Hello from Wyoming!; Or, We Fucking Like Ike

Hi! How are you? Now it says on my chart that my skin is dry, I talk too fast for the locs, and my boogers are all hard. Sorry, I am having an Idiocracy moment lately.

I got this little couple at a flea market since my dachshund salt and pepper shakers are wearing out. Not even painted straight! D’AWWWWW.

My route was like Washington>Idaho>Montana>Wyoming via Yellowstone and Jackson Hole. It sounds beyond ridiculous but I always forget how fricking big the Mountain West is until I am floating through it. To be fair, my friend Halo drove. It is our ten year friendiversary this September. I will have to tell you the story of how Halo and I met soon. I offered but I was happy to be a passenger and pay for some gas and meals. I made a Flickr set if you’re so inclined, and will keep adding to it.

On the first night we stayed in Missoula, which was pretty uneventful, other than getting upgraded to a Jacuzzi room for free because of a booking issue. The second night, however. We drove through Yellowstone and stopped at places here and there, and by the time we were getting through the Tetons and whatnot it was very dark. I am kind of excited to say I have driven through Yellowstone in the pitch black, wow. It’s really something. There’s fires everywhere out here now so no stars even, but gorgeous red sunsets.

By the time we got to Jackson Hole, our destination for that night, it was 11:30. Every hotel was either booked solid (most of them) or they were $400/night, which, I just couldn’t book a place that was $400 a night, barely see it, and not get like, handjobs from angels or something as a bonus. Using my terrible phone maps we drove all over Jackson, praying for a sign that said yes. After about a half hour, we pulled over to the side of the road, and sat, dazed. Jackson Hole had morphed to Jackson Butthole, because I am 12.

“Hmm,” I said. “What do you think about continuing to drive?” Our destination was about 8 hours away at this point, and there was just not much around. I’m used to being able to throw one of my enemies’ skulls and hit a hotel back home. A lot of the “towns” we drove through were mostly cows or horses.

“Okay, and we can stop at a rest area when we are too tired,” Halo agreed.

We were driving out of town…the freeway was in sight…and BANG, there was the Virginia Lodge with a sign reading “vacancy.” Even from the dark road I could tell it wasn’t the plushest place, which maybe meant it would be more affordable. I rolled into the lobby and greeted the clerk with a cheery “GOOD MORNING.” There was taxidermy everywhere and he had the dirtiest fingernails I had ever seen on a hospitality employee, but this was going to work. It had to. He handed me actual keys, which was novel. The room boasted wood paneling and a single fishing poster. The parking lot was a mix of trailers, Harleys, and cars. Halo was curious about the ratings of the place and took a peep around once we were in our jammies and trying to wind down in our beds. Some people loved the price for value; one person complained that their feet got filthy from the carpet, which I thought was funny until my soles turned black from walking the distance between the shower and my bed.

The next morning was the real treat–I regret not getting there early enough (okay, being too old and tired after two days on the road) to venture over to the saloon for a drink.

The butting rams were something special. You may be shocked to learn I have bought no taxidermy and no velvets. I have not seen any velvets, and the taxidermy has looked ugly to me. I am surprised to discover that I have opinions about antelope appearances and that some are pretty and some have faces for antelope radio. Of course, I would not buy a SECOND antelope (though Halo is urging me to buy a Barry Mantelope to keep Jennifer Antelope company), but I have not seen other animals I want either. YET.

I popped into the liquor store after the saloon for purposes of general anthropology and was astounded to see this!

A Crown Royal quilt! Being raffled!!

“This is beautiful,” I said to the clerk, who beamed. “Is this from the company, or…?”

“Oh no,” he said. “My mother-in-law made it. We go through hundreds of these bags a week at the bar!” He flipped the quilt over and had me admire and feel the glorious soft gold fur she had backed it with. What a treat it would be to curl up on the couch and read under a motherfucking Crown Royal quilt. Boy am I glad I went in. I was sadder to see the souvenir hoodles were $60. OUCH.

The next day, after arriving in Laramie, Halo decided to take me to one of her favorite cafes, the Prairie Rose.

