Monday, February 23, 2015


Now I've had the flu before, quite a few times actually, so I wasn't expecting anything particularly spectacular when I found out that I would be trying out and reviewing this year's strain.  I had built up a considerable dent in my immune system, what with attending a three-day wedding drink-a-thon the weekend immediately prior, so I think I caught it at its best.

The initial impression I had wasn't akin to past flus, since they sometimes lead you on with minimal symptoms for days before smacking you in the face with the good stuff.  This one, however, came in like naked Miley Cyrus riding a sparkly wrecking ball - unexpected and a little too long.  Tuesday morning I felt fine, then suddenly around 3pm I must've walked outside, stood on the 101 and waited for a semi to hit me because it was at that moment that my entire body started hurting and I decided I was likely on the fast track to the county coroner's office.

While often the flu hits me without warning, I do find that it hits me with everything at once - body aches, headache, sore throat, head cold, cough - but not this time.  This year's glorious visit was marked by specific days dedicated each to their own special, but wildly different, version of hell.  As with a multi-course meal, I shall review this flu in each of its "courses."

Course 1 - This Must Be What Dying Feels Like

My sudden crash into the flu's first stage had me laying in my bed and wondering if this is what cancer patients feel like in their last days.  My head ached, my body ached, my JOINTS ached - I couldn't even sleep because every position, other than "dead," was just too uncomfortable.  I was very thirsty, but my intent to hydrate was derailed by my bladder's intent to stay empty.  As I lay in my bed, convinced I had parasites eating me from the inside and that soon I would simply cease to exist, a mystery for my family and friends to solve and put on Dateline later this year, I wondered where the rest of it was.  You know, the sore throat, coughing, head cold, snot - the works.  But as we know, what is the answer to most dilemmas?  Patience.

Course 2 - Are You Fucking Serious With This Shit?

Course 1 lasted what I would consider slightly too long - both Tuesday and Wednesday were dedicated entirely to my bodily pain, while honestly I would've rather just skipped that altogether.  Thursday revealed a great surprise - my body once again felt normal, but my throat had begun hurting and I could feel the snot building a wall to block my breathing.  This flu was no multi-tasker - it put everything it had into each one of its reigns of hell.

At this point I called my parents to tell them that their initial hypothesis of my being hungover was wrong, and I definitely had the flu and how do I survive without my mommy?  My dad's answer to anything is "orange juice and aspirin" while my mom said a lot more things that I don't remember.  Suffice it to say, Thursday was also spent in bed, but only after a hearty dose of cold meds, orange juice, and a rousing game of "shoot saline up your nose and see what comes out."

Course 3 - Just GO Already.

Friday and Saturday presented themselves without a sore throat but with worsening snot problems, so I felt like I could venture out in to the world.  Not for anything spectacular, I just needed food and desperately wanted someone else to prepare it.  I thought getting outside would be good for me.  Instead, my three-minute drive to Chipotle combined with eating and my three-minute drive home proved to be more physically taxing than climbing the Himalayas, so I napped away the day out of exhaustion instead of my regular boredom.

I also got started on the most addictive medication on the planet - no, not morphine - AFRIN.  Nasal spray.  It clears you up oh so well and then when you feel the congestion coming on, nothing else will suffice.  I knew it was a gamble but I do so love breathing that I took it.  I have yet to know if I will regret this decision.

Now at the end of its run, I am currently only battling slight congestion and extreme exhaustion, which sounds terrible but based on the above is actually rather lovely.


This year's flu was nothing spectacular.  It didn't provide the 8-hour fever of the 2011 flu, nor did it have anywhere near the efficiency of any of the most recent strains.  Drawing it out to a week was petty and unnecessary, but those first few days did pack quite a punch.  My sore throat only made it to "mild" pain and my congestion was simply an annoyance.  Going forward, this flu should focus on extending its efforts to all areas instead of concentrating them at the beginning, or hell, just going for it all in a couple of days so I can get back on my feet more quickly.  Will it be remembered as a bad one?  Not particularly.  Mediocre at best, I'll likely forget about it in a few months.

I give this flu two thumbs down.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015


There's a reason I like writing - I can say whatever I want without someone stopping me in the middle to give their opinion or change the subject or whatever the fuck talkative assholes do.  Ever notice how *most* of my blog posts seem to have a point?  That's because I get to say everything I want to say.

