Tag Archives: blogging

Rehearsals for Departures

Gotta admit folks.  I’m feeling the pensive these days.  I’ve been trying to figure out where these clouds of melancholy are coming from.  You know the one… the kind which lodges inside your chest cavity and won’t let go?  So, I’ve been going through my mental checklist, of things which usually would or should bother me.  And the truth is, none of the usuals are cranking my chain. Mr. Mix and I are cruising in the happy convertible.  Sweet Pea and Drama Queen are enhancing the fine street art of sibling rivalry, but otherwise hunky dory.  I love my work, I have wonderful friends…

So why am I feeling…lonely? Yep, that’s it.  I feel disconnected, even in the midst of all this good.

And to answer the question I KNOW some of you are thinking, uh NO, I did NOT stop taking my meds.  And I’m NOT depressed about turning 40.

Now that I’m all free associating and all, I think I’m still mourning the loss of a friend of mine…you see, I’m an only child, which means friends are, like, heavily layered and meaningful for me and shit.  Once I love you, I mean REALLY love you as a friend, that’s it. You’re usually in for life.

Um, I guess until you’re not.

This friend is not a bad or malicious person.  And in very different ways, this person was one of the best hangs around.  But I made a promise to myself when turning the big 4-0 that I’d only have cheerleader-type friends in my life from now on (see previous post).  And I’m sticking to it. 

I am sure that this person feels I let them down as well…and I’m sure on some level, that’s true.  But if s/he takes a moment, s/he knows full well that I loved them dearly, and even though I’m not the easiest person to deal with, all I ever wanted for them was to find out what made them happy.

But that happy can’t come at my expense. I can’t put up with someone always living glass-half-empty or with thinly veiled, passive aggressive jabs.  You got a problem with me, then spill it like a big kid or shut the fuck up. You can’t find the happy, then get your own therapist and get on some meds already. 

So I’ve been cleaning house.  And while it’s necessary, it doesn’t mean it’s easy for me either. So there.

10. “Circle,” (Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians) Shooting Rubberbands at the Stars.

09. “Don’t Panic,” (Coldplay) Parachutes.

08. “Phantom Mountain,” (Laura Veirs) Wrecking.

07. “Unraveling,” (Deb Talen) A Bird Flies Out.

06. “The Funeral,” (Band of Horses) Everything All the Time.

05. “Last Goodbye,” (Jeff Buckley) Grace.

04. “Lonely,” (Tom Waits) Closing Time.

03. “Pitseleh,” (Elliott Smith) XO.

02. “Rehearsals for Departure,” (Damien Jurado) Rehearsals for Departures.

01. “Revelation Big Sur,” (Red House) Songs for a Blues Guitar.

Love in the Dumps? Not with This Crew It Ain’t!

I love sharing the love.  And my latest blog affair’s with Love in the Dumps.  I found out about them, on all places, Twitter, when (if memory serves) they started following me around like a lovesick puppy (KIDDING).  Anyway, I liked the blog title and went over for a visit…and proceeded to shake with the giggles.  Subject matter spans from how to tell if the guy’s a prick to the top 12 things NOT to say in bed.

One of my favorites is the one below (reprinted with permission, of course, of course)….takes balls the size of Yonkers for a young woman to go to Qatar by herself.  I’m small-time compared to this rad gal 🙂

Letter from Qatar

Lately I’ve been busy learning the ways of Allah, and apparently, His people want my infidel ass.

OK back up a bit. Five months ago, I decided to pack my bags and move to Qatar. Yes, the tiny peninsula just off Saudi Arabic – one of the richest countries in the world, where Lamborghinis are as abundant as second and third wives.

Some Arabic I’ve picked up so far: Kees ummak (Your mother’s pussy!), Kees ummak bi ayri (My cock up your mother’s pussy!), Kees ummak bi Ras’ayri (The tip of my cock up your mother’s pussy), and finally Kees ummak bi Ras’ayri sharmoota (The tip of my cock up your mother’s pussy, bitch!). Yes I ‘m a fast learner, Masha’Allah (God meant it so!).

