Bah Humbug

I will Bah Humbug just for a moment. Christmas is just not as fun when you:
A. Don’t get to play Santa to the kid(s) in your house anymore
B. Aren’t receiving squat in the way of presents (ohhhh, don’t roll your eyes. We all like wrapped packages with our name on them)
C. Are feeling a speck worried about finances (or more than a speck)

This year feels icky. It started feeling icky when the stores were putting up Christmas merchandise alongside back to school and Halloween items. It started feeling icky when the Christmas carols were piped into every store November 1. I am not a big shopper in the best of years, preferring to make and re-gift many things, and if I do shop, I like to putter around used bookstores and such, not the big box mega marts…but around every corner on tv, radio, email, Facebook, Instagram…there’s someone trying to sell me some idea that the only way to show adequate love to my friends and family is to go about $5000 into debt.

I admit I do daydream of those smarmy jewelry commercial moments: a surprise jewelry box handed to me on a snowy walk or a delivery man dressed like Santa rings my doorbell to hand me what looks like a box of cookies but has a diamond nestled inside (mmmm cookies and jewelry)…but I know deep down that money can’t buy love or happiness. I can still daydream a little of cupids and sparkly baubles…but I don’t for a second believe anyone’s buying me a Lexus for Christmas no matter how good I’ve been…and I’ve been REALLY good, I swear.

So. Bah humbug. I will not be buying a giant screen tv or a new car or brand new sofa for Christmas, no matter what the commercials tell me. I will dream my little dreams of love and peace and happiness.

my xmas wish list for 2014

i  know you’ve probably been wringing your hands over what to get me for christmas.  what to give a moody blogger?

1. books.  used books are great.  mr. k’s used bookstore is the bomb. books from your own shelf that you’re done with are fab. great words inspire more words.

2.  music.  mr. k’s again. or burn a cd of your faves for me.  i love to hear what inspires other people.

3. love. i will likely be alone on christmas, as the kiddo disappears to see her dad’s family that day.  there’s something about being alone on christmas and new year’s that just stings to the core, especially when i’ve known the joy of a house full of kids or a road trip to grandma’s for dinner, and i miss it so very, very much. send me love love love.

4. send someone else love.  lots of people are lonely this time of year, but not everyone is able to say so.  reach out with a card, cookies, or whatever gesture feels right.  it makes my heart happy to know my tribe is spreading kindness.

the mole of doom: what, universe, what?!? i’m listening!

As an alarmingly pale person, I see the dermatologist once a year to check any little moles and whatevers, make sure all is right in the world.  I’ve been reasonably good to my skin as an adult, but as a kid who played soccer three seasons a year every year from age six or so into my twenties, starting back in the days when no one used sunscreen…well hell, back then people slathered themselves with a weird concoction of baby oil and iodine and would lay out on aluminum foil like salmon fillets on the grill.  In those days that lacked sunblock, I remember getting a burn on the tops of my feet one year at the beach that was so bad I couldn’t walk for two days without bursting into tears.  I remember burning so bad I blistered all over my chest and shoulders every single summer.

Nowadays, I sunscreen the hell out of myself and I wear a hat of some kind if I’m gonna be out in the sun for any substantial length of time.  Some of you have mocked me for my uncool random baseball hats (these are also known primarily as “hats I stole from my Dad”), but who was whining about their sunburn a few hours later?  Not me and my scary hat hair, nope. 

But still I go to the dermatologist each year and generally all’s well…except just ahead of this scheduled visit, I noticed a little teeeeeeeeeeenytiny mole was different, it was changing.  Suddenly it was darker.  And then it was spreading.  And then it wasn’t flat anymore.  And in the span of just  a couple weeks tripled in size from being a tiny speck to being a topographic map of Florida.  It is still fairly small, but the changes in it were rapid and obvious.

