Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Halloween Festivities

On a dark night on October 29, I came into the world. The chilly air caused the candles in my belly to flicker, as they burned brightly. With my gap-toothed smile, I grinned happily throughout the night.

The next day wasn't too eventful. The plastic skeleton was whining about being in the cobwebs and arguing with my friend Yaak, who was named after a hockey player. Yaak was a lot taller than me, and spoke in a fake British accent.

"I'm tangled in these stupid cobwebs," the plastic skeleton whined. "I don't even have a name. How horrible is that? I just spend my time wrapped up in cobwebs like a fly. There's not even a spider. If there was a spider this would make sense but no- there's just me, in the cobwebs."

"You are a whiner," Yaak said haughtily. "As the premier pumpkin-"

"You're not the premeier pumpkin-" I said.

"Really?" Yaak laughed. "I'm taller than you, my smile is larger, and I don't have goofy gap teeth. I believe I am the premier pumpkin."

"You're just an arrogant twit," the plastic skeleton shot back as a bird landed on a tree. "Don't poop on me. Excuse me- oh no. Put your tail feathers down. Don't do it. I said- DON'T DO IT! I can't get away! EEEWWWW! Ah man, it's in my mouth!"

And it went on like this the rest of the day, Yaak arguing with the plastic skeleton and the plastic skeleton whining about his position. The butterflies ignored them as they flew by, much to the skeleton's dismay. He was convinced if enough butterflies flapped their wings at the same time, it would create enough wind to blow him out of the cobwebs. He was never able to convince the cobwebs of this.

After another cool night with the flickering candles in my belly, it was the Day. It was Halloween! All day I felt the anticipating anxiousness in my shell.

"I wonder what trick-or-treaters we'll see!" I said excitedly.

"Trick-or-treating is sooo childish!" Yaak said disdainfully. "We'll be lucky if we're not crushed by teenagers."

"Crushed?" asked the plastic skeleton.

"Yes," Yaak said. "Teenagers tend to smash pumpkins in the streets. You can hear their screams throughout the night. They lay in the streets, sobbing- it's the most terrifying thing in the world."

I was petrified. What if I became a smashed pumpkin? What if my blueberry candles covered the insides of my belly? What if my warm glowing face became the last image anyone saw before I exploded into chunks, only to coat the bottoms of tires? Suddenly, I was not looking forward to trick-or-treating.

Night fell, and the candle burned in my tummy. I braced myself for the trick-or-treaters, terrifed of what would come. If I could have squinched my eyes, I would have. Instead, I just grinned at the world with my gap-toothed smile.

Suddenly, I heard footsteps. They were coming. The people that were going to destroy my hope were making their way towards me. Could I run? Could I hide? Suddenly I heard-


They didn't want me after all! They just wanted candy. Delicious, sweet candy. They didn't want me after all! I began to laugh happily! My gap-toothed grin got even better.

I saw pirates, fairies, vampires and football players. But my favorite part of the night? Grinning happily into the night. After all- I was a happy pumpkin.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

They Don't Understand

I have come to the conclusion that the majority of people in the world have no idea what to think of me.

The Invisible Friends are wholeheartedly agreeing, saying, "We don't understand what she's talking about half the time anyway!"

Between people looking at me like an idiot when I talk about the plans I have going on at work, I'm truly starting to believe most people are fascinated by me. It's like adults who have no business being around small children who get stuck babysitting for a night. They want to put the toddler on a couch and have it watch movies, and are baffled when it tries to make a fort out of their plastic champagne glasses.

Ever since I began writing more, I've become a lot more creative. I've also become a lot more expressive with the stream of random thoughts that goes through my head.

For example, John and Kurt, friends from college, invaded this weekend for the Weekend of the Boys. I couldn't have been more delighted for my husband. However, I quickly realized they had no idea what to do with me from conversations such as these:

"Kurt, why do you hate me?"

He looked startled. "I don't hate you."

"Kurt, you know I brighten up your life."

"See, look Kurt! You're smiling! You can't help it! HOORAY!"

In my bubble, I tend to see things in different ways. For instance, I interpret animal's actions differently, as you've obviously seen in previous posts. Traffic and crowds gives me hives and fills me with an intensely irrational anger, particularly when dealing with malls. Even more annoying for most, I walk around in a perpetually happy perky state. People can't help but call me cute, but I wonder if they really think I'll just grow out of it. I don't think I will. It's rather like being caught up in a dance where I'm constantly spinning. Everytime a new song comes on, I can't help but keep moving.

And I like it.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

It stares at Me

It stares at me. It stares at me day and night. I can feel it’s eyes on me while I work, watching quietly, judging me. It never speaks, never moves- it just stares. If it would even leave for a few minutes, go off to the corner to take a nap, I could breathe easily. However, he is ever vigilant in his post, never wavering.

There is a spider staring at me.

It’s a cute spider. He has big, button-like black eyes that shine down at me. His fragile golden body is thinner than an angel hair pasta. Looking at him, you can see the outline of his spindly legs as the light passes through.

And the spider doesn’t do anything wrong. He doesn’t harass the Water Cooler Ants, he doesn’t spastically run around my desk, he’s not building a web. He just stares. All day long.

I am not that interesting of a person when I work. The most I do is talk on the phone a lot. The phrase most people hear out of my mouth is my name being spelled over and over. Pike was much simpler.

My friend, the spider, is not even interested in my peanut butter. If I was a spider, the first thing I would do would be to leap into the vat of creamy goodness. Not this spider- he turns his nose up at the peanut butter. He would rather stare some more.

Then I thought he might be dead. So I gently poked the area next to him. He scuttled over a few steps, still staring. He obviously was not bothered by my red pen.

What could make this spider stare at me? I thought to myself. Does he think I’m a giant bug? Does he think I’m a mountain? Is he simply a bit slow in the head?

So one day, I asked him.

“Why are you staring at me, Mr. Spider,” I whispered, trying not to alert my co-workers to my insanity. “I don’t understand.”

The spider just stared at me. There was no movement, no flickering of understanding.

“Fine,” I said, “I’ll stare back.”