I'm friends with both introverts and extroverts, but I find that the extroverts will interrupt me every time I try to breathe.  I don't know why this happens.  What the fuck do you have to say that's so important?  Do you ever wonder why my stories don't make a lot of sense and take ten thousand hours to tell?  YEAH, BECAUSE YOU KEEP FUCKING INTERRUPTING ME. STOP IT.

Sometimes my mouth goes faster than my brain (that's what she said) so I have to pause and take stock of where I am.  Inevitably, someone sees that pause as a time to insert either a) an opinion on the subject or b) something entirely unrelated that they just thought of.  Once I get them to shut their filthy pie hole, it takes me a second to remember where I was in the story, thus MAKING IT TAKE LONGER.  Then interrupters want to interrupt more because they think I'm taking too long.  WHOSE FAULT IS THAT?  YOURS.  IT'S ALL YOUR FAULT.

Things that make me happy:

- Those types of meetings or groups where someone is only allowed to talk if they're holding the talking stick.  Not only do I hate being interrupted, I hate listening when someone else is interrupted.  It breaks my train of thought, and I was trying to listen to something.  The sound of people talking over one another is like fingernails on a chalkboard to introverts, and they really need to make talking sticks both mandatory in life and bigger, so I can smack the people who don't understand how to TAKE TURNS.

- The courtroom.  Oh, the glorious rules of speaking while in court.  Think about what would happen if there wasn't required silence by the opposing party in a case.  It would probably end up with someone being hauled off to jail and another person on a gurney.  That's why there are these lovely little rules that allow me to speak when it's my turn without being interrupted.  And if I AM interrupted, it's simply by "Objection!" at which point both of us stop talking and the judge decides who is to speak.  The defense attorney can't just sit there during my opening statement and start screaming "That's not true!  He wasn't even driving!  The cars were different colors!  He couldn't have been there at 7am, because he was here!"  And, even though you are technically allowed to object during an opening statement, rarely is something considered prejudicial enough to warrant an objection and generally you make it through without interruption.  It's an amazing feeling.

If I'm not very talkative, it's likely because it's a "talk over each other" situation or I have been shut down by multiple interruptions and have no more energy to communicate verbally.  So take note.  Not only is it rude to interrupt people, ANY person, not just an introvert, it makes our lives a living hell just to explain something that would've taken three minutes but your incessant talking drug it out to ten minutes and you have the balls to tell me I tell bad stories.  So, in conclusion:

Wednesday, February 11, 2015


There's a saying that goes something like "If you treat people who serve you like shit, you're a giant dickbag, even if you treat everyone else nicely."  Well that's probably not the exact quote but you get the point.   The vast majority of people have worked in restaurant or retail work at some point in their lives, including me.  It's absolutely awful.  If anyone needs to be treated nicely, it's these people, for multiple reasons.  It's part of why I'm such a condescending bitch.

1) Their lives suck. Or at least this part of their life.  The number of assholes you run across as a waiter or store clerk in just one month of work is enough to make you think the world is full of ungrateful shitheads.  Which, now that I think about it, it probably is, but at least once you're past this point in your life you will be dealing with them from a different perspective, i.e. perhaps their boss, or their equal.

You may very well be the nicest person a server has seen all day. Seriously.  The fact that they get one table out of 50 that doesn't complain about something and says "thank you" might literally be the one thing keeping them from running through a plate glass window into the middle of the street. 

2) They're getting paid shit.  Servers work on tips, and most retail clerks don't even get commission, so they have to put up with your bullshit without any bonus.  They just do it because they need a job and they're 19 and at the moment that's all they're qualified to do. 

When I was 19, I worked at Abercrombie for two months.  This being my first job, I didn't ask  how much the position paid in my interview, because I thought that was presumptuous, or rude, or showed I was only interested in money.  I was, and the clothing discount, but I didn't want them to know that.  My first paycheck came and it turned out I was making $5.25 an hour.  One hour of work won't even buy me a combo at McDonald's.

People would ask me ridiculous things.  They'd look at me and think "Oh, she's probably in control of this whole operation, I'm sure if I tell her my problem she can fix it."  At the cash register, ironically my favorite spot, one woman came up with three XL men's shirts and asked me if we had any XXLs.  I politely said that Abercrombie doesn't make XXLs and that I was sorry.  She decided to tell me that "You guys need to start selling XXLs.  You're losing out on a big part of the market.  Why don't you make XXLs?"

