Sunday, May 29, 2016

Crazy Apple Lady - Pt. 2

It’s not my fault I drive a big car. I still pretend I drive a small single-person's car, squeezing down near impossible back alleys, reversing into shoebox-sized car spaces…

But here I am, parody of the modern day suburban mother, driving my huge, ozone depleting, nitrogen oxide emitting, four wheel drive to the supermarket and back. There are practical reasons of course - I do share it with my husband who runs a photography adventure tour business, but I won’t bore you with the details.

The only thing you need to know is that it’s big and white and shiny and when I drove it for the first time I could feel the HATE from other drivers.

On the day in question I wasn’t expecting to totally loose my shit, but I did have a deadline to meet, I had to get Tom to the set of ‘A Place To Call Home'.

I’d allowed two hours for a journey that was supposed to take one, avoided peak hour, and packed snacks to eat on the way - nothing worse than having low blood sugar in Sydney traffic - in other words, I’d done all the right things.

In my bag was a perfect big red organic apple. I’d been looking forward to eating it all day. I’d actually smuggled it out of the house under a tea towel so the kids wouldn’t get it. It was mine and I took the time to polish it lovingly as I drove calmly following the sat nav’s directions. Tom was in the front seat beside me, we were in a good mood, like Thelma and Louise, setting off together on an adventure. This was a fun job, we were going to stay the night together at a motel in Wilberforce…

Thank God Thelma and Louise didn’t have sat nav, that’s all I can say.

It would have been a completely different movie, the female robot voice constantly talking over the top of them:

‘At the next roundabout, take the second exit. … At the next roundabout, take the second exit.’

Louise would have been shouting at it well before they’d left Arkansas, ‘Yes just SHUT UP! We know! Just go straight though the fucking roundabout! We get it! Can’t you stop it from speaking??! How do you STOP IT FROM SPEAKING???’

As they tore across the dirt of the Grand Canyon: ‘Please perform a U-Turn… Recalculating… Please perform a U-Turn… Recalculating…’ I’d drive my car off a cliff too.

The sat nav told me to turn right at the next intersection but I couldn’t because there were about 3 million cars waiting to turn already. I slowed beside them to a crawl and put my indicator on, someone would let me in, surely, that’s what I would do, that’s what a normal person would do if they saw a driver struggling in unfamiliar territory, lost on a tangle of motorway intersections…

But not if that driver was a woman in a big white shiny four wheel drive - it was like the gates of hell opened - road rage that had been compressed for decades spewed to the surface and erupted - head shaking turned into horn beeping, a truck driving past three lanes away blared a long enraged howl from it’s air horn as it thundered down the motorway.

Stupidly I put down my window and put my hand out. When the light turned green the person I had pulled up beside would let me in. This was how society worked... wasn’t it?


I turned to look at the last driver, ‘Hah! Stupid sat nav!’ I called out the window. He had his windows up but inside he was clearly shouting like I was his ex-wife. I took a bite of my apple, and I was crushed - it was soft! I hate that. I hate soft apples. The man in the car was going berzerk, his eyes were full of hatred at me, for what?

My beautiful apple - I chewed on the pulpy mush. So... unsatisfying… and I snapped. It hit me that the angry man was not going to let me in, and the rest of the 3 million angry men behind him, they were going to set an example of me - I felt like a small dog who’d just crapped on the carpet in front of his owner.

But I was not a chihuahua.

The apple hit his windscreen and exploded. The man instinctively repelled from the impact, his face turned to shock; his eyebrows went up and his mouth opened into a circle.

‘Mum!’ gasped Tom. I panicked.

‘Oh shit,’ I thought, ‘What have I done?’ I slammed my foot on the accelerator and took off with a squeal of smoking rubber. The blood was pumping through my veins. The car and the driver were left far behind but now I could hear a new threat, a helicopter, somewhere above me, and then… sirens. ‘Oh God,’ I thought, ‘A traffic chopper…’

I could already hear Vic Lorusso, 'Police are chasing a big white shiny four wheel drive after the driver, a suburban mother, was allegedly seen discharging some kind of weapon before surprised onlookers…' I was going to be on the nightly news. They probably had it all on camera! The angry man probably had a fucking dash cam - I'd be on COPS and mothers would be playing Crazy Apple Lady on YouTube in the playground forever.

