Category Archives: ew

The Cough, a horror story.

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Warning, this is gross.  Not quite as gross as that time I accidentally Carried my sex buddy, but if this story becomes a stage show, you’re definately going to want to stay out of the splash zone in the first few rows. 

Can I offer you one of my ..... tissues?

Getting over a nasty little cold has left me with a particularly bad Cough.  To understand why I’ve capitalized the C in cough, you have to understand that this is not the bodily function of the politely dying Victorian consumptive, this is more like a pull start motor in the throes of an exorcism.  From flubber demons.

"You're my new mommy!"

My Cough demands attention, and a certain begrudging respect.  Strangers stop and say “Woah.”  And then often cross themselves, scoot away and start googling “death rattle” on their phones.  My cat won’t have anything to do with me, she just hides and dreams of better days when I didn’t hack thunderclaps at her.  A trash truck driver actually stopped his work to look around for what the ruckus was.

"Do you hear something?"

And now that I’m moving through what my friend Helena politely calls the “expecterant phase,” it’s gotten messier.  And she’s pretty much the only person willing to be around me during it, bless her heart.  For her trouble, she and two of her unsuspecting friends got to witness the following this morning.

We’re driving and I start to feel the cough tickle come on.  It sounds and feels like a tick-tick-tick in my chest because I’m breathing through a film of semi-gelatized snot.  Once I start coughing, I have to finish, I have to hack it up or I feel like I’m going to choke on it.  (I did warn you this was going to be gross.)  I start hacking and my leg starts twitching like a dog getting it’s belly rubbed and then it ends with me with a mouthful of demon-snot.  I can feel it’s firmer consistancy floating in my salivia.  I’m out of tissues in my purse, so I try to sidetalk out of one side of my mouth with the debris and various Cough shrapnel floating in the other, “are your windows up back there in the back seat and does anyone mind if I spit out the window?”

They don’t so much agree as realize they have no real good choices here and say, “um sure?”  I roll down my window and wind up for the pitch but get firmly checked by the seatbelt’s shoulder strap.  I recoil and make a second windup but the whole missile launch has already been thrown dangerously offbalance.  In that slow-mo that only bad memories come in, I realize that it lacks the critical OUMPH! but there is no return. 

It's too late to take lessons.

I fall back into my seat with snot and salvia streaming across my right check and tendrils extending into my hair.  “Babies spit up more effectively than that,” I offer feebly.   A hand extending from the backseat, belonging to a girl I’ve just met moments before (and probably never again, now) offers me two crumpled Rubios napkins.  I realize that most of the damage is to the shoulder of my own top, where I’ve Jackson Pollocked a fist-sized green and yellow painting of my viral illness.

Not that I'm suggesting he's anything less than a genius.

I hear the two girls in the back seat discuss the contents of the one girl’s purse, from whence the napkins came, probably because they’re desperate to distract themselves from the horror of what they’ve just seen.

I continue to take stock of the damage.  One ambitious bit of snot has broken my body’s gravity and streaked away like a green comet of nasty across the back passenger side window.  This is now the view of a nice girl named Cynthia, whom I barely know.

But with a daytime background.

 At least I made sure that window was UP?  Small saving graces, I guess.

“That pretty much could not have gone worse.”

We arrive at my destination and I offer goodbyes.  “Ok, thanks and can we not talk about my harffing a snotball all over everything?”

………………. Silence.

“No,” I continued.  “That was so bad that I think it enters the realm of funny and we must joke about it.” 

“Yes,” came the chorus from the backseat, as the final word on the subject.

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Who’s familiar with Westboro Baptist Church?

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According to their (hilarious) picket schedule, they are coming to San Diego for four days of protesting.

Protesting amoung other things, all things Jewish (allowing non-virgin women to live), a handful of high schools (letting the gays have their gay), Protestant and Catholic churches (allowing women to talk), and La Costa Spa (???).

So the question is, is counter-protesting them a pointless waste of time, or good clean fun in the form of feeling vastly mentally superior?

I cannot believe I’m admitting to any of this.

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My friend Sally is in town, visiting from Australia.  Isn’t she cute?

sally rutter

Totally adorable, right?  Hold that image in your head ok?  Because this post is about to take a big turn towards the terrifying.

Buckman joined Sally and I for dinner, and as it tends to go when girls get together, one story blended into another.  In passing, I mentioned an incident over the weekend of *ahem* off-season spotting (and yes, male readers, that means what you think it does and if you are offended STOP NOW), and that reminded me of a Story, a story with a capital S.

