never again, grapes.

I bought some grapes while grocery shopping on Sunday.

It was a mistake.

The grapes themselves are fine – it’s me that’s the problem.

You know those awful memes you see on Facebook where someone buys a bag of grapes and then notices there’s a GIANT FUCKING SPIDER in the bag?


Those things haunt my dreams. I’ve always been vehemently anti-spider (or, anti-spiders-in-my-space, I should say. I have no problem with spiders who respect my personal boundaries), but those spider-in-the-grape-bag memes have fucking scarred me for life.

Except, I forget things a lot (due in large part to the inside of my head constantly being like a freshly shaken snow globe. The snow being thoughts, not cocaine. Just so we’re clear…ish…), so sometimes the things that have scarred me for life kind of take a little while to bubble back to the surface and become Big Fucking Issues…

…which is how I ended up with a 3-pound bag of grapes on my kitchen counter that I subsequently spent quite a lot of time eyeing suspiciously, examining for signs of movement and/or arachnid legs.

THEN I started thinking about how the grapes had been in the house long enough that any spider living in them had probably crawled out by now and made a home behind my fridge or something. MOTHER. FUCKERS. At that point I began contemplating the feasibility of nuking the entire site from orbit. But, nuking would have meant having to move in with my parents until we found a new place which, at 36 years old and newly bankrupt from having bought a nuclear weapon, seemed…less than ideal.

My husband finally saved the day (albeit unwittingly) by breaking into the bag of grapes and eating like half of them yesterday while I was at work. When I noticed he’d been eating them, I told him how I bought them and then couldn’t make myself put my hand in the bag because of the spiders and how the grapes were all too close to each other in the bag so I couldn’t see, like, AROUND the grapes enough to be sure that there wasn’t actually some kind of lethal (or at least super hairy) spider in there, and how I was relieved that he had finally eaten some so now I could see they were safe and eat some too, but also that I felt kind of guilty for thinking that because I didn’t purposefully WANT him to eat unsafe grapes but I appreciated that he (again, unwittingly) took one for the team. So to speak.

I think he probably stopped listening somewhere around “internet memes of spiders”, because he’s known me a really long time and that’s usually where things start going downhill quickly for me.


I managed to nut up and take some of the grapes to work with me for lunch today. They were OK, but they weren’t really worth all the mental turmoil they caused. I think I’ll stick with apples. Or pears. Fruit that I can see completely around and inspect thoroughly before consumption. And if any of you assholes send me memes about spider-infected apples, we’re done. DONE, you hear me?!

Also, side note to any Federal agents who may have been led to this site by Internet bot scanners (don’t lie, it’s a thing. I’m not paranoid, you’re paranoid) picking up the phrase “bought a nuclear weapon” , chillax. If I had that kind of money, I’d be in a secret bunker, covered in puppies, drinking high-end merlot through the longest twisty-straw I could find, and paying a group of scientists to come up with a coating for Cheetos that doesn’t stain your fingers. PRIORITIES, YO.

on a roll

Lately I’ve been on a streak of grocery shopping without a list.

Normal adults can do that, right? Just roll into the grocery store and buy what they need without having a premeditated list (preferably written out in sections, in order of the their preferred route through the aisles)? And they come home with the stuff they ACTUALLY need, not a farraginous assortment of shiny bits and pieces that seemingly called to them across the aisles?

Welp, I’m not a normal adult. I knew that anyway, but shopping without a list has really served to reinforce the point.

All in all, it hasn’t been a disaster. I mean, yes, I bought three avocados last week with the intention of having avocado toast for dinner a couple nights, only to come home and realize that the bread I had made for the week was cinnamon raisin and thus not really suitable for avocado toast. And I forgot the paper towels that I really DID need, so I had to make a mid-week stop at the mom-and-pop grocery in town that resulted in my buying not only paper towels but also cookies, wine and beef jerky (none of which I even remotely needed).

I keep buying toilet paper, though. It’s becoming a problem.

I know, toilet paper is one of those things that it’s better to have a wealth of than a dearth of…but it has gotten to the point where I’m running out of room to store it. I went to put away my newest toilet paper acquisition yesterday, only to find that the cabinet under the bathroom sink is getting quite full. Of toilet paper. There were two unopened 6-roll packages already in there, plus an open package over by the toilet.

We don’t have a bathroom closet or linen closet or whatever – if I overflow the under-sink cabinet, I’m going to have to start stashing TP in our bedroom or the spare bedroom.

And that seems…weird.

Even to ME.


This picture came from, for one, feel better knowing that this website exists.




