Tag Archives: mothers

Why My Mother Wins

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Why My Mother Wins

If you’re like me and let’s all bow our heads and pray you aren’t, your mother engrained certain behavior, preferences and prejudices into your supple, young psyche—two adjectives which describe nothing about me at this point in time.

I’m not talking about manners as your family saw them, because, aside from please and thank you and stop hitting your brother even though he started it, most manners are created by societal guy named Norm.

Family dynamics rule the day when it comes to customs and regulations in every household. My mother, for instance, considered using the word “Pop” the Midwestern term for soft drinks, instead of the vastly superior term “soda” to be déclassé and forbade us to use the noxious term. My mother had grown up in Pennsylvania where the term soda is the preference. The trouble is, we grew up in Chicago where I the word pop on the streets.

I went along with my mother because, when we’re living in a closed environment, we figure our parents know what’s up, given the amount of time they’ve spent on earth compared to you, as a child who sprung from the parental loins.  Yes, I found that term slightly nauseating as well and will forbid my son to use it in the future.

When we’re about 12, we realize parental superiority is nonsense and that we, at 12 measly years-old, know everything important that needs to be known and consider our former concept of normal to be —how to be diplomatic?—A steaming ball of crazy, a conception which usually vaporizes at about 21-years-old, but, in my case, is right on.

For instance, my mother and her mother called green peppers mangos throughout my childhood.  I don’t remember when I realized this was wrong, probably when I learned to read the sign over the peppers at Jewel which clearly stated “Not Mangoes”.

But, I digress and return to my original premise which is; my mother is more peculiar than your mother and I can prove it.

When I was a child and my mother monitored my bathroom habits, she felt the need to create words other than poo-poo or pee-pee, et.Al. for feces and urine because, in her eyes, what our body considered waste, my mother considered rude to talk about, even during potty training, which, in the real world, necessitates discussion when you’re two.  (I probably didn’t need all those commas, but I have nowhere else to put them, so I’ll just leave them there for now.)

So, the words my mother created, much like mangos for green peppers, had a definition outside of the context used by the majority of society.  (Did you get my societal norm joke yet?) When I came out of the bathroom, my mother asked me if I had wet or done something special.

I know what you’re thinking, talk about creating a sense of accomplishment far beyond what is necessary, did she also keep little trophies in the cabinets which were bestowed upon you for breathing and sleeping?

Nope. My mother was neither touchy nor feely. My mother was and is a no nonsense woman, unless you call referring to green peppers as mangos nonsensical, and why wouldn’t you?

Still, while I was young and impressionable the phrase “something special” meant what the rest of the world called poop, nonsensical or not

So what? I’ll tell you so what. Some time ago, a major religious figure died in Chicago. I am not a practitioner of his faith, but this is Chicago, so Catholic news leads, even ahead of cat videos.

I was half watching and half updating my Facebook page in a way that would make me appear more normal than I am, when I fell into peels of laughter, proving my quest for the norm was unsuccessful.  Why? A priest was discussing his last conversation with the soon-to-be-late religious figure just before the fellow, who usually wore a decorative hat, found out if God is what he expected or is, instead an angry woman with a celestial rolling pin.

At that dramatic point in time, according to the non-hat-wearing religious figure, the dying leader requested that the aforementioned priest, do something special for him.  Get it?  It was hilarious!

I laughed so hard that crossing my legs became a necessity and my husband demanded an explanation which consisted of him glancing at me, raising his eyebrows and going back to what he was doing because me amusing myself is not an unusual occurrence in his life, and my explanations never seem to justify my level of my mirth…to him.  My son gets the same treatment.  We’ve contacted Amnesty International and we thought they’d be more sympathetic as they laughed as well, but nothing has come of it.

I live in fear of sitting through a eulogy where the speaker makes a comment such as “Hubert brought a little something special into every home he visited.”  I’ve also shamed myself when servers have told me they have something special on the menu.  Even Oprah would send me into peels of laughter when she announced the show was sponsored by a certain airline whose slogan was, “Something special in the air,”.  That probably should be Dave Matthews slogan as well.

Now, I’m making a pretty big assumption when it comes to family weirdness and I’d love to hear your stories as well, I’m sure you all have something special to share or maybe you don’t. Maybe your family is the one and only normal family in the land.  In any case, until you are further notified, my mother wins.

