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The swirly hair that broke the camel’s back

I am SO lucky that I actually buckled down and made an appointment for my spring personal cleaning, as oh my god, the moratorium on shaving my legs was totally going to end this weekend. It happened when I was applying lotion post-shower. I looked down and instead of a little golden aura of follicular prickles, the hairs were long enough to actually flatten out when wet. I went from a Billy Idol to a Bret Michaels, overnight. I applied the Body Butter and suddenly, there were swirls. I squeaked and almost jumped back in the shower, but my mid-week evening appointment at the spa allowed me to steel my resolve. Come Wednesday, I will once again be smooth head to toe and my nose pores will be suitable for close viewing once again. It’s sad that I feel more scandalized about my blackheads than having misappropriated Chewbacca’s calves.

Our refrigerator has The Funk again. It seems like every 8-10 months, it has some kind of episode and starts superfreezing and then gathering a weird disgusting toxic slime mold slurry on the top shelf that dribbles down and infects the rest of the shelves. Even if the food on the shelves weren’t rendered inedible by Funk, you lose your appetite just opening the door. I was about to say that it’s a new fridge, but actually, it was a wedding present from Ward and June, so huh, it’s 9 years old. How long do fridges last? I have no idea, but I’m so ready for this one to just commit seppuku or something. June, in her strange wisdom, decided that we needed a beige fridge, to match the used beige hammy down stove we were using. The strange thing is that she actually knows me and knows that my favorite colors in all the world are white and black, and sometimes red or grey. If I were to continue naming favorite colors, I would be twenty, fifty, eighty million colors in before the word “beige” even crossed my lips. Incidentally, a year later, that beige stove kicked the bucket and we got a white stove to replace it. So that’s been eight years of non-matching appliances. It’s amazing that my head hasn’t exploded.

In truth, we need a new stove much more than we need a new fridge. We have one of those glass-top units, which just doesn’t heat tremendously well. Certainly not as evenly as a nice juicy gas flame on the stove of my dreams. Although, quite honestly, if I had my way, I’d totally replicate the kitchen from the camp where I used to work, complete with giant walk in cooler and double convection oven. Yes, I go overboard.

The theme of 2008 has been “making do” however, and I’m sure this is the theme in a lot of US houses this year. And this, boys and girls, is the retribution for reelecting a chimp for President. Remember that bleeding heart liberal you crucified for getting caught with his pants down (as if Republicans don’t cheat)? Man, I miss that stellar economy, don’t you? Anyway, we’re keeping it in our pants (our wallets, that is) until things start to look up. With everything going into the crapper, no major purchases until we’ve got at least 6 months of income saved up in something that can be easily liquidized in one or both of us feels the recession’s wrath. In truth, it really sucks, this self-imposed frugal state. I freely acknowledge that I wrapped a lot of my sense of security in my disposable income. That’s all sorts of fucked up but it’s totally true. Growing up poor fucks with your mind. Hence the spa appointment mentioned above. Shut up.

Over the weekend, I worked on my master’s project and am happy to report that I have now finished 55 pages out of 70 minimum required for the project. The problem is, despite evidence to the contrary on this here rambling diary, my fiction is actually pretty economical with the language. Usually, that’s preferred, but in this situation, most people could probably get away with 5 stories, but I’m having to pull out at least 7 to make the page limit. Which is sad, because I was hoping to have more choices in the matter. I haven’t written a lot of stories that I actually like. I like the iPod Guy story (which actually contains a lot of this entry) but I think a lot of my liking it has to do with the fact that it’s the only thing that’s gotten published since getting into the Master’s program. On the other hand, it’s the only thing that I’ve actually SUBMITTED, too, and I only submitted it to the one place, so there’s that. Flip flopper, party of one. I also really like a body image story and the sleep story, but no one seems to like those as much as I do. And then there’s the boat story, which people seem to like a lot but I don’t like nearly as much as, say, the sleep story. I’m probably just saying that because I had to do so much more research for that one. One doesn’t just bust out with anecdotes about K-complex brain waves without a little backwork. There’s also the baby story (which, for long timers, is actually hanging out in the password protected area last time I checked), that I don’t really like very much at all, and I get worried that it has too many themes from both the boat story AND the sleep story. And then I worry that I’m a two-trick pony, because the remaining two respectable stories in my dwindling pile of work are the bingo story and the car salesman story written oh so long ago, and they have practically the same plot! Why did I not see this before? The bingo story is more recent, and needs some major work (the verb tense is all over the place) while the car salesman story is currently in a state of dismemberment that would make Frankenstein blush. It’s sad, really, because I love the final page of that car salesman story so damned much. It’s one of maybe two endings that I actually really and truly feel proud having written them (the boat story having the other good ending) but the idea of slogging through all that ancient stuff just gets very wearying. Now, the bingo story has some problems, but I think I can work through them, and I had a flash of brilliance on the mechanics and story framing last night while I was falling asleep, so that’s a super bonus. Right now, the bingo story is 19 pages long, which would put me over the page count, but given my need to tighten when I edit (as is clearly not evidenced by just this lonesome paragraph right here, hello, are you still reading?) it might truck on down close to the 15 page mark. Which then begs the question about whether or not I want to walk into my oral exam and project defense having done just the bare minimum, in front of these three brilliant professors whose work and opinion I truly value? Probably not. Probably need to resurrect the stupid car salesman story. Stupid stories.

Anywho, enough of that. I’ve got so many social occasions coming up in the near future! I have two different sets of printed invitations coming my way that need to be sent out and addresses to collect and guest lists to draft and also, a book list to concoct. But I will think about that tomorrow.

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