The Underdog

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.

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.

That period of time was as beautiful as I look in this photo.

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 616 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. Because that’s what this last year and over a half has dealt…an excruciatingly slow climb out of (or rather up) the lowest of extreme lows, seeking the summit of a mountain top that appeared further and further away by the day.

What happens when I hike.

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 tirelessly acted as my own advocate with a less than helpful (and that description is extremely nice) 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 a month ago, ten days after I suddenly lost the fur ball love of my life, Ted. The searing losses felt 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 Iowa versus Iowa State. It was a thrillingly unexpected day jam-packed with tailgating shenanigans.

The fun of family…

Mama CBXB, Uncle Toddy and Aunt Crispie host tailgating done right.

Friendly family rivalry.

OR WAS IT?!

The fun of the endless booze all around…

I hate tailgating.

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

Shotski for three please.

The catching up with old friends…

Game ready.

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 loudness…

A beauty and a sparkly beast.

Embarrassing my youngest cousin with all the right moves…

Cousin love is acceptable below the Mason Dixon line.

Seeing a live marching band was fulfilled for the season…

March on.

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.

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.

It was a much needed reminder that I’m doing the best that I can every goddamn day. Aren’t we all?

Happy tailgating!

CBXB

Weekend Winks – Ass Hats, Ass Slaps and Lazy Asses

Is the weekend ever here fast enough?

Not for this duo who couldn’t wait long enough for me to take a piss before expressing their delight in having their mother smother them for two whole days.

We spent Friday lounging around the mini while I guzzled wine like Kristen Wiig in an SNL skit.

My dream come true.

Sunny Saturdays in Nashville call for pool parties. Since I don’t do beer and sipping on Skinny Pirates all day can make for an early evening, I’ve discovered spiked seltzer water. It’s the shit – 4.5% alcohol, 90 calories per can and 0 sugars.

Truly. Madly. Deeply in love.

After an all day sunfest, our pool crew decided to hit up my fave watering hole, Dalts for the aforementioned Skinny Pirates and home cooked food.

Feed me.

Thirst quenching fun with Cat Boy, Pool Mom and Rasta.

You see, we chose Dalts for our after hours pool party because last weekend, we ran into a bit of trouble at another local bar. After several rounds of cocktails and bar snacks, I got up to sing one of my fave AC/DC songs with the band. Complete with a greasy bun, prescription sunglasses on at night (’cause I’m douchy like that – oh, and also sunglasses hide sins, requiring no makeup after a pool day) and a maxi dress.

After my non-Grammy winning performance, on the way back to our table, some guy at the bar smacked my ass so hard my bun fell out. Some guy who I hadn’t spoken to all night. Some guy who I hadn’t ever laid eyes on before. A stranger. Trying to get some semblance of dignity back after the unwanted, unmerited slap of a stranger, I made my way back to our table. Just in time to find Cat Boy in the dude’s face, defending my honor…and thankfully so. Who knows what I may have done once I garnered my wits?

Girls just having some fun.

We were immediately asked to leave the bar and I inquired whether or not both parties were being asked to leave. I was told yes and I must say that I understood why – alcohol combined with angry tempers don’t mix but not one person – not the ass hat who slapped me, not the bouncer, not the employee who asked me to leave a very busy bar acknowledged what had happened. And as we stood outside waiting on our Lyft, we witnessed the stranger who smacked me being served another round of drinks with his buddies.

Isn’t that nice?

Daily reminders compliments of Metal Marvels.

This kind of shit isn’t OK. It bothered me all week and so after a few days, I called the owner of the bar who went back, looked at the tape and called back to apologize. He also said that as an owner of this establishment of 13 years, he’d never had any issues brought to his attention like this and wondered out loud how many other times something of this nature happened. Which is so fucking true.

If you see something, say something.

Violence isn’t the answer but fuck. There is never an appropriate time to spank a grown woman – a stranger to you – like she just hit a home run in the 9th inning of the World Series. Hands off.

Luckily for me, these two were just happy to be scarfing down on celery and pizza and I got picture proof of it.

Are your diners this cute?

Princess B got a new leotard and hates it. Obvies.

Hot shit and she knows it.

You know who else is hot shit? Former Iowa Hawkeye, Karl Klug, who has played for the Tennessee Titans since 2011. As Dada CBXB says “Klug is what hard work and not great talent is all about.” Does he sound like a former football player and coach? It’s been beyond fun having a defensive end on our professional team to cheer on every Sunday (after our college football Saturday fun). Klug signed autographs after practice last weekend and my friend’s boys were lucky enough to get a little pep talk, as well as an autograph.

Football season can’t get here fast enough!

You know what else can’t get here fast enough? Tourists leaving Nashville. Us locals can’t even go downtown anymore without fighting asses to elbows…I mean, I’m sure Robert’s Western World is wondering where in the hell the folks who come and sit in he front row for 10 hours have been. Although the Music City has grown so much in the past five years, we may have to get there at 10am just to see our fave band come on at 10pm.

