Friday, March 30, 2012

I'm the Witch with the Cupcake Tree and all These Cupcakes are Just for Me

Isn’t it funny how cupcakes are suddenly so popular? Personally, I think it’s because all we really need to do is ice them and then stick a couple googly eyes on for decoration and TA DA! We have a dessert that is too cute for most females to eat. Needless to say, I put other things on mine. It’s for a wise and glorious purpose, I assure you.

Actually, I just wanted to show off how much I love my creepy syringe cake decorator’s handy work. This is what goth girls do – we make something and then find some way to think about it in a morbid way. Like the other day, I was making up cook books with this gal (she doesn’t know me very well). The books we made had dark purple brocade covers with shiny purple ribbon ties holding them together. I said they looked great – like books of death. Her expression was priceless. My husband picks up a book, flips to a random recipe, “Yeah, that could kill you.” He understands me.

Actually, I’m not that much of a goth. At least, I don’t live like a goth. I like life affirming things. But I do like making three-eyed stuffies and pillows with eyes and ears. Besides, if it wasn’t for creative impulses, life would probably be unbearable.

Anywoo – I like cupcakes and I have tried to make some cute ones out of felt. Mercy – that has been so uncool. I bought this little cupcake kit from a dollar store to see if I could make mine look as cute as the picture. If only it hadn’t been such a disaster. For starters, they didn’t give me the right kind of thread, so I threw it out and used my own. Secondly, they sent the least amount of felt that they could, so every stitch had to be perfect or it would look terrible. And lastly, it was a stuffie, with absolutely no purpose. They didn’t even include googly eyes. I don’t like crafts with no purpose. So, I tossed the whole thing out and tried to make my own pattern. That didn’t turn out right either. I wanna go to plushie school!

So, to comfort myself – real cupcakes that look the way they’re supposed to. Yeah, I’m going to eat all of these myself. Ha!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

I Never Hated a Man Enough to Give Him His Jewelry Back

You would think this would have been my mantra when I was dating. The truth was; I did give a guy his jewelry back – once. I never thought I’d be the type.

The truth was, even though I was a popular girl for dating – I didn’t score much jewelry. Why? Because I was always blowing guys off – rather rudely I’m afraid. And so unless his opening line went something like, “Please take this beautiful piece of metal” then there probably wasn’t time for him to warm up to giving me a shackle. However, it was one guy’s opening line once.

I love jewelry. That guy was really onto something. Seriously, if a guy waltzed up to me in the hall at my high school and said, “Yo Stephi-babe – I found this under the seat of my car. Want it?” And then he hung a pretty necklace in front of my face, I would have squealed with joy and thought happy things about him for weeks. I know I’m superficial. I get it. I also like articulate men, but in the face of something that sparkles, my ears would only hear, “This is for you.” I wouldn’t even have heard the bit about under the seat of his car or think about finding the real owner.

Anywoo – this one guy did do something like that. It was a bracelet and it wasn’t heart-stoppingly pretty, but it matched a necklace I wore all the time. He came up to me in the shop and asked me if I wanted it. I was like, ‘Gimme! Gimme!” Then a couple days went by and one of his friends came and asked me if I would go out with the guy who gave me the bracelet. I blinked. I was in grade ten and I had no idea why I was still being asked out via proxy. Wasn’t that for kids who were actually too young to date? So, I told the guy I wouldn’t participate in that kind of foolishness and if his friend wanted to date me he should ask me himself. The next day I was in a mood. So during shop class, I went up and gave it back. Zero ceremony.

You know, that must have been it. I must have enjoyed dumping boys more than waiting for the jewelry to come. I even dumped guys I liked. I know. I make myself sound wretched. It was just my belief that it was better to be brutally honest about my non-interest than string him along. I hate it when people get strung along. I’d rather be superficial.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Who's Scared of Turning 30?

These days we twenty-year-olds are practically taught that turning 30 is a bad thing. A couple months before I turned 30, I was definitely feeling the burn. So, I got to thinking about my 20th birthday.

Let me tell you about my 20th birthday. I was already married and my hubby and I lived in the crappiest basement apartment you can envision. Even though I was a college graduate, my first job out of college was a temporary position and when it ended, I couldn’t find another job. So, I gave up looking for a serious job and started working at Dairy Queen to pay the bills. To this day, I would rather clean up a child who has poo smeared from his neckline to his ankles than clean the ice cream machine coated in petroleum jelly. The kid you can get clean. That machine? … I don’t think so.

Anyway, I was sitting on my crappy linoleum floor with the ugliest lighting that has ever been invented, looking at the pathetic cherry chip cupcakes I’d made for myself, rubbing my sore feet, thinking about my pay cheque which was a fraction of my old one – wishing for death.

Thirtieth birthday? Oh Baby – who wants to be 20? Thirty is wicked. Life has set in. I have kids, a house, my book published, my tenth anniversary behind me, and a myriad of other adult pleasures at my fingertips.

The best thing about turning 30 has to be my kids. You know, I think I was always bored until my first child was born. I mean, I had progressed to a great job by the time I got pregnant and doing it really represented a positive, important contribution to society. But, even still, it didn’t give me the same satisfaction that raising a child does. I had more time to write before kids, but once I got my creative impulses assuaged I had all this time left and no more energy for writing. So I had all this free time that was wasted on entertainment because I was bored and tired.

