Patty and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

I felt invigorated this morning; I actually got up and worked out.  I’ve heard that many adults do that in the mornings, and it’s not as fun as eating cheese.  Still, I did work out.  In my adventures, which included a brief and slow run, I went to my car to grab a CD (yes, I still buy them) I bought for a friend.  To my dismay, the door handle was broken.  Until I can find the part, figure out how to take the panel off, and replace it, I’ll be climbing in from the passenger’s side.

After that fun discovery, I took a shower, did my hair, went downstairs to pick out shoes… That’s when I saw a steady stream of water coming down from the ceiling of my closet.  Nearly all my clothing was soaking wet, multiple items were ruined, and it smelled great (just kidding).

I started pulling clothes of the rod, and piling them in the next room.  I ran upstairs to grab pots and pans to catch the drips.  I removed every shoe, shirt, skirt, dress, box, that one stuffed beagle, and my carved wiseman who looks like Jafar.  I exhausted my towel reserves and paper towels while sopping up gallons of questionably-colored water.  I individually cleaned every damn shoe.  I did hours of laundry.  It was so fun… no.

In the midst of the mess, I called my landlord and he assured me that it had “never happened before” which totally helps me in this situation.  I mentioned that it was convenient that the last maintenance they’d done in my apartment had left sawdust all over my closet.  Isn’t it nice that they failed to clean up earlier in preparation of this coming disaster.

For the next few hours, I watched water leak from the ceiling, then inexplicably and inconceivably coming out of the floor.  Because this is such a high-quality apartment, the floors are uneven and so are the ceilings.  The linoleum seemed to be soaking in the water, then rejected it for being far too natural to live in the horrid floor.  Even the spiders started to run away.

When the landlord and his “boy” arrived, sans plumber, they first decided to paint one of the garage doors brown.  They never use tape around here, it’s all just nearly straight.  Upon sight, he forced me to hug him, called me “sweetheart” and said “oooooooohhhh” about seven times.  I cannot fully capture how intensely I dislike them; all the bitch in me rises up in my throat and begs to be thrust at their puny little minds.  I held back.  I needed to go buy more detergent anyway.

When I returned, they had managed to open the ceiling and promised to go get a real plumber and real parts.  I inspected the whole in the ceiling while they were out – so many spider carcasses!  Yay!

The plumber arrived, with the landlord and his boy, and they proceeded to run up and down the stairs, call me “sweetheart”, and not understand plumbing.  When they finally realized that the issue was an incorrectly installed fixture in the tub.  My landlord, being a creative deflector type, told me it was because I hung a sponge from the faucet.  He said that the water was deflecting there and going into the crack.  If I hadn’t used that sponge, no water would have gotten into the cracks and holes.  Wrong.  Water goes lots of places in showers.  The sponge wasn’t there very frequently.  I use the shower, not the bath, so the water comes out of a different spout – it’s amazing.  That’s not even a sponge, it’s shower puff, dammit.

The plumber explained that the issue was a wrongly-installed part and not the (f’ing) “sponge”.

My landlord literally said, “Don’t you worry your pretty little head about this.  We’ve taken care of it.”

I repeated it back in my grown-uppiest voice, and then said, “You know that I’m a grown woman, right?  I’ll be sure to not ‘worry my pretty little head’.  I’d hate for it to get too full with ideas.  That’s for men!”

He stared blankly.  His boy laughed and appreciated the anger I was holding in.

I escaped to my computer where I was clearly working, when my landlord decided to start a very personal conversation with me.  Mostly, he was defending how great he thinks this place is, but he also wanted to push his fun opinions on me.  He asked about the guy I’d been dating when I moved in, I said that we were no longer together.  He then gave me tons of great advice.  He asked what happened, and how, and why, and so much more.  I said, “Yeah… I don’t want to talk about that with you.”  Then, it got weirder.

He said, “That’s too bad.  He seemed really successful.  You should really ask him to reconsider.  A girl would be lucky to have a successful man like that.  He seemed nice too, and he was pretty good-looking.  You should really ask him to get back together with you.  Seriously.”