‘Fuck!’ I took a turnoff towards a shopping centre, I would drive into the multi-storey car park to hide and wait til the chopper went over, then I’d take the back roads to Wilberforce. Make sure I didn’t drive near any cliffs.

I looked at Tom to make sure he was okay, he took my hand as we bounced over a speed hump. ‘Don't turn back Mum, let’s just keep going...’ he said, ‘Go!'

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Crazy Apple Lady - Pt.1

Okay, so I’ve been putting off writing Crazy Apple Lady because people are actually reading my blog (the blatant self-promotion is working!!) and now you’re all going to know how truly unstable I am.

I don’t know why I’ve been worrying so much because I suspect that most of you know already… But the thing is, I can usually kid myself that people possibly don't know because I always have a good excuse. That’s how I got away with being a delinquent in high school and got a prefect badge.

Let me give you an example. This week I volunteered on the kid’s primary school Drop Off/Pick Up zone - but I was staggering around opening car doors looking like I’d polished off the cooking wine and then got stuck into the vanilla essence.

I appeared to be drunk doing the DOZO. Not a good look, as you can imagine.

But I wasn’t drunk, I was suffering from some weird, annoying thing called vertigo. Let me say this now: VERTIGO SUCKS BALLS, it really does, because it’s like having all the bad symptoms of being obscenely drunk - catching your hip on sharp table corners, suddenly falling into walls, feeling like you’re going to puke every time you roll over in bed, without any of the good things - e.g. feeling like randomly stripping off, or thinking that you’re wittier than everyone else, and sexier…

Plus, the only person I’ve ever heard complain of vertigo is my mother-in-law who is 89, so on top of all that I felt really, really old and depressed. I was given some exercises to do to make it go away - it was like doing yoga while you’re drunk. Awful. Downward Dog into a Darlinghurst gutter.

Doing the DOZO always cheers me up though, so even though I still had a bit of vertigo I did it anyway.

My husband is always banging on about what a filthy mess our car is, but doing the DOZO I see MUCH WORSE. It makes me feel instantly happy. The confetti of old McDonalds chips, the bunched up laundry trodden to the floor by kids who get changed in the car on the way to sport or dancing, the multitude of half-empty drink bottles, the equivalent of floating debris in the North Pacific gyre. I’m not alone! One time I even opened the door of a car that had an empty vodka bottle rolling around on the floor. Uh-huh.

Anyway, the point of all that was to tell you that I may have looked drunk on the DOZO, but I wasn’t, even though I was staggering slightly in my high visibility vest and steadying myself every now and then by holding onto small children like some strange overfamiliar auntie - I wasn’t drunk, I just had some freaky old person’s affliction called vertigo*.

You see? I’ve always got an excuse… no matter how bad it appears.

Except, when it comes to the Crazy Apple Lady story. My confession, Part 2, tomorrow.

*NB. I want to make it quite clear that I subscribe to the adage “You’re only as old as you feel" - I don’t want to slag off people who are numerically older than me. There’s a tiny, brown, shrivelled up old lady at Mum’s nursing home who wears sequin tops and dances to rock’n roll music and out plays quoits with Hunter when we go to visit. She clearly feels as young as twenty-something and could give Chris Hemsworth a run for his money I reckon. She’s brilliant!

In my head most days I feel like I’m a teenager still, and probably behave like it too, except when I suffer with vertigo or get depressed, then I feel like I’m about the same age as the Red Woman in Game Of Thrones without her magic necklace. Really. Fucking. Old.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Metaphorically Speaking

Tom has a big mouth. From the minute he popped out of my uterus he was LOUD. He’s also very passionate and confident and usually blurts out the first thing that comes into his head. 

This combination - loud and confident reminds me often of my mother. She always said the first thing that popped into her mind too - it was this unpredictability that made her so astoundingly funny at times. People never knew what to expect. 

