Category Archives: pathetic

Thursday is Thor’s Day

Notes on this Thursday morning:

1. Office coffee is gross.

2. If you look at yourself in a reflective surface while you’re chewing on a plastic coffee stirrer thing, you realize that you look like a hillbilly chewing on a piece of straw.

3. Phil Collins rocks. I don’t even care if people catch me singing along. I wonder if he has a Christmas album.

4. He does not.

5. Hootie and the Blowfish are grossly underrated in the 2000’s.

5. My work has this one sculpture that is the shape and size of an award and I think is of two men kissing…? Either way, I’ve already held it and pretended I was accepting an award for something.

Call A&E

My name is Lisa, and I’m a gum addict.

Okay, that’s a little rude. I thought you were supposed to say “hi” back to me at these things, but whatever.

Um, sorry. Anyway, yeah.

I’m a gum addict, I guess. God, it feels so good to say that.

Tell you about myself? Okay. Um, well, this addiction has been a long and slow process. It stared out innocently enough, I suppose. I would buy those three-packs of Orbit (Bubblemint was my flavor of choice at the time), and go through all three in less than a week. That’s normal though, right?

Well, soon that led to “doubling it up,” where I always had two pieces in my mouth at any given time. Couple that will the compulsive need to ditch the stuff when the flavor’s gone, and, well, I started going through packs faster. Now, I’m embarrassed to say, I sometimes have a wad of three to four pieces in my mouth. God, I’m so embarrassed. I just need more to get the same rush, you know? That burst of flavor from just one piece doesn’t do it for me anymore.

In fact just this morning, I plowed through the pack of Orbit Sweet Mint gum is less than 30 minutes. I know you’re wondering about the logistics of that: I put three in my mouth, chew for 5ish minutes, spit out, and repeat. I just…I just know it’s unhealthy and disgusting, okay? The sorbitol in these things do a number on your digestive track. And don’t even get me started on the clicking jaw…

I just wish that I could just be one of those people who’s happy with one piece, you know? I pretend I am when I’m around normal people, but they don’t know the beast of addiction that lurks underneath. I don’t want anyone to know…

I’ve tried again and again to wean myself off. And I don’t buy it very much anymore for the most part. But sometimes, when I’m feeling weak, and I just see it there by the checkout at the grocery store….I can’t help myself.

I’m so ashamed. I just want…help.

Wicked witch of the West Coast

I’m molting! MOOOLTING!

That’s right. It’s that time of year when I shed my winter head-coat in preparation for summer weather.

Now, this is going to sound like a brag, but it’s not: I have long, thick hair. Lots of hair. Lots of long hair. Enough hair to spare, is what I’m saying. And the winter, I guess my scalp goes into overdrive in an effort to keep my head warm. And it works–this thick layer of brunette padding keeps in my body heat like a boss. But in the spring, my head is like, “To hell with THIS” and it starts shedding. During this time, I can’t escape my hair. It’s everywhere. (Also, I like to rhyme. Some of the time).

So, currently, my carpet is sporting a gauche toupee. My brushes have a thick layer of padding. I pulled a drowned-rat-sized clump from my shower drain. I combed through my car upholstery with my fingers and pulled out a veritable tumbleweed of hair. I watched it roll away in the summer breeze while I played Western movie music in my head. Elegant. Beautiful.

Aaannnd cue the panic. Every year I panic. Every year I assume I have a disease or adult-onset alopecia. I start thinking of tattoo designs I would get on my scalp to commemorate this tough time of my life.

I start out all calm: “Oh, everyone had periods of excessive shedding. And this happens every year. I got this.” Then shifts into quiet concern: “Hmm. Well, this seems like a lot. But I get concerned EVERY year. And my hair is pretty long, so it makes it look like more than it is. I got this.” And then shift to panic: “Oh GOD! I’m going bald! I can’t own that look! I’m not sure I got this!”

That’s right; my brain is full of exclamation points.

You guys, I really can’t afford a decent wig.

The devil is in the details

(That idiom KIND OF applies, if you don’t think about it too much.)

Two recent events that have confirmed my suspicion that I am, in fact, a horrible human being:

1. Recently, I was leaving my house in order to go shopping for food or something stupid from Target. As per usual, a flock of small children were playing some sort of uncoordinated game of pick-up football. Or pass-the-football. A football was involved and they were throwing it, is all I’m saying. God.

