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The Bang Bang Theories

Much Too Young (to feel this damn old)

Reader, I’ve got kump’ney coming tomorrow and a little shindig we’re throwing on Saturday and because of all that you know I have to repaint the house, build an addition and homeschool the cats into looking like a well-behaved clowder.

Everyone got a brushing on the deck earlier this week. To feign respectability with less dander.

The reason things take me so dern long to get tidied up around here is because I Find Things and then think O’My Law, these things MUST BE SHARED with my adoring public (that would be you, Reader).

So then I’m taking pictures and planning the story and the next thing I know it’s the night before kump’ney is coming and I still have a floor to scrub to get our “fake house” in shape.

Just don’t open any cupboards, closets or drawers, please.

I wish I were exaggerating about how kump’ney motivates me, Reader.

Right now I’m looking at PAINT that needs to be touched up – that I’ve conveniently ignored for several YEARS – but think, “hm, that should really get taken care of tonight!”

Now, it most likely will NOT, and my backup plan is to keep everyone’s glass full up with wine and no one will notice the paint.

Instead of doing any one of the things that should be getting done, though, I determined that this right here needed to be shared.

It’s Young Trixie Bang Bang, way way way a lotta years ago, when she had a Little Dutch Boy haircut

And her infatuation with Garth Brooks during his let’s wear the flag era*

Well, you put those two things together, and here we have young young young skinny-but-she-thought-she-was-fat-my-what-I-wouldn’t-give-to-be-this-“fat”-again Trixie Bang Bang in all her concert finery.

The hair, the shirt and some fifth-row seats, and a SIGN beseeching Garth to SIGN ME, well, it was pert-near a perfect night.

*p.s., I’m still just as infatuated with Garth and wouldn’t be above capturing his eye with matching shirts should our paths cross again.  Because Garth.

Urine Trouble (and no, the cats are not involved this time)

Hi Reader, Happy Friday to you, or just Happy Day if you’re reading this another day.

Join me on the patio for a cuppa joe, why don’t ‘cha, and let’s chat about what’s been going on.

Firstly, I’m happy to report that during my recent bout of unemployment, I have managed to take a shower every. single. day.

I know, right?!

That is some accomplishment around Chez Bang Bang!

Now, I may or may not have been gadding about town without all of my foundational support systems in place, a.k.a., proper bajonga support, but that’s for the neighborhood to worry about and not your problem, Reader.  It’s their nightmare, not yours.

Also, I’ve taken to enjoying my face in it’s natural state during my unemployed status. I’m sort of beginning to like it just fine in as-is condition.

I’ve used my newly free time to mostly sleep in til eleven a.m. … er… I mean being super productive! It’s not even NINE A.M. and we’re on the deck – which I leaf-blowed off already – and we’re typing up words! Talk about progress!!

I also went to Chicago for a quickie trippie, because I thought I was going to be meeting an author who I like, but she decided she had better things to do and was a no-show, which is frankly RUDE and I have vowed when I am famous I will ALWAYS SHOW for my fans! I’m here for you NOW, because I’m a giver!

But all was not lost, and I enjoyed the weekend with my cousin, and also eating pizza and drinking wine and seeing things and I met other nice people that showed up for the No-Show-Jen-Lancaster, yes, I called her out right HERE on this very popular blog.

My biggest takeaway from the trip was learning from my cousin about Groupon Getaways, which is how she and her husband enjoyed a $650 trip to ‘Gina and she advised me if I plan to go I need to get a little more limber because public restrooms involve squatting over a hole in the ground.

After she told me about all the wonders she witnessed while in China, she began that information sharing session with, “Um, also you need to know this. It may be a deal-breaker for you.”

I’m not exactly…bendy.  Or squatty. She saw me in motion over the few days in Chicago, when she was showoffy with her super-bendy knees and squatted for a photo and I sort of had to bend at the waist while pretending to squat. I fooled no one.

I grilled her for more specifics.

