Monday, August 31, 2009

Penny's Thought of the Day...

Well I guess I can cross manager of future strippers off my list of things to do in life...

I really am trying to be positive and upbeat about the whole looking for a job thing.

Probably one of the only things that I am attempting to be upbeat about.

It's hard people. It's really fucking hard.

I'm getting REALLY tired of revising my resume.

I've dumbed it down about as much as I can, which (scratching my head in complete exsasperation) apparently has helped tremendously because instead of never hearing from the perspective employers that I send them out to I've actually gotten some responses.

Applause, applause, applause...yeah NOT SO MUCH!

The first response I got was from a pediatric practice.  The kiss off came as a result of me "expecting too much money."

Ummm, I don't think so jackasses. If you've been running your add for close to a month and just now had to run a new ad putting a specific salary cap on the job your trying to have filled then maybe it is YOU that has the problem.

Quality cost money people.

Also...just a little FYI...maybe if you had someone actually, oh, I don't know...interview the perspective new hire instead of using an oogy "head shot" and relying on job application that asks what your applicable hobbies are in regard to said position...then you deserve the under $9.00 hour crowd that are gonna come-a-flocking.

Jacklegs.

Next up was a voice mail. Yes, you read that right..a voicemail.

It get's better. It wasn't even a human speaking. It was an automated and not even friendly sounding computeresque woman the glibly advised me that "while we appreciate your interest in our firm after careful consideration we realize that you are over qualified for the position requested."

Wow...that one came out of left field. I've never been advised by something that closely resembles what I dream to be the wife of Mr. Moviephone that I am to over qualified for a job.

It then went on to ask me if I would like "the firm to keep my resume on file for future openings". I thought it was an okay idea..even if I didn't agree with their approach at notifying applicants I was at least grateful that I had gotten a phone call so I could cross this one off my list.

The automated voice told me to "select option #2 to save resume". I pressed the selection and it told me rather rudely, "option failed". I tried a few more (like 4) times and finally gave up after it seemed that the statement of "option failed" began to sound more and more hostile with each attempt.

It made me wonder how do they handle the ones that aren't qualified? Do they just send them back their resume's with the word FAIL written across it in red Sharpie??

Major jacklegs.

I tried really hard not to take either of those too personally and really just laughed it off. I was drunk with confidence over the fact that I had what I privately deemed to be the perfect position in mind.

It was as an Office Manager for a local dance studio. It would marry my loves of bossiness, creating memo's and dance!

Hi I'm Jessica. And you must be perfection.

This place had four things that I REALLY wanted which were:

A) the job is located less than a minute from home - I wouldn't even have to travel on any major roads to get to it

B) it was part time - it would allow me to enroll in school come the new year and not have to worry about shuffling a school and work schedule

C) it had the same holiday schedule as my kids school...no worries for childcare come summer when Liv went to spend the summer with her dad inevitably leaving Jon and I to scramble for childcare for Han.

D) it started after the kids left for school in the morning and finished before they got out each day - plus it was only 4 days a week just like my lovely dental practice job

Honestly when I sent out my resume via email as it instructed I could almost see God winking in complete approval. Ok...actually it was Penny but I'm sure somewhere...up there...the big guy was like "you go girl"!

My children had taken lessons from this place previously so I was familiar with the owner. They enjoyed the instructors and the classes but after two years we decided to leave and go somewhere else due to the failure in the management aspect.

Well there was that and the fact that with each year they attended the recital costumes tended to get skimpier and skimpier. Let me just say that when my husband went to pick up Han's tap costume for "Whistle While You Work" from Snow White he nearly had a stroke. He thought the song was descriptive of the hoochie momma bikini top and let's just sew together the smallest swatches of fabric we can possibly get away with and call it a skirt ensemble.

Han was 4 at the time of that recital. We took NO pictures that year for fear that when they went to be developed we would be hauled in for kiddie porn.

The fact that I had seen the bottom of the barrel in regards to office help that the owner had in the past I figured my experience would bring a level of professionalism to the table. I felt as though I had this one in the bag.

The only draw back would be having to take a pay cut but the benefits to this position FAR outweighed the downside of the money.

It was brutally crushing to get the last and most recent kiss off. It came in the form of a "thanks but the positions been filled" email.

Email? Really?

The email was sent at 3:45 p.m. on Saturday.

ON SATURDAY!!

Who the hell decides that they don't want to hire someone and then alerts them...via email...in the middle of the day on a fucking Saturday?? Way to kill the weekend for me.

Then as if that wasn't enough the email went on to ask me if I "know of anyone that would like to apply for an instructor position please forward this email address so that they can contact our studio".

Umm..hello?? You just hired a fucking Office Manager...make them find you an instructor...don't burden the person you just turned down!

Final dagger to the heart regarding this job is that the classified ad is still in the paper for the exact position that I was passed over for.