It was slammed. The regular waitress was like a well-oiled machine, cranking around the counter and tables, taking orders, slinging food, cashiering, and, unfortunately for her, being in charge of what was immediately revealed to be a new girl. She was tall and tan and blonde and was wearing those fancy jeans that look like Liberace spooged all over the pockets too tightly so it made a little brown muffin top that poofed out of the gap between her shirt and pants. Halo and I watched the new girl ooze around behind the counter, every motion inefficient and including several unneeded movements. We watched her forget things and greet customers out of order, and let food stack up on the service window. We both cringed because we have been the zippy fast counter girl in the past and we felt the pain of the old hand who was albatrossed with this new lemon.

The old pro was doing that training-in-motion thing where you nudge the noob into doing things correctly until their training wheels come off. “They want four waters, four coffees,” she said to the new girl, who did not appear to even hear the order. “Bring them menus!” Trudge, trudge, ooze.

“Where is she?” said the cook, shuffling the backed up plates in his window.

“I don’t KNOW,” sighed the pro, grabbing what looked like about twelve plates at once.

The new girl drifted out of the backroom. “Do we have…chocolate chips?” she asked the cook through the window.

“NO.” he said.

The old pro stopped in front of us briefly and we could hear her taking a deep, deliberate breath. “I don’t know why it’s so busy at 11 on a Tuesdsay morning,” she muttered, mostly to herself but partly to us in the way you do when you work close to the people you are serving. Someone may just hear you and respond.

“Count to ten!” I said, not glibly.

“It won’t help.” she replied. A few minutes later the pro asked the new girl to get our orders out of the window and bring them to us. We were all of 6 feet from the window and practically could have reached them ourselves.

New girl brought two menus and waved them at us weakly. “Do you need…?”

“Our food is in the window,” I said, pointing.

“Oh.” she put the menus down and walked off to do something else entirely.

There were no refills on coffee, but the breakfast burritos were delicious. It is my fondest wish that the new girl gets fired and finds a more suitable line of work, perhaps as a snail or as that goop you put in your bike tires.

À Part Ça

Here’s some news for your face: I bought a house. Of course it’s been in progress for a couple of months with the looking and the bidding and the inspecting and the oy with the poodles already, but I didn’t want to jinx it by talking about it. I wish I could tell you how many things in my life have fallen through unnoted because I didn’t want to tell you and jinx it preemptively and feel all sad in my blogpants and well, fuck, things fall through anyway, so what do jinxes have to do with it, anyhow? I don’t want to dwell on that stuff. Everyone is coming along–I think there will be no more household divisions unless something goes really sideways again. The house is from the amazing year 1954 and has been barely altered. In fact, other than the necessary updates, like plumbing, electrical, roof, etc, it’s pretty much a time capsule.

One of my very favorite things about it is that of all previous owners, of which I don’t believe there’s been too many, none have destroyed the pink tiled guest bathroom in it. I have pink tiled bathroom nostalgia, because my darling college rambler in Phoenix had a pink and black tiled en suite bathroom off the master bedroom. What else can you do but run with it? Of course I had a flamingo shower curtain. Sometimes things that happen to you at that impressionable age change your DNA a little.

Did you know there is a thing with pink bathrooms? Mamie Eisenhower loved pink so much that her shade was dubbed First Lady Pink. I have often assumed that Mamie was a nickname in her case–but no, it was her actual name. “Mamie” cracked the top 1000 baby names in 1960, no doubt inspired by her. When I think of the 1950s in the U.S., I certainly think of that shade. I almost jizzed in my pants when I walked into this bathroom in an antique shop in Deer Trail, Montana where I bought too many brooches and a fake fur coat with fake leather chevrons patterned into it. In addition to a Cinderella tub, the bathroom also had a Dixie cup holder that was identical in shade and style to the one in my new house.

