Dear Men in my Life

So, Facebook dragged up a post from 7 years ago.

Oh how very little things change and Oh for crying out loud... once a man-baby, always a man-baby! ❤︎

Dear "The Three Men in my Life",

The three of you are well aware that there is a right and a wrong way to load the dishwasher.  The right way results in sparkling, squeaky clean dishes.  The wrong way results in residue-y, speck-y, dried chunks of food-y, gross, nasty dishes.  Now... 12 and 20-year-old men in my life, I have coached and coached you again on this topic, monitored, corrected and praised.  47-year-old man in my life... *sigh*  I'm not sure why I would even have to coach and explain, but I have (such is life).  

Today, upon unloading the dishwasher, I saw immediately that all rules were (once again) broken. Instead of yelling for a do-over, and scrubbing away the yuck, I have decided, quite simply, that tonight I will be making and serving dinner on these nasty dishes.  You're welcome and enjoy, my sweet men... 

Love, You Know Who...

I could totally dig being a Handmaid…

...
But wait! Life, according to Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale would likely be way too constrictive for a sort such as I.

But, let's pretend for a moment...

While I watch the show (which I have done many times because I deem it as absolutely fantastic!), I think, DAAAAAANG, what beautiful gardens the Handmaids have to hover about within, and what beautiful homes they have to float through (Especially Ofwarren), and OHMYGOODNESS, what simple BLACK & WHITE rules they have to follow!!

Handmaids wear the kewlest hooded, flowing cloaks and I simply LOVE their frumpy, hardy, Ugg-style brown boots. They do not have to style their hair, nope, they only need to pull on the simple, white, conservative cap and call it good. No makeup (allowed) and no fashion sense to prove. Nope. Just follow the law.

Additionally, those pampered Handmaids do not have to cook, only do some simple shopping while they keep their bodies aired and healthy,  and they are not required to do housework. They only HAVE to have sex once a month, you know, during the "fertile time." They do not have a choice, this is what they have been chosen to do for they are scientifically and biologically equipped to reproduce. THEREFORE, THEY MUST.

However, really, enduring the act once a month with a big-wig bloke of the new, dystopic society? Not so bad... I suppose. I mean, there are rules and certain expectations so there would not be any unexpected surprises of intimacy. I could shut myself off for that period of time, no problem. Bare children and hand them over to the bloke and his barren wife to raise while being held around to nurse the baby and grow it strong with the fruits of my body? Sure thing! The child would be cared for and treated well, this I would know, especially if it conformed to the many dystopic rules of society. A safe life it would be for the babies I produced...

Sure, me as a Handmaid, I would be denied love and friendship, at least on a soulful level. I would walk with my partner Handmaid during shopping outings and I would socialize superficially with the Martha of the house (while I watched her bake the bread and prepare my breakfast, or fetch my monthly napkins...), and I would answer and agree to all that the Wife and the Commander asked of me. Simple. Black & White. So clear. Like accounting or math.

Perhaps the family would have a dog or cat that I could bond with, I could dig that!

Who needs love? I wouldn't need romance or fulfillment of desires or camaraderie. I would be just fine! Especially if I were to be a Handmaid in my current frame of mind... all mature and shit, right?

Perhaps the family would have a dog or cat that I could bond with, I do not believe that there are rules against Handmaids bonding with animals. I could dig that! I always love me a canine and feline to pet and talk to!

And the luxurious baths on Ceremony days? Oh yes! Soaking and shaving! Imagine having a bath like that be mandatory? Yes. I could soak, relax, and read...

Errrrrrrrrrrtttttt! *rolls eyes*

Silly me. Handmaids are not allowed to read, nor are Marthas or Wives. Females are NOT ALLOWED TO READ. They are not allowed to write. If they are caught doing so, off with a finger or something that will not interfere with their assigned duties. Off with it! No more reading or writing for you, you inept female!

Ohmygoodness! Imagine a world without reading or writing? Especially for the likes of me? In my day, I was fertile, I would have grown many babies but only if the Commander TOO was fertile. Ohmygoodness! Most of the Commanders are sterile in the Handmaid's dystopic world, but who is blamed, punished and sent to the Colonies for the non-production of babies?

That's right.

The Handmaid.

Daaaaang.

So there I'd be, soaking in my luxury bath on Ceremony Day, with no bubbles, candles, wine, or books. I would be soaking and contemplating my future and eventual death because it is likely that my Commander is sterile. The wife would soon be angry that I had not yet conceived and would usher me off to the Colonies for toxic and poisonous servitude until I died.

Ok, NO, I couldn't really dig being a Handmaid.