My office is on the second floor of an old converted farmhouse. There are a couple other tenants with spaces on the second floor as well – some guy that I’m pretty sure is a mad Internet scientist (he’s the one with the dog), and a lady who teaches Pilates classes.

Obviously, because the Pilates lady is teaching classes, there’s a fair amount of traffic up and down the stairs and in our little hallway some mornings and afternoons. For the most part the people that come for the Pilates classes are no big deal, although for a while there was one that would always wear so much perfume that it would throw me into a migraine or an asthma attack whenever she showed up.

There was also The Groaner – a guy who would make the most hilariously awful sounds during his sessions on the Pilates Reformer machine thing. It seriously sounded like he was making geriatric Pilates porn in there. Which, don’t Google that…just assume it exists and move on with your life untainted.


So, there’s one  bathroom on the second floor. It’s a little half-bath like you’d find in a home, not an industrial multi-stall deal. Normally that’s perfectly adequate, as when it’s just the people from my company working up there, we number only four. Sometimes somebody from our downstairs office will sneak up and use our bathroom if they know they’re going to lay a particularly stinky egg, but whatever. Still adequate for the number of employees, and we seldom experience any kind of toilet traffic drama.

At least, until the Pilates people show up.

There are the ones that use our bathroom as their changing room, the ones that just need a quick pee before or after class…and then there’s Doorknob Jiggler.

First of all, I don’t know if DJ is always on the verge of pissing herself or what, but she never even slows down long enough to notice that the bathroom door is closed and the fan is running. She just always makes a beeline straight from the doorway of the Pilates room to the bathroom (which is like three steps) and bodily throws herself at the bathroom door. Maybe her bathroom door at home is made of solid mahogany and is really heavy so she’s just used to having to heave her whole weight against it to move it? All I know is that it’s terrifying to be sitting there on the toilet when she gets out of class because you’d swear it was a fucking battering ram coming through that door.

Second of all, if DJ encounters a close and locked door, rather than saying to herself “oh there’s someone in there, I’ll hang out in the hall and wait my turn”, she will, in fact, start jiggling the doorknob. Further, if she jiggles the doorknob and you don’t immediately say something to let her know you’re in there, she will assume that the door is somehow mistakenly jammed shut (again, the fan and light are both on if someone is in there. You can see the light around the edges of the door and you can hear the fan halfway down the hall), and will start turning the knob and start battering the door bodily again.

This afternoon was one such situation. There I was, spending some quality time with my Instagram feed while enjoying the tranquil confines of the bathroom, when suddenly I heard someone coming. I didn’t think much of it until the first loud BANG as she heaved against the door.

Shit“, I thought…”it’s DJ and she sounds like she means business“.

Apparently the split second I took in self-dialog was too long for her liking because the doorknob jiggling started almost immediately.

“Occupied” I said, trying to sound friendly but, you know…busy. I put my phone down on the counter, wiped, stood up, and jumped as she banged into the door AGAIN!

“Be right out” I said, not trying for anything less than terse this time. I washed my hands, dried them, put my phone in my pocket, reached for the slide-latch on the door to unlatch it…and found that DJ had in fact bashed into the door so aggressively that it had jammed the motherfucking latch. She started jiggling the doorknob again just about then and I was done with her shit.

“HOLD ON. The latch is jammed.”

I could hear her muttering on the other side of the door but I took the high road and ignored it – mostly due to the fact that I was dealing with mounting panic over being permanently stuck in the bathroom, I’ll be completely honest.

After a couple of tries, I finally got the slide-latch thingy to unlock and the door swung open. DJ stood there in the hallway with an accusatory glare on her face and basically SHOVED past me into the bathroom, slamming the door behind her.

I silently wished in that moment that she would sit down on the toilet and discover she had pin worms. Or some other kind of anal-itch-causing malady. Basically, I really wanted her to feel like she needed to drag her ass across a nice rough carpet. Preferably with a bunch of people watching and trying to get her to hurry up because they wanted to use the carpet themselves. Although who would want to use a carpet after someone butt-dragged on it, I don’t know. But still. You get my point.




buyer beware

Out here in the sticks one of the best ways to buy and sell things, keep up with local happenings and sometimes watch people show their asses, is the town ListServ.  I subscribe to the one for the tiny town I live in, and the one for the even tinier town I work in. The one for the town I live in is generally pretty quiet, but the one for Work Town is very active. There are lots of posts about community happenings, people looking for help with various things, businesses advertising their goods / services, townie drama, and my personal favorite – things for sale.

It’s not that I particularly buy much from the ListServ, even. It’s more that the For Sale ads are often entertainingly odd.

