Wednesday, February 29, 2012


Like the vast majority of American babies, I started out sleeping in a crib. I even remember my crib. I used to stand there and gnaw on the top railing to the consternation of my mother ("you practically chewed through that railing"). It's probably no surprise that I transitioned to gnawing on pencils when I entered school, often until I got to the lead. I was a weird child and an even weirder adult, and now since pens are more mainstream than pencils, I've given up pencils as part of my diet and have added pen caps. I've been told this is less hygienic but more therapeutic.

At the age of 3 or so, my crib vanished one day, and I was now the owner of a full-size bed, which is a few inches less wide than a queen size bed. It was a serious space upgrade to go to that big of a bed. I loved it! Then my mom and I started our moving expedition. I can't even count how many times we moved; it was all such a blur when you count all the apartments, houses, people (including my teacher) we lived with. Toward the end of the moving expedition, my lovely full-size bed frame broke. As in, I was in bed (all 80 pounds of me at that time, so you can't claim it was my sheer weight that did it), and the bed collapsed. The wood frame basically gave out, fractured, and was deemed not fixable.

For a few years I slept on the pullout couch that had been moved to my room. Not the best thing ever because there were these buttons on the very thin mattress that poked into your back while you slept. Unless you put many layers of blankets down under you, you could feel those pesky buttons.

A few factors went into the decision to get the next bed that would see me through the rest of high school. My room was super tiny, and the full-size bed and then sofa bed had taken up a vast majority of the space. The bed frame had been huge, as it had been made in the early 1900s. I thought something more dainty might be a nice change of pace. And of course cost was a factor. My mom didn't want to spend a lot. I ended up getting a daybed to conserve space and have a more girlish look. It was white with dainty little posts highlighted by pictures of flowers with brass on them. Probably not exactly "me," but it was on clearance and, again, cost was a major determinant.

I HATED this new bed. It wasn't necessarily the looks either. It was LOUD. I'm an awful sleeper; I move all night, rub my legs against the sheets all night, twist, turn, etc. This bed squeaked ANY time you did ANYthing. It even squeaked if I moved my arm to itch my nose. The squeaking kept me (and likely my mother) up all night. Another horrible thing about this clearance daybed was that it majorly sagged in the middle. That caused me to be a more agitated sleeper than I already was. Being a daybed, it was twin-sized. That isn't necessarily bad, but I kept banging into the bars on the back of it. They were metal bars, so it wasn't all that comfortable.

About a month after having the Most Awful Bed in the History of All Time, I decided to sleep on the floor next to my bed. It was far more comfortable, less squeaky, and I could sprawl out more. Plus my stereo speakers were there, and I could sleep with my stereo on very low and still hear the music. My mom hated that I slept on the floor, "I spent so much money (really?) on that bed, and now you sleep on the floor." That's because it sucked, but I didn't tell her that.

I proceeded to sleep on the floor for the next 4 years. Actually it was fine, but again this might be why most people consider me to be fairly low maintenance. I just make do, and I never complained about it to my mother. I don't think I even complained about it to husband because I don't remember telling him about all those years I slept on the floor.

Then I go off to college. At first I was a bit concerned about the state of the dorm mattresses (have you seen the stains on those things???), but I quickly learned that you put an inch thick cover on it & just pretend that the cover will block you from any cooties. They are extra narrow twin mattresses, and having come from sleeping on the floor, which does tend to have more space, I was a bit skeptical of the tight quarters.

I loved the dorm mattresses. Maybe it is good to come from no standards. I also loved the dorm food, and I was quickly told that my mom must not cook, which is indeed true. To me living in the dorm was like living like a queen ... in an extra narrow bed.  I loved sleeping next to someone in the extra narrow twin bed too. I always claimed the wall side. I didn't want to worry about falling out of a bed that's several feet off the ground. The wall side was also nice for other reasons. You were next to the cool wall. In the summer, it was a nice way to cool off one side of your body, and in the winter you could put a blanket against it for extra warmth. Another reason was that you could wedge things between the wall and the mattress: a midnight snack, a book, etc. There was a certain logistical problem of putting two adults on an extra narrow twin bed. I tended to have to be a side sleeper, which I would have thought I would have hated, but it actually worked out okay. Maybe it was nice to have the comfort of a wall and another person to block me in. For whatever reason, I loved sharing an extra narrow twin bed.

