maarmie's musings

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Tropical storm be damned!

Today I brave the aftermath of Tropical Storm Ernesto as I head to Clearwater/Tampa for a weekend of geocaching, comedy clubs, the beach - maybe?, good food and visiting with my brother and an old friend.

This old friend is named Pete - he goes by Peter since he moved to Denmark. I met him in 1988, I believe, when I worked at Publix Supermarkets. I was a cashier. He was a bagger. I had a HUGE crush on him and love, love, LOVED it when he would bag for me. Then this geek named Ike (Isaac - but his nickname was altogether appropriate - think Turner) came on the scene and pushed Pete out of the way. I ended up dating Ike off and on for three years. Ike was the first guy I ever had sex with and was the only guy who ever beat and raped me. Nice first boyfriend memories, right?

After all the beating and the raping was behind me, I hung out with Pete a few times. I was living with a couple of roommates, working at Wendy's and going to community college. I have only good memories of Pete, however hazy, and I think this weekend will be good.

We'll be having dinner tonight. Tomorrow morning, we're meeting for breakfast before he heads off to the airport. He's married now, though, so there'll be nothing exciting happening between dinner and breakfast. Unless we get in a car accident or one of us breaks a leg or something, that is.

The rest of the weekend will be spent with my brother. If it isn't raining, we'll be going geocaching (for those who don't know what geocaching is) and we hope to catch a show at a comedy club. At minimum, we'll be going to the movies, I'm sure. In any case, I'm bringing two of my LSAT study guides for downtimes.

Wish me luck driving to Central Florida. I'm thinking there will just be bands of rain, but you never know.

I'll have plenty of photos for your viewing pleasure when I return. And you know me. I can turn opening a jar of mayonnaise into a grand adventure. Or maybe I'm just easily amused.

Monday, August 28, 2006

I need to learn how to cut hair

I just paid $17.95, including tip, for a five-minute haircut. I'm serious. I left the house 15 minutes ago to get my hair cut, and I'm already home.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Law school update

With a little less than five weeks until the LSAT, I have plenty of studying to do. I got a lot done last week, but my steam petered out this week. Instead of studying, I spent my time adding a couch to my office and rearranging the rest of the furniture there to make room for it; reading other books (excuse: These will be due soon, so I better get them out of the way); hanging out with Michael; and sleeping. The Princeton Review advanced logic skills guide is kicking my ass, and I'm worried that I won't do well on the actual test. On the upside, my book of 10 previous REAL LSAT tests arrived as well as an addition one: the actual June 2006 LSAT just administered - along with the correct answers. I haven't looked it over yet, though, because I wanted to learn more before I tackle the real thing. I also don't want to get thoroughly discouraged until the week directly before the exam. That way, I can spend my last week crying and wishing for death, wetting my bed and drinking lots of alcohol to get my mind off my impending doom.

On the upside, here is a list of things I HAVE accomplished:

Transcripts: FSU and St. Petersburg College - check

Recommendation letters: Three of my four recommenders have copies of my resume and a three-page essay on what makes a good law school recommendation letter. The fourth recommender will hopefully receive the packet this weekend. All have or will be given a directive to have the letter completed and mailed by mid to late October.

Criminal/driving record check: I paid $10 to get a copy of my traffic infractions e-mailed to me and checked the public records in Leon and Pinellas counties to see how many traffic tickets I've had. I checked to see how much the tickets were so I can classify them as "major" or "minor." Only "major" ones have to be disclosed, but every school has a different definition for "major." I also looked into getting my criminal record sealed or expunged. I won't go into the fight I had with my dad when he INSISTED on taking care of this by TELLING me he would have his lawyer buddy look into it and then come back with a bunch of noninformation that didn't help me at all. All I'll say is that - after I found out how worthless my father's help would be - I made two phone calls and found out everything I needed to know. A few days ago, I mailed my check for $1.50 to the Pinellas County clerk of the court to get an official copy of the disposition mailed to me and ordered an application from the FDLE to get my record sealed. Since a ruling was made on the case (adjudication withheld), I can't get my record expunged until it has been sealed for at least 10 years. ARGH! I'm hoping that an admittance of all my misdeeds on my applications won't hurt me too badly. After all, I'm sure most people have SOME kind of blemish on their records.

