Jessielah!

adventures in awesomeness…

Power Kegels or: How I Found My Way Home While Hating the Garmin

It began so innocently.

I had the rage, all I needed was the Geto Boys

After almost 6 months of procrastinating, I was finally taking my iPod touch to be repaired. I grabbed my coffee, Mylo, and my shattered iPod and hopped on the road. The repair shop was located 11 miles away. Google estimated 27 minutes. When I typed the address into the Garmin GPS, it tells me it can get me there in 20. Nice. I had planned to drop off my iPod, stop by the mall to get my glasses fixed and buy a gift for Matt’s birthday, pick up my (hopefully) repaired iPod and be home in time to pick Jaxon up from school at noon.

We drive a total of 2 miles before the shit hits the fan. Instead of taking a route that utilizes freeways, the Garmin decides it would be faster to take the streets through Hollywood and Beverly Hills. The Garmin was WRONG. 45 minutes later we arrive and I have to pee.

I drop off my iPod (more about that experience in another post) and rush back to the car. It’s 11:28am. So much for getting my glasses fixed and going to the mall. Doing the pee-pee dance, I tell the Garmin to take the fastest route home. I pull onto the road, squeezing my Detrusor muscles every time the car hits one of the millions of Los Angeles city street pot holes. Surely, I thought, the Garmin would surely direct me to the 405 N, which was much closer than trucking back across town.

WRONG. It wants me to go back through that horrible mess of congested, single lane streets. I try to pull up a map to see if I am actually close to the freeway. The Garmin won’t let me see a map. I try to find out where it’s planning on taking me. It doesn’t feel like telling me. I can feel my anger level rising and like the Hulk, I’m about to explode. But not into a mash of green muscles, but a burst of pee! I throw the Garmin aside and turn left. “RECALCULATING…. TURN RIGHT AT….”

Oh shut up stupid Garmin. I am not going that way. I see the freeway. EFF. YEAH. I groan, squeeze, and turn up the bumpy on-ramp. “RECALCULATING…. EXIT IN POINT FIVE MILES…”

I am not exiting! I am not spending the next 45 minutes weaving up and down everybody’s back alley! I make it over the mountains and down into the valley.

“IN ONE POINT FOUR MILES, EXIT ON VENTURA BLVD.”

WHAT?? Why is this stupid thing trying to put me on the streets instead of taking the freeway? I asked for FASTEST ROUTE! The 101 S runs parallel to Ventura!?!!! I am very angry now. Angry at the Garmin and angry at the idiots on the road. Doesn’t anyone know that I have to PEE??!!??!! Today must have been Leave Your Brain At Home Day because no one was doing any thinking. You would have thought there was massive traffic considering how slow everyone was going. Nope, no traffic. God just blew a nasty snot wad on the road and we were all stuck. Stuck behind stupid.

Since I did not get the brain-removal memo, I managed to unstick myself from the annoying wad of traffic and get home. Too late to pick up my son, though. Luckily Matt was able to get him.

And I peed for one minute and two seconds. I timed it.

The Garmin. Great for finding an ATM in a jam, but sometimes you need to rely on your own brain to get you home.

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

It’s that time of the year where single people rush to get a date or go out in a group or hide under their covers while couples send and receive flowers and chocolates and make reservations for fancy outings called ‘dates’ and cynics complain about how much greeting card companies profit from it all.

Heart-Shaped pancakes taste better than regular ones.

Me, I cleaned my house from top to bottom, from the microwave to under the sofa and didn’t find time to shower until after dinner was started. But don’t feel too sorry for me. I had a blast making heart-shaped pancakes for the boys – which they gobbled up, plate after plate – leaving Matt with the clippings.

Baby hearts for my baby boy.

And then I was pleasantly surprised with a lovely red rose that Mylo almost destroyed and a tin-foil wrapped gift that Matt hid in the fridge. How sweet!

Flowers, books, and Coke Zero… Can a Valentine’s get any better than this?

Um, yes. Two hours later, Jaxon comes home from Preschool with a giant red bag filled with a shit-ton of cards, pencils, toys and candies. Jumping Jehoshaphat! What is all of this? My gift has just been put to shame. Jaxon is laughing (high on sugar, obviously), shoving as much candy into his mouth as fast as he can before I confiscate it, or worse, make him share with Mylo. But that’s not all. Matt starts going off about Jaxon’s Valentine party (and I start wishing I was three) and unveils Jaxon’s party plate. Pizza, cookies, cupcakes, and a doughnut!?!!? We all get excited about how great Preschool and Valentine’s Day is and help Jaxon with his goodies.

Valentine’s Day: It’s okay to be dateless and in yesterdays pajamas as long as there are Choose Your Own Adventure books, a clean house, and lots of free food.

