Tag Archive: brother


I have a problem with roadkill.

At 23, I should probably not think of wild animals in terms of Disney creatures that have homes and families and feelings. I know it seems ridiculous, but I just can’t help it. In my head, I only see Bambi’s mom, or the Beaver family from the Chronicles of Narnia, or Simba and how he ran away from Pride Rock after Mufasa’s death. These poor animals have others counting on them; they have responsibilities and a family to come home to.

When I see a raccoon’s guts splayed on the side of the road or a deer laying broken on the shoulder, my heart breaks.

On my way to work last week, I burst into tears when I saw a black cat squished in the middle of the road.  I cried for the little girl who loved that cat with her whole heart, I cried for the other kitty cat friends that Blackie had, and I cried for the person who hit the kitty and killed it.

It’s so sad to me and I can’t help but be really, really upset by it.

I hoped that I had hit my quota for roadkill for the week, but it seems that the universe had other plans. Yesterday, I experienced the most traumatizing roadkill event to date. I probably won’t tell it right or be able to express how deeply upset I was by this, but I’m going to try.

I was driving to meet my brother for dinner when this occurred.  I was driving happily, listening to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows on CD, and I was halfway to my destination.  Just as I was picking up my phone from the passenger’s seat of my car to call Drew to ask him where he wanted to go for dinner, it happened.

By chance, I happened to notice a deer on the shoulder of the highway.  I can’t remember now what it was that made me come to this conclusion, but something told me that something wasn’t right about this deer. For one, it was not dead.  I could see its eyes and they were wide open.  Then, all of a sudden, it was picking itself up off the pavement, only it wasn’t going as it should have.

It all happened pretty fast, and I was driving as I was watching this, but I did see enough to be traumatized.

Poor Deery was having trouble standing up and I could tell that something was very wrong with her (I’m assuming?) hindquarters.  Deery couldn’t put any weight on her back legs. She began dragging her back legs as she tried to get away from the highway and the cars driving so fast past her. I had passed her and my vision was blurry with hot tears when I had dialed Drew via speed-dial on my phone.  By the time he picked up the phone, I was in the throes of a full-blown grief-meltdown.

What was so upsetting to me was that I did not see any vehicle near her that looked like it had been hit by a dear.  I didn’t see anyone around other than me and the other cars driving past this suffering animal. I couldn’t understand how someone could hit a deer and leave it to die in such a painful and agonizing way. The fact that where she had been hit was on top of a hill worried me.  Without the ability to use her back legs, how was she to navigate that hill to get back into the wooded safe haven? I think about it now and my heart hurts. I imagine that she fell down the hill and lay at the bottom, wishing to die because of the pain.  It is terrible, but I would have preferred someone shot her or something, to put her out of her misery.  It isn’t fair.

I explained what happened to Drew through thick sobs. He laughed at me.

After crying my eyes out and having him listen to me wail wordlessly, I tried to change the subject. He didn’t because he probably didn’t want to seem insensitive since I was so obviously upset. He’s such a good brother.

When I finally got the words out to ask him where we should go to dinner, he replied, “Well there’s this new venison place…”

That’s when a sob escaped and I hung up on him. I grabbed a mostly clean napkin off the passenger seat and wiped my eyes and blew my nose.

He called back.

“That wasn’t nice,” I cried.

He was joking and he was trying to make me laugh, but I wasn’t ready yet.  So I cried on the phone some more, cursed society and contemplated calling the police (or ANYBODY!) to have them come rescue Deery (or at least end her suffering).

I didn’t call the police, but I haven’t been able to get the image of that poor deer dragging its back legs out of my head.

I just can’t handle roadkill. It really hurts my heart.

This weekend Chiefy learned how to swim.

Tam bought him a lifejacket (as evidenced below) on Saturday and he finally realized he can swim.

We were exuberant!  For as long as we have had Chiefy, he as only waded in the lake.  He has only gone as far in as he can comfortably and effectively stand, so taking liftoff in the water was a great success.

Since then, I have become disgustingly ill and now have a gnarly cold.

My neck still hurts, but only vaguely.

