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11:42 a.m. - 2012-11-16
Chugging Along

Thanks, everyone, for being so kind with me about the other day's meltdown. Stuff sneaks up on you sometimes. What snuck up on me was that same tunnel caving in feeling you get when you really think about being married. I remember not long after Mick and I did the deed I was here in my office and had a whack-a-doodle moment when I truly understood that to keep my vows Mick's penis would be the ONLY penis I'd ever touch for the rest of my life. That's it. One dick forever. Barring medical stuff he'd be the only person I see naked and he me. (These days the 'only Mick sees me naked' thing is a blessing, but I digress.) If you've been there- whapped upside the head with the suddenly freaked out long-view you understand what I mean. I know this is why the 12 step programs focus on One Day at a Time. A lovely helpful technique, btw. Not just for staying off the sauce but for everything.

For today I will eat a nutritious breakfast.
For today I am a non-smoker.
For today I will not go berserk about the Barky clan's endless racket and stab whichever Barky I can catch first with a BBQ fork.
See? All kinds of ways to use the One Day approach. And you don't get all jammed up thinking about how you have to be this healthy breakfasting, non-smoking, non-stabby person every day until you die, you only have to do it today. Maybe tomorrow you can have Yankee-Doodles and Marlboro reds for breakfast and then go commit justifiable homicide with grilling tools. Sure, maybe tomorrow, however for today let's do the right thing, shall we? So with a potential 'out' swimming around in the back of your consciousness the pressure to be good ALL THE TIME FOR-FREAKING-EVER goes away and you can breathe.

Wednesday I forgot to breathe.

However, I had a good grumble, allowed myself to go loony-tunes for a little while and then went out, ran my daytime errands and treated myself to a deli sandwich and a box of nicotine gum.

The thing about the gum is I believe I'll only need it here at my desk. See, it was the only place I smoked. Well, I smoke on Stephanie's porch too, but this is a whole other deal and one I'm not ready to figure out yet. In my daily life I am (was?) the only smoker I know. When we moved here to the Hobbit House I decided I would not smoke in the main house and only indulge my cruddy habit in my wee office. My office is sealed off from the rest of the house with a heavy steel door and a vestibule. Almost an airlock. At the old house I only smoked in certain rooms too, but had much more leeway in my venues, the place was HUGE and fairly drafty so I never felt too bad about lighting up in my bedroom or downstairs in the library. There were another 24 rooms for the non-smokers to hang out in. This house was too small for that. Six rooms, all of them right on top of each other. Besides, smoking discolors the walls and makes the place stinky and I wasn't about to besmirch my shiny new little house.

As for the rest of my daily life, if I didn't smoke inside my house I sure as hell wasn't about to make my kids sit in a car full of smoke, so no smoking in the cars. No smoking in restaurants, even back in the day when such a thing was allowed, I traveled with non-smokers and wasn't going to make them sit in the stinky smoking section while we ate! Yucko. Gradually I weaned myself off even wanting a cigarette unless I was at my desk. My bod would click over into 'no smoking' mode and I was just fine. It was akin to the One Day rule, since I knew I'd be able to sit down and light up soon as I got to my desk at home I could go hours, sometimes even days if needs be, and not freak out. It was delayed gratification not a lifetime ban and thus deal able.

One last thing about smoking and then I'll shut up about it, I already assured Steph and this goes for the other smokers out there...I pledge not to be a preachy asshole about quitting. No "I smoked for 36 years and quit just like THAT! You can too! Come on! It's great here in non-smoking land! Just put down your lighter and hippety-skip away! Lalalalala! See how easy it is?"

Feh. It is NOT easy and if I were not ready to quit no amount of have-to, should-do, pictures of diseased lungs, etc would motivate me, in fact when I was hocked about quitting I'd smoke more out of spite. Telling a smoker to quit is like telling an overweight woman she should lose weight because she has such a pretty face. Yeah? Fuck you. No one in this day and age is unaware of the danger and expense of smoking. That a smoker chooses to keep smoking is a multi-faceted complicated addiction thing and frankly none of anyone else's business. Including mine, LA the quitter who's motivated to stop smoking yet also feels entitled to bitch and whine every step of the way.

Onto a new subject, though let me say those who are addicted to this thing are more annoying, more dangerous to others, ruder, and feel perfectly entitled to indulge their addiction at the stores, in the movies and even in a public bathroom whereas the poor smokers nicely go outside and huddle in little groups minding their own business and bothering NO ONE. Anyway, Wednesday night Mick and I were finally able to convince a representative of Verizon to let us have new phones. It took over 3 hours and a sizable bribe but Mick and I are now the owners of a shared data plan and a smart phone each. Mick's phone is less fancy whereas mine is the Enterprise D of smart phones (at least for another 3 months until the next version comes out making mine quaint). I got the Galaxy III S. I did NOT want an iPhone. I dislike Apple products. I never got my iPod and iTunes accounts to work properly for one thing, and for another I have always been an outsider, misfit and weirdo so had no need of the rebel cachet of being a Mac person. I like Windows just fine and even use IE. So there.

I'll say this new phone of mine is actually far less confusing and intimidating than my previous cell phone. My old phone was mean. It was crotchety and getting it to do things seemed to require some esoteric programming knowledge that tech people intrinsically understand and technophobes like me never, ever do. 'To set the alarm open the hooz-fooz screen from the subset menu, press the invisible button located under the (mumblemumble), put the phone in your left armpit for 23 seconds, bow toward Mecca, play 'There's No Biz Like Showbiz' on the keypad, rotate the screen 45 degrees using the globbety-glie key, and there you go! Now you can set the alarm using GMT and add or subtract according to your time zone.'


Like my vow to never be a preachy honker about quitting the butts, I do hereby vow to NEVER use my phone in a movie theater, public restroom, during dinner, or while having a conversation with an actual person in front of me. I also promise not to post pictures of every piece of food I'm about to eat, more than one pic of my cat and/or child per day, I will not update my FB status to tell you when I left the kitchen and went into the living room (or similar), and if I for any reason indulge in THE most reckless, selfish, wholly stupid activity of using my phone while driving I grant blanket permission for you to kill me dead on the spot. Texting and driving has got to be the most childish asinine miserable self-involved thing ever. We finally got the message across about how horribly selfish and wasteful drunk driving is only to change it up for something far more dangerous.

Guess what? You are not that important. You are not. Nothing your twit brained friends had to text you and your immediate reply to them is NOT more important than MY life or those of the people I love. Put down your goddamn phone and PAY ATTENTION to the road, you gormless selfish jerk. Seriously, shut the fuck up and drive.

And with that kindly public service announcement I'll sign off. Answers to questions about hair (length and coloring of), my clean bill of health at the doc's, our weekend plans, why I am making a fancy dinner for company on my wedding anniversary next week, gleeful reports about my figuring out how to play Angry Birds, why my new winter jacket is the bomb, and other such thrilling tales next time.

A 21st century woman at last, ~LA

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