“June,” “May” We Hear About Your “April” Weekend? Otherwise We’ll “March.”

I’ll wait till you can stop slapping your knee over that headline.

Let’s see. What the hell did I do this weekend while you were here in my computer in suspended animation?

Friday.
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On Friday afternoon, I got an Amazon delivery at work. “I need a blog,” the mailroom guy always says to me, as every delivery I’ve ever gotten is you guys sending me things, usually things that enable my animal habit.

Faithful Reader PJ sent me a most excellent litter scoop (it’s fabulous) (oh, hang on! Entreprenuer June has an idea!).

Oh, look, a link to the scoop! Now YOU can have this excellent scooper, or anything you want on Amazon! All profits go to kitten or lipstick habits.

Also, FR Suburban Correspondent, who really is a faithful reader, sent me some of my kitten food, which I am needing, as they are now eating real food as well as nursing, and they are going through about five cans a day.

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ware a condum

And by “they,” I mean my seven foster kittens. And their mom. In case you’ve been out of the country, and not reading me. Being out of the country means there is no internet. Everyone knows internet is American.

IMG_7743.jpgThey’re doing great, as long as you don’t mind food crumbs everywhere. And they’re ALL getting the hang of the litter box!

IMG_7716.jpgThe runt is my special friend. She wasn’t eating the real food yet, so I started hand-feeding it to her like she was a bird or something, and now as soon as I walk in, she gets on my lap and screeches, MEEEEEEE.

Oh my god, I love that runt.

IMG_7735.jpgI make a gruel, because the internet told me to, of canned kitten food, dry kitten food, kitten milk supplement and water. It looks disgusting but they adore it. And step directly in it. So.

Oh my god, I was talking about Friday.

After work Friday, a very exclusive 187 of us were invited to a happy hour. There’s one guy who’s always funny, and near the end of the day he replied all, “I can’t wait to see all 187 of you tonight. What a reasonable number to invite.”

The good news is, it meant a lot of people were there, and I couldn’t stay long because see 12 animals at my house, above, but I did get to hang a bit.

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Koo-koo-ka-choo

It was Ryan’s birthday, and he is very depressed that he is a year away from being 30. Now he isn’t, because I bludgeoned him with a pickaxe. Forever 29.

Also, I’d asked Wedding Alex if she was going to go, as she and her spouse have been doing Whole 30 all year and it’s illegal or something to drink on Whole 30. By the way, if they’ve been doing it since January 1, at this point it’s more like Whole 120.

“Yeah, I was thinking of going,” she said. “But I gotta look cute first.” Then she pushed her hair from behind her shoulders to in front of her shoulders.

“…That’s it? That’s how you get cute? You move you hair forward?” asked the woman who spent $3228,920304 on Ultherapy.

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Her “cute side.”

The fun thing about Wedding Alex is she’s a terrible drinker. She’s drunk on like five sips. Normally she’s all professional and poised and then you get a mai tai in front of her and she becomes your Irish uncle. It’s one of my more fun hobbies, witnessing Drunk Alex.

Saturday.
There was a fund raiser here for pit bulls–a pitty party, if you will–and Saturday I left my house of animals to attend a fund raiser for animals. Apparently I did not win the raffle or they’re holding out on me to build suspense.

IMG_7708.jpgI photographed self before the event, but once I was in there, surrounded by sweet pitty puppies and big-headed pits and so on, I felt like an idiot saying, “Can I photograph these dogs?”

But, oh. There was a teensy all-gray one who I died over. I’m dead right now, next to bludgeoned Ryan.

After I’d ponied up my raffle money and so on, and headed to the country. Every Friday at work from spring through fall, this produce truck comes to work, and guess who never has cash.

“You should always keep $300 cash on you,” my coworker Griff says, from his loft in Fantasyland.

But everyone’s strawberries looked so good that on Saturday I headed all the way to their actual farm–the produce people’s farm, not my coworkers’–and bought strawberries. Since it was a really pretty day and I was already in the country, I drove around a bit, as that is my bailiwick, driving in the country.

Is your bailiwick a thing you like to do or a thing you’re good at?

Anyway, I found a park with a trail (I could not help but appreciate my grand hiking shoes, which were my pink satin ruffly shoes that’re excellent for a fund raiser AND, apparently, hiking! Versatile.) and a dock and it was lovely and I saw fish jumping, which made me think of how Ned gets annoyed at that Doobie Brothers’ song that goes, “catfish all jumping…” because catfish don’t jump.

The thing is, I go around with my regularly scheduled list of things that irk me, like calling them “veggies” and so on, and then someone lists something new for me to abhor and it’s a whole new world.

I hiked the smaller trail, in my pink satin flats, and did not see a snake, which was my entire goal.

Sunday.
Migraine. Goddammit. Why I always gotta have a migraine? In fact, this weekend I’d stupidly formed the thought, “I haven’t had a migraine in awhile,” which is something my mother-in-law, fmr., taught me is a kina hora, which means you think something like that and you curse yourself.

“Oh, traffic’s not bad today” and boom. There’s traffic. Kina hora.

I really shoulda been Jewish. I’m perfect for it.

I got up, fed everyone in agony and unmatched pajamas, went back to bed and slept till almost 5 p.m. and got up and fed everyone again. Ned came over with two bags of kitten food and a ton of canned kitten food, which was nice, and I will have gone through it in a week, probably.

But thanks to your tips, I’ll just get more!

The shelter should really pay for this. They’d be paying for it if the kittens were there. Also, I’ve been volunteering since November, and in that time two volunteer coordinators have quit. I don’t know what is up, there, but everyone who does work there is really very lovely, if overworked.

While I was lying in misery yesterday, I ordered a Freeze Sleeve.

Actual photo of my body. Also? A link to Amazon.

My elbow has been killing me, and I thought, if only they had an ice sleeve, which sounded like something I made up. My doctor told me to ice my elbow twice a day, and I have been, but when I do, I have to sit motionless with an iced eye mask on my arm. It’s stupid. So in my head I invented a sleeve you can just wear, that’s iced.

It’s like this time in, say, 1989, when my roommate Sandy and I were lying out. It was Michigan, so even though it was probably May, it was still a bit cold.

“This would be perfect if we just had a windwall,” she said.

“A what?”

“A windwall, to keep the wind from blowing on us.” She adjusted her reflective blanket.

“You know you just invented that in your mind, right?”

A windwall.

That was me, with my ice sleeve, but it turns out it’s really a thing, so I ordered one.

Hoping you find your windwall, and get past the torment of turning 29.

June

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With better legs

You know the part where I’m weird?

Now imagine it in high school.

Because I was generally this, just with better legs, in high school. In fact, I was even weirder, as I had not yet learned to rein it in. I wasn’t the deeply sophisticated, subtle woman of mystery brewing before you.

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Oh my god. I really was just this with better thighs. I just Googled myself for some high school photos and my high school column, “I’m Irked,” came up for me.

Classroom habits drive me mad!

I mean, what did I even have to be bitter about yet? But there I was, already annoyed. And in case anyone recalls the diary I recently shared with you–because I give and I give to you people–where I list everything I wore in 1982? Behold the gray cords, above. It’s sad that I know those are the gray cords. They had slanty pockets. And possibly pleats!

Anyway.

I was not what you’d call part of the In Crowd, what with this personality and this hair and those cords. And “I’m Irked.”

That is why it was weird when, in sophomore year, I got a call from Cardinal Hunter.

Cardinal Hunter was the shit, man. Everyone fekking loved him. My Uncle Leo had taught him in 6th grade, and somehow my uncle and Cardinal had stayed friends past, you know, 6th grade. Every so often he’d pop in at my Uncle Leo and Aunt Kathy’s house, and they’d always say to me, “You should meet Cardinal Hunter. He’s your age, and he’s so funny.”

Oh, sure he is, I’d think. I’ve always been a snob about that sort of thing. But someone tells you another person is funny and you check them out and the first thing you see is a hashtag that reads The Struggle is Real and you’re all, see. I knew you weren’t fucking funny. With your Live, Laugh, Love wall decal.

Because I’m clearly Shekky Greene, over here. Who can argue the level of hilarity that comes from old inventing-the-word-sparklefraffle June Gardens?

Me being snooty about funnyness is like being snooty about Dr Pepper when I’m Mr. Pibb.

So, I got to high school, and the entire world was abuzz about how magnificent Cardinal Hunter was, and how hilarious, and how cute, and though I’d yet to meet him I was already completely over him. It’s the same way I feel about geocaching.

Even my boyfriend at the time, Giovanni Leftwich, was all up in him. “Oh, man, have you met Cardinal Hunter yet?” he asked me while we walked home one day. I can see his tube socks as we walked. I don’t know why, but I totally can.

What I wouldn’t give to just re-live one stupid day of 1981 and see what that was like.

Probably like this, with less cankle. And more Scotty Baldwin.

At any rate, there it was, early February of sophomore year, in the early ’80s in the early days of this personality, when I hadn’t learned to rein it in, and perhaps I’ve already mentioned that. And as per usual I was grounded for whatever transgression, so I was home, Giovanni and I were broken up, and the phone rang on a Saturday night.

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It was Cardinal Hunter.

“Good gravy, what does he want?” I thought, although I wonder now what my “good gravy” of the day was. Maybe “wow” or “the struggle is real” or “live, laugh, love AF.” I don’t know.

He’d been back visiting at my Uncle Leo’s, Cardinal had been, and perhaps that seems odd to outsiders, but if you knew my Uncle Leo you could totally see being 15 and popping in to chat. He’s entertaining, Uncle Leo is. That’s why when he and Aunt Kathy divorced, we kept him.

We all apologize, Aunt Kathy. But dude is funny.

The point is, Uncle Leo was making Cardinal watch a slide show, and maybe he’s not as entertaining as we think. My Uncle Leo gets…into things. Like, he gets a hobby, let’s say sailor hats. And then for a year you gotta hear about sailor hats, and when they were invented, and then he starts making his own sailor hats and all you want to do after that year is burn down every sailor and every hat in the nation.

I don’t even know that “sailor hats” are a thing.

But the point is he was into photography then, and he’d taken pictures of me, at 15, dressing up in my grandma’s clothes. Oh, I thought I was hilarious with this. I had on a babushka and her cat-eye sunglasses and her gramma shoes. And Uncle Leo showed these slides to Cardinal.

For some reason, this enticed Cardinal, who has a little weird in him, too. He just hides it better by being socially acceptable. So he called me. And we became a high school thing.

You may have guessed that my romance eventually ended, as I am not mentioning my husband Cardinal that often. You’d think after 11 and a half years of blogging I’d have brought him up.

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But we’ve always been friends. Also, Ima have to recapture and reupload all these damn photos again, because dredging them from my old blog doesn’t really work. I really need you to see every nuance of my 1988 perm and my 1988 white zinfandel, up there, and you cannot.

IMG_7492.jpgIMG_7490.jpgYesterday I saw my high school boyfriend Cardinal Hunter. He lives outside of Seattle, and yes, we both lived there at the same time for awhile. He was here because most of his family lives in North Carolina, which is weird, right? I can’t shake that damn Cardinal Hunter. It’s like tryina get a taffy wrapper off my hands.

He was glad to meet my kittens, and he was way into meeting Edsel. “How many pets do you guys have now?” I asked him, because he’s like me with the pets. “Just two cats and two dogs,” he said.

So, reasonable. When you’re us.

There was one time he had a mastiff and two Newfoundlands. That was small, over at his house, is what it was. What dogs? You have dogs?

IMG_7507 2.jpgHe fell particularly in love with Erin, that tortoiseshell one, as she is a big starer. Eye contact is kind of her jam.

(And in case anyone’s worried, I have been feeding runty Elizabeth a bottle and she’s taking it, so, yay.)

After the kitten intros, we walked Edsel and eventually tried to get a drink somewhere, but my stupid city has decided Wednesday is a big party night, so it took awhile to find anywhere, but we did. We were like that song by Dan Fogelberg, where it’s Christmas Eve and he runs into his ex and they can’t find an open bar and they buy a six-pack at the liquor store.

And they drank it in her car. Which sounds legal.

After our drink, Cardinal had to start driving back to his sister’s place an hour away, so we said our goodbyes. I was just shutting off the lights when the doorbell rang.

“Woof,” remarked Eds.

“I forgot. I got you this,” said Cardinal.

It was a Mallow Cup.

In high school, he’d always go to the party store, which is what we called convenience stores in Michigan, and he’d get a disgusting Cadberry Egg and I’d get a Mallow Cup. And then we’d eat them in his car. Which was probably legal. Other stuff we did in there probably wasn’t.

img_7494.jpgAnd that, my friends, is how a February 1982 phone call resulted in weird June Gardens nostalgically eating marshmallow in a cup in 2018. Just for a moment I was back in school. And felt that old familiar weirdness.

Love,
June

Hair-ried

I forgot to mention to you that the day Steely Dan was clearly hurt, with the growling when he walked and his big eyes and so on? I called the vet right away, like at 7:30 in the morning, and they said, “Can you have him here by 8:00?” So I took the world’s fastest shower and put on the world’s fastest stupid ensemble and then I scream scream screamed to the vet and went to work and looked like this:

IMG_7079.jpgWow. I don’t know anyone whose hair reflects her every mood the way mine does. This one says, “Harried.” Hair-ried.

But while we’re on the subject of my stupid life, usually when I write you, I’m in my robe, and I will give you a moment to stop being so turned on.

But today, after I showered

[I’ll give you another moment. You must be on fire at this point.]

I thought, You know what I’m gonna do? I’m gonna get dressed right away, because that robe is always kind of warm and my bosoms are always in the way

[At this point there’s nothing you can do. You are going to spend the whole day in a heightened state of arousal.]

so why not get dressed now?

So I did, and then I made my avocado toast and bit into it and squirted grape tomato all over my outfit.

And right then I knew, that’s why I fucking wear my robe when I write you. I have to wait till the very last minute to dress, to alleviate the many things that can go wrong with my clothing. The cat hair, the tomato seeds, the toothpaste.

Goddammit.

It’s a good thing I pilled Steely Dan before I showered and dressed, as that was another thing that could have landed on my clothes. I know I told you he takes pills nicely, and compared to my other cats, he still does, but perhaps he’s feeling better or just wasn’t in the mood, because he

SPAT

his pill across the kitchen floor.

