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Passports, sandwich-wrappers, and monster love affairs

7 Nov

She’s baaaaaaaaaack…….

That’s right.  After sending me on a wild goose chase that would have given Sam and Frodo a run for their money, Zilla returned this morning.

She’s been snoozing since eight, but I suspect I’ll get an answer as to her whereabouts later this afternoon.

Here’s what I know:

-She’s wearing parachute pants that are neither worn out enough to be vintage, nor from this decade.  I suspect foul-play with that busted up time machine of mine.  It would also explain the armor on her right arm, which is either from a Gladiator television prop chest, or the real-deal.

-Her passport has stamps from various countries, including a short-stint in Pakistan earlier this year, which I can assure you-I have some questions about….

-She appears to have acquired real-estate, scuba, skydiving, pilot, taxi, and rickshaw licenses.  Two of which expired in the late nineties.  One of them appears to have expired at some point in the early 16th century, but the bite marks make it hard to tell for certain.

-She has a tattoo indicating a romance has transpired between herself and what appears to be a mythical creature yet to be identified.

-Her backpack has sandwich wrappers from at least five different airports.  There is also an unopened bottle of pickles inside.

-I can’t be certain, but I think she’s lost weight.

-Her journal is hard for me to read (those twiggy branch fingers of hers to blame), but it seems she has either won the lottery in the past, is planning to do so in the future, or has drawn up an assassination plan for JJ Abrams.

I’m going to be having long chats with her in the upcoming days to get her stories and find out why on earth she found it acceptable to leave for such an extended period of time.  Unacceptable, I assure you.

Regardless, I wanted to let you all know as soon as she got in.

Obviously, we have much to discuss.

I’ll be traveling around to your blogs in the next weeks to catch up on your news.

Feels good to be back.

Rawr.

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Thailand, Kid-Ginger, and my hairdressing aspiration

2 Dec

My brother thinks we should move to Thailand and open up a backpacking hostel.

I’m not so sure I’d be able to handle that much hippy.

Not that I wouldn’t be willing to give it a try.  I’m sure the opportunity for adventure and writing material would be vast.

He’ll report back on the situation, I’m sure.  He just left this morning, so I’m expecting an email within the next two weeks casually mentioning his intentions of marrying a local.

With Kid-Ginger, anything is possible.

Plus I recommended he read The Alchemist on the trip.  What better advice to give a brother than-hit the road, don’t look back, and go make your own journey?

I can feel my father’s expression as he reads that last sentence.  It’s bothered my parents for some time that I’ve been able to -ahem-casually suggest ideas for Kid-Ginger since he was quite small.

I can’t count the amount of times my mother has stared at him, exasperated, and muttered:

“Why, why on Earth do you keep listening to your sister?  Stop it.  Just stop listening to what she tells you to do-honestly.”

She may have been on to something the day I blindfolded him and fed him anchovy paste.  But I don’t think he really understood until nearly ten years later, when I decided to give him a ‘cool’ haircut.

I’ve somehow managed to convince three people in my life that I am capable of cutting hair.

He was my first victim.

Things were going well when I shaved off the sides of his head, and let longer red locks fall over the buzz underneath.  This was the nineties and we were in Seattle, so the grungy, mohawk potential was cool at the time.

For the record, he enjoyed the modern art on his scalp for the first week.  Like a little bad-ass, he ran across the soccer field, scoring goals while donning a look my father would later refer to as ‘white-trash chic’.

bad.ass.

If my mother  hated the artwork on his head at that point, she despised it a week later when I again came at him with scissors.  We were eating sandwiches on the porch, when I glanced at my 11 year old sibling and said:

“You know kiddo, I’m pretty sure it’s uneven.  I just need to fix it-a little, won’t take long, I promise.”

The problem with making hair even when you have no idea what you’re doing-is that somehow you convince yourself to just keep going shorter, and shorter….

and shorter….

Suddenly I realized I had turned my brother into a turnip.

uhhhh..whoops?

When my mom came home from work that afternoon, she found me outside the bathroom door, trying to console her only son on what would go down in history as Kid-Ginger’s worst haircut.

