Too much livin’ I tell ya!

Well, to say that I’m disappointed in how little writing I’ve been doing wouldn’t be nearly whiny enough, so I’m just going to vow to do better. Here’s what I currently have going on, in case you think I’ve just been slacking off…

  • Two jobs
  • Yard work (since I’ve finally acknowledged…after 13 years in this house…that it won’t do itself)
  • A vegetable and herb garden (now that I’ve decided that eating things that grow in the yard isn’t a sin…and hell, if I’m out there anyway…)
  • Two crazed kitties with a new-found addiction to being outside (with their mama, while she slaves over the crops)
  • Worrying about if I still have any followers when I do write
  • A (more than) crazy, on-again-off-again boyfriend
  • A serious addiction to HBO
  • Periodic bouts of totally necessary retail therapy
  • Listening to my neighbor children grow up (to the South we have a budding Ethel Merman in the making who belts out that song from Frozen over, and over, and over …on the North we have a toddler named Wyatt who, if my ears don’t deceive me, may just be the most perfect child ever, cause all his mama ever says is, “Good BOY, WYATT!” She yells it a lot. A whole lot.)
  • Returning a lot of beer cans and…um, never mind that one

See? And I didn’t even mention all the time it takes me to put my makeup on and do my HAIR…I don’t wake up looking like this, you know!

The other issue is regarding what comes out when I finally DO write. Let’s just say that my last post was, well, maybe a teensy bit self-indulgent. Don’t get me wrong, everything I wrote was true, but I didn’t really need to dump all that on ya’ll. This is supposed to be a happy, feel-good break in your day…a time to check in and see what old wacky Tammy has going on. I can just hear you thinking to yourself, “NOW what has that girl gone and done?” or, more likely, “Damn, that girl better get funnier FAST, or I’m outta here,” or, “Hmmm…isn’t America’s Got Talent on right now?”

Well, keep your britches on…I’m still here and, like I said at the beginning of this post, I’m vowing to get back into writing more regularly. I’m also learning to type while drinking and watering the garden, so the odds are in our favor!

 

 

Don’t make me write you into the corn field…

There’s an old saying that gets thrown around a lot, but it really is true…something about the ones who know us best also being the best at pushing our buttons.

Well, my buttons just got pushed, and I’m PISSED.

I’m finally figuring out that the people I gravitate toward and want most in my life are usually the interesting ones…the ones who stand out in a crowd and demand to be noticed. They’re funny, and charming, and being around them seems like the best thing since I learned to tie my own shoes. Being with them just feels GOOD…for a while.

And then I realize that (more often than not) their charm is really just some sort of ramped-up crazy…the kind that wants to burrow down into your soul, where it tries to crazify everything it touches. That wouldn’t be so bad if I didn’t have a peculiar disorder that requires me to invite that proselytizing, born-again crazy right into my life. Not only invite it in (like the clueless victim in the vampire story…”Well come on IN Mr. Dracula!”) but I then have the need to make a comfy little spot for that crazy, complete with a La-Z-Boy and a plate of fresh-baked cookies. I apparently want that crazy to stick around and make itself at home!

cornfield

Which leads us to today’s button-pushing episode. The worst part of it was that I have, over time, showed Mr. Crazy where the buttons were, and have instructed him on exactly how to use them…more than once. (This is the part where I take responsibility for my own crazy…I think it was Einstein who talked about doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result…yeah, that’s me…I get it.)

Note to self: Tammy, a month from now when said button-pusher shows up looking all sweet, innocent and only mildly crazed, remind yourself about that stomped-on area adjacent to the La-Z-Boy…the spot where all those stale cookie crumbs are. Keep that area VACANT, and invite that crazy right into the corn field, where it belongs.

Thank you…my tirade is now complete.

 

On reaching 100

Posts…not years! Actually, this is #101, and it’s hitting 4 days before the one year anniversary of this blog.

Rackhams pandora

There’s hubby #1…and Grandmama…and that time I embarrassed myself…and Miss Piggy?

When I started this blog I had very little ‘real work’ to do, so writing was my everything. I couldn’t get the words down fast enough, and they flowed like energized particles from the tips of my fingers. I had never before allowed myself the luxury of really sharing my stories, and once my Pandora’s box was opened I was flooded with things I just had to tell you. I got past the fear that no one would read what I’d written, or that (God forbid) they would read and would somehow think ill of me. I just let go, and the process carried me.

These days, I’m working two jobs, gardening, kinda-sorta dating someone and, while the words are still there, I have to move more stuff around to find them. It’s like sorting laundry to find the one pair of jeans that you know you can get one more wearing out of…you know they’re there, but it takes time to dig for them. (And sometimes they’re under the bed.)

I’ve promised myself that, at some point, I’m going to actually sit down and turn all of these stories into one big one with a beginning and a middle…not sure about the end though, ’cause the story and my life are a work in progress. Maybe old Pandora will just need a bigger box. (Um…that came out kind of weird.)

