Monday, March 02, 2015

Well, Sh*t. Part 1 of 2.


We're in the temporary house, and getting back into a groove.

Disclaimer: this post is long… and largely about poop.  So I split it in two - part 1 now, part 2 in a few days.  Now you know.

Japan is a small island nation. I think that’s pretty common knowledge, and a horse that I’ve rather beaten to death here already, but I want to make sure we’re all on the same page.  

There are some societal rules which come along with being a small space holding a LOT of people.  Trash is one of those things.

When you don’t have space to create landfills, you HAVE to recycle what you can.  And what you can’t recycle needs to be burned.  And in order to keep the burning at a minimum, you have to be careful about how your trash is sorted.  This is all obvious and logical.

Great.  I’m a bit of a hippie, I can get behind recycling.  But let’s take a peek at the track record of my homeland: in a country where recycling programs exist everywhere; even in states where they will actually PAY YOU to recycle your cans and bottles… Americans are super poor at allowing themselves to be inconvenienced in saving the earth.  
(less a cartoon and more a documentary from our future.)

Because it’s easier to just toss whatever you’re holding in the nearest trash can (of which there are plenty in the states) and move on to the next fast-food restaurant.  Relying on people to do something good just out of the goodness of their hearts has not proven to be a widely successful way to implement recycling efforts.  Or any effort, really.

 


Our trash schedule, and our sortable trash bin. Cat for scale.

Super-nerd bit from my grad degree:  How do people develop morality, learn right and wrong versus how they decide to behave? Morality isn’t something that comes built into a person, and just like bodies, they develop and grow, lead to horrific, unspeakable things during their puberty years, and then sort of mellow out with adulthood.

If you’re curious, here’s the Campbell’s Condensed Soup Version of how people develop decision making in regard to morals:
Stage 1: How do I avoid punishment?
Stage 2: What’s in it for me/ What do I gain?
Stage 3: What does society expect of me, so that I can fit in?
Stage 4: What does the Law require of me?
Stage 5: What are my values and beliefs, and how do they fit with this decision?
Stage 6: I will act justly because it is right, not because I fear consequence, aspire to gain, or have any previous expectations.

Stage 6 is some Dali Llama shiz.  Most people don’t ever get there.  Seriously.  

So.  When you can’t rely on any one person’s strong moral ethics, how do you drive an entire society to faithfully recycle and trash-sort every day, 365, 24/7?  Well, I’ll tell you how Japan does it:  Guilt/ intimidation/ peer pressure.

If ever there was a society that adhered to rules and regulations, Japan is it. In regard to trash, it means there is a startling scarcity of public trash cans - you are expected to bring your trash home and sort it.  

All the trash is sorted into different bags according to what exactly that trash is.  Those bags, with color coded printing, are largely CLEAR.  Since all the trash is put out in those clear bags on the curb for collection (though only on the correct day for that kind of bag!) boy howdy, people will not hesitate to judge/ shame/ tell you off if you put the wrong thing in the wrong bag.  (aka Stage 1 or kinda 3.  So you hit everyone at the lowest level for 100% good moral behavior saturation. Gold Star on that, Japan) 

I tell you what:  The fear of being told off in Japanese works for me as well.  I’ve got that stupid trash sorting chart so committed to memory, I have nightmares of bottle caps flying around my head screaming about how I didn’t rinse the milk carton well enough.  I’ll be damned though if I don’t spend a few seconds every time I have to throw something out standing in front of my fridge to double check.


(fun fact: Don Cheadle made this Captain Planet spoof a few years back. You should watch it, but only if you don’t mind a laugh and a swear or two)

TLDR: Trash is complicated and frustrating for an American in Japan.  
Even more so if you have a dog that does what dogs do outside.
We’ll discuss more in the next post!

Meanwhile, I’m curious - how do you make your morality based decisions?  
Have you become the next Dali Lama?  
Have you seen great examples of kids showing off their 
own morality development (they’re SO good at it)? 
Tell me in the comments!

today’s little language lesson:

ごみは、どこですか。
gomiwa, doko desu ka?
where is the trash bin?
(answer: nowhere near you.)

