Friday, November 30, 2012


As any good middle school teacher will tell you, a bucket full of candy is a must have school supply.  Adolescents will do almost anything for a piece of candy.  They will do almost anything for the mere promise of candy.  I suspect that is why pervs use candy as a lure to getting kids in their teardrop-window vans.  It just never fails.

"Hey kid, you like Twizzlers?"

I usually get to school a couple hours before my first class to do my work because I refuse to bring anything home with me.  Yesterday I opened my candy drawer and ate candy while I worked.  Usually I'm not that crazy about the stuff I buy, but yesterday for some reason, it was really hitting the spot.  I'd eat a piece, throw the garbage away, work for a few minutes and eat another piece.

When my first class came in, the kid that sits right up next to my desk looked into the garbage and we had this conversation:

Kid: Mrs. Lindahl, do you have a class before this one?

Me: No, why?

Kid: Well, who ate all that candy then?

Me: I had a few pieces before you guys came in, so what?

Kid: A FEW PIECES?  There's like, a hundred wrappers in there!

Me:  There's not a hundred wrappers.

At this point other kids came up to look at the collection of empty wrappers.

Another kid: Hey! She has Twizzlers!

Different kid: Are there any left, Mrs. Lindahl? Can we have some?

Original kid: Did you eat breakfast this morning?

Me: Yes, there are some left, and yes I had breakfast, why?

Original kid: You did have breakfast?  Wow.

Me:  Hey, it's not that much candy!  I like candy too, ya know.

Original kid: Not that much?  There's enough wrappers in there to feed a village!

At this point my aide was curious also, so she came to look at the wrapper carnage.

Original kid: Mrs. P., you must have been in here helping her eat all that.

Mrs. P.: No, I wasn't invited to this Twizzler party.

Me:  I'm never sharing my candy with you guys again.

Original kid: That's because there's probably none left.

Me: You have detention.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Kira in the Car

Sam, when you start driving I'm going to put a bumper sticker on your car that says "I heart my sister's hugs".

Sam said, "Pass."

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Here's something from the past to get us in the mood for the big day tomorrow.  Happy Thanksgiving!


Happy Thanksgiving! I'm sitting here with my sisters and dad talking about Dolph Lundgren and his relative hotness (I think he's not, my sisters think he is, my dad says "he doesn't really think about that.") and discussing whether my dad has ADHD. (We all think he does) I don't really know where my kids are. I think they are outside somewhere probably buried in 40 feet of snow. I hope they are okay. I will be very thankful if they are okay. We are having a late dinner because of work schedules and I haven't eaten anything all day long (except for a giant breakfast) and I am getting HUNGRY. I also think I might be having a heart attack. Or heart burn. But how could I have heart burn if I haven't even eaten anything? (except a giant breakfast) I bet beer will help. Also, my foot is asleep and it's annoying me. It's my left foot. Isn't that a sign of a heart attack? Uh oh. I have to go to BRB.


Good news, according to Webmd, a sleeping left foot is not a sign of a heart attack, so I am free to sit around and eat my weight in stuffing with no life-threatening consequences! Yay! Kira just asked me, "Do you think if I threw Amy's dog in the fire, it would stink?" I think maybe I have to look into some counseling for my sweet little angel. Between her potential horrifying animal abuse and her milk farts ("Oh my god! I farted and smells just like milk!") she's both getting on my nerves, and causing some serious worry. Be back after dinner.


Okay, dinner is over. Everything was delicious, as usual; and the company was great. We had champagne and Beth (who is six months pregnant) wanted a glass and wavered on whether to have a small one or not. My mom and her friend said, "No! You can't! What about FAS?" and were indignant until they were reminded about how much they smoked and drank during pregnancy in the 60s and 70s. They said, "Well, we didn't know about it back then!" and then looked at all of us like they were seeing us for the first time, inspecting us for small head size and short attention spans. To their relief we all have enormous heads so whew, that's one bullet dodged! Score one for drinking during pregnancy! Beth decided that a few sips of wine would be okay considering all the mouthwash she "accidentally" ingests.

Then we got in an argument about why the Kardashian's are famous. Amy said it's because their father was one of O.J. Simpson's lawyers and the rest of us were all, "Yeah, right! Bruce Jenner was not O.J. Simpson's lawyer!" and she tried to tell us that he's not really their father, but please, we've seen the show! How dumb does she think we are? Whether Bruce Jenner is a world-class athlete as well as a cracker-jack defense lawyer still does not answer the question about why the Kardashian's are so famous.

