Baby of the Family Blues

Today is apparently National Siblings Day. In honor of that, here is a re-post from February 2017. 

little kids

I am the youngest of three children. That’s right, I’m the “baby” as my mother would tell people well into my adult years. Stereotyped by older siblings as spoiled and immature, there are definitely perks to being the youngest. Our parents have been “broken in” by the first few kids. By the time we come along, they have seen it all and their energy has been diminished if not depleted entirely. This can be a good thing, especially if one of your older siblings had delinquent tendencies – you are allowed to skate by with moderately good behavior.

Before you get too envious of us, you should know that it is not all daisies and rainbows. On the contrary, the harassment we endured made us dream of having a baby brother or sister to take the brunt of the sibling tyranny, or better yet, the imagined paradise of only childhood.

Decades later, you can still see remnants of our trauma. Here are five ways that you can tell that someone is the youngest child.

  1. We flinch. A lot.
    My brother is nearly five years older than me, so he had a distinct physical advantage over me. I talked about some of his tormenting in this post. He specialized in Indian burns (sorry – still haven’t found the politically correct term for these), and grabbing my wrists to slap me with my own hands. Continue reading
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So Many Blogs. So Little Time.

In my last post, I talked about distractions that keep me from blogging.

I follow a bunch of other bloggers. It takes up a good chunk of time to catch every post which keeps me from posting on my own blog. Also, the sheer talent out there gives my Inner Critic plenty of ammunition.

But I’ll continue to read them. When you read, comment, and engage with your fellow bloggers, you become part of a wonderful community. I think of them as pen pals for the modern age.

Here list of some of my favorites. Those of you lucky enough to be listed will reap the benefits of being read by my entire list of followers. That’s right – you could reach tens of readers! Congratulations! Continue reading

Sorry. Not sorry.

Well, this is a sorry state of affairs. I am in an all too familiar spot. It’s been ages since I published a post. Do I have excuses? Yes. Are they good ones? Some. Does anyone really care? Probably not.

I’m not just being self-deprecating here. I don’t have many followers. A handful of people read my stuff, and some of them are kind enough to hit like or leave a comment. If I were to go away for good, something might someday jog your memory and bring to mind one of my posts, but would you miss me? Hardly.

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There are bloggers I’ve followed who seem to have packed up and left WordPress. Or maybe they’re out there in some new iteration that I haven’t discovered yet. If they resurface*, I’m glad to see them back, but they don’t owe me an apology. I’m not gazing at my screen, arms crossed saying “Well, well, well. Look who’s come crawling back. Just what do you have to say for yourself? This better be good!”

Most of us here on WordPress are doing it for the fun of it; for the practice of it; for the catharsis of it; for the whatever-the-hell our reason is for it. We’re not getting paid, and we’re beholden to no one.

And still, many of us feel the need to explain why we haven’t posted in a while.

Your day job has hit a rough patch (my 14 tax seasons at a CPA’s office qualify). Your three kids are in three different schools with activities out the wazoo. You’re in the middle of senior finals. You’re busy attending all the Kardashian baby showers. More than one blogger I follow is busy publishing a book. (P.S. I hate you. P.P.S. No, I don’t! I envy you! Please be my friend so some of that inspiration and creativity will rub off!) Heck, even if the biggest item on your calendar is rearranging your sock drawer and you can’t find it in yourself to post, guess what? It’s really ok.

sorry

 

I myself have been a serial apologizer most of my life. I have been known to say “sorry” to people who hit me with their grocery carts, or to start out confrontations saying “I’m sorry, but you really hurt my feelings.” So, if you feel the need to apologize, go ahead. I can relate. I will listen, sympathize, and give you absolution if that’s what you want

But, of all the things we have to be sorry about, not posting on our own, unpaid, just-for-the-hell-of-it blogs should not be one of them. I’m not doing it anymore, and neither should you!

