Friday, September 12, 2014

Reunited And It Feels So Good!


The internet is a funny place.  It’s allowed me to connect with people across the world I would never know existed otherwise.  It’s like a virtual Pandora’s Box except there’s good mixed in with the evil.  However, once Pandora’s Box has been opened, there’s just no shutting that little Mofo.  Once you’ve allowed some internet tomfoolery to enter your life, it’s like cyber lice that no amount of head shaving can vanquish.  I could never have imagined that innocently agreeing to meet up with a couple of fellow bloggers 3 years ago would turn out to have such severely detrimental and far-reaching consequences.  And so, it’s with a heavy heart filled with shame and remorse that I shall relay the story of The Burners.
 
This August was the 3rd year in a row that Brett and Rich have driven through my lovely Salt Lake on their way to attend Burning Man.  The first two years were pleasant enough, appropriately tame and all parties involved left with their dignity intact.
 
This year however?  THIS year?  *deep tragic sigh*
 
 
THIS is the kind of shit that went down this year.  But I'm getting ahead of myself.

Let me tell you a bit about these two.


I still have no idea what either of them really do for a living because we never seem to get around to talking about that.  We stick to the deep, meaningful life discussions that involve things like...balls.  And naked karaoke.  And...whatever.  My POINT is, it doesn't matter what is discussed.  If you ever have the opportunity to hang with these two, do it.  You won't immediately regret it.  They both have this way of making ANYTHING fun.  They're two of the most accepting people I've ever been lucky enough to know and I've come to love these idiots dearly.




We met up at the bar Piper Down again.  Brett, Rich and their beautiful blonde companion, Allison.


Brett had another couple of friends show up but I can't recall their names so we'll go with Blondie and Blondier.  Or, as the night progressed, Drunky and Drunkier.
I brought my own blonde backup in the form of my friend McQueenie.


So we've got the two veteran Burners, a whole lotta sexy blondeness, and then me.  The red-headed step child let out of the attic for this very special occasion.



We ordered dinner.  Poutine and scotch eggs for me.  I'd never tried scotch eggs and was clearly not drunk enough to enjoy them as I imagined they're meant to be enjoyed.  Unless they're like the Scottish version of brussel sprouts in which case, why are they even on the menu?  It's a hard-boiled egg wrapped in sausage meat, coated in bread crumbs and deep-fried.  On this night, a lifelong conviction I'd always held dear was shattered.  Deep-fried does not guarantee automatic enjoyment.

 
I KNOW!!!!!
 

More drinks were ordered, shots were consumed and dancing by Drunky and Drunkier commenced.
It was with a mixture of annoyance and jealousy I watched them dance with the tight lipped smile of a woman whose version of dancing involves someone yelling for a wallet to be shoved into her mouth to avoid biting off her own tongue during what is clearly an epileptic fit.

Dancing was eventually terminated when the bouncer made them sit down.

At one point Drunky started slanting towards the floor while in her seat then jerked upright with a sloppy sideways smirk.  Brett looked over at me with a grin and said, "She just mentally fell".

While they continued their feminine hijinks, I worked on removing the judgmental stick that had somehow wedged itself up my ass and tried to focus on the conversation.  We got back to talking about the trip.

The ride they purchased for the trip was a '96 El Dorado RV they fondly named, The Goat.  Allison began to wax poetic about how impressive the size and girth of The Goat was while Brett piped in with, "We're really into goats".
Brett and Rich have always talked about what an amazing adventure Burning Man is and how everyone should have the chance to experience it at least once in their life.  I asked Rich why his wife hasn't ever joined him on this marvelous enterprise to which he replied, "She hates dirt".
They showed me a picture of the layout of the camps and discussed how their setup was conveniently situated between the Thunder Dome and the orgy camp.


And it was at this precise moment my life took a turn for the worse.  Rich stated, rather than asked, saying I was going to Burning Man.  Being trapped in the desert for a week surrounded by oddly dressed strangers who seem to have a penchant for blind acceptance and love for their fellowmen, sounds like some kind of fresh new nightmare specifically designed for my own personal circle of hell.  So naturally, I agreed.  In the form of a stinky pinky swear. 

And now, just thinking about this poor life promise I’ve made, I can feel my soul drooping within me, draining out my ass.  That anal leakage?  Oh, just my soul. 