Squinting my eyes, I pushed all my mental power towards the spider. I made faces at him, I glared, and I stared. The spider did not move. He just kept staring. Frustrated, I threw up my hands and went back to work.

At the end of the day, I organized my best and turned off the computer. After I left, the spider blinked and crawled back to his corner.

“I win,” he said to himself contently, exhausted from staring. “I won. She blinked.”

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The Water Cooler Ants Take a Swim

The Water Cooler ants generally spend their time around the Water Cooler- hence their name. They're smart enough to have realized that coffee-sucking, doughnut-eating people dwell over there. These people shed a lot of crumbs as they laugh about sport stats or tell interoffice jokes. The ants wait under the the protection of the cooler, watching. They ignore the rantings of the cranky Noisy Cricket. After the traffic has died down and people have chained themselves to their desk, they strike.

"Hurry!" they squeal, scurrying out onto the tile. "Move Move Move Move Move!"

"Oh for God's sake, it just got quiet," the Noisy Cricket groans. "Do shut up."

Hauling their prized crumbs onto their backs, they take off running towards the counter where the Pools of Coffee sit. The Water Cooler Ants reach the edge of the Water Cooler. The textured plastic walls seem to stretch up forever.

"This gets longer every time we do this," one of the ants grumbled.

"Hopefully the crumbs aren't stale," another ant grumbled. "The cheap crumbs are always stale."

"Keep going!" the leader bellowed. "We're almost there!"

As they made their way up the cooler, the cooler seemed shorter and shorter. Suddenly, one of the ants shouted.

"Look! There's a ocean!"

"An ocean?"

"An ocean!"

"Let's go swimming!"

"We can't go swimming," the leader ant argued. "We have crumbs!"

"We can put the crumbs on the beach," one of the ants said.

"That's not a beach, that's a ledge!" one of the ants shrieked. "A ghastly ledge! We could tumble to our deaths."

"Weeeeee!" yelled one of the ants, jumping in.

"Holy crap, he jumped in!" the leader shouted.

"He jumped in?"

"He jumped in!"

"And it's cooolllddd!" the now shivering ant said as he retreated from the water. "It's bad, it's cold! Cold is bad! Retreat!"

"It's cold! Retreat!" All the ants yelled in unison, scurrying up the side of the water cooler with their crumbs.

"For God sake's, of course it's cold," the Noisy Cricket grumbled. "You're swimming in the run-off from the cold facet. Do you know how many diseases there are in there?"

"Ants can't get diseases," the Water Cooler Ant leader argues.

"Fine," the Noisy Cricket snaps. "When you get a cold and you start sneezing, and blow off your crumbs, don't ask me for help."

The Water Cooler Ants sat quietly, chewing on a few of their crumbs. The ant who went swimming is shivering and huddling up to the others for warmth.

"Should we go swimming later?" one asked.

"No," the leader said. "We must protect our crumbs. It'll be lunchtime soon. We just have a few minutes left."

Suddenly, the door swings open, and people begin coming in.


"The CRUMBS!" they all shriek.

Suddenly, swimming is forgotten. All that matters now is protecting the doughnut crumbs.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

The Pants Rant

Now, here at the Pond, the Invisible Friends don't want to hear about clothes. They've made it very clear that they would prefer to discuss the Water Cooler Ants, flowers and the ever popular butterflies. However, rather than discuss and embarrass the male Invisible Friends by talking about how the bra industry is out to screw me by making torture devices I either fall out of or fall into, we're going to talk about pants.

"Pants?" the Invisible Friends groan. "We don't want to hear about your issues with pants. Unless you sat in something? Did your pants get paint all over them? Did you get glued to a chair? Is it interesting in any way?"

Unfortunately, this is a rant about pants. Particularly, a rant about the pants at Express. When I was in high school, Express sold decent, non-skank clothing. Button down shirts, cute lacy tops, and normal fitting pants were the norm. I lived at Express. My college sophomore year, they morphed into a clothing line that catered to the wanna-be-heroin-addict-twenty-something-that-goes-clubbing-every-night-and-is-a-waiter-during-the-day-but-really-they're an-actress person. Clothes were slit, shirts became long and tight and necklines began to waver all over the body. The only people who look good in this clothing are either hot dogs, or really really skinny people. If you have hips or a chest, just buy a paper bag. Otherwise, you'll look like a hot dog stuffed into a green polyester wrapper.

My mother had bought me some pants in college, when I was a freshmen and two sizes larger. I had a gorgeous pair of khakis with the tags still on them. This afternoon, I returned them to Express. I told the openly gay clerk that I just wanted to exchange them from a smaller pair. Terrified I would touch his perfectly lined up piles, which he was using a ruler to measure, he handed me a size six. I scurried off to the dressing room.

Normally, I wear anything from a 4 to an 8, depending on the store. I'm normally a size 6. I assumed I would try the pants, twirl around, and be out of the store and off to the grocery store in mere minutes. Was I ever wrong.

The size 6 khaki stretch pants were skin tight. Painted on. If I ate a dorito, you would be able to see it. It would stick out of my butt, telling the whole world, "Oh my God! She ate a dorito! Look at me! She ate a dorito!"

"Is she done yet?" the Invisible Friends yawn. "Does she fart noisely at least?"

Peeling off the pants, I emerge and ask the hovering clerk to get me another pair of pants. The way he gently caresses the pants as he hands them to me makes me a bit nervous.

Back in the dressing room, I pull on the pants. These are an inch too big around the waist and baggy in the hips and crotch area. This is not making sense. The other pants are so tight in the hips, crotch and thighs they could easily be mistaken as pantyhose.

I emerge in the pants to examine the three way mirror, trying to convince myself they'll look decent with heels. At this point, I was so distressed by the idea of having to come back to the mall I was willing to do anything. Then the dressing room girl pounced on me.

"OOOOH!" she squealed, coming over. I looked around, praying she was squealing over someone else. "Those are too big! You need a smaller size."


I explained my situation and I was simply between sizes. "Put on the six," she instructed. I changed and came back out.

