Friday, January 29, 2010

Things to do while snowed in

A) Hot bath with mud mask and a book. Done
B) Read a book by the fireplace. Done
C) Hot coffee and a movie. Done
D) Shop Online. Done
E) Book excursions and plan activites for our cruise. In 29 days. Done
F) Use the PediPaws on the Dog with startling results. Done

Thursday, January 28, 2010

So the moral of the story is: Looking like a whore is actually NOT a good thing

It’s raining ice from the sky today. I have blankets, pillows, candles, firewood, water, canned food, flashlights, batteries, and thermal socks. I am ready for you ice storm. Anyhow, I am expecting to be without power (actually I better be because I spent a lot of time getting ready for it. Grrr.) anytime now. So here we go.

Earlier this week, Luke and I were scheduled to sing at a convention. Not just any convention. A convention full of Baptist people. We were singing worship music for 2 days which I total love and would have done for free except that they paid us and that is awesome. I decided that I needed a new dress, which I decided pretty much every time I sing somewhere or sometimes I decided that just because it’s a Tuesday or a Thursday or because I got a pop-up ad from Target or I can’t decide what to wear. So just hours before we were supposed to be on the platform for the sound check, I headed to the store.

I needed something all black which dramatically narrowed my choices. I managed NOT to try on/purchase about 4 other really cute dresses. This is a big deal. I may need to reward myself by going back and buying that awesome pair of red platform pumps that I saw. Of course, then I will need a new dress to go with tem. So I was looking for things that were all black. I found, after an hour or so, the cutest black dress with simple beading right over the neckline and cut kind of like a kimono in the sleeves. The best part is that it was cleavage friendly for a bunch of Baptists. I mean, there was no cleavage. (Side note: I love my own cleavage. Sometimes I catch myself just looking at it going “Man, I look so good. I love having these things!”)

I didn’t actually try it on because I am a pretty good judge of my own size and it was a loose flowing cut so I didn’t think it would be oddly bunching anywhere. I knew that it was a little short so I headed over to the leggings to see if I needed any new leggings to wear under the thing. Once there, I decided that I was probably safe with the opaque tights that I already have. (Multiple pair of opaque tights in fact.) When I headed over to pay, she looks at the dress and says “Oh that is so cute!” I never know what to say when they say things like that. It’s like, I didn’t make the dress so do I say “thank you” anyway”? I’m not actually wearing the dress, so she’s not complimenting me on how well I pull off the look. Maybe she is just addressing my good taste? Actually, they are the ones who chose to carry the dress in the store, so maybe I should congratulate them? I just never know. Anyway, she thought the dress was cute and then she gives me what should have been a warning or foreshadowing or something. She says “Is it a shirt or a dress?”

I carried home my super cute shirt/dress and began the beautification process. It’s not an easy process. I pretty much love being a girl. So there were lots of female type things that I had to accomplish. First up was my mud mask. I won this mask at a women’s event. It’s not one I would have purchased for myself, but it is serious business. It’s more like a concrete mask. I think that its purpose is to actually harden your skin and muscle all the way to the bone in an attempt to just preserve it as it is. So I spackled my face and sat back to wait 20 minutes. Lily popped into my room during this time and caught a pretty good startle. I said “Do you like mommy’s face?” Only my face was a brick so it was like “du du da do du da?” She just turned around and left. I tried to take a drink of coffee. FYI: You can’t drink coffee when your face is frozen.

Finally, it came time to take a shower. I liberated my face from the iron mask and reveled perfectly smooth skin or a layer of muscle; I’m not sure which. I spent the next hour drying, curling, painting nails, make-up-ing, jewlary-ing, and watching a documentary on the Hindenburg. Because I love hydrogen air-ships. My plan was to finish all of the process and put on the dress at he last moment. Luke and I would then pick up Grace from school, swing by and pick up another singer from our group and be just in time for the sound-check. Right about the time the air-ship caught fire I slipped into my dress. Right around the time the crew on the ground was panicking, I realized that my dress was, in fact, a long shirt.