I didn’t even know cats could spit. He was like a gray angry llama up in here. Just ptooi across the floor with that pill. But I gathered it up and gave it to him and he was all, FINE and took it without incident.

The fact that he is currently an indoor cat makes me feel better about finding this last night…

IMG_7124.jpgIMG_7123.jpgMy friend Lucy, from TinyTown, gave me this right when I moved into this house, and it’s been in my backyard ever since, and it’s been used ever since. Now, I know Iris isn’t strong enough to, you know, RIP a birdhouse open, and probably SD isn’t, either, but since he was inside (and so was Iris, actually), I know I don’t have to blame my own self for this horrific scene.

I didn’t see feathers or eggs or anything, so maybe whatever animal did this was out of luck. There WAS a nest in there, but that coulda been from last year.

So that was dramatic, and also dramatic yesterday was when an electrician came over. I had a smoke detector hanging from my ceiling by its wires, like I decorated using tips from Crack House Monthly. Like I decorated using pins from Needle-trist. And anyway, Alf my ridiculous handyman said it was going to require an actual electrician to fix it, so I got one to just replace all my smoke detectors, because every single one of them is wired into my ceiling and was either (a) missing because I ripped it down or (2) had a door that was stuck open because they were all old and stupid.

IMG_7118.jpgSo yesterday at lunchtime, the electrician came over and replaced all 6 smoke alarms, and when the new ones went in they would beep a few times to let us all know they may be new but they’re still annoying. And as he did that I was tryina stay out of his way and I saw this.

IMG_7121.jpgPoor Eds was in the bathroom, being a letter C. A few minutes later, I walked past again and the electrician was standing over Eds, rubbing his dog chest. I dearly wanted to say, “May I photograph this moment for my blog?” but YOU try that and see how insane that makes you feel.

But speaking of Edsel, he did get rewarded for his terror last night when Aunt Alex came over. Oh, he was mad when her truck pulled up. He was all making a letter O with his mouth and raising his hackles and carrying on, and Steely Dan, who wants nothing to do with any of us at this point and feels like Pa Ingalls did when he was snowed in for months with his stupid family, glared and hoped the person in the truck was an ax murderer and we’d all be removed from this mortal coil.

IMG_7128.jpgBut it wasn’t an ax murderer. It be Aunt Alex. Note SD in the corner, with his Paw Wash of Disappointment.

“Steely Dan’s inside!” she exclaimed ‘ere he stomped out of sight.

“Apparently you’re not reading my blog,” I said, and it’s always a weird thing when you write about your life every day and then you have friends in real life and you don’t wanna be RUDE and be all, “Do you read my blog?” but you also don’t want to launch into a story they just fekking READ about and then they have to feign interest and it’s really become a thing, basically.

Other than relatives such as my parents, the people who know me in real life don’t read me. It’s probably enough to know All This in real life without having to read All This.

“No, I–I read. I know he got hurt, but then what happened?”

See. She saw it in Facebook, is what she did. It really is a thing, this blogging and having friends. It’s an awkward thing. Maybe I should just go ahead and tell all my stories, and they can interrupt me with, “Yeah, I read this already, bitch,” but who’s gonna do that? Emily Post has never addressed this situation.

Aunt Alex was over to have dinner with me, as I have not seen her in awhile because we don’t work together anymore and she no longer lives a mile away. She and her spouse, who is also good-looking, moved to the country so they can impress the animals with their golden blondeness. They’re like Adam and Summer’s Eve.

And why do all my younger friends get to move to the country and eat a lotta peaches while I’m stuck in the bustling metropolis that is Greensboro? Why I gotta be all urban? I’m dying to live in the (snake-free) country.

They should make snake-free country the way they got the seeds outta grapes. I mean, someone figured that out, and that couldn’t have been easy. Work on it, smart folk.

Oh my god, anyway. The point is, we went to dinner at this little diner that’s been around since 1977 and since they last decorated in 1977. I want it to NEVER CHANGE. I adore it there.

I had quiche, because 1977, and she had a prosciutto and swiss sandwich, and we had a lovely time and talked and laughed and then she took me home and as I walked into my living room, I saw her pull back into my drive.

I went outside.

She got out of her truck. She stared at me, aghast.

“We didn’t pay.”

OH MY GOD WE DIDN’T PAY! We just clean forgot! We just STROLLED out of there without going up to the counter!

Alex went back, and she texted me after. “They weren’t even fazed,” she said.

We totally coulda gotten away with it.

I gotta go, but I wanted to tell you about a lovely experience I had last night. I mean, beyond dining and dashing.

Here’s one of my Amazon links to a CD. Back in the year 2000, which feels like five years ago but was EIGHTEEN, I trained for and ran a marathon. I also had a very fruity therapist, whom I loved, who changed her name from a nice Jewish lady therapist’s name (think something like Myra Goldblum) to something Indian-ish, because she was super duper into meditation and so on, and during some sort of seminar she was given a new name. So she went from Myra Goldblum to Sanguine.

I loved her. She lived in my neighborhood, so I’d walk over to her house once a week and get therapied. She got me to get a Ganesh keychain, and so on. The point is, she loaned me the above CD, there, called Sound Body, Sound Mind, by Dr. Andrew Weil. It’s five minutes of him talking, then an hour or so of really pretty music.

What happens is allegedly while you listen to it, your body heals itself from whatever’s wrong.

I was to take her CD and tape it, and dear Dr. Andrew Weil, don’t arrest me.

So Marvin made me that tape, and he inscribed it, Sound Body, Sound Mind CD from Gurpmaloni Changetrimeshu.

I used that tape like a motherfucker while I was doing my marathon training, because something always hurt on me, and I would giggle

LIKE AN IDIOT

every time I saw Gurpmaloni Changetrimeshu. And that’s really the name he wrote; I can still remember it.

THE POINT IS, eventually I bought the CD so I wouldn’t have to get up and flip the damn tape, and I LOVED it and I think Marvin accidentally stole it in the divorce, because the very last thing he wants is a bunch of fruity meditation music given to me by Gurpmaloni.

I told her that story, by the way, and she giggled. Oh, I adored her.

Anyway, m’tooth was hurting again last night, and I said, Goddammit. I really wish, what would really work, is if I still had that Dr. Andrew Weil CD, and I don’t. But you know what I did? Technology. I got it on iTunes, and I plugged my phone in next to my bed, and when that music started up, I almost started to cry.

I’d listened to that thing so often from, like, 2000 to maybe 2005, and then it got lost, and it was so nice to hear it again. And I fell asleep listening to it, slept like a LOG, and then today my mouth doesn’t hurt.

So I’ll link to it again if you want it. Or you could just iTunes it like I did. It was 12 dollars.

Namaste,
Junemaloni

The stitch has been fixed. The eagle has landed.

I ended up getting invited to two things last night, because apparently Tuesday is the hot night now or something, and the point is that over the course of the evening, I had a glass of Prosecco and then two glasses of chardonnay, because I’m a girl. Then at my now-usual wakeup time of 4 a.m., I had a splitting headache and slept in this morning.

There was a time I could have three drinks in preparation for my workday. When did I get so wimpy?

So write fast I must, but I hated to leave you without the stunning results of our StitchFix polls yesterday. It would appear that about 355 of you voted, which is a pretty good turnout when I had (lemme go see) 1,430 readers yesterday. According to my maths, 407% of people participated.

img_6725A stunning 88% of you voted that my boss, fmr., keep that bird shirt. I hope she perches on that decision and spends some bills on this shirt.

The distressed jeans caused some distress, and oh, lort, June, are you gonna do this throughout? Only 55% said to keep them, which distresses me out. June stop.

IMG_6717We were double-breasted on the coat, too. It was pretty much half and half (49% yes, 45% no) on whether it should stay or should it go, now. If it goes it will be double (breasted) and if it stays it will be double (breasted, still).

That’s it, June. I’m leaving.

IMG_6731At least we were all in agreement that we hated a wrinkle in time, over here. A weird 1.36% voted she should keep this. I’d like to hear from this elusive 1.36%. Do you also hate chocolate and Tom Hanks?

IMG_6722And, finally, we didn’t link to this cuff much. 58% said to unhand the cuff.

Oh, June. You shoulda stuck to waitressing. For you were a stellar and unharried waitress with the patience of Job and the focus to remember what your tables wanted.

Did I ever tell you about the time I cried because the soup changed? Remind me.

Sometimes I have nightmares that I’m waitressing again. I’m at some soda gun going, How did I get back here?

Anyway. Thanks for participating, you 355 or so who did. Why didn’t you others? What a bunch of cranks. Perhaps the rest of you are men.

Yesterday, my boss, fmr., and I were discussing her photos on my blog, and the reactions we were getting to the clothes, and my boss’s boss, also fmr., happened upon us.

“I’d rather…go to the dentist, yes, go to the dentist, than have a bunch of people tell me what clothes to buy,” he said. Keep in mind this was the guy who gave me the eagle calendar. All of a sudden we gotta listen to THIS guy.

Boss, fmr. and I stared at him blankly.

“Well, then how do you shop?” we asked him. Pretty much at the same time, like those twins in The Shining.

“How you shop is, you decide you need something, and you go out and get it.”

We stared at him blankly some more. Kind of like those twins in The Shining. Still. Occasionally, after that stunning announcement, I’d kind of see my Eagles-Loving Former Boss’s Boss and then an elevator with blood pouring out of it would cross my vision.

“Now, what now?” I asked.

“If I’m shopping alone, I at least take a selfie in the dressing room and send it to someone for their opinion,” I told him.

“Yeah, of course,” agreed my boss, fmr.

“You’re kidding,” said my boss’s boss, former, lover of eagles. And their calendars.

Later, I asked Ned about this.

“How you shop is, you say, wow I’m out of blue jeans (Ned always calls them “blue jeans” like he’s Grampa Joe or whatever) and then you go out and get the same kind of blue jeans you’ve been buying since 9th grade,” said Ned.

Blood. Elevator. Somewhere in Florida an old man is having a vision under a painting of a naked woman.

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“How is it that we even exist on the same planet?” asked Former Boss of All Eagles.

Anyway, I gotta go. If I’m going to have a wine headache, I’m going to have it at work, where I can complain about it to the world at large.

Givingly,
Joon

June goes off the grid

I realize the best part of life is the thinner slice, and it don’t count for much.

What is wrong with me?

I realize I was supposed to write you Sunday for two–yes, TWO!!–special June weekend posts, but on Sunday I got into a weird cleaning frenzy and never did it.

The good news is, my floors are gleaming. The bad news is, you were bereft all Sunday. e3e88f11658862cb4435b9174d1b3e0eThen it was Sunday night, and your mom was spraying Hair So New on your wet hair while you watched Wonderful World of Disney

and ate a pot pie,

download.jpgknowing you had school the next day and the weekend was over, and NO JUNE POST.

What is wrong with me?

Anyway, we can still have a …banquet this morning, so dry your tears. And your hair! It’s So New!

Screen Shot 2018-03-22 at 8.10.11 AMThe reason I was going to write you Sunday is that my iPhotos had presented me with this weird grid the other day, a grid titled “People.” And indeed, it showed me people. Why these people, I don’t know.

But seeing as I’ve blogged at you for 11 years, give or take times I’ve allegedly FLOUNCED, it occurred to me that while I recognize all these folks, scarily, you might too. So I asked you: Who ARE these people?

And you answered. Often wrongly. So without further ado, because your ‘do is wet and it has Hair So New on it, let’s look at who’s on m’grid.

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First person on the grid? Ned. That’s back when I liked him, when he still lived in his apartment. That’s all I have to say about grid number one.

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That’s my stepfather, Harry, in the second place on said grid. He’s a saint. I remember that picture. My mother said, “Take a picture of Harry to put on Facebook, so his nieces can see him.” Then she photobombed.

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Aunt Kathy. I couldn’t believe people didn’t know right away who this one was. I mean, how many times have I featured Aunt Kathy? And her Paul McCartney video?

Geez.

Okay, up next?

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Aunt Kathy’s husband, Uncle Bill. He is very handy. Also, he never, like, relaxes. Like, he’ll fly to China, which he does a lot, then come home and replace the roof all weekend, then get on a plane to Germany.

I’ve no idea what he does. Maybe he’s an international handyman.

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Most of you knew my youthful coworker Ryan. What a buncha Mrs. Robinsons you all are.

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This is my coworker, fmr., Alex. Her name is actually Alex, so she got offended when I started calling everyone ELSE at work “Alex.” To be fair, there really used to be like 12 of them at once. Anyway, you know her from coming to my house to do yoga, and also being one of the youthful people I would drink with.

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Cantankerous coworker Griff. Of Thus Saith Griff fame. I like how someone was all, “Your coworker Gif or whoever.” Gif. Dying.

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One of the Alexes from work. She doesn’t work there anymore. She helped me make my brick house costume when I had that Dress as a Character From a Song party. She lives a mile away and we never see each other, despite several tepid, “Let’s get together” texts.

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Wedding Alex. Been on this blog approximately one frillion times. I took credit for every nuance of her wedding, from claiming I sewed her dress to building the church brick by brick. I forget why. Oh, right. I’m an asshole.

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The Other Copy Editor, fmr. We worked on the same team, but then she left to edit poetry for a living, a job I do not understand. How do you edit poetry? Anyway, she also owns the B&B where I drink, as they have Come Drink at Our B&B Wednesdays, she and her husband do.

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Aw. Another one of the Alexes. She left to take a very fancy job. She has a single dad my age who is hot hot hot, a thing I never let drop, and I wonder why I rarely hear from her. Hunh.

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This Alex was in my blog also 21 frillion times, when she worked with me. She’s gone, too. She and I got pedicures, we had dinner together, I forced her to go to the psychic with me. I mean, we did it all. I also talked her into going on OK Cupid after her breakup, and she met her boyfriend on there, and is still with him, so get ready for another June Takes the Credit Wedding coming to a blog near you.

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Dick Whitman. First person I dated once I was single. We dated for I think two terrible months, then we became friends, and then I got mad at him because when Ned and I broke up, he wasn’t what you’d call around. I felt bad. I felt abandoned. I felt all sorts of things. Anyway, when his mom, Dick Whitman’s Mom, died, we did have a nice chat about how great his mom was, so it’s not a terrible or anything, between us.

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Camilo, of the banana Camilos. Like, we just talked about him LAST POST, so don’t be giving me any, “Who’s that.”

