Tag Archives: humor

Lost: Much-loved Sofa

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There’s a link on our Neighborhood Council website entirely devoted to lost & found pets, just in case little Fluffy wanders off in search of Starkist Tuna instead his standard bowl of Fancy Feast, or if an owner’s tag-less mutt breaks off his leash and ends up dodging cars on a freeway onramp. It’s a very useful tool for reuniting loved ones.Screen shot 2014-07-14 at 11.52.06 PM


IMG_7084 Another lost & found tool was not particularly useful if you were lactose intolerant, so that’s probably why you no longer see ads for lost children on the back of milk cartons asking “Have you seen me?” I wonder how often someone six states away from the child’s disappearance noticed the photo and remarked over a bowl of Cap’n Crunch, “Hey… If you ignore the nose piercing, shaved head and the neck tattoo of the Virgin Mary, doesn’t that kid look like Crystal from reform school if she was 12 years younger?” (for all those of you who are offended, you inadvertently stumbled on a humor blog and you should return to your Google search and click on something that ends in “.org”).

IMG_7291There are resources if you’ve lost your child or can’t find your pet; however there doesn’t seem to be a good way to locate a piece of treasured furniture that has gone missing.

Lately I’ve been noticing an uptick in the number of lost furnishings throughout my neighborhood. Sofas, chairs, desks, mattresses, bookshelves – even full living room sectionals can be found on street corners, in alleys,  behind apartment buildings or hiding in empty lots. My heart goes out to them because they look so sad. I imagine their owners pouring through Pennysaver ads and stopping traffic abruptly when they see a sign posted on a phone pole. They’re hoping the handwritten scribble says, “Found: Brown Sofa. Springs exposed and missing one cushion.” But no… it’s always another damn lost cat.IMG_6600

Sometimes the furniture only appears to be a few years old, but more often than not, it is obviously well-loved and looks like it could have been in a family’s (or crazy cat lady’s) possession for decades or more. The owners must be distraught over the loss of their coffee table with their 4-year old’s carvings and sharpie illustrations of SpongeBob SquarePants. Or the sofa that appears to have been the actual birthplace of a litter of puppies. Or the mattress that contains so many memories of successful evenings initiated at the single’s bars. Such treasured furnishings are irreplaceable.

IMG_7340I’m not really sure how these important pieces of furniture magically transport themselves from an owner’s living room, office or bedroom into a weeded area behind a chain link fence, but I have a few theories:

1. Burglars were in the process of stealing these treasured furnishings, but didn’t secure them properly to their truck, van, wagon, or other method of transportation, and the sofa, et al. fell off and landed on the afore-mentioned street corner, alley, etc.IMG_7085

2. Aliens (as in ET – the Extra-Terrestrial, not as in swimming from Cuba or following coyotes through the desert “illegal aliens”) noticed these functional and comfortable human contraptions and decided they wanted them for themselves, but after beaming them to their spaceships they realized that since their bodies are far from human, the furnishings are not actually as functional and comfortable as they originally thought, so the furniture was abruptly tossed from the alien spaceship and landed in the new spot on earth.

3. Perhaps for easier moving while rearranging furniture, the owners attached wheels to the furniture, but during the recent minor earthquakes, the furniture rolled out of their homes and down the street, losing their wheels along the way.

Screen shot 2014-07-15 at 12.01.07 AM4. An angry roommate with vengeance in his heart took the furniture and hid it where the legitimate owner couldn’t find it.

5. Ditto #4, but instead of an angry roommate, it’s an unscrupulous criminal who has stolen the furniture and is demanding a ransom for its safe return.

IMG_7066These unfortunate furniture owners must be drowning in pools of their own tears. I feel for them, but I am even more concerned about the horrifying experience endured these young sofas, chairs and mattresses by being exposed to the cruel elements. Scorching sun, brutal wind, torrential rain, and attacks from lawn sprinklers and hoodlums can transform these innocent furnishings into tragic victims that may never completely recover from their ordeal. They may sit silent and ignored for weeks, months, possibly years (depending on the neighborhood and the efficacy of their Sanitation Departments), and in most cases, their worried owners may never be found.

