Wednesday, November 18, 2015

bitches gotta read: carry on.

yoooooo, did you guys ever read eleanor and park!? i was late to that party, but when i finally got my grimy hands on a copy i read that shit in approximately thirty-seven minutes, ignoring my towering workload and my unmade bed and my idiot cat, book pressed to my nose from the first page to the last. as soon as i finished it, tears streaked through the frito dust on my cheeks, i was like WHO THE FUCK IS RAINBOW ROWELL then put on some outside pants and took the bus to women and children first and bought everything else she'd ever written then read every single one back to back in two days. I DIDN'T EVEN PEE. she's amazing, you guys. and now, after some mutual twitter stalking, we are friends. like for real. i have her phone number to prove it. i mean, i could totally text her n00ds if i wanted. anyway, my friend wrote another YA book and it just came out so let's read it for this month's drunk YA book club. then maybe you could tweet rainbow after and tell her how smart and pretty she is.

the rules
1 we are never going to meet in person. that would require a bra and zippered pants and probably an expensive uber and motherfuck that. you don't have to worry about carla's gluten allergy or that amy doesn't like gin. no cleaning the cat box or vacuuming the drapes or hiding the dirty laundry in the oven so your company doesn't realize what a huge slob you are. just you in your house glasses and gravy pants sobbing into your pinot grigio, the way john green intended. getting together with people you don't live next door to is hella stressful. plus, a bunch of old bitches sitting around talking about fictional teenage romance is lame. OR IS IT THO.
2 we are never going to discuss this, ever. i mean seriously. i'm going to derive pleasure from knowing that people i might possibly enjoy spending time with if i ever could bring myself to meet new people and i are falling asleep and drooling on the same book we'll probably never finish. maybe we'll talk about it on twitter or something. but even thinking about organizing that is a daunting task and i'm already exhausted. mariyam suggested making a facebook group, but is that dumb? the internet is so hard sometimes.
(shit i never made that fb group am i terrible?)

3 we are never going to shame each other about not reading the fucking book. this is the beauty of never having to meet or talk about it: i ain't gotta come up with "thoughtful questions" and you ain't gotta pretend to remember what happened at the end of chapter seven while a bunch of wine-drunk bitches you don't even like that much wait expectantly for your answer. i'll read them, but that's only in case i run into you at the 
farmer's market and you decide to pop quiz my ass.

(did you like "everything everything?" i fucking loved it. but don't ask me why.)

brief internet synopsis: simon snow is the worst chosen one who's ever been chosen. that's what his roommate, baz, says. and baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he's probably right. half the time, simon can't even make his wand work, and the other half, he starts something on fire. his mentor's avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there's a magic-eating monster running around, wearing simon's face. baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here--it's their last year at the watford school of magicks, and simon's infuriating nemesis didn't even bother to show up.

so i started reading this already but then i realized i need to finish broken monsters by lauren beukes (it's so good!) because i still like reading adult books too and my own adult book STILL IS NOT FINISHED and i have some other things to write and i still kind of want to figure out how those of us who want to can talk about these books online somehow (WHAT IS A CHATROOM) so fingers crossed that i get everything done before i have a complete emotional breakdown. jesus god, 80% of the essays i've written so far are straight trash. if my book just ends up being an annotated list of reasons why i couldn't write a real book you dudes have to promise to buy it anyway, deal? okay cool. see you around the water cooler.

UPDATE here is a virtual playground amy made for us that i have no idea how to operate but whatever see you there. (ps i am terrible at hyperlinks so if this doesn't work goodbye forever, i guess?)
drunk YA book club group!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

last night a man eating out of a garbage can called me ugly: a play in three acts.

act one: the protagonist. last night, at just past reasonable to be awake on a weeknight o'clock, i decided i needed an ice cold can of ginger ale. so i haven't been to a proper grocery store in, like, three years. scratch that: i went into the jewel on chicago avenue eight months ago to try to get a dvd from the redbox but was too fucking stupid and impatient to figure out how to use the damn thing so i ended up just kicking it and sulking off and not buying any food. (i didn't really want to watch horrible bosses 2 anyfuckingway.) and while i've pooped in a few, i haven't purchased groceries in an actual supermarket in three years. since i'd already had a handful of borderline-rotten spinach and the lesser bruised half of a banana for dinner (JESUS GOD I HATE BEING ALIVE) it seemed like a waste to try to order takeout and i had just missed the window of opportunity to sneak in a latenight instacart delivery so i found myself faced with an unenviable decision. DO I 1 find my goddamn shoes; put on a house bra, not to be confused with a work bra (utilitarian, reinforced with 18/8 steel) or a sex bra (flimsy, lacy, 100% ineffective); remember where i last saw my debit card; check the weather to see if i need a jacket because i haven't been outside all goddamn day; make sure my phone is charged so i can listen to music; have a 30 second internal debate over whether or not to haul the recycling down to the dumpster since i'm going out anyway; watch some love and hip hop, momentarily forgetting how goddamn badly i wanted some fucking ginger ale a minute ago; walk to the corner store; weep silently while lightly running my fingers over all of the delicious forbidden snackfoods i no longer eat; wonder if the dude behind the register can tell that the left underwire in this bra popped six weeks ago; spend three real minutes contemplating an overpriced brick of cheese; return home to realize this is not the fucking hoodie i keep my keys in; drink 1/4 of my soda before passing out on the toilet OR 2 TAKE AN ATIVAN AND GO THE FUCK TO SLEEP. alas, the heart wants what it wants. i began my search for two matching shoes.

