Saturday, July 28, 2012

Have Liquor, Will Travel.

A couple of weeks ago, a friend of mine visited for the weekend and we went out for a drink. And she was packing--mini bottles in the purse, that is. So although we had ordered legitimate beers from the bar, she pulled out a mini bottle of booze and asked if I wanted it. I shoved it into my own purse; I was only having one beer and then meeting another friend somewhere so I had to be wary of driving conditions. 

It amuses me to share with you that the mini liquor bottle stayed in my purse for two weeks. It even survived a transfer into another purse. Every time I would look inside my handbag and see the liquor nestled there, I felt....somehow ready for anything. I'm not sure if carrying around a shot's worth of alcohol makes me a criminal or not. In fact I just go0gled it and all I saw was advice on how to make your own cocktails on a flight. Ha. 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Learning To Walk Away.

Years ago, a then-friend encouraged me to adopt a kitten that he was keeping at his home and trying to find a family for. I was uncertain about having a kitten (I've never had a pet of my own) but i was willing to at least consider the opportunity. After all, the kitten was cute enough, and how hard could it be? But one night, after a few beers, I stayed over at the said friend's house and the kitten attacked me during the night. She bore her claws into my nose while I fitfully tried to sleep in that tiny guest room bed, and, when I opened my eyes to see what the hell was going on, she  practically scratched out my eyeballs. I retaliated by throwing the beast out of my space and announcing to my friend that this animal was not the right pet for me. Dramatic? Perhaps so. But the kitten had officially pissed me off. And my friend ended up finding the kitten another owner. I knew I'd made the right decision.

But the notion of "giving up" on something, particularly on something living, has not always been an easy pill to swallow. Nowadays, people hear phrases like "Never Quit" constantly. In fact, I think back now to an Offspring song with lyrics that declared "the more you suffer...the more it shows you really care...right?" I clearly remember my mother saying at the time how the lyrics were bunk, and not to take them to my teenage heart. My mother knew I'd have a hard time letting go of things. She was the same way when she was younger, after all. Of course, we both liked the song (hey, it was the nineties) but she did not want the lyrics to influence me. 

Throughout my life, it's indeed been difficult for me to walk away from friends who don't boost the well-being of my soul, lovers who do not understand me or love me in return, acquaintances who will not make the effort to become friends, and so on. I have a tendency to cling to those people until something outlandishly hurtful happens, similar to the kitten clawing at my eyes.

And it's not just me. I know at least a few other people who have the same issue; they keep something or someone that is best just discarded until it practically cripples them with dead weight.

So, I'm taking this opportunity to tell myself --and all of you-- just to stop. Go ahead and delete that person that you don't talk to, go ahead and delete that text message you were saving from the one night that you heard from your drunken college lover at 3 a.m. Learn to get rid of seeds that won't ever, can't ever grow. This nonsense is stifling your, and my, garden.

I won't even be offended if, after reading this, you decide not to speak to me again.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Stop Your Motor.

This morning I woke up at my usual time. The problem was, I had gone to bed super-late...and it was the umpteenth night in a row of staying up at least a little bit past my bedtime. I had a real brain fart, if you will, at the gas station around 9:30 a.m. when I climbed out of the driver's seat and attempted to put gas into my car without turning off the engine, something I never do.

But I actually learned today that not turning off your engine might be a personal preference. When I sorrowfully announced to my boss that "I was so tired I almost gassed my car while it was running," he responded that it's not a big deal and that he does it all the time. Note that my boss is not a person I typically take life advice from! But then someone else said the same thing. Is it actually okay to leave the car on?

I think, for me, the whole reason I've always thought that gassing a running vehicle is dangerous is because of my childhood, when my mother would buy "two dollars" worth of gas at the station up the street from our house. The station had signs everywhere that said "No Smoking. Stop Your Motor." Since my mother smokes, I used to pretend that the sign actually said "No Smoking. Stop Your Mother." Ha. Either way, I knew the car would be turned off.

So, despite what my boss and anyone else says about it, I'm sticking with turning the Saturn's key before I fill'er up. Provided I've had enough sleep to remember.

Friday, July 6, 2012

The 4th: A Recap.

I just returned from a truly epic vacation with my family in Litchfield Beach. Independence Day this year was one of the most spectacular on record, not to gush or anything. However, as I sit here at work, I can barely move. Why is that? Because my muscles ache to high heaven after falling out of my Uncle Joe's boat and into the saltwater marsh.

Let me explain. My Uncle Joe, a seasoned boater, invited me out on the morning of the 4th for an impromptu boating adventure and I happily accepted, second cup of coffee be damned. It was the funniest boat trip I can remember. 

First, we actually got pulled over by a boat cop, and Joe got a warning ticket for "not having either a horn or a whistle" on board. Who knew that a small boat like the one we were in needed such a plethora of emergency items?! Luckily we had life jackets!!

After we parted ways with the boat police, we made our way back to the floating dock at the house. Here's where the mayhem began. I tried to leap from the boat to the floating dock, while the two were connected only by my hand. Only I didn't quite make it. The boat floated away, my fingers slipped and --SPLOOSH!-- next thing I knew i was knee deep in oyster shells and mud softer than my own heart. I struggled to hoist myself onto the floating dock, but much to my dismay, my arms have zero strength and, between the pluff mud practically engulfing my lower body and my lack of biceps, the whole thing took awhile. When I got out, I resembled some sort of marsh creature and my toes and legs were slightly scratched after coming into contact with the oyster shells. But I survived. 

That was Wednesday and I'm still sore. My upper body feels like I subjected it to a crash-course in weight lifting. It hurts to move too vigorously. But you know what? I wouldn't take it back--it was funny and interesting. And we writers thrive off funny and interesting stuff, even if we get left a bit achy. 

Besides the boat adventure, other highlights of the trip included meeting my Aunt Stephanie's sweet 13-year-old niece, who said I was "more fun than any other adult there," spending time with my best friend John Myers, seeing my grandma, pool-lounging with my childhood pal Gayden, and the awesome fireworks on Wednesday night. My little BlackBerry did me proud, until the very end, when it was completely tuckered out from so many photos on the beach and went to sleep. I couldn't blame it.