Monday, February 23, 2015

Fasten Your Seatbelts.


Look, we’re happy and doing well here in Nagoya.  But we’ve had a few bumps here, and I should probs acknowledge them in a post now because they’re going to affect things in the future.  

It would be good to have laid out some context.
So here’s where we’re at.

Click to embiggen - we're at the yellow star in the middle of the picture.
We’re settling into our apartment in Tsurumai, which is a 'borough' (for lack of better word).  There are many little inner communities like this which make up Nagoya at large, and we’ve found that generally speaking, whatever train/ subway station you’re nearest is the borough to which you belong.  

We started here with the few pieces of furniture that we picked out on our trip in December, a suitcase each of clothing, and of course, Mac and Bubba.  We’ve since stocked up a lot of little necessities at the local Daiso, which is a 100 yen shop.

I don’t really know how to do justice to explaining a Daiso, because that’s essentially a dollar store in the US, but the variety and QUALITY of the stuff at the Daiso blows dollar stores out of the water.  Like all these cooking utensils.  Or these beautiful porcelain soy sauce bowls and bunny chopstick rests.  Or our kitty coin bank.  I love Daiso.
when we put coins in there, we call it feeding the kitty.  I don't know why it makes me giggle so.
We’ve had to do so MUCH Daiso shopping (actually I’m writing this knowing full well I’m about to go to the Daiso yet again), because there was a labor strike at whatever California sea port that all of our stuff is supposed to ship through.  Our stuff should arrive in a few weeks, but we weren’t prepped for a long wait, and thus we didn’t pack stuff for such a long wait.  This is particularly tricky because while we can certainly get whatever we need from the shops around here, we don’t need two of everything once things do arrive, and we don’t have space to store those things.  So thank goodness for Daiso because I don’t feel too bad about throwing out dollar-worth items.

Meanwhile, we found a bit of an issue with our apartment.  Bit is maybe an understatement, but I’m downplaying because I don’t want my family to panic.  Don't panic family, we're fine.  Here’s the very condensed version:

There is mold growing on one of our pocket-style doors.  It is severe enough that they need to take the wall down to fix.  We are obviously not financially responsible for any of that, but we do need to relocate for the time that the construction is underway.  We picked our temporary housing for this last week, and will probably move over there this weekend.

If you’ve sent us mail, no worries!  It will likely make it to us in time, and even if it doesn’t, we will be able to collect our mail from the post office during this time.  But maybe hold onto it for a bit if you haven’t slapped a stamp on there just yet.
We got this on the 17th.  So, you know, pretty quick for international mail!
In any case, this is a fairly big blip in the plan - we were enjoying getting used to this area and how to navigate it, and it’s disappointing to get ripped away from that so early on in our experience.  We’re hoping that the work goes off without a hitch, but we’re a little nervous that it is a bigger construction project that’s been proposed, and no one knows what’s really behind that wall until they take it down.  Blargh.

The temp spot we picked out seems lovely; it’s a free-standing, traditional-style Japanese house in a nice neighborhood.  We’re a bit concerned that because it’s an older style home our internet connection (now that we just FINALLY got connected to the world again!) is not going to be great.  We’re also a little concerned that it’s in an area that’s less built up with stores and ease of transportation, with less foreigners, so we’ll be getting a little more of a “critter in a zoo” attention.*  But it’s certainly doable, and it’s closer to The Mister’s work than this home, so we’ll make it work.
Click to embiggen - we will be relocating to just past the yellow star at the bottom of the picture.
What do you do to keep your cool when you get a wrench in your plans?  
Tell me in the comments!

So that's what's up.  I'll check in next week from the other side of the train tracks (literally!)  In the meantime, you can keep up with our daily shenanigans through my almost abusive level of photo spamming on instagram (@KpQuePasa).  Feel free to check that out to see such greatness as our tour of the Nagoya Castle, some videos of real life SAMURAIs, and of course, the super old, important tree in a park which Mac recently pooped on.  In front of small children.  We're not going back to that park. 

probably pretty safe bet to say that I'm going to post lots of food pictures too.
Duck Soba!
today's little language lesson
ボックス内にすべてのあなたの事を入れてください
Bokkusu-nai ni subete no anata no koto o irete kudasai.
Please put all your things in a box.