And then Beth told us a delightful story about how she had to go to the bathroom really bad while she was on the road with her toddler and she couldn't hold it so she had to stop at a gas station. She, of course, had to bring the baby in the bathroom stall with her because leaving toddlers in running vehicles right next to the highway is a no-no (apparently). She tried her best not to let the baby touch anything because gas station bathrooms = blech. She was pretty successful until she flushed and it was one of those super loud powerful flushers and it scared the crap out of the baby who jumped, screamed, and fell; smearing herself against every gas-station-bathroom surface she could on her way down and the whole catastrophe culminated with the poor scared baby spitting her binky out and it skittered across the disgusting floor, and then she screamed even more when Beth wouldn't let her put the gross binky back in her mouth. Fun times! I also watched Beth change a diaper that made her gag THREE TIMES. I thought she was going to puke on her baby. Oh my god! I want to get pregnant again RIGHT NOW!

But seriously, I'm thankful I'm not pregnant, and that my kids are old enough to leave alone while I use the bathroom by myself. Really, super thankful.

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone! I'm going into a tryptophan/wine coma now for the next 24 hours or so!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

A day in the life of a bad haircut

When you have been given a bad haircut every day is filled with unwanted, unwelcome stress that emphasizes how shallow you are for feeling this amount of stress over something as inconsequential as a hairdo.  Then you are stressed about how shallow you are.

First of all, there is no more waking up looking adorable and slightly tossled.  You wake up looking like someone spent the previous eight hours sliding your head through a mangle.  Also there is no wondering if you can go one more day without a hairwash because this is what you look like when you wake up.

So you take the shower you didn't want to take, and you put in extra conditioner to discourage your hair from getting any of its own ideas.  You want it as limp and lifeless as possible because the above picture is what your hair looks like with life and vigor now.

You get out of the shower and prepare yourself for spending a ridiculous amount of time on your hair when you'd normally spend about three minutes on it.  First you have to decide how much product to use.  Too much and you will have to rewash and start over, not enough and your hair will revert to the original "fat bird with teeny wings" style it had when you walked out of the "salon."

After about twenty minutes of hairstyling that only takes you from looking like a mental patient to looking like you cut your own hair with a dull knife (mentally outpatient), you are ready to face the day.  You have pasted down the teeny wings that want to flare, you have tamed the hair on your cowlick in such a way that you can only hope it won't silently stick up like a  flag in an hour, and you have fought the top part that only wants to be in the shape of a cone.  Time for work!

You go to work and even though you've had this horrible cut for several days now, people still look at you with wonder and pity like you just walked away from a terrible car accident.  Several people say, "You got a haircut!" to which you can only say, "Yes, I did.  Thank you?"  Your students say, "I liked your hair better before."  And you agree.  Then they say, "Then why did you get it cut?" to which you have no answer.

You stop in the bathroom for a mid-morning pee break and glance into the mirror to discover that your hair has somehow, without you even knowing it, transformed itself and now you look just like Dwight Schrute.

You wonder how long you've been walking around like that and wish that someone would have said something, but at the same time you're thankful nobody said anything.  You frantically fingercomb the hair back into some semblance of a purposeful hairdo and go back to work.

The day goes on and on with many more "You got a haircut!" comments and bathroom breaks to see how ridiculous you look.  Finally, you can go home and relax.  You stop worrying about your hair for awhile and just let it do what it needs to do.  When you go to the bathroom to brush your teeth before bed, this is what you see:

And you remember fondly the old days when your hair was glorious enough to earn you the name "Lord Farquad" by a couple of jealous sisters.  You think that the stylist must have had some style in mind that was so good it was worth not listening to a word you said and giving you this cut instead.  "I just haven't figured out how to fix it right," you tell yourself.  "Tomorrow I will figure it out."  Then you go to bed sure that it will grow quickly and soon you'll be the ugly duckling no more!  Then you wake up to another morning and it's like it's Groundhog Day all over again.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Be careful what you wish for...

