Category Archives: People I'm jealous of

Wine snob

I started a new job in June. When you’re thinking about taking a new job, you think about the actual work involved and what they are going to pay you and if there is free food, but all that goes out the window on your first day when you realize you’re the new kid and you have no friends at this place.  So I was pretty pumped to get an invitation  from one of my new co-workers regarding a wine party at her house.  She said all we had to do is bring our favorite bottle of red.  I felt like that was a sign from God that I had finally arrived in the right place because red wine and I are closer than Jada and Marc Anthony were last week. Red wine is my fucking specialty.

This party would give me a chance to introduce BD to all my new co-workers and in turn, I would get to meet their spouses.  I always hate when you know someone at work forever and you’ve never met their spouse.  Because really, there is nothing more interesting and shocking to me on God’s green earth than meeting your co-workers’ spouses. Well, and that Charlie Sheen continues to find crazies to have his children.

I always create this detailed idea in my mind about what my coworkers’ spouses look like.  Dudes that I would have dated when I was single I imagine with really hot, cool wives.  Dudes that I are d-bags? They have super ugly, dumpy wives.  And the cool women I work with have hot hubbies and the bitchy ones have gay husbands.  Unfortunately, my track record on guessing what someone’s spouse is like is about as good as Kirstie Allie’s on staying away from ice cream.  Suffice to say there are a lot of clown couples in this world. But these type of parties generally have me sitting back and marveling to myself (before two glasses of wine) about how on earth some total zero landed his wife and then after two glasses I marvel to my colleagues about it. Needless to say, I have had my fair share of CLMs (career limiting moves) at parties such as these.

But I’m pretty pumped for this party because BD and I will have to go into the city for this one, which is like a bona fide, full-on real date like the kind we had before we produced our litter.  I mean, the babysitter is going to have to stay until after 10pm. After 10 pm!  I’m going to miss the beginning of Saturday Night Live! Aww, yeah. Big pimpin’ baby.

I need to take this seriously. The wine choice is paramount. The instructions were to “bring your favorite bottle of red”.  I felt some pressure. I mean, I drink a half bottle of red wine every damn night. And that is kind of an expensive and time consuming habit, because I’m kind of particular about the alcohol I imbibe. I have spent hours in agonizing over wine choices at the liquor store – finding good ones under $15 is an art. An art! (which, fortunately, I have mastered).

While we’re on that subject: let me just tell the 12 of you who read this whole Internet that those $9.99 bottles with the Kangaroo on them? Are shit. You already know that, right? When people bring that to my house as a hostess gift I want to just smash it on the doorstep the second I see it.  Not out of anger, but just because I could kill two birds with one stone: my dehydrated hydrangeas would finally be watered and I could quickly and safely dispose of that toxic waste before my children were exposed.   The issue is that you can’t even re-gift the shit, because as a wine snob, I sure as hell am not going to give that to someone I actually like and/or respect.  So really, the only thing that kind of wine is good for is donating to the crazy homeless alcoholics who hang out at the local food pantry along with my expired garbanzo beans to find someone who can really appreciate that shit together, or smashing it on my doorstep as soon as it is presented by people who clearly hate me.  Or don’t know me at all. Cue the Weepies.

But back to the momentous situation at hand: my wine selection. I’m terrified if everybody brings their favorite bottle, that might mean that we drink them in some sort of order and if I actually bring my favorite I’ll become pretty surly if it’s like the bottle people drink after they are already smashed and they don’t know what the hell they are doing.  On the other hand, if I just bring my everyday go-to $13.99 bottle, I might look like I’m unsophisticated and don’t really know the difference between the wine you get drunk on every night versus the wine you get drunk on on your anniversary.

So I discussed with BD and he suggested the bottle of wine we always ordered at our favorite Italian restaurant in Chicago (word up, Via Veneto).  It cost $65 there, but its only about $25 in real life at the liquor store.  I liked his idea.  The wine had some sentimental cache for us, plus if we would routinely pay $65 for it, it had to be insanely great, right?  The decision was made and I was okay with it.  It’s an awesome wine, but not too expensive so if it gets opened last, I’m not going to shed tears all over the place. Not like I would if I had brought my true fave and people didn’t bow down and worship it like Bobby loves Whitney. So we went with it – the David Bruce Petite Sirah — the very wine I happen to be guzzling sipping as I write this.

