Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Grout

When the hubs and I decided to replace the linoleum in our kitchen with tile, every single one of our friends told us to make sure we used a dark grout because the lighter is a bitch to keep clean.

Although that's what we requested, the flooring guy ended up using a really light color grout.  We couldn't complain; "the flooring guy" was some dude my best friend was banging at the time and he offered to do it for free to get in good with her peeps. 

And anyway, it's like I told everyone who commented on the light grout when they attended a dinner party (read:  hot dogs, macaroni and cheese, and beer) that we hosted a couple of weeks later:

"Whatever, drama queens, because I've got a plan.  I'm just going to keep swooping a bunch of dirt in there so that it looks dark gray and nobody is the wiser."  And look, my plan is already working. Exhibit A:
I'm smart.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Trashy Shorts: Sound Advice from My 6-Year-Old

"MOM.  Did you know NEVER to throw a spear of fire into a balloon full of helium?"

Well, damn.  Now what am I supposed to do with all of these spears of fire?

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Peeing in the Pool

I was swimming at my sister-in-law’s pool a couple of weeks ago with my other sister-in-law.

“I have to pee,” I told her.  “I guess I won’t piss in the pool since it’s smaller than a public one and a family member owns it.”

I thought I was being really generous; in normal circumstances we wouldn’t have even had the conversation because I’d have already peed, nobody being the wiser.

“GROSS!” my sister-in-law shouted, moving away from me. “Do you really do that?”

“Of course I do,” I answered.  “And I tell the boys to do it, too.”

It’s true.  I tell my sons that unless it’s a number 2 coming out of them, they should just do it in the water because I don’t want to have to get up and take them to the nasty pool bathroom every five minutes. 

The younger one’s having a hard time catching on; last time we were at the public pool, he told me he had to pee.  I did that shifty-eye thing where I looked around to make sure nobody was listening, and then I leaned close to whisper in his ear, “Just do it right now.”

“WHAT?!” he yelled, shocked and appalled that I would suggest such a thing. He pulled away from me, and with his loud, squeaky, confused voice, I knew that everyone in the pool could hear his next question.  “MOMMY, why did you tell me to pee in the pool?  I can’t PEE IN THE POOL!!”

I swear he almost got a time-out for that.

Listen, I know it’s gross. That’s why I don’t stop to think about it for too long.  Because I also know that all of the other people are doing it—the honest ones have told me, and believe me, there are a ton of them out there—and that, supposedly, the chlorine is supposed to sort of “clean it up.”  I know it sounds ridiculous, but I don’t question it. I just pee.

Ten years ago, the hubs and I took our honeymoon to Jamaica.  One afternoon, we found this great little swim-up bar at our resort and joined two other couples in pounding rum-filled drinks over the next four hours.

At one point, one of the other husbands, a guy from New York with big biceps and a thick accent, started laughing.

The others of us smiled politely but looked around at each other, confused.

“What?” we all kept asking.  “What?”

Finally he stopped laughing long enough to speak. “I just realized that we’ve been sittin’ here drinkin’ for 4 hours,” he explained, “and not one of us has gotten up to take a piss.”

Slowly, we all began to look around us, first at each other—each of us both a victim and a perpetrator of the crime—and then at our surroundings.  You could tell from the disgusted looks dawning on our faces that we had all noticed the stagnant lazy river, tinged with yellow, at the same time.

And it kind of smelled.

But we were drunk on rum, you see.  So the next thing that happened was that we all started laughing and ordered another round.

“It’s on me!” my new husband shouted.  It was his favorite joke all week because the trip was all-inclusive, but in this case, it took on a double meaning and we laughed all the harder.

Back at my sister-in-law’s pool, my other sister-in-law was glaring at me.  “You’re not doing it right now, are you?” she snarked, still wading to the other end of the pool.

