Guest Entries, Humor, Musings

Guest post: Why I Would Completely Fail as a Serial Killer (via snarkandcookies)

This goes out to all my friends that have become addicted to Dexter with my exuberant assistance. I love that show and I love this blogger, if only in a favorite sister kind of way. Unfortunately for any vile miscreants I happen to come across, this lovely post has gotten me thinking about my prospective success as a serial killer. And it just so happens that I picked up a package of garbage bags yesterday.

Many thanks to my sister for introducing me to the TV show Dexter, the title character of which is an exceptionally organized serial killer who only kills bad guys.  Just so nobody decides they need to report me to the police, I’m letting you know right up front that the items referenced in this VERY FICTIONAL post are borrowed directly from the VERY FICTIONAL character, all of whose VERY FICTIONAL victims were in fact actors who went home after … Read More

via snarkandcookies

Aviation, Humor

Penis Envy

The thrilling realm of night freight is, for some odd reason, rife with talk of genitalia.  It may have been simply a personality quirk shared by the cargo cowboys (and girls, for I was no exception) with whom I worked or perhaps there is something in the crisp night air laced with the delicate fragrance of jet fuel that makes one suddenly fluent in all things associated with Captain Winkie.  Of course, it doesn’t help that aviation is inundated with sexually suggestive terminology such as “joystick,” and that aircraft in general, and Learjets in particular, are more than vaguely phallic in appearance.  I’m positive that H.R. would have been horrified to learn that not only did merely saying the word “cockpit” more often than not trigger licentious snickers from some of more adolescent of us, it was also unanimously decided that a flight deck occupied by two female pilots was more appropriately referred to as a “box office.”

Lear 35
Heat-seeking Love Missile?

As it is readily apparent to anyone who has spent more than a fraction of a second in my company that I have a juvenile sense of humor, an extensive vocabulary of expletives and am extremely difficult to offend, I was quickly accepted into the “boy’s club” and awarded all the perks enjoyed therein including an honorary john thomas complete with a set of manjigglies.  Apparently, the stature of my pseudo-schlong was fairly respectable, even among  those with whom I did not work.  Once, as I fiercely analyzed the pixelated bright red and yellow splattered weather radar and contemplated a reasonably safe path from Omaha to Kansas City in my Baron, another pilot asked if my company simply issued balls to us after we successfully completed training.  My response?  “Yes.  Big brass ones.  Can’t you hear them scraping on the floor when I walk?”

One of the most memorable practical jokes in which I participated involved a six foot inflatable punching weenie called “Captain Pecker the Party Wrecker” which my captain and I hand-delivered to a co-worker in retaliation for some portraits of a baloney pony he had drunkenly scrawled on another colleague’s garage wall.  My contribution to this escapade included shopping for the immense super secret agent hosepipe, blowing it up while enroute to St. Paul to present it to it’s ultimate beneficiary, and letting the recipient know that we had a really big package waiting for him in the plane.  The memory of my friend’s embarrassed attempt to hastily deflate the giant tally-whacker by bending it in half still reduces me to childish giggles.

Fortunately for me, H.R. was never informed of my propensity for one-eyed trouser snake jokes.  On the other hand, I’ve come to the conclusion that the virtual chubby bestowed upon me as a fully vetted member of the Freight Dog Boy’s Club must be the reason I keep receiving all those unsolicited emails for Viagra.

Humor, Pet Peeves

Kindly disregard this post. I’m drunk.

So, you’re reading this anyway, huh?  Well, suit yourself.

Let me set the scene for you then.  It is 11:20 p.m. CST.  My husband and my son are attending a Cub Scout Pack 679 Camp-In where they will spend the night “camping” in my son’s elementary school’s gymnasium.  I participated in this event last year, which is why I am not doing it again this year.  I love my son, but not enough to do it two years in a row.  My daughter is sleeping.  As she is also sick, she is probably snoring like a freight train.  I don’t particularly care at the moment because I, interestingly enough, have very recently consumed an entire bottle of Merlot purchased from Aldi.

I was initially very hesitant to purchase a bottle of wine from Aldi.  After all, it’s Aldi.  How good could the wine be?  But then I realized that, after two very stressful days of both children AND my husband being home from school and work due to the Chicago 2011 Blizzard (or as I like to call it, Snowtorious B.I.G.), I really didn’t care anymore.  I would consider drinking rubbing alcohol after the week I’ve just endured.  I probably wouldn’t actually drink it, but I would definitely consider it.  It’s been a rough week.

