Tag Archives: Flannel

Moving…There’s Not Enough Vodka for This. Vol. 1

It all started with what I thought was a dog’s bellowing.
You know that sound.
Something between a howl and a growl.
Or it was a terrible bagpipe performance….performed by a ostrich.

In reality, it was our cat….. Monkey.
In her carrier.
Being taken out to the car.

By the time we got everyone into the backseat, the cats were carrying on a conversation that clearly they thought life, as they knew it was over. Well, buy those felines a king size bag of nip….they were correct!

We were on the way to get kitty health certificates because in two short days….they were  flying with Momma from Miami to Boston!  Are we excited? Oh yeah.

They were about as excited as cats going to the vet’s office, in cat carriers, in the back seat of the car….screaming the whole way.  We’re going to need some drugs.  Either the cats are going to need drugs for the flight or I’m going to need drugs for the flight.

Someone WILL be medicated.

Fast forward and let the chaos unfold.

Day of the flight…I am packed and ready to go.  The house is fairly boxed up and sorted out.

Eric will be driving up in the Honda, so I have a pile of “must go in the car” and a pile of “would be nice to go in the car” and a “can wait for the movers” pile.  Knowing how the day is going to progress, I begin the day with a hearty breakfast – a Whipped Cream Vodka shot.  Perfect.

I download a movie.  Get dressed.  Throw things in my two giant suitcases,  one under the seat suitcase, which will be checked as luggage and one carry on.

One cat, will be a carry on.  Two cats will be checked as luggage.

There is a word for this traveling style:  Circus.

The only saving grace for today is it’s a non-stop flight.

Time to get dressed.  Boston.  It’s freezing, literally.

Attire: jeans, long sleeve shirt, jacket, Xtra Tuff boots.

UGH.  Time for another shot….Rootbeer Vodka Shot.

Alright, we are close to leaving, time to pack up the small pets.  I calmly say to Eric.  I’m getting a cat.  I pick up Taku, the youngest and stuff her into a pink, hard sided carrier.

He grabs Liggy, the eldest at 15 years, and we back her into her soft sided case.  She is the one traveling under the seat.

Next up is Monkey.

It becomes a three ring circus.  Monkey is under the couch, over the chair, up the stairs.  Her tail is as fat as my arm.  She is NOT happy.  She is hissing.  Growling.  Under the couch.  Over the chair.  Under the couch.  Through the kitchen.  Behind the boxes.

We are now 10 minutes into trying to catch Monkey.

What.

Is.

That.

Stench?

Great.  She has released her anal glands.  Think musky, dirty, poopy, dank, odor from the swampy depths of cat butt.  Awesome.

Scratches on Eric’s legs as we try and grab her as she dashes past on her way round boxes, under the couch, under the coffee table, over the chair….knocking over trash cans, empty suitcases and other roadblocks.

Finally, we catch her and she is literally sweating.  Her fur is wet.

The Monkey.  Is.  Pissed.

A blood curling yowl escapes from her little furry black body.

Into the pink carrier she goes.

I need another shot…..

Now, we’re late, of course.  Damn it Monkey!  We get into the car and the felines are silent.  I think someone said two words and that was about the end of it.  They knew.

We race up to Ft. Lauderdale airport and decide to drop me, the luggage and the circus at the sidewalk.  There are hundreds of people in line for curbside check in.  You have got to be kidding me.  We don’t have time for this.  I can’t lug three suitcases and three cats by myself while Eric parks the car.  So I decide to crouch next to the felines and talk calmly to them.  There isn’t a porter in sight.

I’m sweating through my Xtra Tuffs and jeans.

Is that a whiff of Monkey ass?

Christ, please.  I don’t want to smell like cat butt.

Next thing I know I hear this man say, “Mommy, you need help?”

I look up and low and behold….A PORTER!  A PORTER ALL FOR ME!  Yes, I will be anyone’s mommy if you can help me!

Yes, yes, yes! I need help!  Checking in…with three cats!  Please!  (Get me into the air conditioning before my crotch soaks through these jeans in this heat…that would be a fantastic feat!)

Within minutes, he had me in the line and we were zipping to the check in counter.