Having said all of this, I want to apologize for the included sentiment at the top of the page.  It is an example of why my life is more difficult than yours and not representative of feelings about you, my valued readers, or reader, as is often the case..  You’re not something special. You’re welcome.

Why 312 Months is a Difficult Age

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Why 312 Months is a Difficult Age

Parenting is a challenge. Just about the time you realize what your 12-month-old means by geya, (read a book) your 312-month-old moves out of the house.

I know what you’re thinking, “Did you count to three? Because the book says counting three will nip unwanted behavior in the bud”. I did and it didn’t.

I threatened to ground him, but he openly defied me as he packed about 500 of the 1200 t-shirts he owns, along with some guitar picks and was out the door with everything he would need to be a guy in the world.

I wasn’t too worried at first. You know what they say, he’ll get to the end of the block and change his mind and they were right, except about the changing his mind. Apparently, he got to the end of the block, went onto the next block, eventually got on the expressway and forgot the saying entirely, which is not as cute as my friend’s son’s story. He ran away from home on a tricycle dressed only in his mother’s filmy pink nightgown. This would be less cute and more creepy if the son in question was 312 months old, but, luckily, this youngster was a mere lad and therefore only raised a few eyebrows and instead of the suspicion of the neighborhood watch.

It’s going on two months since my son became room mates with two women and had to pretend to be gay so as not to raise the suspicion of their conservative and clueless landlord and that, of course, was Three’s Company. My son has become room mates with two women and two men, none of which pretend to be gay, except maybe their cat, who is suspiciously drawn to Broadway musicals.

Still this doesn’t mean hijinks and shenanigans don’t occur on a regular basis. It just means there’s no laugh track and none of the girls are dingbats or future spokespeople for the thighmaster.

The entire situation has thrown me through a loop, but I’ve always been pretty clumsy. On one hand, I want my son to live in the basement of my house and be at my beck and call when it comes to going out for breakfast or watching cat videos on youtube or just so I can mock him in person, but on the other hand…to be honest, there is no other hand. I just want him to live in my basement.

I suppose if he actually considered this his best option, I would doubt my fitness as a mother all the while we were going out to breakfast and I would, most certainly, be making fun of him for his lameness as it pertains to basements. Still, there would be the youtube sharing, but I guess that’s not enough to make life decisions by unless you want to make your mother happy and guilty at the same time, and who doesn’t?

His departure has made me question a number of things in my life. I wonder if I should have had a second child, a girl, maybe, with a sweet manner and the desire to make me happy at all costs. Then I look at the ghosts of their former selves, which are my friend with daughters, and realize that sugar and spice and everything nice business is crap, at least till the daughters move out of your house.

Still, as my friends with daughters sip their crack cocaine in the morning to prepare themselves for the eye rolling and lip curling which is female adolescence, I kind of envy them and wonder if it’s better to wish your child would hit the tricycle trail then to wish they would sit on your lap beyond the time it’s physically, psychologically, and socially a terrible idea for them to do so.

Other vital questions: Now that I’m no longer the mother of a child, does that mean I should stop signing him up for tee-ball in the spring? How many times can I tell the story of him saying “a little bite of Jesus” rather than “a taste of heaven” before the cashier at Jewel quits her job to become an inner city cop? Should I buy groceries for him to stave off scabies or let him eat globs of grease until he learns that Crisco is not a food group?

All in all, it’s part of the evolution of parenting from holding your breath in hopes that he’ll fall asleep so you can finally catch up on the four months of sleep you’ve missed since the introduction of baby monitors in your life, to holding your breath in hopes that he’s happy and safe and, to tell the truth, I still like the breath holding better than not having someone in the world that you made from scratch who may or may not cure cancer or write the next million selling record or introduce you to Chris Martin when that happens, so it’s all good, except for the fact that someone in that apartment is bound to write an wacky sitcom about his or her time living with these room mates and I’ll probably be played by Roseanne Barr as the overbearing, manipulative, nosey mother of the Jesse character, let’s call him Jorge Ponyboy, who barges into the apartment at the most inopportune times and hollers, “Don’t worry about me, I’m just a mother!” each time I arrive.

(The preceding run on sentence was brought to you by Nike.)

In real life, I have tried to control my urge to rent an apartment in the area where my son lives, mostly prompted by the order of protection he took out and I only considered calling my son Jorge Ponyboy for a brief time when he was about ten and discontinued the idea when I found out the amount of paperwork it takes to rename your 120 month old son.

