father and daughter

It’s been five years since I’ve seen or spoken to my father. Five years since he flew into a rage because I looked at him wrong and he threw me out of his home. Five years since I decided I’d had enough of being his verbal punching bag.

Occasionally, I’ll get news of him through my stepmother—how he’s ailing, and not handling ageing well. I often wonder how I’ll feel when he dies. Will I regret not letting bygones be bygones? Glorify the good and forget the bad? Long for closure? He was my father, after all. The only thing that comes to mind if I were asked to describe him in one sentence is: He was the nastiest man I’ve ever known.

That’s it in a nutshell. My male role model, first male figure in my life upon which I model all men and relationships (which probably explains why I’m single). The experts say that a girl who doesn’t grow up with unconditional love and support from her father suffers from poor self-esteem and an inability to form healthy relationships with men. Go into any strip club and ask a stripper how her relationship was with her dad growing up and nine times out of ten I’ll bet you they’ll say, “He was distant, or emotionally unavailable, or abusive, or had unrealistic expectations, or…”

Some women can channel the burning desire to win Daddy’s elusive love and make him proud by turning into an overachiever, a workaholic, an anorexic even (if he’s overbearing and critical, and it’s the only thing they can control about themselves). Or they can go the other route like I did—assume the victim role and become depressed. I internalized all his anger and verbal abuse.

If my parent, who’s supposed to love me like no other, claims I’m no good, then it must be so. If my parent thinks I’m a failure, I’ll never succeed at anything. If my parent doesn’t love me, it must mean I’m unlovable.

Well-meaning people think you can just shrug this stuff off. “You’re an adult. Get over it.” But you can’t. Not without years of intensive therapy anyway. Your formative years mold your entire state of being. They influence your psyche in a more pervasive way than even genetics do. So if you’ve been screamed at your whole life and made to feel worthless, it’s going to impact you negatively no matter how many positive affirmations you recite. And when you’ve been forced to deal with a parent who’s unstable and explosive, you learn you can’t trust anyone, because you’re expecting to be ripped to shreds at a moment’s notice.

I remember one time being in the car with my dad and half-brother, who was around two years old. We were stopped in front of my father’s office and my brother was climbing all over me. “You’re such a little monkey,” I told him, laughing. And my father stopped what he was doing, and began screaming at me. “Don’t you ever call my son a monkey again. Howard Cosell was fired for calling a player a monkey. Did you know that? How would you like it if I called you a cow?”

Wait, wha-?

Instead of telling him what an asshole he was like I should have, I always took the passive approach just to try to make the screaming stop. I held back the tears and clammed up. My entire childhood and young adulthood was spent holding back the tears and clamming up whenever I was around him. So when I look back and try to remember something, anything nice, like him telling me he loved me (never) or giving me a compliment (only one in my lifetime and it was about my nails looking nice), or being proud of me (He once told me a monkey (that word again) could do my retail job), I can’t seem to find a thing.

So will I have any regrets when he dies? Yes. I’ll always regret he wasn’t a better father.



I have this male friend who always dates crazy women. And then ends up complaining about them, claiming they’re “emotional fucktards.” I get it—the crazy ones are uninhibited, fun and unpredictable, like a fast ride on a mechanical bull. Problem is no one can stay on a bull for very long. It’s exhausting, and you often wind up face down on a dirty, sawdust-covered bar floor, wishing you were home in your recliner, watching TV and drinking a longneck.

Bad boys are the equivalent of emotional fucktard women. I’m constantly asked by men what women see in bad boys, why they never go for the nice guys. I’m a former bad boy lover. Nothing got me going more than a tall, dark, emotionally-retarded guy with tattoos who could kick some ass if someone looked at him wrong. It stemmed from my teenage years when I hung out with the neighborhood guys—high school dropouts with absent fathers, tough guys who got tattooed at age 15 and watched their older brothers succumb to heroin addiction.

Not exactly marriage material. But when you’re a nut as I was you’re not thinking long-term. If you’re a girl who likes to take a walk on the wild side and is used to getting what she wants, you’re going to be attracted to a man who can “handle” you. A man who makes you work for the relationship, for the thrill, for the challenge. Nutty women don’t like easy. Or smooth. Or drama-free. Every day needs to feel like they’re on a movie set or else they get bored. And if you’re loca, boredom is a fate worse than death.

A bad boy keeps you guessing, longing, gives you the continual sensation of sprinting barefoot across scorching hot pavement. And this can be very exciting. For a while. Until you suffer a mild concussion from being slammed up against the wall. Until you’re forced to work two jobs because he can’t hold down one. Until he goes out drinking with his buddies even though you just found out your father died. Until you realize he brings his cell to the bathroom while he showers.