act two: the antagonist. according to steve jobs the temperature was around fifty degrees and looking out into the alley my apartment surveys i didn't see any raindrops, so i decided to wear my robe to the store. it's not, like, a sex robe? but it's long and black and if you squint real hard it in the dark and i stand at an angle it kind of looks like a dress. plus it's comfortable and i'll take soft over stylish any day. i should also mention that i was wearing pajama jeans underneath because i'm glamorous. so i roll up to the corner bumping that new goldlink record in my headphones and immediately spot a gentleman across the street maxing what appeared to be a raccoon carcass mottled with human snot that he was enjoying directly from the garbage can. the light changed and as i started across the street i noticed that he was actively bleeding from an open wound on his forehead. seemingly unfazed by this recent injury, he locked eyes with me and motioned excitedly for me to remove my earbuds as i approached, taking a big bite of some other person's trash. i slowed down, praying to a nonexistent god to please hit me with a fucking bus before i made it all the way across the street. WHAT IN THE FUCK DID WE HAVE TO TALK ABOUT.
"how do you do, m'lady? lovely evening for a stroll around the promenade, isn't it?" *tips blood-soaked cubs hat*
"well i do say so! pleased to make your acquaintance!" *curtsies while coquettishly raising tattered right hem of dressing gown*

but i welcome any opportunity to be helpful (no i don't) and i don't like being rude (yes i  do) so i obliged; maybe he needed me to buy him some advil or call him an ambulance. i could do that! "hey sir, do you need me to help you?" i asked with a sweetness that doesn't come naturally to me.
he appraised my stunning (pffft) rubenesque figure and said, after ten real seconds which is like a fucking eternity when standing in your stupid robe on a brightly-lit, busy-ass corner in rogers park, "i love an ugly woman with confidence."
LOL PARDON ME, HOMIE? i didn't even know how the fuck to feel! at first i was all "yay! confidence!" but then i was like "boo! ugly!" welp. how could a dude who probably definitely would be spending the rest of his evening wrestling chicken bones away from a rat fuck with my self-esteem in five seconds!? i hung my head in shame as he cackled evilly and took another bite of the used maxi pad he was eating.

so i have a pretty special relationship with the nightshift dude at sonny's. i mean, i don't think i'm on his christmas card list and the one time i ran into him at the neighborhood bar i was so awkward that he immediately just turned and walked away from me, but he's cool and he plays good music and he never appears to be visibly judging the frequency of my spicy nacho dorito purchases. "hey, cat food!" he said cheerfully, looking up from the 700 page novel he was reading at the tinkling of the little bell over the door. "we just got new skittles!" i waved sadly and tried to smile (he told me his name forever ago and i can't fucking remember it and that is the absolute worst, when you can't recall a person's name and you're too ashamed of your shitty memory to ask the first couple times you see him after he told you and now five literal years have passed and it would be fucking ridiculous to admit you've been mumbling "how ya doing, mfgrrarlmmbt?" in his general direction before racing with your blushing head down to the Dry Goods and Ramen aisle every time you need a can of 2am soup) and moped over to the back of the store. even the prospect of new skittles wasn't enough to lift my crushed spirits.

"am i ugly?" i whispered to ben, voice choked with tears, clearing some condensation from the freezer case to gaze despondently at my harrowed reflection. 
"of course not! you are gorgeous!" he replied reassuringly. "although that mustard-splattered housecoat is a bold choice for a woman your age." i glanced down in horror to find that my robe had begun to come unwrapped, the left side gone slack to reveal one jagged edged dinner plate-sized areola and a stretchmarked breast that may or may not have had toothpaste dried on it. 
"i am one magazine subscription away from an episode of hoarders!" i wailed inconsolably, taking out an entire shelf of fabuloso as i collapsed in a dramatic heap on the floor.
"there there," jerry soothed. "everything's gonna be okay, cat food. mint chocolate cookie is on sale two for $8!"

act three: the resolution. there was a dude at the counter with a thick roll of dollar bills buying lottery tickets (dollar straight, dollar box) and i spent the hour and a half it took him to play the birthdays and anniversaries of everyone he'd ever met to think of all the cutting and hilarious shit i was going to say to oscar the grouch when i finally got outside. "i may be ugly but i sure do have a wonderful personality!" or "i know you are but what am i?" OOH, YA BURNT. when i finally got to the register terry or michael or roger (fuck i am a terrible person, shit) looked at me with concern and said, "dang, you seem so down tonight! wanna talk about it?"
"yes i do because i just went off lexapro and i can't afford a therapist," i said in my mind while my mouth said, "oh i'm okay, it's just that guy eating cigarette butts off the curb just called me ugly."
he laughed. "don't pay that fool any mind! every night he calls me 'big charlie'" i leaned in, breath caught in my chest, exhilarated as it dawned on me that i was finally gonna get my chance to learn homeboy's name without having to admit to him what a thoughtless asshole i am, "and i keep telling him my name is--"
the bell over the door chimed and i was so startled that i missed what the fuck he said. danny? donny!? WHY IS EVERYTHING THE WORST. crestfallen, i handed him some cash and took my bag of loose assorted ginger ales. "chin(s) up, cat food! tomorrow we're getting those jalapeño cheetos!"

ol' boy was sitting at the bus stop with his shoes off, reading a newspaper upside down while shouting at cars speeding down sheridan road. he smiled at me and i flipped him off the meanest way i could (lots of scowling), and i'm pretty sure he said FUCK YOU BITCH but i wouldn't know because i had my music turned all the way up which is really what i should've done in the first goddamned place. i'm no humanitarian. people, in general, are terrible. when i got home i drank my ginger ale in the shower in the dark and decided that, if i can find it, today i'm going to recycle his apartment.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

bitches gotta read: everything everything.

OKAY SO WE ARE REALLY DOING THIS. and it's gonna be difficult because it's october and there are so many good things on tv right now and i got an ipad mostly so i could watch my shows in the bathroom so i basically don't even read when i poop anymore jesus god what a nightmare. when am i going to have time to read? on the train? in the back of a cab!? also i'm not done writing my new book and wtf am i even doing with myself other than online searching for flattering ponchos. (is that even a real thing.) my goddamn manuscript is due, like, yesterday. anyway, for a while i've been kicking around the idea of a book club but in real life i know i would never go; i would read the book and never go to the club part and be crippled with guilt every month for suggesting a thing i'm too socially anxious to go to and i'm stressed out enough as it is. so this is my consolation plan. i like reading YA books so that's what we're reading. unless you don't want to. see how easy this is gonna be, my dude?

the rules
1 we are never going to meet in person. that would require a bra and zippered pants and probably an expensive uber and motherfuck that. you don't have to worry about karen's gluten allergy or that monica doesn't like gin. no cleaning the cat box or vacuuming the drapes or hiding the dirty laundry in the oven so your company doesn't realize what a huge slob you are. just you in your house glasses and gravy pants sobbing into your vodka glass, the way john green intended. getting together with people you don't live next door to is hella stressful. plus, a bunch of old bitches sitting around talking about fictional teenage romance is lame. OR IS IT THO.
2 we are never going to discuss this, ever. i mean seriously. i'm going to derive pleasure from knowing that people i might possibly enjoy spending time with if i ever could bring myself to meet new people and i are falling asleep and drooling on the same book we'll probably never finish. maybe we'll talk about it on twitter or something. but even thinking about organizing that is a daunting task and i'm already exhausted. mariyam suggested making a facebook group, but is that dumb? the internet is so hard sometimes.
3 we are never going to shame each other about not reading the fucking book. this is the beauty of never having to meet or talk about it: i ain't gotta come up with "thoughtful questions" and you ain't gotta pretend to remember what happened at the end of chapter seven while a bunch of wine-drunk bitches you don't even like that much wait expectantly for your answer. i'll read them, but that's only in case i run into you at the farmer's market and you decide to pop quiz my ass.

brief internet synopsis: madeline whittier is allergic to the outside world. so allergic, in fact, that she has never left the house in all of her seventeen years. when a new family moves in next door, she begins a complicated romance that challenges everything she's ever known. the story unfolds via vignettes, diary entries, texts, charts, lists, illustrations and more. everything, everything is about the thrill and heartbreak that happens when we break out of our shell to do crazy, sometimes death-defying things for love.

i hope you like it. see you next month.