Then I got a super single, which meant I had two extra narrow twin beds in my room. As most people do who have super singles, I jammed them both together and ended up with a bed somewhere between a queen and a king with a big crack down the middle. I suppose the advantage of this was that if someone ever stayed over that you really weren't into, you could designate sleeping assignments with the crack down the middle as a dividing line. I only have neutral memories of this bed set-up; it wasn't as cozy as two people on a twin bed.

I moved off-campus after only a year. My mom gave me mats, which were much easier to transport than a mattress in our Corolla. Basically gym mats - those blue mats you see at gymnasiums. (Do you see a theme? When my mom chooses my bed, it sucks.) On the plus side, gym mats aren't squeaky. They are small, and I don't believe are meant to be slept on. I had 2 years of the gym mats.

When I moved in with my husband, he had a queen size bed (with a frame! that didn't squeak! that didn't sag!). It was heaven. While I actually wouldn't mind a twin size bed, I realize that a queen size bed is far more practical for two people. It was so nice to sleep in a REAL bed.

Once we got married, we realized that an unfortunate consequence of owning a house is that people will come stay with you. We didn't really have a guest bed unless the gym mats and the old squeaky, saggy daybed counted. Can you see the in-laws sleeping on the gym mats? might cut down on their visits. Plus I really didn't like the bedroom furniture my husband brought into the relationship. While, yes, it was actual furniture, it was sooooo not my taste. I tried to find an image of it on Google, but ... ummm...everything was far too nice. It was from the 1980s, painted black plywood with brass accents - what you will find in the free section of Craigslist. So we decide to get a new bedroom set and new mattress & move the old bed to the guest bedroom. We didn't really think too hard about the size. A queen size bed just seemed about perfect for us - enough space but not too much that you don't know someone's in bed with you. And it was the size we were familiar with.

Then we had a child, and she has slept with us quite a bit. I think she slept the first 9 months in our bed. Most of that she was swaddled, so it wasn't too bad. When she finally outgrew swaddling (could move around at night without waking herself up---I think I STILL need to be swaddled), we kept getting slapped by her and decided to move her to her crib.

Now she tends to wander in during the night, crawl into our bed, plop herself down between us, go back to sleep immediately, and then kick and/or slap us for the rest of the night. Nothing like being whacked across the face at 3am. I realize that my daughter got my sleeping tendencies.

Now we kind of wish we had a king size bed. Maybe the whacking and kicking would subside if she had more space. Then I realize how ridiculous it is to buy a new bed because she comes into our bed in the middle of the night. At some point it's going to stop, right? Or we need to send her back to her bed.

The funny thing is that she usually gets in bed without either of us waking. She crawls in over my husband, situates herself, and we wake up to see that we had a visitor come during the night. One would hope that we wouldn't be so accepting of just ANYone crawling into bed with us during the middle of the night, and hopefully we've just learned to tune out a certain 28 pound toddler.

A queen size bed is perfectly fine (right?), and at some point she will end up staying in her bed all night. I don't think there's many 13 year olds that routinely get in bed with their parents.

My vision for payback is crawling into bed with her when she's a teenager. Do you think she would appreciate that? Random night visits sound good for so many reasons when you have a teenager anyway.

We've just got to get through this rough patch, and then I will enjoy the perfectly sized queen bed again.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Giving up a career in social services

When I started at the university I went to, I wanted to become a psychologist. The reasoning is that I like to listen to people and help them, what could be better than a career in social services in which to accomplish that goal? I could have been an idealistic 17 year old, but isn’t that part of the charm?

As academics went, I was doing great. My GRE test scores to get into grad school were decent. But as I learned during the college application experience, having those interesting extracurricular experiences and internships were really what tipped the scales in your favor.  I realized to set myself apart from the other grad school candidates, I had to get some experience behind me.

I applied for a local county crisis center internship and got it (it was unpaid, so it wasn’t like it was a nail biter).  There was the general crisis center, which tended to be more suicide/depression sorts of calls, and there was a sexual assault division. Due to having lost a close friend to suicide right before the internship training started, I realized that I wasn’t in a place to deal with suicidal callers (Hint 1 that social services might not be my calling). So I decided to enter the sexual assault division training instead of the suicide prevention training.