“I still don’t understand why girls go for bad boys,” nice guys cry.

Women go for men who are confident, exciting, adventurous, challenging, masculine, and in-control. So if you’re all this as well as a nice guy, and your face doesn’t look like it’s been run over by a rototiller, you shouldn’t be having any problems getting the ladies.

“But why do women stay with guys who treat them like crap?”

Because they’re emotional fucktards. It’s as simple as that. Like attracts like. Dysfunction attracts dysfunction. Men need to stop trying to analyze bad boys and instead, analyze the woman they’re attracted to who’s going for the bad boys. No self-respecting woman puts up with a bad boy’s crap. The ones who are attracted to the bad boys are insecure, have low self-esteem, and/or have Daddy issues. Do you really want to be with a woman like that?

I was an emotional fucktard with Daddy issues and a Florence Nightingale complex. But recently I’ve experienced a modicum of emotional growth as a human being; therefore the bad boys have lost their appeal. Now I can smell their cologne a mile away. Now when they give me that head nod and say “Hey” (not “Hi,” mind you. Only nice guys say “Hi.”) I keep my head down and continue walking. I’ve learned that getting involved with bad boys is like eating too much Mexican food. It may taste good going in, but you’re gassy and bloated for days and your ass burns when it comes out.

So for all you nice guys out there, let the bad boys have their relationshits with the emotional fucktards of the world and go find yourselves a nice girl you can bring home to Mom.



It’s been a while since I’ve talked penises. Raising a 12-year-old boy ensures they’re never very far from my reality. My son loves to talk about his penis and the fact that almost everything gives him an erection nowadays. Sometimes in the middle of the Victoria’s Secret commercial he’ll say, “See? I’m getting hard right now.” “Well, stop it,” I tell him.

He hasn’t gone through puberty yet, nor has he masturbated. How do I know this? Because he’s thrown out comments like, “I don’t think I ever want to masturbate,” to which I inwardly smirk and think, “Honey, as soon as you discover that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow I’ll hardly see you anymore.” Which is fine. I actually can’t wait for him to start masturbating because when he’s tired of playing Xbox he drives me nuts.

“I’m bored,” is the equivalent of nails on a chalkboard to me. “Read a book, clean your room, go outside…” None of these hold any appeal for him, but when the day comes when I can say, “Go masturbate then,” I’m certain the suggestion will be met with approval and glee.

I’ll admit there’s a precarious balance between being a “progressive” mother and a “prude.” It may sound like my son and I live a clothing-optional lifestyle and still shower together because we’re so open with each other, but trust me when I say half the time I’m crying, “I’m your mother! You shouldn’t be telling me these things!” But who else can he talk to about male bodily functions? “Go ask your father,” doesn’t apply here, and friends aren’t always a reliable (or healthy or realistic) option.

For as sexually open as I am, sometimes I am rendered speechless. Like when my son asked me how to masturbate. “Um, you’ll figure it out when the time comes,” I mumbled, praying he’d just drop it. He didn’t. “But like what do you do?” I stopped what I was doing and looked up. “You just kinda…you know…move your hand up and down and stuff.” Are you uncomfortable reading this? If yes, then imagine my discomfort in person. Yikes.

If I don’t answer his questions I’m terrified he’ll turn to the internet for information. A few months ago he wanted to impress a girl at school so he Googled “How to get a 12-year-old girl excited.” You can imagine what came up. So then we had to have the Porn talk. I gave him my best spiel about how porn creates unrealistic expectations about women and if he watched too much of it, eventually he wouldn’t be able to have sex with a real woman. Short of resorting to “Your penis will fall off if you watch too much porn,” I think he got the message, but come on—porn at your fingertips? A mere click away? What teenage boy is going to be able to resist the temptation? And it’s sad. It literally makes me want to cry, because I didn’t watch my first porn until I was 18, and it was a joke at that. I was living in Italy at the time, and my gay friend and girlfriend decided it would be a hoot to go to a porno theater to see a movie in Italian. Except that it ended up being in English with Italian subtitles, the floors were icky sticky, and a man sat down next to my girlfriend and began to masturbate, so we fled, laughing hysterically while wanting to throw up at the same time.

My next porn experience was in my early 20s right after the Pamela Anderson/Tommy Lee video came out. My gay friend (a pattern I seem to have with porn) came over and said, “We gotta watch this. I hear Tommy Lee’s cock is huge!” And it was. But we spent the whole time snickering and counting how many times Pammy gushed, “I love you, baby.”

