One of the toughest things for me, as a writer, is having 5,000 ideas floating in my head all at the same time, but never feeling like they’re “just right.” This means I don’t put them down on paper, so they just keep floating around, and I feel too overwhelmed to sit down and do what I need to in order to remove the mental chaos, which is write. So, with that being said, here’s a collection of some shit that is stuck in my brain and worth laughing about, because otherwise…It’s just depressing.
1. What happens in Vegas lands you in a New Jersey Urgent Care
Back in July, JD and I flew to Vegas to cheer on our friend as he fought for the UFC title. Prior to this, I’d decided that, due to the unpredictability of teaching employment, I should prepare myself for the fact that I could someday lose my job. The only sensible profession to take up if this ever happens, I’ve realized, is fighting. So, with a career goal in mind, I signed up at a local MMA gym, and I LOVED it. Three nights a week, I’d take all my frustration to class, beat it out of others (or more realistically, have it beaten out of me), and then come home with a smile on my face and a few choke-holds to practice on an unsuspecting JD.
When we went to Vegas to root for our pal and he, against the odds, won the title, I was more than excited. We all planned to go out to celebrate the day after the victory with a few of our buddies who’d also flown out. As we waited for one of those friends to get ready at the Hooters hotel, JD punched me. Really hard. In the face. And then I attacked him full-on, like a banshee. (There’s a slight chance the first part of that never happened, and that I just went into attack mode for no reason, but it’s already been put out there, and I don’t want to confuse you by backtracking.) Faced with the impending embarrassment of his friend coming out of the bathroom and seeing JD being worked by his teeny-tiny wife, my husband saw no other option but to throw me away from him and onto a nearby bed. This plan went to crap, however, when upon picking me up, JD straight up broke my rib.
I did a pretty great job of keeping my shit together during dinner, but the minute we parted ways with our friends, I started crying. Hard. Which made my rib hurt even worse. I barely survived the flight home, and as the pain worsened over the next few days, I finally had to go to an Urgent Care. ”So, how did you hurt your rib?” the doctor asked. ”Um, well, I fight MMA, and I did it at practice.” I’d already taken on the battered-spouse role (since that’s what I am), and had worked out a solid backstory in the waiting room. The doctor gave an unconvincing “Uh huh,” and told me I’d need X-rays. The results came back, the rib was fractured, and the moral of the story is don’t attack your husband at a Hooters hotel because two weeks of MMA training does not make you a badass.
2. I have no chance in the real life Hunger Games
Let me just start by saying that, despite the story I just told you, I’m decently tough. And I can talk a pretty good game, which works as a deterrent in most situations where I’d otherwise get my ass kicked. But none of that applies when you’re driving down the NJ turnpike in the middle of the night and you break down. It also doesn’t apply when you’ve got your 11-month-old baby in the car and there’s no heat because by car, I mean JD’s shitbox Audi, and by shitbox Audi, I mean hobo box with wheels and no heat. You see, Reader, I was just driving along, singing some jams, when suddenly, the car just said, “Fuck you, I quit,” without any prior notice. I think that’s really rude, seeing how I’ve always given a two-week notice when I’m about to quit a job (assuming they haven’t fired me first). I was able to coast to the emergency lane, and then I called JD. ”Use your AAA card, Jaimie. That’s what it’s for,” he quickly replied. And that’s true, which is why it wasn’t a great idea that I had taken it out of my wallet because I was running out of room for all of the cards I have, and I’d just gotten a credit card to The Loft. They always have incredible sales, so I never know when I’m going to need it, and it made sense that if I had to choose between it and the AAA card, AAA just wasn’t making the cut. The plus side of this, since I’m such an optimist, is I just scored a great deal on some corduroy pants the other day.
Anywho, JD ended up having to call the state police, who said they’d send a tow truck but it would be about thirty minutes. And that is when I lost it. ”Thirty minutes?!” I screamed. ”The baby’s going to freeze to death! I’m going to freeze to death! And then a truck’s going to hit us!” In the moment, all of these thoughts seemed completely logical. JD assured me it’d be okay, and told me to just hold tight until help arrived. I climbed into the backseat of the car, covered the baby and myself with every piece of clothing I could find (I told you the car is like a hobo box, and hobos definitely keep clothes in their boxes), and prayed. Then, I rummaged through the diaper bag to find any food since we were on the brink of starvation. All I could locate was a container of Gerber baby cereal puffs, so I ate most of them and the baby ate four pieces (she’s way smaller than me and I needed the nourishment in order to make all of the important decisions). That took up about the first 10 minutes of our thirty minute wait for help, and so I just spent the next 20 minutes crying and calling loved ones to tell them I loved them and that I forgive them for anything they’ve ever done to me. I didn’t want my battery on my phone to die before I’d called everyone I needed to, so I didn’t have time during each phone call to apologize for anything I’ve ever done to each person. You understand.
Finally, I realized that I could just call JD’s uncle, whose house I’d just stopped at to pick up the baby. He was able to get to us in about ten minutes, and everything was fine. So, if the shit hits the fan tomorrow, and we have to start dealing with a national crisis Hunger Games-style, don’t try to form an alliance with me…You’ll only bring me down.
3. Last call
This week, I lost my phone for the first time. Aside from the total meltdown that ensued, I think I’ve handled it pretty well. On Friday, when it happened, I scoured the building I work in for a good 45 minutes. I finally gave up, and hoped I’d accidentally left the phone in a friend’s car that I’d traveled in on the way to lunch that day. While driving home, and thinking things this week couldn’t get any worse (following the breakdown, meaning the car and emotional), I suddenly remembered that I needed to pick up Chase and it was already 15 minutes after school ended for him. I panicked and jerked the car into the nearest gas station parking lot. I ran to an attendant and begged to use his phone. ”Sorry, it’s a pay as you go phone,” he sighed as he showed me the screen, which indicated that he only had about 14 minutes remaining on the phone. ”I don’t care, I’ll pay you!” I pulled out the only money I had, noticed I still hadn’t put my AAA card in my wallet, and threw a ten dollar bill at the guy. He spoke limited English, but tossed me the phone, and I called my mother-in-law. Fortunately, since she’s well aware of my and JD’s total incompetence as adults, she’d already picked Chase up. I handed the guy back his phone, did my best to tell him he was an angel in Spanish (meaning that I said, “You are Los Angeles,”) and drove off. Once I got home, the hits just kept coming. JD needed a ride home since we only have one car, and he couldn’t get in touch with me due to the missing phone. I called him from our house phone, he yelled at me and said that I must have been wasting time at work considering I’d just now gotten home, and then I screamed back at him, in my most adult behavior, “ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! I HAD TO PAY A NICE MEXICAN GUY TO USE HIS PAY-AS-YOU-GO PHONE AND THEN I CALLED HIM A CITY IN FUCKING CALIFORNIA!” JD only responded with, “Well, I didn’t know that. I’ll get a ride,” and then hung up the phone.
So, in a nutshell, these are a few of the things that have been on my mind lately. Oh, and turns out my phone is in my friend’s car and I’ll have it on Monday. Silver lining, folks. Silver. Lining.