Picking out law schools: UM, Ann Arbor, is still my top pick, but I've also been researching other schools. UT, Austin, is my second pick. I've also been looking at American University and schools in Wisconsin, Chicago and Boston. It all depends on my LSAT.

Personal statement: I also need to come up with a personal statement. Tricky. Some schools require it to be two pages long, some require up to four pages - double spaced. It can be about anything, but it needs to be original. I've read that it shouldn't be some dried-up old "why I want to go to law school" screed. But the ones I've read on line (examples of GOOD ones, supposedly) are all about why the people wanted to go to law school. DOUBLE ARGH!

I'll keep pecking away at it.

So that's my update for now. I'm going out of town next weekend to visit an old friend who lives in Denmark now. He'll be in town for a business conference, and I'll be spending next Thursday night with him. Then, I'll spend the rest of the weekend and possibly Monday with my brother. My parents will be out of town. Darn. I won't be seeing them.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

I never knew I was such a hardened criminal

Up until last night, I thought of myself as relatively innocent. It's interesting how the mind works.

Looking over fall 2007 law school applications last night, I came across a section that's similar on all the applications: criminal/driving record. They want to know if I've ever been arrested, and they want information on all "major" traffic infractions. Crap.

Well, I was arrested for underage drinking when I was 19. But I was told at the time that if I paid a $75 fine, the arrest would disappear from my record - as if it never happened. All this time, I have lived under the assumption that my criminal/arrest record was clear. WRONG!

I searched the criminal database for Pinellas County last night, and there I was. 1991. Underage drinking. No contest. Adjudication withheld. $75 fine paid. It's still there!

I paid $19.95 this morning to get a record of all my traffic infractions in Florida. There are plenty, some I don't even remember. I also searched the free online database of traffic infractions and came up with a few more. Those, combined with a speeding ticket in Oregon (which wasn't major) and the whole speeding in a work zone debacle in Illinois (definitely a major infraction) will leave me with two or three major infractions to add to law school applications.

I don't really know what can be done about the major traffic infractions, but I definitely intend on getting that arrest record sealed. It shouldn't even be there in the first place, and I'm really upset and wondering if I can even GET IN to law school. I feel like such a loser, but I never thought I'd be having to list traffic infractions or even misdemeanors on my applications.

THIS SUCKS BIG TIME! But I'm still going to take the LSAT on Sept. 30. I think it's valid for more than a year...

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Smoky returns?

So this putrid smell started off as this faint odor and grew and grew into this awful imposition until today when my friend Michael showed up unexpectedly and I got him to figure out the odor's source. I knew it was in the kitchen. I just didn't know where. The fridge is spotless. The cupboards? Nope. Oooh. Yep. Michael confirmed it. It was coming from the stove. Nothing in the stove. Nothing on the stove. Move the stove. Nothing behind the stove...except....rat droppings. Unscrew the door that would have been a drawer under the stove. Nope. Take off the burners and plates. Nothing there...except...rat droppings. Argh! Then.....

This little panel on the back of the stove that could be unscrewed. Michael took the screw out and pulled off the panel door. The stench! Fur! Gray fur! Smoky?

A little tiny rat was in this little tiny cubby in the back of my stove. It had long since been dead and was rotting away, its fur dried and shrivelled up and dropping off in clumps. The rat is in the garbage can outside my neighbor's front door now, but a bit of the stench remains. RIP

LSAT progress

On Sunday, I bought two LSAT guides. I'm done with the learning portion of the Kaplan guide, but I have yet to take the three practice tests at the end of the book. I still need to go through my LSAT for Dummies book as well, and I ordered a copy of the June 2006 LSAT and a book of 10 previous LSATs from the Law School Admission Council (LSAC). All the tests come with an answer key and explanations of the answers.

I spend a big chunk of time each day studying for the LSAT. I still need to pick the schools to which I'd like to apply, though. Michigan, Florida State and the University of Florida are the only three I have decided on so far. I guess I'd like to see what kind of LSAT score I get before I make a final decision. I'm planning on applying to about a dozen schools.