I almost tipped over in the kayak today. My butt was soaked and, just moments later, I got shit on by a bird flying overhead. Drew almost hit me with a rock he was throwing into the lake.

I basically slept all day long. That, or I’ve been watching Nurse Jackie with Drew.

My nose is raw and I’m a mouth breather.

I spilled ice cream on the dog and on the floor.

I think it’s time I go to bed and hope for a better tomorrow.

Here is what I have learned about success:

It’s all about managing expectations.

For example, I try to go first whenever I can when giving presentations in class.  That way, no matter how ill-prepared I may be or how often I fumble over my words or even how lame my powerpoint presentation really is, there is no one to compare it to yet.  Going first allows the presenter to set the expectations for the rest of the presentations and is the one that the rest are measured against.

If I can help it, I never, ever go last.  Going last is simply not an option.  I’m not that much of a douche bag that I will email my professor ahead of time and insist on going first, but I definitely try to be that person that is like, “Oh, yeah, no big deal, I’ll go first if no one else wants to.” You know, all nonchalant.  And when someone else is like “Oh, I want to go first!” (because that always happens- there are always other freaks like me who want to set the bar low) I’m always like *Hulk’d up* NO I’M GOING FIRST, YOU IDIOT FUCK!

Just kidding, I don’t turn green, grow three times my regular size, or bust out of my white (??) shirt and purple pants.  I don’t even shout at my classmates. I simply keep it real and let everyone know what’s up: I must go first.

In life, I finally learned to be that kid at a birthday party to have her gift opened first.  There were far too many times I tried to be that girl whose present was so good it had to be saved for last. You know, that whole save the best for last bullshit.  But what parents don’t tell you and what you learn after birthday party after birthday party is that it sucks when someone else gives the same gift as you- or worse, someone gives a better present than yours.  That is a situation that takes you on a bullet train to Sucktown.

The best time to give your gift is first.  That way, you have the best gift of the day, even if it’s just for a moment.  That’s a moment you can’t get back. And, that way, if there is a duplicate gift situation, you don’t look like a dickhole and you don’t have to sit in the corner and cry because someone gave the same gift you did.  You can know that you have won. (Because winning is really all that matters- ask Charlie Sheen.)

At work, you have to manage expectations too. If you do something really impressive one day that is something that is expected to be repeated, you better believe that you have just set a precedent.  You will be held to that standard from now on.  That is totally fine if you don’t mind working your butt off to constantly exceed expectations and/or consistently perform at a high level.  But if you’re lazy as fuck and it was done on a fluke, then you’re pretty much up Chocolate Creek without a popsicle stick. If you’re lazy as fuck at work and really just want to do the least amount of work as possible, then you should never do anything more than what is expected of you. Because that is the kiss of death for you, and you can no longer be lazy as fuck.

I have finally realized that even dealing with some family drama, it all comes down to managing expectations.  Drew and I have tried (and failed at) the being-sneaky approach- that just ends in tears (including my own). We can’t just lie about our plans and spring them on a certain person at the last minute- a shitstorm of drama explodes out of seemingly nowhere.  We have also tried the let’s-be-really-vague-about-our-plans approach and that just ended in bitterness, shouting, resentment, anger, and, yes, you guessed it, tears (including my own).  Being vague has usually just resulted in having to lie (which we all know I am not good at) and/or just really awful family moments.

So, this time, we are trying the honesty-is-the-best-policy approach.  This approach includes telling both parties exactly what’s up and setting clear expectations for everyone involved. That way, when the time comes to leave, no one is surprised or upset.  I’m psyched about this.

Here’s hoping.

So, my friends, go forth and embrace this managing expectations lifestyle I have adopted.  Share with me your success stories. Or just stories about your childhood birthday parties. I would enjoy that as well.

I thought I would share with you, my friends, just a few things I am obsessed with lately.  I usually throw in, like, one or two examples in any given post, but I don’t see why I can’t just put the major ones in one place for you. You know, in case you want to be exactly like me and like all the same things I do.  If that’s the case, then, DUDE, it’s your lucky day!!

