Blast From the Past: The Fierce Eye

20 08 2010

I’d like to pretend that I’m not one of those easily influenced women, the type that doesn’t fall victim to flashy ads or well-thought-out displays. The sad, unfortunate truth is that a little bit of clever advertising goes a very long way, and that I will, inevitably, desire to dress in period costume for at least a week after seeing anything set in 19th century England.

That being said, I like TV. It’s safe, only mildly influential, and not necessarily in a negative way, and the only danger comes from seeing a commercial for something I absolutely cannot live without.

The Biggest Loser inspired me to slim down. I imagined myself on TV in spandex and a sports bra, fat rolls bulging and thunder thighs straining the tight, black fabric of those ugly shorts. I began to diet (passively) and exercise (actively). I started belly dancing, and moved into boxing. Always, there was the elliptical machine, harbinger of misery. So far, I’ve lost twenty pounds, all without a Nazi trainer and dietitian. Suck on that, Jillian.

The Pussycat Dolls Present: The Search for the Next Doll inspired me in a different way. The show name was pretentious and annoying. Robin Antin was (and is) scary in a very Janice Dickinson way. The contestants, vapid and largely untalented, were clones, each dressed in The Pussycat Doll Style (varying degrees of stripper), proving to me that the clothes make the Doll. Aside from that, you must have long hair and be remarkably flexible. You must be able to sigh alluringly on command and strut in stiletto-heeled boots. I began to think that I could be a Pussycat Doll. My hair was long and tossable, and I could dance in heels with the best of them. I can sing; I can certainly sigh on cue. My inner diva began to make her presence known. “I can do what those bitches do,” I’d say. “It’s not hard to dance on a chair.” In the end, I realized that I don’t look like a Pussycat Doll so much as I look like a whale, and so those aspirations were short lived, even if I can cage dance. In heels. For hours.

There are safe shows, though, mindless ones that don’t affect or influence me. Scrubs never made me want to be a doctor; Project Runway never made me yearn to design anything at all. Shear Genius did not inspire me to try my hand at cutting hair. Sex & the City was entertaining, but something that was fictional, something that I couldn’t relate to. Until recently, I believed America’s Next Top Model to be mindless and safe, lacking any real influence.

It started innocently enough. I’d been sitting at my desk, applying makeup and watching America’s Next Top Model, eager to see if Tranny Ferocia had made it through another elimination. When the episode ended, one of my favorite contestants had gotten the ax, but Isis remained, and, after thirty seconds of sheer outrage on Brittney’s behalf, I trudged to the bathroom to make sure that I hadn’t botched my makeup by applying it using a compact-sized mirror and while engrossed in a TV show.

It was fine. Actually, it was almost perfect. I made a few final touches, making sure to blend well and to set the foundation with an oversized brush and loose powder. I used my finger to delicately wipe beneath my eyes, making sure to clear away any excess eyeshadow, before applying a sheer, work-appropriate lip gloss.

Generally, at this point in my morning routine, I’d fluff my hair, grimace at the orange t-shirt I’m forced to wear to work, sigh, and leave, grumbling about foolish people and their inability to master the technology they insist upon. As I speed toward the mall, toward another day at the Apple store, I’d wonder what new horrors were in store for me, or if this day would be monotonous, a repeat of yesterday and every day before it. Would someone throw an iPhone at me? It wouldn’t be the first time. Would today be the day I finally snap and bludgeon someone with MacBook power adapter?

This morning was different. I was more tired than usual, distracted; the light caught the subtle shimmer artfully applied to my brow bone, and I turned to catch my full reflection in the mirror. Rather than turning away, marveling at my own vanity, I found myself squinting seductively through dark, sooty, perfectly mascara-ed lashes, sending my smoldering, green-eyed gaze into the mirror as though I could melt it with sheer sex-appeal.

I’d like to pretend that this has nothing to do with Tyra Banks or America’s Next Top Model, that I’ve never in my life witnessed Miss Tyra’s demonstration of The Fierce Eye. I’m afraid this is not the case. I do watch enough ANTM to have seen all of Tyra’s important lessons and to have seen those skinny girls ignore them, and I did pay particular attention to her lesson in The Fierce Eye.

