Monday, December 10, 2012

Your Neighborhood Librarian Avoids the Clap

Gracious, looks like I never posted this, despite having written it in about March. It's about a surprising thing:

So, here's a surprising thing. Today's adventure - in our ongoing series of Your Neighborhood Librarian Gets Shit Done - involves something that I was putting off for a reallly long time, and that's buying jeans. My New Year's Resolution was... oh wait, the surprising thing. I don't want to leave anyone in suspense. That shit kills, you know. Nobody needs excess suspense.

Your Neighborhood Librarian Buys Jeans at the Mall

Times when you wish Purell made lube.
The surprising thing I'm talking about, the thing that will shock and alarm you is - I have just spent basically the whole day at the MAAALLLL, and I am in really a ridiculously good mood. Just chew on that for a second.

THE MALL. The place where crowds and perfume samples and overpriced throw pillows and the sinister alleyways of the second floor - I mean, you could get a raging case of genital warts even just from lingering outside Abercrombie and Fitch long enough to tie your shoe. NEVER touch the floor, or god help you the benches, outside of Abercrombie and Fitch.

But I. Prevailed.

Let's backtrack. Let me give you the backstory, the exposition for how I got to the MAALLL in the first place.

Monday, December 03, 2012

Your Neighborhood Librarian Can Hear a Bell Ring

I don't have cable, and I mostly don't miss it. I would like to watch the E! Oscars pregame show, yes granted, and I would probably waste a lot of time watching marathons on SyFy if I had it, but mostly I am ok with my collection of James Bond / Veronica Mars DVDs and Sports Night on Netflix.

Last Sunday night, however, was another matter ENTIRELY. That night, the hotly anticipated Lifetime original movie Liz and Dick was to air. I had been hearing about it for MONTHS. The gossips had news from the set that Lindsay Lohan could barely function. The trailer was so snipped-up you just knew they never got an entire coherent line out of her. And you know how Google sometimes tells it like it is? Like how if you're researching the history of lawn-ornament Blessed Virgin Mary statues and you google "antique yard Madonna" and Google's top result is a review excoriating Madonna's 2012 Super Bowl halftime performance I AM NOT LYING TRY IT YOURSELF - oops, there's another sentence that got away from me...

I mean... right? WRONG.
Umm anyway. You google "Liz & Dick parody" and it's all reviews of the actual movie. Plus this montage of Lohan breathing and touching her head. She's like taxidermy, really.

So right, since I don't have cable, I was reduced to watching Liz&Dick on Twitter. And if you don't think that is a thing you can do, look up the hashtag and scroll back. Every line, every costume - every hat! and even most of the backdrops were critiqued. At one point there was a robust rally to nominate the Liz&Dick green screen for an Oscar. It was amusing, mesmerizing... and it eventually made me sick. It's one thing to watch something that you yourself think is TERRRRRIBLE. It's another thing to witness an entire nation throwing up their arms in captivated horror.

After about 45 minutes, I closed Twitter, fired up the actual TV, and put on Mamma Mia!


Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Your Neighborhood Librarian Is Giving you a Long Look

So I'm driving to work, and I go east to go to work, here in Baltimore, and it's kind of different over there. So I'm driving to work, and there's this guy in a van, in a white panel van. Econoline. Driving alongside of me, and he gestures to me to roll down my window. So I roll down my window, and he calls out to me. I'm driving my blue minivan, my Honda Odyssey, total soccer mom minivan.

And he says to me, "You sell this van?" And I, of course, say, "What?" because, you know, people say "What?" when someone says something totally random to them. And he says, "You no want sell this van to me?" and I'm like, "Yeah, no. No. I'll just drive it to work instead."

And you know, he kind of shrugged and smiled at me and kept on going, and took the next right. And I'm driving along, as I was before, but completely baffled. I'm sure I had that look on my face, that baffled look.

Alexander the Great doesn't want
to sell his van either.
You know? What would that... how would that play out? You'd say, "Huh. Sure! I'll sell you my van! How much will you give me for this van? You want to give me five thousand dollars for this van? Eight?" I don't know, I would take eight grand for that van.

What's he going to do? Is he going to shell out a whole shitload of cash? Does he have that kind of roll in his pocket? And then he's going to give me a ride to work? And then take off, like, with my van?

Is it a question of... Where? Else? Could he find a van? I mean, all kinds of places, right? Has he checked the Pennysaver?

It's like you see those hand-lettered magic marker signs on the telephone posts, "WE BUY HOUSES." "WE BUY HOUSES - GOOD PRICES." Who does that work for? You have a house, you've been having trouble selling because it's a rough market, finally you're like, man, I'm under water on this house, I'm going to call the number on that sign. I bet they can help!

Who..? does that? There's got to be someone. There's got to be some percent return on that, some success rate of that kind of advertising, or people wouldn't draw up these little signs and staple them to posts. The investment in tagboard alone! And does this just happen in Baltimore? It can't just be Baltimore.

Although I am beginning to think it's just Baltimore where people beg on the street corner with a bucket and call it fundraising. Not kidding. Not even wearing like a vest, or matching t-shirts - I saw ladies wearing t-shirts that somebody had written on them with marker, the name of a daycare center, and they're walking around with spackle buckets at the intersection just asking for money for this daycare center. What? Isn't your daycare center a business? "We're raising money for the God's Little Superstars Daycare..." Really? Are ya? Cause... I'm a little short today. "I'm raising money for the... librarian lunch fund? That's right." I don't know.