After the requisite training, my volunteer gig will entail being on call for a 12 hour shift with a beeper. Some of the job was intercepting phone calls from people being diverted from the general crisis line if it was a sexual assault. The other part of the job was going to the hospital if a rape victim showed up at the hospital. The volunteer would be there during questioning, the exam, etc. to provide moral support and a shoulder to cry on.

I don’t like hospitals (Hint 2 that social services might not be my calling).
I get woozy easily when I’m close to ickiness (Hint 3 that social services might not be my calling).  

I complete the theoretical training just fine, as it is just like going to school. We do role play some, but I just follow what the training materials say to do. I get a certificate saying I have passed the training, and they ask me to take some shifts.

My first 12 hour shift is non-eventful. While I was kind of jazzed to do it, I was kind of worried that the beeper would go off, and I wouldn’t know how to deal with the caller. Or I was worried that I’d have to go to the hospital. We were warned that the hospital stuff could be a long time. It also sounded really draining and emotionally exhausting (Hint 4). My second shift there ends up being 1 or 2 calls. I have to do a follow-up a few days later and pencil that in on my to do list. Maybe I could do this after all!

My third shift was a night shift, something like 7pm to 7am. I had a paper due the next day, and I’m working on it with a good composing rhythm at around 10pm, and then the beeper does its thing. I call, and the crisis line person tells me that there’s a rape victim at the hospital, and I need to go there and go through the whole thing with her. Frick!  Sure, I knew it was possible I would be called, but I had wanted to finish my paper and get some sleep with a quiet beeper sleeping next to me.

During the hospital tour where we learned what we were supposed to do, I really hadn’t paid attention. It smelled bad. There was someone lying on a gurney moaning in the middle of the hall. Then someone was puking in one of the emergency cubby holes where they put the patients. I was so woozy with all of the stimuli that it was taking all my energy not to pass out. So I missed that part about what we were supposed to do other than tell the girl it wasn’t her fault and do reflective statements.

When I get there, I found out that the rape victim is 13 years old. 13!?! I start to feel woozy immediately. It starts out with questioning by the police. Her mom and sister are there, but she seems to want me there more than them. The police start questioning her about what happened. I just basically sit there and rub her arm because I have no idea what to do.

The gist of her story is that she was hitchhiking on the side of the highway (Hint 5 when I wanted to ask WHY she was hitchhiking), a guy in a pickup truck stopped, she got in, he took her to the middle of nowhere, raped her, dropped her back onto the highway, and she got home somehow. I don’t know much, but I do know that her story isn’t making a whole lot of sense because her timeline is wonky, and the logistics of her saying they fought and me not seeing any defensive wounds on her is slightly perplexing. Not that I am a detective by any means, but I guess I would expect to see a few cuts/marks/the beginnings of bruises on her hands or arms if she’s fighting this big guy in a pickup truck.  The policewoman does a good job of not making it sound accusatory, and she did ask about the whole hitchhiking thing. The girl said she got home from school and wanted to go to the store. I would think waiting until your mom got home or even walking there would be safer than hitchhiking, but obviously I have a different decision tree in my head than this girl.

After an over an hour of questioning, they have to get the rape exam room ready, so they send us back to the waiting room for an epic wait.  It is quickly apparent to me that there is bad blood among all three of them – the victim, the mother, and the sister. They practically start shouting at one another. I start out being woozy in anticipation of the exam, then I pretend not to listen to them, and then I get sucked into their drama once it seems like they might start hitting each other at any moment like it was the stage on Jerry Springer.  It seemed odd to me that after the girl was raped that the mom and sister would start a fight with her. Based on the conversation, this 13 year old girl just got out of rehab (I didn’t know 13 year olds COULD be in rehab), she runs away a lot (perhaps why she was hitchhiking?), and she has a probation officer (again, I didn’t know 13 year olds could have such things).  My experience of being a 13 year old was reading Forever by Judy Blume with my friend and trying to figure out what all the naughty passages meant. She obviously had a different experience as a 13 year old with the rehab and probation officer than I had.

We get called back for the exam. Her mom goes with us. I’m sweating at this point because I really don’t want to be there. The exam takes a lonnnnnnng time. It’s dark (probably because of all the black light stuff), so I can at least sweat and be woozy without calling any attention to myself. I just do the pat-pat-pat thing to her arm and whisper words of what I hope is encouragement into her ear.