I justified it, of course. I have stunningly green eyes and mile-long lashes; my eyes are easily my best and most striking feature. Even my hair, which is awesome, isn’t as awesome as my eyes. Why shouldn’t I know how to best present them? Not learning to do so would, clearly, be a disservice to myself.

And so, under Tyra’s in absentia tutelage, I absorbed the theory behind The Fierce Eye and added it to the bank of acquired feminine wiles. I am not ashamed of this. But then I caught myself moving from theory to practice, and it was at this point that the shame began to set in, though I don’t know whether the embarrassment is due to catching myself being so vain, or because I displayed a savage natural aptitude for it.

I can’t help but feel that this knowledge would be best put to use as a Pussycat Doll.


Chimichanga Hell

14 08 2010

I’m allergic to chimichangas. Before you laugh, hear me out. A couple of months ago, we visited Chattanooga to see the aquarium and the IMAX. Afterward, we ambled into a Mexican restaurant and I ordered a chimichanga. I spent all afternoon vomiting. I thought it was a fluke, that only that particular chimichanga didn’t agree with me. Last night at Soccer Taco, emboldened, I ordered the chimichanga. It arrived, and I figured the rice was the safest place to begin, so I ate it all before turning to the fried, chicken-filled tortillas dominating the plate. Nervously, I cut into the crispy flesh of the tortilla and brought the first bite to my mouth. Nothing happened. Soon, the first chimichanga was gone and I felt triumphant. I raised my fork to cut into the second chimichanga, but the sudden roiling in my stomach seized me completely. My fork clattered to the plate before falling to the table. I bolted toward the bathroom.

Naturally, the bathroom was occupied by a stupid hussy in a strapless romper. She’d forgotten to lock the bathroom door, so I barged in on her and saw her in her beige strapless bra with her gray romper pushed down around her ankles. Her shoes were black, high-heeled, and strappy.

“Sorry,” I croaked, my hand flying to cover my mouth even as I slammed the door. Seeing a nearly naked woman in a restaurant bathroom was shocking, but the move wasn’t the dainty, dramatic ‘oh my goodness’ type. It was a practical ‘I’m going to vomit in this hallway’ one. I began to count the seconds, hoping that the girl would hurry the fuck up before I embarrassed myself in the busy restaurant. At one-hundred-seventeen, she stumbled out, smelling heavily of margaritas.

“I’m sorry,” I said again.

“No big deal,” she slurred. “I forgot to lock the door.” She gave me a friendly smile before tottering off toward her waiting party.

Wasting no time, I bolted into the bathroom and gagged twice before vomiting into the toilet. I could feel the blood rushing to my head, my face, where there would be tiny ruptured blood vessels later.

Clammy and shaking, I rinsed my face and mouth before heading back to my waiting husband. My plate had been whisked away and our check had been delivered. I sank into my chair, hoping that our bill would be settled shortly so I could continue to be sick in the relative comfort of my own home.

I was right when I knew that I’d continue to be sick. Nearly as soon as we walked into the apartment, I felt the familiar roil and bolted upstairs, where I promptly threw up. Unfortunately, I did not throw up in the toilet. I threw up on the toilet. And on the floor. And on the bathmat. And on a fluffy white towel. And on the side of the bathtub. And on the shower curtain. And down the front of my navy scrubs. I could not breathe. The orange vomit was everywhere, it was inescapable. Weakly, I called my husband to help me pull the soiled scrub top over my head without smearing vomit on my face. It was an indignity, as was cleaning the bathroom while he nearly ran downstairs to rejoin his mistress, the Xbox.

Once I’d thrown everything in the washing machine, poured two capfuls of detergent over the reeking mess and started the wash, I stumbled upstairs and washed up before dressing in my warmest pajamas and crawling into bed where I slept for twelve hours. I dreamed of chimichangas.


29 07 2010

My husband and I share a car. On some days, like when I work, I have to stumble to the Fusion and drive him to the Apple store. On these days, I don’t typically bother to dress. I mean, it’s not like I’m getting out of the car or anything, so I just go in my pajamas. Sometimes I’ll pause, and wonder, “What if I get into a wreck today and have to stand in the middle of Kingston Pike in my blue fish-print pajama pants?” but, ultimately, I decide to throw caution to the wind and leave my apartment dressed as though I’d just rolled out of bed.

