30 April 2009

Things that make it all worthwhile

Last night Adam Avitable wrote a horrible post about the swine flu. Nothing new - Avitable ONLY writes horrible posts.

I don't know why I keep reading him. Except that he brings out my inner 12-year-old boy and makes me laugh til I snort. Or pee. Or both.

Last night's post was no exception. It was a list of hints about the swine flu, very serious hints, (yeah, right) including this gem:
Q: Can I get swine flu from eating or preparing pork?

A: No, with a small exception. IF the pork product is particularly fresh and IF the product contains any pork anus, such as in a hot dog or sausage, the CDC recommends avoiding these products or cooking in boiling water for a minimum of 12 minutes to rid the chance of infection.

That made me laugh, so I tweeted part of it.

Two minutes later, I got followed by someone whose twittername is "SwineFluAdvice."

THAT made me laugh until I wept. I just imagined poor "SwineFluAdvice" spreading the Avitable gospel of cooking your fresh pork anus well and...oh good gosh. I hope they don't get sued.

I KNOW Avitable won't get sued, because any judge who took a look at his site - the header shows Adam riding in a car with Hitler, eating ice cream - would know he isn't right in the head.

But poor SwineFluAdvice. I'm kind of worried about them.

28 April 2009

Too hot to handle

On Tuesdays, I usually work at home in my PJs. On some days I get dressed, but just as often, I stay comfy all day long. I always wonder what my neighbors think when they are coming home at 5 pm and see me taking the trash out in my pink furry slippers and my notorious (and hideous) purple fleece pants.

After work, I get off my butt to go to aqua aerobics. I throw on my favorite hippie skirt over my swimsuit and put on some flip-flops. I mean, all I am doing is heading to the pool and back, right? Right!

But tonight I went to the grocery store on the way home. I piled all my groceries on the belt and the cashier told me that I could go to the lane next door, because that cashier wasn't busy.

I gestured at the 30 items I had just piled up like "No way I'm moving all this stuff."

"But she's open," said the cashier.

I just stood there. Then I noticed the new bag boy. He was gorgeous, with dark hair and tan skin and glowy hazel eyes.

He spoke to me in a Euro-accent and I noticed his nametag: Giancarlo. Ah, Giancarlo. Sigh. Dreams of holding hands on lounge chairs at St. Tropez danced in my head.

I didn't even mind that he had ridiculous Eurotrash faux designer sunglasses hanging off his apron.

"If I were 25 years younger and 100 lbs lighter, I would SO be right there," I thought, picking out a bikini in my mind.

Giancarlo was sweet as well. He talked to me as he bagged my groceries in such an engaging, gentle way. It was a super nice way to end the day. No, I did not obviously perv on him. He was about 23, fergoodnesssake.

Then I came home and made the mistake of looking in the mirror as I threw my wet swimsuit in the sink.

Mashed down hair from my swim cap, all piecey and goofy because I hadn't brushed it after the pool. Red eyes from chlorine. A wrinkly T-shirt I had found in my swim bag. Hippie skirt. I looked bad. I looked CRAZY.

It all became clear. The cashier wanted me to change lanes because she thought I was INSANE and she didn't want any part of me. (Seriously mentally ill people are sadly all too common in my neighborhood).

And Giancarlo was trying to make sure I didn't cause an incident by calming me in his soothing Euro-accent.

Yes, I make a lasting impression, all right. Just like the guy who collects stuffed animals in a shopping cart and then sets them on fire.

PS: Hint to panhandling guy outside: take off the iPod earphones. It makes it hard to hear the people you are hitting up AND makes them think unkindly thoughts like "Gosh, I would have bought an iPod but I had BILLS TO PAY."

26 April 2009

The March for Maddie

There was a billboard that rises above the Ventura River Trail, which is one of my favorite walks to take with Goldie. It said "Walk for Babies" and had these little baby footprints on it.

I don't know why but it really pulled me in. As we walked, I felt strangely drawn to it. I thought "Maybe I should do that."

That was an odd thought, because if you know me, you know that babies aren't among my top ten causes. As I always say about myself "Not much of a people person."

Then soemone I know got very involved in organizing the Los Angeles Walk for Babies, and I kept getting emails about joining. I kept thinking "Maybe I should do that."

Then Maddie died and my heart cracked open and so did the internet. I became one of hundreds of people who were inspired to March for Maddie.

The team in Los Angeles grew to over 100 people and more than $50,000 was donated to the March of Dimes by kind people like you. And you. And you.

And the Los Angeles team was only one of more than 50 in the country who were Marching for Maddie. One tiny girl inspired so much love, so much giving.

In Los Angeles, we walked yesterday. It was a beautiful day, a glorious day. All of us gathered on the steps of the Museum of Science and Industry dressed in purple like a big spill of Grape Kool-Aid.

I have always been kind of snotty and looked down on both USC AND sororities, but seeing Heather's sweet USC sorority sisters come out so strongly to support her made me drink a glass of my own Shut-Up Juice.

Heather and Mike spoke (well, Heather did the talking) and by the time they were done, about 90% of the audience was doing the ugly cry, me included.

Then we took a little 3 mile stroll around Los Angeles. 10,000 people. About 2,000 dogs and 1,000 baby strollers. A sea of goodwill stretched from curb to shining curb.

My favorite was the little boy of about 4 whose t-shirt showed him as a NICU preemie and said "I am a miracle!"

I just wanted to say thank you one more time to everyone who supported me. It means the world that you were there with me in my heart. Bless you all.

Martha Stewart I'm Not

I kind of hated to spend a glorious Spring afternoon doing housework, but I just didn't think I could put it off until Winter.

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