When a story really gels

I’ve not mentioned this, but work is busy. And this week, what arrived but a book, a whole book, for me to freelance copyedit. They wanted me to do that in a week, but I called that place and said YA TRYINA KILL ME? And now I have till the 17th.

The point is, when things get busy, I have some physical reactions, re-act-shuns, and that’s the story Ima tell you today.

So, for the last week, it’s been, you know, hectic at work. Stuff is coming at me before I even get there, then all day I think I know what I have to get done and that I’ve got it under control and then even more stuff comes my way.

We had a big meeting this week about how important it is that everything gets copy edited, yet there are still the same number of copy editors there, and mother of god.

And I agree, is the thing. Everything should get copy edited. So I can’t turn my back on my religion, there, even though it’s stressy.

Yesterday morning I was showering, and not at all thinking about all the things I had to do that day, when my bathroom door burst open. It was another one of those situations that let me know when a murderer really does burst in, Ima be frozen like a deer when your headlights are barreling toward it.

As someone was opening the doorknob, and I was recalling that I do, in fact, live alone, I stood naked and frozen in the shower. BOOM, went the door as it opened, and

TAAA-DAAAA

went the universe, as Steely Dan stood in the threshold, paws victoriously on his hips. heeeer i be.

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was thurstee

And go ahead. Notice that that bath rug should probably be exchanged for a cleaner one. My house is ludicrous right now, with the busy. Just last night I finally got sick of stepping over my open suitcase on the bedroom floor, and finally unpacked it all the way and put it away, in the closet. Those antlers had been staring at me judgmentally all week from the bowels of my case.

Anyway, all that cat wanted was to drink from the toilet, and he wanted it NOWWW, so he, you know, got on his hind legs and turned a crystal doorknob with his evil paws. As you do. When you’re thumbless.

The point is, that was the serene way I began my day, and it got better from there.

IMG_1526.jpgHere’s m’boss, fmr., and me, at a meeting yesterday. Apparently it was “Wear muted purple” day.

IMG_1523.jpgHere’s another coworker and me noting we have on similar shoes. Apparently it was “Wear pointy shoes” day.

Wait. Which?

Anyway, it was busy, which I believe I’ve mentioned, and if I DID pee all day, I don’t recall it, and the whole point of this story is it was 5:30 and I was getting ready to leave. I was at my car, in fact, with plans to go to the grocery store before going home. I  realized I needed to pee; went back in to do so.

It was then, finally, after a whole day of stressing, and knowing what happens to me when I’m stressing, that I looked in the mirror and

MOTHER

OF

GOD.

My hair.

My hair was insane. And no. I did not photograph it.

When you have ludicrous hair like mine, the latest thing is to use sulfate-free products, and to shampoo with conditioner (yes, it still has some cleansing agents), and so on. But every once in awhile you have to use a clarifying shampoo, because eventually your hair just gets kind of Rosie the Robot doing her impression of Miss Judy. The-Jetsons-and-Rosie-the-Robot.jpgDoes anyone remember that impression? Where she’s beleaguered and bent over and exhausted? I can’t find it online.

Anyway, yesterday morning I clarified, because what with the extra product that I used for making my Frida costume believable and so on, my hair was looking distinctly sad and hangdog.

And then when I was done clarifying, I realized, oh. I’m pretty much out of gel, the good gel, the sulfate-and-alcohol-free good gel, so I used this kind I hate. All that plus work stress, and my 5:30

MOTHER

OF

GOD

with my hair. It wasn’t just big. It was big and frizzy. It was big and frizzy and was seriously lacking in, you know, any shape. When I stress, my hair stresses with me. Always has.

This art guy was still in his office when I left the bathroom. “All day I’ve been looking like this, and no one said anything about my, you know, hair looking like this.”

The art guy looked at my hair awhile. “They were being kind, I guess,” he surmised.

Last night I bought the good gel, and even tried to come home and wet it and USE said good gel, but I couldn’t even get my hands through my… angry bush, there. If you’ll forgive the disgusting imagery.

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neeeedee commitee, um, sit heer. away from harr.

So that is why today, even though I don’t usually GET my hair wet two days in a row, I just got in the shower and began anew.

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After all, tomorrow is another hair day.

Wish me luck.

The one where June misses Halloween

For years, we’ve been doing this project at work that is what you might call detailed.

If you’re a proofreader or a copy editor, all three of you, it has everything that takes time. Names you need to check? Yes. Numbers? Yes. Details that’re listed in several places and they all must match? Yes. Fact-checking up the ying? Oui.

Is it really important, so you can’t mess up? Yes, yes, yes.

I hadn’t worked on this thing in years, but last month I did, and found all sorts of errors that would excite only another copy editor (a word was lowercase in a few places, then capped in a few others, then…ready, three copy editors?…BACK TO CAPS AGAIN!) and I was extremely in love with self. This is the shit that gives us life.

So, I found all these errors, and was excited, then I got the thing again at blueline and found an extra word (“to”) in a paragraph.

What’s a blueline, June? This is riveting, we promise.

It’s the final, final version of something before it goes to print. And lots of what we do at work anymore doesn’t even GET printed, but print is scary. You screw up with print, that mistake is there forever. Or worse, that mistake means you have to reprint, and that’s never good.

The point is, because this thing is so huge and detailed and so on, I worked with the manager of the project and we worked out a schedule to determine when I’d read this thing, and when I’d again reread it, because detailed.

That schedule started yesterday. I’d had it on my calendar for weeks: Big project starts today. I was supposed to take all day yesterday and all day today on it.

Then next weekend I take it home and read it again.

When I got to work yesterday, it wasn’t ready yet, as everyone working on it is on business trips. They’re working on it from said trips, so it’d be with me any second.

“Hey, June, here’s another project. Can you work on this today?”

Well.

The thing is, I was just sitting there waiting, unsure of when it’d get to me. So I hemmed and I hawed, and I finally took the project, which turned out to be (wait for it) a lot of stuff, and detailed, and so on.

Naturally, the second I began, I got an email. “You can start that other big project now!”