I'm hoping that it's because she had previously paid for a certain amount of time for the ad to be run because seriously if this woman lied to me about the position being filled I may just hang myself in the shower. If I can't cut it at a dance studio that may possibly turn out the next wave of strippers to entertain the tourist down on Bourbon Street and it was deemed that I wasn't experienced enough to handle that level of greatness...well, there just aren't words to describe the deep hole of blackness that I will sink into.

Biggest jackleg yet!

The level of professionalism that I am used to having is completely lost on today's hiring society. I mean come on people. Seriously?

Seriously??

SERIOUSLY...WTF??

Today is a new day. I've brewed a fresh pot of coffee and got back to the business of job hunting.

Looked over the resume again.

Resisted the urge to take out any words that have more than 2 syllables in the hopes that I can fool someone into thinking I'm a complete idiot and therefore a perfect candidate to be hired.

I will be hot on the trail of 15 more ad's that I pulled from the classifieds yesterday.

Given the first 3 responses that I've gotten after a month of looking I'm both scared and slightly intrigued about what else may lay ahead.

Stay tuned.

~JP

Saturday, August 29, 2009

You have your version of sexy...and clearly we have ours.

We are now entering day #5 of "the illness". 

It has been mainly uneventful.  No doctor's visits or hospitalization (mainly because we can't afford health care).

I didn't really start feeling the full effects of the germies until Thursday when my ability to swallow and breath magically disappeared.  Jon is in the same hellish boat as me so it's basically a free for all for the kids.  The last time Jon and I were both sick like this at the same time our kids were 10 & 5 and we allowed them to eat whatever they wanted for dinner one night. 

It was one of those moments when we were both burning up with fevers and so delirious with illness that we felt sure that our 10 year old would make a completely logical choice for dinner.  She chose brownie sundae's.  We were ill equipped to disagree or even care.  The next day when they came home from school they both asked if they could have a "real dinner".  Honestly the two of them were acting as if we hadn't fed them in days instead of the one missed meal that they had actually suffered.  And in truth it wasn't even that because they had eaten.

I was was like what the hell is that supposed to mean.  They seriously were acting as if we had tortured them and forced them to eat dessert for dinner. 

I think that was one of the moments when I realized my children were definitely one of a kind.

But back to this current sick fest. 

Hannah was the carrier monkey that exposed us to the illness.  Damn kid. 

How many times do I have to tell her to wash her hands, use sanitizer, don't share drinks, stay away from that one boy who's been in her class since Pre-k that ALWAYS seems to have strep throat and who infected her 7 times in one year???  Seriously people, if your kid is burning up with a fever and can't swallow without crying DO NOT...I REPEAT...DO NOT SEND HIM TO SCHOOL!

Pisses me off.  I may be lax on ALOT of stuff, but when it comes to illness...I believe that is something you should keep at home. 

The year of the "7 times of strep throat" I was pretty sure that our family physician was contemplating profiling me for Munchausen Syndrome.  I swear it was the illness that wouldn't go away. 

But this time around we are not in strep hell.  No we are in flu hell.  Or at least that is what I have self diagnosed us with.  Thank you WebMD.

By Thursday I was overly tired (more so than usual), chilled, unable to breath and hacking up a storm.  I was hitting the NyQuil like it was hard liquor.  If I could have put a straw in that bottle and carried it around like a juice box I would have.  At one point in a foggy haze of exhaustion and...well...NyQuil, I actually contemplated if I could make it into a cocktail.  Turns out it was the 1/2% alchohol by volume talking and when I finally came to my senses, kind of, I figured it not to be such a great idea. 

I mean, truth be told, we refer to the cherry NyQuil as "red death" in our house.  Jon will gather the kids to come and watch me take it because I have a severe aversion to liquid medication.  I'm a consistency girl...and liquid medicine is not something I can handle.  I will throw tantrums that could rival a 2 yr olds when it is deemed that I am sick enough to choke down that crap.

I will flail around stomping my feet on the ground with fist balled up at my sides and lips pursed tightly shut.  I know that this isn't a good example for my children, but so far all it has done is send them into hysteric fits of laughter to the point of almost peeing themselves.  Even at a younger age they would put up less of a fight then I would when it was time for them to take any medication in liquid form.  I am still baffled by the fact that Hannah, who can swallow a piece of candy whole, while opt for liquid over pill form medication any day of the week.

My mom says by 7 she forced me to take pills over liquid because she was tired of the sheer madness that ensued from trying to pin me to the floor and get me to swallow and not spit up the medicine that she was cramming down my unwilling throat.

When I turn to the Nyquil, my family knows that I AM SICK!

With all the coughing, snorting, achiness and chills it seemed the only thing that I couldn't seem to do was sneeze.  I have the tingle in my nose constantly though but alas...no sneeze.  I finally got one out on Friday after 2 days of waiting for it to happen. 

One. 

Singular. 

Pathetic. 

Sneeze.

Even now I NEED to sneeze. 

God, I really do need to sneeze.  My nose is being a sneeze tease.


As I sit writing this Jon is out in the living room sneezing 1..2..3..4..5..wait for it...6 times!  His norm is anywhere from 2 to 4 sneezes at one time.  In the 12 years we have been together he has never sneezed just once. 