Winding down the weekend, there was a packed couch.

The gray duo on one side of the couch.

Balanced by the human sized Rocky on the other.

Somehow, some way we made it to our usual wind down spots, naturally.

All’s well that ends well.

Here’s hoping you have an ass slappin’ fabulous week – for all of the right reasons.

CBXB

 

 

 

Cattail Hour

Who needs humans for happy hour?

Not this bat shit crazy cat lady!

My precious pussy Ted can hardly wait for me to arrive home in the evenings so we can partake in our cattails (of course this is only a mocktail for me before I move onto Skinny Pirates).

Catail time!

Those who cattail together, stay together.

He hates drinking alone at happy hour, so I get my head under the sink with him (yes, you read that right) and liquid my liver up before I master the art of dehydrating it over the weekend.

Drink up!

Drinking alone is no fun.

For those of you feeling bad that New Cat is left out – well, that’s his own fucking fault. His brain is filled with so many dead cells that he lays in the water once the sink has been filled…

And then bitches about it.

…and then bitches about it.

Happy cattailing to you and yours on this fine feline Friday.

Cheers!

CBXB

CBXB!

Weekend Winks – BOO!zin’ Style

Skinny Pirates, Halloween decor and college football oh my!

Holla for handles of Captain! Oh how my dad knows the way to my heart...

Holla for handles of Captain!
Oh how my dad knows the way to my heart…

Friday started with Miller Lite for Camo and Captain for me as I stopped for a quick happy hour at my fave Nashville watering hole, Dalts.

Drive by drink

Drive by drink.

I only stayed for a few Skinny Pirates, as I’d been bit by the Halloween bug (yes, I know it’s still September and no, I don’t really give a shit).  It was mass chaos as I felt the need to unload every single piece of Halloween decor I owned before even attempting to decorate (maybe six a few Skinny Pirates and holiday embellishment don’t mix).

Halloween nightmare.

Don’t drink and decorate.

While I kept sipping on my Captain, my two fraidy cats felt the need to inspect the nooks and crannies of every box and bin.

Two fraidy cat helpers.

Expert Halloween helpers.

I decided to wave the white flag in Halloween adornment surrender as the wee hours of Saturday morning were fast approaching and I was reminded by my nephew, Prince B what awaited me the following morning.

Hawkeye time!

Iowa Hawkeye game day!

I headed out to game watch with my folks, where we nervously hoped for touchdowns in order to squeeze our moonshine tradition into Saturday.

Moonshine

Hawks score!

Posers

Moonshine mania posers.

Never ceases to amaze me.

This special spirit ever ceases to amaze me.

There’s no better accompaniment to moonshine than my dad’s ribs (his “best batch ever” is a phrase uttered each time he prepares them) and they didn’t disappoint this weekend.

Washing down moonshine

Ribs ‘n’ shine.

While I couldn’t stuff my face with ribs any faster than a competitive eater, my niece was busy discovering her favorite flavor of salad dressing.

Face Stuff

The Face Stuff

Face Smother The girl loves her ranch, OK?

The Face Smother
Screw the Hawks game. Gimme my ranch.

Seems as if she’s taking after Auntie CBXB more and more every day with her classy ways. Be still my beating heart.

After a Hawks victory and a quick wardrobe change, it was time to sit in a standstill on my way to Mrs. America’s (who joined me in a reality sizzle reel earlier this year) house.

Is there anything more fun than sitting in an interstate parking lot? Everything. Everything is more fun.

Is there anything more fun than sitting in an interstate parking lot?
Everything. Everything is more fun.

But it was all worthwhile when I laid eyes on Mrs. America who, along with her three princesses and hubby, just moved back to Nashville. Yeehaw!

Miss and Mrs. America.

Miss Trashtacular and Mrs. America.

While we were celebrating good fortune of her fabulous new house and positive network feedback on our sizzle, I ran across some extremely special decorative pieces from Mrs. America’s past.

We love us.

I’m demanding she spotlight these over her bed in the master.

It was all fun and games Sunday, trying to sneak in some last rays of summer sun before it turns into crispy fall weather.

Sneaky sneaky.

Sneaky sun success.

When the clouds rolled in, Ted demanded I get my ass in gear and finish garnishing our mini manse in all things black and orange.

Demanding I finish up this mess.

Get this shit cleaned up. NOW.

Turns out Mr. Bear had an ulterier motive, as I was mauled the rest of the weekend.

Because it was time for couch and cuddles.

Tag team.

Happy fall y’all!

CBXB

CBXB!

 

 

Adios Amigos!

Goodbye Nashville! Hello vacay!

A few weeks ago I was bitching and moaning that I had nothing on the books for Spring Break. The vacation Gods heard my whiny ass soon and soon I’ll be basking at the beach while cabana boys deliver endless umbrella adorned Skinny Pirates.