“So, how close do you have to get to this hole in the ground??”

“Well, you know…you have to get close enough to not miss the hole. Kinda like camping when you were a kid and had to squat in the woods.”

“Hm.  Well, I was never good at that when I had eight-year-old knees. I used to pee all over the back of my pants.”  And p.s., I have never been much of a camper, either, so I used the more recent memory (of only 20 years ago) of the one time way back in my married life when I was in Texas with my Ex’es (because it rhymes, Reader) and we were drinking in the car from a cooler stuffed with cold brews because it’s TEXAS (except the drinker was not the driver, it was mostly me and his step-mama as the drinkers) and we had to pull over into a scrub-brush area and I had to walk out there by some cactus and hope to Good Garth we didn’t step on a rattler or a fire ant hill, and I had to pee.

I effectively peed on the back of my shorts. Because I’m not good at outdoors.

My cousin concurred it can be a challenge.

With this new knowledge that a cheap trip to China can be had, I came home and have gotten right to work.

I’ve been Youtube-ing how-to-get-bendy-enough-to-pee-in-‘Gina videos and doing them every day this week.  In fact, I did a new 19-minute-get-more-stretchy before I even had my first cuppa coffee today.

What I’ve learned is this:  I am. really. really. really. not. bendy.

I think I used to be more bendy. I have recollections about doing fancy sex trickery moves in my twenties and maybe my thirties. I mean, I caught a couple’a husbands back then, I was able to Do Things.

I’m not sure when it all got stiffened up.  But knowing I once had it gives me hope that with enough dedication to youtube videos and my yoga mat,  I may be able to pee in China before the end of the year.

Goals, Reader. We all need to have goals.

I Like Me To

I’ve been working on making my office space a working office space, Reader. One where I can sit down and have no other projects that catch my attention and drive me away from my writing. I’m like a dog chasing a squirrel sometimes, off in all directions.

It’s a tough job, whipping that office into a good working space, because I’m sorry to say (to myself) that I have acquired Too Much Stuff, and I just don’t know what to do with it all. Most of it sat in the middle of the floor, which then in one cleaning attempt got pushed to the peripheral, and now it is all going to be be filed and put away or it is going in the trash or a goodwill pile. Or a sell-this-shit  space, because as I’ve lamented before, some of the stuff is Good and needs to be sold to generate a few bucks for the UP (unemployed person).

One of the little nuggets I did find was this note, written by 8-year-old Me, according to my mom’s  notation on the back of the paper:

I’m only surprised there is no mention of cake, had 8-year-old-Me identified that in the note I would have known my destiny was set early on and I would stop fighting against the force of buttery, sugary confections. My guess is I started to write it just below the “i like cats” stanza but it was going to throw off the whole meter of the poetry so I scribbled it out and just kept that knowledge deep in my heart.

Sometimes the secrets to life are spilled at the hands of an 8-year-old girl. The things worth liking are basic business –  mom, dad, dogs and cats. And don’t forget to like yourself to.

 

 

 

 

 

Cat Scratch Fever

Reader, hi!

I have been biiiiizee!

Not really, but really.

I feel like my days are plumb full-up, but I’m not sure exactly with what.

I do know I’ve made it through a week as an Unemployed Person (UP! coincidence? I think not!) and have used the time to tackle some household projects. Still have many to work my way though, but it’ll get there.

I have a doctor’s appointment for their never-ending-we-must-always-check-you-all-the-time-for-everything-pay-us-your-copay-please on July 2nd, which is also when I no longer have health care coverage until I get new in place, and that just reminded me I was supposed to get up at 8:30 a.m. today and call for a same-day appointment opportunity, but I just remembered that right now, so oops.

Instead I was busy giving the cat a scratch on the chin probably around that time*.

The same face I make when I get my back scratched…

 

*I want to pretend to you that his chin-scratching happiness was possibly happening at 8:30 a.m., but the only happiness that was happening at that time was me, snuggled up in another two hours of dreamy dreams.