“No, DRAMA QUEEN,” I sighed, moving to the stairs so that I could get out of the pool.  “I already said I wasn’t going to do it in here.  But if you have an issue with it, you probably shouldn’t come with me the next time I go to the public pool.”

My sister-in-law grimaced and called after me as I walked into the house.  “You’d better hope you never swim in one of those pools where they use that dye that turns red every time someone pees in the water!”

I turned back to her, rolling my eyes.  “This isn’t a Kevin James movie, dude.  This is life.  They’ve been threatening that dye shit since I was a kid, and it’s still not a reality.

“And besides,” I added, deciding to be kind and impart one last piece of wisdom to my sister-in-law, who is, after all, 4 years younger than I am and could obviously use it, “I’m smart about it. I watch the shallow end of the pool—you know, the side that’s really warm because of all of the snot-nosed toddlers pissing in it?—for like 10 minutes.  If the water’s not turning red over there, it sure as hell isn't going to turn red where I decide to pee.”

My sister-in-law acted like she wasn’t listening, but I knew she was, so I continued.  “Then, when I do it, I let a little bit seep out first just to make sure.  And guess what?  THERE’S NEVER ANY RED.”

But goddammit, whoever started that rumor was brilliant because I swear, despite all of my Kevin James movie talk, I still worry a little bit about the elusive dye every single time.

I wish I could end this story by saying that after all of this peeing-in-the-pool talk, I noticed that my sister-in-law didn’t get out of the pool again for the rest of the day. 

But she did.  And each time she clambered out to hit the restroom, she gave me this holier-than-thou look, like, This is what a grown-ass adult should be doing when she needs to pee and happens to be at the pool.

Whatevs.

Hey, guys, if you feel like it, click here to like Trashy Blog's Facebook page. I know you're reading; the stats show it (THANK YOU!), but I look like a fcking loser over there because I have like 12 followers.  It's not like my self-esteem depends on it, but--okay, it does.  It totally does.  :)

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Trashy Shorts: Feeding the Fish

I took my boys to the park today for a picnic and then to play, and amazingly, I remembered to bring along the old bread that we always save to feed the fish that reside in the small lake at the edge of the park.

When we were finished feeding them, I said, "We should feel really good about ourselves.  Because of us, those fish ate really good today!"

My 6-year-old looked up at me.  "Well," he said, "it wasn't actually protein?  Like, it was just stale bread, which is just a bunch of grains and carbs?"  He was saying it in question form, nodding at me hopefully in order to make sure I was following along as he imparted his wisdom.  "So really," he finished, "they didn't eat all that good."

Of course.  What must I have been thinking, child?  We'll make sure they have filet mignon with a side of veggies next time.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Yeah, RIGHT

This summer, so far, has been both fun and luxurious in that I've allowed my Type A scheduling self to slow down enough some days that I'm not constantly checking the wall calendar that I normally live and die by. (I know I've just ended a sentence with a preposition, peeps, but "by which I normally live and die" just didn't do it for me.) 

This summer has also been long in that really great way where you feel like you've already gotten to spend so much time getting relaxed and refreshed for the upcoming months, yet you still have a few weeks of summer fun left to look forward to. (Oops, I did it again. #britney)

Our boys have taken to sneaking into our bed in the middle of the night, and although we'll have to get them out of the habit when school starts up again to ensure that we all get a good night's sleep, right now, I'm enjoying the hell out of it.  It won't last forever, you see, and so I'm going to snuggle with them (read:  tell them to stop giggling and talking and SHUT THE HELL UP, please, so Mommy can get some sleep) while I can.

My 6-year-old came in this morning around 7:20 AM.  I've been allowing myself a few days here and there to sleep in, and today was one of them.  I remember fumbling for my phone on the nightstand and blindly handing it to him, telling him, "I'll let you play on my phone if you let me sleep for another half hour."

He was all too happy to agree; phone time is precious around here, especially as his younger brother wasn't yet awake to fight with him over it, and he could play in peace.

