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...over-educated and under-experienced, or so they say...

Friday, October 30, 2009

Pumpkin Bread

If you read the post My Craft Is Words, then, if nothing else, you will see my point.

I exit the elevator and step out onto the floor, my hands full of pumpkin bread. As I head to my desk to put everything down before I head out on my search to find out where I'm to leave the baked goods, well, the following will explain it all:

Ladies Man: (stops in his tracks) What's this, Pandora? You actually baked something?

Pandora: Yes, yes I did.

Ladies Man: (smirks) Can you even cook?

Pandora: Don't get excited. It came from a box.

Ladies Man: Damn it, Pandora! You just ruined it for me! I was about to put you in goddess category but now I'm not even going to eat that!

Pandora: Shut up. Besides, in what mythological tale have you ever read about a goddess that cooks.

Ladies Man: Huh... Good point.

I drop my bag and such at my desk and back out of my cube to see Sugar walking down the hall with a cart full of bake sale stuff.
Sugar: Oh my god! You baked something?

Pandora: Yes.

Sugar: Oh my god! You never do anything for these things!

Pandora: Yes... I'm well aware of that.

Sugar: Is it good?

Pandora: It came from a box that Trader Joe's puts out, so I suspect it is, yes.

Sugar: Bah ha ha ha ha ha! Well, Trader Joe's is good stuff, as long as you didn't burn it or something.

Pandora: Well, I see you pushing a cart, what did you bake?

Sugar: Girl, I don't bake for this shit! Pushing the cart and helping set up is as good as it gets.

Pandora: Yes, well, while you're making fun of my boxed baking abilities, cart pusher, can you tell me where I'm supposed to put this?

Sugar: No idea really. I was told to go down the hall here and I would see it.

So I start walking down the hall and see Ms. Guilt Trip.

Ms. Guilt Trip: (gigantic smile) Good morning Pandora! You didn't forget!

Pandora: (thankful she didn't notice/care I didn't have a cheese cake in my hand) Nope, thanks to your last minute reminder.

Ms. Guilt Trip: (still smiling) You can put it on the table over there.

So I place it on the table right by the pumpkin bread label. As I start to walk away I notice Santino, who has basically been my mentor all this time, fooling around in an ice chest at the far end of the table.

Pandora: What? Are you contributing to this too Santino?

Santino: (in his Brooklynese) Well ya! I do it every year. Pumpkin Ice Cream. You bring sumthin in Pandora?

Pandora: Yeah, I made some pumpkin bread.

Santino: Really? Dats not yer style. (he looks at the table and I point to it) Any good?

Pandora: I made an extra batch for my daughter. She thinks it is.

Santino: Huh. Who'd a thought Pandora woulda bake sumthin.

Pandora: Yes, that seems to be the topic of conversation this morning.

So I went back to my desk, checked my emails and my voice messages, organized the to do list for the day, and after about twenty minutes I went to the bake sale intending to taste my own bread. When I got there, all of it was gone. I could only assume that meant it was a pass. The afternoon came and went. Around 4:30 everyone started to head home and no one had said a word until...

Santino: Eh! Pandora!

Pandora: (turns around) What's up?

Santino: I'm headin' home. Just wanted you to know I ate sum of dat bread you baked. You done good, Kid. Dat was sum good stuff. Have a nice weekend, eh?

Pandora: (smiles) Thanks, Santino. You do the same.

So... it may not have been from scratch, but the mentor wouldn't lie to me (he makes no bones about telling me where and when I've messed up) so I know it was good. I also know, it was a historical moment in the Land Department. Pandora, even if it was from a box, showed, if nothing else, some half-assed home-making skills. ;-)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

My Craft Is Words

If there is a stereotype of women I wish I could shake it's the one that says I must be good at things like sewing, knitting, crafting, and baking. Just because there are certain genetic cues in my physical being that make me a woman there is nothing that states those same cues mean I am a) naturally inclined to be good at the above things and b) find great joy in being good at those things.

There is a group of women in my office that sit in the conference room behind me nearly every day at lunch and they craft things like Christmas ornaments and Thanksgiving baskets and such. And it's a wonderful thing that they are doing, since all of this will be sold at some charity event with proceeds going to charity. But they have done this every year that I have been there and there are two consistencies: 1) I am never in there crafting with them and 2) there are never any men in there with them either.