Most of the time, I find better things to do than listen to this song and weep into my chocolate, and when I miss him too much, I drive the 45 minutes to his apartment and take him out to breakfast at Beatles and Bianca, (that’s an inside joke) because I’m glad he’s moving forward and enjoying his freedom and I hereby promise, if Jesse let’s me get away with this one last ode to missing him, I’ll find something else to talk about on my next blog. Maybe something new and surprising like how Chris Martin’s mom must have felt when he moved out.

What I Forgot to Tell My Son

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What I Forgot to Tell My Son

Whilst checking out at Target, I inexplicably shared with the woman ringing me up, that my son was moving out that very day. She peered at me like a small hen who had just rang up all of the ingredients for my world famous fried chicken minus the chicken and then asked if I left my son with anything.

I thought she might have meant torn towels and cracked dishes,license-plate

but she soon clarified she meant advice on how I expect him to behave.

What I should have said was I expect him to behave like he always behaves,

like an enormous galoot that trails coins, socks and guitar picks wherever he goes, but instead I told her, my son is 25 and if he hasn’t figured out what my life lessons were, it’s a little late to start now, although I still call him baby and occasionally try to pick him up, which is beside the point, but absolutely relevant when I visit the chiropractor.

She went on to discuss why teenagers can be assholes, advancing a theory which was neither relevant to our conversation or more than 10% true, but I thanked her because that’s how you get people to stop telling you things, and rolled my cart out of hearing. For all I know, she is still discussing the topic with confused replacements of me, but who can replace me, so never mind.

While driving home, I wondered what he’d say if asked about what I taught him over the time it was my chance to espouse philosophies and demand compliance. One thing’s for sure, it would be quite different than what I think I told him, so I thought I’d try to advise him one last time (kidding! I’ll never let up on him. Poor kid is an only child).

After a great deal of deep thought, here’s what I came up with.

There are seven deadly sins; sloth, envy, gluttony, anger, Curly, Larry and Doc. Try them out, pick which one you like and stick with it. My favorite is sloth, but you’ll need to figure this out for yourself.

Try not to be swarmy or smarmy.

Don’t wear white after Labor Day…or ever. I’m the one who did your laundry so, trust me on this.

Do not befriend or fall in love with anyone who can’t name The Beatles by their first and last names. Only marry someone who can tell you Paul’s first name and Ringo’s given name. The Ringo point is less important, naturally.

Try to be kind. Yes, even to the guy who argues that Yeti’s are eating his potato chips while he sleeps. There’s no need to jeer him unless your friends do and then, of course, join in.

Watch out for women who ask; Notice anything different?

Do your damn homework. Even if it’s irrelevant, like Algebra or Physics.

Even though you will always love me best, you probably shouldn’t tell women this on the first date…or the thirtieth. Maybe just keep that our little secret.

No one is better than you and you are not better than anyone else. Except for people who leave clothes on the floor is store dressing rooms and people who leave their shopping carts in handicapped parking spaces. These people are stupid and evil. Avoid them.

This is not 100% true, but people who use mustache wax are clinically insane 90% of the time. Approach them with caution.

When deciding whether or not to participate in an activity; ask yourself, will this make a hilarious story to tell my mother? If the answer is yes, do it and try to take videos. If the answer is no, move on to the next ridiculous activity you are inclined to participate in.

Never end a sentence with a preposition. (Do as I say, not as I do. Doobie doobbie doo.) Make of that what you will.

If anyone wants to fight you, seem to happy about it and they’ll wander off.

Finally, become a rock star so I can meet Paul McCartney and Chris Martin. I’m sorry but you just don’t meet enough people I want to meet as a Forensic Psychologist. (I know. I just can’t remember the title you’re aiming for.)

Wait. Don’t forget to tell me you miss me with a fiery passion, even if you haven’t given me a second thought in days.

Oh, one more. Lie.

Why a Lack of Vulgarity Can Be Amusing. (Rated PG-13) (R For My Mother)

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Because my mother was uncomfortable with the human body and its functions as I grew up, she came up with unusual names for urination and defecation, (and everything else). The urination euphemism wasn’t as bad as the defecation word, and really didn’t stick with me, otherwise the following question might have inadvertently offended me: Is it wet where you’re sitting?ifwt-grandma-surprised

That’s right, my mother called urination wetting. Therefore the above question would insinuate that I don’t have control of my bladder, which I usually do; less so since my son trounced around on the poor organ before his birth, but still, “Hey!”, might have been my answer, but I speak Normal Person now.