Friday, October 2, 2015

fall beauty tips for the bored and occasionally greasy.

i seriously gotta get my shit together. guess how many times i've worn makeup this week? ZERO. now guess how much money i spent at sephora last month? upwards of 14 billion. WHY!? what am i even doing this for!?!?!! everything stinks and nothing works and even the stuff that is kind of okay flakes off or spills everywhere or causes a bright red painful-looking rash streaked across the entirety of your tender left cheek. and not just because your colorful cheek ink is so popping. somehow, i bravely soldier on. reading about creams then slathering or dabbing or rubbing or spritzing them on my skin and crossing my fingers that my eyelashes won't fall out and my lips aren't going to swell shut. (but if they did i would shine them up with some oil infusion color and care because that shit is gorgeous. and then afterward i would soothe them with some badger creamy cocoa butter lip balm. cocoa butter is the official moisturizer of african-america. pretty sure this shit is made by hippie white people, though.)

anyway, aren't you bummed summer is over!? LOL JUST KIDDING, FATTY. the last thing i ever want to fucking do is figure out how to wedge this rotting meat carcass into a pair of motherfucking shorts in the blistering fucking heat. so thank the global warming gods that it's still about to get cold. in twenty years who fucking knows, it'll probably be 137 degrees at 10pm in the dead of january but for now? bitches still get to rock a blanket scarf. i never write about clothes because i basically wear the same relatively cool-seeming adult uniform every day, but YO DOGGY YOU GOTTA GET YOUR JUGGS A BREASTNEST. i ordered one months and months ago because of this piece i read on xojane and i have since gotten three more and do yourselves a favor and fuck this blog off into the sea and crash the breastnest site with all of your plastic monies. it's the softest, most comfortable cotton and it goes with everything, especially your inside cheese-eating pants. it's like a baby bjorn for your tits. a booby bjorn. IT IS PURE MAGIC. 

before we get to the 137 different shampoos i've tried in the last six weeks, let's first talk about feeling beautiful on the inside. i stopped eating meat and dairy a couple months ago and you know what? my skin is still weird and terrible, i can no longer solve my volatile emotional breakdowns with medium-rare bacon cheeseburgers or half-melted pints of pistachio ice cream, and even though i lost thirty pounds in five minutes i'm definitely still about to kill myself. but before i do i'm going to pass on this super easy and nutritious vegan recipe i make all the time, because bitches is always like GOD WHAT DO YOU EVEN EAT. 1 chop up some fresh broccoli 2 coat liberally with the tears you shed sobbing over pictures of gooey nachos 3 steam for five minutes 4 rage eat over the kitchen sink while contemplating taking every pill in your medicine cabinet at the same time. i mean seriously you won't even want any mouthwatering roasted chicken or crisp, salty bacon crumbled on top. (someone cut my fucking throat, please.) 

i don't really paint my nails a lot because i'm terrible at it and nail shops make me feel bad, plus once it's dried i obsess over every imperceptible nick and gouge until i drive myself crazy and scrape it off while vowing to never paint my dumb nails ever again. and i'm usually pretty boss at upholding that promise, until i see some earthangel on the train with perfect glossy nails and i look down at the cuticles fraying around each of my nailbeds like a sweater from the salvation army and think, "bitch you need to do better." so first i signed up for those monthly julep boxes because my girl gets them but also because i need a reason to drag myself into work every day and the possible arrival of a present on the afternoon UPS truck is as good a reason as i'm going to get. i have amazon prime and i order one thing every single day so that my life is an endless parade of gifts. (that may or may not be true.) so a box full of nail polishes that i will never use and toss in the trash once they've grown slimy and begun to separate is obviously the appropriate thing. i also have a bunch of sweet polishes from trust fund beauty that are vegan and non toxic and five free if those things are important to you.

my commitment to wasting as much money as i can on senseless bullshit remains intact no matter the season, and as sure as the leaves change colors and fall gently from the trees i will spend roughly $2,936,785 every october to approximate their scent in my home. i'm the jerkbag with a balsam candle burning on her desk in the middle of april because i want my life to feel like crockpot stew and pajamas literally every day of the year but i'm not a fucking savage, i do switch my scents up from time to time, and these are my jams for fall 2015: archipelago botanicals in stonehenge (smells like a hot grandpa's armpit), bath and body works marshmallow fireside (smells like a rich guy's buttcrack, you know, the kind of homie who has a secluded cabin in aspen), and the southern firefly candle in tobacco barn (smells like the crease of a fat, sexy, rugged dude's sweaty neck).

ARE YOU GUYS REALLY MASTERING LIQUID FOUNDATION OR NAH. even if i buy the good shit, i'm looking at you tom ford ahem, halfway through its application i'm like "i hate my slimy face and i look like a fucking mannequin." but not even a quality mannequin, i'm talking a 1986 montgomery ward mannequin. so i'm not falling for those dirty tricks ever again. i have a solitary bottle of l'oreal true match that i like to slap on while staring blankly at youtube winged eyeliner tutorials i will never ever feel confident enough to attempt. and it has nothing to do with the makeup, i'm just bad at blending. so i'll stick with what i'm good at, which is haphazardly poking at my t-zone with powder and hoping no one takes my fucking picture. mac studiofix is my one true love, but shhhhhh i've been stepping out with a new beau. cover fx pressed mineral foundation is everything i could ever want in a mate: strong, supportive, and incredibly mattifying.

