How to Dress for a Temp Job Interview

Unlike any other job sector, the use of temps has jumped more than 50 percent in the last four years (Source: American Staffing Association). This is terrific news for the optimistic worker who actually wants to be temporary, and it’s not bad news for the pessimistic worker who really doesn’t want to be temporary, but needs the work to pay the bills. For better or worse, temp jobs are on the rise. But the question that no one is asking is this: are temporary employees’ skirt hems on the rise, as well? What’s the story with temp attire anyway? How exactly are temps supposed to dress?

Temps are here to stay, at least for the foreseeable future, but fashion is fickle. We know the hiring trends, but do we know the fashion trends on the temp scene? We know the employers’ hiring numbers, but do we know what employers consider ‘cute little numbers’? Or what they consider just too ‘little’? Or too casual? Or too loud? Or too sexy? Or too messy? Or too ‘90s? The professional ensemble extends beyond just clothes. I think we can all agree what an assault on the nose too much perfume is, but what about hair spray? Can we all agree what an assault on the eyes some hair styles cause? What about make-up? Lack of make-up? Nail polish? Jewelry? The list is endless. You might think that it basically comes down to common sense, personal opinion and style. If only it were that simple…

Here’s a typical scenario: A temp agency emails with a low-paying temp job prospect that you are humbled but grateful to receive. Unfortunately, sometimes even the most qualified and professionally savvy temp has to interview for a $10/hour temp job. The agency’s email includes a 4-page document detailing ways to prepare for an interview. It provides basic suggestions – review their web site to get familiar with the company, prepare five questions to ask the interviewer, have references available, etc… but it also includes one brief and unclear point: the company’s dress code is business casual, so they recommended you wear a dark-colored suit to the interview. Since when is a suit of any color considered ‘business casual’, you ask yourself. When was the last time you wore a suit? Do you even have a suit? Let your interview outfit conundrum begin!

Following the suggestions of the temp agency, you google the company to familiarize yourself with it and seek out those five questions to ask. But you’re also hoping to get a sense of the company’s culture to assess if you actually should wear a suit. How emphatic is the agency’s suggestion? You decide to start browsing online and window shopping. With your unpredictable employment stability, but predictable wage of $10/hour, you don’t have a lot of options. Whatever you choose to wear could get you the job, or it could just get you pity.

I have heard and I agree that it’s always better to be over-dressed than under-dressed, but it’s entirely possible that the person interviewing you will be wearing a t-shirt and jeans. You may end up feeling like you look desperate or nerdy in any professional garb you wear. If you have suffered this awkward situation in the past, you may opt for the timeless and safe cashmere-sweater-and-tweed-skirt outfit. Very smart-looking. But the person interviewing you may be old-fashioned and/or narrow-minded and does not see “timeless and smart” – they only see “no suit”. You may end up feeling embarrassed and defenseless – they did tell you to wear a suit after all. Suit it is!

I have also heard and I also agree that there is no accounting for taste. Since your financial resources are limited, you may need to choose between trendiness and quality. You may choose trendiness and buy a new, inexpensive suit mass-manufactured for a Swedish chain store, and risk breaking out in hives. The hives may be an allergic reaction to the synthetic fibers or a reaction from selling out to The Man. Or you may choose quality and find a perfectly preserved, cotton-candy pink, three-quarter sleeve 1960’s skirt suit and risk the possibility of feeling like a little kid playing dress-up, or worse, you may not be taken seriously. My personal opinion is that the quality option is infinitely better than wearing anything manufactured in a sweat shop. Obviously these are extreme examples. I believe it is sound advice to follow the lead of your local news anchors’ wardrobe, but for clothes only. Pay no attention to their hair and make-up. You do not want to end up looking like a Stepford Wife. For your own sanity, avoid looking for above-the-neck decorating ideas on Pinterest. The onslaught of contradictory recommendations yielded from a simple ‘make-up for interview’ search will give you bags under your eyes, and not the Gucci kind. Resist Pinterest. This cannot be understated, although your make-up probably should be.

A dizzying number of articles have been written about appropriate hairstyles for job interviews. If you have straight hair, you shouldn’t have any trouble. If you have curly hair, it is an entirely different story. “The goal is to wear your hair how you’re most comfortable… You want to look polished but still look like you. Trying to take on another persona just to get the job probably isn’t going to work out”, says celebrity hairstylist Mark Townsend in a Dec. 2013 article in Cosmo. But then he proceeds to list myriad ways in which to make curly hair really straight including a blowout, a sleek ponytail, a chic French twist, a sleek top knot, a low bun, etc…. None of these styles seem comfortable, and they are not very “me” at all. My advice about curly hair is my same advice about most things in life these days: keep it simple, nothing too crazy. Imagine that you are having your picture taken the day of your interview. The picture will be on your make-believe interview ID card with an expiration date of ten years or your next hire date, whichever is sooner. Now think about your high school yearbook photo. Really think about it. Remember to think about it while you are primping for that interview.

There is no formula, nor any standard, and there’s certainly no shortage of recommendations for what appropriate attire for an interview is. Amidst the effort, attention, and care you are meticulously putting into your outfit, do not forget the reason you’re getting dressed up in the first place: to get hired. Potential employers are more likely to read a neat and orderly resume than they are to read one that’s been doused in perfume. In the same way that it is immeasurably less stressful when your resume is accurate, it is immeasurably less stressful when your presentation of yourself is accurate. Personal expression will comfort you in familiarity, and it could also help you stand out from other candidates. Try wearing something small with a dash of color. Confidence and authenticity may be the only things you can control, and they are probably the most important things you can wear to a job interview. Now go knock their snazzy socks off!

Works Cited

Cardellino, Carly. “The Perfect Hair and Makeup to Nail Your Dream Job Interview”. Dec. 12, 2013. [online] Available at:

American Staffing Association. ASA, 2013. Accessed on March 24, 2015 [online]. Available at

Temp of the Year

Hello, there!

Long time! Looong time.

I got an email reminder the other day that my blog domain is about to expire. You know what that means? Slushkitty’s 3rd birthday is coming up on March 20th! Happy birthday, you dear thing! For funsies, I looked back at my very first entries. From March 20th to March 29th of 2012, I posted three times. THREE TIMES! Cut to March 2015: I have not posted in six months. SIX MONTHS! I really have no reason. It’s not like I have been too busy working or something – I keep getting canned from temp jobs. Not really. It was just that one. And I walked out of another one. But just that one.

I have been under-employed or unemployed since May of 2013 – that’s almost two years! I have been temping since November 2013, and they have been sending me on a lot of assignments lately. The sympathetic and wonderful recruiter I work with even mentioned something about “Temp of The Year” and I am not even kidding. The more I am out there both begrudgingly and gratefully, the more Ghosts of Temp Jobs Past have been visiting me. Come, my benevolent anti-Scrooges, and take a walk with me….

My temping career began when I lived in San Francisco during the dot com boom, which lasted roughly from 1997 to 2000 (I had to google that because let’s just say I was totally out to lunch during those years). For five years, I worked at a flower company, being sure I wore flowers in my hair, until sadly they closed their SF office and I got laid off. Someone suggested I go to his staffing agency to get some temp jobs until I got a permanent one – he alleged they were really nice. I called and they wanted me to come in. So far, so good, right? I walked into the interview confident, friendly, adorable, and oh so very very high. The jerk told me that the way I was dressed made me look like I was interviewing for a job as a bike messenger. I walked out of the interview withered, surly, looking like a bike messenger apparently, and still oh so very very high.

When I taped myself back together, I started working with another agency. My first assignment was at The American Lung Association. I stepped out like every 20 minutes for a cigarette. It wasn’t the best match, but it was a really pleasant experience. Living in and booming with SF, I found a permanent job in no time, and I really loved that one, too. Until I didn’t. After five years working there, I whimpered with great haste back home to Boston where I gave temping another try.