 
BALLS!






















Saturday, March 29, 2014

The Week Baby Stella Ruined My Life

I know it's been 17 years since I last posted, and let's be honest, it will probably be another 17 before I do it again, but in my previous rambling, you may or may not remember this little girl...


This little bundle of fuzz is a spitfire swirled into a tornado, mixed with a big glass of stubborn.  This is the little girl Erik (aka E1) adopted after meeting my pup, Mr. Milo, and falling in love.  Naturally.  

  
This was the first time they met and the very first time he got to hold her.  Since day one she's adored him and she's had Erik wrapped around her little waggly tail ever since.

Milo and Stella were the twins of the litter but couldn't be any more different when it comes to their personalities.  The first day I met Milo, he snuggled his little head into my neck and that was that.  He's my little mellow Milo.  Stella on the other hand, has more energy than can possibly be contained in that one little body.  I once had her on my lap and she was so excited she was whimpering and licking and waggling and when it finally got to be just too much, she flipped herself over onto her back and started doggie paddling the air.  She's an effing weirdo.  And I love her.

As does Milo.  They're lucky enough to live conveniently close to each other and get sibling play dates together at least once a week.  When Erik travels out of town, puppy slumbo time!  They go to their vet appointments together and even got spayed, neutered and micro-chipped together.  If, at any point so far, you've rolled your eyes even once, it's totally justified.  The ridiculousness of it all has been recognized and then just as quickly discarded ages ago.  In fact, when I think of the hundreds of dollars I've already spent that could have gone towards new shoes, I kind of want to staple myself in the head.  Until I look over at that sweet little face and then I just want to snuggle it until he sighs his deep, martyr-like sigh and I know he's had enough molestations for the moment.

  
Little Miss Stella has led a charmed life during her first 7 months.  She's been happy, ridiculously loved and never gone a day hungry.

And then she had to go and try to ruin it all.

A play date had been scheduled.  Milo and I picked up Stella and I drove them up Millcreek Canyon that allows dogs free reign off leash.  Both pups have always been amazing and come when I whistle or call them by name.  They absolutely love this canyon.  They tore through the snow, high marked the sides of the hills before tumbling back down and tag teamed any other dogs roaming the trails.

On the way back down, a skier swooshed past me and got in between me and Stella.  He could see he was scaring her so instead of trying to pass her, he loudly swished to an abrupt stop.  That sound was all that was needed and Stella bolted.  I sighed and grumbled and Milo and I took off running after her.  The trail curves quite a bit.  She was fast and already out of sight.  Assuming she'd run back to the car, I wanted to catch her in the parking lot before she decided to head down the road.  It was already getting dark.

Finally huffed my way to the parking lot only to discover Stella was nowhere to be seen.  A woman sitting on her tailgate said she'd been there for the last 30 minutes and hadn't seen her.  The first whisper of worry hissed through my heart.

Milo and I head back up the trail and I bellow her name while squinting into trees through quickly fading light.  We hike all the way back to where she initially bolted and back down to the parking lot, calling for her the whole way.

By now it's completely dark and I'm without a headlamp.  I pile Milo into the jeep and have to drive halfway down the canyon before I can get cell service all the while peering into the darkness and cursing my eyes for playing tricks on me. My heart is pounding, I feel as though I'm on the verge of losing it and briefly wonder if this is what a panic attack possibly feels like.

Erik answers and I completely break down.  I have to pull over after blinding myself with the torrent of tears. 
"I've lost Stella!" I belted into the phone.  I had to repeat myself 3 times before he could understand what I was saying through my hysteria. He said he was on his way.

I called my Erik and blubbered the situation to him.  He grabbed the headlamps and headed up as well. 

After the 3 of us searched for what felt like an eternity, we called it quits and drove off the mountain without her. I don't remember how many inches we got that night but it snowed.  A lot.  And I cried. 

