“You should start a blog,” The Daver, circa 2003
“What the fuck is a ‘blog’?” Student Nurse Becky, circa 2003.
I had plans – grand plans – after graduation. Most times, they involved things like “never wiping old person ass again,” or “taking a nap,” or “eating thousands of cheeseburgers,” and “taking over the universe.” Upon occasion (generally when I was sleepy and/or drunk) I wondered what I would DO with the rest of my life. I simply couldn’t visualize it.
But it was that one statement, made by a much younger Daver that started me down a path I’d never expected. I became a blogger.
It was through my first blog, Mushroom Printing, I learned that I could write – albeit not very well. Like anything, it took years of practice and several good editors before I really learned what made a blog post good. And I might argue that I’ve never learned that trick.
It wasn’t until I started writing Mommy Wants Vodka in 2007, shortly after I turned 27, that I realized how powerful a voice could be. It was then that I began pouring myself out onto a blank WordPress screen. What came out was sometimes good, more often not, it was bad, but it was mine. Those words were mine.
Out of a twisted branch of a conversation I’d had many years before, I found my voice.
I’m not about to sit here and tell you how GREAT my voice is or that I’m SO RAD to be a blogger because some company gave me a yacht*, but I am going to tell you that through that voice, I found myself.
There’s no dollar amount, no traffic spike, no amount of comments that can ever compare to how powerful that is.
I went black yesterday to protest SOPA/PIPA (which I keep thinking of as “SOAP” and “Pippy Longstocking”) not because I am certain that these bills will be shutting me down – I don’t know that – but because I love my Internet. The verbage on these to bills is vague enough that something – anything – can happen.
Certainly, as someone who’s shit’s been stolen, I dislike piracy. I’d like to be able to take those who have stolen my material, passed it off as their own, and shove them in a hole and make them listen to the Facts of Life theme for days.
Let me be clear: stealing shit? That sucks. Buy your own fucking movies – I do. Come up with your own blog name – I did. Write your own damn words – I do.
That aside, those laws freak me out.
And I owe the Internet a debt of gratitude I can never repay. For helping a lost girl find her way. That is worth more than any yacht**.
I mean, where would I be without my crazy dancing cat videos?
10:52AM, my neurologist’s office.
Man, I hope that fish eats some more rocks. That’s hiLARious when he spits ’em back out.
I’d really like a fish tank. Salt water, tho. Freshwater fish poo too much. Shit, I’d probably kill them. Then I’d be depressed for months.
10:55AM, my neurologist’s office.
BUBBLES! BUUUUUBLES! BUBBLE BUBBLE BUBBLE!
Man, fish are hilarious.
11:05AM, my neurologist’s office.
Fuck, this is gonna be some shitballs news. I really should’ve put this off another day.
OH, hell, he’s asking me a question about my headaches. LOOK AWAKE. Nod. Yeah! Nodding is always good. WAIT, I just told him my headaches are getting better. RETRACT, RETRACT, RETRACT.
11:10AM, my neurologist’s office.
He really does look like a cowboy from a spaghetti Western. Wait, what the hell does “spaghetti Western” mean? Either way, he totally does.
Shit, more drugs. And these side effects. If the headaches won’t kill me, the treatment fucking will.
11:12AM, my neurologist’s office.
Is he still talking about side effects? I’m getting depressed. I know, I should think about something else.
Why is Jessica Simpson, reported to be due “this spring” so huge? I don’t believe it. I bet she’s popping out a kid any moment now.
11:17AM, my neurologist’s office.
Did Jay-Z and Beyonce REALLY shut down an entire NICU for their baby? That’s some bullshit.
hums, “it’s a hard knock life.”
11:22AM, my neurologist’s office.
He’s yelling at me for not getting a blood test done. Fuck. What was the test again? I love tests. Just yesterday I took an IQ test – I’m pretty sure I failed.
Should I tell him about my IQ test and ask if that’s what he wanted? NO. Bad call, SHUT UP BECKY.
11:24AM, my neurologist’s office.
Damns. More drugs. And a side effect that can kill me – another one. Lords.
THINK OF THE BUBBLES, BECKY. BUUUUUUUUBLES.
Not working. Imagining my funeral.
People better be crying at my funeral. None of this – “celebrate my life” bullshit – I want tears. REAL TEARS. I will PAY people to cry if I have to.
Shit, I wonder what the going rate is for funeral criers.
Hrms. Would I find them on Craigs List? That seems to be the best place to find ’em. Fuck. They took out Craigs List personal ads. Fuck. Now I’m gonna have to find a real job.
11:36AM, my neurologist’s office.
Ooooh! My brain is rewiring itself to become better at circumventing my migraine meds. That’s almost robotic.
Wait. No. That means my brain is becoming resistant to it. That’s not good.
11:42AM, my neurologist’s office.
Woah, he gave me a lot of instructions and all I can think is: “when is Jessica Simpson REALLY having her baby?” This is not good.
When my crotch parasites came home to discover that my house, had, indeed been turned upside down and two formerly ugly rooms now had lickable colored walls (hey, purple’s a fucking flavor, dammit), they were impressed. I could tell that they had no idea what “painting the walls” meant, because they assumed that somehow The Guy on My Couch and I had painted pictures to put on the walls as well. And if they had any idea what sort of artistic aptitude I have, they’d have known better.
I have to admit, however, that I did appreciate being taken as someone artistic for a moment – even if it was by a four-year old.
Well, the rooms were a gigantic success. Not only am I no longer Furious George when I stare at my walls, slack-jawed and thinking, but they’re actually pleasant to be in.
Of course, there was an unexpected side effect. The moment my children realized that The Guy On My Couch and I hadn’t actually painted pictures, but changed the color of the walls entirely, they began to clamor for us to change their bedrooms, too.
Their bedrooms – two of the rooms that had BEEN previously painted by Your Aunt Becky. Of course. Two of the four rooms I’ve painted, and they wanted to repaint them.
I managed to stall the boys who are in a fierce deadlock between Purple and Green, but my daughter, o! my daughter, she chimed in, asking me to paint her room her favorite color. My heart, of course, grew three sizes and melted into an ooey gooey pile of mush on the floor right at my feet.
That tiny voice said, “Mama, I want a PINK room.”
Oh, my heart. My heart forever walking around outside my body.
Pink has been my favorite color well into my late twenties (I’ve now decided on a more grown-up “blue” as a favorite color, but only barely). As a tot, I loved pink – which horrified my hippie mother, who would’ve preferred that I like a nice brown burlap. I’d have shot someone dead for a pink bedroom (presuming, of course, I had access to a gun, which, hippies don’t like).
Under normal circumstances, I’d have fallen over myself to make this happen. But the room she lives in now? It WAS painted pink. A pink I couldn’t stomach. That room remained shut until I got pregnant with Alex, at which time Daver painted it a nice soft yellow.
My daughter is a rational creature, though, so I knew I could appeal to her logical brain.
“Okay, Mimi,” I said, hoping she’d forget it all. “Would you like me to paint your room instead of buying you a birthday present?”
“YES!” she screamed happily. “I want a PINK ROOM.”
For days, she told everyone we saw – including strangers wandering the aisles at Target looking for baking powder as well as the cashiers at Target – that she was getting a pink room.
So there you have it. For her third birthday, my daughter is getting a pink bedroom. Bubble gum pink if she has her way, which she will. You’re only three once, after all.
I will SO miss that yellow.