This was also about the time that Luke came in the room and said “That’s the dress? It looks kind of Friday-night-at-the-club-whory.” Of course, I take this as a compliment. “You really think I look that good! Thanks, babe!” But I understand that a room full of Baptists might not agree that Friday-night-at-the-club-whory is a good look. So NOW I am frantically digging around in my closet trying to find an alternate dress; and the clock is ticking. Dress 1: Bra straps showing. Dig through all of the laundry trying to find any of my strapless bras. No luck. Maybe I should actually wash clothes instead of just buying new ones. Dress 2: Dowdy. Why did I ever buy this dress? Dress 3: Not exactly all black. In fact it is mostly white with black designs. Dress 4: My go to funerals dress. Well…this could work. Black wool. Tea-length. Sleeveless. High cut. Done. But it looks ridiculous with these tights. Ditch the tights, Discover that I need to shave. No time to shave. Grab a razor. Out the door.

As we drove to the convention, I dry shaved in the car. It was kind of like that part in the Breakfast Club where she makes all the dandruff fall on the table. Only it was the top few layers of skin on my legs. We ate burritos in the car just before we went inside. The good news is that we made it on time and sang our little Baptist hearts out. The bad news is that my legs looked like dried out, chopped up, tree trunks. But hopefully that was offset by my super cute shoes. The shirt/dress actually made its debut the next day; along with jeans and boots.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I'm a total blog slacker. I'm blacker. Or a slog.

Remember that time when I had a blog and I wrote stuff all the time and then I didn’t write anything for two weeks? Yeah, sorry about that. I have had serious business. Or if it wasn’t serious, it was just time consuming and sometimes just laziness.

So I was collecting up my list of excuses to use. My computer wasn’t working right. My husband broke his freaking nose. I have been really busy with rehearsals, new students, kids, etc. I have been having panic attacks again.

Then I realized (now hang onto yourself cause I’m fixing to get all up philosophical in here) that aren’t all the excuses exactly what I wasn’t going to do since facing anxiety disorder head-on? Wasn’t that exactly the point? No lies, no hiding, no excuses.

So there. I didn’t write anything for two weeks because I was dealing with my OCD and anxiety in that order and also busy doing serious business. I’m all better now. For the moment. With that in mind…I shall now be thankful:

A) My dog likes to spoon with me. Luke told me he was jealous that the dog and I cuddle up so nice and tight. I told him that if he was the same size as the dog, then I would cuddle him too. He told me I was retarded. We are so good together.

B) Luke’s broken nose doesn’t really look all that bad. It just makes horrible squishing and popping noises. I promise a story soon.

C) I bought a new dress. Except that it’s not really a dress. Well…that’s kind of a story too.

D) 5 layer burritos. They have changed my world.

Sunday, January 24, 2010


OK seriously a new blog post is eventually going to happen.

I have business.

Lots of serious business.

The 5 layer burrito from Taco Bell has changed my life.

I promise I am working on better material.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Mmmm..nachos. And the Met auditions.

Yesterday I sang for the Metropolitan Opera National Council Audition. Just to be clear…I sang at the freaking Met audition.

It’s not like there are stringent entrance requirements; pretty much be the right age, learn 5 arias, and pay the entrance fee. However; the singers that enter are no Saturday night Karaoke singers. Well they might sing karaoke on Saturday night, I don’t know for sure. They may even cross-dress or smash baby turtles with hammers or collect those creepy little babies that look like they are alive. They might dress them up and name them and push them around in little baby strollers. I honestly have no idea what people do with their free-time, but the actual point is that these singers are all the real deal. The judges are the real deal. And I sang along side them. And I didn’t suck. Entirely.

A year ago my dad the singer decided it would be a great idea if I did the Met audition for the experience. I’ve sung very little classical music since leaving college in ’02 and it would be a good goal and a great way to get my voice back in shape. A year ago that seemed like all the time in the world to get ready. Then suddenly it was 6 weeks before the audition and I was like “Holy Crap! I have to memorize 5 arias in 6 weeks!” So the frantic studying began.