Dance Music

I’m obsessed with my itunes playlist for when I workout.  I add to it constantly and spent a lotttt of time putting songs that put me in the zone into one place.  There is nothing worse than sweating your butt off to Ke$ha’s “Blow” for the song to end and segue into a slow jam like “Not Like the Movies” by Katy Perry. Don’t get me wrong- I LOVE Katy Perry, but I cannot keep my heart rate up if a song with less than, like, 120 beats per minute.  I got some ideas from searching online for fitness playlists, and Shape Magazine’s website proved to be pretty helpful.  Another thing I did was use my library’s website to find mix CDs of songs I like that were remixed for “the club”- which means that a techno-y beat was added and they’re usually sped up quite a bit.

S&M Remix

This gets its own bullet point because it’s just THAT good.  As you can see from above, I’m currently listening to Rihanna’s S&M Remix with Britney Spears. Oh. My. Gawd. I cannot get enough.  I listen to it on repeat and can’t stop.

You must purchase it on itunes.  Don’t illegally download that shit. I don’t believe in it (when it’s an artist I like).

Harry Potter

I am sure I have probably shared this with you before, but I am rereading all of the Harry Potter books.  And by “rereading” I mean “listening to them on CD because I’m too lazy to actually read and I enjoy listening to books in the car since my drive to work is 40+ minutes.”

I’m currently listening to Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.  Every single day, I listen and I just can’t believe how amazing these books are. Every single day, I am amazed by how much I had forgotten. Every single day, I get angry that so much is cut from the movies.  Every single day, I send angry text messages to Drew about that fact. Every single day, I try to work in Harry Potter vocabulary into my everyday lexicon.  For example, I used the following sentence today:

“Ohhh it makes me want to crucio the movie makers!”

See? I would totally unforgivable-curse the shit out of the powers that be in Hollywood that decided that the Harry Potter movies shouldn’t be like 8 hours long and shouldn’t include all the awesome little details I love about the books.  No big deal.  A lifetime in Azkaban for using an unforgivable curse? I guess since it would benefit the greater good, I could take the fall for that one.

Ron + Hermione = ❤

Yeah, I’m a huge nerd.

I don’t care what you think of me but I think that the two of them are just adorable. If you ‘ship anything other than Ron/Hermione and Harry/Ginny, you’re retarded and we can’t be friends.  I mean, go ahead and do whatever you want, but know there will be consequences.

They’re just too adorable for words.

Love love love!!

The Office

I’ve been watching it on DVD lately and hate myself for not getting into it when it first aired back when I was just a baby in high school. Okay, so that’s obviously the reason I never got into it. That and I tend to jump on board to things way after the fact. Oh well.  All that matters is that I’ve seen the light and love it now.

I just finished the fifth season on DVD and now have to wait forever and ever for my library to let me watch season six, since I’m, like, 16 or 16 holds. No big deal, I’ll just watch it in four months. I’m not mad.

I should also mention this: subset of this obsession can be my love of Jim and Pam on the show and just my general adoration of John Krasinski.  He is a chunk of nerd-alert, awkward-face-making, man-sass sexiness.

That Emily Blunt is one lucky bitch.

Mmmkay, guys.  There are five of several hundred obsessions that I have.  Please make a note of these and brush up on these things.  That way we will have lots to talk about and you can truly begin your mission of becoming just like me, because I know that’s what you’re working towards in life.

Oh, ps. I’m also in a really good mood right now because I just took my final for class and now the hell that I endured for the past seven weeks is officially behind me. Win. Win. Win. (#charliesheen #winning)

If you haven’t seen The American President we can’t be friends.

I love it.

Maybe too much.

Drew is home this evening so we get to watch it together. Be still, my heart.

Something about watching this movie with Drew just makes it so much better.  We can basically recite this movie in its entirety and it’s more fun to do it with him than by myself.

I keep remembering how often lines from this movie pop into my head on an everyday basis.

Let me explain:

1.)    One year in school I remember that effigy was a vocab word we were tested on.  We needed to know the definition and how to use it.  Luckily, the America President was created before I took that vocab quiz.  I totally knew what effigy meant because this movie helped me understand its use.