With big and crazy eyes, I replied, “Wow.  That is so far over the line.  You need to stop talking.”

He said, “Oh, I’m sorry.  I just don’t want a nice girl like you to end up alone.”

That’s when I asked him to leave.

In conclusion, I hate this apartment, I hate my landlord, and I hate sexist norms about women needing men.  I just wanted to not have wet clothes.  I just wanted to have the whole in my ceiling plugged.  I just wanted them to pay for dry cleaning.  I just wanted to go to work.

Great.  What a great day.

“Plus” what, exactly?

ImageThe woman to the far right is Jennie Runk, pictured here in a Glamour spread circa 2009. The intarwebs have been a-buzz because she’s H&M’s new “plus size” swimwear model.

Let’s take another look. Here she is in H&M’s new swimwear shots:

ImageYes, apparently this size 12 woman is “plus-sized.” Excuse me? She looks HEALTHY. AND NORMAL. And pardon me, but I believe one finds size 12 in the “misses” (that is, the NOT plus-sized) section. Since when is this plus-sized? Certainly it’s not the size 0 we normally see, but should we really be calling this “plus”? Plus what? A normal amount of body fat and muscle?

As two women who are not size zeroes, we object. We object first because calling this woman anything other than normal is a gross misstatement. To imply that this woman is somehow heavier than she should be is nonsense. She looks beautiful as-is. I don’t just say this because when I look at most retailers’ models, I want to feed them giant Katz deli sandwiches by the fistful, but because this is the same kind of nonsensical distortion we get with the size zero model. Girls who are Ms. Runk’s size and one higher (14) are shopping in the section that advertises with size zeroes. Women who are size 16 and over are shopping for the clothes Ms. Runk is modeling. Isn’t it time we have just a bit of truth in advertising? If you’re going to sell “plus size” clothing, you need to use a plus size model. A model, that is, who wears size 16 or higher.

Additionally, there needs to be some parity across sizing. I give you the following anecdote: In December, I went looking for a New Year’s Eve dress. I headed to the predictable spots: Forever 21, H&M, etc. H&M was my first stop. My dress size, 95% of the time, is a 6 or 8. I do have a bit of trouble finding dresses that fit because I’ve got a lot of booty and not a lot of booby. But, I digress. I went looking for a black sequin number I saw on the website, and found they only had a size 4 left. I thought to myself, I might as well try this on. It’s realistically only one–maybe two–sizes below me. Maybe it will fit.

And what do you think happened?

Not only did this “dress” not fit over my ass, it hardly fit over my boobs! My tiny boobs! Most women who are my size or a bit smaller have bigger boobs than me! And, on top of that, the notion that this thing was a dress was a joke. Even if I had gotten it to begin fitting over my hips, it wouldn’t have made it much farther because there just wasn’t any more fabric! The damn thing was shirt for a 10 year old being passed off as a dress.

My call, therefore, is for parity in sizing as well as in advertising. I should be looking at models smack dab in the middle of the spectrum of “misses” (that’s a size six, by the way) and smack dab in the middle of “women’s.” And I should be able to reasonably enter a store and try on one or two sizes of clothing and find items that are at least close to fitting. I shouldn’t have to shop at store A as an 8 and then go over to store B and have to buy a 13/14. If we could actually get some real sense of what size we were and stick to it, and saw real humans modeling the clothes we’re buying, we’d significantly reduce the amount of body-hating that goes on.

Creep Week: Snake Tongue, Over-Confident

Snake-Tongue, The Over-Confident

True Story…

I made the mistake of allowing this small-ish man to kiss me.  It was shockingly bad.  He then bragged about how good of a kisser he was, which I found alarming.  He asked me to confirm, and I said…  “Uh, I have to go.”  He then tried to convince me to sleep with him by explaining that he was as good at sex as he was at kissing.  So… I said, “No, thanks.”

It was awkward.

