February 24, 2012

Adventures in Dog Bathing: Tank Edition

Remember four score and seven years ago when I wrote about bathing my lab mix, Raven?  I put To Be Continued all dramatically at the end of the post, totally intending to post Tank's bathing adventures the next day.  As you know, I am a confessed slacker, so it didn't happen as planned.

But fear not, my restive readers.  I shall present you with a Tankcentric post forthwith.


After Raven ran off to do her post-bath victory lap, Tank trotted into the bathroom all excited about his turn in the tub.

Tank is easy to bathe. He's a little obsessed with the tub, actually.  He likes to sit in there while I read on the potty quickly and efficiently take care of business.  He does a Tub Check at least once a day so as not to miss any delicious bath water remnants.

Tank loves bathing so much that I really don't have to do more than pass him the soap at bath time. He waits for permission to get in the tub, and then waits patiently for me to arrange towels on the floor before he gets out. It's adorable.

On this day, the tub was full of fur from Raven's bath, so I rinsed it out.  Afterwards, I ran a new bath so my bathing beauty of a boxer could get to the fun as quickly as possible. 

This upset the order of Tank's universe.  My bath-loving boxer would not get in the tub. 

Tank is not exactly the sharpest tool in the shed (bless his heart).  So I assumed his confusion was due to a misfiring of the ol' neurons.  To help the poor guy, I tried saying all the usual things to clue him in that jumping in the tub was okay.

"Get in the tub, Tank!"

"It's okay! Go on in!"

"Time to take a bath!"

It didn't work.  After about 5 minutes of cheerleader-like encouragement with nothing to show for it but a befuddled boxer head tilt, I gave up. I grabbed a towel and moved near the bathroom door to defur myself, and lo and behold--Tank hopped in the tub.  No, he didn't think I was a matador.  He'd just been waiting patiently for me to get over my brain fart and proceed to the door.

It took me a minute to realize that I'd made two boxer bathing-related gaffes. 

1.  In the World According to Tank, a dog must enter the tub before the water goes in. (I was unaware of this particular dog-ma.)

2.  I had also failed to obey the People Must Always Stand By the Door Before I Can Go Through Law. (I'd observed this preference in Tank's door exiting behavior, but was ignorant of the fact that it also applies to tub entrances.)    

So Tank was finally in the tub.  But since I'd stupidly added the water first, he had to suffer through that icky sensory experience of having to step into standing water. He wasn't okay with this. He really wanted to take a bath though, so he compromised by only getting 3 feet wet. The 4th foot stayed cocked and ready like an angry mule's, and it eventually shot out and knocked all 3 of my (open) shampoo bottles off of the side of the tub.


At least the rest of his bath went well.

So well, in fact, that Tank decided to crash my shower later in the week!  All 70-odd pounds of boxer jowls and muscle hopped in the tub with me mid-shampoo.  Try rinsing out your hair with a giant boxer head just south of your tush!  I tried pushing him out of the way so the shampoo wouldn't get in his eyes, but we don't call him Tank for nothin'.  And instead of rescuing this damsel in distress, my husband's reaction was to stand at the door and laugh.

Next time he's totally on dog-bathing duty.

February 21, 2012

Adventures in Dog Bathing: Raven Edition

This has been a canine-centric week, y'all.  Someday when the public-at-large recognizes my genius, I'll have my own personal paparazzi.  (Which won't be all that different from being paranoid, really.)  Then I'll have slapstick videos instead of crappy drawings to share with you.

But until then, you'll just have to be satisfied with my subpar sketches and superfluous storytelling. 

And my arbitrary alliteration.

Earlier this week, I noticed that our couch smells decidedly dog-like.  That clued me in that another Dog Bathing Debacle was nigh.  The double-dog bathing process is at best an exercise in chaos at my house, but I determined that this time it would be different.  My goal was to prepare for all possible outcomes before a drop of water hit the tub.  (Pre-winning!)

