Scratchy Glitter

Observations for the easily irritated.

Category: Theater of Cruelty

The Donald and the Dragon

You may recall that Nick was headed to the Capitol to stop the government shutdown, so let’s check in on him, shall we?

He charged in the doors without significant opposition, since the guards had never seen such a beast before. To get the attention of Congress, he flew in sweeping circles near the ceiling, then sailed down for an impressive landing before the podium. Lawmakers drew back, gaping.

“Wh-what is that thing?” Mitch McConnell said, drawing his turtle-like head into his shoulders.

“I’ve heard of these!” Paul Ryan said, coming closer. “Experimental use in police departments…but the one I saw didn’t have wings.”

“That one was a female,” Nick informed him, and he jumped back.

“It talks!”

“I’m not an ‘it,'” Nick said testily, but then everyone came crowding around, poking at his teeth and ears in spite of his terrible growls, which became louder when a voice in the back said, “I’ve heard of those, but it’s not as big as I was expecting.”

“The President has to see this,” McConnell said.

“Yes, the President! That’s even better than Congress!” Nick cried, and set off eagerly with them for the Oval Office.

The President was eating lunch and watching TV when they came in, but screamed and jumped under his desk when he saw Nick. “What is that?! Get it out, get it out!”

“Sir, this is the latest in law-enforcement technology. We think the model deserves wider application.”

Nick jumped onto the President’s desk, gulped down two cheeseburgers, knocked over the drink and lapped it with his forked tongue, said, “Eww, it’s diet,” and jumped down.

“And it talks, too?!”

“Yes, sir. At least, it appears to.” Nick’s tail began to lash.

The President, having not been devoured yet, began to recover his composure. “That thing’s an ugly color. What do you call that color?”

“I believe it’s navy blue, sir.”

“So you get these things from the Navy?”

“No, sir. They’re used for police work.”

“Hmm. I want this one for Mar-a-Lago. Have it gold-plated.”

“Sir, I’m not sure that’s possible–”

“Gold spray paint, then. But I want it gold. Crate it up and ship it down there. And get a couple females! I’ll start a breeding program!”

to be continued!

 

 

Writing Well Is the Best Revenge

Facebook asked me what my life motto is. The above title was the second thing that came to mind. The first was “My temperament is to believe in extremes,” but I didn’t write that, Michael Stipe did.

No, I have not posted since Dec. 14. I’ve been taking stock of things writingwise, as opposed to, you know, actually doing it.

BEAST IN SHUTDOWN, DAY 2

…brought to you (clenched in his teeth) by Nick, who couldn’t stand it any longer and finally asked me to write. (“I did nothing of the kind.” Yes, you did, you were just too proud to put it in the form of a question.)

Nick is sulking at my feet. “Why is the government still shut down? They won’t let me do anything.”

“Because…well, you wouldn’t understand.”

“Will they still buy my food?”

“For a little while, at least.”

“Will I have to gnaw off your foot to survive?”

“You never have to do that.”

“But it remains an option?” I frown at him.

“If I could breathe fire, I could go out and remove the rest of this snow.”

“Find yourself something to do. Go read my old blog posts.”

“You know I can’t read! Tell me a story. You never gave me a Christmas special last year.”

“I never told the story of you pouncing on that clown at the Fall Festival, either.”

“Wait, what?”

“Never mind. Go fly around the yard or something.”

“I know! I’ll fly to the Capitol and make them stop this shutdown.”

…to be continued…

 

 

ASTROLOGY INVESTIGATION CONTINUED, 1977

…brought to you, as always, by a Taurean with Scorpio envy.

Fashion for Gemini–“Wear a beige-and-white striped men’s cotton bathrobe loosely belted for exciting at-home entertaining.” Yes, the excitement of wondering when the hostess’ clothing is going to fall off. Plus, all her guests are thinking, “She couldn’t bother to change out of her bathrobe?”

Fashion for Scorpio: “Daring fashion that only Scorpio can get away with includes a pale wild rice-colored blouson in thinnest wool with a chocolate suede skirt, high matching boots.” Yeah, a gray shirt and a brown skirt is pretty daring.

Interior decorating for Scorpio includes “a rainbow-striped hammock for bedroom fun.” OK, would sex in a hammock even work? Of course, I’d probably fall out even if I wasn’t having sex. Of course, I’m not a Scorpio.