Well, as the 19-year-old cashier at one single Abercrombie and Fitch store out of hundreds, I am absolutely able to make that change happen.  ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?  Do I look like the CEO?  Do I even look like the manager?  Do you have any concept of how few fucks I give?  I don't even care if you buy THAT shirt.  I'm not making any more money.  I don't care if Abercrombie gets a whole new market share with big boy shirts, they won't give any of that to me.  I'm here to pass my time, take your money, give you change, and get your annoying ass out of here.  People thought I was an intern when I was actually a full-fledged DA, do you think I looked any more important when I was 19??

I quit after two months because the pay wasn't enough to justify the ridiculousness.  People complaining about their clothes falling apart when they exchanged them, as though I cared even as much as I cared about what color socks you're wearing.  I became the sounding board for anyone who had problems.  Eventually I just heard 3 words and said "let me call a manager."  It's their job to deal with idiots who want to complain, and they don't get paid enough to deal with it either.

When I was 22, I was a hostess at California Pizza Kitchen.  I never applied nor asked to be a waitress.  The managers thought it was weird that I was about to go to law school yet I wanted to be a hostess instead of a waitress, and kept asking me if I wanted to train to be a server.  I flat out told them that I'd get fired in one day, because I'm mean and I'm clumsy.  They didn't ask after that.

The hostess is actually a pretty shitty job, especially in a new restaurant that has a wait list.  You're keeping people from their tables, the one thing they want.  You're the gatekeeper, and everyone hates the gatekeeper.  Since this was the first and only CPK in Austin at the time, it was almost always on a wait.  Some people were nice and just dealt with it.  Others were giant douchebags.

In the back we had two-person booths.  One day, on a particularly long wait, a woman came up and said she had a party of 6.  I told her it would be about 30 minutes and she sighed loudly and gave me her name for the list.  About three minutes later, a couple, as in two human beings, walked in and we happened to have a few two person booths in the back, so I grabbed menus and walked them back.  When I returned to the hostess stand, the party of 6 woman was standing there.

"Why did you just seat them?  They came in after us!  We should've been seated first!"

In my most condescending voice, I pointed back to the two-tops and said "Ma'am, they were a party of two.  You have a party of six.  If you would like to try and fit your party of six in those two-person booths back there, you are welcome to, but I was under the impression you wanted six seats for six people."

She had no response, and huffed back outside.

Then there were the people who said we weren't "kid friendly" because the fire marshall wouldn't allow us to put high chairs at the ends of booths, only at a table in a chair's spot.  "If I put you in that booth with the high chair, I will get fired. Not only that, but immediately after firing me, they will take the high chair, put it back, and you will be in the same position you are now."

Some of the stories I heard from the waiters made me wonder how they didn't pour drinks on people.  Which is exactly why I never became a waitress.

So here's some advice - waiters have the power to do a lot of gross things to your food.  If you're a dickhead about something where you could've easily been polite, they will likely adulterate your food somehow.  At least I hope they do.  The waiter did not cook your steak, make your pasta, bake your cake, or put too much spice in your food.  He is also not allowed to taste-test it to make sure it matches your standards, so when it comes and doesn't taste right, he's not the person to yell at.  Really you shouldn't yell at anyone at all, because mistakes happen and if you don't like your food that's likely your own personal opinion and not that of the hundreds of other people who order that same dish all the time.

You are not better than people in the service industry.  Likely you were once there yourself, and if you weren't, consider yourself lucky.  Obviously there are bad waiters and waitresses and people who don't listen or slack off, and those people are fair game.  But most people just want to do their job without getting yelled at for putting too many beans on your burrito.  It's not necessary to tell a restaurant they should "never run out" of something.  Yeah, that's kind of a given, but likely they have little to no control over that.  If everyone orders something one day, they'll run out.  Shit happens.  And it's EXTREMELY not necessary to drive back to a restaurant and yell at the manager because someone didn't fill your FREE SIDES OF SALSA all the way to the top of the container.  Yes, that happened today while I was eating.  I wanted to punch that woman in her throat.

So the lesson is simply "don't be a dickhead."  Or at least, "wait til someone has been a dickhead to you, THEN you may be a dickhead back."  I have in the past and will not hesitate to call someone out for being a dickhead to someone who is trying their hardest.  So you might be humiliated in front of everyone AND get spit in your food.  Have a nice day.

Sunday, February 1, 2015


Yo, 18-year-old self -

So I heard some shit about this bitch I used to know... no wait, those are Dr. Dre lyrics. Please disregard.  Anyway, I'm here from the future to help you out, and perhaps let you in on a few secrets that might save you some pain, time and money.