My family has been giddy with excitement because of the storm’s effect on their normal routine.  They played in the snow, drank hot chocolate and watched television until they passed out from exhaustion.  However, my activities haven’t been curtailed in the least.  In fact, my “job” became infinitely more complicated simply due to their presence.  I did not get a day off from the dishes.  The five loads of laundry still needed to be washed, folded and put away (I don’t iron.  Not anymore).  And now, in addition to everything I normally do throughout the day, I was also expected to prepare three squares a day for everybody, referee the grudge match between the boy and the girl over the blue Fisher-Price Geo Trax cargo box and every other piece of microscopic crap they decided they simply couldn’t live without for five minutes, and ignore the fact that my husband has a horribly warped sense of time because he honestly thinks he’ll be able to clear three feet of snow with an underpowered snow blower from an approximately 35 x 15 foot driveway (my measurements may be off – I am a girl after all.  I’ll blog about that another time) in an hour.  After which, he promises to relieve me of childcare duty so that I can decompress in the bathtub.  Yeah, right.  And maybe later monkeys might fly out of my ass.  (Wayne’s World ROCKS!)

What actually happened is that I have very narrowly escaped being permanently incarcerated in the local loony bin by a Cub Scout Pack 679 activity and my purchase of a $4.95 bottle of French Merlot from Aldi.  And now, having concluded my drunken rant, I intend to stay up all night in order to enjoy every second of my hard earned “mommy time.”

On that note, I bid you adieu.  I’m sure you can find something more interesting to occupy your time.  Move along.  These aren’t the droids you’re looking for.



Humor, Musings


Please help me.  All I want is my freedom, if only for one measly hour.  I don’t think that’s too much to ask.  I imagine even convicted felons currently residing in Stateville Penitentiary get an hour out in the yard to lift weights and plot their grand escape during a staged prison riot.  In comparison, my transgressions barely register.  I’ll confess that I do know, and frequently use, a plethora of exotically glorious foul language, but what girl doesn’t?  Surely an occasional f-bomb doesn’t warrant such extreme chastisement.

Not only have I been cruelly ensnared in a dragnet of stupefaction, but an insidious and terrible campaign of psychological warfare has been instigated and is even now slowly and unequivocally smothering my sanity.  My mind is being assaulted by horrific domestic propaganda in the same way climate change is eroding the Maldives but without the glimmer of hope provided by the Mulee Aage solar panels.  Sleep deprivation, emotional blackmail, noise and social solitary confinement have taken their toll.

I don’t know how much longer I can resist.  You must hurry.

Do not attempt to appeal to my captors for clemency.  They are callous, unappeasable and absolutely reasonless.  They are cunning and powerful, using their formidable ninja skills to utilize terrain, weather and even my own intrinsic sense of responsibility and morality against me.  They are relentless, unstoppable.  They are my children and they are ruthless.

As the sand slips gracefully through the hourglass ushering in my inevitable downfall, I beg you, please release me from this torment, if only for an hour.  Please, before I am lost to the mists of parental oblivion.  Please.

I have to go now.  They want a snack.  Save me.  Hurry.

Sky Whore
Aviation, Humor, Musings

Sky Whore

In general, I’m the kind of girl who appreciates the classics.  If given a choice between a 1969 GTO convertible and a 2011 Cadillac, I’d be out hunting down some fuzzy foam dice to proudly hang from the mirror of my Goat.  I  prefer the original Planet of the Apes over the 2001 remake, although I do enjoy Tim Burton’s work, and readily admit that Charlton Heston’s cameo was brilliant and Mark Wahlberg provided some nice eye candy.  And when it comes to airplanes, I’ll take the old steam gauges over a glass cockpit in a nanosecond.

Yes, please!
No, thank you.

It is probably this personality quirk which allowed me to appreciate and later unabashedly love Sky Whore.

Sky Whore
Sky Whore

Each aircraft in my employer’s stable had a generally agreed upon name based on it’s registration.  Some designations made more sense then others.  For example, N100WN was known as “Willie Nelson” because it had once been owned by Willie Nelson and N81FR became “Fred Rime” in honor of  it’s primary pilot.  Some names simply sounded good such as  “Bubble Gum” for N88BG, “Wild Ride” for N31WR and “Crack Pipe” for N64CP.  And, finally, some labels described the aircraft’s “personality” and that was why most pilots referred to N228SW as “Shit Wagon.”  Once I got to know her, however, I decided “Sky Whore” was a much more fitting moniker since she worked her empennage off making money for The Man while being completely unappreciated.