I don’t want to talk about that glaring SF –> Boston gap in my resume – it’s really depressing. Let’s just say I was totally out to lunch during those 1.5 years. I eventually got a job selling plastic maracas for assholes. It sucked. I got another job selling dial-up modems for assholes. It sucked. It sucked and it sucked and it sucked my soul out for nearly six years. A sales rep sent me a vibrator in the mail and shortly thereafter I got laid off. Long story.

As I said, I have been under-employed or unemployed since May of 2013. At this time last year, I found myself working two consecutive temp assignments with two different people who had Tourette’s syndrome. Whoooop whoooop. I worked a bunch of other jobs since then, and they were pretty dull, so dull I can only vaguely remember what they were.

This past Christmastime, I got a job where the fact that I have zero sense of direction was confirmed. Auntie told me that she read that some people are just born without that sense. Something about in utero brain damage. In any case, they had me going on bank and post office runs every day. And every single day, no matter what direction I took, I wound up in Post Office Square. It was like the city version of The Blair Witch Project. Using the GPS on my phone was not helpful at all because I was always within feet of my destination. No matter how fast I ran so I could see the little arrow showing me which direction I was running, I could never find the turn I was supposed to take to get to my destination. Because it was Christmastime, I blamed how long I was gone on the long lines at the Post Office. Thank you, baby Jesus!

That assignment ended because they found me another job covering for a woman who was going on maternity leave. It was right by my house and the company was growing at an impressive rate. There was a good chance that it would turn into a permanent job! Woohooo! It didn’t. Partly because I have no sense of direction. The guy I was working with was one of those cooler-than-thou modern hippies – he had long but carefully coiffed hair and interesting facial hair. He had a framed picture on his desk of his really pretty girlfriend on the beach looking lovingly at him, while he looked the other way in contrived contemplation. He talked and blinked slowly. He never smiled. He recycled. Anyway, the company was in a warehouse in two huge rooms where everyone was in their 20s, hip, and scooted on scooters up the aisles of the open workspace. I was being trained somewhere in the maze of aisles where everyone looked the same, and he told me he’d meet me back at his work area. I roamed around, haunted again by the Blair Witch, everything looking familiar, and then Hey! I know where I am!, thought I. But I found myself standing right in front of him. I said, “Wow! You’re fast!” thinking he just beat me there. He glared at me with his smileless face and said, “No. I haven’t moved. The company only has two rooms.” I had just walked in a huge circle.

At lunch, they ordered burritos for everyone, so that was nice, but I was kind of a mess the rest of the day. I had that Hysterical Stupidness I may have told you about. I get so nervous that my brain feels paralyzed and can’t understand the simplest instructions, and just “yes” everyone to death while I fight back the tears afraid to ask for help. I chanted in my head all day the mantra, “This is your first day. No one expects you to know what you’re doing except you. You are the only one who expects you to know what you’re doing. This is your first day. No one expects you to know what you’re doing except you. You are the only one who expects you to know what you’re doing”. When I left for the day, I gave everyone a huge smile. Never let them see you sweat. Huge toothy smile and big wave, “See you guys tomorrow!”.

Seven hours later in Cambridge, TOIL and I were walking down the sidewalk when he gave me a double-take, stopped me, and said, “look at me”. He gave a hearty laugh and told me I had something stuck in my teeth. I had a goddam head of lettuce from the burrito at lunch stuck in my teeth all day. The image of myself, huge toothy smile, “See you guys tomorrow!” nearly made me lose the burrito. That tomorrow was my last day there.

They must have been merciful and not told the temp agency I was incompetent and seemingly not very bright because they had me on another assignment at another law office the next day. It was during those weeks we had 200 feet of snow. I was still shaken from that last job and still suffering Hysterical Stupidness, but I think it went more or less unnoticed – the office was in administrative chaos. They had three receptionists – one was on vacation, one had given her notice, and the other had just walked off the job after three years and didn’t give any notice. The woman I was working for didn’t have time to train me on anything so she gave a mile-high stack of invoices from an entire year that she wanted me to scan and organize. The next day, she came into the copy room where I was scanning my little heart out, and said, “I am so embarrassed to have to ask you this”. I thought she was embarrassed because she had another mile-high stack for me to sort. Nope. She said, “Mr. <ancient partner of the firm> asked me to tell you to do something about your hair.” Wha?!?!? “I am so embarrassed I had to say anything to you”, she said. “Look at my hair! I have bad hair days too and this weather! This weather makes everyone’s hair a little messy”. Wha??!?! My hair looked like it does EVERY day!!! I went into the bathroom to “do something” about my hair, and started sobbing. I called Lily, DLD, and temp place crying my afro off, and they all told me I could leave, gave me permission so to speak to exercise my dignity. I went back into the office, messy winter hair untouched, and told the woman I was leaving, I wasn’t going to fix my hair, and Mr. <ancient partner of the firm> needs to learn some manners. She was very apologetic and told me that he’s a “prick” and she wished she could leave, too. It took some of the sting out.

The temp place asked me to come by since their office was around the corner, and when I got there, they all practically hugged me, lulling me back to the Land of Self-Respect, telling me I have beautiful curly hair, and what was his problem. Lily pointed out that it was a great lesson, and a measure of recovery that I refused to accept unacceptable behavior. Not only did it make me feel bad, but I actually recognized it was demeaning, and did something about it by leaving. Not only did I leave with dignity and grace, it didn’t even occur to me to walk into his office, give him the finger, and tell him to go fuck himself. What’s even better? I didn’t do a damn thing to my hair.

I started this blog saying that I hadn’t really been working, but now that I write about it, I actually have been working quite a bit. I’ve also been getting some seriously ridiculous blog material. I have been working yes, and I also started school, my Final Frontier. (Rest in Peace, Mr. Spock). I am easing my way into school by taking one class, English class “College Writing 111”. My second paper is due Tuesday. My topic is going to be “How to Dress Like a Temp”, and it will emphasize to temps the importance of bringing maps of the city and dental floss, and wearing their naturally beautiful hair and dignity, to all temp assignments at all times.

53 Days

Well, hello there!

It’s been 53 days since the last time I posted. Do you know how I know that, besides by looking at the date of my last post? Because it has been 53 days since I smoked my last cigarette! Wooohooo! The agreement I had with DLD was that we’d quit our individual bad habits for 40 days and 40 nights, so technically I could have resumed smoking 13 days ago. But I think I’ll stay stopped. I’m $504.38 richer! Seriously! And I’ve noticed my senses of smell and taste have skyrocketed – it’s almost impossible to believe that all this time Snickers could possibly have been more delicious. And Starburst, too. Unfortunately, I can’t eat blueberries anymore – too tart. Except blueberry Pop Tarts. I can eat those. Delicious. Curiously, my visual imagery ability has also skyrocketed. No one has ever mentioned this could happen when you quit smoking, but I’ll take it! It’s the cherry on top of my quitting smoking sundae! Mmmm. Sundaes. Cherries. Cherry Pop Tarts. Yum.

Occasionally and happily, it occurs to me that I am not really experiencing any negative effects of quitting smoking, such as irritability and overeating. Knowing that it is wise to get a second opinion when making self-assessments, I asked DLD if I have been more irritable than usual these past 53 days. He said no, not at all. Essellent! Mmmmm. Egg salad. It may have something to do with some other lifestyle changes I’ve made since I stopped smoking. I’ve started exercising and practicing guided mindful meditations while on the T on my way to Wonglood – I’ve replaced nicotine with endorphins and Zen. I’m also practicing acceptance. I have to accept that some people on the T are simply annoying. I am practicing trying to remember in real time to pause and notice the annoyance – I should simply notice the annoyance and imagine it as a cloud passing across the sky. Acceptance is the answer to all of my problems. I’m accepting the fact that my body is adjusting to these changes, and sometimes when I am on the T, I’m just tired and need to remember that things will be a little easier after I have had a cup of coffee. Don’t you hate when people say shit like that about their first cup of coffee? Or worse, have actual coffee cups that say shit about their first cup of coffee? Albert Camus (allegedly) wrote, “Should I kill myself, or have a cup of coffee?”. Which do you think I think people who say shit like that about coffee should do, Albert? And the word ‘cup’ – don’t you hate that word? I’m not even kidding. I hate that word. ‘Cup’. I also hate the words ‘nugget’ and ‘dollop’, to name a couple of others. I guess I hate words with an “uh” sound. Except ‘fuck’, as in “fuck you”. ‘Moist’ doesn’t bother me in the least. I rather like it. But don’t you hate that suddenly everyone hates the word ‘moist’? News flash everyone who says they hate the word ‘moist’: you’re not being original. You’re stealing someone else’s (lame) attempt at humor. Stop it. You’re annoying. Where the hell was I? Yes, I was talking about how I am not irritable and don’t overeat. I don’t even drink coffee, by the way. I hate coffee. Mmmm. Coffee cake.