Now that we’ve established the fact that I’m totally opened to mingling with Arabs, I’d like to talk a bit about the cultural differences within the dating scene.

Urrr, what dating scene? First of all, there is none. Because dating is haram (taboo)! If a woman wants to hook up with someone, she has to get married, and contract whatever STD her husband had accumulated from trips to Thailand and Bahrain.

Inevitably, I’ve had several marriage proposals.

Most of the time they just want to get into your pants, so it’s nothing serious. One time in Oman, though, a man gave me a complete list of perks attached to being married to him. Among them:

“I would buy you a Landcruiser,” he said. “Because I want people to respect my wife on the road.”

Ahhh yes. Love is like a Toyota, it can’t be stopped.

“And I only want two kids,” he added. “And only one wife.”

I know… I should’ve jumped on the opportunity. But of course that would’ve been weird without consulting with my father first, so I told him, “Insha’Allah” (If it is God’s will) – the perfect phrase that Arabs use to wiggle out of every difficult situation.

Can’t meet a deadline? Insha’Allah. Forgot to pay someone back? Insha’Allah. Can’t get it up? Insha’Allah.

So, back to the marriage thing. Just the other day, I was hanging out at the beach in northern Qatar, when a Qatari man started talking to me. “Are you married?” he said within the first minute. They sure don’t bullshit around.

“No,” I said.

“I can find you a good husband,” he said.

“Uh ok,” I said. “I gotta go.”

“I love you!” He said after me.

Dude proceeded to follow me all the way till I found my friends (two guys), then finally he backed off.

But this kind of thing happens all the time. Which is why so many Western girls wear fake wedding bands. It happens in the mall, outside restaurants, in supermarkets, etc. And when they have to be more discreet approaching a woman, they hand you a piece of tissue paper with their numbers written inside. (Because that’s just so inconspicuous – a Qatari man handing tissue to a non-Qatari woman – you know, so she can blow her nose with it?)

Anyway, life in Qatar is very interesting, to say the least. Before I sign off, though, I’d like to take a moment and be very Canadian about this. Not all Arab men are the same, of course. Next time I’ll surely devout an entire piece on sexy Arabs… Insha’Allah.

Dangerous Minds

So I’m sure that unless you’ve been living under a rock – a really BIG rock – you’ve no doubt heard about the latest infidelity debacle Sandra Bullock is currently enduring.  I’ve read a slew of crap pieces (I know, my bad) ranging from the typical, venemous ‘how could he do this to HER???’ to an idiotic, correlation between winning an Oscar for best actress to being hit with spousal infidelity…with the not-so-subtle message stating ‘be careful not to get TOO successful Ladies…otherwise your man’s gonna use his pecker to excavate his lost man pride’.

Please.

On a more personal note, I now know seven couples…yes, SEVEN couples….in various stages of deep marital strife or divorce.  Two of those due to serial infidelity.  My side of the family is also no stranger to this ‘phenomenon’ – and due to this, I’ve delineated what I think are the basic two reasons why people cheat while in seemingly content marriages:

(1) Duh, they’re actually not so happy after all, and are looking for a endorfin-drip-laden escape or

(2) Because they thought they could.

I want to discuss the latter, admittedly over-simplified reason above. 

I have absolutely no doubt that Tiger and Jesse and others I’ve known are deeply in love with their spouses.  I also believe they thought they were special or clever enough to get away with it.  There’s an old expression: “To cheat is French, to get caught is American.”  Apparently true.

And while I cannot condone infidelity, I think it’s safe to say I understand the urge.  That’s human.  I am also deeply in love with my husband and treasure the life we’ve built with our two kids.  But that hasn’t stopped me from fantasizing about the allure of tasting something different.  Jesus, even Jimmy Carter admitted to being adulterous in his thoughts back in the 70s – and THAT was considered a big scandal at the time.  Let’s now LOL over THAT one, people.