The big night arrives. I dress up our wine. Well, as much as I’m capable of dressing up anything. It had a paper bag on it. It was a sparkly purple one with some bling that I felt was a nice nod to Martha Stewart and Jay-Z together. I found it in a drawer somewhere and wondered if perhaps the Artist Formerly known as Prince had once presented me with a hostess gift? Not sure.  Anyway, that is about as crafty as I get,  so it was kind of a big deal for me.  We show up and I’m still a tad nervous because I’ve only worked with these people a month and I don’t know what they’re really like.  They seem pretty cool at work. Maybe a little too intense for my taste,  but good people nonetheless.

So we get there a half hour “late”, but we were the first people there, so right off the bat? Dorks.  So much for being fashionable.  Then the hostess tells us to write our name on the bottle and then to wrap it in a plain paper bag. Well, maybe this is for the best because I’m starting to really regret my sparkly purple bag. The sooner it disappears, the better.  I’m totally back in junior high with a fucking Timex and Lee mom jeans when everyone else has Guess and Swatch.

I’m shaken from my insecurity by the news that at this party, we’re having a blind tasting where everyone submits their wine and they all look the same in the paper bags and then we rate each bottle.  PLUS, we put $5 in a pot and then whoever wins for best wine wins the pot.  And I can’t stand to lose. I don’t care what the competition is (well, except if it involves running, swimming, biking or all three) — I’m going to fucking win.  You know, this was almost unfair.  I mean, I am the queen of wine and even though I didn’t bring my favorite, we brought a fucking contender. Surely some ass clown will bring the stupid $9.99 wine referenced above, and even those who don’t will likely bring a terrible bottle because nobody has the sophisticated taste for red wine that I have so carefully honed the last 15 years.

So an hour later, the place is packed and for once in my life, everybody’s spouse matches. They all turn out to be kind of awesome and beautiful and there are no clown couples to be found.  Because OMG, now I work with normal people.  Wait. *Love has an a-ha moment* If they aren’t clowns, could this mean that they too might know something about wine? Something more than I do with my infinite wine wisdom? I start to feel a twinge of anxiety. I will not be beat at my own game!  But I make the best of it. Maybe I’ll discover an even better bottle than the one I brought.

Yeah, right.  Mine will win.

The wine tasting begins.  There are eight bottles to judge.  I immediately try to figure out which bottle is mine, so I can rate it the highest. But I can’t figure it out just by looking at them. The bottles are too dressed up. Damn. Cheating is not going to work.

I don’t know if you’ve actually done this before, but tasting eight different reds in the span of a half hour is highly int(r)oxicating. I consider myself kind of a heavy weight given my daily wine consumption, but at the end of that exercise I was loaded. I could barely see the rating sheet, let alone figure out on a scale from 1 to 5 what my rating was.  So I decided the best route was to cheat off BD’s paper.  Our tastes on wine are the same, so that is a no brainer.  He would recognize our wine and give it a 5.  And I would copy him since I was too drunk to figure out what the hell I was doing.  And we would win.

So I glanced over there after about my 3rd or 4th wine rating and something was awry.  Every wine I gave a high rating, he gave a low rating. I mean, WTF? We share a bottle of wine every night. Surely we should agree on the quality of the wine before us? Right?  Maybe BD’s ‘2’ was actually a ‘5’ he wrote backwards because he is drunk too. Or maybe that was me.

So I couldn’t cheat off that bastard because he wasn’t keeping it real like me.  So I had to do my best to drink each wine, figure out which one was mine, and judge all the others poorly which is really a lot to ask after three or four glasses, I promise you.

So everybody finishes and we turn our sheets in and I’m pretty damn confident that although I’m drunker than I should be, the wine will stand on its own.   At the very least I’m not going to embarrass myself.  So the hostess starts by naming the 6 bottles of wine that did not win…or lose.  Of course, we weren’t in that category because our wine was the winner and I was going to win the coveted Wine God crown. Wait? Was there a crown up for grabs, because in my state of mind at the time, I really felt that wearing a crown for the rest of the party would be an appropriate reward.

Finally they get through all the yada yada yada bullshit and the glory that was all mine was about to be announced. The only problem? The two wines left – the winner and the loser — I rated a 3.  But that didn’t really make sense because I rated the wine I brought a 5.  And so did BD, I’m sure. Or didn’t we? Something had gone wrong. Very wrong.

