Conservatives Are Cuddly; We Wubzes You!

Damn, but there was some vitriol last night on The Twitter while the governor of Virginia gave his rebuttal to the State of the Union address. It was mostly not about the speech itself, but about Republicans. Apparently, they are all heartless, mean, kick orphans & skewer puppies whilst astride polo ponies.

This all seemed incongruous with the pleasant face & tone of the governor. I figured there must be some underlying preconception sparking such nastiness, but I’ve yet to hear a rational explanation from anyone. So far it’s been of the “OMG, my parents are so stupid!” flavour. Lots of foot stomping, bang blowing, & pouting.

But Conservatives love you.

Yes, yes they do. They want you to pursue life, liberty, & happiness. They want you to keep the money you earn. They want to help the truly sick & injured. They want you to say what you think, believe what you want, be who you are.

How is that not loving?

But, you protest, in far more words than I will use, The Left cares more. We want to give everybody everything.

Have you met a child whose parents caved to their every whim? How about the adult version of that? Did you in any way enjoy that person’s company? Be honest with yourself. I’m willing to bet cashy money that you fantasized about decking that person repeatedly, particularly if you had the displeasure of working with them.

Spoiling a child is abuse. It’s mental abuse. When someone grows up thinking the world owes them a living, the world has another thing coming for them. Usually, it’s debt, divorce, redundancy, & the ocassional beat down. They also tend to have trouble making decisions on their own, feeling independent, and forming meaningful relationships.

Conservatives don’t treat you like you’re three years old. They expect you to pick up your room & wash your own dishes, mister. But if you are ever in true need…if you come back fighting for this country wounded, or you are born according to God’s plan in a manner that makes it difficult to get by on your own without help, Conservatives drop the tough love stance and give you a hand up.

Unless, of course, like my brother, you are a manipulative little sod. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that folks with Down syndrome can’t lie, set booby traps, charm their way out of due punishment or kick your arse in basketball. My brother is living proof that Downs people are heartless bastards. No mercy, that guy. None.

Oh, you think they’re cute, because they hug you & their faces light up when they see you. But after they hug you, feel around for the “kick me” sign or, even better, the tamale in your hoodie. Also, somehow, against your better judgment, you’ve made them a sandwich. Yeah. Evil.

Huh? Where was I? Oh yeah. Conservatives. They dig you enough to tell you to how to take responsibility for your own life & then let you do it. If you are free to fail, you are free to succeed. In that vein, if you are free to speak your mind, you are free to be offended. Small price. Talk it out, folks. Hug it out, if it won’t be considered sexual harassment. Nobody should ever be afraid to respectfully voice their opinion or disagree, but also remember some of us are not afraid to ask how you came by your asinine assertions. We expect no less of you back; just make sure you have done the reading before you ask.

Another thing you may not believe about Conservatives, in addition to their loving you…

Conservatives love to celebrate and love a party. No? You don’t think Conservatives have fun? You’ve not read P.J. O’Rouke’s Republican Party Reptile, huh? For that matter, you’ve never been to a Republican fundraiser. I have some stories…

Every fundraiser I’ve been to was, ostensibly, to make my father look funny & charming. I can turn any wackjob statement resulting from a poor grasp of English into what seems like an intentional joke. This is essential after my dad has had five Pink Ladies (“They kept bringing them to me, Kay-lee!”) and sucked the juice out of the lobster head while the candidate is speaking (“Eet’s got the most flay-voor, Kay-lee!”). Imagine Ensign Chekov crossed with Arnold Schwarzenegger & you have my father’s accent. Of course, the highly soused elderly trophy wife across from us was utterly convinced my really quite obviously Slovak father was Irish. This is because my father told her he was Irish for about twenty minutes. Republicans do love their fun. And free cocktails. Well, not free at $1000.00 a plate, but still.

They keep bringing them to you!

Republican parties are way more fun than any frat party or lesbian vegan barbecue I’ve ever been to, & yes I can say that I have been to plenty of all three. I have no idea why I get invited to lesbian vegan barbecues, but they are always delightful (& I’m not being snarky). However, the fundraisers & charity events are still more fun. For starters, better booze. For seconds, you know you are doing something good with the money you plonked down. For thirds, the conversation is fast paced & well informed and the men do tend to be hot and dressed like grown-ups. I can’t say that for any frat party I’ve trolled & of course there are no men at a lesbian vegan barbecue.

Conservatives like when Liberals show up to their parties. Want to call out criticism? No problem! It’s like a game. What will the self-righteous lefty say next? Who can score the most polite points? And the ultimate challenge, who will show him the error in his logic & change him into a full time right winger for life?  King of the Lab!

If you don’t have any money, & these days, that’s lots of us, you can get into Republican functions by volunteering. Be on the committee; help pick the charity. Then, you too can suck the lobster head, but for free!

There’s always a way. And see, that’s a very Conservative attitude to take. People think that’s Liberal, but it ain’t. There are no excuses in the Conservative world. If one way doesn’t work, find another. This is the land of opportunity, and all you need do is some leg work to find it. No, it might not manifest immediately. Nothing worth having ever comes terribly easy (unless you prayed for it; then it was bought with the blood of Christ, in which case it wasn’t easy to begin with). Yay, are you done laughing at the Christian reference? Do you feel happier now that you had a good laugh? I’m glad; it’s my job to make you happy. I am actually not being snarky.

Because that’s the thing. We don’t take offense at your public mockery of us. We understand that you think you have special knowledge that makes you brighter than us. We get it. The difference is, we know we have special knowledge that makes us brighter than you. I kid.  We know we aren’t perfect & we know we make mistakes. We wish Liberals knew that about themselves, too, but meh, whuteryagonnado?

We also know Keith Olbermann is out there waiting to wax hyperbolic about our mistakes, and that’s kinda funny.

You think we’re racist; we think you draw attention to race by not bothering to evaluate a person based on their merits regardless of race. You think we’re sexist; we think you don’t appreciate what each sex can inherently achieve. You think we don’t give a damn about the health & safety of the nation; we think you should actually read the proposed bills and see that Congress gives even less of a damn than you think we do. Taxing durable medical equipment? How is that caring? Forcing you to buy insurance whether you want it or not? How is that sharing? Taking assistance away from people with ALS and end stage renal disease so people like me with migraines can be covered for our pre-existing conditions? Seriously? I can live without my meds; forcing someone with ALS to wait for an authorization for treatment could have serious consequences.

What I’ve learned is that when we are told by the government to treat everybody equally, all we end up doing is treat everybody equally like shit. Before all these insurance programs and relative value units, doctors were able to cut deals with patients that truly needed it. Now? If we don’t charge everybody the same thing, no matter what, we get cited for kick back laws. If a doctor accepts Medicare, he is not allowed to discount anybody below a Medicare allowable, so sorry guy with kidney failure & radiation treatment who has $30,ooo a month in bills. We have to send you to collections if you don’t make payments because we’re not allowed to write your bill off. It’s not “fair” to everyone else.

Oh also? Even if you don’t accept Medicare, you still have to abide by their rules because just about every insurer has adopted Medicare guidelines. Why? Medicare follows a morass of rules most providers don’t have the time or law degrees to interpret, & if a private insurer cites Medicare precedent for lack of payment, oh the hell well. You are skeeee-rewed. Granted, we throw it right back in their faces, but guess who wins most of the time? That’s right, the giant company with the money & lawyers.

Now you want more government intervention? The government really isn’t as caring as you think. Sure, you’re in the fancy schmancy house with the cult of personality as your daddy now, but the second you’re even a smidge out of line, it’s “No. Wire. Hangars. EVER!” on your bewildered arse. Why did you adopt me indeed!

Ok I have obviously written myself into a sleepy, loopy corner when I’m quoting Mommy Dearest.

Do you get it, though? Do you see who’s yer daddy? Do you want a daddy who lets you sort it out on your own, lets you fall on your face but get back up again and do as you will? Or do you want a daddy who grounds you for ten months and says it’s for your own good?  Translation: We’re gonna tax you more to pay down the debt we created because you wanted more stuff. Which we gave you because we wanted something to hold over your head. Granted, none of the stuff worked well, but you asked for it. You wanted to own a home, so even though you didn’t have the income to own a home, we made it so we could tell you that you could afford a home. If you can’t do math, not my problem, says your daddy.

How do we fix this? First of all, learn to embrace the tough but loving parent. That parent does expect you to know math. That parent will not buy you a pony to cheer you up when you realize you can’t do math (only to take the pony away from you because you still can’t do math). That parent will not , however, ask you to contribute part of your allowance to the household income. That parent figures you’re smart enough to sort out what to do with your own money, and if you’re not, then you learned something, didn’t you?

Yes, of course I’m oversimplifying & life is not that cut & dried. It’s a stupid humour blog for God’s sake. In your snippy comments, say something funny; don’t be Captain Obvious. But on the serious tip? The simplest, happiest thing ever is realizing you alone are in control of your existence in relation to this country. Like Satre said, people are afraid of freedom because it comes with responsibility, but it’s really quite…freeing. Ok seriously it’s time for bed.

Actually it might have been Simone Bouvier who said that…aww hell. Whatevs.

Whatevs = seriously time for bed.

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Please, Won’t Someone Think of the Chickens?

Quick one tonight, and this is merely because my left leaning followers on Twitter are complaining to me that 140 tweets are not enough for them to convey their thoughts regarding my question today, which was essentially this:

Why are some of the folks who are convinced of the sentience of chickens unconvinced that an unborn baby is a person?

I got a wide variety of interesting responses. Some were very emotional and sweet from either side of the political spectrum, with personal experience and anguish. Some were quite brief and to the point. I do have to admit that those responses came from my more conservative followers. They seemed to immediately grok what I was asking. I also had my fair share of multi-tweet analysis of what it means to be sentient, brain development stages, and is-a-zygote-a-baby type questions. I also got a dollop of silliness and snark, which I expect and enjoy.

Those of you who wanted more air time please, log your responses below in my comments section. I have to explain one thing, though. My tolerance for people who lack reading comprehension is limited. Because some of you are going to think this, I am not comparing eggs to human fetuses. I am asking why some of the folk who agonize over the treatment of chickens & might possibly lambast you for eating an egg still think the jury is out on the human soul. That’s all.