Yeah.

Then I got two other emails from two other accounts I work on. “Here’s some work. Can we also discuss it in detail?”

And, “Here’s a project. Can you not just edit it, but write this and this? Here’s what I was thinking and what I want and…”

I had to write both those poor folks back and say, I can’t even read this whole email right now.

So I worked. And worked. I hadn’t put on my Frida costume yet, because everything that could have gone wrong yesterday morning DID go wrong, including THE CITY SHUTTING DOWN MY FREEWAY EXIT to get to work, so the plan was I’d get dressed at lunch.

Naturally I worked through lunch, then when I did get away, I had to run errands, so okay. I wouldn’t dress up.

“The costume contest is starting on the dock,” I heard the front desk announce, at 2:00. For the first time in my seven Halloweens there, I did not watch the contest, much less participate, as I had planned. I don’t even know what people dressed up as.

At 4:00, kids were coming for candy, so around 3:00 I just took my computer and went home, so I could work in peace. I was that curmudgeon.

Kit was supposed to come over last night, help me hand out the candies, and I had to cancel on her.

And by the way, just like my morning, everything that COULD go wrong with me getting the work and doing the work, did go wrong.

And truth be told, by 6:00, I was done. I could not make myself think any more. I’d been thinking so intensely. So I shut off the computer and lay blankly for awhile, till

“Trick or treat!

“Wooo! WOO WOO WOOO WO!” snarled Eds.

If Edsel were a normal dog, we could do things like I could dress up as Little Red Riding Hood (Medium-to-Large, Depending, Red Riding Hood) and he could dress as the big, bad wolf. He could sit next to me nicely, with his gummy fangs or whatever, and everyone who came to trick or treat could say “Oh, there’s that cute dog that we pet on his walks” and so on.

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would like salty dog, or maybe banana dakkeri.

Instead, Edsel dressed as banished-to-the-back-room guy.

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wate. dis not jist for blawg? eds really back heer?

I did not photograph trick or treaters, even though you want me to be the weird woman who photographs every fucking thing, because how, exactly, was I going to ask, “Can I photograph your children and put them online?”

The best parts were the one kid who said, “Oh, please, not a Snickers.” I gave that child coal I had left over from my own Christmas stocking.

And then this very small person just started barreling in. “You have a doggie!” she said, and my reputation precedes me. “Yes, I–”

“I want to see the doggie!” Her parents were all Ebony, don’t go in that lady’s house. Ebony didn’t give a shit. She wanted to see the doggie.

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let chyld see doggie. it totlee safe.

And finally, I saw Ava’s family. Of course, I recognized Jane right away, with her June hair and her attitude. In years past, she’s been Katniss or whoever that is, and other popular costumes of the day, and I’m all, Why aren’t you dressed in a pumpkin head or a plastic mask from the grocery store the way I would have been at your age?

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But this year, she was just barely dressed as anything, and was taking a smaller child around, so I guess she’s aging out of this process. Jane is, I’d estimate, between seven and 19 years old.

Her brother I met way, way back, when I just had Tallulah. He’s the kid I ran into on a walk once, when Talu had been rolling in the blackberries or boysenberries or whatever the fuck grows in my yard that she used to roll in and get purple spots.

“I wish I had a yellow and blue dog,” I remember him saying. He asked about Lu’s breed for awhile, and told me about his dog. “What kind of dog is he?” I asked. I hadn’t met his dog yet, who in fact is an enormous, calm, steel-gray 100% pit who is Ava’s best friend.

“Oh, he’s a pet bull and a beagle,” that kid said at the time. And that is when I knew he was full of the shit.

The point is, a group of teenaged boys came to the door, boys who really should not even be trying to trick or treat, and he had cool hair, but I didn’t register that was old pet-bull-and-a-beagle, there.

“Ava’s gotten really big,” he said to me, and right then I knew. Oh, it’s that kid!

He’s somewhere between 11 and 32.

So, in reality, I guess I had the kind of Halloween most adults have who don’t work at a creative agency. I mean, I worked all day and handed out candy at night and The End. BUT I’M USED TO COSTUMES AND PARTIES AT WORK.

I gotta go. I’m slap in the middle of that project, and when you think of June today, and you will, think of me bent unergonomically over details. Deets. June checks the deets.

I know that seems scary in general, but when it comes to copy editing, I am stellar at the deets. Copy editing and stalking boyfriends: June is the deets master at those.

Okay, boo.

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edz can come out nows?

You’re so already out, Eds.

Luff,

Joooon

 

 

 

Chicken parm for the marm

Here’s what I like about myself. I mean, other than the obvious “everything.”

I recently got matched with a cool-looking dude on the Bumble, there, and with that particular dating site, they give you 24 hours to write the person after you’ve been matched, and the woman has to write first. This cuts down dramatically on the number of crude hellos one encounters with online dating.

Why are there men who think opening with a line about wanting to stick your previously unseen personal parts into the recipient of your inaugural note would go over well with any non-roofied woman?

So yesterday evening I wrote a man, “I’m just on my way out the door, but I wanted to write before our time expired.” Don’t I sound breezy, and fun, and whirlwind, and like I’m taking a nothing day and suddenly making it all seem worthwhile?

IMG_1502.jpgI was leaving a bar to go to a sandwich truck. Will the adventures never end? That guy probably thinks I’m dashing out to accept my Nobel or hauling water for the Peace Corps or something.

And I like how if we call a sandwich something else, like glamorous “panini,” it sounds better. I had a mozzarella, basil and tomato PANINI. So rather than eat it as I walked to my car, I masticated during my evening constitutional, under the waxing gibbous.

IMG_1489.jpgI’d been at a bar, on a MONDAY, as you do, because it was someone’s last day. Yes, I DID just go out recently because it was someone’s last day. It was another person’s last day. Hundreds of people work there, dude. They come and go, talking of Michelangelo.

It was the same bar I went to last time, where the sun is screaming in at you for the first hour, and you get a free cataract surgery, so intense is the laser of the sun.

