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Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Orange you glad I didn't say bananna?

Reason #1 as to why I can't live with my parents, even though I totally love love love them and am glad that they are visiting:

They like to open closed doors.

Without knocking.

Even if you're behind the closed door.


In your own house.

In your own master bathroom.

And before leaving to use the bathroom you declare, "I'm going to the bathroom...to poop. I'll be back in 35-45 minutes."

And then after you freak out and yell, "I'M IN HERE!!! GET OUT!!!" They say, "I'm sorry, mija. I was just wondering where you keep the sponges."

And then you yell out, "To wash the dishes? It's in the little sponge dish right on top of the sink."

And then they say, "No. To wash the car."

Silent pause...

Me: "Why do you need to know that information now? It's 11pm."

Them: "Oh yeah. Never mind."

Parents...can't live with them, can't live without their money.


posted by The Merry Widow at 12:59 PM | 5 comments

Sunday, March 27, 2005

The Chicken? Or the Egg?

Today I told someone that guys are the reason why girls go psycho.
That person, in turn, told me that guys don't make girls psycho -- girls are just plain pyscho.
I then eloquenlty replied, "Nuh-uh!!!"

I'm pretty sure I won that argument.

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posted by The Merry Widow at 1:30 AM | 5 comments

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Zen and the Art of Frisbee

I had the day off from work today. And what a perfect day it was to be free from work. The sun was out, the birds and butterflies were fluttering about, the greenery looked greener, the flowers smelled flowery, and it wasn't unbearably hot outside. (You'll find cooler weather in hell during the summer months in Houston. Note: Summer months in Houston begin in February and end in December.) Not wanting to waste the day inside, I called up my friend, Guy #3, and forced him to accompany me in my day of outdoor fun and randomness.

We were searching for things to do, so long as they involved being outside, and Guy #3 suggested that we go to a park and play frisbee, at which point I screamed in terror and begged Guy #3 not to make me throw and catch a frisbee. But he insisted that we do it, so I proceeded to make up lies as to why I should not play frisbee.

Lie #1: I've never thrown a frisbee before. I don't know how to do it.
Truth #1: Throwing a frisbee is as American as Apple Pie. And I am as American as an Apple Empanada. So of course I've played frisbee before...but probably only like 3 times in my life.

Lie #2: I have frisbee-phobia.
Truth #2: No I don't. It's a plastic disc. Who's afraid of that?

Lie #3: I have a fear of things flying towards my face.
Truth #3: If I really had this fear, then my social life would be out the door. Hehehe...

But being the fabulously nice person that I am, I finally agreed to play Guy #3's silly little game until he got tired of my fussing about how much I didn't want to play, and we quit. Our entire frisbee session lasted about 3 minutes.

Anyway, we spent the rest of the day drinking icees/Dr. Peppers, shopping, walking, annoying suburban mothers at the lake, and trying to break playground equipment. So aside from the frisbee fiasco, it was a great day.

But later on that evening, I got to thinking about that damn frisbee. Why didn't I want to play? Did I really have frisbee-phobia?

So here's what I came up with: I'm a perfectionist. I have a fear of failure. I've played frisbee before and I know that I don't play it well. I've never been good at catching flying objects and I can't throw a frisbee, ball, newspaper, or whatever to save my life. I am horrible at playing frisbee and am well aware of that fact. I am a frisbee failure. And since I don't like to talk about or share the failures in my life, I instead flee from them. Hence, the frisbee hissy fit that I threw today.