Fair warning: people who post “morality aside” will evoke laughter. Both are moral choices. Someone choosing not to eat traumatized chicken or eggs, unless they are allergic to traumatized chicken meat/eggs, is making as moral a decision as someone choosing to keep a child.

My summation on Twitter was that it made a certain kind of sense to think that the sentience of chickens & the personhood of fetuses were both ludicrous concepts, just as it makes sense that someone concerned about the personhood of chickens would fiercely fight to protect the personhood of fetuses. See greater path Buddhism for how that works. Sentience is as sentience does; you can’t reserve it for one life form and not the ones higher up in the food chain.

Funny quick story: one of the weirdest conversations I had with my ex boyfriend was during Planet Earth. He was furious, livid, outraged & beside himself when the fox ate the chicks. I asked him what was wrong, because although it was disturbing to watch, his response was kind of over the top. He said, “Those are defenseless babies! This is horrible!” I blinked. “That’s a fox. She wants to feed her babies. I mean are you actually serious?” and then I had to shut up because I had apparently crossed some kind of heartless bastard line.

What floors me is the picking & choosing what poor defenseless creature counts as someone worth fighting to protect. Isn’t every vulnerable creature worthy of our concern?

Sorry, PETA, but I am squarely in the “chickens are squawky, mobile vegetables” camp. And while I believe women should have the same rights as men, I am deeply saddened by the idea that anybody would punish a child for something over which the child had no control. Don’t use the rape card on me; I’ve been there, survived that.

Killing should only be for self defense & sustenance. From what are you protecting yourself? (Here is a good time to invoke the life of the mother exception.)

Lots of us childless wonders want to adopt your kids. Those of you who want to use the foster kids argument, it is a sad fact that older children do get placed in the system for ages because of the stupidity & cruelty of their birth parents. This I give you. But that does not translate where a new baby is concerned. There are waiting lists for those.  Foster kids tend to come as a package deal (adopt all of the siblings or none at all) and have severe disorders like RAD. It takes a very special person to adopt a foster child, and I think many people are more special than they imagine

Why chickens and not children? I guess that’s the briefest, most conservative way to ask that question. What’s the logic?

You Have a Penis, & That’s Totally Ok!

Originally posted to Posterous on January 19, 2010

God’s balls, Batman, what happened?!

Yes, this is going to be one of THOSE blog posts, where I swear a lot. Like the good old days! Because someone intelligent reassured me that Jesus actually doesn’t care about my liberal use of perfectly good Anglo-Saxon words (it’s the French that made them dirty in the first place. What don’t the French ruin? Ok, souffles. And my friend Bruno is lovely. BUT SERIOUSLY. THE FRENCH).

Um, I’ve had a very generous glass of wine.

Remember when women got offended because they were called girls & girl stuff was attributed to them, like crying & being hormonal & our feet are always cold? And see how we’re fucking over that because it’s ALL TRUE?

So…when did men get sensitive about being, er, men?

It’s an alarming trend I’ve noticed. More than one guy, lately, has resented being called a guy. These are intelligent, cool blokes whom I enjoy as friends. However, they are more sensitive about being referred to as guys than I was when someone called me a choice piece of tail. I in fact enjoy being called a choice piece of tail. It’s better than being called a fugly bitch, yes? So seriously…

What’s wrong with being a guy?

Guys are great! They don’t burst into tears during nearly every episode of season 2 of Buffy. They didn’t cry all through that “Worst Christmas Evar for the Scully Family” episode of X-Files, & then for hours afterward, & then every single time they see a child in a sandbox. Their butts don’t get ludicrously cold for no reason. They don’t whine incessantly about it being too hot or too cold…at the same time! They don’t obsess over knitting. They don’t throw things at the TV during football. They don’t spend much of their day in the office talking about how so & so did such & such. Guys are just peachy fricken’ keen!

So why do they get offended when I call them guys?

They call me a chick, a broad, a female (rhymes with ‘tamale’), sweetie, kid, and tail. For reasons I will never understand, they rarely ever call me kitten, which is just not fair, as I am SO a kitten! I’ve gotten “Simmer down, tiger” a few times (once from a wicked hot law school student) which perplexes me. I am perfectly fine with all this stuff. I’ve been recently accused of being a bat shit crazy bitch, which I thought was funny, and a silly girl, which I am. I don’t care. These are all acceptable terms to a girl who knows that words are just words. We can use them however we wish and we can ignore them. We can choose to get all uppity about the terms or we can bother to register the context.

So I say to my guys…why don’t you want to be guys?

Here’s a fact some people just do not dig. We’re machines. God made us so that we could run efficiently via a system of neurochemicals & other junk. You don’t have to have gotten an A in neuropsychology to understand this simple concept. You run on electricity & hormones. There’s also a sodium potassium pump in there somewhere, but I’d sooner stick a septic tank pump in my eye than describe it ever again. Countless exams are enough, thanks. If you have any kind of metabolic disease or immune disease, like me, you know for a fact you are electricity & hormones, because when they are out of whack, the whole world knows it. Your body screams at you “HEY! DIPSHIT! Did you eat gluten? You MORON! Now I’m going to have to spike you with sharp stabbing pains, aching, multiple trips to the loo, & constant, unending pissiness. Why do you suck? I hate you!” At least this is how my body treats me if I so much as inhale a crumb of wheat.

Yes, you have a soul, and yes, God loves you, but God made you so that He doesn’t have to futz with you every ten seconds. What good is a creation if you have to tend to it constantly? It has to be able to run independent of the attention of the Creator. If you ask, He will tune your shit up & give you instructions, but if you don’t, you are running entirely on electricity & hormones.

Men & women have the same electricity, but different hormones. If we didn’t, it’d be really hard to make more of us. God could do it, of course, but then who would make nachos for Andrew Klavan? Well, I’m sure ther e’s an Arch Angel of Nachos, or St. Jalapeño or something, but that’s beside the point. God is smart & made his Creations self replicating, & part of that is a delicate, ingenious balance of hormones. Some more of this for men, some more of that for women.

This delicious hormone balance makes us want to giggle too loudly & makes our brains go blank when we talk to each other & makes us do dumb things like cry by the phone or not want to call because we don’t want to seem too eager. It makes us think that snuzzling nosies is awesome & kissing is heavenly & that being naked & rolling around a ton would be aces. God did that for you! And all that acne when you’re stressed or right before a date? God did that too, but the inability to control your stress is, admittedly, my fault.

When we’re not using hormones in the complex, non-direct, non-Seven-of-Nine mating ritual we’ve devised for ourselves (God did NOT come up with the Cosmo “80 Ways To Make Him Crave You” thingy), those hormones are being used to keep us our genders. It’s very important that women respond to children a certain way. It’s very important that men respond to boobs a certain way. This is all to keep each other safe. Yes, boob lust keeps women safe, & by default, the children of the one with the boobs, too.

It’s ingenious, isn’t it? There are just a few chemicals & some electrical impulses & by jove, we’re humming. Er. And mating.

Now you want to piss all over that? It’s GLORIOUS. Look, I noticed you staring at my boobs, I called you on it, I thought it was funny, and you were mortally offended that I “accused” you of wolfish behaviour. GET OVER YOURSELF. You’re a freakin’ guy. Obviously it’s not an issue or I wouldn’t be hanging out with your dumb ass. If I say that you didn’t cry at something that I cried at because you’re a guy, that’s better than what I would say to another girl, which is “You have no soul.” You’re a guy; you’re not programmed to weep when Angel goes weird or the little girl gets leukemia on the stupid Lifetime show*. It’s ok! The alternative to you being a guy & not weeping is You Have No Soul. Accept the guy part, because I don’t talk to people who have no soul. They’re creepy.

*Though I have to admit, the guy who cries for the little girl with leukemia is probably going to get laid. When men cry, I get soppy & lose my brain & I have to pat them & fuss. Well, it depends. If he’s one of those guys that cries when his World of Warcraft character dies, fuck no.

I think guys are tops! A guy is going to keep a relatively level head while I sob for a full half hour after The Colour Purple. A certain type of guy is going to do nearly anything I ask based on the depth of my neckline. Some guys respond simply to a tilt of the head that I don’t even realize I’m doing, apparently, & subsequently I will be treated more nicely. Because of my hormones, a guy who treats me more nicely is more inclined to receive masses of lovingly prepared food & I might, over time, even consent to give birth to one of his children. Hormones grease the wheel, so to speak.

So why do we keep wanting to act like we’re above them? Oh, that whole equality thing. Look. Having different hormones doesn’t make anybody more stupid or mean or crazy or worthless. I don’t like the dumbing down of the American dad on TV over the past couple of decades any more than you like it when women are offered less money than a man for the same job. I don’t like when a man is excused from simple chores because he’s too “stupid” to notice the garbage is about to tip any more than you like when a woman is considered a wiggy menopausal bitch. We do a disservice to each other & to hormones when we use them to excuse boorish behaviour from either gender. And being all politically correct about it is boorish behaviour.

Whuh??

You heard me. “Be nice to your coworker-of-a-certain-age; she’s all crabby today because of her period/hot flashes/pregnancy.We have to honour her womanhood.” Oh HELL no. Yeah, you may have a five alarm fire going off in your head thanks to ovarian dipshittery but you do NOT get to be an asshole at work. Save your murderous rage for someone who is having sex with you & therefore has good reason to put up with it. If you can’t be decent at work, you don’t GET to work. Go home, cook, & clean, little woman. People who can’t be arsed to comport themselves like gentlemen in public, & this includes ladies, should not get to be in public.

Another scenario: “You haven’t got your man trained yet? My husband’s been taking out the rubbish like clockwork for the past 20 years.” Really? Congratulations for marrying a music box monkey. Does he dance on command, too? What a weird thing to be proud of…does he also, like, I dunno, have a career of which he is particularly proud? Ambitions, life goals? Granted, I would be stoked if I met a man who remembered to do anything, really I would. That’s sexy. But I am more interested in who the man is. Also I refuse to clean in lieu of a man cleaning if we make the same money and I utterly refuse if I make more than him.