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TinaDoris. We worked together; now she works with OKCupid Alex. I went to her wedding, I saged her haunty house, I blog-named her baby Borbala Rut. She’s having another baby, and I am the father.

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I just want you to know, whomever called Austin, “Jerome or whoever,” I have called him nothing but Jerome ever since. I went to his house this Christmas Eve, he has the really good wallpaper in the kitchen, with the measuring cups and so on. He’s my favorite person at work.

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Marty Martin. Friend in real life. Boyfriend of Kayeeeee. Marty is good people.

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See. I already said Austin was my favorite person at work, but The Poet is also my favorite person at work. She is the other white meat. The Poet is being flown to London for a week, to read her poems, as she is The Poet. I’d be such an asshole if I were as fabulous as she is. Look at what an asshole I am at THIS level.

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This is my coworker Molly. I go see her perform sometimes, as she swallows swords. No. She sings and plays guitar, and I like all of her songs. All of them.

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Yet another Alex who was actually named Alex. She works with OKCupid Alex and TinaDoris now, in some new place where I don’t actually understand what they do. Anyway, she’s British, this Alex is, and she used to live in TinyTown, which you don’t see every day.

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Faithful Reader LaUral. She wrote me and said, “I read your blog, and I’m not crazy but I can tell we work right near each other.” This was when I would do things like meet someone who read my blog. Now I’m wary. Too many creepy things have happened. But LaUral slipped in under the wire.

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My tenant, fmr. She became my tenant, then got a job where I work, worked there for a few years, and Friday was her last day. I’m, like, the Last Woman Standing. I feel like some wizened old veteran there, with my seven years going on.

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Aw. My boss, fmr. I miss him. I miss him more than I thought I would. He was always good for amusing conversation. And he and Griff would bicker like two old married people.

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Kayeeeeee. Marty Martin’s girlfriend. Let me move in with her for those six weeks after Ned and I broke up and my tenant, fmr., was moving out. Kayeeee. Not a fan of Tracy Anderson workout videos.

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And finally, none of you were right. This is Ned’s mom. I think I’ve only had her in my blog maybe five times in six years. So you’d have to be a careful, careful, possibly even obsessed reader to catch that one.

So there it is. My grid. And now I’m fairly exhausted.

Gridily,
Jooon

June Doles Out the Special Banana Post

Were you worried I’d slip and forget the banana story? Did you think I’d peel out of work Friday and forget you? That I’d split and forget about the banana?

What a fruity idea.

June’s readers. Finding June unapPEELing since 2018.

IMG_6300.jpgAs you know, from your Enormous Banana of June Events, my ridik coworker Camilo–whom I’m certain I’ve blog-named in the past but who can remember what I called him. I must be low on potassium.

Anyway, Camilo, my coworker, mashed in from New York all flambé about some shit he learned about bananas. “You guys wouldn’t BELIEVE it,” he said. Look, he’s still green. Banana things excite him.

I don’t know where this news stemmed, but he had something thrilling he learned that was banana-related, and he needed an ACTUAL banana to show us.

No matter how you sliced it, he was making this a huge deal. So after he’d plantain-ed the seed, we were all into learning what the news was. I set up an actual meeting on everyone’s calendar, in an actual meeting room, and every chichita in the place gathered to see what was up.

You could say we were a banana republic.

Dear June:
You’re fired.
Love, All readers everywhere.

So without so much as a yellow, he showed the BUNCH of us the banana.

IMG_6305.jpg“Is it the thing where you peel it from the bottom,” an unenthused coworker, who had a deadline, asked. Clearly she had not been on the banana boat earlier, when he’d already assured us it was WAY BEYOND the old opening-it-from-the-bottom trick.

IMG_6309.jpg“You know how sometimes you have a banana, and you want to share it with others?” he asked.

No. No I don’t. But I’m an only child.

IMG_6310.jpg“Watch this,” he said, about to serve us a banana shakeup. Camilo stuck his thumb in the top of the banana, and pressed down.

Voila. Or, waa-laa, if you want to be …rotten.

IMG_6311.jpgTurns out, if you press the top of a peeled banana, it automatically divides into three sections. “It’s like it’s MADE to be shared,” he said. He wasn’t monkeying around. He handed banana sections to the whole bunch of us.

I know I already used “bunch.” Why don’t you try to think up this many melon-farming banana puns?

So. There it is. I don’t know what kind of bread you can make from this info, but now you have a party trick that’s…bananas.

Daylight come and me wanna go home,
June

P.S. Tuuuuuune in Sunday for “the grid.” I have a migraine. Too many banana daiquiris last night.

June’s delusional world

I’m writing you on Sunday night because I have to call the IRS in the morning to figure out if I owe money or I’m getting money back, a thing TurboTax can’t seem to tell me, which makes my ass ache mightily.

Yes, June, that’s a shame. So, what’d you do this weekend?

Well, mostly I hung around Marianne.

In 1992, I moved to Seattle. I knew I wanted to leave Michigan after college, and they read more books there per capita, so I figured I’d fit in.

I did.

I got a job a few days into my move there, by talking up the guy who helped me open a checking account. “I know they need a receptionist on 12. You want me to make some calls?” And a stellar career answering phones on the 12th floor was born.

One of the people who worked with me on that 12th rung of the ladder to success invited me to go to a rugby game with her on a Saturday morning. Anyone who’s read me awhile (See: All of you) knows how often I get up on Saturday and seek out rugby. But I was new in town

and completely desperate for friends. So I got up at some ungodly hour, maybe even 10:00, and went to a damn rugby game.

“We’re going to stop and pick up my friend Marianne,” the woman from the 12th floor said to me. I hate it when you have plans with someone and they throw someone else in like that. In my MIND I’d psychologically PREPARED for it to be just us. But I pretended to be a normal member of society and said okay.

Turns out, Marianne was fairly new to Seattle, as well. And as we stood on that cold rugby…field? Is it a field? Hoooo care. Marianne looked at our other friend getting all into rugby, and said to me, “You wanna go back to the car and drink all the beer?”

And we did. The end.

From then on, we spent every ding-dang weekend together, no matter what. There was a restaurant across from my apartment, and inexplicably it had a mechanical bellhop in front of it, with an arm that moved up and down, sort of guiding you into the diner. We had breakfast there every Saturday. I mean every Saturday.

I’ve no idea what the name of that place was, since all we did on Friday night was sort of drunkenly say, “What time?” and do the bellhop’s arm gesture.

“Eleven.”

Or even, “Oh, god, like, 1:00?”

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Marianne and me, right after Kurt Cobain’s memorial at the Space Needle. I’ve no idea why we were so gleeful. I remember being devastated at the time. We were moody at 27.

She left Seattle a year before I did, to go back to North Carolina. At her goodbye party at Lai Lani Lanes, a Tiki-themed bowling alley we adored, I told Marianne that at my wedding someday (Step One: Get boyfriend), we’d find a way to drink a beer in a car during the reception.

She drove all the way from North Carolina to Michigan to come to my wedding, three years later. At the very end of the night, the band packing up, I sneaked into the kitchen of the B&B and grabbed two beers.

We drank them in the rental car, me in my wedding dress and ridik veil.

Anyway, now here I am, in North Carolina as well, and she’s an hour and a half away and we see each other like once or twice a year and it’s stupid.

On Saturday, I was running my usual errands: taking the kids to soccer, meeting with the prime minister, knitting socks, I texted Marianne. “Wanna meet in Winston-Salem right now?”

She did.

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While I got groceries Saturday, my car made a pal.
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I had no earthly reason to also go to PetSmart Saturday. Other than the important task of getting some strange. I LOVE YOU, HALF-A-PEACHY-FACE KITTY!
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I LOVE YOU, STEELY DANELGANGER!

Anyway, since Marianne was able to drop everything and drive to Winston, off I went.

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We’d sort of forgotten it was St. Patrick’s Day, and by “we” I mean clearly not old Kermit, up there, dressed head-to-toe in green. Marianne has always been more excited about life than I am.

My point is, we went to a restaurant, and they were shamrocking out, man. They even had hootchie-gootchie girls (TM, Ned’s mom) handing out Irish whiskey for free and everything, along with hats, shirts and sunglasses.

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Marianne opted to take all of them.
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I just went for the bowler hat. Because, bowler.

“We probably shouldn’t drink all of this whiskey, because we have to drive,” I old lady-ed.

“Oh, I wasn’t planning to,” doddered Marianne.

“I wonder how many St. Patrick’s Days we’ve spent together,” I said. For some reason, Marianne had, like, this houseful of friends who’d all come over from Ireland together. Their house was magically delicious. And not at all devoid of, you know, parties. Especially on St. Patrick’s Day.

Oddly, we can’t remember any of them. Hmmmm. What could it be? What.could.it.beeeeee that made us forget?

Anyway, our three sips of whiskey in us, we headed to our cars. On the way out, I saw a good-looking man I completely recognized, and we both stopped in our tracks because we clearly knew who each other was, but could not place. He was with a woman, so if he was one of my 39583030402 internet dates I’ve had over the past two and a half years, I didn’t want to stir up any trouble.

“Who was that hot woman in the bowler hat?” I mean. It was inevitable, right?

On the drive home, I was all,

“RON!”

Which means nothing to you, and anyone who actually remembers who Ron is gets a plastic green bowler hat.

He was Marvin’s bandmate. From, like, 2008. Marvin put an ad on Craigslist or something and this really nice guy, Ron, answered the ad, and every Sunday for years they would have band practice here at this house.

Every Sunday for years, I would therefore go to the movies and see some weird independent thing, and Ned and I used to say we MUST have been in the same theater at the same time, as a result, which is weird to think about.

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I tried to find a photo of Marvin practicing with Ron, a thing I know existed, but instead I found the photo of the time I insisted you all call Henry, my cat, fmr., “Henri.”

Am delighted with self anew.

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Ah. Here’s a crystal-clear shot of Ron and Marvin practicing. Pre-bookshelves. Pre-not-beige walls. Weird.

Anyway, the next day I talked to Marvin. “Ron thought that was you, but he wasn’t sure.”

“Is it because I’m so hot now?”

Marvin didn’t answer that. You’d think Ron woulda said, “Man, she’s clearly had Ultherapy.”

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IMG_6176.jpgAnyway, I’m glad I had the brilliant idea to get together with Marianne, and that we had a good time even though we were done by, like, 7:00 rather than just going out at 7:00. It’s good to have people you can grow old with. Even though I’m getting hotter by the minute.

Youthfully,
June

June the snowflake

It snowed.

If you’ve read me for awhile, you’ll know that (a), that means work was called off, although we are expected to “work from home,” and I remember a really bad storm two years ago where I proofread a giant deck–giant–and just as I was finishing it, Iris stepped on my laptop and erased all the changes I had made.

And that is why Iris is mounted on my wall today.

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shut upz

(Also, a deck is a presentation. It is important to never call anything by its name.)

This, by the way, is how Ms. Iris has spent her snow day, aka all days. Her big-game-hunting seems to have dwindled, although to her credit, now when I see something dead on my doorstep–mice, a bird, a hobo–I just assume Steely Dan killed it. I also assume he, and not video, killed the radio star.

I don’t give poor Iris any credit anymore. However, see above. How can she kill things if she’s nodded out on the horse or whatever is going on with her and all cats who can’t seem to stay awake more than 20 minutes at a stretch.

Anyway, they warned us snow was coming, and when did weather get to be such an exact science? Remember in the old days and all the jokes about the weatherman being wrong? Now it’s all, “Snow will begin in your zip code at 4:49 a.m.”

But anyway, yes, they warned us it was coming, so I left work on time-ish and dashed on over to daycare to get my child.

IMG_3678.jpgCareful readers will note the ears in the window, and how did he KNOW it was me? It was 5:30 on a Tuesday; every motherfucker on god’s green was coming to get his or her dog, but old Ears up there…maybe that’s why. Maybe the ears tipped him off. He could hear my thoughts or whatever from Spain.

IMG_3674.jpgAnyway, my giant nose and I got him home and at some point I turned into a Rembrandt with that collar. I guess it’s a scarf. Still.

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Let’s gather thou things and get thou home, Edsel

I made an enormous pot of pumpkin chili on Monday, because you know what a chef I am, and yes, I just linked to a recipe. Who even am I?

Anyway, I knew I was okay with food in case I had a long winter like Laura Ingalls Wilder. And also like Laura, in her hit book Little Movie at the Shopping Center, I had the dilemma: Should I go to the movies with The Poet as we’d planned, and risk opening the theater doors afterward to see that we lived in a snowglobe?

I sound like a movie trailer. In a world

IMG_3679.jpgBut because she is from Iowa and I am from Michigan, we decided to not be a couple of pussies, and we applied the same logic to the size of our popcorn. You’ll be stunned to hear we had some left over.

“Well, I didn’t know you’d eat five pieces and be done,” said The Poet, who apparently really is one of those “where does she put it all” kinds of people, because she gave that bucket the college try and she weighs about 72. Lithe, is what she is. And also currently full of popcorn.

Anyway we saw Lady Bird, and I will not bore you with the fact that we liked it, as everyone likes it, and I wish I could be rebellious and say, “Not enough titties” or whatever, but I cannot. As it was a sweet movie.

IMG_3683.jpgThen I got up today, as per usual, and kind of forgot it was supposed to have snown–yes, snown–and went about my normal business, such as navigating the Cat Calcutta that is my hallway first thing.

IMG_3689.jpgBut I opened the blinds, and I was all, Oh, yay! I forgot that it was supposed to have snowded. Then I checked m’phone and Oh, yay! Work is canceled. Then I checked it further, and Oh, boo. We are expected to work anyway.

So I’m constantly checking my phone to see if work is streaming in, which really cockblocks my original plans of Bailey’s and hot chocolate all day.

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not so much wif dis bullchit

So, as I was saying 47 paragraphs ago, if you’ve read me awhile, you’ll know snow means I don’t have to go to work and also winter frolic pictures will occur.

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offend delicate sense biliteeez
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one dignity shot

IMG_3714.jpgIMG_3712.jpgIMG_3716.jpgIMG_3711.jpgMeanwhile, back inside my ranch, and that joke never gets old, Steely Dan was torn between wanting to venture outside and being highly offended that something outside kept making his paws cold.

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da fuk?

IMG_3724.jpgI was in the kitchen, doing dishes because hey, dishwasher that works, and Steely Dan kept opening the damn back door, going out, trying to walk on everything that wasn’t snowy, then coming back in getting bored and doing it all over again. I’d have snapped his neck had it not been sort of cute.

