Monthly Archives: February 2012

Welcome to Club 30, my friends

Gather ’round, children. Your wise, old Auntie Aprill wants to tell you a story. A story about growing older. A story about turning 30 and accepting that your life is now, in fact, over.

Now, many, many years ago, when I was in school and we used pagers instead of cell phones and lit our cigarettes by rubbing two sticks together, I was the oldest amongst my high school and college friends. Naturally, this meant I was the first one to get my driver’s license and the first one legally able to drink.

As great as that might sound, it did have its downsides. For instance, I spent many months as the unofficial chauffeur to a bunch of squealing teenage girls, shuttling everyone from school to the Burger King parking lot, which is where in our teenage wisdom we decided was THE place to be on Thursday night. This also meant I was the only one without a Whooper, since I spent all my money on gas, which cost an outlandish $1.50 a gallon!

My older age also meant I spent an inordinately large amount of time in bar bathrooms, licking my “21 & Over” handstamp and then pressing it down on my 20-year-old friends’ hands in the hopes it would rub off and they could also pass for 21. I also became insanely adept at slipping off club wristbands at will, which unfortunately does not translate into any actual marketable skill in the real world.

And then we cut to this year, when I was the first to turn 30. So considering one of my best friends just celebrated her 30th birthday this week, I feel it is only right that I pass on the knowledge I have gained since entering this decade of my life.

One of the first things you’ll notice now that you are in Club 30 is that your body becomes involuntarily loud. For example, the other morning I went to hug my husband only to have my elbows crack like a whip ricocheting off a canyon wall. I can also make the exact same noise with my knees when I bend down and my neck should I attempt to swivel it more than 30 degrees in any particular direction. According to my husband, who is 36, these are known among the wiser 30-somethings as the morning creaks.

You’ll also notice that oldie radio stations are now suddenly playing the song you danced to at prom. Worse yet, that rapper you thought was so hardcore now has a reality TV show on VH1 with his FAMILY. And when you saw Lady Gaga in that meat dress, you didn’t think “oh, how avant-garde.” You thought, “man, now I’m hungry.”

Speaking of hungry, your body now clings to every fat cell as though it is its last, even though it actually has TONS of buddies. In fact, you can now gain weight just by dreaming about cheesecake.

Age 30 is also when the media decides to hit you with a barrage of reports about just how steeply your fertility has declined. Oh sure, you may say that it’s probably much more likely that we are just noticing these reports more now. But I’m 99.8 percent sure the media has the birth dates of every childless woman in the U.S. and as soon as they turn that golden number, they go into overdrive to pump out these stories.

“Hey chief, Mary Jones in Dallas just turned 30!”

“All right, team! You know what to do. Ace, I want that story on the increased risk of birth defects! Scoop, I need that editorial on how older women are selfishly forsaking motherhood for their careers! And Johnny, get me a graphic of shriveled and useless 30-year-old ovaries!”

This is also the age where WebMD suddenly becomes your new best friend. That mole that has been on your back for as long as you can remember? It is now most definitely a sign of skin cancer. And that headache you had this morning? You’re about to die from an aneurysm at any moment.

Now, you may be thinking how are you able to keep your sense of humor through all this, Aprill? Well, old age has taught me that life is a tragedy for those who feel and a comedy for those who think, which must be true because I read it off a fortune cookie.

And it helps that the other day I was talking on the phone to a delightful woman in her 90’s who upon discovering my age said “Thirty! Why, you’re just a baby.” Which helped me realize that one woman’s old age is another woman’s zygote.

So perhaps I’m not quite THAT old. I mean, I guess 30 does still sound fairly young.

Yeah, you know what? I am still young. Hell, 30 is the new 20, right? I may have started noticing fine lines on my face but at least two of my major female body parts are still north of the equator. I still have the majority of my whole life ahead me! And cookie fortune wisdom aside, I am still wildly immature in the eyes of any and all Baby Boomers!

So if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to do something youthful and ill-advised and that ensures I can never run for public office.

Right after I Google this weird skin abrasion on my abdomen.

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I’m a better housekeeper than NASA

Oh, you read me right. I am officially better than some of the most brilliant minds on the planet at keeping my shiz in order. I may have dust bunnies the size of Sam Winchester* under my bed, but at least my trash isn’t orbiting the Earth and threatening to decimate Idaho.

Aprill: 1

Astrophysicists: 0

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Now, not to sound like these guys:

But did you guys read that article in the New York Times about how we are only just now considering doing something about the huge amount of space junk we so generously left behind for the past 50 years? Apparently, it’s becoming a hazard. Like, “hey, there are 20,000 pieces of junk just hanging out up there and most are the size of a Greyhound bus” kind of hazard.

Yes, we take the same healthy attitude of “meh” toward destroying space as we do with our very own planet.  

