Idiot Savant: A History

Today was one of those days that was fabulous, but that also provided me with an opportunity to demonstrate the Siemionko genetic heritage of being a book smart person that can’t engage in general life tasks.

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Where does the gas pump go again?

So I may or may not have already told this story, but my father Magoo is incredibly bright. I mean, everyone in my family is smart (and super humble lezz-be honest), but my dad is like, super smart. Like he should wear a cape smart. He has a PhD in inorganic chemistry; I can’t tell you if scandium is an element or someone from Scandanavia (shout out to Marla Bee right there). He helped saved one of DuPont’s businesses and has more patents than I have pairs of shoes.

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Oh my god, shoes.

While Magoo is very book smart, he lacks… certain life skills. Here’s a common scenario of a day in my mother’s life prior to dad’s retirement: Mom gets up with dad, they have breakfast, and he leaves for work. An hour later, mom goes to get in her car…

Except she can’t. Because Magoo took it, because he has an inability to pump gas. Sighing, she goes to the grocery store to buy milk. When she goes to take her cash out, she finds her wallet empty, because Magoo can’t operate an ATM machine.

See where I’m going with this? 

So yesterday, after working on my insanely awesome jigsaw puzzle (oh the thrills of single gay life), I set two alarms on my cell phone because I’m sleeping in the living room for the cross breeze because I live on the surface of the SUN. 

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Salt Lake in June: Pre-gaming for hell.

In any event, I go to sleep, wake up a few times, and then check my phone to see if I have time for a few extra winks only to find out that I set two alarms.

For tomorrow.

So after two decades of schooling and some fancy degrees, I have a small problem with electronics. And literacy. And money, which is not news to anyone since I’ve been vocal about Big G putting me on a budget that reduces most grown men to tears.

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What do you mean Happy Endings is cancelled?!

So oops, I did it again. I was able to submit two grant reports and a request for $50K to Edwards LifeSciences but am prone to forgetting that I’ve already wished someone a Happy Birthday on their actual birthday and not two days later when I think it is in reality. All I can say is that while I am proud of my abilities to engage in cognitive thought at a higher level, I’m also surprised I’ve survived in the wild for this long unsupervised.

Stay classy Salt Lake.

Puzzles, RuPaul and Dunkin Donuts

Just roll with it here…

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I promise, I’ll tie the threads together.

I am beginning to recognize that I heart the trouble triplets that are Willam, Detox, and Vicky like nobody’s business. As someone who has had very little contact with my drag sisters, and given my history of places where you’d think I’d have more opportunities for interactions (you know, New York, Vassar… Utah), I’m surprised a bit by my new love for three men who dress as women, parody pop songs and are generally awful to one another.

In watching the girls in ball gowns waxing poetically about injecting themselves with Fix-O-Flat, I found an apparently well known gem of Willam Belli skewering RuPaul for waffling on whether or not he would be on his Drag Race All Stars show.

ImageYes, there is such a thing, I need to Netflix it.

So I immediately downloaded the mp3 (or was it a mp4, who gets to make up these acronyms anyway?!) and rocked out to it all day, including in my car except for when Ms. Tyler and I went to pick up a file I forgot at home and drove down 400 South to get back to work.

In approaching the intersection by Library Square, the roadway became a twisted labyrinth of perplexed drivers, blinking tail lights, and angry people like me. What was causing the center of the city to literally implode you ask? ImageAre. You. Serious.

Apparently, either Dunkin was giving out free naked people, or they put heroin in their coffee. Whatever the case was, 2 police officers were on patrol, coordinating traffic and trying to ensure that the fewest accidents would occur given the absolute chaos the store opening entailed.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Dunkin, but seriously? A line out the door? A dedicated city lane to get in the drive thru? I’m going to make some enemies here, but seriously, Utah, a new chain donut place does not warrant the same city response as a parade. Get a hobby.

ImageI know. Double-sided, 500+ pieces. Ambitious.