 

Sit Down and See What Happens

…is what I’m doing, though with the amount of apple ale I’ve consumed, I make no promises.

Black Friday purchase–toilet paper. Hey, Consumer Reports says Walgreen’s store brand toilet paper is the best, plus it has roses on it! Only get the Premium Soft, though (the one with a kitten on the package–it’s a win/win/win situation!).

The first residential Christmas decoration was spotted some time ago, like on the 12th (ED. …of November…!) or something. Yeah, I should have said something about it at the time. The theme of decorations this year is apparently Cheap Glitter Crap.

A WEEK OF L’S

I ran into former co-workers Laurie and Lori! Life goes on without me.

.,..taking this up again several days later…

…the apple ale is but a memory.

YOU’RE WELCOME

I was charged with a great responsibility. The other day at McDonald’s, two people were refused the new “holiday” pies, even though they had them in stock, because “we can’t give them out until we sell all the pumpkin pies.” My mission, did I decide to accept it, was to eat up those pumpkin pies. Success has crowned my efforts as of today. You’re welcome.

NO, I DID NOT EAT THEM ALL IN ONE SITTING.

Speaking of eating, I saw on the news where Owensboro police officers are waiting on people at restaurants for charity. I remembered that Evansville PD sometimes does that. Therefore, Nick, I command you to tell me when this opportunity next comes up. What fun we two could have! And by “we,” I mean me.

ASTROLOGY ’76

“Adventurous You” for Cancer: “You like to have delicious treasures–especially antique necklaces, rings in a secret trove only you know exists.” In your mind, one presumes.

Fashion for Cancer: “The home-loving you relaxes in navy velvet jeans with the tightest of t-shirts (no bra, natch), with the logo of your favorite perfume emblazoned across the breasts.” One hopes your favorite perfume isn’t Tom Ford’s Facking Fabulous. Yes, that is a real thing, yes, it is spelled out on the label, “u” and all, and no, I don’t know why I won’t spell it out, as if someone’s going to tell me I can’t cuss on the Internet.

Hidden Desire for Sagittarius: “To be made love to while astride a magnificent black stallion, back to front and front to back, in a moonlit forest.” Yeah, nothing could go wrong there. If it’s even possible. Back to front, front to back…I’m confused.

TIME MARCHES ON

So I haven’t posted since, gulp, November? I actually began this one a couple weeks ago and have added to it several times. Because the best way to get something done is to wander back to it intermittently. Apparently nothing short of Nick pointing a taser at me will motivate me. But wait…

TREXA COMES TO THE RESCUE!

…with this story, available only here, until someone posts a picture of it on what is known as the Internet.

Trexa, driving on the Northeast Side, spotted a dead raccoon, notable mainly for its feet sticking up in the air. Coming back by several days later, she saw that someone had tied a helium balloon to its wrist saying GET WELL SOON! I love this sort of thing. (“We know,” they say. “You were the one at work who’d say, ‘That dead bug sure is big! Let’s put it in someone’s mailbox!’ To which I respond, I never actually did that..because there was always someone else willing to take my suggestions. And it was the mailbox of The Nemesis. I’m not proud of it, but there it is.) And for those of you wondering, Why hasn’t it been picked up yet?, that would be because no one has called it in. Animal Control does not go patrolling for dead animals, being too busy tending to abused and neglected living ones.

DISGUSTING NEW-PRODUCT NEWS

I walked by the skincare aisle at CVS, and had to turn back, thinking, Surely I did not just see the word “Snail” on a package. Yes, it was “Organic Snail Gel” for “Healthy-Aging.” (Need I mention that no hyphen was required there? Yet there it was.) Snails are, of course, known for their youthful energy. The actual ingredient list said it contained “Snail Secretion Filtrate.” Well, as long as it’s filtered. And organic. And–EW EW EW THEY’RE PUTTING SNAIL SLIME IN COSMETICS.

Yeah, I should have broken this into several smaller posts to keep myself on a regular posting schedule. I’m not proud of it, but there it is.

 

 

 

Environmental Enrichment Required

I seem to have a dearth of material now that I’m retired, unless Nick were to kidnap me and take me on some horrible Adventure, I suppose. After all, how often do you need to read my opinion of holiday decorations?