Next thing I know we get to the counter.  My little agent guy has a helper.  The helper lady seems to be doing a lot of the work.  Uh-oh.  My little agent guy….is new.  Buddy, I don’t have time for new.  Not today.

Look, you fill out the form, you slap it on the kennel. It already has a Live Animals sticker on there.  You put the label with the arrow going UP.  You want the kennel to stay in the UPRIGHT position.  Are you kidding me?

I don’t want to tell you how to do you job – but damn – I don’t have time for this.

Then they tell me we have to take the two kennels going under the plane over to TSA and they need to inspect the kennels and we have to take the cats out.  I look at Eric.  One word comes to mind.

M O N K E Y

We tell the TSA guy, “well, let’s do the easy one first.”  Taku, who never says a word, comes out…blinks at us while I hold her…. and goes back in.  Time for the stinky, pain in the ass, but really she’s just scared to death,  one.  I open the door, reach in and grab her by the neck ruff.

WE will not be playing any games in this airport missy.  You may think you’re all that and a bag of cat nip…but I AM the momma cat and YOU WILL not be fucking around.

Fine, back in she goes.

Next, time for me to go through the security gate and I look at Eric.   What time is it? Plane boards in 10 minutes.  GREAT.  I have to give Liggy her medicine 30 – 60 minutes before the flight.

Wait!  Where is my iPad?  Momentarily I panic.  It’s in the car.  I debate, leave it or should Eric go and get it?  I downloaded a movie to watch just for this flight!  I have my book, but I really wanted to watch the movie.  He runs and gets the iPad….in the meanwhile….

I throw everything on the floor.  I grab the pill and try to shove it down Liggy’s throat while she is sitting in her little bag.

Once, twice, three times.  Not happening.

I open the bag.  Jerk her out and hold her in my lap.

You.  Will. Eat.  This.  Pill.

Liggy, however, has other ideas.

Such as…..there will be no pill going down her throat today.

EAT THE PILL!

By this time, sweat, is pouring down my face.  I am literally, a hot mess.

Eric is back and he’s telling me, “you have to go.”

Okay, well.  Here’s hoping she ate the pill.

Pack up the 15 pound cat, roller suitcase and my handbag.  Off we go through security.

I get to the X-ray machine and tell them I have a cat.  “Please take her out of the bag.”  Okay.  Liggy and I then stand there for 5 minutes while they discuss with the persons in front of me which machine they should use.  The walk through X-ray or the stand there with your hands above your head machine.

Okay, I’m standing here with a 15 pound feline, who isn’t really happy with her situation.  Could we move this along?  Is she doesn’t start hissing, I might.  We both might.

We get through the machine and don’t you know her carrier bag get stopped on the conveyor belt…..just short of arm’s reach.  There’s that sign that says, “don’t reach in to grab your bag.”  Come on.

COME ON!!!!

I get all the stuff…cat in the bag.  Luckily, for once, I was the FIRST GATE!  Eureka.  They were already boarding First Class when I arrived, so I dashed to the restroom.  Why?

Well, yes, to use the restroom, but also, because unlike most people.  My quart size bag….is filled with airplane bottles of…vodka.  Yep.  So I had a shot of chocolate vodka before jumping on my flight.

(No.  Contrary to popular belief, the only thing TSA has ever said to me was, “Finally someone actually gets the idea of what they should be using the quart size bags for on these flights!”  I can get about 8 little bottles in there.)

Liggy and I get to the gate and I hop in line.  I look around and smile.

Finally.

This is the first time in two years.

I have found my people.

Carhartts.

Flannel.

Boots.

North Face.

Fleece.

English is the first language.

It’s good.

As I get on the plane I advise the crew I had two other felines joining me below, they were like, “YOU’RE the CAT LADY!!!!”  Yes.  Yes.  I am.  They were delighted.  They had the slips showing Taku and Monkey were already boarded.

Liggy and I get on board and the middle seat remains empty.  I’m thrilled.  I’m thinking, this is great!  I will enjoy my movie “Chef” and order a seltzer water for my Vodka….after the last four hours, I need another Vodka.  Liggy, I’m pretty sure, hasn’t taken her pill as she keeps changing positions and mewing.

Then it happens.

I get a middle seat person.

Which under normal circumstances, would be fine.  But this, of course, isn’t normal circumstances.