Right now...I hate him.  That lucky able to sneeze bastard!

God he is such a show off.  I would yell that over the t.v., through the closed door in hopes of it traveling down the hallway to make it to his semi-deaf (even when he's not sick) ears...but alas I am too tired and that would hurt the hell out of my throat and then I'd be pissed and still unable to sneeze.

Kind of off the subject, but kind of related too..Thank God Jon got lasik surgery because now we almost make one normal human being.  Me, with supersonic ears but so-so sight and him partially deaf (he says from repeated ear infections as a child, which he blames on the fact that he was NOT breastfed as a baby...let it go man it's been 33 years) but with superior store bought sight.

We are both so fucking miserable.  The only highlights so far have been the delicious soup (Mmmmmm....baked potato) that he brought me and being rubbed down with Vick's vapo rub. 

The rub down with Vick's was actually pretty funny because if you would have thrown in some cheesy instrumental music in the background it could have been mistaken for one of those low budget adult movies.  I was moaning and Jon was totally getting turned on.  Then I snorted back the snot that was starting to dribble out of my nose and shabam...the moment was lost.

Not that we would have acted on any of the sexual rumblings that began to well up during the rub down because A) both of us are to fucking tired from being sick and B) ok..well there is no B.

Apparently it doesn't matter how sick we are because Jon, like any man, is always in "please I want nookey" mode. 

Perfect example: This morning I made my way from the bedroom out to the kitchen bleary eyed.  I had barely slept between hacking and snorting.  I had tried to wear ear plugs so that I would only have to listen to my bodily fluids being sucked back up into my head and not Jon's futile attempt to achieve air passage through both nostrils but the arrival of an ear infection (or what I have self diagnosed as an ear infection due to extreme pain and a red inner ear) made using those completely impossible. 

So it sounded like a lame version of dueling banjo's only with our coughs and snorts as the instrumentals.  How either of us slept more than 15 minutes at a time is COMPLETELY beyond me.

Anyways, I make my way into the kitchen and immediately set to making some tea.  I ask Jon if he would like some tea.  He agrees which is a sure fire sign that he is feeling just as shitty as I am.  Or so he would have me believe. 

I set about rubbing the sleep out of my eyes and trying to brush down my unruly and unshowered (for 2 days) hair.  Then I pick a wedge...I know...HOT!  I try to clear my throat and curse the pain that arises. 

I turn to whine to Jon and say, "I feel miserable.  I can't even swallow". 

"Great, there goes our evening", he retorts smiling.

I stand there for a second trying to compute the meaning in my foggy head.  And then it hits me...even with all this hot mess of a sicko wife who has become a mouth breather due to the overwhelming surplus of snot in her nasal passages he is making a sexual innuendo.  Gotta love that man of mine.

I smile.  He smiles.  We both hack and then snort back the flem.  If that isn't romantic and sexy...well I just don't know what is.

~JP

Penny's Thought of The Day



The Font War: Ikea Fans Fume over Verdana

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Penny's thought of the day....

Is this Plan B?? Oh god...

When it became increasingly apparent, as I hacked up a lung while sitting on the toilet...because alas motherhood makes you have a leaky bladder when your coughing hard enough to dislodge an organ...that Jon was going to TOTALLY shirk his parental responsibility of taking the kids to school in lieu of going to work in order to make money to support the kids he was unwilling to take to school I felt it best to hatch a back-up plan.  

First thought was to let the teenager who has had 3 (count them 1...2...3) driving lessons and doesn't even possess a learners permit to drive her younger sister to school and then drive herself.  Of course she would be supervised.  I'm not totally irresponsible.  I would be in the car...hopped up on NyQuil and no sleep.

I realized that was a TOTALLY ridiculous idea.

See, I'm not a total loon here.  I figured letting Penny (yes, the dog) drive was a MUCH better idea.

 
Penny is very responsible.  Looking both ways before nearly running over the jackleg students that walk in front of us in the carpool line.  
Hello...you obviously aren't that smart if you are willing to walk in front of a woman under the influence of cold meds who has determined that it is safer to let her dog drive.  Thank god for your sorry asses that my dog is super smart and cares that you live.

After dropping off both the kids Penny had one thing on her mind.......

Of course she really didn't think McDonald's would be this damn busy at 8:45 a.m. on a Wednesday!  Come on...is the economy so bad that NO ONE has a job!  Seriously it can't be that bad because They have the money to get their grub on!  I just want a sweet tea....I'm dying here...I'm coughing up other organs that I am pretty sure I may need later.  Oh, yeah...and Penny wants a biscuit!


Finally...I got my tea...Penny got her biscuit (seen above licking her snout) and we can head home and go to bed like NyQuil intends us to do.  
Thankfully neither of us has to be responsible again until 2:45 p.m.
~JP

Brew it up and throw some toothpicks in for good measure...

I have spent the better part of the sleeping hours rebuilding my blog.  It seems that when a completely slightly unskilled bloghess as myself attempts a format change after consuming three two times the legal limit of NyQuil you are prone to deleting misplacing the entire contents of your page.

