The Man. The Myth. The Birthday Legend.

Oh dads.

If you are lucky enough to have one or have had one in your life, then you win. A familiar fixture on this blog and in my life, my dad celebrates his day of birth (along with his twin!) today. Aunt Crazy Pants once doled out advice that I didn’t think much of at the time when I was younger. She said (during some stupid crazy boy drama, no doubt) “No man will ever love you the way your dad loves you.”

This didn’t really dawn on me until I was an “adult” (a term I use for myself extremely loosely these days) and a dude I was living with said to me, “I can’t treat you like your dad treats you.”

BOY BYE.

I guess I never had to think about it because of the jackpot I scored when my dad chose to be mine. A knight in shining (well, in his case probably rusty) armour. A frugal on the allowance guy whose driving abilities were always affected by how loudly the radio was playing in unknown territory (TURN DOWN Q.102 GIRLS WE’RE IN DES MOINES!). A dad who commuted four hours daily to work but rarely missed an extra curricular activity. A dude who could scare boyfriends shitless with his size but is actually a giant, goofy Teddy Bear.

A father who not only duct taped my glasses together in the third grade (hence the short-lived nickname “Ducky” by the oh-so-sweet fellow 4th graders) but also uses the same magic to keep my bumper adhered to my car as an “adult”.

A dad who tells you to “tough it up” when you’re sitting in the superintendent’s office, holding a bloody chin after being hit in the face with a baseball bat during P.E. but remains strong and silent decades later when he’s driving you to the hospital after being raped.

So yeah, Aunt Crazy Pants and her advice rings true – best of luck to a dude ever living up to The Man, The Myth, My Legend.

Celebrating the Big Fella today, please join me as I share some of the valuable…

LESSONS FROM MY LEGEND


Image 90

You should always have your family’s back…

bl

     … even if they often attack.

Throw your hands up in the air…

wave

…and wave them like I just don’t care.

Even if you’re a dork inside…

...without my shades.

                                              

…it’s no matter if you’re cool on the outside.

The art of muscle blowing is unique.

blow

                      

and

                                       

still

Passed down to generations for upkeep.

Pink isn’t just for girls…

flex

…guys often put the color on for a whirl.

Sequins should be in my everyday attire…

love

     … as you gave me the first bedazzled top I ever acquired.

It’s OK to stand out in a crowd…

Dada C-Note

…just be sure to do it loud and proud.

Giving is better than receiving…

Image 91

…except when you let your three year old open your gift to be appeasing. 

The importance of slathering on sunscreen daily…

very

   …just be sure to not get too crazy.

The significance of jazz hands…

was

…often help when making demands.

It’s not a road trip…

check

…unless you have rot gut vodka and your finger to mix.

Reminding me there’s more than one fish in the sea…

fish

           …especially whenever a boy has been mean to me.

Being the life of the party…

never

                                    

…is like leading one big, fun army.

The duo that shoots shots together…

Wild Turkey

Image 11

Stays together.

…stays together.

It’s important to share…

at the

…even while pigging out at the Iowa State Fair.

It’s OK to relax…

after

…after a day has been crap.

You’ve carried me through physical hard times…

broken foot

         

broken ankle

…even if sometimes it was from too much self-inflicted wine.

Tipping my Skinny Pirates when my nails are drying…

treat

                         

…because you know there’s a silver lining.

Most importantly, not all heroes wear capes…

Not all

…just dads who pick us up no matter our proverbial scrapes. 

So let us all raise our glasses today…

cheers!

…and cheers your birthday away!

Those are just a few of my lessons from…

happy

 The Man. The Myth. The Legend.

Happy Birthday Dada!

Join the twins in a sing-a-long to Coo Coo…

(of course we do not have normal monikers such as Grandpa in my classy family)

We love you.

CBXB

CBXB!

Meowloweens from Halloweens Past

If you think stuffing pets in costumes is ridiculous, you’re gonna wanna divert your eyes.

The fur ball love of my life, Ted E. Bear has been gone for two years now. I couldn’t love any of my Pussy Posse more if I birthed them myself (and yes, I mean that with all of my fucking heart) but Teddy…Tedstar was THE ultimate love of my life. I would give almost anything to have him back with me although I know he’s mauling my Gma, Aunt Crazy Pants, Precious, New Cat and Nicodeamus up above not patiently awaitng my arrival.