Lovely Lady Lumps

There’s a strong chance that my new daily uniform may be this shirt and a pair of yoga-pants-that-have-never-actually-participated-in-yoga-unless-you-count-bending-over-to-pick-up-a-cat.

Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful. There are enough, more legitimate reasons for that.

I had MM take a photo to showcase my uniform and also so I could make sure I wasn’t walking around with unsuspecting camel toe that I just can’t see because do you see the size of my jugs? They are camel-toe blockers. I have to put forth a concerted effort to see what’s going on below the belt, and my new laissez-faire attitude can’t be trusted to do a camel check.

Also, I’ve taken to not wearing make-up, save for a smear of lipstick, because I’m just unemployed, I’m not a barbarian.

On a positive note, I haven’t succumbed to going around unshowered, which happened a little the last time I was unemployed, except in my defense that was wintertime and how sweaty can a girl who does nothing actually get.  In the summertime that same girl can get a little ripe rather quickly. I’ve actually taken two showers a day this week, on occasion. I’m show-offy like that.

Today is the REAL Saturday, and I’ve made a shopping list and plan to make some real-honest-to-goodness Italian GRAVY, and also try a new recipe for Lasagna for tomorrow, since apparently it is never going to stop raining here and let me actually work on my freckles tan and/or get any yard work accomplished.

I did stain the furniture  on the deck last Sunday, and with my new free time during the week, I was able to put the last coats of polyurethane shininess on top, in between bouts of rain.

You can sort of see the before here, in this adorable picture of Kitty Purry looking completely stressed out. Notice the wear on the arm of the chair?

Trixie BB gave it all a light sanding and many many layers of stain. When it was 93-degrees and hot-as-balls that one day it didn’t rain this month. Because I know how to plan.

Now, with several coats of shiny water repellent topping, the water beads up nicely and I take a ridiculous amount of glee in that fact. Fi on you, Rain. You will not destroy us.

I did the three pieces of furniture and also the little table in the background.

Notice how crap-tastic my bright and colorful rug is looking? Thanks for nothing, Mother Nature.

Maybe my deck will be finished once and for all, by oh, September at this pace. But I hope sooner, because I have an out-of-town guesty coming in July and I’m hoping to be wine-drinking-ready by then.

If we can get the weather to cooperate.

 

In the meantime, stop in. The more the merrier is our motto at Chez Bang Bang. The odds are ever in your favor that I will be showered. Probably.

Onward! Is the Only Direction to Go.

I’m in a whole cycle of wash, rinse, repeat, Reader.  Sort of.

As of yesterday I find myself in need of a Louise to my Thelma.  Because the Card Mines laid off 100+ folks and my number (51*) was up.

*also, my age. Coincidence? Probably.

Luckily, I got an awful awesome severance package. And they wanted me to come back in for two days this week and transition my projects over to the team that would be handling them.

Now, that just isn’t going to happen. Ever.  I know very few things for sure, but that, I know for sure. I may or may not have laughed in their faces when I said, “I am NOT doing that!”

And then I gathered my things, turned in my badge and let the doors open to new adventures.

As I was driving home, pondering the endless Summer of George possibilities that now sprawl before me, the first stop was for a cake. Like marriages, new babies and birthdays, some events just beg to be shepherded in with a cake.

It’s hard to have any feels-sorries when there is a flour and sugary confection headed towards your lips.

 

I’m a little bit worried about my lack of worry, Reader.

Instead of coming home and frantically updating my resume and hitting the job boards, I literally spent two hours looking at all the places I can go.

A solo road trip across the USA. I would love to find a Louise to my Thelma, without the death part at the end, but am prepared to go it alone. I’m even considering buying a tent to – gasp – camp! – during parts of the adventure. Because I need to be frugal, Reader.

My friendie from upstate NY reached out and invited me to visit and float around in her pool. I plan to bother grace her with my loungy ass for a few days.

