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

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I just laid there. Or lay. You know what sounds good? Lay’s Potato Chips.

Yesterday, I finally relented and called my doctor, because you know how I resist doing that. I’m never one to call the doctor. Or cause a fuss. Anyway, he insisted I get an x-ray of my toe, because apparently if you let it go, occasionally something hellish could happen and all of a sudden Scarlett O’Hara is watching your anesthesia-free amputation.

Fortunately, the x-ray place is literally across the street from work, so all I had to do is hobble over there, and to make a long story agonizingly longer, I have a broken toe, officially.

GettyImages-2642432I know.

So, the good news is, I have to buy “hard-soled shoes,” whatever those are, and when I Google that, I find sort of nerdy Maryjane, I-love-folk-festivals shoes that I have always secretly thought were sort of cute.

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Normally, these shoes are like $115, and I just got the last pair, in red, on Zuilly, for $61, including shipping, which always pisses me off. Shipping.

Anyway, now I have nerd shoes. I hope they don’t reject my feet, seeing as I’m so cool.

I wonder if I’ll start listening to NPR and letting my hair go gray and long. Serve soup in handmade bowls with crusty bread on the side.

My doctor, who is not at all sick of me.

My doctor, who’s got a fever and the only cure is No June.

My doctor said I will be laid up with this major break for six weeks. But if I tape my major break and wear my nerd shoes, I can still walk Edsel. “You’ve got that dog, right?” he said, thinking of my plan for a cure. What’s sad is he knows my ins and outs so well. He also said, “You’re not gonna blog about walking into a dog bone and breaking your toe, are you?”

“Dude. I already wrote about that this morning,” I told him.

“Do you think you’ll lose readers?” he asked. See. I think he thinks the secret to blogging success is to seem, you know, dignified. But if I were dignified, what would be the point of reading me? Oh, I think I’ll wander on over to June to see what dignity she has today. Ima go over and see June handle life with grace.

I mean, zzzzzzzz.

So that happened; I broke a major bone in my body and may never walk again. But now that we know that, and we know that the solution is I have to wear shoes that look like I’m teaching granola making at The Learning Annex, let’s move on to the topics I did not cover yesterday.

Ned and Nancy. Almost Sid, but if Sid were an engineer.

As you know, from your Big Book of June Events, I have been fostering kittens for the local animal shelter, and recently I had a mom cat and her four kittens–all of whom are already adopted; I checked. Anyway, Ned lost his cat in December after 18 years of having her, and he decided to adopt Nancy, the mom to my foster kittens.

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sheee miss uzz, eben tho we poop on ebrything

Oh my god, I DO miss them.

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IMG_4214.jpgI’ve no idea why I’m giving you so much background, like you don’t all know this info. Like someone just got here. Anyway, the mom, Nancy, pooped outside her litter box once or twice here, but once she got to Ned’s, she’s doing it all over yonder.

And why doesn’t everyone ask me if he’s done all the things anyone would do. Yes, he tried other litter boxes. Yes, he tried other litter. Yes, he tried the cat-attracting litter (he told me EVERYONE is asking him that one). Yes, he took her to the vet.

They didn’t find anything physically wrong, but they think she’s a feral cat. They told him to confine her to one room (he did) and put her on Prozac (he did). That’s where it is now, and it’s not going well.

 

IMG_4221.jpgHe will probably not be able to keep her, which is just so sad. I asked Chris and Lilly if they needed a barn cat, but they don’t. Poor sweet Nancy.

Ned called me last night to tell me the latest, about the Prozac, and I told him the sad truth about my major injury. “Do you need anything?” he asked. Ironically, I needed cat food, so he bought some at the store, as opposed to conjuring it up with his mind control, and brought it over.

He’d been at the gym and tending to Nancy and so on, and hadn’t eaten, so I offered him one of my bags of nuts. So to speak.

I buy those 100-calorie packs of nuts to snack on, and I can just HEAR my mother saying, “That’s too expensive,” but I don’t know if she’s met me or not, but you give me a big container of nuts and all of a sudden we’re out of nuts and I’m Templeton at the end of the fair.

templeton_satisfied_by_guttloverz.jpgThe point is, I like the bags of almonds and walnuts–plain, no salt–but Ned crunched a few and asked, “What ARE these?”