I decided in light of another milestone (to be shared in like two seconds, relax your weave, goodness) I was going to treat myself with something really, really nice. And by that, I mean I went to Deseret Industries (the DI, basically a Mormon Salvation Army with nicer stuff) and perused some of their lovely wares. I settled on the afore-pictured double-sided 70s masterpiece that I am going to attempt clumsily to put together while chatting with the ‘rents and sipping on my voddie-Frescas, which I just decided to start abbreviating to my VFs.

ImageCareful, the one on the left might eat the one on the right.

I know, you’ve already heard it before a thousand times. I’ve lost weight. Like, a lot. After a quick chat with one of our providers, I went and weighed myself for my monthly progress check. In 5 months, I’ve lost 70 pounds. Seventy. Pounds. To put that in perspective, it’s the equivalent of the average ten year old.

I’ve lost a 5th grader.

While I’m pretty pumped about it, I still have a ways to go. Wish me luck. HOLLER. Stay classy Salt Lake!

When a Stranger Calls

So I have fears…   

As does everyone. Unfortunately, those fears run into my more intensive fears of a zombie apocalypse, complicated by factors that involve infectious disease, and before you know it, I’m prepping a 72 hour emergency kit and talking to Big G about the end of the world as we know it. And I feel fine….

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Yep. Call me a Socialist. McCarthy-who?

I know that I have an… active imagination. But after watching a bunch of trailers for movies where the Earth is a barren wasteland filled with my ex-boyfriends, hungry people, and the Dutch, I’m ready willing and able to move down to T-town with Big G and start to preserve some bizness all up in here.

Five years from now, after learning how to tend chickens, keep bees and goats, and preserve fruits and veg I will be the epitome of the quintessential Pioneer Woman.

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By the time the farm is ready, Pioneer Park will be on FIRE.

I am not going to lie. Living with G would be fab (I mean, she sort of owns me) and reconnecting with my family’s history with agriculture is appealing. My great-grand-g’s worked their asses off on farms to not only provide for their families, but to instill an insane work-ethic and to remind their progeny that nothing outside of nepotism and cronyism could outweigh hard work and integrity.

PREACH.

What is even more awesome is the move to urban farming and the fact that, if the worse came to worst, I would have the skills and capacity to take care of me and those most important <Justin Timberlake and Seth Meyer need apply> while staying comfy and keeping the undead at bay.

Which I’ve been in training for, since my inception.

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Those girls need an Atkin’s Bar.

Take home message is: I love zombie movies. Maybe a bit too much. And while I can’t wait to reschedule my date with KimB and her hubby to see Rihanna get swallowed by the Earth, I am also chomping at the bit to watch Brad Pitt trying to fight a giant army of blood-thirsty zombie kindred whose sole interest is breaking off a piece of that Kit-Kat-Bar.

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Break me off’a piece of that!

Stay classy Salt Lake!

Whose Lime is This?!

Lezzz-bee-honest.

It’s almost 1am. I’ve already had a pretty phenomenal weekend so far. While Friday was unfortunate (aka I missed out on going to go see This Is The End), I was able to salvage the weekend with some Pepto-Bismol, my favorite new blankie courtesy of South, and Resident Evil.

ImageSuch a girl-crush on her. Seriously.

Today was fantastic. Good morning, insanely nice weather, and my tummy didn’t cry havoc and unleash the dogs of war. I picked up Alejandro, whose hair-did was flawless, and proceeded to go to the Arts Festival free of charge (thank you websmasters) to look at art and proclaim happily in code which guys I would like to get to know better.

At a recent work event, I shortened “I’d hit that” to “IHT” to make things less awkward and more appropriate. And apparently, the place to go for people-watching is Lib-ary Squared at the Arts Fest. The art was hella awesome, the people watching even better.

ImageWhat? Diddy does it…

A delish lernch and some windowshopping later, I ran home to make another insane pasta salad that I can’t even f-ing EAT for my barbe-queer evening with V, Labee and V’s niece Melis, who happens to be my new bestie.

Knowing full well that V and his cohort are later than a girl 6 weeks after prom night, I puttered around the house, texting Jubbins about her visit tomorrow (I’m hosting some coffee and snackies) and Big G about Family Night Dinner at her place. At 6:45pm, I drove over to WVC to pick up the girls, go to Smyth’s for reinforcements, and then headed out to K-Town for a night of hilariousness.