This wasn’t adding up, even in my embarrassing drunkeness. What could have happened here? How could we both handicap our own superior wine?  Surely a bottle I rated a shitty 3 in my infinite wine wisdom isn’t the winner….or the loser. I gave out 1’s pretty freely too.  What is happening here? Am I this sloppy drunk? Why is everybody talking slow? I wonder why Oprah named her dog Sadie? Oooh. That guy’s wife has shiny earrings….

Well, this much was clear: when we were crowned the winners, it would be sort of a hollow victory,  given that the most either of us could muster for our favorite wine was a stupid 3.  This wine we paid $65 for on a pretty regular basis. I mean, what wine did I give a 5 to then?

The winner was announced. That guy’s wife still had shiny earrings.  And as expected, we were…not the winner.  Wait – what? We were the losers? Indeed. THE. LOSERS.  I mean, out of eight red wines, we LOST. And you know why? Because we both gave our favorite fucking bottle of red wine a ‘meh’ rating of 3.

The world hasn’t really been the same since then.  It’s like how you remember where you were when the Challenger blew up.  And when the Twin Towers fell.  I’ll never forget this moment when my wine was voted WORST WINE EVER AT THIS PARTICULAR PARTY WHERE  I WAS TRYING TO IMPRESS MY NEW COWORKERS AND THEIR GOOD LOOKING SPOUSES WITH MY WINE PROWESS AND EXPERTISE BECAUSE I’M A WINE SNOB, DAMMIT.  The fall out has been kind of horrific, as you might imagine.

I’ve learned a couple of things: first, I realize that my husband and I have completely different tastes in red wine. I don’t even think he likes red wine.  Our entire relationship has been built on lies and deceit. So there is that. Second, fuck you David Bruce Petit Sirah.  Third, shiny earrings can be super distracting at a serious wine tasting fiesta. Fourth, I lost. No money. Just shame and heartache. And PTSD if you must know.  I can’t look at a bottle of red wine any more and not question whether I can tell whether or not it sucks or rocks.

Even though I don’t deserve it, I don’t know how not to be a wine snob.  I still say affirmations each morning to myself about how awesome I am at identifying the best red wines in the land, but I kind of know deep down I’m just a self-righteous asshole who knows just about nothing about anything I pretend to know something about, giving me and Rick Perry more in common than I’m comfortable with.

No more fucking wine parties for me.

Love’s PhD trilogy: Genesis (also, Why it’s just “Mrs.” instead of “Dr.”)

This is the story of how I was almost a doctor. Not the kind that actually helps people, but the kind that everybody listens to, because if you have PhD at the end of your name, people think you are an authority on any and all subjects.  Which is kind of my dream.  To have everybody listen to me and feel like I have some credibility, even if I have no idea what I’m talking about.

Do you know they give out PhD’s in marketing? They do.  I suppose a PhD in physics is probably higher on the totem pole than marketing, but I’m pretty sure you can’t have ADD and get a PhD in physics. I think you need to have Asperger’s for that.  So I’m S.O.L (does everybody learn that acronym from their dad at age 6?).  So marketing seemed like a reasonable alternative. Plus, after you get a PhD in anything, you’re a PhD. Nobody knows or cares after you get a PhD  what it is in, so I figured I could kind of be like Dr. Phil.  He has a PhD, albeit probably from an online university, but nobody questions his credentials any more. So what if it’s in marketing? I’d be Dr. Love and suddenly, the editors at O would be busting down my door begging me to write a monthly column. But instead, Oprah found Dr. Berman, PhD, a hot blond who loves to talk about sex and suddenly my dreams are shattered.

But I digress. Here is the story:

So I’m in this job that is kind of boring. And the people I work with are really nice, good people, but I had the suspicion that they weren’t as intellectually superior as I was.  So to stave off my boredom, I decided to go back to school part-time because my company would pay for it.  But it had to be something relevant to my job, which only gave me a single choice, which was MBA school.  So luckily I live in a city that has about 6 trillion universities/colleges that offer part-time MBAs.  But going to just any MBA school would have been too easy and wouldn’t have inflated my ego to the levels I crave.  I had to pick one that was prestigious and where I would meet a lot of intellectuals so I could have an intelligent conversation about the current events I read about in US Weekly.  And I am very lucky, because the top two MBA schools in the U.S. are right here in Chicago.