“They’re almonds and walnuts.” I thought he’d be happy with them. Ned buys Girl Scout cookies and eats one a day.

One.

A day.

Till they’re gone.

So I thought saltless nuts would delight him. But Ned has never had protein in his house, a fact that has always annoyed me. He works out and then he’s starving and you offer him a stick of cheese and he acts like you’ve offered to brand him with I Heart Ted Nugent or something.

Anyway, deese nuts. “What are they flavored with, the powder of boredom and despair?” he asked, crunching frownily.

The point is, he will try Prozac on Nancy for awhile, but he’s cleaning random poop a hundred times a day and is about to give up.

So that’s THAT happy story.

My Chakras. As Opposed to My Shakiras. Either Way, Hips Told the Truth.

IMG_5439.jpgOn Saturday, I went to a cute local place to have my chakras read.

It’s kind of hard to explain what all we did. We talked a lot about the enneagram first, which is a personality thing I made you all take a few years back. I am a 4 on the enneagram, which if you are too I apologize, but 4s are really the assholes of the enneagram.

Anyway, we talked about ways to make my 4 less horrifically 4, and that was informative, and then I laid on the table (I lay on the table? I never know. Hey, what’s my job, again?) and she swung a pendulum over my chakras

chakras5.jpg

and determined my crown chakra was blocked and my solar plexus chakra was also too blocked. She did whatever she does to clear them. I just laid there. Lay there? Anyway, story of my life. That could be the title of my autobiography. I Just Laid There, or Lay There, by June Gardens.

When I got home, I Googled what the signs were of having those areas blocked, and the crown chakra, when it’s blocked, causes migraine. The solar plexus chakra, when it’s blocked, makes you depressed and codependent.

TAAAA-DAAAAA!

So I got those cleared up and immediately broke a toe and gave nuts to Ned. So.

While I was writing all this pertinent info to you, I had the gate up back here, because it’s muddy out, and I wanted Edsel to be back here till his paws dried. Meanwhile, Steely Dan

IMG_5507.jpg
WUT

LEAPED over the gate, knocking it over as he transcended it, which made it crash, and then he walked to the back door, opened it, and stomped outside, the screen door crashing behind him lustily.

IMG_5521.jpgAnd that’s why Edsel looks like this.

Brokebone mountainly,
Joob

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.

World’s Dramatic-ist Day

Careful readers will note that yesterday I had a mammogram. Or, really, slovenly readers will too, seeing as I just said it yesterday, there, genius.

I tried a new place this year because allegedly–according to their ads–they have same-day mammogram results, but of course only after I’d transferred my files, my D Files, did I learn they do NOT give same-day results in Greensboro.

Greensboro. The city that makes you wait. For results.

But it was really close to work, and very sunny and pretty in there, and once I got called in, each locker where you remove all waist-up clothes was named after a famous woman. I chose the Cher locker.

Two women were in gowns, waiting, as well. “I’m Cher! Who’re you all?”

“I’m Marilyn Monroe,” said a 90-year-old woman, who is probably younger than Marilyn Monroe would be now.

“I’m Elizabeth Taylor,” said another woman, not remotely draped in diamonds. Perhaps she was wearing her White Diamonds. By Coty.

Marilyn, Liz and I waited to be called while I tossed back my hair and showed my ass to servicemen.

The mammogram itself went without incident; I told the person performing it how anxious I am about the waiting thing, and she was very nice. Of course I searched her face for signs of pity when she took the photos.

“She was so young. -ish.”

On the way back to work, I heard from Ned. Goddammit.

He was crying so hard, I could barely understand him. “A vet is coming tonight to discuss putting [NedKitty] down. I found a place that will do it at home.”

I knew this day was coming, and I had plenty, plenty, of salty retorts about chippies and why doesn’t he call a chippie instead of me and also salty chips sound delicious right now. But once I was faced with the reality that NedKitty is finally giving up the fight, I was without salt. “If today’s the day, I’ll come over there,” I said.

