Monday, March 31, 2008
Horton Hears A Leaf Blower
Horton Hears A Car Alarm
Horton Hears A "Mommy! The cat puked again!"
Horton Hears A Teenager Who Apparently Doesn't Believe in Car Mufflers Driving Way Too Damn Fast
Horton Hears An Ambulance
Horton Hopes It's For The Teenager
Horton Hears A Ringing in His Ears
Yes, Horton Knows His Ears Are Ringing Because He Took Too Much Aspirin When He Hurt His Foot Doing Pilates, But What Was Horton Supposed To Do? Suffer?
Horton Hears A Basketball Bouncing
Horton Always Hears A Basketball Bouncing
In Fact, Horton Hears A Basketball Bouncing So Effin' Much That He Now Feels Like He's Living In A Real Life Version of Poe's "The Telltale Heart"
Horton Hears An Inner Voice Telling Him To Go Grab The Basketball
Horton Hears A Middle-Aged Woman Sprinting Down The Street Desperately Clutching Onto The Basketball And Laughing Maniacally
Horton Hears The Basketball Being Angrily Stuffed Down The Neighborhood Storm Drain With The Help Of A Garden Trowel and A Lime Green Espadrille
Horton Hears A Few Minutes Of Shocked Silence
Horton Hears The Rumor Of A Lawsuit
Monday, March 24, 2008
1. Take off your pants
2. Stand in front of full-length mirror
3. Look at those freaky naked mole rats you call legs and realize you probably shouldn't have spent the previous four months sitting on the couch watching "Wife Swap" and eating cream cheese
4. Put pants back on and pray like a mother for a cold front
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Mommy, is the Easter Bunny real?
Sure. For about 4 more years, anyway.
I mean, yes! Yes, of course he's real! The Easter Bunny is sooo real! I'm practically sneezing right now just thinking of him.
Good. And is he also sometimes called Peter Cottontail?
Yeah, I think so.
Why does he have two names? Isn't that kind of weird?
No, not if you're a rabbit. Or P. Diddy.
Do you know where he lives?
Let's see...probably in a Miami Beach penthouse or some other place with solid gold toilets and a closet full of white Versace suits.
Oh, you meant the Easter Bunny. Well, I think he lives on the, um...East...Side.
Sure. In fact, I think he just moved on up to the East Side. To a de-luxe apartment in the sky. Yyy-yyy. Yep, that bunny finally got his piece of the pie.
Why are you smiling?
Because Mommy wishes Daddy was here to appreciate that particular little gem.
Well, how does the Easter Bunny travel everywhere so fast? How does he hide all the eggs? Does he have elves? Does he have helpers? Does he give out Star Wars toys?
Whoa, whoa, whoa! Listen, Sam, I really don't know that much about the Easter Bunny. Nobody does because he's kind of an enigma. A mystery. A shadowy figure in the land of holiday icons. Lord knows he's not a frickin' open book like that fat diva Claus, anyway. I mean, is there a mall in America that that bearded queen hasn't been to? Talk about your overexposure--he makes Paris Hilton look like an Idaho survivalist.
Just be a good boy and you'll get candy.
OK. But can I ask you one last question?
(sigh) Go ahead.
Where does the Easter bunny get all of the baskets and chocolates he gives out to everyone?
Oh, well that's an easy one. He gets them at Costco.
Uh-huh. Because if there's one thing rabbits know how to do, it's buying things in bulk.
(Here's some more Easter from last year.)
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Recently, I was accused of being "a complainer". Of "constantly complaining". Of being a person who "complains all of the time". And to be honest, these comments upset me a little. Shook me up some. And for the first time in a long time, I took a long, hard look at myself. It wasn't easy, it wasn't pretty. But despite all that, it did lead me to make a very honest and true discovery. The fact is, I don't always complain.
Sometimes I bitch.
Or grouse. Or grumble. Or rant. Or rave. Or just angrily mutter under my breath like a senior citizen trying to open up an e-mail attachment. It's what I do.
Now, do I actually have anything real to complain about? God, no. I'm a lucky bastard. Life is good. But here's the thing: the world outside of my house can be kind of a shitty place. Not always. Not every day. But sometimes. And on those days, the days when reading the newspaper makes you want to just crawl under the covers and cry, the days when you see pictures of fathers who'll never again tuck in their kids, the days when you wonder just what's the damn point anyway, on those days, on those crappy days, there is a lot to complain about.
But I don't.
Instead, I kvetch about wiping my son's bottom. Make jokes about my professional career as a Housefrau. Tell my depressed friend to cheer up because, hey, at least she's not married to Eliot Spitzer, right? Because for me, anyway, using humor to complain about the little, silly things in life is a hell of a lot easier than dwelling on the big, scary things I know are out there. Because those are the things I can't fix.
