The Thing By The Car

Labor Day Weekend 2021 was scheduled to start on Friday at 12:30 EST.

Unfortunately I received a text at 12:24 that shattered any illusions I had about enjoying the last official weekend of the summer that I never got to enjoy, but all of that is for the entry where I whine and cry about the traumas I’ve experienced in the past two weeks.**

Labor Day Weekend was scheduled to end at 10:00 EST on Monday. Then around 9:58 EST this happened.

I was walking down the hall while reading an article on my phone as my mother locked the screen door for the night.

“There was this guy who wanted to lose some weight, so he started exercising and eating better, but he didn’t do anything drastic,” I said still looking at my phone. “He lost ten pounds no problem because he’s a man so of course he would.”
I glanced up to see if my snark was appreciated but it apparently was lost on my mother who was too busy looking out of the screen door as she turned the lock. The porch light was out, and there aren’t any street lights on our block, so I had no idea what she could be seeing in the dark, but I continued with my story.
“But then the guy kept losing weight. He lost twenty pounds, and then another thirty-“
“It looks like there’s a pile of balloons next to my car,” my mother interrupted.
“-pounds,” I finished and then internally shrugged. “Alright.”
“I’m serious, it looks like a bunch of balloons,” she said.
“I believe you,” I told her, not really believing her at all, and continued my story. “But this guy kept losing weight to the point that people thought he was dying. He couldn’t understand it because he had been eating protein powder the entire time to make sure that he didn’t lose muscle weight instead of fat.”
“Come look and tell me you don’t see balloons,” my mother insisted.
I walked to the front door and looked outside. “Well, it turns out that his wife was putting arsenic in his protein powder.”
“You don’t see balloons? By my car?” my mother asked.
I stared at her car. “No, I do not see any balloons. But what I want to know is, given my difficulty in gaining weight, if you’ve been putting arsenic in my protein powder.”
“It looks like balloons! Or an alien. Or an alien holding balloons.”
“No I do not see an alien holding balloons,” I said in my most obnoxiously condescending tone as I finally turned away from the door.
Look!” she insisted again.

And for some reason I did look again, and that was when it suddenly clicked in my head that my mother was pointing to the car she’s had for years, not her new car that I’ve been driving since mine was totaled. Sitting next to the passenger door of her car wasn’t an alien holding balloons, but something almost as bizarre.

“It’s… It’s a giant bear wrapped in cellophane.” I blinked in disbelief.
“And you thought I was crazy!” my mother yelled triumphantly.
“I still think you’re crazy,” I told her as I unlocked the door. “An alien? An alien holding balloons? ‘We come in peace – see, we brought balloons!'”

I stepped outside and crept up on the giant bear.
“Do you want a flashlight?” my mother yelled from the safety of the front door as I confronted the ursine intruder.
“No, it’s definitely a bear,” I yelled back. “A giant pink bear.”
“And there’s no card or note or anything,” I added as I looked closer.
“That’s weird.” My mother came outside and joined me in examining the package. “I wonder if one of your uncles sent it.”
“Why would one of my uncles send me a giant pink bear?”
“Well, they know you’re not feeling well.”
“And you think that they would think that sending me a giant pink bear would help?”
“There’s chocolate too.” Mom pointed to the gold box sitting in front of the bear.
“Okay, that would help.”

I looked on the ground around the package to see if a card had fallen off and finally shrugged. “I guess we might as well bring it inside.”
“Maybe you have a secret admirer,” Mom suggested as I carried the bear through the front door.
“Why are you assuming this is even for me? It could be for you. Maybe you have a secret admirer.”
“Don’t be silly.”
“I don’t know. You’ve been looking awfully cute lately. Everyone has said how they like your silver hair.”
Mom waved away the idea.
“This is probably some warped joke, and for anyone who’s listening I do not want to play a game,” I shouted at the bear.

I set the bear down in the hall where the dogs and the cat proceeded to give it the sniff-degree.
“I’ve had it. I’m going to bed,” I said as I started up the stairs. “I’m sure the cellophane will keep it trapped if it comes alive.”

It wasn’t until the next morning that I realized that around midnight I had received a series of texts from the 15 year-old next door:

Hey 🙂
I hate to bother you at such a late time but I have a question.
I think you may have taken something of mine by accident.
It’s a pink teddy bear with chocolate.
If you do please keep it there if you don’t mind and I’ll pick it up from your backyard around 9 if that’s okay. I have to pick it up at that time because my mom doesn’t know I’m dating someone.😁

So not only was there a giant pink bear in my house, but I was now an accomplice in the illicit love affair of my teenage neighbor. And me being me I started overthinking and wondering if I was now responsible for telling her that her body is hers and no one has any right to it no matter how many ridiculously huge teddy bears that they leave by your neighbor’s car because consent is everything, and if anything is consented to then please do it in a responsible and safe way. Then I remembered that she is being raised in a normal, stable family with boundaries – hence not being allowed to date – and didn’t need my anxious dysfunctional attempt to adult at her.