Well ain't that just something.


I went back and read the NyQuil bottle and while it does say that one should not operate any heavy machinery it doesn't say anything about tending to your crops on facebook, posting a new blog or advising your children about the greater complexities of married life when their father has decided to go play poker while leaving their slightly inebriated, on cough syrup, mother in charge of their well being.

So now I am stuck between a rock and a VERY sleepy place.  


I have drank more than the legal limit of caffeine for any 6 hour period.  I can just about see my heart jumping out of my chest and have on more than one occasion had to stop Penny from attempting to attack it as if it is some kind of defunct pet toy.

I am able to keep my left eye open but my right eye...clearly the more lazy of the two...is in great need of having either my finger or a toothpick inserted to keep it open.  I look like a bad interpretation of a pirate.  One that keeps coughing and sneezing every 5 minutes.


The husband, that lucky bastard who got to sleep, will be waking up shortly (and by that I mean his alarm has now gone off the first time of 30 which will signal that he will role out of bed a full 15 minutes after he should have gotten up and a FULL hour after it sounded this first time).  Sadly, he subscribes to the same snooze button ritual that I do when I am of the "working class" and not the depressed class that I currently reside in.

The kids will be up in approximately 1 1/2 hours and need to be hauled to their respective places of higher learning.  Which will mean that I will need to have both eyes and at least part of my brain functioning in order to cart them there.  


So do I crash on the couch for a power nap or tough it out until after I get them off to school?

Times like this make me wonder why in the hell I don't make my kids ride the bus.  

Maybe today would be a good day for them to start.  Unfortunately...my head is swimming too much from the cold syrup caffeine cocktail to even begin to think where the bus stop is and to just send them out into the world without a final destination would surely be the most irresponsible thing I have EVER done.  


Probably WAY more irresponsible than the time I took them to both to see Superbad.  Too bad I can't blame that one on NyQuil.

I guess I will do the most responsible thing possible....get Jon to take them.


Ahhhhh....that was easy.


Goodnight Morning.


~JP

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Philosophy of Penny

It's creeping up on 3:30 a.m. and it is by far my favorite time of day. Middle of the night. Is that truly a time of day? Or would that be classified as time of night?? I mean it is dark outside. There is not even a wisp of sunlight in the sky.

Ever wonder why I never accomplish anything...hint, hint, hint...it's the never ending Q&A session that occurs in my mind 24/7.

I can't sleep because my mind doesn't shut off.

I can't accomplish any task without getting hung up on a million questions as to am I doing this right?? Am I gonna like the end result?? Did I leave my flat iron on?? Oh, wait I've been wearing curly hair lately...crap...when did I shower last??

Do you see the perfect insanity that plagues me on a daily basis?? It's a wonder I remember underwear and shoes all in the same day and then manage to remember that these two items alone does not an outfit make.

I woke up today at the crack of 1pm to the shrill ringing of what was supposed to be my new BFF...the CrackBerry. After vaguely remembering what button to push in order to answer incoming calls (yes I realize it's shaped like a phone and green for GO, but when you're woken from a state of zomby euphoria these common sense rationales escape me) and then there was the voice of my youngest..."mom, did you forget to come pick me up??"

OH SHIT...what would be worse...admitting that I forgot to pick her up from the sleepover she was at -OR- forgetting she had actually gone to aforementioned sleep over altogether?? You choose.

I tried to sound breezy while I flung myself out of bed in 1.2 seconds and scrambled to pull curly hair into pony tail while simultaneously wiping the sleepy eye boogers out of my eyes that were still trying to will themselves into the awake position. I brushed my teeth as I hopped into shorts. I figured a bra was a good idea even though I was hastily pulling on one of my husbands shirts which can easily hide flailing breast that at times can look like a bizarre floation device.

The fact that I put on two matching flip flops at the same time as trying to tame the two wild beast that are my breast into their harnesses was a sheer feat of brilliance, if I do say so myself.

The greatest thing about depression...if there is a bright side to this dark hole...is that I wear pajama's ALL THE TIME.

It's a slightly less sexy version of Hugh Heffner and I don't have a team of blonde nimrods with amazing bodies to flock around me. Although if there are any hot men that would like to apply for this postion please note that I expect there to be sleeping when we sleep together. If I wanted to have sex I would work with what the good Lord and my marriage vows bestowed upon me. Also, if there are any hot men that want to just sleep with me...I'd like if you were also good with dogs because these bitches make ALOT of noise and probably need to be walked WAY more than my one time per day sleep jammed, feel sorry for me pity fest allows.

Yes ladies and gentleman I do realize that I am making myself out to sound like an emotional torturer of kids and dogs alike. Send the men with the white coats...a padded room sound like perfection right about this stage in my life.

But back to my day. I made it to the house that held the sleepover in less than 5 minutes from time that phone call of worried 9 yr old was received. Thank god we live in the same neighborhood because I really don't think I was fully awake and having to clear more than 2 stop signs would have been a challenge that I am not sure I would have been up to.