I am also learning to accept.. and to imagine as clouds passing across the sky.. that some people have a remarkably high tolerance for noise, especially the noise they themselves emit. Actually, most people are too loud in every way – eat too loudly, breathe too loudly, talk too loudly, and the worst – talk to themselves too loudly! Oh – but THE worst worst worst – people who talk to me too loudly (or talk to me at all actually) when clearly I am ignoring them, as in, my back is to them, earbuds are in my ears but not plugged into anything else in true passive-aggressive fashion, I don’t nod in any kind of recognition while their lips are flapping. Speaking of lips… whistling? Why? Whyyyy??? Luckily for all the whistling idiots who cross my path, due to my new superhero power of mental visualization, I can imagine pulling their lips off their faces with my bare hands instead of actually pulling their lips off their faces with my bare hands. Visualize this – I’d impersonate one of those mechanical claw machines they have at arcades and Chuck E. Cheese (and the old Ground Round by Fresh Pond – remember that place?). I’d calmly walk up to them and gently grasp their whistling face from nose to chin with my fingers, then gently close my claw around their whistling lips. And then pull. Wicked hard. In my sociopathic imagination, it is done in slow motion hilarity. The whistling would trail off as their eyes would bug out, not so much from suffocation but from utter shock. Of course, in real life, they’d get really pissed and block my physical assault, so it’d have to be a surprise, ninja-like attack. They’d never know what hit them and they’d be too fearful to ever whistle again. You’re welcome.

HK claw

Being all mindful and healthy and Zen the way I am now that I have quit smoking, I am sure that you will be supportive of all the tools I have used to quit smoking, including violent visualizations. The next time someone on the T whacks you in the head or jabs you in the ribs – and we all know they’ll be a next time – instead of scowling or getting upset, take a page from my book. Close your eyes, take deep luxurious breaths, smile with your eyes, smile with your mouth the half smile of the Buddha. And then imagine calmly walking up to them, pushing them down those three stupid and hazardous stairs on the Green Line, grabbing their bag, beating the daylights out of them with it. Imagine walking calmly back to your seat and resuming looking out the window at the beauty of God’s Green Earth. Exhale and cradle yourself in the relief the visualizations lovingly provide. Release the tension, release your worries.  Imagine them as clouds passing across the sky….

Have a nice day!

P.S. I have a 28-day supply of 14mg nicotine patches if anyone who’s trying to quit would like them. Being irritable doesn’t mean I am not generous and thoughtful and serene. It simply means I take public transportation and have really good hearing, especially since I quit smoking.. 53 days ago.

The Quitting Smoking / Getting off the Floor Challenge! or 40/40 CCSSCSSCCCC



DLD and I have challenged each other to a bad habit cessation duel. I started writing up a formal contract… 21 days ago. Because God only knows how long it was going to take me to write it, we started the challenge before I finalized the contract. I valiantly wrestled my smoking monkey for about 24 hours and DLD valiantly wrestled his falling-asleep-in-front-of-the-TV monkey for about four hours. Since then, we have each tried with varying and inconsistent successes in kicking our respective monkeys. So it was back to the drawing board!


I got the writing a contract idea from Oprah’s “Best Life Diet – Best Life Contract with Myself”, but I ended up perverting it beyond all recognition. The last sentence in her agreement is, “I realize this contact is solely with myself and that it carries no rewards, penalties or punishments other than those associated with the reflection of the strength of my character”. I don’t think so, Opes – that’ll never ever work. That self-determination, among many other reasons, is why your net worth is $2.9 billion and mine… isn’t. But self-determination has nothing to do with overcoming whatever plagues you. The very spirit in which my and DLD’s contract is intended is to acknowledge that we absolutely cannot do this solely by ourselves. We’re using the 12 Steps as a model: knowing that probably no human power could have relieved our fixations, and then committing ourselves to our primary purpose, which is to stay <something healthy> and to help others achieve <something healthy>. Being accountable to and supported by someone you love makes quitting a very bad and very old habit bearable, and maybe even possible. And what’s this business about “no rewards”? More like “no fun”! No penalties or punishments? We LOVE penalties and punishments! (More on this later – see contract). This “Best Life Diet Contract” sounds like it kind of shames people into skinny. Failure to smack down whatever misery you’re battling has diddly, zilch, zip to do with your strength of character. Sheeeeesh! This kind of ultimatum practically begs someone to mainline a double-deep-fried Baked Alaska then throw themselves off the roof of Harpo Industries. Shame on you, Oprah. And now that I am spending way too much time considering this, I’m surprised Oprah would support such a sinister and threatening contract. She may want to consider a 12-step program herself. There must be one for overeating, right? Hmm. Nothing is coming to and Oprah


DLD and I originally made a wager. If he fell asleep in front of the TV, he’d give me $50. If I smoked, I’d give him $25. (We agreed to a scale – I’m barely working, remember?) The money part got laughed out of consideration for inclusion into the terms of the agreement – we’d just end up swapping cash from my sweaty, unemployed hand into DLD’s lifeless hand (lifeless from lack of sleep). The other snag we immediately got caught in is that one of us (which one slipped first is irrelevant) fell asleep/smoked before the other, hence giving the other permission to fall asleep/smoke (which one slipped last is irrelevant) and revise the start date. So there was really no incentive other than having the privilege of being smug for a little while, which isn’t very nice. All that this confusion managed to do was obliterate the entire purpose of the challenge, which is to be happy and healthy and live a long life being bright-tailed, bushy-eyed, and smelling like a girl, and helping a friend do the same. Except he’d smell like a boy, not a girl. He’s going to smell the same as he does now – which is sort of like a combo of turf and juice – no matter what happens. I’m going to smell like a girl. Or at least not like smoke.


We decided to make the challenge for 40 days and 40 nights. I don’t remember why it’s 40. I think it has something to do with Jesus. Or the Israelites. Or something.

Sooooooooooo without further confusion and procrastination, here’s the contract!… which DLD is invited to clarify or to straighten shit out in the comments or something…



40 days and 40 nights C&C Super Smoking Cessation and Sound Sleeping Challenge, Commitment, and Consequences Contract

The 40 days and 40 nights C&C Super Smoking Cessation and Sound Sleeping Challenge, Commitment, and Consequences Contract (“40/40CCSSCSSCCCC”) between Slushkitty (“SK”) and Darlie like Darling (“DLD”) will commence on the morning of Monday, the eighteenth day of August two thousand fourteen, and will end on the night of Friday, the twenty-sixth day of September two thousand fourteen.



The challenge for SK is to secure her rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of having nice-smelling hair, lungs, and mouth.


SK hereby commits to quit smoking. She will cease the inhalation of carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, hydrogen cyanides, ammonia, as well as any of the other 4000 deeeelicious chemical compounds – 69 of which are known to cause cancer – and the trace amounts of tobacco and nicotine found in cigarettes or created by the burning of cigarettes. Regardless of the precipitant(s) of the craving, which include but are not limited to: physical addition, social awkwardness, emotional distress, boredom, habit, anxiety, excuses/opportunities to be close to cute boy smokers, escape from work (when applicable), obsession, motivation to get out of bed, she will abstain from smoking as evidence of her commitment to herself – and, by way of this contract, to DLD – to live and enjoy a long and healthy life.