Porn just wasn’t a reality while I was growing up like it is today. Now it’s an obsession. So I made my son promise he wouldn’t watch any until he was 15, the compromise being that I would buy him a nude magazine when he was ready. When he asked me for one, all these thoughts went through my head before I agreed. Thoughts like: “I guess Playboy wouldn’t be so bad, right? After all, I started looking at my dad’s collection when I was 8. Although that’s the reason I have such a fucked-up body image.” And, “As long as it’s not Penthouse or Oui (is Oui even still around?), both of which horrified the crap out of me when I was younger due to its extreme graphicness. Remember the Vanessa Williams scandal? How could one forget? And Madonna with the hairy armpits and pussy…cat.”

And then I had this thought: “Too bad there isn’t a magazine I can buy filled with pictures of teenage girls with various body types specifically for teenage boys to masturbate to,” which was immediately replaced by: “There are undoubtedly tons of them out there, but it’s freaking illegal to use underage girls in porn and Holy Hell, what was I thinking?”

Clearly I’m not, as my brain seems to be clouded with penises and porn.



tis the season

Why yes, it’s that time again–the season of ugly sweaters. Christmas sweaters have always been ugly (that’s part of their charm), but when did they get so, um, sexually explicit?

US 1

Is this Madonna’s Christmas sweater from the 80s made by Jean-Paul Gaultier? It needs to go back to the 80s and stay there, along with neon colors, leg warmers, and shoulder pads.

US 2

I can’t help but think these reindeer got punched in their noses outside the bar while Santa was inside having a few shots, or are experiencing a severe allergic reaction after eating a cheese ball covered in nuts.  I’m the one who needs a bottleful of Benadryl (or Pepto-Bismol) in order to deal with this one.  

US 4

Deck the balls with boughs of–oh, never mind. If I were face to face with this man I’d have to fight the urge to hang my coat from his erect carrot, or a dish towel, but I’m guessing he’s thinking more along the lines of hanging mistletoe from that bad boy. Ick.

US 7

Is that a frozen carrot or are you just happy to see me? Mrs. Snowwoman (who looks strikingly like a man) doesn’t look too happy. And neither would I if I had to wear this monstrosity, although it does bring to mind a joke: Why did Frosty the Snowman pull down his pants? He heard the snow blower coming. Heh.

US 8

Does anyone else just want to tweak that nose…or lance it because it looks like a boil? This is the perfect “sweater” for a stripper in North Dakota. Ho Ho Ho! Merry XXXmas!

US 6

Proof that Santa is lactose intolerant, because after a glass of milk this is what happens to me. Can you imagine poor Santa after 52 billion glasses of milk? For the record, we leave vanilla almond milk for Santa, which is why he visits our home first.

US 5

This gem isn’t necessarily raunchy. Instead, it looks as if someone ate a decorated Christmas tree and then vomited it up onto a piece of wool (or I’m guessing polyester in this case). It hurts my eyes and gives me a searing pain in my head–which is what ugly Christmas sweaters are supposed to do, so I choose this one for the WIN this year.


Here’s hoping your holiday season is filled with non-dysfunctional family time and gifts you don’t have to feign joy over receiving.



I welcome change
I hate change. And yet I crave it. I’m a creature of habit, but I get uncomfortable and frustrated when my life becomes stagnant. Living in the suburbs of Southern California was supposed to be temporary. 2 years—max. Enough time for my ex and I to save up money and move back up north which we both agreed was a much better environment to raise our son.

Welp, 11 years later, things didn’t go quite as planned. The ex and I split and there I was, stuck just trying to keep a roof over my son’s head. I don’t necessarily regret staying in this area for so long, (even though I have nothing but horrendous memories I wish I could lance out of my brain), because I provided stability and a somewhat decent environment for my son for the first 11 years of his life.

But we’ve exhausted our time here, and while I would have loved to give my boy a nice suburban upbringing with extracurricular activities ad nauseam and vacations once a year, I just can’t. So I’ve decided to do the only thing I can think of to bring some free diversity and experience into my child’s sheltered life—move to a big city. Chicago to be exact. Yes, I know it’s freaking cold and windy there. And yes, I know it will be a huge culture shock. My son may hate it. I may hate it. The diva, who doesn’t like weather below 70 degrees, will definitely hate it.