I bring this up because these women seem to take it personal somehow that I don't craft with them. I always smile and say something along the lines of, "I'm not good at that kind of stuff," and then they just give me a blank stare as if I'm lying and what I really mean is, "I'm too good to hang out with you ladies." This irritates the hell out of me. First of all, I'm not lying! I'm terrible at that kind of thing! Ask my art teachers from kindergarten on, I am terrible at making things with my hands! Seriously, the first time I realized I sucked at crafting things was in the seventh grade when mine was the only paper mache butterfly that looked as though it might drop bombs over Nagasaki. And come on ladies! You are the same women I make smile and laugh at the lunch table, office happy hours, and business meetings. My craft is WORDS and that's about all I'm good at. You need me to write a letter for you? I'll do it. You need me to help with your child's reading and writing? I love it. You need me to argue a point for you and make sure you win that argument? HELL YEAH! I'll do that any day of the week. You need someone to help make a dozen doilies? uh... sorry, I have to go floss my teeth, it's very important that I keep my gums healthy.

So... the reason this is on my mind at 7 in the morning is because, well, it's 7 in the morning and this blog post should be delivered to you right now but it won't be because I didn't post it on time. Why? Because I couldn't say no when one of those same knitting circle ladies walked up and asked if I would bake for the Pumpkin Bake Sale today. Yeah... me... baking for the department bake sale. Granted, I am a good cook, but baking is not my specialty. It takes extra time and it has a different feel to it than cooking a meal. And I'm a busy woman with a schedule that strangles me like a boa constrictor sometimes and the last thing I need to do is stand around the kitchen for hours and bake. However, the minute the word "uh..." came out of my mouth that lady focused a stare on me that I'm pretty sure could send me to Hell if I said no. I could see it in her eyes. Her non-verbal cues said to me, "You never craft with us, you never knit with us, and I'll be damned if you don't bake with us. I like you Pandora, but after this you will be on my list!" So, I'm sure you understand when I tell you I signed myself up to bake.

I planned on baking this past weekend. I do have an excellent recipe for a pumpkin cheese cake and I started to see it as an opportunity to show the ladies that I am not totally a home-making outcast. The problem was that I completely forgot about the stupid bake sale until yesterday at four thirty, as the same lady was walking past my cube and said, "Don't forget the bake sale tomorrow, Pandora. Have a good night!"

ARGH!!! At that moment I stopped what I was doing, sat back in my chair and just stared at my computer screen. There was no possible way I could bake that stupid cheese cake last night and have it come out as though I actually know what I'm doing in the kitchen. My boss, gentleman that he is, walked in and said, "Bring in a frozen cheese cake. That's what I'm doing." And I'm thinking, "Yes, but you don't have the same chromosomes as me and they don't look at you as though you belong on the Island Of Misfit Toys." So, the best solution I could come up with was to go to Trader Joe's and buy two boxes of their awesome pumpkin bread mix and bring it to the bake sale hoping they all forget that Pumpkin Cheese Cake is written by my name. That was the easiest way out, and I'm sure the clan of "made it from scratch" ladies will still frown upon me somehow, but I guess they need to learn the hard way that it isn't personal... I... just belong on the island of misfit toys.

(Disclaimer: I did not want to break my daily posting streak and I wrote this as fast as possible without review for errors. If you must grade it, at least grade content separately from grammar. -- Pandora)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Something For Nothing

The air is heavy lately -- thick and weighted with a sense of doom. The economy here seems particularly bad. The majority of my neighbors are now unemployed. The mom & pop shops close one right after the other -- strip malls left with nothing but The Good Will. The college degrees now work the check out line and the drive thru. Shirts and ties outweigh the usual down trodden look at the bus stop. My own company goes into its third wave of layoffs, and everyone I know wonders when it will be safe to breathe again.

Ah... America... dare I say something stupid like how the mighty have fallen?

I am no stranger to this heavy feeling, this ominous weight that impedes forward motion. I have learned, in years gone by, to create a light in the darkness to stay alive; I have clung to the promise of light to find peace in the midst of struggle. But this time is different. This time the darkness lies in the world around me, an external darkness, one in which I feel the lost dreams of others, the fear of others, the sorrow, the depression, and it lingers in the air we are all breathing.

How can one take a cleansing breath if the air is toxic?

People count on me to stay positive, to tell a story, to make them smile. How do I explain to them that even I sometimes hold a pen between my teeth to dupe my brain into happiness? How do I explain to them that they, the people, are the source of my stories and my sense of humor? How do I tell them that I can't laugh when I feel like crying alongside them? To them I am The Smiling Lady with a sense of faith and a bit of insight -- a Dear Abby with a little more style. But lately, I have wanted to stay in my bed and not move just like everyone else. Who am I, really?