A Story that Buckman now claims did what he previously thought impossible, a Story that made him more gay than he previously was.  A epic adventure of tragedy, comedy, drama and romance.   It answers the timeless question of what would happen if the Williams Ferrell and Shakespeare got together to rewrite Carrie as a low budget indie flick as a vehicle for a Lindsey Lohan comeback.  (And could someone please make that happen?  I miss her raspy voice.)

I’ve decided it’s time to tell this Story.  Ya ready?  No, you’re not.  I should be more concerned I suppose, that this Story will turn all my male readers gay, but did you know that if you turn a hot straight man gay, you are awarded a toaster from the gay community?  And you, my readers, are nothing if not attractive, so perhaps this will be enough to trade up to the breadmaker I’ve been eyeing.  So here we go.

I had this “friend.”  Now, kids.  Mummy is allowed to have “friends.”  No, that is not gross and do not NOT slam that door and where are you going?  The movies?  Actually thats ok.  Take your time, and call Mummy before you come back.

Ok you’re back.

My friend, let’s call him Ricardo because that’s not at all his name and I don’t know anyone named Ricardo and it’s a shame because it’s a cool name.  When our schedules coincided we liked to meet up, and fairly often that was on my lunch break.  One warm and sunny day, such as today, he texted me to ask if I was available.  I did a quick check before I responded.  My period had been over for three whole days, but for the two days following I’d had a tiny bit of spotting.  Unusual for me.  But we were all clear, as well we should be, so we arranged to meet.

I was wearing my hair up in a bun, and cute little pencil skirt.  As I left, a coworker remarked that I looked very innocent that day, like a librarian.  I giggled to myself as she told me to enjoy my lunch.

Flash forward about five minutes.  I’m in the back seat of my car, which is parked in a parking lot behind an empty office building.  My cute little skirt is hiked up to my armpits, and I’m straddling Ricardo, who is wearing only his shirt.

A good time is being had by all.

Until suddenly something doesn’t …….. feel ……… normal.  I look down and there is blood.

I’m not sure I have the words to explain to you how much blood I’m talking about here.  We’re not talking oh oops sort of spotting.  We’re talking crime scene.    Except that period blood is ….. recognizable for it’s consistency (I’m really trying to be delicate here because if there’s one thing I want you to take away from this story, it’s that I’m clearly a LADY) so there’s mistaking this, or passing it off as, oh perhaps your piercing nicked me?

Now when it comes to my womanly bits and pieces, I think of myself as ….. the air traffic controller.  I feel no shame that there is ……. weather, but I pride myself on, to the best of my ability, predicting  it, and coordinating with the ….. pilot to bring us to a …… safe landing.  So to speak.

Epic fail.  There is blood on the back seat of my car, all the way across his midsection, on his white shirt, on the seat again …..  I’d Carrie-d him.

I looked around frantically, it felt like the car was slowly filling up with blood.  For a brief moment I felt relief in God’s promise to Noah that he’d never again kill all mankind via a flood, but then my heart sunk when I realized God had promised nothing about not killing with a crushing wave of mortification.

I turned around to the front seat, stretching to reach the napkins in the glove compartment, only to realize that my hands had somehow gotten covered in blood and now I was leaving bloody handprints all over my car.  Including one on my car window.   I frantically dabbed at Ricardo with a napkin and a bottle of water I’d just grabbed from the fridge before I left, because clearly what the poor dude needed now was an ice cold sponge bath.

And that’s when I saw the truck pull into the parking lot.

OH SWEET JESUS.  I froze.

Gone were the innocent days of a bygone era, when I’d worried about being caught merely having sex.  No, now they were going to take one look at in my bloodmobile of a car and assume I was in the process of disembowling Ricardo WITH MY VAGINA, and I’d be spending the next 36 hours in a police station trying to explain how I’m not the fucking Ice Truck Killer.

The driver stopped the truck and looked at me.

Then he slowly drove away.

I took a few seconds to enjoy my freedom and returning hearbeat, and then turned my attention to Ricardo’s formerly white shirt.  He assured me it was fine, that he had another shirt in his car.  And then he paused, admiring the splatter, and said, “You know, my next client?  Hasn’t paid me.  I’m leaving this shirt on, I bet he’ll pay me today.”

Hallmark doesn’t make a card for this, but I made sure to send a gift, thanking him for being so cool about all this, because that?  That is a good “friend.”