The rewards that SK will earn for quitting smoking include, but are in no way limited to: zip, zest, wealth, health, extended life expectancy, calm, increased energy, wrinkle prevention, whiter teeth, prettier skin, easier breathing, reduced irritability, peace of mind, self respect, respect of others, smelling better, increased work productivity (when applicable), prevention of puppies stepping on my burning cigarette butts, prevention of an inevitable smokers’ cough, a savings of approximately $296 per month, $3558 per year, elimination of litterbuggerness, decreased homicidal ideations when flying the friendly skies, prevention of house fires, prevention of forest fires, prevention of ashtray fires, fewer dirty looks from non-smokers, ending being the incarnation of Pigpen in a cloud of dirt and ash, fewer dirty looks from ex-smokers, less annoying to others, and not flying into rage and/or hysteria upon realization that my pack is empty and the store is closing in 3…2…1.


The consequence for violating 40/40 CCSSCSSCCCC by smoking cigarettes, including drags of cigarettes, is a ban on Facebook for any purpose in any way for the four days following the violation.



The challenge for DLD is to secure his rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of a good mood. I kid. It is to secure his rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of a restful night sleep with sweet dreams of Slushkitty and bunnies and ice cream cones and rainbows.


DLD hereby commits to turning off the TV, getting off the floor and into bed, and calling to check in with Amanda by 10:00 pm Monday-Friday, and by 11:00 Saturday and Sunday. Regardless of the precipitant(s) of the desire to stay on the floor, which include but are not limited to: fear of the dark, fear of being alone, depression, believing life is too scary, feelings are too scary, sweet sweet numbness, repression, feelings of any kind, obsession, false sense of escape, fear of being alone late at night with nothing to do, thinking it’s not worth it – never has been, never will be, doing God’s will isn’t worth it – never has been, never will be, delusions that he has never been committed to recovery, believing changing anything makes no difference, he will begin and maintain his healthy nighttime routine as evidence of his commitment to himself – and, by way of this contract, to SK – to live and enjoy a long and peaceful life.


The rewards that DLD will earn for getting off the floor and into bed include, but are in no way limited to: everything. Every area of life will open up, come alive, and exponentially improve socially, professionally, psychically, gastrointestinally, spiritually, mentally, and sexually; acid reflux will be reduced, while memory, sex life, libido, studliness will be increased. He will feel younger. He will love and care for others in an honest way. He will also never have to look like this again: Charlie's eye

can you actually get black eyes from insomnia???


The consequence for violating 40/40 CCSSCSSCCCC for DLD sleeping on the floor with the TV on is a ban on watching TV for the entire day following the violation. SK and DLD contract Wish us luck! Keep us in your thoughts, please…

Bible Thump the Pain Away


I went out for dinner last night for some much-needed always-enchanting one-on-one NayNay Time, and we naturally got to talking about love and shit. Me being a little mopey, she suggested we listen to a little clip on YouTube of a sermon by T.D. Jakes. It was the one about “when people can walk away from you: let them walk”. It’s also about how our “destiny is never tied to anybody that left”, and if they left “it just means that their part in our story is over’. He talks about the “gift of good-bye”.

Do you guys know who T.D. Jakes is? How have I lived all this time not knowing who T.D. Jakes is?? I ask you this again: do you guys know who T.D. Jakes is? Am I the only one who doesn’t?? We should all know who he is! I was up until 2:30 this morning watching a bunch of his sermons. Being skeptical of Bible thumpers, I spent a few hours this morning trying to find some dirt on him and/or his congregation. The only dirt I found was found on a Jesus-freak web site, so their non-endorsement is endorsement enough for me. Fascinating man. Am I the only one who never knew of him??

While not particularly known for my own evangelical preachings (except maybe ones about hopeless love and sundresses), some of you listen to/read them anyway. Please push aside and try to overlook his unabashed, evangelical preachy-ness as well, and do yourselves a solid and watch this!

* NayNay introduced me to his sermons, but this video is not the one she showed me. But since “nothing just happens”, it’s not a wonder that he mentions Naomi within the first six seconds of this clip.

** note to NayNay: Naomi is the mother-in-law of Ruth and Oprah.


I’ve mentioned before that poetry really embarrasses me. Quoting people also really embarrasses me. So, I don’t do it. If I were to do it, I would quote only Mother Teresa and Lily Allen. (But now that I think about it, I actually have quoted people in this bloggy-bloggy: Roberta Flack and Carly Simon, pretty ladies with cartoon hearts where their eyes should be. Of course!). Anyway, I gotta quote this guy. You should totally watch that video, too! It’s beautiful – about strength and success through pain, success found in fellowship, sharing our lives with friends, soul mates, soul families, intimacy in abstinence, God (watch with an open mind and an open heart, please), how nothing just happens, holding on, letting go, love, so much more! I cannot do it justice.. watch the video… Here’s a little…


When people can walk away from you, let them walk.

I don’t want you to try to talk another person into staying with you, loving you, calling you, caring about you, coming to see you, staying attached to you. When people can walk away from you let them walk. Your destiny is never tied to anybody that left.

The Bible said that “they came out from us that it might be made manifest that they were not for us. For had they been of us, no doubt they would have continued with us”. [1 John 2:19]

People leave you because they are not joined to you. And if they are not joined to you, you can’t make them stay. Let them go.

And it doesn’t mean that they are a bad person it just means that their part in the story is over. And you’ve got to know when people’s part in your story is over so that you don’t keep trying to raise the dead.

You’ve got to know when it’s dead.

You’ve got to know when it’s over. I’ve got the gift of good-bye. It’s the tenth spiritual gift, I believe in good-bye. It’s not that I’m hateful, it’s that I’m faithful, and I know whatever God means for me to have He’ll give it to me. And if it takes too much sweat I don’t need it. Stop begging people to stay. Let them go.

If you are holding on to something that doesn’t belong to you and was never intended for your life, then you need to let it go.

If you are holding on to past hurts and pains, let it go.

If someone can’t treat you right, love you back, and see your worth, let it go.

If you are involved in a wrong relationship or addiction, let it go.

If you’re stuck in the past and God is trying to take you to a new level in Him, let it go.

If you are struggling with the healing of a broken relationship, let it go.

If you keep trying to help someone who won’t even try to help themselves, let it go.

Let the past be the past, forget the former things. Let it go.


If you want to watch the short video on the “let them walk” part, here it is.. but watch the other one, too!:


Never ever ever letting you go, NayNay! Marry me?

Dear Bam-Bam

Dear Slushkitty,

How do I get my thighs to stop jiggling?

~ Bam-Bam


Dear Bam-Bam,

Thank you for your question… the question you asked on February 18th, which was my birthday! I apologize for the delay. My advice column is obviously going to have to appear in a quarterly.

So, to your question, you have always reminded me of a hot Mary Lou Retton, so I doubt your thighs jiggle much. Mine, on the other leg… I’m stopping there. I am actually trying (with about 15% success) this new thing where I do not complain about stuff that I have the opportunity to remedy or change, and if don’t think that is possible – or more likely if I don’t feel like making the effort – Lily suggests that I accept it. So jiggle I shall! You, on the other leg – though again, I don’t think it’s necessary – may want to try something by Jillian Michaels? Jillian Michaels coincidentally shares my birthday!