So I pointed the mole of doom out to the dermatologist first thing at my appointment today and he squinted at the spot (smack between my boobs) and said, “Oh that’s gotta go.  We’ll want to test it for skin cancer and we should just go ahead and remove it.  We’ll punch that out for a biopsy and stitch you up.  Sign a surgical consent form and we’ll get you scheduled ASAP.”

His friendly nurse then explained how they’d use a “cookie cutter” tool to remove the mole and depending how deep they had to go to “get it all out” would determine if the stitches involved would dissolve on their own or if they’d have to be removed at a later appointment.  She went on to say that they would call me with biopsy results whether they were good or bad, then she shooed me off to get on the appointment book for this procedure.

Ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.  Biopsy.  That’s a scary word, a word they use on a lot of really sick patients on episodes of House.  I know it’s routine for every questionable anomaly that’s removed from your skin, they wanna test it and know all about it, and I’m sure this will be fine, especially since I’m on top of it so quickly.  But still.  Yikes.

There’s been a lot of pondering and reflecting on mortality and the fragility of life and seizing the day in the last 18 months or so for me.  A dear friend was murdered, my best friend flatlined a couple times in the hospital and my first serious high school beau has colon cancer.  I’ve made many changes in my life since early 2007, purging toxic people from my social circle who were causing me more harm than good…I’ve said no more often to things that drain me (no, we’re not selling cookie dough door to door) and said yes to more of the things that I love (a hot bubble bath and a glass of wine are good medicine).  I’m not perfect, but I’m doing better on giving more attention to the real life meaningful things and letting the rest of the nonsense of the world go on by.  So…….what, Universe? What? What do I need to know? What are you trying to tell me?  Have I not pondered my own mortality enough that you have to throw a biopsy my way to shake things up?  I feel like I’ve seized the hell out of some days in 2008, that I’ve lived and loved and so what now? What am I supposed to learn from this exercise?  It remains to be seen, I suppose.

My “procedure” is Monday.  Ouch in advance–I’m poking the spot right now where they’ll punch a hole and put stitches, right on my breastbone, not a squishy soft spot with lots of cushion, nope.  So on Monday, send flowers and money and a pony and jewelry, I like jewelry, and dark chocolate from The Chocolate Fetish…but in true Kat form, I will point out that sending me “feel better” gifts on Monday does not excuse you from buying me a Christmas gift.

so whatcha whatcha whatcha want?

Chiquita suggested that I spell out some rules for dating me, the uber hott Katster, so would-be lotharios bearing gifts get it right.

1.  Pretty much I can date as many people as I want at a time, but you can’t.  You can only date me.  “Date,” by the way, is not a euphemism for “bed.”  Just because I date you doesn’t mean I will bed you.  Get over yourself.  You’re lucky I’m even acknowledging your existence.

2.  I deserve gifts and flowers ALL the time, and I require them to put up with your nonsense.  One of my ex boyfriends was so fabulous at this.  He never appeared at my door empty-handed; even if it was just a pack of my favorite gum, the boy brought gifts every time.  He knew how to pay homage to She Who Must Be Obeyed.  Good boy.

3.  I will only tell you I despise red roses one time, and this is it.  If you bring them to me, I will hit you with them.  If you enjoy that, you are too bizarre for me.

4.  Don’t lie to me.  Don’t make up random crap.  I have no tolerance for lies. NONE.  Ask Mr. Kat version 2 if I have patience for that.

5.  I get to remain friends with as many of my ex-boyfriends as I want.  Your ex-girlfriends should fall off the edge of the planet and be snapped up by piranha from outer space.

6.  You should buy me dinner, at least the first date; I’m not looking for a sugar daddy, but I need to know you at least have the means to provide a meal or two…it’s a manly, good thing to do.  You should hold open doors, and you should let me order first at restaurants.  Didn’t your momma teach you any manners?

7.  You should smell good, but manly.  A manly, rugged scent is not sold in the bathroom at any bar, bowling alley or gas station.  I should smell your goodness only when I lean in, not when I’m leaning away, gasping for air.

