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Oh Hai, Anxiety.

September 22, 2014

Last week Meredith sent me this link via Gchat and said, “Here. This made me laugh and think of you.” Go ahead. I’ll wait. It is actually really funny.

My only saving grace with my extreme anxiety over things that will most likely never happen is the fact that I can laugh at myself and say, “Ha, Self… You are NOT going to get Mad Cow Disease because you ate a hamburger.” (Obviously, I’ll continue to worry about whatever it is that doesn’t need to be worried about; however, I can at least make the people around me laugh while doing so.

Anyways, almost everything on that list applies to me. Not really the haircut one as much because I do change my hair quite a bit, but the rest? Absolutely. I checked the mail obsessively for an entire six months the first year I did my own taxes because I was convinced I entered something incorrectly and the IRS would be sending me a letter saying that I had to serve hard time in some terrible prison similar to Alcatraz. When the Bird Flu happened in 2005, I stockpiled Ramen and bottled water and didn’t tell a single soul I was doing it. Hey – it’s every man/woman for themselves in the Apocalypse. The WebMD one on that list? Magnify that by about 1,000 and you have my level of anxiety. But as I was reading, I realized they left a few off, so let me enlighten the rest of you on the world of my never-ending list of worries and reaction gifs because I’m nothing if not a band-wagoner.

1) Car Accidents – If there happens to be any car accidents that make the news, I will automatically assume it’s a family member and they’ve been rushed to the hospital as I sit at a red light twiddling my thumbs.

“But Whitney, they said it was a semi-truck and a large F150 pulling a trailer full of cows on I75…”

YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT CIRCUMSTANCES HAVE HAPPENED SINCE I LAST SPOKE TO MY ENTIRE FAMILY. MAYBE ONE OF THEM DECIDED TO HELP A FRIEND OUT AND HAUL ALL THEIR COWS AWAY. YOU DON’T KNOW.

2) Big Decisions – I’m easily overwhelmed by large decisions so you know what my go-to method is of dealing with such things is? Shutting down completely. When we moved last month I actually thought at any moment I was going to drop dead of a heart attack because it was just that stressful. Everyone was asking my opinion on things like furniture and paint color and it was all entirely too much. At one point, I just laid down in the middle of the floor, face first, and cried because, you know, I’m an adult.

3) Viruses – I hear of any “new” virus popping up in the news and it’s game over. Plague is here. Stockpile your Ramen now because shit is about to go down. Flu season? Just plan on not seeing me until April. I’ll be hibernating and avoiding most public places. Hand sanitizer? Buy some stock because that bad boy is about to peak. Also, if you work in the medical field I will pester you with questions regarding my current state.

“I have a runny nose and I’ve been coughing a little bit…”

“Whitney, it’s probably just a cold.”

“Wrong. It’s terminal and I’m dying. Spread the word.”

4) Not Answering Your Phone – My cousin, Emilee, actually pointed this one out (so if you can’t tell, the nerves in my family? They be a fragile thing, m’dear) but if I call you and you don’t answer your phone and then if you proceed to NOT call back, I’m already planning your funeral and halfway through my seven (twelve?) stages of grief.  In fact, if it’s your house phone, I’ve completely envisioned either a) a burglar broke into your house in the middle of the night to simply murder your entire family for laughs or b) you’ve fallen down and broken your neck in the most unfortunate landing. So, until you call back I’ll just be here, alone, imagining what terrible things have most likely befallen you.

5) Vacations – For most people, the week or so leading up to vacations is a time of excitement as you count down to the day your flight takes off or the day you hit the road. Not me. Those two weeks before vacation are typically filled with me worrying over every possible worst case scenario. What if we all catch some sort of stomach bug the night before? Or even worse, what if one of us starts throwing up ON the drive down?? If I’m flying, I’ll spend my spare time catching very Final Destination-ish type things in my every day life. That light bulb just blew when I flipped the switch? Sure sign that it’s supposed to represent what’s going to happen to the plane mid-flight – EXPLODE.

What I Imagine Happening Before I Leave On Any Vacation

 

So yeah, how excited are you to not deal with me on a daily basis?

We Might Have What You Call A Problem…

September 19, 2014

We bought a new house last month. I KNOW, right?! Why am I not showing you pictures of our lovely new abode in all of its glory? Well, because I don’t have it decorated… And there’s only a few things hung on the walls… And well, it just isn’t ready. I promise that one day there will be a post on it. Today is not that day.

