PURPLE MOUNTAIN TRAVESTIES

America is so beautiful, from sea to shining sea. That is until I set foot into the lobby of a bank. All those money holders, being potential breeding grounds for crime and possible end to loan officer’s careers. I sure wish God would shed His grace on thee by crowning thy good in all brotherhood, but not before He knocks some sense into criminal minds. For decades I have wondered if I’d ever be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Precisely, within a gunman’s range in a tellers line. I’m not fit to be tied, or gagged, or killed. I’d rather be fondled by a creepy gynecologist than an embalmer.

John F. Kennedy said that society must set the artist free to follow his vision. I doubt he was referring to those with loaded weapons descending on pallets of dough and innocent bystanders while hurrying to make off with valuables. Good luck getting rich with my account balance! And the Starbucks coffee that is complimentary to customers is far more valuable than my diamond encrusted watch from Marshall’s, and not really worth stealing… just in case any thieves feast their eyes on my bling. But I won’t give up my BCBG Max Azria handbag, not for anything. Especially since I purchased that thing myself. No one else bought it for me for Labor Day. What’s up with that?

If I’m ever held captive, and request permission to leave, I’m afraid I’d be shot in the foot or something. Murphy’s Law will tell you that those who go to a target range are less apt to hit their mark as those who have never fired a single bullet before. Forget the 7% annual annuity returns. I want a 100% jumbo rate of reassurance that I will return home safely from every bank visit.

My daughter now works in one of these cash filled establishments, which presents a whole new set of worries. I have seen people do crazy things for money, even work for it. Even though my ultra-efficient twenty two year old can bully punch with the best of them, she can’t bypass the barrel of a revolver. Knowing her, she would step in front of a customer or coworker if it meant saving them. Or maybe she’d turn into a cheetah and just bolt out the back door, I don’t know. Or maybe, just maybe she’s really a vampire fully prepared to bite the bandit in the you know where. I suppose I should be buying her a bulletproof vest, ballistic helmet, and ball peen hammer for her birthday. She can’t carry around a 12 gauge!!! She told me one of her branches was recently robbed at gunpoint. This could be as bad as Shameless, when Frank gets arrested for drunk & disorderly AGAIN while Fiona fends for her siblings AGAIN in the midst of romancing Adam and Jamie has the tendency AGAIN to sleep walk.

I wandered off in a daydream that imitated the dreaded dilemma of a robbery in progress. I was the teller, and was holed up in a vault-y transaction and close encounter of the rotten kind. Because clearly, some of these thieves are far too busy to bathe. A shower wouldn’t kill a person. I’ve done it once or twice myself. And I needed to discuss an exfoliate with the larcenist. Personally, I swear by the Egyptian adzuki bean dermaplaning. Anyway, my lunch hour turned into a hostile takeover. I had a code blue alarm button that read: HAVING A BAD DAY with Excederin next to it. The code red alarm button read: HAVING AN EXTREMELY BAD DAY with a bottle of Jack Daniels next to it. Since the conspiratorial henchman didn’t have the same finesse as the Mafia, he tried writing the demand letter on his own personalized stationery, then asked me for my car keys. I told him “no” but would be tickled extra pink to call him a cab. I withheld any indecent hand gestures and asked if I could help downsize his emotions from being in such an erratic place. All I got was a blank stare, then some unwarranted verbal expletives. With the proverbial gray cloud looming over me, I asked if he was a seasoned shooter. I also mentioned that we weren’t an equal opportunity lender. Because, with what I was about to give him, he could live high-on-the-hog for about eight minutes. Mister moneybags took off the hankie he used as a headband and shoved it into my mouth rather abruptly. Such joy overcame me. What if he had lice? Then he pointed a pistol at my mug. So I did what any other would be captor / crime preventer would do. I faked a seizure. To which he announced, “I have good news!” I asked, “What news? You’re just about to win the flippin’ lottery and you want to share?” He replied, “No, I’m gonna let you go.” He got away, with a pile of loot AND my BCBG purse AND my watch. Needless to say, I came to in a cold sweat, but was free to run to the store for that Jack Daniels.

Financial institutions are where the anxiety, pulse, and love for the great outdoors reside. And robbers are ridiculously reliable, more so than contractors, cellulite removers, and washing machine detergents. The next time I need a plumber, I may have to call a crook. But to all you would be robbers out there, if I do hire you, I have this message: I don’t keep cash on hand, ever. I don’t even know what it’s like to feel the many faces of George Washington, much less Benjamin Franklin or Grover Cleveland. You are not welcome to my great grandmother’s silverware as parting gifts, unless you know how to outsmart barbed wire. And shame on you ahead of time for even considering my well earned penny jar. In addition, may the alarms pierce your eardrums, the surveillance cameras show your bad side, your guns backfire, and the wool ski masks give you hives.