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More of a sunfie, really. A shot of me and my pal Ray. I’m live-streaming. …I got a million of ’em. Give me a ball of fire and I got material for years, sunny.

Not only did I see a lot of the sun, I also saw my handyman Alf. Which was convenient for me, as I was able to cut into his drinking time to alert him that my windows need fixing. Truthfully, Alf looked a little paned when he saw me.

Thank you. I’ll quite literally be here all week. Speaking of which, I was at a restaurant the other night next to a table of the millennials, and really we should just be assigned different restaurants. Or they should have millennial/nonmillennial sections. Anyway, the woman behind me said, “This is literally so good” three times.

I wanted to just turn in my booth and school marm the fuck out of her youthful ass. I did. “What do you mean when you say it’s literally so good, you moronic turn-of-the-century asshole?” I wanted to menopause and reflect all over her bullshitty youthspeak. But I did not. Because my chicken parm was literally so good. Chicken parm for the marm.

I can see that I’m on a nonlinear roll today, so let me stop, let me menopause, and tell you three things right now, before I wander off. I wanted to write you before we expire.

Six months ago, I had my daith pierced, because I am street and also because it’s supposed to help migraines. They told me it’d take a long time to actually heal, and they were right about THAT, but finally it seems better, so on my way home from Atlanta Sunday, I passed the tattoo parlor where I got pierced, and had a real earring put in, as opposed to the training bra I’ve been sporting.

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If we could all just pretend you can’t see my pores from Sputnik. Thanks.

As for the success, I still get migraines, but not as often on that side, which leads me to want to get the other side pierced. I thought of doing it Sunday, since I was already there, but Tuna seemed distracted. Tuna is the piercer, and what has become of my life? Also, is “tattoo parlor” aging me, like when my mother calls them “blue jeans”?

Anyway, while I was in Atlanta I clearly had to stick my dog somewhere, and please see above references to online daters sticking their parts, which has nothing to do with where I stuck my dog, so please hang up on PETA before you alarm them. I stuck him at dog daycare, where he’s been going since birth. When he used to go with Tallulah, he’d follow her everywhere, and she’d act like they’d never met.

guy wif unnerbyte? he still behind Lu? yeah, no idea.

When Lu died, his time at daycare looked, well, less fun. When I’d look at Edsel on the webcam, he always seemed to kind of stand alone, waiting for me to come get him. This weekend I was so busy, with my breezy on-the-go life, that I never checked on him via webcam till yesterday at work.

Screen Shot 2017-10-30 at 12.04.39 PM.pngEvery time I looked at him, he was hanging out with a beagle. I mean, every time.

Screen Shot 2017-10-30 at 12.01.13 PMThey were inseparable, so much so that I was reluctant to get him at lunch, but I knew I had to get my drank on after work, and priorities. When I retrieved him, Dexter the beagle threw his head back and howled at the gate.

I found out his name was Dexter because I asked daycare, who’ve been knowing Edsel since eighteen aught six when I first took him there, “Who’s the beagle he’s actually acknowledging?”

Turns out, Dexter had also been there all weekend, and the two of them were thick as thieves since Saturday.

So you know what I hate? When people add “come to find out” to a story. “He was with that dog, come to find out it was another boy dog. Come to find out, my dog is as gay as the maypole. Come to find out all my suspicions were correct.”

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Edsel, falling asleep looking at me when he got home from his weekend Dexter extravaganza

Anyway, I intend to call daycare and get more guff on when Dexter will be there next, as Eds having a friend is just the cutest goddamn thing I can think of. It’s literally so cute.

I think I had more, but I see I’m at 1,059 words, and hello, restless crowd. I close with more photos of my coworkers, and puppies at bars, and I will talk to you tomorrow when there will be a full Kit and June Hand Out Poison Candy Halloween extravaganza throwdown.

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Took by accident, but I think insurance ought to pay for that deviated septum and oh, while they’re in there, that tulip bulb for a nose tip I got going.

Boo.

Joooooooooon

 

Kahlo of the wild. Or Fridatlanta. What do you want from me. I’m hung over.

Back when I first became a blogging person, in eighteen aught six, someone told me about another funny blogger named Miss Doxie.

What I just did, there, was call myself “funny” again, and that’s twice in a row, now. But I’ve only called myself funny twice since eighteen aught six, so that’s saying something.

The point is, I took to reading the Miss Doxie, and I was what you’d call a big fan. Oh, she was hilarious, and like me, was also incredibly successful and ridiculously pretty.

The day June lost eighteeen aught six readers.

Eventually, Miss Doxie and her long-term boyfriend, who never deserved her, broke up, and she met a new boy, who did. Deserve her, I mean. Whereas the first guy was not as…pretty as she was and also was a commitmentphobe, the new guy was cute cute cute, and proposed in less than two years, I think it was.

Oh, it was exciting when he proposed. So there I was, all caught up in someone else’s life story, and her wedding day was almost as exciting as my own.

cemeterywedding_lytlefoto043She got married in a cemetery, and Dear Miss Doxie: I stole this off the internet please do not arrest me.

The point is, she was someone whose blog I read and occasionally commented on, and then one day in 2011 I was at my lawyer’s office, commencing to get a divorce and I get an email from her.

From her! From Miss Doxie!

I can’t recall what it said, exactly, but I know she told me she read MY stupid blog, and boom, there it was. We became friends. I visited her in Atlanta later that year, and we stayed in touch, and she’d say, You have to come back and visit, and I’d say yeah.

This weekend, she had her annual oh-my-god-this-woman-loves-Halloween Halloween party, and she invited me, and I said, You know what? Hell yes Ima go. So I slapped on some antlers and drove six hours.

img_1467.pngI went as Frida Kahlo. I mean, for Halloween. Not as a houseguest. Yes, I’ll come visit, but you must call me Frida all weekend.

If you’re not familiar with Frida, and really?, you may wonder why I had the antlers going. Sometimes she painted herself with antlers, but I did not have time to search for Frida photos for very long, because it turns out I took 168 pictures this weekend, which took 800 years to upload, it took eighteen aught six hours to upload and oh my god now I’m in a hurry.