Anyway, I am thinking of how to decorate it, and how to paint to complement the pink. I’ve got some unboring ideas. While I was at Bart’s Flea Market here in Laramie, I noticed there was a ton of twentieth-century presidential memorabilia, and I am a sucker for midcentury American political history and have been since I was 18 really. I could not take all the Kennedy banks and Lincoln bookends home, but I did decide to snap up this gem:

I had to take a close up picture of President Eisenhower and his delightful lip color. Of course this is going up in the bathroom in honor of Mamie.

So closing is August 28th. If you think all this court stuff is boring, just wait until you see this turn into I, Interior Designhole. Pictures forthcoming! ZZZZZZ, sorry. Either you are landed gentry and have many opinions and advices for me, or you are unlanded and don’t care. Boy howdy will you miss Legal Beat volumes 1-9000 then. Click to unfollow! Etc.

Asshole girl

The dark covers me and I cannot run now

Let’s get this out of the way immediately: this morning I woke up to GRISLY CHICKEN DEATH. Zsa Zsa, JWOWW, and So-and-So the Easter Egger got the axe. I locked them up at dusk last night and it was quiet outside and they were burbling in their house and everything seemed well. There was a lot of noise at 5 a.m. but I didn’t think much of it. Sometimes they get noisy when the sun comes up. I came out at 6:30 to let them out (I surrender, I am a morning person now, yes I hate myself appropriately) and the first thing I saw was feathers under the coop. Too many feathers. There were three broken and gutted little bodies around the backyard. One of the raccoons had eaten the eggs out of Zsa Zsa’s body, which just made me furious, really.

I walked to the corner of the yard and old lady Veronica was hiding behind the shed, standing upright and eying me warily. A feather was stuck to her head and at first I was afraid that her eye had been poked or something, but she was just sticky. I let her be since I figured she’d get it off herself, and also because after what she witnessed she is probably now Chicken Dexter Morgan and I didn’t want to get too close.

Watching her stand there made me feel really sad. I surveyed the little piles where the raccoons had left the girls laying around the yard half eaten and all I could think of was how scared they must have been in the dark and how terrible I was to have shut the door too early and locked them out. It’s like a horror movie when the door closes too soon and you watch your friend get torn apart by zombies/tentacles/LaRouchies through the porthole. I cried–I couldn’t help it.

The thing about chicken deaths is that I don’t really bond with them the way I do with my cats and now the dog, but they are trusting and defenseless and just kind of generally good animals, I believe. I know chickens peck each other and sometimes they eat eggs and they are stupid, but after ten years I feel that most problems can be prevented with proper conditions and control. You can steer them like a waterway and they do good work for you. And I had let them down.

Once the bodies were cleaned up I opened their door to check on the remaining hens. No one came forward, and normally they burst out like they have been shot from an extremely short range cannon.

“Girls?” I stuck my head in. There was an egg open on the coop floor and Silver Belle’s beak was wet. That was weird. They rarely break their own eggs. I walked around back and the back egg hatch was open. Strudel had done her egg duty yesterday and had left it open.

I was still crying when I came into the house and I sat on the couch. Frannie came upstairs and it’s extremely rare but I feel bad when the first thing the girls see in the morning is me bawling like a big soppy muffin. I told Frannie what went down and she hugged me while I sniffled and felt terrible. After a couple of minutes on the couch, we heard Strudel’s door open and Frannie went down to fill her in on the news.

When Strudel came upstairs she looked stunned. Strudel always has strong notions about justice and responsibility, and spent a few months asking me hard questions about things like police justice and morality. I have NO IDEA what she is going to turn into when she grows up. For a long time the people who were most responsible for breaking and taking things in my house were Not Me and Must’ve Have Been My Sister, but lately she has been coming forward more and talking about how she could handle things better the next time. What a fucking relief.

“I’m sad about the chickens,” she said.

“Yeah. Thanks. Me too,” I said. I waited for her wheels to turn to where I knew they would go next.

“Did someone leave the door open?” she asked, gently.

“Yes,” I said. “The egg door was left open on the back of the house.”

I watched her face flicker through several changes before the needle got stuck on, “Oh shit, this is my fault.”

“Sorry, Mom,” she said, almost inaudibly.

“Thanks for saying that.”

I got a note on a sugar packet.