Also on my mind: a personal statement and recommendation letters. I will be needing four letters to go along with my applications. My boss from the Oregonian has agreed to write one for me. Getting people for the other three won't be a problem.

I understand the need for confidentiality as far as the letters are concerned. If the applicant has a chance to read the letters, there is a greater chance the letter writer would be less than 100 percent honest in his or her evaluation of the candidate. I get it. But it's more than a little scary to mail a form to someone in Oregon knowing she can write whatever she wants about me before sending the letter directly to people who will be deciding my future. That's trust.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

LSAT = September 30

I signed up today. I have six weeks to study. The Kaplan LSAT guide and LSAT for Dummies better come through for me.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

UM Ann Arbor and other odd ramblings

My recent other cockeyed plans have fallen apart after just one of two days of mulling, but this law school plan is becoming more concrete every second I think about it. The more I chew on the idea, the more I feel that taking this step would be taking the next step toward my destiny, that this was always meant to be my purpose, the reason I was born. I've tearfully asked myself that question many times in the face of lifelong rejection by my family. I've allowed my own deep well of pity to overflow and engulf me. Why was I ever born, anyway? I'm pretty sure that's the question that has plagued me most throughout my 34 years of being me.

I grew up learning about men's superiority to women, and, as a result, I grew up hating women and denying my own femaleness (what does that mean, anyway?) in an effort to be a second son to my father. I have always prided myself on my "masculinity", and it has taken me a lifetime to realize that my strongest traits need not be categorized as such. Why can't being "female" include being strong, intelligent, fearless? When I was a kid, it was unthinkable, so I played rough and tumble with my brother and his friends. I didn't cry - or, at least, I didn't let anyone SEE me cry. The thought of wearing skirts or dresses repulsed me. Instead, I wore faded corduroy pants handed down from my brother. I played in the bay when the tide went out, walking barefoot on painfully shelly sand bars, messing with fiddler and horseshoe crabs. I dug in Dumpsters with my brother, spent my spare time playing basketball, football, running and roller skating. To be "male" was good, I learned both covertly and overtly. To be "female" was to be inferior.

I also learned about racism from an early age. It was nothing to hear the word "nigger" being bandied about at family functions and to hear all kinds of racist and sexist jokes being openly told among family members to rounds of laughter I was too young to understand. As I grew older, I began to understand these jokes, and, while I don't remember ever laughing along with the rest of them, I distinctly remember not disagreeing or even actively thinking the jokes - and the beliefs behind them - were necessarily wrong or untrue. If someone rewound the tape of my life and I saw myself smiling or laughing then, it wouldn't surprise or shock me. It would, however, reinforce my horror at the destructive cycles families repeat over and over and over.

The United States is superior. Americans are superior. This is also something I grew up to believe. Of course I can see these beliefs don't originate with my family. They originate with the culture. In so many subtle and not-so-subtle ways, Americans are taught from the time they are born that their way of thinking is the right way, the good way, and that the rest of the world falls short in terms of how to run a society, how to conduct business, how to exist as individuals. Americans are very good at making fun of anything that is different. Of categorizing "different" as "inferior." Of having a "my way or the highway" attitude. And we back it up with firepower and brute force. To me, that is the first sign of just how inferior we really are.

If you start talking about God and Jesus in front of me, I instinctively tune out as urgently as if my life depended on it. Organized religion scares me simply because so many people I have known (and been related to) have used religion as a crutch for unspeakable thoughts, viewpoints and deeds. Hypocrites, most of them. I'd rather see them in coffins, dead, than hear one more word from any of them. Though I don't subscribe to any kind of organized religion, I still feel that everyone has some kind of purpose on this planet and that our jobs are to figure out what that purpose is and to spend the rest of our lives fulfilling it. I've always thought - and have told others - that I feel my purpose is to help others, even at my own expense. Always, always. Even from the age of 10 I have been sticking up for the underdog and have been shunned and mocked as a result. It seems most people like to side with the winning team and that, for them, loyalty is something that can be taken away as easily and quickly as it is given.