As I walk by, one of the children goes for a long pass. As he is running, he trips over his own limbs from what I can only assume is a lack of motor skill development. He crashes onto the pavement in a tangle of limbs, not even trying catch the football anymore (that’s not how you make the team!). The ensuing ear-splitting wail is preceded by one of those silent screams where the kid’s mouth is opened in exaggerated pain and terror–you know, the one kids do because every time they feel pain their body is like, “But what, what is this FEELING. What do I DO? Should I make a noise? Am I making a noise now? Is my mouth open? Is noise coming out?” and then their face screws up something stupid because they haven’t coordinated the brain with the vocal cords yet. But the following wail is, indeed, earsplitting.

The second the first dissonant note tears through the air, I literally RUN to my car. I don’t want to deal with that shit.

As I’m fleeing in my car, I think to myself, “Huh. I guess I probably should have checked if that kid was okay.” But then I looked out my window and some adult was tending to him. So at least there’s that.

(Kids are such fakers anyway, though. He didn’t even tear his jeans. Talk to me when you’ve impaled your leg on your own bicycle gear and stopped a fall with your face. /end clumsy justification of misanthropy.)

2. I was coming back from a run and enjoying my cool-down walk when I was forced to stop at a busy intersection. From my block, but crossing the other direction, was this crouching, enfeebled old woman carrying canvas bags full of who-cares-what.

Now, you know how old people move slower then us spry, young folk? Well, other old people would be able to complete a marathon in the time it takes her to do a 5k, yaknowwhatimsayin? She’s slow. That’s what I’m saying. And I just watched her go. I watched her shuffle along with her bags at some sort of ungodly pace. My inner monologue went something like this:

“My god, that woman is slow. I hope I don’t move that slowly when I’m old. How can I avoid going that slowly when I’m old? Why is she walking if she can’t really walk? Did she escape her home? What’s in those bags? I wonder if they’re heavy or really light but she thinks they’re heavy because she’s old. Remember working in the grocery store? Old ladies were always like, “Don’t make the bags too heavy!” and I’m all, “Ma’am, there’s only eggs in there!” and they gave me that face that just means they’re jealous of my youth. Particularly then because I was a teenager. I wish I were a teenager again. Good God, no I don’t. Holy crap, is she not even half way yet? My God. Look at her go. I admire her determination. God this light is long. I want to go home. Home home home home. SHE’S STILL ONLY HALF WAY!”

And then this teenage kid rode up to her on his bike, put her bags over his handle, and helped her cross the street. It was heartwarming, really, to see that people still care enough to help their fellow man. I might have even teared up if I weren’t dead inside.  But then I realized, “Awwwww shit, I just didn’t help an old lady cross the street. That’s like Good Person 101.”

Oh well. Maybe if I ever see an old lady fall down, I’ll check and make sure she’s okay. I think that would make up for both things.

I’ve started talking to myself. No big.

/Intro music

Hello, good people. My name is Lisa, and it’s time for our first installment of Lisa vs. Lisa, a piece in which I interview myself.

We should be impressed with how much time I spent on this

Hey, Lisa. Thanks for taking the time out of your busy schedule to talk with me this morning.

Oh Lisa, it’s really no problem. I’m really not busy at all. Well, I tell a lie–I am kind of busy, but I’m way too caffeinated to be productive right now. Also, nothing I do really matters anyway.

Let me stop you right there, if I may, because this segues nicely into our first question.  Lisa, were you aware that many people compare you to a worthless pile of garbage–

Wait, I don’t think–

Let me finish, please. A worthless pile of garbage that a homeless person wouldn’t even sift through for cans. How do you respond to this?

Well, everyone and everything has an important societal function, I think. You know how you can’t have happiness without sorrow? Can’t have pleasure without pain? Well, how do you have awesome things without…garbage? What I’m saying, Lisa, is that I make other people look better. I’ve been doing it my whole life, and, frankly, I have a natural talent for it. I plan to rent out my services one day.

Oh? Do you believe that there’s a market for that?

I’d like to think so. I mean, I’m not very well-versed in “the market” or “the economy” but–

Yes, you do seem to display an almost willful ignorance on many topics. Is this intentional?

Intentional in that do I actively pursue ignorance in favor of intelligence? No. It just kind of happens that way. I’m afraid that my brain has atrophied to the point of near uselessness. I have to pick and choose what I retain carefully.

Like song lyrics?