Are there better ways to deal with the world, to possibly improve the world, than through humor? Absolutely. And my efforts on that front are continuous and personal. But right now, today, if I know I can make someone laugh, make someone's step a little lighter, make my own kids see a happy, less crabby mother, by just sitting down and writing about how much I hate removing the dryer lint from the stupid dryer lint trap, sign me up. I'll do it. And you know what? I won't even complain about it. Much.
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Spring Break. A time when a lot of people take family vacations to exotic places like Miami, Los Angeles, Lubbock. We ourselves just returned from a week-long trip to Kauai. It was wonderful. The weather was perfect, the flights were on time and the kids were so well behaved, they’ll probably make the Nobel Peace Prize short list this year.
I couldn’t be more depressed.
You see, vacation mishaps are a tradition in my family. My sisters and I saw America from the back seat of a pale green Country Squire station wagon. In the front seat were our parents, embroiled in a bitter map fight that continues to this day.
At least every one of our trips had one minor disaster, like the time we got trapped in the Sturgis, South Dakota biker rally. Or the time our car was towed by a giant, leather-clad San Franciscan man named Dr. Hook. Or the time we were camping in Arizona and all of our down sleeping bags ripped open, covering everyone with sticky, white feathers that had to be sprayed off with ice cold water from the campground hose. Then, of course, there was the legendary New Mexico mud puddle crash of 1978 that was so intense, it permanently sealed shut the wagon’s passenger doors. My dad still doesn't know how that one happened.
I knew my bad trips would continue into adulthood when the highlights of my honeymoon were a hurricane evacuation and an infestation of flying ants. And, of course, kids are born travel problems. I’m still apologizing to the passengers who suffered through a four-hour flight filled with my son’s repeated screams of “We’re going down, brotha!”
However, while I’ve learned that horrible vacations might not make you relaxed, they do make you popular. Come home talking about your great time and nobody gives a crap. But stagger in covered in bruises and lacerations and saying things like, “Thank God for the American embassy” or “You can bet those fuckers at Dollywood ain't never gonna see ME again!" and you’ve got an audience. That's why the real reason I want to visit Mexico has nothing to do with the sun and fun. It's because just one night in Mexican jail and I’m booked on the cocktail party circuit for the next two years.
So to those travelling this spring break, I say “Bon Voyage”. And if anything goes wrong, call me. No, seriously. Call me.
I originally recorded a version of this for broadcast on Austin's NPR station, KUT, in March of 2007.
Tuesday, March 04, 2008
Holy housewife! WENDI AARONS is one busy lady! Besides raising two young sons, the married Austin, Texas stay-at-home mother, 39-ish, still vaccums her house daily and makes weekly trips to Target. How does she manage? "I don't!" she says. "Just look at these horrible dark circles and reptilian dishpan hands! I'm one hot suburban mess, y'all!"
As Wendi does her life's work of grocery shopping and housework, she lets Us follow her on a packed day.
Rise, shine and wipe bottoms! Wendi staggers out of bed, then downs her first Diet Coke of the morning while brushing her teeth and pulling her hair into a limp, graying ponytail. No shower today!
Wendi slouches into the elementary school assembly, totally rockin' an Old Navy sweatsuit and last summer's broken flip-flops. "Elastic waist pants are the new little black dress!" she predicts.
Driving to the nearby preschool in her bird-crap covered Volvo, Wendi talks to her son JACK, 4, about how it's never a good idea to wipe your nose on the couch. "But by this point, I'm so good at stain removal," she tells Us, "I could probably get a job cleaning up grisly, underworld crime scenes!"
Wendi folds laundry and turns on Bret Michaels: Rock of Love 2 on VH-1. While she watches, she hopes Bret remembers that every rose has its thorn. And that every contestant on a VH-1 dating show has a social disease.
After a few exhilarating hours of dusting, Wendi grabs lunch, usually a Luna bar or something else that doesn't require actual plates or utensils. "One day I ate 14 sticks of string cheese!" Wendi boasts. "Then two days later, I had to go see an Internist!"
Choosing what's for dinner is never easy for Wendi ("I'd rather try on swimsuits!"), so tonight, she's taking it easy and letting the kids pick out the pizza topping. (Hint: It rhymes with "sneeze"!)
Bedtime for the kids! Wendi kisses the boys good-night, then heads downstairs to try out new Texas hotspot The Couch. "I've been waiting to go there all day!" she reports. "I hear it's totally ultra-swank!"
8 P.M.-10 P.M.
Finally able to relax, Wendi spends the evening pursuing some of her other many interests. (Think Pinot Grigio and "American Idol".) "Damn, it's been a long day," she says. "And you know what? It's really not as glamorous as it sounds." Good-night, Wendi!