When Mr. Bear and I first became connected, he had such a nervous disposition, it took almost two years of work to let me hold him (talk about being careful what you wish for). Once that happened, he was my shadow and I didn’t hate it. So when the art of dressing pets entered my mind, I had some ideas.

His looks could kill. So maybe a bodyguard costume was in order?

The stare that gazed through souls.

Ted always liked to be in control (obvies my baby), so when we’d road trip, he insisted on being in the driver’s seat. So maybe a truck driver costume?

Jesus Teddy take the wheel.

Dental hygiene isn’t something that pussies are fond of but then again, TB was no average feline. And being that we shared everything, he always used my toothbrush. So maybe a dentist costume?

Pearly whites.

Cheese.

Then there was the time I considered how much time I was spending watching my fave TV show, Forensic Files, as Ted mimicked a crime scene. He did this by jumping off the porch into a neighboring bush, leaving an outline of his body and himself ferociously confined to the bottom branches. The removal process should have been filmed for Forensic Files, as you can imagine how calm and tranquil and non dramatic a stuck cat can be.

Maybe a kitty CSI agent costume?

I slowly started introducing props to our costuming atmosphere. I began with a simple cowboy hat, as we lived in Nashville, the home of country music. He really loved it. So much so, he had the hat on for .000000000002 seconds.

Yeefuckinghaw.

After the western attire was a success, why not take it even more south of the border with a sombrero and poncho?

Mad hombre.

Since he obvies loved gussying up, I went out on a limb one Halloween and turned him into a member of the Apidae family, a bee.

Buzz.the.fuck.off.

Not so honey lickin’ good.

I had so much past success, the following year, I decided to not only gussy Ted up but join in on the fun with him. Why couldn’t I do a couple’s costume with my cat? That’s not weird. At all.

We went as Miley Cyrus and Robin Thicke. This was after Miley casually dry humped Robin in front of the world on live television at the MTV Music Awards earlier that year.

No gyrating here.

While it may look like I easily capture award winning selfies, about 8,325,910 photos were taken (I had to take resting breaks for my arm) in order to get the money shot.

Blurred lines.

Tongue lashing.

If Ted could wear sunglasses, he could certainly don a wig, right? The following Halloween, he was the Princess Leia to my Darth Vader.

Ted, I am your mother.

It was super easy getting him into wardrobe.

He don’t want none unless he gets his buns, Hon.

While we didn’t know it was our last time for dress up together, our Batman theme was our best Halloween ever.

Catman.

We’d taken in a sidekick, a cat I found at the dumpster (now that I think about it, I find a lot of fucking things at my dumpster…) and refused to give a name because I didn’t want to keep him even though we all know what happened. He stayed. And kept the name New Cat.

Poor New New had all kinds of anxiety and instead of audibly sighing so loudly the neighbors could hear like Bear, he preferred to hiss and bat his declawed paws at me (people who declaw animals and then dump them have a special place in hell) in defense of looking like a dressed up asshole.

A forced Robin.

Batman, Catwoman and Robin together furever about a split second.

Wishing they had superhero powers to use on their super whack job mama.

Robin’s revolt.

Upon New Cat’s divaesque behavior, Bear and I cuddled up only as a not-awkward-at-all mother and son duo could for our Halloween photo.

Purrfect pair.

I can almost hear the heavy sighs from Ted above right now. Only this time instead of being from forced costume insertion, they’re signs of relief. He was always such a little bitch.

Happy Meowloween!

CBXB!

 

Weekend Winks – Feelings of Funk

I have been in the worst mood the past few weeks. Nothing self inflicted – mostly my reaction to first world problems kind of bad mood. I haven’t been able to shake it the fuck off (where is Taylor Swift when I need her?!) and it’s been an emotional and mentally exhausting time. The kind that sucks the joy from your bones.

Anyone else been stuck in a foul funk?

All the feels.

Luckily for me, aside from implementing the coping skills gained from therapy, my fur babies just know when mama needs extra TLC.

Prissy leading the snuggle pack.

I can never stop gazing at her purrfectly imperfect underbite. It’s the fucking cutest thing to me.