*I am struggling with a polite society that has a different definition of polite.  Namely, if I caught someone so openly staring at me because I’m different in the US or heck, even Mexico, I could have straight up been within my rights to say something to the effect of “what’s your problem?” and/or call them out on it.  That’s not really how it works here, particularly as a lady.  Though I do like that Mac sticks out because generally everyone in the neighborhood already knows his name, and the pet store people ADORE HIM.


Monday, February 16, 2015

Stream of Conciousness: Post-Plane.

Hi Friends!  We're here and happy in Nagoya.  We just got our internet up and running yesterday, so I've got some blog catching up to do.  Let's start with the post below, which I wrote the day after I got here. :)

Wednesday, February 04, 2015

Restless Regret

Quick Houskeeping Notes:
1.  Looking for valentines?  Don't forget my stationery company, FINvites.com, has put out TWO different FREE downloadable designs for Shark-Themed-Love.  You can find them by visiting our website HERE.

2.  This will be the last post from the states (!) - but we haven't quite gotten internet set up in the Japan apartment yet, so next week might be a bit lacking.  I'll figure something out. :)  In any case, no worries if you don't hear from me first thing next week friends.  (Also I'm sorry I was stupid and packed my sketch book, so we're a little low on drawings for this post.)



3.  As you can see, we're just about at that time where I reinstate live-tweeting Bubba flying.  Last time it was pretty entertaining, maybe it'll be the same this time, who knows?  In any case, you can follow along with that on Thursday by following @KpQuePasa on twitter.  I'll be using #AirBub15  If you've got a twitter, feel free to tweet at me, I'll be checking the tag as long as I have a connection (I'm not sure if the flight will have internet).
This happened last time when the Mister and I went.
Now on to the Main Event:
Hey folks!

As you’re reading this, I’m simultaneously refreshing my phone every 30 seconds to track Mac’s flight to the Land of the Rising Sun, and making my way to Detroit to board my own plane with Bubba.  

(jokes aside, don’t phone and drive friends.  I’m probably being smart enough to pull over at rest-stops for my checks.)

In any case, over the weekend I wrote this blog post and scheduled it to post from a fluffy hotel room bed, while waiting for the snow storm that hit Michigan to calm down a bit.  Next week, assuming our apartment internet gets figured out, we’ll start posts FROM JAPAN!  Let’s keep our fingers crossed that my next post will be about Japan, and that nothing else of consequence happens in the little time I have left in the states.

So let’s back up a bit.  When last we checked in with our heroes, I had mentioned that with all of our worldly possessions and furniture gone, we would be checking into a hotel that evening.  And as I hit “post” on that one, The Mister came into the bedroom where I sat on the floor so we could review our options.

While The Mister’s Company takes very good care of us throughout the moving process, sometimes the roundabout way that we need to access company resources can prove problematic.  Such was the case in a hotel stay, as we would need to pay for the room out of our pocket first, then turn in paperwork to be reimbursed.  Pairing the slow reimbursement system with the Japan Branch’s system of only one paycheck at the end of each month, we were not setting ourselves up for greatness.  I mean, not totally unmanageable, but not ideal.  

But, we reasoned, we’re young!  We’re spry!  And we’re resourceful!  So what if we don’t have a mattress?  We have a blanket each, and a pillow between the two of us, and those “help you sleep” pills that we’ve been saving for jet lag.  We can just camp out on the floor.  We are a brilliant couple who is about to capitalize on our flexibility in the face of adversity.

We were both enthusiastic about this - at 9pm, we took the sleep aids and hunkered down on the floor in the corner of the bedroom.  And we both fell asleep… for like half an hour. 