okay. if you've been here before you know that i never write about eye products because even just sitting here doing nothing my eyes are sticky and wet so instead of wasting money on fancy eyeliners and mascara that will leak down my face ten seconds after i put them on i instead buy flonase and generic allegra online. but i do make up for it by flushing a shit ton of money down the facial care toilet. i will try anything on my face. i just don't care. and i'm kind of dumb, so i'm a sucker for flashy advertisements and hollow promises ie the perfect person to lure into spending her rent on some new crap she absolutely doesn't need and will make absolutely no difference in the quality of her skin. SIGH. i love love love gabifresh (even though she never accepted my facebook friend request but whatever) and one day i was scrolling through her site seething in a jealous rage at her gorgeousness and saw a post she did about frank body's coffee-based skincare and she looked so glowy and ethereal that i ordered the sweet cheeks bundle immediately without even looking at the reviews. it came three days later with a creamy scrub, a creamy cleanser, and a basic moisturizer, and i still look like me and not like gabi so DUH life is terrible. but the cleansers are nice!

so lipstick is my jam and always my main event but you guys: lately when i see pictures of myself in dark lipstick i feel like i look old. and my hair is so fucking gray that it doesn't matter? BUT THEN IT KIND OF DOES. and i am a 'til death wearer of red lips but i'm not trying to get called ma'am at the pharmacy so these days i'ma keep shit light. milani is the hands-down best drugstore brand (says me), and their moisture matte lipsticks are my hands-down fucking favorite. they feel real good and don't give you gross dingleberry crumbs between your lips after an hour and they are basically perfect. i have matte darling, matte beauty, and matte naked (HUBBA). and they cost six dollars each. i mean, come on. but a bitch is still fancy, so i'm also still obsessed with nars velvet matte lip pencils, except now i alternate between dolce vita and walkyrie because young. young-ish? oh shut up. also also i'm rul into kat von d's studded kiss lipsticks and holy shit they're expensive but you're worth it i promise. there are so many gorgeous red ones *sob* but OLD AS FUCK so: lolita, cathedral, gothica, and lovecraft. i used to not fuck too heavy with gloss but since i don't really eat food anymore bring on the chicken greased lips! my faves: milani brilliant shine (srsly kids, don't sleep) in sardinia, venice, and milan; nyx butter glosses in creme brulee, tiramisu, and madeleine; and make up for ever plexi gloss in 500, 501, 105p, and 300p.

WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU WATCHING ON TELEVISION. i like shows more than i like humans, so every fall i get v v excited at the prospect of all the new friends i'm about to make through my beloved tv. i watch so much silly shit and i would fight you in the street if you ever tried to take my remote control away. so far i'm really loving scream queens. are all the new shows even out yet? i can't keep track of the new shit, but i have watched the new seasons of blackish and empire. and don't tell anybody but i fucking live for survivor. i love watching people practically starve to death while putting absurd puzzles together for a couple thousand dollars. i still set the tivo every week for project runway and shark tank. ugh and i also religiously watch the voice even though the people i like never win but i think it's because i have an adam levine thing i haven't completely unpacked yet and now is probably not the time. you know what i'm obsessed with? project greenlight. they can't make episodes of this shit fast enough, it's such a jam. when is the good wife coming back, and is it always going to be on at 8:57 or 7:32 because of i'm also stoked for the affair to come back? because i watched that whole first season in a day and the entire time felt like i wasn't smart enough to really understand exactly what the fuck was happening. i need a text buddy for that shit. get at me if you watch it because seriously, that ending? it was like taking the goddamn GRE.

god what else even is there? i love me some doctor bronner's castile liquid soap in almond, and i still use neutrogena body oil every day along with my pond's dry skin cream (check the dusty bottom shelf of your local grocer's lotion aisle or steal it from your grandma). lately i've been washing my gnarly scalp with shea moisture african black soap shampoo but the shit doesn't lather and i am childlike in my need to see bubbles and feel that elusive clean squeak. look, i know sulfates are terrible and all but there is just something so soothing about working your fingers through a big foam cloud on the top of your head. lush silky underwear is still the best powder and lush coalface is still the best oily skin soap. also i have a lot of books on my to-read list (fates and furies by lauren groff, negroland by margo jefferson, loving day by mat johnson, the star side of bird hill by naomi jackson) taunting me from where i've piled them atop my desk, and also also i'ma for real start that YA book club where we never talk or meet but maybe read the same book at kind of the same time while possibly wearing our breastnests and old lady lipsticks. maybe we can facetime? lol jk i would rather die than show you my pixellated computer chins. THAT IS WHAT TEXT NUDES ARE FOR.

Friday, September 25, 2015

enjoyable leisure activities for adults.

this is how we have fun now. so my homie christine owns this gorgeous, sprawling house nestled into lush green lawns right on top of the sugar sand and shimmering waves of a private beach on lake michigan, and one of my very favorite pastimes is to rent the nicest mid-sized sedan my local enterprise has to offer and drive up there to sit inside in the climate-controlled dark and scowl at the sounds made by sunburned dads grilling dry, underseasoned chicken breasts on outdoor gas ranges that cost more than my apartment and leer at shrieking children splashing each other in the pool. "drown him," i whisper to myself, tying my robe closed with a phone charger as i peer through a slit in the blinds, watching two little boys wrestling in the water over an inflatable pig while checking the weather and hoping for a sudden thunderstorm. i scuttle from room to room, occasionally venturing down the stairs for a snack (cardio!), but mostly i just huddle paranoid in a corner of the master bedroom and hope no one calls the police because 1 i put a number 5 plastic container in the public recycling bin (DON'T I JUST GET POINTS FOR DOING IT, GOD) or 2 they've spotted the smoking ford fusion with chewed-up floor mats and rusty new mexico tags i tried to hide between two BMWs in the visitor parking lot and know there is an interloper among them.

HAVE YOU MISSED ME OR WHAT. you know what i've been doing? "working on my book." which really means "sitting in front of my computer staring at half-empty google docs wondering why i'm not roxane fucking gay." damn that bitch is smart. and i don't want to give a fucking ted talk or whatever (wtf would it even be about, cheetos!?) but i sometimes wish when i drag my macbook into the bed to pretend i'm going to write the next great collection of essays (LOL) that some eloquent, socially-relevant words would come pouring effortlessly forth from my fingertips so i can stop being so anxious about whether or not people really want to read this stinkpiece i'm working on about how thirteen years of customer service has slowly murdered the nice parts of my soul. which is why i broke down and braved the world outside in an attempt to participate in some of this elusive "joy" you happy people are always going on about, in the vain hope that it would inspire some genius writing. i read on the internet that group vacations are a fun thing that some people like, so i grudgingly invited a handful of my most amusing friends to south haven for a busy, exciting weekend of riotously fun things like sitting on the beach fully clothed and peeking at wildlife from behind a closed and locked door. everyone is always talking about how you have to connect with people and leave the safety of your crib to explore the world around you to really live your #bestlife. but i hate that. whatever happened to just dying alone in your ice cold apartment while netflix plaintively inquires of your rapidly decaying meat carcass, "are you still watching gossip girl...?"