I’m the only other person NedKitty loves. She pretty much looks grumpily out at everything in this world, a position in life I can get behind.

I was at work maybe an hour when my phone rang. See. This time between mammogram and letter/email saying all’s clear is my very worst time. The phone rings, I jump. Because the phone call is never good.

“This is Breast Buy calling, and we gave your test to the doctor right away because you’d said you were anxious, and he does see something and wants you to come back in.”

God

DAMMIT.

“Today,” I said. “Please get me in today. I’ll lose every moment of all my shit if I have to wait.” So they did, which is really nice, and all I had to do was wait TWO DAMN HOURS to go back and get an ultrasound.

I called Ned, who of course I’d already regaled the “I had a mammogram today” story to, because he knows how I get, and he knew I was trying out The New Place and so on. “Call me when you get the answer. I guess that’s one way to get your results today,” said Ned.

Then? I’m not fucking kidding you, everyone in the WORLD needed to speak with me. I had get-this-done-now work things pop up, and could people not DO THAT? You never know when someone is two hours from a horrifying test.

Then, I swear to you, I heard from a person I dated in Virginia, who’d had a job interview near here, and he wrote to tell me he didn’t get the job. I had to feign interest in anyone’s life but my own, which could be the title of my next book.

“Next” book.

Plus also too, I heard from this place I freelance for, with a very detailed message needing to know very detailed info from me RIGHT NOW, and finally? Finally? I got a call from my gym–yes, I have a gym. I know, right? We’d had a dispute, because my membership was up. And even though I called THREE TIMES, offered to COME OVER THERE, to make sure when it officially expired that they’d stop charging me? And they’d said:

“Oh, no, we’re not charging you after October, ma’am. We mean it.” Finally, I got them to email me a document saying my last automatic withdrawal would be in October, and

GUESS WHAT HAPPENED IN NOVEMBER?

So they picked then, that horrifying two-hour window, to get in touch to tell me I was right and they were refunding my money and in my head I’m all HOOO CARE EVERYONE LEAVE ME THE FUCK ALONE I’M TRYING TO PANIC OH MY GOD.

Finally I drove back to the place, and when I got back up to the lobby,

there was Ned. He was reading a book in that sunny waiting room, which was, in fact, less sunny cause it had been morning and now it was panicky afternoon.

“Ned,” said, finally tearing up.

We sat there silently for a minute, Ned holding my cold clammy hand.

“What are you reading?”

“Oh, it’s nothing.”

“For fucks’s sake tell me about your book or I will beat you with it.” So he did.

It’s a book about Buddhism written by a scientist, which is perfect for Ned because he’s incapable of being remotely spiritual, but science? You throw science at him, and he’s down with that.

Happens to be a link to Amazon. I know! June shills, even in panic.

“So far, it’s saying that we’re biologically wired to seek pleasure,” said Ned, who never does anything but seek pleasure. And eat salads. Which seems contradictory, but there you go. “And they’ve found that it’s the anticipation of pleasure that’s usually better than the pleasure itself. I don’t know what happens next. I just hope they tell us how to stop doing that,” said Ned, and oh, so many salty things unsaid. The sequel to my third book.

“Mrs. Gardeeens?”

I wish, when I came up with a fake blog name 11 years ago and why the fuck am I still blogging, what’s WRONG with me, that I’d come up with a name you could also mispronounce, so you’d feel my pain. My name, my real name, is forever being mispronounced, and if you know my real name, it does not end in “field.” No, go look at it again. NOT FIELD.

It’s not Jerry Seinfield. It’s not the Zigfield Follies. It’s not Marty Fieldman.

NOT ALL NAMES ARE PRONOUNCED “FIELD,” GODDAMMIT.

“Good luck, sweetheart,” said Ned, and is it possible to want to feel grateful to someone while still wanting to punch them clean in the face? Is there a word for that? I mean other than “dysfunctional.”