IMG_6281Within this blog post, I am sharing the photos I have taken of some of the lost furniture I have found in my neighborhood over the past few weeks. If any of these treasured furnishings look familiar to you, please respond in the comments below.

In advance, I’d like to say: You are very welcome! I am so pleased to be able to reunite you with your old friend.




Filed under Humor, Satire

What to Expect When You’re Expecting the Royal Baby

Disclaimer: Not the real Royal Baby.

Disclaimer: Not the real Royal Baby.

Handmaidens have guided Kate Middleton through nine long months of holding her hair as she vomited morning sickness into the royal throne and dabbing at the sweat build up (correction: perspiration) that collected under the Duchess of Cambridge’s enlarged bosoms these past summer months. Prince William (AKA the Duke of Cambridge) spent a number of hours calmly barking “Push, my Lady! Push!” as doctors and nurses donning taffeta and top hats tended to the Duchess’ labor. And finally, on the 22nd of July in the year of our Lord two thousand thirteen, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named-Yet, the future heir of the kingdom of Great Britain, slid out the birth canal like every other vaginal birth baby in the history of the world, and was born.

Yet unlike every other vaginal birth baby in the history of the world, the rest of this baby’s life will be quite different.

Even though Willie and Katie will most likely only be ministering to the Royal Baby during photo ops, dozens of their loyal staff have participated in months of classes on caring for the infant upon its arrival to its home in the nursery of Kensington Palace. Hopefully the Duchess and Duke also sat in on the seminars, just in case their employees depart unexpectedly to write a tell-all book or become special guests on Oprah.

Here is a sample of their schooling from the symposium entitled:

What to Expect When You’re Expecting the Royal Baby

Diapering the Royal Baby: Even before he exited the hospital’s neonatal unit, millions of the future king’s subjects were already kissing his royal butt, so obviously much training was put into taking care of his bottom. Absorbent cotton grown exclusively from the United Kingdom’s dominion of South Africa will be crafted with a covering made from 2,000 thread count Egyptian linen. An olfactory expert has been enlisted who will smell the scent of the of the baby’s bowel movement the moment it exits his royal rectum. Without hesitation, this employee (whom the staff has affectionately nicknamed “Sir Brown Noser”) will whisk the baby away and remove the troubling turd. Sir Brown Noser will be accompanied by another aide, the Humidity Homer, who will insert his finger into the diaper every 60 seconds to see if the little tot has wet himself. This Dynamic Duo will be joined by a larger team who will gently cleanse the baby’s bottom with only the purest, most natural soaps, then massage fragrant lavender lotion onto his chubby cheeks. Maybe the ones on his face as well.

Breastfeeding the Royal Baby: Apparently there is a lactation consultant who is recognized world-wide in only the most elite circles as being enormously skilled in the art of forcing a newborn to latch on to a nipple, no matter how prim and proper that nipple may be. Yet this expert is so discreet, no one knows her name or what she looks like (or even if she is a she). Known only under the pseudonym The Queen of Suck, she has advised everyone from Angelina Jolie to Octomom on the best way to breastfeed a baby. The confidentiality agreement is so airtight that she (or he) is not allowed to discuss the details of angling Mother Kate’s breast into feeding position lest the Milk Maiden be put to death by drowning in a vat of formula.

Getting the Royal Baby to Sleep: Genuine eunuchs will be flown in from China to wave palm fronds over the Royal Baby during naptime and a trio of Benedictine Monks will sing three-part harmonies of Gregorian chants. The royal bassinet has been fitted with a 10-inch memory foam mattress and a 21st century “Magic Fingers” device which contains 12 different speed settings which the baby may choose himself based on his squirming direction.

Playing with the Royal Baby: Three of the most popular American My Gym teachers have been flown across the pond to teach the Royal Baby to play peek-a-boo and pat-a-cake. They have been instructing Kate and William for the past two months on games and songs, and basically getting them to behave like the children they were never allowed to be. We are told that the Proud Papa’s favorite children’s song is The Hokey Pokey; however, his manservant is still not used to ignoring his Highness’ instructions: “You put your right line in, you put your right leg out…” and has been known to trip mid-step while carrying in the morning tea.