But why am I so afraid of failure? I could sit here and tell you that it has everything to do with my parents. Straight A's in school were never good enough for them. Instead they wanted A+'s with gold stars and smiley faces grafittied all over my school work. They wanted me to be a doctor, a lawyer, a rocket scientist, a success in life. They wanted me to be polite, courteous, talented, and graceful. But you know what? None of that is true. Not one iota of it. My parents NEVER put those kinds of expectations on me. The only thing my parents ever expected from me was for me to always put my best foot forward...to always give it my all...to always be the best that I can be. Whether that resulted on an A on a test, or a position in medical school, or as class validictorian did not matter to them. Just as long as I could say that I did the best that I could. When I decided not to go to medical school, my parents were behind me 100%. When I decided to quit my second semester of Organic Chemistry in order to spend more time with my recently re-diagnosed-with-cancer fiance, they were behind me all the way. When I decided to stay in Texas after my husband died, in lieu of moving back home with them, they helped me find a house in the Lone Star state. My parents have always supported me, no matter what I did. So my quest to be perfect is self imposed. And I can't, for the life of me, figure out why.

But maybe, by trying to avoid failure, I have, in fact, failed. Because by not attempting to try things at which I am not good (i.e. playng frisbee,) I have failed to give it my all. I have failed to try to make myself better. I have failed at doing what I always claim to do: live life. My fear of failure is holding me back. So what if I'm not good a playing frisbee? I should at least get out there and try to learn, right? I should at least get out there and have fun with it. Just as my parents love me no matter what I accomplish, Guy #3 isn't going to like me any more or less based on my frisbee playing abilities. So why should I be afraid to fail at it?

So bring on the frisbee, Guy #3. I dare you. This time I'll actually try to play. I'll actually try to learn and improve. Maybe I'll be really good at it and become a professional frisbee player and Nike will sponsor me and start manufacturing pink Nike frisbees that say, "Just fling it." Maybe frisbee throwing will become an Olympic event and I'll win the gold medal and get to be on a box of Wheaties and on Jay Leno and talk about how my friend, Guy #3, made me play frisbee and how I hated it at first, but then I became totally awesome at it and now's he's all jealous of my frisbee playing skills. Maybe I'll make millions of dollars, playing frisbee all around the world, and people will ooh and aah and talk about how frisbee players make way too much money and how more money should be given to people like teachers. Or maybe I'll still suck at frisbee. But at least I will be able to say that I gave it my all.

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posted by The Merry Widow at 1:46 AM | 1 comments

Sunday, March 20, 2005

I Miss My Mommy

This one time, when I was 15, my parents and I took a trip to Mexico to visit family. On our way back, my mom realized that she had forgotten her green card at home. When we got to immigration, my mom explained her situation to the boarder control man. The man told her that it wouldn't be a problem...if she had a green card, then she would be in the computer. There was just one little problem: my mom couldn't remember what name appeared on her green card. You see, my mom is one of those typical Mexican ladies with like 800 names. She has varied her name throughout her life, making it shorter and shorter, dropping certain names, or adding certain ones, until today, where she only has a first name and a last name. And acutally, her official U.S. first name, as listed on her U.S. Naturalization papers is actually her middle name. (She always hated her real first name.) But I digress. She couldn't remember if she had already dropped her first name when she receieved her green card over 15 years prior to that day. Nor could she remember if she used her married name when she received her green card. INS only gave her one chance at "guessing" her name. And she didn't guess correctly. So we had no choice but to leave my mom behind in Mexico. My dad and I travelled back to the U.S. without her and had to wait 3 weeks until my dad could get more vacation time for us to travel back to Mexico and pick her up. We weren't about to mail her green card to her...the mail system in Mexico is not to be trusted. Who knows what kind of thug would have ended up with her green card and all of her information. We had to bring it to her in person.

I remember during this time, during these 3 weeks, missing my mom immensely. But I was a kid back then. I was used to seeing my mom everyday...talking to her, laughing with her, crying on her shoulder...and during this time she was gone. She wasn't there for me. Not by her choice, of course, but gone nevertheless.

It has now been 10 years since I've lived with my mom. I went to a college that was about an hour and a half away from her and after I graduated and got married, I moved to an entirely different state than where she lives. So I've gotten used to being away from her. Of course I still miss her, but not like I did during those 3 weeks that she was trapped in Mexico.