The bigger problem for me has been her name for a bowel movement: Something Special. Yes, you read right. My mother would ask me, upon exiting the bathroom; Did you do something special or wet?

Needless to say, but I will anyway, Delta Airline’s former slogan, spoken majestically by Oprah Winfrey at the end of every show as a thank you to the airline which transported her guests to Chicago, never failed to amuse me: “Delta Airlines, Something special in the air.”

I’m a little embarrassed to say, this still makes me laugh. Even as I typed, alone on my couch, I giggled. This isn’t a rare event, as anyone who has lived with me for any amount of time will tell you.

I amuse myself. My son recently pointed out that I am probably my best friend. I responded in the same way that I would if someone would tell me that they brought me something special, but he’s right. I silently entertain myself and laugh out loud. That’s neither here nor there, but as a trait, it really is something special. (Take that as you will.)

I have evolved or deteriorated linguistically, depending on your outlook, from my mother, who was horrified when I told her that she had been mispronouncing the word Volvo, a car company, after hearing my sister-in-law, an immigrant from China, mispronouncing the word as the anatomical name for a part of a woman’s nether regions.

“Look!” She’d announce, as we drove along. “There goes a vulva! Sue has one of those!’

That was a real head swinger the first time I heard it. She saw this where? On the expressway?

Once, I understood, of course, I laughed until I wet. See, how that sounds more lady-like?

Being perceived as lady-like is a number one priority for my mother. For me, not so much.

When she still held the reigns of my life, she sent me to charm school, hoping a magical transformation would result and I would exit, wearing lovely frocks and using euphemisms for private parts, or at least stop me from flopping down the street like David Cassidy, (her words) The experience didn’t suck as hard as it sounds.

I’m sorry. It was not as uncomfortable as I had previously anticipated.

My friend and I attended together and, as a result I learned that “shitting bricks” referred to a person’s level of unhappiness and had nothing to do with something special.

At 12 this elicited a shocked response which I muffled so as not to be detected as young and naïve. Soon after, however, I mimicked this phrase as it applied, even slightly, to every situation and that’s what I learned in Charm School. That and the fact that girls who seemed lady-like were often less so when it came to inter-personal social situations.

I’ve moved on to words that would cause my mother to have the vapors at least, if she understood what I was saying or gesturing.

For years, my mother thought giving someone the finger had an entirely different meaning from what it means on the freeways where all the vulvas are.

Once, as I was visiting her in her current home of Georgia, we were driving along and my mother marveled at how many people from her native Pennsylvania lived in the south.

I asked how she recognized Pennsylvanians and-I kid you not- she gave me the finger. I wondered what I had said to elicit this vulgarity from my mother.

Turns out, flipping people the bird was some sort of Pennsylvania thing in my mother’s mind and meant, “Hello and how do you do, Fellow Pennsylvanian!” when, as we all know, it’s more of an invitation.

All of this information may make the casual reader consider my mother’s sanity as something less than attainable for her and they would be right to an extent, but mostly my mother’s behavior stems from a complete naïvete which arose from living her first 19 years in a town which was apparently run by the Disney Corporation and her expectation that the rest of the world complied with Uncle Walt’s rules for behavior (pre-1970s or so.)

Luckily, she considers me less of a vulgar excuse for a lady and more of a curiosity, so if anyone tells her about this blog, I’d be less than pleased…if she understood the meaning of the word blogs, or online or Internet or DVR or !@#$%^!

Just let her live, happily saluting her fellow Pennsylvanians, who, seemed less likely to signal their Pennsylvania roots while I lived among them briefly, than my fellow Chicagoans, who must make up the largest population of former Quaker Staters in all of the 50 states, including Pennsylvania.

She lives in a nicer place and she’s happy there.

Why Mothers Should Worry

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Explaining motherhood to the uninitiated can be difficult, especially when it comes to the love factor, because the type of love required to attach you to a person who comes into the world by forever altering your body for the worse is a 2,000 on a ten point love scale.

Whoever came up with integrating mother love into a female did a much better job than they did with say, gnats. Really, what’s the point with gnats? They simply live a life to irritate normal people who are just trying to enjoy the summer, much like family BBQs.