I've always wanted to change the world, and law school might be the way to do that - or at least try. My whole life I have told those around me that I can't stand how things are, how power is distributed, how so many people are treated as second-class citizens, how the white male wields all the power and uses it in ways that horrify me. As a result, I am not interested in specializing in environmental law, corporate law, international law or intellectual property law. Public interest - civil rights - law is the only kind of law that draws my attention, and the University of Michigan Ann Arbor - ranked at number nine in the country for law schools - apparently has a very good public interest law program. My undergrad GPA is a smidge below the school's median range, and a lot of where I go will depend on my LSAT score, but UM Ann Arbor is my top choice right now. The tuition is steep. Classes alone cost $35,000 a year, the same as Harvard Law School. If I go there, I will have to get some kind of scholarship, and I'm hoping that my years as a journalist combined with my current job experience and my volunteer choices would make me a highly desirable candidate.

The school also has a kind of dual enrollment curriculum that would allow me to get a law degree AND a master's degree in a discipline of my choosing (sociology with a focus on gender) in four years - instead of three for the law degree alone.

So, here I go. I'm going to pursue this. First step: Buy an LSAT study guide and prepare myself for the test in December. Concurrently research other schools so I can apply to at least 10 of them when I get my score back. I'm not going to get my hopes up hugely high right now, though, because I'm going to have to forget the whole idea of law school if I do poorly on the this test.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Not ALL lawyers are bad, right?

I interviewed a lawyer about his experiences at law school. His memories go back 20 years, however, so I think I'm going to be interviewing some of the younger lawyers here as well. I'm pretty sure I've got it figured out. (big breath) I'm going to law school - if they'll have me.

For the past year I have known that I want to go back to school, but I haven't been sure if I want to go to law school (my first thought) or to get a graduate degree in public policy, sociology (focus on gender), or psychology. Considering my personality (huge ego mixed with self loathing, highly argumentative, inquisitive) and considering the things I value in this world (truth, justice, equality) it seems that a law degree (focus on civil rights) is the logical choice. Not that I'm all that logical. Oops. That can't be good!

Strange that I am who I think I am (all the good things in the world) yet I choose careers that most people revile. People hate reporters (someone made a cross sign at me once as if I were the devil), and people hate lawyers. I'm drawn to politics as well.

After my little vacation, I'll be buying an LSAT study guide and taking the test. Then, if I like my score, I'll shop it around to different law schools. I'll be needing a scholarship, so that will limit my choice of colleges. I hope all this works out. It seems that my experiences the past couple of years have been leading me right to this point.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

My laziness has finally paid off

I just returned from a trip to Bordes where I was on the hunt for The Betrayal Bond by Patrick J. Carnes. They didn't have the book in stock, so I had to order it. I had planned on sitting my lazy, cheap ass on a couch in the cafe and reading the entire book cover to cover, but, since I now have to wait for the book, I had lots of time to kill. After a quick tour around the music section (most of the featured music there sucks) I made my way to the new fiction, nonfiction, memoir and original voices racks and got excited when I saw a stack of a new memoir I'm waiting on at the library. I won't reveal what it is now. You'll find out when I have it in my hot little hands. I desperately wanted to buy the new Writer's Market guide, but stopped in my tracks when I saw the price: $50. It's definitely worth it. I'd like to write some lighter feminist-type/empowerment stuff for teen magazines and some heavier stuff for women's magazines - and maybe some travel articles - and make money.

As always, I ended up in the magazine section. I'm looking for a cool art magazine to subscribe to. Sadly, the ones I saw focused on single mediums. I'm looking for a magazine that showcases modern works in all genres from painting to sculpture to experiemental video and interactive art. No deal.

Of course, I had to pick up the latest issue of bitch magazine - especially since I saw an article on sex workers and a trade magazine dedicated to the oldest profession made by and for its workers: Spread.