Now I don’t know what’s going on down there since there’s a sheet. There’s people and instruments coming and going from what I can see. The girl is beyond patient given it had to be at least an hour of lying there with everyone looking at you. She just lies there zoning out, not crying, not telling people she wants this over with like I would have done. I keep pat-pat-patting and slowly get less woozy as I’m getting more comfortable. No one seems to be talking to the girl, but they keep talking in those hushed voices to each other. It’s becoming obvious to me why they have volunteers come stay with the victims. It can be isolating and dehumanizing as all these police and health professionals do their thing while all you want is a shower and your own comfy bed.

Exam is finally over. The awful fluorescent lights come back on. A nurse starts to give her the discharge instructions. It’s after 1am, and I’m so ready to go home. I’m contemplating whether it would be better to go to sleep first and wake up early to finish my paper or just finish it when I get home and then go to sleep. I’m so drained, and I can imagine the girl is 100x more drained than I am.

Then a nurse comes in and sits down. “Is there something you’d like to tell us?” Huh? After all this time, it feels like it’s me going through it all instead of me sitting there next to the victim (Hint 6: getting too emotionally involved). I almost feel like the nurse is talking to me, and I start racking my brain. The most likely explanation is that they found absolutely no evidence of a rape. That’s what I’m preparing myself for because, given her awful responses to the police questioning, that’s my suspicion.

She just sits there. The nurse tells us that the girl is pregnant, which of course can’t mean that the father can’t be the rapist because it takes at least a week to register as pregnant. I am so tired and drained that this news completely takes me down. Not only has this girl been in rehab, on probation, been raped, now she’s pregnant by another guy? All at the age of 13?

Mom starts screaming at her. I get the sinking feeling that we’re not leaving anytime soon, and I think I’m treading outside the rape victim gig now that we’re into teenage pregnancy. Then the nurse asks who the father is.

The girl says, “I don’t know.”

I need some aspirin at this point.

Mom is acting crazy; she gets thrown out of the room. The nurses try to get more out of the girl. She says she only knows the father’s first name. She doesn’t know how old he is.  The funny thing is, she doesn’t really seem to care that she’s pregnant. Maybe she already knew, and the so-called rape was a cover up (Hint 7: I think the victim could be lying). Then they ask her if she’s on any drugs at the moment, and I suddenly put the reason for her rehab stay together with her current zoned out state.

That was the night I gave up wanting a career in social services.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Social Climbers

There are those people who can walk into any situation and command everyone's attention. It's that combo of charisma + self-confidence + stunning looks.

Well, I don't have whatever it is. It's okay, it's not like I cry into my Rice Krispies every morning about it. I know I'm quiet, kinda insecure, dress way too casually and am not stunning.  I don't mind being that girl that fades into the background; in fact, I kind of like the anonymity of it all. I'd rather wear my non-designer jeans, hoodie & Vans and watch the rest of the action, only participating if convention or desire arise. The pressure to be one of those people who "owns" a room has got to be enormous.

Now on to what aggravates me...

People meet me and form a first impression of me. And, often, their first impression of me is kind of close to who I really am. (Sometimes it depends on the situation.)  I tend to be down-to-earth, low-maintenance, a good listener, sometimes spew random/tangental info, and prone to sighing and rolling my eyes when in the presence of self-important people who don't know what they're talking about. You either like me, or you don't. There are specific people who tend NOT to like me: high-maintenance, social climbing people who are into fashion, money and impressing others because I'm not into that scene. I don't really care for their schtick either, and I can't supply them the ego strokes they need. I'm not very stylish, and on the surface don't live for getting my nails done and shopping like they do. 

Those types of people dismiss me since I don't seem to fit in with their world. Again, this is okay, but they often tend to think I'm invisible or in a whole other (inferior) space and time continuum.

Then new info is sometimes obtained, and - well, things sometimes change. This has only happened a handful of times, but it happens enough that I know something is up. I suddenly get upgraded into a new category in a way that mystifies me. I wonder why I have been deemed worthy of being acknowledged for a few months/years by a few specific cool kids, and now I'm worthy of being asked to go out and do something or invited to a non-multi level marketing party (as I've told you, anyone is invited to a multi-level marketing "party"). I've finally realized that the commonality in all of these interactions tends to be that I've been upgraded because of not who I am as a person, but rather that I am a tool in their social climbing endeavor.