Because there is always going to be someone you didn’t get to have….or something your spouse won’t do that maybe the tattoo-laden hussy is more than happy to give you.  You’ve been there. I’ve been there. I’m sure Mr. Mix rides that wave as well (although I must admit I can’t think of something I wouldn’t do with him, but whatev).  In fact, thanks to the latest hookup bar otherwise known as Facebook, Mr. Mix has been hounded by an ex of his – wanting to ‘get together’ a little too often. Sigh.

And the truth is, maybe if I had frequent absences from my spouse – coupled with living in a world full of celebrity self-entitlement, maybe I or Mr. Mix would find ourselves entangled in a similar mess.  Does that reflect bad character? Probably…but I think Chris Rock has a point when he says we are only as faithful as our options. 

So, what’s the answer? Well, after thirteen years of marriage, I’ve delineated once again the options down to three:

(1) You and your spouse are gonna ride your own ‘Hot Tub Time Machine’ and have one of those open, 70s-disco-coke-inspired marriages where almost everything goes.  Good luck with that.

(2) You’re gonna sneak around and get caught. No really, you will.  And uh no, you’re not that smart.

(3) You decide that you’re not really into seeing your spouse ride someone else in front of you, and you’re not quite alternative enough for one of those polyamorous arrangements, so you choose monogamy.  And if you do choose this option, you surround yourself with others who have made the same choice – for better or for worse – in order to curb your out-of-marital-bond enthusiasm. So to speak.

In other words, you follow Chris Rock’s advice and YOU limit your options.  Figure out what your own triggers are – and then don’t go there.  Sex can be the same thing as drugs and alcohol…they become a problem when the consequences start to seriously mess with your life.  And I don’t say this as some Buddha-on-the-mountain…in the past, I have come dangerously close to blowing it with Mr. Mix over my ego-driven flirtations.  Why? Not because I’m a celebrity or some testoserone-infected lothario.

Because I thought I could. 

Does that make me an asshole? Yep. Does that make me human? Right again. 

I guess what I’m saying is, I unfortunately get what Tiger and Jesse and other like them were thinking.  I guess the difference is, I didn’t actually do it.  The question is, did I not do it because of my character or my options? I don’t have an answer for that, and the whole point of this piece is to say I’m not going to test myself trying to find that out either.  It’s not worth it.

Ms. Mix & Bitch’s Must-See Site: Texts from Last Night

I’ve gotta be honest: most blogs bore me to tears (sometimes including my own).  So when I come across a site which has me glued to the screen and laughing out loud, it’s a must-share.

Texts from Last Night is a compilation blog of the most hysterical, piss-in-your-good-panties, text messages.  After reading through this site, the first thing I thought was “My life’s a dull, dull bird.” But that’s okay.  I’ll vicariously live the drama instead.  I’ll itch less that way 😉

Take a lookie:

Best Nights of All Time

  • (413):
  • Before I left in the morning I deleted her purity ring app off her iPod, I figured it would save her the shame

 

Your Life in Six Words

 
 
 
Book Cover of 'Six-Word Memoirs'

From Ms. Mix & Bitch:  If I never looked in the mirror again, I’d have proof I’m getting older because I like to listen to NPR.  Not that NPR’s for “old people,” but if you prefer talk radio to rock-n-roll while you drive, you’re definitely not hanging with the hipsters anymore.  

I’m actually o.k. with that (considering I listen to my iPod fairly often and I do, duh, run a quasi-music site).  I love NPR because there are stories here you can’t get anywhere else. I’m a big fan of the alternative press because I think they’re the few still looking out for the soul of journalism.  The rest of it is a corporate press release and not much more. 

Anyway, I’m getting off topic here….bloggers do this ALL the time… 

In fact, we tend to rattle on and on at length quite often, a by-product of being reared in a narcissistically oriented culture I suppose.  I am guilty of this. That said, I am still fascinated by those who use the brevity happy formats of Twitter, the Facebook status, and now what you’ll read below – the Six Word Memoir – to express themselves.  I thought you’d get a kick out of the examples below.  As for me, I admire the laconic – those who pack a  punch with seemingly little.  Perhaps I’ve lived with Mr. Mix for too long, but I now consider such skills definite proof of higher intelligence. 