“Oh you shallow bitch!” I hear the moaning now. “Money isn’t a gauge of love or chores.” Um, yes it is. If my job is more stressful than yours, I don’t have to clean up after you. You’re a big boy; bus your own couch. If you made enough where I could stay home & be a writer & lovingly raise our children, I would gladly give you a spotless home & a martini as you walked in the door. In heels, no less. Until you supercede me in the providing for our home, you can suck it. Hell YES you will vacuum, mister!

Our reverse sexism has allowed us to become infantile & whiny, using our politically correct excuses for our equally annoying behaviour. There is actually a book called Her Blood is Gold. No, her blood is gross. You want to be equal but you want to exalt menstruation? Like we have a say in that or something, or can control it? Really? And now you want men to take us seriously. Right. When we’re writing essays about menstrual blood. Good luck with that. If you want men to honour menstrual blood, learn to honour Letters to Penthouse. OH, we don’t like it both ways? Bah.

In pretending to ignore our differences, we’ve called even more attention to them. I don’t understand those parents who try to raise their kids unisex, with trucks & dolls, only to be shocked & dismayed when the girls start picking dolls more often & the boys trucks more often. By all means, provide both types of toys. I played Army with my Barbies, for example, & they had a Jeep. And guns. And I took them in the mud. But they cleaned up & wore evening gowns & married bears. I also ganked my brother’s wicked water machine gun (pre all the goofy safety modifications; this was the first Reagan term, baby!), brought it for forest wars, belly crawled through the bracken in my freakin’ skirt & patent leather black maryjanes, and loaded it with Kool-Aid knowing full well how badly it stained & how pissed off their mothers were going to be. I was a devious goddamned little girl; it’s why chicks make the best assassins. Deadly & smart!

But eventually, as our hormones kick in, we will differentiate on toys, clothes, everything. This is not your failing as a parent. This is what God set up so that eventually, your kids will be happy adults. You may end up with a weird adult daughter, who hates chick flicks but did cry at the end of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, but she’ll be totally a girl, & you will eventually get that big stupid wedding you want to throw. In theory. She is getting old, you know.

Oh God, & she’s SO tired…

I had more of a point, but I think we’ll stop it there. I am sure I will get some horrified comments I can respond to at a later date, & then I can clarify points that you may find callous, meaningless, offensive, etc. Look, I don’t deal in lady feelings, ok? I deal in facts. If you don’t like the facts, I don’t know what to tell you. You’re a creature of your gonads. Whatever they’re pumping out, no matter what you look like, that’s what’s going to inform your initial response to everything.

Which brings us to cognition. Your initial hormonal response to many things is probably inappropriate to give full voice to in a public setting, so your brain tempers it. This is fine. This is civilization. But don’t kid yourself. If you are lucky enough to have a spiritual connection to the divine, however you define it, this may also overlay all your brain & hormone action. How we relate to God, however, is still going to be dictated by hormones, because God wants us to make more of us. You might want to serve God by defending your country, or feeding the hungry, or simply by raising some decent human beings & being a decent person yourself. Male or female, you are still going to approach it differently. That’s why the Bible addresses us differently, as do the various sutras & other religious texts. The male & female ways are not superior to each other, just different. Yeah, we’re gonna mix it up sometimes. We each have a little bit of the other’s set of hormones, after all, and we also have the same basic brains. But we are different. You’re a guy. I’m a chick.

Thank God.

Big Girl Grown Up Blog Time (kind of)

This is what, like, the 5th blog I’ve had? Well, here’s hoping this is teh smartest one. It has lots of spiffy tracking features & looks all pretty & schtuff. I can also haz iPhone app that makes it easier to blog from said iPhone, as my previous attempts to post to my Posterous blog from the iPhone have been mediocre at best and positively bloody disastrous at worst.

I can apparently also manage several blog pages from this sucker, which means a Chuck blog is feasible & I have been compelled to do one by a mandate of the people. I promise you this is the last time you will see that kind of crapulent talk on my blog, except when I am being snarky, sarcastic, smarmy, or other forms of delightful prickery.

I first learned of WordPress viewing the pretty & entertaining blog at http://www.maeko.org. I was instantly seized by the desire to embed photos & have magical happy widgets. Maeko is stylin’ & I admittedly need to be guided in that vein from time to time, as I tend to value function over form. However, I am awfully fond of form, too, as is evidenced by my enjoyment of teh hot mens.

(Well, there really are only 1 or 2 hot mens on the planet at any given time, but this is, I am assured, due to my single-minded slightly charming ability to focus–i.e. cheating ain’t hardwired into me–and not reality. Perception, perception, perception.)

What is a Princess of Swords? Well, some of you will gleefully assume I am talking about Arwen of Rohan, & if that makes you happy, run with that, nerdface. To be honest, it makes me happy too except I’m not blonde.

Not a blonde.

Actually it’s a tarot card. Sometimes called the Page of Swords, or Arrows, the Princess of Swords is a messenger of quick wit who is admittedly fumbling toward maturity. That’s my writing in a nutshell. There are moments of “Ooh clever, funny!” but it will be months before you see anything even remotely resembling personal growth. I’m a stops-&-starts spurty kinda girl.*

*Of course that can be interpreted pornographically; there is utterly no reason to comment as such below. Perv.

This is going to be short (gasp!) as I am exhausted. I spent the better part of last night (well, all of it) Skype chatting (translation: laughing like a braying horse) with Chuckbuddies & failed utterly to sleep for any decent adult length of time. Being a decent(ish) adult, this does not bode well for my thinkings & writings. If you absolutely cannot function without learning what I normally write like when I’m not being a whiny sleepy baby, check out http://kelliejane.posterous.com

For reasons I do not understand, WordPress does not import Posterous. So you are stuck having to go look at another site to catch up. Assuming you are interested in such things. Which, y’know, some are. One guy in the last fiscal quarter apparently read my entire collection of blogs, both contemporary & ancient, in the space of a night or two. I wasn’t sure whether to be flattered or intimidated by the intensity of his interest (turned out to be the latter; go fig. Actually it was mostly an alarming lack of reading comprehension on his part that kinda freaked me out). If you are not a psychofactory, feel free to read as much as you like. Because if you are not a psychofactory, you will of course understand what you are reading, or at least have the sense to ask me questions about the things that seem contradictory or more specific than they really are. I enjoy that kind of discussion. If I’ve not been clear, I need to know.

If you are prone to generating delusions & fantasies, I have to quote that sage Flava Flav: “I can’t do nuthin’ for ya, man.”

Notice I’ve also stopped naming blog posts after song lyrics. That was really “mix tape” of me.

I’m don’t promise to pretend to get all professional & serious up in here, either. Nobody is paying me to blog, & although I would certainly follow some guidelines if one of y’all wanted to pay me to blog, I intend to pretty much carry on as normal here. Which is to say stream-0f-consciousness ranting. By all means, if someone wants to pay me to blog or gank me for a focused site where my style might help convey a point, tame the savage beast. Until such time, this where the beast goes to tear up its meat & strop its claws.

I assure you nothing I post will be exciting enough to evoke that imagery ever again. Well. Maybe.

And so another chapter in brain vomiting begins.*

*whoa, I just spell checked using WordPress & I apparently use passive voice a whole ton. English diplomacy for you. [bats eyelashes]

Chuckfest 2010: When I Was Just A Little Girl

My intention was to sit here & write out my Chuckfest 2010 report. And by the power of Greyskull, I will. Must…resist…responding to…smarmy, snippy…judgmental, mean spirited…Twitter leftists…

*imagine now the pained expression of someone desperately trying not to throw up on her prom date’s shoes…now imagine someone breathing through the rage, realizing she has ample time & space to go off on people who are apparently so politically correct that they are above loving a child…grrrr…argh….ah! Got it!*

‘Cos technically, I kinda vented…heh.

Speaking of loving a child, I got to spend pretty much all of Chuckfest 2010 with the one & only Bailey, or @LittleChuckFan for you Twitter types, and her fabulous mom Sara @radi8n & dad Jeff, who has concluded I too am a small child. Yayz! I can haz jellybeans! But before I drop any more inside jokes, let me begin at the beginning (which we all know I suck at, so I’ll try to stay on task).

It was weird flying out of Reno to Los Angeles. Lake Tahoe was covered in a mist so thick, it looked like it was replaced by a snow field. I tried to explain this to the dapper and profoundly gay elderly gentleman next to me, who was a delight, & kept trying to get me to eat & drink things. Eventually, the snow gave way to fog gave way to a glorious sunset. We landed in Los Angeles and I could already feel the misery of the northern cold melt from my muscles and bones. I had arrived.

No sooner had I arrived than Tabin called me. No shit, I was waiting in the noisy terminal pick up thingy for my sister & Tabz called me about a boy. She has a magical sense of when I am not in airplane mode. I wanted to hear all about said boy, but buses the size of brontosauruses & just as loud made it nigh impossible. I concluded that drinks later were in order, and we decided to table boy talk until there was booze. My sister arrived with newly acquired bangs & I was whisked away by her expert LA driving and swearing.

Then we got lost.

To her credit, we completely avoided the 405 by getting lost. My many Angelino friends tell me my sister is a hero. It’s like avoiding the Pass of Caradhras, I am told. My sister is Gandalf.

On through Moria we went, & by Moria I mean the 101 or the 10 or the 110 or any number of combinations of 1 & 0. We were on some binary freeway that was going NOWHERE. Fairly parked, we sang along with the Cocteau Twins & I relayed some nonsense or other to my extremely patient sister, who enjoys all stories. Eventually we made it to the bloody effing sodding Marriott (which is what she was calling it by the time we finally reached it) & met up with Sara & Bailey in the lobby of our extremely nice hotel (& I will not tell you how I scored that unless the parties that be wish me to share that info, but MUCH love to them!).

Bailey regaled me with her solid two victories over some dude in Wii Tennis (girl power, roar!) & Sara revealed that she had won the Wii Golf Tournament stone cold SOBER! The Captain was not in the driver’s seat all day (& for some reason, nobody believed her). I then checked into my lemony fresh room & we all met downstairs with Jen @hokie98jj to walk across the street to Japanese food.

Lemony fresh explained: The Marriott uses, as its toiletries, the citrus ginger schtuff from Bath & Bodyworks. It smells quite a bit like Lemon Pledge, which is not all together unpleasant but is rather intense. My sister remarked that my room smelled overly clean, which is better than underly clean, we agreed.

