Don’t you wish your blogger was hot like me. In other news, I continue to make no sense. Also, text. It has a past tense.

Last night I worked late, and I got Ned drunk even though I wasn't there, and I took another 45-minute walk with the dogs and my foot is KILLING me, and now I have to go to work. If you want, you can leave now, as Ive just summed up this stupid post.

Remember last fall, when Ned went to a funeral, and he called me at work after all loud? "I'M NOT GONNA LIE TO YOU. I'VE BEEN DRINKING." Yeah, really? Cause I thought maybe you'd just bought a bullhorn, or perhaps you'd taken up projecting to the back of the room. A guy Ned went to college with lost his wife, and she was 46 and really pretty and they had children it just SUCKS, is what it does. At the funeral, Ned saw a bunch of people he hadn't seen in awhile, and might could have gone for a drink (or 88939493) with everyone after.

That was the night I dragged his drunk ass to Twilight, and I think sobriety hit him about halfway through when he came to and said, "Why am I watching men with glittery skin?"

Last week we ran into the guy whose wife died, and he told Ned that every Thursday from 5:15 till 6:15, a bunch of men meet at this bar. "You should come," he told Ned. "It's only till 6:15, so she won't get mad."

"Oh, she wouldn't get mad anyway," said Ned, and I appreciated the she's-not-a-battle-axe credit. Had he gone drinking with men till 2 a.m, I wouldn't be mad. What do I care?

So at 5:00 yesterday, I called Ned. "Did you remember you're supposed to drink with that guy?" He hadn't. "I'm going to go over there right now," he said. Several minutes later, he texted me.

This is what I don't miss about LA, because if this were taking place in LA, it'd be "an hour later, he texted me."

And have you noticed people don't say "texted," rather they say "text"?
You know how few things bug me. But this is one of the few. "And he text
me and said, 'What you doing tonight?'" Have you noticed that? Cause,
irks.

"No one is here yet," he wrote. He text. "I got the veggies," he text. Okay, skin crawling.

After the next "no one is STILL here" text, I looked Ned's friend up on Facebook. "Oh, hell. I think he's on vacation," I wrote, looking at pictures of him ziplining. As you do. You guys are probably so sick of my ziplining photos. Sorry. I cannot resist zipping across a line.

The POINT is, Ned had two beers waiting for anyone to show, and because he'd had a (sit down) salad for lunch, he was drunkeldy drunk. Fortunately he lives right there where the bar is. Well. He doesn't live AT the bar. Maybe he'll start doing so, and become like Norm on Cheers. "NED!"

So that's how I got Ned drunk without being there. In the meantime, I very virtuously worked till 6-ish, then came home and turned on the TV for a minute, where there was a Behind the Music: The Pussycat Dolls special on. You can imagine how hard THAT was to tear myself away from.

I mean, do the Pussycat Dolls actually count as "music" to be behind? Remember when they had the E! True Hollywood Story? I mean, maybe they still do. But they used to have this theme music they'd play constantly, it went do-do-do-do-dododo. Remember?

 

Would seriously marry YouTube if it'd just ask. "YouTube text me and proposed!"

My POINT is, Marvin used to follow me around the house and play that theme music, as though I were living a True Hollywood Story. "Sometimes, June would do dishes. do-do-do-do-dododo…." "It was then that June came out of the bathroom. do-do-do-do-dododo…"

OHMYGOD ANYWAY. This whole post was gonna be eight words, where I ask you to delurk, and FORTY MINUTES LATER HERE I STILL AM. WHAT I MEANT TO TELL YOU REALLY FAST WAS I SAW PAUL.

Paul is my neighbor, whose birthday is four days (and 50 years) from mine. Often when I walk the dogs, he asks me to sit with him awhile and talk, and I always do. I hadn't seen him on his glider this spring and it worried me.

IMG_1026But here he is. He looks a little more frail this year, but you'd look frail, too, if you were in your 90s. I asked how he was, and he said, "Oh, I got FAP–falling apart." It seemed rude to mention "apart" was one word. Do you think a lot of people like me? Do you? Me too.

IMG_1027Even though my poor dogs act like they like these giant walks that are crippling me, you can see Talu drank Paul's cat's water and floomped down as soon as humanly possible. With Edsel's head like that, they look like some weird push-me-pull-me dog.

IMG_1028
I'd LIKE to say they were too tired to mess with Paul's cat, but really that cat puts out such a "Oh, really? Go ahead. Go ahead and fuck with me, buddy. No, really. Do it" vibe that I think they just thought, neber mynd.

So thanks for slogging through all that nonsense, and NOW WILL YOU DELURK? I mean, if you are a regular commenter, go ahead and leave whatever comment you always do (you know, the one where you point out an error I've made, or tell me how crappy my photos are, or guide everyone with a link to a funnier blog. Those. Don't ever stop with THOSE), but if you don't comment, go ahead. I will not look at your ding-dang spelling and grammar. She says, after spending a whole post complaining about grammar and "apart" being one word.

Otherwise, leave a text. "So many readers text me!"

Sigh. FAP-ly, June.

Zen

Yesterday was one of those run-around-y days where you don't get a single solitary damn moment to yourself for a minute. My boss was out sick, and TinaDoris was working on a big project, which left all the everyday work to me. And holy cats, everybody, with your everyday work. Jeeeeeeeeesus.

There was one thing I was working on all morning, and every five minutes an email would flash across my screen. At work, when you get emails, they hover there ghostly-ly for a minute on your home screen. They all started with, "Can you…?"

OH MY GODDDDD.

Finally, the thing I was working on all morning was coming to an end, and I was on the last sentence when

BLOOOP!

Word crashed. And my whole thing went with it. And YES, I looked for it to have been recovered, and NO, it wasn't recovered and NO, I don't know why because YES, I hit Save while I was working on it. The document was there, but with NONE of the changes I had made.

You can imagine my sparkling mood.

Flash: Can you…?

I left a message with IT and screamed over to a meeting, and five minutes into the meeting I realized I had to pee. I had to pee, and I was in the midst of the World's Longest PowerPoint Presentation, complete with spacing errors just to drive me berserk (SOME bullet points had a large space between the bullet and the text! SOME bullet points were mating with the text next to them! And yes. Things like that give me angina. What do you want from me. All of a sudden I'm Billy Squire).

Is there much worse than having to pee and not being able to? Seven hours and 900 minutes later, I said to the New Girl, who started Tuesday and probably just wants to fly under the radar for awhile, "I have to pee so bad." "SO DO I!" she whisper-screamed, holding up an almost-empty water bottle.

Our problem in this nation is we drink entirely too much water. We're all convinced that we're riddled with toxins that constantly need flushing out. Are you eating MUFFLERS or something?

Toxins. Pfft.

New Girl and I got up and screamed to the bathroom during Q & As. Once the 98th person had raised their hand and started her Q with, "Okay. Couple things," I was out of there. I pointed out to new girl where the super-secret bathroom was, and she said, "No, you can take that one" and soon she'll learn she needn't be nice to me, as I am just the lowly copy editor. Probably because I'm old she assumes I have some authority or something.

I got back to my desk and had 3484839393 "Can you…?" emails, and while I was slogging through everything someone did the thing I LOVE at my cubicle.

"Knock knock."

Oh, how I love that. HOW.I.LOVE.THAT! Knock knock! Oh, shut up.

I just figured it was someone from my department, so I very generously said, "IMA KILL MYSELF. WHAT!!!?" and when I turned around it was a very nice man from IT. He is nothing but sweetness personified, and you know in the cartoons when that guy turns into a First Class Heel? Yeah.

He figured out why Word is crashing, and I don't know how IT guys even know what they're doing all day. If I had that job, everyone's computer would be punched in a week. But speaking of computers, I had to SCREAM home for lunch, as I had a phone appointment with Daniel Boone, as my OWN computer is screwed up and D Boone is a Very Fancy Computer Guy for a living.

The good news is, he was able to walk me through everything, and he is very good at walking someone stupid through complex computer things, and once he even got me to fix my vacuum while we talked on the phone, kind of like when Radar did the tracheotomy on MASH.

"Is everything good, then? Cause I'll send you my bill," said Daniel Boone, and oh, hardee-har-har.

The rest of the afternoon involved getting more and more work like I was Lucy at the chocolate factory, and at the end of my relaxing day, I got a call from my eye place: my contacts were in. This is good, because as of today I am Officially Out.  Before I went over there, though, I checked my account, because contacts are expensive. The part where I had $27 kind of squelched my get-my-contacts plan till Friday.

