Category Archives: aging

The 3 Types of Dreaded Phone Calls

When you’re a teenager (or a toddler with a phone, as the case may be today) the only people who call are your parents, your BFFs, your boyfriend and maybe the occasional prank caller.

But once you have your own money and an aging body, you start getting all kinds of new and interesting phone calls.

I try my best to never answer the phone.

I figure if someone really needs me, they’ll text me, or track me down via drone or carrier pigeon.

But occasionally a call falls through the cracks.

In my experience, these correspondances fall under one of three categories.

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The Insurance Call

Today I received a call from my obstetrician’s office saying that all of my recent medical claims had been denied by my health insurance company – because they have me listed as a male.

Interesting.

I’d like to know how many males named Julie are visiting the OB?

And how many of these male OB-goers are submitting gynecological claims for pap smears, urine samples and ultrasounds?

Now I will have to spend 30 minutes on another phone call with the insurance company navigating numerical prompts and shouting voice commands to a robot agent.

Is the robot agent going to ask me to somehow prove I’m female over the phone?

Sure, should I just scan you a copy of my lady-parts identification card? Or read you the serial number stamped inside my labia?


It’s also super fun to get a call from the car insurance company.

The one where they’re just calling to give you an update on that fender bender you got in six months ago – you know, the one where you side-swiped that 1995 Bronco?

The one where you left a scratch that would take a 1500X Phase Contrast Inverted Flurescence Microscope to actually see?

The one where the driver sprinted over to your car, using both of his legs, to give you the finger?

Yeah well, that driver was apparently very injured, and is suing you for $100,000 and your first-born child.

The Scam Call

This kind of call can involve any number of exciting offers like free cruises, complimentary Madonna concert tickets, membership into the European Cheese-of-the-Month Club, and so on.

Or worse.

A few years ago, I got a call from “Bank of America” saying my account had been hacked and they needed to issue new cards.

In order to do so, for security purposes, I would need to confirm my name, address, birthdate and social security number.

Because I’m a little bit dumb naive, I willingly obliged.

I gave my name, address, birthdate, social security number, blood type…

The hacker “Bank of America representative” promptly hung up and stole my identity.

The Doctor Reminder Call

As you get older, these types of calls become more and more frequent.

The dentist, the ophthalmologist, the dermatologist, the gastroenterologist, the gynecologist…..

“Hi, it’s Jenna from [insert specialist’s office] calling to remind you that you’re due for your yearly [insert aging body part] check up.

Would you like to schedule your appointment now?”

“Oh yes! I’ve been waiting for your call.

I was hoping to get in right away for [insert doctor name] to look at this strange spot on my [insert body part.] In fact, it’s throbbing and changing color as we speak!

Oh, you can get me in for tomorrow at 2 p.m.?

Great, I’ll plan to sell my body on the streets in the morning then, so I can afford the specialist copay and the time off from work.”


If you’re a parent, you also get to experience a fourth type of dreaded call.

The School Call

This call usually involves one of two things – vomit or poop.

If you’re lucky, it’s only the school secretary calling to remind you that it’s Early Release Day and you forgot to pick up your kid.

If you’re extra lucky, it’s just the PTA president reminding you that you signed up to bring in three dozen safari-themed cupcakes tomorrow.


My advice is to avoid having a phone all together.

Let them email you, or Facebook-message you, or better yet, send you a piece of snail mail, which is actually kind of fun and nostalgic to receive.

If that doesn’t work, and you accidentally answer, it’s best to feign a foreign accent and hang up.

Que? No entiendo. No comprendo. Au Revoir!”

End Call.

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Why I Don’t Wear Thongs

I used to wear thong underwear.

In fact my college roommates and I used to have thong slingshot fights at the laundromat.

Until one of them would inevitably get hooked behind the washer on a drain pipe, or hung up in the light fixture (the underwear, not the roommates).

These days, my underpants are large and roomy. (To read more about what I’m currently wearing, read My Husband is Head Over Hanes for Me.)

But I do still own two thongs. One for daytime and one (black lacy) version for night time.

Don’t get excited.

