Ordinarily, I don’t like change. I’m happiest when my life is lived in calm little routines, when spontaneity is sandwiched between predictable things.

For nearly two years, I’ve lived in what would seem on the surface to be a perfectly happy routine: up with my son in the morning, chores done by lunch time, errands after my son’s nap, Hubby home at 6:30, dinner on the table by 7. My social life was limited to nights when the Venomous Hubby brought home work from the office, when I’d wait until my son was in bed then join friends at the local hangout for drinks, conversation, and (often bad) karaoke. Nice, predictable, rarely chaotic. The picture of serenity, eh?

Frankly, it’s driven me damn near insane.

I’m not the kind of gal who does well away from cities and suburbs. I’ve learned that in the past two years living here “in the country” - which is how they describe the area where I live. I miss having more than one restaurant to choose from. I miss sitting at Starbuck’s on Sunday morning and reading the newspaper without a gecko, mouse or cockroach running across my foot. I miss living on a calm street where it’s safe for to ride tricycles or play tag. I miss having neighbors who wave at each other as we get our newspapers from our driveways in the morning. Hell, I miss having a driveway!

Since moving to our house here “in the country” I’ve watched my life - and my interests - dwindle. I haven’t gone to a movie since Legally Blonde 2 came out. (Of course, that one was so horrid, I don’t feel I’ve missed much.) I haven’t browsed art galleries or gone antiquing. I gave up trying to garden when high surf wiped out my plants. I don’t know of any book clubs meeting in my area, and the nearest gym is 45-minutes away, as are most churches. My “social life” - such as it is - has consisted of meeting friends at or, occasionally, getting together with friends at their house or mine… for a drink. I miss having friends with whom I have more in common than the bottle of vodka we’re splitting.

Fortunately, a whole lot of circumstances collided to make now the ideal time to move. My son will be starting kindergarten soon, so I want to move to a school district where he won’t get beat up for being haole (white), where the teachers don’t speak in a mixture of pidgin and heavily-accented English. I want to move to a neighborhood with sidewalks instead of highway shoulders, where can ride their tricycles and play tag, where front yards feature neat landscaping instead of abandoned vehicles guarded by menacing pit bulls. With Hubby’s retirement from the Army looming at the end of the year, now is really the ideal time for a move.

Luckily, the market for home sales is hot here on O’ahu right now. The median house price is nearly twice what we paid for our home two years ago, and we should be able to make at least 80% profit if we sell now. Not shabby, eh?

So. We listed the house for sale yesterday. The first showing is on July 8, and before then we’ll be cleaning, de-cluttering, and cosmetically polishing the place. Meanwhile, I’m spending most afternoons taking the for long drives while we hunt for our new house. Truth is, I’ve been doing that secretly for almost a year now and have narrowed down the areas we’re looking at to three quiet suburbs with of all ages, above-average public schools, and plenty of shops, stores, restaurants and activities less than 10 minutes away. There’s even a Starbuck’s, and I’ve made it a regular stop on our house-hunting trips. Sure, it’s over-priced but I’ve yet to see a mouse or cockroach there.

I have no idea how these developments are going to affect my blogging. No doubt, I’ll be pressed for time over the next couple of weeks as I prepare the house for showings. Afterwards - who knows? I started blogging to break out of the isolation and depression I felt after we moved here. I needed to interact with non-preschoolers, with people who read and care about news and current events, who don’t interpret debate as a breach of manners, who aren’t eager to start throwing punches or pulling knives over differences in opinions. Perhaps, then, it’ll be a good sign if my blogging gets light but regular after we find a new house.

All I know is that I’m seeing light at the end of this long, lonely tunnel. And it just so happens, the light’s coming from Starbuck’s. Ah, to live in civilization again.

Recovery Mode

My whirlwind week with Kelley was a blast. Sorry to report that we did not take pictures. Somehow, whenever we set off to go somewhere, the camera was always left behind. Ah well. I’ll leave you to your imaginations and assure you our time together was still better than that.

Until yesterday, that is.

Yesterday morning, while I recovered from a bit too much wine the night before, Kelley took my Jeep and ran to the local store to get herself some cigarettes. Now, I love Kelley. I do. But if I’d seen the shoes she was wearing at the time I would never have let her leave the house in them. We’re talking slippahs - y’all call them “flip flops” - with a sole that’s 4 inches thick. Not what you wear here in the country where the roads are pitted and the sidewalks are even worse.

So she found out, as her foot planted itself in a pot hole on the sidewalk outside the store’s exit. Foot planted, the rest of her body continued forward toward the Jeep. Her arm met the side of the Jeep first, followed by her body and what she’s described as a loud sounding CRACK!

Bless her heart. Her poor left arm was clearly broken, and yet there was so little time before her flight that she didn’t want to make a run to the emergency room. (After hearing the frightening experiences I’ve had with our local hospitals, who can blame her?) So she flew home with her wrist in a splint and a sling, and hopefully went straight to the hospital after landing. So be sure to visit her and send your “Get Well” wishes.

Meanwhile, I’m in recovery mode. There’s laundry to be done, email to answer, groceries to buy, news to read … and both my ears and mouth need a rest. Girlfriend and I can talk, as Wind Rider can attest after his evening with us on the Venomous Lanai last Saturday.

