Figuring out what I wanna be when I grow up.
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Saturday, August 11, 2012

Underpants. Freaking Underpants. The Vacation Ends With Underpants

Hello everyone!  Tis I:  Karen The WRINKLED RAG!

I have returned from my FAMILY VACATION!

I have a lot to chat about, and I know how you guys get all annoyed when I can't keep it brief, so once again, I will divide my family vacay post up into short "bathroom reading" segments, like all the best bathroom reading books and magazines do.  I do this because I lurv you.  But, you know that.

First of All: A Welcome!

Everyone, before I went on vacation, my super fun friend Mark let me stink up his joint.  That sounds crude. He let me do a guest post on his blog.  It's funny too, because while Mark is hilarious, he's also far more mature than I am, and it's kind of like my blog is the Value Village to his Pottery Barn.

Anyhoo, I gained several lovely new friends from visiting Mark's blog, and then I immediately went on vacation, and I didn't get to say hello, or welcome, or here, have a butter tart square.  So to my new friends, welcome.  I can be very funny. I can also be a major drag.  You've been warned.

Ask Lizbeth.  She Knows

Do you know my friend Lizbeth at Four Sea Stars?  We both have kids.  She has more. But...she has a son, as I have a son. My son is somewhere vaguely on the Autism Spectrum, and her son has Aspergers.   Maybe my son has Aspergers.  Whatever.  They are about the same age, and damn if Lizbeth and I haven't lived a LOT of the same frustrations and daily melt-downs and freak-outs.

This is not to say this is ALL our sons do (melt down and freak out), but this means that a family vacation is a TOTAL F*CKING CONTRADICTION IN TERMS.  Family vacation.  Pppft.  This means that even though our kids are excited for summer time family fun, there will be plenty of angst and strife and tears and screaming, and maybe some good old fashioned US getting pummeled by THEM because, say, Jack was away from his routine and away from his COMPUTER all week.

So, when I wrote my last glib little post about "oh, I'm all sugar plums an smiles I'm going on vacation!" Lizbeth said this:

Ok, I have to ask because this is important----is it a vacation with the whole family? Because in my book, that's not a vacation. That's a metric shit ton of work. Well, either way have fun and tell us all about it when you get back!!!
♥     ♥     ♥
I kiss you from afar, Lizbeth.  She understands, of course, why I had a total breakdown on Wednesday.  But I'll get to that.
I kiss you as well, my other Spectrum/Special Needs parents.  Oh yes I do, with the inside part of my lips.

Grownups Don't Like To Swim NEARLY As Much as Kids Do

Every year, I gotta whine about the same thing.  A vacation for me means sitting on the deck, in the full sun, with a ridiculously strong drink, and a ridiculously filthy book.  

It does NOT mean ENDLESS SWIMMING.  I mean, you've just been in the green, algae-choked lake ALL AFTERNOON.  Who then turns around after dinner and says; "let's go swim in the slightly chilly quarry!!"???  And yet, that is what I did each day.  And it doesn't matter if I've been in there for an hour, carefully trying to push the algae/water-plant gunge that has collected between the front material and liner of the hoot cups of my bathing suit, down to the bottom of the hoot cups, so it doesn't look like that chunk of trapped gunge is a giant NOPPLE, for an hour, the kids still want to keep swimming.  

They want to swim until I want to weep.  They think it's fun to splash water in your face.  You get a foot in the gut as they're SHOVING OFF.  When you try to splash them back and show them how obnoxious they are, they cry.  And YOU are the one who looks like a douche.  

You also look like a total creep, when your son grabs the pool noodle filled with quarry water and tries to blow it into your face, and you grab the other end, and you have MUCH better lung power, so you blow a lung-full of water right down the poor kid's yap, and for a second, just a second, you are FREAKING DELIGHTED BECAUSE YOU HAVE WON! BOO YAH! I'M THE KING OF THE CASTLE! NYAH NYAH NYAH NYAH NYAAAAAH! SUCK IT KID! THAT'S WHAT YOU GET FOR MAKING ME WANT TO PUT MY HEAD THROUGH A WALL ALL WEEK!   Shameful.  So very shameful.

which leads me to...

Guess What! We Can't Get Polio Anymore!

Yeah, I was so tired this week.  After I had the pool noodle showdown with Jack, and won (poor little guy. I am truly a monster) and he was coughing, and sputtering, I became HORRIFIED, and wondered what a good drink of quarry water could do to him.  