Maybe if I were allowed to read, or blog, or be guaranteed that the female children I produced would be allowed the same and would NEVER be in danger of losing an appendage for committing an atrocity (like reading or speaking her mind)... maybe then I would enjoy the simplicity of dystopic law, the beautiful gardens, and homes of my sterile Commander and his barren, pious wife... And the dog or cat... hopefully, there would be that, too. I might be able to be a Handmaid then until I died in the Colonies because realistically?

At this point in the game, I am Martha material. Ugh. I would be doomed to cook and clean until I died, but only after being shipped to the Colonies for sucking at cooking.

Oh modern society, let's not go dystopic.

Honoring the Dead: Tell the truth.

This topic has been hanging out in my "to do blogs" for a while.

So tonight I will begin my rant.

Several years ago I went to a funeral. No, no, it wasn't my first and has not since been my last. However, it was the funeral that brought me to terms with my take on the subject matter of this post. 

I have lived long enough to understand that there is more than one way to cope. Be it coping with stress, trauma, sleeplessness, or death, people deal in tune to who they are. That means, of course, in regards to this post, that some people hold funerals, closed or open caskets, for their departed loved ones. Some people honor their deceased with a memorial service or by sitting shiva for 7 days. While others hold vigils or rituals while dancing and offering sacrifices. Human coping is colorful and judgment should be withheld while humans honor their dead; let them cope, man, let them cope.

That being said, however, since I'm a huge fan of respecting human differences, colors, and tunes, I'm going to gripe about how humans (quite often) forget about WHO HAS ACTUALLY DIED. What I mean is... for some mourners it seems that death erases human imperfection and replaces the human version of their loved one with an angel, or martyr, or some form of noble perfection. Like, suddenly, tah-dah, the departed was never guilty of jealousy, greed, hatred, exclusion, or deceit.

This is coping. I know this. The pain of loss is tremendous and many seek release from the grips of such profound emptiness by any means possible. I get it, I get it, I get it, in fact, I am not exempt or beyond coping (oh lawds, not by any means!!).

But.

Because this is my place, I can say what I want to.

Martyring and shrining is not realistic! And not real, in certain terms, bothers me!

So I feel like this:

When I die, first of all, do not bury me. Please no. Donate whatever is viable, perform an autopsy to learn something (if applicable), and cremate me. Please. I do not want to be viewed in my coffin with clay on my face and formaldehyde in my plumbing. I don't want my children or grandchildren or ANYONE to be haunted by the image of dead me or the dead smell of me. No, no. Let the alive me resonate and haunt them. And besides, depending on how and when I leave this world, there may not be much left of me to view? Right? How awesome it would be if there was a someone who could benefit from my retinas (hopefully they will not have my classic, extreme myopic eye-ball), or my skin, or kidneys, or even my arteries for those poor folk who suffer from CAD. Yes! Maybe a few pieces of my heart or lungs or liver could supply a benefit to some form of humanity...

Selfishly, though, I want to live to be old. I want to witness the changing of times, the accomplishments and aging of my loved-ones.  Hell. If there's a zombie apocalypse, I want to see it! I want to witness mankind transition from shit to sunshine; I want to be old enough to start smoking cigarettes again, eat whatever my old body can deal with and drink whiskey without worry! Yes! Aging is an honor, and I will be honored to make it to an old, wrinkly, and crazier version of myself.

Anyway.

What will be, will be. Whatever and whenever it is my time, I hope that parts of me will help parts of others.

Ok, ok, but, I have to spew forth more.

If one is to speak at my memorial service (because remember, there will be no viewing of my dead body and no wasting money and ground space on a coffin with burial accessories), I want them to honor and remember the REAL ME. The ME that they knew, complete with imperfections, flaws, and perpetual ill-fitting scrubs (too long, too tight, too big, too many holes). The jaded-me, the bossy-me, the throwing-my-cell-phone temper-tantrum-me, the potty-mouth-me, the bitch-at-my-husband-all-the-time-me, the too-lazy-to-take-a-shower-me, the not-visit-my-mother-and-father-enough-me, the cry-at-TV-animal-death-but-not-TV-human-death-me, the I'll-pretend-nothing-is-wrong-me, the TWO-faced-me (we all have a second face... you know this), the I-haven't-changed-my-bed-sheets-in-a-month-me, the I-love-whiskey-sours-every-night-me, the unsocial-me, the oh-hell-yes-I-will-pick-my-undies-out-of-my-butt-me, the Facebook-stalker-me, the rolling-my-mind's-eye-a-million-times-a-day-me, the I-don't-like-you-but-you-will-never-know-that-me, the I-know-your-game-me (but I won't tell... I'll keep it secret for my own reasons), the damn-at-least-my-ass-doesn't-look-like-that-me, the I-hate-managing-money-so-therefore-I-suck-at-it-me, the I-pick-at-my-fingers-when-I-am-under-stress-me, the THANK-GAWDS-for-my-Prozac-me...