The next four days were torture mixed with smatterings of marvelous.  My friend Specialized printed off tons of flyers for me to put up and even put some up himself.  My sweet friend Tara made her own posters and plastered them all over the canyon in the spots I'd missed and nearby areas.  So many people offered to help search for her.  I posted her picture on every site I could think of and by the end of it, her picture had been shared over 1,000 times by absolute strangers.  Calls to animal hospitals, vets, and daily walk-throughs of the shelters produced nothing.  I was reduced to trolling Craigslist looking for the thieving wretch who stole her, ignored the fact that she was chipped, and decided to sell her for meth and/or blowjobs.  Because just the thought of her still being lost up in the cold and snow with nothing to eat was more than I could stand.  I was absolutely useless at work.  If anyone even glanced at me sideways, I'd burst into tears.



On day four, Erik (E1, Stella's Dad) had to leave town for work.  He debated cancelling but had worked hard to get the contract in the first place.  There was nothing more to be done and I promised to continue to check the shelters every day and return to search the canyon.

I sat at my desk and continued trolling Craigslist.  And then my cell rang.  A number I didn't know.  Normally I'd decline those but my cell was on Stella's posters.  A hiker had heard barking up a steep incline near a picnic area.  He gave precise locations.  I wasn't optimistic but it was a lead.  I called my Erik since he has the flexibility of working from home and off he went to search.

Thirty minutes goes by and it's another number I don't recognize.  I answer it and the first thing the woman says is, "I think we've found your dog".  My heart starts galloping in my chest and I feel like I can barely form the questions.  I want so badly for it to be Stella but what if it's not?

"Is she wearing a blue Kong collar?"

She is.

"Does she have one blue eye and one brown eye?"

Sure does.

At this point, all my amazing, patient coworkers who have been dealing with my random bawl fests sporadically throughout the week, have all popped up and are peering over the cube walls with hopeful, questioning expressions.  My boss, Cathy, has come out of her office and is standing next to my wall. 
As soon as the woman assured me it was the pup I've been searching for, I completely lost it.  I started sobbing, couldn't even speak, and handed the phone to her.

Cathy made the arrangements to meet up and since I'd carpooled that day, she bundled me into her jeep and went tearing down the freeway while I latched onto anything I could with a death-grip wondering if the next corner would be the one we roll.

I tried calling both Erik's.  Mine was still searching the canyon with no reception.  E1 was still on his flight.  I left mine a message letting him know what was happening.  I didn't leave E1 a message just in case there was some huge cosmic screw up and it wasn't really Stella.

It was Stella.

   
 I'm not sure who was happier to see who.  Cathy managed to snap this shot amidst the chaos of one of Stella's angels holding her LOST flyer.
After running from the skier, she'd made her way up an incredibly steep hillside with a cliff drop off on  the other side.  She dug herself a little burrow and hunkered down.  From the first callers description, Erik was able to find where she had been but she'd already been rescued by the time he got there.


The couple who rescued her, heard barking.  The husband hiked all the way up to where she was, scooped her up and headed back down.  Stella slipped out of his grasp about halfway and ran back up to her bunker.  This dear man trudged back up to get her again and they managed to carry her to their truck.

After more tears, awkward hugs that the couple didn't especially want but I couldn't help myself, and many thank yous, I jumped in the back with Stella while Cathy ferried us home.

On the way, I snapped the photo below to send to E1 with the caption, Someone wants to say hi.  On our way home now.

He got it while walking through the airport terminal and broke down weeping.  Geez.  Get a grip big baby.

Sometimes, just sometimes, people don't completely suck and miracles really do happen. 

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Warning! Shit makes an appearance 5 times in the first paragraph. The word. Not pictures.

What the hell is happening here!!!  When did it become December?  This is some straight up bullshit.  So, apparently the last time I posted, FOUR MONTHS AGO, I mentioned I would be getting a puppy.  I'd been trolling the googlyweb for over a year looking for the perfect puppy.  Also giving Erik time to adjust to the fact that yes, we are indeed getting an addition to our little family.  There's not much I give a shit about.  I'm pretty apathetic and indifferent to most things.  However, when I do decide to give a shit, I put a lot of energy and focus into making those shits count.  And that can turn into a pretty monumental shit, if ya know what I mean.  And I don't think you do.  Because I certainly don't. 

My point is, I wanted a puppy.  I searched and waited, knowing (sort of) what I wanted.  So when I saw a listing from a border collie breeder whose stud had a "mishap" with her Husky, I knew one of those little mutts was going to be mine.