So, I abandoned logic and reason, and immediate jumped to POLIO.  I started to feel all sick and panicky, and I said to my sister, as she was floating by;

"oh my god. Could Jack get POLIO if he swallowed that much water???"
She of course looked at me like I was an idiot.  A crazy idiot.

"UH, NO, he's had his VACCINATION.  We're all vaccinated against polio."

Oh yeah!  OH THANK GOD.  OH MERCIFUL MOTHER OF SNACK CAKES, how could I have forgotten??

Like I said, I was very tired.

Ew, I Smell So Gross

Vacation comes with a whole other set of rules.  They are different from what you live on a daily basis.  

1. It is imperative to wear the same underpants at least two days in a row.  Most of the time will be spent in your bathing suit anyway, because the second you come in the trailer from that TWO HOUR SWIM, you will be immediately required to a) rinse some sand-covered kid off in the shower, or (and this is more likely) b) MAKE SOMEBODY SOMETHING TO EAT.  

Children are always hungry.  You?  You can easily get through the whole afternoon on a couple of whisky and cokes.  

2. It's just plain stupid to wear a fresh shirt every day.  Who's going to wash that shirt when you get home, princess?  That's right.  YOU.

3. By the end of the week of swimming in a lake, your bathing suit will smell GREEN.  VERY GREEN.  WEIRDLY GREEN.  When you ask your husband to smell your hoots, it will not be sexy, because those hoots will smell like a swamp lady's hoots.  It's okay though to keep wearing that same bathing suit though: see rule #2.

Just Because You Go On Vacation Does NOT Mean Autism Does

Autism is a mean mother-f*cker.  It does NOT go on vacation.  This means that your kid may have been looking forward to this trip for months, but when you get there, he is still going to FREAK if there's a fly in the trailer.  

He's also going to LOSE HIS MIND because you had the nerve to take a few minutes to put on sunscreen.  

He's going to have a good fight with you every day at some point.  Maybe it's because you're a total jerk, and decided the whole family should hop on the golf cart and go see the little Saturday morning market.  This fight will last twenty minutes complete with begging, screaming, rage, some punching, insisting you are an IDIOT, begging to be allowed to just sit on the golf cart with a grownup, begging to stay at the trailer.  Lather, rinse, repeat.  

I was calm for days.  Days and days. I was reasonable.  I was patient. I was determined.  Then, many nights of total shit sleep, being woken up too early and, well, endless fights took their toll.  Things rolled right down the toilet on Tuesday night (we'd been there since Friday), when the golf cart battery ran out of power right before we were supposed to motor on over to the trailer my sister was staying in for a bonfire.  

We were jerks.  We were mean.  How could we let the golf cart battery run out of power?  Why did we have to charge it up again?  This was the worst day ever!  We're IDIOTS!!!  Picture volcanoes and hurricanes and stuff.  It went on and on until he broke me. This is usually a good sign.  Usually after my little guy breaks my spirit, things look up again.  He was really great the rest of the week.  I was like the trailer park after the tornado.  

Stupid Hair

I hate my hair quite often. It annoys me so much, I've considered time and time again doing a whole blog post about it.  When I'm at home, I work my sexy mop look, but as soon as I hit that lakeside humidity, I turn into THIS

cute if you're FIVE

and ESPECIALLY this:

looks about right

You get the idea.


I'll tell you what is not awesome:  getting your period on the EXACT DAY your vacation starts and having it until the EXACT DAY your vacation ends.


But,  I once again have to recommend the Diva Cup.  I lurv it.  It kicks tampon's ass.  It makes maxi pad look like a total loser.  You know how you're out there in the lake, and your tampon is sucking up all that bacteria water?  Yeah, well, Diva Cup tells that fecal coliform water to EFF OFF.

I'm going to go kiss my cup now.  I'll be right back.  

Dear Jillian Michaels

Dear Jillian Michaels,

Surely you know how much I love you now. I've been working out to your videos for five months now, because turning 40 sucked big rods, and I was afraid of hitting that milestone as Saggy Dough Karen.  That and I'm wicked scared of death, and will do whatever it takes to LIVE FOREVER.

Anyhow Jillian, I am very, very proud of myself.  I brought two of your workout videos with me, and I worked out ON MY VACATION, EVERY DAY except for one.  The only day I didn't work out was Wednesday, and that was because I was broken.