I wear them only when the outfit necessitates, which is almost never. Or when I haven’t done my laundry in three weeks, because I’ve been doing everyone else’s.

That was the case today. And look what happened!

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This never would have happened with granny panties.

Every time I bent over or turned sideways, this good-for-nothing T-Back gave me a Wedgie for the Ages!

I hate when you have to spend your whole day managing your outfit.

We all have “that shirt” where the button in the front randomly bursts open.

Usually in the middle of a staff meeting, or an interview – exposing your breasts to the company president.

And we all have “that skirt” made of some kind of unnatural polyester blend, that static-clings to your legs and crotch like a sausage casing.

I don’t think men have these wardrobe malfunctions.

“I was at lunch with a client and my jock strap broke, and my penis just FELL OUT in front of everyone!” said No Man Ever.

Or

“I can’t sit down because the Spanx under my khakis are too tight, so… I’ll just stand.”

Or

“My slacks flew up in the wind and my entire butt was showing. It was so embarrassing!”

All things never said by a man.

Maybe his fly was down ONCE and someone got a glimpse of his boxers. Big whoop.

Until your bare ass, or exposed nipple, has felt the cool breeze of embarrassment, you can’t really relate.

But as women, we can do things to mitigate these malfunctions.

We can buy new underwear and bras (with sturdy straps) more often than every five years.

We can do our laundry first next time and let our husbands turn their underwear inside out for a change.

We can remember to not neglect ourselves.

 

And for Pete’s sake, get rid of those thongs!!!!

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Tampa: Biblical Rain, Nuclear Roaches and String Bikinis

umbrellaToday I saw blue sky for the first time in what feels like months.

It was sunny and warm. (Albeit 103 degrees and muggy, but I’ll take it.)

I grew up in Florida so I’m used to the

The entrance to my neighborhood is closed!

The entrance to my neighborhood is closed!

summer weather patterns. Two hours of sunshine, 30 minutes of apocalyptic cloud-to-ground lightning, an hour of sunshine, and so on.

But the last few days have defied all meteorological paradigms.

The amount of rain has been of biblical proportions.

Many streets have been closed even in areas that don’t typically flood (like my neighborhood!)

I saw a photo in the newspaper of two 16-year-old girls floating on inner tubes, in their bikinis, down a flooded street in South Tampa.

Oh, to be young, and carefree and care less.

Oh, to not care about algae, or sewage, or amoebas crawling up your vajayjay.

I remember a similar feeling going down the Ichetucknee in college.

It was freezing cold, but I didn’t care.

I was blue from the cold water and tan from the sun – a sort of greenish color.

I was gulping up the spring water like wine, peeing in the woods, laughing and falling over boys – in my string bikini.

Now as an adult, wife, and parent, I am horrified at the thought of floating aimlessly down a shit-river of rain (and even more horrified by the thought of a string bikini.)

Now I think about things like flesh-eating-bacteria, and worms, and snakes, and insects, and drowning, and gastro-intestinal illness.

And cellulite. And dying.

At one point during the downpour, I drove through an intersection so flooded, I thought my little Prius wouldn’t make it, and then a tidal wave (from the car next to me) washed over my car impeding my vision for several seconds.

This is what I thought….

“AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! I’M GOING TO LEAVE MY CHILD MOTHERLESS BECAUSE I DECIDED TO GO TO WORK IN THIS F*&K-ING MONSOON!!!!!!!!! THIS WAS AN AWFUL DECISION!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

But then the wave passed, and the road ahead was clear, and I was fine.

Phew.

I saw several people get into fender benders and run off the road. Others were desperately trying to get out of their flooded cars and homes.

Even my sweet neighbor slipped (and sprained her wrist!) on the primordial ooze that had taken over our sidewalk.

The plants are overgrown, the mosquitos are breeding in the standing water, and nuclear-sized roaches are making their way into my house.

Coincidentally, the Tampa Bay Times just published an article revealing Tampa’s most impressive statistic. Cockroaches.

According to the article, the U.S. Census Bureau’s latest American Housing Survey, found that Tampa “is among the roach-iest metropolitan areas in the nation. More so than New York or Miami or Houston.”