Twenty-seven dollars. What am I, a freshman in college? The good news is I found two dollars in my jeans this morning, and somehow having $29 sounds less pathetic. I got home and let the dogs out and started to commence my freelance work, because in case you did not know, I have work from that statistics company I freelance for now and then.

I? Had left the freelance work AT WORK. I HAD LEFT IT AT WORRRRRRRRK.

And that, folks, is how I ended up at work till 8:30, and had a screamy day, and the only good thing I can tell you is on the drive home, I saw my first fireflies of the season in my neighbor Pollyanna's yard.

"Pollyanna" is not a made-up blog name. That is her actual name. Her sister Monopoly is more sensible. Their brother Uno is kind of a loner.

Am I the only one who had Pollyanna as a board game growing up?

So that's all I have to tell you, other than today is officially my friend Pal From MA's birthday.

6a00e54f9367fb88340167688c2eaa970b-800wiHere we are in 1971, when we were six. My parents were obsessed with dyke-ing out my hair. They were probably telling us to make out when they took this.

Happy birthday, Pal. Every inside joke I want to make now is so crude that I cannot do so. So. You know. Happy birthday.

June, frazzled and out.

The quiche of now

Sometimes, I get so busy telling you one story, like about Ned's horrid day, that I forget to tell you the other things I meant to say, and really this whole blog is like we're at dinner and I'm dominating the conversation and you're smiling fakely and painfully, waiting for dessert so you can go.

IMG_0932I love this picture, with Ned's for-the-love-of-god-not-your-flash-in-a-restaurant look. That was dark chocolate pistachio mousse. I know.

We were in one of those long booth situations, and next to our small table was another small table, and this couple was dressed to the nines, because technically it's a really nice restaurant and there were Ned and me in jeans like we owned the place. Anyway, the dude was going all out, with a bottle of wine at the table, and asking her questions about herself ("Why do you think you're such an introvert?" I can't imagine an introvert wanting to answer that.), and the point is, girlfriend had the highest, squeakiest, most awful Minnie Mouse voice humanly possible. Ned kept giving me knowing looks because they were .0003 inches from us and we couldn't say a thing, but he knew I was thinking mean thoughts.

I've heard you should record yourself to make sure your voice isn't ludicrous, but I think her voice may be unrecordable, like a dog whistle or something.

See. I wasn't gonna talk about ANY of that and here we are seven hours later.

But what I DID mean to say was at that dinner, Ned got something or other–maybe a fish?–that had pesto on it.

"Is that pesto?"

"Yes."

I paused to eat my rainbow trout. It didn't SEEM gay, but maybe when that trout was alive he was all wearing short shorts and YMCA-ing and so forth. "Pesto is the quiche of the '80s," I said, because it's important I quote When Harry Met Sally as often as possible, and that is ABSOLUTELY less annoying than having a helium voice. Shut up.

After I explained to poor Ned that I wasn't, for once, quoting Sex and the City and why does anyone like me, Ned asked, "Then what's the quiche of the aughts? What about the teens?"

Well. That is a brilliant question. I kind of feel like cilantro was the quiche of the '90s. But the aughts and teens? What do you think?

The other thing I forgot to tell you from this weekend, and clearly I packed several lifetimes into this holiday weekend, was at my friend Charlie's birthday party, there was a young woman there with a kid. The kid was, like two to nine years old, and Ned showed him the pool table, which led to the kid hitting himself in the face with one of those hard pool balls, and what if my Very Exciting News were that Ned and I were stampeding out to adopt? How quickly would you call Social Services?

While her child impaled himself on pool sticks, I talked to the mom about her life and her earrings (she never wears matching ones. She had a carousel on one side. Yes, a carousel. And on the other a dinosaur. Cute when you're 24 or whatever, but if I did that I'd look like dementia was setting in.). Finally she started telling me about her mom, who after so many years of marriage had finally ended it with this young girl's dad. Her mom had just TAKEN OFF, and moved West, where she managed to actually find another man and live with him outside the Grand Canyon.

The whole gist of the story was that who knew at her advanced age, with the cobwebs growing out her nethers, that her brittle old bones could take the weight of a man on them. It was such an amazing Grandma Moses thing, her mom finding new romance at this stage of life.

Suddenly I was struck with an awful thought. "How, um, old is your mom?"

"Mom? Oh, wow, sheeeeeeeeee's…47? Forty-seven or -eight, yeah."

You have no idea how tormented I was while she dragged out the "sheeeeeeeee's." Please say 92. Please say 92. For the love of–crap.

And I can't remember if I told you this already, it feels like I have, but I have a friend in LA who is gorgeous. She runs marathons all the time like it's fun and she was pretty even BEFORE she started doing that rather odd thing, and anyway she recently found herself back on the market so she put an ad on OK Cupid.

Have I told you this?

She got a message from a 33-year-old guy, which, woooooo! "You are beautiful," he wrote, which is true. "I just wondered. Are you still sexually active?"

 

I know I need to get past the Price is Right losing horn, but I love it so.

Are you still sexually active. Oh my GOD. "I was just wondering. Are you still lucid?" "Are you still able to chew solids?" "Are you still alive?"

That pretty much wraps up all the dumb things I wanted to tell you, other than it's my Pal From MA's birthday on the 30th, and my whole life there hasn't been one single May 30 that I haven't thought, "Oh! It's Pal's birthday!" Anyway, I was cognizant enough, and sexually active enough, to remember to go on Amazon and get her a little gift and I won't tell you what because she reads me.

The POINT, however, is once I'd placed my order, Amazon suggested I might like these other items:

Screen Shot 2013-05-28 at 4.00.32 PM
What. In the Sam Holy Hill. Do you think I got her that they suggested I might like wood toilets and dead vacuum-sealed rabbits? What? What did I get her? How scared do you think Pal is to get her gift?

Okay, I'm off. To creek oldly through my day. But tell me what the quiche of now is. It's been haunting me.

In which Ned, who doesn’t cook, said, “Let’s cook!” to June. Who doesn’t cook.

The holiday weekend yawned before us, and Ned, who enjoys food and eating and talking about food and eating and perusing menus to decide what to eat and then discussing it, said, "We should grill out at your house." I have a grill, see, and also a back yard and a deck. Which makes my house ideal for a cookout. Except for the part where you have two people who excel at the chef-ing. Is what we do.

"First, we need to get you one of those chimneys," said Ned, like he knew from grills and cooking and did I mention neither of us cook?

(To be fair, Ned has two or three dishes he prepares for himself, but he's just learned these since I met him, and one thing you don't want to do if you want any novelty in your life is ask Ned what he made for dinner. "Beans and rice," he'll say, 77 nights out of the week. Alternatively, he might say, "Rice and beans," and I'm just saying that Ned would have made an excellent Tibetan monk or war prisoner or something.)

"A chimney? But I…don't even have a fireplace," I told him.

Outset-chimney-starter__65759_zoom
But it turns out, there's this new thing for your grill, and it looks like a tall sifter or something, and yes it IS weird that I know what a sifter is. You dump your charcoal in the sifter, and then you sift it. Or burn it and sift it. Or maybe nothing gets sifted at all and I need to get over the sift again, like we did last summer.

So we went out and bought one, like we were cooks who cook, and we also bought hamburgers and buns and corn on the cob and then we came home and realized we'd forgotten 80 things, such as condiments that weren't expired because have you met my kitchen?

After a return trip to the store, in which post-millennium condiments were gotten and so on, we got home and realized we'd need newspaper to burn in the sifter thing, so we…went to the store and then we killed ourselves and came back to life and this whole story is a lot like that Found a Peanut song you sang at camp, where you find a peanut and it's rotten and you eat it and you die and you come back to life and find another peanut.

Dear Mom: Do you miss me singing songs I learned at camp? Because I could totally call you right now and sing a few bars of The Other Day I Met a Bear.

Out in the woods (out in the woods). Oh, way out there (oh, way out there).

Our grocery bill came to $82. "We could have gone to a STEAKHOUSE for that," said Ned, who would have probably suggested we find a riceandbeanshouse instead.

Before we got the grill hot and bothered, Ned decided we needed to make homemade salsa. Yes, he did. Homemade salsa, with the peppers and the tomatoes and the other things that needed chopping, and he chopped and he diced and he sliced and he cut, and the dogs were scared of all the cutting sounds, and the peppers burned his hand because we didn't know which peppers were super hot so we got a bunch and turns out, hey! Those hot cherry peppers? Hot! And finally?