Here’s mine, not that you asked:  Woman with revolutionary heart, haphazardly contained. 

More Six-Word Memoirs:

text sizeAAA

February 3, 2010

Once asked to write a full story in six words, legend has it that novelist Ernest Hemingway responded: “For Sale: baby shoes, never worn.”In this spirit, Smith Magazine invited writers “famous and obscure” to distill their own life stories into exactly six words. It All Changed in an Instant is the fourth collection of very, very brief life stories from Smith. The tiny memoirs are sometimes sad, often funny — and always concise.  

It All Changed in an Instant is full of well-known names — from activist Gloria Steinem (“Life is one big editorial meeting”), to author Frank McCourt (“The miserable childhood leads to royalties”), to actress Molly Ringwald (“Acting is not all I am”).  

Larry Smith, founding editor of Smith, and Rachel Fershleiser, Smith‘s memoir editor, talk to NPR’s Rebecca Roberts about the fun and the challenge of capturing real-life stories in six little words.  

Smith’s six-word memoir? “Now I obsessively count the words.” And Fershleiser’s: “Bookstore to book tour in seconds.”  

Can you write your autobiography in one sentence? Share your six-word memoir.  


  

More six-word memoirs from It All Changed in an Instant:

 

Found on Craigslist: table, apartment, fiance.
Becki Lee  

Alzheimer’s: meeting new people every day.
Phil Skversky  

Met wife at her bachelorette party.
Eddie Matz  

Family portrait: everyone smiles but me.
Ian Baaske  

Hotel sex still rocks over fifty.
Marcella Oleksiuk  

I picked passion. Now I’m poor.
Kathleen E. Whitlock  

Normal person becomes psychotic on Twitter.
Robin Slick  

Yale at 16, downhill from there.
Anita Kawatra  

Overworked and underpaid,
Oversexed and underlaid.
Victoria Hansen  

After cancer, I became a semicolon.
Anthony R. Cardno  

At least I never voted Republican.
Tony Kushner  

Full circle: morgue tech becomes obstetrician.
Andrea Skorenki  

So would you believe me anyway?
James Frey  

Excerpted from It All Changed in an Instant: More Six-Word Memoirs by Writers Famous and Obscure from Smith magazine, edited by Rachel Fershleiser and Larry Smith. Copyright 2010. Reproduced with permission of the publisher, Harper Perennial.  

Ms. Mix & Bitch’s Top Ten Facebook Annoyances

Yes, I’ll admit it.  I’m addicted to Facebook.  I check in too many times a day, and use it way too often as an alternate form of communication with just about…well…everyone. It’s also a lifesaver for people like me who hate the phone. 

That said, for those of us who troll Facebook more than we should, it’s natural for there to be a growing list of annoyances which result from frequenting a virtual establishment more than any place in reality.

So, without further adieu, here we go…

10.  People Who Don’t Get the Real Purpose of the Facebook Status

Listen up, dipshits. The point of the Facebook status is NOT to tell us that you’re waiting in line at the dry cleaners or to give us your New Agey one liner pep talks.  Do I really need to hear one more time that “today is precious – that’s why it’s called the ‘present’?”

Please. 

Facebook status updates are either to entertain people with a little funny – or to vent your frustrations (frankly, also meant to entertain).  Occasionally, you can send a shout out about an important event in your life – both good or bad – in order to save yourself the trouble of having to call a million people.  I don’t recommend, however, you break up with a person via Facebook status.  While highly entertaining, it’s still a shitty thing to do, which leads me to my next annoyance…

9. People Using Their Relationship Status to Signal to Their Significant Others There’s Trouble in Paradise.

I can’t believe I even have to say this, but don’t – I repeat – DON’T use your FB relationship status to let your baby know you’re pissed with them.  I have actually heard from friends of mine, telling me they thought everything was fine between them and their girlfriend or boyfriend only to see their status change from “in a relationship” to “it’s complicated.” Can you be anymore high school than that? You’ve got a problem with your man, work it out at home and IN PERSON.  I have even heard of one married couple who were going through some problems, only to have the wife change her status from “married” to “single” before letting her husband know it was over. That’s just beyond tacky. You don’t have the nerve to break up with the person IN PERSON, then at least do it one-on-one over the phone and not through the Facebook community.  Made me feel like the kid at the dinner table watching their parents fight and not being allowed to leave.