Teddy will be checking in on the blog (as he loves revisiting posts all about him, naturally) while I’m away.

Ted loving Ted

Ted loving Ted.

Of course he’ll also be pining for me daily, so he’ll dramatically thrust himself into a fave blanket in my absence.

Feeling sorry for himself

Feline fit for a soap opera.

New Cat has tried to pack himself among my sunscreen and sequins, although he miserably failed as he ripped every bag he tried to hide in to shreds.

Hi. I'm expensive. And I like it that way.

Where do you think you’re going?

While both of my pussies will be in beyond capable hands, I know I’ll be paying one high price upon my return (which is why I’ll be stocking up on cat nip while away).

If you hear of any breaking news on the beach, I had nothing to do with it….

Cheers!

CBXB

CBXB!

Key West White Trash

White trash can be fabulously trashy, right? Right?!

To me, being white trash is knowing better but doing it anyway, while not giving a rat’s ass what anyone thinks – which is a category I may fall into because I feel it’s better to ask for forgiveness than permission in most cases.

So I brought the fabulous trash to Key West (not on purpose but this trait just tends to shine through on me)…

Checking into the hotel, I spied a hammock screaming for me to come and have happy hour cocktails on it.  I immediately went over and took a seat (if that’s what you call laying on a hammock).

Happy Hammock

Happy Hammock Time

I promptly turned into a Captain Morgan model with no makeup and a shoddy ponytail, while continuously sipping (gulping – I was on vacation don’t judge!) my Skinny Pirates.

Fancy Tails

Fancy Tails

Noticing a wedding taking place behind me on the beach made me think about crashing it but then I’d have to get up off the hammock. No bueno.

This is what a crasher looks like

This is what I look like as a wedding crasher.

And as this nosy gal was trying to sit up for a better view of the nuptials, I ended up flipping the hammock all the way over, landing legs up for all of the tourists trying to enjoy a quiet drink on their patio viewing pleasure. I’m pretty sure I ruined quiet time anyone was trying to have because I was laughing so loudly (a fun or annoying trait of mine, depending on how you look at it)…I think I actually heard a few room doors slam shut. Oops.

My landing view wasn’t all that bad. And then I laid in the sand for a second – 1) to make sure I didn’t break anything and 2) the sand was a nice, fine sand providing a nice, fine cushion. I kinda wanted to take a nap there.

Palm me

Palm me.

While I didn’t end up snoozing under the hammock, my world was a little fuzzy due to the head bump (and four Skinny Pirates I just enjoyed), so didn’t it make sense to jump into this beautiful, fuzzy pool?

On a dare, jump into this fuzzy pool because it seems like a good idea.

This would have felt better in a swimsuit.

Think the classy hijinks stopped there? I wish. Hanging poolside the following day proved to be a lesson in classy for this gal.

A trashy gal hanging at the pool

Tranquil pool no more with CBXB’s arrival.

Heckle the nice lady trying swim laps around the boozers on floaties enjoying their vacation in a non-lap sized pool because she’s making you feel bad about not exercising (and creating a wake in the pool, hence making tipsy people feel tipsier). OK, I didn’t heckle her really but I did sneak a snapshot because she was ultra serious about these laps, wearing a hair cap and a nose plug like an Olympian swimmer.

Why you gotta work out lady?

Why you gotta work out lady while I’m trying to act like a lazy fat ass on vacay?!

Being that I typically stay at hotels where I am required to wear flip-flops like they are a natural part of my feet, I was just getting used to the pool boy bringing cocktails. Then, a gentleman came by and asked if I wanted a frozen towel. Of course I wanted a free frozen towel!

what the...

But what do you do with this thingy?

I mean it felt good against my check but what the…?

Things that make you go, hmm...I usually stay at the super 8 with bed bugs

Things that make you go, hmm…

I took a peek at some classier pool gals and then joined in on the “what you do with a frozen towel fun” after I was able to finally get my frozen towel unrolled by dunking it into the pool (therefore defeating the purpose of the frozeness but oh well).

Burn notice.

Burn notice.

And while I was unintentionally sprinkling my fabulously trashiness all over Key West, I ran (well really spotted from behind) into someone who raised the bar.  This chick was walking hand-in-hand with an albino-like red-head who seemed oblivious to what her shorts read.

there were 1,378 men following this lady and her "shorts"

I Heart Black Guys. Which isn’t a bad thing if you are actually holding hands with a black guy instead of the King of Sunblock.

There were 1,378 men following this lady and her “shorts” (which actually looked like swimsuit bottoms they were so tight) acting like discrete (and not accomplishing) paparazzi, trying to get a picture of this chick (and of course I had to join in the chase to snap this pic).  I actually thought I might see her on the evening news there was so much hoopla surrounding her.

Which made me think I needed to get a pair of shorts that read I Heart Furry Cats. Think I’d get the same reaction?

Just trying to keep it classy.

CBXB

CBXB!