Even the man in the White House.. King Of Hope... Prince Of Change... hmm... the best he can do is offer more government which, to me, does little more than add to the depressed state of the union. "The United States are destined either to surmount the gorgeous history of feudalism, or else prove the most tremendous failure of time"(Democratic Vistas: Walt Whitman! Where are you when we need you?).

The best stories I have, as of late, are all past tense: stories I should've written months ago. Now I work to revive them. I burn the midnight oil and pray that Blake was right, that Jesus is the imagination, The Great Creator, and He will come to save our souls through inspiration. Yet, I stare at the blank page and this is what I come up with.

"Few are aware how the great literature penetrates all, gives hue to all, shapes aggregates and individuals, and, after subtle ways, with the irresistible power, constructs, sustains, demolishes at will" (Democratic Vistas, Whitman).

What happens when the light has lost its luster and the remaining salt adds no flavor? People go blind and the palate grows dull.

I am sorry. I am, tonight anyway, at a loss.

For everything there is a season, and for the majority of us, this may very well be our time to mourn.

Monday, October 26, 2009

The Lunch Room: Politically Incorrect Love Fantasies

Misanthrope: (sits down at Pandora's table) Heya.

Pandora: (looks up from her book) How goes the battle?

Misanthrope: The cubicle is winning thus far. You?

Pandora: Aye... the great oppressor with no ceiling and no real door. Haven't seen you in a while. How was your weekend? Any lovely ladies to speak of?

Misanthrope: (speaks through the side of his nearly full mouth) Weekend was, eh... Nothing significant. No significant ladies to speak of. What about you? Secret admirers? Special Valentines?

Pandora: Eh, I continue to be a menace to myself and society, so no special valentines or admirers. Although, I did come home the other night and found that flowers had been delivered to me from some no name sender. I have a stalker (or did have) that I threatened with police last December, so I assumed it was another stupid wooing attempt from him. However, as I learned this morning, the flowers actually came from a guy that works at the Walgreens by my house – which means he had to go looking through files, etc., to find my contact info. I am…disturbed, even though it may be harmless.

Misanthrope: Ooh, a Walgreens admirer? You must have made quite the impression on him! Careful with those drug people… (takes a bite of his sandwich) they have access to some scary stuff… (chews a bit more) Never accept a drink from a pharmacist!

Pandora: Yeah, I’m not sure what to do about this problem with love (or the lack thereof) that I’m having lately. All I did to the Walgreen guy was smile and make small talk, maybe a joke or two whenever I went in to pay for things. Seriously... It frustrates me! Did I ever tell you how I had to stop going to the Circle K by my house?

Misanthrope: (shakes his head and grins as he continues to chew his sandwich)

Pandora: Pfft... ya! I had to stop going to my favorite Circle K for my morning coffee because the old bald guy behind the counter started creeping me out! He somehow thought I was coming to see him every morning and not coming for the coffee.

Misanthrope: (peeking over his water cup) Does anyone truly go to Circle K for "the coffee?" I thought that's why you went to Starbucks. Are you sure it wasn't for the Bald Guy?

Pandora: (glares at him)

Misanthrope: What? I wouldn't know! You're the coffee fan, not me! I just... well... I'm sorry. Please... continue.

Pandora: I'm being dead serious right now, Misanthrope. I think I'm cursed! I had gone to dinner back in August with a guy that bored me to tears and after that he proceeded to stalk me and forced me to get mean! And I hate to get mean.

Misanthrope: You do? I thought you thrived on it.

Pandora: And you know the story about Bombastic Babbling Boy.

Misanthrope: Oh yes, that was a good one. The one where you enjoyed getting all, what did you call yourself, Ice Queen or something? Oh, but what am I thinking. You didn't enjoy being mean that time.

Pandora: Well, I did enjoy that one, but that was different, and you know it. But these things happen alot and it’s really starting to drive me nuts. What did I do to deserve this crap and how do I make it stop?

Misanthrope: (starts to unwrap his cookie) No clue. Thought about growing some hooves?

Pandora: Maybe I'll just let myself go.

Misanthrope: ...let yourself go?

