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the latest waddle:

good morning, wordpress - 10:36 a.m. , 2009-07-03

elaborate murder attempt - 2:56 p.m. , 2009-07-01

building a tractor in the basement - 10:42 a.m. , 2009-06-19

ask no questions tell just a few lies - 3:17 p.m. , 2009-06-09

my long lasting flavor really lasts long - 1:10 p.m. , 2009-06-04


2001-07-12 ... 11:32 a.m.

To-Do List magazine wants your lists: so send them in. Who would want to read strangers' to-do lists? Me, thatís who. No detail is too minute for me. I'd probably watch a television show where people debated the merits of different breakfast foods.

If you too are a Whore for the Details, read The Mezzanine, by Nicholson Baker---his other novels don't really do it for me but this one, a tiny little book about an office worker's lunchtime trip to get some new shoelaces---is excellent. Say what you want about the man's personal views (that whole Double Fold debacle: he's gotten a lot of librarians hopping mad) ---but boy does he ever know the meaning of detail.

So let's get some details about what's inside my voluminous briefcase, that I carry back and forth to work every day, and see if we learn anything. We probably won't, but I feel like making a list.

One Filofax, containing lots and lots and lots of lists, lists of grocery items needed, books I want to read, things that need doing, etc, and also containing bills, receipts, stamps, and a sheet of Powerpuff Girl stickers.

One long checkbook-containing "mom wallet" (you know you're a grownup when you feel the need to get one of those checkbook wallets) containing aforementioned checkbook, $21.32 in cash (woo hoo!), and various pieces of ID, including my NOW membership card, which I carry on purpose to remind me of that "card-carrying feminist" crack the Republicans made years ago.

One zippered black makeup bag type thing, containing a tin of Carmex (oh Carmex! I love you so), a few hair ties, a lipstick in a color called "Vixen" (I love the color, but I confess that I did originally buy it just because of the name), a tiny hairbrush, and a Badtz-Maru tin containing Aleve, Pepto-Bismol (why? I never take Pepto-Bismol), Sudafed, and a few leftover Xanax.

One tin of the Caffeinated Penguin Mints, mentioned in these very pages. Get some!

One stenographer's notebook (the spiral-on-top thing is great for us lefties), full of jotted-down nonsense.

Three of the best pens in the world. One purple, one red, one black. One Powerpuff Girl pencil, featuring Buttercup.

One copy of The Human Stain, by Philip Roth, checked out from the Chicago Public Library and due on 7/23. Started it on the train this morning, got to page 53, and my place is marked with a blue index card.

One brown plastic stegosaurus, and one plastic whistle shaped like a skull. Why are these in my bag?

Three CDs: Featuring "Birds" by Quasi (yay!), Stories From the City, Stories From the Sea by PJ Harvey (yay!), and Four-Minute Mile by the Get Up Kids (ehhh...catchy enough, but still ehhh).

One scrap of paper with the name of a Rolfer that Kat helpfully referred me to, as I'm finally ready to do something about my messed-up neck and jaw muscles.

One pair of cheap-ass sunglasses.

One set of keys, one of which opens nothing as far as I can tell.

One mini-flashlight, one little calculator, one package of kleenex, one bottle of instant hand sanitizer, one tiny package of Band-Aids. I have EVERYTHING, yo. I am PREPARED FOR EVERY EVENTUALITY. Do not FUCK WITH ME.

One self-injectable epinephrine pen, which will supposedly save my life if I am ever stung by a bee (I'm quite allergic). However, now the trick is to get a bee to sting me when and only when I'm accompanied by my briefcase.

One rubberized and very cool Design Museum business card case, containing my business cards, which I never give out because it's just too pretentious to force your card on someone, unless they give you theirs first. I always feel like a pompous ass when I hand somebody "my card."

Now, your assignment, which is for extra credit only and will not be collected: Come to some sort of stereotyped conclusion about me based on the contents of my briefcase. Or, alternatively, think of a scenario in which I, as superheroine, can fight the forces of darkness with these tools. Extra special super credit for featuring the brown plastic stegosaurus in some sort of sidekick role.

---mimi smartypants

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