You see, I had allowed this small “gentleman” to walk me home, thinking that due to our common friends and his general demeanor, that he would not try a thing.  Well, he tried some things.  At first, he was just sort of oddly asking me to go out with him.  I was trying to negotiate down and not really interested.  Then, he just full-out went for a make-out session with my face.  I mean, he dove into my face.  He stuck his tiny, thin tongue down my throat and just kept jabbing it into my mouth.  His tongue moved in short, terrifying spurts.  It felt like he was trying tenderize my mouth.  It was, hands down, the worst kissing experience of my life.  Perhaps, the worst of all time.

He then began to tell me that he was “really, really good at stuff that girls like.”  I was like… “No.”  He kept trying to talk me into going to his place or letting him in mine so he could show me his skills.  He tried convincing me because he promised that “We don’t go all the way.”  He said, “We don’t go all the way” about 50 times.  It was an actual negotiation to him.  He thought that if he promised me orgasms and only foreplay, I’d be totally down.  In actuality, I was just trying to get him away from me without totally destroying our mutual friendship situation and without him knowing which apartment was actually mine.  He seemed very stalkery.

The reason he knew he was so good at pleasuring women?

He went to an all-boys school where the older boys “taught them all about that stuff.”  Uh…  Not to be judgmental, but wouldn’t older boys teaching younger boys about sex-stuff likely not involve women?  I mean, wouldn’t that experience all be dude-on-dude?  I just don’t think the ancient Greek system of old men making love to young men bodes well for that man’s skills with women.  You know?

When I finally convinced him that I really, truly, actually, for real was NOT going to mes around with his snake-tongued face, he said something horrible.

“Are you on your menstruation?”

The only reason he could imagine I wouldn’t want to feel his tiny hands or creepy tongue all over me was that I was on my period.  This yucky, creepy question was the last straw.  I slapped him across the face and told him to get real far, real fast.  He ran away.  He was a gross asshole.

This is, by far, the worst thing I’ve heard in response to rejection.  Never, never bring up a woman’s menstruation.

Side note:

He showed up at my apartment building the next day, calling me repeatedly (with a number he got from my friends), and begging to go on a date.  He also told me he lied about his age (he was younger) and he boasted his virginity.  I did not pick up the phone or see him again.

Yes, this is a real commercial.

After seeing this on TV for the second time, I felt compelled to share it with all of you. At least, I figure, I won’t be alone in my rage against this company and whatever marketing “genius” came up with it.

The first time I saw this, I thought, “Oh awesome! This guy built a mousetrap-style machine that refills his drink! This should be cool.” Alas, I was disappointed, aghast, angered, etc. to find that instead, the solution to the empty drink glass is the girlfriend (wife?). What the fuck. How is this on television? Why isn’t the whole world pissed about this? I mean, the Miller Lite commercials they used to have on TV promoting the “manliness” of drinking Miller Lite (e.g. don’t be a sissy, girls’-pants-wearing light beer drinker!) seem tame and almost endearing compared to the outright misogyny of this gem. I mean, really? We haven’t moved beyond “women belong in the kitchen and/or serving my every need including thirst”? It’s 2012 for godsakes.

I mean, the idea of businesses like SportsClips thrive on the idea that women are meant to serve men both in deed and as eye candy (see also America’s favorite place to get buffalo wings and glimpses of boobies, Hooters). The problem isn’t only the proliferation of antiquated notions of what it means to be a Woman–that is, buxom, always sexy, kitchen- or service-centered, adorably dumb… the list goes on–but antiquated notions of what it means to be a Man. Commercials like this imply that part of being a man means treating all women like glorified servants and exclusively doing “manly” things like watching sports–and being unable to drag oneself away from such manly activities in order to groom oneself, because that’s for pussies. It’s not only women that should be outraged at commercials like this that appeal to undeniably sexist notions of male/female relations, likely located somewhere in the irrational amygdala.

I don’t want to suggest that we should be better than this. We are better than this and it’s about time we show it.

