We’re cracking nuts

nutcracker_pic1I sat on the couch contemplating my nutcrackers. The boy was asleep and DH was bustling around doing his nightly chores.

I sat looking at my nutcrackers, making mental notes about their similarities and differences. I came to the conclusion that nutcracking must be an exceptionally violent and/or dangerous profession. Four of the six nutcrackers I own bear a weapon of some sort. Even Santa Nutcracker carries a sword, leading me to wonder what kind of crazy- ass homes he’s delivering to.

The first, given to me as a gift, whom I call Sir Purple Pants (no explanation required), carries a polearm. Over time, it seems, violence in the nutcracker world has escalated. Two, acquired in subsequent years, carry swords. The most recent member of the collection carries an axe.

DH was passing through the living room as I wondered about Axe Man. I asked DH what might have happened in Axe Man’s life to cause him to decide that a sword just wouldn’t do. Without a moment’s hesitation DH replied, “Oh, he’s the palace guard. They bar the door with their axes.”

We went on to discuss Drummer Dude. I queried whether his family might be disappointed in his failure to adhere to the family’s weapon wielding traditions. DH said “Everyone needs a drummer. How else are they gonna have a theme song as they ride into battle?”

The greatest departure, from the seemingly war themed nutcrackers, is the fancy fellow in the tartan waistcoat. It was decided that we caught him on his night off and he is on his way to a holiday party. He’s laid aside his weapon – polearm, sword, or axe, we don’t know – to free up both hands, lest he should drop the gayly wrapped hostess gift he is balancing, somewhat gingerly, on one palm.

This. This is why you marry someone. Because they do not question you when delving into the back-stories of the inanimate objects that populate your home during the holidays. They join you in your weirdness. That’s just about the best thing ever.

TMI Tuesday: Fill in the blank



1. My best friend is far too complex to describe in a simple fill in the blank .

2. A Dominant lover is all I want, need, desire.

3. If you only know one thing about me it should be that my brain is for shit and I probably won’t remember this conversation tomorrow. As a result, you may find me a hugely frustrating waste of time.

4. Hot cocoa with a couple shots of Marshmallow vodka is the best winter drink in the world.

5. A man and a cat walk into a bar and they find a table in a quiet corner. The waitress looks at them askance. The bartender, seeing her hesitation, gives her a ‘get to it’ jerk of his head. She approaches the table and asks “What can I get ya?” The man replies “Heavy cream, in a chilled bowl.” The waitress blinks at him once, twice, and walks away. She returns and sets the bowl in front of the cat. The man looks at her, an eyebrow raised, as if to say “Well, aren’t we presumptuous.” He reaches out and drags the bowl across the table, ceasing when it is centered precisely in front of him. The waitress watches, mouth agape, before retreating to the wait station to observe. The man, locking eyes with the cat, lowers his head and laps at the cream, flecks of the liquid dotting the table as he does so. The man continues until the bowl is empty, the cat drooling all the while, never breaking eye contact. When finished, the man drops a twenty on the table and heads out the door, the cat half a pace behind.

6. I like to eat crisp apples in fall.

Bonus:  I can’t garden if it rains but I can curl up under a blanket with a good book.


How to play TMI Tuesday: Copy the above TMI Tuesday questions to your webspace (i.e., a blog). Answer the questions there, then leave a comment below, on the TMI blog post, so we’ll all know where to read your responses.

TMI Tuesday: Behave


This week TMI Tuesday takes its cue from the world of psychology and sociology, which both deal with behavior.

1. Catharsis – What behavior or activity do you do to achieve catharsis.
I don’t anymore. When I was young, foot-loose and fancy-free, I went through a period of Retail Therapy. As I got older I realized how incredibly stupid that was. I also went through an extended period of emotional eating. Though I have managed, with help, to stop medicating with food, it remains a herculean monkey on my back and one that I regularly have to put back in its cage.

2. Self-affirmations was made famous by Saturday Night Live character Stuart Smalley (now Senator Al Franken): “I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and gosh-darn it, people like me.” What self-affirmation do you say/or should you say to yourself?
I really should come up with one of these. They, whoever “they” are, say that 70 percent of all self-talk is negative. Mine is much closer to 95 percent. It is exceedingly rare that I say anything nice to myself and when I do it is always couched with a qualifier e.g., not “You look cute” but “You look kind of cute today.” We mustn’t issue unadulterated compliments. That’s something we do for other people not ourselves.

3. “I knew it all along.” What did you know all along?
The only thing that is reliable is that people are unreliable.

4. Daydreaming. About whom or what was your last daydream?
Is worrying/obsessing the same thing as daydreaming? Daydreaming is a luxury that fell by the way side when I gained responsibility and multiple people who count on me to keep it all together.

5. We all have fears. What fear (real or improbable) have you taken steps against to protect yourself.
The fears I have all revolve around things that are beyond my control. (Which is why they are scary.)  I can take steps to limit the probability of these fears manifesting. I cannot take steps to assuredly prevent them.

6. Relationship churning–How many on-again off-again relationships have you been in? Why would you say you that you repeat this behavior?
One and only one. Never again. I do not tolerate the waffling some people tend to engage in. I learned this the hard way. If the choice has been made to end a relationship and, that decision has been given voice, then it’s over. I do not take, nor do I issue, idol threats just to see what the reaction will be or as a tactic to open negotiations. If I say I’m done, you can be well and truly sure that I have agonized over the decision, I do not see another path, and I absolutely mean it.

Bonus: Self-monitoring is the ability to both observe (or measure) and evaluate one’s behavior. It is an important component in human behavior that aids one to measure their behavioral outcomes against a set of standards. What sort of self-monitoring do you do on a regular basis?
Any and nearly all of my behaviors are self-monitored every single day. It is one of the many things that keep me awake at night. Was I clear in what I said? Is there any possible way that behavior might have been misinterpreted? What was that odd feeling during that conversation? Did I miss a social cue? I meant no disrespect, might it have been taken that way? Should I have phrased that differently? That thing I said was taken wrong. How can I avoid that in the future? How should I phrase ideas like that differently? Did I do enough to show <dedication, respect, love, etc.>? Am I too hard/easy/gentle/strict with my child? Am I teaching my child all of the things necessary for my child to function without me? and on and on and on ad nauseam


How to play TMI Tuesday: Copy the above TMI Tuesday questions to your webspace (i.e., a blog). Answer the questions there, then leave a comment on the TMI blog post, so we’ll all know where to read your responses.