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Proposal Would Punish PARENTS of ‘Sexting’ Teens

Originally I was just going to publish this link on my Facebook page with a WTF?!?! comment underneath, but before I knew it, the comment was more like a paragraph… so off to the blog to properly rant about this.

First, if you don’t know what I’m about to go off about, check out the article here: Proposal Would Punish PARENTS of ‘Sexting’ Teens

All done? Okay, good! On to the rant!

So you have the sex talk with your kid. You hope that they wait until they are 30 and married, but then you think back to your own youth and know that’s not likely to happen. But you tell your kid to be careful and … he listens! He doesn’t go all Jonas Brothers on you, but he’s not banging every other girl in the back of your old Kia Rondo. But then he gets caught…. **DANT DANT DAAAAHHH** ‘sexting’.

What do you do?

Before you can get a look at the photo to laugh (or cry), TX State Sen. Kirk Watson (D-Austin) wants to stick your kid with a Class C misdemeanor. Yup. Theft, Simple assault, marijuana possession, and dirty text messaging. But you, the parent, can get that reduced if you take a class on the DANGERS!!! of ‘sexting’!!  Danger? Didn’t you know? Sexting is the gateway to unprotected sex, STDs, unwanted babies, prostitution, the unemployment rate, and pot holes.

But it’s better for the kids. Before, teens could get charged with underage sex trafficking… for sending a photo of themselves to person they’re looking to bang. Really? Reaally?!?

Really though, my beef isn’t even about ‘sexting’. My problem is with the government telling me how I am going to raise my kid. What if I don’t care if my kid is ‘sexting’? What if I believe that ‘sexting’ replaces actual sex, and therefore saves me time and money and stress? You mean I have no say in what my kid does? You mean to tell me, while I am sane and competent enough to provide my kid with love, food, clothing, shelter, and a cell phone, I am unable to provide my own rules?

But you don’t have a girl! It’s different! What if her photos get out?!?! Unless someone is holding her down against her will and snapping photos (which, um, we already have laws against) then all you, the parent, have to do is TAKE AWAY THE GODDAMNED CELL PHONE!!!

And there’s nothing like a good “I told you so” to reinforce what ever responsibility speech you gave your child when you handed them the cell phone in  the first place.

Bottom line: It’s not the government’s place to take away the joy I will get from confiscating away Jaxon and Mylo’s cell phones.

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Flashback: Books!

As much as I love music, I’ve never shown up at midnight at Borders to wait in line for the first few copies of a CD. I can’t say the same thing about books. I can still remember how bent out of shape I was when Ruby and Kim wouldn’t drive an extra 2 hours north up to Eureka so we could get the Harry Potter book at midnight and I was forced to wait like a whole weekend before gobbling it up in a day.

I will let a good book totally eff over my sleep and take over my life… I remember swearing off books (like they were a hard core drug) after the Twilight series stole almost three full days of sleep. Thank goodness Jaxon was still too little to climb over the baby gate!

The other night Matt & I are watching Family Guy and Peter is reading a Choose Your Own Adventure book — rapidly flipping back when he gets to an end he doesn’t like. I am instantly transfered back to Franklin Elementary’s library, where I read every single Choose Your Own Adventure story that we had. I was obsessed.

I almost began laughing out loud when I found the cover art for the books. I could remember all of the stories as well as smell the rough, yellowing paper of the books that you had to turn oh-so carefully to keep the pages from popping out. A glutton for 80s adventure, I’d flip back and flip back, hoping to read as many of the story lines as possible. It was so frustrating, though, when you would choose totally different things, and still die. It’s probably why when I happened upon this Comedy Goldmine a few years back, I was wiping away tears by the end.

Following are a few of my favorites:

Choose Your Own AdventureYes, no matter how much you back pedal, you can’t escape your fate…

Choose Your Own AdventureI remember this one — wtf, though, how did vampires get in space?

Choose Your Own AdvetureFor a split second, I thought the disco ball was part of the original work…

And what’s with the pick-pocket co-pilot?

Choose Your Own AdventureScary-glasses android with giant yellow cell phone, floating midget, stairs from nowhere… Who designed this?!?

If you need to waste some time on the internet, check out the rest at somethingawful.com.

Ah, the good old days of bad cover art paper back books. Being 10 was awesome.

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Flashback: Music!

This morning I had the most awesome opportunity to wake up at the butt-crack of dawn and get out the house all by myself!! I got to walk-in to get coffee, I didn’t have to break up any fights, and best of all… I got to listen to the radio as loud as I wanted.

And what were they playing on the radio, you ask?

The Blue AlbumWeezer’s “Say it ain’t so”

Things don’t get much better than the radio playing your favorite karaoke song while blazing down the highway, singing at the top of your lungs.

DookieGreen Day’s “Welcome to Paradise”

I remember sitting in the car on the way to school, angrily thinking how I’d sing this to my mom after running away because she was so mean and oppressive with her “rules” of not allowing me to do whatever I wanted… which pretty much consisted of hanging out with Adelle & Elizabeth, making prank calls, and listening to CDs.

