Karin Mitchell's books on Goodreads
Between Families Between Families
reviews: 5
ratings: 8 (avg rating 4.75)

Friday, January 29, 2010

Friday Quotes!

"Its nothing important like peanuts, weed, or milk."

"Shrimp is what happens if a cockroach and your thumb have a baby. "

"Last night we watched our cat, Bleeker, hump this stuffed animal, it was a little disturbing."
"I must admit, at Christmas, I too humped the toy."

"I will karate chop a pregnant lady."
"People are going to think I said that."

"Dear God, please never let me become a milk dud. My hopes and dreams depend on it."

"Sometimes I too, need a manual tickler system."

Friday, January 22, 2010

What do you do?

One night, a long, long time ago, I was at a bar with my friend PPP. We were chatting at the bar and a guy was lurking on a stool next to me. I paid no attention. I wasn't there for boys. I was there for beers. So she and I were all leaned in and he was hovering on the outskirts of our conversation, looking for a way in. But like I said, I wasn't paying any attention.

I started bitching about work and talking about certain administration personnel and ending my tale of woe with the exclamation, "I work with a bunch of RETARDS!"

The guy leaned over and asked, "What do you do?"

Dismissively, I said "Oh, I teach special ed."

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


I was a terrible dawdler when I was a kid. If there was a way to make it take longer, I did it. Not on purpose or anything. Its just that if I saw a toy, it would suddenly become more interesting when I was already supposed to have my boots on to leave. Or if I was waiting in the living room, the piano looked friendlier to play if I was supposed to be brushing my teeth.

My worst time for dawdling was in the mornings. I was never a morning person. Even as a baby. My dad had me in before care and after care at a woman's house so he got me up really early every morning. And from the moment he woke me the first time to the moment we left the house it was constant nagging. I thought Karin-stop-dawdling was my AM name.

So one winter morning when I was about 6 or 7, my dad woke me up and we began the routine. Only this morning, he told me that he wasn't going to wake me over and over, I'd better get up and get ready. He wasn't going to nag at me.

So I got up. And ran a wet comb through my hair. Took my pajamas off and put my pants on. And then...

Went back to sleep.

I woke up to him yelling "TIME TO GO!" And fearing that he would be pissed, I hadn't gotten ready, I just walked out of the house. I threw my coat on first.

Anyone notice what's missing?

A shirt.

I had no shirt on. Just my coat and pants and socks and shoes that I threw on in my sleepy stupor.

I figured it out on the way to the before care lady's house. But I sure didn't say anything. I knew I'd be in trouble.

Now, you'd think this would end in some awful embarrassment when some adult figured out what I'd done. Not so. We had a sub. And somehow, through before care, all day at school, and after care, I managed to convince all the adults that I was just cold and wouldn't take my coat off.

So yes, as a little elementary girl, I once went to school with no shirt on.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Past tense

I work with this really kickass lawyer. She's been all crazy over this guy lately. He worked for probation. Past tense. Did you see it?

Over the weekend he killed himself. Enter past tense, the unwelcome jerk. And I feel soooo terrible. And guilty. Because I tried it to. I talked about it a little in this post. Try #17 and on. That's where I talk about it. A little.

And now when someone kills themselves, I feel guilty. Like what I did when I was 17 somehow makes me responsible for everyone who ever does it. Like because I tried it, I should know how to fix it.

But there are tons of recovering drug addicts that can't tell you how to get sober. There are great thinkers that can't explain their ideas. And the fact is, no one can explain suicide.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Wednesday Weirdos:

So my brain needs some emptying. So prolly don't try to follow this as any train of thought.

Ever feel like someone's words can just strike you like lightning? Like they vaporize a part of you and the ashes are just a scar and every time you see them, that's what you feel?

I think women's shoulders are really sexy. At all ages too. And not floozy, trashy sexy. Sophisticated, timeless, classy sexy. Beautiful. Wrists sometimes too. Its not like tits or butts where its the obvious spot, you have to look for it. Being aware of their beauty.

I'm bad with question marks. I think them. I just forget to put them in the actual sentence.

I hate fake smiling. But I do it all the time. Before I started fake smiling women were always mean to me. If you have a pretty face and aren't overly ingratiating, you come off as a bitch/snob/snot/mean/whatever. It sucks. I'm pretty sure its often why I don't want to go anywhere after work. I don't feel like faking friendly anymore. But then, other times you fake it till you make it. And I know it has definetely worked to put me in a better mood. So I guess it all works out. Still...

I've been having really bizarre dreams lately. Ever notice how no matter how you spell bizarre, it looks wrong? Bizzare, bizar, bizzar. Why two rs? Anyway, I dreamt one night about a boy (currently a man) I grew up with. We were travelling all over a city tasting different tea flavored whiskeys. They were terrible until I got one that was iced tea flavored, but NOT sweetened. It was awesome. I haven't seen this guy in over 10 years. What the hell am I dreaming this for?