I got back to the lockers, and this time I was Princess Diana, which I was hoping was a good sign. I didn’t chat up the other waiters this time, as we were in the diagnostic area, not the hey, it’s our everyday mammogram hoooo care area.

IMG_2289.jpgI did, however, have the wherewithal to snap this selfie, in case I lived till today to tell you this tale. I call this Portrait of Petrified. I was hair-i-fied.

Not that that was such a clever name, but do you know what annoys me? Artists who title their work Self Portrait. Wow. Thanks for the effort, there, Snappy.

While I was begowned, waiting, I checked my phone.

“Did you Facebook unfriend me?” my stupid-ass friend Mark wanted to know. He has no idea how close he came to making me stomp my phone to death. I wrote him back, explaining that I’d disabled my Facebook for now, and then he wanted to chat, and that is why I paid a hit man to snap the face right off my now-faceless friend Mark.

I was tense. Yesterday was tense. (Entire contents of my fourth book, actually just an index card, written by a man, because I wore myself out with words.)

Finally, they brought me into a room with an ultrasound, and then the ultrasounder said, “I’ll show this to the doctor and be right back.”

IMG_2290.jpgHere was my view, while I waited for the woman or, worse, the doctor, to walk in. I did not check my phone, because I could only imagine the inanity awaiting me on that thing. Instead, I just listened to my heart beating in my ears.

The door opened.

“I bring you nothing but good news,” she said.

Oh, Jesus Christ and all the pleasure-seeking Buddhas.

Seriously, she spoke for 10 seconds before I even caught up with the “good news” part. I was so determined to steel myself against the bad news that good news wasn’t even an option.

In summation, I have a cyst. And we all need to remove our Dust Mite Allergy Awareness pins and slap on a MAMMOGRAMS FUCKING SUCK BUT IT’S A CYST  pins.

I stayed a little late at work to make up for the work I missed while I lay dying over at the Hootie and the Blowfish concert. Then I drove right over to Ned’s, where a pink-haired vet was assessing NedKitty.

“Well, her eyes are still bright, and she trotted down the stairs to see me,” said the vet. “Truthfully, I thought she’d be worse.”

Ned had on the coffee table the litany of pills and powders and ointments he uses each day to keep that cat alive. The vet laid out a plan to keep NedKitty comfortable, and a big part of that plan is that Ned is to no longer force as many pills down her cat neck, and she doesn’t have to have that goddamn IV three times a week. The point is for her to feel happy and not sick till she’s ready to go.

Of course, we all know my feelings on the topic. I’d have offed that cat back in February. But it’s not my cat, so I kept quiet, and meandered into the kitchen, where NedKitty was crouched, hoping for a treat.

I gave her about 472 treats. And girlfriend scarfed them. So.

6a00e54f9367fb883401b8d08e6b51970c-600wiI did not take pictures of her old, bony self last night. She wouldn’t want you all to see her this way. Let’s remember her as the fluffy white bitch she usually was–which incidentally is the title of my biography, to be handed out at my funeral. Which, according to the fine folks who saw way too much of m’boobs yesterday, isn’t going to be any time soon.

6a00e54f9367fb883401b7c74b8f14970b.jpgWhile Doctor Pink Hair and my ex-boyfriend discussed NedKitty’s exit plan, I picked up her old bones and held her. She won’t let anyone, not even Ned, pick her up and hold her, but she lets me. I kissed her smelly old head and stroked her cheeks.

She’s got a few weeks left, and they will be comfortable weeks. She still wears bags on her head and insists the tap be turned on so she can stick her head under the water like a lunatic. And when it’s finally time, I will be there with her, the one of two people she likes. Everyone else can fuck off. Which will be the engraving on my tombstone, where I will be buried with the ashes of my 79 dead pets.

“I’m so glad you’re okay,” Ned wept, as the vet left. “Can I take you to dinner?”

“No, Ned,” I said. “All I want to do is get into my owl pajamas, and eat toast, and watch TV.” Truthfully, I was fekking exhausted. I was drained. I was spent.