But here’s the logic behind this move: I want my boy to be exposed to different cultures, food, customs, colors of skin, mindsets. If he winds up not being college-bound I want there to be a plethora of other opportunities available to him. I personally want to be able to make more than $12/hr without having to drive an hour. I want to be able to visit the world’s largest aquarium without having to add 3 hours onto the journey for being stuck in LA traffic. I want to be able to walk outside my door and stumble upon a street fair, Farmers Market, musicians. I want various experiences at my fingertips because the truth is I’m dreadfully lazy and unmotivated. And I suck at planning outings. Oh, and I also want to associate with people who speak grammatically correct English, no more “I don’t got no more.” And I really want to live in a place where every other person hasn’t done meth or sold meth.

Basically, I want to be able to grab the boy by the hand sans Xbox controller and say, “Hey, let’s go explore the city and see what we find.”

Am I freaking nuts?


I rag constantly on models, actresses, and skinny bitches in general, because, well, they’re skinny…and obviously disciplined (or neurotic, bulimic, or anorexic). But I’ve a newfound respect for them. I’ve come to learn it’s really hard to be a skinny bitch—especially after 40.

I have always been somewhat obsessed with my weight. Not to the point of compulsively dieting or working out, but always mentally obsessing. Because I despise exercise, a quick fix to lose a few pounds would be to just not eat. No biggie, since food doesn’t excite me all that much, and I’m not a stress eater. I much prefer to chew my nails and make other people’s lives miserable when I’m stressed out.

I’ve never had a weight problem per se, but I’ve never been a skinny bitch either. I’m half Italian and half Polish, which explains why excess carbs go straight to my ass. I grew hips at 16 when I went on the Pill and they’ve been with me ever since. I fell in love with my son’s father when he uttered those 3 words I always longed to hear: “You’re too skinny.” He liked thick women with big asses. Who wouldn’t love that in a man?

It wasn’t until my ex up and left me with a 1 year old and I started fantasizing about driving head-on into traffic that I began taking happy pills which packed on the pounds. I didn’t care—better to be fat and (somewhat) happy, rather than thin and batshit crazy. I did manage to eventually lose the 30 pounds I had accumulated from eating bagels drenched in butter, much to the delight of literally everyone around me, including the mailman. You never realize how fat you’ve gotten until you A. See yourself in photos and B. Receive congratulatory comments about how much weight you’ve lost from people whose name you don’t even know.

Weight management is like being bipolar—sometimes you’re up, sometimes you’re down, but there’s always fluctuation. So when I stopped working out regularly once again and began eating crap like salty snack mixes, Almond Joys, and pizza, the pounds crept back on. Here’s the frightening thing though. While I may have always had thighs, hips, and an ass, what I NEVER had before was a stomach. So when all of a sudden I had this fucking muffin top hanging over my waistband, I was horrified. According to my rules of karma, everyone should have 1 area of their body that doesn’t give them a problem no matter how much they eat or drink.

After a few months of whining and feeling sorry for myself, I started working out regularly again. No results. Then I started eating slightly smaller portions. Nothing. I cursed my 46-year-old metabolism, and saw myself turning into this flabby, middle-aged potato-shaped woman with a lot of cats. I became depressed. I napped a lot. I took the Why bother? approach. Summer crept closer and closer, which meant shorts and tank tops. I knew a burka just wouldn’t go over in my neighborhood.

So I finally, finally got my ass in gear and took charge. Made a goal, started getting B-12 shots in my ass for energy, bought some green detox powder that tastes like mowed grass, plus a high-quality meal replacement drink that becomes gluey paste if it sits too long. I started exercising and using little 5-pound weights. But I did not actually start noticing a distinct change in my body until I took drastic measures. What did I have to do? I had to go to Hell and stay there. In fact, I’m still there, because I’m 6 pounds away from my goal.

For the last month, I have been working out every. freaking. day. I have NEVER done that in my life. I drink that green crap for breakfast, a meal replacement for lunch, and have a salad with maybe some tuna in it for dinner. I dish out lasagna and pizza for my son while biting my fist in frustration, but I have not caved yet. I went to a 4th of July party and didn’t drink alcohol or eat dessert. I had guacamole without the chips, and chicken instead of beef.

Sure I may feel great, but are you kidding me? This is no way to live. How do the skinny bitches do it? I mean, yeah, I’ve lost weight, but I had cherry tomatoes for dessert last night when I was craving something sweet. Fucking cherry tomatoes! That’s insane to have to do that all the time. In order to be skinny, you have to omit carbs (the good ones, anyway) which means you can never eat a goddamn sandwich or a burger. Certainly no chips. Or tortillas. No to sugar. And steak. And pasta. And potatoes. And what you do eat has to be in minute amounts. Plus, you have to exercise like 2 hours a day!