A Learjet 25D built in 1977 and sporting two CJ610 jet engines originally designed for military fighter aircraft and producing up to 3,100 pounds of thrust each, and capable of a cruise speed of over 500 m.p.h., a climb performance of over 6,000 feet per minute and a service ceiling of 45,000 feet, Sky Whore was an absolute joy to fly.  She was old, loud, brash, tough, fast and burned through jet fuel faster than an alcoholic at the company Christmas party’s open bar.  And like most Learjets, she kept you on your toes and made you pay attention because she was always waiting to bite you in the ass if you let her get away from you.  Learjets do not suffer complacent pilots gladly.  She was a mechanical version of my soul sister.

She even provided opportunities for me to razz my fellow freight dogs.  On one such occasion, I was flying Sky Whore into Midway on our last leg of the day and for some reason, I didn’t slow down to proper landing speed soon enough to land.  I executed an extremely loud go-around, possibly waking up everyone within 50 miles of the airport, stayed in the traffic pattern and came around for a successful landing.  This turn of events delighted my colleagues also enroute to Midway and we were barely off the runway when the radio relayed the following taunt: “Did you get lost?”  To which I immediately replied, “I did some pattern work and still made it in before you, slowpoke.  Try to keep up next time.”

Every time I flew Sky Whore, I felt a freedom and elation I hadn’t felt since I was a student pilot on my first solo.  She reminded me why I wanted to be a pilot and why, in the end, all the hard work, long hours and substandard wages were worth every second with her, despite the fact that she didn’t have a good spot from which to hang my fuzzy foam dice.

Humor, Musings, Philosophy, Weight Loss

Hell Hath No Fury…

…like that of a spiteful woman.

All right, all right.  I know that’s not the way the quote is supposed to go, but that doesn’t make it any less true.  In fact, spite can be a fantastic motivator.

This is when you say, “Really?  How can that be?” to which I would respond, “Yes, and I’m glad you asked.”  Otherwise, I wouldn’t have much of a reason to continue with this post.  Except, of course, simply out of spite.

In order to answer your most excellent and felicitous question, I will provide the following two examples from my own personal scrapbook of activities driven purely by spite.  First, I contend that I am now flossing my teeth every single freaking day completely, totally and utterly in order to spite my dentist.  He thinks he’s so smart.  Well, we’ll see how smart he really is the next time he checks my teeth and he has to come up with something to say other than his customary (and extremely tedious) “you really aught to floss your teeth more than once a millennium” speech.  Blah blah blah, whatever.  I’ll show him.

My second example of spiteful self improvement involves exercise, but before I get into that, I need you to understand how much I truly hate mornings.  My post M is for Morning didn’t even scratch the surface of my eternal, deep-seated, smoldering hatred of mornings.  I would rather eat cockroach Étouffée than emerge from my nice, cozy, warm bed anytime before noon.  However, three times this week, I have forced myself to forsake my beloved cocoon of blissful warmth and get a in workout at 6:00 a.m. as a show of blatant animosity directed at the cartoon avatar of my Wii Fit balance board, Kevin.

Kevin has plagued my existence from day 1 with his snarky little comments like “you really should check in every day,” “that really isn’t your strong suit, is it?” and “that’s obese.”  Well, Kevin, it’s on now.  And if the only time I can get in an uninterrupted 30 minutes of Crunch Fitness Fat Burning Pilates is at the butt crack of dawn, so be it.  I will let spite be my muse in order to get you to shut your animated piehole.  Just watch me, mister.

So, the next time you find yourself a little short in the motivation department, give spite a try.  If it’s potent enough to get me out of bed and moving in the morning, than it wouldn’t surprise me if someone figured out how to accomplish faster than light travel simply to spite Einstein.

Humor, Musings, Pet Peeves, Philosophy

At the club with my girlfriend, Snow White

A vast majority of American women have, at one time in their life, had a girlfriend that is not only blessed with unbelievable good looks, but is also without a doubt the nicest person on the planet.  You know who I’m talking about.  She’s so hot that she can go out to bars without any money whatsoever because men are constantly buying her drinks and because she leads these men to believe there may be the barest glimmer of a possibility of getting a date with her through you, she gets them to pay for all your drinks, too.  She will only agree to dance with men who have a good looking friend with whom you can shake your grove thing as well.  She always remembers your birthday.  She freely shares what little of her wardrobe you can squeeze into (shoes, mostly) and always compliments how you look in them.  She never ever has anything bad to say about anyone.  It’s disgusting.