One has a reputation for being really fun and one has a reputation for being really not fun. So it was a really hard decision, but I eventually settled on fun.  I took the GMAT to prove to myself and the admissions group that I was as brilliant as I fancied myself.  I didn’t get a perfect score, but there is math on that test instead of celebrity trivia, so it doesn’t really test true genius. But I did alright. So I applied to the part-time program and they let me in and it lived up to its reputation. I was having a good time.  The people I was going to school with were very smart – maybe some were smarter than me — which then made me feel kind of average and inadequate, but that was probably good, because sometimes I need to be taken down a notch.

So while I’m in MBA school I decide that I need to get into health care sales, so I could do something that helps people and still make lots of money. (Please stop laughing — I was just very naive at that point. Who knew the health care industry is even shadier than the financial sector?).  So in order to network my way into the health care industry, I go to this health care conference being held by my business school.  And they have CEOs from some of the top pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers on this panel discussing sales strategy and management,  and the conversation is being led by this professor at my business school.  He keeps throwing out pretty good questions and the executives answer but they always finish up their answers by looking at the professor expectantly, like they needed his approval for what they just said.

And then it hits me.

OMG. I should be a professor. I want to get paid for thinking about whatever I want to think about!!  I want to facilitate discussions between people who work for a living and I’ll be the big PhD at the table who everybody listens to and respects even though all I do is teach a class here and there and maybe write some books and get quoted in the New York Times every other day. Yes! It is my calling. I’ve found my life’s work!! Elation!

I was a newlywed at the time. My husband asked me to marry him a couple of weeks before I started my MBA adventure. I have to assume he thought that I would pull my own weight in our marriage at least financially because I was going to a great school and that should guarantee me a solid place in the career world, right?  Maybe he could be a house husband if he felt like it because I would be making wads of cash as I scurried quickly up the corporate ladder. Because I was the very definition of a future baller and we’d be big pimpin’ (spending Gs).  So I run home from this conference and I announce to BD that I am going to be a business professor. Fuck sales. Fuck working for a living. It was so simple! Why hadn’t I thought of it before!! I’m going to be a professor. And now I could finally earn the right to wear cardigan sweaters with little patches on the elbows and start smoking a pipe. I already had the scholarly specs. All I had to do was get a PhD and how hard could that be, especially with me being such a genius and everything?

So that night I shattered BD’s illusion of having a responsible, rich, hard-working, baller wife.  I told him I was going to finish my MBA and apply to the PhD program.  I wasn’t really sure what PhD school was about, but it couldn’t be that different from MBA school, right? I mean, I knew what the 4 Ps of marketing were, so I was practically halfway there.  And in the PhD program, you don’t have to pay tuition and they even give you a stipend to live on while you think all your deep thoughts.  See?! They were already paying me to do what I loved doing anyway, which was being a geek and tricking people into thinking I wasn’t as clueless as I was and collecting degrees that I could hang in my future big office with leather chairs and floor to ceiling bookcases.

Since the PhD program wouldn’t cost anything and I would actually be bringing home some money, BD got on board and supported the decision.  So I quit my job and started going to school full-time so I could finish the MBA faster.  Of course, that blew up the whole plan where my employer pays for my education. I actually had to pay them back for everything so far and then shell out the money for the rest of the MBA, but no matter! I was on a mission. An intellectual journey. And what is money anyway? Bah! It is clearly only important to the bourgeois as a method to keep the peasants in their place (or something like that. All you need to remember is that I used the term “bourgeois” in a very dismissive and authoritative way, which is very academic of me, don’t you think?) As you can see, I was already starting to ask the deep questions required of a professor.

When you have a dream, you have to go for it, right? So now I just had to get into the PhD program. The odds were kind of bad. They accepted 8 people a year and there were probably close to a thousand applicants. And some of them were from China, where I think you need to know how to solve Rubik’s cubes in 14 moves, in 10 seconds or less just to pass 6th grade.  And they can do some fucking mad math, even without being Aspergers.  And all I have is ADD and a dream.

But when Love wants something, Love gets it.

That fall,  about six months after my epiphany at the healthcare conference,  I started MBA full-time and I started getting busy applying to the PhD program for the following fall.  Apparently that wasn’t the only thing I was getting busy at, because that’s also when I got preggers.  Awesome.

Another very well thought out plan by Love is put into motion…

Part II, Numbers is up next…

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I don’t know if I’ll get back before Christmas….so if I don’t, Merry Whatever-you-might-celebrate-at-the-end-of-December!