Well don't you all just loooooooove the idea of me sending my sister who is in Afghanistan a picture of myself with the worst haircut ever given to anyone who has had haircuts.  I have spent most of the past four days trying my hardest to keep my head from looking like a fat bird, but last night I stopped the constant smoothing for a while and then took some pictures of myself for my sister and I SENT THEM TO HER.  Are you all happy now?  I did that for my own personal troop.  What are you doing for your troop?  Don't have a troop?  You can share mine.  She says she loves getting mail over there so send her something.  Some magazines, or some gum, or some cookies, some holiday decorations, or some pictures of YOU with a bad haircut.  Her address is:

LCDR Amy Lindahl
FOB Tarin Kowt
APO AE 09380

Send her something, Smarties. Now I know you are all dying to see my crazy awful bird hair so I am going to post it, but this is not for you, dear reader, this is also for my troop because nothing makes a sister happier than when another sister looks silly, right Amy?  Right, Beth?  Right sisters all over the world?  (And also because Amy has a blog and I wanted to scoop her on this hot story.)

There must be some magical under-cutting on the sides that I can't find because without constant management those wings want to fly.

Side view.  There is nothing in the back to support those wings.  And nothing on the top to hold them down.  Just fluffy feathers.
This is just for Amy and Beth.  A gross, lipless, multi-chinned oversmile.  You're welcome.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Decision 2012

This is a Facebook chat between my sister and me this morning:
Amy: I DO have a package to send you....since I didn't get you a b-day present....

Me: Is it a blue burka?

Amy: I got Sid and Mills some 'jewels' at the bazaar last weekend. And no, it's not a blue burka. You're NOT getting a blue burka. Those are creepy.

Me: But that's what I want!!! I got a horrific haircut on Saturday. I've never wished more for a blue burka.

Amy: I want to see a picture. And I'll see what I can do....there's certainly enough of them around here. Geez.

Me: No pictures. Just imagine a fluffy fat bird with teeny little wings. That's my hair.

Amy: HA HA! PICTURE!! Come on....your followers would LOVE it!!

Me: No. It's too horrible. That's why I need a burka.

Amy: NO you don't! What does Kira say about it?

Me: I would wear the burka and say it is in protest of the taliban, but really I'd just be waiting for my horrid haircut to grow out. Kira calls me "Sir."

Amy: HA HA HA HA HA!! I'm going to tell her to take a picture and send it to me....

Me: No.

Amy: Come on, that would be a GREAT Christmas present!! Framed, please.

Me: I will send you one of my school pictures.

Amy: No, I've already seen that.

Me: But it's a professional portrait!

Amy: Sarah, I'm in AFGHANISTAN. Don't you want to lift my spirits? I won't be able to Afghanistand it if you don't....

Me: Oh.... My .... God.... That was horrible.

So, should I throw vanity and self-respect to the wind and send her a picture of my horrific hairdo? Or do I say tough shit, I will not sacrifice my dignity for the cause of troop morale and just send her some gum instead? You, my readers, get to decide. Vote in the comments...

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Person of Walmart

About a month ago I got my 150,000,000th bad haircut.  Like many in the past, it was almost right, but not quite.  I had to come home and hack off a couple pieces to make it better which seems so stupid, but it simply has to be done.  Of course, I didn't do a very good job because it's hard to cut the hair on the back of your own head.

So today while I was out and about, I thought I'd stop in somewhere and just get the back part shaped up a little.  I got in right away and told the cute girl that I just wanted the back fixed where I cut it because it wasn't very neat.  We talked for a long time about what I am looking for in a haircut and I thought she got me.  I told her I liked the sides and top, but the bottom of the back needed to be fixed.  She took my glasses and assured me that she was doing what I was asking.  It even felt like she was doing what I was asking.  I'm no stranger to cutting my own hair so I knew what I wanted, I just needed someone to do it that could actually see what they are doing.

Like the optimist I am, while she was cutting I thought maybe she was the one.  The girl who would be my haircutter for the rest of my life.  The girl who I would be so loyal to that when she got promoted to a super-fancy salon that charges 80 dollars a cut, I'd still go to her because it would be worth it.  She seemed so happy with her work, and genuinely excited about what a good job she'd done and how good I looked that I was excited too when she turned me toward the mirror and handed me my glasses.

I looked in the mirror and could hardly keep from crying.  It is the worst haircut I have ever gotten, IN MY LIFE.  Yes, worse than the crop-topped poodle cut I got in seventh grade when I asked to look like Stephanie Powers.  Worse than all the cut-THEN-perms I stupidly got.  Worse than all of it put together.  I am at a loss for what to do about it because there is no way in hell I'm going in to have someone else cut MORE and try to fix it.  And I don't even know where I would start if I try to fix it myself.

How to describe it... hmmm.  It's like she heard that I didn't want the sides touched, but then totally stopped hearing me so she gave me a supershort "mom-cut" but left the long sides.  Like a Hasidic Jew.