Like song lyrics, yes. And not just any song lyrics, mind you–crappy pop songs that no one will remember in five years. I tried to fight this for a while, but the brain does it what does.

It does seem like its priorities are a little off. Tell me, can you even remember the plot of the book that you are currently reading?

No, Lisa, I cannot. But if you ask me to sing the Spice Girls…

Not now, thank you.

Another time then, maybe. I’m always good for a song.

Lisa, I must say, I just find you remarkable. Here you are: single, lonely, with no career prospects, no discernible talent, and waning intelligence, but you manage to still wake up every morning and–

Well, wait. I don’t think you’re being very fair. As far as career goes, the Recession–

It is the poor carpenter that blames his shoddy tools…

I’m not sure that metaphor really applies here. Anyway, Lisa, I feel like you came into this interview with some sort of misguided bias against me. I have been nothing but civil. There are certainly some good things about me. I’m pretty sure my mom likes me, anyway.

I apologize if you feel that way. Of course, I’m sure your mother is rather fond of you. I would love to let you explore your good qualities, but I’m afraid we’ve run out of time for today. Lisa vs. Lisa will be sure to have you back on soon. Good day, everyone!


A day in the life

[feel free to play the Beatles song in your head before you read this. Go ahead; I’ll wait. It’s kind of a long one.]

I have an iPhone because, well, because I’m that type of person. I recently downloaded the app “Instagram” which I guess is kind of like Twitter with pictures…? But I don’t care about the social networking part; I just like taking pseudo-artsy pictures and messing around with the filters.

Long story short (too late!). This is a day in my life told through pseudo-artsy pictures. To enhance your art-viewing experience, the pictures will come complete with a title and commentary. Perhaps the commentary will be witty. Not as witty as it SHOULD be, but I’m sober, so we can only ask so much.

Procrastinator's Delight

Some mornings, while at work, I like to make myself a cup of instant oatmeal because that way I can give myself a couple minutes of complete unproductivity (which apparently isn’t a real word. Thanks, red squiggly line. I get it) while I eat…and I also like to eat. This one is Trader Joe’s Apple Cinnamon. It’s pretty awesome.

Working Nine Tah Five

I actually work 8-5, but Dolly Parton didn’t sing a song about that. She did sing a song about a chick named Jolene, but that’s a whole other thing. Anyway, this is a shot of the left side of my desk. See that thurr? That’s mediocre art. And that other thing is a tape measurer. Tools of the art trade, friends.

I'm in a Raaaaage!

I have redefined hell. It is driving north-to-south in Los Angeles during rush hour on a Friday of a holiday weekend. See how my speedometer is at zero, but somehow my RPM is at 1,000? The wheels were powered by my hate, which I think we all know leads to the Dark Side. But it WAS 71 degrees out, and that’s lovely.

Post-Run Show-Offery

My gym is closed for the week for renovations. So I got this brilliant idea in my head that I would try running. I ain’t a runner, folks. My people are of peasant stock. Ask me to till some fields and shear some sheep, and I could probably do it for hours. It’s in my descended-from-serfs blood. Anyway, I went for some sad walk/run hybrid thing. That headband that you see was way too tight because I have a huge head, but I wore it anyway because it makes my hair look cool. I also wore that watch because I’m an idiot and when I got sweaty it got all slippy-slidey. The water bottle is there because I drank water when I got home. Gotta stay hydrated, yo.


Dinner. See how I just use the cup of the Magic Bullet instead of transferring my smoothie-thing into a real bowl? Class should be redefined to be more inclusive of cool people like me.

Friday Night Shenanigans

And this was me about 30 minutes ago. 11:00 PM on a Friday night. Watching Louis C.K. on Netflix, lying prostrate on my bed, filled with too much ennui to move.

The art of the email

To my boss:

Dear [Boss],

My friend is coming into town and because I haven’t seen her in a long time, if it’s okay with you, I would like to have [specific upcoming] Friday off. Also, I have a dentist appointment that day, and it would just be easier if I didn’t have to come into the office. If it’s inconvenient to you, I could make up work hours during upcoming lunch periods or stay late or something.

Sincerely, Thanks!


To new friend/aquaintance:

Dear [Friendish Person], Hey! Hi There! Howdy! Yo!

[open with joke] How’s it going? What’s happening? Hey, it’s Lisa from [thing we have in common].