There’s Chicago next weekend, which I can now leave for any ol’ time of the day.

Then there’s the  Seashell house on Isla Mujeres, where I could probably get a lot of book-writing done, as I would be very inspired. And maybe a little drunk, also known as “releasing my creativity.”

My other friendie, who I visited in San Fran during my last bout of “Funemployment” has moved to Australia, and welcomed me to join for a visit.

My actions clearly tell me that my need to explore the world is more valued than a steady paycheck.* Except I still need to pay bills to keep a roof over my seven three cats heads and kibble in their mouths. Because we won’t all fit in an RV.

*probably will have a different thought in six months time if I’m still not working. Let’s hope for wonderful things to happen so I don’t need to worry later on.

I’m taking today to not do anything at all and then tomorrow, I will begin my Summer of George.

But instead of reading a book from beginning to end, I’m going to write that book from beginning to end!

And finish organizing my house.

And working on the yard.

And selling crap to make a little spending money.

I’ve been here before, Reader.  And it turned out just fine for a while. It’ll turn out fine again, I believe in myself.

I just have to keep my sails adjusted to catch the next breeze.

Farmer Bang Bang

It’s about dern time I set down at the computater and shared something with you, dear and patient Reader.

Yes, we started out with a slight hillbilly twang in that sentence.

It’s been since MAY since we were here together. What. In. The. World.

I was using my free time differently.

I was farming.

And yarding (which I hate, by the way).

And reading, instead of writing.

What have I been reading, you ask?

I just finished Love Warrior by Glennon Doyle, and me likey.

I also read Stories I’d Tell in Bars by Jen Lancaster, and it’s bloggy-type reading and fun. And as an aside, I’m part of her exclusive invitation-only-so-ha-I’m-fancy Facebook book club, and oh, p.s., I get to be even MORE fancy and exclusive and have been invited to have lunch with her and a group of other strangers in Chicago, so I’m super excited to meet new people and drink wine together. I’m sure they will all love me. Because what’s not to love about me, amiright, Reader.*

*rhetorical, because we all know if you’re here it’s because we love each other. 

That’s what I’ve been reading lately.

As I mentioned above, in addition to reading, I’ve also been FARMING.  Yes, I’ve gotten the farm at Chez Bang Bang tilled and planted.

With these two beauties, that blossomed with all the direct hot sunlight that drenches the front of the house in the morning.

Perfect for growing tomatoes.

I was excited when it flowered so early in the season and then my first little gal showed up:

Because I watched a Facebook video about plants who have been verbally bullied vs. one who was lovely caressed with words, I would spend time every morning and evening telling my tomato how proud I was of it, what a little beauty she was growing into, etc…

We had a whole thing going on between us, and as I watched it grow I did get a little concerned about the deer and other wildlife in my yard taking advantage of her.

So I turned my tomato around, facing the house, to keep it out of the sight of any wayward animals who thought they would sneak a snack.

And then one night I came home from work, and bounded* up the step with my encouraging words on my tongue’s tip, and stopped and rubbed my eyes in disbelief.

*bounded may be an overstatement.

My lil tomato?

Gone, girl.

All it’s flowering-friends?

Gone, too.

Apparently my stealthy ways of turning the plant around was no match for the yard snackers.

I may or may not have cried a little.

So now they’ve been moved to the back deck, probably where they should have been placed all along except the sun is an afternoon sun and not quite as good for growth.

But guess what’s worse than afternoon sun for tomato growth?

This:

I may or may not have the scent of green tomato on my breath.

 

She was out rustling around in the yard just this morning, looking up at me, wondering where the hell I put her front-yard buffet.

The moral of the story is that I’m an eternal optimist, Reader, and truly believed the deer and other assorted wildlife would show some grace and an ounce of respect and leave my two-pot farm alone.

I was wrong.

