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SWF seeks That Person

Monday, January 20th, 2014

The moment I opened the door, I knew. The air was different. I just knew.

Throwing my purse and lunch bag to the couch, I made a beeline for her kennel, calling her name as I went. “Foxy? Foxy, are you okay?” I was sure of what I would find when I got to her, but had no idea the extent of the damage – until I crouched down and saw it with my own eyes.

I was immediately on the phone with the emergency vet.

“Hello, I have an emergency. Actually, it’s not an emergency-emergency, but just this thing that’s happened and my dog is in her kennel and I don’t know what to do.”

“It’s okay,” she said. “Slow down.”

“I mean, everything’s okay, it’s just that my dog – ”

“Do you have an emergency?”

“No. I mean yes! I mean, I don’t know. My dog is sick.”

“Your dog is sick?”

“Yes!”

“Is she breathing?”

“Yes – ”

“Is she vomiting?”

“No – ”

“Is she conscious?”

“Yes!”

“Is she – ”

“Ma’am, my dog has had an explosion of diarrhea.”

I waited. Silence hung on the line. Finally,

“Is that why you called the emergency vet?”

I explained to her that my dog had been spayed on Friday, and that the clinic had told me to keep her incision dry at all costs, and that since I’m a rule follower to the fullest extent – I spent years using a full 1” of toothpaste on my toothbrush every time I brushed because that’s what the package told me to do – I wasn’t sure how to clean her without water hitting her belly, and also do you know how much toothpaste I was going through?

“Well, you’ll just need to be careful – keep her incision covered while you wash her off.”

“Ma’am, I don’t think you understand. My dog is covered – covered – in poop. There’s no way I can get her clean without washing every moment of her body.” I thought about some of those… moments… namely the ones beneath the tail… and what it was going to take to get her clean (that is, my own personal fortitude).

“You’ll probably want to get someone to help you. Just keep the incision covered and you’ll be fine. Good luck!”

And that was that.

I scrolled through the contacts in my phone wondering who to call. Because who is That Person? WHO IS THE ONE you count on in moments like these? I’ll be honest, I don’t think I have That Person* – because the yearbook didn’t call them out in the superlatives, “Friend Most Likely to Help Scrub Caked Shit Off Your Dog Whilst Protecting Her Lady Parts.” I knew that this was going to be a solo endeavor.

Like a surgeon in an OR, I prepared the bathroom. Towels – check. Dog shampoo – check. Hair in a ponytail – check. Okay. Let’s bring her in.

I opened the kennel door, and my crap-crusted dog bolted out like her life depended on it. “FOXY!” I screamed, as she tore under the dining room table, hiding between all of the chairs, rubbing poop into the rug. “No! Come here! COME HERE.” I pulled her out from under the table, and we retraced the brown paw prints back to the bathroom.

Friends, someday I will find the words – but tonight’s moments in that bathtub are beyond my current storytelling abilities. I am now familiar with areas of Foxy’s body that, frankly, I never want to think about ever again.

And I’m sure she feels the same way.

fox

*If you are That Person, please let me know. This is an arrangement best decided upon in advance, like the meeting place for your family if your house burns down or where you’ve stashed the fake passport when you need to make a run for it.

We interrupt this blog silence for some repulsion

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

There are little bugs in my bathroom sink. They’re tiny, and they hop. I rinse them down the drain every day, and the next day, they’re back.

Tonight, I came home to ants in the kitchen. Everywhere. This is bad, because REMEMBER THE LAST TIME I HAD ANTS?

In other gross news, I cracked open a pistachio today and found two things: a rotted nut and a worm.

It’s been 16 years since I’ve thrown up, but today almost broke me.

If you’re easily grossed out, do not scroll down

Tuesday, September 18th, 2012

No, I’m serious.

I’m warning you.

Stop now, or forever hold your peace.

We caught the mouse.

And the screaming that ensued as Hannah and I disposed of it was the most obnoxious display of sissiness ever known to man.

R.I.P. little buddy.

But THAT’S NOT ALL.

We caught a second mouse.  It looked exactly the same as the death above.

So we set out even more traps.  And – horror of horrors – the traps are MOVING.  The peanut butter is getting STOLEN.  But we haven’t caught any more rodents.

You guys.  They’re getting smarter.  They are evolving, just like “Jurassic Park.”  Life finds a way…

Mousetraps

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

When I was in high school, a traveling magician came to perform at my church.  I can’t remember if he had some evangelical message that tied in with his magic show, or if he was simply a man trying to make a living turning tricks in front of anyone who would watch – but regardless, there he was, right between the American flag and the Christian flag, onstage at First Presbyterian in Montrose, Colorado.