Sometimes I don’t know what to expect with my son either, like at the playground yesterday when he found a spider on him and yelled ‘FUCK!’ really loudly in front of some little children by the swings with their parents. 

I did the best thing I could under the circumstances - I pretended he was not my child. 

I looked around and did a bit of a Ricky Gervais shrug thing when they looked in my direction with a slight head shake that said ‘Disgraceful! Where are the parents of this delinquent?'

It worked quite well until Tom came over and called me Mum at which point the parents gave me a filthy look, packed up and left as if to say, ‘We don’t want our perfect small children contaminated.'

It reminded me of the time a bigger boy was bullying him in a gated playground a few years ago and Tom finally cracked it and said to the boy he was going to stab him to death with a knife. Unfortunately the kid's mother overheard, grabbed Tom forcefully and started shouting ‘Where is your mother!!!?’ The mother of the bully was also a bully and a violent exchange of words about each other’s children followed.

‘Of course he wasn’t ACTUALLY going to stab him with a knife!’ I remember screaming, to which she screamed back, ‘Well how do you KNOW that?’

She was insinuating that my child was a psychopath and that I was stupid. I screamed back ‘Because he DOESN'T HAVE A KNIFE!!!'

On the drive home, me shaking with adrenaline, Tom still red-faced and sobbing in the backseat, we had a serious talk about using language as a weapon. I knew that Tom had said what he’d said because he’d been frustrated and wanted the bigger kid to leave him alone. 

It was quite simple I explained, anyone could say anything they liked as long as they popped ‘metaphorically’ into the sentence. I gave the first obvious example, ‘I’m going to metaphorically stab you to death with a knife.’ 

Charlotte and I tried out a few - ‘I’m going to metaphorically flush your head down the loo!’, ‘I’m going to metaphorically kick you in the shins!’, ‘I’m going to metaphorically poke you in the eye!’

Tom was finally smiling again, ‘I’m going to metaphorically throw a microwave at you!’ he shouted at the top of his voice.

The kids were thrilled, I’d shown them a linguistic loophole. 

My husband Tim thinks I've gone too far in this story and that people might actually think our son is a psychopath - so I found a photo of him from halloween dressed holding a scythe and applied a really scary Photoshop effect on it... Do you think I've gone too far? Let me know in the comments! 

Life Love and Dirty Dishes

Friday, May 20, 2016

Nip Tuck Tuk Tuk

Charlotte has turned into the Walking Dead, she wanders the house after everyone’s asleep, roaming the corridors into the early hours of the morning, leaving lights on in every room, hair dishevelled, face pale and ghostly. 

We went to see the Ear Nose & Throat specialist yesterday, it’s not a zombie virus turning her into the undead, it’s her tonsils. They need to come out.

"12 months waiting list," says the doctor. We don’t have private health cover, never have, my husband and I are anarchists or socialists or something at heart. We pay taxes and only go to the hospital if we’re dying. 

“I might take her to Thailand to get them out,” I joke. 

He laughs but says seriously that she’d probably need to stay there for three weeks post-op. 'Fucking brilliant,' I think to myself.

The receptionist has a sense of humour, “You could get a boob job while you’re there too!” she says.

“Ha ha ha!” I laugh, “And a facelift!"

Three weeks in Thailand! A tonsillectomy holiday - what a crazy brilliant idea!

I picture my daughter and I recovering on matching hospital gurneys in some stunning cosmetic surgery resort place in Thailand. My daughter well-rested and happy, me looking twenty years younger with my eyebrows permanently stapled into an expression of surprised delight. 

Why not take the whole family? Tim needs a vasectomy, Tom needs serious dental work, Hunter could do with a circumcision… I wonder if they take animals too? Curly has a big lump that I’m too scared to get removed by a vet in case I need to remortgage my house… 

“Are you out of your mind?” Tim says when I tell him. 

'Yeah, a bit…’ I think, ‘but no more than usual…’ 

I tell him about a documentary I once saw, an eighty year old Thai surgeon doing sex changes, “If someone has the skills to turn a penis into a vagina they could do a tonsillectomy on their lunch break!”