Food was yummy! I had a nigiri plate. I asked my sister for her wad of wasabi because my wad was too small (I dig me some wasabi) & for some reason, the word ’wad’ was of particular amusement to our companions. This of course made me start laughing, & I was trying to be quiet, failing, & I told everyone it would be awful the next day at the premiere because I was actually trying to be quiet now, & Bailey stage whispered to Mom “If that’s quiet, what does she NORMALLY laugh like?” Well, Bailey then found out.

All iced tea in SoCal is berry flavoured, even the unsweetened kind.

We nommed & laughed & then went back to the hotel. I told my sister goodbye & went upstairs to my room. No sooner had I entered, almost, than Tabin called me (her ring tone is “Still D.R.E.”, which is so pimp) so I let the music play for a little bit & then picked up. She was downstairs! Well foxtrot me! I joined her & I had a gin n’ tonic, some Riesling, and she had a beer & some cake.

After a bit of booze & boy talk, Tabz joked we should get Baldwin’s attention at the meet & greet the next day by wearing t-shirts that say “We Heart Sowell” with taped up glasses. The idea was that we are poli-economics nerds. I suggested little plaid skirts to go with & this for some reason got us laughing so hard that a guy at the bar started talking at us. “Had a bit to drink, ladies?” “NO! We’re being nerds!” I shouted. More giggling.

“There’s nothing wrong with nerds,” the bespectacled would-be swain oozed over a sleazy grin. I’ve seen this look before. It’s the “SCORE! Two drunk chicks! And one of them’s Asian & one of them’s a red head! This is a nerd’s anime fantasy come true! I do hope one of them has glasses!”

Tabz & I looked at each other. I fired a volley at him: “We’re being politics nerds.”

*weeeeeoooooooooPKKKKKHHHHHHHH* <—the sound of a rocket propelled grenade of reality hitting a dude.

“POLITICS nerds? Oh, that’s scary.”

AH HAH! I can haz weeding out! He was nice enough, & continued to talk at us a bit, but eventually we were able to go back to Sowell nerding out & what have you. 

“Wait, KellieJane, why were yall trying to get Baldwin’s attention by being poli-economics nerds?” you ask. Um, do you follow him??

Well, we didn’t know at the time how intimate Chuckfest was going to be. Most of Tabz experiences with The Man They Call Jayne were during Browncoat events she was volunteering with, so this was the first time in a good long while that she was just going to be able to be a big geeky fan. What’s geekier than wearing a t-shirt that says “I Heart Sowell”? We all (I’m including Adam in this) appreciate the man’s writing. Turned out to be profoundly unnecessary. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

At some point, we snapped a photo because the bar we were in was the scene of a Browncoat gathering some years before. I posted it to Twitter. Some of you may have seen it…

Some guy randomly asked us (& everyone else in the bar) who the most powerful man in Hollywood was. We both decided it was George Clooney. This is not a good thing, we just figured it was true while we were tipsy. I mean, he IS on Entertainment Tonight a lot.

I think we shut the bar down. Eventually I went to bed.

The next day, Jen, Bailey, Sara, Jeff & I had brunch at Denny’s. It’s exciting conveying the concept of no flour tortillas to people who don’t understand why a flour tortilla will decimate your gut. And now I realize I had a Spanish-language gluten card in my purse. DUH. Oh well. I do speak Spanish, I just don’t speak medical condition Spanish. My knowledge is relegated to beer acquisition and nonsense phrases about cats. “El gato es un boligrafo.” Yah. But it was all good. We then went back to the hotel & changed for the party.

Jen, Bailey, & I sat in the back seat of a Chevy sedan. I had forgotten to put lotion on so Sara, who had read @MrsHekmi’s tweets before we left, said, “Do you need to get cocoa buttered up? All I’ve got is Lemon Pledge lotion,” and she handed me a little bottle from the hotel. Jeff drove & Sara quipped. Bailey pointed to at least two jellybean shops (Burbank is oddly loaded with them) & Sara promised Bailey that if she called Baldwin “Sugar Bear”, she would get her some jellybeans. We also went over a list of things Bailey could NOT say to anybody involved with Chuck. To her credit, Bailey was ON it. 

It was noted that Bailey & I are a little silly together, and by a little silly I mean poor Jen. Here she is, sitting next to Frick & Frack, the giggle twins, & lo, on Sunset, a homeless lady talking merrily into her Styrofoam cup of soup. I’m not sure which one of us decided to “happy up” the homeless lady by insinuating that she was a secret agent reporting on Bailey, but when she disappeared, Sara announced that Bailey had “made her” & I figured she lowered back down into the sidewalk via a secret platform, Get Smart style. From then on, the concept that Bailey was being tailed by various forces was lodged in our heads.

Well, she is, after all, Mini Sarah Walker!

Jeff found an amazing parking spot & we made our way to the House of Blues. Thank sweet Jesus I decided NOT to wear my stiletto boots. That damn sidewalk is steep, & I would have gone flying down it. We were able to identify some peeps while in line. I got to meet Jasmine @chucknut, who checked me in, & Jess @jessicasisk, whom you will know from the Chuck You Tuesday podcasts. They & the other volunteers were both working hard.

Once we got inside, we realized how very different this would be from a Con situation. There were tables, & it was dark & intimate. There were two stools in front of each table, which meant we were going to get everybody in pairs, just to our table, at a time! We took a booth up at the front &, being an idiot, I squished all the way to the back of it guaranteeing no hugs. Tabz showed up & squeezed in, and then we waited. The House of Blues folks were inexplicably playing Mariah Carey. I am not a fan. Tabz apparently is. She sang quite a bit of it to me. Someone got word that the cast would be coming in on our end. We started to get a little fluttery. 

To distract us, gobs of folks were coming up wanting pictures with our little star, Bailey! She was wearing her Orange Orange outfit & looked like Sarah Walker crossed with Alice in Wonderland. She took all the photo ops in stride. What a pro!

We were then hushed & the ground rules were reiterated, then Mark announced they were here! Everybody got palpably wiggy. And then Zachary Levi popped in. Holy crap, it’s Chuck himself! Then I think it was Josh Gomez, Mark Christopher Lawrence, Yvonne Strahovski, Sarah Lancaster, Scott Krinsky, Vic Sahay, and Adam Baldwin. Flashes went insane. I got lots of blurry iPod photos. MCL AND Yvonne both came over to shake Bailey’s hand before any of the actual meeting/greeting was to take place.

I heard someone say, “Zac & Adam…” but Adam said, in a silly-on-purpose voice, “Nah, I don’t wanna go to that table” and he went to the one next to us. I get the impression one doesn’t argue with Adam Baldwin (see how he deals with his Twitter opponents to get an idea) so we got Zac by hisownself. What an affable chap! He is basically Chuckesque, just obviously not all wriggly & nervous. He’s charming & friendly to the nines. He shook all our hands, asked us our names, remembered them all, talked some, & asked us if we all knew each other before meeting at the event. Yes, we said. “How? Through chuckmeout.com or nbc.com or…”

“Hashtags! On Twitter!” I blurted. Many of us met each other by doing #chuck searches or noticing each other during Chuck Me Mondays. I explained what all that meant & he seemed impressed, but also wary, so I said, “A little psychotic, huh?” But he was cool; he remarked it was great that Chuck brought folks together like this. We agreed. He also tried to pronounce Tabin’s name correctly several times, which is very sweet & of course proves they are soul mates.

Oh, if this report seems My Remarkscentric, it’s because I have quite a bit of ambient hearing loss. If I actually caught anything anybody else said, I will mention it (if it wasn’t private), but I really have to concentrate to hear anybody in a room full of people. Don’t feel bad; it’s my own fault for being in a really unbelievably loud band when I was a teenager. And rehearsing next to a ten foot Marshall stack. Yeah.

Zac left us & we were kind of hanging for a while. This made us all much more nervous. Either Wendy Farrington @serendipityWAF or Jasmine came over to tell us we were getting the girls next. Bailey kind of went into super alert mode.

And then the utterly perfect Yvonne Strahovski and Sarah Lancaster alit at our table. Yvonne is so elegant and gazelle like in grace, so charming and serene. Sarah has a twinkle in her huge blue eyes & was comported like the old Hollywood sirens. Yvonne signed Bailey’s orange Chucks, hugged Bailey, and spent a lot of time on Bailey which delighted me to no end, because Bailey was BEAMING. We all talked about Twitter a bit & I (sorry guys) told Yvonne if she does get Twitter she might want to keep it on the down low & just tweet Bailey. The boys are a tad, er…scary? Some of them. Now I realize the girls are, too. Yvonne strikes me as a very quiet person, so Twitter could be overwhelming & distressing. For some reason I am oddly protective of my TV heroines (I think it’s my mei mei complex) so I’d rather not see Yvonne be inundated with a bunch of demanding or creepy BS. Sarah said she doesn’t understand the whole Twitter thing at all.  My concern is, if regular girls like me get weird tweets & DMs, what would happen to our starlets, who would have thousands more followers? I’m sure the other tables plied the ladies to join Twitter, so I’m sure I didn’t do much to discourage them. 

Next we got JEFFSTER! Scott & Vic sat down & it was interesting how Scott was Scott, but Vic was Lester. Like, Vic is ALWAYS Lester. Scott, thank God, only appears to be Jeff on camera as he was very normal & charming in person. Jeff of course 24/7 would be terrifying. Vic took a series of creepy Prince photos that were awesome, and Jeff said something about a Mexican prison which, no matter how much analysis myself & Sara devote to it, we still don’t get.

I told both of them that Jeffster needs to do “Under Pressure” and also some beautiful, cheesy Chicago. “Why would we do something cheesy?” Vic said, in full on Lester mode. 

“No, Chicago is cheesy,” I explained. “Jeffster would do it beautifully. Comedy gold.” 

“I think you’re saying we’re cheesy. That‘s hurtful.”

“No, I…”

“That’s hurtful.”

“No, I!”

“You’re hurtful!”

I laughed. “I’ve been told that.”

He blinked. “You’ve been told you’re hurtful?”