So, remember when we talked about [thing] and how we mutually wanted to do it/go to it? Remember [thing]? I was wondering if you still wanted to do [thing]? Still up for [thing]? If not, that’s totally cool! I’m totally in if you are.

[gentle ribbing based on something I know about person] [close with joke] Oh yeah! Hope you had a blast at your grandma’s funeral! [close with Simpsons quote that no one will get]

Love Sincerely Best Thanks

[Nickname they didn’t give me] Lisa


Hey slutbag,

Wanna go to the thing tonight? Word.

Other slutbag (me)

Stuff like this doesn’t happen to MacGyver

Have you ever, like, gone to the bathroom and lock yourself in the stall, and then when you were done with your business, try to open the stall but the lock doesn’t open? And then you twist the knob furiously while simultaneously assessing how close the stall walls are to the ground and decide that there’s no way you’ll be able to climb under? And then you realize that the only other woman at your office left and you don’t know if you should call out to the men or if they’ll even hear you because the warehouse is far away? And you wonder if they’ll notice that you haven’t left yet because it’s near the end of the day and they could just assume that you’ve gone already? And then you assess how close the stall walls are to the ceiling and decide that there’s no way you’ll be able to climb over it if it came to that and you wonder who the hell designed this bathroom stall anyway? And just when you reach that point of desperation where you’re going to start ramming the stall door with your shoulder, the lock turns and you leave and pretend that nothing happened?


Talk nerdy to me?

You know how when people talk about nerdy girls, the pop-culture image that may spring to mind is some hot chick with thick glasses wearing a shirt that says “Talk Nerdy To Me?” Yeah, no.


I’m not saying I’m the nerdiest chick out there (I only had two 80s in pre-Cataclysm WoW, after all). But nerdiness is a state of being that’s impossible to shake. It warps your core and makes you less palatable to the normal adult population, so you try to hide it. But even though you may have a big-adult job and wear clothes that aren’t hoodies and wear make-up and read the news and watch art-house movies, you can still have text conversations with your friends that go like this:

(Like last time, this chick’s name isn’t Mabel I just like to start a story out with the line, “So I says to Mabel, I says…”)

Mabel: Why do male nerds wear ponytails? Is it because of the Jedi?
Me: Ponytails are a hotbed for midichlorians.
Mabel: Lol. Isn’t that what’s responsible for the “dark side”?
Me: No! It’s the Force. Duh.
Mabel: Sorry…after seeing the prequels, I drank enough until everything created by Lucas was erased.
Me: Meesa getting drunk!
Mabel: I feel hungover right now.
Me: Talking to me will do that.
Mabel: Guess what artist I am listening to
Me: …BSB?
Mabel: No
Me: Well?
Mabel: REO

(Also, I should note that I think Mabel and I are the only members of REO Speedwagon’s current fanbase. REPRESENT!)

Nerd out.

Behold the ravages of age!

In an effort to be more proactive about negating some of the stuff I have been indiscriminately shoving down my gullet as of late, I thought to myself, Hey, wouldn’t it be neat if I woke up 30 minutes early and did that 30 Day Shred Video that I’ve had forever and never actually done. Metabolism boost! SHREDDED BODY! ARM MUSCLES!”

Boo. Yah.

And in a miracle that beats that whole water-into-wine nonsense, I actually got up at 6:30, put on workout clothes, and poised myself in front of the screen. Honestly, I could have gone back to sleep at this point and already called the day a success. But I soldiered on like…a soldier.

So there I am, jump-jacking like a moron in my bedroom at 6:30 AM, and then I hear this NOISE.

Pop! [beat] Pop! [beat] Pop!

What the HELL is happening? It sounded like a slow-paced ping pong game.

It took like five pops to realize this sound was coming from me, or, more specifically, my right ankle. WHAT THE WHAT? WHY AM I MAKING NOISES?! (Sure, if I had to guess, it’s probably from spraining my ankle, like, a bajillion times, but whatever).

There wasn’t, like, any pain, but just knowing that the noise was coming from me made me feel something. Like someone was popping bubble wrap in my joint. I would have been able to ignore the feeling if it weren’t for the noise! THE NOISE! Like The Telltale Heart, I was being driven mad by a rogue body part. And all I want is to get shredded!

So, I guess I’m just wondering: is this something my body is just going to do now? Make noises like a broken bicycle? NICE! THIS IS WHY I CAN’T TAKE YOU ANYWHERE!

I’m nervous to try again tomorrow.