I've been interested in prostitution from a feminist perspective for quite some time. I used to be hardcore against it, keeping in mind that a majority of sex workers work in unsafe conditions and do degrading acts while exposing themselves to possibly fatal diseases and violence for a pittance. My brother and I got into an argument about it once, though. His attitude is that the government expects women to give for free something that men very much want and are willing to pay for: pussy. If women can make money on it, he argues, why should the government step in and tell them that's illegal. Rape is barely illegal. Why should prostitution be?

I sit squarely on the fence here, though I feel like prostitution is an answer for some women because other alternatives don't exist. I feel that the reason it's an alternative for women is that there's such a demand. I think there's such a demand because of the way too many men view women. I think too many men view women in a certain way because of society. I think society perpetuates certain beliefs because it benefits those in charge: men. Things are changing....slowly, slowly. I hope.

Anyway, I moved on from the rack holding Adbusters and all the queer magazines to the music rack. From there, I went to the news magazine rack and flipped through the Atlantic Monthly to look like I'm informed then turned my front registerward. As I rounded the edge of the magazine stands, I saw a bright orange cover. I almost kept going. Then I stopped. U.S. News and World Report 2007 Edition America's Best Graduate Schools covering everything from business to law to medicine and more. Kaching! My week-and-a-half of lounging in my apartment NOT researching law schools wasn't such a waste of time after all. It's all here in one handy dandy guide. HA!

Now to take the LSAT...

And get a good score...

And get a scholarship.

Do they have a magazine for these things?

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

He had me at "hello"

The second I laid eyes on him, I began sizing him up for the tuxedo he would buy for our wedding. I studied his hair, his teeth, his eyes - imagining what our two daughters and son would look like when they were babies, children, teens, adults. I hoped they would have my nose but his eyes. DEFINITELY his eyes. Then he spoke his first words to me: "Hey, sweetheart. Regular oil change?"

Oh. Don't listen to me. I made up that last part. Someone else asked me if I wanted the standard service, some lowly oil jockey. The guy on which I had pinned all my hopes for my future marriage and family was the MANAGER of the place. He ran the show. A man who can make decisions. Large and in charge.

I talked about him before, but I didn't update my readers on how our relationship has progressed. I really think he's going to pop the question any day now. Wait. I think he probably already did. Years ago. To someone else.

I gave him my number. He called me and asked me to lunch. He stood me up. I threw away his phone number. He called with some lame excuse. I accepted a second request to meet up. He said he'd call later that week. He never did. The end.

Savia was right. I should have waited outside his workplace and followed him home and hid in his bushes until he wasn't looking then snuck in his house through the unlocked sliding glass door and crouched in his closet til he was asleep then slit his throat as he let out his first snore. I mean, I should have kicked him to the curb the first time!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

What I did while I was sick

I've been burning through my sick days lately thanks to a nasty little virus that's been terrorizing our office. I already thanked the knucklehead who must have given it to me (he's a lawyer - of course he's not to be trusted with an illness) and have been spending most of my time at my apartment for the last 11 days. That includes weekends, of course, but I've still demolished the 70-odd sick hours I've been sitting on.

With all that free time, you would think I would have accomplished something. I've been flirting with the idea of going to law school. Did I buy an LSAT book and start studying? Did I research law schools? I've been wanting a new job. Have I been checking my Internet sources for jobs in other states? That's a big N-O. Is it possible to actually decomplish things? To be so inert that not only do you stand still but that the tide actually drags you out and you find yourself lagging five miles behind where you once were? If so, that's what's happened to me during the last week. Just when I get into researching something on the Internet, I'm lulled back to my bed, drawn by a grown man making motorboat noises to a laugh track or Shannen Dougherty getting stalked by an ex-boyfriend on a movie made just for Lifetime. While it makes me happy to think of that nasty bitch getting shot in the back, I'm sure there are better things I could've spent the week doing other than:

Eating - a lot. Ice cream, sodas, salads, chips, chicken with broccoli and cheese, lasagna, tacos, cake, cupcakes, popcorn, Lean Cuisine, soup, bread, eggs, potatoes, turkey, Chinese food (my favorite: shrimp lo mein and two eggrolls/fortune: "Luck will visit you on the next new moon."), etc.