Want to bring your family on my Nip Tuck Tuk Tuk holiday? Tell me in the comments what you'd get done!
Life Love and Dirty Dishes

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

My New Deodorant Smells Like a Sanitary Disposal Bin...

Which El Stinko! deodorant would you use? Take the poll!
Okay, so Hunter threw my deodorant out the bathroom window.

Sadly I'm not like my husband who doesn't sweat, treks across mountain ranges with heavy camera gear and still smells as sweet as a rose. Bastard.

Nope, I've got some stinky pheromones, I NEED deodorant - if I don’t wear it I smell like a Pakistani cab driver in Sydney*. So if I had to go live on a desert island (you know how kids always ask you these questions?) I’d choose deodorant over a live chicken. THAT’S how much I need it.

So when Hunter threw my deodorant out the bathroom window I ended up buying not one, but two, to replace it. The first one sucked, it made my underarms all sticky and wet like a rainforest and by the time I went to pick up the kids from school I had stuck squares of toilet paper under my arms - I didn’t smell but I felt like a collage.

The second one was a stick, not a roll-on, but it smelt… unpleasant. I couldn’t place it at first 'coz I was busy and I was sick of thinking about my underarms, but it bothered me and then I realised why - the smell reminded me of a public toilet. Not the horrible fake perfume they spray these days out of automated boxes on the walls, (my nose had gone into a kind of detective mode by now) but the smell of a sanitary disposal bin. Seriously.

I’m wondering who did the market research for Rexona on this product and if they were on drugs at the time.

ANY fragrance would have been better. Here’s a few examples:

1. Lavender or Sanitary Bin.
2. Sweet Pea or Sanitary Bin.
3. Citrus or Sanitary Bin.
4. Fucking Anything or Sanitary Bin.

Hello???! EVERY woman knows the smell of Sanitary Bin and hates it.

Maybe they skipped the market research and just bought a load of cheap chemical fragrance, like the stuff they use at the dog groomers to mask the smell of wet dog.

So here’s another option:

5. Dandy Wet Dog or Sanitary Bin.

Obviously I would take Dandy Wet Dog, but I’m stuck with Sanitary Bin until I get back to the supermarket.

And the only thing that smells worse is me au naturel, so don’t stand near me when I’m in the line to get my coffee up at Unwritten - I haven’t been bathing in Bloo Loo, I’ve just bought a really crap deodorant.

So! Tell me…

Which smell would you go with?

*This is not a racist comment, this is just obvious if you live in Sydney and catch taxis.

#humor #lmao #sundayfunday #toofunny #comedycentral #funny #lol #parentingfail

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Social Media Sex Worker

Sarah Jessica Parker - Not
Yup. That’s me. Until I get a publishing deal I’m going to have to bombard you all with blatant self promotion.

I might stop blowing my own trumpet after I get a publishing deal, but then I might not... I might enjoy inflating my own ego so much that I start putting my name on the side of blimps that float over the city, or it might be summer and you might be on the beach and your kid will look up and say “Look Mummy! That plane is writing something in the sky!” and you think the trail is going to spell out JESUS SAVES or whatever, but instead it will say Katie M Little is 'Going To Seed'.

I’m going to have to start wearing tutus when I go out so I can be caught in a panning slow-mo shot with gutter water splashing over me as the bus goes past with my blog advertisement on it. Forget SJP, think KML.

Or maybe I can start advertising a 12 Week Body Transformation thing like Michelle Bridges, except I don’t know what you’d turn into if you followed my regimen… a sarcastic, sleep-deprived, caffeine-addicted woman who cuts her own hair and talks to strangers in supermarket check-out lines, throws organic apples at the windscreen of drivers who cut her off* and swears a lot… anyway, it’s food for thought.

Paleo pilates lifestyles are for wimps.

So here’s the deal - short blogs that are so funny you snort - about imperfect parenting, about behaving like a child when you’re supposed to be the adult, about dealing with situations that suck - the kind of conversation you have with your girlfriends when you think no one can hear. This blog is for women and men (If you think you can handle it) of any age, although people who have to wipe another person's bum on a regular basis will probably laugh louder.