STALL TACTICS

Let’s define dribbling. And I’m not talking basketball. It’s just another hour with the timely celebrated tinkling tradition and ill effects of my internal plumbing system.

For the first year of my life, my mother ran around town with me, and the unsophistication of soggy diapers, with rubber pants on top of it holding in the moisture for added comfort. I haven’t been that fond of a rashy bottom since. September 16, 1973: I laughed so hard I peed all over my platform heels. August 8, 2001: A bit bloated after six beers. And with such kidney concentration, I bolted for the water closet right around midnight, 2am, 4am, then again at sunrise. Hops taught me I can’t have a few without the other.

Now it’s the age of Aquarius. I mean Capricorn. And I’m not disgruntled at all. I just don’t like over the shoulder boulder holders (bras) since I can’t fill the dang things. Nor do I favor public restrooms, and peeing every hour on the hour. It’s really gotten in the way of stopping to smell the roses. It’s unfair of our heavenly Father to retract that many hours of living with constant visits to a commode. He could just as miraculously detour me to a Cold Stone Creamery. I don’t even want to see super expensive gold inlays or objects that grace a billionaires’ bathroom. I’d rather plan a non-peeing trip to Barbados.

Boy, I’ve seen it all. Everything from cleanliness to filthiness to seeing the writing on the wall. Think circa seventies. Especially if words date back to the Led Zeppelin days and I’m reading unsolicited and scrambled sentences. And all those so-and-so loves so-and-so’s. They probably got married and are divorced by now. Personally, I want to write “If you know what’s good for you, run for your life!” I read somewhere that cow urine may soon be on shelves in India as an alternative to sodas and meant to promote Hinduness. Remind me never to move to India.

Let me clear up any confusion about my future career decision making. You couldn’t pay me enough to be janitor to these fun spots. Is it normal for a stallmate to ask to borrow a magazine and a Heath bar? I’ve waited in lavatory lines so long you’d think someone was in there viewing a full length feature film. Or doing other trivial things, like checking stock options or liver spots. And teenagers? They aren’t hooked on phonics, they’re hooked on Facebook. It may be a millennium before they surface from a stall. God only knows whatever other life forms cohabit these public nuisances.

I’ve been shopping only to exit the store with a trail of toilet tissue. I beg to differ with management. It wasn’t exactly stealing. How about those empty hand paper and toilet rolls, and trying to wipe with a mint wrapper? *I’m a wall designer. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wanted to do an extreme makeover at truck stops, adding Chintzy pillowed bum seats and better lighting. Architects haven’t the sound judgment of developing acoustics and lining the depository walls with arcade games. If they can make psychic faucets and auto flushers, they should be able to make these magical mystery tours more enjoyable.

I do admit to one fella-ny. Going to a concert in my teens and forgetting to tote a port-a-potty. The women’s bathroom line looked similar to Hands Across America. The men’s? Nothing. Zilch. No one urgently waiting like a jumping bean. My date grabbed my hand, with my other one covering my eyes. He made way through the men’s room yelling, “Girl coming through”, while I yelled, “No peeking!” I was totally peeking. If only cell phone picture taking had been invented a little earlier, I would have had a field day.

This urinary inconti-penance is downright dullsville. I’m very close to going to an astrologer to see if this chain of events will continue to get worse. Do I always welcome the chance to down a few more brewskis just to skip to the loo with every other darling in dire need to relieve her undercarriage? Then hear, “Plop, plop. whiz, whiz, oh what a relief it is?” Hardly. I’d rather hear the soothing sounds of Enya, with strep throat.

*Visit my Facebook business page: WALLDASHERY

ABSENCE MAKES THE HAIR GROW BLONDER

Don’t discount me as being one of the most highly non-effective gals in this galaxy just because I have goldi-locks. There’s really no evidence of brainiac disparity based on hair shades. Besides, I was born blonde but my hair these days is naturally a mucky brown, tinted. Just ask my hairdresser Miss Clairol, whom I helped soar to super stardom. I get a bit hairy dispersing funds for food, gas, updated electronics, and constant color re-dos. My cluelessness comes from the depletion of burnt brain cells and bottles of rum. Not from being blonde.

Bleachy follicled women are known to get a bad rap. But I can handle irritations. It’s irritating getting bills in the mail every day. Since my gerilogical clock is ticking, I lose memory faster than I can pop a Ginkgo Biloba. Alright, I admit that I tend to stray and am somewhat slow. That’s no fault of my hair. Although, I’m never late for anything. Maybe the occasional thirty to forty minute delay if there’s street construction, or if I have to kill a spider. Or, maybe I have to save a spider in the middle of street construction. Otherwise, I am fully capable of setting a timer, and turning it off, provided I don’t throw it in the washer or take it to the dry cleaners by mistake. I’m calling this blondeness dumb luck since my mammy and her mammy were both brunettes. If I was adopted, I haven’t been told yet.

