Life thru the haze of cat hair.

Category Archives: friends

Oh, hello! Lovely salad today. Dressing on the side.

I used to be fun. Honest.

Back in the day, I would get dressed up and go out with my friends. We’d drink, and dance, and laugh, and pick up boys (who wanted to be men.) The night would be considered young at 10pm. Heck, we wouldn’t even leave the house until after 10.  That was back when people could still smoke in bars – you’d come home reeking of cigarettes, and need to take a shower. Sleep (or pass out) for a few hours, then start making plans to do it all again.

But, somewhere along the way, my fun got broken. I’ve been trying to figure out what happened to it, and when, but the thought of going out and being jostled in a loud, too crowded bar holds all the appeal of the cats chewing my toes off. Maybe it’s a function of getting older, or the after effects of being betrayed by the above mentioned friends, or the result of acquiring more mature friends, or being more choosy with who I do consider a friend, but my fun seems to be gone.  (I know I previously described how I suck at the whole “I wanna be your friend” thing, so I won’t go there.)(Okay, just one thing about that – if someone calls to go to lunch or dinner or whatever, and I am not *completely* sure they are among my handful of friends? I experience something that can only be described as a mild panic attack. Seriously. WTF is wrong with me??)

Now, it seems that “going out” is more around the happy hour time frame. A lovely night is home, with a book. Dinner out? I’d love for it to be done by 8pm. Bed? On a school night, I like nothing more than to be in bed by 9, reading. Weekends? It’s later, but still not the crazy early morning hours of the next day. It’s a very low-key, comfortable existence.

But the more I think about my fun and what happened to it, I realize that what I have really *is* just an existence. Sure, it’s comfortable, it works (sort of), it’s somewhat lonely, but I’m not really *living*. I do have fun when I go out with my true friends. Or when I go to the hockey games with Herb. I really do. But how do I get out of my head, stop over analyzing every word/look/gesture with the ones who haven’t forced their way in. (And let’s face it – they do have to force their way in. And for those that have? Thank goat they did. I cherish them.)

Maybe once I stop expecting the worst from people, or suspecting the worst of myself, I will be able to find the instructions and fix my fun. I just hope that all the years of sweeping it into the corner, and moving it from one apartment to another, from one state to another, and finally to this house, haven’t permanently crushed it. I suspect the pieces have been pretty disintegrated and crushed, but maybe not irreparably harmed. Hopefully, with a little bottle of self-love, a healthy-sized box of kind words, and a final rinse-off of trust, my fun will re-emerge as some shadow of its former self. Maybe then, I will be able to water it daily, play it good music, feed it good food, and have it return stronger than before.  To be clear, I have no desire to relive the crazy days of leaving the house at 10pm and driving home (usually drunk. I know. You don’t have to say it. I KNOW!) several hours later. But I do want to not be suspicious of people and their motives. I do want to know that I have something to offer/contribute. I do want to hear myself laugh until my tum hurts.

I miss my fun. I hope it hasn’t given up all hope. After all, I did keep it with me for all this time, despite my neglect. That should count for something, right?


Oh, hello! Veggie wraps for lunch. I hope that’s okay.

Some of my furry friends.







Oh, hello! Come on in and have a glass of port with me.


Back Story: One of the very few perks of working at the Gas ‘n Sip is that sometimes we get tickets. To sporting events. For those of you who follow me on Twitter, you know that we had tickets to the Boston Red Sox for last evening.  Now, I am, admittedly, not the biggest fan of baseball. It’s fairly boring.  But, since I NEVER get offered a ticket, I thought it would be fun.  There were 4 tickets. I got 1 and the other 3 went to Frank, the napkin dispenser filler, and Aubrey and Wesley, the co-chief gas Pumpers.  Yep, me and the 3 boys get to hit the road for some baseball.

I rode down with Frank. He drives one of those froofy cars, FAST! I didn’t know that froofies went 80+ and got so close to the cars in front of them. 😮  What an exciting ride down. The Pumpers took Wesley’s car.