“Well, I can be a little mean.” I was thankfully saved by a conversation shift to Scott. Lester…I mean Vic’s insistent gaze is slightly terrifying.

Our visits were occasionally punctuated by rambunctious shouts of “Casey!!!”

Next we got Josh Gomez & Mark Christopher Lawrence. He hugged Jen, who had received a special surprise from him earlier in the year. Both Josh & Mark were extremely friendly. We talked about Mark’s play, his inspirational tweets regarding work outs & prayer, and Josh signed Bailey’s game gadget. Josh said “I love signing electronics!” to which I responded “Hey, beats selling electronics” which made him laugh. I got Josh Gomez to laugh! Yay! I thanked Mark for taking the time to follow so many of us back on Twitter & to interact with us. He & Josh thanked us for watching. Mark shook our hands and they left.

Then Baldwin strode up. “Saved the best for last!” he bellowed, to which we all cheered. He turned immediately to Bailey. “Hiya, gorgeous!” and proceeded to make her beam with joy for a good long while. He then turned to me, reached over the table, stuck out his hand, and said, “And you must be KellieJane. I recognize you from your photo.” Holy foxtrot! Really? But instead I think I said “And you’re Adam!” because DUH. *headdesk* He turned to Tabz and said, “And you’re Tabin. You in the Supreme Court yet?” because she’s met him many times & used to chat with him back in the day on the old Firefly board. That’s how fricken’ generous he is to his fans. He also introduced himself to Jen & sat down on a stool. 

“You’re my last table so you guys get me the longest,” he said. “Yay!” we all replied. He then said to me, “Now, you’re at the Marriott in Burbank, right? I saw your tweet last night. I thought this thing was there.” Again, in my utter brilliance I said “No, it’s here” and Tabz saved me by saying “That was the Browncoat Bash.” “Ohhh,” he says, “Right, the thingy.” I am so glad somebody more intelligent than me also says “thingy”.

We talked about a LOT of thingies…I know he described the DC Ride to Recovery to Jeff when he found out Bailey’s family is from Virginia. At some point he hid his beer from Bailey & I told him not to worry as I’d been swearing up a storm in front of Bailz & both parents told me she’d heard worse. Adam said “Well, they hear everything, you can’t help that, but it’s when they start regurgitating it that you gotta…“ and he made a sort of cutting off motion. Sara then brilliantly said, “That’s why we like Chuck. It’s great for the whole family.“ Bailey handed her game gadget to Adam and, visions of jellybeans dancing in her head, said, “Would you sign this for me, Sugar Bear?“ He made this charmed face, growled, & signed it with his name, then wrote “Sugar Bear” with an arrow pointing to his autograph below it. Y’know, in case Bailz couldn’t remember which one was Sugar Bear.

There may have been a couple more topics before Adam said to Jeff, “Now if you want me to discuss anything further, that video camera’s gotta go off.” I turned immediately to Jeff and in a voice with more authority than is probably due me, I barked “Shut it off.” To Jeff’s credit, he did not throw anything at me.

I don’t THINK our conversation after the camera went off was terribly classified. There were no Chuck secrets if that’s what you’re all wondering. However, it was personalish, and therefore not really bloggable. You wouldn’t want me to do that to you, would you? Let me say this about Adam Baldwin. He is unimaginably convivial, & jovial, in person. He listens. He retains the slightest bit of info, even stupid things you tweet when you don’t think he’s paying attention. He’s quick as hell, and he laughs readily (which is arguably the most important trait a fella can have, in my book). He is extremely expressive and unbelievably kind. He’s pretty much like I expected him to be, except really real! Who knew?

Well, Tabz did but STILL.

He talked as he was signing items for us. He drew something cheeky on one of them…I won’t say what it was as I didn’t actually witness it & had to be told later. But this part I can reveal, because he told us what caption to use on the photo. He pulled a couple of Army golf balls from his sport coat pocket & held them up. Grinning fiendishly (see the photos) he said “Here’s a caption for your photo. ‘Never let it be said that Adam Baldwin doesn’t have balls‘.” Do you know how hard it is to take an iPhone photo when you’re laughing? It was then time to leave, so he graciously bowed out & went over to the Chuckfest 2010 banner for more cast & flash action.

They went back to the Subway sandwich area to chow down & Tabz went out for a smoke. I needed fresh air so I went with. We noticed that people were just mingling among the cast, so we went over to see Adam. In line, I met Tom briefly (hi Tom!), one of many people I unfortunately didn’t get to spend much more time (if any) with as it was kind of nuts. Being in Bailey’s entourage is a whirlwind, lemme tell ya! But Adam saw me & Tabz, put his arms out, & did the “Get your butts over here” gesture. We went over for a photo with her camera, then I tried to take one with my iPhone which Adam said wouldn’t come out (he was right), so he moved us over to another spot & a guy took the photo for me. He called us gorgeousesses, said “Bless ya, see ya!” and then all the cast were whisked away to their Escalades. Tabz & I watched them leave, then Ron @droitz joined us. When everyone was gone, we headed back to the Bailey Table & gathered our stuff as we were being herded out for the next phase of the evening. 

Tabz charged ahead on Sunset as she knew where to get drinks & grub. Bailey & I followed, and I took her hand as we crossed the first street. We talked about her imminent stardom & I nearly hid her as a camera crew with a boom mic came up the street! “You thought that was for me!” she laughed. I said, “It wouldn’t have surprised me a damn bit if it was for you!” So…yeah, swearing in front of a 9 year old again. *foreheadpalm*

We got to a little place called Poquito Mas & I handed Bailey back to Sara. “Here, this is yours.” Jeff said, “We don’t have a little girl!” and I said, “Ooh, can I keep her?” and Jeff said, “Hell no, you want to bring her to the west coast!” I guess being in Virginia they would like to visit with her from time to time. I pouted. I’m still pouting.

They ended up going to Mel’s, so I got yet another berry effing flavoured iced tea & sat down with Tabz and her nachos. We were joined by Ivy @yoitzivy, Mary, Rose, Aimee, & several other girls I haven’t memorized yet (sorry!). We basked in the afterglow of the meet & greet, tried not to look at Twitter since people on the east coast were already tweeting about the Chuck premiere, & weirdly didn’t actually discuss the meet & greet itself. I think we all had our secrets.

We all rendezvoused and walked back to the House of Blues for the premiere. We watched Colonel & The Ring before it started. Bailey was in utter demand for photos & meetings with writers & such, so I stayed in my seat & watched our stuff. At that point I was freakin’ exhausted anyway so I think all my charm & wit (such as it was…”You‘re Adam!” DOH) had escaped me. Tabz brought me a gin n’ tonic which sealed the “Huh? What?” deal. 

There was a brief raffle before the premiere began. During it, Jasmine grabbed me & said, “Fernando would like to meet you.” Jesse Heiman! I went over & he was just about to leave. He shook my hand & I gave him a hug. He was very sweet. He said it was crazy because people wanted his photo & autograph & Jasmine said, “Hey, this is Chuck! You’re a big deal with us!” He said he had been trying to leave for a while as he had to work early the next morning, but he wanted to say hi to me first, which was so sweet. He said goodbye & I bumped into my friend Scott @agent_akin for three seconds before I had to sit down for the thing to start. He tweeted something like “KellieJane is being whisked away by staff” so I feel so bad that I really was barely able to say two words to anybody.

The premiere started. You’ve seen it; I won’t go into it. The most disturbing part of the evening was myself and Bailey chanting “Kill him! Kill him!” when Emmett was being menaced by the assassin. Well, and the bursting into laughter when…in retrospect, I feel slightly bad, & to Jen’s classy credit she was mortified (I think Jess Sisk was, too!) by our collective behaviour, but…dude! It’s Emmett.

BIG MIKE IN THE HIZZY!!!

We watched both episodes, a veritable orgy of laughter & tears, excitement & tension. Casey with a mini-gun? Just about meets the Casey with a radiator fun of last season. When it was all done, we cheered like lunatics. It was magical. And Bailey was almost fast asleep. So it was time to go, after briefly chatting with the unbelievably sweet Laurie.

Once we got outside, though, Bailey lit up with that silly second wind little girls & I get. We kinda both did. There were a ton of limos, some across the street, some following us, all for Bailey, I assumed, out loud. Somehow jellybeans were worked into the conversation. But we had to get back to the hotel & go to sleep, as we had the WB tour in the morning. I assured Jeff I would not go out drinking again. Jen had a plane to catch in the morning, so we hugged her & said our goodbyes.

The next day, Sara & Jeff were already sort of pre-exasperated with myself & Bailey so the fact that our car ride to the WB lot got even sillier did not help. At one point, Bailey pointed to a giant billboard and said ‘Chuck!’ really loudly, but at that very moment a truck rolled in front of it so I kind of went blank, turned to Bailey, smiled, & said, “Yes, Bailey, truck. Very good.” Oh boy. Once we figured out what happened, we played the Regression Game. Bailey pointed to a car. “Look, KellieJane! Car!” “Good, Bailey, you’re so verbal!” and so on. Sara rolled her eyes a lot.

When we got to the lot, she said, “You’re sitting with her in the tram.”

The tour was AMAZING. Our guides were Chuck fans so we got the Chuck treatment. We went to the wardrobe department & met the lovely & generous Claire, and weirdly also an actor from “Cold Case” whose name totally escapes me, but he was very funny. He was mortified that we were there for Chuck. We saw a fake Navy Seal-esque sign that, in Latin, said “Always wear underwear.” We got to see the house party flier from 3.02. We went to the costume department & saw some amazing stuff…and we all went “Awwww” when we saw Harry Tang’s little ass man polo. We miss you, Harry Tang!

We got to go to the Orange Orange set, the castle set (the flak jackets & gun stash are RIGHT THERE!!), & the Buy More set. Holy crap. The Buy More is really & honestly the same size & layout as my local Best Buy. It was CRAZY. And there was a Nerd Herder parked outside. I was particularly stoked about the castle & the Buy More…Bailey was in awe of the Orange Orange. You should have seen her face. It was magical.

A lovely thing, especially when we were in the castle…you really get the impression the crew cares a lot about Chuck. They are proud of their work, craftsmanship, and the actors. They are just as excited about working on the show as we are watching it, which was nice to see. The castle is freakin’ awesome, you guys. It’s basically a tough girl’s dream office.