Pandora: Yeah, you know, eat McDonalds three times a day, stop dressing nice, stop taking care of myself. If I did that the Circle K Baldy wouldn't feel the call to "meet my needs," so to speak. I won't have to get flowers from some random Walgreen guy that mistakes kindness as an invitation for romance. I won't have to sick the police on the guy that likes to show up unannounced at my house because he's convinced, I love him I just don't know it yet. If I have to be alone because God has somehow seen fit that I never meet my match, then I’ll have to make it so these idiots stop tormenting me. I can’t stand it anymore

Misanthrope: (wipes the crumbs from his hands and crumples his napkin) Unfortunately, going large wouldn’t stop them -- men, that is. There are those that prefer ‘em big. And I was going to suggest wearing a ring on the ol’ marriage finger, but then, there are those that prefer ‘em that way too. My point is, you’re screwed. There’s no way around it. There will always be men. I know. As a man myself, though often ashamed to admit my membership, I can say that we will be rationally or irrationally attracted to pretty much anything that moves at some point… if it can fog up a spoon, you know? Boost McDonalds stock, if you will. But it won’t help. Resistance is futile.

Pandora: (sits back in silent thought) What if I go all natural and never shower or shave in addition to the fatness?

Misanthrope: Still no. Mountain men everywhere will still go gaga… I’m sorry. No chance.

Pandora: (...sigh...) So what you’re saying is that I may as well just stay the same since nothing is going to change anyway.

Misanthrope: (raises an affirmative eyebrow)

Pandora: (plops her elbows on the table and purposely stirs her coffee) Life...it mocks me... regularly.

Misanthrope: Me? I'm the opposite. I could go get an amazing beach body through hours upon hours of tormenting exercise and get cosmetic surgery to look like Brad Pitt, and I still wouldn't get an ounce of attention. Eventually, I'd start working at a Circle K and start making googly eyes at a customer buying her daily coffee...

Pandora: Well, if bald man had done all of that, he may have gotten some attention from me. I guess the real question is -- would you prefer a blimpy girl or an unkempt showerless girl?

Misanthrope: Huh. Those are my only choices? That's rough. Hmmm... Well, is unkempt showerless girl fit? And... can I take the garden hose to her once in a while?

Pandora: You can take the hose to her from time to time, particularly in the summer. And yes, she’s fit, she’s just unkempt and showerless. Kinda like a French feminist, or …something like that.

Misanthrope: So she has a butch buzzcut and wears a communist jumpsuit and no bra? Ouch… I was originally seeing some sort of ugly duckling that, as long as she had a good foundation, could be transformed into something of beauty by just a few quick lessons in hygiene and a day at the spa… you know, an Eliza Doolittle… but now…
Tough call. Tough call…

Pandora: Okay, I take it back. Bad comparison. No butch buzzcut or communist jumpsuits. More like unruly, unkempt, and full of dread locks from prolonged bed head. Tons of armpit and leg hair from no time spent shaving. Probably greasy skin, maybe some pimples, because of the no shower thing. Not to mention the odor. And she would most likely throw a fit about taking a bath, just like Eliza Doolittle.

Misanthrope: But a good foundation? Nice bone structure and a decent shape?

Pandora: Sure. I'll allow that.

Misanthrope: Huh, well, at least potential is there, right? I mean, sure I’m OCD and would only be able to hold her hand with latex/nitrile-gloved hands. And sure, I’d line my couch and bed and anywhere she’d go with plastic… and yeah, perhaps I’d be taking bleach showers. But dammit, I think I’m going to take the shallow road here and say that, in the case where I am given only a choice of between fatty or dirty, my choice would be to the one with seemingly more immediate hotness potential. I mean, sure, they both have potential. But the one would take months and months of dieting and exercise. Whereas the other I could slip a roofie and commit to a day spa and have them take care of her in a day. You know, something I could repeat ... monthly? ...weekly maybe? I guess I have to admit that I’m shallow like that… What about you?!

Pandora: I have an issue with people that smell. Having a man with a smelling pit wrap his arm around me and potentially make my clothes, skin, and hair smell is absolutely terrifying. And what about the teeth? I imagine part of the unkempt is to have disgustingly filthy teeth and rancid breath. That might be a severe issue. I mean… you’re worried about covering the bed with plastic but I’m thinking the desire to let them near the bed might be an issue. Nose plugs may be necessary too. Weekly trips to the day spa still only happen once every seven days. And it may be the only time I seriously mean it when I ask, “Do you kiss your mother with that mouth?”