IMG_1275.jpgMiss Doxie had moved since I last visited, but as I pulled onto her street, I pretty much knew I’d found her house.

IMG_E1276.JPGNo scary stone was left unturned, man. Miss Doxie is in the details.

IMG_E1334.JPGIMG_E1289.JPGIMG_1291.jpgThe best part was, you never knew which thing was just gonna START ANIMATING when you walked up to it. A bear rug would start roaring and glowing red-eyed at you. A fucking creepy-ass doll would follow you and whisper.

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Or, for that matter…

I got to stay in the guest house, which was pretty cool, man. Miss Doxie is an excellent hostess, on top of all the other, you know, positive qualities and so forth. I eventually retired there to get ready for the shindig, because I’m from eighteen aught six. The jamboree. The gala.

IMG_1310.jpgI remember somebody once telling me that getting ready for the prom was the most fun part of prom. I kind of feel that way about getting ready for a party. This part is just so anticipatory.

IMG_1312.jpgOne hour of makeup, three hours of shopping at basic-girl stores for jewelry, half an hour of Amazon shopping for antlers and flowers, and zero time spent at the waxer this month, and fin. I am Frida. Where is my Diego?

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IMG_1329.jpgIMG_1339.jpgIMG_1318.jpgI was pretty pleased with other people’s costumes, and it should be noted that Doxie’s bartender came, which slayed me, and he was downstairs at her bar and said, “Let me make you an old-fashioned.” Who was I to argue? I’ll tell you who I was to argue. How about an adult who should know her limits? Maybe that’s who I coulda been. Later, a friend of Doxie’s said, Let me make you a spiced rum-and-cider drink. Who was I to argue?IMG_1451.jpgOh, June. That’s not actually a person, June.

I was having a high time, till somewhere around midnight, that six-hour drive and oh, possibly the eight gallons of alcohol hit me, and I was bone tired. Tired. In m’bones. I tried to go tell Doxie I was wandering back to my Fonzie guest house, but she was saying goodbye to people at the door.

I got in my pajamas and as I told her the next day, left a Shroud of Turin on her washcloth, washing off that Frida makeup.

I was just drifting off when my phone buzzed. “We’re just girls left, and we’re having girl wine!” Doxie texted me. “I’m already in my pa” I wrote back, then fell into a dead sleep till morning.

Turns out, she stayed up till 4. FOUR! Who is a pussy? Is it me?

IMG_1463.jpgEven little girls drank harder than me. Had I had any more alcohol, I’d have been less Oz and more paging Dr. Oz. So.

IMG_1284.jpgIMG_1283.jpgThe point is, I survived, and got to kibitz with her dogs, and her spouse, and her people, and it was so worth driving 12 hours in one weekend.

And the possible alcohol poisoning.

Now tomorrow I gotta, you know, put that outfit on again, as it is actually Halloween.

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But I can do it. I’m not a Frida-cat.

Self-portraitly,

Traveling June

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Miss Doxie, the very reason I have a “June doesn’t know any ugly people” category.

Hey, where’s June?

Awhile back I chatted with a very funny person online, who got weird at the last minute so we never met.

This, by the way, could be the title of my life story: Things Got Weird at the Last Minute. Careful readers may recall I’ve already named my life story I Turned the Camera on Myself, but I made that title up before front-facing cameras.

Careful readers will also recall that I’ve told you I want to be called Dimebag Wasabi, and since then I’ve told you I want my new name to be about 40 other things.

Yes, we recall all that, Coot.

Oh my god, the point is, this online guy was really funny before he got weird, which could also be my autobiography: Really Funny Before She Got Weird. Except that’s rude to say about myself, the “really funny” part. I recently saw another online profile where the guy described himself as handsome.

Dude, might that be something we get to decide? I so wanted to write him that. It’s the same as describing yourself as an artist. I don’t think you get to make that call.

I did not take Ritalin today.

Oh, really, Dimebag? Who knew?

Please pretend the last seven paragraphs did not happen.

SO WHILE I NEVER MET THIS WEIRD/FUNNY GUY, one thing I liked about him is that he had a special abhorrence for the little conversation Tommy Lee and Vince Neil have in the middle of the fine tune Girls Girls Girls. Those two are artists. And probably would describe themselves as handsome.

The little conversation goes like this:

(Hey Tommy, check that out, man)
(What, Vince, where?)

He, the guy who was funny and then got weird, told me he and his friends would regularly say that to each other. It got to the point where my opening line to him would be, Hey, Tommy, check that out, man.

Then he’d write back What, Vince, where?

The point of all this is to tell you that today’s post title made me think of those lines. And really, it’s not even that close, but this is the shit you have to tolerate from me sometimes.

I took today off, as I have a lot of freelance to do, and also I am planning a small trip that I am leaving for shortly, which I will describe to you upon my return, or possibly on the Facebook while I’m there. Am vv excited about trip, and think it will be fun.

That there’s some quality writing. “I think it will be fun.” What, Vince, where?

I may even say to myself, on my “think it will be fun” trip, Hey, Coot, check that out.

Anyway, I’ve been scooched up in a not-very-ergonomic position, here, on the couch, with a laptop, trying to get stuff done, and I really ought to get back to it, so I will catch you on the flip side, or later in the weekend, or maybe at a strip club.

Friday night and I need a fight
My motorcycle and a switchblade knife
Handful of grease in my hair feels right
But what I need to get me tight are those
Girls, girls, girls
Long legs and burgundy lips
Girls, girls, girls
Dancin’ down on the Sunset Strip

My burgundy lips will talk to you later.

What, June, when?

P.S. Oh my god, I just remembered! Today is my 20-year anniversary of being a proofreader. I mean, that’s what I was at first: a proofreader. Then I became a copy editor, and I hate to toot my horn and all, but now I’m a SENIOR copy editor. I know. I wear a cap and gown to work every day. Anyway, that’s all. Check me out. What, June, where?

I need to get past this. Please send your thoughts and prayers to get me past this Motley Crue obsession. Where, June, where should we send our thoughts and prayers?