Reading - The first 480 pages of a book about a woman who, while on a bicycle trip with a friend, got run over in her tent and hacked at by a crazed hatchet guy in the late 70s in the Oregon desert. Crime never solved. Woman goes back to solve it herself 18 years later. A news magazine. That's it.

Shopping - New grip tape for my tennis racquets, new sports clothes for my Sporty Spice look I'm going for these days, shoes (I passed up on a CUTE pair of Sketchers), music (Cut Chemist/The Audience's Listening) and a DVD (PJ Harvey on tour/Please Leave Quietly)

Taking medicine - On top of my once-a-day Celexa, I've been popping Doxycycline for my cold/bronchitis/whatever, Polymyxin B Sulfate and Trimethoprim ophthalmic drops for my pinkeye, saline nasal spray for my stuffed up nose and lots and lots of Tylenol Cold capsules, Tylenol Sore Throat liquid (for day AND night) and Walgreens brand Nyquil crap so I can (kind of) sleep.

Watching TV and movies - I've watched men dive with great whites, bats avoid predators, Oprah spread her cheer and tears, Dharma act wacky against Greg's normality, Rory grow up and go to college, a home full of tacky broads vie for Flava Flav's attentions, Hef's girls throw him an 80th birthday party, Carlos Mencia do his thing, etc, etc, etc. I've never watched so much TV in my life.

It's turning my brain to mush.

I'm dumber than I was two weeks ago.

If that's even possible.

I'm going back to work Wednesday.

Even though I don't want to.

I have to get out in the real world.

That's why I hauled my ass to the laundromat today.

And did four loads of laundry.

So now I have clean underwear.

And clean sheets.

And clean grown-up clothes.

What? Oh, I gotta go. Doug and Carrie think they're pregnant, and Carrie's not happy about it. Not one bit.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

What I just saw on TV

A really cute commercial that dragged me right in - until the end when I saw it was an ad for WAL-MART ORGANIC!

I'm so ashamed.

Stinkeye, pinkeye

I've been home sick with a chest/throat thing for the past week, but I woke up at 4 a.m. today with a whole different kind of problem. I knew it the second I tried to peel my eyes open. Yep. That crustiness felt familiar. And the thick liquid around the eyes. In the mirror? Yep, the familiar pink.


I had pinkeye once before, when I was younger and dumber and much, much poorer. Those were the days when I'd tried to survive on a pair of contacts that had a notch ripped out of one of them. I thought then that the notch was what was causing the redness and watering. I thought that for longer than I probably should have and just took the contacts out (and went blind - no glasses!) hoping my left eye would correct itself. It didn't, and I woke up one morning with that eye crusted shut. I went to the emergency room (I didn't have health insurance) and, $100 later, I had a little bottle of eyedrops in my hand that cleared up the pinkeye in no time.

This time, I didn't waste any time with getting to the doctor. Thank goodness for urgent care on the weekends, because I now have some antibiotics for my chest/throat and that little bottle of yummies for me crusty ole eye. My left eye must be particularly susceptible to infection as she's the only one that's gotten red and watery both times. She doesn't do me much good fer seein' either! Might as well get er taken out and buy me a patch to cover up the 'ole! Argh!

My throat is killing me, and, if I feel back on my tongue far enough (just before I start to retch) I can feel these huge nasty bumps. I can barely swallow, and the doctor used the word "bronchitis" and, when he had me do the cough thing with the stethoscope on my back said, "woah!"

I'm in sad shape, people! Looks like I'll be taking MORE time off work. I need some cheer, so send all monetary donations, flower arrangements, cans of chicken noodle soup and stuffed monkeys to: P.O. Box 5555, Tallahassee, FL 55555.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Close but no cigar...

A friend (who happens to LOVE cigars) found this on Wikipedia:

Little Women is a novel by Louisa May Alcott published on September
30, 1868, concerning the lives and loves of four sisters growing up
during the American Civil War. It was based on Alcott's own
experiences as a child in Concord, Massachusetts.

- - - - - - - - -
"Marmee": The girls' mother and head of household while her husband is
away. She engages in charitable works and attempts to guide her girls'
morals and shape their characters.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

I love it when you touch me down there

Schmutzie's recent post on one of her least favorite extracurricular activities has jolted my brain into activity and given me a topic to steal, er copy. I mean write about.