Yes. Remember the real me. The ME that is guilty of sneaking away from the crowd to toot, the ME that doesn't care and toots in the crowd and lets others assume the blame, the ME that talks too loud when I get riled, the ME that is grateful that you cannot read my mind as you freak out about the needle I'm about to stick in your arm, the ME that laughs at the dipshit who spins out in the snowy median while driving like a douche-bag (This! How often do we see justice served? It's sweet and I savor it!), the ME that plays stupid, the ME that pulled my sisters hair when I was a teenager, the ME that forgot to pick a kid up from school, the ME that (shamefully) smoked cigarettes while pregnant, the ME that doesn't shave her legs for several weeks at a time during the winter, the ME that is tired of maintaining her chubby "bikini" zone, the ME that loves rain and snow storms and cloudy days, the ME... the ME that is flawed beyond repair, aged beyond innocence, experienced beyond ignorance, exhausted beyond inadequacy, fed-up beyond  game-play, and humbled beyond conceit. Repeatedly.

...the ME that forgot to pick a kid up from school...

Yes... that ME. The ME that has an endless list of flaws, most harmless and some that need serious attention. The ME that identifies the good, of course, however, the good that wouldn't be notable if it weren't for my endless stream of flaws.

The ME that is mostly happy to have reached a point in life where I am OK with admitting my weaknesses and not feeling "less than" for doing so. I think it takes something to do that... not to brag. 😉

But mostly, for crying out loud, if you stand up to speak at my memorial service and you can not think of what to say, say the truth! If I bossed you around while we played Barbies as kids, say it! If it was me that told you Santa is not real, THEN SAY IT. If I stuffed my snot tissues under YOUR pillow during camping trips, reveal it! If I smacked the rump of a horse that you were riding bareback and laughed as it took off all barn-happy with you clinging for dear life, SHARE IT! If I got mad at you because you were skinnier and got cold faster while swimming, call my dead-ass out!

Please, please, please, world, keep it real.

Don't martyr-fy. Or shrine-ify.

Done.

My House Smells Like CAT PISS!

Oh please, powers to be, let me deal!

So I love my cats, oh yes, and even my damn dawg, and I can tolerate the insurmountable globs of animal hair (thanks to Robot and his undying floor cleaning commitment) all over my house. I can deal with daily, early morning, on the dot, operation-feline-starvation-notifications, I can deal with stolen hair-ties and random “gifts” dropped on my side of the bed. 

I can even deal with the dawg escaping to the basement to eat cat poop. I can tolerate picking up dawg poop in the yard. I can deal with dawg pee dead spots in my grass and shredded hostas along the back side of the house. I can deal with taking the stinky dawg to the groomer and wiping her paws off before she comes inside on a rainy day. I can deal with the dawg rolling in a splotch of dead grass (from dawg pee) and demolishing her fresh groom.

Oh yes. I can even deal with sticky tape on door frames, wall corners, furniture edges, and backs of barstools to deter feline claw-markings (leaving wonderful goo-tracks when peeled off, yes, I can even deal with that). I can deal with stepping in cat vomit and promptly calling the dawg to clean up the squished mess (she loves cat vomit, it’s one of her favorites). I can even deal with dawg vomit, of which the cats will not clean up and neither will the dawg.

I can deal with laying out puppy wee-pads for the cat that has a litter aversion, likely due to a flubbed declawing (before we rescued him, many littler experiments before we concluded what his issue was) so that he can go potty. 

I can deal with flea treatments, even the ones that go wrong, ending with a cat slicing open my artery, licking the flea medication, and frothing at the mouth like Cujo and running about possessed for approximately five minutes. I can deal with the cats eating the dawg’s food, promptly booting the dawg out of the way and then promptly puking the food up (win, win, I guess, the dawg still gets her food!). I can deal with never being alone in my bed or the bathroom for the sake of ensuring that the cat is able to monitor the proper use of their bed and shower.

Ohmygawsh. I can deal with so much when it comes to loved ones, especially my furry loved ones because they’re faultless. I can deal with not being able to walk away from my plate of food without it being licked by a cat or snagged by a dawg (the dawg is getting better about this as she matures, her manners are evolving, see Auntie Piper & the Tortilla). I can deal with the dawg being scared of the lollipop-girl on a scooter, the garbage truck, the vacuum, the broom, plastic bags, the pooper scooper, and the swiffer. I can deal with rushing to shut the back or front door before an entitled feline strolls over the threshold to escape among the world of birds, rabbits, squirrels, and scary cat-haters. 

I can even deal with people wrinkling their nose when I tell them I have FIVE cats.