I put three different shampoos (for all of your canine coif conundrums!) on the side of the tub.  I opened the lids to facilitate an efficient shampooing process.  I covered the floor with towels for containment of the inevitable Wet Dog Shakes.  I hung anticipatory towels on hooks to catch the water that usually decorates the wall after a canine cleansing.  I removed all reading material from the bathroom.  And I pushed a sharp, heavy bone out of the way so I wouldn't trip on it whilst wrangling my water-phobic labrador mix into the tub. 

Raven is 10 years old.  She's at that point in a woman's life when pleasing her people just isn't as high a priority as it used to be.  She's all about living authentically in her golden years.  She also despises racial profiling.  She wants you to know that she is more than her heritage.  She is a lab mix who hates baths.

Problem is, thanks to her border collie forebears, she has been blessed with an abundant mane.  This creates a conflict of interest.  There's the whole back to nature, down-with-bathing thing that she's into, but come 6 weeks post-bath, she's sporting an oily 'fro.  And while I respect her right to an alternative lifestyle, I just can't get down with the funk.

Bathing Raven requires that I bodily lift her into the tub.  When she can manage it, she uses her nails to grip door frames and shower curtains--anything--to avoid the dreaded water. 

Once I get her into the tub, I spend about 34343453453423 minutes trying to wet her fur to the skin. (It's bushy like a border collie's coat and water-repellent like a labrador's.) I'm already sweaty and arthritic at this point, but I persevere.  Because the only thing worse than stinky dog is wet stinky dog.  I scrub her all over and then spend 489645349534752305 more minutes rinsing all the dirt and shampoo off.  She usually shakes at this point, and somehow, she catches me off guard every time.  Water and fur go flying, and I can't clean it up immediately because I'm so covered in clumps of black hair that I look like the Wolfman.

Next, I clean her face with tearless baby shampoo.  She really doesn't like to get her face wet, so I try to get this done as quickly as possible.  To rinse, I just dump a bowl of water on her head and shove the shower curtain between us so she can recover with minimal bathroom soakage. 

The final step is the most important.  I throw a towel over her while she's still in the tub, rub her down as quickly as I can, and get the hell out of the way.  She comes barreling out of the tub (because suddenly, she is able to clear the side of the bathtub without help) and then she rolls all over the floor in an effort to get that stinky shampoo scent off of her carefully cultivated coat.

Only problem is, this time I forgot that I pushed that heavy, sharp bone out of the way before bath time. 


So I stepped on the bone and fell backward, messing up my carefully laid-out network of towels.  Raven jumped out of the tub and proceeded to go all Wet Dog Crazy while we both scrambled for purchase on the wet, slippery floor.  Somehow I managed to throw another towel over her and finish drying her off before she darted out the bathroom door to run a victory lap through the house.


To be continued

February 17, 2012

Can't blame this on the public schools

Nature Boy loves him some meat.  So he wrote a haiku about it.  Like to hear it?  Here it go.


Bacon, steak, and ham.
Juicy, succulent meat - yum.
Poor little cow.  Aww.

He also loves him some dairy.  It is an unrequited love.


Oh, dairy.  Why me?
Making my butt erupt.  (Groan.)
Dairy sucks a lot.

Which brings us to the final haiku of the day.

Volcano butt.  (Pfft.)
Smelly gas comes out my BLEEP.
Boy, do I like farts.


*I helpfully pointed out to Nature Boy that bacon and ham do not come from cows.  He sensically replied that "animal" has 3 syllables and haikus require a certain sparsity of sound.  Ergo, the cow remains.

My shy, retiring boy would also like me to share this picture with you.  You're welcome.