The salsa was made, and the sun was setting. I am not even kidding you. We had spent SO MUCH TIME shopping and chopping and not knowing what we were doing that it was, like, a midnight cookout, and at this point we were so hungry we descended on that salsa like Hispanic seagulls. And oh, it burned. It burned us so. But it was worth it. Because, hungry?

Photo-15
We took our firey mouths outside and put the coals in the chimney thing. Enclosed please find a photo of Ned getting this flamey party started. While we stood there, sated from salsa and mesmerized by the flames, we noted the sifty thing was burning. On the outside.

"You see how it's on fire, there? You know what's burning? The directions that were glued to the outside of the thing." Ned drank his beer. "I wonder if we should have maybe READ the directions before we set them on fire." We watched as they curled away. "Well, we can't un-burn them now," he said.

Nine hundred and fifty-nine hours later, Ned stood in the darkness, holding his cell phone as a kind of flashlight over the still-raw burgers. "I think…I think maybe we should go out to eat," he said, as the last energy he got from that salsa waned from his being. Most of the hamburger meat had fallen into the grill. Finally Ned brought in the dregs that were left and we cooked them on a pan in my kitchen. I was a skeleton at that point as I clicked into the dining room and we shared the .0007 ounces of meat that had remained on the correct side of the grill.

The next day, after Ned worked out and so did I, if by "worked out" you mean bought FABULOUS! NEW! SHOES!,

6a00e54f9367fb8834019102a506cc970c-800wi

IMG_0979(Those second ones. I know. But the Persian Mom look is totally sweeping New York and Paris right now.)

Ned said, "I want to try again."

"What?"

"I do. I don't want to be a failure at grilling. Would you mind if we went to your house and tried again? I Googled the chimney."

There's something Almanzo probably never said to Laura Ingalls Wilder in all their years together. "I Googled the chimney."

And that, folks, is how Ned and I found ourselves at the VERY SAME grill, cooking the VERY SAME meal for the second day in a row.

IMG_1004And we had? Success. Because Ned and I RULE at cooking. And chimneying. And having Groundhog's Day.

IMG_1008Mostly.

IMG_1005edz kind of juge you, mom.

Yours in cookery, June

June’s Showcase Showdown

By the way, I get to tell you the Very Exciting Thing in less than a week. At this point I've built up Very Exciting Thing so much that unless I announce I am the next pope, you'll be let down. I'll be all, They've named a brand of lace after me! And you'll be all

.

I am so absurdly in love with myself right now for using that sound effect.

Anyway, I'll blog at you at lunchtime. Tell you all about the rest of my holiday weekend, in which shoes were purchased and red meat was grilled.

Twice.

I know! June. Bringing in the reader and making her beg for more.

The one where you’re probably gonna feel pretty bad for Ned

Yesterday, there was a Very Important Sporting Event on, and you can imagine how I've thought of little else. But despite my complete indifference to said Very Important Sporting Event, Ned was all up in it.

"There's a very important baseball game on," he told me. "Whooo de whooo and bleeee de bleee blee are godogodoooling, and it's really super important, and I'm gonna watch it."

Ned is not one to be pushy, generally. He's kind of a polite Southern boy. So when he says something like "I'm gonna watch it," I know there's no messin' around. He knew we had Charlie's party to go to, which started at 4:00, and his Very Important Sporting Event was at 7:00, so he recorded it just in case. But he mentioned to me 90 times that he was GOING TO BE WATCHING Very Important Sporting Event afterward.

So we saw Charlie, and it was nice to hang with him and hear his funniness, and people from my old job were there, so that was cool, too. 

Photo on 5-26-13 at 2.02 PM #2Plus, we all got Chuckzillas. As long as I've known Charlie, he's made these his-head-on-Godzilla things, and you're supposed to take them on vacation with you and pose Chuckzilla in front of something cool. Here's Chuckzilla in front of my computer! Wooo! Exotic.

So I'm sorry to tell you that after the party, it was still light out, and Ned stupidly said, "You want to try to go to that garden you'd wanted to go to?"
IMG_0948There is a beautiful mansion/museum/grounds/gift shoppy kind of place made strictly for girls, in Winston-Salem, called Reynolda. And yes, it used to be owned by the Reynolds people, who brought us cigarettes and the untimely smoking-related demise of half my family. How delightful that I frequent the place, but hey. It's lovely. Cigarette money is lovely.

We'd planned to go to those gardens BEFORE the party, but Ned had been terribly late, and I suppose he was making it up to me, but the first hour of his Very Important Sporting Event he found himself traipsing around a bunch of roses with yours truly, over here. Sparkly Rose Blossom, over here.

IMG_0945Which, you have to hand it to him. The only thing I can liken it to is if the series finale of Sex and the City were on, and I missed it to go with Ned to a penis factory or something. I mean, big gardens are to women what penis factories are to men. That is a perfect analogy, what do you mean?

He even sat with me on a little bench, in the middle of said garden, and let me kiss on him and be all romantical, when you know the whole time he was thinking, How long do we have to be in this godforsaken garden before I can go home and watch Very Important Sporting Event?

IMG_0947I'm Ned. I'm either the most patient boy alive, or I'm really, really ensuring I get some action this weekend.

Finally, I'd had enough of stopping to smell the roses, and funny funny garden jokes ("You can say THAT again," I said when we looked at something called Echo roses.)

(Do you need a minute to gather yourself? I know this is some hye-larious stuff, here.)

 We were just walking out when

"SON OF A BITCH," Ned yelled, and I turned to see him covered in brown. Dudes, some bird exploded on poor Ned. I mean, that bird was flying back from a food truck that'd served room-temperature guacamole or something. He had bird poop in his hair, on his collar, on the bottom of his shirt, in his soul, you name it.

"This is the THIRD GODDAMN TIME a bird has shit on me in my lifetime," he said, taking my hand sanitizer for the first time, ever.

"Wait. You've been pooped on THREE TIMES? Who gets that?"

"THAT'S WHAT I WANNA KNOW," said Ned, whose mood may have taken a turn.

The drive to Greensboro is about 35 minutes, and Ned didn't WASTE any time. Getting home was not NUMBER TWO on his list, and if you'd like I could tell you more garden jokes. We had a shitty goodbye, and he went home to shower and watch Very Important Sporting Event, finally, while I went to my neighbor Peg's cookout for awhile, because I haven't vomited nearly enough lately.

Guess who's never gonna get over Typhoid Peg. Ever.

My POINT is, it was two hours later that I got back to Ned's, and his Very Important Sporting Event was on, and he was grousing that, like, 29 innings had happened and yet the score was zero to zero. I guess that's bad or something. He had kind of thought the thing would be practically over by then, but it wasn't, and he was starved, so he paused his recording and we walked down to a restaurant near his house. When we got there, we'd both forgotten reading glasses, and the menu may as well have been written in hieroglyphics for all we could see, so Ned had to literally RUN back to his apartment and get our glasses while I enjoyed some delightful bruschetta.

When he sat back down, breathless, he noticed behind me was a TV. "Oh, no!" said Ned. "Very Important Sporting Event is on! Can we switch places? I don't want to see how it ends." We did, and every time I even GLANCED that way, he'd shout "DON'T TELL ME!" as if Very Important Sporting Event were what I was watching and not the hot man of color at the bar.

We got back to Ned's and he resumed his recording and dudes. That Very Important Sporting Event would.not.end. It wouldn't. It was 11:30 and I said, "I really have to go to bed." I lay there trying to sleep, and just as soon as I'd drift off, I'd hear Ned saying,

"@&@&%$$*!"

Then I'd drift off again.

"@&@&%$$*!"

Roll. Zzz. Zzzz. Zzzz—

"@&@&%$$*!!!!!"

So that was restful. But then at 2:00–

TWO!!!!

what woke me up was the utter LACK of noise. I got up, and there was poor Ned curled up on the couch, fast asleep. "Why don't you come to bed?" I asked. Ned looked at me blearily. "It's not done yet. I just fell asleep because this thing won't end. But I have to know what happens."

"Why don't you just Google it?"

Ned looked at me like I'd asked why we didn't skewer his cat with a few vegetables and grill her over a flame in the trash can. He turned the TV back on.

And who, WHO, do you think sat there like an exhausted idiot, watching that sporting event at TWO IN THE MORNING with Ned, and he was right, it WOULDN'T end, and it was THREE A.M. and there we sat, and that thing kept going ("Do they give up, eventually?" I asked Ned, who gave me the cat-on-a-skewer look again) when all of a sudden?

