I have abandoned you, my loyal five readers, for the last three months. I have no excuse other than work has been insane and I have been just too freakin’ tired to do anything at all. That said, it is part of my New Year’s Resolution once again to amuse you with the insanity, absurdity, and genius of my neurotic ramblings on a bit more regular basis. It isn’t that I do not have anything to say, this is the Demure One talking. I always have something to say. I need to figure out the damn wordpress app on my iphone, it is shitting the bed. I got a new iphone 4 (will have to tell you that tale later) and it seems to be the only thing I cannot figure out.
The title of this post is “epic” so let’s define it so there is no confusion or accusation of misusing this fine word:
1. noting or pertaining to a long poetic composition, usually centered upon a hero, in which a series of great achievements or events is narrated in elevated style: Homer’s Iliad is an epic poem
2. resembling or suggesting such poetry: an epic novel on the founding of the country.
3. heroic; majestic; impressively great: the epic events of the war.
4. of unusually great size or extent: a crime wave of epic proportions.
Well, this entry will be long, poetic (because poetry is subjective and I say so!) and written in my usually “elevated style”. I will speak of great deeds and achievements, heroic adventure, and impressively great shit. It will be so epically significant that I have to break it into multiple posts to give you a break from the fantasticness of it. So there…on to “Part I: Pre Holiday Insanity”
I took off every Friday between Thanksgiving and Christmas as well as the entire time the kids were out of school. The after Thanksgiving Fridays were obviously a misguided attempt to get my shopping done before the girls were out of school. Yes, go ahead and laugh. The first attempt was consumed by the need to find a dress and shoes for my Christmas Party. What I thought would be a quick purchase and then I would knock off a chunk of my girls lists turned into a day full of retail frustration followed by a pedicure, cocktails, then nails and NO ACTUAL PRESENTS BOUGHT. The second Friday off involved a mall. An indoor mall… I hate malls. I hate anywhere that serves as a place for stupid people to congregate.
For those of you who know me, you have no doubt how I feel about shopping. I hate it. If shopping involves a mall, my hand to God, I would rather give birth. Malls represent everything I hate about society. I am not talking about some political “the world is full of greed” bullshit, I love capitalism… I am talking about “I fucking hate people, especially in large numbers”.
Ten things that happened while shopping this year:
1. I couldn’t find fancy shoes I liked. Strike 1
2. I had to stand in line. I do not do lines. I do not have time for lines. Jen Rule #124325 if there is more than two people in line ahead of you, put the shit down you do not need it that badly.
3. First run in with retail sales people happened early.
Hollister, while the shop of choice for my girls, is obviously where the misguided-overly thin-totally vapid youth of America works today.
Two weeks before Christmas, store is busy, ten people working, and wait for it… one hobbit working the register. In her defense, she was doing it all as fast as she could. However, that was not fast enough for me.
I watch three other famine ridden sales clerks standing around behind the counter talking about the latest way to purge carbs or maybe they were talking about how to best accent their skeletal frames, but whatever it was, they could have done it while fucking running a cash register.
I was obviously pissed; i do not do pissed off in a subtle way. Bimbette number 1, the one in charge says, “Ma’am is everything alright?” I smiled demurely, “Uhm, not really, precious. There are twenty people in line and you need some more help on the register.”
She smiled while probably thinking, omg, not another crazy bitch. She said, “I am sorry about that but we are understaffed today.”
I smiled back thinking, I could snap you like a twig, honey. “I can count seven people from right here not counting your cashier.”
She had a moment where I could actually hear the squeaking of the underused gears of her brain working, “Yeah, well they are not trained on the cash register.” Yes, she actually said that.
“Are you the manager, honey?” She smiled, knowing the answer to that one, “Yes ma’am!” I mean she was proud of that, obviously the morning team meeting over some sort of organic soy wheat germ smoothy had made her really excited about being a manager. It was short lived, call me Killjoy…
“So as the manager of this fine establishment, are you telling me you are not trained on how to run a register?” Yeah, that freaked her out.
She was sweating. Tim Roth on Lie To Me would have had a whole bunch of shit to say about her body language. ”Yes, I can use the register.”
Oh for the love of all that’s holy, “And the reason you are not currently doing so, precious?” She was trying to figure out a managerial answer… she failed.
In fact she didn’t even answer, she just opened the other register and said, not making eye contact, “I’ll take the next person in line over here!”
I WAS THE NEXT PERSON IN LINE! Fucking idiots.