8.  Compliment me.  I am looking extra especially glamorous in your honor.  Tell me I’m hotttttt, but please don’t say that directly to my cleavage.  I’m up here, thanks.

9.  Hold up your end of the conversation.  My last date was very good at this part, so good I was quite charmed by his company, pleased to spend time with him, not planning my escape.  On the other hand, I have had numerous dates with gents who couldn’t come up with anything, anything, anything to say, so it was an exercise in pulling teeth to get them to talk.  No fun!  You should also be the one to follow-up after  the date with an email, phone call (I probably won’t answer) or text; this shows you are undaunted in your passion for me, even after I’ve been a diva all evening.

 10.  If it doesn’t work out, no harm, no foul.  Don’t talk nasty untrue nonsense about me around town.  You want me to hug you when I run into you at Stella Blue, not enlist one of my posse to beat you up in the men’s room.

 I think these 10 rules are a really good start.  If you can make it beyond the first 10 hurdles, the rest is a cake walk.

I suppose we can stop celebrating my birthday now

My Captain Jack Sparrow balloon has started to deflate so I guess it’s time to stop celebrating my birthday.  It’s been nice having Johnny Depp floating in the corner of my living room for the last two months, but I guess it’s time to move on…

…to what I want for Christmas!  I know that some of you wait with eager anticipation each and every year for my list, so I’m ready to spring it on you so you can cater to my every whim.

First and foremost, there should always be good chocolate.  If you have to ask where good chocolate comes from, you are not worthy of even giving me a gift–just relinquish your entire wallet unto me, as you are too stupid to operate it.  Good chocolate in Asheville, NC, comes from The Chocolate Fetish, and that is the one and only place you should go for chocolates if you are in the Ashevegas area.  I want Ancient Pleasures (dark chocolate with cayenne) and I want Velvet Sin (dark chocolate inside and out).  If you aren’t in Asheville, they will ship, so you have no excuses for not giving me what I want.

Next, bubble bath.  I will eat my truffles in my bubble bath and I’m sharing neither the truffles nor the bath.  A good bubble bath is a difficult thing to master.  I want bubbles that last with a fragrance that doesn’t overwhelm me.  Jasmine Vanilla is a nice blend, let’s do that.

Now that I’ve been subdued with my bubble bath and exquisite truffles, I want books.  Ooooo lots and lots of books.  I read in the bathtub.  As a parent, the bathtub is one of the only places in the house I can hide, so if I’ve got a great book, we are bringing my bubble bath experience to new highs.  Don’t try to pick out a book for me, just gift card me.  You’ll undoubtedly pick out something pretentious and foreign to make yourself seem cool and knowledgeable, so don’t even bother; I’ll select my own books and thank you kindly for the gift card.

Eventually, I’ll have to leave the tub. To keep your beloved Kat subdued and happy, let’s lavish me with wine.  Nothing expensive, really.  I prefer Yellow Tail Shiraz and Yellow Tail Merlot, both readily available at many a grocer’s.  And bendy straws.  You’re already at the grocery store, get me some bendy straws.

I think now you should drive my drunk ass to a spa so I can get a massage.  Don’t be cheap, I want 90 minutes of attention there.  The best massage I ever had was given by a male massage therapist.  It wasn’t just that he was a man that made the massage super yummy (although it doesn’t hurt to be rubbed into a pile of submissive dough by a man in a dimly lit room with a warm scented oil all over my back), it was the fact that he was so tall he could really, really work on some of my tense spots from above, rather than reaching across, niiiiiiiiiice.

Now, make me a nice dinner and go away.  That’s all I want for Christmas this year.

And what will you get out of all this?  A kinder, gentler Kat, at least while the wine and chocolate supply lasts.

Lest you think I’m shallow and greedy, please make a donation to one of my favorite charities (Manna Food Bank or Buncombe County Foster Care Association) before you shop for me.  And then, once that’s done, please feel free to inundate me with the love offerings I so richly deserve.