mimi smartypants
Seriously, though: what's with the penguins?

as discriminating as a goat


1. Why is Montana advertising itself so strenuously? There are ads all over the CTA imploring me to visit Montana. It seems like a nice enough place if you are a fan of sweeping vistas, but what really creeps me out* is that the ads seem kind of Chicago-specific, with taglines like “Miles Magnificent” and “Rams vs Bears.”** Why does Montana so badly want Chicagoans (in particular) to visit? I am suspicious. DON’T DO IT CHICAGO! IT’S A TRAP!***

*Another thing that creeps me out: one of the ads is just a close-up of a swimming moose. At least I hope it’s swimming, and not depicted in the last moments of its struggle, on its way to a  watery grave. Come to Montana! Swim with a moose carcass!

**How often do rams and bears really fight each other? I somehow doubt that nature, even in Montana, is the perpetual interspecies Ultimate Fighting Championship that this ad makes it out to be.

***It really was a trap, you know? LT sometimes likes to harsh on Admiral Ackbar for so theatrically pointing that out, quite a while after the fact, but I always tell him fuck you. Ackbar rules. He had the balls (figuratively, at least; anatomically, it’s unclear) to say so out loud! Plus, so dashing in the white uniform.

2. Last night I went to the gym for a treadmill run. The plan was to leave right from there for a show, and thus eliminate the danger that I would get comfy on the couch and move rock-and-roll way down on the priority list. This plan necessitated showering at the gym, something I rarely do—usually I head home and flop about dirty for a while, observing how creepy Rocko gets even more demonstrative and amorous when I am all sweaty. When it gets too creepy I shove him off my lap and shower in my own home, without the need for plastic-shoe fungus protection.

Anyway, this time I showered at the gym and dealt with their crazy temperature controls and pump-dispenser “body wash,” which smelled a little like pesto. There is a sign in the showers, in English and Korean, that forbids shower urination and warns that this act will result in membership termination. I wondered how they would know, as it seems one would have to be caught in mid-pee. Then I fantasized that there was a very high-tech sensor in the drain that can detect the smallest trace of urine, down to something like one pee-particle per million, and it triggers a deafening WOOPWOOPWOOP siren and strobe lights, and jackbooted Pee Police run into the showers and beat the naked, cowering offender with nightsticks. As well as canceling your gym membership. On the spot. They make you eat the membership card. Covered in horseradish. At gunpoint.

I had to know for sure, so I tried a little test pee, and nothing. No woopwoop, no steel gate automatically crashing down to lock me in the shower, no German Shepherd attack. It appears the sign is really just an empty threat, so go ahead and pee in the gym shower if that’s your thing.

3. I was heading to the library on my lunch hour, and there are always a lot of people lollygagging around that section of State Street—some are homeless, but some seem to be dudes who just don’t have anything better to do, so they sit somewhere and watch downtown go by. One of these yelled at me as I went by, “Girl, you walk fast!”

I gave the tight half-smile that means, “I’m Not Going To Make An Issue Of It Right Now But Please Quit Talking To Me, Jackass.” He followed up with, “You really walk fast! Damn, that’s stupid, to be walkin’ so fast.”

This required no answer, as I was well beyond conversation range by this point due to all that FAST WALKING. It makes me laugh though. Stupid! If I only had a brain in my head I could shuffle, lollygag, amble. Poor dumb me.

4. The copy editor in me had a few problems with the first-grade science fair. Some parents/children do not know the difference between “affect” and “effect.” No, rope jumping does not “effect” one’s heartbeat, unless you mean it can bring you back from the dead. If you are going to help your kid with his project, make sure your help is grammatically correct! Other than that, it was awesome to see all the small kids dropping science like a Texas curriculum. (Ooooh! Burn! Fundie burn!) Nora demonstrated the miracle of CAPILLARY ACTION, with white carnations and food coloring, although she admits she liked last year better when she dissected owl pellets. Not everything can be about skull fragments, which saddens my little forensic anthropologist.

5. Some excitement over the weekend when my wonderful seven-year-old daughter, who surely should know better, swallowed a marble. She was fiddling around with one of the small glass marbles from the marble run while we read our respective books on the couch, and then suddenly she turned to me with this panicky face and said, “I just swallowed the marble.” She started to cry and cough a bit, and I was like oh shit it’s ER time and started to get my shoes on, when I realized that if she can cry, and cough, and talk, then this might not be a medical emergency of the airway variety. She drank some water and confirmed that the marble had gone all the way down, and we consulted Dr. Google and the pediatrician on call, who both said that time will tell, if you know what I mean and I think you do. There’s no point in even getting an x-ray since glass won’t show up very well on film, and the smoothness and smallness and nontoxic nature of a marble make it unlikely that it will cause any problems. Luckily Nora is old enough to track her own “transit time” and do her own in-toilet gem mining, and I have a box of disposable wooden craft sticks for that very purpose. Too bad the science fair is already over!

—mimi smartypants wants to be left out of it.