"They're too tight," I said, rubbing my thighs. I looked in the mirror. My phone book butt now looked like a bubble butt, and you could see the pattern of my underwear. These were definitely not work pants.

"Do you have any other styles?" I asked.

"Not in that fabric," she said, eyeing my figure. "Try these." She pulled out some wool trousers. I pulled them on. Not only did they itch, but I now looked like a Barbie doll. You could see every dimple and line in my skin.

After a convention of three salespeople (two gay) and the unsolicited advice from curious watchers, I pulled my lounge pants back on. I handed the pants back to the disappointed sales girl. My eyes were filling up with tears and my voice was catching. I was so frustrated that I wanted to rip the pants in two.

"Did these not work out?" she asked.

"No," I said. And with that, I sailed out of the store. The mall was swimming with people, making me more angry by the second. I began to watch legs, and everybody had pants! Some were a bit tight, some were a bit looks, but no one looked like they were painted on. I could not believe I lost control and was in tears over a pair of pants. I couldn't tell what frustrated me more- the fact I now had a $100 credit to a store that was rarely carrying anything I liked, that all the other stores were carrying very expensive but gorgeous pants, or now that I was going to have to brave the chilly week with three pairs of black pants. All I wanted was some variety.

The worst part of it all is, I have to go back next weekend. For I desperately need bras and work clothes of any kind, which makes the mall seem much worse. I'm just so frustrated I can't find a simple pair of khakis and dress pants that don't make me look hippy or like I'm drowning in fabric. I just need bootcut khaki and grey pants that look elegant, some nice skirts and shirts that aren't t-shirts. All without being long for hot-dog people and so loose or tight that I just look normal. Is that so much to ask? When did shopping become such a chore?

But I still think that this is all a conspiracy of the designers for the skinny people without hips and boobs. Mannequins, perhaps?

And for the Invisible Friends who have now turned this off because they're bored- I did fart so bad I stunk Ben out the other day. There.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

The Noisy Cricket

I don't talk about work a lot on this blog. One reason is on the rare chance they would stumble across it and figure out it was me, I wouldn't want to have written anything I would regret. The other reason is because as interesting as I know I am, the Invisible Friends don't want to hear about it. They want to hear about butterflies and yard-roaming pigs. They want to hear about me embarrassing myself (like calling my boss short accidentally. Or the time I wrote a colleague an e-mail when I had introduced myself already and been talking to him for two days. He wrote back like he didn't know me. Then, I had my boss introduce me b/c I didn't realize two separate people were the same person. And they both laughed. Hard.) The Invisible Friends want to hear about the weird and crazy things I do ( like interviewing a curandera. That's right, look it up.)

So, I will give you one of your only work-related tales. This is the story of the Noisy Cricket.

In the breakroom at my Invisible Office, I have a little friend. There is a cat that roams the halls named Miss Kitty, but that is not my friend. She is very furry and makes me sneeze. Whenever she comes into my Invisible Office, everyone begins sneezing. The snot offends her, so she stays away.

My little friend is the Noisy Cricket. The Noisy Cricket is located somewhere in the breakroom. Since I don't sit still well, I take little walks every few hours. I walk through the breakroom, outside the office, around the parking lot, and come back in, circle the breakroom, and go back to my office.

The Noisy Cricket chirps up a storm during these times. He screeches his little heart out.

"Why are you back in here!" he scolds. "Can you not sit still? You're like the Water Cooler Ants. They don't sit still either. I'm trying to play my pretty music, and all you do is breeze in and out like it is unimportant. I AM NOT AMUSED!"

As the day goes on, the Noisy Cricket gets more and more annoyed. In my best estimate, the Noisy Cricket is old and crochety. He enjoys the early morning and late evening hours of solitude. He despises Tuesday and Thursdays because they are deadline days and people don't leave until late at night. But the one thing the Noisy Cricket hates more than anything in the world- is lunch.

As soon as the clock creeps toward in, people storm into the lunch room. Microwaves are roaring, the refridgerator is slamming, vending machines are whirring and everyone is speaking at a dull roar. The Water Cooler Ants are in a nervous frenzy on top of the water cooler. They run in circles, bumping into each other and hoarding the few crumbs they found.

"Oh my God, here comes another one!"

"Why won't they ever stop!"

"They're after our crumbs! They're going to steal our crumbs!"

"It took me all morning to get these crumbs!"

"They'll have to take them over my dead body! GRRRR!"

"You bloody idiots, they just want water!" the severely annoyed Noisy Cricket shouts. The Water Cooler Ants look confused.

"Oh. Right then. Back to work!"

Every day at lunch, much to the Noisy Cricket's dismay, a group of girls from advertising push several tables together. They laugh and talk loudly, sounding like squawking chickens. The Noisy Cricket does not like this at all. He starts chirping softly at first, as if he's being stern with them.

"Keep it down, please!"

As the girls grow louder, his chirps become louder and shorter. He is more insistent, and very much annoyed.

"I said keep it down! Are you deaf! I can't believe this!"

The noise continues to grow as a few men join the coversation. The Noisy Cricket is having an anxiety attack trying to shush the noise. The Water Cooler Ants are now giggling in hilarity of the situation, which only infuriates the cricket more. His back legs are scorching hot from rubbing them in fury.


Suddenly, , lunchtime is over. The noise dies down and people return to their cubicles. The Noisy Cricket lies in hiding, exhausted.

"All quiet. Just how I like it."

Just then, a group of sales people walk through the door. "We'll have our meeting here," one says, pulling up a chair. The Noisy Cricket's eyes open wide and his jaw drops. Out of sheer disbelief, he faints.

And wakes up chirping.

The Missing Tombstone

Some things are never quite right. No matter how you work with them- coaxing, pleading, lecturing, things never add up. During my Halloween decoration frenzy, I had placed two Styrofoam tombstones into the ground. They were held into the ground with half a roll of duck tape and a half of a wire hanger.