Hey, God, check that out, man.

What, Job, where?

Okay, really leaving.

Sowing my wildly expensive oats

You know what I don’t like?

Yes, June. In fact, I have a comprehensive list. It’s really more of a scroll at this point.

No, there’s a new one.

Sigh. [turns scroll sideways to write in the margin]

Packet oatmeal that makes you work for it. You’re buying DRY OATMEAL in a foil PACKET. Clearly you are not up for whipping up a gourmet breakfast if you’re choosing dry oatmeal in a foil packet.

Add 150-degree purified water, let stand for 48 seconds, put in microwave for 192 seconds, on low, then remove and cover with Sanskrit tomes for 18 seconds under a full moon, 22 seconds if it’s a waxing gibbous. If it’s waning or new, do not eat this product.

My joie de vivre coworker Griff, of Thus Saith Griff fame, hates it when gas pumps tell you to pull the card out quickly, or when you’re microwaving something, to leave it in there sitting for a minute after.

“Don’t tell me what to fuckin’ do,” he says. And see, he’s right. June says, as she crunches her refusing-to-soften-for-some-reason fancy oatmeal.

It has MADAGASCAR vanilla. Oh, fuck off. Isn’t all vanilla from Madagascar? I don’t know what possessed me to purchase such lofty foil breakfast food; I must have been feeling vulnerable. “This oatmeal will solve everything. If I spent 11 dollars on four packs of oatmeal, surely my life will gel marvelously.”

In other news, my father sent me these:

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What are they, June?

They’re socks.

Fuck off, June.

They’re socks with Frida Kahlo on them. And did she really own a monkey? Because goddammit. I want a monkey.

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fuk off, joon

I came home from work last night to all three cats clamoring to come in. I had worked late, and they were all looking at their kitty watches, annoyed. Iris limped in. “Why you limpin’ little Irises?” I asked, and once again, I’m certain the neighbors do not abhor me and my cat speak at all.

There is some fur off her little Iris head, and one has to surmise she was in a tuffle during the day, and “tuffle” is a fine word, and while, yes, it may have been her enemy, Orange Cat, it may also have been her very own brother, Gray Asshole.

All night, she just wanted to be on me. I was trying to work out, and she kept stretching over to lie on my lap while I, you know, lifted my leg 800 times.

In the meantime, last night, Steely Dan came home with everyone, had dinner, then immediately stood on the secretary and howled. The piece of furniture, not Henry Kissinger.

Won’t you enjoy my current references?

I let him out, and of course even though it was 2 degrees out, he wouldn’t come home, and since we all know he was very extremely undoubtedly likely to have SLEPT IN ANOTHER HOUSE, he was fine.

He came home today, ravenous. Well, “ravenous.” He was probably fed Madagascar vanilla cat food before he wandered back here. But what he does if he deigns to stay home during the day is get on the spare bed and do this:

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He likes to get between the pillows. And he looks so sweet, and like such a nice kitty, that one can’t help but pet his velvety earses and kiss his sweet walnut head and

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seeeryouslee. fuk off JOON.

Crap.

I’d better go. I woke up at 5:00 today and couldn’t fall back asleep until I DID, and then when the alarm went off at 6:30 I reset it for 7:30 and now I’m late and this is all you get today. Oh!

IMG_1220.jpgBut my flowers and antlers came yesterday, for m’Frida costume, and now my head matches my socks. We will not speak of my curtains or drapes or however that crude saying goes.

It’s carpet, right? Carpet and drapes? What a stupid thing to ask. Whose carpet ever matches their drapes? I guess mine do–I have neither.

Hoooooo-aaaaa. But really, I don’t. I have blinds and hardwoods.

Hooooooo-haaaaaaaaa.

Oh my god.

Frida, out.

With her caffeine, her Ritalin, and her pearls. Of wisdom.

That’s really my favorite line from a song.

WHAT is, June? We aren’t actually there in your head. And clearly half the time we don’t read your title.

“With her fog, her amphetamines, and her pearls.” Love that line. Also, do you ever do this? If anyone says to me, “I hate Bob Dylan. Oh, that nasal way he sings,” I just assume that person is dumb. I also never wish to hear that you don’t like the Beatles, because you then plummet into the same category I place “don’t like cats” people.

I can never feel the same about those people again.

What’s your thing, your bottom line, that sort of reduces your opinion of a person irrevocably? Like, I find it utterly baffling that you don’t like tomatoes, but I won’t like you less because of it. Not liking cats, though. See. I gotta take you at least down to the B list, if not the C. You’re my Hilary Swank. You USED to be something.

Last night, I told this guy from work I’d help him with his personal project, which just sounded vaguely dirty and isn’t. Writing is not his jam, see, so for a few nights I’ve stayed after work to help him out, and last night was one of those nights. One of these crazy old nights. We’re gonna find out, pretty mama.

See. I didn’t really hate the Eagles, ever, but once The Poet expressed to me her distaste, their lyrics are becoming noticeably ridiculous to me.

Anyway, it was exactly 5:00, and my phone rang. It was one of the Alexes. “I’m actually leaving work at 5:00!” she exclaimed. “Want to hang?”

We’ve been trying to do something for fucking ever, and she’s always got things going on, as she’s a millennial who grew up here, so she’s got that whole 90210 group of thus-far childless friends she still hangs with. Plus also she’s forever got family things. We live maybe a mile apart and I think the last time we saw each other was last Christmas.

“YES!” I said, excited, and then I remembered. Vilhelm Oyster. I branded my coworker with that name in 2011, and that’s who I promised I’d help. I’d been looking for him, anyway, to see if we were ready to begin our little after-work work, and he hadn’t been around, but then I began searching for him in earnest.

“Vilhlem!” I said, locating him, and I really do call him Vilhelm, which probably irritates everyone around us. “Alex called, and we never ever see each other, and she’s actually available today, right now! Can we work tomorrow?”

“No,” said Vilhelm.

So I moped over to the phone to call Alex and say I couldn’t meet her, but Vilhelm came over and said, YES, I COULD see her after all, and now I gotta find a way to blow him off tonight.