No need for canine braces.

My middle boy, Fabs, is the pussy most attached to my side by demanding attention, head rubs, head butts and figure eighting between my legs in horrible attempts to trip his already klutzy as fuck mother. But damn do I love the companionship (and let’s be honest, constant attention).

As for my twins, Rocky and Ruby Sue (aka Thundercunt), they may as well be attached at the hip. At night, this is their exact position, only I’m in the middle.

The snuggle is real.

Coming home and being surrounded by The Pussy Posse is a tremendous aid in the day-to-day bad mood struggle. You know what else helps? Weekends. And booze.

First Mate has been busy running around the world traveling for her new job, so we needed a catch up on a fabulously fall weathered Friday.

My kind of happy hour.

What the fuck would we do without our friends?

Hawk chomp.

College football is also another sanity sidekick I eagerly anticipate every Saturday. My Iowa Hawkeyes lost two of the last three games, so there was some extra added bubbles into the mix, as our family tradition shots have been shockingly sobering the last two weeks.

Champs. The only thing fun about an 11am kickoff.

Still touchdownless during the first half against Purdue, we overindulged in all the tailgating snacks.

Snack attack ingredients combined.

Then FINALLY, Iowa scored two touchdowns, double shots went town smoothly and our livers were back up and running.

Two touchdowns and a WIN!

While I was celebrating Saturday away, my two little monsters in Iowa were busy prepping for Halloween.

Cutest pumpkins on the planet.

I’m not exactly sure what was in this concoction, or which witch is gonna consume but brewing took place outside of their palace.

Witches brew, anyone?

Princess B has become quite the “baker” as she learned how to deep fry an Oreo.

Chef BoyarePrincessBee

She hated it.

The grocery chain Trader Joe’s is one I have never stepped foot in, mostly because it’s in the middle of a highly congested area of Nashville (and we all know how I feel about the fucking traffic here nowadays). A new store opened in my neck of the woods, so I decided to make my way in for their CBXB priced wine I’m always hearing about.

Trader Me Happy!

I got a cart (buggy if you’re from below the Mason-Dixon Line) and soon remembered why I don’t go to grocery stores on Sunday. Especially stupid since this Trader Joe’s had its grand opening this week.

Superfuckingmarket Sweeps.

There is no way the store wasn’t at its capacity, as every aisle I tried to venture down was asses to elbows to shopping carts nipping at my fucking ankles. Therefore, I just stayed in the wine aisle and gazed lovingly at the gigantic assortment offered.

Still worth the pennies on the vino I paid.

After the shitshow of Trader Joe’s, I went to my mothership, Target and ran into First Mate. Obvies it’s obvies why we’re besties. Afterward, we headed to Dalts for our new favorite Sunday cocktail, the poinsettia (champs with cranberry juice).

Watering hole.

After settling back into the Mini Manse, I practiced my Sunday selfcare for two hours (yes, I have to drain the tub and add more hot water but soooooo worth it).

As for the funky feelings, they are still lurking around the corners of my mind but what can’t be cured by pumpkins and wine?

Cheers!

CBXB

CBXB!

How to Not-So-Secretly Love a Scrunchie

Glasses + retainer from 9th grade + scrunchie from 4th grade = dream girl.

Maybe more of a nightmare than dream.

Not to mention I own five pussies, feed seven outdoor cats and recently added a pomeranian to the mix.

Just over here, wondering how I’m not yet married.

I fucking loathe scrunchies with all of my being (along with fucking Croc shoes that convey “I really have given up on life” – unless you’re a gardener).

The huge gator bit off more than it could chew in this unique series of images captured on camera by American photographer, Phil Lanoue.

My thoughts on Crocs captured purrfectly in an exquisite photo by my buddy Phil Lanoue.

Being that I consider myself fashionable, and how loudly I make my disdain for fabric wrapped elastic known, it may surprise you to know that I still have two scrunchies from my earlier years.

I own the black one pictured above in the tangled mess of fuchsia and sorta blonde hair I got at Kmart in sixth grade. I also sleep in the purple scrunch below that I bean walked my ass off on my aunt Marilyn’s farm to purchase in fourth grade (I got more than a scrunchie with my loads of money from pulling weeds in bean fields. I also got a tie dyed shirt, which I still own (my hoarding abilities can be discussed another time). Obvies I put my money to expert use).