I remember telling a terrified acquaintance,who feared she wouldn’t love her infant, that she would feel overwhelming love for her own baby after introductions were made, even though there wasn’t a chance in the world that her baby would be as adorable as mine. After all, my son broke off my tail bone as a how-do-you-do and it only took three or four months to forgive him and treat him like a member of my family. (It took my dogs forever. They were really pissed about the tailbone thing, but it’s quite possible that they misunderstood what happened, as they often had a tendency to do when they were distracted by the word “bone.”)

I’m kidding about my reaction to the tailbone incident of 1988, of course; it wasn’t my son’s fault he had a head like a basketball; that lies with me. I can’t even try hats on in public because they sit on top of my skull like a thimble, thus making other shoppers think they are in a clown hat store and shop owners less than happy to see me.

Anyway, mothers-to-be tend to worry, and not just about the fact that her upcoming baby won’t hold a candle to mine. (and don’t let your baby hold a candle; that’s the number one rule.) Yet, unless your baby is a trouble maker, and most of them aren’t, as there is little trouble to be caused while lying in bed drooling, you don’t have to worry about baby generated nonsense, that’s for grown men.

At this point I’m going to pause and say, no first time mother has, or ever will believe this to be true. I guess you have to have more than one child to understand this from the get go. Because I have no back-up children, it took me a few years to truly understand this and you can ask the 24-year-old version of my Angel Bunny, who is, as we speak, yelling at Congress in my basement.

So, here’s a list of what you should worry about: is your baby, warm, fed, clean and not likely to hold candles? Yes? Now you can stop worrying unless spots appear and you don’t own a firstborn armed with a marker.

Worries can be as varied as the mothers who lie awake at night. (Trick point. All mothers like awake, their babies don’t let them sleep. A friend of a friend once worried that if God gave her an ugly baby, she wouldn’t know about it as she thought of all of her children as the most beautiful ever born. She was wrong, of course as we have already covered, but I’m sure her baby was pretty good.

Most mothers worry about situations that will never happen no matter how many times other mothers insist that they will. A favorite, in my situation, was that my mellow, loving baby with a head full of hair would, at most milestones, become bald and likely to pull a gun out of his diaper.

This never happened; not at nine months, not at two years, not at seven. My son didn’t become cranky until he learned about politics, and who can blame him? At that point, it was a Pandora’s box sort of thing, without the sexual connotation. Luckily, he rarely displays anger towards me unless I sing London Calling like Robert Goulet , so I didn’t become involved when he sent a hornet’s nest to a former member of his band because UPS wouldn’t deliver my box of exploding itching powder and something needed to be done.

Here’s the thing: for as long as you live, what makes your child angry, makes you angry, what makes your child sad, makes you sad, what gives your child joy…you get the idea. And that’s something to worry about.

Why Football is Not My Religion

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Recently, I created a new religion that I’ve only shared with a few people because if I announced the tenets to the general public, people would either believe or not believe and then there’d have to be a war.

Speaking of the Super Bowl, I won’t be watching. The game which the rest of the world calls “not football,” is just a small representation of war as far as I’m concerned, although there are no religious undertones, which rarely happens. There are those, however, who seem to enjoy football with a fervency of a southern Charismatic Church, in which case, amen and carry on.

Still, and don’t take this the wrong, to me football represents all of the things that are wrong with the world except for chewing loudly, which most likely happens at viewing parties, however, as far as I know, is not sanctioned by NFL.

The idea of football gives me another case of “Where the hell are their mothers?” syndrome, which was last examined in my post Why Mothers Would Ruin Les Miserables. (Football fans: Les Miserables is one of those musical things you’ve heard of which inexplicably involves sudden outbursts of song and Neil Patrick Harris, which is not that surprising. You might like this one, football fans as it has to do with war. Now, back to the game.)

Anyway, so your kid comes shuffling in and says, “Mom, I’m going to go to a large field and play a game where men the size of a bull and twice as hostile, will try to knock the stuffing from my innards (which is the best place for them) if I touch a ball shaped, ironically like a squashed head.”

If the mother is on the phone or watching Judge Judy of course, she will nod quickly and make the move along signal with her free hand. If the mother, however is actually listening she will say, “Do you need a ride to practice?” I’m serious! I’ve seen it happen!