We drove around the backlot & saw a lot of storefronts that have been used in Chuck, redressed in various ways. We saw stuff that is coming up in future episodes, in fact. Hee hee! We didn’t want the tour to end, but it did, and we went for Mexican food & then rested up before 3.03. We were so tired & Bailey was near death, so Sara & she came to my room. Bailey managed to make it through, but the poor thing was fighting sleep all the way. It had a been a busy few days for a little girl on EST! Of course we were in hysterics over the great Casey lines (“I’m sorry I blew up your dog; obviously the bomb was meant for you” is bound to be in the quote list) & excellent Chuck faces. And then we pretty much died.

The fam kindly took me over to Denny’s again for breakfast, where Bailey & I continued to be sillies. We speculated as to the types of soup an agent would talk to on various missions (won ton for China, albondingas for Mexico, & the ubiquitous Mr. Chunky), and Bailey practiced her spoons for when she has to go undercover as a crazy soup lady. Then I had to hug everybody goodbye as they were going to Universal and I was going home.

My sister picked me up to take me to the airport. I told her everything. She squeeed. A lot. I love her. I miss her.

What. A Fricken. Trip.

I’m exhausted just writing about it! I’m sure at nearly 10 pages, you are exhausted reading it. But it was phenomenal. I want another one. Let’s do another one! Again, again!

Apparently, I am still a little girl…and I miss my friend Bailey. She’s truly an awesome kid, & deserves all the attention she gets. She’s gracious, well behaved (yes, Sara, she is!) and funny as hell…er, heck…and that is all a credit to her folks, Sara & Jeff, who are lovely people themselves. Sara & I got to talk a bit, too, & she is a cool lady, guys, with a wry sense of humour. I see where Bailey gets hers. Jeff…well, we’re not sure where Jeff’s sense of humour comes from…it’s a little off. But he’s got a good heart, & Bailey does, too.

Chuckfest 2010 Part B, let’s do it! Mark, Laurie, Wendy, Magnus, and all the other wonderful folks who volunteered really did this right. And we raised money for the American Heart Association, which makes it more than just geeks getting together to geek out. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but having a heart is, when it comes down to it, the Chuckiest thing of all.

An Open Letter To Teh Mens

It’s not you; it’s me.

I apologize in advance for my abject fear. While your kind attention does not go unappreciated by me, it is also admittedly met with trepidation & a measure of suspicion. This is not your fault. Previous representatives of your gender were either ill prepared to deal with this model or grew tired if it’s many bugs. Rather than be returned, this model simply quit working. It’s built into the code.

Wait.

I just realized this is not an open letter to MEN. It’s an open letter to boys. In which case…

Holy crap, I am over you goddamn people. Seriously. If the sole content of your conversation, in person, on the phone, or tweeting is your brilliant mastery of the word “dude”, how you’re a sensitive modern guy or how ‘Call of Duty: Modern Warfare’ was life changing, move on. I will listen politely & giggle at your jokes on rare occassion, but I will never sleep with you. Unless you are screamingly hot. But I’ve found that doesn’t matter & simply leads to “What was I thinking?!” moments later in the evening when I realize I’m just as bored looking at your pretty face as I am hearing you talk about anything. And that I, a finely tuned responsiveness machine, have failed to come. So get out of my house.

I have historically complained that the feminist movement failed women because instead of obtaining equal regard for what women naturally do quite well, we are scorned for it more than ever before. If you have the audacity to be a stay-at-home mom, pretty & delightful, or even the slightest bit (unintentionally) seductive, you’re just nowhere near as much of a woman as the gal in the surgical mask, the judge’s robe, the pantsuit. If you’re “just a girl”, you are somehow betraying your gender. Rather than being celebrating for being a girl how men were once celebrated for being men, you are denigrated as a race traitor & also a crazy person.

No? You’d never do that to someone? Hah! What would you say to a woman who says “I make no purchase without his permission. It’s his money, afterall”? Oh, are you about to claim pity for that poor misguided creature? Then suck on this: I was the primary wage earner for the past eight years and I STILL asked him if I could get something. That’s how deeply ingrained my respect for his earnings were to me, because we shared a bank account.

I feel begrimed by your pity. Now I’m going to have to shower again. Knock it off.

Yes, feminism denigrated women by trying to force us all into male positions, robbed us of the choice of being stay-at-home moms (since so many are now dependent on dual incomes), and then attempt to elevate us over men by making us superproducers. Instead, we are more tired, angry, & dependent on the insipid “Does he want me?” quizzes in Cosmo than ever before. Because now that men feel they can’t communicate their desires to us any more, we have no. Fricken’. Clue.

Feminism turned men into idiots, and by idiots I mean you boy types. Many of my generation were latchkey boys who were raised by The Great Space Coaster (psychedlic inculcation of retro t-shirt admiration forevermore) and Super Mario Brothers. Admit it, you sniveling man-child; you hear the music RIGHT NOW. I know because I hear it too. But I have an excuse; I AM a 14 year old boy. Ish.

You, in your 30s, think Jack in the Box is acceptable adult cuisine because you had more pizza nights than kids of the prior generation. When I cook you something gourmet or damn close, you have utterly no appreciation because your mom took most of your meals out of the microwave or a crockpot. Newsflash: lasagna does not traditionally come out of a box; salad dressing does not come from a squeeze bottle.

Holy crap, I had no idea I was this angry.

You are woefully unequipped to handle someone whose simplest wish is to make you happy, so her every attempt is met with confused scorn. If she stops cooking, cleaning, and doing THAT for you because you don’t seem to notice either way on the first two & have been poisoned by porn acting on the last, you may develop a mild resentment or you may just stay the same. The first is unfair since you never rewarded her with affection & protectiveness, instead insisting on still calling her by her name like a business associate (because baby, kid, kitten & honey are sexist) & letting bolder male friends harass her because you figure she can handle herself OR your apathy is like daggers through the heart because her sweet attention has gone unnoticed.

She is effing sick of you and your ilk. And your ilk are everywhere.

You’re a whiny, bloated series of stains on the fabric of this nation. Sort of like that Spiderman t-shirt you insist on wearing out to DINNER for Christ’s sake. What are you, three?! And it’s your big boy Spiderman birthday?!! PUT ON A JACKET. Wear clean TROUSERS, not shorts. You are not going to the sandlot to play whiffle ball, you retard.

Holy crap, I’m angry!

Oh also? When I’m angry, don’t get huffy back like my 13 year old daughter. I am guaranteed not to have sex with you if I start thinking of you as my 13 year old daughter. Instead, fix it like a man. If for some reason you feel you have a right to dress like a toddler for a party, explain it to me like a man. Once you realize how stupid you sound, you’ll change into a sport coat & jeans at the VERY least.

Learn to grill. Stop insisting that Halo somehow made you a man. Initiate sex like a grown up. I’m not 15; you don’t have to “trick” me into it. Fix things when they break, or hire someone. Tell me what wine goes well with that. Talk to me about politics. Be man enough to say grace. Tell me there’s no way in hell you’ll sleep under that bedspread. Understand tools better than me! How hard is that?! I only took one semester of woodshop for Chrissakes!

What’s a man? Someone who’s taken responsibility for his existence & is willing to take on the responsibility for his family’s existence. No, really. That’s it. When I’m ready to date again, I will only entertain offers from men. In the meantime, flirt with me only if you think you deserve my undying devotion. If you have the slightest doubt you can’t handle it, move on to some cynical faux feminist who will play Xbox live with you & who agrees the government should take care of both your carefree, adorable arses. I want no part in your prolonged adolescence.

Why now? Why this now? I was going to write something like this (less, er, pointed) before my trip, but being out here alone & among my friends I’ve chosen has shown me my preferred lifestyle is not what I’ve been living & it sure as hell is not worth forsaking in the interest of not being alone. I thrive best in a service environment, but I don’t want to service a table full of frat guys who don’t tip. If you’re gonna slap my ass after I put a plate in front of you, you better offer to buy me a Sapphire tonic & be able to extend your discourse past the point of the last SNL Digital Short. If not, I will stop that hand before it reaches my behind and break that wrist. I am over cheap admiration.

Figuratively, figuratively. I’m not offended by such things, just don’t expect it to lead to anything, dingus. I mean, look at you. When did your mom last wash that sweatshirt?!

Gonna be single for a good long while, I’m thinkin…

Non-Bacon Bits of My Sexy Vampire Novel

I am trying to force myself to work on my novel rather than, y’know, wax verbose about Jesus & healthcare & what not. Instead, I started reading my novel & found a part that’s not too spoilery & also miraculously not bacon-related. Since some of you have been pestering me for more bits, I felt it wouldn’t do too much harm to post it.

This is most of chapter four. I hope you don’t hate it. I am totally in love with Sasha & Charlie, so please be nice to them if you feel you need to comment. It’s not their fault if anything you read sucks. It’s totally mine. Anyhow…here you are:

***

She bolted upright. She was in her room, in her bed. She was in her white nightgown. No Pepperidge Farm guy, no spaceship, no pool. No sunlight. She looked toward the door. Charlie was propped up against it, sleeping. She wondered why the fuck he was still there. Then she remembered the door.

“Dammit!” she whispered loudly, not wanting to wake him. She found herself, however, tip toeing toward him. She crouched down, thought about touching his shoulder, stopped herself. She studied his face. He had a five o’clock shadow now, or something like one. His beard was coming in kind of greyish red. That was sweet.

And of course, utterly inconsequential. She gently shook his shoulder. “Charlie. Wake up. Charlie!” His blue eyes popped open, looked immediately and directly into hers.

He lifted a weapon he didn’t have, knocking her on her arse in the process. She stayed there, folded her arms, scowled at him. “Going to shoot me again?”

He looked in pure terror for a moment, and white as her. Then he remembered everything else that had transpired. “Wait. No. Sorry. Instinct. I, uh…” He rubbed his neck. “Jesus Christ. How long have I been sleeping against the door?” He shifted his weight, clearly not enjoying the new sensations the act brought to his body.

“Well, dawn was five-ish, and sunset was eightish, so you’ve been asleep for nine hours?”

