Sometimes guy friends are so much more fun than girl friends. This is why.
“Hey, Seamus. I need something to write about. Can we shave your head?”
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[Damn hippie.]
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[Starting out with the #4]
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[Laugh it up, hippie boy.]
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[A crowd gathers.]
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[A look of regret?]
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[Ready for the #2 blade.]
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[Natasha gets in on the action.
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[The Melvin.]
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[The Bi-Level.]
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[The Moe.]
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[No more messing around.]
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[Military man.]
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[Missed a spot.]
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[Final touches.]
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[Feels like a kitten.]
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[A new man.]

It’s all making sense now

“So Jen, where are we going Saturday? We need to go somewhere hip – maybe Wicker Park?”
“Definitely. God – I have nothing to wear…”
“How come I’m not invited?”
“Nat, you’re not invited because it’s singles night and you’re not single. Dee-Dee and I need to go someplace where we can actually meet people.”
“So I can’t even come with? I could be your wingman.”
“No offense, Nat, but you’re pretty much the worst wingman in the world.”
“What?! What are you talking about?”
“Okay – you either completely abandon me the second some weirdo starts talking to me, or you announce to the cute mop-haired guy reading Frannie and Zooey that I’ve never read Salinger before. This is not the definition of being a good wingman.”
“But I was being honest!”
“Why didn’t you just tell him that sometimes I like to play video games and eat entire frozen pizzas on a Saturday night? Or maybe you could advertise the fact that Dee-Dee is obsessed with wizard books.”
“I’m just saying, Dee. You like your wizards.”
“I know. I really do.”
“Well, maybe I could learn. Just tell me how to be a better wingman.”
“Okay, for starters, you can’t just abandon me. You have to help me get away from the freaks.”
“Not a problem.”
“And you’ve got to can that honesty stuff. Make me sound more interesting.”
“Yeah, Nat. Wingman is supposed to talk up her single friends. You’ve got to work the room for us.”
“I do?”
“If you want to be our wingman you do.”
“So I have to work the crowd for both of you?”
“Totally. And only talk about the good things. Like, if exercise happens to come up, don’t say that I just finally started going back to the gym and couldn’t walk for a week after using the Madonna-Whore machine. Say something like, ‘Oh, you like to workout? My friend Jenny always has the best stories about her gym. You should meet her!’ Something like that.”
“Is that really what a wingman is supposed to do?”
“Well, that’s probably a bad example because I really don’t want to meet anyone who’s going to expect me to work out, but that’s the idea, yes.”
“Okay, I think that maybe all this time I was thinking wingman meant something else.”
“What did you think it meant?”
“I don’t want to say. I think I was just thinking of a different word”
“Just say it.”
“No, I’m embarrassed.”
“Nat. Come on, just tell me.”
“I think I thought it meant… pssst, pssst, psst.”
“Okay, Natasha. I can’t hear a word you’re saying.”
“Fine. I thought wingman meant… cock block.”
“Ohmigod! Wait… that’s what you thought I’ve been asking you to do all these years?”
“Well, then I stand corrected. You’ve been an excellent wingman.”

ANTM + Unicorns = FIERCE!

Sometimes I have days where everyone makes me want to punch them in the ear. Like that guy who almost gave me an appendectomy with his ginormous golf umbrella today while I was walking to work. Were you planning on parting the Red Sea with that thing? And that one lady who kept sneeze-screaming on the train. Seriously? Don’t act like you can’t control that shit.
It’s times like these when you just have to escape… to Planet Unicorn!
Oh, why are there only four episodes?

[and props to jennie at long story short for posting episodes 1 & 2]

Thigh Master

Woman #1: “Ouch. Ouch. Ow. Ouch. Ow. Ow. Ouch. Owee. Ow. Ouch.”

Woman #2: “What’s wrong with you? Why are you walking like a robot?”

Woman #1: “Ugh. I started going to the gym again, and I think I overdid it yesterday. I can’t walk – it hurts to move.”