One tombstone fell over. At first, it just leaned slightly, as though it was tired and wanted to lay down. Then it fell flat on it's face, the tape still surrounding the hanger. The tombstone was quite tricky. It would wait until the middle of the night to throw itself on the grass, so I would see it when I left for work all morning. The dsyfunctional tombstone would gnaw at me all day at work. Once home, I would rush to retape it and return it to it's proper place. I spent many nights squatted down in the damp grass, tapdancing around the ants who were attacking my toes.

I tried duck tape. I tried to tape the duck tape to the duck tape. I tried mail tape. I tried painters tape. I tried painters, clear and duck tape in a complex arrangement. Nothing worked. Every night, I would squat in the yard with itchy grass tickling my thighs. AFter securely taping the tombstone, I would march back inside happily. Then, I'd rush to my office window. Still standing. A few hours later, I'd come back and check. Still standing. The next morning, I'd peek through the shades. The tombstone would be laying face down in the grass. As my dear husband would say, "it showed it's ass."

This morning, the tombstone had fallen over. Again. I drove to work annoyed, knowing that I would have to fix the tombstone once again. This time, I'd wire the stupid thing. I drove home, fixed myself dinner, and walked outside with a roll of tape in my hand. The tombstone was gone.

I was quite confused. Where had it gone? Had Ben put it in the garage? I grabbed a flashlight and crept around the yard. Ignoring the chill in the air, I ran the flashlight over every inch of the yard. For good measure, I checked my neighbors as well. Nothing. The anxious feeling in the pit of my stomach had turned into full blown despair! Someone stole my tombstone!

It wasn't even that it was gone. It was $2. It was the fact my yard decorations were not off-kilter. I was missing part of what I had created. Some cretin had crept into my yard while I chomped and had stolen my tombstone!

Suddenly, I stopped. Maybe the tombstone wasn't stolen. Maybe it had run away! Perhaps the tombstone had crawled away to another yard. Maybe it was playing tricks on me. Tombstones are quite tricky, you know.

I'm not sure what happened to my tombstone. All I know is I have a desire to go to Walmart as soon as possible and buy another tombstone and make my little world right again. One can't have just one tombstone. Until then, I'll be on the watch for my tombstone around the neighborhood. After all, it couldn't have crawled too far.

I Throw Myself At Your Mercy

Dear Invisible Friends,

I know. I neglected you this week. I saw your sad eyes, your quivering lips. And I do apologize. So I'm throwing myself at your mercy. 2 blog entries, both funny. Enjoy!

Yours always,

The Humble Blonde Duck

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

When Pigs Fly

They came through the night quietly. They walked through the hills, in the trees and across creeks. The sound of thousands of cloven feet walking down streets in the early hours of the morning sounded like falling rain.

When I raised my garage door to go to the gym, I stopped and stared. The streets were crawling with piglets, like ants on a picnic table. A crescendo of snorts and grunts filled the air.

"Num num num num num," the pigs oinked happily. Rooting along the street, chomping on the bermuda grass, the pigs were in heaven. A few moseyed up to the driveway and stood in front of me.

"Hello!" they grunted, smacking their lips. "Your grass is quite tasty! Do you have any more?"

"In the backyard," I stuttered, my eyes wide.

"May we sample that grass?" the pigs asked politely. "Please?"

"Sure," I said, gesturing to the gate. The pigs began trotting toward the gate. When my brain finally connected that I needed to open the gate, the pigs were standing in front of it. Suddenly, they flew over it. I was so startled, I sat down in the middle of the driveway, nearly landing on a baby pig.

"Excuse you!" the pig said crossly, scooting out of the way. Seeing my empty lap, his face brightened. "Might I lay here for awhile?"

"Sure," I said, dazed. As several small pigs crawled into my lap, nudging my stomach and burrowing in my thighs, I tried to process what I just saw. Piggies just flew over my fence. What was going on?

"How did you fly?" I asked the pigs. They were too busy fighting over who got the best place in my lap to answer. Suddenly, a familiar fluttering whispered in my ear.

"What is going on?" I asked. "How are the pigs flying?"

"Why not fly?" the butterfly whispered.

"I don't understand," I said, frustrated. One of the piglets began squealing at another piglet and shoved him with his shoulder.

"You don't understand because you're thinking. You have to feel and not think. Close your eyes."

I closed my eyes and leaned back. Understanding suddenly flooded my mind. I understood. I understood everything. I opened my eyes and saw the smiling pigs flying above me. The butterfly danced around the flying pigs as the morning sun began to rise. The pigs raised their voices into a song, a song that told of.....

Suddenly, my eyes flew open. The alarm was shrieking at me- "UP UP UP! HURRY HURRY! GYM GYM GYM!"

The magic of the pigs was threatening to fade away. Quickly, I squeezed them tight. They were still there, flying against the sunlit sky. For you see in my world- pigs can fly.

Sunday, October 15, 2006


Further proof I am destined to become my alter ego Elle Woods: It's playing on TNT tonight.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

A Very Important Debate

"What should I be for Halloween?" I asked to no one particular last night while we watched the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader show on CMT.

"You should be Leela, and I'll be Fry!" Ben said. I looked thoughtful. While I loved Futurama, I wasn't so sure dying my hair purple was the key. Besides, I wear black dance pants all the time- there was nothing different about that.

"I know!" I grinned. "We can be Tim McGraw and Faith Hill." As I grinned happily, Ben looked at me like I'd grown three heads.

"Gumby and Pokey," Dave suggested.

"A Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader," Karen suggested.

Bryan looked stumped.

I was not pleased with any of those suggestions. Though it would be fun to jump around in a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader outfit, I didn't feel like scaring small children with my boobies. Besides, my butt is not a cheerleader butt. Cheerleader butts are high, tight, round and protrude gently like a bubble. My butt does not do that. It sticks out a bit and is flat. I have a phonebook butt.

"I don't like any of those," I said, looking disturbed. I had to figure out what I wanted to be for Halloween. One of the most important features of the night was what I would look like. This would take days and days- ok fine- minutes and minutes of planning.

"Hey- you could borrow Karen's stripper dress again," Ben grinned devilish. "You know, the fishnet one-"

"I've worn that to the symphony!" Karen squawked. "Symphony of strippers," Ben teased.