Thank you to everyone who’s ever bothered to read my stuff. I love you and you’re a part of my world now, whether you like it or not.

Is ‘knee-jerk’ a diagnosis or a job title?

So my torn meniscus and I took a trip to the mall a few days ago. I got my toes and even my fingernails done (OPI Big Apple Red…thank you very much), drank a fancy coffee and then an even fancier Jamba juice (add antioxidants, please), and bought some cool stuff at Sephora (the girl’s version of Home Depot). It was a lovely time until my damn knee decided it was DONE for the day. My heart wanted to keep going, but my joints were just shopped out.

“And how did you tear that meniscus?” you might be thinking to yourself. “Isn’t that an injury typically reserved for professional athletes?”

Oh no, I’d have to tell you…it’s for professional athletes AND drunk dog walkers wearing the wrong shoes. (Don’t forget, this is from the woman who shared with you her tale of plantar fasciitis woe, caused by spending a week on ladders while wearing flip-flops. The odds were against me, I tell you!)Angel

About a month ago that same poor, pitiful meniscus and I went to the doctor. We imagined that our orthopedist would be a sweet-faced, caring man in a white coat…a look of concern in his eyes when he realized the pain I’d been in. Instead, we got a very tall, lanky, athletic older man in scrubs, dainty ankle socks and crocs. I somehow couldn’t take my eyes off of his feet…the socks weren’t frilly or anything, but they were so strange. When I did finally drag my attention to his face, well…there was no mercy in those steely eyes.

“So you have a couple of pretty serious tears in your meniscus. How did you do it?” he asked.

“Oh, well…I was just walking the dog and I…um, stumbled…and I, ugh… had on shoes that weren’t really supportive,” I lied, knowing that no one with those ankle socks was going to be understanding about my penchant for post happy-hour shenanigans.

He then proceeded to explain to me that injuries like this were common in middle-aged women who were overweight. I glanced around the room, doing my best to avoid the incriminating stare of the anklet wearer. (My brain was racing…Did he really just tell me that? Should I blame the vodka, or will he then call his psychiatrist friends and have me locked up? Will they wear socks or just bare feet with crocs?! And, most importantly, does this guy have a whole sock drawer full of these dainty little socklets? Does his wife roll them up into tidy little mini-sock-balls?)

I like to remember this scene with me throwing in a light-hearted, “Oh…you mean ME?” or something witty. In truth I just sat there until I had no choice but to look back at my accuser…my head hanging a little lower than it had been when I came in.

“Well alrighty then,” I finally broke the uneasy silence. “I’ll bet you really love this part of your job, huh?”

He actually looked a little relieved that I didn’t burst into tears or even try to (defensively) explain the size of my butt (But see, I have this Cheetos addiction…and my thyroid meds need to be, um…tripled!) We just talked about how I need to lose a ‘significant’ amount of weight, be more active, and basically turn into a new person who enjoys riding a stationary bike and eating lettuce with water on the side. I thanked him for his candor and couldn’t get back out into the real world fast enough, where I’m trying to get a little more exercise, where my knee is feeling better (unless I shop too much), and where doctors worth their salt wear REAL SOCKS, damn it!

I calls ‘em like I sees ‘em

It turns out that I’ve had a little bit of blow-back on my post about movies with my name in them. Turns out that people dearly LOVE that Melissa McCarthy, and a few followers let me know that they weren’t any too happy about my assessment of her new film.

To be clear, just because I don’t like or appreciate something and mention it here in a less than favorable light doesn’t mean that I’m in attack mode. In this particular case, I was just (playfully) bummed that my name was the title of a goofy movie with a somewhat slovenly heavy girl as the title character. Um…hello…maybe because I AM A SOMEWHAT SLOVENLY HEAVY GIRL? Ahem.

So, here’s the thing–when I started blogging  (11 months and 1 week ago…hard to believe it’s been that long), my intention was to try really hard to not throw anyone under the bus. I’m not sure that I’ve totally lived up to that goal, but I do think I’ve taken a whole lot more jabs at myself than at anyone else. Luckily for me, I happen to like laughing at myself, and it’s pretty darn entertaining most of the time (if I do say so myself). Interestingly, that’s the basis of the humor of many popular comedians, including….yep…Ms. McCarthy herself.

This is a good reminder for me, though, that I need to learn to appreciate all kinds of feedback…not just the, “Oh girl you crack me up!” kind. Not that I’m gonna change my style; I write like I think, and it’s true to who I am. I do want to grow my writing, but a big part of it is always going to be about poking sticks at stuff…myself included.

Oh, and I just realized that this, my friends, is my 99th post! Now I have to start worrying about what #100 is gonna be! Who knows, maybe I’ll finally tell you about that time I…well, you’ll have to come back to find out, won’t you?

sarcasm

Don’t make me channel my inner Cher on you….