I hadn’t been home all day, which for me is rare. I almost 100% of the time come home at lunch, even though Edsel almost never pees at lunch, Edsel is a camel, or…some kind of other animal that never has to pee. Do camels pee? I have no idea. I mean, of course they pee, but…

Oh hooo care. The point is, it had been 11 hours that I’d been gone, and I trudged in like Ashley after the war, and hey, June, trot that example out for a change, why don’t you. I kissed Edsel, and fed everyone, except…

Where the fuck was Steely Dan? “STEEEEEEEEEEELY DAN!” I called out the front door. Then the back door. Then back to the front door.

Oh, great. This was gonna be God’s deal. I get to be okay, but I have to lose Steely Dan.

I thought of all the possibilities. He’d been run over. A family finally decided this robust, shiny cat was a “stray” and dragged him inside and locked the door. (Dear Family: Good luck with that. Soon he’ll be outside looking in the window at you, and you’ll have no idea how.) A dog ate him. He left me.

“STEEEEEEEELY DAN!” I called again.

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That dog bed isn’t even Edsel’s anymore.

THIRTEEN HOURS that cat was gone, before I heard the telltale THUMP that he’d just left the roof and was back on the deck, waiting to come in. For all I know, he was on the roof for all 13 hours.

I may have overreacted to his return. I may have swooped him up, felt his robust, youthful cat self, kissed his cold ears, and hugged him hard and cried like an idiot.

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wat da fuk

Dear Steely Dan: I am sorry I took all the emotions of the day out on your bastard self. But mom has a cyst, and she was never so glad to have a cyst in the history of cysts.

Love,

Jooon

Toothy

Seeing as medical checkups are my hobby and all, this is really a stellar month.

Yesterday, I went to my new dentist. In half an hour, I go to my eye doctor, a fact that will not at all make Faithful Reader Paula nervous. She doesn’t like it when I’m writing and have to go somewhere or am in any way rushed.

Dear Faithful Reader Paula: I write these before work. I am pretty much always rushed.

In a few weeks, I get my mammogram, which in truth I’ve put off. That thing terrifies me.

Anyway, yesterday I saw my new dentist because the old one, whom I started going to as soon as we moved into this city–Marvin found him–was just fine, but the hygienist gave me angina.

I’ve told you about her before. She not only hurt me, she also seriously–SERIOUSLY–had some sort of disorder where she could not stop talking.

Dear Women of America: It’s okay to have silences. It’s also okay to not tell every detail.

I have Sirius radio, says June, telling every detail, and at lunchtime there’s really not much good on there, talk-radio-wise. I was listening to some stupid call-in show recently, and a person called in under the topic of How Did You Meet Your Significant Other.

“Hi, Jenny, thanks for taking my call. I just love you. I listen to you when I…”

See. Already she was bugging me. THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE ARE LISTENING. YOU’RE NOT JUST TALKING TO JENNY. YOU’RE THE ENTERTAINMENT.

“I met my husband when he was a junior and I was a freshman.”

See. “I met my husband in high school.” That was all we needed.

“He went away to the state school, and he played soccer and had friends and all that good stuff.”

Oh! All that good stuff! Well, that’s descriptive. Also, is this remotely germane to the story?

By the time I’d heard her whole tale, I retold it in my head using three sentences. I can’t help it. I edit for a living.

This pales in comparison to that hygienist at the old place. She was so bad that she’d already read a complaint someone had made about her on Facebook, about her…talking problem, and you know what she did?

She talked to me about it.

So, after, you know, SEVEN YEARS of this hygienist, I got up all my courage, and I mean I really had to get some courage re this. I had to talk myself into it. But not in a chatty way.

“Dude, you’re the patient,” I told myself. “You have a right to request the other hygienist. It will be okay. The first hygienist probably won’t even know.” So, heart pounding, two years ago I called my dentist’s office, where they already don’t like me.

(I just tried to link to that blog post about when the funeral happened at my dentist’s office, and the woman who answers the phone was the one throwing said funeral for one of her family members, and I called and referred to “some funeral” screwing up my appointment, does anyone remember that? And then I realized my error and called back to say, “Donna, I’m so sorry. I just realized I flippantly referred to a funeral you all are going to, and that that funeral was for your brother-in-law, and it was insensitive of me and I really apologize.” and she said, “My name is Dana.” Does anyone recall that horrificness?)