Hard earned hair acccessory.

Hard earned hair accessory.

Although I saved scrunchies from years past, this does NOT mean that I condone wearing anything of the sort in public. I feel so strongly about this, I have risked jobs and friendships, saving folks from public embarrassment.

A few years ago while at an extremely new place of employment, I spotted my boss sitting at her desk with a white scrunchie in her gorgeous hair. And while I hadn’t quite figured out our working relationship boundaries yet (being that I was her assistant) I felt it my womanly duty to rip it out of her hair.

Well, actually I walked up behind her and as I slid it off of her locks I leaned in and whispered, “We don’t wear these in public. Trust me.”

Um, no.

About to be unemployed but I don’t care.

Horrified at my casual approach and sure as shit I was about to be fired, she laughed and said thank you. We’re still gal pals to this day thanks to my brazen move in the name of fashion.

Fuck that noise. No boss of mine will sport a scrunchie

Fuck that noise. No boss of mine will sport a scrunchie even though I wear tiny sombreros and t-shirts announcing my crazy cat lady status.

And then there’s my old band manager I ran into at the mall one afternoon. I was so excited to see him and his fabulous fam but also felt immediate shame for his kids when I assessed his outerwear.

I expected so much more than….

Manager fail.

THIS.

While I can’t agree with his white socks and black sneaker approach (but I mean, it’s such a classic dad look, so it’s cool), it was the teeny, tiny piece of material stuck in the layers of curls that made my skin crawl.

NOT blending in.

Scrunchie not blending in dude.

Being that I didn’t work for my buddy, I could be a little more blunt in expressing how insane it was to see a grown man wearing a scrunchie.

Someone actually procreated with you?! TWICE?!

KNOCK. THAT. SHIT. OFF.

A mere two seconds later, the scrunchie was mine and my buddy was back to being, well, my buddy.

Yep. Back to being a bonafide '80s rocker

From totally geek to totally chic 80s rocker.

My intense dislike for scrunchies in public does not reflect my feelings on the use of them in private.

CBXB shocker!

CBXB shocker!

But I only sport these little pieces of fashion fails on two occasions.

I wear one to keep myself cool when I sleep within the confines of bedroom walls.

Night sweat no more.

Night sweats no more thanks to my ancient accessory.

Even love it when it gets stuck in my mane.

Morning mane tangles.

The other occasion in which I wear something so taboo is a deep, dark scrunchie secret.

I wear it to perfect my bun.

Which, now that I think about it, means I technically wear a scrunchie in public.

THE HORROR!

Bun magic

Scrunchalicious bun secret.

But you can bet your ass I never let anyone in on my bun magic…except all of you.

Hey-oh. But why would I ever let anyone in on my bun magic?

We’re all friends, I know you won’t tell.

So there I was, going along happily in life with my stealthy scrunchie use until…

I LOST THE BLACK ONE.

After visiting Iowa a few years ago, I returned to my Nashville Mini Manse unable to find my bun perfecting pièce de résistence I’d taken with me on my trip. I was certain that I left it in Sister CBXB‘s guest bedroom and quickly resigned to the fact that I may never see this beloved piece of my hair history again (I mean, it’s not like she’s that busy with twins that she couldn’t drop everything and scour her palace for my beloved accessory but whatever).

Noooooooooooooo!

Goodbye my love.

What will keep me cool at night?!

How will a bun ever be the same?!

But then I remembered I still had a purple scrunchie.

Be still my beating heart.

Be still my beating heart.

As I went to sleep that evening, reaching for the limp pile of aged elastic and who-knows-how-many-germs-its-infested-with-material, I heard a snap.

S-N-A-P.

Noooooooo!

Can a girl catch a goddamn break?!

My purple piece of shit went to scrunchie heaven, as the decades old elastic finally died (most likely committing suicide).

Finding myself empty-handed, I did the only thing I could think of to console myself.

I headed to Claire’s – a store I haven’t stepped foot in since I was a gal on the hunt for prom accessories in high school.  Upon entering the overstuffed store, a sweet girl who was maybe 15 greeted me and instantly looked baffled when I told her I was in dire need of a scrunchie.