One of the major problems with being blonde and spending your growing up years in the deep south is definitely sunburn. I’ve never had a real tan in my entire life…I go from beet red to pink to alabaster within about a day or two, so I gave up even trying many years ago.

Once, when we were in our late teens, my sister got a really, really bad sunburn. You know the kind–people stop and stare at you in the 7-Eleven (whispers of, “…look at that poor child!” carrying across the isle). You just want to sleep but that isn’t an option, since even 1000 thread-count Egyptian cotton bed sheets feel like sandpaper. It’s just a royally shitty time.

Now, Lynnie’s never exactly been known to suffer in silence, so that particular evening promised to be a tough time for everyone concerned. She was getting pretty worked up about being so uncomfortable and her curses were starting to turn into moans that echoed through our Mama’s apartment. I had heard somewhere that soaking in a tea-solution is supposed to help, so I drew a bath for my patient and dropped in a big old handful of Lipton teabags (we’ve never been a Tetley family).

Once the brew was sufficiently steeped, I led a reluctant Lynnie into the bathroom and finally convinced her to ease herself down into the tepid tub. To say that she wasn’t happy about it would be understating the situation…by this time she’d worked herself into quite a frenzy.

“This is NOT going to help,” she half-whined/half-spat at me, her already reddened face twisting into a scowl that was heading more and more toward the purple end of the spectrum.

Pleeeeeease just give it a minute to work,” I pleaded, but I could see her anxiety building.

I had already figured out that things probably weren’t going to end well, but I actually got a little scared within another few seconds. My poor blistered sissy was shaking like a crazed chihuahua and crying like a woman who’d just heard that her ex was dating her best friend AND had just won the lottery!

‘NOW what do I do???’ I thought to myself. Was she going into shock or….oh good Lord…did she fry her BRAIN?

My efforts to calm her down weren’t having any impact at all and, before I even knew what I was doing, I just reached out and slapped the poor girl squarely across her (already painful) face! I don’t know what in the hell I was thinking! I just did what came to me (and immediately regretted it), but before I could even apologize, the crying and shaking actually STOPPED. Lynnie’s eyes were huge and focused on me, but her moans quickly dwindled down to whimpering and the tannin in the tea started working its magic. I was stunned. I don’t know how, but I had somehow fixed things. (Of course, it’s possible that she was just afraid I was going to stab her or something worse, but I just figured that I’d take it for what it was worth and claim it as a victory.)

Please reference the video clip below of Moonstruck-Cher slapping a (pre-Hollywood teeth) Nicolas Cage while yelling, “Snap OUT of it!” I swear to you that my tea bath slap was almost exactly like that…I even recreate the moment in my mind complete with me having a huge black 1980’s Italian hairdo. Um…yeah…I can totally see that, can’t you?

 

 

 

 

Bring in the ‘stunt Tammy’!

My name seems to motivate movie makers in strange ways.

According to Wikipedia, the first Tammy movies were a series of four light-hearted American films about a naive 18-year-old girl from Mississippi. The main character is Tambrey “Tammy” Tyree, portrayed as a sweet and polite country girl looking for romantic love. Tammy’s speech is stereotypical of dialects of the rural Deep South. Some elements common to each film are: Tammy falling in love; Tammy singing about being in love; Tammy being hurt by sophisticated city folk; city folk learning something from Tammy; Tammy praying to God and talking to her grandmother; Tammy quoting from the Bible; and Tammy relating the wisdom of her grandfather, a lay-preacher and moonshiner.

The movies covered some pretty deep topics:

  • Tammy and the Bachelor (1957) – Tammy saves a man from the swamp and falls in love. (I personally think Tammy and the Married Man Pretending to be a Bachelor would have been much more entertaining…but it was the 1950’s, so even with twin beds I guess that idea wouldn’t fly.)
  • Tammy Tell Me True (1961) – Tammy goes away to college, meets a man and falls in love. (Based on the title, it’s obvious that, by the age of 22, Ms. Tyree had become a compulsive liar.)
  • Tammy and the Doctor (1963) – Tammy meets a doctor and falls in love. (They don’t specify if it’s an MD or a psychologist, but my thought is that, at the ripe old age of 25, Tammy decides that it’s finally time to treat the delusions that have haunted her for years. Oh, Wikipedia didn’t mention that the grandmother she talks to is dead and that Tammy’s best friend is a goat.)
  • Tammy and the Millionaire (1967) – Tammy works for a millionaire and falls in love. (By this time, Tammy seems to have become a full-blown gold digger. Light-hearted? I think not.)

Now we have a new Tammy movie to throw into the mix. It’s not out yet, but my namesake in this one is pretty much a female Chris Farley, and the plot is about an unkempt, overweight, down on her luck burger flipper with really bad hair who goes on a crime spree after losing her job and finding that her husband is cheating on her.

Can we get the hillbilly goat-talker back?  Please…?