**I want to take this opportunity to state emphatically; I am not criticizing any mothers. It has been my experience in life that 99.9% of all mothers are working at the peak of their game, giving parenthood all they can and then, crossing their fingers and hoping for the best, which is what we do at my church meetings.**

Now, back to the game: For better or for worse, if my son were to relay a request such as the one above I would, most likely respond with, “Over my dead body, let’s go see Les Miserables!” Given, most young men would not find this a satisfying alternative, but some will and that’s why we have the Tony Awards. (Football fans: it’s like the Super Bowl with no serious injuries except for hurt feelings…Feelings are something…never mind, it’s best you don’t know.) Now, back to the game. (I’m told these words are often used during football games and I want you folks to feel comfortable.)

Despite my pooh-poohing the idea of my son’s participation in football, however, he sustained a football injury and isn’t that always the way. He was in the end zone when another kid, who I was persuaded not to sue, ran right over him. My son, of course was sprawled out, drawing pictures of Star Wars Characters and it might be argued that he should have sketched in a less volatile environment, still…This all happened in third grade and I still have nightmares. I want to be clear about it, this actually happened and he won’t particularly like my sharing this, but football is dangerous and everyone should consider that.

Also, by my son’s avoidance of the sport, your sons (and occasional daughters) are safe from my wrath as evidenced by the time my kid was pushed by a fellow two-year-while I Jazzercised on the other side of a glass partition. I still find the occasional shard of glass in my teeth, although I’m told the child in question went on to live a perfectly normal life with only the smallest phobia of organized exercise.

There are those of you who might think I’ve tried to make my son less than macho, but the truth is, he came that way and I simply never tried to whip him into shape. We encouraged other sports, but a kid who is outraged at the rudeness of other players who take possession of a ball he is clearly playing with just doesn’t have the warrior spirit needed to knock out the teeth of his fellow four-year-olds.

Still you needn’t worry about him as he plays lead guitar in a rock band which seems to allay fear that I will not know a grandchild with my genetic material. For those of you that are worrying in that direction, please turn the page on your calendar, we’ve moved out of the 19th century, and whizzed past the twentieth. For those of you saying. “hehe…she said whizzed,” there’s no hope for you. Enjoy your raw meat.

Anyway, because a part of my religion deals with tolerance of those I don’t understand, I’ve had to internalize that football is something I will never understand but doesn’t necessarily make its participants or fans bad people; just people who are missing Animal Planet’s  Puppy Bowl IX; a game where teams are seldom formed and the worst thing that happens is pooping on the field, although you can’t tell me that doesn’t happen in the NFL from time to time.

I’ve come to the conclusion that while some people enjoy Wolverine, other’s understand that Jean Valjean is the greatest singing hero the world has ever known. Which is why Hugh Jackman has been elevated to sainthood in my religion, but has not reached the status of Chris Martin who should be aware that I’m considering an annual sacrifice.

With that, and because the Puppy Bowl starts in 40 minutes, I want to emphasize that no one should consider the previous paragraph as instruction to kidnap Hugh Jackman and demand he choose a side. Watch your Super bowl, spit out nachos as you yell at the team you support, complain about Beyonce as you smear chicken wings on your host’s couch, with my blessing.

Peace be with you. After the Super Bowl. Amen.

Why TMZ is unhealthy for me

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I was merrily skipping through my exorbitant amount of TV stations (skipping being a deceptive word as I have Direct TV and trying to surf their channels is very much like the unlikely event of my mother literally surfing. (Up! And she’s down…Uh, uh, up, no she’s down, etc.) when I came across TMZ, a show populated by third grade graduates, wait…I’m being told they are, indeed third graders, who seem to think they have a career in journalism when in fact they are simply bed bugs dressed like wannabe hipsters.

These six-legged pests crawl into the world, bother people and then return to their nests with tales of how angry people get when they are annoyed by biting insects.

Now, I am not a celebrity and TMZ seems completely uninterested in accosting me as I go about my life, no matter how many times I call ahead to give them a heads up as upcoming whereabouts. So, one might assume that my displeasure, bordering on simmering disgust is out of proportion to the situation and that I would choose to ignore them since there has been no legislation enacted requiring me to suffer fools gladly. You’d be wrong, because on this particular day, TMZ was harassing Coldplay’s frontman and my pretend gentleman friend, Chris Martin.

I know what you’re thinking, aren’t you a middle-aged woman who should have matured beyond crushes on rock stars? A: Is this the first blog post you’ve read of mine? Go back and do your research before accusing me of teen-aged behavior B: Shut up.