I can deal with dawg and cat zoomies and cat explorations that result in decor on the floor and in the baby’s mouth. I can deal with the dawg chewing Blankie and when trying to poop, Blankie parts are hanging from her damn dawg butt and hubby has to help by pulling it out (but I’m not sexist! ). I can deal with finding Christmas tree tinsel in the cat poop and hanging my plants where the cats cannot eat them. I can deal with snags in my curtains because young cats assume they are for climbing… and for access to the hanging plant.

I can also deal with endless vacuuming of furniture and rugs, as well as endless washing of throw blankets (which makes for less furniture vacuuming). I can deal with endless dawg stares while I eat ANYTHING and the ghostly and creepy appearance of the old man cat whenever I handle any form of shredded cheese. 

I can deal with the constant feline body forcing its way onto my computer keyboard, textbook, or notebook. Oh, and I can deal with drinking morning coffee and wearing some of it down my front as a result of a feline “pay attention to me” head bump to my mug. I can deal with having to wipe my kitchen counters before using them (because I’m not about to put sticky tape up there, too) and washing the kitchen table off before eating at it (on the rare occasion that we DO eat there). 

Additionally, I can even deal with the humiliation of a late night trip to the bathroom, stooping to pet a kitty, only to discover it’s a slipper or a pile of clothes that are somewhere they shouldn’t be.

Yeah, I can deal with that, even when I flip on the light to discover the mocking stares of the lounging cats of which I thought I might be petting.

Omygawsh, shamefully, I can deal with watching a nurse (that was sent by my insurance company to assess and draw blood before I got approval for a life insurance policy) sit at my kitchen table and leave with old man cat hair on the butt of her black scrub pants (the horror, especially when you consider yourself above the standard cat owner). What’s even worse is that hubby noticed it, too, and neither one of us told her! ?

And… I can deal with my allergies to both cats and dawgs. I can deal, I take a daily allergy tab and keep up on dusting and vacuuming. Good enough *shrugs*

Yeah, yeah, I can deal with all of this. But, if you haven’t already guessed…

…I CANNOT deal with the smell of cat piss in my home. No. Way.

Nope. Not gonna honor that stereotype. Not gonna be that stinky lady in the store or the lady that co-workers secretly unify together in being grossed out over (likely already occurring because that’s right, I have five flipping cats!). Naw. 

Gonna conquer that smell and discover where it is coming from and eliminate it…

**UPDATE**

Totally discovered where the cat piss smell was coming from! In the basement, among scattered stacks of boxes, a secret, pooping and pissing field upon something fabric. Solution? Organize the scattered stacks, ensuring that there are not any hiding-holes left for old man cat to rejoice in contaminating. Also, pick up anything plastic bag or fabric like (except wee-pads). 

Oh, and gobs of scrubbing with bleach, floor cleaner, and vinegar. 

Done. Hopefully stinking cat lady stereotype is averted, for now.

Am I Spitefully Sexist?

*ugh*

Strangely enough, I asked myself this, just this evening, as I was snuggling myself into sleep.

Now I am awake. I’m not completely sure why tonight (of all nights) I have become “sleepless” over this question.

Am I spiteful? Am I sexist? Are there implications for being so? Especially for a female?

Ouch.

You see, I live among a generation that believes (at least partially) in the supremacy of the male gender, and also believes in the strict honor of female weakness. Additionally, I was raised by a generation that quoted the Bible in terms of women and their value. For example, “Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak… And if they will learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home.” 1 Timothy 2:13-15

WTF. ?  Hm.

EARLY RECORDED MAN lived by a standard of which has been detailed in many Bible writings. They lived in a time of great political and religious upheaval, along with violent repression and oppression. The dudes who contributed to the writings of the Holy Book sell short the entirety of a higher power (God) by trying to harness the vastness in terms of writing and /or storytelling. And clearly, some of those guys didn’t like women.

Hm again.

So I’m not buying all parts of the Bible. No, and mostly because the Bible is the word of MAN, not God. God, as I see it, cannot be expressed and comprehended on a human level. Nature is as close as humans can come to understanding the enormity of God and existence. I know, I know… there are many who will argue with me, condemn me, and likely pray for my redemption. There’s no need and please don’t. That’s not what this post is about.

How does any of this have to do with me being sexist? It doesn’t really, all that only establishes my take on the old-fashioned view of women and how society has come to believe the way that they do.

Moving on.

Long ago, when I was a wee, bratty, chubby, little one, I noticed one thing in particular and inquired to my grandmother:

“Grandma, why are the girl birds not as pretty as the boy birds?”

At that point, in my youthful, Wonder Woman obsessed little life, I had only witnessed the real world on television. The Dukes of Hazard, with sexy Daisy, Wonder Woman with the amazing Linda Carter and her fabulous boots, and Gilligan’s Island, with the powerful, glamorous Ginger. Women were meant to be beautiful and captivating, right?