When he finally opened the door and she saw what I had done to his head, I knew I was grounded.

Hours later, after he had returned from the proper hairdressers and finally stopped glaring at me, I convinced him that it was just a misunderstanding.

By bedtime, we were friends again.

Here’s hoping he comes home from Thailand.

Girl on girl, beads, and keeping my boobs in check.

1 Dec

My best friend P.J. and I spent an entire weekend making out for charity.

By charity I mean a foundation we created on Bourbon Street.

In the middle of Mardi Gras.

An organization dedicated to the promotion of more beads, if you will.

Specifically, more beads for she and I to merrily don around our necks as we swam along with rest of the crowd.

If her husband is reading this, I’m sure he’s intrigued.

Approximately twenty minutes after landing at the airport, she and I were whisked away to the apartment of our French friend.  He was living in New Orleans, decided we had to give the festival a try, and invited us down to the booze-infested mess.

It was awesome.

Except that I didn’t want to flash anyone.

I know, I’m lame.

So when the first group of guys on the crowded street came up asking to reveal our racks for the beads around their necks, I turned to P.J. and loudly proclaimed:

“I’ll kiss her for your beads”

Just for a frame of reference, P.J. and I were not in the habit of kissing each other.  At all.  She had no idea I was about to suggest we lock tongues for beads.  In fact, I had no idea this was my plan.  It just seemed like a good move at the time.

So, quite rationally, this statement threw her off guard.  Staring at me with huge eyes she blurted out:

“What?! You want to kiss me?  Here?! I don’t think I can…. Isn’t that weird?”

I bet you can’t guess what kind of audience we were collecting at this point.

Forever egged on by a crowd, I grabbed her hand, gave her a coy smile and said:

“Come on, it’s no big deal.  I swear I’m good.  It’ll be soft.  And gentle.”

Her expression now completly confused she nervously looked at the growing crowd of testosterone surrounding us and said:

“With tongue?  Like French kissing?…”

At this point a burst of chanting broke out around us.  Frat boys, men, and other creatures began pulling beads off their necks while hollering:

“kiss her! kiss her! kiss her!”

So, doing what any menace in my situation would do, I grabbed her face and kissed her.  With tongue.

It was really good actually, as far as kissing goes.  Far better than some of the other smooches I’ve experienced in my time.  It was soft and nice, and there was no tongue sword-fighting, just gentle twisting and turning.  Our rythm was incredible.

When it was over, we had many, many beads.

So it became the game of the weekend.

One of us would shyly announce to men who requested flashing, that instead we’d make out for beads. The other would instantly become offended and appalled at such a suggestion.  We’d discuss it as the crowd formed.  Eventually, we’d give in.

At some point someone said the kissing had to last at least a solid minute, but considering we both know what we’re doing in the lip department, that didn’t bother either of us.

At the end of the weekend, I had more beads than my little neck could bear.

What can I say, P.J. is the greatest best friend a girl could ask for.

Long. Live. Her. Smooches.

Wizards, fox-roaming, and a mild cocaine addiction

30 Nov

I knew she was drunk when she repeatedly picked up the receiver in the public phone booth to ask for the Minestry of Magic.

When that didn’t work, she started hollering:

“Dumbledore, Albus.  Just trying to make this damn phone booth work m’am.  Just a muggle in need.”

It was two days after Christmas.  It was cold.  My cousin and I were stalking the streets of London in search for excitement.

Being two outgoing American ladies, we managed to finagle our way into a conversation that led to an invitation for pub-crawling.

Obviously this was a good plan.

Or not.

By the time the invitation was offered, we had both consumed several beverages.  The woman suggesting this great adventure was British and judging by the manner in which she kept licking her gums and disappearing into the bathroom-I’m guessing she was a little too into powdering her nose.

But no matter, her friends were fun.  They knew a club.  We chose to follow.

It was on the trek to the establishment when my cousin and I fell behind due to her fascination with the phone booths.  Well, that and my obsession with spotting a fox.

I know what you’re thinking, but hear me out.

Wild foxes roam about London.  Seriously.