When I finally awoke fully at 8:05 AM, my son, sitting up next to me, looked away from the phone so that he could give me a soft smile, one of amused appreciation for another person that went way beyond his 6 years.

"You were snoring," he said, and then shifted his attention back to the phone.

"Was I?" I laughed.

"Yeah," he said, not looking up from his game.  "But it wasn't loud.  It wasn't, like, a normal snore."

"Oh," I said. "Okay."

"It was different. Quieter, maybe. Because there's something special about you, Mom."

He's observant; he's constantly hearing people use phrases and then trying to fit them into his own daily life. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.  Last week, he was all about the normally sarcastic "Yeah, RIGHT," and he just couldn't seem to get it right.

"We're going to go get ice cream after dinner!" my husband announced with a flourish one evening.

"Yeah, RIGHT," my son said, all of the proper snide affectation in the proper places.

"Seriously," my husband said, shooting me a quizzical glance over my son's shoulder, "we really are going to get ice cream."

"Yeah, RIGHT," my son repeated, a full smirk now spread across his face.

"I don't understand," my husband admitted, furrowing his brow as he looked at me again.  "Is it that he doesn't believe we're really going to get ice cream?"

I shook my head, smiling at my husband's confusion.  "It's that he was hanging out with his 11-year-old cousin all last week and hasn't quite figured out how to use the phrase."

Practice makes perfect, though, and all we've heard over the past few days is, "Yeah, RIGHT."  The trouble is, my son thinks he's wholeheartedly agreeing--with enthusiasm!--with what the speaker is saying, while on the outside, he looks and sounds like a little asshole.  It's kind of hilarious, actually, especially as his younger brother is starting to parrot him, also using it in all the wrong places.

And I know, you guys, I know I should be encouraging him to use more of the sweet phrases that he's heard like "There's something special about you, kid," but I can't help it. I love seeing people's confused reactions when he misuses "Yeah, RIGHT" in any and all given situations:

-Oh, so you'll be in first grade next year, big guy?
-Yeah, RIGHT.
-[Looking in my direction]  Oh, so he's not?  Or he is?  

Ice cream truck driver: You know what, you're such a great customer that this one, today, is on me!
My son:  Yeah, RIGHT.
Ice cream truck driver, looking in my direction:  Oh, so he wants you to pay for it?
Me:  Yeah, RIGHT.

His aunt: It's been so good to see you, buddy. Have you enjoyed spending time with your cousins?
My son:  Yeah, RIGHT.
His aunt, looking in my direction:  So he hates us?

One of these days, he's going to get it right. And I'll be sad.

Friday, July 17, 2015

What Was the Point Again?

I know that I’ve been talking about working out and running a lot lately on here and on my Facebook page, and I know that can get annoying.

Trust me, I know.

My husband tells me about it all the time.

“Whose house are we going to again?” he asked once when I'd lured him to a get-together with the promise of all the beer he wanted to drink because I would forgo my own drinks and drive us home.

“Oh, Christine and Doug’s,” I answered nonchalantly, hoping he wouldn’t press the issue.

Wrong.

“Oh, shit,” he groaned, shooting me a dirty look because I’d tricked him with all the drink all you want; I’ll drive! talk.  “Because that’s what I want to do all night is sit around and listen to you running nerds talk about your latest half marathon.  You better have another cooler packed somewhere, because I only brought a 12-pack, and I’m going to need to knock back about 6 more in order to stomach it all.”

I deftly pulled into one of the drive-thru liquor stores in town, ordered a 6-pack of Guinness, and we were on our way. 

My husband stared out the window for a moment, temporarily pacified by the fact that I’d gotten him the good stuff. But then he turned to look at me again.

“Seriously, do you know how pretentious you guys sound when you get together?  With your flaring nostrils and nasally voices? When was YOUR last haaaaaaaaalf?” he mimicked, eyelids fluttering in a look that I’m pretty sure I’ve never used in my whole life when talking about running or anything else.  “I ran negative splits in MY last one.”