More on Mr. Akin’s Bullshit (“Legitimate Rape,” etc.)

First, he begs for Forgiveness….

It makes me so mad that he is saying that his issue is “the words” but not his “heart.”  Yes, the issue is about words.  When politicians, when men use words like this to discuss rape, they put it on women.  In our culture we tell women to not get raped, instead of telling men not to rape.

When women are forced to jump through hoops and relive their traumas to prove they were raped, they are being forced and traumatized again.  Abortion is legal and it’s staying that way.  Maybe we should focus on educating men that sexuality is about choice, agency, and mutual desire.  Men should be taught respect and self-control.  Women should be allowed to be sexual and men should be better than raping.  Let’s expect more of the men in our culture.

Let’s stigmatize raping, not being raped.  Victims are victims and they should not be ashamed.  Rapers are evil and they should never be excused.  All rapes are real and legitimate.

For Todd Akin to use these words makes me so angry.  For him to go on and “explain” that women who are raped cannot get pregnant… What the hell?  Who is this guy?  How can someone be that stupid?  Sorry, but pretty much anytime sperm goes into a lady’s vaginal crevasses she has a chance of getting pregnant.  That’s kind of how it works. Ugh.

Todd Akin is one of many politicians making shit up about women’s rights and bodies.  I’m sick and tired of men pretending like they understand rape and abortion.  Actually, a whole heck of a lot of men understand a lot about women – some even understand that there are things they can’t understand.  Many Republican politicians seem to be confused about vaginas, babies, rape, abortion, pregnancy, periods, and other such issues.  I would love to throw some tampons (new, don’t worry) at all the Republican senators… That would be amazing.

Leave our vaginas alone.  Unless you are invited, stay away.  Stay away.

Then, some really amazing grannies take him down.  I love when old ladies swear…

 

This girl also wrote an amazing song about it…

You can stop whining about how hard it is to be young now.

More and more often, I’ve been seeing articles bemoaning being in your twenties (in particular, Thought Catalog and the HuffPost Blog love making lists on this topic). I wrote a goofy version (at least I like to think so) myself–far less, well, serious and doom-y. But I’m really, really, REALLY getting tired of people bitching and moaning about being twenty-whatever in combination with one of the following:

A. Not having a job. I get that this is frustrating. I do. Having a degree that you worked hard for and that you can seemingly wipe your ass with sucks. However, there is not some sort of cosmic significance to your lack of employment. We have a shitty economy. We are, realistically, in a rec(depr)ession, and you’re pretty much at the bottom of the ladder. It is, yes, adversity that you have to work through, but plenty of other people have worked through it before you. It is not something special for our generation, it does not make you better/unique/more self-aware. You’re also the one who refuses to do menial labor because you’ve been fore fed some bullshit about it being below you for the last two decades. You annoy me. Shut the hell up already.

B. Being single. And drunk. And single. Okay, I get it. You’re lonely. And you’re verging on being a full-blown alcoholic. This has nothing to do with being in your twenties. Being drunk and lonely is not a profound experience, nor is it the special property of the young.

C. Feeling directionless and using your blog to whine about it. Blogging always straddles that strange line between making your point and getting whiny in order to elicit sympathy from total strangers. One thing that is true about many people in their twenties (but also true of many teens and even a boatload of baby boomers) is a need for constant reassurance/confirmation from their social circle. Why else would social media be so addictive and so conducive to the humblebrag?

D. Being too far or too little self-aware. It depends on who you ask on this one, but for all the time you, author of blogpost/article, are spending reflecting on being in your twenties (instead of oh, I don’t know, living them) I sure hope you’re erring on the “too much” side of this equation. Honestly, quit taking yourself so seriously. Chances are, by the time you hit your mid twenties, you’ll experience something that will change the way you see the world or yourself. That’s healthy and appropriate. Whether that’s losing a beloved grandparent, having to break off a long-term relationship, or even getting a first phone call from a collections department, all of these things can force you to crawl out of your (supposed) vodka-induced coma from part B of this list and re-evaluate your shit. It’s called life, and it is not special or particular to being a young adult.

