Words of wisdom.

I've been reading Sh*t My Dad Says by Justin Halpern, and it's so funny and wrong at the same time. I hadn't heard of Halpern until I picked up his book in Barnes & Noble, but apparently he began with a Twitter stream and gained a ridiculous amount of followers in no time. Not surprising, because his dad is hilarious, but in a brutal, "I can't peel my eyes away from that train wreck" kind of way. Every quote I read makes me laugh out loud while simultaneously thanking the universe that I wasn't born to that man.

Apparently a CBS television series is going to come of this as well, so we'll see how that pans out. I'm not so sure about the show, however, as most of Halpern's dad's zingers are a little more Comedy Central and less CBS. Take just one of Halpern's recent tweets, for example, wherein his father is quoted on his service in Vietnam: "War hero? No. I was a doc in Vietnam. My job was to say "This is what happens when you screw a hooker, kid. Put this cream on your pecker."

Lovely sentiment, eh?

Anyway, reading the book has me thinking about the sage words of advice passed down to me from my own parents. My dad has always said, "Some days you get the bear and some days the bear gets you." I love that one. It's so Dad. A little bit of sympathy, but mixed with just the right amount of perspective. It's like his concise way of saying I understand that you had a crappy day, but get over yourself already. It happens to everyone. Tomorrow will be better. Or it won't.

Other gems I remember from my childhood and adolescence = my ever-practical step-dad's "Always shit on company time," and my dear mother's "I can slap you from here."

If that isn't advice to live by, I don't know what is.


So glad he's cool.

Conversation on the way home from the public library...

Eliot: "I'm so glad you got me that tractor movie, Mommy!"

Me: "I'm so glad you're happy."

Eliot: "Are you so glad I'm cool?"

Me: "Yeah. That too. Obviously." *glances in rearview mirror and sticks tongue out at passenger*

*much snickering and snorting from the backseat*

All we had is gone now.

I remember years ago, someone told me I should take caution when it comes to love.
I did. I did.

And you were strong and I was not:
My illusion, my mistake.
I was careless, I forgot.
I did.

And now when all is done
There is nothing to say.
You have gone and so effortlessly
You have won.
You can go ahead tell them...

Tell them all I know now.
Shout it from the rooftops; write it on the skyline.
All we had is gone now.
Tell them I was happy, and my heart is broken.
All my scars are open.
Tell them what I hoped would be impossible.

Falling out of love is hard.
Falling for betrayal is worst.
Broken trust and broken hearts
I know, I know.

Thinking all you need is there,
Building faith on love and words.
Empty promises will wear
I know, I know.

And now when all is gone,
There is nothing to say.
And if you're done with embarrassing me
On your own you can go ahead tell them...


The language is leaving me.

"I used to be a lunatic from the gracious days
I used to be woebegone and so restless nights
My aching heart would bleed for you to see
Oh, but now...
I don't find myself bouncing home whistling buttonhole tunes to make me cry."


For some people it's called multi-tasking. For me, it's more like an inability to concentrate.

It's not unusual for me to be in the middle of multiple books at a time. There are occasions where I become so involved with something that I'm reading that I cruise right through it with my attention completely devoted. Most of the time, however, I'm a multi-tasker when it comes to reading. Just now I've got these cluttering the surfaces of my apartment, lying in various states of mid-read, whether dog-earred, bookmarked, or simply laid flat with the pages parted to the spot where I last left off:

I usually know if I'm missing an important note, or receipt, or list, any kind of piece of paper, it will probably be found in the last book I was reading. And the last book I was reading can usually be found in whatever bag/purse I was carrying, or under the bed, or between the couch and the wall, or buried under a pile of mail. I'm a complete muddle head about keeping track of my stuff, even the important stuff. Most especially the important stuff. I can't count how many times I've left my apartment without my keys, or my phone, or my purse. Or how many times I've frantically searched for my keys or my phone, only to find them in my pocket, or even more embarrassingly, in my hands.