So then, I tell him about it on FB and he and I exchange some emails catching up on old neighborhood friends. Then, last night, I dream about one of those people. There was this girl who was married (think 19ish) and her husband and a bunch of us were friends. He was kind of a creep really. But very good looking. And very confident.

I'm pretty sure he slept with a couple of my friends. While married. To her. But I wasn't into that sort of thing. So she didn't hate me. But she did terrify me. I remember this story of them having rough sex that resulted in her scratching his back so badly that the sheets were stuck to his back and had to be showered off. I hadn't even had sex yet. Plus, she had a gun. Granted it was pink. But I opened their kitchen drawer and there it was. So yeah, terrifying.

You'd think I'd have steered clear, but I was stupid teenager and was fascinated by their strange life. So I hung out at their house and got drunk. At one point, I got this guy drunk and convinced him to let me give him a hair cut. He had long, gorgeous dark hair, but lots of split ends and I wanted to clean it up a bit. I'd never cut anyone's hair before. I tried using kitchen scissors. It didn't work out real well.

Another time, I think it was the time I found the Barbie gun, I was drinking at their house during a snow storm. I tried to climb on top of his Firebird which had one of those big obnoxious bird decals on the hood. I was determined to pee my name in the snow on the hood. I slid down the entire car with my pants around my ankles.

Anyway, upon catching up with my old friend. He tells me about what's going on with her these days. And I procede to dream that while Rob and I are decorating the lawn (which is weird in an of itself,) with christmas paper wrapped Elephants and horses and camels, she come tearing down the street, police in tow, and crashes in front of us. She gets out of the car, says "Hi, Karin," And tosses me her keys.
"I'm gonna get arrested now." She says aloud, then mouths that I should get the prescription drugs out of the car. There's half a bottle in it for me.

I'm excited about this. I get in the car. Rob gets in the car. Then I look in the rear view mirror and see that there's a cop laying in the backseat. Ummm. Now I know I can't go hunting for the rx meds. So I drive around the block under the guise of properly parking the car. When we get back, all the other cops are gone and the cop in the back is all "They left me." Which I think is hysterically funny and I make fun of the cop.

Then the fucking dog wakes me up so I don't get to find out what happens.

I also had a dream last night that involved going to an amusement park where a friend got all dolled up and insisted we go watch one of the shows. You know, the ones only grandparents want to go to. The ones that involve no splashing animals and no rides. Only dancing and clogs. My friend proceded to get up and take over the emcee's job. She did a great job.

Dreams are weird.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Friday Quotes! Best of 2009 Part I

"I gave Toddler a plastic drink sword and a paper drink umbrella the other day and he gave them back saying, "no thanks, I'm not a Chinese girl"me: "what?"Toddler: this is how Chinese ladies fight dragons (holding the umbrella above his head and making jabby motions with the sword) "

"You look like a parapalegic trying to do pushups."

"The fairyest of drag queens and 3 year olds have the same taste in music."

"If you ever want to fuck again, I'm gonna buy you an iPhone cuz there's an app for that."

"Innapropriate comments? That's what little girls are made of."
"Little girls are made of Adderall."

"Next time I want a lawyer, not an attorney. I may be dyslexic but I'm not stupid."

"G supposes you think it's funny that she had hot sauce on her finger and then picked her nose."

"Happy Anniversary Sesame Street! Cheers to 40 years of having a hand up your ass."

"A painter paints pictures on canvas. But musicians paint their pictures on silence."

"I'll be Kanye West for Halloween & just before kids say Trick or Treat, I'll jump out of the bushes and yell "Christmas is better!""

"Thank God they found balloon boy, I was afraid that Michael Jackson was ordering take-out from heaven."

"When a mother has just given birth, is she crying because she is happy or because she knows all the pain and suffering her child will experience throughout its life?"
"Shut up, you douche canoe. She's crying because her vagina hurts from GIVING BIRTH!"

"Why you got to pry like that, Facebook? What's on MY mind you always want to know? Why do you care? Huh? Ass."

"You're like a tornado of bullshit right now. We'll talk again after your bullshit dies out over someone else's house."

"I wanna see if Michael Phelps can take a bong rip and hold it through th Eisenhower Tunnel."

"I'd like a cuckoo clock over my desk with a button I could push to make the little birdies come out and they'd twirp "Crack rock, Crack rock" real loud while people were talking to certain clients."

"nor do I hold it against you. You can't help being a Theravada Buddhist. Is that yoga for racist?"

"What's up with the gallon bottle of chocolate syrup."
"I mean fucking business, Dean."

"If you fuck a baby up, there's no amount of salt and butter that will fix it."

"You gonna sock some armless chick because shes got no balance? What do you think this is your birthday?"

"when I was little, I thought that mermaid vaginas were in their belly button."

"That blue water really cleans my hands, but it sure tastes like shit!"

