Bite Fight

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That’s him. That’s the guy.

I’m a pretty agreeable person and get along with most, but if I had to choose a nemesis (which I believe should be a requirement at age 18, and I’ve expressed this to my local government officials), it would be the mosquito.

I’ve had a long, hateful relationship with mosquitoes. As a kid, I can remember hating the onset of summer, knowing it would mean legs covered in bites, tubes of calamine lotion, and public pools (yick! but that is neither here nor there). On one occasion, I counted 40 bites. I was about 12 years old and lanky, so there was a lot of surface area for the bugs. They probably high-fived one another as they saw me, before feasting on my flesh.

After hearing me complain as a girl, my aunt once said something to me like, “they’re just eating you up ’cause you’re so sweet!” Then I showed her the mounds of bites across my body and watched her gag at the sight.

Well, last night, my old friends paid me a visit. I was in that lovely place just before a dream begins when I got a ‘zzzzzz’ in my ear. I snapped awake, shaking my head and swatting at my ear. I turned on the light and looked around the room. Finally, I found him posted on the ceiling, all smug like a character on Boardwalk Empire. I grabbed a tissue and stood on my bed, trying for the mosquito a few times. I’m sure this did not please Barbara, the bitter old biddy who lives below me. I followed the ‘squito as he flew from the ceiling to the wall. With one angry slap, his tiny body smushed onto the wall.

“Got you,” I said under my breath, like a creep. I smiled, wiped up his remains, and threw him in the trash. I got back into my bed, ready for a victorious night of sleep.

I was probably asleep for about 4 hours, when I got another buzz in my ear. “Stop it!” I shout-whispered, as I sprung to life. I turned on the light once again, but this guy was nowhere to be found. I walked around my room, tissue in hand, searching for him for about 30 minutes. If anyone had come in, they would certainly have thought I was a crackhead. I was hunched over, far too alert for 4am, and mumbling things like “where are you?” and “come on back, friend.” I would find him as he flew across the light yellow backdrop of my bedroom wall, then lose him as he flew past dark jackets and towels hanging from hooks. These moments were the worst, the most hopeless. I thought I might never sleep again.

Finally, I cornered and pinned him. This time there was blood.

I got back into my bed, knowing that I had just secured my space in dreamland.

30 seconds later, there was a buzz in my ear.

“Please stop it, sir,” I pleaded, barely swatting. I was exasperated. It was after 4:30, and just knowing that this a-hole was flying around my face would keep me up, not to mention the bites that I’d suffered over these hours. My arms, leg, and even butt boasted a mark from one, some, or all of these disgusting jerkflies.

I turned on the lights and rubbed on some cream, hoping I didn’t have West Nile virus. I would have surrendered, if I could, but I just can’t sleep with little creatures buzzing around my head. It’s just too scary. The mosquitoes had to die. All of them.

As it was late, and I was weak with delirium and West Nile virus, I tried a different method. I had no time to chase this guy around. I needed aid. I went into the kitchen and grabbed some all-purpose cleaner. Nothing on the bottle mentioned anything about killing bugs, but I just had a feeling this was the key.

I walked back in, scanning the room. When I finally found the mosquito, about 10 minutes later, I calmly walked over. He flew a little to the side. He was jumpy, anxious, and he knew he was too fast for my sleepy human arms. I extended my arm, as he flew back to the spot he’d been, then over a little more. I pulled the trigger. Schwooomp! He splayed across the wall. The force and speed of the spray were enough to kill him. I had won.

I wiped the wall with the disgust of a cop cuffing a black teen caught speeding (or doing anything). I pulled the sheet over my head, as the sun began to peek through my shades. 5:15, my phone read.

The next night, I sprayed a bit of bug spray onto my arms before getting into bed. I was not bothered and slept very well (probably because you’re not supposed to spray that stuff inside, and I just passed out). As summer approaches, I can’t help but feel that I am absolutely screwed. I will have to leave my window closed from here on out, and any outdoor suggestions by friends will be met with resentment. But as long as I have my all-purpose spray, I’ll be able to show those suckers who’s boss.

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Break a Leg

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I love Prolia, no bones about it.

Poor Blythe Danner. She loves the theater. And she used to love when people said, “Break a leg!” But now that she has frail, old-y bones, she worries that maybe she will break a leg. Or perhaps a hip. During a live performance of Arsenic and Old Lace. 

But thanks to Prolia, the osteoporosis drug for which Danner is the spokeswoman, she doesn’t have to worry (although she should probably still take it easy). Blythe is one of several celederlies (a word I just made up that means elderly celebrities) pushing drugs these days.