“Okay, stop right there!” I interrupted him, giggling.  “First off, not one of my friends has whatever British accent you just sprouted to make fun of us.  And secondly, I have never used the term negative splits—probably because I don’t even know what it means.  Where did you hear that?”

My husband smiled.  “You left a pile of Runner’s World magazines on the back of the shitter.  I got bored the other day when I was in there for a while.”

In my defense, the Runner’s World magazines were given to me by a friend whose husband ordered them for her and then she never read them.

The reason I bring all of this up is that I wanted to talk about running just one more time this week.  Because I was at the in-laws’ house last weekend, and running there…well, let’s just say it’s an interesting experience.

My mother-in-law fervently believes that running and writing—two of my absolute favorite things to do in the world—are humongous wastes of time.  And by God, don’t you even think about letting her catch you READING A BOOK. It disgusts her.

“You and those—books!” she spat last weekend when she caught me red-handed on the couch with a beachy Elin Hilderbrand.  “Why don’t you go outside and smoke a cigarette?  At least then you’d be doing something.”

Anyway, she feels the same way about running, although my husband has tried to make her understand.  “It’s her stress relief, Mom,” he’ll tell her.

We love telling the story about the morning a couple of years ago when I was in a bad mood.  I was walking around yelling at everyone, grimacing at babies and kicking kittens.  Okay, there weren’t any babies or kittens around, but if there HAD been, I totally would have grimaced and kicked, respectively. 

Finally, my husband looked at me and said, “Holy SHIT you are being a raging bitch.  Please go for a run.”

I stopped and looked at him, eyes wide.  “Yeah?” I said.  “You’ll watch the boys?”

“Yes. Please—go run.”

I’m pretty sure I single-handedly saved our marriage by cranking out those 5 miles and coming back a new woman that day.  I should be a marriage counselor.  I’d be all, “Get your grumpy, combative asses on the treadmill and call me in the morning.” 

So last week, when I was at my in-laws’ house for an extended visit, I laced up my running shoes at about 8 PM.  The humidity had been fierce all day, making the already-hot high of 98 feel like 104. I knew that, barring the early-morning hours in which I had chosen to sleep in, 8 PM was the best time to go if I wanted to get a run in—and I did.

I slipped out the door quietly after nodding at my husband, who put his finger to his lips and motioned for me to go. He was in on my plan; maybe I could get a quick run in and be back before my mother-in-law had time to notice my absence and berate me when she figured out the reason for it.

During that run, I swallowed 7 bugs (including one that was ingested via my unnaturally large nasal cavity); I got one bug in my eye; I almost ran directly into a deer that was calmly watching me from the middle of the trail; and I had to cut it down to 3.3 miles because that damned humidity was making me feel like I was going to slip in a puddle of my own sweat, bump my head on the rocky trail, and pass out.

HOWEVER, I also remembered to douse myself liberally with Off! (Deep Woods, mothas) so I didn’t get bitten once; I managed to not get killed and eaten by a coyote; and, partly because of that last one, I witnessed the beginnings of a solitary sunset that made it feel as though God Himself was speaking just to me.

So I was feeling good when I got back to the in-laws’ house.  I was feeling really good. So good, in fact, that I allowed myself a slight lapse in judgment as I took 3 seconds to turn on the living room’s ceiling fan and lie on my back, eyes closed, feet flat on the floor, knees bent up, arms splayed around me.

That’s what you get for reveling in your accomplishments, folks.  Those goddamned endorphins get me into trouble every single time.

Because my bratty younger sister-in-law had apparently been just around the corner in the kitchen, eating a rice krispie treat.  How the hell had I missed that?

“MO-OM!” I heard her bellow.  My eyes snapped open.