You know who else shares my birthday? Molly Ringwald and John Hughes! Which brings me to where I have been drowning lately:  my inner Teen Angst in all it’s gooey, innocent awkwardness, newness, and excitement, and the crushes o! the crushes! and the crushing crush of crushes that truly do crush us, don’t they? Crush. *Sigh*

A couple of months ago, I watched “16 Candles” for the 116thtime and quite unexpectedly found myself totally heartbroken and reevaluating my life, specifically my love life. Not long before I watched it for the 116th time, I was having a heart-to-heart chat with Celery, waxing melancholic about “16 Candles” and how I feared I’d never ever ever ever again feel anything the way I felt things back then, back in the mid-80s. I am so goddamn old. What got me all bummed out was the second to last scene, not the dining room table/cake/candles scene, but the one outside the church when Sam ran back into the church to get Ginny’s veil. When she came out, everyone was leaving and forgot about her yet again. She stood there pouting with those beautiful February 18th lips of hers, and when she looked up, the last wedding guest was driving away, and behind their car stood Jake: arms crossed, smiling, leaning against his Porsche, waiting for her. I just cried. My heart swelled and fell and it hurt, my face flushed and blushed, years of impractical romantic longing for that gooey, awkward, innocent crush broke that dam of trapped tears, and I cried. Wait – maybe it was just an intense hot flash? Regardless, I cried for Sam finally kissing her Jake, I cried for John Hughes’ dying and taking a bucket of my happy memories with him, I cried for the empty relationships of my past and for the time I wasted trying to convince myself they were more meaningful than they were, trying to convince myself that I felt anything resembling love because really I felt nothing but apathy and disappointment. I cried because it feels like summer vacation and I am happy. I cried because I am actually happy and I want a boyfriend. I cried because I know I have to be patient and I don’t want to be. I cried because I want a Jake. Where’s my Jake. I want my 16 Candles. *Sigh*

Ask and you shall receive! Or ask and you’ll totally get shaken up. Ask and you might wind up getting salt in your wounds. Ask and you will get a cold dose of reality. Ask and you’ll get a broken heart. When I first joined AA, I heard people say all the time, “We will love you until you love yourself”. Being Miss Angrypants, I scowled and mimicked them under my breath. Now that it’s been a little while and my heart has been resuscitated, I understand that they were indeed sincere. I have felt this Love for many a newcomer, and certainly for some more than others. I have most certainly not, however, ever felt this for anyone who shoe-gazed sadly into the rooms with one pocketful of broken heart and the other pocketful of 16 Candles. And it is certainly not wise, nor even the teeniest bit sensitive, even with the gentlest curiosity and honest-est heart, to mess with that. Alas, it would appear I didn’t get that memo, I missed that bus. Story of my life. *Sigh*

This past April, I was at a meeting, and a woman asked me how I was doing. As occasionally is the case when a woman whose sobriety I admire asks me how I am doing, I fall apart and actually tell the truth. (I highly recommend this to everyone, btw), I was sad about my employment situation, sad about my love life, sad about the fact that if I hadn’t have relapsed I’d have three years of sobriety. In a word, I was heartbroken. Sometimes life leaves you heartbroken – that’s the way it goes, homey. And that’s OK. She hugged me and said, “There’s more room in a broken heart”. So sweet. She got that from Carly Simon and that’s OK, too. I got that song stuck in my head – “it’s coming around again, so don’t mind if I fall apart, there’s more room in a broken heart” – and then I remembered Nay Nay’s RecoveryMountain! This is the analogy that recovery is not an upward trajectory, but instead like going up and around a mountain. You have to go around the same treacherous cliffs but they become less treacherous each time because you know they’re coming around again, and you are learning how to not careen off them by slowing down and using your safety equipment. So, I went back through the SK archives to remind myself of the details of RecoveryMountain and man oh man am I glad I did! I found the entry that details my madness of being in a relationship waaaaaaay tooooo soooon in recovery – read all about the insanity here! What a confused, angry, and terrified little maniac I was! And heartbroken – am I always heartbroken?? Or do I just like writing about boys and love when I am lovelorn, which apparently is always? Am I terminally sentimental? *Sigh*

One of the many things I have learned in sobriety is that when I feel myself crumbling, I need to walk through the pain in the spirit and safety of Love and gratitude. I cannot die from rejection or from a broken heart. I have lots of evidence to back that up. Love takes care of me and if I am open to it, the signs are very very clear. If I care about “16 Candles” – and I do, I really really really do – in the spirit of Love, I will gracefully let go. Remembering how much agony I was in will make it bearable. Risking putting anyone I care about through anything like that pretty much guarantees me a one-way first-class ticket to Hell. I am grateful I wrote about that dark time – it might even be compassionate providence, if only for myself. No one could have told me what to do back then. They actually tried but I didn’t listen. I heard what I wanted to hear, saw what I wanted to see, felt what I wanted to feel. In this same exact way, I cannot make anyone or anything happen or change to suit my desires or needs. All I can do is watch “16 Candles” (the movie, not the person… unfortunately) and not give up on my Jake. He’s out there longing for me the same way I am longing for him. I am endlessly grateful to be able to feel so disappointed and so hopeful at the same time. I am endlessly grateful to feel anything at all. And isn’t that some kind of wonderful? I am so grateful to witness someone putting their recovery first, even though it means I can’t spend time with them anymore – he cannot see me anymore and I am so happy for him for making this decision. This is proof he is recovering and isn’t that beautiful! That I am not whimpering (that much) and clawing to find ways to numb this sadness is proof that I am recovering and who ever would have thought that was possible! Certainly not me.

Backing up a second, when I said that missing the bus was the story of my life, I should have said it was the story of my life, as in past tense. The story is not over, and in many ways, the good parts are just starting.

So, Bam-Bam, my hot Mary Lou, I hope that answered your question! To get the thighs to stop jiggling, you might want to try Jillian Michaels, or you might choose to accept it. You might also want to give some summer lovin’ a try! Summer sun, something’s begun, but oh oh the summer nights! Well-a well-a well-a Huh! (I also have the same birthday as John Travolta).

Much love to you, my lovely friend,


A Warm Welcome to New Employee Slushkitty!

Hello, brilliant brilliant friends!

Thank you for playing Mad Libs: “A Warm Welcome to New Employee Slushkitty!” Here are your <adjective> masterpieces! Enjoy!




Dear Members:

We are fluffy and pleased to announce the new addition to our Wonglood Klondike Club family, Slushkitty. Slushkitty has accepted our rotund offer of employment in the position of Prison Greeter. She will be reporting to Sylvan and is sloppy about tiptoeing in her new role.

She has been unexpectedly sought out by Berkshire Hathaway, one of the largest traders of geese worldwide, and recognized in a Juggs article praising her for her quaint curiosity and vision. Her ground-breaking work in washing and earning has earned her the erratic reputation as one of the hottest nuns in the industry.

Prior to joining Wonglood Klondike Club, Slushkitty pierced as a long team leader, spearheading tender initiatives such as Snake Appreciation Day, weekly company oiled wrestling matches, and installing free Pop Rocks vending machines in the employee parlor.

One of the world’s top diligent talents, Slushkitty approaches each new challenge with her eager flair for risk-taking, courageous problem-solving, and herpes-building. She has developed an immense interest in and offers purring approaches to the responsibilities of Prison Greeter and is looking forward to putting them into action at Wonglood Klondike Club.

Please join me in welcoming Slushkitty to our fleet family and help to make her feel at home in her new job. We are rarely excited to have her on board, and look forward to sliding with her and sharing her muffled enthusiasm!

She starts on Monday and her office is located in Little Rock, Arkansas.








Dear Members:

We are sporadic and pleased to announce the new addition to our Wonglood Puppy Club family, Slushkitty. Slushkitty has accepted our deft offer of employment in the position of Pony Greeter. She will be reporting to Cara DeVito and is calm about sporting in her new role.

She has been brightly sought out by Volkswagen, one of the largest traders of tangerines worldwide, and recognized in a Miami Herald article praising her for her brown curiosity and vision. Her ground-breaking work in dancing and prancing has earned her the purple reputation as one of the hottest dining chairs in the industry.

Prior to joining Wonglood Puppy Club, Slushkitty wasted as a burnt team leader, spearheading itchy initiatives such as Banana Appreciation Day, weekly company ice dancing, and installing free haggis vending machines in the employee conservatory.

One of the world’s top crisp talents, Slushkitty approaches each new challenge with her dark flair for risk-taking, angry problem-solving, and table fan building. She has developed a slimy interest in and sticky approaches to the responsibilities of Pony Greeter and is looking forward to putting them into action at Wonglood Puppy Club.

Please join me in welcoming Slushkitty to our hard family and help to make her feel at home in her new job. We are sloppily excited to have her on board, and look forward to drinking with her and sharing her rough enthusiasm!

She starts on Monday and her office is located in Adcare Quincy.








Dear Members:

We are forlorn and pleased to announce the new addition to our Wonglood Fiction Club family, Slushkitty. Slushkitty has accepted our envious offer of employment in the position of Methane Greeter. She will be reporting to Timothy Leary and is raspy about inheriting in her new role.