A pacifier for the Royal Baby?: Even if it is blinged out with the Hope Diamond itself, under no circumstances should the Royal Baby be allowed to establish the crude habit of sucking on a pacifier. Although the pacifier is lifesaver for common folk, its use is known to cause an overbite. On the other hand, the Brits are famous for their bad teeth, so binky-sucking might be allowable in private, as long as its dependence doesn’t continue after the future king has been shoved off to boarding school.

Although with time the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their underlings may become more adept at caring for their little bundle of regal joy, they will soon be thrust into the next stage of infant care: Baby-proofing the Royal Castle. The first item on the list: installing a child-proof lock for the lid of the Royal Throne.


Filed under Humor, Parody, Satire

Happy Father’s Day to the Guy Who Knocked Me Up!

happy-fathers-day-knocked-up-mom-fathers_day-ecards-someecards Life was pretty simple for Tom in the fall of 2004. He owned a tiny, unkempt home in Van Nuys and his three dogs happily roamed the huge yard filled with knee-high weeds. His roommate Travis was a barrel of laughs and they’d have cigar-infused poker games beginning at 10:30 pm on Friday nights and lasting until the wee hours of Saturday. Tom spent his free time watching ballgames and blaring Black Sabbath as he tooled around in his little sports-like car.

IMG_1953“Tom’s such a nice guy,” his friends would say. “It’s a shame he can’t find a nice girl.”

It never occurred to me that I might be that nice girl.

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Emily & Mary 2003

In 1995, I became friends with Tom and his soon-to-be wife, who became his soon-to-be ex.  My ex-husband and I split up in May of 2004 when my daughters were 3 and 7 years old, and six months later, I was frustrated that I couldn’t get the internet to work. I knew Tom was great with computers, so I asked if he could set up my  Mac and offered to make him dinner in exchange.

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Tom & Baby Jake

Apparently he could run rings around a PC, but he’d never touched a Mac. Tom’s roommate gave him a crash course before he came over so he could fake it.

Tom never did get me online, but a year later we were married, and three months after our wedding day I was pregnant. I was already 43 and in perimenopause. He was 38 and apparently had some tenacious swimmers.

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Tom and 4-year old Mary

Suddenly Tom had a new home in a different part of the valley – one where the lawn was expected to be short and the mess shouldn’t be chokeable to young children. He became an instant step dad to my two little girls, and his life was no longer his own.

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Tom & 8-year old Emily

There were constant play dates, slumber parties, and endless backyard karaoke performances with pop songs and show tunes that would make his ears bleed. Tom knew nothing about decorating Barbie’s Dream House, putting on Fashion Polly gowns, or watching predictable Disney Channel sitcoms with overbearing laugh tracks. But he learned.

Today Tom is blaring the brand new Black Sabbath album, but now it’s from his family-friendly mini SUV. The late night cigar-infused poker games are few and far between, but he attended one last night and won a whopping 70 bucks. Tom still has 3 dogs (2 of them replaced the other 2 that died), but he now has 3 kids added to the mix.

Tom Jake Raingutter Regata

Tom & Jake at the Cub Scout’s Raingutter Regatta

Tom became the treasurer of our local elementary school even before his own son was a student, and the assistant den leader for Jake’s Cub Scout Pack. It’s a fairly odd turn for a man whose favorite song lyrics come from a guy known for biting the head off a bat.  He also became the head coach for Jake’s Toluca Baseball team. Tom Jake Toluca GrettelTom even built a batting cage in our backyard driveway, complete with enclosed netting, and he pitches wiffle balls to Jake after work.

His life has become much busier than I’m sure he ever dreamed it could be. Tom started his own blog Middle Age Metal HeadParenting With a Heavy Metal Twist. Although I doubt that he’s fond of Talking Heads (probably too conventional), the common theme running through his blog seems to be like the band’s Once in a Lifetime lyric: How did I get here?

