relationship's undoing.

12. I love reading blogs. I read Dooce and Sarah and Antonia on a regular basis. I also read my friend Lindsey's pop culture blog, and my friend Paul just started a really interesting one, and my cousin and my mom. There's my friend Birdie, and then I just discovered this girl yesterday and I discovered this girl last week. I like blogs, and I like reading blogs, and I like writing blogs.

13. Just about the only thing that I know of that I don't like to eat is olives. I'm not a big fan of sushi, but I can eat it. I probably don't like anchovies- I've never tried them. For the most part I like everything else IN THE WORLD there is to eat. I know you guys can come up with some weird stuff that I've never had- pickled pigs' feet and chitterlings and whatnot. But for the most part, I like pretty much anything. For example, I like fried chicken livers. Yep, I said it. When I was a kid I ate an entire jar of sliced dill pickles, which I promptly threw up. I also have always loved A-1 sauce. LOVE IT. When I was young I would pour myself some A-1and THEN try and find something to dip into it.

14. My parents divorced when I was 14 and I was SO RELIEVED because they fought all the time and it was awful and tense and I knew things would get better once they didn't try to be married people any more. Then after my dad moved out, we suddenly spent more time together. He took me out to eat almost every weekend. We still weren't best friends, but it was certainly more time than we ever spent together before. Then my mom and dad remarried each other when I was about 21, and I got really excited because I thought we would be like a regular family, that we'd all be able to spend time with each other and eat dinner together and that kind of thing. Alas, it didn't happen; they were unhappy and re divorced about a year later. Now I never see my dad. He doesn't call and invite me to do anything and I don't call and invite him to do anything.

15. My sister India is really my half-sister; we have different fathers. But when I was born and all through growing up she lived with us and we always just thought of each other as sisters, still do. We just can't seem to see eye-to-eye on things, so we don't get along very well now. But we were pretty close up until about 14 or 15 years ago.

16. My mom is one of my best friends. She irritates the living shit out of me sometimes, but I figure that's probably payback for how much I irritated her when I was growing up. One time I stood next to her and said, "Can I? Can I? Can I?" over and over until she stood up and thrashed me with a newspaper. I think she's entitled to irritate me a little bit. In spite of our mutual irritation we still are best friends, I think. When I am mad or sad or happy, she's one of the first people I call to tell about it.

17. Jason is impossibly cool and so nice and is the best man I've ever known. That's why I'm so sure he'll leave me eventually: there is no possible way that I am cool enough to hold onto this guy. I am dorky and crazy and crotchety and irritable and obsessive about cleanliness. Jason, on the other hand, is laid back and well-meaning and smart and knows tons about music and movies and history and deserving of a nice lady. Unfortunately I'm not sure that I'm a nice lady. I'm nicer than his ex is though, so I guess he's moving closer to the mark. I hope maybe something has happened to his brain that causes him to think that I'm that right one for him, because I don't ever want to be without him.

18. I cannot stand when people mispronounce words. "Nucular" is the worst one, which started when Josh pointed out that Steve said it the wrong way, and then we got a president who said it the wrong way and it's all I could hear, every time he spoke. IT IS NOT "NUCULAR", IT IS "NUCLEAR". It is not "real-IH-tor", it is "real-tor"- no "ih", it is a 2-syllable word, not 3. I could go on for days. When people say "pitcher" for "picture", I throw up in my mouth a little bit.

19. I am terrible at talking to people. With my friends or family I'm usually fine, but at work or in restaurants or stores or on the phone I am TERRIBLE. I lose my train of thought, I get sweaty and nervous, I misunderstand the other person, I can't think of what to say, I make stuff up to try and get out of the situation faster, and I almost always come away from it loathing myself and feeling like I'm going to puke.

20. I believe very deeply in God and Jesus, but I don't go to church hardly ever and I don't quote the Bible. I feel strongly that Jesus loves us and he WANTS to love us and that people make mistakes and that if everyone who said "fuck" or smoked a cigarette went to hell, then hell must be like the Galleria at Christmas (crowded as fuck). I think that Jesus just wants us to try to be good people and that the effort alone means something and God is by definition smarter than us and He doesn't expect us to be as smart as he is, because that wouldn't really be fair, would it? To me the whole point is that Jesus loves me and will forgive me and just wants good things for me and wants me to strive towards those good things to make them happen for myself because you can't just dick around and wait for somebody else to make good things happen for you, and that folks should spread joy around as much as they can because not everyone can find joy by themselves.

21. I love to laugh and I love to make people laugh and I love to laugh with other people, at myself and/or all by myself. That's why I love to read Dooce and Sarah and McSweeney's: their stuff makes me laugh out loud. If this doesn't make you laugh, you are a robot (Chris, you don't count).

22. Reed likes the Vandals, the B-52s, Empire Records, the Office, and Mexican food. My work here is done.

23. 25 things is a fucking lot of things. It took me two days to write this.

24. I have never been good at standing up for myself, at letting people know when they're hurting my feelings or making me mad or sad or taking advantage of me. It is something that I'm working on this year and I am already managing to open my mouth more frequently.