Ned's recording stopped. IT STOPPED! In a million years, Ned would not have predicted this Very Important Sporting Event would go on THIS LONG, because WHAT DOES other than Sting, and boom. His TV just shut off.

And that, folks, is when Ned picked up his shoe and threw it across the room and broke a picture. "OH CRAP! I DIDN'T MEAN TO BREAK A PICTURE! "@&@&%$$*!"

IMG_0954Poor Ned, in the cold light of day, trying to fix his picture.

"I'm sorry I lost my temper," he said. "Are you kidding? I'd have set the WHOLE CITY on fire," I told him. And I would have. He'd KILLED HIMSELF to watch this thing in its entirety, and gotten pooped on, and avoided the TV in public, and, well, yeah. I'd have punched the Pope.

In the end, Ned had to Google the results of his Very Important Sporting Event.

His team lost.

I bought a toothbrush

Last night, I went to Ned's. He seemed to have packed a lot of living into his dwelling in the few days since I'd been there. A huge golf bag was in the living room, and some aloe vera gel was on the floor. And "Why is that ball in here?" I asked him.

"What ball?" he asked.

IMG_0933Honest to god, he did. "What ball?" Oh, never mind. I must be seeing things.

Anyway, I just got back from another ding-dang huge walk with the dogs, and now I must shower, as we are headed to Winston-Salem, for a change, because it's my friend Charlie's 30th birthday and he's having a partayyy. He invited us all on Facebook, and he wrote, "I'd send an invitation to each and every one of you by hand, but I'm paralyzed." I mean, you can't argue with that.

Ned hurt his back playing golf yesterday, and my plantar fasciitis will be acting up due to my long walk with these smelly creatures I call dogs, and I have work to do this weekend and I'd really rather just fool around and do dumb things.

Ned would rather sit around and listen to his old records with the turntable I got him, but even THAT isn't going so smoothly.

 

Yeah.

But my dumb smelly dog survived having an Easter Island head this week.

And despite our aches and pains and skips, Ned and I have found each other at this late stage in life, when we're practically dead and unable to see giant balls in the living room.

And I have a steady paycheck again.

And Charlie? Charlie slipped on a damn rock, and yes. He can't move. And it sucks. And he's pissed off. But he's here. He's here to make us laugh, and to still be cute as all getout, and to get the truth out of you even when you don't want to hear it.

There's something magical about Charlie. Something about his open face, and kind eyes, and total lack of judgyness makes everyone hold a mirror up to themselves, and, sadly for him, you end up telling him things you don't want to. Things you never even wanted to admit to yourself. It happens to him everywhere he goes, with total strangers and old friends.

So, yes. What happened to him blows. And he has yet to make sense of why this happened, and what it will mean for him in the years to come. But having Charlie on this planet is something we all should be glad about.

So we are gonna celebrate the shit out of his 30th birthday. Is what we're gonna do.

Then we might buy a toothbrush. I'm not sure.

Come on, Precious

I forgot to tell you that when I ran into that little kid the other night from the neighborhood, the kid who used to own Snowflake before his untimely postman-eating demise, she had a question for me.

"Do you have a lot of markers in your house?"

I mean, it was in the context of precisely nothing. We'd all said hi to each other, she'd asked if Edsel was still shy (well, let's see. The part where he's wrapped his leash around me 50 times and is behind me, trying to crawl up inside me, might tip you off, but whatever. Bright child.) and then she came out with that query.

In some countries, that is the traditional greeting. ¡Hola! How's it going on your number of markers?

"You know, I don't," I told her. "I don't think I have any. I don't have kids, so markers never really come up."

I may have alluded once or twice to the lack of brightness of these ragamuffins in my neighborhood, and I could see those wheels trying to churn.

"You don't? You don't have kids?"

"Nope."

She looked completely taken aback. "Well, when are you going to have any?"

Am seriously wondering if my mother hired her.

Anyway, hiiiii! How is everyone? It's the holiday weekend, so no one is going to read me at all, ever. You'll all be busy with the grilling and the eating of baked beans and the getting out your white shoes. Truth be told, I've been wearing white pants for a couple weeks, and I've been rocking them, too. All this in white pants, man. Woooo!

I've been working out 45 minutes, five times a week, due to this stupid challenge I'm in at work (my team is in second place) (have hired someone to bang Team #1 right in the knees, though), and yesterday I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror–

–I like that. "Caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror." Like I'm not Buffalo Bill in Silence of the Lambs in that mirror all day. Anyway, I saw myself and man! I looked good! See? Am back to being Buffalo Bill again.

Come on, Precious!

Should I get that poor kid a pack of markers? Or will her negligent parents think I'm a molester?

But none of this is why I forced you to log on here today. I brought you here because Ned has Nedflixed the terrible movie we saw last Sunday, and man, was it terrible. It was my fault, too: I picked it.

 

Long ago, I dated someone who said I always wanted to see any movie that showed someone standing in a field. It was really one of the more astute observations anyone's ever made of me. And sure enough. Oh, field! I pick this one!

As soon as it was over, there was an old lady behind us, who said, "Jesus." Completely exasperated. We loved her. Anyway, here is Nedflix.

To the Wonder

The name of Jesus Christ, delivered
derisively from one of our fellow moviegoers in the back of the theater, was
the first feedback June and I received upon the conclusion of To the Wonder,
the new film by Terrence Malick. Malick is the director of such obtuse head
scratchers as The Tree of Life and The Thin Red Line, and To the Wonder doesn’t
disappoint in that arena. What it does disappoint in, however, is everything
else.

To the Wonder stars Ben Affleck
and Olga Kurylrnko as Neil and Marina, two young lovers with nothing better to
do. Having met and fallen in love in Mont Saint-Michel, they return to Oklahoma
to set up house. Life is pretty good when you’re hanging out in Mont
Saint-Michel, falling in love and gazing off meaningfully with your own inner
dialogue playing in your head. That shit gets old pretty fast in Oklahoma
though, and Neil and Marina run into problems once reality sets in.

Rachel McAdams and Javier Bardem
make inexplicable appearances in the movie, neither much affecting the lives of
the main characters at all. Bardem’s role is not a small one, yet we see him
with Marina only once or twice, and never do we hear his take on her situation.
His role seems to be a parallel one with its own issues and crisis, but not one
that makes much comment on the movie’s main theme. McAdams’ character has the
good sense to walk away early.

Most of the dialogue in To the
Wonder, as with many of Malick’s films, is delivered in whispered voiceover
narration. While this device does significantly reduce having to listen to Ben
Affleck flap his yapper, it gets old pretty fast as well. I don’t intrinsically
dislike Malick’s films. They are always well shot, and I believe he has
something to say. What he does say he delivers with subtlety and without
clobbering his viewer over the head. Sometimes, though, you wish he’d just say it.

We admitted we were powerless

Last night, I came home from work and stampeded to the refrigerator as if I were an 8th-grade boy, and the light was out in there. "Well, crap," I thought. "I've never replaced a refrigerator lightbulb in all my days. Guess I'll have to go to the store."

I headed to the TV to watch my intellectual Long Island Medium, and?

Nothing. No TV.

In 1989, when that terrible San Francisco earthquake was happening, my then-roommate Sandy and I were watching TV. Probably intellectual A Current Affair, cause we watched that a lot. The point is, they interrupted to tell us about the earthquake. They interviewed a man who said, "I thought it was a plane flying over. But my wife said, 'No. It's an earthquake.' Right then I knew. It was an earthquake."

To this day, Sandy and I make fun of that poor quick man. Did you, sir? Did you know right then it was an earthquake? After your wife TOLD you? Did you? Every time something is obvious, Sandy and I will pull out that line.

"I searched my wallet and it was completely empty. Right then I knew, I was out of money."

"The panther leaped out from the dark and sunk its teeth into my neck. Right then I knew, a panther was attacking me."

"When I woke up, there was a big orb in the sky and the darkness was no longer there. Right then I knew, it was morning."

You get my drift. So after my fridge light was off and the TV was blank, right then I knew. I was out of power.

Of course, I had to go around flicking lights and looking at clocks and trying my food processor.

My food processor. BAHAHAHAHAHAHAA! I know you're probably worried sick about how I got dinner on the table, with no power. BAHAHAHAHAHAHAAA! again.

I got my cell phone and called Duke Energy. Oh, I was attitudinal. "Yes," I said, because I always start my I'm-calling-a-business phone calls with "Yes." "I just got home, and I have no power. This is unacceptable." In my mind, I'd turned completely into Miss Grundy in the Archie comics.

"Yes, ma'am. We cut your power off for unpaid bills. You haven't paid since January."