4. I had an amazing salad at Kona Grill!
5. I needed liquor by 11:30 am
6. Justice is an unbelievably annoying store. It is bad enough that the prices are the equivalent of retail sodomy, but add to that the non-stop “best of radio disney stars” going at full blast and I am ready to totally lose my shit. They had Pillow Pets and Pillow Pets were on my list! Best part? There was a fucking line!
7. I found that mixing wine with my meds ROCKS!
8. It occurred to me at some point I was not only subjecting myself to torture, but I was paying to suffer. My Visa card was smoking within an hour.
9. Sarah is absolutely great at stopping me from getting in my car and fleeing. This sounds like a simple enough task. Maybe, but the urge to bolt hits me roughly every twenty minutes and anytime I see someone failing to control their barbarian children.
10. I have no idea who Perry the Platypus is, but apparently everyone else on the planet knows him.
The week before Christmas, the week the kids were home and my family came into town with my oldest in tow was a good week, thank you Sister Creek Winery and Xanax. Love the family, I am an only child, I actually enjoy my parents mostly so I was looking forward to watching competent people bake and working jigsaw puzzles! Of course the family was not in the door ten minutes when Mom said, “Raven and I need to finish shopping. Let’s all go to La Cantera!” For those of you who are not familiar with this retail shopping “city” it is in a pretty swanky area and they set it up with streets and stuff so you do not think you are in a mall, it is open air so you get to really enjoy the freaking unseasonal heat and humidity of San Antonio mid December. I affectionately refer to La Cantera as “Locked in Terror” and the name is fitting.
While shopping with Sarah was traumatic, it at least went quickly. Shopping with the family (that would be 7 of us because my husband was working, the coward! jk) is always stressful. My father wanders off, my mother is convinced he is buying something he doesn’t need to buy, he usually is, and then before you know it they all need to be fed. In my mom’s defense, she is like me… give me a coffee or a diet coke and I will just push through lunch and get the shopping done. My kids, even the 21 year old, and my father are like little birds with their mouths open waiting to be fed.
We go to Kona Grill! I love Kona. Everyone is totally on board. Daughter no. 4 is happy they have pizza! Daughter no. 2 is happy she gets a burger! Daughter no. 1 aka the queen of a la carte is happy! Dad insists on reading the entire menu when he just needs to get a burger. Mom is easy. I just want a freakin’ salad. Then there is daughter no. 3 aka I like to keep things interesting by being impossible to please. She wants cheese nachos. Kona doesn’t have cheese nachos! After 20 minutes of offering everything and my saying at least twice, “Dont eat!” I was getting the look from my parents like I was Cruella deVille and starving my poor child. So what do I do? I order then walk to the food court where I proceed to get cheese nachos, a cheese quesadilla, and a gratis chile con queso for waiting. Why do I get anything beyond the nachos she requested, you ask? Because it is Daughter No. 3 and she will not want them when I give them to her! I was covering my bases. I return to Kona and said 10 year old decides she is not only in love with the nachos but wants to eat it all. Dear God, she is like a locust, all 70 pounds of her. Crisis averted, my blood pressure returns to somewhere in the “avoid an infarction zone”.
By the time we got home I felt like I had been beaten to within an inch of my life. I was happy though, I was done shopping… I thought. Oh no! Mom says, “We need to go to Costco in the morning!” I cried myself to sleep that night.
The next morning I got up, had my parents version of coffee (think strong tea), medicated and resolved to survive Costco. Just when I thought all was lost, Dad says he is staying home with the girls! Daughter No. 4 bats her big eyelashes and manages to tag along, but she is easy to deal with and just happy to be around. Costco turned into HEB and I wanted to cry. I survived though.
We finally got around to baking two days before Christmas and I got to stay in my PJs all day! Finally! I had been off for nearly a week and hadn’t had a PJ day. UNACCEPTABLE! Christmas Eve was easy, did some cooking and went to Mass. Came home, had tamales and then could no longer avoid the dreaded wrapping. I do not wrap. I do not have time for wrapping and that is why I have my mother and other people who care. For the first time in years we were actually finished wrapping before midnight! This is what resulted!
Here are a few pics from Christmas Eve when everyone was cleaned up and dressed for church. I have posted more on my facebook page so you can go see the rest there if you want.
I gave up trying to get everyone smiling. Those of you with children know what I mean. I was just glad everyone was looking in the vicinity of the camera.
12 year olds are so “enthused” by photos
You think she is mine?
Some photos are just cooler in black and white! Daughter no. 3 “the gillybean”
Another one with my chin! Baby girl is The Shit…
Me and Dave aka the man with way too many headstrong Latin women in his life.
Next up: Part II: The Aftermath, Part III: The New Year…