I started with an empty notebook just like I used to. I filled the notebook with page after page of German, Italian, English and French phrases. After a while, Luke would catch me wandering around the house speaking phrases in various languages. Close to the end, he would catch me dramatically enacting the phrases I was speaking. That’s how I develop characters. It’s all very glamorous and artistic and crap.

The night before the actual audition I was getting out the dress that I was going to wear. It’s super cute glittery green and black, short enough to be memorable but not whory, and just enough boobs to give you a second glance. I flipping love this dress. I always wear it with my black opaque tights (or sometimes fishnet) and knee high black boots. I also pair it with one of my many pairs of enormous hoop earrings. I figured, I knew I wasn’t going to be the best singer there because honestly these are people who have been doing this for a long time and I was there pretty much to prove to myself that I could keep up; not necessarily win. So I thought “If I’m not going to be the best singer, at least I can look really good and I will be memorable." Except that I could not find my black opaque tights anywhere.

I pretty much ripped my house apart looking for them. I even looked in the refrigerator, trash cans, dog bed, and bathtub. Seriously, I was starting to freak out. I needed those tights. I called Luke who was out playing basketball and alerted him to my freak out. When the girl with OCD and anxiety disorder who is about to compete in a serious competition for the first time in years calls in a panic over opaque tights, you go get her opaque tights. So my man went to Wal-mart at midnight to get me some new tights. By the time I called him in a panic, I had already taken 2 of my anxiety medications to take the edge off of the singer’s nerves and the tights panic. Apparently because of the drugs I also asked him for nachos. Once I knew that the tights were under control, I feel asleep. I have a vague hazy memory of him waking me up sometime in the middle of the night and asking me if I wanted nachos. My next fuzzy memory is me being all “What? Nachos? No way. I ‘m sleeping here. I have to sing tomorrow. In foreign languages.”

Saturday morning started early and involved make-up, hair, nails, ginormous earrings, and coffee. We got on the road and made it the hour and a half to the concert hall with only a little bit of arguing from the Aussie girl who runs our GPS. She kept trying to tell us to turn around and she kept being all “Re-calculating” in her little Aussie accent. And I was like “Freak no I’m not turning around. I need a flipping breakfast burrito. Maybe I should have some nachos. Those sound good”

We got there and listened to a whole mess of good singers through the morning. I was starting to freak a little because I needed at least one person to suck so that I could meet my goal of don’t-suck-the-worst. Then some blessed girl helped me to achieve that goal. I was schedule to sing right after lunch so I hung around while everyone went to eat for a few minutes. At the end of the break I figured that I couldn’t put it off anymore and headed to the warm-up room. Unfortunately the one warm-up room was occupied by a kindly young woman and her enormous boobs. Seriously, I didn’t even know where to look. As I was waiting for a turn to warm-up, the competition director rushed up the stairs and says “Are you Angela?” And I was like “Um…yes. No. I don’t know. Why? What did she do?” She said that no one had showed back up from lunch yet and she needed me to go on. Like right that second.

This was going to be a problem. A) I hadn’t warmed up yet. So the Director went ahead and tossed bosoms out into the hall so I could “warm-up” for approximately 2 minutes. B) I had carefully timed my anxiety meds so that they would be maximized right during my audition time. But this was like an hour early. I needed more time to get all relaxed and whatnot. But off I went. I was backstage and then onstage before I could ever re-touch my lipstick.

My accompanist must have been in a bit of a hurry. He started my first aria about 24 times faster than normal human speech capacity would allow. Seeing as how this song was in German and most of my face doesn’t work correctly, this just wasn’t going to be happening. I might throw a screw and have my jaw un-hinge which really puts a damper on the whole looking pretty situation. Dangling jaw bones probably aren’t going to be featured in the fall fashion shows anytime soon. So in an attempt to slow down the tempo, I simply slowed down. Somehow Chief didn’t get the message and we pretty much spent the aria playing tempo chicken. But I really was OK with the outcome.