I kid. I will work with him tonight. Probably.

Anyway, I probably went to his B list when I bailed last night.

I took zero photos of Alex being here eating popcorn and drinking wine with me, as I was, oh, in the moment, so you’re gonna have to trust me on this. Also, I have a freelance assignment I want to get done with, and I’m nowhere NEAR done, and yesterday I got offered ANOTHER freelance assignment, and one wonders about my broken back/fenders polishing situation.

While all that wasn’t happening yesterday, I came home at lunch and took action shots of the pets. Act-shun, I wanna live. Wow, June, you’re so not at all predictable, with your lyrics.

IMG_1212.JPGIMG_1213.JPGIMG_1214.JPGPoor blindy Iris. A GOOD mom would have said, “Look out, Irises!” But no.

Also…

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And

IMG_E1203.jpgPerhaps you’re wondering who got a snout full o’claws, but are you? Are you wondering? Or do you know the answer already?

I put in my contacts just now; they’d been resting comfortably in the pocket on my robe. But once I put them on, seeing this screen isn’t easy, as then I need my reading glasses. Hello, 462.

I want you to promise me that no matter how old and feeble I get, still sitting here blogging my goddamn days at you, that the minute I in all seriousness say my age as anything “years young” that you will put me out to pasture with Ferdinand the Bull.

I’m 52 years young! Heh. …Hey, where ya takin’ me?

Anyway, I got up to get reading glasses just now. I noticed my coffee cup was empty (By the way, that Ward guy I dated briefly? Had, like, three cups of espresso before work, then a pot of coffee once he was there. I admired his fortitude), so I filled it, then I looked for pants, because what pants am I gonna wear today? Then I put some stuff in recycling, as I am a filthy liberal snowflake who recycles, and finally I sat back down here.

No reading glasses. I’m typing you from as far back as I can go and still reach the keyboard.

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helloooooo! can you hear me from back here?

What I’m saying to you is the Ritalin has not kicked in yet. Clearly.

I’m still taking a fairly low dose, but it is marvelous, is what it is. Once it begins working, anyway.

Okay, I gotta go. Still on pants quest. It was kind of easier when we were “business casual” and not “hep agency” because the former required nothing from me but eleventeen pairs of black pants. And one gray. For when I was whooping it up.

Whoop, there it is.

Juan

 

 

Dancing queen. Old and mean, only 52.

Yesterday at lunchtime, I stampeded across town to the damn dance store, which is its official name. Greensboro’s Damn Dance Store! We’re open stupid times!

When I got there, I realized I’d tensed up, in the worry that they’d be closed Mondays or some other similar irritating thing. But they were not! There they were, all open and shit.

I’d have taken photos, but it was really a small boutique kind of place, and there was one other person in there, a rather demanding-seeming woman over in the kids’ section. Which, by the way, seemed to dominate. And you know how I am. “Oooo, tiaras! …Oh. They’re for kids. Dammit.” “Oooo! Tote bags that read “ballet” in glitter! …Teensy, for kids. Dammit.”

A very helpful saleswoman got me m’shoes,

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Hey. YOU try holding your purse, your phone AND ballet shoes and see how good YOUR photo is, fussy.

and also some yoga pants that I am delighted to report were kind of too big. Naturally, I cut the tags off them before trying them on, because that’s the kind of careful planning that’s resulted in the delicately elegant life I’ve created for myself.

When work ended, I checked the time and locale of my dance class; I’d already emailed the place to reserve a spot. It had been a lovely, warm and blowy–but not THAT kind of blowy–day, and I was happy to have a few minutes to come home and hang with the entourage, the four-legged entourage, my FURBABIES (sigh) before heading to my 7 o’clock class.

IMG_E1158.JPGThis sums up all of my quality time with Steely Dan.

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there just so much of SD to luff. Have to share wif wurld.

But look. Here’s six seconds of autumnal calm, now with falling leaves!

Anyway. At 6:30. I left the house, got downtown–where I will not mention the mental status of any old men–found, like,  TV parking right outside the building, and sauntered into the “cultural” center.

I don’t know why I’m cynical about that. But you know what? I got in there, and it was pretty cool! It was so, you know, cultural. I turned into yogurt, it was so cultured.

IMG_1161.jpgI found the room where my class was to begin at 7:00, and?

Everyone was ballet-ing. Ballet-ing hard. Because the class had started 45 minutes before.

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Flyer for the modern class.

I WANTED Absolute Beginner, Ballet. I read the TIME for Absolute Beginner, Modern.

I needed an Absolut.

So, I sat on a comfy metal bench, right outside the class, and watched my coworker finish his ballet, just like my parents used to have to do when I took ballet from the winged-eyeliner lady circa 1973. I talked to another parent, who was doing her homework and was probably delighted to have to hear my plight about the wrong time and so on. Then I kibitzed with my coworker when he was done, and when I got back outside, after promising to come back AT THE RIGHT TIME next week?

Storm. Don’t know why, there’s no sun up in the sky. Other than the fact that it’s 7:15 in October. Stormy weather, since that man and I ain’t together. It’s raining all the am I blue.

That was only funny if you know my Am I Blue/asking gramma for the lyrics to Stormy Weather story.

You know what I like? People who don’t scroll up. Like, we’ll have a big chain of comments going, here or on Facebook of June, and someone wanders on and asks something we addressed four comments ago. I adore that.

IMG_1165.jpgAnyway, here’s an unretouched photo of JOOON, having been caught in the RAAAAAIN on the way home from dance class where she didn’t DAAAAANCE. I have no idea why I’m talking like that.

It was scary rain, scary driving rain where driving is scary.

Oooo, also, while I was waiting for my coworker last night, I noticed a particularly lovely woman, who actually I’d noticed dancing before she was even milling around after class. She looked the way a ballerina should look, and then after class, she put on the best pair of multicolored chunky heels, and I was in great admiration.