I’ve got two new girls growing on the other plant right now, and So Help Me Garth, if a bird swoops down and pecks my plants to death I’m going to go coastal*.

*yes, coastal. Back in the olden days, of my olden life, when I was a somewhat respectable stepmother-ish to four kids, the oldest boy thought the saying was “going coastal” instead of “postal.” Going coastal is hella lot better, because a) less shooting and bloodiness and b) because we could all use a little more beach.

Up & Adam

Are you there, God? It’s me, Trixie.

*no, I’m not going to talk about getting my period. I have some couth. But mostly I’m not going to talk about that because I’m fifty-one for crissake, and me and my period parted ways several years ago, without so much as a proper goodbye. It was just gone, never to be seen again, and I guess I went through menopause but I never really noticed it, except for the wayward hair that now sprouts from the bridge of my nose and needs to be constantly monitored. It’s like I’m trying to be a unicorn in my next fiddy-years, except with a black hair as my magical horn. Maybe I’ve been plucking out my mystical powers all this time.

Here’s what I want to talk to God about.

God,

1. Why do mornings have to come so quickly and so early?

2. Why did you make sleep so damn delicious only to force me to get yanked out of it by creating a world with harsh morning rules?

3. In a world with harsh morning rules, why couldn’t I have been created as a morning person?

4. My mother was in labor for like forty-million hours, because I refused to come out of her womb until 10:00 a.m.

5. Even then I didn’t want to come out willingly, so the doctor at the time retch up there and grabbed me by my widdle-bitty-baby arm and yanked me out of there.

6. Thanks, doctor, because you jacked up my what-was-a-perfect arm before it even had a chance to be a star pitcher for an all-girls baseball team. Or a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader, because with my crooked arm, I could never execute a cartwheel.

7. Plus, you turned me into a lefty, not by nature at all, but by force.

8. There’s been a crook in my arm ever since, if you ever wondered why.

9. Ironically, that doctor’s name was Dr. Best, which is a misnomer.

10. This is not at all why we came here this morning. We came to complain about morning coming so early.

11. I resist getting up early even when I have something fun to look forward to.

12. Even though this is my holiday-day-off, I don’t have something fun to look forward to.

13. I’m up early because my father fell a few weeks ago, is in a rehab facility, but wants to get out and go “check on the house” this morning, despite it being checked on several times per day.

14. Don’t try to rob the house, Bad Guys. There’s nothing you’d want, and p.s., it’s hillbilly alarmed which could mean any number of booby-traps are set.

15. I somehow committed to, “Sure, I’ll be out there at 10:30!” which means I had to set my alarm on my day off, which goes against everything that is holy and sacred in my world.

16. Despite my snoozing the alarm thirty-billion times this morning, I decided I will not forgo my morning cuppa coffee on the deck and write this nonsense that was crafting itself in my hypnagogic state.

17. No, that’s not a typo, look it up and learn something today. I’m like a teacher, giving you a homeschooling lesson right now. We’ll have a graduation ceremony for you once you write me a fifty-trillion-word essay on what an influence I’ve been in your life. Good or bad, your choice. On what sort of influence I’ve been, not on how well you write. I will judge your writing. Even though I mostly don’t follow the rules myself. As your homeschooling teacher, it’s my duty to send you off into the world with something. I’m not sure what exactly, though.

18. It’s early and my brain is still in bed. It took a benadryl last night because allergies.

19. I have to go to the grocery store today because I’m out of coffee creamer. That is the impetus that drives me the grocery store. Actual food? Not as important. Coffee creamer? Emergency conditions.

20. On that note the morning isn’t getting any longer, and it’s time to get ready.

*is it “up and adam” and we’ve been saying it wrong forever and ever amen, Reader? Because the saying could actually be “up and Adam” as in the first man God created with clay and dinosaur bones, and therefore “Hey, Adam – time to get to it!”  And all this time you thought it was at ’em, which makes less sense than Adam, and now it’s like I’m your Sunday school teacher, too, because until now you didn’t even know man was made with the bones of dinosaurs.

