Part 3 of 3

In which I review a few things, and call them horoscopes.

Sagittarius (11/22 – 12/21): Oxytocin.  This is the hormone that's released during sex and breastfeeding that promotes bonding and feelings of well-being.  Here's something:  rats that have never had babies eat baby rats whenever they get a chance (the way you do), but after being injected with Oxytocin, they tend to and protect young, even if they aren't related.   The oxytocin effect of caring for young lasts for their whole lives -- once that form of generosity is activated, it never goes away. Shysters purchase oxytocin spray on the internet and spray it in the air when they want to close a deal.  Can you even believe that?  Now you know how Einstein felt about the a-bomb.  But maybe, just maybe, there is some backwash with the spray, and everyone gets a douse of good will and generosity and the instinct to protect and defend the vulnerable.  Maybe goodness actually wins, and can't be misused by hucksters.  That's possible, Sag.  I'm giving Oxytocin 5 stars.

Capricorn (12/22 - 1/19):  Pep Talks.   It has been brought to my attention that I give a lot of pep talks.  At first was like, eww, really?  Is that who I want to be?  And now I've decided, well, if you can't be the one you love, love who you are.  (Someone should make a song!) Anyway, I really don't like the term "pep talk".  It sounds fakey, and I picture some dad running along next to a kid learning to ride a bike, saying, "you can do it, son!" right before the crash and lacerations.  Or a, GO TEAM, SELL SELL SELL rally like I imagine happens at a multi-level marketing convention.  My so-called pep talks are some variation of this: "hey, I see something amazing and unused in you -- maybe it's just in remission or maybe you haven't taken it out of the box in a while, but I really think you've got it in you to up-level and do something outstanding, and I want that for you."  And I really mean it.  According to my daughter, I've been giving this pep talk to my loved ones for her whole life which makes me feel a little squirmy and embarrassed because suddenly it was clear that this is a thing that everyone but me has noticed, and there's probably some eye-rolling, like here she comes with that same old pep talk again.  But maybe I felt a little good too because hopefully what people hear isn't some bossypants weirdo, but rather, someone who loves them wishing they'll figure out how to squeeze a little more goodness out of the hand that they've been dealt, and shiny up their talents for the world to see because the world needs that.  I'll give Pep Talks 3 stars. 

Aquarius (1/20-2/18):  Gritty.  Gritty is 7-foot tall hairy mascot for a hockey team in Philadelphia, the Flyers, that has somehow captured the hearts of the residents. I don't understand what a sports mascot role is in the world but I do like it when a whole town gets behind something.  I'll give Gritty 4 stars.  Oh, and in my research, I learned that some heavy metal bands have mascots too.  I guess everyone else has known that since Iron Maiden was big, but not me.  I'm just telling you so you'll know that I'm catching up!

Pisces (2/19 – 3/20)
: Vacuum Cleaners.  Before I had a dog I would vacuum once "every so often" and by that, I mean never unless someone was coming over.  Then I got this big yellow dog and a new bagless vacuum cleaner and began to really enjoy vacuuming because I can see the equivalent of another small dog getting sucked off the carpet every few days.  Speaking of evolutionary failure -- what's in it for dogs to devote so much energy into hair production, only to let it fall off everywhere?  Not to mention that it's nearly impossible for them to be stealthy at a crime scene, leaving their DNA all over the place.  Anyway, the vacuum lasted two years before it died, and I took it to a vacuum repair place and very briefly fell in love with the repair man because he was so quirky.  He looked like a combination of the guy from the Detectorists (the one with the baby), and the shoe salesman in You, Me, and Everyone We know.  (There, I got in my two favorite things to watch!).  The look is a skinny, hungry, homely look. The main draw was his soliloquy about vacuums.  He has more passion for the vacuum cleaner than anyone I've met.  "It's gonna be a couple weeks," he said, "because every day, people pull up, and bring out a vacuum, and then another and another, like some clown car full of vacuum cleaners, and I'm like, bring it on, I love this stuff."  Anyway, he promised that he'd fix my vacuum and it would be like brand new and I left with so much hope.  Our 15 minutes in the repair shop, with him explaining all of the places where dust can escape from my particular type of vacuum, is the longest relationship I've been in for oh, maybe a decade.