He chortled. “No. No, I have definitely not been asleep for nine hours. I spent the first two trying to get out of here. Then I took a whiz. Then I went through your bathroom cabinets.”

She glared at him.

His eyes went wide and he kind of smiled. “What?! You would have done the same thing.”

“I would not. That’s totally rude.”

He cocked an eyebrow at her.

She sighed. “Ok fine. Did you find anything interesting?”

“Of course not. You obviously don’t get sick, and you apparently don’t menstruate, and your taste in creams & other various chick crap is outrageously expensive. Creme de la Mer? For someone who never goes in the sun or ages?”

She absent mindedly stroked her own cheek. “We get dry skin. An all blood diet is very drying.” She stood up and went over to sit on the bed.

He made a face. “I’ll bet. You also have a bewildering array of perfumes.”

“Different meals…men. Different men like different things.”

“Wow.”

“Well! If I’m going to entice somebody, I have to, you know, do all I can.”

“I’ll bet.” He started to stand up, and his knees didn’t like that. He sat back down. “Your shower and tub are immense.”

“I like to soak.”

“I took a shower. But you don’t have any razors so I didn’t shave.”

“Oh. Ok.”

“It would be nice if you had some body wash that wasn’t floral.”

“Sorry I don’t have Eau de Nosy Bastard in my cabinets. I don’t have many men in here, you know. Hey! What towel did you use?”

“Simmer. I grabbed a clean one from your linen thingy and put it in the hamper when I was done.”

She blew her bangs out of her eyes. “That was at least considerate.”

“You have no reading material in here so I just sat here for a while trying to figure out what your deal was and I must have fallen asleep.”

“I have an entire drawer full of magazines, right here.”

“Yes, magazines. Vogue. Bazaar. Allure. Conde Nast Traveler. Like I said, no reading material.”

“Sorry I have no Guns n’ Ammo for you.”

“Please. I like books. Plus there’s a tad more than magazines in that drawer.”

“Hey!”

“Look, I’m not judging, I get it. You’re single. Whatever.” He thought perhaps she was blushing, then he realized that she was in fact blushing up a storm. She almost looked Elizabethan in her blushing, and remembered that any blood rushing to her pale cheeks was going to appear pretty intense. And this was sort of fun. So he said, “However, most single women don’t need that much lube.”

“Don’t be horrible. I only have the one tube and you know it.”

“Hah, gotcha, I didn’t even see any lube.”

“I hate you.”

“Heh heh.” He sat back and smiled and regarded her. Lord, she was pissed. It was kind of fun. Yes, definitely kind of fun pissing her off. “So I don’t get it. You’re young. Looking. Young looking. And passable. You can’t get laid whenever you feel like it?”

Her eyes went vivid. “What is wrong with you? Who even asks questions like that?”

“Someone who’s been trapped in a vacuous woman’s bedroom for nine hours.”

“Vacuous. I’ll show you vacuous.” She rose from the bed in one effortless step and started to charge toward him. He now quickly remembered exactly what she was. He shrunk back against the door and made the sign of the cross with his fingers. She stopped short.

“Are you serious?” she said, with a strange look on her face. It was a mix of disbelief, pity, and amusement.

“What?” he said, thrusting the cross he made with his index fingers toward her.

“If holy water doesn’t do anything to me, why would that? And do you honestly think I would kill you now? Don’t you think I would have done so before I fell asleep?”

He thought about that for a second, dropped his hands to his side, and felt stupid. “About that,” he said, desiring greatly to change the subject. “You literally fell asleep.”

She reached out a hand to help him stand up. It hurt his back to move it, but was inevitable. And her assistance did actually help. She was strong. She sat back on the bed. “When the sun rises, we do literally sleep the sleep of the dead. Maybe that’s why people made up the idea that we’re undead. Who knows? In any event, it’s unpreventable, which is why I need to be in a sunproof area when dawn arrives.” She waved her arm around the room. “Hence the automatic system. I’m sorry it locked you in.”

“Eh, I know better now.” He sat down on the bed next to her and shrugged.

She regarded him with a bit of a surprised look on her face for a moment, then half smiled, scowled, then went blank. It was an interesting bit of improvised dance and he was interested to find out what it all meant. Finally she said, “You didn’t kill me.”

He looked her directly in the eyes, then down into her lap, then on to the floor. “Nope, I didn’t. I dunno. Didn’t seem…fair.”

“Wow. Thanks.” She was definitely being sarcastic.

“That came out wrong.”

“I’d say!” She glared at the floor. Then that scowl again. “And that’s another thing!” she burst out with more volume than she liked. “I distinctly remember falling on the floor. But I woke up in the bed.” Her lower lip was going as she grasped his upper arms, looked him directly in the eye, and said, “Did you molest me in my sleep?”

“What?” he partly laughed. “No, good lord no. It just…it didn’t seem right to leave you on the floor.”

“Why should I believe you?”

“Wouldn’t you have woken up or something?”

“Of course not. I wouldn’t have been able to do a thing about it, it’s like when humans use…” She cut herself off. Well, she thought, that was brilliant. Way to make yourself more vulnerable, dingus.

He smiled crookedly. “Seriously, I could have gone all love doll on you and you would have had no idea? Really?”

She glared at him and jumped back on the bed. “Oh my God!”

“No, no, I wouldn’t. I mean, that’s…that really is kind of disgusting on a number of levels.”

She made a face. “What is that supposed to mean?”

He was confused. “What do you mean what does that mean? It means that rape is disgusting and I’ve never needed to make a woman unconscious to have my way with her in my life. Why start now?”

The odd face she was making softened a bit and she said, “Well, good. I appreciate that. I mean, I probably would have realized when I woke up, I mean, I guess.”

He felt a bit uncomfortable. “Er, probably.”

“Being that it’s kind of, er, a fluidy process and all.”

“Uh…”

“Well!” She cleared her throat. “I’m going to have a shower and then we are going to get to the bottom of this vile person that killed the little boys.”

“Um…”

She whipped around, annoyed that the non-sexual train of thought she had hopped was now derailed. Upon seeing his face, however, she felt a little sheepish. He seemed at a loss. She softened a hair. “Um what?” Just the hair.

“Well, I am not sure what you had planned, as far as the investigating is concerned, but I should like a change of clothes. And I like plans. And being in on them.”

She blew her bangs out of her eyes. “Well. What was your plan?”

He thought, then looked at the carpet, at her pedicure. Her toenails were a very soft, extremely girly pink. Cotton candyish. “My plan was to, er, kill you.”

“Well! That is right out.”

He threw his hands up in front of him, palms out in a gesture of peace. “Agreed, agreed!” he said quickly, feeling a bit stupid about the whole last several hours. “So…what I would do next is narrow down my field. I am still inclined, though not as much, I promise, to think vampire here.”

She sighed just a tad. “I thought as much, which is why we’re going to Gem.”

“Exactly.” Then his mind became a clouded mystery land. “Wait. What?”

“Gem is where all those idiots are going to be tonight.”

“What idiots?”

“My idiots. My people.”

He scratched the back of his head. “Your people are going to be at ladies’ night in a nightclub at the Sierra Nevada Hotel?”

It sounded kinda stupid when he said it out loud. “Yes,” she said, trying to make it seem perfectly reasonable.

“Vampires. Are going to be at ladies’ night in a nightclub at the Sierra Nevada Hotel? Home of the four dollar locals’ buffet and Country Wednesdays and frequent venue for Penn & Teller?”

“For Chrissakes, yes. Why is that so hard to grasp?”

“Um. It seems kinda. I dunno. Not glamorous.”

“Why should it be so glamorous?”

“I don’t know. Shouldn’t it be glamorous and dramatic?”

“Charlie, where are we?”

“Uh, Park Tower?”

She glared at him.

“Downtown?”

She glared more. He said nothing, just stared pointedly back with wide eyes.

“Reno, Charlie. We are in Reno. What were you expecting? That we all teleport to Berlin for Witching Hour at Sexhaus?”

“What at where?”

“Oh for Chrissakes.” She turned on her heel without further comment and shut the bathroom door behind her.

“Um, Sasha?”

She shouted from behind the door, “Fuck! What?!”

“I need to get clothes.”

“Yes, can I shower now & then we will get clothes?”

“I just need to pop across the street to the Estate. Can I just go grab my shit and bring it back here?”

The door flew open. “I thought you were local.”

“Heh. I thought you killed some folks.”

She drew air through her teeth. “Is there a damned thing you told me that wasn’t a bald faced lie?”

“Um. Yeah, there were a couple of true things.”

She leaned against the door frame. She had undone a few of her nightgown’s buttons and did not seem to be aware of this. He was trying to also not be aware. “Care to elaborate on the true stuff?”

“Um. Not at this time.”

She rolled her eyes and slammed the bathroom door shut again. “My keys are on the hall console. Be back within twenty minutes.”

“Yeah, yeah,” he said, continuing to stare at the door absentmindedly.

“Fucking go!”

Remembering she could feel him staring, he jumped, found the keys, left. Halfway across the street it dawned on him that he left his coat and shotgun in her apartment. Sloppy. No, that’s not an appropriate word. Wait. Sure it is. Whatever. Who cares? Who am I talking to?

A car horn alerted him to the fact he was still standing in the middle of the street, talking to himself. He thankfully had his Golden Estate key card in his jean pocket. He entered his hotel room, realised he had only really unpacked the gun, and just zipped up the suitcase and grabbed his hat. He had brought his father’s fedora with him everywhere since he was twenty-seven. He rarely wore it,  but he always had it on hand, just in case. Just in case what? Well, today he would put it on, and did.

As he strode past the elevator…guy…(what the hell was the purpose of those people, anyway? It’s not like they were actual security personnel), the elevator guy asked, “Would you like to check out, sir?”

He kept walking, then whirled around. “What?”

The elevator guy’s eyes drifted down to the suitcase. “Are you checking out sir? I can call down to the desk, get you an express check out.”
Charlie realized this was going to sound weird, then said, “No, I have no intention of leaving yet, thanks.” He fingered the brim of his father’s hat a second and whirled back around. He had somewhere to be.