“A what?” she asked.

“A scrunchie. You know, an elastic band with material around it,” I exasperatingly explained as I felt a bead of sweat rolling down the back of my neck.

Feeling 101 years old (and thinking the store music was blaring too loudly, further solidifying my elderly status), I followed her back to the clearance section where she announced…

“This stuff has been here since before I started working here two years ago. Maybe you’ll find something to help you out.”

Um, what the fuck 14-year-old?!

Um, what the fuck Gen Z-er?!

The new take on scrunchies are pieces of fake fur wrapped around elastic that are about as durable as an earthworm on a dry day, which would be why they were on clearance for 99 cents.

I mean, seriously?

I mean, seriously?

Giving up on Claire’s, I headed to The Mall at Green Hills where my fashion world was rocked so hard, my head still hurts (but not as badly as when I gave myself a concussion while dancing in a parking lot). Perusing the endless, out-of-my-budget fashion at Nordstrom, I saw a rack of scrunchies in the accessory department.

Fucking scrunchies.

At Nordstrom.

Fucking silk scrunchies at Nordstrom.

What.in.the.fuck.has.this.world.come.to?

Search to replace. Nordstrom FAIL. FAIL. FAIL! Especially with silk scrunchies. Old people lunch tables in nursing homes is hte only place this is acceptable.

These are only acceptable on white hair around a nursing home lunch table, mmmkay?

And they wanted twelve (12!) motherfucking dollars for one (1!) scrunchie.

I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry, so I did both.

Still crying tears of scrunchie sadness.

First world problems.

Knowing that I would never again sleep at night without waking up to a crease in my typically straight ‘do combined with the fact that my bun days were suddenly over, I tried mending my broken haired heart to no avail. A regular hair tie left dents in my otherwise straight locks. Bobby pins weren’t strong enough to keep my mane up at night. I was doomed.

But then, the universe must have sensed my intense agony and a miracle occurred. The black scrunchie found its way back from Iowa into my loving arms.

BUT WAIT! My sister found it. And is my hero.

Miracles.Do.Happen.

All of this mental anguish over the love of a scrunchie. Thank god I have Xanax handy for extremely significant life challenges.

Now where’s my Caboodle?

CBXB

CBXB!

Weekend Winks – WTF Fall?!

Where the fuck is fall?

It’s been a balmy 90 degrees and higher month of September in Nashville with not much of an end in sight. If you live below the Mason-Dixon Line, you know what’s up. At this rate, we’ll get one day of fall at the end of October and then it will start snowing.

There are signs of autumn all around – green leaves are falling from the trees (because it’s so fucking dry here), pumpkin spice everything is being advertised everywhere (did Starbucks start this beyond basic trend with their flavored latte?), football in the college and professional realms have kicked off, hockey season is upon us and Halloween decor is out in full force. So come the fuck on fall weather.

Regardless of the tropical heatwave, I scored seats to a preseason Predators game. Feeling the cool air in the arena reminded me what season is coming next.

Puck yeah hockey season is here!

Sleepy and I sat a few rows off the glass and I had to keep yelling chants to keep her eyes open (I kid, I kid. But this chick has fallen asleep numerous times when we’ve hung out, hence her nickname and the beautiful photo below).

Smashed ‘n’  Sleepy.

What other sport symbolizes the start of fall like college football? This was the fifth week of play and Dada CBXB and I were ready, as always.

Photo props waiting for their close ups.

We switched our Family Tradition touchdown shots from moonshine to Tennessee Fire (cinnamon whiskey – waaaaaay smoother than Fireball), when the Hawks started scoring more than two touchdowns per game. Our livers have loved us ever since.

Tenn Fire.

We even had a prediction as to how many touchdown shots would take place when the Hawkeyes took on the Blue Raiders of Middle Tennessee State University.

Our buddy’s shot forecast sure started out on the right cleat.

One and NOT done.

I’ve been trying to incorporate Prissy into the game day hoopla. She is so over it.

Shot two with an side of eye roll.

It was 11:58am when we slid the third shot smoothly down our throats.

Third outside with the birds.

When I posted a video about our Family Tradition consumption on Instagram, a few more peeps had more predictions…

We aren’t quitters.

Four more please.