Screen shot 2013-06-16 at 8.18.35 PMTom doesn’t spend all weekend watching ballgames anymore. Instead, he mows the lawn and takes out the trash. He washes the dogs, shaves the Australian shepherd’s hairy, poopy butt, and fixes anything that breaks, including the 83-year old brass doorknobs that fall off weekly.

Tom Mary pool

Tom & Mary in our above-ground pool

He sets up our above ground pool in May, takes it down in October and plays water volleyball with Mary and Jake most summer evenings. He’s teaching Emily how to drive and play guitar. He makes us delicious, healthy meals and guides us in 20-minute workout sessions. During family dinners, he has us each go around the dinner table and say the three things we did well, the one thing we wish we could do better, and what we could do to get better at that thing.Tom Jake cowboys

Tom has a twisted sense of humor, and never ceases to make us all laugh. We never get sick of him saying, “We’re off like a prom dress,” or his friend Joe’s line, “Don’t sweat the petty stuff; pet the sweaty stuff.” Tom doesn’t hold a grudge, always tries to get us to look on the bright side, and has a never-ending faith that no matter what happens, together we can walk through anything.

Tom Jake“Tom’s such a nice guy,” his friends still say.

How lucky I am to have become his nice girl.

Note: Thank you to someecards for their inspiration for the title of this blog post. For Father’s Day, I sent Tom their “Happy You-Knocked-Up-Mom Day” e-card. He thanked me by saying he’s happy to oblige any time.

Thank you to Grettel Cortes for the fabulous photo!

Today: Emily, Cathy, Tom Mary & Jake. Thank you to Grettel Cortes for the fabulous photo!


Filed under Family, Holidays, Humor, Husband, Parenting, Volunteering

10 Tasks You Can Complete While Sitting on the Toilet

multitasking on the toilet I call it multitasking; my husband calls it insanity.

I like to get things done.

Let me revise that.

I like to get a lot of things done simultaneously.

I think it’s a noble quality to be productive. The last thing I would ever want on my tombstone is a picture of myself as the spokesperson for the 7 Deadliest Sins and being remembered for what I believe maybe the deadliest sin of all: sloth.

For anyone who knows me, there’s little chance of that happening, particularly since I’ll never slow down enough to actually die.

However, my so-called virtue was criticized by my husband recently when he called me from work. I picked up on the fourth ring, a little out of breath.

“I’m so glad you called,” I said, relieved. “I really had to pee!”

Tom didn’t get the correlation. What did a phone conversation with my husband have in common with my overflowing bladder?

I informed him that I was trying to get a scene cut, and I really felt the need to go to the bathroom, but because I was short on time I wanted to keep cutting until I was absolutely forced to take a break. I had actually contemplated putting on a Depends, but that would have required taking the break that I didn’t have time for.

Hence the insanity observation.

However, for all those busy BUSY gotta-get-it-done-now Virgos out there who can relate to my multitasking skill, I’ve decided to compile a list of:

10 Tasks You Can Complete While Sitting on the Toilet

Pine-Sol1. Clean the bathroom floor. With a soapy sponge pre-soaked in Pine-Sol, you can scrub a wide semi-circle of your bathroom floor as far as your arm will reach while still sitting on the pot. The rest of the floor will have to wait unless you have a very small bathroom or a really long arm.

Junk Mail2. Sort through junk mail. This is a productive double purge – clear out your waste while you clear out the mail. All those ads, charity solicitations, and balance transfer offers can get chucked to the recycling bin. (Well, maybe keep those balance transfers. I’m on hiatus now so it’s time for the money juggling act). Also, if you run out of toilet paper and are desperate you can use those mailers to wipe your fragile behind. Just make sure you don’t use the ones sprayed with perfume unless you’re into that kind of thing.

Taking off makeup3. Put on or take off makeup. For the former you’ll need a mirror. For the latter, you don’t really need to watch yourself during the sad process of transforming yourself back into your makeover “before” picture.

Dogs in bathroom4. Pet your animals. All three of my dogs know how to twist the doorknob and knock down the bathroom door to crowd around me during my several constitutionals throughout the day. I can scratch Spike’s ears with one hand, stroke Jasmine’s throat with the other, and rub our new little Yorkie Bella’s belly with my right foot. We’re temporarily taking care of our friend Travis’ Old English Sheepdog Kobe who weighs more than I do, but fortunately I have a fourth limb (my left foot) to pet her fluffy fur. Everyone should have such great quality time with their mutts.