That is, until she went back to Mexico 3 weeks ago to visit her mom. Ever since the day she left, I feel like I did during those 3 weeks when I was 15. I miss her immensely. I don't know what it is, or why I miss her more than I normally do. Maybe it's because I can't call her while she's there. (My grandma doesn't have a phone.) But it's just weird. It's not like I get to see her, even when she is in the U.S. But now that she's in another country, I miss her enough to make me cry. I miss her hugs, I miss her laugh, I miss her cooking, I miss her love.

She'll be back at home with my dad tomorrow. Even though she'll still be in another state, I'll be relieved to have her back. And I'm reminded that you're never too old to want a big hug from your mom. Because a hug from my mom (or my dad, for that matter) always made everything better.

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posted by The Merry Widow at 11:42 PM | 4 comments

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

She works hard for the money, so you better treat her right.

Today I bought myself a fabulous purse. I figure that a fabulous person like me deserves to buy herself a fabulous gift every so often. And yes, I admit that I have a purse addiction. I LOVE purses. And not cheap ones for that matter. These are purses that require me to save money for a few months before I can afford to buy them. For the most part, I am quite responsible with my money. I pay my mortgage, I pay my utilities, I pay my medical/dental/vision/home owners/auto insurance, I pay off my entire credit card bill in full every month, and I even give to charity every month. I put money away for graduate school, retirement, and whatever emergency that may or may not come up. I never spend more in one month than I make in one month. And let me tell you, that's not a lot. I work in science...not a lot of money to be made in my field of work, especially without a PhD. This means that I have to be relatively frugal. I buy off brand clothing, food, gas, etc. So why is it, then, when I decide to buy myself an extravagant/expensive/name brand purse, the whole world comes down on me and judges how I spend my money?

There's only one person on this earth who knows how much money I have. Her name is Wanda. She does my taxes. And you know what? She could care less. She's probably the only person on this earth who doesn't make judgement based on my financial status. Yet everyone else, the people who assume they know how much money I have, judge me left and right. And whether they think that I'm rich or poor, they all come to the same assumption: The Merry Widow gets money from her parents.

Well, I'm here to set the record straight. I'm an independent woman and I work hard for my money. In fact, I worked really hard all last year in order to get a well deserved promotion/raise. This is how I pay for my purse habit. My parents haven't given me money since my last year in college. (Yes, my wonderful Daddy paid for my college. He worked hard to provide me with opportunities that he didn't have. I love him for that and am more grateful than you know or care to know.) Now this doesn't mean that my parents don't buy me gifts. I am, afterall, the center of their universe (aka only child.) I fully admit that they do spoil me with nice gifts, like purses that I can't afford to buy on my own. But still, I take care of myself, pay for myself, and have yet to ask them for a dime since the day I graduated from college.

So some people say to me, in their sarcastic tone, "It must be nice that you can waste your money on retarded expensive purses. I have to actually pay for important things, like my kids." Well la-dee-fucking-da. Yes, I realize that parenting is an awesome responsibility, both financially and mentally, and I commend you for making your kids your priority. That's how it should be and more parents should care for their kids as you do. But that doesn't mean that I don't deserve to buy myself a purse. In fact, you and your kid have nothing to do with me and my purse. And no, I don't know how much formula and diapers cost. But do you know how much chemotherapy costs? How about MRI's? How about funerals, for that matter? Guess what...I do. My husband had cancer and died. Remember? All of that stuff wasn't free either.