Guess who sits next to me?

Nope.  A pilot.  Of course!  There goes my Vodka.  (Plan B:  have to use the restroom and take my purse, which had my quart size bag anyway after security.)

So, definitely, Liggy had not taken her pill.  Luckily the noise of the aircraft mostly drowned out her meows but she definitely could not sit still.  Well sister we have three hours to go, suck it up.

We finally land Boston and we hop off the plane.  Liggy and I meet our pick up party in baggage claim.  All the luggage arrives and we wait patiently for the two pink cat carriers to come through “special baggage”.  Apparently, animals are last off the plane.

As soon as I saw those two carriers I said, “There’s my little girls.”

Then SHE LET ME HAVE IT.

It was one big yyyyyeeeeeeeoooooooowwwwwwwlllllll….followed by…..

A where in the hell are we?

And a who the hell do you think you are?

And a what the hell was that?

And never again!

And a fuck you lady and the horse you flew in on!

Monkey.  Was.  Pissed.

By the time we got out to the car, she was exhausted and had no further words.

Now, if we could just get her to come out from under the bed….we’d be doing good!  She does laps, to make sure we’re still here.  Then back she goes.

 

Really, This Is Dressed Up!

The other day I was walking through our grocery store, Fred Meyers.  If you aren’t familiar with the store, you can literally walk in one side and buy your produce and deli items….exit out the other side with your new firearm and ammo.

I would say “fresh” produce but that would be a big fat lie.  Due to the travel time to Juneau, Alaska nothing arrives fresh.   Recently I’ve started to use asparagus as bows on gift bags….bendy and decorative… yet can be recycled into the evening’s meal.  You mean peppers aren’t supposed to be wrinkled up?

Anyhow, I pass by a guy talking on his cell phone and hear him say:

“I’m tired of dating girls that dress like men.”

Welcome to life in Juneau, Alaska.

I smiled to myself and reflected on all the cute clothes I have in my closet.  Strike that.  Closets….multiple.  God bless Macy’s and my dear friend Ginny….who keep me looking cute.  Big relief to know I’m not in the, “dresses like a man” category.  Then I realized, I was wearing my Carhartt jacket.    Well hell.  It’s warm.  It’s purple.  At least I wasn’t wearing my Carhartt pants at the same time.

In Juneau, dressing up means wearing your freshest flannel shirt, cleanest Carhartt jeans and newest pair of Xtra Tuff boots.  By newest, I mean the ones without the duct tape.  You could walk into any wedding, funeral or religious service wearing a combination of the above and fit in perfectly.

Sometimes, I can’t help myself.  Just have to do it….be a normal local.  Please note, my humorous foot attire for a winter ball I attended a few years ago.  Don’t worry, I did bring my heels and changed into them after the photo.  Only in Alaska…  And yes, quite a few Alaskan brides have had their photos snapped wearing these oh so attractive boots.

Honestly, you could walk into the fanciest restaurant in town and nobody would blink an eye.  Actually, that’s a lie.  Some people would blink an eye and would be shocked.  Those would be…

Tourists.

They’d be wondering what the hell was wrong with you.

Certainly they came to dinner in their linen pants (because it’s summer and doesn’t Juneau have summers like everywhere else in the world….warm?) and breezy resort shirt while reviewing travel guides and local tour brochures.  Here you come with your lover and look like you just got off a fishing boat.  The tourists are dumbfounded while sitting there all prim and proper, looking down their noses at you…. saying under their breath: This is a linen table cloth restaurant and they let anyone in here – can you believe it?  Those people look like they just hiked in from the back woods.  Must be a homeless sympathy meal.

I’m serious.

Recently, I was talking with a friend who had visited Alaska for the first time this year.  They commented on all the reality shows featuring Alaska now.  You name it, there’s a show about it.  Yep, people still mine for gold, fish for crab, drive on ice, get arrested, mush dogs and survive on the bounty of Mother Nature.  My friend commented how apparently some of the people in Juneau were obviously living off the land.  Because they resembled the people in the reality show:

Tough.

Scary.

Hard-core.

Only in town to stock up on supplies before heading back out to their cabin hidden away inside the forest or out into the sea for the next big catch.