She has been gleefully sought out by Rent-a-Chicken ( ), one of the largest traders of elves worldwide, and recognized in a PRO Monthly (Portable Restroom Operator ) article praising her for her torpid curiosity and vision. Her ground-breaking work in accessorizing and flimflamming has earned her the brusque reputation as one of the hottest neuroses in the industry.

Prior to joining Wonglood Fiction Club, Slushkitty radiated as a boiling team leader, spearheading lurid initiatives such as Livestock Appreciation Day, weekly company clay shooting matches, and installing free pork rind and JOLT Cola vending machines in the employee waiting room.

One of the world’s top watery talents, Slushkitty approaches each new challenge with her immense flair for risk-taking, shrill problem-solving, and symmetry building. She has developed a hollow interest in and robust approaches to the responsibilities of Methane Greeter and is looking forward to putting them into action at Wonglood Fiction Club.

Please join me in welcoming Slushkitty to our dizzy family and help make her feel at home in her new job. We are solemnly excited to have her on board, and look forward to sobbing with her and sharing her thundering enthusiasm!

She starts on Monday and her office is located in Istanbul.





/Boing! Boing!



Dear Members:

We are attentive and pleased to announce the new addition to our Wonglood Parcel Club family, Slushkitty. Slushkitty has accepted our cheerful offer of employment in the position of Chanteuse Greeter. She will be reporting to Barack Obama and is lilac about leading in her new role.

She has been suddenly sought out by Google, one of the largest traders of websites worldwide, and recognized in a Highlights for Children article praising her for her gorgeous curiosity and vision. Her ground-breaking work in analizing and quantifying has earned her the fierce reputation as one of the hottest cats in the industry.

Prior to joining Wonglood Puppy Club, Slushkitty amortized as a comfy team leader, spearheading cozy initiatives such as Computer Appreciation Day, weekly company curling games, and installing free Thanksgiving Dinner with all the Fixins’ vending machines in the employee solarium.

One of the world’s top safe talents, Slushkitty approaches each new challenge with her fuzzy flair for risk-taking, robust problem-solving, and coffee mug building. She has developed a delicious interest in and warm approaches to the responsibilities of Chanteuse Greeter and is looking forward to putting them into action at Wonglood Parcel Club.

Please join me in welcoming Slushkitty to our smart family and help make her feel at home in her new job. We are candidly excited to have her on board, and look forward to promoting with her and sharing her perfect enthusiasm!

She starts on Monday and her office is located in San Francisco.





/Munsel Störkel, Sr.



Dear Members:

We are haughty and pleased to announce the new addition to our Wonglood Salamander Club family, Slushkitty. Slushkitty has accepted our intense offer of employment in the position of Assistant Supreme Court Justice Greeter. She will be reporting to Sally Fields and is tenuous about exhausting in her new role.

She has been deftly sought out by Applebee’s, one of the largest traders of cities worldwide, and recognized in a Cat Fancy article praising her for her sordid curiosity and vision. Her ground-breaking work in pampering and punishing has earned her the smug reputation as one of the hottest flagpoles in the industry.

Prior to joining Wonglood Salamander Club, Slushkitty forgot as a passive-aggressive team leader, spearheading oblivious initiatives such as Montana Appreciation Day, weekly company fly-fishing, and installing free Panko-crusted talapia paired with a seasonal mango chutney vending machines in the employee boiler room.

One of the world’s top squalid talents, Slushkitty approaches each new challenge with her magnanimous flair for risk-taking, strident problem-solving, and starfish-building. She has developed an antique interest in and offers celebrated approaches to the responsibilities of Assistant Supreme Court Justice Greeter and is looking forward to putting them into action at Wonglood Salamander Club.

Please join me in welcoming Slushkitty to our self-fulfilling family and help to make her feel at home in her new job. We are blatantly excited to have her on board, and look forward to drying with her and sharing her dusty enthusiasm!

She starts on Monday and her office is located at Bird Hospital, Oakley, California.





/He Writes “Shit” and “Fuck” on Bathroom Walls



Dear Members:

We are plucky and pleased to announce the new addition to our Wonglood Shaft Club family, Slushkitty. Slushkitty has accepted our jaunty offer of employment in the position of Cactus Greeter. She will be reporting to a Dominican and is stupid about scissoring in her new role.

She has been barely sought out by The Trump Organization, one of the largest traders of jerks worldwide, and recognized in a Bitch Magazine article praising her for her fiery curiosity and vision. Her ground-breaking work in jogging and waxing has earned her the foggy reputation as one of the hottest crawdads in the industry.

Prior to joining Wonglood Shaft Club, Slushkitty smashed as a silver team leader, spearheading scummy initiatives such as Puppy Appreciation Day, weekly company curling games, and installing free JOLT Cola vending machines in the employee dungeon.

One of the world’s top light talents, Slushkitty approaches each new challenge with her striped flair for risk-taking, fluffy problem-solving, and talon-building. She has developed a circular interest in and offers deep approaches to the responsibilities of Cactus Greeter and is looking forward to putting them into action at Wonglood Shaft Club.

Please join me in welcoming Slushkitty to our wooden family and help to make her feel at home in her new job. We are strenuously excited to have her on board, and look forward to popping with her and sharing her crisp enthusiasm!

She starts on Monday and her office is located under a bridge.





/Gettin’ Jiggy


Play Mad Libs with me again, please!

Hullo, friends!


Recently, DLD got me a part-time job at a country club – yay! It’s fun! They asked me to write a brief bio of myself so they can introduce me on their web site. I need your help again. You know what that means… more Mad Libs fun! (See previous post if you don’t know what I am talking about: Please put on your thinking funny caps and provide me a list of these words. I’ll fill them into my bio template and post them in Slushkitty as soon as you send some to me. It’ll be fun! Please post your words in the comments section here or email them to me at Here are the words I need:






Any person


Verb ending in –ing


Any company

Plural noun

Any newspaper or magazine


Verb ending in –ing

Verb ending in –ing


Plural noun

Verb, past tense





Food and/or beverage

Type of room









Verb ending in –ing




Please play with meeeeeeeeeeee! It’ll be fun!


Tou rette’s or not Tou rette’s, That is the Question



Slushkitty’s 2-year birthday was last week, March 20th – happy birthday, kitty cat! I have kept a diary since, like, birth. It was always very cathartic and therapeutic for me. I so fondly recall my younger days in less complicated times when I would write every day about my day to work through my troubles and moods, and to journal my happiness. If I didn’t write for even one day, I would feel a little absent or distracted until I caught up. But then a couple things happened: 1- Four people I can think of off the top of my head read my diaries – one even picked the lock! After that, when I’d go back and read my past entries, instead of remembering happy events or seeing how I got through or recovered from heartbreak – even heartbreak over the guy who picked the lock – my stomach would turn and my face would ignite knowing someone read my deepest thoughts, fears, and secrets. Being so violated, I was hesitant to write so honestly and in such detail after that. The devil is in the details. And 2- booze and drugs happened. I arbitrarily wrote in my diary during those years (and years and years). The devil is dreadfully in those details. I actually read some of the booze and drugs diary recently. It was indescribably disturbing… and cryptic. I scanned a page for you. It’s a real cliffhanger, missspellings and all!


The whole reason I started this blog was because I started writing again, writing mainly my 4th step, and some of it was pretty funny on paper. The reason it has been taking me over 1.5 years to write my 4th step is because I am writing and dissecting my story, the devils detailing specifically why I’ve been feeling a little absent or distracted (gargantuan understatement), not for the one day like when I was younger but for the years (and years and years) that I rarely wrote about, and was in deep denial about. It was horrifying remembering those times, but over these past few years through sharing at meetings and with sponsors and friends, I can now look at that old life with awe at the absurdity of it all, and with a big PHEW! I totally understand the humor of much of it now! The only reason so much of it is so very amusing is that we survived it. And we have a healthy, loving forum in which we can tell the tales, for “no matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others”. And if we’re happily benefitting others by sharing our experience, strength, and hope, why not have a little fun with it? Why not take it a step further, beat the ones who put their noses where they don’t belong to the punch, and showcase our own wild-and-crazy flavors of insanity in a blog, especially now that we are starting to ascend that scale. Sharing my stories is a reminder that things could be and sure have been much worse. Many memories that used to haunt me now inspire me! It’s like they were someone else’s adventures – a fucked up and really really dark cartoon character’s adventures. Of course they were mine and I am better for having lived through them… and they’re too precious to keep to myself. Or so I have been told, and so I choose to believe… and so happy birthday, Slushkitty!