After that exciting ride, Frank and I stopped for 2 of these:

mmmm, beer

We finally go into the stadium, and these are our seats:

pavillion seats, first base line

Aubrey and Wesley were already there. Our seats? Rocked. We had servers. We didn’t need to schlep to the vendors. They came to us. I tried to take a picture of the menu, but it didn’t come out clearly. I could have gotten a lobster roll. Yum, right? $18.20. No. That is not a typo. Hotdog? $6.10. Energy drink? $8.10. French fries? $6.10.  Um, no thank you. I’m good.

Here are some pictures of Fenway:

The Outfield

The Green Monster

The maintenance guys making the infield pretty again for the players

And here is a picture of the shmev in front of us with a truly tragic hat:

No, this isn’t one of the Pumpers. But it is truly tragic.

So, why am I freaking out? Well, the Pumpers found my blog. Wesley said, “That’s what you get for putting stuff out on the Interwebs”. Yeah, there is a HUGE difference between virtual strangers reading my deep dark secrets, and boys I see EVERY FRIGGIN DAY reading it. They don’t need to see when I write a post about me being lonely. They don’t need to hear me bitch about the Leg Jiggler – they KNOW the Leg Jiggler!!!

I’ve made a deal with them. They promise secrecy in exchange for free Blue Raspberry Slurpees. I countered that if the Slurpee machine really does go away, I would keep them in orange cheese-flavored food product if I move to the Nacho Bar or the Wiener Wheel.  Deal.

So, you phuckers. I know you are reading this, and you know who you are. If I get back to the Gas ‘n Sip on Monday, and there is any indication of my having a blog and/or working at the G’nS, I will grab you both by the short hairs and make you scream like 12-year-old girls. MMMMKAY? (But if you made me a new, slammin’ Gas ‘n Sip name tag, I’d like to see it, please. 🙂 ) (Oh, and my girl Lesley, over at Um…What? would like one too, please.)


Oh hello! Sorry I haven’t been around for a while. Have some noodle salad.

Several years ago, when my brother Herb was still with Satan, we had all talked about learning to kayak and/or buying them. We went to a local sporting goods store which offered “outdoor sports training” and tried out some kayaks. Herb and I thought it was great fun. Satan decided she didn’t like to get wet. Or leave the house without showering and putting on a full face of make up. And doing her hair. She also didn’t like to sweat. So instead, we continued on with the same old thing – they would leave their house on weekends at around 2, after Satan had vacuumed (again), done at least 2 loads of laundry, had 1/2 pot of coffee, cleaned the stove, and gotten ready. Then they would swing by to pick me up, do Satan’s errands which she couldn’t seem to do during the week, and then go somewhere so Satan could drink we could eat.

I’m fully aware that I could have opted to do something else, but I like hanging out with Herb. And I like to go out to lunch on occasion too. But I was getting tired of always having to plan everything around alcohol. Drinking is also all well and good, but jeepers, can we do something else??

The last winter that Satan was around, I said that I thought it would be cool if we got snow shoes and got out and did something in the fresh air. Herb seemed into it, but Satan doesn’t like to be cold. *sigh*

Flash forward to this summer. Satan is gone. Herb is now with a lovely person. Let’s call her….Spice. (Get it? Herb and spice? No? hmmm…) Anyhoo, Spice has to work every other weekend. So Herb has some free time. He also got a bonus over the summer and invested in….. drum roll…. KAYAKS!! WOOT!!!

The first time we went this summer, we went to a little pond. We were both a little wobbly and tippy, but quickly got the hang of it, to some degree. Neither of us could paddle straight – or float straight for that matter! Being the lazy person that I am, my shoulders and arms were toast, very quickly. Then we went the next day, to a bigger pond. Still ridiculously sore, and uncoordinated, but we both realized that THIS was the way to spend sunny summer days. NOT sitting inside cleaning or running errands.

We’ve been a handful of times since that first weekend. Herb spends every other weekend with Spice. (still nothing? huh…). Each time, we get better and more confident and have tried larger ponds and lakes.

