Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Insecurity Needs a Workout Too

Usually the rule around the house is that once I go outside alone, Mr. Zoom knows to expect a story when I come back. To lessen the chances that I get myself beat up, arrested, or made to cry - Mr. Zoom will actually accompany me many places. This seems to keep the weirdness away.

And this is one of the main reasons I carry a camera with me at all times. If I didn't have actual proof of some of the things that happen to me, I'd think I'd gone "Beautiful Mind", without the brilliant part. Just the seeing things part.

Monday Mr. Zoom went with me to the gym. It was less of a protection thing for me and more of a want to get exercise for him. I was elated to have him with me. For all kinds of reasons, the most obvious being that I would be story free for the evening.

After I kicked the ass of a treadmill*, I went to the little lobby area to wait for Mr. Zoom. This area is directly in line with the "Kidz Klub" and often parents are streaming in and out with their minis. I was checking my e-mail with my phone and I looked up to see a little red headed kid, probably no more than 5 years old standing right in front of me. I exaggerate not, her face was inches away from my face. She asked me very loud and VERY directly, "Are you someone's mom?"

I went immobile in the head and body for a moment before I squeaked ", I'm not." Her Mom raced back towards us to grab her, said "I'm so sorry!" to me and then drug the little depression machine off and out the door. I felt worse than I do when I'm forced to take a treadmill in front of the t.v. playing Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune. SMART. What is FAIL? THIN? fail. And now, YOUNG? fail.

It was already feeling a little unhip girl logic that told me this stranger's little girl thought I was a mom because I was old. It could have been because I was in the lobby area. It could have been because I had a cell phone and was using it. It could have been ANYTHING, but Mr. Zoom got to ride out the wave of self critical jibber jabber that followed. And I am quite surprised that he didn't sit me on the couch and tell me to shut my hole, life is pretty damn good - what some strange kid innocently asks me should not bring my whole world to a halt. Especially since I didn't know where the question was coming from.

But he didn't. He let river jump to conclusion run itself dry.

I like to think I don't have any illusions about being 39, and looking 39 - whatever that means. But you know that idea you have in your head of what an age looks like to you? But I suppose the truth is, that just like I believe the dryer shrinks my jeans, I love to believe that maybe I look pretty good for 39. And that nobody would ever mistake me as someone's mom. But just like the phrase "looks 39" is ambiguous, so is "looking like someone's mom". Because there are a lot of moms out there who are fantastic looking, as well as genuinely wonderful people I'd be honored to be compared to/mistaken for.

So what have I learned? That the dryer really DOES shrink my jeans. That's what.

*Not really, as everyone knows only Chuck Norris can kick treadmill ass.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Underrated Creepiness: The Ice Cream Truck

Mr. Zoom and I came round the corner on our way home from work and stopped mid-smack talk to gawk at the ice cream truck parked in the middle of our street. I began to flail, because my camera wasn't handy and my cell phone couldn't boot up in time to get a shot of it. And the weird thing, it wasn't parked because there were kids there. It was just parked. With the ill-tuned music gushing from it.

Mr. Zoom - funny enough - zoomed into our garage and got his camera out so he could video the rarely seen ice cream truck as it passed our house.

I had previously used the last of my phone battery to amuse myself at the office while waiting for Mr. Zoom to meet me in the lobby to drive home. I spotted a large fly on the window, booted up my phone and giggled to myself as I internally repeated "super fly!" to myself. I took some pictures which I intended to upload to TwitPic. Then I realized that nobody was going to be able to see the fly and the moment vanished.

But not before Mr. Zoom came down and saw me giggling to myself and chasing a fly around with my cell phone camera. The work week hadn't ended fast enough.

Just that morning I had gotten in the shower and all too late noticed a cricket in there. I had the wibblies, but figured I was already soaked in water so as long as he stayed in the corner I could finish my shower. With one eye open at all times. At that very moment, clown cricket took massive leaps into the water on the shower floor and began hop swimming towards me. I yelped and flew out of the shower, squealing for Mr. Zoom in the patented bug-in-my-space-come-fix-it-noise.

"BIG CRICKET IN THE SHOWER!!" I pointed while I struggled with a towel. "I was going to be fine, but then he came out of his corner and started chasing me across the shower! Apparently it was ON."

Mr. Zoom, barely hiding his amused disbelief "Came after you. Right." Then he opened the door. "Oh. He's a big boy." Mr. Zoom had to go find some cardboard so that he could air lift clown cricket out of the shower while I hid under a towel. That is not an exaggeration. I can't stand watching Mr. Zoom deal with the bugs.

You know how getting back in the shower after you've pre-completion exited just doesn't feel the same as getting your whole shower done in one session? Threw off my whole day.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Proving that I'm Always the Last to Discover Anything

It was last weekend that I entered the Bed Bath and Beyond for what seemed like the first time ever. I've been to that store before, but just like I didn't appreciate San Francisco when I was 9, I didn't understand the love capacity I had for Bed Bath and Beyond until this past weekend.

I can't stop thinking about the magical aisles with bric-a-brac that nobody needs but desperately wants. The "as seen on t.v." items are my favorite. And I bought some of them, too. The jury's still out on the actual effectiveness of those products as compared to their claimed effectiveness. But no matter. I was high on potential and I LIKED IT.

Do all BB&B's have just that one teeny little door to enter and exit through? Is it a theft deterrent kind of thing? I'm not sure how they get away with that as far as fire safety codes, but maybe they are so awesome that they are exempt. I am claustrophobic, but for some reason the super high ceilings and walls, covered with absolutely anything you could ever imagine isn't a threat to that part of me. Like, if there was a fire, I'd probably just run to the travel section, lie down and say "yeah, this is as good a place as any to have it all end."

HAVE YOU SEEN THEIR TRAVEL SECTION? Everything you've ever needed is in miniature travel size and in stock in that store. Most stores have that sissy one side of the aisle filled with a few bins of marginally exciting travel sizes. Not BB&B. They dedicate an entire SECTION to that. Their sections are about the size of a room in a house, with extra high ceilings. And all the wall space plus shelving aisles in between is stocked full.

Let's put it this way. Mr. Zoom used to shudder when I told him I'd be going to Target. I can still spend way too much time and money there - but there's a brand new (to me) whore in town and she gives me exactly what I want and exactly what I didn't even know I wanted. In several sizes, colors and brands. It makes me feel like I could have a clean, organized, hip home without the enormous energy I waste already if I could just fugue out the magical combination of items to buy and use. It's like they have some secret gas in there that induces domestic euphoria.


Sunday, August 03, 2008

All the World's My Helmet

Mr. Zoom came home from the store with salsa. And thank goodness he got the non-poisonous one.

I suppose in the wake of the tomato scare, I get it. But here's an example of caution gone too far:

Because if you come back from the fair with anything less than 3 layers of dust, straw, beer, animal hairs, drool, chocolate, sweat, a set of ShamWows and a sense of having sold your soul for something deep fried, well - ur doin it wrong.