I simply remember my favorite things, and then I don’t feel so bad…

My husband just passed me the Kaukauna port wine spreadable cheese and I find myself strangely overcome with lust and desire.  For the cheese.  And as I skimmed a little of it off the top with a fresh Wheat Thin (BAKED! Not fried!) just now and savored its pure awesomeness,  suddenly my head heard the lyrics to  “My Favorite Things” from the Sound of Music.  And I thought, hell, I haven’t written on my blog recently. I shall post about my favorite things.  Because everybody totally cares about them.

Which naturally led me to think of Oprah, and her favorite things.  Remember when she would do that Oprah’s Favorite Things show where she would just talk about products the whole time while her audience members got all the stuff?  The first couple of years she did that show, it was off the hook.  I would watch and lust after all the stuff she picked out, in awe that the whole audience got to take it all home.  But by year three, that show just pissed me off.  All those screaming, fainting whores audience members got thousands of dollars worth of stuff for being a damn teacher or because someone wrote Oprah a note and said they helped an orphan escape from Russia or they just showed up on the right day. I’d feel like crap, because  the only time I got tickets for Oprah was immediately following 9/11 and hurricane Katrina. I shit you not. Anyway, I just got to the point where I stopped watching that show every year because it would just make me angry that I wasn’t there while all those lucky ass bitches jumped around with their heads turning around 360 degrees and popping off (which mine would have as well, no doubt).

Jealousy is a bitch. Sometimes I would tell myself that she picked out all lame stuff I wouldn’t want or know what to do with anyway – like soaps that are like $13 and refrigerators with built-in TVs that would probably only fit into 5% of the kitchens in this great nation. And I couldn’t help but wonder if a cable or satellite hookup was necessary and who the hell has that stuff in the kitchen? See? So who would want to win that on Oprah’s Favorite Things?  Me. ME, DAMMIT!! That show made me hate myself. Thanks, Oprah.

Then one year Oprah decided instead of giving away an obscene amount of shit to people, she would give everybody $100, and then they’d have to go out and give it to someone else and whoever was the most creative or made the most out of that $100 got to come back at a later show.  Ha ha Bit-chez! That put a smile on my face because I knew as the cameras panned the crowd of pleasantly smiling faces, those women and their mothers were secretly thinking: “God DAMN you, OPRAH! I got a ticket for your Favorite Things show and all I’m taking away is this punk-ass gift card and a mandate to give it to someone else?  I fucking hate you. And your dogs too.”  But I’m sure in the end, giving away that $100 made them feel so good and warm and nice inside that they didn’t hold a grudge. Or tell everyone they knew how they got screwed and wanted to die.  Which would totally have been my — I mean, a healthy reaction. I’m pretty sure.

Anyway, I digress.  It’s just that I can’t think about Oprah’s Favorite Things without wonder, fascination and pure snarkiness.  On to revealing my majestic list of favorite things.  If I had a blog wherein I could name all my favorite things and give them to those of you that regularly comment, this is what you would get:

1) One year’s worth of Kaukauna port wine spreadable cheese and Wheat Thins.

2) A Mac.

3) A subscription to “O” and “Us Weekly” — the only publications with real import these days.

4) Bailey’s Irish Cream, Kahlua, a gallon of skim milk and a martini shaker.  Equal parts of these ingredients shaken with ice makes me incredibly happy. I think it would make you happy too.

5) Take 5 bars. A lifetime supply. Proof that God loves us.

6) TiVo. I honestly don’t have the words to explain my love, devotion and adoration for TiVo.

7) Counting Crows “August and Everything After”. Best album ever.

8.) Vaseline Cocoa Butter Deep Conditioning lotion.  I suppose it’s a good moisturizer, but more importantly it somehow captures “new baby smell” like you’re within a few inches of a newborn’s little head at all times. I get high off the fumes on a pretty regular basis.  SO much easier than having to give birth again.

9) A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole.  Funniest book of all time.  All time.

10) Tickets to Oprah’s show.  If you get them, be sure to let me know. We can go together and hope that my attendance doesn’t mark the end of the world. Oh yeah, and did I ever tell you about the time BD turned down a job at Harpo? She brings everybody and their families on these really swank all-expenses paid vacations every year. I would have hunted her down and convinced her by now of our destiny if he’d just taken it. But he didn’t.  And we’re still married. That’s love.

11) Josh Groban’s “Noel”. Shut up. Wipe the smirk off your face, because I’m giving it to you for free, bitch.

12) McDonald’s gift certificates. Enough to buy a Value Meal #2 with Diet Crack Coke and two happy meals with apple dippers twice weekly.