As I suspected would happen eventually, my luck ran out today. I was pulling away from the mall entrance when I heard a ‘pop’ and felt something dragging where my right front tire should be. I jumped out, expecting to find that I’d run over something that needed to be cleared away, like a bottle or something. No. There was no bottle. There was, however, a blown tire. I snatched my cell phone out of the cup holder and immediately dialed my husband, who told me to drive around the mall to the tire/lube place across the parking lot from Dillard’s. He, at least, was thinking clearly. Me? I was thinking that I’d have to wait in a freezing sitting area, bra-less, with peach striped pajama pants, an old Apple shirt, and flip flops.

The tire was not salvageable. Something to do with the alignment causing wear on some certain component that had finally had enough; I forgot the specifics almost as soon as he told me. The thing I did remember…all four tires need to be replaced. Travis–I remember his name, even if I don’t remember what caused my tire to pop–gave me an estimate on replacing all four, and it was enough to make me laugh out loud. “I’ll have to do it one at a time, I’m afraid,” I told him. He stared at my bra-less boobs when I laughed, and it made me hate him a little.

The actual tire replacement took about twenty minutes, during which I crossed my arms over my chest and half-watched an episode of Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grader? (For those of you wondering, I am indeed smarter than a 5th grader, for I knew the Roman name for the Greek god Dionysus.) I would have been out after the initial twenty minutes, but Travis failed to tell me that the replacement had been completed, and I sat in the ice-cold waiting area for an additional hour. After losing my patience, I stormed to the desk and demanded to know when my car would be ready. “Oh, it’s done,” he said. I whipped out my debit card and paid $86.66, wondering if the tire’s inner-workings were plated in solid gold. Hopefully I’ll never see them.

Driving home was nerve-wracking, as I was afraid one of the other tires–particularly the left front, which he said was on borrowed time–would blow. I made it off the freeway and onto the winding roads to my apartment and felt confident that I would make it home safely. I learned several lessons today. 1. Wear a bra. 2. Brush your teeth and your hair. 3. Make sure your pajamas are at least cute, lest you be stranded in them.

Tidbits from La Pharmacia

7 06 2010

I really wish HIPAA laws weren’t so touchy about revealing patient information, like names and such. Because I? Would really like to write open letters to my, ahem, favorite customers and post them on my blog.

Dear Guy In Drive Thru: I know you love your extended cab truck, in all of its fierce chromed glory…even though it only gets seven miles per gallon and ten baby seals are clubbed every time you start it, but could you PLEASE turn the fucking thing OFF so I can hear you when you’re trying to speak to me? I’m a pretty amazing woman, but my talents do not include hearing you over the deafening rumble of that unnecessary V8. Really? You deserve a cock-punch.

Hey Doctor? Your penmanship should be banned in all fifty states. Really, would it kill you to write legibly? Or better yet, invest in the whole e-scribe system. It would make my job easier, meaning less calls to “clarify” your atrocious handwriting. Seriously, look into it.

Working the drive-thru is shitty, no matter what your job is. McDonald’s drive-thru must be soul crushing, but Walgreens isn’t much better. Especially when being stuck there for four hours at a time. Fortunately, my time there today wasn’t ALL assholes. It was merely punctuated by the occasional douchebag, like the vile and much hated dragon-headed she-beast. Every time I encounter her–always, always in drive-thru–I want to toss a vat of battery acid in her immediate direction. She? Is a cunt.

I don’t really hate my job. Generally, I like it, but (like anything else) it has its moments. At least I know that a cheeseburger at the end of the day heals most–but not all–things.

6 in 10, (Mostly) Chattanooga Edition

22 05 2010

1. If I had a gay male neighbor who happened to have a female roommate, I would call them Will & Grace, spy on them, and blog about their fabulousness.

2. The Chattanooga aquarium was pretty awesome, AND I *finally* got to see a sea turtle. In fact, I got about 100 pictures of this particular sea turtle, because it was feeding time and he, like me, was alllll about getting his dinner.

