How I Save The World From Certain Destruction Every Day Of My Life

music-697621_1280Quite frankly, if anyone should be America’s next president aside from Tom Selleck, it is me.  I do realize that this might sound like your typical ‘delusions of grandeur’ situation, similar, in fact, to what we’ve seen a bit of already on the current campaign trail.  I can assure you it’s not.  I actually have a reason for this bold statement, the reason being that I am singlehandedly responsible for preventing the total annihilation of the universe.  Every single day.  This is the truth, but listen.  There is no need to thank me.  I am not looking for glory, it’s just what I do.

I mean, it’s not as if I have a choice.

I am going to share a secret with you, a secret which I recently shared with a virtual stranger for the very first time. It felt so freeing that I’ve decided to share it with the world.  Meaning the population of the world that reads my blog regularly.  So, seven people.  I feel lighter already, to tell you the truth.  It’s incredible.

But anyway, the secret is this: every day when I am in my car, I adjust the volume of the sound system so that it is an EVEN NUMBER.  I do this because if I drove around listening to the radio on volume 11 or 17 or 23, the world as we know it would end. Probably immediately. I don’t know exactly how it would happen. I also don’t know why I’ve been chosen to carry this sometimes crushing responsibility.  Ours not to reason why, ours but to do or die, or so they say.  Actually Lord Alfred Tennyson said that, and what he really said (I think) was “Ours not to reason why, ours but to do AND die,” but I have changed the quote to suit my meaning.  They call this creative license.  Or plagiarism.  Either way.  On with the story.

I am not ashamed to tell you, this makes me very nervous.
I am not ashamed to tell you, this makes me very nervous.

In case I’m making my job sound a little too easy, you should know that I have the same burden when it comes to our home televisions.  18 or 20 is my preferred volume for the living room TV; it changes to 26 or 30 if Jim is in the room, because he enjoys watching and listening to it instead of merely using it for background noise.  I need to stress here that this is harder than it sounds.  Say I am sitting there reading, with the TV set to 16.  And then Jim walks into the room and turns it up to 27.  Obviously I cannot just let this go; as I have already explained, mass destruction etc.  Yet I also can’t immediately adjust the setting to 26 or 28 because then, Jim would be reminded of my volume requirements and purposely set everything to an odd number just to fuck with me.  Of course he does not know the ramifications of his actions, but still.  I have to tread very carefully.

It gets worse.  It’s not decibel levels alone that keep the world hanging in the balance.  Just so you know, my ‘Things To Do’ list must have an even number of items on it every day as well.  Actually it can either be an even number, or a number divisible by 5.  So I can have 12 things to do, or 14 or 15, but not 19.  If I have 19 things to do, I have to think of another one right away, even if it’s something stupid that clearly has no place on a To Do list.  Like occasionally I have written, “Shower.”  But if it’s a choice between a pointless To Do or world annihilation, well I think you know which I will choose.  You are safe.  Thanks to me.

Our planet if I ever accidentally leave the TV volume at 21.
Our planet if I ever accidentally leave the TV volume at 21.

In the spirit of full disclosure, I will tell you that my heroism also extends to the microwave.  Usually when I reheat my morning coffee, it needs more than 30 seconds but less than a minute.  You would think that in this case, I could just set it for 40 or 50 seconds and be done with it. BUT NO.  I look at how much coffee is left in the cup, and then I do some type of mental calculation that is a mystery even to me and come up with something like 43 seconds.  And there’s the tricky part.  I CAN’T HEAT MY COFFEE FOR 43 SECONDS.  My God, anything but that, so now I am left to decide between 42 seconds and 44.  I usually go with 44, because I honestly don’t mind burning my tongue on hot drinks.  Trust me when I tell you that deadening some of my taste buds can only do me good.

Breaking news:  I have just walked away to fill up my glass of water.  Now I am back and have realized there is even more to this than I thought, because I filled up my glass with 24 ounces of water.  I always fill it with 24 ounces of water.  I don’t know what would happen if I filled it with 23 by accident, and here all along I’ve been heedlessly filling my glass with no thought to the consequences!  I have no idea how I’ve gotten away with drinking those 16.9 ounce bottles of water, but I can tell you it stops right here and right now.  No more.  You are welcome.

One more thing I’d like to mention, just in my own defense. I know that some of you, though you may not say it, might be thinking, “she is batshit crazy.”  I want to assure you I am not.  I know this because I asked my doctor if I was and he said, “No.”

Okay.  Actually, what he said was, “Well, do you feel like this is negatively impacting your life?  Is it making it difficult for you to concentrate, or to work, or to deal with your family?”