8. Conversely, It’s Annoying When One Partner is Way Into Facebook and the Other is, Well, Really Not…

I usually don’t care that my man isn’t into Facebook. Frankly, his disinterest perfected aligns with his personality, so no biggie.  That said, I don’t know…I guess deep down I’m a fucking twelve-year-old girl because I’d like my man to write the occasional lovey message on my wall…it’s like getting a big, bad and beautiful gawdy bouquet of flowers sent to your work on Valentine’s Day. It makes you feel loved and you get to show off to the other gals how lovingly awesome your man really is.  I know, I’m pathetic, but there it is.

7. People Believing that By Simply Joining a Facebook Group, They’re Going to Cure All the World’s Ills.

I really hate being asked to join any of these groups, but I will occasionally do it if:

(1) I know the person sending me the join link is really involved in the cause outside of FB, and it’s my way of showing him or her support and

(2) it’s a cause I really believe in and one I put skin in the game outside my computer.

So for those of you who send me the link or app to cure cancer or save the friggin’ whales who have nothing to do with such causes, stop it.  It’s really annoying. And even worse, that silly FB group eschews any real progress made on that cause’s behalf.  Do your cause – and your FB friends – a big fucking favor and instead of spending your valuable time sending links for “Save Darfur” or “Stop Chopping Trees in the Amazon” take a measely $10 or $20 and donate them directly through the organization’s websites (NOT through Facebook). And shut the fuck up.

6. Stop Alerting Me Everytime Your Cow Takes a Dump on ‘Farmville’ or Your Virtual Vampire Bites Into Something.

For those of you who are lucky enough to be unaware of this, on Facebook there are applications which let you play a variety of games online.  Some let you lead virtual lives on a farm, or running a restaurant, or become a wiseguy in your own lil’ ‘Mafia Wars’ (one of my former favorites).  I too was once caught up in the fever of earning points for extra jobs and sending out notices on my news feed for help.  Then, one day, I realized I had a life. A pretty good one, actually.  And I walked away, cold turkey. Haven’t missed it since.

Now, I don’t expect for you all to stop doing something which gives you pleasure.  But do I really need to know everytime you move up another level or buy yourself a new virtual weapon? No, I don’t think so. Moreover, I know that those apps give you the OPTION of publishing that kind of info or not. Choose not to, ok?  It’s fine if you need the occasional help on a job…but otherwise stop with the FB bragging. You’re dirtying up my news feed and boring us to tears.  Seriously.

5. People Who Only Show Pictures of Their Kids (and Never Themselves) on Facebook.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m happy to look at pictures of lil’ Ashley and Madison. Sure, why not? But some of you ONLY show me your kids. Don’t you realize the whole point of Facebook is to avoid having to go to the school reunions and see how people turned out?  So what if you’ve gained some weight since school. Guess what, so have I pumpkin.  And while I’m not sporting a bikini online anytime soon, I’ll still show off my chub mug for you all to see and judge. Big deal. We’re older. Some of us need to lose a few pounds or need a little face work done.  Show yourselves and be proud!

Hey, there’s always Photoshop if you really have THAT many issues.

4. Hey Scumbags, Stop Hitting on Me and/or Our Spouses via Facebook.

If I had a dollar everytime either an ex-boyfriend or an old college “friend” started in with me via Facebook, I could take you all out to dinner.  A nice dinner.  Listen, I get that we all have those in our past that we wish we could’ve had – or there are the ones who got away. Hey, we’re all human, right? But there’s a fine line between catching up and seeing how you’re doing to trying to look under someone’s hood and ask  in Joey Tribbiani-style “howa YOU doin’?” You know the difference, so don’t act as if you don’t.  Light flirting is fine…wanting to start sexting and asking how my marriage is doing is not.