Today is the last day of first and sixth grades. She was a very quiet cricket on Wednesday.

Horace vs. Mere and Goethe

He is SO LUCKY they humor him.

Tart, melon, and guac.

Cherry Cheese Tart for Father's Day

Oh god please may I have some please

Noooo you may not.

“If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.”

(Lewis Carroll)

I think I need to wave some sage around for a minute. I am NOT dissolving into a pile of goo. Life is still happening. Today we played Whoonu and Clue and cleaned the house. Last Thursday I went to the doctor for my rosacea. I was actually delighted to be going to this dermatologist, because she has received some reviews on Yelp so horrendous that I assumed she was going to march right out of a Larry David comedy, but she was fine.

I don’t care that I am pink so much. I had a terrible friend who was always pleading with me to get some of that green makeup and cover it all up, but I kind of like being pink, actually. It’s just who I am. I hate it when people try to change things in you that you are okay with and are not hurting anyone. I was getting tired of the pain that came with my cheeks flushing. It turns out that the cream she gave me cannot prevent that. Oh well.

And of course we had Halloween. I took so many pictures that I was dreading sorting through them, ho ho.

We carved pumpkins:


Spider Web

A lot of my pictures turn out blurry with this new camera. Basically, I wanted to get the newer version of my old Canon Elph which I loved. I feel like this one is less point-and-shooty. I need dumber technology. I just do not have the energy for anything complicated in my down time, you know?

P. Pumpkin


Self Portrait with Bandaged Ear, 1889


I VAN WENT around like this all day. GET IT??? HA HA HA HA.

Franny as a witchy poof:


Strudel went as an Owl:


But P. did the BEST thing, assuming you have ever seen the show Community.

Get ready…

Get set…


I drew the lines and then shaved him down with a small electric razor I have.


It’s Star-burns!



At the end of the night, there was LOOOOOOT!!!


There’s a few more new unique ones on Flickr, if you’re so inclined.

10 10 10 10 FOR EVERYTHING

The bad thing about a memorial service is that if you’re me you cry all the way through, but the good thing is that you get to hear a lot of people stand up and say that the person you admired was the type of person who would cosign medical school loans for immigrants who needed a second chance, a person who would tape a broken arm up in a newspaper and take you to get it set properly, and was a good father, friend, and doctor. It’s nice when a lot of people agree and find all those good things inspiring.

“Am I going to have to stand up to talk when you die?” Strudel said.

At the Hotel Deluxe

Inky and Ruby catch The Panther Express

Outside Jeld-Wen Field

At Pho Van

Cousins–Gabriel, May, and Strudel

Fountain at Leach Botanical Gardens

I nicked an orchid from one of the arrangements.


I probably should have just told the doctor I was having more babbys, since he wasn’t really buying the whole “I have had most side effects from this thing.” Well, he took it out anyway.

A Great Birthday Present

Hand-bricked Chicago Brick. The quality of the ice cream is too nice, but I really enjoyed it anyway. It is nice when someone will hand-brick you some stuff that does not exist anymore, but that tastes like your childhood.

Dear MF Diary, Today The Boy I Like Said Hi To Me In the Hall.

Me: What are you doing with this bacon grease?
P: I dunno. You want to cook with it or something?
Me: NO! I am vegemetarian now, remember.
P: Yeaaaah.
Me: Well? Can you cover this stuff up so it does not become DUSTY GREASE at least? SHUT THE LID.
P: We can save it and rub it on the foundation in case there is a flood or something.
Me: …
P: Heh heh.


This parable, which is not a parable at all, is an illustration of how we never fight about anything important anymore, but only about insignificant shit. Because we are both FIGHTERS, for now and for always. At times we fight about if we are actually fighting. The girls don’t even blink. It’s nice that it doesn’t really count anymore. Sometimes I wish we would have gotten to this stage without breaking up, but that’s life.

The chickens are molting like whoa. Death Ray is nothing but some blondey fluff right now. I can really see new feathers on her.