!!!!!!!!

Turns out, they'd been sending me electronic bills only. I ASSURE you I never said I wanted an electronic bill, because I know myself and I can be, you know, scattered, and there's no quicker road to disaster than to EMAIL me a bill when I get 20492404024 emails a day. I PROMISE you they tricked me into it, by offering it to me and if I didn't UNcheck a box they'd do it automatically or something.

And I remember getting those stupid emails, and once or twice clicking over to pay my bill online. It'd always say, "Enter your account number" and I'd always be at work NOT KNOWING my account number, so my theory was I'll pay it when the paper bill comes.

I guess I did that for four months in a row. And now I don't got the pow-a.

 

Seriously? You thought I could tell this story WITHOUT this stupid song?

So I paid the damn bill and ASKED FOR A PAPER ONE FROM NOW ON, and hung up and waited. They said I'd get power again around 9:30. Or possibly midnight.

My plan had been that I was gonna do 15 minutes on my new bike and 30 minutes of Tracy Chapman video, but that was out. So the dogs had their lucky day and got a 45-minute walk. And yes, I AM 100% completely totally crippled up today.

It was a perfect night for a walk, though. It was warm, but there was a good breeze. We were having us a time till we got to the cul-deeee-sac, as they say here, and a huge black Lab mix came barrelling out of his house. He galumphed over to us, then did that scary stand stock-still thing.

"YOUR DOG'S OUT! YOUR DOG IS OUT HERE!" I was screeching, when that black giant dog LUNGED at my dogs, and I dropped their leashes because they're less assy when I do that, and Edsel–

–yes, you heard me–

EDSEL got all up in that black Lab mix's business. He snarled and jumped RIGHT UP on that dog, pushing him over, and then they did that scary two-dogs-in-a-fighty-ball thing. I know! Clearly it's pets-out-of-character week here at House of June. Next Lily will have a bad fur day and look hideous.

Lu kind of barked half-supportively. "go, um, underbytey dog. you go–hay, we gots treet out heer, mom?"

"Ranger! Get back here!" The black dog's person came out and my racist dog stopped with the fighting. I was still a little shaken when I ran into the Snowflake kids. "HI ETHEL! HI LALUUUULAH!"

IMG_0928oh! dis be lu treet?

When we got home, I still did not GOT THE POW-A! and I will stop that now. I weeded my back yard until my back snapped off, then I took my sweaty self on my front porch and read a book for awhile (The Orchardist, by Amanda Coplin. Starts slowly but stick with it). I listened to the katydids and watched the swallows fly over.

When it got too dark, I went inside and ate some strawberries, and because I was sitting there in the dark, with absolutely no distractions, it was like I was eating them from a sensory deprivation tank or something. I was acutely aware of which strawberries were sweet, which were still too tangy, and so on.

While the moon shone into my bedroom window, I snuggled with Talu sideways across my bed and talked to Ned on my cell phone. "You don't have any POWER?" asked Ned, who'd probably never forget to pay a bill for four months. "You want to come to my house?"

"No, thank you. I'm happy," I said.

And I was.

The Resistance

Two German shepherds have moved in to the house around the corner, and their back yard faces ours. There used to be other dogs who lived back there, and Edsel and Tallulah would run the length of the fence with them in utter delight. Now that there are two new neighbors, and German ones at that, old Goofus and Gallant, here, need to determine who's boss, so now every time they go out they're all

WOO WOOO WOOO WOO WOOO! WOO! ASH HOLESES! WOO WOO! AND NOTHER TING: WOOO WOO WOOO!

So that's relaxing. And I love how tough they are when there's a fence separating them. If these medium-sized mutts met those giant German shepherds in REAL life, it'd be all, oh, haiii. you, um, sertenlee pretty, mr. and miss german shephurd! yes, dunka shane! dunka shane for showing nice teefs! we has to, um, oh, look at time! yes, teef pretty. okay, gooden tags or whatev!

In other news, I got an exercise bike off Craigslist.

IMG_0926
Do you like my extremely realistic action shot, where I did not at all just get up right now in my robe and take a photo?

It's an Airdyne, so the harder I push on it, the more air blows back and it creates resistance. Sometimes I kiss the bike with my tongue so I have the French resistance. In other news, brain has officially snapped.

Ned and I sat here like idiots the other night, waiting for the woman who sold me the bike to show up. We were so officially annoyed with her, because she'd said she'd get it to me two weeks ago, and then she didn't and then she went to the beach, and in the meantime my plantar fasciitis wasn't going anywhere so THANKS, and then she was an hour late Monday night. But when she got here, she was super hot, so we had that as a reward.

And thin? I hope it was the bike that made her thin, but in fact she said she used it maybe seven times. I've used it once so far, I mean other than that official genuine workout I am doing in the photo above, and I do not look like her yet.

I guess that's all I have to tell you about my dumb life, other than we went to see an EVEN DUMBER movie last night, and in the past three days we have seen two extra-dumb movies. Last night's was a documentary on the making of The Shining, which seemed like it'd be interesting, but really it was made by someone who clearly smokes too much pot and has too much time on his hands.

"The number 42 shows up many times in the movie. It's uncanny." Then they show one time the number 42 shows up in the movie. Oh, and he counted.  There were 42 cars in the parking lot at the beginning of the movie.

OooooWEEEEEEEEEEoooooo!

But somehow in the course of the evening, Ned and I got to talking about aspirations. Not like when you get too much fluid in your lung, but I mentioned the Very Important Lesson I learned while watching LA Shrinks, and shut up it's a good show. The hot shrink with the lip implants said in order to be happy, you have to 

  1. Have something to do (other than watch The Shining 3239320 times)
  2. Have something to love
  3. Have something to look forward to

"So, what're you looking forward to?" I asked Ned, knowing that what I was looking forward to was when we could leave wherever we were and go make out for 87 hours. Did I mention am still in ridiculous phase?

But I think it has to be bigger than that, the thing you're looking forward to. It has to be loftier than yay, in a few minutes I get to make out with this boy I adore. I should be planning a trip to Spain, or entering Edsel in a Best in Show competition, or  making a line of June wigs or something.

Do you have any aspirations? Any big ones? Anything to look forward to? What are they? And what should mine be, do you think? And if you HAVE aspirations, what's stopping you from achieving them?

Crap. My extremely tough dog just let himself out the screen door to continue yelling at the Germans. I'd better go give this my undivided achtung.

XO, June

Just Bee

I'll tell you what. Yesterday I told you Tallulah wasn't feeling well, but I did not know I'd be BURYING HER IN MY MIND by noon.

Tallulah had been kind of shaking her head in this weird way over the weekend, and on Saturday it was subtle, probably something only I would notice. On Sunday, after Ned and I went to the worst movie of all time, the plan was that I was going to run home and spend some dog time, then go back to his house. But when I got home, Talu's head shake had become really pronounced.

"I have to stay home with this dog," I told Ned, who offered to come over for moral support, and perhaps I have not mentioned he is the nicest boy, ever. But Talu and I forged ahead on our own, and then she did the thing where she wanted me to hold her head all night.

When I came home from work yesterday morning to take her to her vet appointment? Her whole face was swollen. She didn't even LOOK like herself.

That is when I started to panic.

The head shake thing had scared me over the weekend. Does she have meningitis? I wondered, having no idea if dog meningitis was even a thing. But I worried there was something wrong with her brain, because god forbid I ever be calm and try to think positive thoughts. And THEN, when her FACE was distorted? I figured this was it. This was the end of my beautiful doggie girl.

I cried the whole way to the vet, and every time I looked at her face, all puffed and weird, I got upset again. When we got to the vet, she calmly got out of the car and walked right next to me, not pulling on her leash. There was a small schnauzer in the lobby, and Talu was perfectly fine with it.

That made me even more upset.

The tech saw us when we walked in, and said, "We're going to take her right to the back." Usually, you go to a room, talk to the vet, and THEN they take her back to another room to do god knows what to her. But this time they ushered her right into the back room.

At this point, I was in full-on panic. They hadn't even waited for the vet to talk to me. Talu hadn't tried to eat the schnauzer. Her face was so swollen she looked like a different dog.

There was no way my dog was going to make it through the day. I just knew it. I just knew the vet would come in all solemn and say, "You have a very sick dog." Oh, how I cried in that damn vet's office. I curled into a little ball and just sobbed.

I can't live without Tallulah. What, I'm gonna go home and use EDSEL as my primary dog? Seriously? Edsel's gonna have to pull all the dog weight? He'd crumble in a week.