I may look like I'm unemployed (and under 21- thank you for carding me twice in the last 2 weeks!), but I actually have a good job. I may look like I'm poor, but I actually have money. Not a lot, mind you, but enough. I may look like I still live with my parents (since I still look under 21!!!), but I actually live in a pretty nice house that we're not underwater on.

Another example of this is when I walk into a car dealership wearing my standard uniform of slacker, unemployed Gen Xer. I find a car, they think I won't even pass the credit check, and they are shocked to find out that not only do I qualify for a hideously high loan amount at 0%, but I also have a great credit score. But then I decide at the last minute that I'll probably just pay cash because it's easier. Those poor car salesmen never know what to think of someone who looks under 21 (yes, I will never stop reminding you!) buying cash for a new car.

When the social climbers and car salesmen change their opinions of me, I get kind of grumpy. It's too late, folks. You've dismissed me because I didn't give off the right vibe of being in your clan, then you realize that I actually am higher than you in the weird social order, and then you try to be all nauseatingly sweet to me to try to get in my good graces?

I have a good memory, and I don't forget.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Being Evil

I like to read. I like to watch assorted crap on Netflix. I like to do puzzles. These are the things I like to do on the evenings and weekends. When I get invited to events, I tend to think, "I'd really rather watch a documentary." Because I'm antisocial like that. And it's just easier to lie in bed instead of getting ready, wondering what small talk you're going to have to make, and going through an agonizing evening of socializing. Maybe it's just me. I'm sure it is just me who would prefer watching movies in bed than, say, go to a Christmas party with an open bar.

Now that you think I have Unabomber tendencies let me make you think I'm even more like the Unabomber.

I got sucked back into the true crime stuff this past weekend. For a while there, I was watching 10-15 hours a week of this stuff. Then I went on a reading blitz that lasted a few days, and then I got bored and wanted to watch some true crime again. Full disclosure: I read something like 7 books in 4 days late last week. Now I'm finishing up the Kevin Smith book. I am loving the Kevin Smith book (since I love Kevin so much), but dang it's long. It's 1,800 ebook pages, which probably translates into about a 900 page book. But I'm pulling through...slowly. In the midst of OD'ing in all things Kevin, I went back to the true crime as a diversion.

I saw the most chilling episode of true crime this weekend. Most of the episode isn't that noteworthy, but the last piece of Since I've been reading true crime since I was 10, I'm relatively jaded. At least I think so.  I've built a high-ish tolerance for gore. Maybe I found it so chilling because I could have related to the victim. Or maybe it was that piece of evidence. It just hit me hard, and I can't stop thinking about it 4 days later.

It makes you really wonder if certain people learn how to be evil or if they are born evil. Is it a combo? I wonder how those types of people think. Or do I?

Monday, February 13, 2012

It's the little things

Back when you're young, things that make your day/week/month/year are (hopefully) different than what make your day/week/month/year when you're in your 30s.

1991 Highlight: Slow dance with Nick to "Love You Down" by Ready for the World

1992 Highlight: Ummm, I can't remember anything, probably because I wore copious amounts of blue and/or green eyeshadow

1993 Highlight: Nabbing the cute guy (Jeff H.) as my Spanish partner for the semester

1994 Highlight: Buying a 1987 Toyota Corolla FX (different than a normal ol' Corolla...go google to see the illustriousness yourself) for $2,200

2012 Highlight: Being carded 2 out of 2 times in the last week while my husband wasn't.  I am young, he isn't. MWAAAAAAAH!!!!!  (Til he trades me in for a legitimately being carded-worthy 21 year old trophy wife)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

A relaxing lunch

My husband gave me two gift certificates for foot massages for my birthday. Let us not think too hard about what it implies if he pays other men to massage his wife... moving on...

I used one of these gift certificates today.

I've gone three times before, and I think each time I did talk about it on here. I find the whole thing fascinating. I go to this suspicious-looking place among other suspicious-looking places, like gun stores. There's just the Asian name on the outside of the massage parlor, a neon sign that says Open and a neon picture of a foot; it's impossible to see inside without going in the door. The workers speak about zero English, which is fine as I speak zero Korean. It's a fun game of charades to explain what you want.