Absorbed in my own world, I spent the rest of the night and morning thinking. And then it came to me.

Elle Woods.

I should be Elle Woods. The perky, blonde, ever happy and ultimately cute lawyer who dressed in head to toe pink. My alter-ego and secret dream! Why had I not thought of this before?

After a secret convention of costume planning, Karen and I emerged victorious. Clad in a pepto bismal pink halter dress and rhinestone sparkling pink shoes, I was perfect. All I would need is my hair curled, Bryan's dog to pose as bruiser, and a pink purse. I'll cover my pumpkin in pink glitter and have the sparkliest pumpkin on the block.

Those ghosts and gremlins aren't going to know what hit them.

A Beautiful Soul: Gooey Post 1

I was driving back from downtown the other day for a photo shoot (do I sound glamourous and beyond cool? Good! Let the facade live on) and I started thinking to myself. One of the people I work with is a large man, and is always cracking jokes about his size. He's a very nice guy, and was convinced he was unattractive.

I began to wonder if there are some people that simply can see into other's souls. Not like the Ghost Whisperer or anything like that- but I truly believe for some people, looks really don't matter. Growing up, I never chose friends based on their physical appearance or fashion sense. Of course I noticed things, like everyone does, but I never let that color my opinion of them. For some people, looks are everything. They won't date someone unless they're cute or attractive. An average or overweight person is disgusting to them- they all want a George Clooney look alike with a heart of gold. For as long as I can remember, I have never understood this. In fact, I've always been suspicious of very attractive people. Just as judgemental as they are towards others, I assume the pretty, popular people were really evil demons stuffed inside an outer shell.

However, I truly believe that there are some people that can look at someone and see them for them. They don't see the pimples, the five extra pounds, the extra toe. As much as I would like to brag and say that it was me, I'm not going to. There's only so much of my own horn that I can toot.

Maybe we should all work on that a little more. Maybe things would be different if we looked into people's hearts instead of at their overly plumped lips. I gurantee- things would be a lot more interesting.

Funny post to follow

A Note From Your Favorite Duck

Dear Invisible Friends,

Because my glorious new job has caused me to actually leave days between posts, you shall adore me forever. Today you will have not one, but two posts! Yes, yes, thank you. Your applause only further inflates my ego. I hope you enjoy them, and thank you for reading!

Twitching and cheerful as ever,

The Blonde Duck

**The Blonde Duck has just realized that this counts as the third post. She assures the Invisible Friends that yes, she can count, she just doesn't like to.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

They Aggravate Me

They aggravate me. Every day, they pinch and rub. They itch and swell. You see my toes, they aggravate me.

It's the shoes, I believe. The darling black leather sandals I've been wearing to work. The mules behaved themselves for a few days. They were quiet, well behaved and ate all their vegetables. Now they are cranky, irritable and onry.

"Let's rub the ant bites!" they hiss in glee. I'm walking up the stairs when my feet erupt in flames. I grit my teeth and make it to the top, pumping hard to get around the corner.

"The toes! Get the toes!" they cry. At every step, my toes feel as they they've been rubbed with sandpaper. I walk faster. My toes become more and more hot. It feels as though melted lava is licking against the sides of my feet.

"Here we go!" the shoes squeal in delight. "Pinch, pinch her good!" My big toe suddenly feels as though a crab shook it's hand in acquaintance. I grit my teeth harder as I turn the corner to find my publisher. I am forced to standing on my toes, which are turning red from the pinching. My feet begin to tingle as though popcorn is bursting inside them. As the publisher walks off, I bolt for the stairs.

"The grand finale!" they yell triumphantly, sending up a crescendo around them. "The finale! The ankles, let's hear the ankles play!"

And at that moment, my ankle folds underneath me and I tumble down a few stairs, grabbing the carpeted wall with my nails like a cat. I wave off the concerned faces and make it down the stairs with some of my dignity intact. The shoes are giggling.

The shoes will be having a break tomorrow. For you see the shoes, they aggravate me.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Cloud People

When fog descends on the roads of the Pond, all the people turn into idiots. They all drive seven miles an hour down the road, clutching their steering wheels and peering anxiously through their fogged up winshields.

Stepping out of the gym this morning, I could feel the drops of moisture cling to my skin. It gave the the shivers as I hurried to my car in the damp, cool air. And it made me think: wouldn't the world be better if there was cloud people?

Cloud people would simply float through the fog as faint outlines, like ghosts. They would always be cool headed and polite, though not overly affectionate. The presence of cloud people would keep the outdoors a pleasant place to be. They would clean winshields and point the way through hard to see areas.

Favorite activities for the cloud people would be drifting over the lake and skating on the surface of plants. Never quite touching the surface, they would gently glide over the surface, dipping their toes in the tiny waves spreading from their presence. Plants would become skating grounds as they gently glided between the grooves and did flips off the scalloped edges.

Why, you ask, would the cloud people want to do this? Why would the tiny beings want to float silently throughout the early morning, effereal beings who are so in tune with nature? We have a hard time understanding creatures like this. What is the purpose for these cloud people?

Why that's simple. They all have thin strings, more delicate than a spider's web, that pull the clouds along. As they go along, they swing from swing to swing like monkeys in the forest. Their work leaves a clear path for the sunbeams to follow.

And we all want to see sunbeams, don't we? The cloud people are supposed to be back later this week. I hope to see them soon.

Monday, October 09, 2006

It Offends Me

My foot is offending me. It is staring at me sullenly, as it throbs incessantly. The ant bites covering it's top stare smugly at me.

"Ha!" the pulsing ant bites say. "You can't defeat us. You thought you were safe didn't you? You thought hanging Halloween decorations in the dark would be fun. But you didn't think about us. You didn't think about the nest we had built. We were minding our own business until you stuck our enormous foot in our home! How would you like it if we stuck our foot in your house? HMMMMMM????

The ant bites on my foot pierce the red irritation of my skin. Annoyed, I glare at them. Then I resort to desperate measures: I begin dragging my foot along the carpet. After a few rounds around the house, my foot still feels like it's on fire. It's begging to be scratched as the ant bites cackle in their white-bump glory.