After class, I drove through the driving rain to the grocery store, and guess who was there, over in the wine aisle. So I said, “Hey, I just saw you at that ballet class,” and we ended up talking for a long time, and said, “See you next week,” and soon she will be giving me those shoes, so enamored will she be of All Things June.

Speaking of which, yesterday in Facebook of June, I asked y’all all what the most stalky thing you’ve done was, regarding me and my unblog and my life, such as it is. I’d read this subject on a Reddit thread, titled, “How far is too far for stalking our blog reads” or something like that.

I figured you’d Zillowed my house or Googled my real name or what have you.

But wow!

You’ve researched Marvin’s girlfriends and found Ned’s place of employment. You figured out where TinyTown was and sought out that author I briefly went out with.

But my favorite, my very favorite, was the person who ended up sitting behind Ned and me at a play, after we’d been long broken up and there we were, holding hands. This was last year. I’d like to throw that caveat out there. Last year, before we officially reunited for six weeks or whatever it was.

IMG_1166.JPGAnyway, here we are, NOT KNOWING a reader was behind us, texting our scandalous photo.

It should be noted said reader’s spouse was appalled by her, and this is just how men are, and why they have to be so weird is beyond me. Because of COURSE she took a photo. I would have, too.

I gotta go. Since you’re all behind me right now, you know it’s late and I haven’t showered.

Luff,

Bestalked Juan

 

What is wrong with this emu?

It was inevitable, I suppose, that during a pertinent conversation with my friend Hamlet, in which we were extolling Patty and Selma from The Simpsons,

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that I was struck by HOW MAGNIFICENT it would be to name cats Patty and Selma. It’s these epiphanies that make me say, Well, I could just jaunt off to the pound, there, get a couple orange cats, call ’em Patty and Selma, because that’s just too good to pass up.

I didn’t do it. This is not a Very Special Book of June, where I get new pets.

Well. A Relatively Regular Book of June, where I get new pets.

IMG_E1134.JPGI did, however, just go ahead and have the scheduled pets, which normally, with my advanced maturity, I’d say isn’t nearly as exciting. But with Steely Dan, it’s always exciting.

You know what I like about him, other than his lust for life? He’s a regular Vincent Cat Gogh. I also like how normally he adores Edsel–I mean, the very first time I let whining, eager Edsel into the room to meet his kitten self, SD was appalled. He puffed all up, all four inches of him, and arched dramatically and so on. But about 47 seconds later he was cool with Edsel, and now he’s forever trying to get Eds to play (after that one claw-in-the-snout incident, that’s been less likely of an event) or standing on his back legs to rub his snout on Edsel’s.

But the times that dog gets, oh, emo, the times the dog emotes, which is often, Steely Dan cannot bear it. If Edsel is ever simpering and whining and acting the fool, SD gets up high somewhere–the sink, a counter–and makes sure to smack old touchy-feely EST feeling-his-feelings Edsel, terrectly on the noggin.

This I like about Steely Dan. It’s how we all feel when Edsel works on that Academy Award.

Anyway. M’weekend.

Oh, one more thing. (GOD, June.) Did you ever notice the iPhone emoji for “dog” looks like Edsel? Go ahead. I’ll wait.

FRIDAY

IMG_E1050.JPGAfter work, a bunch of us went to happy hour, because it was someone’s last day. We go to this place near work, and the weather was, in fact, perfect for it, but the sun. That sun. Did you ever notice it? Go look outside. I’ll wait. I know I was already supposed to wait for you to type “dog” into your phone, but.

This time of year, that first hour of happy hour, and I like how I miss the concept, is ALL SUN ALL THE TIME. It’s Barhenge.

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See. I just invented a Stongehenge-themed bar in my mind, but here one already is. Everything’s already been done.

The point is, as usual, everyone went home or off to, oh, eat, and I was the last person to leave, which is how it always works when I attend a happy “hour.” I had only one drink–I was just busy yammering to people. Also, there was a Great Pyrenees there. Of course I petted it. What are you, new?

Happy hour. It’s an hour on Mercury.

Also, science. I have no idea if time is slower on Mercury. I just kind of assumed. All that science, I don’t understand. Plus, as we know, science isn’t real anyway. Fake news.

SATURDAY

Spent way too much time following old Lust for Life around, trying to capture him on film, and by the way, he abhors the camera. Starts whipping his tail as soon as I aim the phone at him. The OTHER pets, the good pets, look right at me, at this point, and then when I’m somewhere trying to photograph someone else’s pet, as I am wont to do, I get so annoyed that they don’t automatically look at me when I point the camera. WHAT IS WRONG WITH THIS EMU?

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Finally, I did an hour of Callenetics, because it’s 1986 up in here. I was tired of Tracy Anderson, and I was getting injuries, so I ordered me up that old …tape, even though now it’s a DVD, but come on.

Anyway, I just loved it. I love that lady, who was clearly some rich person who thought she was a huge adventurer, what with spending the family money to gallivant all over yonder, and eventually decided to teach exercise classes, which is another “family money” kind of job.

You should read her Wikipedia page. Oh my god. It’s not even a humble brag. It’s just a brag brag. It’s Fort Bragg. Just Google Callan Pinckney. Which by the way, she made up. That name, I mean. It’s not nearly as good of a name as Patty or Selma.

See. I’m doing the thing where I’m trying to tell you about three days and I’m taking for fucking ever. Let’s proceed.

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In the afternoon, I stampeded to the movies to see The Other Side of the Mountain or whatever it’s called, the one that gives you yet another clue that you should never take public transportation with Kate Winslett.

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Does it irk you when you see a photo here that I’ve already put on social media? Are you all GOD, June? Are you always all GOD, June?

I attended said film with my friend The Poet and her friend The Prose, and hang on a minute while I gaze at myself fondly for calling him The Prose.

IMG_1089.jpgThe movie was just okay. There was a dog in it and a hot man of color with a British accent, and we get to see him having sex–the man, not the dog–so two cougars up.

Then I screamed to the damn dance store, of which this town has one, to buy ballet slippers for tonight’s dance class, and they close AT FOUR on Saturdays.

At four. On a Saturday. Four. Yeah. Those nutcrackers.