Would I bury Talu in the yard, or have them cremate her? I decided I'd cremate her, and plant a dogwood that I'd scatter her ashes on. I would go to her tree every year on this day and remember how I lost her so soon. I had no Kleenex in my purse, so I got one of the unforgiving brown towels from the dispenser, there.

I couldn't sit still anymore, and I thought maybe if I went to the hallway and paced near the back room where they were working on my expiring dog, she could maybe smell me, and that would be a comfort. So I went to the area and paced. Pace pace paced. Would I go back to work that afternoon, or just lie on my living room floor and scream? Would I ever get over losing this dog? Would the awfulness of this ever cease?

"Are you okay, ma'am?" an 11-year-old tech walked by in Disney-themed scrubs. She's the one who answers the phone there, and she has the worst, most screechy, cloying, loud voice possible, and I always wonder why her workplace or loved ones don't tell her. Her voice is really just awful. It's like a whine and a screech and a wail, all at once, and at top volume. She makes Rosie Perez seem like she could make a hypnosis tape.

"Tape." 1982 called, wants its audio device back.

"No, I'm not okay," I said to the town cryer. "My dog is in there, and it seems bad, and I'm standing here so maybe she can smell me."

Screech touched me on the arm. "I'll go back and check on her," she said.

While I waited, I heard another ridiculously young tech on the phone. "This is Whooo-De-Whoo Animal Clinic. We need an antigen, it's the blahhh dee bleee blahhh antigen. Do y'all have it?"

An antigen? AN ANTIGEN? Was that for TALU? I don't even really know what an antigen is, but if Lu had gens and they needed to get anti, I was worried even sicker. An ANTIGEN? Did she get bitten by a copperhead? Had she eaten poison? Oh, wouldn't you all make fun of me if my DOG got POISONED, JOOONNN!

Bob Marley's Wailer came out of the back room.

"Your dog is fine," Screamora said. "She got stung by a bee. We're giving her a shot and she'll be good as new."

I have always liked that tech. That needle-across-a-record, cat-in-heat-voiced tech. I was so relieved.

Photo-13Even as soon as she came from that back room, where I had doomed her to live out her last moments, Tallulah looked better than she had. And she was wagging and looking like she actually had a personality, like maybe now she'd eat the schnuazer, if there was any left. I took this picture when we got home, and I don't even know if you can see any swelling at all. I can, but I'm her mother.

"Usually dogs don't take two days to swell up like that," said my vet. "But this steroid shot should do the trick. She'll be fine."

I mean, honestly? I had already anticipated a halved dog food bill. I was already planning to walk just one cur each day, and have that much less fur on my couch. Really? She was going to be fine?

Well, okay. I mean, I figured she would be, but.

So that's the story of my dog's brush with…you know, a bee sting, and the part where I killed her in my mind. Because I'm not one to get hysterical or anything.

Dramatically, June

The one where PJ wears a June suit

IMG_0920
Tallulah is sick, and we are going to the vet at 11:00. All she wanted to do last night was squish up next to me and have me hold her hot pitty head. Do dogs' heads get hot when they have a fever? Cause I swear she felt hot.

Anyway, further reports as developments warrant. Also, that floor is GOING TO BE THE DEATH OF ME. I just was on my knees scrubbing it on Friday, due to the bird carcass that had been in there. And look at it. It looks filthy because of the chipped paint. What was it I was gonna do with it, again?

So here it is Monday, and you may have a Nedflix to look forward to, because we saw the dumbest movie ever made in the history of time ever, at all, ever, yesterday, and I really think it needs to be Nedflixed. So we'll see if Ned'll write one.

I bought a used exercise bike off of Craigslist and it arrives tonight, and Ned is coming over to make sure the deliverer of said bike is not some common murderer, but rather a rare distinctive murderer. The point is, I will nag Ned about Nedflixing that brilliant, sensical, not-at-all-dumb movie tonight.

(Did I ever tell you about when my grandmother was young, and she ordered a rare steak because she thought "rare" meant precious and special? She nearly died when they slapped a big bloody slab of meat in front of her.)

I figured an exercise bike would be a good way to work out with the plantar fasciitis. I know it's what my pal Dick Whitman does, and he looks good. He also eats three peanut M&Ms and then cuts himself off, but I like to think it's all exercise bike, all the time.

But none of this is why I gathered you here today. I GATHERED you because I am finally gonna answer Faithful Reader PJ's questions that she asked me in the comments the other day. Here are her Qs again:

June, I would love to hear about pivotal moments in your life. I would like to hear about how you think your sense of humor developed and who influenced you. Pets! What is the most exciting that that has ever happened to you? What's your biggest challenge in life? Books! What you're reading, recently read.

PJ is clearly obsessed with me and would like to skin me and wear a June suit. And I am just fine with that. Any attention is good attention, if you ask me.

Let's see. When I think of pivotal moments in my life, the following come to mind.

I was, believe it or not, a very shy kid. My parents wanted me to go to an integrated school, because it was the early '70s and that's what you did. So we lived in this mixed neighborhood, and I am glad about that because, for example, I never think the way a friend of mine does: She told me that if a black man is approaching her and no one else is around, she is more afraid than if a white man were approaching her.

That is unbelievable to me. I mean, sometimes men are walking toward you and you just get a bad feeling about them. Once when I lived in Seattle, I was doing a work errand and I cut through the park IN THE MIDST OF DOWNTOWN in the MIDDLE OF THE DAY, and this (white) man was approaching. Every fiber of my being got tingly and alarmed. Lucky for me, someone came out of the park to my left, and do you know the guy who'd been approaching me saw that person coming from my left, and did an abrupt turn BACK INTO the woods? It was so effing creepy.

Anyway, my point is, I got sent to this mixed-race school and that was fine, but by third grade I was pretty much the only white kid, and all the other kids resented me because we were more financially stable and I had lots of clothes and so on. So I got picked on A LOT, and eventually my parents sent me to a private school, and then I had a whole NEW crop of adjustment/fitting in problems, so I decided to become funny.

Am still trying.

I guess another pivotal moment was when I was 12, my parents had just gotten divorced, because turning 12 isn't hard enough, and at a family get-together, I fell off a balcony and got very hurt and nearly died. I think this accounts for my personality, which is sort of nervous, I think. (That was a line from Annie Hall, but still. It applies.)

I see that I have only answered one of PJ's Qs and we are on, like, paragraph number 679 of this post, so I'd better wrap it up and answer her others tomorrow. But I think other pivotal moments in my life were when I left Michigan and headed to Seattle, knowing only one person there. It was one of the greatest things I ever did. I'd been wanting to, you know, NOT LIVE in Michigan since I was 13, and at 27 I finally did it.

There was also a horrible, terrible, obsessive, all-consuming, not healthy, not good relationship I was in when I was young, and I was completely obsessed with the person but we made each other absolutely miserable, and I made the decision to get out of that relationship, and it was SO HARD TO DO. He would call in the middle of the night, or come over and knock on the door, and I would lie in my bed and will myself not to get up, because if I did we'd only get back together for the 394584829494th time and it'd start all over again. The part where I was able to really break up with him? Pivotal. Did not know I had it in me to be that strong.

Also, am certain my divorce was pivotal, but I don't have enough distance yet to see how. I DO know that I cannot remember a lot of 2011, when Marvin left. Isn't that weird? I look at old posts from then, or old emails, and I think, " I said that? I went to that place? I have zero recollection of that at all." So, yeah. Probably pivotal.

I will catch you all tomorrow, and I will fill you in on poor Talu's illness. She keeps sort of shaking her head, like she's Katherine Hepburn, and also smacking her lips. She ate this morning, but she had the enthusiasm of a tree sloth.

Poor Lu.

Okay, then. Pivotally, June.

We Be Free

I just got back from getting my roots done, which interfered with my usual going-to-the-movies-with-Ned thing, but you'll be relieved to know we're going to a movie today anyway. I don't know what we're going to see: we have a depressing deep movie we're considering, and then a depressing deep movie. I will let you know.

IMG_0876I had a fine weekend so far, starting with Ned cooking for me, and what is a shame is there weren't enough green beans. After we ate this, we went out to eat. I am not making that up. We went to the hotel restaurant I like so much, where we had our first date, and got a tomato plate and a little pan of roasted almonds. We were both still totally hungry after our mound of green beans.

IMG_0856I also got Ned some strawberries, because a farmer came to work and sold us all a bill of goods, and also many delicious strawberries off the back of his truck. I ate so many I felt ill, and what I like about me is my ability to know when to say when.