"You know you can't take that purse with you in the afterlife, right?" Yes, genius, I know that. You must be confusing me with my dead husband, because you see, I'm alive right now so I'm gonna enjoy my purse right now, while I still have the chance. Maybe you should spend a little more time enjoying the pleasures of life, and a little less time caring about what I buy. And then maybe, just maybe, I'll buy a purse for you too.


posted by The Merry Widow at 12:55 AM | 12 comments

Thursday, March 10, 2005

My Short Skinny Mexican Dad

Has anyone ever seen the movie called "My Big Fat Greek Wedding?" I swear that movie was a documentary of my life and family. They just replaced the Mexicans with Greeks, the tequila with ouzo, and the phrase, "Viva Mexico!" with the word, "Opa!" All to protect the innocent. But most importantly, they replaced my dad's use of caulk with the movie dad's use of windex.

Let me explain: In the movie, the main character's dad uses Windex as a fix all and cure all for any malady. Not only is it great for cleaning windows, but it also gets rid of warts/pimples, and helps with sprained elbows. Well instead of using windex, my dad uses caulk. As in the stuff used to seal window edges, bathtubs, and kitchen sinks. He walks around all day, caulk gun in hand, looking for things to caulk. It started out, innocently enough, during a small bathroom renovation project and has now snowballed into an avalanche of caulk mayhem. He caulked the thermostat to the wall. He caulked my mom's broken vase back together. He even caulked his car back together. Let me repeat that. He caulked his car back together, people. Some of the plastic seal that surrounds the outer edge of the driver's side window was falling off, so he caulked it back into place.

"Daddy, I think it's just time for you to buy a new car."

"No, mija. This car is still pretty new."

"You bought it in 1989, Daddy. It's time to put it out to pasture."

"You want me to drive you where? Hold on, mija, let me put the caulk away."

I told my dad about the windex subplot of the movie and how it compared to him. He laughed, agreed that it was funny, but did not think that he was anything like the movie dad.

Until today.

I called my dad, just to check in and see how he was doing without my mom around (my mom took a small trip to Mexico to visit family.) He said he was fine but he had noticed a small little rash on his forearm today. He had remembered how I told him that listerine gets rid of warts and pimples, so he decided to put it on his rash to see if it helped.

"You did what???"

"I put listerine on the rash. Maybe it will go away now."

"Why did you do that?"

"You told me that listerine got rid of warts and pimples. So I thought maybe it would get rid of this rash too."

"Daddy, the part about getting rid of warts and pimples was made up. It was from "My Big Fat Greek Wedding." It's not really true. Not only that, but you used the wrong thing. It was windex that they used. Not listerine!"

"Oh. Well at least the itching stopped. Opa!!"

I love my dad.

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posted by The Merry Widow at 11:05 PM | 4 comments

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

I See Dead People

People don't realize this, but I drive by my husband's funeral home on a daily basis. That is to say, I drive by the funeral home that took care of my husband after he died. He's not buried there. He was cremated so that his ashes could be taken to another location. ("I don't want to spend eternity in Texas." were his words to me.) Regardless, everytime I drive by the funeral home, I can't help but to think of him. (Sidenote: I don't purposely drive by the funeral home. It just happens to be located in the same area as my home and job. But I digress.) Many times, I'll be riding with friends, in their cars, as we drive by the funeral home. They don't ever notice the funeral home, nor do they know my history with that particular funeral home. (Most of my friends, here in Texas, did not know me while he was still alive.) So they usually go on, blabbing or whining about some insignificant matter in life (like how their boyfriend refuses to use a coaster) while I reflect on the life and times of my husband and his fight with cancer.

I used to talk about my husband's life and death quite a bit. I think that it helped me get through some rough times. But everyone always focused on the death part, whereas I always wanted to focus on the life part. I always wanted people to learn what I learned from him and his fight. I wanted people to realize that life is too short to just watch it go by. I wanted people to reach for their goals, dreams, and aspirations rather than just wish for them. I wanted people to...well...stop whining about the lack of coaster use by their boyfriends. Are water rings on the coffee table really that tragic?