Anyway, June says, doing the woman-talking-thing, I got up the nerve to call there and say, “May I please have Esmerelda as my hygienist instead of Simone?” And I was shaky and scared, but they said yes, and I saw blissfully quiet Esmerelda once. ONCE. And then that funeral story above happened, and the only person IN THE WHOLE OFFICE not at the funeral was Simone the Chatty Hygienist, and then I was back in the loop of seeing her again.

So six months ago I called again. I did my famous “starting with Yes” that I do when I call these places.

“Yes, I requested Esmerelda to be my hygienist? And I got back in the schedule with Simone? Can we go back to Esmerelda?” I mean, I had douche chills asking.

“She’s all booked up, but we’ll call you when there’s a cancellation.”

So they called me, and booked me recently, and it wasn’t till the day before that I thought to check everything out to be sure.

“Yes. Hi, DANA. I have a cleaning tomorrow, but may I just check who my hygienist will be?”

It was with Lady Chatterly. It was with Miss Wordsworth. It was with Story Spelling. They’d put me back on her loop GODDAMMIT. It was like trying to get a taffy wrapper off your hands.

So that is how I got a new dentist.

I like it there. The office is really close to me; right behind where NedKitty goes to the vet. I say that like you’re all, Ohhhhh. Therrrrrre. Yeah.

It’s fancy, and there are People Magazines in the lobby, and they took individual photos of every single tooth. “Did I look fat in those pictures?” I asked, and because I’m new to them, they weren’t sick of me yet, and they laughed. I saw EVERY ONE of my teeth on a big screen and man, have I had a lot of crowns and fillings and “onlays,” whatever those were.

They also did that gum reading where they say, “2, 2, 1. 1, 2, 3.” I used to like it, back in LA, when they’d say my area code, which was 323.

Anyway, it all looks good, and then the hygienist came in to clean me, and you know what?

She was quiet.

Yay.

Tune in tomorrow for June Reports on her Eye Doctor Appointment, which is now in 18 minutes.

God, we can’t wait, June.

Me and you and a dog with Blu

I did many things this weekend, but one thing I did not do was much sleeping.

Internet: Why, Joon?

Joon: Noneya, Internet.

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Vintage June sports her vintage slip on Friday.

On Friday afternoon, I was toiling at m’desk when the phone rang. “WHAT.” I thought, as I am cheerful and elegant about being interrupted when in a flow.

It was my doctor’s office. I’d had an appointment for them to see how I was doing on my Ritalin. I’d gotten scattered and forgotten. Hello, irony? Are you there, irony? It’s me–OOOO, SHINY THING LOOK!

Fortunately, he’s right across the street, my doctor is, so I screamed over there. He just wanted to see me in personal (did I ever tell you that story? Of the prisoner who wanted to get to know me “in personal”?), just to see if Ritalin made me, you know, too peppy.

Apparently it doesn’t, and he doubled my dose, and we’ll see how it goes from there. The good news is, I took the new double dutch bus amount right away, and screamed home after work and got a lot of freelance done before having fun that night. I never do that. It’s either, Ima go out tonight or Ima freelance tonight. BUT I DID BOTH!

Oh, Ritalin. [Chucks Ritalin under chin]

On Saturday I got a manicure (kind of a green/blue. I know that’s my new color. ….Really? Okay, hang ON).

Photo on 10-9-17 at 8.20 AM #3
I know you can’t get enough of these me-in-the-Laila-Ali-hairdryer shots

Oooo, it’s on sale right now! Click this picture to get to it on Amazon. They, the Amazon people, the Amakazons, sent me a very vague email about how I’m not doing something, and maybe it’s that I’m not touting the wares enough? It was purposely obtuse, if you ask me, and this whole not blog is me assuming you’re asking me everything.