But then he called and said he couldn't fix it, and could I pick it up and dispose of it because he has no need for it.  Just like that, I guess we broke up.  Someone younger probably came along with a Miele.  So I spent a bunch of time on the internet where we all live now, researching the best vacuum and then I gave up because research is infinite, like the universe, and you just have to cut it off at some point and buy whatever-the-fuck vacuum is convenient to buy.  

So I went to Costco, which is a big act of courage, and I looked at the choices and picked one, the way we used to do before the internet.  Remember that?  When we used to just select from the choices at hand?  So I put it in my cart, and I'm not kidding, like four people came up to me as I wandered through that giant warehouse full of stuff, and said, "Ohh, so exciting! A new vacuum cleaner!"  I wasn't feeling it myself but I tried to get excited.  I brought it home and assembled it and noted that it has a bunch of attachments that I guess will sit on my coffee table until they get lost, because there isn't a spot for them.  I'm really not into attachments (well, except for my brief imaginary love affair with the vacuum repair main.  For about 9 minutes, I was attached.)  But I'm not the kind who's like, oh, how can I get the dust particles out of this particular spot?  I think I'll stop what I'm doing and seek out an attachment and take the vacuum cleaner apart and reassemble it in some other way.  I'm mostly like, "what's the minimum cleaning necessary to keep dog hair out of my food and drink."

I'll give vacuum cleaners 2 stars.


  1. My experience with Oxytocin was to inject it my broodmare to get her to expel the placenta or else make a six hour drive to the University Vet Hospital to save her. She did after the expel it after the second injection. As it was I had to give her a buttload of penicillin for three days just to be sure she didn't develop an infection. Needless to say I never let her get pregnant again.

    Pep talks are good. Everyone should have their own personal cheerleader to support them enthusiastically.

    Attachments to vacuum cleaner guys might be an exercise in futility. These guys really suck and you shouldn't let yourself get sucked in by their fancy ways and attachments. You deserve better. Dog hair is protein and just part of a balanced diet, after all.

    1. This is all good advice, and may even qualify as a pep talk!

  2. Excellent post! Okay: Here's a true story.
    My daughter Jessie was getting rid of a vacuum cleaner. She asked if I wanted it. I do not have a vacuum cleaner because I hate them but every now and then one would come in handy. So I told her sure, I'd take it. She put it in the back of my car where I promptly forgot it. On Thanksgiving day, my husband said, "I wish we had one of those stick vacuum cleaners."
    "Go look in the back of my car," I told him.
    He was delighted! "It's just like Christmas!" he said, vacuuming merrily. A few days later he said, "I'll be glad to show you how to operate all the features on that vacuum if you want."
    "Mmmmm," I said. "I'll get back with you on that."
    I don't even know where it is.
    But we don't have any dogs.

    1. Exactly how I feel about the vacuum! But that's a good surprise to have what someone wants right in the back of your car.

  3. We currently own four vacuum cleaners and none of them work properly. We thought we wouldn't need one after replacing carpeting with hardwood but not only do the cats continue to shed (and we do too) but now we can bloody well SEE it (hair and dry skin flakes) which is just EWWWW and also our local vacuum shop closed down two years ago and the nearest fixer is a two hour drive away . . . The whole thing just makes me want to cry.

    Your kind of pep talks are the good kind, Betsy. Keep it up, and don't let anyone intimidate you.

    1. I understand the stress that the vacuum issues cause. I picture everyone sitting around crying over the dog hair and the vacuum fails. But we must carry on. xoxo

    2. LOL! At least you've made me laugh over it now! Thanks for that :)


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

The Dowdy Church-lady Post

The random edition

Upleveling Our Badassery