Yesterday was my husband's birthday. He would have been 28. Yesterday was also the day the my mother-in-law was released from the hospital. She just had a round of chemotherapy, as well as a stem cell transplant. Yes, folks, she has cancer. She's still too sick and too immunosupressed to take any visitors, so I had to settle for calling her, rather than seeing her in person. I wanted to let her know that I was thinking about her, thinking about him, thinking about life. She was too weak to talk for long. Not to mention that the chemo stripped away all of the skin on the inside of her mouth and throat, leaving it raw and painful. Yet she still managed to get on the phone to tell me that she was gonna bake us a cake (as soon as she got better) so that we could celebrate the fact that we can still eat cake. Can you believe that? She looks and feels like she just got ran over by a semi-truck (twice) but she hasn't forgotten what her son, my husband, taught us most of all: Cake is yummy. Eat it any chance that you get. Eat it first so that you'll always have room for it. Enjoy it.

So yeah, I'm a widow. My husband died and that sucked. But cake has never tasted as good as it does now.


posted by The Merry Widow at 11:42 PM | 6 comments

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

I'm Every Woman

My Mexican friends refer to me as their “white” friend. This is probably because I don’t speak Spanish fluently (despite the fact that a majority of my family does not speak any English at all,) I listen to John Denver, and I eat at Taco Bell.

My Caucasian friends refer to me as their Mexican friend. This is probably because I speak better Spanish than they do, I listen to mariachi music, and I eat at Taco Bell. Oh yeah, and also because my parents are from Mexico.

My nerd friends refer to me as their cool friend. This is probably because I go out to the bars every other night, watch MTV, don’t know anything about computers, and listen to hip hop.

My cool friends refer to me as their nerd friend. This is probably because I am a science nerd, made straight A’s during school, watch foreign/independent movies, and listen to classical music.

My tall friends refer to me as their short friend. This is probably because I’m only 5 feet tall.

My short friends…oh wait…everyone is taller than I am. Unless they are like 8 years old or something. But even some of them are taller than I.

I like to think that all of these characteristics make me well rounded. I can get along with almost anyone, find something in common with almost anyone, and become friends with almost anyone. But lately, I’ve been feeling lost…feeling like I just don’t quite fit in anywhere…feeling alone. This feeling scares me.

But alas, I must remind myself that it’s the differences, the variations, the diversity that makes life an adventure. I must embrace my own uniqueness and tell myself that not only am I lucky to have such an eclectic group of friends, but they are lucky to have me.


posted by The Merry Widow at 11:31 PM | 5 comments

You Owe Me A Dollar

Dear Guy #3,

You are indeed guy #3 and not guy #4, like you previously thought. I win. You lose. I know that you read this blog, so feel free to call or email me after you read this post and tell me that you'll never question me again, damnit.

The Merry Widow

P.S. You kicked ass tonight. My requests for next time include "How We Do" (not to be confused with Howie Day,) "Livin on a Prayer," song #1 from your CD (no, I don't know the name of it,) and "Blower's Daughter." Yes, I am obsessed. Deal with it.

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posted by The Merry Widow at 12:33 AM | 0 comments

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Everybody say Cheese!!!

Is it bad that one's teeth are a major deal maker/breaker for me?

I was hanging out with a really cool guy last night. But everytime he smiled big, I couldn't stop staring at his missing tooth. It wasn't even one of the front teeth, or even a tooth near the middle, for that matter. It was like the 2nd to last molar. But still, I could see that it was missing and it grossed me out.

About a year ago, I was dating a guy that I like to affectionately call "asshole with small dick." I remember thinking, during one of our early make-out sessions, that I had yet to get a good look at his teeth. I freaked out. "What if his teeth are gross, and yellow, and scuzzy, and crooked?" I thought to myself as his tongue was examining my tonsils. So I did what any sane, logical, college educated girl would do. I stopped kissing him and asked him if I could see his teeth. (And you wonder why I have such trouble find a guy....) Anyway, he actually didn't see anything wrong with this request, showed me his teeth, and then asked to see mine. And after we both were satisfied with what we saw (he actually had perfect teeth) we went back to making out. And you wonder why we didn't last!