Luckily, the same brilliant minds who never considered the consequences of leaving huge piles of crap right above our heads have also come up with totally viable solutions to clean up their mess. In no particular order of ridiculousness, they are:

  • A giant net to round up wayward items
  • Giant balloons that would nudge wayward items away and make them Venus’ problem
  • Firing lasers from the ground
  • An $11 million vacuum cleaner called “CleanSpace One”

But perhaps my favorite idea is the Celestial Broom.**

If you’re having trouble picturing that, never fear. I drew a visual aid:

Now, I know I’ve written about my lack of domestic skills before (here and here and here, for example), and I’m not going to lie, I used to beat myself up about it.

But HA! Not anymore. Cause while I may currently be going commando because I’ve been too lazy to do laundry for three weeks, at least my mess isn’t large enough to warrant our Martian neighbors giving the TV show “Hoarders” a call.

*Bonus points for you if you get that nerdy reference

**Which would also make a great band name…DIBS!

Just another boring old married couple

For those of you in the office pool who picked “divorced within two years,” prepare to kiss your money good-bye. The end of this month will mark the second anniversary of when I suckered my husband into being permanently stuck with me.

Naturally, to mark such a milestone, we are planning to go all out with our celebration:

Me: “So, what do you want to do for our anniversary next weekend?”

Him: “Um…I don’t know. Hey, is ‘The Simpsons’ on tonight?”

Me: “I think so. Oh! Let’s order Chinese food and watch it.”

Obviously, we don’t have all the details worked out yet. But in our defense, we were so busy this past weekend lounging around the house in elastic band pants and slippers and making chili that was approximately 2,500 calories per bite that it left little time to make anniversary plans.

Now, to the untrained eye, it may seem like in only two short years I have turned into a boring, old married person. But personally, I think marriage has gotten a bad rap as being “boring.”

There are approximately 113,877 movies and TV shows out there that at one point all have some scene where a girl turns to a boy and says “I don’t ever want to be one of those boring, old married couples sitting in silence at dinner.” Those same movies and TV shows then portray married couples as being composed of a shrill, exhausted wife constantly nagging her weary, dead-eyed husband who keeps making sarcastic quips about “I don’t have an opinion anymore; my wife tells me what to think” to his single buddies.

And it’s thanks to these portrayals that people too often confuse “boring” with “comfortable.” See, while I’ll agree marriage isn’t one big giant non-stop action train, isn’t that also the point? I didn’t get married to have it resemble dating. Dating sucks. The constant fart supression alone is exhausting, let alone all the other stuff. If he doesn’t call within three days, should I call him? Or perhaps text? Maybe poke him on Facebook? Does he like me? Is my breath OK? Is he seeing anyone else? Just who is that girl with the horse teeth that wrote a happy birthday message on his Twitter feed? When I take off my Spanx, water bra, fake eyelashes, four-inch stilettos, hair extensions and seven-layers of makeup, will he be disappointed?

And that’s not to say my husband and I don’t go out on dates. We do. We’ll get all dressed up and go someplace nice. And then you know what I get to do after a date with my husband?

Anything I want.

I can keep the sexy times going once we are back home or put on my sweatpants immediately and share a roll of Tums with him on the couch because that foie gras is not sitting well in either of our stomachs.

And as for that boring married couple you see at dinner sitting in silence? Who said silence has to be a bad thing? Comfortable silences are one of the most rare commodities on earth. You ever hang out with someone you can’t have a comfortable silence with? It’s horrible. Both of you struggling to fill the pause in conversation until the awkwardness makes you both want to stab yourself in the eye with a soup spoon. That’s why weather was invented. Simply so we would have something to fill those uncomfortable silences with.

And that’s why they call it “settling down with someone,” not “let’s keep this emotionally-draining roller coaster going permanently.”

So, to my beloved husband, I’d just like to say happy anniversary, baby. I love you. And thanks for at least attempting to hide your laughter at my farts after that whole foie gras incident.

I want my life back, George R. R. Martin!

It has now been a month, George. One month spent reading your series “A Song of Ice and Fire.” And considering I am only on book four and your books are approximately the size of Wyoming, I still have miles to go before I sleep.*

See, thanks to you, George, every free second of my life is now devoted to your stupid books. I can’t put them down (and when I do I have to make sure I don’t set them down on any small children and/or pets so they don’t get crushed to death).

And the further I get into the books, the worse it gets. For example, I now read in the shower…

I’m now reading when I should be working, which can make for some lived and died without setting eyes upon salt water confusing articles.

If I actually did yoga instead of lying on my mat eating Cheetos, I’d read even while doing yoga:

And don’t ask me how I managed it, but I’ve even read during sex before:

Hell, I’m pretty sure at some point during “A Storm of Swords,” my husband had surgery or something and almost died or some junk but to be honest, I have no idea. I was too engrossed in whether or not Jon Snow would take over Winterfell and if someone would finally get revenge on Joffrey.