Nails5. File your nails and trim your toenails. However, it’s not a good idea to paint your fingernails unless you want to wait long enough for the paint to dry so you can wipe your rear. This waste of time would defeat the whole purpose of multitasking on the potty.

empty toilet paper roll6. Change the toilet paper roll. How hard is it (I’m primarily talking to men here) to change the toilet paper roll when you use the last square of paper? C’mon! It’s a common courtesy!

I obviously didn't take a photo of my Kegel exercises, so this is a replica.

I obviously didn’t take a photo of my Kegel exercises, so this is a replica.

7. Kegel tightening. Here’s the exercise: Pee. Stop. Pee. Stop. Great exercise if you’re pregnant and leaking a bit, and it also makes the process of making that baby a lot more fun.

iPhone8. Returning phone calls. Every one of my friends knows that at some point in our conversation they’re going to hear a toilet flush.

shopping list9. Make the shopping list. This is the time I usually remember Kleenex, shampoo and air freshener. If there was a toilet in the kitchen, I wouldn’t keep forgetting to buy coffee.

Coupons10. Clip coupons. So sad that I spend two or three minutes clipping the coupons for things I plan to buy, then run out of time to actually buy them before the coupon expires. Perhaps I should come up with another #10.

I hope these tips help you to be more productive and give you about 10 more minutes to cram something else into your day.


Filed under Humor, Multitasking, Top 10 List

I Won Powerball! Now How Do I Spend My 3 Bucks?

Powerball ticketI buy a lottery ticket on average about once a week. Usually I’m picking up milk or coffee creamer or ice cream at the liquor store across the street and I’ll throw in a buck for Super Lotto. I guess if I found a milkman who delivered for a reasonable price I’d never buy a lottery ticket. On the other hand, I’d miss out on seeing all the interesting characters at my local liquor store.

Liquor Store SignOnce I won $11 dollars playing lotto, which due to the law of averages virtually guarantees that I’ll never win anything again in my life, whether it’s charity bingo or a shot on The Voice. Yet I continue to buy that single lotto ticket. A girl can dream, can’t she?

When last week’s Powerball surpassed a staggering $590 million, I did something I don’t normally do. I bought $10 worth of tickets, which in Powerball-speak is only 5 tickets. Ten dollars is a fortune to me these days, so it was a big gamble. Apparently the odds of winning were higher than being struck by lightning and simultaneously have a grand piano fall on my head, or something like that. But as the commercials say, you can’t win if you don’t play.$3 winning lotto ticket 2

But you know what? I did win! A whopping 3 dollars! And now I have a big dilemma:

How do I spend my winnings?

First of all, should I take it in one lump sum or have it doled out to me in annual payments for the next 30 years? I could really use the 3 dollars now, but it might be very handy to get that windfall of a dime each year for the next 30 years. That way I wouldn’t have the misfortune of blowing it all at once.

Should I spend the wad of cash or invest it? When they win lotto, a lot of people decide to take a trip. I might want to do that. I could pay $1.50 to take the Metro Red Line to LA’s Union Station and then another $1.50 for the Blue Line transfer to the Long Beach Aquarium. The problem then would be that I wouldn’t have any money to get home. That’s the downfall of so many lotto winners. They wipe out their winnings on that African safari but then are forced to return as a stowaway on a cargo ship when the money runs out.

CA Lottery totalsMaybe I’ll invest my $3 in my credit union. They currently pay .15% interest, so this time next year I’ll have $3.04½. I’m not sure if they’ll be generous enough to round that ½ cent upward for a total of $3.05 or if I have to wait a second year to make it an even 9 cents. If it’s only 4 cents, I’m not sure if that would get me much. Some parking meters will still take a nickel, but if you shove 4 pennies into the slot, you’re still going to get a parking ticket. In fact, by the time you plug all those coins, your meter will already be clicking back on “expired.”