Oh, but my slim, red-headed grandma responded to my question with truth and love, she said:

“Tweetie Bird, the girl bird lays the eggs and watches over them. If she has bright colors like her husband, she will be found while sitting on the eggs by other birds that want to steal her eggs. She must stay in disguise to protect them. The husband-bird will go out and gather food or nest materials. However, he is working just the same and the more beautiful he is, the more other boy birds will fear him and all that is his.”

Her explanation made sense to me, even scientifically, at the time. However, I felt sad that a female bird worked so hard to lay eggs, care for the eggs, and then care for the babies and for what? She doesn’t even get to look pretty.

I don’t feel sad about that anymore, of course. I see it now for what it is. It’s nature and the momma bird could care less about her dull feathers. People do, though.

People harshly judge others that have dull feathers. 

So why am I wondering, in the middle of the night, if I am sexist?

When I am angry at my husband, I will tell him I think that he is sexist. I believe this because his ideas often default to the female doing the typical retro-wife-thing: looking beautiful all day long while I scrub the damn house, cooking and baking the damn food, running asses off after kids (in high heels, probably), and dreaming of ways to be a better damn wife (my words, of course, not his). Additionally, when I am angry at him, I believe that he would prefer that I am mindless, kinda like a Stepford Wives-type scenario. He denies that, of course. But think about it, who wouldn’t want every whim and need to be met without question? At least for a little while?

Am I spitefully sexist??

I don’t know, but I do have some complaints. However, many of these points span across both genders, so please note, this post is not directed at any ONE MALE (no whining):

  • Most men think women cannot drive  (“What are you waiting for?” or “Geeeessseee, on your way to a fire?” or “Geeeeesseee, you missed a bump back there, wanna go back and get it?”)
  • Most men cannot acknowledge their own bad behavior or faults; they consider themselves blameless (“I cheated because she got fat and bitchy” or “I cheated because she cheated first.”)
  • Most men are suckers and easily manipulated by beauty and will totally throw their sig other under the bus to continue receiving attention from beauty (“What was I supposed to do, throw her off my lap?”)
  • Most men cannot load a dishwasher properly (“Oh, the spatula wasn’t in the way of the arm when I started it.”)
  • Most men snore, keeping their significant other awake for large portions of the night (“Geeeeeesssse… all I asked was where’s the milk and you have to get all hyper and bitchy for no reason.”)
  • Most men cannot find the milk in the fridge to save their life.

And mostly:

  • Most men expect sex from their significant other like it’s their right (“You used to want to have sex all the time, now you don’t. You must have somebody else.” or “You’ve taken sex away from me, what will you take next?”)

Hm.

But really, I wish for the world to accept that men and women are two halves of a whole, and no one is any better than the other. What most men cannot do, most women can. What most women cannot do, most men can.

No, I don’t think that men are idiots just because they’re men. I guess if I did think that, THAT would qualify me as sexist. I believe people, including men, choose their behavior.

No, I don’t believe that men should hold doors for women, however, I DO feel that people should hold doors for people.

No, I don’t believe that ONLY men should be police officers or firemen. However, I WILL say that I believe men, on the average, are physically stronger than women. Of course, there are exceptions, as always, and I have actually seen some bad-ass women cops. Regardless, men, in general, are physically stronger than women and usually taller, too.

And on and on I could go,  but it’s time to publish this post as it unexpectedly got too deep.

In short, I don’t think that it is necessarily sexist that I am, but more so a realist and equalist. Yeah, and humble-ist. I have no problem owning what I can and cannot do, at least not so much anymore. I have pride, of course, but I also do not have too much of it (anymore) and have become fluent in admitting defeat.

Ok. Good. So I’m likely not sexist. But I am spiteful, sometimes.

I hate the word, “Panties.”

https://www.dementeddesignsoc.com

I do. I effing HATE the word panties.

Panties. Ok, so maybe that word is appropriate when writing a lusty, sensual story that involves "ripping off the panties" or "not wearing any panties" or, for gawds sake, "edible panties." Daily life, folks? Panties? No way, man... I don't wear panties, I wear frickin' UNDERWEAR. Underwear under my jeans, beach pants, yoga pants, scrubs, shorts or boxers. But UNDERWEAR nonetheless.

Panties?

Panties are for bitches who tryin' to be sexy. Panties are for bitches who tryin' to hook a mate. Panties are for bitches who don't have periods.

So... long, long ago, before the nursing endeavor, I worked for this crappy factory that built crappy fixtures for mediocre department stores (i.e. Kohls, JCPenny, T.J.Max, etc.) I worked in the receiving department with a bad-ass, flaming-gay Peurto Rican and a few pot-heads. As the company went through cost-reduction transitions, the receiving department was slimmed down to just the gay guy and I and for a while, that all went fine ('nother story, 'nother time).