Like this. (NOT the woman)

It's like I have three different ugly haircuts all morphed together onto one head.  It's horrifying.  It's a pixie cut with long chunks on the sides.  When will I meet her, the one who will get that I don't want to look like Velma or Peggy Hill or an Orthodox Rabbi?  The one who will laugh with me about all the shitty haircuts I've ever gotten and will never give me a bad haircut again in my life?  I found a husband.  I even found a dentist, but still the hair stylist eludes me.

When I was in the car on the way home I called Mitch and told him how upset I was because of this, sort of giving him a heads up so he wouldn't laugh at me as soon as he saw me or say something like, "What the hell have you done?"  He was appropriately sympathetic until he said, "Where did you get it?" and I said, "Walmart."  Then he laughed and laughed and said, "What did you expect?!"  I guess now we know where the "People of Walmart" get their hair done.  Honestly, I only wanted two or three quick snips to fix the back and since I was there anyway to pick up a prescription, I thought Walmart could handle that.  Nope.  I am now, and for the next several months until this can grow out, a Person of Walmart.

This lady has better hair than me.  

Friday, November 9, 2012

My Hot Hot Body

Like everyone past a certain age (40) I am not a perfect physical specimen.  I have my little health issues, but I usually don't talk about them too much (shut up, Mitch!) because although my problems aren't frightening or deadly, they tend to not be glamorous maladies like amnesia or elephantitis (shut up, Beth!).  One of my problems is that I have to wear a CPAP mask to bed because I have sleep apnea.  I've had it since I was a little kid.  My doctor says I have "dainty respiratory passages."  (And that's why she's my doctor.)  The reason I don't tell people about the CPAP machine too often is because I get into conversations that I think are genuinely supposed to make me feel like I'm being commiserated with but are just humbling.  Kind of like this:

Me: I wear a CPAP mask to bed.
Other Person:  Really!  My uncle has one of those.
Me: Oh?
Other Person: Yes.  He's morbidly obese.
Me: Oh.
Other Person:  He lives in the nursing home now because he couldn't wash himself.
Me: ....Oh.
Other Person: He had to be taken out of his house with a fork lift.
Other Person: Because he's so fat, not because of the CPAP.
Me: Okay.
Other Person:...
Other Person: They had to use a chainsaw to remove a wall to get the fork lift in there.
Me:  Alright.
Other Person: But he's doing great now!
Me: Well.  Good, I guess.
Other Person: The only thing he's mad about is that they don't let him eat his favorite breakfast anymore.
Bacon and egg yellows.
Me:  I gotta go.

Or when I recently had vertigo and had to explain myself to other people.

Me: Sorry I couldn't make it.  I had a bad case of vertigo.
Other Person: Oh! That's terrible!  I'm so sorry!  My great great grandma has that.
Me:  Your great great grandma is still alive?
Other Person: Barely.
Other Person: Anyway, she has a walker because her balance is so bad.
Other Person:  It's a really nice walker. It has a seat on it.
Me:  ...
Other Person:  And a basket.
Other Person:  Want me to ask where she got it?
Me:  I gotta go.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Seventh Grade Sucks

Kira has FACS class this quarter (Family And Consumer Science (home ec.)).  She had the rotten luck of being put into a kitchen with three girls with food allergies.  One girl can't eat gluten, one can't eat eggs, and one is lactose intolerant.  She came up to my room the other day in a total huff and gave me a baggie with what looked like a couple of misshapen candles.  They were her pumpkin muffins.

They are as disgusting as they look.  She said she was so looking forward to pumpkin muffins and when they were cooking, she looked in an oven at a pan she thought was from her kitchen, but was from a kitchen with some kids who could safely eat eggs, flour and dairy.  She said they were puffy and golden with just a hint of crispness on the top.  Her mouth was watering.  You can imagine her disappointment.  No, actually you can't.  She was more disappointed than a person should be about bad muffins.  I don't think saying that she was outraged would be overstating.  She was outraged.  What really put her over the top was that the gluten girl (who never does the dishes!) wouldn't even try their muffins.  She had the gall to go and try one from another kitchen and then came back and raved about how good the other muffins were while Kira was doing the dishes, AGAIN.  

Sunday, November 4, 2012

First World Problems UPDATED!