I’ll be forced to pay taxes, so the total might only come to half of the 3 bucks. Too bad Uncle Sam won’t let me count that buck a week loss for the past decade to counter my winnings. With $3, I might have enough to buy an actual Starbucks coffee, but after taxes, I’d have to fill up my caffeine intake at 7/11 instead. And after dropping a few cents in the palm of that homeless guy hanging around out front, I may be bumming the cash back from him to get that cup of burnt java.

lhasa apso I’m also afraid that when word gets out that I’ve won lotto, every 3rd cousin and anyone who’s read about me on Patch is gonna be looking for a handout. I’ll be getting requests from strangers who want me to treat their precious lhasa apso’s diabetes or beg me to donate to their foundation to help shopaholics from hoarding Bloomingdale’s shoe purchases. By then, there wouldn’t even be a quarter left to give my son a mechanical pony ride outside of K-Mart.

Mechanical pony rideThere’s the fear that my kids will be kidnapped for ransom, or that my husband will poison me so he can keep all the money.  I could develop a costly drug habit just as Prop D passed and all those stinky shops with the green crosses will be closing their doors, forcing me to feed my addiction elsewhere. I might be hounded by news crews day and night, and I’ll have to go into hiding. The liquor store where I bought the ticket would need to hire an extra cashier just to handle all the extra lotto tickets sales from people hoping that lightning and a falling grand piano might strike twice in the same spot.

What a headache!

I think I’ll just use my $3 winnings to buy a couple of Advil.


Filed under Anxiety, Debt, Financial Insecurity, Humor

How to Lose 10 lbs. in 2 Days – Have a Colonoscopy!

ColonoscopyOn September 13th of last year as I was dropping off my son at school, a friend of mine wished me a happy birthday. At midnight, I had posted a blog entitled I’m a Half Century Old Today! and she shared that she also had just passed the 50-year old mark.

“Did you schedule your colonoscopy?” she asked.

“Huh?” I obviously hadn’t learned much in the way of verbal skills in my first 50 years.

Apparently when you turn 50, it’s time to schedule your first colonoscopy, a procedure in which a fiber optic camera slides up your anus and explores your bowels for possibly cancerous polyps.

It sounds a little gross, but gross doesn’t usually bother me. After all, I have posted blogs about sewage rising up in my daughter’s shower, about how our dogs ate a box of Special K bars and sprayed a pool of diarrhea all over our bedroom rug, how I hate it when automated toilets flush and aerate my deposits all over my behind before I have a chance to stand up, and spending my morning bicep work out plunging my feces-filled toilet.

I have a 6-year old son, so every other word is “poop,” and “butt.” In fact, his teacher took me aside just this morning to tell me that Jake was demonstrating spelling words to his classmates by arranging magnetic letters, prompting the other 1st graders to sound out his word: “butt.”

There’s a good friend of mine who doesn’t read my blog, so I feel pretty safe to anonymously out him about his reaction to finding out he needed to schedule a colonoscopy. Apparently he is quite homophobic and was terrified of the thought of anyone probing his butt hole. I admit to frequently being naïve, but I have to say, this thought had never occurred to me. I wanted to tell him to man up, but perhaps I should come up with another choice of words.

So being the responsible middle aged woman that I now am, I had a gastrointestinal consultation and scheduled my first colonoscopy the week after I started hiatus from work. It took place yesterday. And yes, I was able to walk away from the procedure without looking like my butt cheeks were squeezing a quarter.

The prep began 5 days earlier when I was instructed to stop my daily low-dose aspirin which I take to prevent a heart attack. When in the world did I get so old that one health precaution cancels out another one? Soon I’ll be too senile to remember to take the aspirin, which will be a blessing since I’d rather die of a heart attack in my sleep than spend my last ten years repeatedly asking my caregiver if she gave me my baby aspirin.

Sunday was Mother’s Day and my last day in which I was allowed to eat food. You can bet I made a complete pig of myself. My Mother’s Day request was for my husband Tom to make his delicious jambalaya, so I devoured a huge bowl plus not one, but two pieces of garlic bread. For dessert I had an overflowing bowl of strawberries and vanilla bean ice cream. I was completely stuffed in the way I only feel after Thanksgiving. And like I do every Turkey Day evening, I vowed that I would never eat again.