I saw one in front of the National Gallery one day that stopped traffic.  The thing was so tame it wandered up to a woman on her cell phone and started sniffing her shoes.  She glanced down expecting to see a dog, but found a red-furred carnivore lazily seeking sandwich crumbs.

So while my cousin sought out Hogwarts’ finest, I set about looking under parked cars for Robin Hood.

It took us some time to catch up to the others.

By the time we did we could no longer locate our sniffing companion.

Not that it mattered.  The club was interesting and full of characters.  I talked to a man who claimed to have seven toes on one foot.  She managed to get herself tangled up in a conversation where she attempted to convince a British chap that she was speaking with a proper English accent.

She didn’t succeed and I didn’t get a proper toe reveal.

As the club grew stale, she and I wandered back outside in search of a taxi and the warmth of our beds.  Giggling in the car, we came to the conclusion that we’d just started our own Christmas tradition.  Forget roast goose, with pub-crawling, wizard-seeking, and near fox-spotting this was true holiday bonding.

If Dickens was watching, I’m sure he was proud.

Demonic cookie breath, sundress, and my love of burritos

11 Nov

Last summer I was haunted by a demon.

I know what you’re thinking.  My imagination is ridiculous, I’m overly-dramatic and prone to campfire-style tales likely to scare no one but myself.  I’m not saying you’re wrong-I’m just saying that last summer a demon in a floral print sundress followed me.

Ok, not in total abundance, more like a two-sighting occurance.

But still.

It started when I went out to lunch with my cousin Molly.  We went to a Mexican restaurant to catch up over chips, salsa, and burritos.  Things were going fine until I left to find the bathroom.

The restaurant is located inside a near-vacant strip mall.  In fact, I think the only thing in the mall is the bathroom, and the lone bench sitting next to the door of said rest-stop.

That’s where I first saw her.

No blinking. Just eye contact.

Sitting on the bench, floral church-going dress, long, wavy blonde hair framing her beautiful face.

I started towards the bathroom, when her eyes locked with mine and I knew something was off.  Mostly because she was creepily chewing on a Nilla Wafer while fiercely maintaining eye contact.

Demon fuel. Dude.

Holding it to her mouth, she nibbled away on the treat while never looking away as I worked my way towards the door.  The torn box sat on her lap, eagerly providing her with cookies while she sat with no apparent purpose other than to stare.

Let me point out how weird it is to be eating Nilla wafers this close to a Mexican restaurant.  I can’t pinpoint the exact reason, except that the sweet cookies are most likely mass-produced from the tears of children.  Enchiladas on the other hand, come from a happy place filled with sombreros, ponchos, and laughter.  Given the two options, obviously a demon would choose the cookie.

That was my evidence of her being a demon by the way.  Cookies next to restaurant + creepy eye contact + sundress=demon.

Since I am brave, I just decided to pretend that I hadn’t noticed our eye contact and went to the bathroom.  On my way out she had upped the creep-factor.  Now sitting so that her body faced the bathroom door-whereas on my way in-she was facing the Mexican restaurant-she continued gnawing away on the tears of children.

Obviously, I hurried back to my burrito.  I tried to act casually, but knowing me-the glancing over my shoulder definitely gave away my fear.  Not that it matters, demons can smell that stuff a mile away.

After we finished eating, Molly had to go to the bathroom.  I said I’d wait for her outside.  Happy to discover that the woman had left, I sat down on the bench while awaiting my cousin, breathed a sigh of relief, and was just convincing myself that my imagination needs a make-over when I looked out the strip mall door and saw:

Demon woman standing outside glass door, about an inch away from the glass, still munching away on the Nilla Wafer, and again-holding eye contact.

Needless to say, this was not a highlight of my afternoon.

Regardless, I sighed relief when Molly emerged from the bathroom, and we got into her car and left the scene of what I’m sure was about to become a Satanic-epicenter of evil.  Who knew such things could happen outside the Happy Taco.

Skip ahead two weeks later, when I flew to Madison, WI to be in my best-friend’s wedding.  On the morning of the big day the bride-to-be and I stopped in a pharmacy for some things before getting ourselves ready.