This past weekend? We decided to try THE BIG ONE! The lake everyone boats on. The lake our water supply comes from. The lake with more boats, jet skis, canoes and kayaks that we’d ever seen. On the busiest weekend of the summer. Yeah. Good thinking. *eye roll*

So we head out early. It’s a gorgeous sunny day. We have lunch and water and beer and lots and lots of sunscreen. We get there, put the kayaks in the water and set off. So far so good. “Hey cool, we should paddle around those islands!” “yeah, let’s do it on the way back” “k”.

It’s a bit rougher out there than we’ve seen, but nothing we can’t handle. We paddle up one side of the lake, looking at the ducks and trees and camps. We went for about an hour and a half. Then we stopped at a sand bar, where there were a lot of people sunning themselves or bringing in their boats to stop for lunch. We swam for a while, had lunch and rested.

Then we get back in to go further. Onward we go up further into the lake. There are a LOT of boats now and the wake is getting higher. But we pressed on. We traveled that way for about another hour-ish, then turned back. By this point, the waves were practically white-caps due to the number of boats going by. We were both exhausted, but kept going.  We even went by a whole flock of tufted ducks. They looked almost like loons, but they were brown with tufts of feathers off the back of the head. Tufted Duck This is the closest picture I can find. But the real ones were way prettier.

Almost back, we decide Hey! Let’s go across to the island! Yeah. From where we were, to get to the island, we had to go across “open” water, across the boat lane, across the jet ski lane. No protection of the shallower water. No protection of the shore. And off we went. For about 30 minutes we paddled. Hard. I lost feeling in my hands from gripping the oar. We both decided our shoulders were burning. Finally!! We made it. Um. Yeah. That was fun. Kinda. NOT.

The waves from the boats were pushing my boat into the shore and I almost got washed up onto the rocks. But halfway around the island, we discovered such calm water that we floated for a while then. We made our way back towards the car. We had to wait at the bridge for 5 or 6 boats to go under first, then we went under and back to the car.  We were out for about 4 and a half hours. Whew!

Long day. But the weather was perfect. The exercise was great. The water was warm. We had a lot of fun. I did feel badly that after all of that, Herb had to drive down to Spice’s house for the evening. Spice lives about an hour +/- away. UGH. I was toast. I don’t know how he made it. 

But the best part? After that adventure, we decided that we would be able to make it out to one of the coastal islands next summer. Ocean! There is a lovely restaurant out there that we could have lunch at. FUN!

Oh, and if you are wondering why Herb doesn’t go kayaking with Spice? It’s because she is not a strong swimmer and is a little bit afraid of it. I still think she would be fine and have a blast, but Herb doesn’t want to push her. She would have probably died out on THE BIG ONE with us, but the smaller ones would have been great for her.

So there you go. My new favorite thing to do. Kayak. If you have been kayaking before, you know. If you haven’t, and you have the opportunity, GO! You don’t really need to be a strong swimmer if you stay on the lakes and wear a life vest. (I consider myself a strong swimmer and still wear one, because you just never know what could happen.) Try it. You may find yourself with a new favorite thing to do, too.

Have you ever had (what you consider) a really good friend? One who you spent a huge amount of time with, laughing and having fun? But then all of a sudden, they start to pull away? You see them less and less? They call you less and less? You call them, but get voice mail more than a person? It’s sad, and it hurts, and it’s part of life. Everyone comes into and goes out of your life for a purpose. Some stay longer than others and some make more of an impact on your life than others.

So, have you ever had that happen to you? No? Me either. *snort*

Oh, hello! Tonight, it”s Sugar-Free Pecan Shortbread cookies, and club soda. The cookies are a little stale, but you don’t mind, right?

Remember when you were little? And you saw another little girl or boy who was about your age? You thought nothing of just going up to them and playing and giggling and chatting and being instant friends. There was no judgement, no ulterior motive, no guile.

Remember when you got to high school? All the cliques? One day you are BFFs with this group of girls (or boys) and the next they have “turned” on you and talk about you badly behind your back and laugh at you. There is one-ups-manship; judgement; cattiness.