Sally Fields (who I can’t believe is old, because I still think of her as the mom from Mrs. Doubtfire) is the spokeswoman for Boniva, another osteoporosis medication. She is, obviously, Danner’s nemesis.

Paula Deen, who is old AND kind of fat, recently “came out” as a diabetic. I was as surprised as you were. Conveniently, the same day that she announced her diabetes, she began getting paid to talk about what she was taking for her diabetes: Victoza. If Deen was cool, like my girl Blythe, she would have incorporated a play on words in her ad, similar to the “break a leg” joke. Maybe the commercial would start with “Pour Some Sugar on Me” playing, and Deen would say, “I used to love doing that. But not since my diagnosis…” then someone would rattle off warnings and side effects. The camera would cut back to Deen. “Now that I’m on Victoza, I can love this song,  just like I used to.” The song would play in the background, as she unhinged her jaw and dropped a five pound bag of C&H right on in there.

Bob Dole was once the spokesman for Viagra, which I was too young to appreciate when it was announced. I never saw this commercial, despite my love for “Nick at Nite,” but I imagine that maybe it took place in a courtroom. The judge says, “All rise,” and everyone stands up, except for Dole, who just looks at the camera and smiles.

There are also younger celebs who endorse things, like Alicia Keys and the Biebs, with their unruly acne, pushing Proactiv. But you don’t have to ingest that, and I don’t think it counts. One day, though, these entertainers will age, and their bodies will start to fail them. You’ll turn on your TV to see a grey-haired Kristen Stewart sitting with a friend on her “front porch,” sipping sweet tea.

Friend: Penny for your thoughts.

Kristen: Oh, I’d just love a penny. [turns to camera] But I can’t think of a thing, what with my Alzheimer’s.

Then she’ll explain her disorder (we’ll all have it by then, but the explanation will be nice anyway…since we all have it) and tell us what she’s taking to keep things on the up and up. (That porch scene was just a flashback. Silly us!)

Instead of Proactiv, a balding Justin Bieber will try to sell us on Pro-bactiv, a medication for bacne.

Dakota Fanning will be the face of Botox, selling it like it’s her job (and it will be, because her extreme use of Botox will destroy her ability to memorize lines. She will use cue cards in the ads).

The Cali Swag crew will all suffer from a mean case of Restless Leg Syndrome, and there will be something really stellar for that, so they can finally stop Dougie-ing.

I’m really looking forward to hot, young celebrities getting old and diseased along with the rest of us. By then, I bet there will be some new diseases from which we all suffer, which means there will be some new drugs we’ll all need to take, and God willing, there will be some amazing commercials to steer us in the right direction.

It’s Ya Birthday.

My birthday is Saturday, May 12 (thank you, thank you). I was struggling to think of a blog topic, as I’m turning 25 and felt pressure to write some profound, quarter life enlightenment post. Oddly, though, I had no urge to write about myself (I may be stricken with a case of the humors). So, I did a little research to find out if any celebrities share my birthday. My findings were pleasing, as it seems I am in extraordinary company.

Among deceased legends like George Carlin, Florence Nightingale (not the lady from Florence and the Machine, turns out), Katherine Hepburn (we share a love for trousers), and Yogi Berra (who was apparently a human and not a cartoon bear…bummer), I am joined by some truly bizarro C list celebs.

1. Jason Biggs. Biggs is best known for his college romp, American Pie, and least known for American Reunion. Once, I recall seeing him in a movie where models farted. I thought that was funny. I don’t remember the name of the movie.

2. Mary Kay Ash. Yes, that’s THE Mary Kay. This old broad (God rest her soul) is the founder of your aunt’s second favorite makeup dealer (next to Avon). She had women across the country riding dirty in pink Cadillacs. Most of us know someone who sells this stuff, and if you’re really unlucky, Mary Kay may have put you through college.

3. Ving Rhames. Rhames is the super-jacked black dude in Pulp Fiction. If you’re black, you may know him from Baby Boy. He also has a movie in post-production called Pimp Bullies, so you’ll want to check that out.

4. Stephen Baldwin. (Booo, we want Alec!)

5. Emilio Estevez. The Mighty Duck Man himself.

6. Kim Fields. Kim is my favorite birthday buddies, and it’s not just because we’re both sistahs (I should use this term more often…I sound really good when I say it). Most people probably know her as Tootie on The Facts of Life, but I fell in LOVE with her on Living Single. Living Single was like Sex in the City with realistic characters, who had real jobs, and were black, in Brooklyn, in the 90s! Did no one clock how progressive this show was?

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We are living (heeeeey) single. Oh, and in a 90s kinda world, I’m glad I got my girls.