WHY ARE WE OLD? HOW THE FUCK DID THIS HAPPEN!? one day your idea of a house party is passing around a bottle of vodka the girl you sit next to in geometry snuck out of her mom's liquor cabinet or cramming butts to nuts into somebody's deafening basement and indiscriminately making out with any face that comes within an inch of your own. fast forward twenty years and you think a rollicking good time is inviting your friends over to watch empire on the couch in your jammies with catered snacks and a couple boxes of night wine and then falling asleep before the first commercial. i can't stay up past nine o'clock or tolerate too much loud-ass music or truss myself up in fashionable, uncomfortable clothes anymore. i wore elastic-waisted tribal print palazzo pants to a wedding last month, guys. it is officially over for me. 

menu planning. the funnest thing you could ever imagine doing in your whole life is trying to plan a weekend full of elaborate meals for seven adults' specific palates +/- allergies without accidentally poisoning a bitch or forgetting that one of these jags is gluten-free. life is fucking terrible for real. the most terrifying thing about leaving your home to stay in someone else's is: what is the snack situation gonna be like. also are they the type of assholes who don't own washcloths or hide their garbage cans in unconventional locations or expect you to compost or actually buy 1-ply toilet paper but who am i kidding WILL THESE MOTHERFUCKERS HAVE DORITOS. i would spend a weekend eating instant oatmeal and old batteries if i had to, but when you invite people to a slumber party you can't expect them to live like a goddamn animal just because you do. the last thing i ever want is for one of my scumbag friends to be tweeting about how i filled the refrigerator with an insufficient number of cheese hotdogs. so 
here are some real life copied-and-pasted out of context excerpts from an excruciatingly grown up gchat prior to embarking on a motherfucking three-day trip. get ready to die.

"friday menu: the goddess chicken plus fish (salmon? please advise), i'm thinking roasted potatoes and also whatever veg looks best at the farmers market tonight? (hoping for okra and brussels sprouts). they haven't had okra much at the market but i am gonna try and then just get it at the grocery store if necessary"
"are we making fingerlings? and the thai salad?"
"def baked feta with tomatoes. but i could get some more rice and we could make the stuffed tomatoes too. also have an edamame spread and should i bring the rosé?"
"also some homemade vin d'orange shit that we mix with fake champagne and is truly
"bottle of riesling y/n?"
"that sipping cream is divine"
"i'm not sure about the no bake, do i need a mixer? i think i will!""i also was dreaming about that burrata. but i've never bought burrata in real life (not available here that i can figure) but i could get ciabatta and arugula and i have my strawberry balsamic jam" artisanal jam alert!
"if you grab my tomatoes and butter and onions and spaghetti i will make that for lunch"
"do we need real milk?"
"i'll have cream for coffee and almond milk for cereal/porridge"
"yeah i'm bringing my gruel. will not force anyone else to eat it unless they are so inclined? i usually soak overnight in almond milk but can make it hot in the morning"
"you are going to come real up close and personal with all of my bizarre foods GET READY."

LOLWUT. did you read the part about the porridge. i mean, who could even be hungry after all that. i'm not even going to disclose all of the participants in this snoozefest or how many hours of my life i lost to all this blahblahblah just in case you ever meet any of my friends in real life and recall this conversation then immediately beat them to death while screaming "burrata" over and over at the top of your lungs. why are we such insufferable jerks. ps i fucking ate peanut m+m's and lime lacroix all weekend. LOL FOREVER AT THAT THAI SALAD THO.

catching up on scandal. sacrilege to miss an episode, i knowwww. but don't take my NAACP card just yet. i fell off halfway through last season because i can never stay awake later than 830 on a thursday night, and when is anyone going to admit that this b316 shit is motherfucking confusing and GODDAMN SHONDA CAN WE PLEASE JUST GET BACK TO THE SEX. that huck and quinn thing was kind of gross and i don't care that much about mellie so yeah, i kind of missed most of last season. the only reason i started watching it anyway is because everyone i like on twitter was going nuts every thursday night, plus the wardrobe is a jam and i am a big fan of an expertly tailored coat. and even though birds were chirping and the sun was shining and the frat boys next door were playing bags (i am surprisingly good at bags, get at me) i instead sat in bed watching drunk-ass olivia's quivering lips. i mean, "working on my book."

facetiming other morons who also have no idea how to have fun. my ace keila lives in LA and has probably never seen 1 midwestern earnestness in real life or 2 a waistline bigger than the circumference of a beer can, so as soon as we unloaded the 4,372 bags of pizza combos (the best kind duh) and halloween candy from the car the first thing we did was huddle around the old picture machine and dial her up. which was amazing. because watching people awkwardly hold their phones at a flattering angle and try to effortlessly pose as their eyes dart back and forth between your face and their reflection is goddamned hilarious. for the record, she looked beautiful and perfect and her lip gloss stayed intact the entire time. facetime is the fucking devil, tho. a couple weeks ago i was slouched in bed in the kind of outfit i only let the cat see (and even she was like, "ugh put your areolas away") when the webcam popped up and the most hideous, eight-necked garbagemonster's giant head filled my screen. nothing is more humbling than that surprise facetime showing you what a disgusting beast you are look like while scrolling through the clearance section of old navy's website. OH SHIT THOSE ARE MY GLAZED-OVER EYES AND ACNE-SPOTTED CHINS CONTEMPLATING THAT BILLOWY POPLIN TUNIC!? how can i turn that shit off, pretty please. i don't want to put on a full face of makeup and hose down my apartment every time i watch porn just in case one of you jerks decides you want to say hello in person. although if you do i will make you say hi to helen for, like, three real minutes.