Anyway, on Saturday night I saw Ward, this man I’ve gone out with a few times who came up with the blog name “Ward” without knowing my blog name is June, a thing that sent all 10 of you abuzz.

The point is, Ward has met the animals, and the animals have met Ward. Need I tell you Edsel’s reaction?

damm et, mom
leaf lone, mom

I went outside to try to get Edsel in a “EDS IN LUFF O EDZUL GOD” photo, but he’s out there quite involved with Blu and hasn’t time for us right now. Behold a photo of me taking Blu and dangling it over my head, just so that damn dog would pay me any mind.

Anyway, Edsel has asked for his own Facebook account just so he can update his status to IN RELASHION WIF WARD. Oh, he simpered, he offered his ears up for pets, he’d walk away and come back to be sure of Ward, he flumped to his bed and gazed at him. Edsel is Violet Bicks. He likes every boy.

The good news is, Ward came up with the best Steely Dan voice, sort of a “If Barry White were from Louisiana” thing that OH MY GOD IS SO STEELY DAN’S VOICE. It is totally that cat’s voice. Low, manly, lazy, not-give-a-shit-y.

Perfect. So, now SD has a brand voice.

On Sunday, I gathered up my freelance and headed to the coffee shop, where I get more done because there are distractions here. I can sit down to do my work and realize I’ve spent 21 minutes playing with Edsel’s teeth.

I went to a coffee shop downtown, where everyone pretends to be involved with his or her laptop but looks up any time anyone walks in, lest they be pickupable. Of course, seeing as I’m 89 years old, I do not fall into the pickupable category.

I had a cafe au lait and a chocolate croissant (say, just-not-mentioning-it-to-my Weight-Watchers-app, how’s the cheating going?), and got all my work done, because Ritalin.

It was raining hard out, so I sat on the leopard-spotted couch and watched the rain come down, and the people passing by downtown, and thought about how lucky I am.

And now I must head to work. It’s still rainy and no matter how hard Laila Ali blows me, Ima be frizzy today, but it’s Monday, Blu Monday, and there’s not much you can do about that.

XO,
June

June’s stay-at-home vacation. Annoying morning readers, since Monday.

It’s the last day of my expansive vacation, in which I saw many exotic things, such as Chapel Hill. Continue reading “June’s stay-at-home vacation. Annoying morning readers, since Monday.”

At 52, June finally plays with a full deck

“I have to blog,” I just told my mother. Not that I have a blog.

When I’m visiting her, I always emphasize how, if I’m writing, I don’t like to be interrupted. Ruins m’flow.

“I know you have you write, you’ve told me and told me,” she said from her perch in the living room. I have. I’ve tried to write all the other days she’s been here and as soon as I sit down, she’ll be all, “Where are your spoons?”

So, I said, “Okay, here I go. Really writing now.” I sat down. Stretched my claws. Poised over the keyboard.

“Did you feed Edsel?” Continue reading “At 52, June finally plays with a full deck”

It was the 3rd of June, another sleepy dusty Delta day. Volume XVIIIX934X

I’m only writing at you because it’s our day.

A few years back, when I sat next to my boss, fmr., he and I got into one of our 408-minute discussions about Things That Didn’t Matter and gee, I wonder why they split us up. That day, the discussion centered on what did Billy Jo McAllister toss off that bridge? Continue reading “It was the 3rd of June, another sleepy dusty Delta day. Volume XVIIIX934X”

Try to guess the swear word I use when I hit Publish then realize I’ve not added a title.

I knew I was going to a party yesterday afternoon, so I planned my ensemble in my mind so that I could do my freelance work in peace. I showered, did my hair, put on my kabuki makeup

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Fuck with me and die

Continue reading “Try to guess the swear word I use when I hit Publish then realize I’ve not added a title.”

Chocolate > labs

Today, I was supposed to go to work having fasted, and have blood drawn for our health insurance thing at work. Then 40 minutes later, I was supposed to go to my new doctor and have even more blood drawn for my initial visit with him in a week, unless of course he dies or quits before then. Or I die of italicizing.

The point is, I didn’t feel like it. Continue reading “Chocolate > labs”