Friday, August 26, 2016

Let Them Eat Cake

Oh, hello there. Long time no see. How's it goin? What's new?

I've been a wee bit busy. That's part of my excuse for being MIA. The other part is that Donald Trump's presidential campaign has made me question my reason for being, which has eclipsed my mommy blogging motivation.

These times, they are a changin'!

I left my old job after five years. But I took this lamp. And also that one. And this one. And the other one too.

Then we had a Michael Jackson party for The Boy's 6th birthday. This was at his request, which kind of made me feel like I was winning at this parenting thing. (He's too young to appreciate any awkward irony.) But about a week before the party, a little buddy of his came over and apparently didn't know who Michael Jackson was, so J$ said he changed his mind and wanted to have a ninja party instead. I said A) TOO LATE. And B) Your friend needs to reevaluate his life choices. Duh.

The night before the party I almost died the death of a thousand paper cuts because, as per usual, I was assembling motherf*cking cupcake toppers and bedazzling oreo pops at 3am. Seriously why, WHY, WHYYYY do I do this to myself ? WILL I NEVER LEARN??

Ahh. That's bettah.
Also, someone RSVP'ed the night before for a FAMILY OF 5, and then someone RSVP'ed THE MORNING OF for another two kids and two parents and in case you don't know, now you know: This puts me IN A RAGE. Pet Peeve Hall of Fame right here. It drives me absolutely BONKERS. I can hear myself getting all shrewy about it and I can feel DM trying really hard not to roll his eyes at me and I still can't stop. It is seriously SO ANNOYING TO ME. Like, WHAT IS YOUR MAJOR MALFUNCTION? I'm not asking you to reply via carrier pigeon. The marvels of modern technology make it literally as easy as the push of a button. "I Will Attend." Click YES. Or NO. It's that simple people!!!

I shouldn't be so judgy. "He that is without sin among you, cast the first stone," or whatever. Once DM did this to friends of ours, but it was against my express and vehement objection. I was like, No, absolutely not, that is not okay. We are not a family of lawless savages! He went anyway. Also, I recently forgot to send my regrets to an old friend's wedding invite until two weeks prior. Oops. Dick move. But, less bad than a late RSVP - "Will Attend - PLUS FOUR," right???

Maybe my frustration is exacerbated by the fact that I am a woman obsessed who hand-crafts cupcake toppers and magical rainbow unicorn wands and/or orders personalized thingamajigs from Etsy or what have you. I mean it's one thing if you want to bring a few more people to a mellow backyard BBQ. But, for me, kids birthday parties are a production. There are months of careful planning, ordering, multiple trips to Michael's, crafting, baking, etcetera culminating in one mathematically and scientifically calculated afternoon of conspicuous consumption. I already order/make/bake extra everything because I now know better, but the last few parties we've had, there have been like ten unaccounted-for little critters in need of goodie bags! Maybe this is indicative of the underlying problem of kids expecting elaborate to-dos and fancy goody bags at all (a problem created by Pinterest and psycho parents like yours truly). I don't know.

ANYWAY. The party was fine. It always is. AND. The people who RSVP'ed the night before? Literally the nicest family with the most polite children I've ever met in my entire life. Like, THE actual nicest. And as they were leaving the mom said, "I already told the kids they don't get goodie bags because we RSVP'ed too late, so no worries at all if you don't have enough." Soooo, I'm an asshole. Thank the Patron Saint of Party Etiquette we had enough!

Success. DM and I celebrated the next day with a well-deserved grown-up date.

"Mom Purse" this, MFers.
Then DM took the kids to the East Coast for a week and I started a new job and it was kind of good in a way that I could just focus on the new gig, but it felt very strange to come home to an empty, quiet, CLEAN house every night. I felt a little lost and floaty but also a lot free. I got more sleep than I have in 6 years. I subsisted primarily on popcorn, jelly beans, and toaster waffles. It was not the worst.

Imma 'bout ta watch TV by myself for the first time in a year! Just as soon as I figure out which remote to use.
I also had a romantical sister date complete with crafting, poolside cocktails, sunset over the Pacific, and Mexican food. It was all fun and games until the Uber driver asked if I was her mother. [Side eye emoji.]