BUT YOU’RE GOING TO HEAR IT ANYWAY

‘Tis the season for gag-inducing cinnamon candles at the dollar store, the candle they would make me burn in Hell. Especially since they’ve had problems with the glass in their candles exploding when it gets hot. I bet all glass in Hell explodes when it gets hot.

OK, I guess candle-burning in Hell is an interesting topic.

HARKING BACK TO YE DAYS OF YORE WHEN I DID HAVE MATERIAL

On I guess March 21 2013 (I don’t know what time zone WordPress is in, but it sure ain’t mine, so all their dating is suspect), I reported a caller saying that someone needed to be “cemented” (they meant “committed”), and a caller saying, “There’s been a suicide….I’m the victim.”

HARKING BACK TO YON DAYS OF YORE EVEN FURTHER

Astrology for ’75:

Taurus woman/Cancer man: “He’ll lick your belly button when you’re not looking.” I don’t advise anyone to lick my belly button. Even if I am looking.

Taurus woman/Leo man: “Wear emotional sunglasses to avoid burns.” Where do you get those glasses?

Secret Wish for Aquarius: “Having a tall, silvery humanoid/astronaut go to the moon and back to prove his devotion to you, having him proclaim his love for you on network TV.”

ANOTHER DISSATISFIED CUSTOMER

The guy in front of me at McDonald’s was making a complaint. The manager said, “I’ll replace your entire order, sir.” He said, “I don’t want my order replaced!” (I’m thinking, Shut up, let them replace your order, and let us all get on with our lives and lunches.) Then he said, “Where’s the dude I talked to on the phone?” Ah, the Dude I Talked To On The Phone. I used to work with him.

McRib is back! Tastes like a weiner, shaped like a bone!

This Blog Won’t Write Itself

…as I realized earlier today.

THE SAGA OF THE CASHMERE TWINSET

I once read that “every woman should have a cashmere sweater in her signature color.” My signature color is periwinkle, so the closest choices were either Lilac or Paradise Blue Heather, and only the latter came in size L, so that’s the one I got. Ssso soft….

THE WORK ETHIC IN ACTION

…well, aside from expecting the blog to write itself.

The woman in front of me on the bus started her phone conversation with, “They can’t get mad at me for not coming in today.” I’m betting they can, especially when she continued with, “I need to get someone to call my work on Tuesday and act like my kids are sick and it’s an emergency, so I can leave work at noon. I gotta go trick-or-treating with my kids.” Because you shouldn’t let your job get in the way of the traditional trick-or-treat hour of NOON. She finished up with, “This job is gonna get me in trouble.” No, you’re doing that quite well on your own.

Commercial: “It’s the Halloween weekend!” There is no Halloween weekend. This ain’t Labor Day. This year Halloween isn’t even contiguous to a weekend. Wonder what they’ll say when it falls on a Wednesday.

I suppose I shouldn’t expect Walgreen’s to be anatomically correct, but not only do they have skeletons of spiders, but the things that do have skeletons–dogs, cats, rats–all have skeleton ears. I thought it was for cuteness’ sake, but the inclusion of rats suggests they did it so that people would know what it was a skeleton of.

What does it mean when the “Scary Witch Hair” wig looks suspiciously like mine? WELL?

THE WAR ON PARTS OF SPEECH CONTINUES

“Tell us how you burger.”  Or just point and grunt.

STAB FROM THE PAST

My first post from March ’13 marked the first mention of Nick as a beast, and the introduction of “Theater of Cruelty” to describe our interactions. I excoriated him for referring to me as “abominable” on Facebook, and for misspelling “abominable.”

ASTROLOGY ’74

Beauty for Taurus: “Tuck a rose in your cleavage.” Ouch.

Favorite Fantasy for Cancer: “Having him carry you off to the bedroom while the steak burns.” Um, shouldn’t you do something about that fire first?

Passionate Setting for Capricorn: “At the base of a gnarled oak tree in a bed of daisies.” I can actually provide that in my front yard, if any Capricorns want to get in touch with me.

An Army of Red and Green Laser Snowmen

…is what was promised in a commercial I saw today. “ACT NOW AND WE’LL THROW IN VAMPIRE BATS, ABSOLUTELY FREE!”