I love the atmosphere of the place, and I also like the way of the workers. The workers there are so unobtrusive. It can be unnerving when you think you are alone with your masseuse, and there's really two other people in the room that you could not detect even with your above average hearing. Americans are so flippin' noisy. The place is dark with a solo incandescent uplight in the corner of the room. The walls are painted a brown-orange. A water fountain trickles in the background, and mellow instrumental music surrounds you. Once you lay down, they cover you with heavy blankets. During your stay, you can hear the rhythmic cycle of the heating system intermittently working.

I've said before that I don't like to be touched. It's true. I don't like to be randomly touched, as in I hate when people touch me when I don't know they're going to touch me or people who want to hug me for no apparent reason. Personal space is good. But if you go into the situation knowing that you're going to be touched, then I'm cool with it.

The thing with this foot massage is that it really isn't just a foot massage. It's a 10 minute acupressure and face massage + a 10 minute arm massage + a 5 minute chest and back massage + a 10 minute leg massage + 20 minute foot massage + 5 minutes of physical therapy, all this under the name "foot massage." 

The first time I thought he misunderstood me because he was starting off with my face. I thought it was a foot/face English noun issue. But, alas, they have a massage script they don't deviate from that's 2/3 not foot massage, starting with the face and ending with your pelvis (which is a bit unnerving the first time you have a male masseuse getting on top of you to push on your pelvis).

I've been four times, and each time was the same script. One time a woman did half of my massage, and a man did the latter half. (I wasn't fond of her because she stuck her finger all the way in my ear, which is a script deviation.) I have had four different guys massage me, and each one diligently followed the script. While the script was the same, each one did slightly different things or had his own spin on it. It's kind of like dating, I suppose. You follow the same first date script with multiple people, and each experience is slightly different.

This time, of note, the massage dude was particularly good at face accupressure (is it a masseur since it's a guy or still masseuse? I'll just stick with massage dude.). I could have laid there all day with him pushing on my forehead and head.  They finally switched lotions/oils. For my previous 3 visits that were spaced over the course of a year, they used very smelly mango goop. I reeked of mangoes. Today he used a far more subtle oil/lotion, and of course it's on my face and hair since he was massaging there. For the rest of the day, I've been catching subtle whiffs of something kind of musky. I realize that it's likely the oil/lotion (it felt like an oil instead of a lotion, but they cover your face with a towel so you really don't know what it is), and it is better than overwhelming mangoes, just kind of unusual.

It went well overall. I still get rather tense at the arm massage. I get ticklish when he gets too close under my arms, and then I spazz out about the finger massage. I'm always freaked out that he's going to take my rings. I keep my fingers always tight together so that I can feel my rings against my other fingers. When he separates my fingers, he could totally slip off that ring unnoticed. Other than that part, I'm totally relaxed during the whole thing, even with the pelvis pressure --> which, again, is a tad weird.

One more gift certificate to use!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

True Crime Overload

I find true crime fascinating. Getting into a killer's mind can be terrifying but oh so fascinating. I'm not much one for Law & Order or CSI. I tend to read true crime non-fiction and the procedural true crime series. Basically, I like real crime instead of fake crime. I know the crime dramas steal from the headlines, but they somehow seem like a second cousin to the true event.

I've been watching a lot of true crime lately. I think I maxed out on my dosage and will wean myself off of it for a while. There was the woman who cut a baby out of a pregnant woman because she wanted a baby. Then there was the 15 year old boy who killed the 13 year old boy, dismembered his body, and threw it down the sewer. Then there was the guy who strangled a woman in a hotel room, went out at 3am to buy a suitcase, put her body in it, and then tossed it into the dumpster. He did this years prior to another woman as well. Then there was the college kid who took out a hit man to kill his parents and sister. Then there were some more "normal" murders arising from jealousy.

After watching these, I wonder why I'm down on people. Hmmm?

Then there was that horrible murder nearby where I live with the guy who was a prime suspect in his wife's disappearance who blew up his kids.

I think it's time to watch some stand-up comedy or something a little bit less depressing.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Broken up for now

I think I forgot to report a stunning update back at the end of Dec/early January. "Stunning" is in the eye of the beholder, and since I forgot for over a month, it certainly is "stunning."