Today I’m talking about the fact that I believe that we have a spider infestation in our house. Do you KNOW me? Because if so, then you happen to know my debilitating fear of the disgusting creatures. So every time I walk into a room in this new house, I’m met with this:

spider-hell

Ok, it’s not exactly like that. With my imagination though… It seems like this is the corner in every room in my house. It’s more like these guys are everywhere:

wolf spider

 

I know that they aren’t poisonous but it doesn’t made them any less horrifying. Seriously, we find them EVERYWHERE. This morning I walked over to the sink to rinse out a glass and there was one just hanging out in the sink. He met a terrible fate called “the disposal.” I totally get the heebie jeebies if I think about them too long because at night… I’m positive they’re crawling on me. Just having little dance parties on my face. I’m prone to nightmares about spiders crawling on me anyways and have been known to get up and completely strip the bed in the middle of the night because I’m convinced there’s a nest of them huddled in the sheets.

Anyways, last Saturday Evie wasn’t feeling well and she had fallen asleep on the couch downstairs and I went upstairs to pick up and make the beds.  She has a pink Pillow Pet that always sits on the end of her bed and it had fallen on the floor. Daydreaming and off in my own little world, I reached down and grabbed the pillow off the floor without even bothering to look at it. So, for a good 30 seconds, I have this pillow in my hand and am arranging it on the bed and fluffing it so it doesn’t look too smashed. Then, I looked down.

pillow spider

(That’s a crappy picture… I know. It’s just that I’m entirely too lazy to go about the business of cropping it and making it look pretty because really the point is the gigantic spider that was just sitting there and contemplating eating my hand as I lovingly arranged my daughter’s toy on her bed.)

I have no idea how my heart didn’t completely stop because it felt like it did. I froze because I could see it’s beady little eyes freaking looking at me! And then! When I slowly regained movement in my legs I inched toward the door and its eyes FOLLOWED ME! Like I could see them moving!

So, I did what any adult woman would do and sprinted down the hall to find an old shoe I didn’t want anymore and decided this guy’s time had come. I raised the shoe in the air and slowly inched towards the beast, thinking any swift movements might send it flying toward my face, and then WHAP! I slammed the shoe down on top of it. Only I didn’t factor in that the pillow was really fluffy so when the show came back up the spider FLEW in to the air in my general direction.

And in (not my) proudest moment I let out a bloodcurdling “EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP!”

Not a scream.

An “eep.”

Evie, who was still napping on the couch at the point heard me all the way downstairs and came sprinting up the steps all the while screaming, “Mom! Mom, are you ok?!”

So, this is the event that prompted me to tell Michael that we have to call an exterminator.

His solution was to rent “Arachnophobia.”

Thanks, honey.

Sweet Disappointment

September 17, 2014

Sweet Pickles**Before I begin, let me just preempt this entire debacle by saying I have no idea why this (THIS!) is what prompted me to blog again. It randomly came to me earlier at work this week and I thought, “Hey… that would make a good blog post” so here we are.**

When I was a wee lass of about 4 years old there was something that my mom ordered for me – Sweet Pickles Bus. Not only was it fun, it was educational! Hooray for my mom being ahead of the curve and going for the educational toys in the 80s as opposed to the ones that just made a shit ton of noise and lit up. (Or the ones probably composed entirely of lead paint or something equally dangerous.) Regardless, she came to me one sunny morning as I ate a delicious buttered Pop-Tart and softly said, “Sweetie, I bet your Sweet Pickles Bus comes today.”

The excitement… I can STILL remember how utterly and completely excited I was. But first, let’s watch a quick video:

I mean, how could a child not be excited?  The tune, so catchy! The games! They look so fun! Who cares if I’m learning?! I’m getting toys delivered directly to my door like I’m some sort of royalty! I calmly got up from the kitchen table and asked Mom if I could wait by the front door because in my head the mail comes in the morning and this just isn’t any mail… THIS IS A BUS FULL OF HUGE ANIMALS DELIVERING MY TOYS.

Did you catch that?

Four-Year-Old-Whitney was certain that the boring old mailman wasn’t worthy of delivering this delightful gift. NO, NO. This was a job for the characters of Sweet Pickles and no one else. At least, this is all what the commercial implied.

So, there I sat, patiently waiting for a giant bus, in the shape of a pickle to pull up to my house and a gaggle of animals to come clamoring out and bring me my goodies. A REASONABLE DREAM. I had, of course, devised a plan. I would charm them with my personality and wit, so much so that they would choose to stay and play the games with me.

What about the other kids that were waiting on their Sweet Pickles? SCREW ‘EM.

A happier time... A time before I was marred by the pain of disappointment.

A happier time… A time before I was marred by the pain of disappointment. Plus: Floating Head.