Anyway, this post is not about Mr. Martin as much as I’d like it to be. This post, eventually, will be about misplaced anger and why it is unhealthy. Now, back to Chris Martin.

The reason I paused to watch TMZ (which stands for, you rat bastards, you’re going to hell,) was that I glimpsed Chris Martin getting into a car at an airport, which naturally needed immediate attention from the press and never fails to garner mine.

As he was stowing his luggage, wannabe arachnoids skittered towards him, throwing out the kind of questions that are completely appropriate to yell at human beings who write music, sing and put on a sensational show. “How many times do you go to the bathroom everyday?” “Is there a sexual position you prefer when cheating on your wife?” “Can we see your feet?”

Chris attacked ne’ery a one of them and hopped into a car with a smile and a wave. This is where I should have changed the channel, but instead, to my everlasting regret, I lingered, having never had a close up view inside the nest of nuisance insects.

At this point, the “reporters” discussed what was surprisingly evident to them: that the questions asked were less than professional. Then-get ready for irony to make a guest appearance-a female of the species offered, that given the opportunity to accost Chris Martin, she would have asked, “… how he stays married to that insufferable woman,” (Gwyneth Paltrow, presumably.)

Now, I have only achieved an Associate Degree in Ms. Paltrow in the course of getting my doctorate (cyber stalking) in Chris Martin studies. Much to my chagrin she seems to be quite cute, smart and funny, so much so that I almost hate to put my fiendish kidnapping plan into motion.

Even given that information, however, there is absolutely no reason for me to borrow rage from her loved ones, and yet I made the decision to gnash my teeth and carry that insufferable woman (insect girl) with me for more than a week, to my admitted detriment.

(OK, here comes the social commentary portion of tonight’s entertainment.) There are many things which should anger humanity as a whole: injustice, war, and why we can’t cure static electricity, but still, we feel the need to drop coins into the anger vending machine and take whatever random item that drops into a less than sanitary receptacle slot, holding our dubious treasure tightly in our hands and wandering off eating, even though it tastes like the stuff your mother used to make which could only be made relatively palatable with large doses of catsup or ketchup, whichever makes you less angry.

Of course, indignation on behalf of celebrities is a purposeful exercise of which we should all indulge, but do we have to turn our stomachs into acid milkshakes over our neighbor’s rickety fence? (And we’ll be working on it this summer, neighbors, FYI.)

My mother is the queen of random anger, (which is a good name for a band). High on the top of her list, which rivals the government’s Facebook files, are high heels and the women who wear them. On the bright side, neither she, nor I, nor anyone we visited while she was here, wears them. Plus, we agreed that the huge lifts that pass for an elegant shoe these days resemble what The Bride Of Frankenstein might wear to The Bride of Dracula’s open bar wedding reception.

I argued that, since we were neither shopping for these items or are required to wear them to avoid a fine, we might as well laugh at them and then go about our business in the closest thing to slippers we can legitimately wear out of the house.

Instead, my mother chose to grunt like an amplified tennis players every time a woman on TV or in a magazine slipped on these monstrosities and stumbled into view before careening into the next available wall.

My mother has the same reaction to women in low cut dresses, men in low cut dresses and women who dress very modestly (Ellen Degeneres). She hates teenagers, Ann Margret, the idea that she should have to pick up her dog’s poop (She doesn’t. Feel free to become infuriated if she lives in your neighborhood) and the other political party, when she figures out which is which.

Early on in her visit, I explained that anger is a destructive thing which turns in on ourselves unless it’s directed at my middle brother. However, for whatever reason, she chose not to change her lifelong view of the world because I told her to and continued to harrumph at an alarming rate for her entire visit.

I suppose we all have our triggers which we should be able to ignore but, instead offer a rent free room in our mind so we can conveniently visit at our leisure. Whether it’s politics, sports, who lives in the stupidest state, (I won’t name names, but it starts with In and ends with ana…I’m KIDDING! Can’t you take a joke? Why are you Hoosiers so angry all the time?), we choose our own destruction via pointless temper.

Maybe as a New Year’s resolution, we can all attempt to release our anger and find the peace which would replace it.

But don’t @#$% pick on Chris Martin or his circle of loved ones or I will torture myself with unfounded fury. I’ll do it! Don’t think I won’t!

Namaste, dammit.