25. Jason started uttering the phrase "That's what she said" several months ago at the appropriate (inappropriate) moments ("I can't fit this into the box." "That's what she said."). As a result, I now say it in my head any time anybody says anything remotely deserving of "That's what she said." My boss said, "No, I don't like nuts in my stuff" last week. FOR FUCK'SAKES. That's what she said.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

On 17 glasses of red wine.

So last night I had a dream about a headless dog.

I can't remember all the details of the dream, and I can't remember a lot of the whys, but Jason, Kristi, Chris and I were in Tuscaloosa, but in the dream Tuscaloosa was a big, windy, bustling city, and we were all dressed in nice clothes and nice wool coats and we were in a big hurry trying to get somewhere to catch a bus.

The next thing we knew there were pit bulls everywhere- nice, friendly, sweet pit bulls and for some reason this had something to do with Alabama football or perhaps Bear Bryant. And all of the pit bulls were wearing those wire and gossamer angel wings. And when they ran the wings would bounce in a way that made it look like the wings were flapping or fluttering, so fast that they turned into a blur, and the dogs were waiting politely for the signal to walk across the street.

Then, without warning, one of the dog's heads was on the ground, and its body was still walking around. The head was still animate, it was licking its lips and looking around, the body was walking around wagging its tail. And it wasn't bloody or gross or gory. And I was just standing there staring. Then I turned away for a moment, and when I looked back the dog's head was back where it belonged and he was trotting off with his wings flapping.

The end.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Random thought: Why don't people flush? I mean, what goes on in someone's head that makes them go, "NO WAY am I flushing this when I get through. THIS deserves to be seen."

One week to Costa Rica, you unlucky bitches (unless of course you are Kristi, Chris, or Jason; in that case you are one lucky bitch... or three, whatever).

Don't forget I've started a movie blog that's coming along nicely.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

On knowledge.

Recently my boss asked me if I have a college degree.

I always feel like it's something special on my resume, like it gives me some extra oomph or something to have on there "Yes I got my degree in bullshitting just a few years ago. I am capable of sleeping in classrooms for several years at a time." It's funny that I've gotten a job that I really am very happy with and the fellow who probably chose me out of however many applicants didn't even notice that I graduated from college. My position is entry-level; a degree wasn't required. But you'd think they'd notice.

I must say though that I forget sometimes that I have one. I was in college for, like, 17 years; I took it pretty slowly, dropped a few classes here and there when they looked like they might involve much work or the professor was a shit. There were times when I forgot that college actually ended. Sometimes it seemed like I might just go to college forever, especially once I discovered film classes in which I could watch lots of movies and then do some reading on them at home and that was about it.

When graduation time finally came, I was finishing in December, and I just wasn't very interested in participating in the actual graduation ceremony, so I skipped it. They sent my diploma in the mail which kept me from having to demonstrate in front of my fellow graduees that I can't shake hands with my right hand and clasp onto something with my left at the same time- it's like chewing gum and walking: too much thought is required, especially at that time in my life when I was drinking about 43 beers a day and living off of deli food.

When I told my boss that I do in fact have a degree in philosophy, he laughed and said, "So what have you used that degree for?" In truth, I haven't used it for much professionally. I intended to use it for toilet paper, but I keep forgetting. It's one of those liberal arts degrees that is great if you're going to move onto something else, like law school, or teaching, or hanging around in a toga sitting on rocks and coming up with stories about dudes in caves and their shadows and what they were thinking about. But on it's own, it doesn't burst down doors to lots of jobs or anything.

What it has done is teach me a lot about thinking, about how I think and what kind of perspectives I have and how I can change them. Studying philosophy taught me a lot about having an open mind, being able to appreciate lots of differing opinions all at once even if they don't line up with my own. It taught me how to look at my thoughts and beliefs and evaluate what they were based on, strengthen them, even to throw some of them out altogether.

So in the end I think my study in philosophy is invaluable. Well, the value of it is actually about $15,000 in student loans that I have yet to begin to pay back. But who's counting? Say, if a philosophy degree-holder turns tricks in the woods to raise money to pay back her loans, does it make a sound?

Monday, March 02, 2009

The result of an "isolated malicious act."

I was reading this blog and discovered that Tucson viewers of the Superbowl were treated to about 30 seconds of free porn. First, NO FAIR I didn't get any free porn. Second, the article is HILARIOUS if you have the right kind of sense of humor, meaning a wrong sense of humor.

In light of the incident, Comcast says it will issue a $10 credit to any customers who say they viewed the 30-second clip, which featured full male nudity. (SEE BOX) I don't know why I think "SEE BOX" in this context is so funny; I just do.

The Star newsroom was flooded with calls Sunday night from irate viewers who said that the porn cut into the game with less than three minutes left to play. The issue wasn't that there was porn, it was that it cut in to the MOST IMPORTANT PART OF THE GAME.

Callers said that the clip showed a woman unzipping a man’s pants, followed by a graphic act between the two...The Super Bowl was being shown locally on KVOA. The station sends its signals...to Cox Communications. Cox Communications. Perfect.

I don't know how I didn't know about this, but I missed it somehow, and I find it to be hilarious.