The doorman at the Park didn’t give him a second glance, but he could feel the questions. He allowed himself a slightly self satisfied grin. You think she got laid, like she won. You’re an idiot, door dude. Then, as he stepped into the elevator, No, you’re the moron, Charlie. He thinks you got laid, he thinks you won. But you didn’t win. You’re an idiot moron with a suitcase and an anachronistic hat who is about to go to a stupid club with a…chick.

He tried to clear his mind completely as nothing happening in there was making him happy. The elevator seemed to be taking eight years. It stopped, but the doors didn’t open. He realized this when he walked straight into them. He tried this again two more times, started huffing, then remembered the key entry. He finally did everything correctly, got through the huge double doors in the entry way, and no longer heard the shower running. He started to walk into the bedroom, but found himself chest to door again.

“Hello? What the hell?” he glowered at the door.

“Um, I like to get dressed without an audience, thanks,” came the muffled reply from within.

He blinked, then stepped back a second. “Oh. Right.” He set his suitcase down while continuing to stare at the door, backed up a little more, then thoughtlessly removed his hat and set it down on a console table running behind one of her sumptuous couches. He leaned against the table and felt a wet nose and furry face bump against his fist. It was Sadie, the chubby tortie who did not fear people butts. He scratched behind her ear and she purred happily in response. A couple of minutes later, the doors swung open.

He was greeted by a whiff of herbally floraly shower gel or shampoo and the briefest hint of steam. She was bent over trying to do something with a shoe strap, so all he saw was mostly a tangle of wet blondish streaks on darkish hair. She apparently could see him, though, because she said, between grunts of frustration with the shoe straps, “Why haven’t you changed?”

He didn’t have a good answer. He made one up. “I didn’t know the dress code. I wanted to see what you were wearing so I would blend in.”
She stopped moving for a moment, then he saw her shoulder blades rise a bit. “Makes sense. Well?” she stood up, swept a hand across her body. “Got anything suitable and, oh Christ, uncreased in that suitcase?”

He didn’t answer immediately because he was half trying to remember if he did have anything even remotely complimentary in his suitcase, and half not trying to have any further reactions. Her black dress was perfectly fitted to her body, mighta been DVF or Black Halo, something in that vein. It was basically a black jersey column mini broken up with cut-outs. There was a cut-out segment over each side of her waist, and cut-outs over each clavicle, making it essentially a halter with off the shoulder details. It was kinda stunning. Her white skin peeking out of spots of the austere black was something. And was she wearing fishnet hose? And t-strap black patent leather stiletto heels?

Her face was make-up free & her hair was a tangle of highlights, but for some reason that bordered on charming. But she was glaring at him.
“Hello? Anything suitable?”

“Uh, yeah, yeah I have a black suit and a black shirt or maybe even a red one in there, but probably have to steam it…”

“I have a steamer. Here.” She lifted the suitcase effortlessly, brought it into the bedroom and plopped it on the bed. She had made it, this time pulling the duvet all the way up to the pillows. No seductions tonight. She then disappeared into a walk-in closet and came out with a stand up steamer as he unzipped the case. Sure enough, the suit components were an unholy wreck.

She took them from him and hung them on the steamer. He began to hand her the red shirt and she made a face, failed to extend her arm to retrieve it from him. “What?” he asked.

“It’s not Saturday Night Fever, Fonzarelli. The black one.”

“What the hell is wrong with the red one?”

“Really? Really do you want me to go there?”

He was hurt, but he set the red shirt back. “I’ve been told I look good in red.”

“I’m sure you do,” she said, patting his arm in a condescending, emasculating manner. “But if I wanted to show up with Travolta von Winkler, I would have asked you to also unpack the white suit.” Her lips turned up in one corner.

He glared at her while handing her the black shirt. “Do you have any idea how many things are wrong with what you just said?”

“How so?”

“Well, you mixed like two TV characters. From like two different decades! And then…”

She fired up the steamer, sent the first plumes shooting out. They smelled lavendery. “Oh thy tiny centuries, how they do fly.”

“Did you seriously just quote Star Trek?”

“What?”

“Never mind. Jesus, do you have a lot to learn.” He was helping her hold out the sleeves on his black shirt.

She rolled her eyes at him. “Yeah. I’ve been alive for over one millennium and you think I need to learn about TV.”

He looked at her and his eyes crinkled. “Have you really been alive that long?”

“No, I like to exaggerate my age because God knows men find that attractive.” She beat his shirt a little with the steam wand. “Yes, I am that old.”

“How?” he asked, taking the shirt, hanging it on the steamer rack and helping her with the jacket. “How do you people live so long? I mean it boggles the mind. Even in our popular culture, most of you aren’t more than a couple hundred years old.”

“Shows what you know. Have you heard of the principles behind VLC?”

He got his trousers ready. “VLC?”

“Very low calorie diet.”

“Oh. Yeah! Yeah, I saw that on Dateline or something.”

“Blood is very, very low in calories. At least that is our theory.”

“Your theory?”

“Yes. Our genes aren’t too different from yours, except we know we don’t have telomeres like humans. And we are not sure how that happened or why. We might live so long because it is so hard for us to reproduce. Could just be a safety mechanism.”

“Huh.”

“Yeah.” She smacked the trousers down a little bit. “Ok, this looks presentable. Put it on.” She draped the trousers over his arm and went into the bathroom, fired up a hair dyer. He continued to stand there, watched her through the open door.

She turned off the hair dryer mid pass over a piece of hair caught up in a wide flat brush. “What are you waiting for?”

“Um, some privacy?”

She rolled her eyes. “Oh come on,” she said, but seeing his face through the mirror said, “Ok fine, I will close the door.” And she did.
He still hesitantly removed his jeans, shirt, socks, boxers. He grabbed a clean, fancier pair from the suitcase, then followed up with pants, shirt, jacket. He noticed his bottle of cologne and decided to spritz his neck. He should probably shave, he figured, and do something with the hair. He assumed this was not a tie oriented place.

He then found himself waiting quite a while. He passed the time by strolling around, checking out the various views from the ample vantage points in the all-windows-no-walls apartment. He met another cat, a lavender point Siamese who spent the rest of his meandering time yelling at him about one thing or another. The cat was in fact so insistent that he found himself answering whatever questions he imagined the cat was asking. “No, I know, I need to shave. Of course not. Do you know if she has a good hair gel that’s not, you know, too girly? Huh, never thought about goldfish like that before. You make an excellent point.”

When he came back to the bedroom doors, she was standing in them, her arm above her head, leaning on the door frame, suppressing laughter.

“What?” he asked.

“You and Yoobee having a profound discussion or is he just gossiping again?”

Charlie rolled his eyes, but crouched down to scratch behind the ear of the irritated cat, who was offended that his discussion was interrupted. “What’s U.B. stand for?”

“No, no, Y.B. Yul Brenner. He’s Siamese. Seen The King and I?”

“Yeah once, when I was really little. Cute.” He stood up. Yoobee yowled some more, but eventually became distracted by invisible forces. Charlie looked up at his new…what. Partner? She had blown her hair out, her eyes were rimmed with black, her lips were pink and shiny, and she had spritzed, it seemed, a little of that flowers and brown sugar perfume.

“You look…” he started…

She stood up straight, arms at her side. “Hmm?”

“Passable,” he offered. She rolled her eyes and turned around. She went back into the bathroom, grabbed a tube, and threw it to him. “Please for the love of God, do something about your hair.”

“Shit!” Charlie exclaimed upon catching the hair gel. “I left my razor back in the hotel room.”

“Don’t shave,” she said. “Trust me, this works.”

“It does?”

“Go fix the mess,” she said as he walked past, pointing in the general direction of his unruly waves. She stooped down to pet Yoobee, who was done chasing invisible forces and wished to converse once more.

Charlie shouted from the bathroom, “What colour is your hair supposed to be?”

“What?” She looked away from Yoobee for a second, and was met with an annoyed “Maaaap!” She turned back to him.

“Your hair,” Charlie repeated. “What colour is that supposed to be?”

“Hah!” she blurted, over Yoobee’s various comments. “God doesn’t want vampires to be blondes, Charlie. I get it highlighted weekly, but the best I can manage is a sort of orange. If I let it go, it’s a kind of dark brown black kind of thing.”

He rejoined her in the door way. “It works. The orangey red  and blonde bits with the purple bits. It’s kind of Spice Girl as Attorney.”
She stood up. With her heels, she came up to his chin. “Wow. That’s a hell of an endorsement.” Yoobee chirped a few times, but they were glaring at each other with half smirks, and he decided further comment was pointless.

“Your hair’s not fried. Is that a vampire thing? You can dye it weekly and it doesn’t turn into straw?”

“No, that is an expensive hot oil treatment thing. Actually, it’s probably a bit of both. How often can human women colour their hair without it going fritter frizz on ’em?”

He shrugged. “Uh, I dunno. Maybe like a month or two?”

“Huh,” she said, still looking up at him. “Must be nice.”

“Well I guarantee,” he said, still looking down into her upturned face, “that if a human woman highlighted her hair every week, well, she wouldn’t have hair any more.” He continued to look at her. She continued to look at him.

“Are you sure I don’t need to shave?” he asked, rubbing his face.

“No.” She broke eye contact immediately and grabbed a black silk clutch she must have packed while he was gone. “Let’s go.”

He grabbed her keys off the console table, then  realized that Sadie had decided to fall asleep on top of his dad’s fedora. “Oh dammit…”

She turned around. “Sadie!” she yelled. The bulbous cat rose and casually walked off the table and on to the couch. She grabbed the hat and tried to reshape it. “I am so sorry,” she began.

“Ah, its my own fault for leaving it somewhere the girl could sit on it. It’ll live. It survived my grandfather for God’s sake.”

“Huh,” she said, now fingering the rim absentmindedly.

He took it from her, hung it in her entryway closet. “I told you I like old things. Er, old folks. But old things, too.” He wasn’t being mean. He was smiling brightly. He then seemed to be looking for something.

“What is it you want?” she asked, peering into the closet from behind his arm.

“You need a coat. It’s chilly.”

She laughed. “I am not putting a coat over this dress. Here.” She pulled a cashmere wrap from a hanger. He snagged it from her, draped it over her shoulders. She looked up at him briefly, then both of them averted their gaze.

“Well,” she said. “It’s high time we go suss out some idiots.”

***

I hope this satiates some of you until we get to the bacon porn.