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I had to MapQuest it and everything.

Here’s the story.

When the girls get together, we get cray cray. We drink, we grill out, and we laugh. A lot. Topics tonight included SNL skits, tumbling down the backyard, and how to insure body parts. I laughed so hard I almost peed a little. When we get together, we have fun, pure and simple. Well, maybe not pure, but you get the picture.

And that’s what has me typing furiously in the middle of the night: the fact that after almost seven years in Utah, I’ve found my crazy niche. I’ve surrounded myself with a surrogate family that makes me laugh so hard my voddie-Fresca’s almost shoot out my nose. Are our jokes bawdy and insider? Hells yes. And that’s what makes them so awesome.

ImageAlso, photos like these with Marla Bee!

So I’m happy. Tired, still somewhat fat but getting there, and happy. I look forward to seeing some old friends tomorrow morning, puttering around the house in the afternoon, and some Boskovich fun time later in the day before facing another work week of insanity. But life is good.

Did I mention I might get a cat? Because I might.

Stay classy Salt Lake!

Another Brush with Kryptonite

While I wish I was referencing going to see the new Superman (but seriously, 12 bucks for a movie ticket, who am I, Bill Gates?), instead follows the story about how for some reason, karma decided that instead of good juju for my antics yesterday, it was going to break out a can of whoop ass.

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Why you gotta do me like that, Heinz?

While I should just list out the foibles of my Wednesday, I enjoy twisting words around and utilizing double and triple entendres to make people laugh. Or cringe. Don’t be a jerk about it already. Let’s begin with the fact that one of my work buddies had their last day today.

Sad. Panda. I would go on and on, but long story short he was one of my closer work-friends and while it’s a good move for him, it makes my heart sad. Couple that with a flu-ish feeling, and you’ve got yourself a nasty afternoon. So, deciding that a good couching was in order, I went to get into my beloved car and drive home early to take it easy.

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And then this happened.

A cautious and attentive drive to my shop in the car that I love (but that is determined to continue to ruin me financially), and SIX HUNDRED DOLLARS LATER, my alternator and timing belt are replaced and I’m one step closer to becoming a patient at my own job. Yes, this means that in 2013 I’ve invested over a grand in my toaster. She is just determined to make her tenth year the one that bass-tapes me like no one else.

Couple that suck salad with not feeling well and a would-be funder asking for a third revision on a grant (seriously? Who DOES THAT?!), and I was in. a. mood. Leaving at 6pm, I try to jump on the freeway to get stuck in bumper to bumper traffic because human beings are fundamentally indecent and just have to know how gruesome the accident was (see my expose on rubberneckers posted previously). I get home to a dirty house, a belly-ache, and edits to the Annual Report.

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Fourth Street, you’re lucky I love ya.

On a side note, noticing my distress my Poppa called and shared some of his wisdom. “See Matt,” he said, possibly intoxicated but definitely onto something, “it was your hair. All of your power was in your hair. Now that you’ve cut it, you’ve lost your energy and your car’s energy. It’s all about the karma.”

Touché.

So, lessons learned. On the flip (and positive) side, two of our former patients/members of our Consumer Advisory Board wrote me a lovely thank-you card and bought me a gift for helping them out with some of their events and for the recent fundraiser, which was really sweet. Miss Tyler was awesome about getting me back to my car when it was fixed, and Marla Bee made sure I made it there in the first place. And my stomach, while not 100% better, is getting there. Plus, it’s not a Bonnie Bedelia-ion degrees outside.

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Yes, Kimbee, she IS a real person.

Stay classy Salt Lake!

The Death and Rebirth of My Little Pony

Badass, I know.

ImageAnd no, I am not talking about Lucky, the beat up black-and-blue little pony that I gave my grandmother when I tricked her into thinking that I had bought her a real live pony. Which was awesome.

God do I love Betty.

No, instead I am speaking of the little ponytail I grew over the last few years in part to make my immediate family clinically insane (crushed it), but also to grow it long enough to donate to Locks of Love, which for those of you who live under a rock makes wigs for poor, sick kids.

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Shhh… It’s a wig!