I was able to perform my comic piece next. Part of this song involves singing intentionally horribly to make folks laugh. People who attend opera competitions don’t find me funny. But it was funny. I crack myself up. I ‘m pretty much my biggest fan. And then it was all over. I sang, I was happy with it, and I wasn’t completely horrible.

After the judging is over and the winners are announced you can go talk to the judges about your performance. You tell them your name and your number and the look you up in the binder that they took all the notes in all day. I sat down and said “I’m Angela. Number 18.” And the judge says (no lie) “Ah yes…earrings.” So there you have it; enormous earrings are always a great choice.

The entire experience was fabulous. I checked OCD long enough to prepare, travel (with my safe person), perform, talk to judges and basically re-establish my confidence as a classical performer. I think it’s about time to go and get those nachos.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Tuesdays with Chuck E. Episode: 6 or 7 or someone go back and count for me.

One busy Saturday afternoon somewhere in the neighborhood of April or May 1998 I set up a birthday party for a young lady. When you have a CEC party you get 90 minutes. End of story. 90 minutes. We were Nazis about it. SO after 90 minutes when this particular group had never shown up, I re-set the table for the next party who had already arrived.

About 5 minutes into the next party, they arrived. And when I say “arrived” I mean “stormed through the door like some kind of mafia.” They were asking to be shown to their table. I politely and in my best I’m-only-in-high-school-so-please-don’t-yell-at-me-voice explained that since they were late, they no longer had a table. Here’s where the fun started. As I am explaining the situation to Party Mom #1, Party Grandma #2 gets right in between us and tells me that I was her waitress now, not these other folks and that I had better get back over to the table.

Let me give you a visual on Party Grandma #2: She is about 4’10 with gray hair, a cute little shawl, and the meanest mouth I’ve ever heard. Not one to be deterred by her size, Party Grandma #2 grabs me by the arm (ferociously), looks right up into the eyes of Party Mom #1 who has about 8 inches and 100 pounds on her and says (and I quote) “What? Just because you’re black you think that you get everything first?! Well, too bad!”

Well, of course this inspired Party Mom #1 to stake her claim to me as her “waitress” (FYI: I was not a waitress. I was a Party Hostess. Big difference) She grabs my other arm testing the durability of my skin against her 3 inch nails in the process and says (and I quote) “Listen B****, this little white girl was dealing with me first.” The racial slurs began to flow quite freely at this point, meanwhile I am still in the middle as some sort of human tug-of-war.

Finally, after one too many “black people” vs. “white people” comments, Party Grandma #2 loses her crap. With one hand still firmly on my arm, she uses her free hand to smack Party Mom #1. This was probably not ideal. Party Mom #1 without ever letting go of my other arm manages to pop off all her press on nails, which offered me some relief I must say, and go to town on little white grandma. So NOW I have a race war being fought inches from my face while both parties hold firm to their prize; the little white waitress.

All of this happened over the course of only a few minutes. Soon both families had become aware of the altercation, as well as most of the guests, and both families came to the rescue of their side. Party Grandma #2 must have taken some kind of crazy pill that morning. Party Mom #1 is now joined by her enormous, muscled husband who also has an affinity for colorful language. Grandma finally lets go of my arm only to charge the man and chest bump him (you know, as well as she could) while calling him a variety of terms that I think haven’t been heard since about 1952. Mom #1 drops my arm to aid her husband in educating all the children in the room some new terms for little white waitress. Honestly, I didn’t even know that some of those words even existed.

Fortunately, some quick minded individual had called the police from the words “Just because you’re black…” Apparently it’s common knowledge that conversations beginning that way never end well. The fight was mostly over as the police came inside. Everyone scattered and no one was forced to leave in the back of a police car or anything. I, however, was left standing in the exact same spot with nail marks in my flesh for approximately an hour saying to my self “Did that just happen?!”