I applaud all you skinny bitches, because it’s damn hard to stay skinny. The will power and discipline needed is enormous and commendable. I think it was Julia Roberts who once said that in order to be thin you have to say no a lot when it comes to food. Yeesh.

So Brava to all the skinny bitches out there! I’ve decided I don’t want to join your masochistic club (the dues and obligations are way too high), so I’ll be admiring you from afar, instead.

How many of you are skinny bitches? And how in the hell do you stay that way?


“Nighthawks” by Edward Hopper

WARNING: The following post is NOT warm and fuzzy. Proceed at your own discretion.

Depression is a fickle bitch.

It’s PMS, road rage, PTSD after returning from Iraq, or staring down at your beautiful newborn and feeling…nothing. It’s partial paralysis after a stroke, a blown-out knee, an unwritten novel, failed dreams. Constant pain from a herniated disc, dialysis, gluttony, the inability to leave the womb-like safety of your home.

Depression is the faded ink stain on your favorite shirt, the dormant stage of a daffodil bulb. Or a zombie apocalypse.

Depression is the dress you buy for when you’re 5 pounds thinner, only to find it years later crumpled on the floor in the back of your closet.

Depression is failure for not being able to “snap out of it.” It’s unfulfilled potential, too many hours of sleep, and medical bills for undiagnosed ailments. Relationships gone sour, regurgitated food, clogged arteries, and one too many glasses of wine.

Depression says No before getting smacked across the face by a parent. Depression says No to the babysitter who molested you, the assailant who raped you. Depression says No to the men you try to please to fill the hole. No to extra work hours in place of family. No to your child about…well, anything.

Depression says You’re Not Worthy. How could you be with Hep B-tainted blood, tract marks on your arms, semen deep inside you from someone who shares your DNA? Or simply that your sexual preference is different from mine.

Depression says It’ll Never Get Better. Because you’ve tried everything. Because the meds can only do so much. Because cognitive therapy doesn’t work when your words and thoughts are diseased. And in response to all those success stories about others who have overcome this beast, you scream, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”

Depression says I Don’t Love You. I never wanted you. I wish I had aborted you. I beat you for your own good. It’s how I was raised. It’s the only way I know. It runs in the family.

Depression says You Could Have Done Better. Because a B+ is not an A, 2nd Place is no Winner, and if only you had worked harder…If only… If only you were thinner, smarter, taller…

Depression seduces, giving you that tingly feeling in your groin. It brings you to that moment when morals, doubts, marital statuses are forgotten. Depression gets you completely naked, ready, and willing…and then whispers, “I don’t want you,” before slinking away.

Depression leaves scars in the form of cutting, tattoos, or grooves in the brain like well-trodden areas of carpet. It can be obvious and deafening like angry feedback during a concert. Silent and seething like a small gas leak. Or brains splattered all over the wallpaper you never wanted in the first place.

It’s selfish and maddening and sensitive and organic. It’s suffocating, lacking in compassion, intuitive and creative. It’s paralyzing and hopeless and cerebral and methodical. It’s both powerless and powerful. Bright light when you remember how you once were; darkness over how you are now. It’s prison, then parole. Purgatory. An apathetic Heaven or Hell.

It’s the underachieving, New Age pessimist and the overachieving, Mensa tyrant. The insanely talented Oxycontin-addicted Narcissist. The gold-medal winning, anal-retentive introvert who wonders, What now?

Depression is Jim Carrey, Eric Clapton, Agatha Cristie, Edgar Degas, and Princess Di. It’s Reddit co-founder, Aaron Swartz, J.K. Rowling, Marilyn Monroe, John Hinkley, Jr. It’s “That which doesn’t kill us makes us stronger” Nietzsche, (but if it does end up killing us, it’s only because we’re desperate for the pain to go away). Depression is Mike Tyson, Mike Wallace, Terry Bradshaw, and Oscar-winning director, Malik Bendjelloul.

Depression is the doctor, the artist, the addict, the mother, the Vet, the student, the Walmart cashier.

Depression is the unemployed and the employed, the psychiatrist who treats you for symptoms, the terminally ill, the convict, the mortician who will dress your dead body. Depression is your parent, your child, your spouse, your grandfather.

Depression is a petulant child throwing a tantrum in the middle of the supermarket on a dog day afternoon. “See me,” it cries, before retreating once again into invisibility.

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