instagramming pointless shit. you would think none of us had ever seen the fucking sky before. i don't know how i always end up stranded somewhere in the middle of nature when i totally hate the outdoors (yes i do: white people), especially when all there really is to do is look at trees and shit through a camera lens because i am loath to interact with it in any way. i can't mess with biting things or stinging things or bloodsucking things or plants covered in hazardous goo; the furthest into the wilderness i was willing to venture was right up to the edge of the porch, where i glowered at chipmunks from behind big black sunglasses. grass? WORST. flowers!? KILL ME. i almost took a picture of a butterfly, but then it sensed me trying to capture it in the most twee setting i could find and flew the fuck away and i immediately abandoned my budding career as an amateur national geographic photographer. i took a lot of pictures inside of food and my toes (jk why do you guys do that just why), but i needed to document some live shit so people would believe that i was really there. a rat or some other furry brown thing i would never touch had drowned in the deep end of the pool and the surface was covered with slimy yellow leaves and FUCK THAT. the frothy, churning lake was on the other side of of the pool and that's pretty great but i don't like swimming next to dead carp and waterlogged baby diapers so fuck that, too. which leaves no outside shit to do other than taking pictures of cloud formations and fighting squirrels. besides, does anything really exist if it hasn't been filtered through your goddamned phone?

taking a serious and mathematical approach to children's board games. the last time i played clue i was maybe ten years old, and i basically just guessed "professor plum in the library with the candlestick?" on every fucking turn because i hate thinking. but fuck that reckless abandon when you're an adult, i guess. these dudes were typing up excel spreadsheets and making complicated notations on the backs of napkins while grimacing at the board and it wasn't even noon yet. i hadn't even had my third mimosa! i am not competitive, like at all, unless it absolutely does not count. my GPA was garbage, i quit the marching band after two years, i spent my early 20s dating the least desirable men in the metro chicagoland area, i totally got this job by accident and continue to keep it despite being a shit because i'm the only black one: i don't care about anything that matters. i was the kid in volleyball who stood next to the star athlete and casually ducked behind him every time the ball soared my way so he could send it flying back over the net so my team wouldn't hate me (I LOVE YOU MARK WELLINGTON) and i never entered any goddamn spelling bees or science fairs but i did get to go to an ice cream social once because i read a lot of books in the second grade. because reading is cozy and takes place indoors and doesn't require any coordination. so obviously i am the last person you want on a team of any kind, because i will quit and go watch tv the minute it gets difficult or looks like i'm about to lose. these assholes were playing clue like it was an episode of fucking CSI, like there was an actual dead body in one of the five walk-in closets upstairs. (see also: WHY ARE WE POOR.) bitches are pulling out DNA swabs and fingerprinting kits and i'm sitting there like a dummy with my untouched suspect sheet because i was busy daydreaming instead of keeping track of who was in the game room and whether or not anyone had seen the rope. i couldn't even remember who i was half the time. i've never been so stressed out in my life. i did win apples to apples, though. at least that's something?

doing things and going places is overrated. i fucking hate trying to have fun. who wants to start a book club with me that focuses solely on sappy YA novels and never meets in real life? any takers!? i'll bring the fucking riesling.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

what do i have to say to a cop?

the first time i ever got pulled over by a police officer there were drugs in my car. i was driving a shitty 1988 ford escort hatchback with a busted taillight south on green bay road in north evanston late on a weeknight, 19 years old and mostly ignorant to my rights as a united states citizen. the car was illegally registered and willfully uninsured and my driver's license was taped the fuck together and i'm not entirely sure how i charmed my way out of going to jail that evening. the prescription bottles and maybe some mushrooms were shoved in my backpack behind the passenger seat and i could feel them radiating incriminating heat up my back and neck as dude stood at my window asking if i knew that my taillight was out. thankfully he let me go with a warning because, and i'm not even fucking kidding, i worked in a bakery at the time and he recognized me from behind the counter.

when i watched the dash cam video of sandra bland's arrest the only thought bouncing around my head louder than the sound of my own heart breaking inside my chest was "what would i have done if that had been me?" would i have gotten out of the car? tried to make a phone call? put down my cheese sandwich!? (i don't smoke, and i'm incredibly realistic in my hypothetical situations.) it struck me how loudly and clearly she was narrating the cop's actions as they moved off camera. would i ever have thought to do that? it's terrifying to realize just how much i don't know about how i can/cannot protect myself against police. so i hollered at my lawyer kaitlin jackson and asked her to answer some basic questions to give all of us a better idea of how to best take care of ourselves when dealing with law enforcement. and i know i usually keep it light (albeit hate-filled) around here, but this shit has got me vexed. i mean, samuel dubose had his head blown off over a missing front tag? WHAT THE FUCK IS THIS LIFE. so i need to chill on these jokes for a minute and use what i have to do what i can.

BIG GIANT FLASHING NEON-LIT DISCLAIMER: this is really an abridged cheat sheet for encounters with the police that has been painted with really broad strokes. reading this doesn't make you a legal expert; pleeeeeease use this information to protect your rights and NOT to argue with the cops about the law. because lawyering at the cops is never wise, and even if it were you'd need a lot more information than provided here to do that well. also keep in mind that laws vary from state to state, every situation is different, and this doesn't substitute for advice from your lawyer. last thing you want to do is be in court talking about "well sam said..." i mean, come on. i completed, like, three semesters of community college and still eat diet hot pockets as my real dinner sometimes. i love you, be safe.

do you have to let the police search you if they ask to?
legal answer Hard no. You NEVER have to give the police permission to search you, your car, or your house. They cannot arrest you because you didn’t give them permission to search. BUT there are times when they can search you without your permission. For example, if an officer has "reasonable suspicion" that you might be armed he can pat you down. You never have the right to refuse a pat down. Additionally, if an officer has probable cause to search you they can search without your permission. Or, if they have a warrant, they can search without your permission.

practical answer Most of the time you get to decide whether an officer can search you, but occasionally it isn’t your call. Luckily, you don’t need to be able to tell the difference in the moment. You only need to know two things: 1 ALWAYS respond to requests to search by saying “You do not have my consent to search.” As long as you do that, you’ve preserved your rights, and a judge will decide later if the search was legal. 2 NEVER physically interfere with a police officer who decides to search you.

one other note:
People often consent to searches because they don’t think there is any contraband an officer could find. This bites a lot of people in the foot. There could be something in your car or house that someone else put there that you don’t know about. You also might have something that you don’t realize is illegal. For example, some states have rules about what types of pocket knives are legal and, if you unknowingly have the wrong kind in your toolbox, you could get a weapons charge. Or maybe you carry your spouse’s prescription medicine in your purse—that can easily turn into a controlled substances charge. The moral of the story is memorize the phrase “You do not have my consent to search” and then USE IT.