Of course my child was the last one there...CRAPY MOTHER OF THE YEAR titled is ALL locked up ladies, you can breath easy.

I strolled back to my friend, and crazy ass mother that decided 5 tween girls for a sleepover was a BRILLIANT idea, bedroom. I apologized for letting Han be the last one to leave. She asked what we had on our agenda for the day. Well, my social butterfly of a 9 yr old had been invited to a birthday party. She knew because her son and this child were in the same class. Her family would be taking their kids as well. Super. Great. Ha, ha, ha...breezy chatter about new CrackBerry...then she remarks she needs to get ready, take a shower and so forth...I ask when they are heading to the party...she comments that her son has already left. Stupidly I ask why.

She then alerts me to the fact that the party starts in under 15 minutes. FUUUUUUCCCCCCKKKK! What the shit...the procrastinator in me cannot catch a break?

I haul butt home, truthfully only stopping for one of the two stop signs and jump in the shower. I may not feel the need to smell okay for my own family, but making others suffer...well that is just wrong. See at least I have a minor shred of dignity left. Well this week at least. Check back later to see if I maintain that...I'd give 50/50 odd's on that one going by the wayside.

I was shocked at the fact that I showered and threw myself together and wrapped the gift that my husband had so brilliantly purchased earlier in the week. It was a vicious and loving strategy all in one simple act. He knew, from many years of experience, that I would A) wait until the last possible second and B) I would use ANY and ALL excuses possible to forgo party all together..especially if I could use the no gift as a reason. Damn depression was foiled again. Take that mental disorder.

Off we went to partake in cake and ice cream and a HUGE inflatable water slide that had broken bone written all over it. Within 2 hours I was the one being called to it's watery basin as my child sat wailing while holding her arm.

First thought...son of a...please don't let her have rebroken arm that she broke last year. (FYI: any teacher or school administrator that thinks taking entire 3rd class to a skating rink for an end of school year party is a FUCKING MORON)

Thankfully we were not in broken anything territory and instead she milked a bruise but I could tell her previous night of partying hard with her besties was wearing her thin and we were coming up on a full fledge meltdown. I tried to love on her. Negative. I tried to joke with her. Negative. Finally I tried bribery...BINGO! I encouraged her to pack up her stuff and we would bring one of her friends back to the house to hang out.

She caved but within 30 minutes of being home and proclaiming herself "all better" she and her friend were hinting...but not very subtly...that they wanted a sleepover.

Fine.

Whatever.

Once again we were hauling our kid off to someone elses house. Sometimes I wonder why my kids don't want to have their friends over here. Then I take a listen to our maniac dogs and review the mental catalog that is my emotional state at any given moment and I begin to see why they wounldn't want to be at home. Ever.

I made dinner for the remaining members that stayed in for the night and we settled in to watch a movie. About 30 minutes into the movie I was being beckoned to pick up Han. The meltdown that I had predicted earlier but that I had ignored at her pronouncing she felt "all better" had indeed happened and now she was crying and proclaiming a headache which was the tell tale sign that she was D-O-N-E and in desperate need of her bed and good night sleep.

Of course we couldn't just get her home and get her into bed. There had to be one more emotional showdown. Oh how I adore the pre-pubesent years. Shoot me now.

I may have believed that my first daughter was an emotional rollercoaster but she doesn't hold a candle to this one. I'm beginning to think I need to start crushing up Midol and putting it into her orange juice in the morning as a preemptive strike.

Finally her room fell quiet as the Tylenol kicked in for the headache she had from crying and the sheer exhaustion of the last couple days took ahold of her. Our movie ended and one by one the husband and then Liv made their way to bed.

And then it was just me. Well and Penny, my trusty late night companion.

I sit here thinking through the day. With all the questions that tick through my mind constantly. Consistently.

I sip on my Sleepy Time tea. What a joke...but damn if it isn't yummy. I sit here typing and thinking.

Thinking of the time when I would have counted this day as a good day. An eventful day. A normal day in the life of a mom and wife. The sliver of a sane person that remains in residence inside my body tries to rationalize that I just need to accept the goodness that comes out of the madness of not getting every single thing perfect.

I wonder why I can't accept my imperfections as others do of themselves. I contemplate why I feel a day spent sleeping ranks higher than the days I spend not doing all that I set out to do or stumbling with the things I do manage to accomplish, but are still filled with trying to find a median.

I can feel myself reeling through a million more questions...and then my process of questioning is broken by a large SMACK. I spin around in my chair to see that Penny has managed to fall off the couch while still wrapped up in a blanket.

She is flailing about like...well...like a dog wrapped up in a blanket that had been sleeping comfortably on the couch but that has now fallen to the floor. She finds her way out from inside the blanket. Shakes off the thud she has received and pops back up onto the couch. She leans over the side of the couch, grasp the corner of her blanket in her tiny mouth and pulls until there is just enough of it back on the cushion with her and curls back up inside it.

It is this moment of complete randomness that makes me realize sometimes you just gotta pick yourself up off the floor and get back on the couch. Maybe it's my new metaphor for life. As taught to me by my dog.