It occurred to me today, as I watched Disney’s Snow White with my daughter, that Snow White is the epitome of that girlfriend.  Beautiful, sweet, and innocent, Snow White’s kindness even wins over Grumpy, who may not know what “feminine wiles” is, but is absolutely and firmly “again’ it.”  She has everyone eating out of her delicate little hand: the woodsman who incurred the Queen’s wrath because he couldn’t bring himself to kill her, the dwarfs who took her in and even surrendered their beds to her, and the prince who was so enamored that he had no qualms about kissing what he believed to be her corpse.  Even the forest creatures were enthralled with her.  An army of rabbits, deer, raccoons, chipmunks, squirrels, birds and a turtle comforted her when she was frightened, lead her to the dwarfs’ home, helped her clean the house, tried to warn her about the disguised Queen’s poisoned apple, alerted and retrieved the dwarfs to save her from the innocent folly of her very badly misplaced trust, helped the dwarfs avenge her “death,” and finally grieved at the side of her glass coffin.  I, on the other hand, can’t even get the squirrels to stay out of the bird feeder.

She makes me sick.  All that singing about her prince and true love and wishing he would come for her and carry her away to his castle and they would live happily ever after…I just want to smack some sense into her, but she’s just so darn winsome, I know I couldn’t do it.

I suppose Snow White’s insipid little dreams of romance are understandable, though.  If your only female role model was a vapid sociopath like Snow White’s stepmother, you’d dream of letting the first mildly attractive guy who stumbles across your path steal you away, too, simply as a matter of self preservation.  The Queen has no ambition other than to ensure that some mirror thinks she’s the most beautiful woman in the land and she will annihilate anyone that interferes with her narcissistic delusion.  Not even in the cut-throat world of Victoria’s Secret models is there a woman willing to kill to secure her angelic domination of the runway.  Certainly not a stepdaughter and not even if her second cousin twice removed is Halle Barry.  Well, I guess if I were related in any way to Halle Barry I might be tempted , but I know that even if I fitted her with thigh high cement platform stiletto boots and sent her for a swim off the Côte d’Azur, she’d still be way hotter than me until she’d been decomposing for at least half a century and I really don’t have that kind of time.

So, in the grand scheme of things, Snow White is all right in my book.  She may not have grand aspirations, but she has a kind heart and ultimately wants the same thing everyone else wants – to feel safe, loved and happy.  She has a lifetime to realize her potential to achieve anything her heart desires.  In the meantime, I intend to make sure she has the opportunity to get me free drinks, dances with hot guys, and a boat load of shoes.

Humor, Musings

‘Round the Mulberry Tree

Many years ago, my husband and I, being newly married and intent on pursuing  the American Dream of home ownership with the gusto of a shipload of rum-infused 18th Century Caribbean pirates, were presented with the opportunity to purchase my childhood home.  We accepted this generous offer and settled in to revamp the house and make it our home.

While the backyard was not quite a leisure paradise, we made due with a deck, cement patio, and an 18 x 30 oval pool.  We installed a few small ornamental gardens, a walkway and rock border for the pool, and a portable metal fire pit.  Unfortunately, it was also outfitted with a large mulberry tree which, for some reason beyond the knowledge of mortal man, we did not have removed.  Each year, this behemoth of a tree haphazardly released it’s unharvested fruit, converting our little patch of peaceful relaxation into a failed experiment in mulberry wine-making, which may or may not have been conducted by drunken muskrats.  There was scarcely an inch of terra firma unaffected by the decomposing mulberry mine field.

One evening, while admiring the stars, enjoying a few Mai Tais by a peacefully crackling fire, and attempting to ignore the unpleasant cloying stench of the fermenting mulberries, we heard a furtive rustling near the gate leading into the backyard.  Further investigation revealed the noise to be a mother skunk leading her six baby skunks to the golden promise of a mulberry smorgasbord.

Now, a rational human being would have left the skunks to their feast and moved the party elsewhere.  But we were anything but rational that night.  I’ll never know whether it was the Mai Tais or the poisonous scent of the mulberries which initially convinced us to perceive this family of harmless (and not yet stinky) skunks as a horde of invading Huns intent on ravaging our territory, but we struck without thought and our initial attack managed to frighten the mother and one of her babies across the street to a demilitarized zone.

Somehow, we managed to escape being sprayed as we chased the five remaining baby skunks over every grain of soil within our property lines like a cruiser full of Keystone cops.  At one point in time, I was using a stick to herd the last kit out from underneath some evergreens in the front yard when it suddenly attacked the end of the stick and engaged me in a growling contest of tug-of-war.  Thankfully, it quickly surrendered and scampered across the street to join it’s mother and siblings.

We graciously accepted the skunk’s defeat with a flash of our middle fingers and stumbled to the backyard to resume our soiree when the full realization of the possible consequences of the last 45 minutes finally dawned upon us.  A full retreat to the security of our kitchen did nothing to dull the resulting nightmares I endured for the next week.