do you have to answer questions from the police?

legal answer If you are on the street Generally no, but in some states you do have to give identifying information like your name and birth date if you are asked. Otherwise you do not have to answer questions—that includes questions about your citizenship status. If you are in a car You have to show your license, insurance and proof of registration. Otherwise, you do not have to answer questions. 

practical answer It is almost never in your best interest to answer questions without speaking to a lawyer first. It’s much easier to talk yourself into trouble than it is to talk yourself out of it (overconfidence is your worst enemy). Your two safest options are to 1 end the encounter, or if you can't do that, 2 get a lawyer. A good way to find out whether you can end the encounter is to calmly ask: Am I free to leave? If the answer is yes, great. If the answer is no, calmly tell the officer you don't want to speak to them without a lawyer. And then make good on your promise and don't speak.
two other notes
 1 It's rarely wise to run from the police. Even if you aren't doing anything illegal, running has the potential to escalate the situation. 2 If you are stopped in a car, keep your hands where the officer can see them for the same reason, to avoid escalation.

do you have to blow into a breathalyzer/do field sobriety tests?
legal answer No. BUT the police can use your refusal to blow into a breathalyzer and/or do field sobriety tests as evidence against you. In other words, if you are charged with driving under the influence, a prosecutor can argue to a jury that you refused because you knew you were intoxicated and would have failed. Additionally, in some states the DMV will automatically suspend your license for refusal to blow.

practical answer Does that mean you should always blow? No it doesn’t. It means you have a decision to make. If you haven’t been drinking it’s in your best interest to blow into the machine. But, if you think there is any chance you will fail the breathalyzer or field sobriety tests, it’s probably in your best interest to refuse. Here’s why: if you are likely to fail, the jig is up. You’ve been caught. At this point the best thing you can do is stop giving the police more evidence to use against you. Blowing in the machine and doing field sobriety tests that you are likely to fail can only make you look guiltier.

one note Most field sobriety tests are based on balance. If you have leg or knee issues, weight issues, are wearing high heels, are advanced in age or have any disability that causes you to struggle with balance, you may fail these regardless of whether you are sober or not. If any of those apply to you, make clear to the officer that you are refusing field sobriety tests because you struggle with balance, and then don’t do them.

are you allowed to record the police?
legal and practical answer Yes. If the police approach you and ask why you are filming, you can remain silent; that is your right. The ACLU has a great set of apps called Mobile Justice (there are different ones for different states so make sure you download the right one). If you record police encounters using that app, they are automatically uploaded to an ACLU server so that even if the police take your phone, the video is preserved.

what are your rights in an interrogation?
legal answer You do not have to answer questions during an interrogation. You have the right to an attorney, and the right to remain silent. If you are being interrogated, and tell the police “I want to remain silent and I want a lawyer,” they must stop questioning you.

practical answer Police are well trained in the art of getting incriminating statements. You are not trained in the art of resisting their tactics. Do not overestimate your ability to talk yourself out of a bad situation. I repeat: do not think you can talk yourself out of a bad situation. DO NOT assume you can’t talk yourself into trouble just because you’re innocent.

three notes 1 Police are allowed to lie to you. They can, and often do, tell people untrue things designed to get the person to make an incriminating statement. Don’t be tricked into responding. 2 People get convicted of crimes all the time based primarily or solely on their own statements. For real, for real. Don’t be that guy. 3 Just being quiet isn’t enough to invoke your right to remain silent. You need to say something along the lines of “I don’t want to talk to you” or “I want to remain silent.”

what's the deal with miranda rights anyway?

legal and practical answer Miranda is the warning you hear cops read on Law and Order when they arrest people. You have two Miranda rights 1 the right to remain silent and 2 the right to an attorney (whether or not you can afford one). When the police read those rights, most people waive them. Meaning they decide to go ahead and speak to the police without an attorney. Sometimes because they are confused, but more often because they are intimidated and think they have to talk to the police. But now that you have read this, you know better. Use your Miranda rights, and silent treatment the police (after giving identifying info) as hard as you’ve ever silent treatment-ed anyone.

so i know i am supposed to be "cooperative" with police, but what does that really mean?

It’s always best not to escalate a situation. Be calm, polite and respectful. Don’t threaten or yell at police. However, being cooperative does not mean answering officer’s questions (other than requests for identifying info) or allowing them to search you. Remember that you are on different teams. If you’ve ever played sports you know that being a cooperative player doesn’t mean scoring goals against yourself for the other team. Often people imagine they are helping themselves by being cooperative, when in truth they are just assisting an officer who is building a case against them. This is true even if you are innocent. Don’t risk it. Saying “You can’t search me,” “I don’t want to talk to you,” and “I want a lawyer” are the best things you can do for yourself. Once a lawyer gets on the scene they can help you figure out the next best move.

note Don’t be tricked by statements like “if you answer a few questions or just let me look in your trunk I’ll let you go…” See above: officers do not have to tell you the truth.

keep your heads up, champions. be cool out there.

Monday, July 6, 2015

the case against guacamole.

i don't really pay attention to what barack obama tweets. but last week i was scrolling through my timeline and saw that your boy (ie some lowly staffer assigned to the task) tweeted: respect the nyt, but not buying peas in guac. onions, garlic, hot peppers. classic. WHAT DID YOU SAY, MY DUDE. IS THIS THE MAN I WOULD'VE VOTED FOR IF I CARED EVEN A LITTLE BIT ABOUT VOTING. what tf does he care about guacamole, i thought. then i logged onto facebook to find that no fewer than 137 people rage-linked a new york times recipe that suggested adding green peas to guacamole and bitches was flipping the fuck out, writing outraged status dissertations lamenting just how erroneous a choice that was. but guys: guacamole is disgusting. why aren't you all lathered up about things that matter, like motherfuckers who make chicken salad with too-big, uneven celery chunks and/or (gasp) put grapes in that shit!?