Misanthrope: (sits back in his chair) Oo! You just made some disgusting points. Hm. How about this? Lets reduce our options and say that we are kidnapped and sent to some 3rd world country and forced to be the love slave of either a fatty or a dirty… there are no plastic sheets or nose plugs. We are at the mercy of these two creatures. Then which would you choose? I might have to go with the fatty in this case. At least I can maintain some sort of cleanliness… and at least there’d be the possibility she’d smother me to death and I could be put out of my misery…

Pandora: Yeah… I can’t handle filth. (...sigh...) Funny how we’ve both lost so much faith that we just created a scenario where “love” will be forced upon us in the form of an oppressively obese Iraqi that might mercifully kill a couple of American Infidels via amorous asphyxiation.

Misanthrope: Yep. If only we could be so lucky. (grabs his lunch box) Take it easy, Pandora. Don't work too late tonight.

Pandora: I won't. Have a good one.

Neighbors, Windmills, And The Proper Disposal Of Garbage

So, I live in an apartment (one of the more humble moments of my existence). One of the nice things about this living situation is that instead of the usual covered parking, I actually have a garage. Granted, I have to share this garage with three other people but... it's a garage. What else can I say?

Anyway, there's a dude that lives directly beneath me (also one of my garage mates). He's a mechanic and in his portion of the garage is a non-operational vehicle that he's restoring (I've seen no changes in this vehicle in the past four months -- apparently it's a "work in progress").

A few weeks back, this neighbor of mine took his garbage out and seemed to have mistaken the garage for the dumpster. In other words, he left the bag of garbage on his side of the garage for days. The stench grew and grew until it became a topic of conversation for my daughter and I, both coming and going from our home. Eventually, after much nasal abuse, the dude did us a favor and took the garbage to the dumpster and, well, at least for me, all was forgiven.

Another plus to apartment living is that one can pretty much hear everything that goes on. For example, the weather has been so nice lately that I have left my windows open in the evening which, at times, makes for better entertainment than any TV series has to offer. I say this because one night last week, as I was lying in bed, the neighbor from downstairs decided to step onto his patio for a cigarette while talking on the phone. To save some of my more sensitive readers, I will spare you the vulgar details, but apparently this man and a few of his cohorts have decided it would be financially lucrative to create an adult film or two. I was fortunate to hear the names of each character involved. For story telling purposes, you must know that he proudly named himself Windmill Dick because he can "swing that thing around like a windmill." Needless to say, I had a good laugh at this man and his "ingenuity," and I've been calling him by his pseudonym ever since.

So... the other morning Hope and I walk out to the garage and as we step inside our noses are overcome by a new yet familiar garbage stench. Hope groans and holds her nose exclaiming, "Not again!" And sure enough, as I turn my head toward my neighbors "work in progress" I notice a bag of garbage that didn't make it to the dumpster. I groaned, knowing that it would be days before that thing would be removed. With each passing day the stench grew worse and by Wednesday it had successfully made its way into my car. It was so bad that even after driving with the windows down and hours away from the diseased bag of trash, I could still smell the odor inside my vehicle. Well... that was it. That was more than I could take. I basically had two options: 1) remove the garbage myself or 2) say something. Obviously, the easier way out would be to remove the disturbance myself, but the thought of removing trash that wasn't my own, or even remotely related to me, was troublesome. So, this morning, the following note was left on his front door:

Dear Windmill Dick,

I, of all people, understand the lackadaisical approach to chores and household duties. I understand that the garbage is a nuisance, at best, particularly since the dumpster seems miles away from the front door. However, I don’t understand why it seems acceptable to make the nostrils of one’s garage mates suffer at the expense of what is most convenient to the self. Over the past three days, the odor of your garbage has escalated to the point of wonder – meaning, I wonder if I should alert the authorities because it smells like the decaying flesh of someone who may have disappeared due to a recent and unpublicized dismemberment. Said odor has also penetrated the "circle of safety" within my own vehicle – meaning, my car still smelled like your disgusting garbage after I drove away, stepped out of the car for a moment, and returned to my vehicle. I have enough trouble as it is in this life without driving around in a vaporous cloud of someone else’s rank garbage. I am not one to complain much, nor am I one to bother my neighbors with trifles, but when it comes to my sense of smell and the fact that an unwanted odor is invading my personal space I would have to say, dear sir, this is no trifling matter. That being said, would you be kind enough to remove the garbage from the garage and place it in the dumpster where it belongs.