Jazz hands for the fifth TD.

Double hands for the final family tradition count!

With a final score of 48-3, we were high on life, a win and had well dehydrated livers. Aside from victory, Saturday’s game highlighted one of the most endearing stories to come around in awhile. On the program College Gameday (the one where my 82-year-old boyfriend Lee Corso commentates and I just stood six hours to catch a glimpse of him two weeks ago), it’s tradition to hold signs up during the broadcast. My Iowa Hawkeyes played in state rivalry, the Cyclones on September 14 on their turf in Ames.

In the crowd, one of the signs red “Busch Light Supply Needs Replenished” along with a Venmo handle @CarsonKing-25. Meant to be a joke, strangers started sending funds to this Venmo account and when the sign maker, Carson King, a Cyclone fan, finally noticed, he’d received over $600 just during Gameday. And then, something specfuckingtacular happened. King decided that he would donate all of money he received for beer money to the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital which is in Iowa City, where the Hawks reside.

That’s when it took off…

With both Anheuser-Busch and Venmo’s pledges to match donations through the end of September 30, 2019 (you’ve got time to donate), Carson King will be donating well over $2 million dollars raised in TWO weeks. What a heartwarming story needed when the climate of America is so divisive. The world needs more Carson Kings (oh and p.s. he’s 24 years old).

#ForTheKids

After all the feel goods in the morning, I joined the crew at the pool for one last weekend.

Captain, First Mate, Sleepy and Mama CBXB.

Saturday night proved alright. Prissy, the Pussy Posse and I hunkered down for the premiere of SNL, which did not disappoint. If you missed it, look up the sketch where Woody Harrelson’s Joe Biden character compares himself to a plastic straw. Comedy writing at its finest.

Saturday night vibes and yet, more fucking side eye.

Although it feels like tropical vacation weather minus the vacation in Nashville, my apartment pool shuts down this week. So you bet your ass, I planted mine in a lounge chair all of Sunday.

See ya summer.

I’m already working on a bikini body for next year’s heatwave in hot yoga and spin classes (still trying to lose the weight gained since Rapegate).

Rising and fucking shining.

Now come the fuck on fall!

Cheers.

CBXB

CBXB!

For the Love of the Game

It’s no secret that I’ve had a rough go in my personal life the last few years. Of course, no one has perfection and bad shit happens to everyone, however, I’ve been numbed to the point that I don’t expect the worst but am surprised by nothing. Nothing.

Martians falling from the sky? We believe you.

It’s also no secret that I love college football – especially my alma mater, the Iowa Hawkeyes.

Fans #1 and #2.

It can be hard for those who experience trauma to remain in the moment, appreciating what life offers up for enjoyment. No matter how small the pleasure.

The last day that I can truly say I was ‘in the moment’ was December 5, 2015. I got to experience the first Big Ten Championship with my dad, The Silent Indian (who cheered for the wrong team) and Camo with my Iowa Hawkeyes taking on Sparty of Michigan State.

Big four at the Big Ten game.

It was one of the best days of my life even though Sparty won in the literal last second of the game.

All the after morning feels.

Four days upon returning home from that game, I was pushed out of a career that I’d worked my ass off to obtain in the music business. Eleven days after that, I experienced the worst Christmas of my life – a day I cherish (almost as much as my birthday) due to family dynamics shifting and my unwillingness to accept it. Less than one month later, a woman who was like a little sister to me died in a car accident. That evening, I went to my best friend’s house and was raped by her boyfriend.

I went into deep personal hibernation.

Somebody wake me when it’s 2025.

The day I was at the hospital awaiting my rape kit to be performed, I was asked if I’d like an advocate to come sit with me. I didn’t know if I did or didn’t because as my bare ass was hanging out of the back of a hospital gown, I was in a state of shock. An advocate was called on my behalf. Aside from her beyond sweet demeanor, her name being Barbie (I mean, c’mon!), her fabulous Louis Vuitton purse (obvies the right advocate for me), she said something that still rings true to this day.

“There will be a before rape in your life. And there will be an after rape.”

A before and after. Seems like a simple enough concept but I did not comprehend then how fucking true this would be in my daily life moving forward.

The Before: last selfie I took before Rapegate.

The After: first selfie taken after Rapegate.

