Re-launched, but still slightly under construction. :-)

Wednesday, March 31, 2004

A Fate Worse Than Death

This is a story about how I can make any bad situation EVEN WORSE NO KIDDING DO NOT COME TO ME FOR COMFORT. You will only suffer more.

My friend, Lance, died this week. His wife, Sarah, has been taking it hard. I wanted to be there for her at the memorial service. Scott picked me up at 11 a.m., one hour before the service. We had a quick two-shot-of-courage at Applebee's (Thanks, Rico!) before heading to the funeral home. We have 10 minutes to get there.

Pulling up, I'm already upset. The parking lot is half empty. Lance had more family than this. Lance had more friends than this. They should all be here to support Sarah, goddammit. Maybe people carpooled from Sarah's. Most people have been sleeping there, anyway.

Walking up onto the porch, I spot Michelle, a girl I know from ASU. I feel relieved. We hug.

Me: Oh, it's so sad!
Michelle: I know!
Me: So sudden!
Michelle: Yeah, it was. How did you know Aunt Nomi?

Who the fuck is Aunt Nomi?!?!?!

A lot of funeral homes have more than one reception area... for more than one family... gosh, this funeral home is small, where the fuck is the office? Oh, just ahead. We'll check with them...

Seconds later, Scott and I are rushing through the lobby - past poor, old Aunt Nomi's grotesquely displayed body - from the office to a different funeral home down the street. I'm trying not to laugh, hiding my face in my sleeve. I hope I look sad. I suspect that I don't.

"Walk faster," Scott hisses.
I choke back a slightly hysterical giggle.

I race out the door towards the car. I hear Scott's footsteps stop on the porch. I glance back. He has stopped and has sympathetically taken Michelle's arm.

"I'm so sorry for your loss," he says.

I don't know how he manages to maintain his composure, but I can't. Uncontrollable laughter pours out of me the second the car door closes.

I'm so sorry, Aunt Nomi.

Tuesday, March 16, 2004

My mother is disturbed

I'm on the phone with my mother, who mentions that she is on her way to the outlet stores, and can she buy my some underwear?

Me: Heck, yeah: bras.
Mom: What kind?
Me: Um, the bra kind?
Mom: Noooo. Do you want cotton? Satin? Lace? Leather?
Me (chortling at "leather"): Um, I want pretty ones.
Mom: Do you want padded? Push-up?
Me: Yeah, the higher the better. In fact, if you can find one that lets me use my boobs as earmuffs, that would be great.
Mom: My daughter: the weirdo.
Me: Mmhm.

We go through other specifics - underwire, etc. - before she asks me the question that will resound in my brain forever:

Mom: Do you like the kind that shows your nipples?

There is a long silence, while my brain thrashes frantically in search of something to hold onto.

Me: ... What?
Mom: You know, with the cut-outs.

My brain stops thrashing, shudders once, flops over, and dies. Surviving now solely on instinct, I grasp for something neutral to say.

Me: Well.... what if it gets cold?
Mom (laughing): I didn't think of that.

Sunday, March 14, 2004

Warm Beer and Remote Control

Long ago, in a restaurant far away...

Carol and I are bartending. We have a friendly, rivalrous banter going on. It keeps us occupied, mentally, while working. I love Carol to death. Today, the beer cooler is broken. It annoys our guests, but they're good-natured about it.

Guest: Can I get another warm beer?
Just then, Carol walks up from the back with beers for restocking. She hands him one as I laugh at his question.
Carol: There you go. Much fresher than anything she'll give you.
Me: Right. Thanks, Carol.
The guest takes a sip and grins.
Guest: Colder, too.
Me: That's because she chipped it out of her icy heart.
The guest chokes on his beer. Carol whirls around.
Carol: What?!
Me (innocently): Nothing!

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Not a Good Day

The phone rings.
Carol: Hey, it's Carol.
Me: Hey! How are you?
Carol: Well, I'm - I'm not calling under good circumstances.
Me: Oh. Okay. What's up?
Carol: We're just calling everyone who were friends. But... last night... Lance passed away last night.
There is an interminably long silence. Lance. Dead. What...
Me (at my most articulate): What?
Carol: Yeah.
Me: What happened?
Carol: We don't really know. They did an autopsy this morning. It's alcohol-related. But we won't know until the toxicology report comes back in.
Me: Okay. How's Sarah?
Carol: She's... not good. I think she's sleeping right now - which is a good thing. But we're all over here right now... Jacob, Foster, Kara is coming by later.
Me: Okay. I'll be there as soon as I can. I'm watching a very destructive dog right now, and I can't leave him. He'll tear up the house. Can I bring anything?
Carol: No. Her church put together a lot of food, and we have drinks and ice over here right now.
Me: Alright. I'll see what I can do with the dog, and I'll be there ASAP.
Carol: Okay. See you later.

I'm stuck with the dog. Scott's old roommates won't take his mangy ass, even for a couple of hours. Better yet, I come back into the living room, and he's peed in a line from the kitchen into the bathroom.

What the fuck happened? He and Sarah split up over his drinking. Maybe he tried to stop again and his heart just couldn't take it. I haven't seen him for a month. I don't know how he was doing. I was going to get his new number and call him to let him know that I was still his friend, too (even though my primary loyalty is to Sarah, let's be honest). And I put it off too long.

My name is Stacey, and I'm a Wal-Mart friend.

Thursday, March 04, 2004

You Got Served

At garden reception, Scott, Dwayne, and I are standing by the Rose Garden. Along comes these two adorable little girls, pushing a metal cart to their parents' barbecue stand. We all grin as they run past, gleefully unaware that what they're doing is generally called "work."

Scott: Hey, can I have a ride?
Six-Year-Old (with a world-weary sarcasm rarely seen outside of Monte Carlo): Um, I really don't think it will hold you. (She gives a thumbs-up sign) But have a nice day!
Dwayne and I burst into laughter as Scott's jaw drops to the ground.
Dwayne: Oh, man! You just got ripped by a six-year-old
Scott: I'm going to trip her when she walks past.
Me: I will strangle you with your own tie.
Dwayne: You're just mad that you got beat down by a little girl.
Scott: I'm going to get her back.
Me: You realize you're having a battle of wits with a six-year-old.
Dwayne: And you're losing.
Scott (hanging head): I am.