Me? I am NOT GOOD at this whole making friends thing. It’s not that I don’t want friends, but I’m in a viscious circle – having friends and someone to hang out with is great, but I’m fairly private too, so opening up to people is hard for me. That tends to push people away. And it starts all over again. *sigh*

As part of my letting go of the past and not wallowing in the crap, I’m looking at why I do the things I do. I’ve had “friends” in the past who I thought I could trust. (And this was WAY past HS). And suddenly, with no explanation, I’ve been shut out. It hurts when that happens. I wracked my brain to figure out what happened, and to this day, I honestly have no idea. This has happened more than once. As a result, I have trust issues. I don’t want to have trust issues. I want to have friends.

I just still always have that back in HS feeling where there is the “cool kids” group, and I am on the outside, looking in with envy. Mostly, this is due to my crippling insecurity. What if I say something stoopid? What if they laugh? What if they talk about me after I walk away? Also? I am very shy by nature. Most people do not believe that about me at all. But, I find being social exhausting! If I make myself the center of attention, I’m okay with it. But if someone else puts the spotlight on me, I am MISERABLE!! I want to crawl under a table and hide. Then… once I am comfortable with a sitch, I’m good. My confidence level jumps from -27 to around 2.

I would love to have a handfull of friends with whom I could be completely comfortable, could tell anything to, would do anything for or would do anything for me.  My friend Meffa is that to a point, but I hold myself back. I know I do it. I hate that I do it. The K2Kid is another.

So, I’m going to ask you a favor. As a way to help me get out of the past, if you are talking to me, and feel me pulling away, call me on it. Let me know I’m safe. It really doesn’t have anything to do with something you’ve done. It’s all me. I’m owning this. And I’m asking for help with it (another thing that is EXTREMELY hard for me to do.) Thank you in advance.

Baby steps, right?

Oh, hello! I think a wee dram of port is in order tonight.

Facebook? My Space? Twitter? Instant messaging? Is this really the way of the world? I joined MySpace about 2 years ago as a lark. I heard it was all the rage. Um, yeah, if you are a horny high school kid! I think I lasted about 6 months on that and then deleted my account because I felt so icky.

Next came Facebook. I joined that about a year ago. It seems to be a little better. I was able to connect with some people from high school. Although, now that I think of it, if I wanted to still be friends with the people I went to high school with, I probably would be. I have a feeling that most of them would probably feel the same way. I can see what people I work with are doing. But, again, do I really want to do that, either? I used FB quite regularly for a while, but then got bored with it. I know there are games that people love – bejeweled and mafia wars. One coworker has set up a bot at his house that keeps playing for him while he is at work. Really? Yikes. Now, I check in maybe once a week.

Twitter is one of the most addictive time sucks I have every come across. I joined Twitter in February of this year just to see what it was about. Like this blog, I started out slow. Then I got a few followers who seemed cool and now I’m addicted. I have “met” a whole community of people who are very similar to me. Whereas I often feel out of place around my job or family due to my snark and dry sense of humor, these folks take me as I am, and love me for it. One blessed, kind, sweet sole – who I won’t name our of respect for her privacy – has even offered to help me out of a recent financial situation. We have NEVER EVEN MET but she trusts me enough to be so selfless and generous. I declined her offer, but only because I find it so difficult to ask for and receive help. (That is a whole other blog post!)

Anyhoo. These three applications are called social media. But how, exactly, is this social? Sitting at a computer, chatting with people who may or may not be who they say they are. I don’t even have my real picture on Twitter. Or here. (That’s mostly because I HATE HATE HATE having my picture taken. I can fool myself in the mirror into thinking that I’m not as heavy as I am, but the camera doesn’t lie.) Honestly, I do try to be as much myself as possible, but I can’t say that about everyone.

I don’t know what the point of all this is. I guess that while I don’t quite get the “social” part of this, I am glad that I have the followers I have on Twitter. I believe them to be kind, real, friendly, and very supportive. I don’t believe there is any hidden agenda with any of the people I follow. It’s relaxing to me to be able to be myself. To be able to let my guard down because keeping it up all the time? EXHAUSTING!!