Some unpleasant things are going on around here.  Firstly, I'm not what I would call sick, but I feel like something crawled into my digestive system somewhere and died.  Maybe a squirrel. It feels like there is a huge ball of raw over-kneaded pizza dough in my stomach and it won't go away, it just rolls around all day.  You can imagine the effects of having a undigested tudball of dough/dead squirrel stuck somewhere in your intestines. It's not good.  Also, the corners of my mouth are chapped and irritated so I look like I just took off clown make-up all the time.  I'm disgusting right now.

The other unpleasant thing is that apparently my upstairs bathroom is the central destination for all the flies in the world.  There were hundreds of flies buzzing around the window yesterday, and many more hundreds of teeny fruit flies that hang out on the mirror.  I took the vacuum in there and took care of business, and then cleaned the place until it smelled like a hospital thinking that would take care of the problem, but the flies are back today.  Why is this happening?  There are no carcasses in there for flies to breed on, and there is no rotting fruit for the fruit flies so I really don't understand the attraction to this particular destination.  There is only one possible explanation:
My upstairs bathroom is possessed by the devil.

Remember in Amityville Horror when the priest was killed by the millions of flies in the upstairs?  I have the same thing except they haven't killed anyone, yet.  One of these days I'm going to be sitting on the pot, trying to dislodge the squirrel, and I'm going to hear "GET OUT" in a devil voice, I just know it.  At least if that happens the squirrel will probably come shooting out, no problem.

But then that makes me think that maybe the two problems are related.  I mean, it seems like a ridiculous coincidence that I could have dry-rot in my innards and a demon-possessed bathroom at the same time. That's just stupid.  Maybe the flies are coming from inside my body and I am the one possessed by the devil.  Holy crap.  It's not a dead squirrel inside of me, it's Lucifer.  If that is in fact what is going on, I have to say that the little girl in the Exorcist was kind of a drama queen.  It's not all that bad.  In fact, if it wasn't for the flies, I wouldn't even bother bringing it up.

UPDATE:  Anonymous wrote me a helpful comment about how to solve my problems.  She told me to take a probiotic for the dead squirrel, and to set up a fruit fly trap.  I got a jar and filled it with some fruit (didn't have apple vinegar) and put in a paper funnel.  I am catching fruit flies.  Then I thought, "Huh, anonymous really knows her stuff!" so I looked up probiotic on Wikipedia because I didn't know what it was.  Is it a pill?  Yogurt?  And I found this:

Probiotics are also delivered in fecal transplants, in which stool from a healthy donor is delivered like a suppository to an infected patient.[2]

Oh. My. God.
I would rather be possessed by a dead-devil-squirrel-demon than have a fecal transplant.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Juxtaposition (I've never written that word before)

Yesterday Sam had a friend over who started the year going to a charter school, but a few weeks after school started, went back to his old school.  Mitch asked why he did that and he said that at the charter school they made him take all kinds of tests and found out he is really smart (he's super smart) and they made him take (free) college courses.  Well, he was having NONE of that because in college there's lots of homework!  Yuck!  No thanks!

Mitch told me this story and we laughed and even as I was laughing at how dumb a smart kid can be, I glanced out the window to see my own brilliant little daughter bent over in front of the car and she may or may not have been licking the headlight.  Mitch and I watched her for a while and we couldn't decide if she was actually licking it or just resting her face on it.  Either way her head was really close for a weird amount of time.  I stepped out of the door and said, "WHAT are you doing?"  She said, "What do you mean?" innocently.  I said, "I mean with your FACE on the headlight?"  She said, "I was just looking at it."  Maybe she needs new glasses.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

How Fantastic is Facebook?

My answer is:  Pretty Fantastic!  My sister is in Afghanistan on a military base and she gets the internet and can access her Facebook account which allowed us to have a chat conversation yesterday morning when we were both supposed to be working.

Years ago I would have had to tell her how I had an abundance of stomach gas and was apprehensive about going in to a meeting in a letter.  Then I would have had to get an envelope and fill it out.  Then I'd have to find a stamp.  Then I'd have to send it and wait for her response for about two weeks.  Now, because of the miracle of Facebook, she can advise me immediately that I should try to "take care of business" before the meeting because she recently put off going until after what she thought would be a 20 minute meeting, which turned in to a 90 minute meeting, and let's just say everyone was sorry.

Of course, everything that is wonderful also has its down side.  During the very same bathroom chat I had with my sister across the globe, I happen to read a status update by a former student who is upset that Obama is going to take away his "right to bare arms."  If he has ever seen a picture of Michelle Obama and her beautiful guns, he would know that Obama is an obvious advocate of sleevelessness.  I guess I should have taught homophones a little more.