Or maybe it's just the universe and the Sleepy Time tea's way of telling me that I need to go to bed.

Yeah, yeah...I'm gonna go with the second one. It makes me sound less crazy. Please...woman listens to her dog to validate her life. Now that is a sure sign of insanity.

Another reason why the second one seems to be a better solution is because just a minute or so after getting the blanket back on the couch and nestling inside it she manages to fall off the couch inside the blanket once more. Only this time instead of picking herself and blanket back up off the floor she walks around the blanket as if to scold it for causing her downfall. Then peers at me before burrowing down under the blanket while it lays on the floor.

What's the lesson now Penny? If at first you don't succeed...sleep on the floor. Yep...that's my dog. That's my life. And that's my cue to call it a night and get some rest.

~JP

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Thank you Jonas Brothers....and Goodnight!

It is now "Jonas Brother...the Day After". I can still here a persistent ringing in my ears, sounds seem muffled and when I shut my eyes I have a mini laser light show going on the backs of my eyelids. But all that aside, here's how the concert went:

Let me start by saying...if you've ever wondered to yourself or aloud exactly how many people you can fit into a stretch limousine? I would like to be the one to tell you that you can mash 4 adults, 5 teenagers, 4 tweens, one little boy and still have room for posters, purses, jackets, 12 pack of soda and some (but not nearly enough) liquor.

The Mother's (take note of the red bag that hold the "Jonas Brother Survival Kit")

Teens, Tweens & little one ~ View from outside.....
....and view from within.

It helped that we had one hell of a limo driver who took it all in stride and immediately apologized for removing the bourbon from the bar because he "thought we'd wanna keep it clean with the kids and all"...ugh Tom...there goes part of your tip sweetie. Prolly would've been bigger if ya got us a little tipsy on the way home or dropped the adults in the French Quarter and returned the kids to the address we would've scrawled out on a piece of paper with a note to our other halves that would have read:

Here's the kids. We've gone drinking. Send the limo back for us if you want us to come home.
~ The Mother's

But now I am jumping ahead of myself...and that French Quarter part is gonna be for another night and another blog entirely. So back to Jonas.

For those of us NOT in the Jonas know (which turned out to really only be myself and one other mom) we got the 4-1-1 on how the show was gonna go down from start to finish from the self proclaimed biggest Jonas Fan herself Brittany, her mom Stacy and one of Han's besties Kenzie.

Biggest Jonas Fan ~ (Her glasses say Brittany Jonas...nuff said!)

They had just arrived back in Louisiana the morning of the New Orleans show after seeing the Jo Bro's play in Houston, TX. That's a whole other state ya'll and WAY too far for a devoted mom (stop laughing) like myself to drive my kids to see anything.

How this mother was awake let alone upwardly mobile was beyond me. She credits energy drinks...I say it's the adrenaline produced by pure insanity...you decide.

The ride into the city wasn't bad at all with the exception that we packed more caffeine than liquor and with individuals under 18 out numbering those of us of the parental persuasion by a little more than 1/2 we wondered what genius thought that equation was a good idea. But before we really had time to contemplate our error we were piling out as if we were the clown car at a circus. Even the limo driver commented that he didn't remember this many getting in.

(Nina & Han strike a pose outside the arena)

Once at the arena it was time to divvy up tickets and set up a meeting spot. Since I was late coming into the concert prep I had tickets that were split between two different sections. There was 1 that was on one side of the arena and 2 that were on the opposite side. All 14 of us were not going to be sitting together.

On the ride over we had worked out a solution that would hopefully allow everyone to have the most optimal and enjoyable "Jonas Experience" possible.

It broke down a
s follows. Biggest Jonas fan Brittany with her baby sis Kenzie had floor seats. My oldest Liv, and my good friend Mar's oldest daughter Courtney, who have been friend since meeting in 3rd grade, would be in another section...alone.

(Liv & Court...ready to take on Jonas unsupervised...mother's lock up your sons!)

The shear thought of those two teens on the loose made us both REALLY want to drink. Six tickets were together and belonged to my other good friend, Stacy (the mother that had driven to Texas and back all in the span of 17 hours), her sister Kori, two of Kori's kids, a cousin and her boyfriend. How that poor boy managed to pick the short straw that entailed seeing a boy band with his girlfriend is still beyond me.

The final 4 tickets were left t
o Mar, myself and our two tween-agers, Han and Carolina, who were there to experience their first ever concert.

The tears started streaming from Nina before we even made it to our seats. Mar and I joked back and forth wondering if we should have given her an "M&M" (our code for Xanax) before getting there.

(This is a pose that Mar & I struck prior to one of our first Kenny Chesney concerts together so we made the girls do the same. And yes...Nina, on the right, is crying.)

We finally made it to our seats after being stopped by an arena attendant that worried if Nina was really okay and had to deal with the looks of several other concert goers around us that questioned if she truly was alright. Mar and I contemplated if we should have passed up the Southern Comfort tent so quickly earlier when we were looking for a restroom and our seats.