Okay, and go to this post to see the Oprah Favorite Things SNL skit, along with all my favorite YouTube stuff…

So I feel like if you got those 12 things today, you probably wouldn’t have a need for anything else. Ever.  Feel free to print and substitute for your Christmas/ Hanukkah / Kwanzaa/ Festivus list.  One day when I am rich and famous and lunching regularly with Oprah, I will make sure that my commenters do receive all of these things, making your friends seethe with jealousy and rage.

‘Tis the season, after all.

Have you ever needed someone so bad? Love’s mom crush, Part I

I can sum up about 90% of my thoughts using Def Leppard lyrics. The other 10% of my thoughts are vulgar words and if my boys in Def Leppard would have just had the foresight to add “fuck face” to any of their songs, it truly would have enhanced their universal appeal. A tragedy, really.

I have had many different kinds of crushes throughout the ages.  Here is a quick summary:

  • My first crush was on Brian Murphy in first grade. I named my Cabbage Patch Kid after him, because I thought he was the perfect baby daddy. And he was. We made out in the coat room a lot and he provided many cookies from his lunch box.
  • When I was seven I had a crush on Showbiz Pizza (now Chuck E Cheese). My parents avoided that place like the plague, so I kissed the asses of all the kids who were likely to throw Showbiz parties and I would just sit in the ball pit and pretend it was my bed, ignoring the other children, but doing just enough with the birthday kid to get invited back the next year. Glorious!!
  • When I was about ten I had a crush on the George Michael part of Wham! that was only exacerbated when my beloved George came out with the “Faith” album. I heart you so much George – I would have totally looked out for the cops if you wanted to jerk off in a public bathroom near me. You only had to ask.
  • Junior high/high school I had a crush on Donnie Wahlberg (more on that here) from NKOTB, and I wasn’t even doing drugs at that time. I was just really lame and underdeveloped emotionally, physically and socially.  I’m not sure if any of that has changed.
  • Next came my crush on McDonalds Value Meal #2. It persists to this day. I wish I knew how to quit you, Quarter Pounder with Cheese.
  • Then I fell in adult love with Oprah, although I thought this new season might be the beginning of the end for us because it was so lame….until Mackenzie Phillips came on today to talk about having sex with her dad. Whaaaaaaat?! Oprah, we’re totally back together.  We’re rock solid.

So I’m familiar with having crushes on a wide variety people, places and things.  However, I wasn’t prepared emotionally or socially when my first ever, only ever, mom crush happened. Yeah. I met a real, live woman that made me want to start a commune and blend our families together for all time.  Which, for me, is about as likely as Whitney Houston or Mackenzie Phillips actually staying sober for another three months.

I have trouble forming relationships with other women. Because I don’t like them, for the most part. I’m a guy’s girl. Always have been. And that did not change with the onset of motherhood.  I avoid play dates and moms groups like the plague.  Because they necessarily involve other mothers. The “good” mothers. Not the slackers like me.  Okay, so I’ve never been in one of them, but I just imagine this gaggle of women in mom jeans and sparkly Christmas sweaters with shit hanging off them with socks that match and have jingle bells on them throwing around organic homemade baby food recipes and sign languaging things to their pre-verbal infants who are all named Madison and Jackson (Personally, I think more kids should be named Washington and Lincoln).  Honestly, I’d rather participate in a sex toy party with my mother in law than be in any way involved in a moms group. Yeah. And that’s saying a lot.

So you might imagine my shock and awe when I met another woman I wanted to schedule a standing playdate from 9am to 5pm every Saturday and Sunday with her and her family.  Husbands too.  When you have a mom crush, you spend your days looking dreamily out the window fantasizing about family trips to Disney World together, impromptu BBQs where everyone is dressed in J.Crew and laughing happily with dazzling white teeth, unicorns and rainbows and happy, cherubic leprechauns (not the scary kind) dancing around pots of gold and eating Lucky Charms, as we plan arranged marriages between our children.  It’s like finding true love, only family style.

I met her online.  Yeah, how 2002 of me, right? So I was researching a new daycare place for my son and I posted an inquiry on a parents group forum to see if anybody had kids there and had anything to say about it.  Kirsten replied.  Ah, Kirsten. The woman who would turn my world on its very axis. She responds and says she is starting her son there soon and suggested we talk on the phone. Now you should know that I avoid the phone wherever and whenever possible. Phones = work = boredom = soul suckage = depression.  So I will do just about anything to avoid talking on the phone when it isn’t required for my job. I tried to make excuses about my phone being broken and reception being bad, but finally I agreed to the call because this was about my kid’s health and safety, so it was worth making an exception, ONCE. But I was fully prepared to be talking to a psycho or a SuperMom and I vowed that if I heard even the slightest little tinkle out of a jingle bell on her socks in the background I was hanging up immediately.