I said, “Really?  You’re telling me it’s supposed to be easy to concentrate and work and deal with my family?”

He said, “Well, in general.  I mean, do you feel like it’s more difficult, because of the number thing?”

And I said, “No.  Of course not.  The number thing makes it easier, because I always know everything is okay.”

And it is.  I am sane, and it’s all okay.

Still – please, do not write me in on any presidential ballots.  As I think I have made pretty clear, I am way, way too busy to be taking on a job like that.

Makeup Wars

lips-651339_1280So it turns out I actually need more makeup, in order to appear that I am wearing less makeup.

I have to tell you, this was a revelation. And a welcome one, because I am nothing if not a makeup applier. I wear it when I am going out. I wear it when I am staying home. I wear it to the library and to work and to visit my dad at the nursing home.

I do not wear it because I feel ugly without it. Some days I feel ugly either way, that’s just the way it goes and by this age, I’ve learned not to give it much thought. I wear makeup because I REALLY LIKE IT. I like everything about it. I especially like shopping for it because I love having new makeup. When I make tons of money with my writing, I am going to give lots to charity but probably an equal amount to Sephora. Judge me, I don’t care. Makeup + Me Forever!

How I realized I needed more makeup was really a freak accident. Well I mean, depending upon how you define “freak accident,” I guess, but whatever. At some point in life, I’d received this sample-sized jar of MoonGlow or RadiationGlow or some type of glowy thing that was supposed to make my face, well, glow. Despite my love of every existing makeup sold in the U.S. and abroad, I didn’t bother with it for the longest time. I stuck it in my makeup bag, where it got buried beneath the 70,000 other products.

Then one day I found it, and what do you know. Glow! My skin actually looked like living human flesh instead of like a foundation- and powder-covered potato. One could argue that less foundation and powder would do the same trick, but I would argue back that to look like a plain potato is little improvement. And so now, we must add “MoonGlow” or “RadiationGlow” or whatever it’s called to my list of things to stock up on before the apocalypse.

Jim does not know much about my cosmetic requirements; he only knows that I most certainly have them. One day at the grocery store he looked at me and said, “See? You look good without makeup.” To which I said, “Yes. I actually am wearing makeup, but, thanks.” Since then he hasn’t really mentioned it. Maybe he has learned to accept what he cannot change, but I doubt it. That’s not really his way. More likely he has just quit paying attention. Either that or he’s realized that he has no more interest in being married to a potato than I have in looking like one.

Ahhhh, this makes me happy.

Anyway. I was perusing my local ULTA recently when I came across a handwritten sign, roughly the size of a business card, propped up against the Lipstick Queen display. Note that I do love Lipstick Queen and highly recommend the brand. The sign said, “Stop Teaching Your Sons To Objectify Womyn!” I wish I had a picture of it to include here, but at the time I was too stunned, I guess, to think of taking one. I mean, how did they know I have sons, for one thing?  Haha – that’s a joke. I know they didn’t know and that the sign was not personal, but for rather embarrassing second or two, I felt like it was meant specifically for me and my extraordinarily glowy face.  I looked around me, as if the perpetrator might be lingering nearby waiting to lecture me on my outrageous anti-feminism.

And the more I’ve thought about it (which, granted, has not been that much, since like most of us I have several more pressing matters to attend to), the more annoyed I’ve become.

I mean, I’m all for feminism. Sort of. I spell ‘women’ in the traditional way, and I wear makeup, but I’d certainly like to see Jennifer Lawrence make as much as Bradley Cooper does in the 6 million movies they star in together. I want life to be fair and for everyone to have all the same chances. I want there to be more female executives and neurosurgeons and technology pioneers. The thing is, in order for more women to be those things, more women have to actually be those things. Less time complaining = more time doing. And tearing other women down for wearing makeup? Lady, whoever you are, you are not my kind of feminist.

I don’t have daughters. But if I did, I would not tell them that they can do anything boys can do, because that only introduces doubt that maybe they can’t. I wouldn’t tell them that they have to try harder, because that is defeatist and we all should be trying hard. I would not tell them the world is unfair, because, you see what Oprah did? She made her own fairness.

Life is not fair or unfair, it’s just life. We should all get on with it.

Oh. One thing I would tell my daughters, if I had them? Is that it is totally worth it, finding the one ‘nude’ lipstick that won’t make you look like you just ate half a dozen powdered sugar donuts. Or, you could just eat the powdered sugar donuts and leave the lipstick alone. Either way is fine, because girls, you get to choose.