I’m Not The Hostess With The Mostest

When visiting my aunt at her gorgeous home in Washington State (think the cover of Better Homes and Gardens) there is something that is very evident from the moment you pull into her driveway and see her waving at you from her perfectly decorated front porch…she is a hostess. Your bags will be happily brought in, your bed perfectly made, and before you are finished hugging her, she has a cocktail in your hand and is making sure that the dinner she planned will be to your liking. She just whipped up some ribs, 45 sides, and has her best china and linen napkins filling the dining room table. That’ll do, I suppose. The woman is a hostess. The kind of person you feel grateful to know year round, but especially during a long ass road trip. I’m just an asshole with a house and a blow up mattress covered in cat hair, but feel free to come stay anytime.

What my aunts house looks like. Mine, too. Minus the nice landscaping, clean windows and mowed lawn.

What my aunts house looks like. Mine, too. Minus the nice landscaping, clean windows and mowed lawn.

I missed that genetic coding. My younger sister is the one in our family who knows how to treat a guest and I let her treat me like a fucking queen, even if I just stop by her house to drop something off. Yes, I need a fresh towel. Yes, I need a fresh drink. Yes, you can carry me from one room to the other. When people come visit me there is a 99% chance I will be wearing pajamas and a 100% chance that I won’t make you a drink. I’ll happily show you my liquor cabinet and point out the lovely lake view from our deck, but then you are on your own. Because I’ll be resuming whatever I was doing before you drove 6,000 miles just to visit me. Most likely I was sitting on my deck drinking, so I guess that’s what we are all doing now. I’ll then point you in the vicinity of some possibly clean cups and a sink full of dirty dishes. If you came here to be pampered and entertained, you should probably keep your suitcases in the car and get yourself a room at The Best Western down the road. I hear they have snacks on every floor and an ice machine with that soft ice that I would kick a baby for.

I’m also not going to make coffee that is preferable to your palette because I do that for a job and I’m not at work and fuck that noisy noise. My aunt is such a stellar hostess/superhuman that she wakes up at 3 AM to make two different strengths of coffee. By the time we drag our lazy asses out of bed, she has already watered her immaculate gardens, done dishes, made coffee, ran a marathon, started a charity, and whipped up some homemade waffles with all the fixins. Stay at my house and you can bet your sweet ass that I won’t be out of bed until 9 AM, the coffee will be as thick as motor oil, and I will give you directions to a local greasy spoon where they will make you some waffles and will probably also give you diarrhea. If you aren’t a fan of my coffee, there is a truck stop 15 minutes up the road serving heated urine and powdered milk. Feel free to check them out.

Welcome to my home!!! No...I'm not getting off the couch.

Welcome to my home!!! No…I’m not getting off the couch.

I’m also confused about clean guest towels. I don’t even have the opportunity to use a clean towel at my house (even though I’m the one who washes 5,698 of them every week), so the idea that I would have a stack of fluffy white towels with your name embroidered on them is somewhat laughable. Although, when I stay at someone else’s home and they offer sweet smelling linens for my own person use, I’m like crack head who just discovered a free bag of black tar heroin stashed in a cabinet. I will use the shit out of those towels and then I’ll probably pack them in my suitcase. On accident. Also, if you are in need of a washcloth during your stay here at Casa Del Fuck That, please feel free to do what the rest of human kind does and use soap and water. Matching washcloths? You must think we are rich. Or care about clean ears.

This is a picture of noppity nope.

This is a picture of noppity nope.

My hostessing will never live up to your expectations because I don’t really understand how to be grown up and I’m not running a bed and breakfast up in this bitch. I’m just over here trying to take care of two hooligans, one shedding cat, and a dog who likes to leave Tootsie Roll turds under the pool table. Which you will probably step on when you are forced to bring in your own luggage. I’ll be the one pointing out the lovely lake view while I sip on my cocktail and order a few pizzas online. Keep your expectations low…like Motel 6 low. Okay…lower than that.

I Didn’t Mean To, But I’m Raising Hipsters. Sorry.