3. I didn’t get to see much of Chattanooga, because I was scared to leave the little downtown walking area, lest I wander into a) a seedy neighborhood, or b) a Chili’s.

4. The IMAX theater is amazing, and Hubble 3D is mind-blowing. Stumbling out into the bright sunlight, we realized we were ravenous and stumbled into the first restaurant we saw, which happened to be a Mexican restaurant. Matt had the tilapia (which I thought was pretty fucked up, considering we’d just left the aquarium) and I had the chicken chimichanga. I didn’t like mine very much, but it doesn’t matter, because I threw it up anyway. I didn’t like it any better the second time around.

5. I know it sounds like I’m bulimic, but I’m not. For one, I’d be thinner. Sometimes I just eat really rich or heavy foods that my body can’t process (because I have no gallbladder), and so I throw them up. Usually, I feel better after having horked, but I didn’t today. I turned the fan on and took a nap, knowing that I’d feel better when I woke up. I was right.

6. Note to self: No more chimichangas, even if I like the word. I need to stick to safe things, like enchiladas or cheesecake burritos.


21 05 2010

The other night, after work, I came home and began to catch up on Facebook. There was the typical Farmville and Mafia Wars bullshit, and then I saw this from a girl I went to high school with: god bless the chinks that do our feet…they are much appreciated. I had to re-read it twice to make sure it really said chinks and not chicks. Thinking that I couldn’t be the only person outraged by her casual use of a racial slur, I perused the comments. Her family and friends agreed with her, and so I, being me, posted something along the lines of, “Um, this is really offensive,” and then I un-friended her because I don’t want to be associated with someone like that. For the next twenty minutes, my BlackBerry kept dinging, alerting new Facebook comments. Unsurprisingly, her husband and family came to her defense. Because it’s okay to be a racist as long as your family supports you and your beliefs.

The Double Down

16 05 2010

When I was 18, Sundays were used to recuperate from long weekends of partying. Now, at 27, Sundays are (preferably) spent in bed with a good book, preparing for the week ahead. This Sunday, though, I had to work, so I managed to crawl from my bed to the shower, and from there into scrubs. I took a few Advil for the residual cyst pain and even made it to work five minutes early, and that, my friends, was the only relaxing portion of my day.

Around 2pm, I wanted a meatball sub from Firehouse Subs, but there was no time for that. It was a perpetual onslaught in the drive-thru, car after car of needy patients. As busy as I was, I felt bad for my pharmacy manager. She’s due to give birth in two weeks and the constant movement couldn’t have been good for her. Lately, it’s my greatest fear that she’s going to go into labor in the pharmacy. While I’m there. Alone. I’m afraid I would burst into panicked tears and run to and fro, though the logical thing would be to: call her husband, and alert store management. Let’s hope that, should this occur, I’ll be calm and logical. Better yet, let’s hope this doesn’t occur at all. All of you–no matter who/what you pray to–pray that Joanie makes it to her June 1st induction.

Now, the end of my workday was very welcome, even if it was a few minutes late due to last minute pharmacy closing stuff. I managed to make it out by 6:30pm and was home in the shower twenty minutes later. I took a pain pill and settled down to read for a while before going to pick The Husband up from work. I had planned to cook, but on our way home, we began talking about KFC and their Double Down and I told him that I just had to try one. He agreed to go along with my plan, though he refused to get a Double Down of his own, so I sped toward KFC.

The Double Down combo–a Double Down, one side, and a medium drink–was $7.99. Outrageous? Yes. But I had to have one. The Husband ordered something else, something that came with The Devil’s Accompaniment (coleslaw), so my experience with the Double Down would be solo. Once home, we unwrapped everything, and my first impression of the Double Down was that it was smaller than I expected. My first bite? Tasty, but not mind-blowing. Ultimately? I won’t get it again. I’m glad that my doctors don’t read my blog…I have a feeling they’d have something to say on the effects of a Double Down on one’s cholesterol and blood pressure. Thankfully (and surprisingly, for a fat girl) my blood pressure and cholesterol are perfect. Blood sugar? Eh, we all have our faults.