It’s now been 1,277 days since the saga of Rapegate began. At first it was all-consuming, eating me up – a worm in my brain, invading every moment of my sleep, thoughts, feelings – I had no idea that I might as well have been standing at the bottom of Mount Everest, readying to climb 29,029 feet with zero conditioning.

My thoughts on hiking.

Thing is, life goes on all around even though time stands still for victims of any sort of trauma. For me, I was stuck on January 29, 2016 but I still had a job to find, bills to pay, fur ball mouths to feed and personal hygiene to maintain (this took much insisting from Mrs. America and my sister). I just wanted to wallow on my leopard couch and have it swallow me whole but of course that didn’t fucking happen.

Not so fresh and so clean clean.

With the support and love from my family, friends, and readers of this blog (my sparkly army), I was encouraged to put one (semi-clean) foot in front of the other and got into counseling. I’ve tirelessly acted as my own advocate with a horrendous detective, found a job, kept my lights on, was diagnosed with PTSD, adjustment disorder and severe stress and stumbled forward.

I don’t wanna but I’m gonna!

Through what felt like a continuous avalanche in my life, I put on the happiest face possible and plowed forward. Although, everything had less meaning, was less fun, was just not right. I went to my fave watering hole Dalts, invited girlfriends over, tried to read books but couldn’t remember the page I just read, watched TV only to forget what the episode was about as my mind couldn’t stay focused, stopped going to yoga and jogging due to not being able to be alone with my thoughts – because the aftermath of Rapegate was never far.

SAY WHAT?

Trying to trudge through life, every step felt like I was moving through snow waist deep. Yet again, life stops for no one. Aunt Crazy Pants was diagnosed with terminal cancer almost six months to the day after I was raped. She passed just a little over two years ago, ten days after I suddenly lost the fur ball love of my life, Ted. The searing dual losses not only felt like unusually cruel timing but also like a hot iron had been stabbed into my chest. I’d never experienced the throes of despair (navigating my way out of Rapegate), alongside devastating, life altering grief (losing those we deeply love) at the same time.

There’s not enough wine for this.

While I was home for ACP’s celebration of life, I had an opportunity to go tailgating with my Uncle Toddy, Aunt Crispie, my cousins and their many friends at the in state rivalry of the Iowa Hawkeyes versus the Iowa State Cyclones. It was a thrillingly unexpected day jam-packed with tailgating shenanigans.

The friendly family rivalry…

Battle of the birds.

The fun of endless booze all around…

I hate tailgating.

The classiness of passing time while waiting to use the port-a-potties…

Shotski for three please.

Having to ask your uncle if there’s anyone he’s friends with in his season ticket section just in case I embarrass him with my big, loud pie hole…

A beauty and a sparkly beast.

Embarrassing my youngest cousin with all the right moves…

Cousin love is acceptable below the Mason Dixon line.

Up close and personal for the live action overtime win didn’t suck!

End zone win baby!

Afterward, I realized how much fucking fun I truly had that day. I lived in the moment for the first time in almost two years – at yet another football game. I didn’t think about anything other than what I was partaking in every. single. second. The bands marching through the tailgates. The booze. The Hawkeye buses arriving. The booze. The food. The booze. The rivalry. The family and friends I was enjoying the fuck out of spending time with. The game I got to watch from the end zone and the exciting win by the Hawks in overtime.

Some cousins took it well.

Others were sore losers.

Point is, for a brief day I got a taste of what it will be like when I transfer from survivor to thriver. I felt normal. I felt the fun I was experiencing. I felt like pre-rape me for once in almost two years. And it was fucking fantastic, freeing and I caught a glimpse of my old self starting to shine through the cracks I still carry.

Fist forward.

I’m happy to report that in the two years after this fun day of football, I will be there again this upcoming Saturday as a thriving survivor. And holy shit Ames, look the fuck out. This survivor is gonna be there in the wee hours of the morning to secure a spot to see my 82 year old boyfriend, Lee Corso, with the rest of the College Game Day gang.

At the end of every episode, Lee picks one of the two teams featured and my fucking fingers, toes and legs are crossed that I get to see him don a Herky head.