All day long I heard you saying in my head; "we are stronger in the places where we are broken," but I call bullshit on that. I think it's easier to chip into our core at the places we are broken, but whatevs.  

Fondly yours,


The Humiliation of The Underpants

People, when I work out, I typically wear a tank top, sport bra, some sporty form-fitting black shorts, and underneath those shorts a GIANT PAIR OF UNDERPANTS.  

I like giant underpants. It's my secret thing.  I have kept the TRIPLE X beauties I wore when I was pregnant with my daughter.  I like them.  They are like giant cotton shorts.  They allow air to flow freely over my lady garden.  I wear them UNDER my workout pants so I don't get a wedge, and to wick the sweat away from my body, mm-kay?

So, after working out that last time, I hung all those clothes on the back of my bedroom door.  I sweat a lot now that I am fit.  Like, a shocking, disgusting amount.  I become shiny.  Glistening even.  Wait!  Don't go! I'm getting to my point!

When it was time to leave, I cleaned that damn trailer.  And then I walked around, and around and around looking for anything I forgot.  Something was nagging at me, but I had looked into every nook and cranny in that joint.  

Then, the lady who owns the trailer called a couple of hours after we'd been home. She lives in town too.  We'd forgotten some things: my little container of brown sugar, my workout clothes, and MY ENORMOUS UNDERPANTS.  

I was very, very tired when we returned people. I was stirring defrosted spaghetti sauce, in my apron, with major bags under my eyes. When The Man got off the phone and told me, I 


That was the last straw.  My freaking underpants.  That girl, who is slim, and clearly a GO GETTER if they are that young and own their own trailer in wonderful resort land, and who showed up with highlighted hair, and a really cute strapless summer sun dress--that girl had to pick up my enormous underpants.

And, there's no sign on that pair of giant gitch saying "no, really--they don't fit me anymore!"

And oh my god, it reminded me of that time in Driver's Ed, in the classroom, when this young hottie next to me said; "um, excuse me, there's something sticking out of your pants," and it was YESTERDAY'S FREAKING PAIR OF UNDERWEAR, and I said; "oh! Ha ha! It's  A SOCK!" and I tried to cram that thing into the smallest ball ever in my fist and...and....

Yeah, I totally started crying.  I ALSO hid in the bathroom upstairs when she came and dropped my gitch off.

My sister says that was NOT worth my tears, but I know Y'ALL feel me on this.

And THAT, my friends, is how my vacation ended.  Can I claim my reward now?


  1. wow talk about an exhausting vacay I'm totally ready for a nap but must say you had me giggling about the underwear thing to funny.

    1. exhausting it was, becca. Actually, I'm still exhausted, but I'm glad you enjoyed my underpants horror :)

  2. Damn Karen you can make me burst out laughing. The underwear got me. It is a good thing you don't have to go on vacation too many times during the year.

    1. You know what Alaina, that is a very ironic yet true wish: that I don't go on vacation too much this year. Blech.

  3. I kinda understand why my mom doesn't like swimming now.

  4. What an ordeal! Sorry to hear your vacation was that tough, but you put it in such a way, it is very hard not to laugh... welcome back from the vacation! I would say 'welcome back to normal', but we all know 'normal' is just a setting in the drier machine.

    1. thanks very much Tanner! Forgive me for not visiting your blog yet. I am still in FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT mode with my kids and I never get a freaking turn on the computer.

  5. OMG - see? You are totally Wonderwoman! Come here and lie in the sunshine and I will bring you drinks and porn all day long. I've missed you and your enormous underpants and disgusting period cup thingy! Sarah xxx

    1. thank you lovely Sarah. I have missed you too, and all your serenity and gorgeous coloured fashionable wisdom.

  6. I found your blog through Mark and I have to agree, you are very funny. Thanks for giving me a glimpse into your life. It's a bit like a carnival ride, exciting, scary and there's a couple of screams along the way. You remind me of my favourite aunt. She's 85 yrs old, goes to Curves every morning (keeps her limber but she hasn't lost any weight) and she's coming to Scotland with me next week. Auntie has a way of describing the ordinary and making it hilarious. She says that being able to laugh keeps her young. If that's the answer to long life, then I predict you'll never grow old. Keep up the blogging, you've got skills girl!