First of all, I know you're dying to know - no, you're not married yet; no, you did not get fat; yes, you did finally grow boobs.  Sadly, however, you're also not super rich or famous, nor do hoverboards exist.  I'm sorry to break it to you this way, but it's better to be prepared.

In the last 15 years I've learned a little bit about life, and I thought it would be nice of me to give you some tips seeing as the ride has been a little bumpy.

1) You will not marry your high school boyfriend, no matter how great and awesome he is, even if you are still friends with him and his wife 15 years later (Shit, that reminds me, I need to text her...).  The 1% of people who married their high school sweethearts that don't get divorced are like unicorns, and no amount of magical thinking will make you as a teenager able to make decisions about your future romantic life because you are legitimately a completely different person in 15 years.  So go get those meds, cry it out and keep on truckin' because you don't need to transfer to a school you don't want to go to and get stuck in places you don't want to be for 10 years.

2) You have no idea what you want to do with your life. Trust me, it will change about five times AT LEAST in the course of the next 15 years, so just roll with it.  Get a liberal arts degree.  Yes, I said it, LIBERAL ARTS.  Take lots of courses in lots of shit and learn about yourself.  Figure out what the hell you want, who the hell you are and what you enjoy doing instead of getting an advertising degree that, due to technological advancements, has a shelf life of approximately two years because Facebook did not exist until a few months before you graduated, Twitter wasn't even a mere gleam in the eye of its founder and Instagram was probably a name for an IKEA shelving unit in 2004.

3) Go to law school.  Yeah, you heard me, I'm not telling you not to go.  I'm also not saying you will want to be a lawyer for the rest of your life, or even for part of your life, but right now your shy ass is getting stepped all over and you need to nut up.  Why go to law school?  Two reasons - first, you make amazing friends and have an amazing time and for the first time figure out how to be independent; second, because law school gives you the somewhat over-the-top confidence that can legitimately get you WHATEVER YOU WANT.  Yes, law school will turn you from a shy girl with a smart mouth into a bitch that gets things done.  A whole magical world will open up for you, one where you can skip the line at clubs to being the only person on your "weather delayed" flight to get a free hotel room because you won't take no for an answer.  The ability to terrify someone without cursing, raising your voice or threatening bodily harm is a beautiful tool and it works OH SO WELL.  Take comfort in the fact that you may or may not get three people fired who, for various reasons, definitely deserved it.

4) FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, DO NOT TAKE THE WILLIAMSON COUNTY JOB.  If there were three doors, one being a garden of flowers, one being a palace made of ice cream and the last being THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS OF BLOODTHIRSTY ZOMBIES this job is the ZOMBIE DOOR.  AVOID THE FUCKING ZOMBIE DOOR AT ALL COSTS.

5) You know how you drive a beautifully restored 1966 Mustang that embodies all that is glorious and good in the world?  Yeah, now you drive a Honda Civic.  And you fucking love your Honda Civic.  It fits all your friends, it's reasonably priced, it gets great gas mileage - yes, you will turn into an adult in all ways, including understanding the term "unemployment" and "blogging in bed on a Saturday night."  Shit gets real, man, but if you're prepared, you can handle it.

6) Those people you're about to meet when you go off to USC and go through rush?  You're going to see them all in two weeks at a wedding for one of your best friends.  Yes, 15 years later.  And listen to Meredith - she seems too cool for you, and she is, but she is the secret to learning how to have fun in college.  So when she wants you to play drinking games like "Kings Cup," beer pong, and "chug this because I told you so" JUST FUCKING DO IT.

7) In 2003 you will get to see Robin Williams do standup live.  Don't ever underestimate the awesomeness of that moment.

8) Remember when I told you that you have no idea what you want to do?  I was wrong.  You were right.  You've known since you were eight.  You know it right this second.  You wrote it in your senior bio in the Hyline yearbook - you're going to go to LA and you're going to write comedy.  What would happen if you actually followed that dream RIGHT NOW?  Or maybe you really need the journey to get there.  I don't know, but I'm telling you now, 15 years later, that you were right. 

I remember what it was like to be you, and no offense, I'm SO MUCH BETTER NOW.  I mean, you could eat an entire pizza and not gain a pound, practically kick your own face (note: take up yoga before you lose your flexibility, asshole) and get through all of college without knowing how to study (pro tip - learn the summer before law school because, well, everyone else already knows how and that's kinda important there), but now you have confidence, a way better sense of how to properly dress yourself and a cute, functioning nose. 

Oh, and you maaaaay need medication for the crazies but don't you go worrying about that just yet.

- You, from the future.