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Thankful Thursday with undertones of fighting the urge to run for my life.

Today I panicked.

Today I had a panic attack that lasted for a while. It kept trying to creep up on me. It started with the rapid heartbeat and I deeply breathed it back into its place. Then it tried to sneak in through my tingly hands and feet. I slowed that down using panic control techniques. But this guy was relentless. I finally just gave up, let it happen, and took extra meds. So far, the meds have taken the edge off. But it’s still in there trying to get back out. I have the nervous, jittery, anxious feeling like people are watching me. I have the overwhelming urge to touch and count. I am trying to keep my head around it.

So that totally sucks. These are the days I want to get in bed and not get out.

So what am I thankful for on panic attack Thursday? Honestly…I am thankful for people who read this blog. I especially appreciate all the fun comments. You guys make me feel all warm and fuzzy. Or maybe that is the extra anxiety meds. Either way…thanks for the support!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

My status can't cure cancer. I know Jesus' status could. You should forward that to Him.

Things in my brain

A) Just because I don’t re-copy as my status or forward to 10 people or make a wish or whatever it doesn’t mean that I don’t love Jesus. But apparently, only like 3% of people will copy and paste this as their status therefore insinuating that I do not love Jesus which is categorically incorrect. Possibly it may also be an indication that I am in fact ashamed of Jesus because I chose not to copy and paste an error riddled status update full of smileys and hearts. I have also heard that if I know someone who has cancer I should copy and paste and or forward to 10 people so that we can find the cure. For cancer. But nooooooo. Because of the 97% of people who won’t copy and paste it, we can’t cure cancer now. Thanks a lot everyone. Jesus probably gave us the cancer because we didn’t prove our status update love. (*disclaimer* I am allowed to make that joke because I do actually love Jesus and I promise He thinks that is funny. Also I have had a tumor in my face 3 times. So there)

B) I feel like this cold weather that we are fixin to get is all kinds of not nearly as cool now that we have had an actual blizzard. It’s like when Rick cuts in to be all “Weather Update: It is going to be very very cold. Like really really cold. I’m not kidding here people” (paraphrasing) I feel like his producer most have just said “OK Rick. We only get that one blizzard so get out there and make this sound as bad as you can. I know it’ll be difficult after the blizzard but try your best”

C) I love Jersey Shore. I’m not even gonna lie. I love it. I am fascinated by it. I try to do their accent all the time. It’s OK but not perfect yet. I’m much more proficient at Wisconsin and French accents. I also do a pretty mean Southern Arkansas. I have seen every episode of this show. I watched Snooki getting punched in the face like 14 times on youtube. I always feel better about myself after an hour of Jersey Shore. Or as Luke calls it “Jersey Shore: Making The Real World classier one hour at a time.”

D) Also, I don’t care whose facebook group gets more members first. I don’t care if boys can get a million members before girls or if Oklahoma City can get more members than more or lets see if we can get ten-thousand people to join a group to promote group joining. I don’t care. Unless you can get 1000 people to join a group called “Get Angela to Care.” Then I would actually take an interest. No seriously…start a group about me. I’ll join that crap. Even if it’s like “Let’s see if 2248 people will join this group to get Angela to do something clever that I can’t think of right now” Why 2248? Because it’s the perfect number. OCD is awesome.

E) Hey remember that one time when I put on my wedding dress and took pictures? I would like to see your best wedding clothes photos. I’ll make a collection and post it. Seriously.

F) My brother got into Cornell. I believe he used the phrase “Holy Crap” in his essay. Also “came through the birth canal like a torpedo.” Honestly.

G) Nothing here. I just needed to fill the line so that I could end with point H. Why? Because H=8 and 8 is the perfect good number. OCD is awesome. And this is me medicated.

H) I need suggestions for blog posts. Anything. Be as creative as you want. Ask questions. Make requests. Whatever. Just try and stump me. Gauntlet thrown.