Occasionally I go back and read earlier posts in the same way I would go back and read my diaries of younger days in less complicated times, remembering happy stuff or seeing how I got through tough stuff. Looking at earlier posts, I also see a bunch of references about restraint of pen and tongue, recalling how I furiously typed, going ape-shit on someone but then couldn’t post much of the entry, sometimes none of it at all. I made a commitment when I first started this blog not to use Slushkitty as a weapon. With two exceptions — ex-bf “Prince of Hell” and old boss “C.U.N.T.”— I have been able to honor that commitment. And lighten up because I was also reminded that my only job in my first year of sobriety is staying sober, and that no one ever said anything, not a word, about having to be nice. Give a sister a break. (I had to change my sobriety date again, dammit. I took a Percocet I had left over from my hystie.. six months after my hystie when I was not in pain, so in good conscience I had to change the date. It was sometime in May, I believe. I chose May 24th as my new date, because May 24th is International Tiara Day and everyone deserves to be a princess – or a drag queen – at least once a year). Back then, and sometimes now still, I wondered if my internal dialogue was symptomatic of Tourette’s Syndrome. Tou rette’s or not Tou rettes, That is the Question. And speaking of Tourette’s, welcome to my current conundrum…


Within 15 minutes of starting my new temp job, a guy who works there arrived. He walks around singing loudly, laughing like a lunatic, which I find very disruptive. Everyone thinks he’s so great. He is SO over-the-top loud and obnoxious, it occurred to me that he actually has something medically wrong with him. How would anyone be able to work with this distraction otherwise! My annoyance morphs instantly into compassion, and I think how strong he must be, how hard it must be to have Tourette’s, having to deal with judge-y ignoramuses like me on a daily basis. It is not that fun anymore — and it’s certainly not nice — to have fun at someone else’s expense. This realization, this gift of sobriety, kind of sucks when you’re an irreverent smart-ass. Where do you draw the line? I found that it’s especially difficult when you’re in a bad mood, are waist-deep in resentment excavation, in profound financial crisis, have noise sensitivity, have no one to commiserate with, and have had to spend hours trying to come up with a believable and non-self-incriminating way to explain how you lost your last $10/hour temp job because you a). punched, b). spiked the salad with acid of, c). put thumbtacks on the chair of, d). called the cops claiming indecent exposure from, e). other the person who like you has suspected Tourette’s and a high level of neediness that you had to sit next to in an adjacent cubicle all day. It’s a tough call whether restraint of pen and tongue is in order, or if it is too funny not to share. I have decided to share.


I believe that the HP of all of our respective understandings reflects our purest selves. By that I mean that if you are essentially gentle and quiet, your HP will cradle you gently and quietly in safety. If you’re essentially boisterous and colorful, your HP will scoop you up and dance with you in joy. My HP is essentially obnoxious in a clever and loving way, so it graces my life with inspiration and lessons via temp jobs. My current assignment has had me diving into the depths of my soul to face the truth about my life so I can break through my resentments and be happy while simultaneously forcing me to stifle hysterical laughter. As mentioned above, tragedy or misfortune can simply be rich with comedy. Tragicomedy, I believe it’s called.


As an out-of-control active alcoholic, I was ruining my life, career, credit, dwellings, every single personal and professional and romantic relationship, self-respect, body, spirit, sanity, etc… I did not suffer alone, mind you – I was taking everybody down with me. But I would not admit to anyone including myself that I had a drinking problem. Basic and obvious, alas I was blind. Recently I admitted to Lily, some friends, yesterday to an entire CK group, and finally to myself another basic and obvious fact: I didn’t go to college, and the truth that I have not told and have denied to everyone and myself is that I tried and failed.. 23 years ago. I have been terrified of trying again… for 23 years. This is a huge part of the birth of my self-loathing and shame, fueling the broken record that’s stuck on the refrain “I’m stupid. So stupid. I’m inferior. So inferior. Stupid! Inferior! Too late! Much too late!” and it has caused me to fight, flee, or hide for 23 years. Hallelujah! I can see! I can see now! The fella with Tourette’s (or not) pushed me over the edge and I surrendered, at long last! I can see!


But perhaps more than being able to see that fact, I am capable of doing something about it, and I have started taking some action to do so. I’ll keep you posted on my progress! I am so excited for this new endeavor! My other recent breakthrough was learning that I am not a mind-reader. Not only am I not a mind-reader, no one can likewise read my mind! No one is thinking I am stupid and inferior because I didn’t go to college. No one would even know I didn’t! How would they unless I volunteered it? No one is hearing my mean refrain, my internal constant Tourette’s tic screaming, “I’m stupid! I’m inferior! It’s too late!”. No one thinks it’s too late. And even if they thought this or could read my mind, it’s none of my business. And something else I learned? No one is thinking about me anyway. So, basically, I’m insane. My paranoia and fear are manufactured by my imagination. So I have decided that I’m going to put my imagination to good use, open myself to constructive criticism, learn good stuff, and all the while pushing that monster of a chip off my shoulder!


What does any of this have to do with Tourette’s guy? WELL, so now you know I am terrified of failing college and have been torturing myself for not going. I have been unemployed for over 10 months and have convinced myself I won’t get a job because I don’t have a degree in anything. My HP and in it’s ever-loving wisdom, love, and sense of humor has me working a temp job at a sales office of a staffing agency. ALLLLLL day long I look at resumes and all the higher education applicants have from prestigious schools, knowing these chumps are applying for entry-level jobs, and getting rejected. Not only do I look at resumes all day, I was hired to sort all the applicants based on their rejection status, so they know whether they still need to send out the canned rejection email. I have to listen to Tourette’s guy bullshitting applicants on the phone on his sales calls, saying the same thing to every single person..”I am SO excited to talk to you about your experience! We all love your qualifications! Just a couple questions: how long have you been out of work? Why is there a gap in your employment history? We’ll be in touch soon! SOOO excited to have talked to you!” He hangs up and WHOOOOOP! WHOOOOP! And then saying the same thing every single time to the woman in the next cube, “So annoying! DE-NIED! HAAA WHOOOOOP!!” I also had the unfortunate opportunity of hearing the following conversation between him and that woman-child he sits next to:


Her: I didn’t know Pharrell was so OLD!

Him: Really?? How old is he?

Her: Like OLD old. Let me check.. He’s 40!

Him: Daaaaamn.


I also get to overhear many conversations with other, but nicer and more mature, recruiters. “<Company> is offering a little less that you’re asking. They start between $100-120K. They have other applicants with PhDs – that doesn’t mean you’re not viable, but it may be an obstacle”. I do have a flare for hyperbole, but I am totally serious about these conversations!!!


Hello, all of my nightmares! I am old, uneducated, people actually do lie and make fun of your resume behind your back, applicants with way more qualifications than I have get rejected, I’m working for $10/hour and these people at $120K would be taking a paycut, hundreds of these applicants apply for the same job and get rejected each week, etc…. So, I’m marinating in my nightmares and then I realize that I am laughing my ass off at the ridiculous situation I have found myself in. How could I not laugh! I realize that I’m texting a few of my more warped friends about what’s going on because they’d appreciate it. I realize I have friends at all. I realize that the wheels are spinning about a new blog entry. I realize I have a conscience and maybe I shouldn’t write about it. I realize the education/rejection/bullshitting are in fact realities but they are not personal – they’re pretty universal. I realize so much of the stuff of my nightmares is changeable if I want to change them. I realize I have so many resources of so many varieties to change my reality, or more important, to change my mind about myself and the way I treat myself. I realize I don’t have to turn lemons into lemonballs. I realize HP is working in my life and has given me gifts of questionable taste to heal myself, and maybe others, through comic relief.