We avoid Whole Foods like the plague and I don’t drive a Subaru, but regardless of the fact that I’ve tried to shelter my children from being tree huggers, the unthinkable has happened…I’m raising hipsters. I wasn’t too worried when my youngest wanted a haircut that you would only see in a NYC cafe and it really didn’t bother me when my oldest wore a long sleeve flannel shirt in the middle of July, but then one night I came home to find out the most horrific news any parent can find out (besides the fact that you will be a grandparent at 33). Both my lovely, red meat eating children had decided to be vegetarian. And not just for one afternoon like the other 78 times, they have actually been holding steady for 3 weeks. If it weren’t for all the extra bacon I’m able to consume, I would be dead inside.

My kids parked at Whole Foods, eating beans and figs or whatever shit they eat.

My kids parked at Whole Foods, eating beans and figs or whatever shit they eat.

I know, I know, I should be really happy that my kids are PETA friendly and that one less pig out of the 5 million that are slaughtered every year gets to live for an extra week, but have you ever tried cooking for two vegetarians and one carnivore? HAVE YOU? I’m not trying to throw anyone under a bus here (except probably myself if I have to figure out how to make a decent tasting vegetarian meatloaf) but making dinner around here is already like qualifying for the Olympic dive team. When you can’t swim. My husband doesn’t eat 90% of all vegetables, so I’ve created a rotating menu of dead animal heavy meals that have a sprinkling of canned corn or an optional salad. Now my children eat only vegetables, my husband eats only meat, and I’m currently attempting to eat the label off this vodka bottle so I won’t be hungry at dinner.

I'd eat that. #baconbabies

I’d eat that. #baconbabies

The other concern I have (besides my selfish concern of having to do more work) is that I don’t know how on planet Earth I’m going to make sure my kids are getting enough of whatever vitamins or nutrients or animal fats (that aren’t from animals) so they don’t shrivel up and die before their next pediatric appointment. Which will probably end with the doctor telling me that my youngest is really thin for his age and if she didn’t know me better she would be concerned that he wasn’t being fed. Before three weeks ago, that comment made me laugh. Now I’m tempted to hold him down and drain an entire can of black beans down his throat while his dad inserts a drip line of PediaSure. This food struggle is real.

The vegetarian thing is just going smashingly over here (I say while I sob into the pantry). So far I’ve been able to create the equivalent of a hotel food buffet with optional veggies and meats for every single soul sucking meal. Fettuccine Alfredo with optional chicken, hamburger night with optional veggie patties, taco night with optional “I guess you are having a quesadilla cause I’m losing my god damn mind”. The hard cold fact is that these people want to eat like 3 times a day, so my plethora of ideas for being the hip mom with vegetarian meals my kids can eat while they wear Patagonia jackets and don man buns is really dwindling. Soon I’ll be chucking a bag of broccoli and a handful of cheese in everyone’s face and screaming “This is your f’ing vegetarian option and I’m moving to Belize to live in a hut and eat porridge for the rest of my life.” Porridge… let me put that on my menu list for the week.

What we are having for dinner tonight. And then forever.

What we are having for dinner tonight. And then forever.

When I finally complained to my co-workers about my inability to feed my own children, one lovely vegetarian pal said “You can buy just about anything you can think of as a veggie meat product.” At which point I was equally happy and mortified. Happy because…did you know they have vegetarian deli meat? Like what the fuck, Martha. Mortified because….we aren’t made of Whole Food/Lulemon/BMW SUV kind of money. When your fake deli meat costs more than our entire grocery bill for a week then I’m going to have to think long and hard about how I can get you to eat cardboard in your sandwich. Soaking it in gravy? Is gravy made with animals? I don’t know because it’s gravy and I could drink it by the barrel.

If you need me I’ll be Googling “How to feed your hipster children” and “Does cardboard count as a food group”.