So instead, I shopped for my Halloween costume, then screamed home and got ready for a partayyy, in which I brought helpful cheese and crackers.

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Yeah, thanks for the…cheese and crackers. Thank god you’re here.

IMG_1108.jpgOne of my coworkers had a little get-together, and the food was delicious, and it was perfect weather for a fire pit, and it turns out, all I really ever want to do is drink around a fire pit. That’s all I ask for in a fall evening.

IMG_E1102 2.JPGAlso, I like the people I work with. I’m like a chubby Mary Richards.

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Fairly drained June, midnight Saturday

SUNDAY (Oh thank god. Will she ever stop?)

I wanted to do Callenetics again, that’s how much I liked it, but it says to do it twice a week, so. Everything hurt, so I put on my athletic shoes (hahahahahahaha) and headed to this trail. Lactic acid burnoff. I considered taking the Eds, but that trail is always sick with dogs, and guess whose miracle cure is wearing off. Guess who decided to put the aggression back in leash aggression.

I’m so glad I didn’t take him, because this asshole came up the trail with her two white fluffy dogs OFF LEASH, one in a pink harness and one is a blue harness (okay, that part was cute), and they ran right up to me and climbed up my leg. By the time that woman sauntered to us, Edsel would have digested and passed her flufferkins, her furbabies, her insert whatever annoying thing she inevitably calls them.

“I just can’t bear to put them on leashes,” she laughed, as she approached me petting her dogs. Oh, how I wanted to tell her. You have no idea. You think you can’t bear to leash them? How would you have felt about finally strolling up to a shaggy Civil War scene? To the remains of the fluff? Cause that’s what woulda happened had I been here with my leashed, legal dog. Barely legal, all nude dog.

I walked for an hour and a half, and stopped at the little lake, there, watched turtles, and then it was time for therapy!

Therapy? June? What with your healthy love relationships? Why waste your money?

And yes, she has hours on Sunday, and who am I to argue with a therapist who might be a workaholic? This is, in fact, the second therapist I’ve had who works Sundays; the last was in LA. They probably have to work seven days, like ranchers in Oklahoma or lobstermen in Maine.

IMG_1140.jpgThe office is downtown, which is convenient, because I hear downtown, all the old men have been driven crazy.

And that was the day I stopped reading June.

IMG_E1141.JPGI like going downtown, even though I was once again approached by someone who was “out of gas” on his “second day in Greensboro,” and should I just keep five dollars in my wallet? Is that the most humane way to deal with this? What if the broken old man who approaches me is finally Jesus and I blow it by walking by indifferently?

Or what if he’s just a broken man who needs help and I walk by indifferently? The problem is, I’m also a little scared, so I don’t want to stay long. So it’s this push/pull of help a person/save one’s ass from mugging.

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Sunday version of fairly drained June. Now with white guilt!

So that sums it up. Tonight I dance. Just a Steeltown girl on a Saturday night. Just an aging girl on a Monday night, lookin’ for the fight of her life. Or dancing shoes at her lunch hour.

She has danced into the danger zone when the dancer becomes the dance. Or sciatica.

Head up, young person.

June

Ruins

I’m trying very hard to not talk about my 404 Error, because my hope is that I can just, oh, continue on with my life, and if I make him the topic of my posts, he’s still in my life, a bit. So I’m trying to write about other things even though I really just want to obsess.

So, hey, getting up to watch sunrises and meditative walks and time with friends and my dog blah blah. Oh, and also, I saw Ned on a dating site last night.

And here’s the argument, right? The, “Well, YOU’RE on a dating site.” Which is the same argument my mother would give me about people running into me at Kmart. “Well, THEY’RE shopping there.” Yes, but I have a stellar reputation to uphold.

What I never had in junior high school: A stellar reputation to uphold.

Anyway, sure I am. Of course I am. I’m on a dating site. At this point I’ve winnowed it to one because Jesus Christ, do they ever not work. And I have about .00004% faith in men being good, at this point. BUT I’M TRYING.

This damn breakup is more than two years old already, and I kept getting drawn back in, and starting to think, Oh, maybe this time it’ll be okay (oh, June), and then what do you know, another heartbreaking thing is discovered. I’m the Christopher Columbus of discovering things. “This is India!” No, it’s not. “This is an okay discovery! I can, you know, live with it!” No, you can’t.

I think I’ve found India, but what I really found was an Indian giver of love.

So, hey, June. Nice going. Good idea, to keep letting yourself get drawn back in. You sure selected the right Let’s Make a Deal door, there, sister. Again.

When I was a kid and watched Let’s Make a Deal, I always thought getting the donkey would be way better than a stupid car.

So anyway, there was Ned’s clever profile, a profile I’d have answered tout suite. And yes, I have a clever profile up, too.

So why was I stung?

I guess in my naive heart, I thought he would think, Wow, I really ruined June. I should sit here and think about why I did that, work on why I keep asking her to come back and then being mean to her. But instead, he’s all, Welp, destroyed her. Tourists can now come visit the June Ruins. Her insides are crumbled and missing and desolate. And even though I keep contacting her even still, asking to talk, I’m also gonna say, NEXT!

So. Perhaps that’s unfair, but that’s how I’m feeling.

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“Yes, are these the June Ruins? I was told there was a shave-ice truck near here.”

The Poet and I are going to a movie tomorrow. Here we are, yesterday, at a meeting in a very green room.

IMG_1045.jpgWork isn’t the sanctuary it used to be, either. Lately I’ve felt marginalized, ignored, and I’m trying to fix that but I’m not getting very far with it. I don’t know exactly what happened, but it’s disconcerting, because work was my one place that I was happy, at least from 9 to 5ish.

So I’ve been asking for more to do. Throw it all at me, I keep saying. I’m not sure how else to fix whatever I broke other than to make myself fairly indispensable.

I’d better go. I should shower, as that is the sign of someone who isn’t depressed, right? Like, hygiene and so on? Yes. I suppose showering didn’t cheer Janet Leigh all that much.

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Stabbing it with her steely knife but unable to kill the best,

June