    1. why thank you Anonymous! I particularly enjoyed you likening my life to a carnival ride! That also would include the carnival dirt. Very appropriate!

      Oh, have a wonderful time in Scotland with your aunt! I wish I were there right now. Alone

  7. there really is no such thing as a family vacation, it is a cruel, exercise in futility.if you want some relaxation you have to go somewhere with adults, chocolate and for the period curse, i always get mine on vacation,even when i had it two weeks before, it still comes,whats that about?maybe now that you are home you guys can ship the kiddies off to a granparents house, where the little demons suddenly become angels, and you can get some you can see i have been hating summer, how much longer till school, as homer said "you are the governments problem now" lol.

    1. Paula, I often think of you on a family vacation, and I KNOW that you sympathise. Oh yes. Kids are going to their grandparents tomorrow, THANK GOODNESS.

  8. can i call you captain underpants now?
    i've got to be honest. most of my hiney covers are enormous now too. i haven't been able to afford new undies since i've lost weight and since they fit comfortably 60 lbs ago, they clearly are either magic or they are getting large and droopy. let's go with option B, kay?
    i'm sorry you had to meltdown on wednesday. i think you should schedule your meltdowns for earlier on in your vacas since they make jack act better afterwards.
    btw, i've never seen that peewee clip before. funny!

    1. kar, i just put on a pair of old underwear cuz i'm doing laundry and i don't want to have any of my good ones dirty before i leave on vacation. then i looked in the mirror and laughed cuz i look like i'm wearing a freakin diaper. now i'm looking at my diaper panty and thinking of you.

    2. I would prefer to be called ADMIRAL Underpants. Yes, that has a better ring to it. Sherilinnie, I'm so glad you too have ugly diaper undergitch. Maybe we'll throw our yucko underwear out and buy all sexy new ones, yes? Yeah, probably not.

      It's a funny dilemma to keep needing new clothes eh? I mean, ultimately it's GREAT, but it sucks financially! Hope you're having a wonderful vacation--the complete opposite to mine.

    3. i'm pretending my vacation was wonderful because i don't want my family to feel that it sucked for us or that their money was wasted in taking us along. but honestly, a cruise with an aspie kid was less than fantastic. the snorkeling without brooke or chris was by far the best part of the whole week. every other moment of it was spent trying to calm down or appease or satisfy someone and not giving a thought to myself. i thought vacations were supposed to be relaxing and you'd come home rejuvinated. i came home with lots of pretty pictures and a few nice memories a bunch that i'm trying to forget.

  9. I plan "meltdown day" when I go on vacation, and I don't have kids. Because I am going to melt down. There will be time change. I won't be able to sleep. I won't have enough money. I am tired of eating out. I don't want to brush my hair. JUST LEAVE ME ALONE SO I CAN WATCH PAWN STARS.

    I think it's just part of being on vacation.

    1. Oh Leauxra! I have those meltdowns too! Let's hug! Yeah, I hardly need any help from the kids, so when THEY'RE factored in to the equation...shudder.

  10. Hi Karen, I'm new, thanks to Mark.
    A few things:
    1-I love the Pee Wee Herman underpants epidsode! A few years ago I got my children the giantest underwear I could and now they too make themselves be nuns or ride a swing!
    2-I think my middle boy must be on the spectrum too, not enough that teachers have pointed it out, because he's deathly afraid of being sent to the principal's office so he's VERY GOOD in school, but at home he's all ROUTINE and OBSESSIVE ABOUT SOMETHING (we've gone through phases of lawn mowers, money, presidents, Star Wars, etc.) and stubborn and tantrum-y. He's 11 now and I think he's relaxing a bit (and even joining things!) so I don't know, but he's made our home life...difficult. I'm looking forward to hearing about Jack, and I understand when you say you've been worn down.
    3-I just love your blog. You are so funny, and I can't wait to read more of you!
    4-If you go to check out my blog, I am private,but I am a real person!
    5-Go put on clean underwear. You deserve it.

    1. Hi Beth! Nice to meet you! I will LOVE to check out your blog. I'm dying to check out everyone's blog who's been over from Mark's and my TYRANT children are totally hogging our one computer. It's very stressful, but DAMN IT, I will get there.

      Yes, I see you understand about a "difficult" home life. Sigh. I'm feeling particularly deflated right now as I type this.

      I'm wearing clean, albeit ripped underwear. Sigh. I learn nothing, apparently.