Remember that woman that S's cousin was dating? They went on some cruise back in 2010 with a guy friend of theirs, and we met up at a restaurant while they were in Seattle? She reminded me of an even more obnoxious Kate Gosselin with her hair all wonky and sticking up in the back. Of note during our restaurant outing, she was rude to staff, annoying, didn't listen, bragged about all the concerts she's gone to and complained about the cruise she was just on, alienated my husband, and even exceeded my (now ex) sister-in-law in the complaining/whining/entitled department. It was a painful experience. Her attitude and way of presenting herself did remind me of my stepaunt back east - brash, Italian, in-your-face, so maybe it was a regional thing???  I wasn't terribly impressed with the cousin that I had never met before that day, but he was definitely lower key than she was and that made him infinitely more tolerable.

After she got back to Jersey, she Facebooked us all, to my husband's and my disdain/partial amusement, depending on the day. I suppose she has some merits. She made up very pretty invitations to her boyfriend's 40th birthday party. It was nice to invite us, but it is a bit presumptuous to think we'd fly across the country for a birthday party. Ummm, she doesn't work, so she has plenty of time to be with her boyfriend and make pretty invitations to his birthday party. (She's 40 years old, and I do think it's odd that at 40 years old you've never been married after wanting to be married your whole life and you don't have a job either....but that's just me.)

Since I didn't like her, everything she did annoyed me. Such as sending Christmas cards from her, cousin, and cousin's two kids. I thought it was a bit presumptuous. Then she'd post articles about how wonderful mothers of autistic kids are. I of course find fault with this because she's NOT a mother to an autistic kid. She's the girlfriend of a guy who's a father of an autistic kid. Maybe several years down the road if they are married and the real mother is out of the picture, then I think there's room for interpretation on being a mother. But the real mother is in the picture and she's only the girlfriend.

Then she would always post passive aggressive things about her lackluster boyfriend. Basically it would be these "go girl" quotes about if someone doesn't appreciate you, you might have to walk out of his life for him to finally appreciate you. Or one time he stood her up, and the subsequent argument happened via Facebook. If she wasn't posting passive aggressive things about S's cousin, she was talking about missing her daddy. He had died several years ago, and she still posts quite a bit about missing him. I know we all experience grief differently. But as someone who has also lost her dad, I think it's a bit melodramatic to post lots of things about your dad to invoke sympathy from people. I suppose that's the issue. Everything she posts tries to invoke sympathy - either with her boyfriend issues or with her dad. She needs constant support and validation, which to me is the definition of someone being high maintenance.

So, anyway, on New Year's Eve cousin broke up with her and kicked her out of his house (the house that is being foreclosed on, but that's another sigh-inducing part of the story). Of course, his mother was elated, and it quickly made the family gossip circle. At first I wondered how much they were really broken up. Like if he told his mom they were broken up so that he wouldn't be cut off (his mom is still supporting him...ummm yeah, yet another sigh-inducing part of the story), but he didn't actually tell the girlfriend. Or maybe she wouldn't take the hint. Fortunately, apparently it was true.

Then the Facebook statuses started. The "go girl" anthem of how he's lost a wonderful woman ad nauseum. Because, as we all know, if you have to tell the world you're wonderful that means you really are wonderful and not completely insecure and without any marketable skills to boot. That was her main tactic for a few weeks.

Now she's started a new tactic. She's now, I suppose, trying to prove how much she cares for his family (although I don't know if that was an issue he had with her). She's posting all this stuff about supporting autism, and now she's "liking" all my statuses and pictures, as well as my ex sister-in-law's (who she probably doesn't know is an ex). After a year and a half of not paying us any attention, which I was not heartbroken about, she's trying to be uber involved and like we're all chummy. I honestly think this is her new tactic to get back into good graces with her ex-boyfriend along with posting about autism research.

I have no stake in this whole drama. I suppose my biggest stake in this is that I really don't want to go to New Jersey for a wedding of a person I can't stand. Other than that, I really don't care what happens as long as my interaction is limited to Facebook voyeurism.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Prelude to a weekend

It was a nice, quiet, sunny Friday.  Jay Asher's new book came in. I adored his first book Thirteen Reasons Why. This one deals a lot more with popular culture from the 90s-2000s, which you know I can relate to. I have a feeling it won't be quite as deep; I hope I'm wrong.

Hope to get a lot of reading done this weekend, along with chores and getting out of the house.

Have a great one!