Sure. I'll sell you my van.

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Your Neighborhood Librarian lies back and tries to relax

Why don't I floss? Why don't I FLOSS?

But I don't. So every couple of years, I end up having to have the roots of my teeth scaled, or planed or whatever they call it - I mean, whatever they do call it it amounts to SCRAPED. SCRAPED UGH ROOTS OF TEETH UGH. And you have to get numbed up for it, and now half of my face looks like I have Bell's Palsy again.

You guessed it. This is:

Your Neighborhood Librarian Goes to the Dentist

I had Bell's Palsy once already and it wasn't pretty, ladies and gentlemen! No. Pretty is a thing it wasn't. I looked like I was having a stroke at all times. They need a new name for that shit, "Bell's Palsy" sounds like something that comes in a little yellow cardboard box that you sprinkle on chicken. If I needed to blink, I had to use my finger to shut my left eye. If I wanted to drink through a straw, I had to endure the ridicule of my children. And if I wanted to sneak outside for a smoke after said children were asleep, I had to actually pinch the left side of my mouth closed around the cigarette.

Kim Mulkey, women's bball coach at Baylor,
would dearly like to be able to keep her left eye open.
I feels ya, jocky lady.
You mighta thought I would have quit smoking at that point, but I DIDN'T. NO. I don't have that many vices left, and so I am keeping it up. Here are my vices: I smoke, and I - well I drink, of course I drink, I have little kids - I watch Justified solely to see Raylan Givens with his shirt off, and I don't floss.

Oh, man! Making the f sound with my mouth all numbed up like this makes me make a little fart sound with my cheek. Work tonight is going to be humiliating.

[Once again, Your Neighborhood Librarian is posting from the highway. You live in Baltimore, you see a blue minivan on the Beltway with a woman in it kind of hollering and visibly complaining into thin air, my advice is, give me a wide berth.]

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Thanks, I like yours too! What you have left of it.

When you dye your hair hot pink, as I do (or if you dye your hair Virgin Rose or Fishbowl Blue or Iguana Green), sometimes that is the only thing people can see about you. Fair enough. If I meet a person who has pierced that spot right above your nose between your eyebrows and put a ring through it, that may be the only thing I will be able to see about him or her, at least until I get to know that person a little better.

No I'm not going to put a picture of someone with that piercing right here. Thank me later.

But I feel I ought to document some of the observations I have been able to make while being that person with the cape of long pink hair for I think six years:

  • Some people assume that you are WIIIILD and CRAAAAZAY and tell you things you don't want to know. Note to swingers: KEEP IT TO YOURSELF I DO NOT WANT TO KNOW.
  • Some people assume that I am a dangerous freak and possibly shouldn't be allowed to raise my own children. Note to customers at BJ's: I'm fine, really. Everyone yells at their kids sometimes.
  • Some people think that it is REALLY FUNNY that I am a librarian. Note to old men in bars: you have NO IDEA how diverse librarians really are. Except for the fact that we are almost all women and almost all own cats. So, actually, only kind of diverse.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Your Neighborhood Librarian Has a Monkey on her Back

Oh my god. Here's a saga. The worst kind of saga, really, because a good saga, a really good kind of saga would have some heroes, swords, boats... or maybe it would be a family saga, with adultery and illegitimate children, sweeping landscapes, sunsets, horseback riding, estates handed down.

There would be Kim Cattrall with brown hair (still on her back though I see) and Don Johnson in a ponytail wig. OMG that's who Coach Taylor looks like! Don Johnson! Wow.

But this isn't that kind of saga. No, this story I am sad to say is not the kind of John Jakes melodrama that happens to Randolph Mantooth and Delta Burke, nope. It is instead the kind of saga that happens to you and me, the saga about something that needs to happen but that just... doesn't happen. Something that needs to get done that just... somehow cannot become done.

A thing that is like that square wheel on the wheelbarrow, the worst wheelbarrow ever manufactured - who makes a wheelbarrow with a square wheel I ask you? You push it and push it and it is just never going to roll. It is a story of Fuck You I am Going to Place a Bomb Under You and You Will Move THEN Won't You You Piece of Shit.

Like that.

It's about an old sofabed. Not about Vikings or Forsytes, no, not about bastard children or kidnapped ranis. This is about a bastard couch. One that won't go away.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Your Neighborhood Librarian Goes Out 40

My friend Laurel has so many good ideas she has to dole them out like Communion wafers.

"Body of Christ," she'll murmur. "You should write a picture book biography of Thor Heyerdahl."
Next person walks up. "Sanguinis Christi. You need to open a gelato stand in Collier Heights."

"Mother of God," she said to me one gusty December night getting hammered on tequila on my porch. "You're going to write a series of blog posts about getting shit done."

I had been complaining about having to do jury duty and judge a book award and how difficult it is to slot all this stupid shit in to the crappy December turmoil that is December, and she says, "You really need to make it a thing: Your Neighborhood Librarian Gets Shit Done. Your Neighborhood Librarian Renews Her Driver's License. Your Neighborhood Librarian Gets a Mammogram."

And you know, it's not a bad idea.