IMG_0881The other thing that happened this weekend is Ned and I went to my company picnic, which was fun, and after we took a walk in the park, and no, I have no idea why these poor deer are here.

IMG_0884They had all kinds of parts missing; one had half an antler, and the other had no tail. It was, like, the most depressing collection of deer statues, ever. And that's saying a lot because deer statues are kind of sad in general.

IMG_0885
At the picnic, we sat with Ned's next-door neighbor, who also happens to work with me. He and his wife are from another country, and I am being purposely vague in case they're all, DON'T BLOG ABOUT US. Anyway, they've lived all over the place and are interesting people, and also incredibly good-looking, which is what I require in a friend. We made plans to all go out to dinner at this African restaurant we've all wanted to try. They have kids, so they said, "We'll get a sitter. What night do you want to go?"

Ned was all, "Don't worry about us! Any night! Any night is fine! We've got nothin'! We'll just pick up the phone when you call and get right up and go! That's us! Free as birds! No obligations here!"

Could he have driven the point home more that we don't have kids and they do? Nope! Nothing to tie us down! Not us! CHILD-FREE! That's us! Able to take off at a moment's notice! Yep! We.be.free.

Anyway.

IMG_0886
After our picnic and walk, we headed to the Apple store so Ned could fix his iPod, and then I suggested we get ice cream.

You would have thought I'd suggested we head to the premie ward and scalp day-old infants. "WE CAN'T DO THAT!" said Ned, who is really too healthy for his own damn good.

IMG_0887We got frozen yogurt instead, and I really don't see how cake-batter-flavored yogurt can be that much better for you, but there you go. Also, if Ima hang around healthy Ned, why am I not a size two yet?

Pay no attention to the cake batter yogurt.

IMG_0918
So, I guess that's all I have to tell you, except that I inexplicably took pictures of all Ned's shoes last night and now I guess Ima have to blog about them since they're sitting there in my Photos file. Also, I KNOW I have to blog about the stuff PJ asked me the day I asked you guys what to blog about. I will do so tomorrow! I promise! I also have to tell you about my brilliant theory about how the people of Brazil are trying to ruin us.

I am full of deep thoughts. And green beans.

Hope your weekend was snappy. Off to see a deep film.

XO,

June. The kind of person who says "film" instead of "movie."

Killer Queen

I have to run to my work picnic this afternoon, but I wanted to scream over here and tell you that when I got home yesterday, Edsel ran to the door like my arrival was a miracle, as he always does. Tallulah wagged stoically. Lily splayed herself gorgeously on the dining room table and looked fluffy.

And Iris walked up with a huge dead bird in her lips.

Dudes.

Y'all.

Iris CAN'T SEE. I had left the back door open to the screen door, and even though the only time she goes out is when I take her back there and she sits with me on the glider and never moves, apparently she decided yesterday was the day to venture out and murder something.

It's the only scenario I can think of, unless the dogs killed a bird, brought it in, and delivered it to Iris. Which I cannot see them having that kind of generosity. Lily would not go out that door if you paid her.

IMG_0872eyeriss prowd. not to eff wif eyeriss. she kill you up wif blynd power. …wate. anyone there? eyeriss talking to anyone?

I had to call Ned, who was driving home from work and just wanted to live his regularly scheduled life. "Can you come over?" I asked him. "Iris has a dead bird in her lips."

Ned laughed the whole way over here. Then he very manfully swept the bird up for me and kept shoving the dustpan in my face. "Look at it! What kind of poor bird is this? Here! Here it is! In your face! Please to analyze bird, please."

God.

Anyway, that was exciting. And Iris has been prancing around here like she's something, I can tell you that.

That poor bird.

Oh, and who sent me the BB Creme from South Korea? ‘Fess up.

Photo on 5-16-13 at 1.28 PM #2I want you to know I did everything I was supposed to yesterday. Here I am drinking water like it's going out of style after giving the dogs a 45-minute walk. And yes, my plantar fasciitis IS killing me today.

Water kind of IS in style right now, isn't it? We're all chugging it like we're in some desert somewhere, giving ourselves cancer with our plastic water bottles and so forth.

IMG_0845
IMG_0841I also went to pet therapy at the assisted living place with Happy, who reads my blog and who "June?"d me a few months back after recognizing me at the Coldwater Creek. I know. Middle-age called. Wants its store back. But Coldwater Creek is getting some cute things! I am not making that up! Say, will you hold my elastic-waist jeans while I grab my bone-color Velcro tennis shoes?

Okay, those were old lady clothing items. Say, will you hold my Christmas vest while I pull on my mock turtleneck with candy canes on it? There we go. I'll be right back. Ima fly my May wind sock.

June. Hated by the Wind Sock Club. Since 2013. Anyway, in case you were worried SICK, I did not take my own badly behaved dogs to said therapy. Rather, normal calm dogs were there so as not to trample old people and possibly eat them, in the case of Tallulah.

I saw the really cool old guy who grew up in Michigan and lived in Seattle, so we are basically the same person, and it turns out there used to be a lot of strip clubs in my home town, which he enjoyed verily. His wife used to go WITH him to said strip clubs, and right then I loved her. I have been nagging Ned to take me to this strip club in Winston that's just called Girls Girls Girls. I feel like I'd come out of there with some stories.

(Dear Mom,

I know you are putting away that Marlo Thomas record and feeling like you failed. You never once played Free To Be a Fan of Strippers and Me, did you? I know.)

I ended my day yesterday by doing my favorite thing: Ned. Wait. That came out–oh, you know what I mean. Ned and I watched some episodes of The Sopranos, which he has never seen before, and as you can see, I plan to introduce him to ALL my good shows until finally he BEGS to watch Sex and the City, one episode after the other, for some marathon weekend. Oh, wouldn't that be the best thing ever? Other than the part where Ned had turned gay somewhere along the line. Maybe it happened after those 87 episodes of Real Housewives.

So, all in all a fine day, and I also got paid. which was a plus. It's nice to be getting a, you know, regular check again.The other day I made a budget, and as long as I cut out pesky expensive habits like eating thrice daily, I am golden.

Oh! But yesterday morning, since I had to hurry, I asked you what I should blog about today. Some of the things you suggested I cannot do, such as walk my behemoth bad pully squirrel-chasey dogs and hold their poop bags and somehow also take photos of my neighborhood with my third goddess arm that will conveniently pop out, finally. Or blow it with the nice place that is doing some thing nice for me that entails the Exciting Secret Thing that I will tell you about WHEN THEY SAY IT'S OKAY, since it's their nice thing that is nice and not mine.

But what I WILL do is answer Faithful Reader PJ's Qs. I liked those. Here they are:

June, I would love to hear about pivotal moments in your life.
I would like to hear about how you think your sense of humor developed and who influenced you.
Pets!
What is the most exciting that that has ever happened to you?
What's your biggest challenge in life?
Books! What you're reading, recently read.

Those are all excellent questions, and they are questions I will answer TOMORROW since I seem to have blathered on with my brief rundown of yesterday and now I have to get to work again.

With the WORK thing all the time. FIVE DAYS A WEEK they expect me to be in there! Yeesch! I should live in one of those laid-back, siesta, wine-at-lunch, long-dinners-late-at-night nappy places. I guess "siesta" and "nappy" are one and the same, but you get my idea. Maybe after all those siestas I'd have nappy hair.

Adios,

June

You wrote it, you watch it

I overslept, so now I have to scream to work in a panic, and at lunchtime I have to do my stupid stupid stupid 45 minutes of physical activity, then after work I have pet therapy. Not that my pets are seeing therapists, although they should. Rather, I am going to the old folks' home with Faithful Reader Happy, and she is bringing dogs who are calm and not likely to stampede fragile old people. In other words, not my dogs.

MY POINT IS, no time to blog today, but what do you want me to write about tomorrow?

Cubism

God, I love coffee. Don't you? I have never understood those soda-in-the-morning people. Blech.

June's blog. Getting shut off one-handedly while people hold their Diet Cokes in the other hand, since 2013.

I do, though. I love it. And I even have to have tamped-down half-caf coffee because of my migraines. Okay, technically I'm supposed to have NO coffee at ALL, not even decaf, but that's just the crazy talk. That's like Sophie's Choice or something. I just can't do it.

Anyway, before I wax on about coffee some more, I wanted to tell you the exciting news that I got moved into a cubicle yesterday. Sadly, it was my work friend Vilhelm Oyster's cube, as he got moved upstairs to another department. Nevertheless, this means I am no longer just OUT THERE, the the OPEN ROOM, like I'm Mary Richards or something.