But all I can say is thank God that this episode didn’t happen this week because I would’ve torn into that chocolate.

~~~~~~~

**I’m doing my best to not have two “heavy” entries in a row, but, as I was recently reminded, I write my best when I just write what I’m feeling from my heart, without thinking or censoring or editing myself. This is difficult to do when you feel like hell and your heart is hurting. It’s even worse when the hurt is from people you trusted or care about because I also have a rule where I don’t put anything on the internet that I’d be wouldn’t be okay with absolutely every single person in the world reading. Not only am I not naïve enough to believe that my corner of the ‘net couldn’t be found by anyone who looked, I’m also not someone who hides behind a pen name to talk shit. I thought a lot about the entry that will come after this one, and I’m willing to take the risk that people won’t believe me or think I’m overacting, in addition to the risk of the perpetrator reading my entry and finding out that, despite my feigned ignorance, I’ve always been aware of everything. This unfortunately might lead to a disruption in my health since this is a healthcare provider, but I’m willing to accept that because I can’t take it anymore.

Anyway.

Writing was once one of the few things that I thought I was good at, that came naturally, that I even…believed. And I’m afraid that I’ve lost it. I’m really afraid that it’s gone. Almost all of the entries that I’ve done in the past year sound like garbage, including this one. I’m forcing a “fluffy” entry with this bear story and it shows. The only thing that doesn’t keep me from hanging up my keyboard is that I can still feel some words left in me, but they’re ugly and painful, and they’ve been suppressed for so long that they festered into something that needs to be lanced. So I’m tearing the blade across the thick skin I’ve developed to keep the pain in and the world out and following this pustulant flow to see if it leads to something I’ve lost, or if bleeding the poison was all that I had left.

Two Pricks in Three Weeks

I’m just thinking about if I was writing a post with that title ten years ago, the innuendos would have been off the chain. I’ve matured so much since then. I legitimately stopped to think before I decided to type out that I haven’t been on a date in nine years, but, as of tomorrow, I’ll have received two pricks in three weeks, and most likely by two different people. So color me precocious. *self high-five* Actually, I’m going to give myself one of those every time I see an opportunity for an innuendo, but don’t jump on it. *self high-five*

I’ll admit I’m nervous about my second COVID-19 vaccine. As I mentioned before, I did not react during my first immunotherapy session when I restarted treatment, but I now go into anaphylactic shock every time. My immune system is like me where you can attack us once, but that’s all you’ll get. Come over again to fuck around and you will find out. So I’m nervous that my immune system is currently preparing for a viral Battle of Helm’s Deep, and is going to let loose the moment it realizes we’ve been invaded by the COVID19 DNA again. *self high-five* It’d be one thing if my immune system was rambunctious attacking the “invader”, meaning a high fever, swollen lymph nodes and all of that misery, but for fuck’s sake does it have to start attacking my organs, too? Or even worse, take down the ship to kill the alien? I feel that my antibodies really did not think their plan through when… Nope, I can’t type it without making it sound dirty, so I’m just not gonna do it, but I’m giving myself a *self high-five* for restraint. *self high-five*

But speaking of thinking things through, I’ve already made a plan for if I do start to react. They have an EMT in the post-shot waiting area, so if I can just calmly walk over and tell them that my immune system is trying to kill me, then maybe nobody else will realize what’s happening. This is one of the huge things that’s upsetting me. Of course I don’t want to die, but I was just thinking that if I had a reaction and people saw it, then they would tell other people, and chances are that it would make at least one person refuse the vaccine. So I’d be responsible for not only that person, but whoever else they infected with COVID19 all because my immune system is haywire and had to put on a show. *self high-five*

I did consider that I might not be able to get to an EMT before I fell into a state where people would notice that I was having a medical emergency, even if I was calm. If it starts happening too fast I’ll have my EpiPen with me, and I can just jam it through my jeans (*self high-five*) into my thigh. (FYI – This is a completely acceptable administration of an EpiPen because in an emergency you can go right through someone’s clothes rather than wrestling them off.) Those shots hurt like hell though. But I’m pretty sure I can do it without screaming. *self high-five*