E. Whining about being broke. Your parents are paying (or stopped paying) your rent/grocery bill/phone bill/bar bill/healthcare bills (think Lena Dunham à la Girls). You live in New York/L.A./Miami/Chicago. Um. What did you think was going to happen if you moved to a HUGE metropolis and had, if we refer to part A, NO JOB? Shit is expensive! I hope your parents have already paid off the house they have in Happytown, USA because even a shitty studio apartment in some of those places is probably going to have them forking over twice as much as they did for their mortgage. Give me a break. Stop acting like they’re obliged to be paying for your dumb ass to live the high life while remaining totally oblivious to all of the benefits you do have, like parents who are not only willing but able to help you with your rent.

F. Jerking off to your own perceived intellectual, social, and cultural superiority. We get it. You have clever Tweets. Who knew so much wit could be packed into a mere 140 characters? Your Instagram photos each have the perfectly selected filter for the five hundredth picture of your cat, or the one where you’re holding up a half-drunken PBR at some skeevy neighborhood bar you like because it’s “pure” (that is, you’re the only person under forty inside of it). Your Tumblr is both thought provoking and delightfully cheeky in the 21st century intarwebs sort of way. You’ve read (and get) Derrida and Naked Lunch. You need to remind your Facebook friends how brilliant and unique and clever and unique and underground and unique and unique and unique you are. Did I mention you’re unique? And your blog, OH! Your BLOG. It is so deep and meaningful and there’s just so many feelings you need to discuss.

The biggest problem is that there’s a good chunk of “twenty-somethings” who aren’t anywhere near this obnoxious, self-righteous, self-absorbed, and arrogant.

We live on our own. We have jobs. We pay our own bills. We might have put ourselves through college. We aren’t stressing that we don’t have the newest version of the iPhone. We still don’t really “get” Twitter. We’ve (self-consciously) learned how to resist the humblebrag. We take care of our parents, financially, physically, or emotionally. We appreciate cheeky internet humor as much as the next guy, but don’t feel compelled to base our entire self-worth on it. We, too, sometimes drink to much, have a crisis of conscience and confidence, and really–really–enjoy watching Girls. We just don’t take to the virtual streets and feel it’s necessary to tell the world each passing detail of our lives, or record them in photographs, preferring to experience them without a camera lens in our face or our fingers racing across the touch screen of our phone to check-in on Facebook 24/7. And quite frankly, we’re sick and tired of getting lumped in with people who do act those ways and do those things. I’m looking at you, New York Times.

So, let’s be real. Being in your twenties, like being in any other conveniently-named age range, has its ups and downs. Sitting around pampering your bruised ego on the internet or looking for affirmation of your feelings and your self-worth from your peers, known or unknown, is a (bad) choice, not a feature of an age group. It’s okay to feel pissed off because you’re unemployed or because you can’t find a boyfriend; it really is. But it has nothing to do with your age.

File This Under “Things That Make Me Hate the World/Want to Cry”

This is terrifying because this person bought a 50,000 euro (that’s $61,780 USD) bottle of champagne, but I also have to laugh because they paid 10 euro for Coca Cola. Middle-American upbringing FTW.

This exists. Okay, not so much that this exists, but that there’s enough material for something like this to exist; and not just exist but flourish. “Rich Kids of Instagram” is a Tumblr site on which the author posts pictures of young people of outrageous familial wealth showcasing their moral bankruptcy and total disregard for reality on their Instagram accounts. Oh, and like any good Millennial, their expertise at bragging. Go figure. This makes me kind of terrified, or as the kids would say,

#omgfearthefuture

Just… yuck.

A Happy Thought for Sunday

After hearing that Chad Johnson head-butted his wife the other day, this makes me feel a little bit better.