Crotch doctors! Gotta love 'em. Since I've moved around so much and since I faithfully get an exam every year at least and every six months at most (HPV - I have to worry about cervical cancer), I've had my fair share of them. Males. Females. Those who do the lubed-finger-up-the-butt trick after. Those who don't. Those who take forever and a day prodding and searching. Those who are in and out faster than a beam of light. I don't like those ones who take their time. I don't. I don't. I don't. And after having ones that are in and out lickety split (I know it's possible!), I developed a spiel for every new crotch doctor I see:

"Alright. I want you to go in and come out as fast as you can. No taking a million years. I want you in. And out. Got it?" That usually gets a smile and laugh. But they never dawdle when I hit them with that.

The worst part about lying there naked, spread-eagled with a piece of cold metal shoved up my crotch is the fact that I'm lying there naked, spread-eagled with a piece of cold metal shoved up my crotch. Sure, some doctors have warmers or run the speculum under hot water before they insert it. Wow. So generous. Is it weird to give a doctor a tip? Psyche!!!

Second worst is the fact that I am lying there completely helpless and moaning and groaning about my lot in life (I'm kind enough to warn the doctor first that I will likely stage a coup or, at the very least, annoy the fuck out of him/her) and there's some person, some STRANGER, doing things to me that, frankly, I don't like. A Q-tip here, a poke there. "You're going to feel a little pinch!" My ass! Manipulate my cervix? My cervix was never meant to be manipulated! And the only reward I get for all this? One lousy finger up the ass. And that part never lasts nearly long enough for my taste.

That last sentence was a JOKE for all those who read my blog and HATE ME who would love to vilify me and say "See? She loves it up the ass and she's such a fucking pervert that she loves it when her DOCTOR gives it to her. I knew she was a degenerate freak!"

(Confession: One time, a male doctor did the finger in the ass thing, and I wasn't expecting it. It didn't feel half bad, though, and I accidentally said, "Wooooohooo!" I got a laugh out of it. The doctor didn't. Yay professionalism!)

OK. I've been to tons of gynecologists. I've had biopsies of my cervix. I've had tons of people looking and poking and prodding and feeling and pushing and searching and swabbing and blah blah blah. But only ONE doctor stands out as being really, really creepy.

Welcome to the year 2000. The place: Brooklyn. Why did I pick a doctor in Brooklyn instead of one on the Upper East Side where all the GOOD doctors are? I must have been insane. So I walk into the office and it's kinda dark with wood-paneled walls. Real old and kinda dank-feeling. I should have left but the counter lady was right there, and I didn't want to offend. So I'm the only one there, and I go in the examining room right away. (Note to self: If I'm EVER the only one in the waiting room of a doctor's office, RUN!)

So I go in the room and there's tons more wood paneling. I'm uneasy. The doc is a million years old and totters around in a state of extreme mental absence. He instructs me to strip, do the whole gown thing. At least he had the decency to leave the room while I did that. I'm surprised.

So he comes back, and I'm expecting the counter lady to come in the room, too. There's always a second person. Always! Nope. Just me and doc. Argh! Aren't there LAWS in New York????? So he starts with this weird physical that involves him slowly feeling his way over my entire body. I'm telling you. This took, like, 30 minutes at least. I think he was a leg man. Too bad I didn't shave. So then, the crotch exam. He's got me right where he wants me, and he takes forever. Then the finger thing in the vagina (yes, he was wearing gloves - I think). So he's feeling around in my vagina and then he pulls his fingers out. He turns around to go to the counter, and I see him. What? What the fuck!??? Did he just?! OH! MY! GOD! DID HE! HE DID! DID HE JUST? SMELL? HIS? FINGERS!!!? HE DID! HE JUST FUCKING SMELLED HIS GODDAMN FINGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My rationalizing brain tells me that's how they did it in the olden days, right? That's how they tested for a bacterial infection. He wasn't a creep, right? He was just looking for some kind of odor, right? Right?