I Need A Crying Room…In All The Places

There is an old movie theater in our little town called The Ritz, it’s one of those places with red carpet on the walls and black and white photos of people in top hats attending the theater. It smells like farts and sadness. They also have this amazing circa 1950’s room at the back of the main theater called The Crying Room. It welcomes you with a creepy little picture of a deformed baby with giant tattoo tears. Everyone knows what that room is for…any crying infant ruining your movie experience and me. The crying room offers something extraordinary…you can get away from the 200 people chomping popcorn too loudly, sneak into your own private room, and watch the second run movie while the baby (or grown woman) you brought to the theater is having a massive meltdown. The kind of meltdown that must be calmed with a nipple or a giant pickle from the gallon container that looks like it has been sitting on that snack counter for 27 years. (Matters not…I will eat that pickle.) This is my petition to bring back the crying room to all public institutions and possibly every home built after July 2016. I just need a crying room…in all the places.

Yes, please.

Yes, please.

Work would be my first go to for establishing the crying room, because…people. Nothing fancy here, I just need a box of aloe tissues, some cold water, a comfortable couch, and sound proof walls. And maybe a fully stocked bar. Two weeks ago I had a customer who finally sent me over the edge. Keep in mind…I’ve worked in customer service for many years and have encountered my fair share of angry women in tube tops who are the most important person on the planet, but this particular cunt sandwich blindsided me during a time in my life when I am barely capable of pulling up my own pants. No details, but things have been tough. Like trying to chew through metal with no teeth and bleeding gums kinda tough. Regardless, I’m an adult who has a job and I’m required to be responsible. So I head to work one lovely Friday afternoon, clock in, and put on that grown up happy face that people come to expect from you after the age of 18. Within minutes, we are swamped with customers and I’m juggling orders, smiling at everyone, and praying for the place to burn to the fucking ground. Then SHE shows up.

Every mean customer looks like every mean teacher from elementary school. Suspicious.

Every mean customer looks like every mean teacher from elementary school. Suspicious.

“What could be so hard about my drink? I ordered a drip coffee and it’s been forever.”

It had been three minutes. Which is kind of like forever when you are a festering twat whistle with the face only a mother could love. And probably not even a mother.

“I’m so sorry. We just made a fresh batch of coffee and it will be right out.”

I clenched my teeth as I felt my throat close up. it’s not that she called me a tragic whore who should have gotten a college degree and made something of myself, she just caught me at a time in my life where I needed extra softy kid gloves instead of a nasty wire hanger kind of attitude.

“I don’t know what your fucking problem is.”

And that’s when I needed my own personal, poorly lit, fully stocked crying room. I knew what my fucking problem was and it had nothing to do with her or her coffee or the fact that she insisted on wearing a low cut tank top with no bra. We just met at the wrong time, on the wrong day, and I lost my shit. In a men’s bathroom that smelled like urine where I was forced to wipe my nose with single ply tissue. WHY ARE WE STILL MAKING THAT SHIT????

woman with coffee cup

The cry room could really come in handy at home as well. I don’t mind crying in my bed at 2 AM while I hide under my quilt, but it would be nice to have a specified room with a little painted sign that says “Crying Room: Do Not Disturb” I’m quite alright once I have a good solid cry, the kind that makes most people uncomfortable when they see it in a movie. It’s like therapy except I’m not paying 175 dollars an hour and I don’t have to watch a stranger take notes about me while my life falls apart. If I had my own crying room, complete with a tub and some bath salts, I could sob in private while taking a two hour (or two week) hot bath and sipping on a cocktail. Instead, I usually wake up my husband and force him to ask me awkward questions like “Is everything okay?” or “Are you going to be doing that for long?”.

It would helpful to have a crying room installed in all stores and restaurants I frequent just in case the person in charge of the shitty elevator music accidentally plays a song that makes me remember something sad which in turn makes my throat seize up like I’m having an allergic reaction to being alive (which I currently am) and I desperately need a place to just fall the fuck apart. While picking up some eggs and tortillas. (I’m probably craving breakfast burritos right now.) Perhaps when the waiter asks me what I would like to drink and I’m feeling unstable in that moment, instead of having to bite my cheek to the point of drawing blood, I could just sprint to the crying room for a respite from humanity. Maybe they serve my pasta in there, I don’t know…I’m just throwing out really good ideas right now.

I just wanted to look at some pasta cause I'm in need of carbo loading.

I just wanted to look at some pasta cause I’m in need of carbo loading.

Bring back the crying room and make it accessible to everyone, not just infants covered in feces who need to suckle a titty.