Like, the guy who is giving away a whole bunch of dowels. I can see needing maybe A dowel, maybe even two….but what would you DO with dozens of dowels? Build a yurt, maybe? I don’t know if dowels even figure in to yurt construction, I’m just spit-balling.

Or, the person trying to unload six gallons of unused battery acid. What? Just…why? Why does a normal person in a tiny town in rural New Hampshire need six fucking gallons of BATTERY ACID, unless they’re going to like…I don’t even know. Build a big battery, I guess? OR DISSOLVE A WHOLE BUNCH OF BODY PARTS. I’m just saying.

This morning as I was going through the accumulated ListServ from the night before, one of the headlines particularly caught my eye:

“Chairlift for Sale”.

I grew up skiing and I am therefore pretty fucking familiar with chairlifts. As such, the idea of someone selling a chairlift was both puzzling and fascinating to me. How would you even go about it? Is it the whole shebang with the cables, the giant poles, the huge motorized whirly-gig at each end that spins the chairs around and sends them back up / down the hill? Don’t those things cost like, hundreds of thousands of dollars? Would the buyer have to come disassemble it and transport it themselves?  So many questions. I shook my head and went on to the next headline.

Then, something occurred to me. What if it was just the CHAIR part of the chairlift they were selling? That would be a lot more manageable in terms of transport, and it would probably make a pretty baller porch swing or garden bench with a little paint and some strategic welding (which I have NO access to or aptitude for, it should be noted in retrospect. These things never occur to me at the time, though).

Interest now piqued for realsies, I went back to the ad to see how much the chairlift-cum-garden-bench was going to cost me, because I was pretty sure I needed it.

(Also worth noting, by the way: I have no garden, nor do I have any significant amount of lawn of my own. We rent, and we live in kind of rural version of an apartment complex where there are a bunch of fields and lawns around us, but we don’t actually OWN any of them.I would have literally nowhere to put any kind of bench, chair-lift or otherwise.)

So I’m reading along…

“Two outdoor elite straight rail stairlifts for sale”


Stairlifts?! Those aren’t fucking CHAIRLIFTS. WTF, person who wrote the ad. The headline CLEARLY said”Chairlifts For Sale”, not “Stairlifts For Sale”. I went back and checked three times because even though I know I’m crazy and I’m mostly at peace with that, I feel like I still have fairly reasonable reading comprehension skills.

I mean, granted, I could have actually read the ad itself, realized what it was being sold, saved myself the excitement over planning a chairlift garden bench for my non-existent garden and the SUBSEQUENT DEBILITATING DISAPPOINTMENT OF WATCHING THAT DREAM GO DOWN THE DRAIN…but on the same token, YOU could have been more clear in your headline, ad-writer.

Way more clear.

Also, just in case anyone’s sitting there rolling their eyes and thinking “whatever, crazypants…chairlift benches aren’t even a THING”, here is Actual Internet Evidence that you are wrong:

You probably have to pay more for the Majestic Dog option. Picture courtesy of Fire On Demand, who actually MAKE these babies, along with super cool fire pits. This is not a sponsored ad placement, by the way. I just really liked this picture and wanted to give credit where it was due.

So there.

professional harsher of mellows

My dog can harsh anyone’s mellow.

Seriously. The Dalai fucking Lama could roll up in here, my dog would lose his shit because, OMG stranger danger, and the Dalai Lama would be like, “Shit, dog…you’re SHRILL”. And after five whole minutes of the drama that is Junior’s carrying the fuck on, the Dalai Lama would be like, “I can just sit with a lot of annoying things and be at peace with them but your dog is way too much. I gotta go.”

Or …who’s more laid back than the Dalai Lama?


Matthew fucking McConaughey! My dog could harsh stoned-ass Mr. “Alright Alright Alriiiiight” Matthew McConaughey’s mellow, I swear to you.


Nice, uhh…belt buckle.

Sidenote: Mr. McConaughey, if you’re reading this and you want to test the theory, please do feel free to stop by. I make excellent brownies and I’m definitely a fan. A big…BIG fan.


Anyway, WTF was I talking about before I got distracted by Matthew McConaughey?

Oh, right. My dog being a shit.

So, I’m laying on my back starfish-style in the middle of the living room floor this evening (I TOLD you things get weird when my husband isn’t home), attempting to meditate. It didn’t actually start out as attempted meditation, by the way.  It started out as attempted yoga to try and coax the GIANT KNOT OF EVIL out of my back. Which, that sort of worked but sort of didn’t because the original giant knot of evil kind of eased off but then two other places started to seize up on me while I was laying on the floor. Which was why I was laying starfish-style on the living room floor to begin with – because basically, I couldn’t get up.