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get steeeellle fone. he going to menshun dis on next door. dis abominaa shun.

IMG_3740.jpgHe also begged to go out the front, as if maybe it hadn’t snowed in the front yard.

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goddammitz
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Coming home in defeat.

I wonder how many people are waiting for (b). See first paragraph. Then remember whose not-blog you are reading.

There you go.

Your Ice Princess,

June Cassadine

Mrs. Garrett was probably younger than me

On the first day of 2011, Ned got out of bed, walked into a wall and broke his toe.

And hey, June, this bodes well. A mention of Ned in the first sentence of your first post of the new year. Yeah, good moving on.

Anyway, he did, and he told himself, “Well, that’s a sign you aren’t going to have a good year. You’d better just keep your head down and muddle through 2011.” And he was right.

He was newly back in his hometown of Greensboro, having spent his adult life in Raleigh (inside guff for outsiders: Raleigh is way cooler to live in than Greensboro), he was working for the family business after a decade of doing something he truly loved

(he’d been a professional beer taster)

(he was hired full time to ogle women)

(they needed an expert salad-eater, and he took on the job)

(he wrote a weekly column titled, “You Know What I’D Do…”)

(okay, I’ll stop),

and he had zero girlfriend.

So he got through 2011, and on the fifth day of 2012, he met me. WHAT. LUCK. REWARD! SILVER LINING!

The point of me telling you this is the very first thing to happen to me today was that my clothes pole…thing in the walk-in closet of my bedroom? Crashed ONTO MY FINGER today. Then after that, all the clothes that had been residing on said pole similarly fell onto my finger.

Inside guff for outsiders: It hurt.

“Oh my god,” I told myself. “I’m Ned in 2011.”

I’d had such high hopes for 2018, too. As you may know, as I very subtly alluded to it earlier this week, I’ve had something of a cold. No big deal, really. I hate to cause a fuss. Anyway, yesterday I ended up being asked to a little celebration, a little reason for the season, and that reason is Prosecco.

But given the precarious nature of my health, I thought I’d better test my reserves, so I took myself to see The Shape of Water first, at the movie theater near my house. I figured if I could sit up and take nourishment (popcorn and a Dr Pepper) for two hours, maybe I was ready for the big leagues, aka a middle-aged mild New Year’s celebration.

First of all, The Shape of Water. Highly recommend. And not just cause everything’s midcentury and you know how I get about that.

So I slapped on the makeup and headed into the middle-aged night and rang in the new year and was in REM by about 12:01. Still. I got out. I didn’t even take 47 Kleenex.

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Me and m’New Year’s makeup and several heavy Instagram filters. You, too can feign rosy health!

So that all seemed to go so well and then boom. Pole on m’finger.

I did not go to my annual ironically named kindness meditation downtown, as it was 870 below zero today, and the only kindness I could meditate on was not doing that to myself given that I just got out of my iron lung with this cold. Instead I paid my bills, wrote in my new journal I got for Xmas (thanks, mom), checked my finger to see if it was turning black, and talked on the phone to my old LA neighbor Alicia for about 700 hours.

This time I wrote down some of the funny English-but-not-quite-English things she said during our 11-hour conversation. I have always loved the way she uses language. She’s like a little angry Spanish poem. Attached below, for your edification, are some of the things she said that I adored so much I wrote them down…

“She had to come up and tell me what she thought. She had to put her five cents on me.”

also

“I have bumped heads with that bitch for years.” This, by the way, was about someone famous, but I cannot, really cannot tell you who. BUT YOU WOULD DIE.

“Finally, we said okay. We bury the hatchets.”

plus also

“She was mad. She did not like that I was in her ass.”

And the grand finale:

“I tell her, ‘Stick it in your ass and shove it.'”

I’m just telling you now. “Stick it in your ass and shove it” is the new “Very nice, Coot.” Although I have to say I grow fonder by the minute of “bury the hatchets.”

I’d been guarding my pole finger jealously all day, assuming the nail was going to turn dramatically black, because I see my finger and I want it painted black. Nevertheless, my finger persisted, and while it’s SORE, it appears I may have exaggerated what I thought would be the effect of that ENTIRE POLE OF CLOTHES crashing down on it.

I took my black finger of death and all the rest of my digits to the grocer’s, and I like how all of a sudden it’s 1950 up in here, with my grocer. Mr. Hooper was waiting for me in his white apron.

Unknown

I got my usual Sad Single Girl items, such as Lean Cusine and cat litter.

(I have forever wanted to find this one Nick at Night promo ad they used to have with Sally from the Dick Van Dyke show. I know it went: “Sally is single. Single, single, single.” I can never find it. I always identified with Sally, the wisecracking writer, and now she’s dead and I can’t find that promo and my finger is gangrenous.)

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The point is, I bought my week’s groceries and got this urge to buy an instant lottery ticket. I almost never do this, because (a) I never have cash and (4) I just never remember we have machines at the store. But the universe colluded or whatever, or the Ghost of Sally came over me, because we all know how famous her character was for buying lottery tickets.

Anyway, I won $100. I bought one ticket for one dollar, and I won $100. Can you believe it?! I’m RICH.

I scratched off my ticket in the cold parking lot of the store, of the grocer, and ran back in to tell Mr. Hooper, who has apparently turned into a 20-year-old black kid. When young Mr. Hooper ran the scanner thing over my card, it played a little song and everything. It was so exciting.

“2018 is gonna be my year!” I announced to Mr. Hooper, and stampeded back to my car, where I excitedly plunked back down in the driver’s seat,

on right onto my glasses. Which broke into 90 pieces.

So, you take the good, you take the bad, you take ’em both and there you have 2018 so far.

Happy new year. I hope you will not feel the need to stick this year up your ass and shove it.

P.S. I imagine “promo ad” is redundant, is it not? Son of a bitch. Thank god I have all this money.

P.P.S. Super Strawberry. Dammit. I keep forgetting.

Sufferin’ Juneotash

I hate to burst in and destroy your 2018, like Godzilla stomping through your city, but I have a cold.

My throat hurts, I’m all achy, my ears have that thing where they itch way on the inside and you can’t scratch them cause it’s really your brain that itches or whatever.

IMG_3289.JPGIMG_3291.JPGYou’d think my cats would be holding an eternal vigil, but they are not.

You know, sitting here, the floor and the washer don’t LOOK dirty, but I take a photo and I’m all, wow, that washer needs to be, like, wiped down or whatever.

Plus, there’s a spot on that linoleum that’s just forever stained. See it, the second blue square in from Jodie Foster? It’s just permanently sort of brown. I blame Lottie.

Good lord, this house has hosted the animals.

IMG_3265.jpgAnyway, despite my raging cold, I schlepped into work yesterday and the first person I saw was the mailroom guy. “Oh, I have a package for you,” he said, and handed me a box. It’s this great clock from a faithful reader! Isn’t it magnificent?! It was on my wish list, my Amazon Wish List. Oooo, I should link to Amazon.

“I want a clock just like Hune’s! If I click on this green clock, I can be on Amazon and buy just anything, and Hune gets rich! Maybe if she gets rich enough, she’ll stop saying ‘Hune.'”

Do you know anyone worse at remembering she’s an Amazon Associate? Anyone?

Bueller? You know what that is? ‘Nother link.

Oh my god anyway, I love my clock, and I put it in the living room because I never ever know what time it is in there, like it’s Las Vegas.

Then at night, despite my killing-me throat and my general aches and pains of having a major cold, I —

Just now, Lily, whom I’ve already let out and back in again today, asked to go out again. I opened the main door, then stood at the screen while Lily pondered the meaning of going outside, and considered if she really meant it and so forth, when

BOOM

Steely Dan burst past us, got on his hind legs and pushed the door open, and ran out, all in one smooth gesture.

Lily kind of waddled after him.

Anyway, because trouper, last night I drove to this restaurant I’d never been to to get up with Kit and Jo. Ko.

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Kit
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Jo
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Me. I never let on I wasn’t feeling well.

On the way there, my friend Beige called me. Her name isn’t actually Beige, but I’ve always called her that and that’s how she’s in my phone. “I’m right near this restaurant, but I can’t find it,” I told her. “I’ll call you later.”

As soon as I sat down, Faithful Reader Happy texted me with a video of that white cat she has, that Ned might like. Then after the video she sent two more texts. “Boop!” said my phone, then “boop!” followed by “boop!”

“At dinner, talk later,” I wrote hurriedly, as gifts were exchanged among us. Jo is a real gifty type.

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heeeeee

Then my father called.

Then Miss Doxie texted.

Then Fay texted.

Not to mention my blog comments were blowing up last night.

Then TinaDoris answered my earlier text about how I was feeling ill and wasn’t going to Pure Barrrrre Thursday morning. She texted three times.

Then Ned called.

Then I got the World’s Longest Email from a new reader, which, Dear New Reader: I haven’t read yet.

Then I SWEAR TO YOU, someone I went to school with in fourth grade wrote me to say she had an old photo of us, and where should she send it.

Seriously, that all happened within the first 30 minutes I was there. It was like all of a sudden everyone I’d ever known wanted to speak with me between 7 and 8 p.m. on a Wednesday. I like how I said “30 minutes” then “7 and 8.” Maths.

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Old photo my classmate sent me.

Okay, this is the greatest thing ever. The “R” is for “Redeemer.” There’s religious June, gettin’ her Redeemer on. (I went to a Lutheran elementary school. Yes, I did.)

I am the top girl (I sure am) on the right, in the pigtails. I was able to name everyone else in this photo except I can’t remember the girl in the middle’s first name. Doreece? Dorrena? I know her last name was Hopeck. Her mom was our Brownie leader. Her name was…Mrs. Hopeck. You’re welcome.

Hell. Or, Redeemer. I wish I could recall that girl’s name.

Anyway, after my Hour of Popularity, and after Ko and I discussed everything from talking dirty to Dick Whitman’s mom–fortunately we did not combine those subjects–it was time for me to go. Jit, over there, the Kit and Jo combo, were gonna move on to a bar, but I was in need of an IV drip, so ill was I, and plus also it was 9:30 already, so.

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“Orange you glad our mom izzn’t a puzzy?” “Orange you thinkeeng maybe she DO be a puzzy?”

As I drove home, I told my phone to call Beige back.

“Calling Beee-aaage,” said my phone, who can’t speak fucking English. If you’re gonna be in this country, man. English is our language, man. (I love people.)

My phone also tells me to take the exit toward the airport sometimes? But it pronounces it “Peedmont Inter-na-seeeee-on-all.” Kills me every time. Why doesn’t it know “international”?

I realize it’s, like, miraculous that I can take my phone with me and not have to drag the cord onto the stairway like I did circa 1982. I realize that the fact that my phone can TALK to me and CALL PEOPLE FOR ME is also, you know, exciting.

Still. Get it right. Beeee-age. Pfft.

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She’s so sweet WHEN SHE’S UNCONSCIOUS

Actually, while I’m thinking of it, you know that cool photo my old schoolmate wanted to send me? She’s not the first person to email me via the “Contact me” feature on my blog to wonder how to get in contact with me, so let me just say now that the contact me feature is just an email address, so anything you want to email me, that’s where to do it.

I think if you’re gonna attach a photo, you might have to write me once, then I write back, and THEN it becomes just a regular email between us and you can attach a photo.

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o edzul god. shut upz, mom.

I’d better go back to work and martyr through my day. Probably I should be certain to bring a giant box of Kleenex to really drive the point home. Perhaps I could even arrive in slippers, for added effect.

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Portrait of a cold sufferer

Here is our Clinique Chubby Stick of the day in Plumped-Up Pink. This will look good when I’m in my casket.

Stoically,

Joon

Oh, did sleigh bells ring? I had my ringer off.

Welp. Christmas. We got through it, and now my throat hurts, so the one holiday I can kind of get behind, New Year’s, will be rooooooooned.

Do you know people who pronounce ruined like that? “Rooooooned.” I think Marvin did. The memory is starting to escape me, like Kate Winslet and Jim Carey on the ice that cracks in two during Eternal Sunshine.

IMG_3114.JPGAnyway, Christmas. I let myself open one gift on Xmas Eve, and the fine people of Summer’s Eve ought to consider making special, like, pine and berry feminine products for Christmas, call it Christmas’s Eve.

I’m an idea woman.

The gift, and you can tell already we’re in for a long haul today, was two of my vintage romance magazines from Faithful Reader Paula, who knows what I like. This time they were Christmas themed, like m’douche.

If you didn’t tune in to my last post, I spent Christmas, you know, Eve at my coworker Austin’s, and I got his family a game–it’s just Concentration, but with Eames furniture and designs instead of shitty flowers that you come across on a …summer’s eve.

Oh, June, remove the nozzle and continue.

IMG_3262.JPGThe point is, they sent me this photo. “We’re playing the game you got us, but because we know how you hate this holiday, we’re playing it joylessly.”

I flow into everyone, leaving you refreshed and bitter.

See what I did, there? More feminine humor. MERRY CHRISTMAS!

June, it’s not even Christmas morning yet.

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krismuffph

Christmas morning arrived (oh thank GOD) and that damn kitten was a pain in my ass. Before it was even dawn, she started pounce pounce pouncing on the bed, and whose idea was it to foster a goddamn kitten? Finally, after like TWO HOURS of just drifting off again only to POUNCE awake, I threw her into the hall, stuffed a quilt under the door so she couldn’t just slither under the door like she does, and WAS JUST DRIFTING OFF AGAIN when

RING!

I knew that ring. Do you ever do that? You know who it is even though it isn’t a special ringtone? You know that ring? It was my mother, of the Obsessed with Christmas mothers, AND I KNEW IT.

“Ima Jon-Benet Ramsey your ass,” I said, Christmas cheerily.

My mother made me stay on the phone with her while I opened my gifts, so I couldn’t photograph my every item like I usually do, and I CAN HEAR YOUR FAKE “I’m so disappointed” groans, all of you, and shut up.

IMG_E3143.jpgIMG_3141.jpgIMG_3140.jpgBut you must trust me. Chaos ensued. It was like having real children there. And do you like my method? I used the laundry basket to hold all the wrapping paper and other stuff that could be recycled. At the end of the festivities (“festivities”), I just dumped the laundry basket in the recycle bin outside.