We were waiting to pay for our items, when suddenly, P.J.(bride) noticed that the woman in front of us was acting a bit-odd.  I didn’t notice because I was too busy debating the pros and cons of eating skittles before squeezing into a bridesmaid dress.

Zilla bridesmaid fuel. Sweet.

Regardless, the woman left the shop before P.J. had a chance to comment.  On the way out of the pharmacy, the woman-who I then spotted just outside the door, was a blonde in a sundress, creepily holding eye contact with me.

Even though she wasn’t identical to my Mexican restaurant demon, she had those same eyes, and this time she got worse.

This time she walked up to me, got way too close to my neck and whispered:

“Stop doing that.  It’s hurting me”

She then proceeded to hold eye contact with me while backing away down the sidewalk.

P.J. laughed pretty hard, but I knew deep down-this demon woman was stalking me.

So if you happen to see her lurking in the cookie aisle of your local grocery store, be careful.  I clearly didn’t receive her message and I’m sure she’s just waiting for the right person to receive her Nilla-wafer whispers.

As for me, I’ll be in the Mexican restaurant.  Look for the girl hiding under the sombrero.

Near death experience in a Parisian airport

13 May

A peanut-butter m&m tried to kill me in the Charles de Gualle airport.

I refer to it as one of my near-death experiences, though the only human witness to the event claims I am ridiculously over-dramatic.  Easy for him to say, the m&m never clawed its white gloved-hands into his esophagus while performing variations of River Dance with its tiny bright shoes.

But before I get ahead of myself-allow me to set the stage for you.

Picture this guy.

Picture me.

I think we can agree-someone was gonna go down.

As I sat innocently waiting to board my flight to the Dominican Republic, then-fiance at my side, I decided to enjoy a few m&m’s, not realizing of course-that the yellow assassin huddled eagerly in the package.  Plotting his demise of my throat he patiently planned his attack as I eagerly thrust my hand into the bag, and attempted to chat with my companion.

For his part, Luka was reading a newspaper and clearly wanted me to leave him alone after I had insisted on twirling the wheels of our check-in luggage whilst he explained his visa status to the Air France woman.  They had rapidly debated in French and I had taken the opportunity to sing the theme song of a French cartoon from the seventies about a love-able seal while spinning the wheels on the upturned suitcase.

Not loudly-mind you, more like humming to pass the time while the visa situation was under control.

So, for his part, the companion was eager to read the newspaper and ignore the antics of one very excited-about-vacation-menace.

I munched away on a few sleeper candies while he read the sports page.  I asked him a few questions, receiving mumbles and deep sighs in return.

His evident desire for peace and quiet resolved in my determination to entertain myself and eat my candy.  Silently.

But it was not to be.

For just at that moment, the stealth-choco-covered-peanut and my fingers were to meet for the first time.  I gotta give it to the little devil, he remained motionless and peaceful when I grabbed him (I suppose it’s part of his melt-in-your-mouth-not-in-your-hand contract), but then cleverly launched himself past my mouth, directly into my throat, and began performing the aforementioned jig.

Quickly losing oxygen, I attempted to get Luka’s attention.  At first with a tap on the shoulder, followed by a punch to the knee.

When neither of these tactics were successful, I thrashed around on the floor as if being attacked by Jaws.  Fearful that my soul might too eagerly jump into the light that was sure to appear at any moment, I frantically mimed out that an m&m was kicking his poofy white Reeboks up and down the interior of my throat-sure to bring death swiftly.

My hands went from the bag, to my legs as I tried to jig-to my throat.  Eyes bulging out of my head, cheeks turning bright red I chose interpretive dance to communicate my distress.  Hoping against all odds that Luka would understand, which thankfully-he did.

He softly patted my back, listened to me cough for a moment-made sure I was actually breathing, handed me a bottle of water, and said:

‘you ok?’.

Right.  As if anyone who has just won an epic battle against a candy-coated monster can be simply, ‘ok’.

The next ten minutes before boarding passed along in silence as I pictured my conquered nemesis slowly dying in my belly-surely devastated at his own failure to take down his Zilla target.

I haven’t encountered any undercover agents in my candy-bags since then, but I’m sure there’s at least one more.  Next time, I’ll be ready.