Here are some people who really should be apologizing:

  • Bullies and internet trolls.
  • Anyone who sexually harasses anyone else.
  • People who litter.
  • That client who’s been ghosting me for the last two months, after making me think I’d be getting regular writing assignments.
  • Whoever designs public restrooms without hooks for your coat and purse.
  • People who take up two parking spots.
  • The makers of the GMC commercial with the weird looking little kid and the annoying “Me and You” song.
  • Companies that make you go through four different screens just to unsubscribe from their stupid emails.
  • Whoever keeps shrinking “fun size” candy bars.
  • The guy having a loud phone conversation in this coffee shop. Scratch that – he just got up to buy 4 servicemen from the nearby air force base their coffee. Dammit, now I’m sorry for not offering to do that myself.

We’re all human. There will always be something to feel sorry for. Save your apologies for the big stuff.

Now go and write something. Or don’t. Either way, you’re forgiven.

sorry (1)
Yes. Yes, you will. And that’s perfectly fine.

 

*Note: I started writing this post yesterday and set it aside to edit today. Overnight, I saw that one of the first blogger/poets I followed posted after an absence of nearly years! First of all, I’m wondering “what are the odds?!”

Second, did he apologize? Hell no! A post published a few days earlier (and that I somehow missed) was a story of someone entering a bar after a long absence. Brilliant!

A Day Late and a Million Dollars Short

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In response to the Daily Prompt from the WordPress Daily Post site: “Genius”, here is something I wrote awhile back…

How many times have you seen a product and said to yourself “why didn’t I think of that?” Even more frustrating is having an idea that someone else brings to reality later on. You can tell all your friends that you thought of it first, but of course no one will believe you. Continue reading

The Autumn of My Discontent

After reading Molly’s latest post on her blog Shallow Reflections, (check it out – it never fails to entertain,) I realized it’s time to re-post this little bit of fiction. The time comes around earlier every year. Enjoy!


interrogation

The interrogation room is cold. I’m pretty sure I read somewhere that they do that on purpose – anything to make you feel uncomfortable. The temperature, the buzzing florescent lights, and the hard metal chair are all doing their jobs and filling me with unease and a sense of impending doom.

I’ve been sitting here for what seems like hours (another time-honored technique, I’m sure) and have had time to reflect about the last 48 hours. Jeff told me I had to be careful. He had tried to talk me out of it. “Can’t you just go along to get along?” he asked.

“I’ve had it!” I had answered. “I can’t just sit back and watch while the powers-that-be do this to innocent people. Continue reading

Aspiring Not to Aspirate

I’m not generally a hypochondriac, but as I’ve gotten older, I have my share of moments when what’s going on in my body scares me. It’s like staying in a haunted house. Every creak, every sensation makes me stop in my tracks and listen. It could just be the old house settling on its foundation. Then again, it could be something malevolent intent on doing me in. Ah, the joys of aging!

Knowing me, however, my demise is more likely to come from doing something really stupid.

Last Thursday night, Mr. Maid and I were eating dinner. It was one of my ordinary weeknight menus of spaghetti with meat sauce and garlic bread.

easy spaghetti

In defiance to all rules of etiquette, I was chewing a big mouthful of pasta while simultaneously trying to talk. I can’t remember what I was saying, but it was making me also start to laugh. The combination of chewing, swallowing, talking, and laughing was apparently a little more multitasking than my brain and body could handle. As the phrase goes, my food went “down the wrong pipe.” Continue reading

Hemorrhoidal Tendencies: The Driving Edition, Volume 2

Welcome! You’ve stumbled upon Hemorrhoidal Tendencies, the occasional feature of my blog where I complain about the things in this world that are a pain in the ass.

In my first entry in Hemorrhoidal Tendencies I discussed some driving pet peeves. Every time I get behind the wheel, I realize I’ve only scratched the surface. Here are a few more things about driving (or more accurately, my fellow drivers) that can make me want to turn a pleasant Sunday drive into a scene from Death Race 2000.

You’re Not Fooling Anyone

Even the most conscientious drivers among us are guilty of breaking a driving laws on occasion. Is there really anyone out there who never goes over the speed limit? Or failed to signal a turn when no one is around? I didn’t think so.

One source of driving guilt that is probably most common is distracted driving. I myself have been known to grab a burger on my way out of town to eat while tooling down the interstate at 75 miles an hour. But over the years I have seen people put on mascara, shave, clean their ears with cotton swabs (yuck,) apply nail polish, and – I kid you not – read a textbook by the glow of the dome light. Continue reading