SO, while I was stuck down there, I figured I might as well close my eyes and try to meditate for a little bit. Or more to the point, “sit with the pain”, as they say. Those fucking sadists.

So, again, laying on the floor on my back, arms and legs akimbo. Eyes closed, taking nice deep breaths. Calming breaths. Quiet breaths. So quiet. So calm. Everything is smoothing out, things are coming down a few notches all by themselves. Things are OK. I’m whole, I’m at peace, I am a denizen of the motherfucking light…

…and then the shit hits the fan.


The dog was three inches from my head when he let out with this full-throat war cry of doom. Also, keep in mind that he’s a tiny dog – he weighs like 10lbs and is smaller than most house cats – so it’s not like a regular sized dog’s howl. It’s as if someone took the tiniest miniature wolf imaginable, gave it several hits of helium…and then stepped on its tail. (Side note: if you like puppies, do yourself a favor and search “tiny howl” on YouTube when you’ve got like an hour or three to spare. I assure you, you will not be disappointed. Case in point. Also, that video is not at ALL what my dog’s howl sounds like, unfortunately.)


Three. Inches. From my head. After ten whole minutes of blissful silence and falling deeper and deeper into a concentrated state of mellow (which, as I’m sure you’re aware, does not come easily to those with teh ADHD and anxiety). It was like someone dumping a bucket of ice water on a sleeping person. Much spluttering and swearing ensued.

What set him off? WHO FUCKING KNOWS. It certainly wasn’t a knock at the door or a car in the driveway or any other even remotely reasonable thing. Maybe a mouse farted three houses over. Maybe the wind blew in the scent of the Dreaded Neighbor Cats. Maybe it was the exact moment when Mercury hit the 7th house of Libra with Pluto ascendant. This is legit how capricious my dog is. There doesn’t even HAVE to be a reason for him to sound the alarm. It’s like he’ll sit there and think to himself, “You know, I haven’t scared the shit out of the humans with my sudden blood-curdling howls lately. Maybe I’ll let one rip right…NOW”, and he’s off.

So, suffice to say, my mellow was harshed quite suddenly and thoroughly.


“Not a single one of the six people that read this blog are going to believe you, Mahm. I have stolen all their souls through the Internet and turned them all against you.” -Junior T. Armitage


home alone 3: the sandwiching

Oh, hey. Remember when I used to write shit here a long time ago? I should probably do that again. Right now seems like a good time since it’s a gorgeous day out, I told like three different people I’d visit them today, AND I have a list of Chores I Wanted To Get Done. So obviously, the best course of action is to procrastinate like a motherfucker.


The last couple weeks have been weird. My husband has been having to work later shifts than normal so I’ve been home alone for dinner like 3-4 nights a week lately. On the one hand, that means less dishes to wash and not having to watch Judge Judy while we eat (don’t ask). On the other hand, I get weird when I’m home alone.

I mean, I’m definitely weird anyway, but Home Alone me is…weirder. More weird? Whatever. You wouldn’t think it would affect me much, considering I was an only child who was alone a lot growing up and then I lived by myself for like seven years before I got married. But, yeah. Home Alone me is an odd duck.

Basically, I forget how to feed myself when I’m home alone. Not in the sense that I run around smearing pureed squash on the dog instead of eating it (the squash I mean, not the dog. He’s kind of an ‘it’ because he’s neutered, but I definitely wouldn’t eat him. Wait, what? Jesus, reel it in Shelby. Gahd.), but more in the “let’s eat three bites each of several disparate foodstuffs, or just a generally inappropriate amount of any one thing and call that dinner” sense. One night last week it was smoked cheese, maple creme cookies and chicken soup. Not all together, but like…a few bites here, a few bites there. One other night I had like four pieces of bread and butter, and a beer. NOT AN APPROPRIATE DINNER ON ANY LEVEL.

It’s not just dinner. Pretty much any meal where I don’t have to feed another human being other than myself, I end up eating strangely. This afternoon, for example, Mark is out doing a thing and I’ve managed to eat: four dates, a handful of salt-and-vinegar almonds, and a “sandwich” for “lunch” (picture me air-quoting those). The “sandwich” consisted of a piece of steak left over from last night’s dinner, stuck between two pieces of the Cheddar Parmesan sourdough bread I made yesterday. No dressing, no veggies, no accoutrements of any kind. I didn’t even fucking slice the steak or warm it up first!

You think I’m kidding but I’m not:


Seems legit.


I guess throwing a steak between two pieces of bread and calling it a sandwich isn’t THAT weird in the grand scheme of things, but still. For someone who actually really likes to cook, you’d think I could have come up with something a little more ambitious to gnaw on.