Super.

Biblical rain, nuclear cockroaches, and girls in string bikinis on inner tubes.

I know I should be thankful for these things (well, maybe not for the roaches).

Because the pendulum of life swings both ways.

Before long, we’ll be praying for rain – wishing to save our dried-up rivers and thirsty plants.

Hoping for some relief from the blistering heat.

Plus, it’s always nice to live in a place where carefree-youth meander about on inner tubes and paddle boards, right?

That’s Tampa.

Home sweet home.

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Holy Moley: My trip to the Dermatologist

sunblock-1461397_1920The annual mole check.

An activity I enjoy as much as renewing my driver’s license, getting a pap smear, or shopping for hemorrhoid cream.

The night before my appointment, I took inventory of every questionable mole.

Like those two spots on my stomach formerly known as Cute-Little-Freckles – that over the course of my pregnancy had morphed into two-headed amoebas.

I anticipated getting whittled on like a Halloween pumpkin.

The day of, I wore a super comfy DVF-inspired wrap dress (okay, so it was actually Jaclyn Smith for Kmart). I remembered reading material, and I brought breath mints (because they get all UP in your grill looking for Melanoma).

I felt very prepared.

The nurse left me alone in the exam room to undress and instructed me to remove everything except my underwear. And thats when I realized…

I forgot to wear underwear.

Instead, my dumb ass wore spanx. SPANX!

Note to self: Do Not Wear Spanx to Your Mole Check.

Sitting on the table, I debated…

Spanx on. Spanx off.

Spanx on. Spanx off.

I didn’t want the doctor to think I don’t wear undergarments.

Then again. If I left them on, it might take two nurses and the office manager to lift and squeeze and search around and underneath them.

Spanx on. Spanx off.

Spanx on. Spanx off.

I decided to leave them on.

No sooner had I made my decision, than there was a knock on my door.

The doctor and her amazingly-gorgeous-assistant (who has probably never worn Spanx in her LIFE, ugghhhh) entered and quickly started the investigation.

I laughed nervously as I rolled down my control top, my flat tire falling out around me.

GlubGlubGlub.

She measured my amoebas with a ruler and noted their impressive size in my chart.

She did not, however, see any need to remove them. (Great, soon I can start feeding them and taking them for walks.)

She then examined my back, legs, feet….Ahhhhh! My feet???

WHY, OH WHY, DID I WEAR MY ABSOLUTE-FAVORITE-BUT-EXCEPTIONALLY-STINKY leather flats?

She looked over each fragrant toe. Painstakingly.

There are few things in life worse than the slow, painful torture of embarrassment.

Please let this be over soon. For I have no dignity left.

As she finished up, I tried to distract myself by looking around the room.

Also, not a good idea.

Look at this terrifying poster!

Ahhhhh!

Ahhhhh!

I left the office with all the moles I came with.

I also left with absolutely no self-confidence and the image of an elderly cheerleader forever etched in my mind.

Should you be visiting the Dermatologist anytime soon, take my advice. Wear panties, bring a pair of open-toed shoes, keep your head down…

And leave your pride at home.

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My Husband is Head Over Hanes for Me

underwearHusband: “Your underwear are heinous.”

Me: “What are you talking about – these are from Victoria’s Secret.”

Husband: “Well, I hope you got your senior citizen discount when you bought them.”

Me: “Just because they are full coverage doesn’t mean they aren’t sexy. Look at this fun pattern!”

Husband: “Mmmm, nothing like faded pink elephants on boxer briefs to turn me on.

And look… there’s a hole in the back…”

Shortly after we got married, I threw in the towel. And by towel, I mean T-back.

I happily traded in the polyester g-strings of my youth for FULL-coverage cotton panties fit for the elderly.

I never looked back.

I guess it’s a little bit sad. To give up the stuff of legends and Sisqo lyrics.

I like it when the beat goes da na da na
Baby make your booty go da na da na
Girl I know you wanna show da na da na
That thong th thong thong thong

That song was so hot. I remember standing in line at Sam Goody for the single on CD.