So with much trepidation, I dialed her number.  And we talked for a few minutes and she was…super cool. Inexplicably, I felt an immediate connection.  Kind of like the first time I ate a Take 5 bar – the most important invention in the last 50 years.  Yes, just like that delicious, magnificent candy treat, Kirsten was perfect for me. She wasn’t one of THEM (the “good” mothers). I mean, she seemed like a good mother, but not the kind that has to remind you all the time that you aren’t as good as she is, because she has already figured out how to get her 6 month old into the gifted program at the $20,000/year preschool.  We talked for a full 15 minutes about this whole daycare thing and not once did I feel inferior, or bored, or confused.

I think she was listening for a tinkle of a jingle bell from me too.  I could tell that she was relieved I wasn’t a psycho and babbling about all the Mommy and Me classes I don’t take my son to. I was working toward my PhD at the time and she actually worked at the same university in a different department. We were both worried about grant money and our research and our careers and our kids.  So we talked for an hour and then the conversation ended and as we were hanging up, I wanted to giggle and whisper, “No, schmoopie! You hang up first!” because I knew I had just met my soul mate mom. Surely since she was the only stranger mother I ever found tolerable, her family and my family were destined to be together forever.  Because she was a mom like me. We could totally sit around sipping on a really good Cab and make fun of people together and talk about all the egotistical assholes at our respective work places and our deep thoughts on celebrities and new movies and all the ups and downs of our careers and trying to be good moms in our own unique ways.  She even watched Oprah. (I made sure to sprinkle in the “Oprah test” before I got too excited about our intertwined destinies. She TiVo’d it too.) I know! RIGHT?!

So we get off the phone and then things got really awkward in my head.  I couldn’t let her get away!! She was the only woman in the universe who knew my soul.  I mean, 60 minutes is enough time to figure that out right? It was imperative that we meet again.  But I don’t do that stuff. I had never asked a mom out for a mom date or a play date or anything like that. I was a play date virgin!  All the friends I have now I met when we were all young and fun and single and though many of us are mothers, I don’t think about them that way. I don’t know how to talk to strangers who are also moms that I want to be friends with. All. new. territory.

But I couldn’t let her slip away. Our impending friendship was all I could think about or concentrate on the whole week. I told everybody I knew (men) that I was in love with my future best friend.  There were a lot of raised eyebrows and derisive little chortles. “You want to have a play date with someone you just met on the internet? HEE-larious!” They would chuckle a little more and shake their head and laugh, “You at a play date! God I’d love to see that!”

See, I’m not a normal mom. But I digress.

My thought process went as follows: Obviously, the only way to ensure that I see her again was to ensure my son went to that daycare! Then I could see her everyday and eventually our sons would be BFF and she and I would be BFF (we were already well on our way, right?!) and then our husbands would adore each other’s company and they would be BFF. I mean, everything would be right with the world.  But…this is unfamiliar territory for me. I mean, does she like me as much as I like her? Did I sound as smart and cool to her as she did to me? Is she also currently daydreaming about being my BFF? Oh my God! Is she going to think I’m a closet lesbian? How do you ask a mom crush out on date?  Should I ask her out for coffee? I don’t want to creep her out and I don’t want to sound desperate.  We stayed on topic in our brief conversation. We didn’t have a whole schmoopie conversation about how we were destined to be together. We were just thinking it. Or was I the only one thinking of it? She probably had a million mom friends. Who has time for another? What would I wear on our first date, and where should it be, assuming I get the balls to ask her out on one?  What if we met in person and we didn’t like each other as much? What if she was wearing a Christmas sweater?  Would we have enough to talk about? The questions were endless.

But I’m a born salesperson. She was going to be my BFF and dammit, I was willing to do whatever it took to woo her into being my best mom friend of all time. It would just be a lot easier if she felt the same way. So I had to woo her. And she would be mine. Oh, yes! She would be mine.  Am I creeping you out now? I’m creeping myself out.