However, in the midst of all this stupid cost-reduction, the quality and assembly departments were experimenting with how receiving delivered raw materials to the lines. At one point during this quest, the bad-ass gay guy burst out laughing at a new "work order" and showed me what we would be consolidating, for the lovely assembly department. Prepare yourself, he warned through snarky laughs, for we would be gathering all the materials for the assembly of... mmm hmmm... PANTY SHELVES.

Yes. As simple as that.

PANTY SHELVES!!

Oh gawds. What has the retail world come to? The order wasn't even for Victoria's Secret (VS). The order was for JCPenny and up until the call out for  PANTIE SHELVES came across our little, dusty, receiving desks, I hadn't thought about JCP since I had been a kid and my mother took me shopping for a Christmas dress.

And now the store wanted pantie shelves. Omygawsh, the gay guy and I came up with bottomless cracks and jokes about these panty shelves. We speculated and laughed ferociously over the visuals of what all would be allowed on the panty shelves and the demographics that would meander through JCP to view the panties on the Panty Shelves! Seriously, in our minds, JCP ordering Panty Shelves was no different than Sears or Lowes ordering Panty Shelves!

Point and case?

I HATE the word PANTIES. I hate the word hate, as well, but hate and PANTIES... man... they are like white on rice, or brown, whichever you prefer.

Photo credit: https://www.dementeddesignsoc.com

Beer, ice-cream, integrative research, and cry-babying…

It's currently 9:06 pm here in the Mitten and it's still 86 degrees, on the lakeshore. Mind you, the lakeshore is generally approximately 10 degrees (or more) LESS in temperature than inland.

No biggie, but seriously hot enough to combine beer & ice cream sandwiches! Yes!

Additionally, I just finished the rough draft to a stupid paper and I am feeling very accomplished. For now.

So I am spending my summer writing papers, responding to discussion boards, and developing silly scenarios. Yeah. I rule.

My house is trashed, I haven't cleaned my bathroom in two weeks, I am washing the same pairs of scrubs, shorts, t-shirts, tanks, underwear, bra, and socks over and over again because I do not have the time (nor the desire) to catch up on laundry. Hubby, frankly, at this point, is doing well at taking care of himself (as he should, for crying out loud. Men only THINK they need a woman to do their stinky laundry). As are my adult children. And the cats (as long as their dish is filled, litter-pool scooped, and water dish at a satisfactory level).

But not the dog. Never the dawg.

The dawg needs love and attention and approval and praise and pets and open doors to venture forth toward the wilderness (of the Mitten) to pee-pee and poop-poop. I am not a dawg person, but I love that dog! She's a good girl, even with as dawg as she is! Anyway, thank gawds her and hubby have one another. I don't think the family would have made it this far (in nursing school, because, as you should know, it's a family venture, achieving passing grades in nursing school...) without the dawg-love.

In any case, I am still rambling, as I did with my ridiculous paper that researched the research on the effects of nurse to patient ratio reduction on compassion fatigue. Sadly, like so many things in our world, healthcare is a bureaucracy and it is delegated, highly, by insurance companies. Health insurance calls the shots, tossing the constraints of care at upper management who pass the buck to midlevel management who pass the buck to lower-level management that do not have education and are therefore job scared and will not go to bat for that of which is important; the patients and the well-being of those caring for the patients.

It's pathetic, really, but, believe it or not, the U.S. still has it better than most countries when it comes to healthcare, even Canada. Regardless of what is read on the internet (I've had Canadian patients vouch for this, real, live Canadians visiting the U.S. who were seeking treatment for their cough due to cold), healthcare in the U.S. is not sooo terribly bad.

I will not allow myself to begin the rant. I would LOVE to, though, and vent about my many frustrations regarding Medicaid, Medicare, and abuse of the healthcare system, of which many providers are a part of, btw, because they are tired of arguing with google degree'd patients. But I will spare potential readers of that monotony.

But I will say this... please, for the love of gawds, don't initiate an entire emergency visit for a picked at (now infected) bug bite. Just... don't. No, no, I promise, it's not

Necrotizing Fasciitis

... *sigh*

Stop picking at your bug bites and apply your Off bug spray. Just do it. And STOP googling your symptoms unless you're smart enough to do so.

And stop insisting that you "got jumped by some guys that you don't even know FOR NO REASON AT ALL. Please. Do you think we work in healthcare because we're stupid? Just tell us that you cannot, for your own safety, disclose who the hell "jumped you."