Hate to break it to you my friend, those are just the regular locals.  Scruffy around the edges.  Yes, it’s true, even the women are scruffy.

I didn’t think much about the attire of our locals until I overheard that guy’s phone conversation.  Then I began to seriously look around at the people near me.  For example the other evening we went to a concert in town.  “Break of Reality.”  They were exceptional by the way.  Before departing the house, we both changed into nicer attire.

He wore a nice sweater and jeans.  I had on a cute top with jeans and heels.  As we sat in our seats, enjoying our glasses of wine I took a moment to survey the fashion scene.

What color flannel did you need?  We’ve got it all covered.  It was a virtual sea of flannel shirts.  Red.  Green.  Blue.  Mustard.  Black.  Amazing.  Quite a few women were dressed in what you’d normally wear to participate in outdoor sports.  Fleece tops and black cotton exercise pants.  Really?

On the other hand, there are people that show up to business functions and you can’t make up what they’re wearing for professional attire.  Recently I attended a function where a lady, who I was unfamiliar with, arrived wearing:

Purple sparkly sweater.

Sparkly black stocking.

Mid-calf black boots.

>> drum roll please <<

Black spandex exercise shorts.

Crap, now we must have an Alaska reality show about “What the Hell NOT to Wear.”

Yes, I will take that glass of wine now, thank you.  Did she even pass a mirror on her way out of the house?  What magazine said that was the new look for the 2012 winter season?  That’s at the polar opposite of wearing your pajama pants out into public.  And by public, I’m saying you’re where other people can see you, not just on your front porch waiting for your dog to piddle in the morning.

Since we don’t have a mall – there are no make up counters.  The concept of enhancing your features is akin to suggesting you reuse toilet paper. WTF?  Luckily, the salon where I get my hair cut has a great make up line and my hair stylist did my make up on my last visit, while my hair was “processing.”

There was another lady getting her make up done next to me.  She was amazed at what a little eyebrow definition can do.  I told her, the one thing I never leave the house without are my eyebrows!  Thank you colored powder and pencils!

Note:  It is the one facial feature I can choose to create every day.  Angry eyes.  Crazy eyes.  Shocked eyes.  Thin, thick, inverted V shape….endless personalities to choose from every day.

At the salon, I bought new foundation, eye shadow, eye liner and lip gloss.  The lady next to me was paralyzed with fear about the idea of purchasing an eye brow pencil.  “It’s just so dramatic.”  No, it’s just enhancing what you’ve got already.  Just like if we lived in a warmer climate, I’d be wearing tank tops that show off my boobs.  Similar, but different.

I am a girlie girl.  I like to get manicures and pedicures.  I like my hair to be done.  I like the color pink, fluffy things, glittery things and sparkly things (which could also qualify me to be a magpie…)  I enjoy dressing up and was probably living back in the day when corsets were a regular fashion necessity and Marie Antoinette was eating too much cake.

I’d wear giant dresses with crinolines and trains, silk stockings, button boots, powdered wigs and painted lips every day if I could.  Ruffles, pleats, layers and layers….oh my.  I’d need a separate carriage just for my dress when going out on the town.  Which leads me to the Wearable Art Show.  It’s the biggest fundraiser for our local arts council, raising tens of thousands of dollars.  For the last 5 years I have designed and modeled an outfit on stage.

Each year, my outfit gets bigger and bigger.

And let’s not forget my love of huge fake eyelashes, wigs and the 6 inch acrylic hooker heels.  Yes, I did purchase my last pair in a porn shop in Vegas.  They’re perfect!

Needless to say, it is that time of year where I have to start creating my next fashion statement.  So many people want to know the who, what, how, why….about this process, I thought I’d share my process with you through my blog.

I have a few videos of my performance from the previous years on You Tube – hope you’ll check them out and see what a great treat is coming up this February!  I can’t wait.

http://www.youtube.com/user/littleminxyAlaska/videos?view=0

Currently, I’m pondering my design.  As always, it will be a dress.  As always, made from throw away items.  And I’m thinking Marie Antoinette will be making a come back this year.  As for the style, I’ve got my history of fashion books down and tabbed…ideas are swirling around in my head like a vodka and tonic……

Put on your seat belt….we’re ready for the countdown!