I've been slowly working my way through the Alice Munro stories. I love them, but they're emotionally heavy. I feel like when I finish one, I need to recover a bit before moving onto the next. So far I've been most affected by the first story in the collection, "Dimensions." It's terrible and wonderful. The Woman: An Intimate Geography I picked up for fifty cents at the thrift store yesterday and immediately dug into. I like Angier's sassy, defiant tone, and it's a very interesting read so far. I usually like to mix fiction and nonfiction when I'm reading more than one book at a time. It's easier not to get them mixed up in my brain.

I just finished this:

Because I'm a glutton for punishment and I like to wallow in my own sorrow...you know, squeezing every available ounce of misery out of a situation. But also because I've been on a memoir kick for a long time now. Unfortunately, Gillies is not a writer. She's a lovely actress, but she's not a writer. I felt mostly like a voyeur reading her account of the demise of her marriage. It was mostly description of a sad train of events, with little to no reflection on them to add relevance for the reader. It was kind of like staring at someone else's wound. There's a bit of solace in that, I suppose. Looking at someone's wounds, remarking on their similarity to your own, and then taking note that they not only survived, but flourished. The book made me sad. I recognized her pain all too well. Mostly, what I got from it is the realization (or maybe just affirmation) that I don't want to display my hurt to the whole world. The last thing I want to do is lay out a narrative of everything he did that hurt me, every painful word and action that cut me, and put it all out there for public inspection. And maybe it was cathartic for Gillies to do that--I can see how it could have been--but as I was reading it, I felt pity towards her. I hate that emotion. I invite empathy, even sympathy, but I don't ever want anyone pitying me, least of all strangers.

Still, I'm glad I read the book. I guess I was seeking some kind of understanding, some way to wrap my head around what happened in my own marriage. I won't ever get that clarity, no matter where I search. There is no rhyme or reason. Other people will make their own decisions, no matter how badly you want them to do what YOU want them to do. No amount of love can convince someone not to leave, when leaving is what they're set on doing. It's so damn hard to let go, but in the end, it's the only thing you can really do.

Besides, now I have more time for reading. (haha. pathetic joke.) And, really, it's not such a tragedy, being a single thirty-something woman on a Friday night. I feel like my life has taken a completely unexpected detour and my internal GPS is frantically "recalculating." But wherever I'm going, I'm sure I'll find some way to get there. Even if I misplace my keys from time to time.


Because I have neither the mental nor emotional faculties with which to create a proper, coherent blog post,

I present to you: randomness.

a) I gave Eliot a poptart for breakfast this morning and when I handed him his plate, he said, "Mom, this poptart looks scrumptious!" I've never heard anyone be so excited about and thankful for a poptart. Except maybe myself.

b) This week and next = jury duty. Not a fan. And yet, I shall perform my civic responsibility with great respect and humility. (And with my fingers crossed that I don't get chosen.)

c) I went thrift store treasure hunting this morning and translated $12.00 into 2 vintage sheet sets, 16 linen napkins, a blue Bell jar, a small green plastic hamper-type container, and 1 hardback book. I was pleased. (And yes, my carpet is in desperate need of a shampooing. Probably not going to happen.)

d) I made an apology today. It didn't bring as much relief as I thought it would, but it's a baby step in the right direction.

e) Last week we resurrected the Ikea tent. I had kind of forgotten it existed. My little elephant boy, however, never forgets anything. We haven't played in this thing since probably January 2009, and he just randomly asks, "Hey, Mom, you 'member that tent that I used to play in? Let's do that tent!" I found it languishing in his closet. Now it's once again his favorite playing/hiding spot.

f) I like coffee.

g) Contrary to popular belief, the character Austin from the Backyardigans is a kangaroo, not a rabbit. Also, according to Eliot, he is Pablo, and I am Tasha. I'm a little bummed, because I wanted to be Uniqua, but hey, that's life.