And stop yelling at us because you're not getting what you want or that you've been "waiting for over an hour." It is likely that the medical staff is busy, very busy, taking care of other patients. Seriously, it rarely happens (though it does happen, and TRUST me, nobody likes working with a fellow clinical staff member that prioritizes FB and Instagram ahead of work, seriously not KEWL) that clinical staff sit around and let patient visit minutes accumulate unnecessarily. Do you have any idea how much shit we would get from nursing leadership about this? No, don't yell at us about your wait because it is likely we are under-staffed and doing the best we can to make sure we save the patient who IS, IN FACT, dying (and doesn't realize it) and doing our best to tend to the new Hilton Hotel elite standards of healthcare. Don't yell at us, unless we are rude. That's never necessary. But if we're sweating and drawing your blood and collecting your urine, be nice. Please. It's likely we have to pee or eat, or our cat just died at home (true story) and we are waiting for the end of our 13-hour shift to deal with it.

And how many times has a post similar to this been posted on social media? Likely a BILLION.

If you want to make a change, fill out the stupid, tree-burning patient survey that accompanies your discharge instructions (some facilities do it that way still). That's what "management" will read. That's the only way to be effective, and, by the way, you'll have to be aggressive and fill out a survey daily, with the same complaint for several weeks to actually get the attention of anybody who is capable of changing a damn thing.

Oh, and did you know that in nursing school we are taught to address patients as clients. CLIENTS.

And there you have it. I ended up venting. I'm not even sure how to categorize this one.

 

Robot. Oh… Robot.

Robot. Oh… Robot.

In this house, we are all family. And this tiny house is packed.

As of right now, we have the hubby, self, middle off-spring with her hubby and child, youngest off-spring, Auntie Piper (dog), Uncle’s Willard and Walter (orange tabby cats), Auntie Tipsy (bi-polar, orca-cat that is deaf-ish in one ear and runs about with her head at a constant 45 degree angle), Brother Ip (goofy black cat), and Auntie Flower (sweetest, demonic black kitten EVER, and stinky, thus, FLOWER because she’s still learning how to clean her butt properly).

And then…  Robot. Oh, dear, sweet, persistent, oblivious, TYPE A, Robot.

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Dear, dirty, sweet, hardworking Robot…

Robot joined our family in December 2015 and the above pic is actually of our 3rd edition. Original Robot was an off-brand and was a complete bad-ass. Original Robot would vacuum my area rugs, leaving them looking fresh and raised, oh sweet Original. But, all that extra hard work eventually pooped Original Robot out, only after approximately 3 months. Considering I spent $150, I wasn’t too disappointed because my floors were cleaned every day, for three months straight. All I had to do was empty the belly.

Original Robot was a self-proclaimed pesky little brother. OMG. Aside from sucking up random cat toys, socks, dog blankies, and underwear, Original was notorious for traveling into brother’s room (youngest off-spring) and ganking toys…

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Original would also venture into the bathroom and attempt to bully and mount Scale but to no avail. He would only end up stuck, calling for help. And scale? Scale just remained as is, though notifying me that Robot weighed 4.2 lbs…

But then, Original got confused and could not manage any longer. I knew it was time to retire him to the area in the basement, by the litter pool, where nobody cared about thoroughness or timely cleaning… Sadly, Original ended up stuck over top the sump-pump. He was never the same after that incident.

So then I went big, I got Roomba Robotfor a hefty price, complete with bells and whistles, which I don’t completely rely on yet. But I suppose bells and whistles are nice… *shrugs* In any case, Robot 2nd and 3rd edition are equally bad-ass, but in different ways from Original…

New Robot is a supreme sucker. I mean, he picks up all the little dirts, pets hairs, and danders. He collects mine and youngest off-springs ridiculous hair by the globs (like, almost beating out the bathtub drain globs!). And once, (true story!), he even destroyed my homework! When I empty New Robot’s belly, I find toothpicks, hair ties, bobby-pins, receipts, earrings, twist-ties, and many other unidentified debris. Also, New Robot runs around at top speed, man, watch out, and as he passes,  you get fanned with a jet-stream of Robot air. The dude’s a worker.

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Two day’s haul. Cringe-worthy, but imagine if Robot weren’t employed at all? Omg, the endless work I would have to do!

Enter Auntie Piper, a black lab mutt-mix. She’s an amazing doggie, smart and super trainable, but a doggie at that. And before she was a doggie, she was a puppy. You know what that means… poopies, pee-pees in and at all the inappropriate times and places. Not a biggie, because with mostly bare, wood floors, it was an easy fix.

Until…

… you know where I’m going with this. And YES, it happened to me. It’s not just that story you read on FB that’s been shared a billion times and the poster/sharer is not even acquainted with the Robot-Poop victim…

But it happens for real. Robot is diligent and does his job and runs over everything in his path. Including fresh dog shit. Fresh, smearable, retchingly awful smelling, dog shit.

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Omygawsh.