My plan of manipulation pleading cajoling bargaining threatening  uh, lets just call it my plan of giving a shit went into action before the little pack was even born.  It seemed Mama dog was purposely letting those babies percolate for an overly extended period of time.  I couldn't WAIT for those puppies to get themselves born.

Eventually, she stopped being a selfish, puppy hogging Mother and pooped those pups out.  Since the breeder lives four hours away, she sent photos and I picked out baby Milo right away.  Then waited another excruciating 8 weeks.

The day I finally met him to bring him home, I was downright ecstatic.

  
He snuggled right in and has been my little cuddle monkey every day since.

Must.  Not.  Squish.

Kitten was considerably less ecstatic and more than a little suspicious. 
It took her about a week before she'd venture into the same room with Milo.  They're not exactly best of buds but she tolerates him, and that's saying a LOT for a cat who has never wanted to be in the same neighborhood as a dog, much less have to share a couch.

Since Erik grudgingly "allowed" me (really, like he ever had a choice) to have Milo, I was a little apprehensive about how they would get along.  Especially since Erik works from home and would be with him all day. 

Probably the most negligible worry I've ever had in my life.

Let's be real.  His heart was doomed from the start.
Resistance is futile people.  FUTILE!
Side note: Please do not be alarmed by this red carpet room of doom.  Obviously, you HAVE to judge, just don't be alarmed.  About 5 months ago Erik and I were picking out new carpet to replace this monstrosity.  We finally decided on what we wanted and Erik was heading over to get a sales person when I mentioned we couldn't buy it that day.  He looked at me questioningly to which I responded, "We'd better wait until the puppy (that hadn't even been born yet, picked out or named) is potty trained so we don't ruin the brand new carpet".  He rolled his eyes and stomped off to look at mattresses.  Resistance is futile!

Second side note: The woman we bought Milo from is absolutely amazing.  She loves her animals like they're her babies and had Milo basically potty trained when we got him.  We had a total of 3 puppy pees inside.  That's IT.  And luckily we had that fabulous carpet to soak up all it's glorious, ammonia filled splendor.  Went along perfectly with the corpse juice stains that have been there since Erik bought the place.  SO, if anyone is ever in need of obtaining one of the best puppies in the entire world, I know a gal!

I was so excited before getting Milo I was telling everyone.  Sadly, not everyone shared my enthusiasm and a few tried to talk me out of it.  Remember E1?  He was one of the most adamant naysayers.  So much so, that he actually had me in tears.  But oh yeah, I'm stubborn, a ginger, and I do what I want!

I played sand volleyball again this fall on the same team as E1.  I brought Milo along so everyone could have the privilege of being chewed on by the best puppy in existence.  E1 met Milo.

E1 adopted Milo's sister, Stella.

Seriously people.  I'm telling you.  Resistance is futile.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

I'm Not Always A Grumpy Curmudgeon Dammit!

A bit ago, my friend Specialized said something about updating my blog.  I piped up with, "But I did!  I posted about a hike Erik and I went on".

Special: "So it's another bitch fest."

Me: "What?  Noooo..." said while avoiding eye contact.

After scrolling through a few old posts, I realized he may have a point.  I do complain an awful lot.  And that's lame.  I don't like reading/watching/listening to other people's whining, so why should I subject others to mine? 

And then I remembered.  It's my blog.  I do what I want.

However, just for the sake of mixing it up, this post is going to be about things that have made me happy in the last few months.

Starting with this...


THIS ladies and gentlemen, is Milo.  He currently lives 3 hours away but in four more weeks, I get to bring him home.  And that makes me ecstatically happy.  In a melty heart kinda way. 


Last month, the e-mail exchange below made my heart go melty in a different kind of way.

On Jul 16, 2013, at 1:39 PM, Dawn wrote:

Hi!!!!!!!!!
Don’t have anything to say.  Just saying hi.  Enthusiastically.  As indicated by the excessive use of exclamation points.    


From: Erik
Sent: Tuesday, July 16, 2013 1:48 PM
To: Dawn McBride
Subject: Re: Hi!!!!!!!!!

GINGER!

How are you my dear? I was just thinking about you and meant to write you a quick note saying how much I love you.  I'm really lucky to have you in my life, you make me happier by just being. 

How's the day treating you?

Erik


It's amazing what an impact two simple sentences can have on a person.  So people, take 5 seconds and send a text, or an e-mail or hell, the old fashioned face to face and let someone know they're appreciated.   It will make them happy. 