February 14, 2012

Valentyme's Day Linky Love

I like compliments as much as the next girl.  I have a small collection of favorites that I keep filed away in my brain under "Absolutely True Things That People Finally Realized About Me".  When I'm feeling low, it helps to remember those words.  One of my top 3 came from a friend during my college years.  Admittedly, it's one of those statements that could as easily be an insult as a compliment.  But since I was hot in college, I'm pretty sure it was legit.  Check it out:    

As is my wont, I was obsessing about my too-short haircut when a very perceptive friend with an eye for beauty said, "With a face like that, it doesn't matter what your hair looks like."  See what I mean?  It's possible she meant, "Girl, yo' face is so butt-ugly that your hair is the last thing you need to be worried about."  But I like to think she meant, "Vision o' beauty before me, doubteth not thy loveliness, for thy face is the fairest in the land and thy hair, the perfect frame."


Being recognized is always nice.  Like recently when my mom told me that my weight loss makes my boobs look bigger.  What a dear!  So imagine my delight when I discovered that one of my favorite humor bloggers mentioned little ol' me on her blog!  Total compliment. 

Although I'm all about shameless self-promotion here at Yeah, I said it., it's time to share the spotlight.  And the love.

1.  Oh Honestly, Erin cracks me up every time.  Every single ever-lovin' time, y'all!  As you know by now, I think sarcasm is a virtue, which means Erin is pretty much a saint.  And her son is God.  At least on Halloween.

2.  You Know What Mama is my favorite redheaded blogger.  Her cool factor is multiplied by 4 because her whole family has red hair.  (I'm a bit of a gingerophile.  But not in a creepy way.  For the most part...)  She's an excellent writer and a great satirist.  I love how real she is. 

Now I'm not a big one for politics.  (I know, I know...)  But this here's funny.  If political discourse was always this entertaining, I might just give a crap.  She should write a book!

3.  Grumpy Grateful Mom's blog has it all.  Self-deprecation, kid chaos, gratitude, and my personal fave, grumpiness.  She's all about sharing her struggles in a lighthearted way.  I'd totally be her friend in real life.

Who's your favorite funny blogger (besides moi, of course!)?

February 10, 2012

Make candy, not war

Tonight my guys went to an indoor Airsoft playing field for some manly time.  Nature Boy really wants to be all, "Yay!  Let's go shoot people!"  But really he's more like, "Yeah, okay, we'll go shoot people.  But more importantly, can I get a candy bar at the concession stand?"

See, my husband is the one who's really into Airsoft.  As a matter of fact, he loves all things war. (Well, except for the whole people dying thing.)  He will actually watch those boring war documentaries on PBS.  Our Netflix instant queue is all cluttered with war movies.  (Which can be kind of annoying to wade through when I want to watch some quality television.  Like Desperate Housewives.)  And I think he's still secretly grieving the fact that Nature Boy isn't into G.I. Joe anymore.

The word on the street is that tonight's battle was a fierce one.  A little bird told me that Tree Guy, my normally G-rated mate, was cussing like a mofo.  Because pretend war is serious, y'all.

Yes.  Fake war brings out the mutha%$*$%#@ SOULJA in my man.  As is evidenced by the following true story.

Random strangers are teamed up for battle at these indoor places.  A kid on my guys' team decided that Nature Boy looked like a good target for bullying.  (Wrong!)  He got all pushy and bossy and up in Nature Boy's bidness a few times.  When Nature Boy wouldn't do what he told him to, he pointed his fake gun at Nature Boy's chest and said, "You SURE you're not gonna do what I say?"  And Nature Boy pointed his fake gun at Bullyboy's head and said in his best Clint Eastwood voice, "Yep."  I'm sure it was as gangsta as it gets out here in the 'burbs.

Later Bullyboy got all up in Nature Boy's grill again, this time saying, "You got a problem with me?!"  Nature Boy said no.  Bullyboy got all hovery and threatening and said, "You SURE you ain't got a problem with me?!" 

What he didn't count on is that Rambo Nature Boy's dad was right behind him in line.*

*Okay, so Tree Guy didn't actually point his fake gun at Bullyboy.  What actually went down is that when Tree Guy saw what was going on, he got in the kid's face and said, "Do YOU have a problem with ME?!"  Bullyboy was all, "No! No, I don't have a problem!"  And Tree Guy said, "Then leave him alone!"

Nice.  (Note to self:  My husband is hot.)