Today I wandered all over Wallingford running errands. Did you see that they are remodeling the QFC? When I first moved here it was still Food Giant. I hope they keep the Wallingford sign that QFC transmogrified it into.

The roses are having their last hurrah. I really like this time of year before the heat goes on, the summer flowers are having one last push, and you can put in fall flowers. I put mums in the front beds this year, and I am just going to leave them there instead of treating them like annuals. My pansies are in place as well, and they will last through the winter, which is an awesome thing about Seattle. Who can complain about year-round flowers? ASSHOLES, that’s who.

Today P. is decorating practice cupcakes for Franny’s birthday. This is her golden birthday so she gets gold cake. I will post the results later. I am trying to decide what kind of gold presents to get her. Strudel is VERY ANGRY because her golden birthday isn’t until she is twelve.

There are more pics on AssFlickr if you are desirous of more rubbernecking.

If You Run Your Mouth About This Secret Rendezvous, I WILL HUNT YOU DOWN

Damn you, Rich. Damn you straight to Cleveland. OH LORD PLEASE EXORCISE THE DEMON MARIAH CAREY FROM MY SOUL.

Anywayz. As if you won’t have enough to do, I made you this BLOGHER CONF BINGO! The first one to win gets declared offish off the chi-zain.

bingo.jpgFURTHER, I don’t know if you remember that book I appeared in recently, but it will be for sale at the Blogher BlogHer Swap Meet, Saturday at 12:15 – 1:30, in the Olympic Room (second floor). I will sign for you or not. Please remember that zero dollars and zero cents of this book goes into my liquor and jiggly bikini girls fund. It’s all charitable giving, so ABSOLUTELY no enabling of I, Asshole will occur as a result of buying and enjoying this book.

Can You See Me? Can You Hear Me? Then You’re In Our Delivery Area.

Today I went to see The Wackness, preceded by a nice glass of scotch and some phad thai. Nothing is better than that, really. Well, toss in some satanic cheerleaders and I would be all set. There were minimal amounts of Mary-Kate Trollsen, and the soundtrack gave me crazy nostalgia for when Biggie Small’s first album came out. It was set in 1994, which did nothing but give me sad sack nostalgia from the music and knowing small time drug dealers who used pagers and shit.

And now, a nice glass of homemade raspberry cordial. I added half-and-half and now it is looking kind of curdled. NOM. Doesn’t that sound SO delicious, curdled? Sadly, it is.


I repotted some thyme this weekend in this hideous faux barrel thing made of plastic with gold plastic trim. Gorgeous.

Also, Operation I Cannot Make Up My Fucking Mind was a success.

Narsty Roots of Narsitness

dotsprittyernge.jpgERNGE in-between stage. I decided to do the roots orange instead of crazy bleach out so I can settle back to “natural” redheadedness when summer ends. This color was pretty nice, but the top half was ORANGE and the bottom half is still hanging onto the red.




Everyone loves a HAPPY psycho. No? NO? I keel you.

The funniest thing happened, if by “funny” I mean “incompetence on everyone’s part.” I reserved a hotel room for Blogher and then I went to look it up in my email a few weeks later. It was nowhere. Was I have an junior senior moment? Did I just imagine that I made the reservation? The older I get the more credulous I get, I think. I called the hotel, hello, hello, where the fuck is my room? “We have never heaaared of you.” “Okay, bye, cocks.” Hmm, it is looking more and more like I was partaking of the crack. Hotel was now full. I made a hostel reservation.

Hmm, this could be good, I told myself. I won’t run into crazy drunken bitches in the hallway (which will actually just be me, making out with a mirror), I can saves the moneys, etc. BUT LO, in my inbox yesterday was a confirmation from the HOTEL. Wut. I am hotel bound now, because if I could marry one inanimate object, it would be a hotel room.

Also, here is an info begzor: can I hav sum n-fo PLZ? I have use of a craptop for the conf but the internal wireless card is borkenated. Can anyone briefly tell me about their experiences with wireless USB? Is good? Is no good? Pay no more than X? Avoid X brand?

I am coming from the Internets to axe murder you!

Call 398-C-O-L-D, 398-…cold.