Mtm6
Do you think she ever got sick to freakin' death of having to talk to Murray all day? And what if her bra strap needed adjusting or some similar quandary? There was NOTHING SHE COULD DO.

So yeah. Less Mary Richards today. More Milton from office space. I told my coworkers I was going to decorate my cube all bachelor pad-y, the way Howard did on Andy Griffith once his mom moved out, and guess who needs to watch less TV?

Howard's mom got married and moved to Mount Pilot, so Howard decorated with those bead room dividers and so forth. I totally want that, and shag carpeting, and an oil fountain with a naked couple embracing and possibly one of those funny funny "Hang in There" posters with a kitten.

What?

So that's my big news. Got me a cubicle.

Also, I'm in this fitness challenge at work, which I've told you about already but no one pays attention to me around here. I am supposed to work out for 45-minute increments, and I get a point for each time I do, with five ADDITIONAL points if I work out five times in the week.

On Monday, we turned in our points for the week, and do you know every single one of those heifers on my team did the five days? GOD. Who knew I'd be with a bunch of overachievers? I did three. Three days. So I got three points. They all got 90 points apiece or something. So last night I took the dogs on a 45-minute walk, with my plantar fasciitis, although the plantar fasciitis was feeling better. Until I walked for 45 minutes with the dogs. Usually we do, like, 20, if I can walk them at all these days. I know. My poor dogs.

At any rate, it was fun to see Edsel look actually kind of tired at the end of those shenanigans last night. His tongue tends to ROIL out once he's tired. He can't just hang it out like a regular dog. It was to ROIL dramatically to the side like he's the TIREDEST DOG ON EARTH, and I don't know where he gets this dramatic streak.

IMG_0828
Lily seemed annoyed that her 45 minutes of peace was over when we arrived back to our abode. She was all, Oh, look. It roil tongue. Good.

I guess that sums up what's new with me, other than I rented Bridesmaids last night, which I've been wanting to see for quite some time other than the barf scene, which I screamed past with steely determination. Anyway, it really was funny and I knew it would be.

Why they gotta put barf scenes in every movie now?

I will go shower now and get ready to work on a cube. You have no idea how exciting working in a cube is once you've worked in a desk sitting in Grand Central Station all day.

Squarely, June

Because you hate yourself.

Yesterday was a dumb day, in which the phrase "emergency dental visit" was used, and I will tell you about all that and also force you to read about my weekend right here, right now. June's blog. Come for the mundane details. Stay for the mundane details. Because you hate yourself.

That is so my official blog slogan from now on: Because you hate yourself.

So as I had mentioned, as I had alluded to previously prior to this before, Ned and I went to the beach for the weekend, because it was Mother's Day and his mom lives at the beach so that's convenient. Yes, my own actual originally scheduled mother was annoyed that I did not go 9354943943 miles with all my riches to see her, but please see the part where she lives 9354943943 miles away and I have all my riches. Also, Dear Mom: Move to the beach.

We were scheduled to go right after work, so I got home and schlepped the dogs to daycare, and with my extremely organizedly packed bag ready, I decided to floss while I waited for Ned. Because I floss a lot. I have little containers of floss all over the house, and do it when I'm watching TV, sitting at the computer, exercising, sleeping, cleaning the gutters and so on. My POINT is, it was a floss day, day like any other day when

POP!

one of my back teeth just came clean off. CLEAN OFF. POP! it went, and it flew across the floor.

Fortunately, it was a crown, not an actual tooth, but unfortunately, my real teeth just grew in for free and I'd paid nine million dollars for that crown at some point in this lifetime.

"Son of a…" I picked my stupid tooth up off the floor. It was 5:45 p.m. on a Friday.

IMG_0821Look. I was so upset that I revereted to my Impressionist photography. But if you really look you'll see my tooth in a cup, which is similar to the Justin Timberlake song about his parts in a box but I will not delve into that at this juncture.

My point is, the beleaguered dentist, who called me from his home where he was just trying to live his dentist life, said (a) these things ALWAYS happen on a Friday when you're headed for the beach and (2) it could wait till Monday and I could try to stick it back on, just don't swallow it.

I left it out. And let me tell you what. A good diet plan? Is eating on one side of your head. It's hard to scarf when you're doing that.

IMG_0785So it was a lovely weekend of beaching and eating one-sidedly and hanging out with Ned's mom, who is an easy person to hang out with and never tells untoward stories as members of my family may or may not do, and please note above is the time she said, "I have 55 SPF. You all should put it on" and Ned and I scoffed and asked if she had anything with a LARGER number and then we spent the rest of the weekend complaining about how burned we were and she remained out of pain and non-red.

6a00e54f9367fb88340191021f0cff970c-800wiAlso, the town of Wilmington is just a fun town to be in. We shopped, and Ned bought books, and I saw this:

IMG_0790SQUEEEEE! I LOVE YOU BOTH SO BAD GIVE ME THAT KITTEN!

I love me a toasty-colored kitten. I mean, as opposed to how indifferent I feel about all other kittens.

On Sunday, Ned's mom wanted to go to a particular restaurant, and we worried about the busyness level, so we called and they said, "There's a 25-minute wait." Oh, that's not bad, we thought, not realizing that 25 minutes was on Mercury. Would time go faster or slower on Mercury? See. This is precisely the kind of thing I could sit here forever and never figure out.

We got to the restaurant, which was really pretty before we grew to abhor it and everything associated with it and all people and things. It was a big old house, and you could eat on screened porches and in different pretty rooms. I mean "you could eat" being a loose term.

We put our name in with the hostess, who looked  a little pale, and sat inside at the bar, because when we'd pulled up? Where there was only valet parking due to the chaos? There were people milling about outside. And by "people," I mean it was like that scene in Gone with the Wind where Scarlett goes to get the doctor to deliver Melanie's baby, and she goes to the train station and as far as the eye can see are soldiers lying about moaning. Which is what we eventually did waiting for our food.

IMG_0801I don't know why no photos turned out well this weekend. I could have been faint from hunger. But here we are waiting at the bar. Note Ned's empty water glass. We sat there. And waited. And watched the wait staff, which we had officially become because we WAITED so long. Did I mention we waited?

After more than an hour, which can I just say "25 minutes, my patoot," we got a table, and guess what?

We waited.

IMG_0805Here I am being sunburned and annoyed, and Ned was telling us how they should have handled this crowd because he worked in a restaurant for eleventy years and it was kind of funny till it wasn't. Because all of a sudden it was TWO HOURS that we had waited for food, and I had not eaten all day, and at this point it was literally the afternoon, and all of a sudden I felt cold and shaky.

"I'm cold and shaky," I announced, and shook coldly. The whole room seemed like it was receding. Somehow, they scored me some oyster crackers and I literally ate a packet of sugar and I rallied.

We made a vow right then, we would never ever go out to eat on Mother's Day ever again.

IMG_0807Ned's mom took this prom picture of us after our quick brunch, and we headed home, but passed Raleigh on the way, so we got up with one of Ned's friends and my pal Daniel Boone.

IMG_0812Ned likes Daniel Boone, and I'm glad of it, because once Daniel Boone and I start talking, we are the two loudest, talkiest people ever invented, and I personally would hate us. It was Ned's friend's birthday, and we can't think of a good blog name for her, and I am jamming out to Ned's timely gift bag. Who is a boy? Is it Ned?

Photo-36Here is a photo D Boone took in the .00003 second I was not speaking. Or laughing at something D Boone was saying. Ned and his friend sat and talked amongst themselves. In fact, at first we were seated with me across from Ned's friend and Ned across from D Boone, and eventually Ned shoved all my stuff in front of D Boone and switched places with me, and to tell you the truth it kind of made me feel bad, but that is because I was inside myself not not experiencing the obnoxiousness that is trying to talk across me and equally talky Daniel and his Boone.

And yes, I DO realize I will get melanoma at any moment.

Anyway, that sums it up. I went to the dentist yesterday for my emergency Dr. Bombay visit, and they glued that thing right back on me, and MAN did that hurt. And the hygienist poked at my tooth that had been under the crown and then the DENTIST came and poked at the tooth, till finally I was all, MUST EVERYONE POKE AT IT? We know it's there. Hi, I'm June's tooth! I may be old, I may be ugly, but dear God, I'm here.

GOD.

So, yeah. Trip to the dentist. Not relaxing. Sunburn. Not unpainful. Not eating. Makes you quessy. These are the lessons I want you to take from this particular blog post.

IMG_0825lessin mom need is not to leef dog again, mom.

June. Out.