IMG_3749 After ingesting these huge servings and guzzling about a gallon of water, I stepped on the bathroom scale and nearly fainted: 140 lbs! Other than the times I was pregnant with my children, I have never in my life weighed so much! I knew my pants were getting tighter, and this week when the mercury was record breaking, I found that I couldn’t zip up last summer’s shorts. Geez Louise! For a gal who’s just 5 foot 3 inches and seemingly fit, this was a huge eye-opener that I really need to lose a few pounds.

The next day I was put on a clear liquid diet, which was described as any liquid you could see a light bulb through: chicken broth, jello, popsicles, most juices without pulp, or nearly any liquid that wasn’t purple, blue or red. I was still full from the night before so I had a low-carb Monster drink with diet ginger ale and an orange Zip Fizz. Coffee surprisingly was on the acceptable list, but my flavored creamer wasn’t, so I avoided my standard 3-cup diet of morning java.

Then came what was potentially the hard part: the laxatives. The doctor advised me that I should not expect to work or plan to do anything because I would be frequently dashing to the toilet. IMG_3733

At 4:00 I was instructed to take 20 mg. of Dulcolax Laxative. A standard dose is 5 mg, so this is quadruple the normal amount for some poor soul who wanted to cure his constipation. Coincidentally, this was a half hour after my 12-year old daughter came home from school and begged me to go to her friend’s house to act as lifeguard so they could escape the 105 degree temperature in the family’s pool. I called the friend’s mom to let her know that this lifeguard might be taking several breaks and most likely stink up her bathroom so badly that it would probably be uninhabitable to the rest of the evening. My daughter who is consistently and devastatingly embarrassed at the mere mention of a bowel movement didn’t make a face or disparaging comment. The girls must have been desperate. I put on my swimsuit (not a pretty sight these days) and lounged by the pool, waiting for the inevitable.

Surprisingly, nothing happened.

IMG_3734At 6:00 I was directed to drink an entire 10 oz. bottle of Magnesium Citrate, a saline laxative with a standard dose of just 1 oz. I chose the lemon flavor and diluted it with Crystal Geiser, and it didn’t taste bad at all. This time I took a few trips to the toilet, but only one time was an emergency. Fortunately we have two bathrooms in our house, and several cans of room freshener.

IMG_3735At 9:00 I was given my final medication: 1 – 238 gm. bottle of Miralax power blended into a 64 oz. bottle of Gatorade.  Each bottle holds 14 doses, so you can imagine how effective an entire bottle would be.

It was a strange sensation. Instead of a diarrhea-like substance emitting from my bowels, it was a warm neon yellow liquid. Not at all unpleasant.  No, I didn’t take a picture of the aftermath for my blog. Even I have scruples on occasion.

IMG_3740The hardest part was the next morning – the day of the actual colonoscopy. I not only wasn’t allowed my coffee with or without creamer, I wasn’t even able to drink water after 6:30 am. For a gal who drinks about 2 gallons of water each day, this was a hardship.

At 10:30, my husband drove me to the Motion Picture Hospital in Woodland Hills where I paid just $125 (thank goodness for health insurance) and slid into a hospital gown. A nurse inserted a saline IV into my arm, attached some oxygen tubes to my nostrils, added some Demerol and Versed to my IV, and in moments I was in La La Land. Apparently I was not officially unconscious, but under a rather light sedation that would give me amnesia so I wouldn’t remember the procedure.

Tamera+4Bummer. I thought I would be able to see the camera traveling up my bowels, similar to the old Monsanto Adventure Thru Inner Space ride at Disneyland where you were miniaturized and taken on a journey inside the atoms of a snowflake.

I awoke an hour later, sleepy and a little disorientated, but able to walk and talk in semi-intelligible sentences. I came home, went back to bed, and slept until 4:00.

Then I weighed myself. No food for the last 44 hours. Nothing to drink for most of the previous 16 hours. Plus 28 doses of laxatives. The result:

IMG_3748130 lbs.