Woman #2: “Nice.”

Woman #1: “Hey, slow down. Let me ask you guys something. Do you know that hip adductor/abductor machine? The one where you squeeze your thighs in or push them out?”

Woman #3: “Yeah – the Madonna-Whore machine.”

Woman #1: “Exactly. So… which one is easier for you?”

Woman #2: “Which one what?”

Woman #1: “Squeezing your thighs together or pushing them out?”

Woman #2: “Oh, squeezing together. Totally.”

Woman #3: “Yeah – that’s way easier.”

Woman #1: “Are you serious? See, that’s what I was afraid of. It’s way easier for me to push my thighs out than to pull them in. I can do 85, 90 pounds pushing out, and only like 40 pounds pulling in.”

Woman #3: “What? That doesn’t make sense. Maybe you’re not doing it right.”

Woman #1: “You sit in a chair and squeeze your legs together – what’s not to do right?”

Woman #3: “Hmm. Well, that just seems wrong.”

Woman #1: “But that’s my point. Does it say something about me that it’s so much easier for me to spread my legs than to close them?”

Woman #2: “Gross.”

Woman #3: “It says that you’re genetically predisposed to being a whore.”

Woman #1: “That’s what I thought. But why am I discovering this so late in life?”

Hickey Means Love

The other day, I was sitting in a strange contortion as I watched TV, with my head resting on my arm, legs twisted to the side. I was engrossed in a rerun of My Three Sons, when I realized that I had accidentally given myself a hickey on my shoulder. Well, actually, it was completely intentional, but I didn’t think it would work quite so fast. Only the slightest bit of suction applied and within seconds I had a hickey. So, yes, I gave myself a hickey on purpose. Accidentally.
I assumed it would go away after a few hours, but three days later it had barely faded. Fortunately for me, since it is now short-sleeves season, it looked more like a burn than a hickey. Or maybe like a strawberry birthmark. At least that’s what I decided I would tell anyone who asked.
I guess I just didn’t realize that I had such delicate skin, organs perilously close to the surface like those transparent sea creatures on the ocean floor that we’re only now able to see thanks to recent technological advances in deep-sea submersibles. I suddenly felt a kinship with these animals – like a bioluminescent gelatinous mass with clear skin that revealed my heart beating, cilia combing, primitive intestines digesting.
I’ve never been much of a poet, but this self-discovery inspired me to write the following piece, which I may eventually set to music. I say eventually because right now, the only instrument I own is a harmonica, and the only thing I know how to play is the intro to “Love Me Do.”
So anyway, this shoulder hickey got me thinking about gulper eels which, in turn, made me think about the fragile nature of transparent aquatic love, and that’s what this poem is about.
Don’t Call Me a Brine Shrimp
Don’t call me a brine shrimp.
I am a Sea-Monkey®,
A Sea-Monkey® of love.
I confound scientists
Sprung to life from just a little pouch.
I have three eyes
Because I just can’t get enough of you.
We will make sweet love
Behind the glow-in-the-dark treasure chest
Or not.
I am also asexual.
Don’t call me a brine shrimp.
I am a Sea-Monkey®,
A Sea-Monkey® of love.
Please remember to give me one level spoon
Of specially formulated Sea-Monkey® food
Once each week
And I promise you this:
Hours and hours of fun
Until I die within one to two years.
Or sooner
If you forget to feed me.
I am not a brine shrimp.
Do brine shrimp live in rocket ship homes?
Can brine shrimp perform tricks?
Do brine shrimp bring laughter to children the world over?
Have brine shrimp known love?
I am a giant.
I am a clown.
I am an astronaut.
I am a hunter.
So don’t call me a brine shrimp.
I am a Sea-Monkey®,
Your Sea-Monkey® of love.

Snap, snap, snap, snap, snap.