The poop smears where indescribable. So indescribable, I didn’t even think to take pics, so you need to just trust me. I simply tossed Auntie Piper outside in her “punishment” pen (all of which she used only twice because she’s such a good girl) and I started to cry and gag and retch. Robot found the poop in my then spare room and dragged it EVERYWHERE! Poop was smeared on end-table legs, floorboard trims, sofa legs, footstool legs, scratching posts, nursing books, throw rugs, and just the WHOLE DAMN FLOOR IN GENERAL!! I was mortified, but what was really bad? The poop had dried because Robot had met the poop in the night, while we were sleeping, and upon waking, I discovered it by means of smell… following my nose and my dog (who was acting guilty about something).  I wanted to have a melt-down but whatever steel-reserve (not the drink!) I had prevented me from escape. I had to deal. Yeah. I had to stop crying and shut up and deal.

After the floor and other smeared items were cleaned, I tackled Robot. Lemme just say, I called Roombaand begged for a replacement, of which they honored, even though initially they said that they wouldn’t. After I said to them, “would they have preferred I lied?”, did they agree to send me a new Robot.

Roomba Robot, regardless of how bad-ass, cannot survive dog shit without losing his mind. And there is really, ALMOST REALLY nothing worse at 0600 than a robot spewing forth a fanned stink of damp dog shit.

So help me!

WHY are dog owners obsessed with watching their dogs poop?

Well. For those of you who want to know, lemme tell you why.

But first, lemme state that I'm a cat person. Not because I don't like dogs, I love them, actually, but dogs are social and needy. Cats are assholes and not needy (unless they want food or to lay on some part of you, or your clothes, papers, books, tableware, folders, make-up... etc.). That works for me because I don't want to be needed.

Kewl.

But dogs? Omg, dogs NEED their owners! They need to be let outside, or else they'll have "an accident." They need to run and play outside as well, or they'll tear the shit out of your rugs, couches, and wood floors, even with a fresh nail trim. Dogs need to be bathed, and doggies need to play often or they get depressed and mope around the house. But guess what? Dogs don't wanna play by themselves... they want YOU to play with them. I'm borderline incompetent in managing my children, husband, school, house, work, and self-needs (and sometimes a cat need here and there, the food dish, once a day, and scooping poop, you know...) let alone playing with a dog. The damn, poor dawg.

Dogs have owners.

Cats have staff.

But bitching aside. Of course, I play with the dog and teach her things and praise her for being a good girl, which she is most of the time. I give her treats for doing what she's supposed to do and constantly encourage her to eat the food in her dish because she is picky and does not like to eat it without "specials" added to it. Let me clarify: she is a picky dog food eater, but eater of everything else.

And there it is. THAT, my friend who wanted to know why dog owners are obsessed with watching their dogs poop, is WHY. Fuckin' dawgs eat everything!!

My dog will eat every piece of paper she can get her snout on. She will eat dirty socks and underwear in seconds flat, yogurt containers, sticks/twigs, vocera badges, toothbrushes, ink pens, sharpies, highlighters, pharmacology books, flip-flops, baby toys, baby socks, bobby pins, hair clips/ties, rugs, towels, paper towels, washcloths, lotion bottles (with lotion still in them), marijuana blunts that have been carelessly dropped in our yard by a handy-man-helper, pop cans, beer cans, dishwasher tabs, twist-ties, plastic flower pots, hostas, ROCKS, bottle caps, catnip, cat toys, CAT POOP, tampons, used q-tips, her very own blankie, and again, with encouragement, occasionally her food.

Ok. So I have spent the past year digging items out of the power jaws of some sort of lab-mix. Her canines are huge and beautiful, but they do not crush everything all of the time (rocks, bottle-caps, etc.). Occasionally she'll end up with an episode of damn-dawg diarrhea because, I assume, she is either partially intestinally blocked or she had too much garbage (table scraps, she actually stays out of the trash, she's incredible that way, but whatever is on the floor or in the yard is free game!).

But here's why I REALLY watch my dog poop: She's a blankie-eater. She eats her blankie. He very own, huge blankie that she drags around the house, wraps around chair and table legs, acquiring many items on the journey. Her beautiful, fresh, large teeth can not chomp up Blankie near enough and when she has Blankie, lately especially, I have to watch her. I never know if she's gonna snuggle or chew.

And when it's time for poopie? I never bothered to notice the condition of her poops until she came running back into the house (this one time) with shredded poopie Blankie hanging out of her ass. She ran into the house and dragged her butt across my rug, of course, trying to dislodge poopie-blankie shreds. Sheeesh. I recruited hubby to finish this up for her, but how relieved I was that she actually passed the damn Blankie! Ugh!

So, I watch my dog poop, especially if I have busted her chewing on a no-no because I need to know if the inevitable diarrhea is a precursor to a blockage, or if eventually, a dangler is gonna smear up my rug. It's that simple.

Sorry not sorry that a dog owner's obsession with watching their dog poop isn't any more complex than that.