But Nature Boy's not gonna let his dad take all the credit!  He told me it's a good thing Tree Guy stepped in when he did.  Because Bullyboy was about to be introduced to Nature Boy's fists o' fury.  And y'all know it wouldn't have been the first time

As is proper, Nature Boy thanked his dad...for rescuing the bully from a beatdown, that is.

I just don't know where he gets his temper...

February 07, 2012

Motherhood: an adventure in idiocy

What fun would parenthood be if not for all our ineptitude and foibles?  I don't know about you, but I make mistakes all the time

Some of them were garden variety new parent gaffes: 

1.  not realizing that boy babies kamikaze pee when their diapers are removed (read: my newborn peed on his own head) 
2.  the abrupt formula change to "Good" Start  (read: a black and grey storm of poo all over my lap)
3.  nipping Nature Toddler's ear while giving him a home haircut (read: haircut avoidance forevermore)

Some of them were no-excuses plain stupidity on my part:

1.  letting my 6-year-old be a Big Boy and hold the gas pump (read: gas in the eye = an ER visit)
2.  searching for a roly-poly sippy cup in the car while driving--in a construction zone (read: the road crew had one less orange and white construction sign and my car had one less side mirror)
3.  checking out the evenness of my eyebrows whilst driving with my preschooler in the backseat (read: street sweepers are like TANKS, y'all)   

My parenting mistakes are varied, but they share one thing.  They all happened because I have no idea what I'm doing. 

I'm making this parenting thing up as I go along.  And that's because the closest thing I can find to a parenting expert whose philosophy meshes with mine is Ms. Frizzle.  And she is a CARTOON.

My particular maternal screw-ups change with each developmental stage.  Which happily means that I am no longer making poor feeding and diapering decisions.  (Yea!)  But it also means that I am now effing up in the areas of tween social skills and Preparing My Child for College and Therefore Life. (Boo!)

And you know, the social skills thing was inevitable.  I mean, what business do I have teaching anybody how to get along with folks?  It's hard to credibly teach your kid proper social etiquette and healthy conflict resolution when your own personal history involves getting the PoPo called on you in a senior living community and participating in a Shout Out at the Golden Corral.   

But I can live with that.  Because fortunately for Nature Boy, he's got his dad to teach him that stuff.  Tree Guy likes people and can handle conflict without getting all red-faced and loud.  He confidently deals with gun-toting rednecks who threaten to shoot him for cutting down their trees on a regular basis!

My particular parenting nemesis at this stage of development is in the education realm.  Homeschool moms have the added blessing of getting to make up the education thing as we go along.  (Huzzah!)  And that's a huge responsibility. 

We're dealing with some learning challenges at my house, and I have been at a loss for years.  While practicing the art of self-flagellation, I ask myself: Will we ever master the math monster? How important is paper and pencil math in the age of calculators anyway?  Are my slackadaisical* ways messing up my kid's chances for college?  Am I even worthy enough to clean the chalkboards of real homeschool moms?  (Okay, I was exaggerating with that last bit.  Kind of.)

Homeschooling the traditional way is as exciting as toilet rings and pap smears to me.  And Nature Boy agrees (with the exception of the whole pap smear thing).  He's a round peg, which is wonderful.  But college is a square hole, and he says he wants to go.  Not for the sake of going to college, but rather because it's the ticket to the type of job he wants to have when he grows up (zookeeper). 

So what's a neurotic homeschool mom to do? 

Feel free to weigh in. 

Unless you're all holier-than-thou and critical, in which case you should be forewarned that I am a sweaty fat chick on the edge.   

*Hey!  I just made that up!  I am hereby coining the word slackadaisical

slackadaisical [ slàkə dáyzik'l ] (adj.)

First known use: 2012
A slang derivative of the words lackadaisical and slacker.
1. without interest or vigor, combined with an overall goal of doing as little as possible
2. lazy; unindustrious and unconcerned about being so

There.  You are witnessing history here, folks!

You're welcome.