Home Hacks from Hune. Maybe I should change my name to Hune and start a whole homemaking blog. Hone Your Home With Hune.

I had cat litter on the lapel of my robe this morning. So I think it’s a given that you all want my home hacks.

IMG_E3161.JPGI believe I said to you all the other day that this back room where I write is a cold room, much like my heart at Xmas, and that I really needed socks. So I went on Amazon, through my own link, and got me three or four pair of fuzzy, slouchy socks.

IMG_3156.JPGThen guess what everyone sent me for Christmas.

IMG_E3163.JPG(This seems as good a time as any to remind people that sentences that start with “Guess what” or “I wonder” do NOT NEED A QUESTION MARK AT THE END. They are STATEMENTS. A statement is a declarative sentence, such as, “Hune has a stick up her ass.”)

IMG_3165.jpgAnyway, I got up yesterday and walked around with cold feet and didn’t marry anyone, till I remembered, “Hey, Hune’s got socks comin’ out her …hass!” So I got me some socks on. I rocked out with my socks out.

IMG_E3167.JPGIt wouldn’t be the most…wonderful time of the year without me putting a ribbon or bow on a pet, and this would be an excellent time for me to offer a retrospective of all the years of pets with bows, but I have to get to work, needy.

IMG_3169.JPGIMG_E3168.JPGThe point is, this year Edsel got Hune’s Holiday Humiliation, Now With Claws!

As I pen this, Steely Dan and Jodie Foster have been stampeding around the house as they do, and just now I heard the broom in the laundry room topple over, followed by two very different-sized, ears-back cats dashing out of there.

I wonder what happened. See? That was a statement. You do not need to write, “I wonder what happened?” It’s not a question. You are wondering what happened.

Do you know what I’ve noticed? When people who aren’t, you know, English teachers or editors ponder sentence structure, they say the weirdest stuff, as if they know a rule, a grammar rule, that in fact isn’t anything at all.

“Well, but it’s stating a question, and it’s emphasizing the…”

WHAT?

Grammar isn’t that hard. Punctuation isn’t that hard. And spelling? You can look that up, you know. M-W dot com. I’m on there about 400 times a day.

I know you want to say “object of the preposition” and sound brilliant, but you don’t need to. There are a few really simple rules, and a lot of them are going away, which is what happens with language. If we didn’t let it flow, we’d all still be speaking Olde Englishe. See what I did, there? We’d all be talking like Chaucer.

Anyway, it’s easier than you’re making it, is my point. And what you learned in third grade, there, Menopause, is not a hard-and-fast rule that is still definitely right.

June. It’s like not NOON yet on December 25. We have to get to work.

IMG_E3180.JPGMy favorite gift was one I picked out myself but forgot I picked out. My mother and I saw this at that little boutique we went to the day after Thanksgiving, but then we ran into my cousin Katie and my Aunt Kathy, who once again is not that woman drinking at the top of my blog, and anyway I was so excited that I

CLEAN

FORGOT

I wanted that mailbox. Am small child.

IMG_3181.JPGAnyway, after I opened my gifts, I went outside and screwed a mailbox.

Here is the next Clinique color in our Chune Checks out Chubby Sticks Even on Christmas project…

IMG_3194.jpgIt’s some kind of way-too-orange color, which I cannot find in the bowels of my purse to tell you what the color is called, but I think we can all agree it’s not a keeper for anyone, unless you are Doris Day.

You’ll note, however, that I’m in the car, here, and that is because I was headed to Chris and Lilly’s to have dinner with them, because they felt sorry for Old Lady June having–

Geeez. Steely Dan is kicking that kitten’s ASS right now, and they break it up too fast for me to take a photo, but just now he was grabbing her whole kitten body and she was saying,

“MEWWWWWWWWW.”

Do not worry about that kitten. For she is an asshole, and also they are deeply in love, and yes, I do already feel bad for him when she goes and no I am not keeping her.

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Anyway.

IMG_3198.jpgChris cooked for us, cause it’s his thing, and it was all DELICIOUS. They roasted a chicken, and by “they” I mean Chris. There were vegetables, and he even cooks those so they’re delicious. And also, red velvet cake, a thing that obsessed Z, who I think was totally in it just for cake.

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Did you hear there’s red cake, Miss Hune?

At dinner, we discussed our favorite Christmas gift, ever.

For Chris, it was his Easy Bake Oven, which kills me. But really, I had one, too, and they were cool as shit.

For me, for some reason my little greenhouse stands out. It was see-through, shaped just like a greenhouse, and divided into three. It came with seeds, and little tools, and you could watch your seeds’ roots and sprouts and it turned me into the plant expert I am today.

Really, I’m not good at anything, am I?

Then it was Lilly’s turn.

“Well,” she hemmed. “I guess it has to be, um, when I, um, got a pony.”

Chris and I exchanged a glance.

Lilly went on to tell us how her parents did the whole Presentation of the Pony on Christmas morning, and no, it wasn’t sleeping under the tree, which is what I immediately envisioned, but there it was, in the barn, with a banner announcing it was Lilly’s.

“So, yeah, I was that girl. The girl who got a pony, for real, on Christmas.”

And that is when I helped Chris gather a few of his things, and we took the kids and left Lilly there at the table. Forever.

A pony for Christmas.

IMG_3197.jpgAfter dinner and resentment, we headed over to the barn to feed the horses, which you can imagine did not delight me in the slightest. Also there: BARN KITTIES!

I took them all home. I probably should have lead with the fact that two horses live here now. Hey, maybe THEY knocked over the broom.

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I LOVE YOU HORSIE
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I LOVE YOU KITTIES

While Lilly busied herself with horse things, her son G decided the cats did not have enough food. So…

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What, is Lily the cat on her way to dinner?

IMG_3215.jpgWe also visited the chickens, and that was the day June was complete.

IMG_3217.jpgAfter, we made a bonfire, and I’m happy to tell you I got a shot of my jowls by the fire. Hune’s howls.

IMG_3219.jpgHave a holly jowly Christmas. We need to take up a collection to fix that shit, y’all. Go. Fund me.

IMG_3221.jpgFor no reason whatsoever other than she is a poor judge of character, Z is a Fan o’June. She is a Junello.

IMG_E3230.jpgAnyway, that sums up Christmas, and what annoys me is Z said about 109 funny things that I was going to repeat to you and I forgot them all like I did my mailbox. Everything just sieves out my brain now, and oh!

At one point this week, I was on the phone to my mother and reported to her that I was streaming Long Island Medium, because that is a really good show and you are wrong. IT IS.

The point is, at the end of the conversation, she said, “Okay, then, go back to watching Long Island Madame.” So that’s where I get it.

Also, THAT would be a really good show.

And that is today’s log for yule.

XO,

Hune

 

 

Because Prosecco

IMG_E3062.JPGHey, June, why so destined for hell?

So Christmastime is here, as the Peanuts would say high-pitchedly, and here’s what I’ve done thus far…

Yesterday, I got this urge to clean the house. I don’t know why. Maybe I’m pregnant and nesting or something miraculous like that. Maybe I’m about to give birth in a manger. The point is, I laundered and dusted and cleaned all fekking afternoon, and there I was, mopping myself into a corner, as I do, when the doorbell rang.

“WOO WOO WOO WOOOO WOOF!” said Edsel, who really has a limited vocabulary.

I literally had no way to get to the door without screwing up the mopping. “Who is it?” I shouted, the way Laverne and Shirley used to while they held their baseball bats.

“It’s Happy,” said Happy, who is a faithful reader and who somehow knows where I live, I forget how. I wish now that’d I’d thought to eat her, as then I could tell you she was my Happy Meal.

“Hang on!” I said, then mince mince minced over the chair and the still-drying floors to the door, which to tell you the truth now that they’re dry don’t really look any different. My wood floors don’t really shine anymore, and hey, Stepford Wife. Nice concerns.

IMG_3074.JPGThe point is, Happy feeds and takes in feral cats, and this one is living in her laundry room at the moment, and she wondered if Ned would want this cat, who looks like NedKitty if NedKitty had dipped her tail in ink.

I SO THINK HE SHOULD. And certainly this personal decision should be mine and not his. Anyway I texted the photo and he hasn’t said either way, which will stun everyone who knows Ned and his lightning-fast decisions.

IMG_E3076.JPGHappy also gave me this jaguar of color, because it reminded her of Steely Dan, and lemme tell you what. Every time I see that thing out the corner of my eye, I think it’s Steely Dan.

IMG_3136.jpgAnd the reason I keep seeing it out the corner of my eye is Dear Happy: I am sorry to tell you that Edsel is obsessed with Jaguar of Color. Obsessed. Like, he slept with it last night. Obsessed. I think you got Edsel a gift, after all.

IMG_3071.jpgAnyway, as the day drew to a close, I left Dickus Americanus, up there, during the .0007 seconds she sleeps a day, and stampeded over to my coworker Austin’s house, as he invited me to a little gathering at his house. Yes, I realize I just told you my coworkers don’t like me, but he resides in the minority. He’s like someone who voted for McGovern or something.

IMG_3083.jpgNot wanting to break our record, I put on my next Chubby Stick color beforehand, in  Mighty Mimosa, which is dumb because mimosas are orange, but I do have to say I enjoy me a mimosa, because getting drunk at breakfast is the way to go.

IMG_3085.jpgI also wore my ridik coursage that Ned’s stepmother gave me years ago, a corsage I adore but that I can’t pin on right, so as soon as I got to Austin’s it fell off and I stuck everyone with m’wayward pins like they were all my voodoo dolls.

IMG_E3088.JPGI like Austin’s friends. This is the guy who also likes old pictures of people he doesn’t know. His wife and I got into a very deep discussion about Highlights Magazine, and she expressed her disdain for The Timbertoes (“I don’t know what they are, and I don’t know what their message is”) and right then I knew, I loved her with all my heart.

timbertoes

Because she’s right. Why are they wooden? Why are they 1800s-looking? WHO THE FUCK ARE THE TIMBERTOES AND WHAT DO THEY WANT WITH US?

“You only ever find Highlights Magazine at the doctor’s,” she pointed out. “And that one Bible Book, which I read once as a kid, not realizing the stories would all have morals,” she said. Then she went on to imitate for me the drawings inside that book, doing a fine imitation of everyone at the crucial moment when they readjust their moral compass, which apparently happens in every story.

Unknown

“Oh my god, that book is ALWAYS THERE at the doctor’s and I never once picked it up,” I said to her. “It’s like those strawberry candies, where the wrapper looks like a strawberry? I sort of know its there, but I also barely even acknowledge it exists.”

There was another woman at the party who, when I asked how she knew Austin and his wife, told me how she was new to town and desperate to make friends, so after a few perfunctory meetings with Austin’s wife, she one day chased after Austin’s wife’s car with a post card, which she eagerly slammed onto the window.

“It had every possible detail,” Austin’s wife told me. “Her shoe size, her kids’ ages, everything.”

At the end of the night, when I was leaving, that same woman came up to me. “I wanted to slam a post card at you but I don’t have any,” she said, and we exchanged numbers and kissed.

Austin’s party gets hot. The real housewives of Greensboro.

IMG_3096.jpgSpeaking of hot, Austin had a fire on his TV, despite actually having a, you know, fireplace. “This is better than a real fire,” said Austin. “It got 5 stars on Netflix.”

This lead us all to want to see a 1-star fire, which we figured would be one guy trying over and over to light wet wood, and eventually just tossing in and burning a Solo cup.

IMG_3102.jpgAustin’s dog continues to be perhaps unhealthily obsessed with Austin, although she did, oddly, give me the time of day, which is rare.

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fuk yuu, laydeee. you fekkin timber tow.

IMG_E3109.jpgI also took time out of my busy schedule to admire Austin’s kitchen wallpaper, as I always do, and I see the Prosecco had set in at this point, because nice focusing. Austin and I spent about 45 minutes discussing the use of typography on said wallpaper, and would we, as a designer and a copy editor, have been okay with those equals signs, and the cursive/all caps fiasco, and the fact that there is clearly an extra space before “drops,” till finally I announced, “We are the two most boring people in the world.”

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You really are, June.

This is another friend of Austin’s, who I threatened to put in my blog last night, but I forget why. Because Prosecco. He’s the husband of Post Card Wife.

Anyway, I see I have droned on about Xmas Eve for too long, kind of like my stay at the Prosecco table last night, and I don’t have time to describe Christmas and this has instead become all about Eve, and I would take credit for that joke but really The Poet made that one up, and damn her and her writing awards.

Hey, June, is ensuring good sentence structure part of your job? Because, job. Well done.

IMG_3185I’ll talk to you tomorrow, when I will describe my not-at-all-chaotic Christmas with a Kitten, volume 3949294. ‘Tis not my first Xmas with a kitten. Probably won’t be my last. That doesn’t mean it’s never a pain in the Prosecco, though.

Yule see me later.

June

Astro surf and turfing

I woke up at 2:53 a.m. today, with a migraine. I attribute this to having gotten up at 5:30 yesterday, to go to damn Purrrrre Barrrrre, and one wonders why I think I need to work out when I already look Like This.

Anyway, my sleep pattern was messed up, which is a migraine trigger, and whatever, I had one, hooo care.

I got out of bed and hunched over to the kitchen, and I feel the need to hunch when I’m not feeling well because my Aunt Kathy always does that when she’s not feeling well, which by the way is around 270 days a year. She’s a professional not-feeling-well-er.

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deer god. wat edzul eber do to deserbe.

The point is, I took my medication and hunched back to bed, where Edsel and Jodie Foster awaited me, and while I was trying to get back to sleep,

boop!

That damn kitten kept booping my face. boop! Oh my god, annoying.

No matter how many times I…gently placed her orange bitch-ass down the bed, and yes, I did want to hurl her with all my might, she kept coming back and

boop!

Here is why I’m insane. I kissed her little walnut head before immigrating with my pillow over to the spare bedroom. That damn kitten drove me out of my own bed, into the vast desert of the spare bedroom, and I still had to kiss her.

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okay, she cute in theeeery, but not that irresist.

In the spare bedroom, Steely Dan was lounging across the pillows. Having spent most of my week with Two-Ounce Tillie, up there, all of a sudden his already-enormous self seems even enormous-er, and he also seems this solid paragon of dignity.

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it troo. also, good pikktur, mom. wat dis be, mom blawg circa 2009?

I kissed his coconut head and settled in to sleep. When,

BOOP.