Look, buddy, I’ll level with you. You’re not my first. I mean…heh…I mean, by FAR (I’ve, uh, been around the literary stacks, if you know what I mean). As a kid, I spent three weeks invested in Narnia followed by a guilty romp through the “Anne of Green Gables” series. At the turn of the century, pretty much most of my life was devoted to “Lord of the Rings”; the movies, the books, the Google searches of a shirtless Orlando Bloom. After that, I became obsessed with Harry Potter, disappearing for a week only to emerge from my cave, blinking from the glare of the unfamiliar sun, to find I missed my own funeral. I got down and dirty with Katniss and Lisbeth and, while I’m not proud of this next phase of my life, there was also that one afternoon when I read the entire Twilight series. In fact, I absorbed “New Moon” simply by taking an hour-long nap on it (doesn’t take a whole lot of brain power to absorb a teenage girl being mopey for 200 pages).

But the difference is that your books, Mr. Martin, are each 1,000 pages long and have approximately 62 million characters. In fact, the one I’m reading now, “A Feast for Crows,” has four maps and an 80 page appendix detailing who all the characters are. 80 pages, George! That is utterly ridiculous. But even though I know it is ridiculous, you have made these goddamned books so interesting that I actually do go back and forth between the stupid maps and the appendix so I make sure I’m keeping everything straight.

And then…and then…what? What the hell am I supposed to do when I finally finish the recently published fifth book? Wait for five years for you to finish the sixth? Huh?

HUH!?!

Look, dude, I’m from Generation X. Smartphones with 3G speed are too slow for us. I can’t wait around five years while you tinker around on your goddamned typewriter. Especially since I know you’re going to leave a shitload of cliffhangers and unanswered questions at the end of “A Dance of Dragons.”

I mean, a lot can happen in five years. Hell, in five years, books probably won’t even EXIST! Or worse yet, I could be a soccer mom! Who only cares about her stupid kids! And not a book series she read five years ago!

WHY ARE YOU RUINING MY LIFE, GEORGE!?!

P.S. If you kill off Arya Stark, I will hunt you down and stab you in the throat.

P.S.S. Don’t know if I mentioned this or not, but I’m a huge fan. You doing any book signings in Boston soon?

*I totes stole that line.

Woman spontaneously combusting

So, regarding the title of this post…

1. That’s a kickass band name and you know it.

2. That is just one of the many random search engine terms that led unwitting civilians to this very site.

Yes, apparently while I (foolishly) thought I was just writing about trying to survive adulthood and the wacky twists and turns life takes as you get older, the Internet had a much more…shall we say…subjective point of view of this website.

Naturally, after discovering that Google (or AltaVista if you are still living in 1995) had taken it upon itself to connect me and my writing to the idea of (quite literally) being a hot mess, I decided to do some investigating and find out just what other terms Google thinks suits me. And lucky for me, my host WordPress keeps a very detailed log. 

Now, I’ll admit, some of these terms excited me and made me feel like I was getting somewhere with my writing career. For example, I am apparently the leading Internet expert on motorboating considering the amount of people led to my blog via typing in “Motorboat me,” “Irishman motorboating you” and “My guy friends motorboat me.”

I am also apparently one of the top results for “black friday poems,” so…yeah. Suck it, Emily Dickinson.

I’m also apparently a “mom I’d like to do” even though I don’t have kids and someone who is in the know about “brownies busted for underage drinking” even though I was never actually in the brownies nor have I ever written about them (although I might have some knowledge of underage drinking but in my defense it was a Zima and the cop was kind of a douchebag).

But perhaps the one I’m must proud about is “kerfluffin ring,” a term I, well, at least thought I made up but apparently at least one other person in this world was just as drunk while typing and happened to hit the same random number of keys in the exact same order as I did.

Of course, this journey down “Search Engine Term” lane hasn’t been all positive. Some of the phrases and ideas people looked up and then were brought into my web were less than…flattering. So let me break them down for you.  

(And just as a reminder, these are all exact terms that led people to click on this site).

Terms that make me think I should really re-evaluate my life:

Hangover

Expletive

Old woman in a corset drinking a beer

Cookies for you in my fanny pack

I love my big lady and she loves me *

*I’m only a size 8, Google. Back off.

Sluty [sic] wifes [sic] in Xmas outfit

Hiccups girl drunk -mee -murder

You aren’t funny, hobo

How to deal with feeling hor **

**I’m assuming they meant “horny” with that last word but apparently my website popped up so fast they didn’t even have to finish typing it.

Terms that might possibly make my husband think he should re-evaluate his life and/or his association with me:

My husband is exhausting

Do I talk to my wife about my inferiority complex?