Blackbird fly, blackbird fly

Don’t be fooled by the elegant scarlet epaulets and the cheery trill of oak-a-leee, oak-a-leee. Red-winged blackbirds will kill you just as soon as look at you. I am ashamed of my own naïveté, really. I thought that if I loved and respected nature, it would return the favor in kind. But you’d think I would have learned by now, because once when I was just eight years old, I was wading in Lincoln Lagoon looking for frogs when a giant carp swam up and sucked on my toe. No child should ever have to go through that. No one should.
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This time, all I wanted to do was take some photos of cattails and butterflies by the pond. How was I to know that red-winged blackbirds like to make their nests in such prime real-estate? All along the pond I walked, no matter where I went, they followed. First it was just the lookout bird who squawked at me from high atop his willow perch.
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“Oh, hello friend! You’re looking handsome today. Don’t mind me. I’m just here looking for frogs and flowers. Good day!”
“Tseer! Tseer!”
I walked closer to the water and came upon an enormous frog. As I carefully pushed aside the tall grass to get a better view, I saw some fluttering out of the corner of my eye.
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“Tseer! Tseer!”
“Hello again! I see you’ve brought a friend this time. Is that your wife? What a lovely speckled breast she has. Oh… goodness! So there are four of you. Nice that you all stick together like that. Well, I think I spy a fancy butterfly over there, so I’ll bid you adieu.”
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Within seconds, another two birds appeared from out of the weeds, screeching in unison.
As I walked over toward the butterflies, one of the male blackbirds flew over my head and followed me for several yards.
“I’m sorry, kind sir. There seems to be some misunderstanding. It’s clear to me now that you must have a nest around here, but I can assure you that I have no interest in your babies. As I love and respect all of god’s creatures, I will take only photos, and leave nothing but footprints.”
It was at this point that the leader called in the infantry. Five male blackbirds began flying overhead in a sort of Blue Angels formation, criss-crossing each other in the air and diving closer and closer to my head. The three females remained close to the pond and just shrieked repeatedly. I backed away from the water and briskly walked toward the safety of a large tree.
This sudden hostility puzzled me. Didn’t they understand who I was? Back in my environmentally conscious college years – long before Al Gore invented global warming – I was a card-carrying member of the Nature Conservancy. My regular donations were likely responsible for protecting that very stretch of marsh. Had it not been for me and my giving nature, those red-winged blackbirds would have been building their nests inside a FedEx/Kinko’s next to the color copiers.
“Tseer! Tseer! Tseer! Tseer!”
“Look – I’m not even close to the water now! And I don’t want your stupid bald babies!”
As I left the shelter of the tree, I had another near collision with the bird. This time, I began to take it personally.
“Just so you know? I could totally eat all your babies if I wanted to. Every last one of them! I’m like, 100 times bigger than you! I could just walk up and grab them, and there’s not a damn thing you could do about it. Stupid red-winged blackbirds.”
“Tseer! Tseer! Tseer!”
“Hey here’s an idea: how ‘bout next time you don’t build your nests 10 feet away from a frickin’ high-traffic bike trail? How’s that sound? Morons. Oh, and how’d you like a punch in the throat while we’re at it?”
I was determined not to be bullied by these birds when I was clearly not doing anything wrong. I came there for flower photos, and by god I was going to leave there with flower photos.
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“DAMMIT!! Leave me alone, you ungrateful motherf- oh shit!”
As I turned to step away from the thistle, I almost walked right into the Kamikaze attack. I was sure I felt feathers touch my hair this time. I clutched my camera to my chest with one hand, then ducked and ran toward the sidewalk, swatting at the birds with my free hand. I quickly ran past an older couple on a tandem bike while muttering something to the effect of, “…pop you in the eye so hard your head will spin…”
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That bird is just lucky I love and respect nature so much. Plus, I’ll bet his babies would have tasted like crap anyway.