Okay, so this is getting really long and I have ADD and you probably have a job to get back to.  But in Part II, I will regale you with the full pursuit of my mom crush.  It was exactly like pursuing a boy crush, except 1000 times more awkward and difficult. Stay tuned…

If my boobs were any smaller, I’d look like a taller version of Jonathan Lipnicki circa 1996

I thought I was totally over the fact that my boobs are too small and lopsided.  I mean, boobs are supposed to look like “jugs” or “melons” — ask any male over the age of 6.  If a writer were trying to use a metaphor to describe the sad sacs on my chest, likening them to ping pong balls would be being extremely gracious.  I’d be so honored.  I certainly wouldn’t be like Kate Winslet or Kelly Clarkson when they tell the whole world that they’ve been airbrushed to look skinny and hot. I’d be like “Holla holla. ping pong!” Not sure is saying Holla holla is even situationally appropriate, but I like sounding urban even though I’m well aware that misshapen peanut M&Ms would provide a much more fitting metaphor.

Normally I’m okay with this. I mean somebody married me after all (but he does have large hands, so that wasn’t very smart on my part (or his)). But I digress. So my baby sister posted a picture of herself in Facebook to show off her new hair, but really it just shows off what a nice rack she has, and all it did was remind me that I must have been a total asshole in a former life to have deserved this.  Oh, and did I mention her hips are like 30% the size of mine as well?  I just don’t know how I got the big hips, tiny sad boobs genes and she got the big orbs, small ass genes.  Not that I’m not gushing with happiness for her. I mean, she was clearly someone who befriended lepers in a former life, so I’m sure she totally deserves to have that body even though she exercises twice annually.  I work hard at toning my body and being healthy – I go to the gym at least five times annually, and drink wine every night and you don’t see me running around in size 2 jeans.  Its just really unfair and I’m so pissed off at my past life asshole self for creating this whole issue in the first place.

Really, the only thing that could cheer me up at this point is if Oprah came back on with a whole new season and Whitney Houston was her first guest, and they talked about how cruel this world is to flat chicks or at some point one of them said “Bitch, pleeze!”. But see, this is where I’m going to go out on a limb and maybe give Oprah some constructive criticism.  Oprah only cares about stuff that happens to her.  She cares about thyroid problem people, and fat people, celebrities, intelligent black girls, menopausal women who can’t orgasm with their husbands, dogs that are homeless, sexual molesters and finding your passion.  And I care about all that stuff too – except maybe the thyroid people.  But Oprah has never struggled with having a concave chest and frankly, I don’t think she even cares because it didn’t happen to her. She is sitting pretty with her bouncing Buddhas while me and my sad little lopsided M&Ms are crying out for help.  Don’t get me wrong, Whitney’s implants could use some work, but at least you can get a good grip on them.  I just think Oprah might do well to think about someone else for a change.

So right now you’re saying, “Love, stop bitching and go get yourself some silicone” and I would except up until this week, I only had one good reason, which was “I just need some semblance of boobage” which BD wasn’t buying because he’s an ass man (or so he claims) but I’m not stupid – if I had sweater stretchers, he’d be a boob man.  But now I have a second reason which is really more compelling: “If I get killed and somebody removes my teeth and fingers, you will be able to identify me by the serial numbers in my breast implants and collect the life insurance money….that is, assuming you didn’t do it.”  Providing he’s not offended by the second half of the statement, I think this argument is a game changer.

Don’t get me wrong – I totally feel bad that Jasmine Fiore married a psycho after knowing him for like 2 days and then he wound up killing her and stuffing her in a suitcase. That blows for her, no doubt.  I mean, just because you look really slutty and marry people you don’t know in Vegas, does not mean the psycho you marry should kill you.  I just want to have that on the record.

But on the bright side,  I know Jasmine is looking down from heaven right now because this was probably her first “teaching moment” ever — I’m sure I’m not the only person who learned from her that breast implants are an ingenious form of dead body identification insurance.  Its something every woman ought to consider for her family’s well-being, and when it comes down to it, that’s really what I’m about.  Frankly it’s how I roll.  Now if only Oprah would think of others beside herself and my sister would take the damn picture off Facebook. I mean, FUCK.

Is it cheating to use someone else’s blog to explain my life in a nutshell?

Mommy Wants Vodka is my hero today. I could not have written this better myself, which is why I didn’t. Or maybe I’m just lazy. I am also on the look out for coordinated attacks by soccer/stay at home moms at all times. Aunt Becky and I might be twins in an alternate universe. Maybe she can be the Gayle to my Oprah. I might just stop writing this blog so she can write it for me.