Functional Boobage

The other night, my husband had several of his buddies over to play darts at our house. Being the lone female, I wasn’t surprised when the conversation turned to boobs and free sex chat websites. Not mine, of course, just boobs in general. How funny, to hear these otherwise gruff, extremely macho men wax poetic as they spoke about breasts. You’d think, from the somewhat reverent adjectives which peppered their conversation, they’d be able to answer a question that’s confounded me for years:

What is it that makes men so enamored of what are, essentially, bags of gland-filled body fat?

“They’re just, well, jiggly and feel good,” said one.

“Men don’t have them,” explained another. “Girls do. Hence, we like them.”

“I think,” began the most coherent explanation (did I mention they’d all plowed through a couple of cases of beer by this point?) “that it has to do with whether we were breastfed or formula fed. If we were on the bottle in our early years, we want to make up that lost time by having a boob or two today.”

Yeah. Sure. And what explains mankind’s fascination with breasts pre-1867?

More importantly, in this day and age when we know that breastfeeding is better for than bottle-feeding, when we’re capable of seeing the breast as more than a purely sexual appendage, when we’re open and accepting toward thong bikinis and pre-teens baring their bellies, why are decisions like this still made? Is there some line where breastfeeding crosses into a public demonstration of sex organs and, if so, does it depend on the amount of breast that’s revealed or the age of the that’s nursing? I mean, it’s not like the woman was breast-feeding a pre-schooler. Why on earth, then, would someone think it was wrong?


Same ol’ shit, that is.

Here I sit in my newly-cleaned, newly-rearranged, newly-painted living room, checking what's new on my jasmine live account. I can’t help but admiring how wonderful it looks, but it’s very wonderfulness pisses me off. Why? Well, the furniture is now arranged precisely how I’d been wanting it for the past two years but which Hubby insisted wouldn’t be conducive to TV watching. Turns out, it is. It also makes the living room look twice as big. Duh.

And the paint? It’s the same color I’d picked out when we moved in - sort of a creamy pale yellow - except Hubby had previously insisted on painting only one wall, leaving the other two natural, bare cedar. Our realtor pointed out how boxy the bare wood made the room feel, and that painting the wood would open up the space and give it a more homey feel. So, it’s painted. And I love it. And now it’s time to sell the house.

The same thing goes for the kitchen: the crumbling tile countertop that I’d been bitching about for two years is now fixed. The crumbling cupboard doors have been replaced. The rust on the front of the refrigerator has been sanded and the exterior repainted. The peeling kitchen wallpaper has given way to gorgeous beadboard panelling painted in a blue-tinged white.

Everything is just so. Everything that was falling apart when we moved in (and which only grew worse while we lived here) is now fixed. In fact, the house is finally looking exactly like I’d wanted it to look all along. Hell, I even convinced Hubby to clean out his endless boxes of electronic parts (including the motherboard for a 386), cables, pieces of dismembered machinery (anyone need a manual database card-puncher, circa 1982?) and 120+ AOL CDs dating back to version 3.0… all of which had been kept “just in case” we might need them “someday".

I swear at the next house, I’m going to give Hubby six months to fix or repair all of the things he talks me into tolerating when we buy the place and, if they’re not fixed by that time, I’m going to put out some fake “For Sale” signs just to ensure the work’s finally done.

With Friends Like These…

I think I’ll start hanging out more with people who don’t bullshit me about being friends.

Girl “friend” #1 is a network tech who’d expressed a deep desire to start her own blog, but a reluctance to just jump into (and financially commit to) running her own site. So I offered her a guest-blogging slot here at EV for a month while I worked on getting my house fixed, on the market, and ready to start showing to prospective buyers. (Experience has taught me, as you’re no doubt aware, that even logging on to a computer “just for a second” to check email, etc., always turns into an hour… followed by another and another and another until the day’s gone and there’s nothing tangibly productive to show for it.)

The catch? I needed her to monitor my email, blog when she felt like it, and notify me of any problems. “Great!” she said. Great! I thought, and I sighed a huge sigh of relief.

Said “friend” then decided to go on an impromptu vacation with her boyfriend (who dumped her and split on their 5th day of a planned 7-day trip, plunging her into a funk which, evidently, made her utterly disinterested in being online, and, evidently, too bummed to bother picking up a damned phone to tell me as much).

I now have 3,782 email messages awaiting my review, deletion and/or response. Three thousand seven hundred and eighty-two. Fuck.

Girl “friend” #2 (Hello, you bitter, little-minded, malevolent bitch) lives fairly nearby. She took it upon herself - because, evidently, she has nothing in her own life worth talking about with her drinking cronies - to try convincing our mutual acquaintances that one of my entries calls Hawaiians “inbred” and “backwards” - among other things. Nice try, skag. Didn’t you realize that most of them own computers, too? Or that I was more than happy to let those who don’t own computers borrow mine while they were here and check out what I really said? Fuck off and die. Better yet, don’t - you’ve given us all someone to laugh at on those rare occasions your fat ass isn’t hanging off one of the stools at the bar.

For the rest of you… I’m back. I’m swamped. I’m pissy and PMS’ing. What of it?