ASTROLOGICALLY CHALLENGED

Let’s continue our zodiac explorations…now for 1973.

Witchiest Makeup for Taurus: “Green shadow on eyelids, the merest dusting of same for the most intriguing earlobes in town.” Yeah, green earlobes would be the most intriguing in town, I’m pretty sure.

Interior decorating for Gemini: “Start a crystal collection–a disconcertingly placed bud vase with blue silk rose in the bathroom.” I guess a crystal bud vase in the bathroom would be disconcerting no matter where you placed it. I recommend the back of the toilet.

Favorite Aphrodisiac for Cancer: “Clam juice, with a frosting of Mediterranean sea salt, sprinkle of tarragon.” I’m glad I’m not a Cancer, so I don’t have to drink this.

THE OTHER DAY…

Rom saw a sour neon crawler on the sidewalk. This must be an omen. Of something.

SOUR NEON CRAWLERS PERSONNEL:

P.J. McBride–vocals and bass guitar. There’s a heartwarming story of how I learned to play bass even though I’m hampered by a previously-dislocated finger.

Romuald McBride III–drums. He learned to play drums to deal with quitting smoking.

Lead and rhythm guitars–two of my brothers-in-law. These guys are real musicians and I was impressed by their performance of Tom Petty’s “You Got Lucky” in my living room. It takes a lot for an acoustic performance to impress me.

Keyboards–my old friend Charles.

With luck (oh, and with work, and you know how that goes), I’ll come up with adventures for the Sour Neon Crawlers, similar to the stories my dear departed friend Suzy and I wrote about our favorite musicians in 8th grade (Bob Dylan, Donovan, Simon & Garfunkel). Yes, I’m regressing. This is what I do when I’m not giving snaky tongues to birds in my coloring book.

I am at war with my coloring book. Every time I turn a page, I think, YOU EXPECT ME TO COLOR ALL THESE THINGS? ARE YOU INSANE?? Then I scribble all over it.

AN ILLUSTRATION OF AMERICA’S FOREIGN POLICY

–Little boy playing with his dad at McDonald’s–“Give me back my missile! You are evil!”

MORE CHILDISH THINGS–THIS JUST IN

Archer (currently 6 years old) is an alien for Halloween. He told Rom that he’s called Extraterrestrial Highway. Rom said, “Is that how you got here?” and he said no, that’s his name. He also has a special way of holding his hands while running (even when he’s not an alien) because “it’s aerodynamic.”

I hope this post meets with the approval of Nick, who was bored by me earlier.

As it happens, my 6th and last post for Feb. ’13 was entitled “Tortured By Boredom,” and described NIMS training as “being waterboarded with words.” Those who have had this training will know whereof I speak.

 

Against Everything

“There’s an improved way to post on WordPress.” No, there isn’t, just a newer way. It is unfamiliar, therefore I fear it.

Faced with an expectant FanBase, I am forced to admit I do not have the cashmere sweaters in hand as yet, so no picture has been taken. I am also bemused by the varied reactions to my appearance in general. A guy who works at Thornton’s said, “You’re the last person I’d expect to have a snake tattoo,” while others seem to think a cashmere twinset is equally unlikely, so perhaps my personal style is not as well-defined as one would hope. Well, as would hope. I try.

CONTINUING OUR CANNIBALIZATION PROGRAM

I forgot to mention, reading my 4th post in Feb. ’13 (called “Trifecta” something, it’s all a blur)–I was basking in compliments as a new blogger (well, ASIDE from the fact that I invented the blog in 1990, and I’m going to keep mentioning that, so get used to it), and someone asked, Why am I not a newspaper columnist? The short answer is that the paper already has Jon Webb and Stan Levco. The long answer is that I’m autistic. (Doesn’t seem like a long answer? Watch me.) I actually had some professional connections in my youth, since my stepfather was in broadcasting, but I was no more able to network than I was able to fly through the air by flapping my arms. (To give you an idea–I worked at a factory for a couple years, and, after calling me into the office to ask if there were “any problems they should know about,” a question which baffled me, they moved me to a department where I could work by myself, since other people had been complaining about me, for reasons They wouldn’t reveal. And yes, I showered every day. So you can see how networking might be a problem.) I might have more of a clue now that I’m older, but I can’t guarantee it. How does one get started writing professionally these days?