I once told my friend, Laura, that I would divorce someone if their teeth fell out.* I explained to her that I just couldn't be with someone who could not properly keep up with their dental hygene. I mean, if they can't take 5 minutes out of their day to brush and floss, then how can I expect them to take proper care of me? (*Note: If teeth fall out due to getting knocked out (i.e. fight, car accident, etc.) then this is acceptable as long as tooth/teeth in question get fixed and/or replaced.)

The moral of the story? You should brush and floss. Daily. Oh yeah, and also I'm psycho and shallow.

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posted by The Merry Widow at 5:31 PM | 3 comments

Friday, March 04, 2005

To Whom It May Concern

Dear Friend,

There was a time in my life when I thought that we were becoming friends...good friends. Then there came a time when I thought that we couldn't be friends any longer. A time when I thought that you would just become one of those people that I would pass on the street and say hi to every so often. I was sad about that because I had felt like you were one of those people who might get a chance to peek into my soul. A lot of people know the outer me. A lot of people know my quirks, my OCD ways, my idiosyncracies, my loves, my hates, my view of the world. But only a handful of people know the real me: the emotional me; the person full of love and sorrow, hope and despair, laughter and tears. Everyone always comes to me to listen to their woes, dispense advice, cheer them up. But the select few, the ones that I really, truly trust, these are the people to whom I confide. These are the people for whom I search. The ones who can comfort me and make me feel...well...not alone. And for a time, I had no choice but to shut you out, both for your protection, and my own. And during this time, I bundled up my heart in protective layers. But I realized that my heart is less susceptible to a chill than I thought. So I'm beginning to slowly unwrap it and stop babying it quite so much. I'm finding out that it's resilience is quite surprising.

Fast forward to today. Today I needed someone to do nothing but just sit with me. Someone to talk with me, laugh with me, share secrets with me. Someone to ease the stress in my life. And there you were. Pure comfort...no hidden agendas, no ulterior motives.

So I just wanted to thank you. Thanks for being you. Thanks for being a friend. Thanks for making me giggle. Thanks for making me believe again that there are still some good people left in Texas.

The Merry Widow


posted by The Merry Widow at 12:03 AM | 1 comments

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

I feel pretty...oh so pretty...

So I went out to dinner tonight with SJ (and some coworkers) and she told me that I had a real good lesbian look going tonight. She said it was because of my glasses (which she had never seen me wear before) but I think it was because I couldn't keep my eyes off of her huge boobs. So then I got to thinking...what if I give lesbianism a try? I mean the guy thing isn't working out all that well for me right now. Well, there are guys...just not the right ones. The ones who will give me the attention that I crave, give me the love that I long for, give me the respect that I think I deserve.

Anyway, 2 margaritas later, SJ decided that she would see if lesbianism was for me. She put her hand on my thigh...she moved her hand up a little higher.... And you know what? Nothing. As cute as she is, I guess she just isn't my type. "What is your type, Merry Widow?" you may be wondering to yourself. Well let me tell you. My type has to be taller than me (SJ is taller,) must not be too hairy (SJ is not hairy,) must be smart (SJ is a genius,) must be funny (SJ makes me laugh), and must have a penis. One that is NOT detachable, battery operated, or surgically implanted. Sorry, SJ, I guess we were never meant to be. It's not you, it's me.

Oh well. Girls are psycho anyway. Don't act like you're not...we've all been there. Just don't tell the guys.


posted by The Merry Widow at 10:09 PM | 4 comments


One of the most satisfying things in life is finally popping that big zit you've been working on all week...finally squeezing at just the right spot so that not only do you get fun white goop to come out, but it also squirts and lands on your mirror. I was lucky this time too...it made a noise when it popped. Gross, yes, but don't act like you've never experienced this sweet satisfaction for yourself.

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posted by The Merry Widow at 9:57 PM | 1 comments
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