Speaking of texts, I got one from my youngest Sister that made me bust out my ugly hyena laugh it made me so happy.

Anonymous (sometimes she likes to post as "Anonymous" because she's too lazy to log in):
"Hey, did you know I have a picture of the guy you work with that you hate?  Toph?  Or what's his name?"

Me: "Huh?  Why?  Send it!"

Anonymous:  
Behold!  Toph the douche!


Another thing that makes me happy?  As if it honestly wouldn't make the list.  Wine.  Wine makes me happy.


 After consuming wine, harassing Kitten also makes me happy.



It's currently that time of year at work where it's getting to be the stupid kind of busy.  It's stressing me out and I get extremely anxious about being able to complete my tasks.  This makes me less pleasant than normal.  Which isn't all that pleasant to begin with.  Yesterday, out of the blue, one of the sales reps bellowed out of his office summoning me to him.  

Rep: "Donald!"

Me: "WHAT?" shouted back in a not so feminine screech. 

Rep: "Come here."

Me: "NO."  Deep martyr-like sigh and I totter off to his office like the obedient minion that I am.

Rep: "Close the door.  I have to tell you something."

No good has ever come from an impromptu meeting like this.  Especially when it necessitates the door being closed.  It has ALWAYS resulted in bad news in one form or another.  I brace myself. 

Rep: "So, I just wanted to give you a compliment."

Me: While eyeing him suspiciously ask, "Is this a trick?".

Rep: "So, I was driving home the other night and you popped into my head.  I just wanted to tell you that I think you're really cool.  You're awesome and really funny and you're just a really good person.  I'm not sure what your situation is with your man, but he's really lucky to have you.

Me: After a moment of stunned silence..."Uhh thanks.  That's actually really nice of you to say."  

Rep: "Now you should go before this gets awkward."


Coworkers who don't always totally suck make me happy.  


Also, manicures and pedicures make me happy.  I don't remember the last time I paid someone to give me one rather than the drunken smearings I tend to give myself.  But that's not the kind that I'm referring to now.  I mean this kind...


The Kitten kind.  It makes me happy when I see how sweet and tender he is with Kitten and how much he loves that little fur-ball.

Also, sleep.  Sleep makes me happy and I never get enough of it.  And sometimes, this is why.


And yet, getting kicked out of bed and seeing this?  It's one of my favorite things in the world.  It also makes me happy at this moment that Erik doesn't read my blog and will never know that I've posted a picture of him sleeping on the internet. Shhhhh!!!  Nobody tell!

My list of happiness could go on and on but I really need to get this wrapped up.  I'm off to the gym to get in another 5k as part of my "training" for this ridiculous relay race I agreed to participate in.  So naturally, this syrupy, feel good blog post will soon be replaced by my rantings, wimperings and overall disapproval of the gym and exercise in general.  

And all will be right in the world once again. 




Saturday, July 27, 2013

My Fourth of July Epiphany

On the 4th of July, I had an epiphany.  It's taken me this long to post about it because I'm not entirely happy with this epiphany.  Denial, usually my most trusted consort, has become an elusive little minx as of late, and failed me completely.  Let me start at the beginning.

Last year, Erik and I started a hike in one of the canyons that leads up to a lake.  It was a beautiful little hike.  Shaded by trees with a lovely little stream running along beside the trail.  We didn't have time to complete the hike, or even make it halfway. 

Since I had the 4th off, and knowing what a freak Erik can be when caged up for too long, I suggested we complete the pretty little hike up to Lake Blanche.  He readily agreed and immediately started filling up the camelbak and packing snacks.  Which I thought was ridiculously unnecessary.  After all, it's not like we were going to be gone long.  It's only 3 miles each way.  I can do that on the treadmill in 30 minutes so I figured it would take about an hour.  Hour and a half if we take our time. 

I can't find my light-weight capris so put on my heavier pair with a tank top, hiking shoes and off we go.  The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, the flowers are in bloom and it's a glorious hike.  I mention to Erik how nice it feels up in the canyon.  It was 87 degrees but I said it felt much nicer than that.  Especially with the delicious breeze.  We pass the point where we had to turn back last year.

And that's when it stopped being glorious.