I waited… and waited… and waited… and oh! Some movement! There’s someone pulling up to the house! And he’s getting out and he has…a really dull looking brown box that has some sort of printed label on it and some worn off lettering. He very non-ceremoniously rings the doorbell as I look up at him with my giant, wistful eyes. (I don’t remember this but I like to imagine him puffing on a cigarette because this is the 80s and no one paid attention to things like chemicals back then and you could smoke on planes for God’s sake, so why shouldn’t the mailman be smoking a Marlboro in my flashback?) My mom comes and answers the door, thanking the man for dropping off the package and I stand there looking at him like, “What the hell are you doing here? You’re not driving a pickle. Also? You’re a human. This is all wrong.” My eyes slowly narrowing as the cold wave of disappointment hits me.

WHERE WAS THE DAMN PICKLE BUS?!

WHERE WERE MY ANIMAL FRIENDS?!

THIS IS BULLSHIT!

My mom, being completely unaware that her child had just experienced her first taste of real disappointment, ushered me away from the door, excitedly hurrying me to the kitchen table. As she pulled out the first packet of games along with the plastic bus, she noted the pitiful look on my face and asked me what was wrong.

That’s when the dam broke and the tears flooded down my face, “I THOUGHT THE GREEN PICKLE ON WHEELS WAS COMING TO OUR HOUSE AND I WAS GOING TO GET TO PLAY WITH A DUCK!!!!!!!!!!”

Utter confusion. That or she believed that her daughter had possibly ingested some sort of hallucenogenic and was considering a quick phone call to the Poison Control Hotline. (Wouldn’t be the first time with me… Had ‘em on speed dial… Sparklers… I ate them once.) As she slowly realized what that wretched commercial had done she understood my disappointment and tried to explain to me that no, the bus doesn’t actually bring the games and no, those animals don’t actually come to your house to play. But seriously, try explaining false advertising to a four year old. You can’t. It’s impossible. I eventually got over my disappointment at the lack of talking animals in my house and my mom and I played Sweet Pickles for a good portion of the day.

But by God, if I wasn’t waiting at that door next month with a glimmer of hope that damn bus really WOULD show up this time.

Stupid kid.

Blogher Book Review: Let’s Pretend This Never Happened

March 7, 2013

This is a paid review for Blogher Book Club, however, all thoughts and opinions are my very own. Not a robot’s. Or someone posing else posing as me. (That would be weird.)

Image

Oh, Jenny Lawson (otherwise known as The Bloggess to those who are around on the internets quite a bit.) Her first book, Let’s Pretend This Never Happened, is a memoir chalked full of hysterical stories stemming from her odd, yet enjoyable, childhood and on into her adult life. You should know that if you’re easily offended by the mention of one’s female ladybits or by the word f*ck then you should probably skip this one, because there is a LOT of both in this book.

If you’re a fan of Lawson’s blog then suffice to say that you’ll also be a fan of her book. At times the stories feel a bit repetitive (this is only if you read her site) but the way she strings them together will leave you laughing until you cry. Her father, the taxidermist, provides some of the funnier material for her to write about as Jenny does seem to have an odd obsession with taxidermied animals. it’s Lawson’s style of writing that really pulls you in. It’s an honest look at someone living with a mental illness and it shows us all that sometimes, you just have to break down a little to survive.

If you’ve read this book, if you enjoy the art of taxidermy or possibly just talking about your female lady garden, then come on over and discuss with us. I doubt you’ll be disappointed. If nothing less, you’ll have a really awesome story to tell about some weirdos you read about on the internet.

Blogher Book Review: Touch and Go

February 6, 2013

This is a paid review for Blogher Book Club, however, all thoughts and opinions are my very own. Not a robot’s. Or someone posing else posing as me. (That would be weird.)

While I’ve never read one of Lisa Gardner’s books before, Touch and Go started off with a bang (albeit, an unsettling bang with the whole discussion of how pain tastes like oranges to Libby…) The Denbe family, Justin and Libby, come home after dinner one night to find their front door open and before they can figure out what’s happening, both are brutally attacked with tasers. As their daughter, Ashlyn, comes downstairs she, too, is attacked. The rest of the story follows Detective Tessa Leoni as she struggles to put the pieces together. She doesn’t believe this was a random attack and as more and more of the story unfolds we learn that maybe the Denbe family wasn’t as All-American as they seemed and just might have been harboring some dark secrets of their own.

While a good part of this book was thrilling (the parts focusing on the Denbe family) some of it left a lot to be desired. It’s hard to actually give any details without revealing too much of the plot. I struggled to really care about Tessa and the details involving the investigation actually bordered on boring. I was much more interested in the Denbes. I believe that if suspense thrillers were really your cup of tea this book would be hard to put down but as it was, I had a hard time making myself finish it.