Speaking of compliments, I was discussing the tooth fairy with Nick. Aside from the fact that inflation will get us all (I only got a dime or a quarter from the tooth fairy–something silvery and disc-shaped, at any rate), I remarked that kids must sleep more soundly than adults, since someone sticking their hand under my pillow now would probably wake me up. He said, “Probably not. I’m sure you sleep suspended from the ceiling upside down, wrapped in a cocoon of your own wings.”

And speaking of that ancient post–I really regret the demise of the WordPress feature that would recommend illustrations based on words you typed. (Well, except when my post title was “Spiders and Dead Bodies.”) You can sign up for illustration services, but they work by sending hundreds of pictures to your email inbox, and who has time to sift through those? Not me, I’m almost famous.

And speaking of fame (the title of this post should have been “Raging Segues”), the soundtrack at McDonald’s today included “The One I Love” by R.E.M., a song which proves that people only listen to the first 2 lines of anything. This is a popular romantic request number on radio stations, BUT–

“This one goes out to the one I love

This one goes out to the one I left behind

A SIMPLE PROP TO OCCUPY MY TIME…”

Anyone see a problem with that? It’s about casual sex on the road, hard though it may be to imagine R.E.M. engaging in the practice. Unlike, say, the Sour Neon Crawlers, with their army of groupies.

 

 

No Title

MORE WAR ON WORDS

“This is how well gets done.”

TV AT OUR HOUSE

Commercial: “Us lives here.”

Me: “DID THEY JUST SAY ‘US LIVES HERE’?!”

Rom: “We be them.”

EASIEST-TO-UNDERSTAND COMPANY NAME

On tanker truck: “Evansville Water Transportation.” Well, now I don’t have to wonder what’s in the tank.

ASTROLOGY IN ’72!

Cancer woman with Scorpio man: “Be the milkmaid with a secret financial ability who wears a tiny silver chain around her waist in bed.” This may be my favorite sentence in the entire collection. Because, what?

Leo: “You could give a winter party for 500, insisting that everyone come in bikinis while you wrap yourself in furs. No one would bat an artificial lash–it’s your style.”

Leo woman with Pisces man: “He wants to run barefoot through your hair. But don’t wait for him to speak up.” Yeah, just say, “You wanna run barefoot through my hair?” It’s your style.

Aquarius: “You’ll spend your last dollars on a quadrophonic tuner even though few radio stations are equipped to broadcast quad.” I believe that is still the case.

AT LAST!

The latest Lands’ End catalog has cashmere sweaters on the cover. I glanced at it and thought, “I’d like to have a cashmere sweater, but they’re so expensive.” Then I realized, don’t I have retirement-gift money I’ve been wondering what to do with? And with their current 40% off sale, I could buy a twinset! How classic of me! So I did. I promise to post a (rare and therefore valuable) picture of me on Facebook wearing my new sweaters. Yes, I should post it directly on the blog. No, I do not know how to do so, having no smartphone. Nick, shut up.

War on Words

No, not a war of words. That’s what Nick and I have. There is mutually-assured destruction involved.

Headline: “MILLENNIALS SAY EMOJIS ACTUALLY EXPRESS THEIR THOUGHTS BETTER THAN TRADITIONAL WORDS.” Ugh, as the saying goes. Where’s Devo when you need them?

And speaking of today’s post-literate world, why is everyone saying that someone “kneeled” instead of “knelt”? Even CNN is doing it.

A TEMPORARY NEW FEATURE!

Time to visit a bright and happy world which uses lots of italics–the world of Cosmopolitan magazine’s Bedside Astrologer booklets. I collected the whole set, from 1970 to 1991. They are the lightest possible entertainment, and even more so in retrospect. So if you ladies want to know what you were supposed to wear in 1972, or how Cosmo thought you should entice your boyfriend of whatever sign in any given year, let me know, I’m taking requests!

Highlights from 1970

Fashion for Aries: “You’re most comfortable in casual clothes, like a mink Russian hat.” Somehow I don’t see a mink anything as casual. And obviously we were still wearing real fur in 1970.