You’re probably reading this and wondering if I’m experiencing a lack of oxygen right now by the way I’m rambling. I’m doing this because there are so many emotions to process with getting this second shot. I’m nervous, and I’m happy, and I’m angry, and I’m excited, and I’m scared, and I’m relieved. *self high-five* Believe me, I have another post coming where I hash these feelings out, but I don’t have time to articulate it all right now. *self high-five* It’s almost midnight and I’m tired, but I’m too keyed up to go to sleep. *self high-five* What’s also a shame is that I’ve decided to not make this post public, so I’ve spent all of this time writing something that no one will read. Maybe I’ll password protect it, though that might be awkward. I can tell people who I’m uncomfortable reading this that it’s for my Patreon – which I don’t have, but think I should since everyone is selling themselves whether it’s through Patreon or FansOnly. What happened to just giving it out for free? *self high-five* I blame slut-shaming. There’s nothing wrong with writing like a slut, though I’ll be happy when I can be paid for my writing so that at least I can say that I write like a whore instead. (No *self high-five* here since I just laid (HA!) it out.)

EPILOGUE

I survived.

I decided to make this post public to celebrate (I’m starting to feel like hell which means my immune system is responding appropriately), and also because all of the stress I went through the last two weeks made me forget that I didn’t skirt around death for the millionth time to kill myself attempting to live up to people’s expectations – which somehow included mind-reading and anticipating people’s own mistakes so that I could correct them before they happened. This is the way I write. This is who I am. When I’m scared or upset I make jokes, and all of my jokes are either inappropriate, puns, or inappropriate puns, in that order. If someone wants to take my jokes too seriously then that is a joke. I’m laughing too hard at my own stupid nonsense to hear anything anyway.

finding yourself way too hilarious

Letting Go

I’ve had an epiphantic weekend.

(I know that’s not a word but it should be.)

For example, I sometimes feel like the Past is unfairly vilified. There are so many memes spouting to “not let your past define you” and “you can’t look forward if you’re still looking back” and “blah blah fucking blah blah”. While I don’t deny that these sentiments are in fact correct, I feel like sometimes we can’t go forward until we do look back and see how much that past defined us. It just sucks because it’s never a simple analysis with an obvious answer and the time that we take to get the message into our thick heads is indeed time taken away from the move forward. And it just sometimes happens that the moment when our eyes are blurry from a combination of sweat and tears, when we blink furiously and only see the bottom of the toilet for a brief moment until the sweaty tears drop from our chin and shatter the water surface in jagged circles, that we see the clearest.

At about 3 am last Sunday I began throwing up more violently than I had thrown up in years. I initially chalked it up to food poisoning but even as I heard myself reciting that reason the next morning when I called my office manager to explain why I wouldn’t be in work I knew that bad food wasn’t to blame. I was to blame. Myself and my psychotic need to not only do everything myself but to do it and understand it perfectly…to stand in the middle of a furiously rushing river, holding on to broken tree branch because fuck you river, I am not finished analyzing what is on the bank right there yet.

On the most basic level I was overexhausted from staying awake at all hours due to frustration over this migration. While I managed to do the migration, I did it without fully understanding the internet protocol and how it actually worked. Do I really need to know the ins and outs of IPS? Probably not because I sure as hell am never doing a migration again, but it still pissed me off that I had to just accept that something worked the way that it did because that’s how it does. (And in a related note I was really fucking pissed that I couldn’t get the feed to work for blogger reader. I think I might have fixed it but I won’t know until I publish this.)

humans fuck up, letting go

I bitched about memes and then made one. GO HYPOCRITICAL ME!

On the deeper level though, I realized that the reason I was so stressed about having this site be perfect is because *deep breath* I’m insecure about my writing. All writers are insecure, and I’ve even admitted as much before, but I didn’t realize just how much until I had made myself sick over it. It was on my third day of lying on the couch in a fevered and dehydrated state was that it dawned on me that I was putting a shit-ton of work into my site because I felt like my writing alone wasn’t good enough to stand on its own. I felt like I needed a massive platform to tempt an agent into trying to market my novels and that my Alexa rating would be the thing to sell me instead of my ability. I know now that I can’t think like that anymore. I’m sure that I’m still making grave webmaster errors but I have to accept that they don’t matter.

This entry is so disjointed since you’re probably wondering what the hell this has to do with that spew in the beginning about the past and analysis and shit, but what else I realized is that I have made a lot of mistakes in my life and, much like my irrational need to understand the mechanics of internet protocol, I’ve spent time analyzing those mistakes to ensure that I don’t repeat them and have wasted attention where it’s not needed. They were just mistakes. I’m not going to make them again because I’m not a moron. I do stand by my statement that you should learn from your past but sometimes you just do stupid shit and there isn’t any deeper meaning other than you’re a human and we fuck up.