Even the extra strength sleep aids couldn’t mask the fact that we were sleeping flat on the hard, cold, floor.  I woke up alone - to the sound of the water running in the bathroom.

I think I had a small (We’re talking infinitesimally small.  Smaller than the Ant Man teaser trailer small) advantage to the sleeping on the floor party, in that I tend to sleep like a vampire - flat on my back.  The Mister sleeps all curled up on his side, and with no mattress to cushion him, his hips were hurting something awful.  So while I didn’t sleep any longer than he did on the cold hard floor, I was at least still groggy from the sleepy pill, while he was wide awake.  And he decided to take a bath.  


The bath ended up being where he ended up sleeping all night.  Not because he had actually intended that when he originally got up, but more because I wrongly interpreted that as his intent when I heard the bath going, and stole the pillow and his blanket to myself, then burrito’d myself up so tightly that he didn’t have the heart to take ‘em back.*

So I “slept” in a ball, The Mister slept in a tub, and in the morning, we checked into a hotel.
click to embiggen
*speaking of sleeping in a burrito of blankets - why don’t they make these for adults? Because I would buy the crap out of that.  

Have you ever overestimated your youth and had it come back to bite you in the butt?  
Tell me in the comments!

today's little language lesson
鮫は、大好きです。
Sa-may wa, dai-ski-des.
I love sharks.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Limbo!

Please don't tell me the Japanese is wrong -
I'm SURE that it's wrong in many places,
but it's close enough to get the point across,
so it's done.
There’s the point in an international move where you will find yourself in Moving Limbo.  A purgatory of relocation, if you will.  As I type this, The Mister and I are coming to the realization that we held out as long as possible, but our Moving Limbo has begun.

Moving Limbo is a weird space to find yourself:  After months of preparations and working like a dog to make sure everything is in place, now is the time when most things have already been set in motion or completed and all that's left is to wait.  Except we still have that original momentum, still feeling like we need to keep running for the finish line to do a ton of stuff.  This can be good, as it means I have time/ inertia to knock some unimportant, but useful things off the list; like making a sign for Mac’s flight crate, or working on outlining what we’ll need grocery-wise when we arrive and translating those items into Japanese so we can ask about them in the store.  It can also be a little maddening to have all this seemingly “wasted" time.

All of our belongings have shipped, save for a suitcase of clothing and a blanket for each of us, enough pet food to get both Mac and Bub through until they fly, and Mac’s giant dog crate.  Also Bubba has this box.  As all of his other worldly possessions have gone, he’s become fairly protective of his box.  

(fun aside, The Mister was not thinking clearly when he packed his clothing - with shipping time-lines, one is supposed to pack enough in a suitcase to get by for about a month.  The Mister only packed few shirts, a pair of pants, and some socks/ boxers.  He is going to be SO excited in March when sweaters/ additional pants, etc. arrive)

Because our apartment abroad will be furnished, and because most of our American furniture wouldn’t fit anyway, we sold all our furniture here.  We held out on the people who bought the bed as long as possible, but they’re coming to get the mattress today (which has been on the floor for us to sleep on for a month now).  Admittedly, I’ve found floor-sleeping is doing wonders for my lower back.  Nothing says “you’re old now!” like being excited about my back feeling not achy when I wake up after a full nights' sleep.

Meanwhile, Mac and Bubba had their final vet visit yesterday.  It was a brief exam and then a MOUNTAIN of paperwork to check, double check, and sign on the dotted line.  Those papers have been overnighted to the USDA so the boys can be certified like sides of beef (really it’s a certification that says they’ve been Rabies free for 6 months and are vaccinated - it serves as their quarantine, and will keep them from having a formal quarantine upon arrival).  After raising two very well-behaved critters, I was a little dismayed to see the tantrum Bubba threw at our last visit earned him a note on his chart:
punk.

What all of that means, is this morning The Mister and I woke up to this reality:

It is time to finally check into a Hotel. 
HOORAY.
King sized beds for everyone! ...for a week.  And then no more king sized beds for three years!