Sydney, seldom does a day go by when I am not burned in effigy.

2.)    Every time I drive by a Volvo dealership (like I did today) or any time I see a Volvo, all I can hear is Annette Benning’s voice lobbying her butt off for the GDC as Sydney Ellen Wade.

Katie, ten years from now any cars with an internal combustion engine is gonna be considered a collector’s item.  Come on board, we’ll make your Volvo a classic.

3.)    Any time I interact with or find myself frustrated with someone who is less than coherent or someone I deem an idiot, I frequently pawn this gem off as my own when talking about this person behind his or her back (because I’m a bitch like that).

Lewis, we’ve had presidents who were beloved and couldn’t find a coherent sentence with two hands and a flashlight.  People don’t drink the sand ‘cause they’re thirsty, Lewis. They drink the sand because they don’t know the difference.

Note: I usually embellish this phrase. For example, blah blah blah can’t find *something* with a compass, a map and a flashlight.

4.)    Generally, at the start of every week, I can hear Michael Douglas’ voice telling me it’s Monday morning.  Sometimes Drew and I even text each other the line from the movie just to share in the moment and reference what I can easily say is our favorite movie. The delivery is so perfect.

Lewis: You skipped a whole paragraph!
President Shepherd: And Monday morning it is.

5.)    The best speech in this whole movie is something I actually quoted in an academic paper in college, well, part of it at least. In fact, I used it in a paper I wrote to proclaim my love of Hillary Clinton actually. I so would.

Everybody knows America isn’t easy.  America is advanced citizenship.  You gotta want it bad, ‘cause it’s gonna put up a fight.  It’s gonna say “you want free speech? Let’s see you acknowledge a man whose words make your blood boil, who’s standing center stage and avocating, at the top of his lungs, that which you would spend a lifetime opposing at the top of yours.  You want to claim this land as the land of the free? Then the symbol of your country can’t just be a flag; the symbol has to be one of its citizens exercising his right to burn that flag in protest.” Show me that, defend that, celebrate that in your classrooms. Then you can stand up and sing about the land of the free.

6.)    The events in Lybia actually made me wonder if President Obama has seen this movie.  Talk about Life imitating Art.  Dude.  Just watch it and you’ll totally know what I’m talking about.  In my head, I imagine that Obama took a move out of the Andrew Shepherd playbook.

Sweet baby Jesus, this is such a great movie.

Like I said, if you haven’t seen it, we can’t be friends until you do.  And once you watch this (and love it, obviously) you need to then become obsessed with The West Wing and watch the entire series on DVD because it’s basically a giant continuation of the awesomeness that is The American President.

That is all.

Oh, no, wait. One more thing. I’m also obsessed with this.

Okay. For real this time.

That is all.

I don’t usually remember my dreams.

But sometimes I do.

And I have noticed a pattern to it.

The only dreams I remember are the ones where I’m about to die.

I just can't look at it the same way....

Like that time I dreamt that my house was being broken into and explosions were going off and there was a hostage situation. Or that time I dreamt that a man lived down the street had lured me into his creepy-as-fuck house only for me to find my loved ones and close, beloved family friends all dead, hanging like marionettes (read: *NSYNC-style) in boxes in his giant living room and him chasing me around his property with a sawed-off shotgun and machete. Or that time I dreamt I was being locked in some type of school gymnasium with a fuck-ton of people because wherever the hell we were was on “lockdown” and we were all safe in the gym but then some man told us we have “two minutes to get out because this place is gonna blow the fuck up” and I woke up in a panic.

 

SEE?! This is not okay!!

I woke up this morning and my face was wet and I couldn’t breathe.

I woke up and realized I had been crying in my sleep.

This time was different. I wasn’t dreaming I was dying or about to die. I dreamt that Drew had died.

Why the fuck?! WHY?!

Do you know how disturbing that was?!

That’s my baby brother. That cannot happen. Ever. He can never die.

I was a mess in my whole dream. I was running around like a ninny, completely out of control and inconsolable. I was completely irrational and out of my mind. It was awful.