"It's going to take a lot more than that! Feel our wrath!" The white bumps on my foot double with itching. I have a desperate need to scratch them. I consider using the knife on the counter to cut them off. No, don't want blood on the carpet.

This time, I drag my foot back and forth quickly, using the counter for support. If any one was watching, they'd be very confused. I look like I'm doing demented lunges. It still burns.

After dumping a bottle of recovered benadryl on my foot, I'm becoming desperate. I feel like an animal with a foot caught in a trap- as the time grows nearer, I'm increasingly considering gnawing off my own foot.

I try everything. I dump ice cubes, toothpaste, baking soda and even soap on my foot. Nothing. Then suddenly, I look down. My foots stopped itching. The top of my foot is red with white bumps scattered around- but they're not itching! I've won! I've beat the beast!

I fall to my knees, full of joy that my foot is not itching. Then I feel a twitch. The twitch turns into an itch. And my feet are on fire once again!

"We're back!" the bumps sing. "We promised we would be!"

You see, my foot. It really offends me.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Mission Halloween

"It's not here!" Karen sighed. "We'll have to try another place."

After a distressing time at the mall, we were on a mission. We were on a mission to find Halloween decorations. I'd already spent a few hours searching for khaki pants and bras. I was in tears when I finally found one bra that worked. Now, we were off to find Halloween decorations. We reconvened at our meeting spot and set off in one vehicle.

This time, we found the Halloween store.

"Look Karen!" I exclaimed. "You can wear this for Halloween!" I shoved a package of a skimpy costume at her.

"And I can wear this!" I exclaimed, grabbing a costume with a bit more coverage. Karen rolled her eyes and gave me that look. The Oh- lord- The Blonde Duck- is- being- goofy- again look.

"Where are the decorations!" I exclaimed, looking around. "I don't see any!"

"They just have those." Karen pointed to some bloody rubber rats and animatron creatures that howled, shrieked and squirted blood. I frowned.

"Well for a Halloween store, they should have more decorations," I scoffed. "Geez. Onto Hobby Lobby!"

Hobby Lobby only threw me into a greater pit of despair. Cluttering the aisles was a 40 year old school teacher's dream: cutsey scarecrows, wooden signs with painted fruit and vegetables and anything ever seen in a small town antique shop. None of it was Halloween. It was all fall.

I looked at Karen. She seemed resigned. "I guess we can try Wal-Mart," she said.

Leave it to good ol' Wal-Mart to be our salvation! I went nuts. I grabbed all sorts of skeletons, spiders and lights. I webt down the aisles, pulling various things into my buggy. After I had exhausted the quality decorations, I scampered off to a corner of an aisle to evaluate my goods.

It wasn't until then I realized Karen was standing quietly. She was not amused by the cheap mounds of badly painted plastic. Instead, she looked utterly bored.

"You didn't get anything!" I gawked.

"No," she said, looking around. "I don't see anything I like."

"How can you not see anything you like?" I squealed. "They have plastic skeletons and spiders for a dollar. And cobwebs! Look at him!" I thrust a foam hanging Frankenstien with bulging eyes and a crooked smile in her face. "How cute is that?"

She still wasn't amused.

By the time I got home, I was delighted. I immediately placed stickers on the glass doors and set about to making waffles. Such a delightful Halloween celebration had to be celebrated with waffles.

Once dark hit, we scampered outside giddily. We carefully draped cobwebs in the trees. Ben dismantled a wire hanger and created stakes that we duck taped to our Styrofoam tombstones. But our greatest achievement was not the hanging skeleton or the cobwebs. It was the four creatures that came with small bulbs and plastic stakes. We drove them into the ground, perservering even as we were attacked by fire ants. When we plugged them in triumphantly, we had a confused mummy, a sneaky witch, a scary Frankenstien and a happy ghost.

We now had the best decorations on the street, thanks to Karen and me. It's even better than the 6 ft inflatable mummy across the street.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Technical difficulties

Dear Invisible Friends,

My blog is currently expierencing technical difficulties. My profile is lingering at the bottom and refusing to come up. We're currently in the process of negotiations- and of course, they're being difficult. Between their demands for chocolate bunnies in October and carmel candy popcorn, they want matching pink pixie shoes. So be patient- we will get it up there. They can't hold out much longer.


The Blonde Duck

Happy Birthday Danielle

The one thing I've always worried about, and never really said anything, was that I'm a crappy sister.

When it comes to being a big sister, I'm worried I gave my little sister the short end of the stick. While I'll go to all ends to make my parents and husband happy, I worry that she gets left out. Growing up, she adored me. My name was her first word. She followed me everywhere. She always wanted to play, to talk, to do anything.

My response was always the same: "Go away. You're bothering me."

In Brad Paisley's video "The World", the big sister is mean to her little sister. She calls her a twerp and tells her no one likes her. The little sister is crushed. It's too much of a mirror for me to watch.

I'll admit, I wasn't the greatest big sister. I was mean and cranky. Selfish and impatient, I didn't want to play a lot of the time. I was prickly, lofty and way too important to deal with my little sister and her problems. She was so juvenile, and I was obviously more important. I had my own grown up issues and was obviously too busy to listen to her problems.

The worst part of all of it was that she stayed completely loyal to me.

No matter what I did, she would have taken the shirt off her back to make me happy. She was so generous and giving, and it was all about me. Her heart was so open and so full of love that it made me ashamed. I envied the way she could go up and ask for hugs and crawl into my Mom's lap for kisses. My jaw dropped when she would hug my dad and tell him she loved him while I stood there stiffly. She easily told me she loved me and I would mumble a response. I desperately wanted to love the way she did. Sure, I can be like that with my husband- but I wish I could be more affectionate with my family.

Even though we missed her 18th birthday party in Shreveport, she never gave me a bit of guilt. She was fiercely protective of me during my wedding, and stayed by my side the whole time. If she hadn't spent hours searching for things, stuffing rice bags, and tying ribbons- I wouldn't have had a wedding. What amazed me was she never once boasted about her work- she never even asked for a thank you.