Monday, January 4, 2010

I hope the first post of the year doesn't suck

It’s a new year, so I guess that mean it’s time to get back to the regular blog routine. Although I’m not entirely sure that “regular” or “routine” have ever been accurate words to describe anything that I do.

I thought about doing one of those “2009 Year in Review” deals but then I realized that I blogged almost all of 2009 and if you care at all you can just head over to the archives and check that crap out. Otherwise you just don’t care about me and you are an evil evil person.

So maybe I could just look ahead to 2010 and create some sort of list of things that I’d like to accomplish. Not New Year’s Resolutions because those are crazy obnoxious. More like a grouping of things that I am willing to put forth a mild effort towards. Not a resolute effort per se, but a semi-determined attempt. I would like to:

1) Eat an enormous amount of spaghetti

Check. I already did that today. I like to start the year off with one in the win column.

2) Take the Mensa test

I’m not saying that I am going to pass the Mensa test, but I want to take the real live monitored test. Then if I don’t pass it I’ll just be all “Well, the test was skewed towards a specific gender/race/religion and I don’t want to be apart of an organization that is sexist/racist/evil.” Advice for 2010: Anytime something doesn’t go your way, just blame racism. Nobody wants to be on the same side as racism. You’re welcome.

3) Wear my Snuggie in as many places as possible

I feel as though I am personally responsible for the dramatic shift in popular acceptance of the Snuggie. It seems as though all persons now have Snuggies and are proud of it. You can’t throw a rock without hitting a Snuggie in a store. Advice for 2010: Do not throw rocks in stores. There are those who will misconstrue this as a malicious act and not simply a method of determining the quantity of Snuggies. Anyhow, I feel as though it is time to bring the Snuggie into the public. As I already wear my Snuggie at church, I plan to expand to wearing either of my Snuggies (yes I have 2) to my doctor, to parties, to the beach etc. Documentation will be included. I expect that by 2011, people will be wearing their Snuggies all day every day.

4) Learn to read lips

I am going deaf. This is a proven medical fact. The audiologist told me so. Apparently I didn’t raise my hand enough times when the beeps were going off in my headphones. Hopefully, the Mensa test won’t be as difficult. Anyhow, since I can no longer watch TV without the captions, I figure it might be a good idea to get prepared in case a go all deaf. I’ve kind of always practiced lip reading just because I think its fun to be able to tell if people are talking about you from across the room. Then I can be like “Hey! I can hear you! From here! I’m very powerful.” And then they will never say anything bad ever again.

5) Watch a football game without giggling

Who am I kidding? Penetration across the line is just plain funny. I’m gonna laugh at that crap.

6) Use the word of the day at least 4 times per day

I previously tried to use the word of the day at least once per day. I would like to up that number to an unreasonable amount of times per day to use an odd vocab word. I hope it makes people uncomfortable. And also this will be very helpful if I ever get to go to a Mensa meeting. I’m sure they use the word of the day like 50 times. Today the word is “enjoin” meaning “to forbid or prohibit”. I will not enjoin myself from using this word multiple times. I don’t enjoin you from this behavior either. That’s 2. Suck it And Mensa.

7) Become a Yoga Master

I pretty much love Yoga but I’m not so much the best at it in the world. I want to be able to do all the crazy triangle poses and the positions that make other people go “Holy crap woman!” And if they are really far away from me when they say that, I would like to be able to read their lips so that I know how impressed/weirded out/concerned they are. I will not enjoin them from being awestruck at my Yoganess.

8) Continue to be a voice for OCD, agoraphobia and panic disorders

Since I have come out of the OCD closet, I have meet and talked to so many people who live with mental illness like I do. Hiding and lying was ineffective and difficult. If you are still sitting in the dark of your mental illness, come on out and let us know. I won’t bite you (most likely). I won’t laugh at you (unless it is really really funny). But I will be happy to talk with you and learn from you. It’s kind of nice to not be isolated anymore. You are no longer enjoined from being real. And that's 4. I'm going to be a freaking genius by the end of the year.