10 lbs. lost in 2 days.

Today I’m back up to 132 lbs. Probably time to renew my YMCA gym membership and lose weight the right way.


Filed under Humor, Surgery

Falling Asleep at the Burnt Out Class

falling asleep

I love school! If I won lotto tomorrow, I would just plan to take classes for the rest of my life, whether or not I could earn a degree for it. I don’t care if it’s on auto repair or astrophysics or how to put up an astrological horoscope, if there’s learning involved, sign me up.

Unfortunately, my work schedule during the tv season virtually prohibits the commitment to a regular class schedule. In 2008 I went back to school taking online classes from Clarion University in Pennsylvania, and even though I was working at the time, in 2010 I earned my Master’s degree in Library Science.

It nearly killed me.

I felt like I fell off the face of the earth for two years as I concentrated solely on work, school, and kids – unfortunately in that order. It’s a learning experience I’ll never get from a classroom – even an online classroom. And it’s one I don’t wish to ever repeat.

Now I save my learning fix for hiatus and then search for classes like a dog with a bone. I finished up my last stage fix for Once Upon a Time on Monday night. Only 26 hours later I began a 12-week series of seminars for small business owners which takes place downtown for three hours every Tuesday and Thursday night.

Do I own a small business? No. But if I start one up, I’ll know what to do.

My medical insurance plan offers several workshops throughout the year on everything from nutrition to stress management to CPR so I signed up for three upcoming classes.

I was especially looking forward to Wednesday evening’s “On Empty and Burnt Out” which asked: Feeling as if you are running on empty? … Learn a new approach to your busy life – one in which you will be able to repair mentally, physically, psychologically and emotionally.

For anyone who knows me, I thrive on being productive, and I get a real rush when I have a sense of accomplishment. Unfortunately this rush was causing incidences of embarrassing short-term memory loss, occasional crying fits and the feeling like someone should just shoot me in the head.

Not something I would advocate, even if I do have a blog called Very VERY Busy Mom.

Frankly, I was hoping they would give me some tools to enable me to multitask more efficiently, offer advice so I don’t feel like such a flake if I have to let something go, and ways to make my sleep more productive so I could get by on 4 hours instead of 6.

Instead, the other potentially burnt out attendees and I were greeted with the advice we didn’t want to hear:

  • Get 8-9 hours of sleep each night
  • Remove all sodas, processed foods and refined sugar from your diet
  • Choose one day a week to slow down and perhaps make it a day of pampering
  • Exercise by walking or running 20-30 minutes each day, practicing yoga 3-5 times each week, and lifting weights 10 minutes each day

This is another great reason why I would like to win lotto. If I had time to do all this, I wouldn’t need to take a class called “On Empty and Burnt Out.” As much as I was excited to attend this class and enjoyed learning the information, I was having an extremely serious problem that was holding me back.

I kept dozing off.

The instructor wasn’t boring. She wasn’t repeating herself. She was knowledgeable and passed along information that would be incredibly beneficial to enriching my life.

I was just tired. Beat to my bones. And I was kicking myself that I made myself too busy that afternoon to grab a Monster Energy Drink, and the seminar didn’t have a coffee pot in sight. As I fought to pay attention to the lecturer, I performed wake up tricks like pinching my ears, pressing the web between my thumb and forefinger, tightening my Kegels and flexing my hamstrings – all to no avail.

I probably came across looking seriously ADHD.

It wasn’t until the next morning, after my first full 8 hours of sleep in weeks, that the lesson of the “On Empty and Burnt Out” class hit home.

Whether I’m working beaucoup hours or not, my tendency is to fill up every waking minute with something. The trick is, now that I’m on hiatus, it’s the perfect time to try to put these habits into place. Perhaps I should try sleeping for 8-9 hours, cutting out the things I shouldn’t be consuming, exercising every day, and taking a day to relax.

If I can do that, maybe then my short-term memory won’t be so shot to hell that I forget to do sleep, eat right, exercise and relax in the first place.


Filed under Anxiety, Career, Family, Humor, Kids, Learning, Multitasking, Parenting