I think I'll thank her now. Thanks Danielle, for teaching me how to be more open with my feelings. You've slowly been showing me how to love more. I love you.

Happy Birthday!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

The Blonde Duck has Buyers Remorse

I didn't mean to. I truly didn't. Surrounded by shiny and colorful objects, I went into a coma. By the time I awoke, I was standing in my kitchen staring at two large carefully packed boxes. As I lifted out the salad plate, I could only stare at it.

"Did I really pick these out?" I wondered to myself. "Oh lord. What was I thinking?"

You were thinking they were pretty, bright and colorful. And you were thinking that those darling powder blue handpainted bowls with colorful polka dots would be so cheerful to look at in the morning. Not to mention the visions you had of turning your home into a Dr. Suess-esque wonderland of whimsy.

"Well crap," I said. "These don't go with any of my dishes. And they don't go with the striped placemats."

Well, you weren't concerned about what would match. You were distracted by the shiny objects.

I began to carry around the plate, hugging it to my chest. I had a nagging feeling in my gut and was starting to break out in a cold sweat. I looked around the kitchen. Things started to spin. I had come down with a fate worse than death, the flu or even a cold in the middle of summer vacation.

Buyers Remorse.

Buyers remorse is the dreaded condition of Duck-kind. It's worse than menstrual cramps, sinus headaches and an itch in the middle of your back that you can never reach. Only spoken of in whispers and desperate confessions over thick slices of cheesecake, buyers remorse is the worst condition a Duck can have.

And I had it bad.

"I'm utterly nuts. I've lost my mind. I'm Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde," I said to myself. "These are glorious plates, but they don't match a thing. Instead of sticking to safe, I got ballsy. And look where it got me. Now I have multicolored things that don't match my whole blue Orleans theme."

That's what you get for being whimsical, a voice chided. It's like buying clothes. You never buy the glittery pieces when a nice tailored scoopneck will last a few years.

"But I get so tired of safe," I sighed. "I just want to create this whimsical escape where streamers hang from the ceiling and people glide about in capes and crowns. On holidays the house becomes a wonderland of magical delight where everything is dazzling. My own little universe."

That costs a lot of money and would probably drive Ben to throw you out in the backyard with the molting sunflowers.

I narrowed my eyes at the striped plate. "I do dislike practicality."

Then keep the striped plates and go crazy over them not matching. Just stare at your fat chicken and be happy.

"This isn't the end," I glared, already looking up the website to return them. "It'll take me at least a week to get over this. Buyers Remorse isn't something that just disappears, you know."

Just think of how you'll decorate for Halloween. And the sandcastle cake you want to decorate with cinnamon and glazed frosting.

I think I may be on the road to recovery.
The Blonde Duck holds no responsibility for anything said in this post that is offensive. Currently, she is under Dr.'s orders to visit the mall as soon as possible in order to heal properly for Buyer's Remorse. There, she is to buy several pretty things to heal her conscience. She should be completely healed by Monday. Any suggestions of pretty things would be appreciated. ******

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Coming Soon to a Duck near you

Dearest Invisible Friends,

Never fear! Your post on the adventures in the lousiana boutique is coming! As well as a post on the new job. I have been going to bed insanely early- so give me a day to adjust to my new bedtime. Be watching for a new fun post tommorow!

Ever Yours,

The Exhasted and Giddy Blonde Duck

The Return of The Butterfly Queen

It was a late summer early afternoon. The wind was blowing softly, the late morning sun touching the plant's gently. And they came.

We had gotten back from Shreveport the night before. Ben had bumbled outside to mow the lawn, and I was cleaning and unpacking. Suddenly, Ben started hollering at the top of his lungs.

"Miranda!" he yelled. "Get out here!"

I took off running, sliding on the tile. Flinging open the door, I fell out as I stumbled through the garage.


"Look!" he cried, pointing. My mouth fell open.

The butterflies were swirling around us, so thick the sky became speckled. Black, orange and brown, they weaved through the air gracefully. Ben stood with his arms stretched high, and they drifted around his outstretched fingers gracefully.

"They're back!" I laughed in glee. "They came back!"

"Look at them," Ben said in awe. They're everywhere."

I stood in watched them as they passed by slowly, gracefully painting patterns throughout the air. They created spirals, twists, and waves- intricate paintings our eyes could never see. Their delicate dance through the air never wavered. Then I noticed something strange.

"They're only around our house," I said, puzzled. "Why are they only around our house? Where are they coming from?"

Ben shook his head, unable to answer as he stood and stared into the sky. Butterflies landed on my shoulder, my fingers.

"We told you we would return," they whispered, fluttering quietly. "But we may not be back for awhile."

"Why?" I asked.

"It is time to return to our winter home." the air pulsed gently around my head. "You see, we have a special winter garden. We are able to float gently, with flowers that never frost and grass that is always fresh. We simply wait until spring, when we are able to return. It is a chance to rest, to breathe."

"It sounds beautiful," I said.

"We have a favor though," the wings gently touched my skin. "We need some help."

"Tell me," I said softly. "Anything."

"It's not the time," I felt their tiny feet dance on my arm hairs. "It is not yet time. You will know when it is time, for we will return. Until then, do what you do best."

"What is that?" I whispered desperately. "I don't know what you mean! You're so full of mystery!"

The butterflies continued to stream by me, but now there was only silence. Ben was still laughing in delight, but I stood confused. The magical swirls and dips now only seemed to add to my confusion.

They continued to stream by the windows all afternoon, turning the blue sky into a speckled piece of turquoise. It was painful to drive and see their tiny bodies smash on the winshield. I drove slowly, waving them away and crying, "Move, oh please, move!" Still, some hit the winshield and died. I felt like a terrible person. I felt as if I was murdering these tiny creatures that had caused me so much delight.

Later that afternoon, I stood with Ben in the backyard. A tiny yellow butterfly whirled around us and landed delicately on a flower.

"They're still coming!" I said happily. If only I knew what I could do.

"You're the Butterfly Queen," Ben said, squeezing my shoulder. "Of course, they'll come!"