(Me & Han posing with our tickets)

We assured everyone around us and ourselv
es that they she was fine and settled in for the show. We were disappointed to find out when we heard on the ride over that Jordin Sparks would not be performing due to illness. There was a crowd warmer that came out in between acts and asked the tens of thousands of fans in the arena to send her well wishes with a group effort of shouting "Get Well Jordin".

With no Jordin Sparks, who I have to admit I was dissapointed that I wouldn't be seeing since I actually knew more of her songs than the Jo Bro's we saw Honor Society and the Wonder Girls. If you are anything like me then you are going..."Huh??? What??? Who???"

Honor Society from a mothers perspective of not knowing who the hell these people are and why are they deserving of a portion of the $90 per ticket I just spent to come to this sho
w....were actually pretty good if you're willing to take the word of a thirty-something, SUV driving soccer mom.

The Wonder Girls...I wish I would have snapped a picture....reminded me of a BAD talent/dance recital. The only part I was thankful for in regards to their performance is that they only sang two songs.

In between both opening acts while they were preparing the stage there was a jumbo tron that played text messages sent by fans in the arena. I was able to get one posted that read.

Hannah & Carolina here to see their first concert ever.

Unfortunately I wasn't quick enough with the camera to capture it.

(View from the top...it was PACKED and HOT)

They were so excited that they got to be "famous" for a few seconds that they made me spend every break in between performances texting madly to try and get another message on that damn screen...it didn't happen. Damn kids...you give them a text and they expect the whole show to be about them!


I was trying to amuse myself as best possib
le during and in between the opening acts and I found it personally hysterical (based on pre-concert post) that a little girl sitting directly in front of us had the EXACT same hairstyle as Han.

I pointed it out to Han and she looked at me like...ugh...I told you I knew what I was talking about!

And then it was time for the boys that we
, meaning the kids, had been waiting for. More tears came.....
and tiny hinney's moved to their edge of their seats....

The lights went down....the lasers came up....

....and they appear to the screams of..."OH MY GOD I LOVE YOU", "NIIIIIIICK", "JOOOOOOE", "KEEEEEEEVIN", "MARRY ME", "WEEEEEELOOOOOOVEYOU", "OH MY GOD, OH MY GOD, OH MY GOD", "KILL ME NOW". Okay...that last one was the sound of the voices in my head...but I am sure you get the point.

And once again....Nina was in tears......
The Jonas Brother's took the stage to the defeaning screams of tens of thousands of hormonal bodies! It was so loud that the sound vibrated through you. We were seated in front of and next to two of the highest pitch squealers that I think I've ever had the displeasure of hearing. At one point I wondered if my eardrum had perforated or burst. Unfortunately it didn't and the ear raping went on for 2 1/2 full hours. Here's what it looked like...because I like you enough NOT to post the two video clips I took.
The outer part of the circle rotated like a record. I waited for someone to fall...it didn't happen.
I found out pretty early on that Han doesn't like loud screaming. She kept looking over her shoulder at the girls behind us and then looking at me like, "mom...aren't you gonna make them stop?" I had to keep telling her that this is a concert and unfortunately we would have to tolerate the jacklegs sitting around us. She looked very unimpressed with my perceived unwillingness to make them shut the fuck up. So she spent a good portion of the concert with her fingers in her ears. So did I. It was like a mother daughter thing.

And the concert continued. Song after song.....


When Nick Jonas came on stage with just his piano and sang "Black Keys" and talked about diabetes you could almost hear the wave of girls crying. He has a line where he says, "and I asked the doctor would I die?" I swear to you it was as if someone got up on that stage and held a gun to the kids head. All around us were fans sobbing. I was like "umm hello...he's perfectly fine jackasses. He's on the stage before your very eyes singing." All Mar and I could do was roll our eyes and sit back and watch.

(Nick singing "Black Keys")

I do have to admit this one thing...the amount of work that must have gone into creating the lights and technical aspect of this show was phenominal. I was highly impressed with all the little and big things that went on to create a visual wonderland. From lighting, raised platforms, rain, fog, lasers, a trampoline that went into the middle section of the middle stage and finally to showering the fans with foam...it was impressive.

And then finally...mercifully they descended into the hole in the stage.

Stupid me though...I forgot that they would come back for an encore. Apparently I wasn't the only one that forgot this was a possibility because some parents hopped up out of their seats as if their asses had been lit on fire the second the lights dimmed and plotted their escape. You could hear cries in the dark of the fans that knew they would be back and of the fans that were being dragged out by their parents. And then just like a horror film...."they're baaaaaaaaaaaack"....
Then their closing song, "Burning Up" came on........

.....and it was over.
Han clasped her hands tightly over her ears as the crowd once again roared. I did a happy dance in my seat as I realized I had just survived my first concert with my kids.

Will I do it again??? Ummm, maybe. Will I do another Jonas concert?? NO.


We made our way out of the arena with the masses. The teenagers that we had let sit on their own had made it back to the limo without incident and within 15 minutes the whole menagerie was present and accounted for. We sat back in the limo and enjoyed the ride home.