And don’t forget - I need to look popular!!! - so if you leave a comment on my blog page I’ll buy you a coffee. A cheap one from a petrol station probably, but if it’s a really good comment and you SHARE a post I might even fork out for a Grinders or Toby’s Estate or something, but don’t ask for soy milk, that would be going too far.

Much Love,Katie M Little
@ Going To Seed

PS. *Can’t wait to share THAT story with you! I’m going to call it 'Crazy Apple Lady’! So look out!#parenting #sexinthecity #michellebridges #12WBT #JesusSaves #CoffeeAddict

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

1 Surprisingly Good Thing About Alzheimer's

You never know how old you are.

Today is Mum's birthday, if she didn't have Alzheimers I know she would scream "Oooah! I'm so OLD Dahling!!"

Someone at the nursing home yesterday asked me how old she's turning and the truth is I don't know, because Mum used to lie about her age all the time, on medicare forms, passport applications, electoral roles, her drivers license, and all sorts of important documents.

The funny bit was when a doctor or police man or customs officer asked her for her date of birth she'd have to guess it in front of them. If anyone else had done something like this they'd probably have been sent to jail or strip searched - but everyone knew it was my Mum so they just laughed and found it hilarious.

Now that Mum's got Alzheimer's she doesn't know how old she's turning and neither does anyone else. Today is just another day like any other. Finally Mum you can take that secret with you to the grave.

PS. I don't care if you find this blog post offensive, I've always had a black sense of humour which Mum found funny so she would laugh at it anyway, even if you don't. But she might have found it a bit offensive, but that would only have been if it was about someone else, and it's not, it's about her, so she wouldn't have got offended. And she would have found it funny.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Motherhood... What were you expecting?

Little Tom was only two months old when my first Mother’s Day came around, it felt so special, like finally I was part of a secret club, like now I had an extra birthday or something wonderful. The baton had been passed, my mother was also marvelling at being a grandmother. I looked down at the angelic parcel, sleeping with tiny perfect fingers curled around the blanket, so incredible to think a baby - My baby! - was in my arms. I spent hours just watching his eyelids flutter in sleep, listening to every tiny noise, taking in the curve of his little nose, cupid lips, every miniature eyelash, awestruck over and over again that this living creature was in my care. - Forever! Fancy that! Theres no going back! I'm a mother!!

Tom was not an easy baby, but then I was not an easy mother. Everything was new to me, I had read enough to fill an encyclopaedia but had no practical experience and no one to guide me; it had always been a running joke in our family that I survived at all, my mother was not known for practicalities. 

And to top it off, Tom did not seem to fit any standard mould either, there was nothing routine or logical about him, I filled pages of a notebook with feeding times and sleeps but none of it made any sense. Try as I might to decipher one there was no pattern to be had… I began to look like Russell Crow portraying John Forbes Nash Jr in ‘A Beautiful Mind’ - sleep deprived, chaotic, paranoid and delusional, talking endlessly about sleep cycles and breast pumps, ringing 24hr breastfeeding help lines - every midwife spoke with indesputable authority, every one told me something different.

I rang Tim and ordered he bring home a cabbage. ‘My wife has a craving for cabbage!’ he thought, proudly swinging the enormous vegetable in a plastic shopping bag as he came through the door, ‘How do you want me to cook it Love?’ Don’t be ridiculous, we weren’t going to eat it! Cut the leaves off and put them in the freezer!

Tom slept little and fed a lot, huge engorged breasts had erupted on my usually flat chest, I was a trannie version of The Incredible Hulk. It was peculiar not to have control of my own body - intellectually I couldn’t make head or tail of the baby, but my breasts seemed to have a direct psychic link-up. I’d be nowhere near him when a strange tight, tingly feeling would take over them, ‘Tom’s awake!’ I’d think, barely having time to grab a towel before the eruption of milk started, soaking through everything just as a hungry scream pierced the silence of the house with the force of an express train whistle blasting through a tunnel - ‘WAKE UP!!’ it screamed - not the baby, who fed with urgency, hiccuped and spewed and fed more until he passed out milk drunk in my arms - ME! I was the one who needed to wake up, over and over again, and I was wide awake, frozen cabbage leaves down my maternity bra, still shaking from the pain of feeding with cracked nipples.