"And you're the Butterfly King," I teased, leaning my head against him.

The butterfly touched my fingertips softly, then flew away. The wind still held the whisper of their promise.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Adventures in the Car

We drove back from Shreveport yesterday. Seven hours in the car for most couples would be absolute hell. The wife would begin to whine about how the husband never pays attention and doesn't communicate, the husband whines the wife is a nag. By hour five, they both sit in silence, furious with each other. Once home, they slam doors on opposite sides of the house.

However, that is not how the Blonde Duck and Ben act.

After a lively debate over why I continue to wear makeup, I fed him McDonalds as he drove. It was hard not to giggle when he tried to catch wayward fries with his jaw like a English bulldog.

Drained from arguing, I sat in the warm sun with the air conditioner blasting on my face. It was hard not to drift off. I kept catching myself right before my head slammed into the window.

I began to edit my book for an hour or two. Now I had the problem of Ben cackling at me while I tried not to drift off. After my forehead hit the top of my pen, I decided I had a bit of a problem.

Though I managed to stay awake somehow, the rest of the trip went like this:

"Coooooooooooooouuuuuuuwwwwwwssss!" I would shout.

"Did you fart?"


"Oh my God, you farted didn't you?"

"Look there's a llama!"

"Miranda, that's horrible. That smells like death."

"Did you know llamas spit?"

"Why don't you just go to sleep? You look like you're dying. Just close your eyes and take a nap."




"Why won't you take a nap?"

"I want to be tired so I can go to bed early and get up for my job. There's some ducks!"

"I'm hungry."


"Seriously, you farted again didn't you?"

The adventures continued through Austin, where we were treated with dinner by my parents. When we finally reached home, a giant mummy on the neighbors yard welcomed us. Though most people think we're nuts, I do enjoy our adventures in the car.

Stay tuned for the Blonde Duck's Trip to a Southren Boutique!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

The Standoff

We stood there, me and my boys. Armed with leashes and a cell phone, I raised an eyebrow. They wouldn't be messing with me.

The contenders stared back, raising a lip slightly. Hair bristling on their backs, they took two cautious steps forward.

Arthur the dog paid no attention to the unfolding drama, while Ace the chihauhau leaped up into my arms shaking. Arthur continued to wuffle along the ground.

"Geez, this smells good," Arthur sniffed. "I wonder what type of pee this is? Deer perhaps? Maybe a raccoon? I know all the raccoons in this neighborhood though. This isn't their signature scent."

"Shut up, old man!" Ace panted excitedly. "We're going to die! The Marley brothers are staring at us! They're going to bite us and take away our bling! Oh God, hide the bling!" Ace tore his collar off in excitement and held it in his teeth, shaking.

I looked at the other dogs. They cocked their heads at me in confusion.

"A raccoon?" one asked. "That white thing shivering in the Human's arms is a raccoon? It doesn't look like a raccoon. Look at it's eyes."

"They're not raccoons, they're dogs." The other one corrected. "I don't know quite what we are to do with them however."

"Sniff their butts! Sniff their butts!" the first dog turned in a frenzy. "I looooovvveee sniffing butts. Especially raccoon butts!"

"Not raccoon," Arthur said thoughtfully. "Possum perhaps? Squirrel?"

"squirrel! The white things a squirrel!" the other cried. " An albino! We can sell him and make enough to buy that fancy doghouse at petco with the vibrating mat!"

"Hide me!" Ace squeaked, burying his head in my arm. "They want to eat me. I know all about squirrels. I try to eat them on a daily basis."

"No, we will be selling no one until we sniff butts," the second dog said confidently. "We shall all have a good sniff. Then we will decide what to do."

"Sniff, sniff, sniff!" the other dog began turning circles in the other day.

The second dog strolled up to Arthur and promptly stuck his nose in his butt. Arthur, unaware of the events, jumped.

"Excuse me!" he said, offended. "Do I know you?"

"Hello!" the second said, wagging his tail. "How are you?"

The first dog stuck his nose in the second dogs butt.

"Whoops." he put his head down. "That was the wrong sniff." He sniffed deeply anyway.

Ace continued to shake in his arms as Arthur began to stride away, offended.

"You sniffed me!" the second dog bellowed, raising his gums at the first dog. "I have already been sniffed today by your hoover nose! I did not need a second snot treatment. When you sniff, you blow snot all over my behind. It's disgusting."

"Well, if you had moved your wide tail I might have noticed it had been previously sniffed. It's hard to see around that big bushy thing."

"My tail is not fat!"
The two dogs began to growl at each other and pace, and we quickly moved on. I put Ace down on the ground, and he scampered ahead, looking behind cautiously.

"We told them who's boss," Ace pranced ahead, raising his head high. "Didn't we?"

Arthur was now sniffing a bush.

"You know, I'm sure this is a beaver," Arthur said, sniffing deeper into the bush. "Duck, perhaps?"

Down in Louisiana

Friday afternoon, we barreled down the road to Shreveport. We were both stressed, tired and in need of a break. After stopping off in Austin, where my Dad gave me a briefcase for my new job (yes, I cried) we kept going down 35. Once we hit the state line, the whole atmosphere changed.

Shreveport is full of tall, majestic trees. At night the cool, humid air swirls around with a scent of pine. Things don't move as fast in Louisiana- people just take their time. Dinners are longer, afternoons languid and people don't worry about that extra dessert. It was exactly what we needed.

Being taken away from Ben's office and my freelancing had us both relaxing. It's been fun hanging out with Ben's parents. Ace the chihauhau has made my lap his permanent resting place. He is currently sulking because my laptop has infringed on his space. On top of a chair, his pouting face is turned the other way, his back to me. If he could sniff haughtily, I think he would.

For Ben, this has been a bit of a homecoming. He's back with his parents, his friends, his old stomping ground. I've watched the worry melt from his face and his jovial personality come back. We drove around last night to kill some time before a party. Throwing his arm around me, he talked happily with the cool wind blowing around us. Laying his head on mine, he said, "I love you girl."

I think it was an overdue trip home.