Have you ever under-packed for a trip?  
What did you do?  
Tell me in the comments!  
(so that I can pass some sage advice along to The Mister!)

today's little language lesson
すみません、果物はどこ ですか
Sumi-ma-sen, kudamono wa doko des ka.
Excuse me, where is the fruit?

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Catastrophic Customer Service.

9 days until The Mister leaves.  13 until Mac leaves.  15 until Bubba & I leave.



I just want to crawl into a ball and wait it out.  There's so many stupid, asinine, superfluous things left to take care of, and none of them actually feel like their completion is making progress toward the goal of just getting ourselves from A to B.  Admittedly, a lot of this is my anxiety talking.
Just waiting for something to light the fuse.

I remember this feeling from when we were about to go to Mexico.  It's a level of stress that makes me a supremely unpleasant person to be around.  I can't answer anymore questions about "aren't you excited!?"  because right now I'm not.  And I can't really focus on anything going on with anyone else because I have literally a thousand other things I have to focus on - they have to get done in the next 10-15 days.  The Mister's co-workers are throwing us a "going away" party on Friday and I am already amped up about how much I don't want to go and put on a "everything is super spiffy!" mask for the whole time.

Unfortunately, my instinct to just avoid contact with the outside world works really well on making me not a burden to everyone except... The Mister, who is also stressed out of his mind, but only recovers from breaking the monotony of check boxes on to-do lists through contact with other human beings.  Opposites attract.  And then spend the lead-up to international moves trying to not kill each other.  Ah, love.

Side note that is slightly related?  I have woken up every morning this past week with an *NSYNC song stuck in my head.  I have no real way to explain why this is happening except to connect it with the weird stress dreams?  I don't know.

Do you ever wake up with a song already stuck in your head?  
What song?  And Why?  
Tell me in the comments!

Anyway, one of these stupid little check-list things was making sure Bubba can come with me as a carry-on in 15 days.  If you're curious, the steps for cat as carry-on are thus:
  • Make sure the little fuzzball's got his customs import paperwork in order.
  • Make sure YOU have a ticket on the plane.
  • Make sure he hasn't gained too much weight to be too big for the carry-on sized carrier (just barely checked that off).
  • Call the airline a few weeks ahead of time and let them know the cat is coming along.
  • Day of, give the airline extra money as a penance for being "that person" on the plane with the cat.
Now, you may remember that last time I took Bubba on a plane I live-tweeted the experience.  I will do this again (@KpQuePasa) on the 5th of February, so look for that.

He's going to be so pleased we don't have to go through the whale-song tunnel this time.
It should also serve as proof that I have some experience in this department and was well aware of these steps when I called Delta two weeks ago to notify them of Bubba's accompaniment.  Here is the conversation I had with the "Customer Service Representative," which is in air quotes for maximum sarcasm emphasis on how poor her customer service skills were.  We'll call her Linda, because that sounds good, and also because she mumbled her name so poorly upon our initial introduction that I couldn't write it down.  (This sucks because I would have written Delta in a heartbeat about her.)
L: Hello this is Delta, my name is Linda, how can I help you?
Kp: Yes, Hi.  I’ve got a flight to Japan coming up in early February and I plan to bring my cat with me.
L: That’s not our issue, you have to do the customs stuff with Japan’s government.
Kp:  Yeah, I know, the customs work has already been done, I’m just calling about bringing the cat on the flight as my carry on.
L: You can’t do that unless you tell us you’re doing that.
Kp: [I paused here because, is this not obvious?]Yes.  I know.  That is why I have called.  To tell you.
L:  Well I don’t see your flight on my screen.
Kp:  I’m… sorry?   [was I supposed to somehow manipulate her computer from my phone to fix this for her?] I have the flight number and my seat assignment.
L:You’re in business class.*
[significant pause, because she did not add anything to this statement and I really thought she was going to.]
Kp:  Yes, I am in business class.
L: *Exasperated sigh* well you can’t HAVE a cat in business class.  You’re just going to have to find someone to take care of him while you’re gone.
Okay I have to stop here for a second.  I'm guessing she does not have a pet, because anyone who has ever had a pet would not be so cruel and abrasive to immediately jump to "this incovinences me so she must GET RID OF HER PET."  Also full disclosure, my brain immediately switch from "more flies with honey" being nice mode to "oh, it's ON, bitch" mode right at this second.