So, I don’t know. Maybe I was in a mood. Maybe this book would’ve been better had I been drooling at the mouth for some sort of detective story. As it is, I thought the book was well-written and it certainly had its twists. It’s just not necessarily a book I’d pick up to read again. But! Don’t let me sway you. You might love it! (Seriously. You could.) Regardless, you should still come hang out with us to talk about it if you’ve read it. Come on. You know you want to.

Blogher Book Club Review: My Life Map

November 15, 2012

This is a paid review for Blogher Book Club, however, all thoughts and opinions are my very own. Not a robot’s. Or someone posing else posing as me. (That would be weird.)

When I first saw the summary of My Life Map I initially thought to pass on this review because self-help books really aren’t my cup of tea. I can only look deep within my soul for so long before I’m like, “Hey, me, let’s go get a cheeseburger… This soul searching is for the birds.”  But then because of the crazy gal that I am I decided to review this one. Turns out? It was an excellent choice.

The book is definitely more of a journal as it has large portions of most pages saved for writing. The book asks questions about your past as well as where you see yourself going. However, it does so in a way that doesn’t come across as overwhelming. The creation of the life map takes place in increments that are broken down so that you’re looking at tiny sections of your goals or past occurrences.  In order to place together the big picture, you have to get all the pieces in line first.

The book gives four examples of fictional characters’ life maps. This allows the reader to get a general idea of how a completed life map looks, but honestly they’re not needed. The instructions for how to create your own life map are so easy to follow that I didn’t find myself referring to them once I started filling out the book. If anything, it was just interesting to see these characters’ choices and goals.

Now, will I ever actually pin my life map up somewhere so that I can draw inspiration from it? Probably not. I’m not a person who usually does such things. I’m not a big journal-writer, nor do I need visual things for inspiration. But! That’s not to say that this exercise was a total waste of my time. It wasn’t! In fact, it did let me realize the things I needed to put a couple of small goals into motion so that’s a plus.

Overall, this book was great for what it was. Would I have ever picked it up in the store? No, but that’s only because self-help books usually make me roll my eyes, so blame me and my judgy-ness. If you’re interested in talking more about My Life Map come join us at Blogher to discuss!

Blogher Book Club Review: Matched

October 4, 2012

This is a paid review for Blogher Book Club, however, all thoughts and opinions are my very own. Not a robot’s. Or someone posing else posing as me. (That would be weird.)

Ohhh, Dytstopia… I should’ve known you were going to steer me wrong at one point… Matched by Ally Condie is where it all went wrong for me.

Set in the future (obviously) Cassia is fine, living in her perfect little house, with her perfect little life in this perfect bubble of a world. The Society regulates everything right down to the person you’re going to marry and live with happily ever after. (Think: Arranged marriages but to an extreme, scientific level) Cassia likes knowing that the pressure of finding the perfect man is off her shoulders. (I mean, who wouldn’t?! Think about how much less stressful high school would be without worrying about finding the perfect boyfriend!) The Society takes care everything Cassia could need. They match up her personality, likes, dislikes and interests with a boy who is perfectly suited to her. That’s exciting, right? Sure, she might have to move away from her home and her best friends (one of which is Xander, resident hottie) but she can handle that for a perfect life.

Everything is going perfectly when Cassia is matched with Xander (less exciting because Xannnnnder?? We know you, but still mildly relieving because seriously, Cassia, think of who it COULD’VE BEEN. At least Xander is hot.), but then, for a split second, another face pops on the screen. It’s Ky Markham. Cassia doesn’t know much about him and knows she wasn’t supposed to see his face, but that doesn’t stop her from wondering if maybe, somehow, The Society got it wrong for once and it’s Ky she’s supposed to be with. The rest of the novel follows Cassia as she struggles with the decision to pursue what happened with Ky’s face accidentally flashing up on the giant screen or to live her life as The Society thinks she should, with Xander.

I’m going to be honest… I hated this book. I really, really wanted to like it but I just couldn’t get past how absolutely BORING Cassia was. You would think with this life changing decision on her hands and the risk she’s taking (The Society does not like it when someone decides to go all rogue when choosing their mates. What do you think this is, Cassia – a free country?!) would make her somewhat exciting, but it doesn’t. As she develops her friendship with Ky she basically gets more boring, which you would think is impossible because she’s a) already the most boring person ever and b) she’s contemplating an escape from The Society somehow, so one would be lead to believe that would be an exciting adventure. No. It’s not. Thanks, Cassia.

So, there. I said it. I didn’t like Matched, but! That doesn’t mean I don’t want to talk about it anymore. We can discuss why we DIDN’T like it, if that’s the case! Doesn’t that sound fun?

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