This cube truck is full of enough food to feed 200 of Hollywood’s richest kids for a week and there’s another  one just like it behind us. Off to the Colorado River we go…

This Fan of My Work Gave Me a Free Haircut Yesterday

(Nashville, TN)

This girl I went to high school with offered to cut and treat my hair for free cuz she saw me dealing with my dad’s illness via Instagram, said she loved all my stories, and thought I could use some love’n. Mind you, I’ve never even hung out with this sweet angel before since I had 400 people in my graduating class. But she just found me on Instagram awhile back and has been a fan ever since. Anywho, she massaged my head and made my coarse, old lady hair soft again and even gave me a cut I actually like. Aren’t people the greatest?
While I was sitting in her chair I was telling her some stories and mentioned that my domestic abuse story is coming out on a big podcast soonish. This lady getting her washed across the way kept staring at me and I was wondering what her deal was. But I smiled and kept talking until she finally interrupted. “Excuse me. Did you say you’re a writer?”  “Cuz I was hit too….” And then she basically went on to tell me about the men in her life who have beaten her up and how she would love to read my stories and hear them. Then she asked how she could find me online. We’re FB friends now.

“Excuse me. Did you say you’re a writer?”  “Cuz I was hit too….” And then she basically went on to tell me about the men in her life who have beaten her up and how she would love to read my stories and hear them. Then she asked how she could find me online. We’re FB friends now.

“Well, yeah, I guess–”

“Cuz I was hit too….” And then she basically went on to tell me about the men in her life who have beaten her up and how she would love to read my stories and hear them. Then she asked how she could find me online. We’re FB friends now.

And then she basically went on to tell me about all the men in her life who have beaten her up. And how she was trying to teach her son, who was playing with a toy truck on the ground beside her, how to treat women so he wouldn’t do the same thing.

“How do you treat women, baby?” she asked him.

“Like princess,” he shouted back without missing a beat.

We talked for awhile and then when it was time for her to get up she said she would love to read my stories and hear them on podcasts. “How can I find you online?” she asked. We’re FB friends now.
It’s times like these that remind me why my stories mean so much to me. In telling them, I make others feel less alone. When they hear that I’ve experienced some version of their pain, they seem desperate to tell me about theirs. I get facebook messages all the time from women I don’t know. My guess is this woman, like all the others, has tried to tell her story before and nobody listened. Or nobody understood when she did.  Or everyone said the wrong thing.

So I’m learning that part of the job of being a writer and telling your story is listening to those you reach who need to share theirs. And I think this is quickly becoming my favorite part of being a storyteller.

Me and My Pops

Several years ago, when I was kinda-sorta dating this guy in Argentina, he told me he’d chosen this shittier, more expensive apartment than a better one up the hill cuz the  one up the hill would’ve been harder for his dad to walk up to during visits. I laughed at this story because it blew my mind. And because I couldn’t relate to it at all.
“Why you laugh at me?” he asked, all insulted. “Oh I’m not laughing at you. I’m laughing at myself. I totally would have chosen the other apartment BECAUSE it’d be harder for my dad to get to.” He looked at me like I’d just told him a puppy died.  “That’s really sad you feel that way about your father.”
It was sad. And I couldn’t get that comment out of my head for months.
My dad and I had a rocky relationship for well over a decade. As much as I loved the man because he was my dad and biology yearns for that connection, I was constantly disappointed by him, or mad at him for hurting my feelings, or resentful at the things he’d done in the past. I used to stress out about visits home for weeks before and then I’d sleep for days after coming back. I even refused to go home for almost a year because it was just too much to deal with. This man, or rather, my resentment towards him, utterly exhausted me.
And then, during that trip to South America, and after a few key moments in my life, I realized my dad wasn’t really the problem at all. No, it was the story I was clinging to that caused me so much pain. So I stopped letting myself focus on the old story and instead set out to tell a new one. A story that would focus solely on what he’d done right instead of where he’d gone wrong. Hell, that story had been on loop too long already and I was sick of hearing that crap. I also forced myself to start seeing him through the eyes of my friends and all his fans on Facebook who’d come to adore him from my posts about all the crazy shit he says, instead of through my victim-y, shit-head-teenager-y lens of yesteryear.
And then there was me. I had to start seeing myself as an adult and an equal, not some scared little girl who needs daddy’s approval. Why walk on eggshells around him anymore, like he’s some scary monster?  Cuz he’s not. And I’m a grown ass woman now. I had to start acting like one.  I learned to bite my tongue and laugh more instead of pouting or being a passive-aggressive bitch.  And I forced myself to stand up to him  and call him on his shit (in a loving kind of way of course) when he was being an asshole. (“Remember when I told you I don’t like you talking about my weight? Yeah, that’s still the case! Please don’t.”)
Well, wouldn’t you know,  we started to get along again. I learned to not only forgive him, and in doing so, realize what a good dad he actually was, but I focused entirely on how I could be a good daughter and, sure enough, became one.
So here we are, years later, hanging out.  Instead of it being a source of stress and unnecessary pain, going to see him now is what makes me feel at home. It gives me joy and comfort even. I was really struggling last week with depression about my job stuff, but now, after sitting next to him for three days, having the same conversation again and again and again (yay Alzheimer’s!), I feel back to my old self and my spirits are high.
 I guess I’m finally like Tuta. Instead of thinking of how I can avoid seeing my dad, I am worried about NOT seeing him. I even go out of my way to see him. Even though he doesn’t remember me being there and he literally talks on a loop about the same things- how great of a daughter I am and how much his ass hurts- I just love our visits. I never get tired of sitting next to him. And he’s always so sad when I have to go.
So, if any of you know a story that’s causing you a lot of pain, maybe do what I did, and try coming up with a new one.


I Did Karaoke For the Memory Center and My Dad Hated It Lol

This is the best moment of my life. 

I not only brought some joy to the nurses and patients and got people to meow karaoke with me, but I embarrassed the shit out of my dad (“why don’t y’all just quit!”) and that is truly a first for me. 

My dad has been a crotchety old man since I can remember (like even in his 30’s lol) but that’s also what I love about him. 

My Dad Hates the Music Man at the Memory Center

Thursday’s are when Mr. Jerry comes to sing songs for the residents. My dad is not a fan. “Who’s this jerkwad?” my dad asked every five minutes. And then he’d say “I don’t want to listen to this shit.” The thing he says at the end of this clip is the greatest. Jerry was fantastic but my dad is a tough crowd.

 The staff here love my dad’s sense of humor and tease him about it. Today they gave him a big bowl of vegetables as a joke as his lunch. He said “I’m not eating that bullshit,” and they all laughed. I’ve never seen my dad eat a vegetable in my whole life. Some things will never change.
Also, that thing Jerry does with his lips is amazing. 

Also, one of the adorable ladies here asked Mr. Jerry where he was from. He said Nashville then asked her. She said Missouri. Then he played a song about Missouri dedicated to her and at the end she clapped and said. “Where you from?” And they had the same conversation three more times and she couldn’t believe the “coincidence” that he played a song about Missouri. This is just as comical as it is sad.

This Cat Is Crazy

Okay I’m officially terrified of this cat. We got some Pet Cemetary shit going on up in here. I’m literally hiding on my bed cuz the cat won’t let me off. I think it’s cuz this is the room that newscaster lady died in last year. Also, this cat can open doors by hanging on the knobs and when he gets locked outside, I kid you not, he rings the fuck’n doorbell.

Awww, Poor Guy Thinks He Can Scare Me lol