Urban HymnsThe Verve’s “Bittersweet Symphony”

Obviously, nothing is hotter than a lanky, shaggy haired guy with giant lips. Hotness.

SmashThe Offspring’s “Self-Esteem”

What is this?? Is it 1995?!? I felt like a 16-year-old again, reading SPIN magazine in the back of chemistry class with pony-tail Troy, who stopped liking The Offspring when we found out they were nerds.

Bottom Line: 1994-1996 = best years ever!

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What To Do If You Wash a Disposable Diaper.

It’s 5:30pm and you are in the middle of dinner, surrounded by sick, hungry children who keep bringing step stools, chairs, potties, overturned toy bins, and anything else they can get their grubby little hands on to get a closer view (and reach if you’re not paying attention) to either the extremely hot pan of meatballs and sauce or the sharp knife you are using to cut lettuce.

You manage to finish cooking without anyone getting e. coli, cut, burned, or dumping the entire meal down to the ever-hungry Beagle, when *buzz* you hear the dryer go off. Seeing as the plates are still steaming, you decide to switch out the laundry before washing hands and sitting everyone down to eat.

The freshly dried laundry feels so good on your chapped, icy hands that you almost throw the clothes on the bed and jump into the pile of them, sinking into a soft sleep. But you know that before you could flop down, two dirty little boys would be in the bed jumping and kicking and throwing clothes around like they were swimming in money. Fantasy ruined, you put clothes in hamper and open up the washer… to a horrible sight!!

Little sticky gelatinous balls.

You’ve seen this before (usually the morning after Daddy gives a baby too many bottles). Your mind starts racing as you begin ripping clothes from the washing machine. Where is it? Where is it!!! Ah ha! The diaper. It’s tripled in size — yet still completely in tact. You stare down at the clothes, covered in goo. What do you do?

1. Eat dinner, because who wants cold meatballs?

2. Procrastinate some more while bathing kids, cleaning kitchen, and singing every clean up song you know to entice your messy little boys to pick up their toys.

3. Look up online remedies, and feel better in knowing that you are not alone in your negligence. Of course, as my mom would say, that is what sorting clothes is for. But who has time for that? Not me.

4. Address the situation. A glass of wine usually helps. Then remove your clothes and shake them out. I was pretty lucky that the gel globules came off most everything except my more-expensive-than-I-would-normally-pay maxi dress. Sigh.

5. Fill washer with water, add 1/2 cup of salt. Throw clothes back in, cross fingers, and wash. I did a 4-minute regular wash.

6. Check for globules. If you’re lucky like me, there will be none, and you can get back to your documentary on life in North Korea.*

* = I did re-rinse my load and then put it in the dryer on a low setting before I got back to my documentary.

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Do Your Heels a Favor…

… and walk on your toes.

I know this has nothing to do with heels, cats, or toes…

I don’t know how I got talked into watching another M. Night Shyamalan movie at 9 o’clock at night, but I did and boy was it scary! Devil is the first of the Night Chronicles trilogy. The first thing I note is that there are no famous people in the movie and I hope that it is good. I’m not disappointed. It’s creepy from the get-go and you are already searching for the one who is the devil.

**possible spoiler alerts follow, read at your own discretion!**

So I guess right away who the devil is. But if you’ve seen any of Shyamalan’s movies, you know he does the ole switch-a-roo trick where you instantly guess who it is (correctly) and then are fooled into thinking its someone else just to be SURPRISED! at the end.  It was very, very scary — luckily most of the horror scenes were done in the dark. But for the horror-suspense freaks, there are plenty of jump and gasp worthy scenes. I kept my eyes under the covers for those. By the end you are totally confused (I thought the devil was now not an actual person in the elevator, but just like a ghost working in the dark) because everyone’s got a plausible background and then….. SCARY!!

Of course like all of Shyamalan’s movies, once the bad guy is unveiled, the movie ceases to be scary. In fact, this movie went from terrifying to touching in under 60 seconds. I even had to wipe away a few tears.

Overall, good movie. Not so scary that I couldn’t watch all of it. Good actors, especially Ramirez, the religious security guard, and the detective. Enjoyable overall with a good message — with a kind of freaky consequence: be good or the devil will get you in an elevator!!! Matt & I instantly found ourselves “confessing” our fatal flaws.

My only complaint. This is a super high-rise building filled with business men and women. Are you telling me that there weren’t worse people to kill? Maybe its cliche to mix real world events with entertainment movies but there couldn’t be at least one wall street scum-bag or sell-out politician??

At 86 minutes long, it left time for 2 episodes of Family Guy so I could flush out the nightmares of the devil popping out from my closet or under the bed. But I did have to check on my kids. =)

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