This hike has an elevation gain of 2,700 feet which I failed to read at the trail-head.

We start climbing.  I start sweating.  Profusely.  Erik the human mountain goat is naturally foraging ahead and not even breathing heavily.  I wanted to push him down.  But that would have required being able to catch up to him.

Of course, we have to pass every person we come across.  Even with me stopping for breathing breaks every 10 minutes, we still managed to pass about 20 people.  Doesn't he realize there's something WRONG with that?

I feel a couple of rain splatters hit my arm.  I look up at the sky in surprise but not a cloud to be seen.  Just the blazing sun beating down on me.  It's then I realize it's my own sweat dripping all over me. 

We've been hiking now for an hour.  I stop for another break.  While panting for air I notice all 10 of my fingers have swollen up.  My palms looks like they have 10 little Vienna sausages glued to them.  

He asks, "You ready?".

"When I start moving, THAT'S when you'll know I'm ready.  It's 5,000 degrees.  I'm melting to death and I can't breathe".

"That's why you wear shorts in the summer ".

"Shut.  Up."

I start trudging again and can't believe I'd said earlier how nice the weather was.  If it were humanly possible, I'd travel back in time, and punch myself in the face for saying something so stupid.

I stop again and hunch over with my hands on my knees trying to catch my breath.  That's when Erik points off in the distance and says, See that peak?  Sticking up in the sky?  That's where we're going.  Not too much further.

I look up.

"You mean that peak touching the cloud that's probably 4 days journey away?"

"Yeah, that one.  Let's go".


 We keep moving and he starts waxing poetic about some avalanche that created the canyon and isn't that just amazing and look at the different colors of these flowers and nature is just phenomenal, don't you think?

If I hadn't been concentrating so hard on making sure I was inhaling enough life sustaining oxygen to keep from passing out, I would have let him know how few of shits I gave about the effing avalanche and that it was probably time I let him know that I HATE nature.


 I pause to pretend I care about taking this picture when I really just needed another break before scrambling over this.  My legs are pretty tired and I'm drenched in sweat.  A couple of guys coming down and noticing my state of dejection, encouragingly let me know once you're over this hill it's just another 20 minutes. 

Seriously?  I'm thinking.  Another 20 minutes?  I'm never going to make it.

"Hey Erik.  Where is the helicopter gonna land?  The terrain is too rugged and there's not enough space.  How are they gonna life-flight me out?"

"It can't.  You'll just die."

"Oh.  Will you leave me the tuna snack?"

"No.  You can have a granola bar.  The one with no flavor."

Those granola bars suck and I don't want it so I decide to keep moving and not get dead.

About 20 minutes later we pass a couple coming down.  I wheeze "Excuse me" as I squeeze past them on the trail. 

The woman looks at me and says, "You need a break.  It's okay, I did too" as she turns to glare at Erik up ahead of me. And then, "It's only about another 20 minutes". 

I stare at her in disbelief for a second before the anger kicks in.  I had the sudden, totally rational urge to run down the trail to catch those lying bastards who 20 minutes ago, told me it was only another 20 minutes.  But I didn't.  Because let's be honest.  On the off-chance I DID catch up to them, I wouldn't have had enough energy to do anything more than breathe heavily on them and maybe flip some salty sweat into their eye holes. 

We eventually make it and Erik is feeling triumphant.

He asks if I want to go explore.  I answer him with a glare.  He takes off and I lay down on the rock to work on my tan skin cancer while pondering the precise moment when I suggested we do this hike.  I again consider the possibility of a time machine.  Rather than travel back to the time I made that asinine comment about how nice the temperature was, I'd head back even further to the moment I asked to venture out on this hike.  THAT'S when I would punch myself in the face.  Only I'd keep punching until there were no teeth left to even form the words that would create the question of hiking.  

Going back down wasn't much better.  The steepness of the trail shoved my toes into my shoes with every step and since I'm an idiot and didn't wear thick enough socks, acquired blisters on both feet.

My lower back, left knee and right hip were aching and we still had about 45 minutes to go.  It was then that I had my epiphany.  All the hikes throughout all the years of my life that I've been on and it's taken me this long to realize it.  Now that denial wasn't around to cloud my normally sharp and lucid thinking, I finally, FINALLY came to the realization.

Hiking is stupid.

And I don't like it.