No, I Don’t Want Fries With That.

We’ve made it to Memorial Weekend, our nation’s weekend to commemorate our veterans. With the holiday comes a delicious 3-day weekend for me.

I’ve already squandered Saturday morning of it.

Because I was out until 4 a.m. at the gambling house, making then losing then making then losing a few bucks. Yes, it ended on a, “Well, maybe next time,” note. I’ve been unlucky in gambling for a while now, no big wins in more than a year. I’m mad at the Universe, because it should know by now that I’m a WINNER when it comes to gambling. Except it must have forgotten.

Yesterday I was somewhat easily agitated in the evening. First, this conversation happened at the Burger King drive through:

K: “I’d like a large Diet Pepsi or Coke, whatever you have.”

The Drive Through Speaker: “Will that be all?”

K: “Yes.”

The Drive Through Speaker: “Pull ahead.”

K: “Wait. The screen says large fries. I wanted a diet pepsi.”

TDTS: “A large fry and a diet pepsi?”

K: “No! Just a diet pepsi.”

TDTS: “So fries?”

Me, from the passenger seat of the car: “Jesusfuckingchrist, A DIET PEPSI, HOW FUCKING HARD IS THAT TO UNDERSTAND.”

Yes, I blasphemied all over the parking lot at Burger King.

TDTS: “Okay, got it. Pull ahead.”

Then, K & Trixie looking at each other and said in unison, “You know they’re going to jizz or spit in our diet pepsi now, right?”

Yep. We both knowingly agreed.

T: “Pull out, let’s just leave.”

K: Pulls up anyway and pays $2.58 for a cuppa soda and spit.

*we’d agreed they probably didn’t have the time to jizz in the soda, but they definitely had time to spit or wipe boogers in it.

K: Hands me the drink.

T: “Nope. No thanks. Not even on a Fear-Factor dare.”

K: “But the guy said “sorry about that” – he wouldn’t have apologized if he was going to jizz in it.”

K: Drinks it. Declares it to be spit-free.

T: “But how do you know that for sure?”
K: “It would be …. thicker.”

T: “More …. viscousy??”

K: “Yes, viscousy. It’s not viscous.”

No one wants a viscousy soda pop. No one. Ever.

But I still couldn’t trust it, and therefore it rode around with us all evening until we parked the car in the drive at 4 a.m. and I told K, “Grab the jizzy soda and dump it out.”

*yes, I know we’ve already established there was no time for jizz in the soda. Let’s just agree that “jizzy” is the term that covers any viscousy liquids that could be concealed in our food.

So after my no-gain from yelling at the drive through speaker, I told myself I need to chill the fuck out a little and that came in handy much later that evening when I was behind a group of really-really-oldies doing their entire week’s worth of banking at the cashier’s window at the casino.

I had to simmer myself down, and then as I was in the process of de-working myself up, I noticed the man oldie had on a Navy Veteran hat and then said, “Thank you for your service!” instead of “Hurry the. fuck. up.” Except I didn’t really say either of those things out loud (he was too far away to hear me), but I said them in my head, so I’m counting it as a good deed because it DID make me change my attitude.  Well played, Memorial Weekend.

 

Just a Little Perspective

I’m going to cheat here a little bit, and give you a little something worth thinking about, from another writer’s perspective.

It’s eye-opening and not exactly funny, but may inspire you to do more of what matters to you.  It’s making me want more oceans, tacos and friend-dates.

On the other hand, it’s also providing me with a “how many more cat-pees will I have to clean up in my lifetime” perspective.  I’m still not sure if that number is good or bad.

I know, I know. You came here for nonsense and not thinking stuff. We’ll get back to that in a bit. I know you’re super-curious to learn about my life as a farmer, which I’m preparing to tell you all about.

In the meantime, make it count.

xoxo,

 

 

 

The Tail End

 

 

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