Close Call

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Last Saturday, I was sitting on the couch reading and thinking about how I would like to have lots and lots of babies with the inventor of air-conditioning when I suddenly got a little creeped out. It was around 10:30pm and my cats had just been fighting, like they do every night. The girl cat was curled up near my feet, chasing dream mice, when the boy cat walked by, wrapped his paws around her head and bit into her neck. She hissed, punched him a few times in the face, then pounced, sending them both rolling around the living room floor.
It wasn’t their battle that caught my attention, but rather their abrupt halt. The tail thumps and soft growls suddenly stopped as they both pricked up their ears and looked toward the dining room window. I muted the TV to listen, but heard nothing. The boy cat’s tail puffed up as he stood motionless, staring at the window. The girl cat had retreated to underneath a chair, but I could still see her eyes glowing.
The boy cat walked slowly toward the dining room, investigating some unseen predator. This is why they say that curiosity killed the cat, I thought. He’s walking straight toward some killer trying to break into my house. When I sat up to get the butcher knife from the kitchen that I save for just this type of occasion, my cat jumped about eight feet straight into the air.
When he landed, I noticed that he now had a faux-hawk all along his spine to complement the already puffy tail. I watched as he crept not toward the window, but to my bag sitting on the floor. With cleaver in hand, I opened my purse to find a red-light flashing. I had missed a call from Natasha.
Lousy vegetarian city cats, eating apples and yogurt all day long. Won’t even kill a baby centipede, but they’ll swallow every grocery bag whole before I can even get the refrigerator open. My apartment was robbed a couple years ago, and did they even try to stop that? No, but apparently if the burglar had called first, they would’ve made sure I got his message.

A Couple Requests

I’d like to celebrate this Independence Day by writing a couple open letters:
Dear Suburbanites –
I think it’s really great that you are coming into the city to celebrate the 4th of July and watch the fireworks and eat some corn on the cob and barbeque ribs at Taste of Chicago this week. But, one simple request, could you please, please NOT TAKE THE F*ING MORNING RUSH HOUR TRAINS INTO THE CITY!?!?
It would just be so nice if my train wasn’t 25 minutes late due to “heavy passenger loading,” which means all you people with picnic baskets and strollers and American flags and sleeping bags clogging up the aisles.
Here’s the great thing – the trains run ALL DAY LONG so that means you can have a whole gigantic seat to yourself if you would just hold your gottam horses until 10:00am or so, when all the people who have to work are already at the office.
Thank you, and please enjoy your Independence Day!
Dear Generous Ladies –
I think it’s so nice that you have a kind heart and an open wallet and are concerned about those less fortunate than you, but please, I beg of you, stop giving money to the deceptively sweet-looking older Salvation Army guy near the train station. I am convinced he is a dirty old man.
I watch him every day as he clutches your hands while you try to stuff a dollar in his bucket. I feel for you as you smile sweetly and casually try to reclaim your hand, which he grips tightly in both of his.
And I see what you don’t – that as you leave, he turns around to watch you all shimmy away. I know he seems harmless and his Salvation Army hat lends him some credibility, but to paraphrase Gertrude Stein: a letch is a letch is a letch. Young perverts grow up to be old letches, and some of them work for the Salvation Army. It’s just a fact.
I’m not asking you to stop donating – just send a check from now on, because then he might be forced to find some other location where I no longer have to see his leering smile every day.
Thank you, and please enjoy your Independence Day!

Back by Popular Demand

In order to stave off any potential lawsuits due to traumatic rabbit viewing from my previous entry, my attorney has advised me to post the following:
Happy, happy, happy!
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Kittens, kittens, kittens!
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Fuzzy, wuzzy wittow schmitty wittens!
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Rabbits are not Evil

WARNING: The entry you are about to read may cause dizziness, fatigue, night terrors, claustrophobia, unusual weakness, numbness or tingling of the hands/feet, rash, loss of vision, difficulty breathing, or headache. If you experience more serious symptoms such as uncontrollable crying, vomiting, or strong desire to rock yourself to sleep in a corner, discontinue reading immediately and contact your physician.

Sometimes Rabbit can’t stand to look at Evil.


Sometimes Rabbit just won’t listen to Evil.


Sometimes Rabbit and Evil are not on speaking terms.