What would you have done if a stranger just casually demanded that you get rid of a pet?  
Tell me in the comments!
Kp:  Listen up.  That is not an option.  I have already taken care of all of his other living arrangements abroad.  If I can’t have him in business class I will downgrade to whatever class will allow him.
L:  I can’t do that for you, there’s a seat change charge.
Kp: Then I’m hearing that you CAN do that for a fee.  Is that correct?
L:  Well yes, but you have to pay for the cat, too.
Kp:  What do I need to do to change the seat?
L:  UGH. [<- are you kidding me, Linda?!] Hold please.
[After 5 minutes of hold time, she returns]
I can’t change your ticket.  [The Mister's] company booked it for you.  They have to change it.  And then you have to pay for your cat.  And if you don’t give us notice that cat is not flying on the plane.
Kp: Wow.  Really.  I’m pretty sure we established that I understand the notice policy.  I’m sorry to have inconvenienced you so by trying to, in fact, give you notice.
L:  Ma’am, I’m not sure what you’re missing.  You can’t give notice because this cat can’t be in business class.  
There has never been a more perfect place for this gif right here.
Kp: Yes, I do in fact, get that.  I’m going to get off the phone now and actually fix the situation.
L:  Don’t bring your cat with you and just expect him to get on the plane!  You have to PAY.  It won’t happen.
 And then I hung up on her.  Because I’m pretty sure I wasn’t the asshole in that scenario.

So that was fun.  The Mister's company got my ticket switched around, and I called yesterday to get Bubba on their record, and spoke with a much nicer dude who made sure we had all I's dotted and T's crossed.  We're set now.  Annoying though, that a checklist item which should have taken 5 minutes took two weeks.  Ugh.

today's little language lesson
Watashi no hobākurafuto wa unagi de ippai desu.

*You know what the one true bummer of this whole thing is?  Like, I understand if they've put a no-go on cats in Business class.  I don't like it, but whatever, I don't own the plane.  

However, The Mister's company pays for me to fly business class -aka the section where you get a fully lay-down-able bed and personal space- ONCE.  And I had to forfeit that to sit with Bubs in the section where I have zero leg space and a little TV in the back of the seat in front of me.  Which will inevitably burn out my retinas because they dim the cabin lights for the flight and I will just sit in the dark and play sudoku on a tiny, bright screen for 13 hours.

Friday, January 16, 2015

I fought the lime and the, LIME won.

In a quick break from Japan-prep-talk, today I bring you this stupid story:

If you have any familiarity with legit Mexican cuisine, you may be familiar with limes.
It is not uncommon in Mexico to put a bit of lime juice on EVERYTHING, and it's a habit that The Mister and I whole-heartedly adopted after living in Monterrey.  We always have a small bag of limes on hand for whatever dish we decide needs a little extra zing.  Truly it's delicious.  Give 'er a try!
I know this is supposed to be a joke,
but I would legitimately try lime juice
on everything pictured in this gif that
 is a real food for people.

Want a free, easy brunch recipe?  Here you go:

  • 2 hard boiled eggs, diced.  
  • 1/2 Avacado, also diced.
  • Lime Juice.
  • salt and pepper to taste.

It's amazing, I promise.  Also a bit fatty.  But the good kind of fatty.  Or something.  Whatever, I like it.

About a week or so before Christmas I was making said brunch for myself.  I took out my lime to slice, and about three seconds later I was looking at the knife as it sat; not on the cutting board between two lime-halves, but more like deep in the middle of the pointer finger on my left hand.
It didn't so much hurt (at that point) as it was just really startling to see a knife IN my finger.

Here's what I want to know about YOU, dear reader:  
How do you react to accidental self-harm?
Tell me in the comments!