That asshole booped me in the face, with all 182 pounds of him.

HE’S NEVER BOOPED ME IN THE FACE EVER BEFORE.

“STEELY DAN,” I said, irritated with the world. He touched his wet cold nose to mine before curling up against me and falling asleep, where as soon as he was unconscious I injected him with lethal gasses.

IMG_E2992.JPG
and yet, heer steelee be

And I’m sorry all my stories are about cats lately. It’s all I’m surrounded by. I’ve all of a sudden become the old lady with cats.

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When did my neck get rings? When did I join the Ringling Brothers on my neck?

The other exciting news is I got my roots dyed yesterday, at lunch, which by the way is super relaxing and you’re not over there nervously checking the clock or anything.

We also had a happy hour team thing after work for a particular account I work on, but I already WENT to one for a DIFFERENT account last week, and just now I typed “last” wrong, and my computer autocorrected it to “astroturfing,” like that’s a thing I say just all the time. I think I can honestly say that is the FIRST time I ever said “astroturfing,” so good going, computer. Good smart-ting.

Anyway, I didn’t go. I was exhausted.

Also, I’ve been invited to two things, one on Christmas Eve and one on Christmas Day, and both hosts say, “Don’t bring anything,” and is that true? What do real people do?

Both are married couples, two kids each, except the Xmas Eve couple has two teenage daughters and the other couple has two little kids. Your thoughts, Hobson?

Also, I’m getting together with Jo and Kit on the 27th, and all of a sudden Jo’s all, Oh I got you two the cutest thing and I was all, “WE’RE GETTING EACH OTHER THINGS?”

“Oh, just regift something,” said Jo, as if I have a whole closet of Gifts That Didn’t Work For Me.

Your thoughts, Hobson? Do you wish I’d quit saying that? It’s from Arthur.

The entire time I’ve been writing you, I’ve been scarfing these chocolate-orange-ball Christmas cookies my mother made me, thereby eliminating all of the work I did at Pureé Bar yesterday. Orange you glad I ate chocolate cookies?

I’d better go. I have to shower, and my whole body hurts, and also migraine hangover, plus also my face was booped repeatedly and Dear People Who Don’t Have Cats Who Are Moments From Annoying Me:

It’s when a cat hits your face with a velvety paw, not to inflict pain. It’s really more a claws-in sitch. They just want to play, so they boop boop boop your face over and over again, and you all of a sudden get how someone could abuse an animal.

Sincerely,

Jone

P.S. Oh, HELL. This is Chunky Cherry, and seriously, Clinique, what’s with all the fat names lately? I have ZERO MAKEUP on again, and I’m SORRY. It’s the MORNING.

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That color really brings out your broken capillaries.

 

June ages, like a fine wine. Or a bottle of ripple you leave out too long.

In a stunning display of self-centeredness, and in preparation for my move to another computer, I looked through the webcam photos I have here and came to the conclusion that my six years with (“with”) Ned have aged me.

Photo on 1-14-12 at 10.24 PM #2
January 14, 2012

Above, I had talked to Ned online, but not dated him yet.

Photo on 3-17-12 at 4.20 PM #3
St. Patrick’s Day, 2012. 

On my way to a date with another dude, above, as Ned had said he “wasn’t ready” for exclusivity.

Photo on 12-23-12 at 3.44 PM
Christmas of 2012

I think at first, as I got all in love and shit, I started to look better.

Photo on 1-19-13 at 7.15 PM

Our one-year anniversary, where I remember hoping he’d not bring up any ex-girlfriends all night. He did.

Photo on 3-16-13 at 7.07 PM
St. Patrick’s Day 2013. 

Even though I’m all Cell Block H here, I was really happy then.

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Spring of 2013

See?

Photo on 1-25-14 at 4.38 PM #5.jpg
January 2014

Right around our two-year anniversary. Is this obsessive, what I’m doing?

Photo on 10-23-14 at 8.29 AM
October 2014

We’d moved in together, and trouble was already brewing. We had a terrible blowout on day three. I don’t mean we both got our hair straightened at the hairdresser’s, which woulda been more fun.

Photo on 1-1-15 at 12.03 AM #3
HAPPY NEW YEAR! In jail.

I spent Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve in my room, as we fought both those holidays. I’ve no idea why I took a photo of this miserable moment, but I did. I watched Google count down the year from my computer.

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July 2015

My 50th birthday. Half the time I was deliriously in love and the other half I was in fekking agony.

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December 2015

Oh, look, I’m home. Home to Tara. Months from my beloved dog dying. Maybe that’s what aged me.

Photo on 7-13-16 at 8.22 AM #3
July 2016

See? Lookin’ sorta old. Maybe it’s just cause I AM old and has nothing to do with emotional strain. Maybe I’m making all this up.

Photo on 3-18-17 at 7.04 PM #3.jpg
Cell Block St. Patrick’s Day 2017

What’s with me and all the morose photos on St. Patrick’s Day? And why do I stampede to my webcam on that holiday? Luck o’the Apple to ya.

Photo on 12-10-17 at 4.14 PM #2.jpg
December 2017

I don’t know. Maybe it’s just m’insides that got old and I don’t look as dreadful as I thought.

2012–2017.

Anyway. Have you seen enough photos of me today? Or do you hope for more?

We had our team Christmas party after work yesterday; the creative team, I mean.

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Oh thank baby and advanced-age, curvier Jesus. A photo of someone else.

That up there is m’coworker Essence, and I did not just use the random name generator or anything. I like her, and I like her earrings maybe more than is healthy.

Am I going to hell for saying, “Advanced-age, curvier Jesus”? Jesus is really embracing his curves.

IMG_2964.jpgAdvanced-age, curvier June’s plate. I’d like you to admire the plates, as I brought them, along with the matching napkins. Yep. June. Brings so much to a party.

IMG_2959.jpgIt was nice to see everyone; some even came from our other offices and so on.

But I had to skedaddle out of there fairly early, as I had promised The Other Copy Editor I’d head back to her B&B last night for Wine Wednesday, because last week she was too busy to really talk to me. She and I got there at about the same time, and said one word to each other before…

IMG_2972.JPG…we noticed 14 of the Alexes were also there. So we went to one of the rooms, we got a room, as it were, and chatted and giggled and did not at all gossip or discuss sex ad nauseam, as girls do.

TinaDoris, there, second from the right, is who I’ve been going to Pure Barrrrrre with, and yes, I got up with her at 6:00 today and pured our bars already. So once again, we have a Thursday where I’ve packed a lotta living into one day.

IMG_2970.jpgOh, and I almost forgot. At lunch yesterday, I schlepped Jodie Foster back to the shelter, in what is a rapid, convenient drive down the not-at-all-most-congested street in town. She had to get her shots, and I wanted that cold checked out.

She’s fine, but they did give her antibiotics just to be safe. And today I heard big old robust Steely Dan coughing, and I just felt terrible about it. I love that cat so bad.

Speaking of which, Ned called to say he got NedKitty’s remains yesterday. He walked into the vet’s, hoping to see, “Bee or Doris,” he said, like I’d know who they are.

“They’ve seen me come in for years with Murphy,” he said, and yes, that was her real name, “and I was hoping we could talk about her or something.”

Instead, a person he didn’t know handed over DeadKitty, and “no one gave me a hug or anything,” Ned said. It would appear he’s not doing well with the death of that cat.

Meanwhile, he’s still aging me, so.

I gotta get dressed. I got some StitchFix stuff I wanted to show you, but that damn Iris has been sleeping, unmoving, on my wrist this whole time and she is IRKING ME and I have a cramp.

Oh, hell, I gotta take a lipstick picture, don’t I? Okay, I have NO OTHER MAKEUP ON, so be kind. This is Roomiest Rose. What’s with all the big names lately?

IMG_2976.JPGThanks, June. Helpful photo.

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Ah, okay.

I added panicked mascara. And got some in my damn hair. Why do I bother?

Talk to you later. Maybe later we can get together and look at photos of me.

XO,

June

When Grape-Up Becomes a Thing

I wish more things could hurt on my body today. Stupid Pure Barre. Also? It turns out? When you get up at 5:20 and you’re used to around, oh, 7:00-ish, you feel really tired all day. Just a little news flash for ye.

“Ye.” Because suddenly I’m in biblical times.

Anyway, Bathsheba, before I forget because you know how I am, let’s delve into my boss, fmr.’s, wardrobe.

My boss, fmr., has an office right outside my open, exposed, raw desk in the open, exposed, raw floor plan that stresses me out on the daily.

“Oh, look, you’re here!”

“Going to lunch?”

“What’s that you’re snacking on?”

“Why you taking antibiotics?”

I’ve no idea who thought making us sit in a huge room with no privacy whatsoever eight hours a day was a stellar idea, an idea that would “inspire” us, because man, do copy editors ever seek inspiration. They don’t at all seek quiet and a place to concentrate. Anyway, whoever thought of it has an office, I guarantee you that.

The point is, my boss, fmr., has an office that she’s never in that’s right next to my exposed-innards desk. I know she’s never there because about 97 times a day, someone says, “Do you know where boss, fmr., is?”

She’s a good boss. She’s the kind who actually answers your emails and takes time out for you and so on, so she’s probably out doing just that, or at meetings, because meetings. There are always the meetings.

Once a month, her Stitch Fix–or is it StitchFix–box comes to work, and as she’s pawing through it, I always take the liberty of stampeding in there to veto her choices. I don’t recall her ever asking me to do that, but let’s face it: she’s in an office. I get like 30 seconds where I’m not exposed, I’ll take it.

This is also why I pee 11 times a day.

Anyway, now a committee of women assault her in this manner when her Stitch Fix–or is it StitchFix–box comes, and that is when I was inspired, in an office and not an inspirational open floor plan, mind you, to

BOSS MY BOSS, FMR.

“What if, every month, you try on all your choices and my readers help you pick?” I asked. And she was all, okay yeah.

Here is her box for this month, wherein she has already decided what to keep and what to get rid of. Ready? Brace yourself. Grab onto the person sitting seven inches from you in your open floor plan.

IMG_E2617.JPGShe is KEEPING the spotty dress!

IMG_E2620.JPGShe said YES to the skirt!!

IMG_E2621.JPGShe is RETURNING the ’80s Forenza-looking sweater with gold thread.

Also, she immediately played up to the camera. For a relatively quiet, unassuming person, it was surprising that you get a camera on her and she’s Princess Diana all of a sudden.

IMG_E2622.JPGSee. This is where we can boss the boss, fmr. next month. Because I wanted her to keep the Blondie Bumstead shirt, totally, for sure, and she returned it.

IMG_E2624.JPGThese boots are cute, but $110. My coworker Poochie, who has 8 million pairs of expensive shoes, was encouraging her to keep them, but I burst in and said, DON’T LISTEN TO POOCHIE. SHE SPENDS 8 MILLION DOLLARS ON SHOES EVERY WEEK.

So that’s a little preview, and next month we’ll actually get to vote. Oooo, ooooo! I can do another SURVEY! We can do a survey for each piece! Is that the best way, do you think? If someone has organizational skillz and can think of a better idea, let me know. LMK, as the kids say. The inarticulate kids.

IMG_E2666.JPGI meant to show you a photo of today’s Clinique Chubby Stick, but instead I uploaded a photo of my coworker’s dog. I took this photo yesterday, as said dog ate A WHOLE BOWL of chocolates, wrapper and all, so my coworker brought him in so she could make sure he didn’t die. If he had, I’d have lead with that.

IMG_2668.jpgHERE we are. This is Graped-Up, and first of all, what does that even mean, and second, it looks like I have no lip color on at all. We have one more boring day of nude-ish colors, then we stampede into some exciting pinks. So.

And speaking of exciting, come back here tomorrow afternoon I MEAN IT. There will be photos of something very exciting. No, not my boobs. Perv.

Before I go, I mentioned this in the comments yesterday but perhaps you didn’t see them, as you were busy asking your coworker who she just called, seeing as she was four inches from you and you heard every word and you KNOW that wasn’t her husband.

My point is, at 6 p.m. today, NedKitty is going to be put to sleep. The vet with the pink hair is going to Ned’s to do the deed. She really isn’t eating anymore–NedKitty, not the vet–and she’s had kidney disease for more than a year.

And yes, I’m going over there while it is happening. And would you like to know what I’m not in the mood for? Opinions re this or anything having to do with Ned. It’s a sad time. And even though we were broken up, when Tallulah died, I called him at 11 p.m. crying so hard he couldn’t understand me and was literally here in less than five minutes. So. I’m going over there for this.

IMG_0716.JPGThis is the very first picture of NedKitty I ever took, in 2012. She gave me that look for about three years before she decided she liked me. Now I’m the only person who’s allowed to pick her up.

Godspeed, NedKitty. May there be paper bags to wear on your head, and much hair to chew in the kitty afterlife.IMG_2585.JPGIMG_1791.JPGIMG_5479IMG_2140.JPGimg_4335.jpg

Drivin’ all the old men crazy.

A good part about how they’ve put me on multiple accounts at work is that I’ve gotten to know more coworkers who aren’t Griff. Also, I’ve gotten to know people I’ve worked with all these years, but rarely talked to because we weren’t on the same account.

It can get (ready?) siloed at work.

One of those corporate terms I love.

What they mean is everyone’s working on their own shit so you don’t talk. But they changed that up now, and I’m on three or four accounts at any given time, and yes, everything DOES come to me all at once and everyone needs everything immediately, but that’s not important right now.

What’s important is I’ve gotten to know people I didn’t know before, including a coworker who I will call

Oh my god.

I just ran her through the Random Name Generator, and they want me to call her Lottie Blanco, which I know is slightly confusing given that I had a dog named Lottie,

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She was delicious

but it’s such a marvelous name that I can’t help but use it.

So, my coworker, Lottie Blanco, is married to a woman with the same name. The Lottie Blanco I work with is a very down-to-earth-seeming person, at least compared to me, which does not set the bar high. Miss Piggy is more down-to-earth than me. But really, Lottie Blanco is the type who wanders over calmly and says, “Welp. I got 26 articles for you to read by 5:00” and then stands there emotionlessly, whereas I would deliver this news with a shaking hanky and a paper bag to breathe into.

The point is, she hates snakes. ALERT, FAITHFUL READER TEE. ALERT. SNAKE STORY.

