More Things I Have Learned
You know how people who have decided to commit a random act of kindness might drop a $100 bill in a street person’s guitar case, or leave their server a 1,000% tip? Well, there I was, thinking I’d give the pizza guy $20 for a $12 pizza and say, “Keep the change,” ho ho ho, aren’t I generous, when in fact I handed over Jackson’s $50 birthday money without a glance. Literally, I just took a piece of money out of my wallet and handed it to him with a big smile. Granted, the pizza guy seemed a little stunned to get what I thought was a $8 tip, but I have to say, knowing what I do now, his reaction was right on target for getting a $38 dollar tip for bringing my pizza three blocks.
It took me the better part of an evening to figure out that my wallet wasn’t a portkey and that $50 hadn’t just disapparated into Nevill Longbottom’s sock drawer. When I finally retraced my steps and realized what I’d done, my punishment was that I had to give Jackson another $50 because that $50 bill was his birthday money from Grandma Susan and none of this was his fault. I also made sure we didn’t order pizza from that place again for a month because I didn’t want our house to get a reputation for handing out money like it was Halloween candy.
Here’s another new fun thing I get to do because of lady hormones and whatnot: pluck random tufts of fur out of the skin of my face. I have had a luxurious thatch of lip down since* I can’t remember when (thanks, menopause!) and for years I bleached it into a lovely albino thicket, and then I discovered ripping it out by the roots via home waxing. And then for some reason I just gave up giving a good goddamn. As I have slowly become more and more dependent on reading glasses for close-up activities, I find that scrutinizing my face in the mirror is like trying to read the Bible through waxed paper. You basically know what it says but the poetry is lost.
I will say that as painful as waxing can be, plucking is its own special hell. Especially when I find a hair literally growing out of my lip. I swear to God, there is little more painful in the grooming world than plucking your lips. Where will it end? My chin began to sprout long ago, as did my nipples, the tops of my feet, and the inside of my nose. I’m just one more missed period away from turning into a George Booth cartoon.
Speaking of dogs, here’s another thing I’ve learned that I have unfortunately had to use a couple of times when Peewee’s lost his mind in the face of another dog: to pull a dog out of a fight by its back legs. It works like a charm, assuming you are larger than the dog, and that the dog is too stumpy to twist around and bite you. And that the other dog isn’t also attacking you. Pulling back on the leash will work when he’s wearing a leash, so the back-legs thing is normally reserved for off-leash situations. And normally Peewee is more relaxed off-leash than on, but a couple of times now, I don’t know what it is — another dog looks at him funny? Their breath is too minty? — and the next thing I know I’m dragging Peewee away haunch-first and yelling apologies at the same time. He’s pretty well trained in most respects, but man. I understand the appeal of a baked potato-sized dog now.
I finally figured out why my drawing output slowed to a crawl, it’s because I don’t have enough creative brain to write and draw concurrently. I am 3/4 finished with the first draft of this novel thing and I’ve had no desire to draw while I’ve been concentrating on it. But I took a break for Jackson’s last week of summer vacation (Disneyland, we were in you), and after a week of doing nothing more creative than an occasional blitz of iPad solitaire, my drawing brain revved back up again.
These were for two little girls whose mom wanted their names hand lettered. The owl and mice might have been a little predatory, so I went with quizzical birds for the other one. I hope that was okay, I felt a lot of pressure to please with those two.
This was for a yogabeans! fan. When I went over to the site to look for something to draw, I sadly discovered that the images for three of the four latest posts were gone. Just vanished. I don’t know if they disappeared when I migrated the site a couple of years ago and no one noticed, or what, but that was somewhat devastating to me. I mean, I hardly ever update the site anymore, but I still love it. And because of a technical oversight on my part the backed up images for those posts are on a damaged external hard drive and you know what? They’re just gone, I can’t fix it, and it’s just a huge bummer, so I took down the posts and now I don’t want to look at the site anymore.
This one cheered me up after the yogabeans! sadness. It’s Kali, the Hindu goddess of empowerment, consort of Shiva, and annihilator of evil forces. The person who donated asked for a drawing of “a female superhero,” though, so I made Kali into an Internet Troll Killer who has conquered that laptop and is getting ready to drink the blood of a h8ter.