Everything else is triple fucking crossed that I not only get to lay eyes on Lee but also, hopefully, maybe just maybe, get my hands on my other boyfriend, Herky the Hawkeye.

Stud.

I attended the University of Iowa for four years and never once got close enough for a pic together. But you bet your ass I tried.

Wait. Stop. I love you.

The Hawkeyes are almost always considered the underdogs. And it’s not lost on me that both the last and first time I realized I was living in the moment were at football games, watching my favorite team with some of my favorite people.

I love you too, Lee.

The love of the football fan experience was and is a much needed reminder that I’m doing the best that I can every goddamn day. Aren’t we all?

Appreciate what life offers up for enjoyment when you can.

ON IOWA!

CBXB

 

Weekend Winks – Traditions, Tailgating and Touchdowns

While Labor Day doesn’t technically make it Fall yet, the long holiday weekend seems to mark the end of summer. While it’s sad to say goodbye to lazy pool days, it was like Christmas come Saturday morning as my Iowa Hawkeyes played their first football game of the season.

Me. All last week.

Always welcoming a long weekend, I kicked off the fun at my fave watering hole Dalts Friday night, guzzling Skinny Pirates.

College football eve time killer.

My Iowa twins have basically turned into mini adults this summer. They’ve lost multiple teeth, learned how to ride bikes and just started first grade.

Wheels of time need to slow down. Please and thanks.

Love.

While the twins started their Saturday off with a bike ride, I was gussying up my celebration tree adorning it with Hawkeye decor. I mean, how could we possibly watch a game without a matching pink tinsel tree?

The game didn’t start until 6 pm and the anticipation was killing me. So I prepped the Mini Manse and had everything set up by 8:32 am.

With more than several hours to kill before kick off, there only one thing to do with the Saturday sunshine.

Pre-party at the pool!

The usual lounge lizards all showed up in our finest black swim gear (I pretended it was in support of my Hawkeyes – our colors are black and gold).

Back in black.

As game time approached, the twins set the scene for our family touchdown tradition.

W-I-N.

Dada CBXB and I have switched from our typical grow-hair-on-your-chest moonshine for touchdown shots to Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Fire. It’s cinnamon whiskey at its finest. Plus, I don’t look so fabulous with hair on my chest and I don’t need to add waxing to my already high maintenance beauty regimen.

The game started a scosh slow but that didn’t dampen the excitement for our first touchdown of the season!

Shot #1!

On our way from #2 to a few…

Three cheers for #3!

Funny fun for #4.

Our Hawks outscored the Miami of Ohio RedHawks 38-14.

Clearly, we had a bit of pent up energy from last year to let out. And also clearly, I don’t know how to convey excitement without my pie hole being wide open.

Prissy really couldn’t have been more unimpressed with her first Hawkeye game experience.

Football is so boooooring.

Ruby Sue was so over college football season’s arrival, she tried to go home with Dada CBXB via his cooler.

No go.

Sunday marked the second anniversary of ACP’s passing. Her favorite place to go was the Cheesecake Factory, as they make the best gin rickey’s on the planet. So Mama CBXB and I took her there to celebrate her life over one of her fave cocktails.

Speaking of celebrating, Van Waffles took another trip around the sun, so the gang gathered for birthday fun.

The bday boy and Sleepy double fisting.

M.Star couldn’t contain her excitement at seeing me twice in one week.

She loves me. So much.

Photo shoots and selfies were endlessly abound and I tried to pose for every.single.one.

The Nicest Girl on the Planet, First Mate and an Ass Clown.

The evening started early and ended early for me as I could no longer keep my eye lids open for pics.

Eyes Wide Shut.

Upon my return home, The Big Three of the Pussy Posse demanded cat tails, turning my vanity into a makeshift bar, fighting over the skinny stream of water that trickles out of the faucet. When in fact, they have no less than five other watering troughs to wet their whistles. But who am I to say no to my pussies?

Cat Tails.

Winding down on Monday was imperative to this lady. When I went to draw my bath, I realized I was out of bubbles but due to my innate ability for classy beauty hacks, the problem was solved.

Perfect end to a long weekend.

Until next Saturday’s Hawkeye game, my liver will be enjoying some recovery (when I shock it with water). Here’s hoping you enjoyed your long weekend of down time, too.

CBXB

CBXB!