“MO-OM!” she yelled again.  “Shay just went for a run and now she’s all sweaty and she’s lying on your clean carpet!!!  MO-OM!!!”

I heard my mother-in-law scurry into the room.  Somewhere in all of the scuffle, my husband appeared in the kitchen. It’s an open-concept house, so he was able to watch, an amused expression on his face, as the scene unfolded before him.

“SHAY!” my mother-in-law barked.  “You are sweating all over the place—"

“Even her crotch is sweaty,” my sister-in-law supplied gleefully between bites of her rice krispie.

“Eww!” my mother-in-law shouted.  “Stand up! Get off of my floor with your sweaty running body.  STAND UP!”

My husband’s easy smile had gotten a little bit bigger, and I knew he was trying to hold in his laughter. I couldn’t blame him.  The whole thing was ridiculous, but I was already in it, so it’s not like I could just…get out of it. Not without making a point, at least.

I rolled up to a sitting position so that I was no longer lying on the floor, but I couldn’t get all the way up or else they’d won.

“This whole goddamned family needs therapy!” I shouted back at them.  I could feel that I was all red-faced, but I wasn’t sure if it was from the run or from the emotions of the argument.  “Therapy to figure out how to stop being assholes!” I clarified, just to make sure they understood.

I saw my mother-in-law’s lips twitch as if she, too, were trying to hold back a laugh, and I felt like my argument on therapy and assholes would have been taken a lot more seriously if I could've been saying it from a standing position—but I couldn’t.  I simply couldn’t. 

Because you guys, I’m three years old and I was going to out-stubborn them by keeping my sweaty ass on the floor just because THEY HAD TOLD ME NOT TO. 

I was already mad at myself for making a concession by sitting up halfway.

In the end, my mother- and sister-in-law walked outside to the porch to share a ciggie, shaking their heads and clucking the whole way.  I lay back down on that goddamned floor and vowed to myself that I’d stay there as long as I possibly could in order to make my point crystal clear. 

To be honest, I kind of forgot what my point even was, but I do know that I lay there for so long that my back started to hurt and it kind of felt like my muscles were going to atrophy.

At one point, my husband walked by and gave me a little nudge with his foot.  By this time, I was shivering, as the cold air conditioner had turned the sweat on my clothes into frost, and so they were just kind of hanging there on me like sheets of light snow. I felt like Audrey during the scene in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation where they pick out the family Christmas tree.
“Babe,” my husband said.  “The sweat has dried into salty streaks all down your face.  Don’t you think you’ve made your point?”

“Can you get bedsores from a floor?” I asked.  “Because I think I have them.”

When I felt that the time was right (read:  After my husband had wrapped me in a blanket and the shaking had stopped), I got up from my spot on the floor, took a warm shower, massaged my frostbitten toes, and joined my sister- and mother-in-law outside for a beer and a ciggie. 

I brought my book along, too, because I wasn’t sure how well I had made my first point and I wanted a do-over.

All in all, I’d say it was a successful run.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Trashy Shorts: It's the Running

As I was taking the last few steps of my 3 ½ mile run this morning, I mentally chastised myself for not pushing on and doing my regular 6.

It was, after all, a beautiful morning—the only break, according to the forecast, that we would have from the suffocating humidity that we’ve been suffering for the past week and will continue to suffer in the days to come.  If I’d wanted to avoid the boredom of the treadmill and get one of my twice weekly 6-milers in outside, today would’ve been the day to do it.

And then suddenly, a sentence popped into my head…something that my 4-year-old had said in response to my father-in-law’s teasing last weekend when he hadn’t jumped into the lake water with his older brother.

“I could do it, but I don’t want to.”

Yeah.

I could do it, but I don’t WANT to! 

So nanny-nanny-boo-boo and take that!…me.

Me?

Seriously, who the hell was I yelling at inside my brain out there during that run?

Sometimes I don’t think it’s the damned humidity or heat that makes us crazy.  It’s the running.