The new job is good but hard. I feel like a newbie again and I hate not knowing things. But everyone is nice and patient and helpful and, p.s., the office is 1.5 miles away from my house!!! My commute is a tenth of what it was. The other night I texted DM "On my way. Be home in 300 seconds!" The place is also a block from the beach, and it appears that the entire staff generally works normal business hours and even kicks off by 3 on Friday to go surf. I cannot complain.

Okay, actually I can complain, just a little. I have to dress like a grown-up which is not one of my specialties. Also? There is no ice. I mean, there's like a dusty deformed block of ice from 2004 in one of the freezers. But there is no way to get cubes of ice in my beverage of choice. So basically I'm adjusting to life as a pilgrim. But don't worry. I'll get there. I'm a survivor.

One other issue is that, before I got the new job, I had signed up for this writing workshop so I could bust out the next great American novel right quick ;) There's a (self-established) daily writing quota and I figured, given my penchant for too many words, I'd be able to meet it, no problem. Haaaaaa.

Let me just say, I am eternally grateful for the opportunity and experience my last five years of employment afforded. But, as I think I've mentioned here before, the job did not require the utmost application of brain cells. Most of my job was rote and repetitious and could likely have been performed by a primate with a law degree (I happen to know several). I figured I could squeeze half my words in during lunch and still have the stamina for a post-bedtime stretch.

At the new place? Not so much. I've used more brain power in two weeks than I have in the past year. And my grey matter is a fat lazy f*ck. It is dusky viscous sludge. I am basically doing an intensive "couch-to-5K" program for my think box. Or maybe couch to half marathon. And it is somehow physically exhausting to be using my brain like this again. Also, writing at lunch just means I'm working an hour later. But trying to string a bunch of coherent sentences together at 9pm? Let's just say it has not been smooth sailing.

Another hurdle has been the fact that, apparently, I kind of suck at writing. I mean, *actual* writing, as opposed to blogging. My scribble-scrabble thus far can most aptly be characterized as "Bridget Jones' less witty, semi-literate, schizophrenic cousin's diary."

It has also become clear to me over these past few weeks that I do my best work when I get a bee in my bonnet about something on the internet and feel the need to preach from my tiny soap box. It is much, much harder (for me) to write, regularly, in a linear manner, and tell a story. Even (or especially) when that story is my own.

The take-home is, don't hold your breath for Mack N. Cheese to be debuting at the top of the NYT Bestseller list anytime soon :)

In the vein of lighting a fire under my tiny soap box though:

This. Freeport Bakery in Sacramento (Sac-TOWN, whoop whoop) made a cake with a Ken doll in a pretty dress. Some people got their puritan panties in a bunch, called the bakery and said they'd lost their business forever and ever ("You're not invited to my birthday party so THERE!"), "un-liked" them on Facebook, wrote them nasty messages, left negative reviews and comments, etc. Luckily, it seems the story has a happy ending. Support for the bakery in general, and orders for the fancy Ken cake in particular, have been flooding in after the story went viral. Git it, gurrrrl.

It's my party, I'll have a trans-Ken cake if I want to!
Hater's gonna hate. The rest of us get cake!
Image courtesy of the Sacramento Bee.
Read the story here
I'm glad it ended well but the initial backlash still chaps my hide. Why is it that when a bakery refuses to make a cake for a non-traditional client/theme/occasion based on their "religious" or "moral" views, these whackadoodles are like, "RAH RAH RAH! RIGHTZ! You can't force a bakery to make a cake they don't agree with. Private business are free to make whatever they want and not make whatever they don't want! Yeah! CAPITALISM! FREEDOM! GOD! THUH CONSTITUSHUN! 'MERICA!!!"

BUT THEN! When a bakery exercises it's GOD- (or Adam-Smith-given) RIGHTS and bakes a deliciously sassy cake AT THE REQUEST OF A PAYING CLIENT, these same 'Merica - FuckYeah fools are like, "DON'T GET YOUR GAYNESS ON MY GOD OR MY FREEDOM OR MY FROSTING!"


Okay I'm going to go crawl back under my rock now, byeeee.

Wait, just kidding, I'm back. I forgot one small recent milestone. My kids also started Pre-K and Kinder on Monday and NOBODY CRIED.

The end.