DO YOU GUYS NOT KNOW THAT THERE ARE PEOPLE IN WISCONSIN MAKING THEIR OWN SUSHI AT HOME RIGHT NOW. who gives a shit about gross guacamole when somewhere in america someone is putting a slice of american cheese on top of a plate of perfectly acceptable spaghetti? some misguided asshole is putting a jar of miracle whip in his grocery cart and we're all talking about guacamole!? fuck it, i'm moving to canada. we've already established that second to cream-based dips tacos are the most perfect food group, and everyone i love is always like "can we get a guacamole to start?" when we go the the taqueria, especially if it's the kind of place where they wheel the avocado cart over to the table while you squirm uncomfortably in your privilege feeling guilty about asking for a little less cilantro. you know it's gonna maybe be too spicy but you can't ask her to make it less spicy because maybe the problem is just your gringo tongue and you don't want to be insulting. i am never insulting. i love mexican food and i'm going to shut up and eat this fiery diarrhea because polite.

i'm just not a fan of the avocado. there is nothing you could mix it into or artfully arrange it on top of that would make the original dish more appealing to me. now you already know. if you like it i love it. i want you to do whatever you want to do, as much as you want to do it. but i have the right to hold my nose and make wretched child faces across the table from you while you do. because:

1 what does guacamole even taste like? i know, i'm a stupid asshole, but i want all my guacamole lovers to do me a flavor and describe what guacamole tastes like without using any of the ingredients you add to it. granted, this is a difficult assignment no matter what the food. i'm not sure i could articulate what a pancake tastes like, but i also wouldn't take to the twitters to vilify a writer who added raspberries to hers. so many purists pissed off about something that was terrible to begin with. i will change my mind if anyone can describe that shit in a way that makes it sound palatable. but you can't. i'll go first: probably bland brownish-green mush that tastes like crunch lumps.  NOW YOU GO.

2 it's too easy to destroy. oh sure, i've had it before. i tried to join in the fun. but i don't like fun. guacamole is one of those pretend fun food items that, even when tolerable which is maybe .001% of the time, if the person making it adds so much as one extra grain of salt the entire thing is ruined. a little too much cumin, not enough cayenne, lemon juice instead of lime: the whole bowl may as well be garbage. there's no salvaging it, either. a few too many red onions, not enough cracked black pepper: BASURA. why do people insist on having it at parties, like the minute you pull that chunky green pudding out of the refrigerator a corona commercial is gonna break out? not if you are heavy handed with the roma tomatoes, my guy. just get a couple jars of tostitos queso and let's party down for real. it's probably even on sale at target.

3 everyone has his own "way" of making it. much like chili, chocolate chip cookies, scrambled eggs, red sauce, HOLY FUCKING SHIT POTATO SALAD: foods that people experiment with or have their own interpretations of ("nah see, the way i make my macaroni is to boil the noodles in miracle whip and use old shoes in place of the cheese") are usually horrible. i don't mean adding a little chicken broth and heavy cream to your mashed potatoes (delicious), i mean putting a bunch of boiled cauliflower into a food processor and serving that saltless mushpile as mashed potatoes. why don't you care about hurting my heart. i'm talking about when a person intentionally added raisins to meatloaf and served it to me as if it was real food. i cried at the table. WHY YOU GOTTA BE CUTE. that shit has three ingredients: meat, eggs, and loaf. jesus god the list drags interminably on. cornbread, "fancy" peanut butter and jelly, chicken noodle soup, people who put fruits and shit in stuffing, tuna fish, garlic bread, deviled eggs, FRIED CHICKEN, greens, spaghetti (why tf is there sugar in this), jell-o mold, noodle kugel, seven layer salad, crab dip, lasagna, overly complicated salsas, SLOPPY JOE, adding nuts to shit that doesn't need nuts, grilled cheese (get those pears off my sandwich), pound cake, baked beans, grits, beef fucking stew: all things that rarely taste the same from one house to the next. my sisters grew up under the same fucking roof! would eat: carmen's pork chops. would not eat: janie's pork chops. OUR MOM IS THE SAME, LADIES. why is one the maker of delicious collard greens and the other one janie!? (to her credit, her yams are spectacular.) guacamole is no different. it's all purportedly the same damn shit (avocados, garlic, jalapeños, sad feelings) yet no one ever makes it the same way twice.

4 it leaves your tongue feeling like it has lotion on it. or like you just ate a bowl of butter, but worse. and then it just sits there in your belly, making your throat slick and your mouth taste like aftervomit until you drink enough modelo to cover it up.

4a MOTHERFUCKING CILANTRO. "did you rinse this bowl after you washed it? yeah, i know you said you washed the dishes but did you rinse out this bowl? the one the guacamole is in? is the dishwasher on the fritz again? i swear this bowl tastes like undiluted dish soap. are you sure you rinsed it all the way clean? this guacamole tastes like it's full of dawn! i'm literally nauseous after eating it because it tastes so soapy. maybe we should dump this batch and make another in a clean bowl. make sure you use hot water. oh wait, what? you doubled the cilantro this time? that explains this deathfeeling in my mouth. feel free to go die."

5 watching a person eat guacamole is easily in the top five worst things. i can't tell if that chip is coming or going, honestly. IS THIS BITCH EATING OR THROWING UP. if we're being totally real with each other watching anyone eat anything is totally disgusting, but watching a human consume guacamole is the tenth circle of hell. you may as well be dragging that chip that's totally about to break in half across a baby diaper. then you gotta open your mouth awkwardly wide to shovel it in without getting gloops on your shirt, and even if you're successful you definitely have clotted grey-green goo clumped in your mouth corners. i mostly eat alone at home in the dark, because i care about people. i will never subject another sentient being to my consumption of: ribs (please don't ever make me "your version" of ribs), buffalo wings (omg), a popsicle or ice cream cone, yogurt, or oversized pizza. mostly because i'm on nutrisystem now but also because those are private foods. anything that you wouldn't eat in a nice shirt is best enjoyed on your bed, surrounded by napkins, with the tv on. doesn't food just taste better after you've taken your bra off? this is why i don't like sitting outside at a restaurant, all the eyeballs leeching the deliciousness out of my dinner. and i know from being a hideous, disgusting foodbeast. yesterday at brunch i pulled a stringy clump of dry pot roast i'd been gnawing on out of my mouth because i was afraid of choking to death on it and hid it under the bread i'm not eating these days. brooke looked at me like i'd given birth at the fucking table. AT LEAST IT WASN'T GUACAMOLE, OKAY. that would've been a million times worse.

maybe i'm crazy. maybe i need to get some from an authentic mexican. maybe i just need to try your guacamole and i'll change my mind. because it's your mom's handed down recipe and see what you gotta do is slice the onions this way and mince the garlic that way and the avocado needs to be just a hair underripe and room temperature and stirred counterclockwise, see? my guacamole is delicious. and i'm open to it, i guess? maybe i just haven't had the right one. MAYBE IT JUST NEEDS TO HAVE PEAS IN IT.