At one point, he requested a volunteer to come up onstage for one of his acts.  Thinking that I might have the chance to get sawed in half, I quickly shot up my hand.  And since I was the pastor’s daughter, yes, OF COURSE I was the chosen one.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t going to have the chance to pick a card any card, or be the recipient of the dove that he pulled out of a top hat.  The magician presented a mousetrap, locked and loaded, and then demonstrated how its spring-rigged action could snap a pencil in half.  And then he told me to stick my fingers in it.

What.

So there I was, in front of God’s holy people, being admonished to trust a crazy traveling magic man with my extremities.  But I couldn’t back out.  So I stuck my fingers in the trap.  And with a wave of his wand or his scarf or whatever it is that he did, with a resounding thwack, the mousetrap came snapping shut.

I still have no idea how – but it didn’t touch my fingers.  I was standing there, right beside him, terrified that I was going to wind up with nubbin digits – and I still cannot explain how that mousetrap was able to clack shut without catching me.  But in any case, I screamed a scream that if you listen closely, you can still hear echoing from the year 1998.

Suffice it to say that I have been terrified of mousetraps ever since.

Fast forward to last night.  I was at the gym when I got Becca’s text saying that there was a mouse in our laundry room, and would I pick up some traps on my way home?

Sure I would.  And I’d get some black widow spray, too – because you guys, it’s the END TIMES at our house.  We are being overrun by demons.

At home in the kitchen, I carefully read the instructions and baited a mousetrap with peanut butter.  Visions of severed fingers dancing through my mind, I nervously pulled back the spring-loaded wire.  It locked into place.  I smiled, proud that I didn’t need a man or a parent or a magician to do it for me.  Holding my crowning glory of a baited trap, I walked toward the laundry room.

And right there in my hand, it SNAPPED SHUT, just grazing the side of my finger and catapulting the blob of peanut butter onto the kitchen wall.  Once again, I screamed like the end was nigh.

Judging by the current state of pests at our house, it just might be.

Business trips

Friday, April 20th, 2012

A few days ago, I took Toad on a walk around the block (as far as she can go). It’s good for her to have the illusion of adventure.

On this particular stroll, she stopped to do her business; Becca calls these walks her “business trips.”  And because I am a responsible pet-owner, I had a plastic bag on hand. I scooped up the mess, tied the bag, and carried it home.

As we rounded the final corner, we came upon three stray cats – a dime a dozen in our neighborhood, unfortunately. Two of them scattered, but the biggest one, a giant black Tom, arched its back and hissed at Toad. Toad was like, oh no you di-in’t, and lunged.

The cat didn’t flinch. In fact, it got even angrier, growled that feral cat-growl, and shot out its claws like Wolverine. I stomped and yelled, hoping the cat would run – but it came even closer, fangs bared and hair on edge. Toad was about to get destroyed.

So I did the only thing I could think of. I swung the only weapon that I had.

And pardon the expression, but that cat learned a whole new meaning of the term “shit-faced.”

The Journey of Gnatty Anne*

Tuesday, October 4th, 2011

Last night at dusk, I went on an easy run – just 3.5 miles around Sloan’s Lake. The weather was cool and I was feeling good – the perfect combination for a great run.

One would think.

However, that proverbial one doing the thinking obviously wasn’t thinking about the swarms of bugs that would be out in force.

First, a gnat got caught in the web that is my eyelashes. I blinked so hard, passerbys surely thought I was attempting morse code with my eyes. I swatted at my face, squishing the bug and pinching it from my eyelashes – at least I think I did. My eyelashes are very black – the perfect camouflage for an insect. Is that an eyelash or a bug leg? It’s hard to say.

Are you still reading? Because don’t worry, there’s more.

So, while I was attempting to rid my eye of the bug by doing my blinky-wide-eyed-blinky thing, my mouth may have fallen open (ugh, I KNOW there’s a “That’s What She Said” joke in this). Ask any mascara-applying girl (or guy? I don’t discriminate) – the mouth-falling-open thing is a natural reflex when doing the blinky-wide-eyed-blinky thing. THE POINT IS: when dealing with the gnat in my eye, my mouth opened up, creating a gaping void perfect for another gnat to fill. It flew straight to the back of my throat – yes, to my UVULA (totally just Googled “uvula” to make sure it isn’t sexual). I hacked like a dog until the dead bug exited on a rip-roaring wave of spit.

And then, as the grand finale, a gnat flew straight up my nostril. I farmer-blew as hard as I could, but I could still feel it. I could FEEL THE BUG IN MY NOSE. So I did what any “rational human in a moment of panic” would do, and used my thumb and my forefinger to squeeze my nostrils together. What I wasn’t counting on was that this would squish the bug. I quickly realized that I now had a DEAD BUG. I had a DEAD BUG IN MY NOSE. I quickly blew into my tank top, leaving my shirt snot-covered and my heart, mind, and soul utterly traumatized.

But I never stopped running.

*Worst title ever. Acknowledged.