  11. Karen - Why in the world are you afraid of death? Death is the end of all this. !

    1. I think it's the damn process that's so oogy, Jeanne! Shudder!
      Excellent point though, as always :)

  12. Hi,
    I'm new and a friend of Mark's. You are hilarious my dear and I can't wait to read more.


    1. thanks very much Rachel, and welcome. I appreciate you stopping in!

  13. Hilarious... at least you're a Trooper and still go on Family Vacations in spite of the expected outcome. I'm not laffing at you, only with you, I can totally relate! We quit going on Family Vacations a long time ago... now The Man tries to hide out in Alaska doing Wilderness Tours for City Folks for part of the year when he's well enough and my 'vacation' is a day a Month having Girl's Day Out locally... this entails neither of us taking the Children. We learned that early on with our own Special Needs kids and Vacations from Hell... including the time when The Son {who had mildly moderate Autism and is Bipolar AND ADHD} threw himself down the stairs at the Circus Circus Casino in Vegas and then when Security showed up said his Sis & Dad had pushed him down the stairs!!! He's 26 now, yes, we allowed him to live in spite of almost sending us all to Prison if they'd believed him. *Winks* That's just one of many wonderful Family Vacation Stories of the Past. Now that we're raising the G-Kid Force we decided no more Family Vacations... EVER... even if that means the only Vacation I shall ever have now is Death! *LOL* Unlike you I am not wicked afraid of it, it may be the only respite I ever get... *Le Sigh* Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian

    1. damn it Dawn, you are a FREAKING WISE WOMAN. Why DO I persist in these FAMILY VACATIONS??? Oh man. I'll never learn. Stupid idealistic fantasies.

      Wow, you have been through it too woman. Here, I'll pull up a chair and get you a cup of coffee. I make excellent coffee.

  14. omg, I feel for you in the pond from hell. yuk.

  15. Oh Karen. I'm sorry vacation had some meltdown moments. I'm also sorry I laughed about your swamp hooters and big ole underpants. I would have cried too.

    1. Vesta, thank you. See? I knew someone else would relate to my underwear horror. Take THAT sister of mine who said it wasn't a big deal!!!

  16. Oh God, I can only imagine... The discomfort of being covered in algae and sand coupled with major meltdowns sounds like a nightmare. As usual you've done brilliantly! Swamp woman tits made my day

    1. too bad you couldn't ART swamp woman tits, eh Miss Simmonds! No way, that's gross. How dare I suggest you devote you fabulous skills to something so gross.

  17. Oh darling Swampy Hoots, what a time you had!
    Holidays (the ones with kids, that is) are vastly over-rated in my book. It's like being at home, except without the home comforts, or your pals around to make it bearable...
    Cute Go-Getter Girl will come to the Big Pants in time, don't you worry.
    It's all over now, you are home, no one has polio, you don't have to swim in gunky water any more, your cup didn't runneth over, and all is well.
    Till next time.... Ha!
    Missed you! xxxxx

    1. thank you Curtise, you always say it all with such eloquence. I've missed you too!

  18. Oh, my gawd, I love Pee Wee!!! But, for serious, if that was the only time you cried during your vacation, then you are a champ!

    1. yeah, but I still have some serious post-traumatic stress or whatever from that trip. That's for damn sure. How are you woman? I'm way behind in reading you! I'll get there damn it!

  19. Girl... you need a vacation from your vacation! I just got back from mine as well, where I left my 17 yr old whining, cranky, irritable (yep, they never change) son at home with his father aka he chillaxed with his buds all weekend & graced his father with his presence only to ask for money. Either way, I enjoyed every second of my vacation & some day I wish the same for you!!!

    ps... I'm a zumba instructor & I LOVE my big ass granny panties! Nothing like picking your sweating crevice when trying to shake your sexy thang!! So I'm with ya sister... no sexy work out panties for me!

    1. You're a zumba instructor! That's awesome!!! I would love to get into Zumba. It looks so fun. I want to find a good Zumba video maybe, and see how that works for me. Your vacation sounds much better than mine. Mine was hideous.

  20. OMG--was that your pair of giant underpants that turned up at my slumber party in 8th grade?! Sorry we put them in the freezer. At least that probably kept you cool during your workout, right?

    PS LOVED this post. Now I don't have to go on vacation. I can just relive yours right here.


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