Blondes having more fun can be contestable. Men usually do wrap themselves around us women folk with lighter strands. It sure isn’t because of my chest. I was out with girlfriends who have raven hair, and men zoomed in on me. One of them was the chief culprit in making me look like a dummy. He threw me a few fishy lines to a story. Even though I was gullible enough to believe him, it coerced me to start carrying a Wall Street Journal in my fanny pack as an intellectual backup. My second instinct was to stand over an air vent letting my dress blow up to my cheekbones while sensuously singing, “Happy Birthday Mr. President.” Instead, I just said, “My name is Bubbles. What’s yours?”

I know blonde men with the same problems. One male friend continuously forgets to shave. If he waits till Monday, he may need a lawnmower. Some men are also forced to use hair color. They are the ones who usually end up with their own home decorating shows. So how can there be absence of brain activity there? And guys love women who keep up with their general appearance. Remember that Clairol slogan, “The closer he gets, the better you look?” Yes, if he’s had six shots of tequila.

And no, I didn’t fall off the monkey bars on the playground in pre-school. So disregard that notion just because I can be an absent minded dresser and space cadet. If I want to get any flightier, all I need is $200,000 and nerves of steel for a ticketed ride on the Virgin Galactica set for orbiting this year. Yet, it’s risky enough having to look both ways when journeying through my own yard. But if I choose to go this cosmonaut route, and in the event that more disorientation were to occur, I’d say I’m already a prime candidate. There’s no way I could co-ordinate myself if flown to the floor during a seven mile climb with that kind of gravity. It wouldn’t matter the color of my hair or quantity of brain cells just to sit in a pressurized suit. Even though I’d be hobknobbing with all the rich and famous who are outer atmosphere enthusiasts as well, I’d hate to run into Josh Duhamel without having highlighted my hair. Because, as they say, gentlemen prefer blondes.

MOTION FOR REHEARINGS: ALL IN FAVOR SAY AYE

Somebody once said that one needs the heart of a brave man, the soul of a wise man, the protection of a CIA agent, the humor of a standup comedian, and the love of Christ. That one would be me. Someone else quoted, “Men will never confess to treason, murder, arson, false teeth, or a toupee.” But that’s beside the point.

Many moons ago after I listened to my mama birthing me, she said she was in the mood for manicotti. It goes without saying that macaroni might be the first thing you think of after a rigorous workout – a common sensation when it was time to pick my daddy up off the floor. She swore a lot too before she got hungry (must have been the breach delivery), and thought I didn’t hear her. When I got older, mama used to tell me that I never listened, and mustn’t grumble. She used to say that before SHE started to grumble. I’ve listened to a lot of things through the years that people have said. Sometimes I take it all in, but I guess sometimes I don’t. The latter only happens if my ingested Mai Tai’s meet a partial coma, which could also lead to intolerable karaoke. Not one person will want to hear that.

I got locked in a closet one time and yelled. No one could hear me. And euphoria never lasted long as I glided merrily alone down an abandoned highway then feeling a pulsating from the engine that turned to a sputtering stop. I grabbed my cell that lost service. Needless to say that no one could hear me then either. But if I screamed to high heaven, no doubt someone would appear telling me to shut up because I could be heard loud and clear in Venezuela.

A friend wanted to buy me a ricer. I told her I already had an eraser. Just the other day I told her a lengthy story. She replied, “What did you say?” We’re both still shaking our heads. Forbes published this King James psalm most likely for good reason…”A thousand may fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand, but it will not come nigh thee.” I have no idea what this means. But I think it has something to do with monumental moments of falling on deaf ears. I recall once asking my teenage daughter where she was going. It started several paces away from her bedroom. The closer I got I still didn’t hear the answer. Finally she said, “Mom, for the eighth time, I’m going to the mall.”

For years I sang Happy Birthday songs with the lyrics, “Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, you look like a monkey, and you smell like a shoe.” Seems I never heard the right version to that growing up. And sounds of silence still resonate with Verizons CAN YOU HEAR ME? CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW? But Joni Mitchell really put it in perspective. “I’ve looked at life from both sides now.” From listening to not listening and still somehow, it’s my delusions I recall, and I really don’t know if I can move forward with this whole communication enigma.

I probably need both a heart and hearing aid of a brave man, and soul with a larger mental capacity as a wise man. Definitely protection from a CIA agent and tons more humor from Jane Lynch. I’m pretty sure I already have the love of Christ. But I am considering the fact that women are targeted to be the chatty/shoulder to cry on of the two genders. But if I’m not careful, I may be done with ever going outside again if it means mingling my meaningless monologues or mute ears. Otherwise I can get back to my regular scheduled programming of confusion.

Look at Vincent Van Gogh. He heard half of what people said. Since I’m half deaf as well, I figure I should get a serious discount from my mobile phone provider, and let everyone else be aware of my auditory range deficit……which makes me a comparatively normal human being.