I've never been a fan of knives.  They give me the heebie-jeebies.  My anxiety almost always sees a knife and immediately takes my imagination to the worst possible scenario of what could happen while said knife is in my line of sight.


  • I anxiously argue with The Mister at least once a week over whether he needs to use the sharp knife when he could use a butter knife for cutting things.  
  • When I was in college, I took a printmaking class (who am I kidding, I took ALL the printmaking classes; Herr-Professor-Taylor-Sir for LYFE!*) and one of our projects included linoleum carving. 

linoleum cutting tool of choice.
We got about a thousand heavy-handed reminders from our prof to always make sure we're cutting AWAY from ourselves with the tool, only to watch the girl sitting next to me accidentally jam that damn thing straight into her lower-thumb-meat.  I'm pretty sure I silent screamed I was so upset.  She just calmly asked to be excused from class, but I was traumatized.
  • Somewhere in The Mister's data files, there's a video of him convincing his new girlfriend to take a video of him while he tries out his new sushi-knife, even though she's pretty adamant about being uncomfortable with such a sharp knife around.  He pretends to cut off his thumb as a "joke," and the video ends with the camera begin thrown onto the counter so I could panic properly by yelling every swear word I knew and running far away from my thumb-less future husband.
You get the point.  Knives creep me out.  People getting cut is a horrible visual.  Knives are the most statistically probable item to cut a person.  And so it's all kind of logical in a crazy sort of way.

It's not just knives, though.  When I get a meager paper cut, The Mister will be the first to tell you that I go to Scarlett O'Hara level fainting drama.

Everything is ending, the world is over.  Might as well start digging my grave, if I didn't believe that cremation (for me) is a far more responsible way to go into the great abyss.  Stoke the coals, I guess.

Similar reactions occur for stubbing my toe or accidentally poking myself in the eye because I forgot my glasses were on top of my head and I tried to habitually push the bridge back up my nose.  A horrific, painful death is clearly imminent, and nothing will ever be good again.

Then a butcher knife** slides off a lime-rind and into my finger deep enough where "stitches?" is not an out of the question reaction.  And my immediate reaction?



TOTALLY FINE.  NOTHING HORRIBLE OR TERRIFYING HAS HAPPENED. AT ALL.
I yelled this as I applied enough bandaids that I couldn't see the cut bleeding through the bandaids anymore.  That equaled somewhere around 10 bandaids.  I figured the yelling as loudly as possble made certain the powers that be would hear me and make sure my finger was actually totally fine and it wasn't going to get gangrene and start to smell and fall off during a poker game.  This needed to be true especially because I don't play poker.

In the past four or five weeks, I've gone through a family size pack of bandaids.  I learned that you can *kind of* decoupage a finger-nail that you've chopped mid-way through by using clear nail polish and a piece of tissue paper.  But friends, I write this blog post triumphantly today because my finger is healed (mostly, it sort of looks like I have a perma-hang-nail), and the nail has grown out just enough that I can give myself a VERY lop-sided mani-cure.  But it means I don't have to keep a bandaid on it anymore, because now I can't catch the cut on everything.  It's exciting.  Really, stop judging.
Bubba is very excited too.
Have you ever epically broken a nail?  How did you deal? 


*My printmaking prof was a highlight of my college career.  He was a grizzly dude-  if Ron Swanson had Albert Einstein hair and a passion for pottery instead of woodworking, that would be Prof. Taylor.  Studio classes were required to listen to his CD of Toto's Greatest Hits on repeat, and for some reason this never made anyone dislike him, but rather it just gave us all a common bond of being millennial kids who enthusiastically knew every word to "Africa."  At some point, we, as chill art students, started referring to him by only "Taylor," his last name.  
This is a moniker he accepted for approximately half an hour until he paused Toto and informed us stoically that we would refer to him with a title that conveyed proper respect.  We couldn't decide on one title, so we gave him all the titles, and from then on he was Herr Professor Taylor Sir.  He seemed to like it.

**yeah, I know, butcher knife for a tiny lime is maybe a bit on the over-zealous side.  But all our other knifes were dirty.