Much Obliged,


Needless to say, I came home to a garbage free garage today.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Rock Eaters

So the other day I'm walking through the grocery store with my daughter, Hope. As I pass the meats and head over to the produce, she taps me on the elbow and says, "Mom! Look at that guy!" As I turn my eyes in the direction she indicated, I notice a muscle bound man, just shy of six feet tall, wearing a yellow T-shirt with cut-off sleeves (you know, so all humans can properly admire the glorious result of his laborious self-sculpting), tight red shorts (that seemed tighter and shorter than what seems socially permissible), and some Nikes with the cutest little ankle socks (particularly for one who intends to show masculinity through what others may consider brawn). Not caring too much about this human spectacle she pointed out, I simply said (in my don't-bug-me-with-trifles-because-I-hate-the-grocery-store-and-want-to-get-out-of-here-as-fast-as-possible voice), "Yep. He must lift weights alot," and then kept on walking.

Now, it's important for you to understand that Hope turned 10 in July. Until recently, she has been a tomboy showing no interest in the opposite gender for any reason other than she wholeheartedly considers herself their equal in both sports and matters of the intellect: she can throw a football better than most of your sons (which is something she didn't get from me) and she skipped two grades in Math this year (also something she didn't get from me), placing herself in the same category as the boy genius who, since kindergarten, has said he wants to be a geologist (What kid says that? Geologist? Really? ...at 5? I'm not sure I even knew what that was until college). She is, in her soul, as strong and independent as I, a 35 year old woman, still strive to be. This is something about her that I both admire and encourage.

Over the past few months, however, I have noticed that the choice in clothing is a bit more feminine than usual (still not frills and lace, but pink is more frequent than it used to be), the hair is done more often, jewelry has been making an appearance and, as expected, I'm starting to hear about what boys on the television are visually pleasing ("I think he's cute, Mom. Do you think he's cute? I think he's cute."). So... unfortunately for me, I suspect puberty is a hop, skip, and a jump from here; and as we stepped into the produce aisle, leaving Musclebound Mania behind, it occurred to me that for the first time in ten years she noticed a) a dude in the grocery store and b) a Rock Eater at that.

Knowing my daughter the way I do and realizing, somewhere between the meat section and the produce aisle, that her fascination with Muscle Mania over there may have had more to do with her transition from child to tween than I would like to admit. Pondering this further as we stroll through the cereal aisle, I start telling myself that I need to pay more attention to these possible teaching opportunities. Watching her grow the way I do, I am absolutely certain that Rock Eater will be her "type of man" even less than he is mine (and if she is smart, she will heed my wisdom, and if I am smart, I will impart said wisdom upon her while she still thinks I'm cool).

Deep in thought, I take my place in line at the check-stand and start putting my groceries on the counter when Hope suddenly taps my arm again. As I look up at her, I can see that her star-gazed eyes are focused on something ahead of me in line. I turn my head only to see, yet again, Muscle Mania one person between us, paying for his groceries. I can see his six dozen eggs and his countless cans of tuna waiting to be bagged up as he turns his checkbook to the cashier and says, "Can you help me with this? It's been a long time since I've written a check and I don't remember how to do it." At this point, I nonchalantly return my focus to the groceries and say, "Hope, let me tell you something about men like that." She looks up at me, as if she knows she's about to hear something good, and I continue, "Men like that spend too much time looking in the mirror and not enough time cracking a book. In other words, little one, they may be fun to look at for a short while, but you will never be able to hold a good conversation with them." She thought about it for a moment, the stargazedness leaving her eyes, and as she looks at him this time she says, "oooOOOoooh... So that's what you mean when you say certain men eat rocks!" I smile to myself and feel the thrill of successful instruction, "Yes, sweetheart, that's exactly what I mean when I say, some dudes eat rocks."

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Drain

The drains are clogged
and someone died today
another person loses their job tomorrow

I'm standing in the backup
now covering my ankles
And all that I keep trying to wash away
never gets past my feet

I stand and listen for the slow drain
I wait for it to slink away
but it still lingers around the soles
and all I can do is pat them dry
and accept the filmy residue that remains

The drains are clogged
and someone died today
another person loses their job tomorrow

I am stooped over the sink
washing my hands of it
staring at the filthy residue
that refuses to go down

The water pools in the basin
suds and spit from tooth and nail
It nauseates me!
This pool, this backup, this left-over
filth that just won't wash away!
And someone died today!
And someone else loses their job tomorrow!
And no one has time to give them
a proper sending or say a solemn farewell!
And someone else says they're too busy surviving
And someone else is convinced this is Hell.

The drains are clogged...
And someone should call the plumber.