I can’t even talk about it.

I watched Beauty & the Beast this week.

Here’s the thing about when I watch movies: I think of questions you’re not supposed to think about. I just do. I can’t help it. It’s just how my brain works.

Hey, just real quick, who in the castle made clothes big enough to fit the Beast?

………

…………………..

…………………………. Really?

Yes, really! Those household items are not dexterous enough to alter his original clothes nor could they sew something new!

Shit, Katie, I don’t know. Maybe one of them was turned into a sewing kit.

Oh. Yeah. Probably. Good point. Okay, bye!

Yeah, I called Drew just to ask that.

I’d really like to say that that was the end of it.

But then this happened:

Thought of another one: who is MR. Potts???

He died tragically. Why do you think she has to work in the first place?

Yes, we were, of course, speaking about Mrs. Potts, the lovely older woman who was turned into a teapot when the castle was enchanted.

Oh good. That’s what I thought too. So she and crazy old Maurice got together??

I don’t know, Katie.

Don’t get mad!!

I’m not. I just don’t know if he ever recovered from the death of his wife. It’s why he dove into inventing, to ignore his pain.  That is why Belle likes fantasies, to escape her tragic life of having seen her mother die and her dad not recover from it.

Aaaaaaand that’s pretty much why I have the best brother ever and you don’t.

Drew is home.

He’s finally home.

I can’t even begin to describe what it feels like. I’m beyond joyful.

I have missed him so much and it just feels so good to have him here again.

There was a lot of traffic at the airport, and we were running late (typical) and Drew’s plane landed early, and apparently it’s not difficult to get into this country as Drew flew through customs.

When we got to the “International Arrivals” drive-up curb thing-y, Drew was already there and waiting for us. Mom was freaking out and getting a little bit road rage-y. She was ready to tuck and roll to just walk to find him. When she opened the door before even putting the car in park, I knew it was the more responsible choice to have me tuck and roll to run down the road to find him.

I got out of the car, all pissed off because she had driven on a rumble-strip just moments before and woke me from a delicious nap I had been taking.

Then, though, I hadn’t even walked ten steps before I saw him.

Tall and lanky as ever, the same as when he left, he stood probably a hundred feet away. I waved. I could tell he was trying to figure out if it was me. And then we started walking towards each other. I wanted to run but I tried to keep my cool. There were so many cars and so many people around.

But then he picked up his pace. And so I did too. Then he started running. And I felt my cold, black heart swell and I started running towards him too. Then he dropped all of his shit on the ground and wrapped me in a big, big hug. He lifted me off the ground and even though my boobs hurt after he put me down ’cause he squeezed me so hard, I didn’t really want to let go. Ever.

He’s home.

 

I remember in the fifth grade, we had to write a memory or something for our silly little yearbook. I remember that I was sitting in the middle pod of desks, next to the boy I had loved since the first day I saw him in third grade. He had broken his arm. Again. Now, I can’t remember what happened to make him break his arm this time. I can think of the time my friend broke her arm by falling off the monkey bars on the playground at recess in elementary school. And I can remember the time my other friend broke her arm when she fell on her rollerblades when we crashed loverboy’s birthday party in sixth grade, but I can’t think of why he broke his arm that time.

That is neither here nor there.

What I wanted to tell you was my memory.

Ding Dong! The witch is dead! Which old witch? The Wicked Witch! Ding Dong! The Wicked Witch is dead!!

I was little, and my parents were still married. We still lived at the house on the lake, the one I remember as my first home even though it wasn’t the first house I lived in as a child. We were outside, and Maggie, our golden retriever, was outside in the driveway with me and Dad. I can’t remember if Mom and Drew were outside with us.

I must have just watched the Wizard of Oz.

Standing at the base of our driveway, by the wooden fence in the front yard, I stood. Though I’m not sure what I was doing down by the fence and the road, I’m sure it was something awesome, like picking grass, or licking rocks, or climbing the rickety, not-made-for-climbing fence. Out of nowhere, I heard something hit the ground with an odd jingle-smack. When I turned to look what it was, I saw that a set of keys had hit the ground behind me. From the sky.