Lottie Blanco and her wife Lottie Blanco live near some woods, and for awhile they had mice, despite having two very cute cats. I mean, really, they are extraordinarily cute–both blonde, one fluffier than the other. The fluffy one was wandering around skinny and homeless and looking like Ren when they got her. The point is, eventually the mice went away, and they were all, hunh. Well, good.

One afternoon my coworker Lottie Blanco was up in the attic, taking a box down for a yard sale they were gonna have, and when she lifted the box

A

GIANT

RAT

SNAKE

was curled up under it. According to my coworker Lottie Blanco, she actually managed to step on her wife Lottie Blanco’s HEAD while screaming and screeching out of the attic like a screaming screeching person.

And this is why I like working on different accounts.

The point is, and yes there is a point besides that stellar story, is yesterday Lottie Blanco The Snake Hater asked me to join a little team celebration at a downtown bar/arcade called Boxcar.

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June downtown. Driving all the old men crazy.

Everyone raves on about that place, but I never went, because what do I care about an arcade?

IMG_2627.JPGExcept nobody told me THERE WERE PINBALL MACHINES.

When I was a kid, we HAD a pinball machine. It was called Skipper, and my father bought it somewhere or other. Maybe at sea. Maybe from Gilligan. I just don’t know.

download.jpg

This is a terrible picture of Skipper. Let me Google fucking it some more.

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It’s for identification only. It’s NOT part of the kit! I have no idea what that means.

The point is, I spent approximately 11,000 youthful hours in my basement, playing Skipper, and what I wouldn’t give to have that particular game back. Pinball machines were simpler then, as was life, other than that racism and sexism and homophobia stuff that has SO CLEARLY gone away now. Thank god that’s been cleared up.

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Photo credit: Lottie Blanco

Despite the fact that today’s pinball machine is now really dark and you can’t see where the goddamn ball is anymore, I took my complimentary tokens and played me some pinball for, oh, an hour and a half. Oh, how I love it.

And it all came back to me. I’d say “like riding a bike” except I don’t know how to ride a bike. But I won two free games, and I got the highest score of the week on one machine, and got to put m’name in!

I also summarily beat Lottie Blanco at air hockey. I did this by slipping into a snake costume when she wasn’t expecting it.

Hey, June, say “Lottie Blanco” one more time.

IMG_2632.jpgimg_2631.jpgI left downtown, as all the old men had been reported as 5150s, and on over to The Other Copy Editor’s bed and breakfast, where she was having her regular Wine Wednesday event, this time with a band that was apparently quite popular, seeing as I had to park on the corner of Rape and Mug and walk 200 miles. No one bothered me because I still had on m’snake suit.

IMG_E2647.JPGIt was my coworker Molly’s idea to go there, and of course she’s one of those people like my grandfather who knows every single person in town, which begs the question why can’t she think of one nice man to set me up with? Not that my grandfather was any help in that department, either.

IMG_2648.jpgAnyway, the band really was good, but I hadda go, because I needed to get up at 5:20.

You what? Great Lottie Blancos in the morning.

I promised my stupid friend TinaDoris that I’d meet her at stupid Pure Barre at a stupid 6 a.m. stupid class. When the alarm went off, I rolled over and said, “Edsel.”

Oh my god, did that poor dog ever startle awake. gud graby, it 7:00 alreddee?

The cats are always lined up along the hallway when I open the bedroom door, but this morning there was nary a cat in sight.

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eyeriss can’t eben wif dis time of day. she TRYING to eben, but she can’t eben.

In case you don’t have one in your town or something, and you know what I hate? Is when people say, “If you’ve been living under a rock…”

Oh, hohohohoho!!! God, that’s original. Lemme stitch m’sides.

Anyway.

In case you don’t know what Pure Barre is, it’s a one-hour exercise program designed to make you wish for your own swift death right there at a ballet barre.

Holy shit.

TinaDoris goes six days a week. TinaDoris looks magnificent. TinaDoris can suck it.

I came home at 7:03 (silver lining: Pure Barre is stupidly close to my house) and ate all the toast. There is no toast anywhere in the country.

“Hey, where’s the toast?”

“Pure Junne ate it.”

So that’s been my last 24 hours, and try to cram some activity in, Juan. But despite my run-aroundy life of music and pinball and allegedly burning calories that get replaced immediately by toast, I did NOT forget our lipstick pact. Today we try Whole Lotta Honey.

IMG_E2620.JPGAlso, before I forget, we’re going to have an exciting new feature here at Book of Pies. My boss, fmr., is going to show us her Stitch Fix box every month, and we get to vote on what she should keep and what she should return! She already decided on this month’s shipment, which I will feature for you tomorrow, so you’ve got that to live for.

And listen. If you do anything, check in with me Saturday this week. I have something SO STUPIDLY EXCITING to show you then.

Meanwhile, Whole Lotta Honey…

IMG_2663.jpgHunh. Yeah, okay. Whole lotta eh.

Wet-harriedly,

June

Noon June

It’s Monday at lunch, and I tried to write you all this morning, but stuff kept happening and I never got around to it. But here I am! The one that you love! Asking for another dayyyyy.

In case you were gone this weekend, or trying heroin or the FedEx delivery man, I wrote about my trip to TinyTown this weekend. It’s the post below this one. I also just linked to it. So you won’t have to be all, What happened in TinyTown, JOOOOOOOOOON??? Why didn’t you write about TinyTown, JOOOOOOONN. In my head, the more I write “JOOOOON,” the harsher you sound saying it.

Other than that, here is what else I’ve been up to…

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Oh my god, June, NO ONE CARES.

I headed out yonder to visit my friends Chris and Lilly, who are 100% over me but have to tolerate me because they’re nice people.

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“Is she gone yet? Don’t look over there. …Did she go?”

They made a nice plate of snacks, which I was indulging in despite my clean diet.

HAHAHAHAHAHA.

Anyway, there I was, indulging, when we all…smelled something.

“So you smell that?” asked Chris, and they probably worried about the contents of my adult diaper, so old am I compared to them. In the grand scheme of things, I’m Ruth Gordon to their Mia Farrow. Try the mouse.

“It’s just me!” announced their child, Z, from the hallway. She leaned into the room. “I just wanted a little company!”

IMG_E2467.JPGTurns out Z felt the…call of nature, so she brought her…call of nature chair into the hallway, right outside of the living room, to, you know. Answer nature. It was more a social event than a private event, for her. It was the social event of the season, really.

Also, I got my hair cut. I go to a regular hairdresser who colors and cuts my hair, but she doesn’t do the Deva cuts, which is a specific cut for curly hair that you have to get a certificate in and so on.

I could see my hair wasn’t…bouncing as it can, and the curls were getting heavy, so I Googled the closest place that does Deva cuts, made an appointment, and walked in this week…

…to an African American salon.

Okay. So.

I guess I never thought about it before, but once I walked into that place, the only BETTY WHITE in there, the only person who was BEYOND THE PALE, it dawned on me. I saw the light, and it was my skin. Maybe there are salons specifically for women of color, and maybe I just walked into one.

White girl walks into a salon.

But here’s the thing. A, they didn’t kick me out, and 2, they were really nice to me and 12, here’s my new hair:

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June. Stop.

No, really, HERE is my new hair:

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Right?

Here it is on another day:IMG_2458.jpgRight right? She did a great job! As Faithful Reader Fay says, I have gone black and I will not go back. I’ll still go to my color person, ironically, for color. But I’m sticking with this hairdresser for cuts.

Then finally yesterday, I tried getting back on Facebook after a few-week hiatus, but almost instantly, people started messaging me, which of course is why I got off Facebook.

(Just to catch you up, in case this was your season to try heroin, or the FedEx delivery man, a person kept sending me messages on Facebook, messages to do with Ned, and when I blocked her, she created a new profile and messaged me again. This gave me the PTSD any time my message indicator came on Facebook.

I wrote here, and on Facebook, and on the page Facebook of June, asking for people to not send me personal messages, but it kept happening. So, knowing I can’t change anyone, I just got off there. I was hoping when I got back on that I just wouldn’t get many messages, but I did, and they made me anxious again, so I left. Again.) (And shutting off messenger doesn’t help. It still tells you you have messages.)

So that was a long stint back on there. Hey, 12 hours!

And finally. In summation. To wrap up. You will note on the side of this page (if you’re on your desktop computer) or at the bottom of this page (if you’re on your phone) that there is a new feature here. It’s called From the Beginning, and it will eventually list all my categories in chronological order.

I have all kinds of stupid categories from this blog: Ned, my pets, my health, Tracy Quartermaine. But if you wanted to just sit down and read about a particular topic, you’d have to read from the present day and scroll down. Read backwards, as it were.

This annoyed me, which is saying a lot because we all know what a long fuse I have. But there’s a woman named Elizabeth who works for WordPress, who offered me her services when I came over here, and she has been magnificent, and I asked her, “Is there a way we can show some stuff in order, and not backwards?”

So she made the little From the Beginning section, and we started with the …friend/Ned category, dating back from January of 2012 when I met his ass, and ending with whenever I last wrote about him.

As I learn how the hell to add the other categories, I will add them. She did this one for me, because did I mention magnificent?

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You rilly sort of dullist person on erf.
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do not bor furthir

So that SORT of sums things up, although I have other things to tell you, but I will save them up. Savor them. Build the anticipation.

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mom blawg. fale.

Talk to you soon, from the warm supportive bosom of my pet family.

Jooooooon

TinyTown, revisited

In August of 2007, my then-spouse, Marvin, and I moved from Los Angeles to Wadesboro, North Carolina. We went from a population of 3 million to a population of 3,000. It didn’t occur to me that this might take some adjustment.

But this is what I DO in life. I plow through it, never thinking anything through, then being stunned by the struggle because I didn’t think things through. I wish for you to put this on my tombstone, along with the 40 other things I’ve asked you to put on my tombstone, which at this point is something of a scroll. A stone scroll. That you can somehow pull out to read all the epitaphs I’ve written.

“You wanna visit June’s grave today?”

“Ugh, no. I can’t even deal with unrolling her stone scroll.”

Anyway. So instead of sitting, oh, still, and letting myself be charmed by TinyTown, I immediately commenced to finding ways to leave. This is why, on February 27, 2008, I was driving to Raleigh for a job interview, when I passed a little dog on the side of a busy road.

IMG_2509(I just took this yesterday, and was stunned by just HOW busy that road was. Tallulah was less than 3 months old when I found her, and you guys, she was past that gutter. It gives me chills. She was probably moments from being in that road.)

Screen Shot 2017-12-04 at 4.38.35 PMI never made it to the interview, because as we all know by now, I made the best U-turn of my life and swooped that little puppy up and into my car. My initial plan had been to knock on the trailer doors, there, to say, “Here’s your dog,” but when I saw all the yards weren’t fenced, and that she was so very skinny, and once I saw the sun glint through her gold eyelashes, I instead shut my car door and put her in the passenger seat. And right then I knew, I had myself a Tallulah dog.

I’ve never known something so certainly, and never loved someone so fast. It was her gold eyelashes that did me in. Those gold eyelashes assured her spot as my passenger that day.

100_1312She was the best passenger I ever had, for 8 years.

This week would have been her 10th birthday, and I decided it was time to scatter her ashes all the places she loved. That included her first home, where I found her; the house we had in TinyTown; my yard here; the dog park; and any other places I can think of where she was happy, i.e., anywhere Edsel wasn’t.

(She was never a fan. Don’t tell Edsel. He was nothing BUT a fan of that dog.)

So yesterday I took the day off work to drive back to TinyTown and to where I found her, which by the way is precisely nowhere–it’s not even a town. Tallulah was a small-town girl. Livin’ in a LONELY world. She took the midnight train going an-y-where.

Also on June’s scroll: She burst into bad ’70s music when no one wanted her to.

The problem was, yesterday was our first snowstorm of the year. Go, June! Wait, did you just plow through something without thinking it through? Hunh.

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Checking out the first flakes, which you can’t see, but trust me.

Just as soon as I got out to the car, it started to snow. It was so pretty, and I was all, Oh, it won’t stick.

Oh, June.

IMG_2476.jpgSo, once again, my favorite passenger and I got into the car and headed on down the road a piece.

I took the country roads to take me home, because it’s a really pretty drive, and normally I’d have stopped to take photos for you, but as the grandmother I’m turning into would say, it was pouring the rain. It wasn’t far out of Greensboro that the snow turned to rain, but man, we’re talking rain. Much rain. It rained longer than Queen Elizabeth.

Oh, June. You’re not funny.

IMG_2502IMG_2499Whenever I return to TinyTown, I am charmed by the people and the beautiful old houses and I think, Why the hell did I ever leave TinyTown? I wonder if I’d have gotten divorced if I’d left. I wonder if I’d have ever met Ned. I’d never have had a Steely Dan, or known a single Alex.

But left it I did, which means I missed the news that my friend Lucy died earlier this year. She was a woman I met through the Episcopal church, where I was the best church secretary the world has ever known.

My stepbrother-in-law Bill once told me about a guy he knew who chucked it all to become a mushroom farmer. He wanted a simpler life. Turns out, being a mushroom farmer is really hard, and you have to constantly keep up with the heat and the moisture and the soil and your mushrooms and LIFE WAS NOT SIMPLER.

IMG_2495.jpgThis sums up my experience of going from being a proofreader at an ad agency in Los Angeles to being a church secretary in a town of 3,000. IT WAS THE HARDEST JOB I EVER HAD.

But man, did I love the people there. I saw the church and the steeple, then I opened the door and saw all the people, and they were fabulous.

It’s funny–when we first moved to TinyTown, we had one car, a car Marvin would take to work. So my only entertainment was walking, and right outside our door was the world’s steepest hill, so every day in the August heat, I’d climb that hill. This church, the Episcopal church, was at the very top, and I’d sit on the wall and spit up blood while I caught my breath. I would admire the architecture every day. At night, the steeple would be surrounded by barn swallows, but I didn’t know what they were yet.

I’ve learned a lot of things living in the South: To be, not to seem. What a barn swallow is. To enjoy conversation. A ham biscuit. And that not everyone automatically believes in evolution.

I didn’t know I’d end up working at that church, is my point.

Anyway, when I learned my favorite parishioner Lucy died, I called her husband, Dr. Whit, and we made plans to get together yesterday.