3. Facebook is a Social Networking Site – Not a Replacement for a Photo Album.

Throwing on a few pictures from last Thanksgiving is fine.  Uploading more than 100 photos from your Family Grand Canyon trip is just excessive.  No one’s gonna look through all that crap, so cut it out.

2. Speaking of Photos, Stop Tagging  Me with Pixs From My My Embarassing Youth.

It’s just not nice to scan and tag those curled yellowed photos of me with feathered back hair and pre-nose job.  It’s not good form to show the world what I looked like with metallic blue eye liner on. Stop with the tagging!!! Please!!

1. Hanging Out on Facebook May Be Kinda Lame, But it Sure-as-Hell Beats The Geek Squad Who Squat Over at World of Warcraft.

Ms. Mix & Bitch’s Pouting Session #1: Not Home for the Holidays

So the whole Mix & Bitch gang was supposed to go to my mom and stepdad’s house in North Carolina for the Thanksgiving holiday.  And while I know plenty of you dread the idea of having to see the people unfortunately related to you, I was really looking forward to going this year.  For one thing, they built themselves quite the rustic palace – and I only say rustic because of its location, not it’s amenities.  With 10,000 square feet and air and heating systems for every wing, it’s not exactly winning any green earth awards anytime soon either.  But my mom really goes all out with the decorations and my stepdad cooks a mean bird.  And thank God my mom loves her box of wine just as much as Kathy Griffin’s mom because she gets more charming by the glass (a trait I too share).  We spend the weekend doing North Carolina mountainy thingys like fishing and hiking the trails and roasting marshmallows at the open fire pit…sigh, it’s just good country fun.

Anyway, the reason why we’re not going is because Queen Mama Bitch (she’s not a music fan at all, hence why no ‘Mix” in her title) is having some unusually bad acid reflux and thinks she’s going to die.  Or that she has a tumor growing on her gall bladder. Or maybe she’s really been having a heart attack the whole time.  In other words, she’s a fucking hypochondriac.  And I wish I could tell you this happens with aging parents, but she’s been this way since I was eight years old.  So she wants to stay down in South Florida, where the “good” doctors are and get this resolved before trekking back to the boonies of Carolina. 

I know I sound selfish. I am, btw.  And I do get it that it’s scary to have pain that doesn’t go away.  I promise you all, I am much more understanding with her on the phone.  But between you and me, the whole jumping to the worse conclusion deal has gotten way old with me.  She’s had a particularly stressful couple of weeks down in Florida (for reasons I can’t get into) and hence, her upper GI tract is inflamed.  Doesn’t take an MD to see the stress is getting to her.  I’ve really been missing her and wanted to see her…so I’m pouting via blogging. I told you all I was a spoiled brat.

The good news is that some very cool Mix & Bitch friends are hosting Thanksgiving and have invited us – there’s also going to be an after-Thanksgiving shin dig on Friday I had wanted to attend.  So that works 🙂   I just hate feeling like the third wheel for someone else’s Norman Rockwellian Thanksgiving Day parade.  I have really stank memories of Thanksgiving with my parents – either it being just the three of us barely talking to each other, or getting the pity invite from someone and feeling like I was looking at happy family functioning through the looking-glass.  I would always end up feeling lonelier than ever.

A lot of that changed once my parents split for good and my stepdad came into my mother’s life.  King Stepdad Bitch (he is also not a fan of music, hence why he shares in my mother’s title) can be a real piece of work, but for all his craziness (and trust me, he’s packaging a full load of the crazies) he brought a genuine sense of joy and – dare I say – merriment back into the holidays for me and my mom.  He’s a trip and then some, and he kinda looks like a Jewishy Santa Claus so he just screams holiday friggin’ cheer.  It’s a good time, and I’m going to miss it. So there’s that.