I also don’t think that mothering is a ‘thankless job’. I suppose that must set in when the kids become teenagers. I was a really angst-ridden teen, so it’s hard to imagine that my children will be any different. I remember times when I was ungrateful for my parents. Then I’d think, “Would you rather they didn’t have you?” Then I’d smarten up. I like breathing. And I like taking responsibility for myself. I think I’ll like teaching my kids to do the same – breathe and stand tall.

As a twenty year-old, I felt like I was treading water, waiting for life to begin. As a thirty year-old, I’m having fun watching my seeds sprout up into saplings. And even if no one thanks me – those little trees still grew.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

He Loves You, He Loves You NOT

I’m sort of on a dating advice kick, so here’s another tidbit for all you married people who have absolutely no use for this advice, but why not? So …

Unfortunately, no matter how aggressive women become in their pursuit of men, they can actually only choose between the men that already like them. Those men – who already like you – can be divided into three categories. I would like to stress strongly that until you know which type he is – refrain from getting emotionally attached to him. Trust me; it’s the wisest thing to do.

Type One – He Likes You

This guy takes you on dates once in a while. Likewise, he phones, emails or texts you and he definitely obeys the ‘three day’ rule (doesn’t call for three days after a date). He may even be your boyfriend, but he definitely has a life outside you. And the truth is – he likes you. If he didn’t like you, he wouldn’t take you out at all. However, he isn’t going to be a heartbroken mess if you find another boyfriend. Why? Because ‘he’s not that into you’ (I know it’s cliché, but so expressive). So, you should be happy. He likes you. But you should definitely not fall in love with him, because that would represent a long and painful road and you’ll probably never get to the Emerald City. So take your Valentine and go home.

Type Three – He Loves Himself

I know I skipped type two, but it’s for the greater good. Type three guy phones all the time, he’s practically banging down your door and you’re about to order a shirt that warns everyone to respect your invisible bubble. Seriously, he’s so attracted to you that you’ve nick named him ‘the octopus man’ in your head. This guy does not love you. I know he gives off all the signs – he’s abandoned his friends – he has no life outside you and fifty other symptoms that lead you to believe that he’s the opposite of type one guy. However, if you start telling him how uncomfortable you are with all the constant touching/kissing/whatever he’s going to start acting like a snot-nosed kid who’s just had his lollipop taken away. Why? Because he’s not with you for any other reason than the physical perk of being lovey-dovey with you. If he won’t give you space without becoming your child rather than your man – he doesn’t respect you, love you, or whatever. He loves himself.

Type Two – He Loves You

This guy is the perfect balance between type one and type three. He gives you the first cut of his time, doesn’t wait three days to call (because he can’t restrain himself), yet he will also respect your wishes enough to leave you all by yourself on the other end of the couch if that’s what you want. See? Perfect.

Friday, March 2, 2012

And if I Win the Eating Contest?

Okay, so last week I promised that I would write a blog about why it’s bad to eat like a bird when you’re on a date. I’ll give you a list and then a story.

  1. It gives the gentleman you’re on a date with a false estimate as to how much you’re going to cost to feed whether you pay for yourself or he does.
  2. You’ll be underfed and weak if you need to beat the ever-living Hell out of him before the night is through.
  3. Are you really planning on marrying the guy and starving for the rest of your life because you can’t eat in front of him?
  4. This is where the feminine revolution really comes in handy. We can admit to being human – yay! (as a nice bonus, we also don’t have to wear corsets or girdles anymore – unless we want to)
  5. And lastly, eating the way you want will allow you to enjoy your date a lot more (his off-key remarks don’t sound nearly as irritating on a full stomach).

As a teenager, I actually did this – ate like a bird – in front of boys who weren’t my brother for three whole years of dating. If there was even one datable guy in the room, I’d avoid the buffet, keep walking past the giant Subway sub, skimp on dinner and cost my date less than $3 to feed.

However, when dating my husband, I actually dated him for two months before I realized that we were dating. You see, he had this whole forbidden fruit thing going on and I had to keep it a secret that I was wildly attracted to him. So, I ate normally around him in an effort to keep him a friend rather than turn him into a boyfriend I would certainly regret.

I don’t think there was a happier time in my life than when he revealed that he loved me, too, except I didn’t know how to eat in front of him. I had eaten normally thus far, which is to say that I ate as much as I wanted with my fingers as opposed to perfect table manners keeping my fork in my left hand and my knife in my right hand.

The walls came clattering down. We were at a youth conference where they served sloppy joes – really sloppy ones. He probably hadn’t noticed how I ate before, but he certainly would now. And one of my old ex-boyfriends was staring at me across the room. I sat there and looked at my jo. My boyfriend was chowing down on his completely unaware that I was deathly uncomfortable, staring down my sandwich. What was I going to do? I wanted to see that boy all the time – every day – and I would die if I didn’t eat properly. I shoved it in my face and to my ultimate shame, sauce dribbled down my chin.

And I lived happily ever after.