The stuff of horror films

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011

This time last year, I was seeing ants in my kitchen.  I eventually discovered that they had raided my sugar bag, so I threw it out, and from that point on, I’ve kept my sugar in the freezer – and thus, an ant-free kitchen.

But a few weeks ago, I saw an ant.

And you know what they say: where there’s one ant, there are lots of more ants.*

For weeks, I have seen ants in my kitchen – but I was never able to figure out their point of genesis.  I cleaned the kitchen cabinets, Cloroxed the counters, sealed every food item, and cleared every crumb after every meal.

Still, the ants came marching one by one.

The other night, I was setting my coffee for the next morning.  I poured the water into the machine, and as I did, I caught sight of an ant camouflaged on the side of the black coffee maker.

I killed it.

And then, I saw another ant come crawling out of the machine.

So I killed it, too.

And all of a sudden, there was a flood, a deluge, a gushing of ants coming out of my coffee maker.

My coffee maker.

The hotbed was IN MY COFFEE MAKER.

Shockingly, I didn’t scream, but I made a pathetic, drawn out, traumatized noise of some sort – somewhere between a moan and a cry and a “Die, scum” sob.  I aimed the bottle of Clorox at the teeming swarm, and just started spraying – spraying like a stream of Charlie Sheen nonsense.  Finally, I slammed the lid shut, took the entire coffee machine, dumped it in a Hefty bag, and marched it to the dumpster.

You do realize what this means, right?

For weeks, I have been drinking coffee that has been STRAINED THROUGH ANTS.

I will never, ever recover from this.

*Not an actual phrase, but true all the same.  Obviously.

Bad choice

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009

I talk to people on the phone all day at work, walking them through various Computer Things.  Yesterday, while the customer’s internet connection was moving slowly and we were waiting for the page to pull up, she decided to make small talk.  She asked me if I’d seen the pictures of the coyote that got hit by the racecar and stuck in the grill – apparently, it’s some amazing “It” email forward out in circulation.

I told her that no, I am out of touch these days.  I don’t even know important things – like if the Taylors are dating – let alone the fate of would-be road-kill.  I am the least “in the know” person around.

So she told me to Google it – to Google “coyote hit by car” – because the pictures are incredible.

Perhaps this goes without saying, and should have been obvious from the start, but THAT WAS THE WORST IDEA EVER AND DON’T SAY I DIDN’T WARN YOU.

I should probably just stop sleeping

Monday, September 14th, 2009

Last night, I had a horrific nightmare that I walked into the bathroom and caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror – and my lips had a hard extra layer on them, almost black, like an avocado rind.  I had to peel them off – two big lip-shaped pieces – to get back to my normal pink smackers.

It wasn’t as bad as the time I dreamed that I…

You know what, I can’t even say it.  If I wrote what happened in this dream, I can guarantee that no one would ever come back to this blog again.  Some images get burned into the brain forever – and as much as I wish for someone to bear this burden with me, I won’t do it to you.  I will martyr myself on the altar of nightmares for your sake.

Don’t say I never did anything for you.

But seriously – what is going on here?  WHY am I having these horrible dreams?  I don’t watch horror movies.  I’ve never witnessed true atrocities.  And yet, I go to sleep, and am transported to being the central figure in an episode of “Rescue 911.”  The freakshow edition.

Maybe I’m spending too much time alone.

If left to my own devices, I would hang out by myself all the time.

No, really.  All the time.

For the past 6 months or so, I have spent most of my free time alone.  As an introvert, time to recharge is important – but when does it become too much?  When does the self-care become selfish? When does the coddling result in an inadvertent snapped neck?

See.  NIGHTMARE.

Good thing I don’t Twitter

Thursday, July 23rd, 2009

Otherwise, this is what you would have been subjected to yesterday.

Annie Parsons… found 7 bug bites.
Annie Parsons… discovered 2 more bites.
Annie Parsons… that makes 9.
Annie Parsons… is going to scratch her skin off.
Annie Parsons… is watching the poison curlicue beneath her skin.
Annie Parsons… is researching bug bites online.
Annie Parsons… thank you, Google images.
Annie Parsons… made a table and is tallying points for the culprit.
Annie Parsons… has narrowed it down to a spider.
Annie Parsons… or a chigger.
Annie Parsons… actually, 5 points for ants.
Annie Parsons… these are really, really red.
Annie Parsons… is itching like a coke whore.
Annie Parsons… is changing her bed sheets.
Annie Parsons… is shaking out her quilt.
Annie Parsons… cannot fall asleep.
Annie Parsons… cannot fall asleep.
Annie Parsons… cannot fall asleep.
Annie Parsons… IS THAT A BUG?
Annie Parsons… is paranoid.
Annie Parsons… cannot fall asleep.

The thought of insects feasting on my flesh makes me want to burn my bed.