Sidebar, Honey Boo Boo is no longer poor, and while maybe suffering from a mental illness, isn’t sick either. But I just love when they go to the wig store. Ok, I digress, and this one’s probably going to be a bit on the long side blerg-wise, but stay with me.

For some reason, I’ve always wanted to donate my hair. I mean, it’s lustrous and whatnot, not as thick and amazing as Archer’s but a close second. Something about it was appealing; it’s for a good cause and I’m always growing it anyway so why not do something good with it? And in the meanwhile, watching my parents and siblings cringe at the sight of my high pony/bun combination wasn’t unappealing.

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Yeah. There was a lot of this in Virginia.

So after Marla Bee measured its length (don’t make it weird) and I realized that I could donate it, I called up Landis and scheduled my boojie appointment. I met my new stylist (Chase, who I love, he’s awesome), and he went to work, sectioning off my curly brunette tresses and quickly, before I could back out, lopping them off and placing them in a little plastic bag.

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And yes, in any other case, carrying around a bag of hair is weird.

Soon it was off to the hair washing station, then back to the table where he worked on my weave for over 90 minutes. Apparently, my hair is very clean, and very healthy, and there’s a sh%^-ton of it. So my new guy had his work cut out for him. But we got to chatting, and by the end of the sesh we hugged it out before I left. Who doesn’t love that?!

So I am now sporting a new ‘do, which I actually really like, and tomorrow will be mailing my hair to Florida (again, weird) in honor of all of my friends who have fought and won or are still fighting cancer. It definitely feels lighter, and since you’ve been such a good sport, here’s the “AFTER”:

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I know. Cray cray.

So between that, the move, and shedding the weight of an Orca, it’s a new dawn, it’s a new day, it’s a new liiiiife. And I’m feelin’ good. Stay classy Salt Lake!

Drag Queens and the World News

Heyyyyyy.

Hope all is well out in the technological wasteland that is the world wide interwebs. After a pretty epic weekend (so. fun.), it was back to the grindstone, filing reports for sister agencies and researching foundations for new grant opportunities, all the while listening to some tunes that Big G helped me procure… which may or may not have been sung by drag royalty.

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Hint: It was. I’m addicted.

For those of you who don’t watch RuPaul’s Drag Race, or aren’t a member of the LGBTQQRXYZ1234/whatever the hell acronym it is now, the above photographed are Willam Belli, Vicky Vox, and Detox. Each of them are ridiculously hilarious, and wildly inappropriate. They like to take songs, rewrite the lyrics, and make people laugh. Think Wilson Philip’s “Hold On For One More Day” becoming “Chow Down at Chik’Fil’A”.

Yeah. I know.

Meanwhile, I have been overdosing on NPR these past few days with all of the big stuff going on in the news. NSA leaks. North Korea wanting to chat it up. A new president in Iran (praise Allah). And of course, the Pennsylvanians who rescued a bear by removing the plastic jar it had stuck over its head.

ImageSad Panda! I mean, Bruin! Dammit!

Yes, this actually happened (see here). A group of residents helped him get the jar off, which was stuck on its poor head for 11 days. ELEVEN DAYS. He was apparently still strong after the jar was removed even after that ordeal. All I can say is bravo to those residents, because I am not going to lie, approaching a bear that is probably pissed and hungry is not my strong suit.

In other news, I got a ridiculously good deal on Southworst to go home to Virginia (that fabulous old capital of the Confederacy) in the fall to visit with my family. I typically go back east each year in October, giving the hellish heat of the summer time off to my coworkers <you’re welcome> because they have families closer by or young kids that require camping trips and the like.

4b079cd6-16f8-4fa1-abae-eac7373ea9b1Oh winter wonderland, how I miss you.

So I’m excited. I get to see my sibs and parents outside of the context of a funeral (I know, dream big), and give big kisses and hugs to the rug rats that continue to amaze me in terms of growing up fast. To put things in perspective, my Sadie-bear, the eldest and easily the boss of the cousins, wasn’t even in the belly when I moved here. She’s going into first grade next year.

Can’t even handle it.

More soon, I’ve got all kinds of news and drama that I can’t wait to spill all over this BLERG. Over and out, stay classy Salt Lake!