I’m starting to hate my wife

Pictures of mixed girls that r kinda fat not to [sic] much

Snort emergen-C

Other search engine terms that led people to this website that would also make a kickass band name:

Drunk Monkey

Tom Felton Hairloss (and/or Breaking Hairloss News)

Forced Corset Corpse***

***I swear I am NOT making these up.

Florida Baby Grasshoppers

Uncles Noogies Wedgies

Spider Corpse

Plain Hotdog

Terms I’m considering for my future autobiography:

Lady dragging Christmas tree

Abused woman driving bald tires

Apologize to mom

Motivation when broke

Terms that would make a good title for my dog Buffy’s autobiography:

A dog running away from its house

And terms that are just downright Google being an asshole:

Fat woman in jungle

Muumuu Boston

Unwanted facial in public

Honorable mention:

Is there a serial killer in the tri-state area?

How can a woman deal with a border collie knote (?!?) **** in the ass

**** The (?!?) is my addition

So, all in all, I think we can agree I’m on the right career track *****

***** She says sobbing as she mixes a bottle of wine with a gallon of mint chocolate chip ice cream 

Valentine’s Day, Schmalentine’s Day

If my husband was married to a different sort of woman, chances are he would dread the month of February every year. Not only is Valentine’s Day coming up, but our wedding anniversary is on Feb. 28.

In ‘guy’ world, that’s like the ultimate double whammy.

Luckily, however, he is married to me, a woman who hates V-Day and was perfectly OK with celebrating our first wedding anniversary last year by going apartment hunting and was then thrilled when it ended with a signed lease. Perhaps I’m just unsentimental, but to me, not being homeless was a way better gift than, say, a scented candle.

I’ve never really been into all the hoopla surrounding Valentine’s Day. Even as a kid, I never understood why myself and my 24 other classmates were forced to give cards featuring cartoon characters to each other. I didn’t really want Bobby L. to “BEE MINE” and yet I still had to sign my name to that card of the bee hugging the honeycomb.

See, even back then I had an idea of how Valentine’s Day forces romance into one-size-fits-all, cookie cutter, pink and red decorated box. It’s a completely insincere holiday disguised as supposedly the most romantic day of the year.

Call me a cynic if you will, but I don’t find tasteless, chalky candy with generic messages such as “Luv U” and “Tweet Me!” and singing teddy bears romantic. Nor do I find waiting in line for an hour at a restaurant where my husband and I can split an appetizer, entree and some dessert called “Lover’s Brownie Delight” for only $20 romantic.

But it’s not like I’m some cold robot or some weird emo girl who finds scabs sexy. I’m still a red-blooded American girl who cries at “Love, Actually.” It’s just that what I find romantic is my husband emptying the dishwasher before I wake up in the morning and then coming home with vodka, cheeseburgers and a stack of books he thought I’d like that he grabbed from the free book table at work under his arm. And then he tells me I look hot in my sweatpants.

When I asked my husband what he found romantic, he said “Um…I like it when you cook me dinner. And there was that one time* you folded my laundry. That was pretty romantic.”

*Domestic goddess I am not

And that’s the thing. Every person has a different idea of what they find romantic. In fact, when I did a brief survey of my female family and friends about what they find romantic, not a single one said “roses, chocolates and going to a restaurant where I can’t pronounce half the menu.”

For example, my friend Michelle said “Random little surprises of things I love but don’t buy for myself. Tj [her husband] doing the laundry. And holding hands.”

My cousin Carrie, a married mom of two, said “Love notes and doing something that he doesn’t want to do but does it happily, like taking a walk or playing card games at a cafe. And anything that would actually take some thought or effort.”

My friend Kimberly, a newlywed, said “A kiss goodbye and a kiss hello when I see my husband. That my parents still dance together to the radio after 38 years of marriage in the living room. And that my grandpa would pick my granny wildflowers every spring until he could no longer drive.”

My former co-worker Allison said “I’d say taking goofy little excursions together-even if they aren’t to ‘romantic’ places. Just being alone together, making memories and having fun.”

And my friend Misty perhaps summed it up best when she said “Anything that has been personalized, like not red roses but your favorite tabloid magazine and your favorite wine or whatever you’re into. Also, anything that’s ‘just because’ and hasn’t been prompted by a birthday, anniversary or holiday.”

See, fellas, we know you feel obligated to buy us worthless crap on Valentine’s Day. But it doesn’t have to be that way. While there are some women out there who really do want pink and frilly and mass-produced consumer products on Feb. 14, in more cases than you would think, cleaning the kitchen and dancing with us in the living room on Feb. 15 will get you more points than giving us a box of chocolates on the day before.

(FULL DISCLOSURE: We will still eat the chocolates though…probably all in one sitting).