Taurus: “As a sixties girl, you love all the good things (fun furs, color television) that money can bring.” Ooh, color television!

Taurus travel plans: “You’ll be drawn to Ireland, Iran, or somewhere in the Near East (Istanbul would be a perfect choice).” So basically any place beginning with “I”?

More for Taurus: “On May 5, there’s danger of a nasty argument with a stranger. (Avoid it!)” As opposed to, say, smacking them upside the head, or whatever we did in 1970?

“The Cancer man may have fantasies of waltzing you, naked and draped in garlands of flowers, through elaborate fountains or waterfalls.” Has anyone ever had that fantasy?

“The Pisces man’s fantasy probably places him in a spa where he can minister to water nymphs.” Yeah, probably.

By the way, my very first job was to write stuff like this for a small local paper, which folded after one issue.

NON-ASTROLOGICAL STUFF

From Saturday Night Live: “52% of Americans believe that sex with robots will be acceptable in the near future. The other 48% are women.”

I was reminded of this looking at an ad for the single of “My Sharona,” featuring a scantily-clad Sharona and captioned, “This is my Sharona–what’s yours?” Um, shouldn’t that be “Who’s yours?” No wonder men think sex with robots is OK.

FUN ON THE BUS

Opinion delivered passing the golf course at Helfrich Park: “They should plow all this under and put up affordable housing.”

There was a guy on the bus wearing headphones that featured red/blue/green lights, which apparently pulsed in time to the music. Which we couldn’t hear, because he was wearing headphones. And he couldn’t see the lights, because he was wearing headphones. Makes every kind of sense.

THE DAILY CANNIBAL FEAST

My 4th post, “Everybody’s Traffic,” is my restatement of the Golden Rule–that every time you complain, for example, that “the traffic was terrible,” remember that you were part of it. For every person who says, “The road was full of idiots who don’t know how to drive,” there is another person saying, “I had some asshole riding my bumper all the way here.”

That post also marked the first mention of Nick’s name, in the context of a threat.

 

Glitterized

Remember my whining about lack of material? (“Which time?” they inquire.) Well, I have been informed by a former co-worker (I guess all my co-workers are “former” now) that Nick got involved in a situation on patrol that would make a good story. And so it shall, once I figure out how to Glitterize it. Did it occur to me to ask my (former) colleagues to send me good stories they encounter? No, it did not. “I fear no blogger,” Nick says, but maybe he should.

I CANNOT BE GOTTEN RID OF

still dream I show up at work, and then realize, “Hey, I don’t have to be here! I’ll just stay and eat donuts.”

IT’S THAT TIME OF YEAR

Time to use both boldface and italics? No, time to criticize holiday decorations. Not that I object to the idea of a spider skeleton. It just makes me wonder how many people think spiders actually have skeletons. “Well, I saw it at Walgreen’s, it must be true.”

SPEAKING OF DRUGSTORES….

I never did tell you what I spent my retirement gift cards on.

–Walgreen’s card from Ms. Tragically-Hip–red nail polish, base/top coat for same

–card from Noelle–gave CVS a turn and got a vat of body wash, one of those mesh puffy things (I normally use a washcloth, so I’m Trying New Things), and a tub of sugar scrub. I will be slicker than owl droppings, as Rom so poetically says, although I don’t think that substance is actually known for slickness.

The jury, by which I mean me, is still out on what to spend the rest of the retirement cash on. The longer I wait, the more ideas I get. How about a bright pink pantsuit? Rom will probably try to talk me out of that one. I think I’d look quite sixth-Rolling-Stone, with the addition of my black t-shirt. The ad for the suit says, “You can’t go wrong with slim-leg pants.” You can if you have big feet.

SONG-LYRIC ANALYSIS

“I’m goin’ away, baby, and I won’t be back ’till fall

If I find me a good-lookin’ woman, I won’t be back at all”

I detect a lack of commitment to this relationship.

CANNIBALIZATION

Post #2, “How I Got Beaten Up At Work,” (Feb. 2013) is self-explanatory. I see that one person re-read it, so they could envision it taking place at a massage parlor. Make sure you envision it with mirrored walls and red and green shag carpeting. Oh, and 70’s hard-rock radio. “More Than a Feeling,” indeed.

 

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