Tonight...a full 24 hours later I asked Han if she had a good time. She cocks her head to the side and says, "mom, it was the best. I had wished and hoped to go and see the Jonas Brothers and now I can check that off my list."

It's really all a mom can ask for. Well, that and for my hearing to return.

~JP

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Making my "Jo Bro Concert Survival Kit"

How are you gonna spend your Saturday night??

Me, I'm going to watch Jordyn Sparks and the Jonas Brother's!

Oh yeah...you're jealous. I know.

I could be in FL right now getting ready to hang out with the people that graduated from my high school (I can't believe it's been 15 years since I left that place...Go Tornado's). Instead I am creating a milestone in the mother daughter relationship I have with my two girls.

This is the first ever concert that I decided to take my kids to. I've taken my kids to the circus, plays and musicals...but no concerts. This is so not how I was raised. My mom started taking me to concerts when I was still in the womb. I cut my teeth with Carlos Santana, Three Dog Night and BB King. To be honest I think I had an unending contact high until I was nearly a year old. No wonder why my mom said I was such an easy child.

As time went on I weathered through Kenny Rogers...multiple times and was lugged from one outdoor music fest to another throughout my childhood and into my tween and teen years when all I really wanted to do was see New Kids on the Block, Debbie Gibson and Tiffany.

Today, however, will be the first concert that I have decided to partake in with my children and I chose the Jonas Brothers. WHAT....was I thinking? Oh, right I was thinking it was about the kids.

While this will mark the first ever concert for Han, Liv has been to a few concerts before with her dad. They are both excited but I have to admit Han takes the prize since she keeps coming in every so often to say, "Mom...do you know what today is? It's Jonas Brother's Day!".

Oh thank God she reminded me...I was worried I may forget. I mean it's so possible...not...that I might forget...not...especially seeing as I am putting out money that we don't have to buy these tickets and pay for a limo to make the experience "EXTRA SPECIAL". Yep, thanks Han...mommy was wondering why the day seemed fraught with anticipation.

Just a thought...but I wonder if they will think it's "EXTRA SPECIAL" when we are living by candle light and eating pb&j sandwiches for the next month.

But we did it. Jon agreed, every kid needs a special memory with their parents (notice how in previous sentences it is just me and the girls that are partaking in this "memory") and that sometimes you just gotta do it and worry about how it will affect finances later. Ummm....must take Xanax now to ward off anxious tendencies that come with spending money we don't have. Whew...that was close.

Side note...as me and the girls are enjoying our "special memory" moment...my beloved husband will be sitting back drinking one of the many Abita beers that is housed in our beverage refrigerator in the garage. Watching t.v. with no distractions...most likely in his boxers and cuddling with my dog. Lucky bastard!

Deep breath...feeling the effects of the sedative.

Okay...back to the concert preparations....

We are 3 hours away from leaving and now is the perfect time to get myself both mentally and physically prepared for the ear piercing screams that are going to befall my already partly diminished hearing (it all starts going down hill after 30) and the drama that always encompasses any night out with my girlfriends. It's like an ongoing episode of "Desperate Housewives". So here's what is in my survival kit:

Jonas Brother's Concert Survival Kit

The only surefire way to make sure you make it out alive without harming the squealing masses around you.

  1. Hefty supply of Excedrin Migraine.
  2. Ear plugs - you may want to hear the music, or not in this specific case, but this will drown out the crying fans.
  3. Kleenex - you really don't want the kids snot on you after they cry over how much they "love them", "want to marry them", "want to date them", "want to runaway with them" and in the event there is not toilet paper (this is New Orleans anyways) you will be covered.
  4. Gum - doesn't matter where you go or what you do, you ALWAYS need gum.
  5. Fully charged cell phone - in case you get trapped by squealing masses you can phone a friend to come rescue you or better yet so you can FB or Twitter your time away.
  6. Camera (preferably with ability to make video clips) - not to capture the "special moments" this is totally to capture the things that can be used as blackmail or YouTube clips (God I hope someone falls on stage).
  7. Hand Sanitizer - I can't even begin to speculate at the amount of germs flowing around in this crowd.
  8. Designated driver - for us tonight...it's a Limo...thank you Jesus!
  9. Liquor - (but only if you have #8) if you've got the DD situation handled then my advice is a shot before, a drink while your there and one immediately after you get home!
  10. Water - stay hydrated, this will allow you to escape to the serenity that is the bathroom.
  11. Sedatives - if ya got em...take em!
I am all packed in a comfy over the shoulder bag...feels like I've gone back to the days of lugging around an infant with a diaper bag. Now I am off to play stylist to a 9 yr old (pictures to follow) and to prod the teen along in her 2 hour efforts to get ready. Apparently my gentle chiding of, "it's a concert, not a fashion show" are falling on def ears.

Even though I whine about this not being "my kind of thing" I know that they are both excited and I can't seem to shake the idea that I am too (maybe that is the sedative talking). This should be quite an experience.

~JP