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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

2003-04-28 ... 3:51 p.m.

In one of my career, not sexual, fantasies I am Nan Talese. Or maybe not Nan Talese exactly, because I think I would miss being me, and all my clothes wouldn't fit. However, I would like to have my own imprint, and to be able to publish all sorts of first novels by all the wonderful talented people who languish in obscurity, especially if I had the time and leisure to personally edit those wonderful talented people, because to me that sounds like the perfect mix of power (to publish) and behind-the-scenes compassion (to work with writers and manuscripts that need a little help). I would also publish one monograph per year by a crazy person. The world needs more crazy monographs. And I would make a weird arbitrary rule that no book title (or indeed, no title of any cultural product, if I could somehow graduate from a simple publishing mogul to a mythical President Of All Media) can contain the word "heaven," because it is poetic laziness to include that loaded word and I am tired of it. Heavier Than Heaven, Far From Heaven, All That Heaven Allows, Fire From Heaven, get out of here with your heaven. Weak.

I am going to do the Weekend Wrapup again, because I am all obsessed with using this website in part to document my puny little history, and because doing so will help me keep my story straight when I get hauled in for questioning.

Friday, my friend who works at Northwestern Hospital called me and said, "Beer after work." At first I said no no no, because I had an Indian-food date with my sister-in-law, and it is no fun at all to go get afterwork (I really want "after work" to be one word like "afternoon") beers if you have to watch the clock the whole time. But he was very persistent and persuasive, so I gave in and met him at, his choice, this place called "Boss Bar." Chicago, have you ever been to Boss Bar? It is not the boss. It is not even, as a 1980s surfer might say, "boss." I walk in and am immediately uncomfortable due to (a) deafening Led Zeppelin on the sound system and (b) the fact that, besides the bartenders, I am the only woman in the whole bar, and the men in the bar are not even the sort of plain old regular men to whom I am accustomed but instead fall into one of two categories:

1. Oily well-fed pink-faced slicked-back-hair corporate types with pocket squares, who look as if they listen with rapt attention when their even-slimier friends detail their romps with underage Thai prostitutes on some despicable sex-tourism pleasure jaunt.

2. Dockers-and-golf-shirts crewcut guys who are probably only six months or a year past screaming "CHUG! CHUG! CHUG!" at their fraternity brothers, and who coasted through a business major at their crap college and now are coasting through life in a similar fashion, and for whom the only appreciable difference in their social lives between then and now is that now instead of drinking their Bud Light in their aforementioned frat house basements they do it while playing Golden Tee.

But even more discomfort-making were the bartenders themselves. Remember them? The only other women in the room? Strippers. Giant silicone breasts, completely flat stomachs, clothing constructed in such a way that after only a few minutes I knew way too much about these women's underwear, like yes, you are wearing a black lace bra under a tight white tank top, and my, what a lovely thong! Oh, you are wearing a visible thong as well! What a coincidence! Did you three call each other before the shift started and coordinate your outfits? The bar was even SET UP like a strip bar, meaning that it was a big rectangle with the bartenders in the middle like they were dancers on stage. Elevate that area, add some poles, lose maybe a third of their clothing = strip club.

Perhaps the horrible sound system had made the bartenders start to lose their hearing, or maybe it helps in that job to be somewhat deaf, in order not to hear all the oily businessmen remarking on your tits. Regardless of the cause, the bartender I spoke to needed three repeats to get my drink order and I know this is cruel but when she finally understood it and wiggled away my first thought was "at least I didn't ask her to spell it." OH HO HO LOOK OUT MIMI BRINGS THE DISS.

How could this experience get worse? Well, all the bartenders were practitioners of that extremely cheesy Cocktail/Coyote Ugly crap of tossing beers around and pouring shots from way up in the air and popping bottlecaps off with big dramatic flourishes. Except that they were not very good at it, and one of the Pneumatic-Sex-Dollies-Slash-Bartenders spilled a full Amstel Light all over the bar right in front of me as she tried to get fancy. She gave me a bitchy look when I continued staring off into the middle distance, patiently waiting for my friend, and simply moved my elbows and my beer out of harm's way while she shimmied around trying to wipe it up, and I made no move for any napkins nor did I help her with the parts that she had trouble reaching with the towel, but guess what: I don't work here, as you might be able to tell by my lack of visible underwear, and I am not going to touch a filthy bar rag just to help your clumsy (but shapely) ass out.

Also, in what universe does a Miller High Life cost $3.50?

Okay, I'm done ranting. About that.

Saturday I did stuff around the house, big, effective things like changing the sheets, plant maintenance, opening/organizing the mail, and breaking the pig. ("Breaking The Pig" sounds like the title for an imaginary, improbable, mid-90s Red Hot Chile Peppers/Nine Inch Nails duet.) I had this glass pig, from forever ago, that is a bank---only stupidly, short-sightedly, there is no stopper in the bottom so you can get your change out. "Being able to get the change out" is pretty much a key feature in a piggy bank, because if you are one sort of person you want to take it all to the bank and be proud of what a great little fiscally responsible change-saver you are, and if you are another sort of person you need to haul it down to the liquor store because look at all the quarters in there, it looks like totally enough for a six-pack. Maybe you are, like me, both sorts of person simultaneously, in which case we should be friends. Anyway, this pig. This stopperless pig. I asked my mother, the Giver Of The Pig, what was up with that, and she told me that when the pig gets full you are supposed to hit it with a hammer and collect the change that way. She gleefully recounted for me her childhood memories of glass-pig-smashing, and now that I think of it my mother also has childhood stories of watching chickens be slaughtered on her great-uncle's farm and laughing hysterically at how they would run around afterwards with blood fountaining out of their neck-stumps. We should all probably try to stay on my mother's good side.

The idea of smashing the pig made me a little sad. But he was full up to the top with change, so no change could get in and no change could come out (I tried prying a few coins out through the pig-slot with a butter knife but it was a no-go), and having a Pig In Stasis, Filled With Cash, seemed kind of stupid. I put it in a garbage can and hit it with a hammer, so now all I have to do is take it to one of those Coinstar machines. Do you have these? They take a small fee out but I vastly prefer it to hauling the change to my bank, because my bank is the ultimate in No Fun: not only are they one of those Mega-Huge Uncaring Banks who charge you for too many teller transactions, but they refuse to count up coins and hand you cash but insist on doing it behind the scenes and crediting it to your account. And you are just supposed to trust them! And walk away! With nothing! Screw that. At the Coinstar thingy you get to have fun watching the counter click up, plus it spits out all non-coin-of-the-realm items, like twist-ties and video game tokens, and, in my case, broken glass, and that is kind of fun to watch as well.

Saturday night I went to a party where I assumed I would not know anyone except the person who brought me, but of course it is a very small world indeed, and not only did I run into acquaintances but the host turned out to have gone to my high school. We were in different classes but he claimed to know "of" me. How disturbing. Did my reputation precede me, back in the dark days of a suburban high school? Was it the antisocial gothy pretentiousness? The bad fashion choices? The way I once burned my name into the football field with gasoline and a blowtorch? (Just kidding. That would have taken planning and effort, two things I was very much lacking in high school.) When the party ceased to fascinate my friend and I went to the Innertown Pub, where there seemed to be an excess of very inebriated men, including one who was so drunk that he said several completely unintelligible sentences to me. I just nodded and drank my beer.

----mimi smartypants steals office supplies.


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