Let our folly be a warning to everyone discovering themselves in a similar situation: leave the damn skunks alone.  You’ll save yourself a possible spraying, probable nightmares and perhaps the cost of cleaning up all those nasty mulberries.

Humor, Musings, Weight Loss

A’Sledding We Will Go

Why I live anywhere other than Hawai’i, I’ll never understand.  There’s no snow in Hawai’i.  Well, except every once in a while up on Mauna Kea, but that doesn’t really count because it wouldn’t be my job to shovel it.  I hate snow.  Snow has about the same chance of me suddenly taking a liking to it as a mackerel in a barrel with Annie Oakley lining up a shot with her lucky bazooka.  Which is the reason I magically transformed into a whiny little girl today when my family brought up the subject of going sledding.

Me: (whining pathetically) “But it’s too cold.  There’s not enough snow.  The sled hill is probably closed.  My gloves are too thin.  My snow boots are too old.  I’m too old.  I have to wait for the mail.  I stubbed my big toe last week and am still too injured to go sledding.  Doctor’s orders.”

My family:  (sighing in exasperation – yes, even the 2-year-old) “Whatever.  Get your coat and let’s go.”

I didn’t exactly cry on the way out to our community’s sled hill.  Not really.  You can’t prove anything.

At one point during the short drive, my husband glanced over at me and asked, “Didn’t you ever go sledding as a kid?”  To which I replied, “Either I did and the event was somehow so horribly traumatic that my subconscious purged it from my memory as a defense mechanism, or no, I’ve never been sledding.  I hate snow.”

After giving me a brief look which communicated a smidgen of sympathy and a whole lot more of something along the lines of  “Pffft – what a weirdo,” my husband parked our car and began the arduous task of extracting our children and sleds.  I still wasn’t crying.

My husband, 7-year-old son, and 2-year-old daughter excitedly gamboled toward the smaller of the two hills, while I trudged behind desperately seeking a legitimate excuse to wait in the car.  Upon reaching the summit, I was shocked to discover that I wasn’t even slightly out of breath, unlike 2 years and 50 additional pounds ago which was the last time I was forced to endure the torture of sledding.

At that moment, I experienced an unexpected shift in my perspective.  Almost overwhelmed by the rush of sudden comprehension, I was finally able to truly see the unbridled elation and delight sledding brought to my family.  Their joyous laughter and excited screeches infused me with a lighthearted and childlike contentment and reduced my entire universe to that moment on that hill with the sudden knowledge that I was physically able to be a participant in their sledding adventure for the very first time.

After sledding for almost two hours down every hill available to us a seemingly infinite number of times, we were finally exhausted enough to head for home as fog began to silently creep over the sled hill and surrounding area.  I still hate snow and want to live in Hawai’i, but now maybe I won’t whine quite so much the next time my family wants to hit the snow hill.  I might not even cry.  Well, unless I have a hangnail or something.  Then all bets are off.

Humor, Musings, Pet Peeves

Lost in Translation

As the mother of a soon to be 3-year-old daughter, I have a bone to pick with Dora the Explorer.

I let it slide as Dora brainwashed my daughter (a.k.a. “the girl”) into believing that there is nothing wrong with having a boy as a best friend (how does Dora avoid boy cooties?), and said best friend doesn’t even have to be human.  Hence the girl’s best friend, Bob the Bear, is perfectly acceptable.  And just as Dora and Boots the monkey are joined at the hip, the girl is never without Bob.  Fine, I can live with that.

However, Dora has gone too far this time.  I can no longer communicate with my daughter and it’s all because Dora has been teaching her Spanish.

When I wake the girl up in the morning, she says, “Hola, mamá!”  When the girl goes down the stairs, she says, “abajo!” Going up the stairs, she says, “sube!”  When opening the door to her dollhouse, she says, “abre!”  When running around the house like a maniac with her brother, she says, “ayúdeme!”  When it’s time to take her brother to the school bus, she says, “vámonos!”  I’m waiting for the day when she says, “¿Está realmente tan estúpido?” and all I’ll be able to do is just nod my head and pour myself a glass of wine.

What have I ever done to you, Dora?  Am I going to have to shell out the bones to get “Rosetta Stone” just to have a simple conversation with my own daughter?  Is this some kind of evil plan designed to erect a language barrier between English speaking mothers and their children so that Dora can achieve world domination?  Does your cousin, Diego, have a secret room at the Animal Rescue Center from which you and your kin implement your insidious plots?

I’m on to you, Dora.  Don’t think I’m just going to let you get away with this.  Tus días están contados!

And the same goes for your little friend, Kai-lan, too.