IMG_2480.jpgWhen I pulled up to his house, he ran out for me with an umbrella, and does anyone want to join me in wondering why I left TinyTown? He’d made a cozy fire in the living room, and we had lunch and talked about just everything. That’s the thing about the people there: They all have the gift of gab. They make an afternoon fly by, because they actually know how to have conversations. No one checks a phone, no one dominates the talk. It’s a skill everyone there seems to have.

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The good doctor

IMG_2481.jpgI was stunned to see they still have their mean cat, Dixie, named because she was found out behind a Winn-Dixie 14 years ago. “Has she gotten any nicer?” I asked hopefully. “Can I pet her yet?”

“Oh, no, don’t do that,” Dr. Whit warned. “Don’t ever do that.”

IMG_E2486.JPGOf course, we talked about Lucy, and he even gave me some of her ashes, and I got my nerve up and asked, and YES, she got to be buried in her Tiffany box after all. I really almost cried when I found out. I so wanted her to get her Tiffany box.

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I think we both had a really good afternoon.

After our visit, I stopped at the church and scattered a little Lu around the back door. I used to work every day from 8–12, and she’d be in her crate during that time. If I ever had to return for more pressing church secretary duties, I’d take her back to work with me for the afternoon where Dear People of TinyTown: Occasionally she’d poop in the nave maybe a bit. I am sorry. SHE WAS JUST A PUP. It was just a little puppy poop.

I remember her little excited puppy self clamoring to the back door of the church, trying to get up those big stone steps. And I remember Father Mike very tolerantly saying, “Hello, Tallulah” when he’d see us together in the office. He was the kind of guy who kept dogs for hunting, so you have to hand it to him that he didn’t fire me on the spot.

IMG_2490.jpgI also drove through the bustling downtown that continues to be adorable, then over to my old rental house, which doesn’t look good. They cut down some greenery, somehow. I want to look at old photos to compare the difference, but it looks barer now.

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Depressing.

Nevertheless, since no one was home, I sneaked to the back yard like a common criminal and scattered Lu where I stood with her for countless hours in the cold, holding her leash, saying, Go potty go potty go potty go potty until we’d give up and go inside, where she’d poop on the floor as soon as we got in.

“Lu really prefer to poop in nave.”

Then I popped in on some other friends I made in TinyTown, Jerry and Rachel. They are the very definition of gracious. They served me hot cider and chewy almond cookies on a silver tray. Also on my tombstone: She never had elegant silver trays.

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More elegance in one strand of my elegant hair than June will ever have.
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I concur.

Careful readers will note this is the couple who had me over a few Christmas Eves since I moved to Greensboro. Their house was built in the ’20s, and they are the second people to ever own it. It has built-in cabinets, and one of those fireplaces with the wood columns and the mirror built in over it and OH MY GOD THAT HOUSE Y’ALL.

IMG_2491.jpgI forget how happy the people of TinyTown make me. And when I left their house, Jerry walked me to my car with an umbrella over me.

Hey, why’d I leave TinyTown?

Anyway, the weather was not letting up, and I basically hydroplaned my way to Tallulah’s old homestead. I saw a kid playing in the yard of one of the trailers, and I was tempted to ask, “Did anyone steal a puppy from you when you were just a wee child?” but I did not. Instead, I very casually walked around the grass, scattering Lu out in the driving rain, looking, I’m sure, not remotely berserk in my suede fringe boots and fur-collared retro coat.

IMG_2503.jpgThe closer I got to home, the snowier it got, and while hydroplaning was not relaxing, neither was slipping on the ice. Despite my concrete shoulders, I took time out of sliding on the road to open the gift Jerry and Rachel had given me, a big tin of peanuts, and what better time to delve into a tin of peanuts than when you’re on an icy road, with cars spun out every few miles and ambulances everywhere? It’s a moment that cries out for a peanut break.

Tip for readers: Some tins of peanuts have very sturdy foil tops. These foil tops will SLICE YOUR FINGER TO RIBBONS should you choose to, oh, eat peanuts and drive.

You have no idea how badly I cut my own self. Turns out, bleeding and driving don’t mix. Oh my god, I was Nicole Brown Simpson. I was Sunday Bloody Sunday. I was bloody, Mary.

The peanuts were delicious.

I made it home alive and Dr. Whit even called today to make sure I did.

IMG_2514.jpgIt didn’t even snow that much–although it’s still snowing as we speak. But it’s that kind with the icy top layer, like a creme brûlée. And today I was supposed to go do something exciting that I was gonna tell you about, but now that’s been put off.

But that is probably good, since I have droned on forever about my day in TinyTown, and talk about your gift for gab.

Not as gabby as my tombstone is gonna be, but you know what I mean.

Chattily,

June. Of TinyTown, fmr.

June Heads Back

I meant to get here earlier, but I was on the phone all morning.

Recently, I discovered I had 5.5 days left of vacation time that I did not take this year, and while I can roll three of them over, I also took today and tomorrow off. Ima Christmas shop today, and then tomorrow I planned to scatter Tallulah’s ashes.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

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you wut?

Tuesday was what would have been Lu’s 10th birthday, and it dawned on me that I should scatter some of her ashes where I found her, near TinyTown, and then maybe at our old house in TinyTown if I don’t get arrested, and then some in my backyard, and then I found a store on Etsy that sort of bakes in some ashes with metal and then you have a necklace. Also, say “and then” one more time.

il_570xN.921029745_svxuSo that’s what’s going to become of Talu. She was an outdoor girl; she wouldn’t have wanted to be in that stereo speaker on my shelf forever.

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And by the way, I did not find Lu in TinyTown, proper. Hey, I wonder if my haters think I made up finding her, too. Anyway, I FOUND her on a busy two-lane road when I was driving to Raleigh for a job interview. And girl, once I got this idea, you have no CLUE how long it took for me to figure out just exactly where I found her. But I did it!!

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Here it is! Here is the busy corner! This shot was taken November of 2007, and since she was just a pup when I found her, the vet estimated she was born December 5, 2007. I COMBED this shot for a pregnant dog, because HOW WONDERFUL would that have been to see in this photo? A Beagle or a Pit, all heavy with Lu child. Maybe Lu’s mom was inside, with her new pups already. What if I get there tomorrow and one of Lu’s siblings is there?? GUESS WHO I WILL BE BRINGING HOME.

So, I guess it was maybe because I was planning this, but today I had a bad feeling, a weird feeling, and I Googled my friend Lucy, from TinyTown.

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She and I got up with each other a few years ago–we went to the museum in Charlotte, and had ourselves maybe a bit of wine in the museum cafeteria. So cultured!

I found out that she died in her sleep this year. I wish someone from TTown had told me. I’d have stampeded back there for her funeral.

Lucy was one of the women who belonged to the Episcopal church, where I was a stunning and effective church secretary. I really liked all the women there, I really did, but she was special  to me. She was beautiful, first of all, which is important to me, because spiritual and deep. Also, she had this low, sexy voice, and was ready to be sarcastic at the turn of a dime. She’s everything I wish I was, had I been born Southern.

I dearly loved her.

So, I called her husband, Dr. Whit. He’d been the TinyTown doctor forever. Pretty much delivered every resident. Lucy agreed to marry him after I think three weeks. She told me she didn’t want anyone else to get him.

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“Hello, June,” he said, as he picked up the phone.

“How’d you know it was me?” My number AND my last name have changed since we last spoke.

“My TV told me,” he said.

Dang. Things got fancy in TinyTown. Also, I love how everyone there still has a real phone. Anyway, we had ourselves a nice talk about Lucy, whom it turns out we were both pretty fond of and

OH MY GOD! CRAP! I just remembered! Out of all the hilarious memories I have of her, I remember she said she wanted to be cremated, and then she wanted to be put in a cardboard box, so she could be ashes to ashes ASAP.

But she wanted to be in a TIFFANY box. And I, idiot that I am, CALLED TIFFANY to ask if they’d just send me a box. Then I told them why.

News flash: They did not send me a box.

DAMMIT. I wonder if she got her Tiffany box. Oh, this all makes me want to cry. I WISH I had known she was so ill.

The point is, I’m not only headed to TinyTown tomorrow to scatter Lu, but also Ima have lunch with the good doctor. Then Ima pop over, drive all the way across town, as it were, to see the Johnson-Johnstons, a couple I also liked from the church. Her maiden name was Johnson, and she married a Johnston. Or vice versa. Anyway, I have thought of them often because they, too, moved out of their house, then back in, and hung pictures right back up where they’d been, and when I moved back here after my year abroad I thought of that a lot.

They did it for a job, though. Not a tumultuous relationship. So.

In all, I am v v excited about tomorrow, and I will fill you in on all the deets as soon as I can. I’m so glad I got to live in TinyTown for as long as I did. I heart those people.

And I really hope Lucy got her Tiffany box, after all.

Cutlery roasting on an open fire

My weekday mornings do not vary much: The alarm goes off and I resent it, Edsel and I open the door to 800 cats lining the halls expectantly. I trip over at least one of those solid assholes every single day. Hey. Cats are more solid than you’d think, when you’re kicking one down the hall accidentally.

I slop the hogs, make coffee/heroin for myself, then sit down to blog. Usually I open my photos from the day before in order to show you it, whatever “it” may be that day.

(Do you have to “make” heroin? I know in the movies they show someone roasting a spoon over an open flame. So maybe you do. Or maybe when you’re high on the heroin you enjoy a spoon over an open flame. I just have no idea.)

M’point is, today when I opened photos, I enjoyed the fact that almost all of them were selfies. Nice. Proud.

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There’s one sad photo of Kit, there, at the end. You can see I never did get happy with my at-the-bookstore selfie, as I took 70 of them.

IMG_1841.jpgWhat’cha doin’, June?

I went to work yesterday like a normal person, which you know isn’t true because I can’t do anything “like a normal person.”

(Do you consider yourself normal? Any time a man writes that he’s “normal” on a dating profile, I’m all NEXT. First of all, hey, judge-y. Also, hey, boring-y.)

Anyway, I went to work like the person I am, only to realize I had scheduled my Botox at 12:45 and my car repair for my accident at 1:00.

Pfft.

So the car repair got rescheduled for today. Not that I know it even NEEDS repair. Today is when they look at it. Give it the male gaze. They check it out now, funk soul brother. Right about noon, funk soul brother.

So above, there, is me going to the OTHER appointment yesterday, applying the ice to my head, there, before the needle and the damage done.

I need to stop thinking in song lyrics.

In summation, I got went to work yesterday and had Botox at noon. That would be a man’s blog entry thus far. Those two sentences.

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Oh, look. A selfie. This is me after work, in the waiting period. See below. Click here! You won’t BELIEVE what happens next.

At work yesterday, I had some of my delicious high-fiber oatmeal, because Mmmmmm, or Nnnnnnnn, as they say in the Pearl Drops Tooth Polish commercial when they lick their teeth.

( https://youtu.be/m2tYvxEVreI

Sadly, while I was searching for a Pearl Drops commercial, as you do, there were 97 clips from General Hospital available to me, including one with a Leslie and Monica showdown that I really wanted to take time out of my executive schedule to review, but look at June. Staying with the task at hand. If the “task at hand” is to get distracted by “Nnnnnnnnn.”)

So I had the oatmeal, June says, and you’ve already forgotten. “Jesus, WHAT oatmeal?” Then I had my important Botox at noon, so that left me no choice but to get a luncheon Dorito Taco at Taco Bell, and why everyone isn’t just knocking down the doors to get them MORE Dorito tacos is beyond me. Cause, nnnnnnnn.

Then, Kit and I had plans to go to a reading together at the local bookstore after work. We were gonna hear Mr. Write’s new book.

We were meeting at 6:45, so it was easiest to just leave from work, where there were, sadly, no snacks. What kind of workplace doesn’t have snacks?

I got to the bookstore a little early, ordered a glass of chardonnay, and meandered to the back of the store, where readers read when there’s a reading, and that was the day you stopped reading June.

I found a book. I know! At the bookstore. And I sipped my wine and read my book, which in retrospect I shoulda bought cause now I’m over here wondering what happens next. I want to click here on that book.

The point is, by the time Kit arrived, I was drunk.

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“Oh, good.”

Seriously. I guess oatmeal at 9:00 and a taco at noon were not enough to take on The Wine. Holy cats.

So I slumped drunkenly in my chair as Mr. Write wandered in, followed by an entourage of admirers. I’ve been to several readings read by writers where they read at the bookstore readingly, and, like, when The Poet was there, she had standing room only.

But Mr. Write, who happens to be good-looking, had throngs. Seriously.

IMG_1853.jpgAnd, you know, careful readers will note that we dated. Not you and me, homophobic housewife in Haverford, Mr. Write and me. We dated briefly last year. He was the most “with potential” suitor I’ve had since my 404 Error, but it didn’t work out.

And now he was seeing me for the first time in more than a year, and I’m drunk.

He saw me through the crowd and was very gracious. “Good to see you,” he said to me, while people gazed at him. He really is a Mr. Handsome.

And his reading was great. I’d link to his book or something, but he is, in fact, really private and I feel like he’d be annoyed with me for being all, HERE IS SOMEONE I DATED HERE. HERE. On m’blog.

Anyway, the good news is, he read a lot of stuff, so I had time to sober up. And I thought, What the hell was wrong with me? I could have had Mr. Write to date for awhile, and I was all oh no. Break me off some more of that guy who’s hurt my feelings 400 times instead.

After, I got his book, Mr. Write’s, I mean, and stood in the endless line for him to sign it. I caught up with Kit’s life, which has taken an exciting turn lately, and I similarly feel like she would kick my ass if I splayed that all over yonder, so let’s just say her life is going well now.

Mr. Write and I exchanged pleasantries once I got up to him, but the woman behind me cockblocked our conversation by including herself in our talk, and I wish you all could have been there to see the daggers coming right out my half-drunk eyes.

Kit and I then sat in the window of the store, as that’s the place where you can sit at tables in the window and have yourself a time. “I’ve never sat up here before,” said Kit, who works 11 feet from that store, and how she hasn’t taken advantage of that table window table is beyond me.

The point is, Kit knows everyone in town, and it was like she was on a float. We’d get one sentence out and there she was again, waving gleefully out the window and throwing butterscotch candies.

I guess homecoming queens don’t do that, do they? That’s more clowns at the Knights of Columbus parade.

Whatever. Girlfriend was waving. A lot.

So, in summation, I went to work, got Botox at lunch, then to a reading with Kit after work.

The end.

Briefly,

Juan