I looked up and saw that the once perfect blue sky was dark, and there were words written in the sky. Don’t ask me what the sky said because I sure as hell can’t remember.  I could swear I saw that mean old, green-faced witch ridin’ off into the sky.

Yeah. That was my memory. That’s the memory I chose to write down to be published.

Really?! I think about that now and just think, Really, Katie? REALLY?! What the hell!?

The best part about this is that I swore that this memory was legit. I would have bet my life on the fact that this actually happened. Of course, when my mom read what I had written down (of course, once this silly little booklet was printed), she had no idea what the hell I was talking about.  The other best part is that I didn’t have a doubt in my mind about the validity of this memory. I didn’t believe I had anything to be embarrassed about by sharing this memory. I believed I had experienced something paranormal, g-d it! I had encountered a physical object falling from the sky! I had seen a witch writing words in the sky!

That was fifth grade. In fifth grade, I still believed  that this memory existed. Who am I?!

I was a weird kid.

Oh, remind me to tell you about the time I ran into a moving van on my bike. Or the time I got my fingers stuck in a wiffle ball. Or the time I found a power tool (drill) and put it to my forehead, turned it on and left a cut in the middle of my forehead. Or the time I played the piano with my face and cried every time I banged my head too hard against the keys.

I bet you’re glad you stuck around to read this.

1.) All this time, I was convinced that red velvet cake was from the devil. For as long as I can remember, I have vehemently hated red velvet cake. With little to back up my hatred, I stuck to my guns and refused to say anything nice about red velvet cake. Now, it’s like I don’t even know who I am these days. We have some “cake balls” left from the party still, and they’re still delish. The chocolate ones? Divine. Banana? Yum. Pumpkin? Yes please! Red velvet? Fuck no. But then… I really wanted something chocolate and Grandma had eaten the last plain chocolate one, and I was desperate. So I decided I’d give the red velvet one a shot. I took a tiny bite, expecting to dry heave and chuck the cake ball at the floor. But then…. neither of those urges came to me. In fact, I didn’t just tolerate the red velvet to curb my chocolate craving. Oh, no, I went on to eat another one. And then I ate two more for breakfast today. What’s happening to me?

2.) I saw Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part I twice this weekend. I’m not complaining. Shiz, I love love love Harry Potter. I’d watch it every day if I could. I just watched all of the Harry Potter movies and I’m re-reading the 7th book right now. Due to poor planning, when I went to see the 7th movie I hadn’t re-read the 7th book. The book is too sad. I’ve only read it once. And when I saw the movie, I remembered why I had only read it once. I’m such a pansy. I cry at just about everything. The book and movie break my heart.

3.) I dread waking up in the morning. It’s not because I’m not a morning person or because I suck at reacting to my alarm. Actually, when my alarm goes off, I never ever hit the snooze button. I don’t believe in snooze buttons. But that is neither here nor there. When my alarm goes off, I am ready to get up. I hear it and I’m like OKAY MORNING LET’S DO THIS!! Ohhh, no. I dread waking up in the morning because it’s cold and I hate wearing pants. When my alarm goes off, it requires that I get out of my warm, cozy bed and stumble blindly to the bathroom to shower.  No pants. That’s just how I roll. It’s all fun and games until I have to get out of bed and brave the cold.

4.) When I watch the American President, I miss my brother like crazy. I simply cannot wait until he comes home.

5.) I had a whole list of things I wanted to get done this weekend. Do you think any of those things got accomplished? No. Except, actually, I did do one thing. I cleaned out my email inbox.  Luckily, I can cross that off the list I made in my planner. Win.

6.) Here is a snapshot of some of the things I’ve googled today: “doe patronus” “taylor swift lyrics” “kelly clarkson lyrics” “dear john letters” “renee estevez” “rob lowe” “list of idioms”

7.) And last night I google map’d the directions from japan to china because I stumbled upon an image that told me to do just that. So I did. And the image I had stumbled upon said that I would “lol” at #43. I did.