Of course, I told my parents I was studying for the AP exams.

Eukaryotic cell structure? (Shhhhhhh. Dumps like a truck, truck truck.)

By 2006, the black fishing line wrapped around my rear had done its due diligence – reeled in the man of my dreams.

Less than a decade later, I was rocking faded, holey grannies like Def Leppard rocked the Ages.

Even the elastic was worn out.

And yet, it didn’t occur to me to buy anything new.

I couldn’t justify spending money on undergarments. I’d rather spend it on shoes or nail polish or a new Michael Kors wallet!

But Todd was right – the situation was dire.

So I suggested he go pick something out.

Surely, he’d go to an expensive lingerie store, I thought. Choose something from his fantasy playbook – with lace, and pink, and frills!!!!

Two days later amidst the turkey and half-and-half, I saw it…

The Hanes Ultimate Comfort multi-pack of 5.

From (gasp) the grocery store?

I didn’t even know they sold underwear at the grocery store.

Me: “This is your solution for my underwear problem?”

Husband: “Babe, they are high cut briefs. They’re gonna be so hot.

And they’re solid colors – no weird patterns. I thought you’d like the bright pink and purple!”

Me: “Well they’re size large, so they’re not gonna fit. They’ll be HUGE on me.”

That turned out to be untrue.

I modeled a purple pair from the pack, and his eyes lit up with pride.

“See! Those look great!” he exclaimed.

It must have been worse than I thought, for supermarket underwear to be so GREAT.

I appreciated his practicality and frugality, really I did.

And I’m glad he didn’t expect me to be parading around like a Thong Song hood rat – post C-section.

Turns out he just wants to see me in something that fits. That shows off a little leg. That’s clean and mended.

Turns out, he’s head over Hanes for me.

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SMH…and Feeling Old

teenager feet-349687_1920Husband: What does “SMH” mean?

Me: I don’t know.

Husband: Well, people keep saying it on Facebook. We should figure out what it means.

Me: I’m sure it means something gross… like “Suck My Hoo-Ha.”

After consulting a friend (and mother of two teenagers) I was relieved to find out “SMH” actually means “Shakin’ My Head.”

Maybe kids these days aren’t as dirty as I thought.

Recently a coworker’s daughter asked if I knew of any cool places for 18-21 year-olds to hang out.

Except she didn’t say, “Do you know of any cool places for 18-21-year-olds to hang out?”

She looked at me and said….

“We want to get turnt up tonight. Where can we go?”

Translation: “We want to get loose. Wild and excited.” (Could also mean ‘we want to get wasted, high, or engage in sexual activity.) But we won’t tell her mom that.

Frankly, I was flattered she even asked.

I started to answer, but then realized I had nothing to say.

Because I haven’t the SLIGHTEST idea where one would go to get “turnt up” these days.

If you want to know where all the coolest toddlers are hanging out…where the juice flows like wine…where everyone’s passed out by 2 p.m…

Call me.

I’ve always thought it was weird that neither of my parents had an appreciation for 80’s music. They were in their thirties in the 1980s – they should have been at the peak of coolness.

But my mom can’t name ONE SONG by Queen, or Duran Duran, or Journey. Why? Because she had a 3-year-old and a 1-year-old at home.

If it wasn’t on Raffi’s Greatest Hits album, she wasn’t into it.

And now I totally understand.

But I’m trying to stay cool. Like I really like that song by Lil Jon…”Turn Down the What.”

Oh wait….

It’s “Turn Down For What.”

Translation: “Rhetorical question used by teenagers. “turn up” is the act of getting drunk and high and being reckless so “turn down” would mean sobering up. Turn down for what is really saying i am Fu*&ed up and will continue to be all night, no matter what.

On second thought, maybe I’ll switch back to the Frozen sound track.

And just “Let It Go.”

THAT song doesn’t have any secret meanings, does it?

Surely, Elsa’s not “letting go” of her virginity or anything crazy…

O.L.A.F. isn’t an acronym for Open-wide Lusting And Freaky?

SMH.

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