Regine was the sassy, curvy, boutique buyer, who stays fly, no lie. I remember loving this show as a kid, and as an adult I love it even more. As a little girl, I liked Regine the most, because I thought she was the prettiest (stocky, by Hollywood standards, but I didn’t even know that then…this show allowed me to not know that!). Now, I like the show because…Regine was the prettiest. The lead character was Khadija James, played by Queen Latifah, who was and is a big girl. But she dated men who were, as they say, foine. Max was a hilariously brash lawyer with short dreds. Work! And Sinclair was a silly and fun-loving actress, also with a full body. And this was on Fox? From 1993-97?

Kim Fields, if you’re reading this (you probably aren’t getting much work if that’s the case), thank you. Than you for being part of an era of television where blacks got airtime on network TV (programs like The Cosby Show, Fresh Prince of Bel Air, and even Family Matters come to mind). And thank you, and your cast, writes, and directors, for allowing women who weren’t traditionally beautiful to hold lead spots in a sitcom. It is only now that I realize that Living Single was ‘the bomb.’

Ha! I tricked you into reading a piece on race in the media. And you thought you were reading a birthday post. That just fully drifted into another realm.

In conclusion, you can send any gifts to my job, because sometimes I don’t get packages that are delivered to my apartment.

I’ll talk to you when I’m…25.

Are You Smarter Than a 2 Year Old?

Yesterday, I found myself watching the teen edition of Jeopardy, and not to brag, but I killed it. I was like, “what is a helicopter?” “who are the Greeks?” just dominating. There were a few questions that stumped me, though. Generally, they were those focused on sports and animals (who knew I was so confused about the world around me?). I thought these kids were pretty smart, being that they were 13ish, and I’m 25, and we were about on the same level. But today, I learned about a child that is even smarter than those teens who know that a ‘chauffeur’ is the French word for someone who drives people around (I feel like Teen Jeopardy could be a lot harder).

It turns out that there is a tiny nerd who was admitted to Mensa (the world’s high IQ society, for those of you who are obviously not in it) at age 2.

Gross is right. But you want the full story. Trust me.

Emmelyn (that’s not a name) Roettger, according to an MSNBC article, “knows that another term for cell division is ‘mitosis,’ and that caterpillars turn into butterflies through ‘metamorphosis’.” I honestly thought butterflies were adult tadpoles. This girl knows far too much.

However, in the first half of her life (meaning the baby part), her parents were concerned, because she seemed to have developmental delays. She would not make eye contact, play with toys, or crawl. It sounds to me like she was just completely over it, but her parents and doctors thought she was showing signs of autism.

Turns out the kid just needed glasses. This poor genius was about to spend her life blind and in special education classes, had it not been for a ‘hunch’ her mother had when the child was 9 months old. These parents, and the doctor, must be really embarrassed. Here they are showing off their genius baby, and they weren’t even bright enough to think that maybe her delays were due to vision problems, and not a developmental disorder. I feel like I see babies in glasses all the time. Their parents and doctors were able to figure out what the problem was. Come on Roettgers!

It’s not going to be any fun for these parents when Emmelyn (sigh) learns that her parents were about to put her on medication and send her to a special school, instead of just checking her eyes and throwing on some specs.

I do feel for the parents, though. The only thing worse than a baby who’s not that cute is a baby that can speak and think. Speaking is for toddlers. You don’t want to get lip from a baby. Trust me. By now, she probably already knows as much as they do. By the time she’s in elementary school, she’ll be reading Proust and smoking Pall Malls.

The article states that the parents are not in Mensa (no kidding) and never expected to birth a genius child. They must be deeply PO’d. They’re just normal people (the article states twice that the mother is a former sixth grade science teacher–the reporter is also not in Mensa) who probably wanted to have a little girl who was a decent student, played a couple of sports, and maybe liked to eat graham crackers. Instead, they have to deal with this kid:

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She sometimes likes to wear a space suit during family outings...

Life is not going to be easy for this little girl or her parents. She’s going to get picked on, and she’ll probably make her parents feel like huge dopes on the daily. She’ll wear that space suit until she gets too big for it, and then she’ll find a bigger–more accurate–space suit. She’ll know more about bugs than people, and she’ll probably keep that haircut until Freshman year of college.

One day I hope to be a parent, and I really hope my kid isn’t smarter than me, at least until he or she can drive. If my kid does prove to be smart (unlikely), I hope he or she leans more towards Teen Jeopardy smart than Emmelyn smart. Then, we’ll at least be able to talk about “what is…meringue?” and “who are the Titans?” Because I don’t know the first thing about mitosis.

For more pictures of Emmelyn in silly outfits, visit MSNBC.com.