‘Are you attaching properly?’ the anonymous voices asked through the phone. Attachment was very important, sitting properly, getting the baby’s head at the correct height, the chin at the right angle, the nose pointing a certain way… A midwife came to visit me, she got straight to the point, grabbing my boob and the baby, putting them together calmly and expertly. ‘Like this!’ she said, watching me nod back at her. ‘I don’t have a fucking clue what I’m doing…’ I thought to myself. The midwife wedged her finger in the corner of Tom’s mouth and pulled him off, ignored the shriek and helped me do it again myself this time. How was breastfeeding so hard? How was something that was supposed to be so damn simple and natural so impossible?

I knew as soon as I got home I’d be lost again, running through the mental checklist of a dozen things I needed to get right, then relax - Relax! It was like learning to meditate in a lotus headstand with a screaming baby in your face. My screaming baby.

Tom always woke up starving and squalling, the couple of minutes it took to go through the checklist was two minutes too long, hold the boob, hold the baby’s head, bring them in together - Posture! Posture! - the nipple already spraying hairline jets of milk across the room, Tom going berserk, his little face turning purple in fury, sweat sharply prickling under my arms, my stomach clenched in anticipation of the excruciating pain. It didn’t matter how perfect I got the attachment, the nipples were cracked well and truly. Bringing them together slowly with trembling hands, the precision of a rocket docking at the international space station. Within range the screaming stops, the baby’s gummy mouth opens wide, panting almost, the nipple spraying and dripping uncontrollably - Focus! Focus! FOCUS! WAKE UP! WAKE UP! WAKE UP! 

Then BAM!

The tiny mouth clamps down with the force of a steel trap, the suction like opening the seal on a vacuum, the pain shoots through my nipple like an electric current sent straight up into my brain, I see stars - Did I actually see stars? Yes, stars! See that? They’re STARS! - The pain is fucking unbelievable, worse than childbirth - I thought nothing was worse than childbirth? - Oh yes, this is worse, that was a walk in the park… The pain is so bad, in fact all of it is so bad I start to think when the pain finally dims, the chaos, the mess, the sleeplessness, that voice in my head... I think I must be losing my mind. What happened to my old life? Gone… gone… gone… let go of it. Drift off to sleep a bit with the baby, don’t bother getting out of pyjamas today - Ever! Why bother ever getting out of pyjamas! - What’s the point? The old life has gone.

Mother’s Day was not just about the birth of my baby, it was about saluting a new me waking up. The Before Me thought only of myself. The After Me was never allowed to think only of myself ever again, and if I did it was with a complicated mix of resentment and desperation. That’s why all mothers are allowed to go mental sometimes.

Motherhood comes more easily to some, perhaps that why if I’m struggling and a woman says to me sagely ‘Don’t wish it away!’ I struggle not to punch them. But to be fair to myself, everyone’s experiences of motherhood are different and mine has not been easy at times, loosing my own mother to Alzheimers sucked balls, the loneliness, and trying - Always trying! - to fill the roles of all the people I wish my children had in their lives - the patience of a grandparent, the fun of an aunt, the sternness of a parent, the busyness of a good housekeeper…

So it’s usually about Mother’s Day each year that I tend to do something awful. 

It’s the lead up, when handmade cards start coming home that say ‘To the Best Mum in the World…’ I panic and worry that I'm not filling the most precious role of all - I’m not a natural mother! I don’t know how to be and I never will! - So I overcompensate and overload myself, baking cupcakes like that annoying chick on Grey’s Anatomy, being too cheerful, too upbeat for too long. It’s always something tiny that sets me off and I crack, all the mean bits of me, the imperfect, swearing, ugly, confused, lazy, horrid awful things come streaming out, I shout and scream and cry like an exhausted eight year old, and end up crumbled in a self-loathing heap. - I’ll never be a perfect mother. I’ll never be a perfect mother...

‘Don’t worry Mum,’ Tom says bringing me in a cup of tea in bed and smoothing the hair from my forehead, ‘You’re perfect just the way you are.’

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