I’ve been at this job for three weeks. The woman I report to came to my desk last Thursday, heard Tourette’s guy whooping and hooting and singing, she stopped talking, rolled her eyes, and said, “I am so sorry you have to listen to him all day. He is so annoying”. I realized not everyone thinks he’s so great. I realized there is nothing wrong with him. I realized he is just obnoxious. I realized my maladaptive coping mechanism to deal with people I find annoying is to pretend they don’t exist. I realized if I change coping mechanism, I would have realized sooner that Tourette’s guy sings loudly all day because he has on headphones and is singing along to music and has a really bad voice. I realize if he thinks Pharrell is old, then he himself must be very young. I realize he’s oblivious, not an asshole out to get me. I realize I am not an asshole because the answer to that question “Tou rette’s or not Tou rette’s?”, is “not Tou rette’s”… = fair game! WHOOOOOP!

My Lanai and It’s Dirty Secrets



So, I am upon another anniversary season. One year ago, my Leroy got sick and went to kitty heaven, but that is very sad. Two years ago, I relapsed over CM at 11 months sober, but I am so bored with that. Three years ago, I surrendered to the bitch and joined CK. I could have sworn I wrote about those final days of drinking but even with some determined digging in SK, I couldn’t find anything. Broadening the dig however, I found some misc. files that I hastily sent myself from work before I got canned, and found some clever Slushkitty drafts, and I found the blog I started! Woot woot!


They say the more things change the more they stay the same. I’m still coming to terms with a lot of the same stuff I was last year. The entry I started writing about that last fateful year began with me announcing that it was the first blog I was writing without a cigarette. Then I went off on some tangent about “Judging Amy” and guess I never finished writing it. Did you know that the little girl who plays Amy’s daughter Lauren did in fact age? BBFITW and I thought she had progeria, that premature aging disease, because after eight seasons she was still in first grade… or so thought this drunk and that pot-head. And come to think of it, if she actually had progeria, the opposite would have happened to her… right? She’d look like she should have been in Shady Pines (“Golden Girls” reference #1), and not in first grade. What was I talking about? Oh, yes. So I never finished the blog and I started smoking again in the meantime – good thing I never made the announcement that I quit smoking. And alas, here I am today, mumbling under my breath, rather than announcing, that this might be the last blog I write with a cigarette. But hopefully and with some help, the more things stay the same, the more they’ll change this time.


My parade route to destination CK was a long and très tragique one, and there were many red flags along the way that I pretended not to see. I described these red flags in an earlier post – and I’m repeating now because it’s funny – as ticker tape in my One Woman Parade of Crazy. In the same way that my hundreds of Mrs.-Jones-she’s-a-nut–she-snubbed-me seemingly inconsequential but wicked resentments snowballed into that monster that’s been in the way of my happiness and Love for the past 42 years, the seemingly relatively non-dramatic and inconsequential but humiliating pickles I found myself in during the last few months of my drinking most certainly snowballed me, a bloody pulp, into CK.


Snowballs! The winter of 2010-2011 yielded Boston 81” of snow, which is about double the average. (This year we’ve gotten 57.1” so I don’t know why everyone is complaining! This is kids’ stuff! Toughen up!). I lived, and still live, on the top floor of my house and have a lanai (“Golden Girls” reference #2) off the living room. Having the same recycling dilemma as every single CK I know, occasionally I’d sneak some bottles out on trash night and stick them in the neighbors’ recycling bin, but more often than not, I’d just put them on the lanai and hope they’d go away. Having 81” of snow that winter made that almost possible – the snow would just blanket the bottle cemetery. Out of sight, out of mind! …until April… when the snow melted.


My landlord “Dizzy” is straight out of Central Casting – an authentic middle-aged townie from the Charlestown projects. And his voice! That voice! Think of a really really really loud Harvey Fierstein with a potty-mouth, a Boston accent, and some boundary issues. Early that April 2011, Dizzy unannounced climbed up a ladder to my lanai to clear out the gutters, and to his – and my! – horror discovered all my bottles. “What the fuck is this?! I mean, I don’t care what you do, do whatever you fuckin’ want, but these are gunna staht to smell! You need some help getting’ rid of ‘em? I’ll help.. I’ll…..” NOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!! Mor-ti-fied, The Prince of Hell and I bagged them up later that day or the next and took them to the recycling bottle return machine thingies at Liquor Land.. and naturally used the $10 towards an 18-pack of Miller Light cans. This is where my drinking took me: 18-packs of Miller Light cans. *Shudder*. Around that same time, Dizzy’s wife “Tishy” – also out of Central Casting – had to come up to my apartment because the stove was broken. Tishy, unlike Dizzy, gave me fair notice. At this point, the Prince of Hell was basically living with me because he wasn’t working (long, obnoxious story behind that) so his cable and Internet were turned off, and I was bringing him meatball subs every night and putting quarters in his meter. Yes, my drinking took me there, too. So, I was walking into my apartment at the same time Tishy and the repairman were leaving. I walked into my living room and there was the Prince of Hell, on my couch, waiting for his meatball sub, all gross in nothing but his boxers, watching TV, every surface of my house covered with our beer bottles and cans. Mor-ti-fied. I was speechless. If absolutely nothing else, he couldn’t have at least put on pants?? Apoplectic, I walked away, as he yelled after me, not entirely unlike Dizzy,  “What? What do you care? You’re paying rent. You can do whatever the fuck you want. They can’t say anything. What’s your problem…” I walked into my room, texted Bed, asked him to take me to a meeting, and the rest, as they say, is history.


Cut to: this winter and the 81” of snow. I don’t smoke in my apartment anymore. And having been snowed in and unable to open the back door, I stand at said back door, blow the smoke outside, and yes, throw my butts on the lanai. Give me a break – I am captain of this ship called Living Alone and have been for a very long time. I can do whatever the fuck I want – walk around naked, not pick up after myself, and generally just be gross – but I had every intention of picking up the butts, and I always do. One day about a month or so ago, I unfortunately did not pick them up fast enough. Dizzy called one morning when I was already out and about, and said he had to come over to fuckin’ shovel the fuckin’ snow. I panicked and asked him if he could wait an hour until I got home. He said sure, sure, no fuckin’ problem. I bolted home, and discovered to my horror, little gobs of slush and wet footprints up my stairs – there were strangers shoveling my lanai! All bitchy, I asked, “Did Dizzy not tell you that I asked if he could wait until I got home?” to which they replied, “No – Dizzy let us in – how the fuck else would we be able to get into your place?” to which I replied “Oh, I’m sorry I’m sorry – you’re right – I’m sorry – I just asked.. um.. yeah so.. I’m just worried about… the cats?”. Dizzy called me later and unapologetically said he had to get up there right away (liar!) because it was a hazard (liar! He slipped and said the guys were on the clock) and he doesn’t care what the fuck I do, and to do whatever I fuckin’ want, and was I mad because he saw the cigarette butts? Mor-ti-fied. I told him.. um.. that I was.. you know… just worried about… the cats?


I’m going to accept this mortification with the cigarette butts as the last, or at least one of the last, heave-hos to get me to quit smoking for good, like the beer bottles and cans did three years ago. My doctor has me on the nicotine lozenges (which are covered by Masshealth!) AND the patch (which is also covered by Masshealth!), but made the unfortunate admission that I can also smoke while on the patch. So I am of course. But unlike three years ago, now I am actually a little worried about my heart exploding and/or having a stroke. The Time has Come. I can do whatever the fuck I want, and what I want is to fuckin’ quit smoking! And I think that I have some family and friends in my life who actually do care what the fuck I do and want me to quit, too. And to you I say, thank you for being a friend. (“Golden Girls” reference #3).


P.S. If anyone else would like to quit, let me know. Maybe we can buddy up and quit together! And then get our teeth whitened together! And smell better together! And have more money together! And have more energy together! And live longer together! And etc, etc, etc…!