And on another note there is some random shit that happens for no other reason than shitty things sometimes happen to good people.

I’m never going to be one to accept things at face value–it’s just not who I am–but I’m trying to entertain the possibility that the answers might not be complicated, that sometimes understanding comes with letting go.

Not Really a Post But More of a HA HA! Moment I Decided To Share

If you are my fraynd on the Facebook then you will see that my current status is that today’s originally scheduled post was not finished due to a visiting puppy. Puppy trumps all work. This is a fact.

However as I was perusing the Interbutz wasting time, I came across this cartoon and it made me snicker and I had to share it because I’m obligated to share amusing shit and also it explains my recent lapse in posting.

writers procrastinate funny

This is almost exactly what I have been doing for the past week and a half only instead of chopping wood I’ve been gardening. And while most people would yell at me for procrastinating on work that needs to be done on the novel (and rightly so but that’s an entirely different egg), I say that I had a legitimate excuse for all of this gardening. Namely that my mother saw a Hummingbird in the backyard and in my world this executes into tearing a part a Bonsai tree that has been growing wild for nearly two decades. (Don’t ask, just accept that this logic is normal for the circus that is my life.)

The hours of slaving in the sun and mosquito bites aside (and oh do I have one motherfucking spectacular rage-filled post about those assholes in the works) I actually think that I did a nice job in creating “Hummingbird Garden”. Mostly it seems to have made my mother happy and she puts up with a fuckton of my *ahem* eccentricity so it was worth it.

Bonsai tree garden before

BEFORE

bonsai tree garden after

AFTER

That is all one tree that I had to tame and you would not believe the shit I found while taming it. Aside from the dude buried amongst the branches who thought that Reagan was still president, it was like an entomologist’s dream of freaky fucking insects that were jumping out of me. It was seriously like being in bloody Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. Not cool since I’m still traumatized from my battle with the Carpenter Ants from Hell.

*Sorry about the picture being the wrong way. I’m still trying to remember that I can actually turn my phone.

A Drunk Unicorn

Why is the unicorn drunk? Because it drank half of my Tequila.

The question is: Is this a good thing?

Well, on one hand you have an intoxicated equine with a long, sharp protrusion stumbling around and at some point I’m sure that someone is going to get stabbed. Also, the brat stole half of my damn Tequila.

On the other hand, it’s a fucking unicorn! If I was going to share any of my precious Tequila it would definitely be with a unicorn. I wouldn’t even mind any unicorn slobber that got in my glass. As for the inevitable stabbing, yeah that would rather suck. But again I must point out that it’s a fucking unicorn, and if you have the choice between never seeing a unicorn and being stabbed by one, I’m going to go with stab away.

The point of this bit of what-the-fuck-is-Kat-talking-about?

go home unicorn you're drunk, drunk unicorn, tequilaThis is my own version of the glass half-full versus the glass half-empty scenario.

Last week I had my first two disappointments as a writer. (Truth be told, last week was psycho crazy or I would have updated sooner.) One of the disappointments was that I found out that I’d lost a writing contest that I had entered. It’s really not a big deal, but the magazine took six months to pick winners and after such a long wait (I’m very fucking impatient) I felt the punch harder than I usually would have. This is the nature of the beast though. Waiting six months for anything is not unusual, and disappointment is the rule rather than the exception, so you suck it up and work harder. The good news is that I can post the short story that I had submitted on here again for ya’all to read! *throws confetti* The other good news is that submitted this story forced me into finally coming up with a title for it. So here is Borne of Armour. For new readers, a quick warning that this is one of my rare “heavy” stories.

Another good news/bad news bit to mention is that I never heard from the winner of my first giveaway. It sucks for them to miss out on an awesome shirt, but the good news is that I’d picked a runner up who will be getting an awesome shirt and ad space on the sidebar. Congratulations to the incredibly lovely, Michael from Crazy Tragic Almost Magic! Her blog is both funny and touching so make sure to check her out!

On a final note, if you’ve been in the tales for a while then you know that I love October and I love, love, love Halloween. I have some really nifty stuff planned for this month to celebrate, and even if my current health status (which is unfortunately subpar thanks to the old ticker being a grab) keeps me from doing half of it (I’ve lots in mind) there will still be a shit ton of fun to be had up in here! I’M FUCKING EXCITED!

*gallops away on my unicorn laughing manically *

(This entry is also No. 28 on my 30 Posts of Shameless Shit, “Discuss a failure.” However I’m galloping off on a unicorn and drinking Tequila while failing so it’s pretty cool.)