3am Clampetts, and other summer sleep disturbers

It can be pretty difficult to sleep in the summertime. Even though I live in the Midwest, which usually has okay summers as far as temperatures go, this year has been absurdly hot. ABSURD, I tell you. Like 95+ degrees for weeks. Not okay. Firstly, if you don’t have AC, you’re screwed. No way around it. You will toss and turn all night in your awful sweat-soaked sheets (and not from any fun pre-sleep activities, either). Gross.

If you do have AC, chances are you have an outrageous electric bill, and, if you’re like me, sinuses that are completely in revolt. Yes, world, I really want to have bloody noses every morning from wanting to sleep in cool air. Blargh!

If it happens to be cool enough to sleep with your windows open, you run the risk of noise.And by noise, I mean assholes shooting off fireworks until three in the morning. Really? It’s a friggin’ Wednesday night; don’t you have to work tomorrow? WHO ARE YOU SHOOTING THOSE OFF FOR? Everyone is asleep, or at least was until you drank one too many Budweisers and came up with this genius idea. Douche.

Another risk of sleeping with your windows open in the summer is something I have christened “3am Clampett Syndrome.” We all can get a bit testy when it’s hot outside; no one is happy to be sticky and sweaty and just generally gross even into the night. HOWEVER–this is not an excuse to go outside of your apartment building and scream at your significant other in the middle of the night. Listen, you hillbilly, you’re not out in the country. People are right above you with their windows open TRYING TO SLEEP, and you’re waking me up with your shrill f-bombs, slamming of car doors, and general banging on inanimate objects. It’s not the car hood’s fault your girlfriend is a whore. It’s hard enough to sleep in balmy, humid weather without your bullshit.

Just a friendly PSA: 3am Clampetts, Drunken Firework Guy, and everyone else disturbing my sleep, STFU.

15 Reasons Your Waitress Hates You

    1. She knows you’ll give her a shitty tip.
    2. You’ve hit on her.  She’s not interested.
    3. You grabbed her ass.  Really?
    4. You will continue your cell phone conversation while we are taking your order.  Then, you’ll hold up your hand to her, so that she doesn’t interrupt.  
    5. There are kids with you.  Oh, god.  Leave your badly behaved kids at home. 
    6. You will make her say how cute your evil kids are while they are pouring out their food and breaking everything.  Thank you.
    7. You’re blaming her for food you don’t like, or prices you don’t like.  She didn’t cook it.  She didn’t price it.
    8. Your specialty order is out of control.  You want extra onions, no olives, extra cheese, no salsa, replace the beans with fish, replace the salt with ice cream…  Something will be missed in the kitchen.  You will flip out.  
    9. You didn’t tell her about your food allergy until after she brought out your food.  “Oh, does this bread have wheat in it?  I’m allergic.”  If you have an allergy to wheat or gluten, don’t order a sandwich.  If you have an apple allergy, don’t order the apple pie.  Consider these rules.
    10. You complain about the meal, after you eat all of it.  Well, she could have tried to fix that… but okay.
    11. You ask for extra napkins four times.  You’re eating a hamburger.  How many friggin’ napkins do you need?  
    12. You will claim there is something wrong with your diet coke.  She knows that there is nothing wrong.  She will either 1) walk to the back, pause, and bring the same drink back to you, and you will say it tastes better, OR 2) will walk to the same machine which filled your glass last time, dump it out, then refill it, and suddenly, you will like it.  Either way, it’s the same.  You have wasted her time.
    13. You won’t leave when you’re done.  She wants to put new people in your table.  New people who will pay her more.  You are costing her money.
    14. She is stereotyping you based on age and the people you’re with.  Super young = bad tip.  Super old = bad tip.  Bunch of ladies = bad tip.  Bunch of douchey guys = good tip.  First date = good tip.  Super drunk = either super bad or stupid good.  Bitches/Assholes = likely a stiff.
    15. Oh, right.  THE BAD TIP THING.  For the record, 15% is base minimum.  20% for good service.  10% if the waitress attacked you, forgot your food, insulted your hair, hit on your husband, poured whiskey on your dress…