"Yeah it is, I might have had to spit on a homeless person but I got 67%"

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


I bought my dad a robe for Christmas. It was the softest, warmest, snuggliest robe I could find. My dad lives in his robe. He just retired. He'll be living in his robe even more. Not in a crazy, don't-do-anything-but-crosswords-and-yell-at-the-neighborkids sort of a way. Just in a finally-have-some-time-at-home-after-travelling-nonstop-for-the-last-15-years way.

As a little girl, I remember my dad would always make dinner, clean up, and change into his robe. We'd all go downstairs to play or draw or whatever and my dad would settle in to watch TV. Some nights, he'd make popcorn and I'd snuggle into the side of him. It was the best feeling in the whole world. It didn't matter what we watched. (Except the news. Or football. Those were not snuggling up programs. Those were stay-out-of-dad's-way-while-he-yells-at-the-TV shows.)

I'm a little hyphen-happy in this post-for-some-reason.

So anyway, I found this super snuggly robe and bought it for my dad. I wrapped it and put it under the tree where our kitty attacked it, tearing a hole in the paper and taking off with the ribbons. But I left it and waited for him to visit. Which he did.

Last time he was here we went to Strawberry Hot Springs. You have to walk quite a ways in your swim suit at this place and it can be quite chilly. A robe is so necessary for hot springing in winter. And hot springing in winter in and of itself is so necessary. My dad LOVED it. He almost for a split second thought about moving here for it.

Which says a lot. He's a big city guy. Opera, nice meals, lots of people, public transit, huge organizations of AA and whatnot to get involved in, more restaurants, plays, that's his scene.

We live in a small, mountain town with weird mountain characters that you run into overandoverandover again at the grocery store or wherever. Its rare I go anywhere without seeing someone I know. And I'm not all that social.

So anyway, I thought I'd get this super soft robe for him to keep at my house and always feel welcome and take to the hot springs and stuff. He opened it and loved it. Said, get this, he didn't have a robe right now. So he was super excited about this robe. It was the perfect color for his silvery goatee and the perfect size for his buddha belly.

My grandmother always kept toothbrushes for each of us at her house. It made it feel part yours. You were thought of. Planned for. Waited for. Wanted. Loved.

I hoped my dad would feel the same way about his robe.

He decided to go to Target to buy another one, so he could have one at home and one at my house. He bought me one too.

Last night I was soooooo cold. I just couldn't get warm. I had my down comforter wrapped around me and down slippers on and the cat but it just wasn't cutting it. So I wrapped up in my robe and read myself to sleep.

It made me feel warm. And snuggled and thought of. Planned for. Waited for. Wanted. Loved.

Twenty Ten

I wonder sometimes if anything ever really changes. I mean really. Sometimes it feels like we take two steps forward and eighteen million steps sideways and who can even perceive how many backwards and then when you account for orbital, the earth spinning, relative position to the sun and whatnot, did we move at all? Did we get anywhere?

I'm not much for New Year's resolutions. I think its bunk. If you need to change something in your life, you need to change it now. Not quit smoking by the time you're 30 or lose weight after the holidays, or stop drinking after Mardi Gras. Do what you have to do now because you know you need to do it. And even though I'm not much for resolutions, I've been thinking a lot about progress and change and the movement of time since New Year's.

They have this new chip that's maybe gonna get tested on folks that would detect if cancer had metastacized llooooonngg before it was ever visible as tumors or masses or tissues in other areas. That seems like progress.

So does the fact that I can tell stories about my dad to anyone, anytime, anywhere and not really worry about something unpleasant happening just because he's gay. It can just all be out there.

But then, I watch a lot of documentaries about wars and conflicts, religious and race based. These conflicts just keep going onandonandonandonandon. One gets better and we'll all supposedly learn from it, but then next thing you know the Israelis are knockin on the Ethopian (jewish) refugees they let in the country in the 1970s because they're not Jewish enough because they descended from Sheba who was not a Jew and and juddaism gets passed from the mother, so they all need to be converted. There are certainly more recent examples. But I think of Israel as being a country devoted to education and that should save us from racist thinking right?

But it doesn't. us them. It goes onandonandonandonandonandonandon.

We beat kids. We haven't solved that one yet. Nor have we solved rape or sodomy or being nasty to each other on a daily basis.

I'm guilty of this. Not beating kids, but the nastiness. I get in a funk and want to yell and scream at strangers who don't know where anything is in my grocery store and stand in the MIDDLE of the isle discussing whether or not we need marshmallows for the hot chocolate and I just want them to FUCKING MOVE!

I haven't learned in 30 years not to be angry at things not worth being angry about.

I believe in anger. Its an important emotion. Its possibly the most motivating of all emotions. It forces us to change. Maybe we're angry but not enough, not at the right things. Maybe I should stop being angry that people drive the wrong way down a parking lot row and yell at doctors who don't report child abuse. Maybe I should stop getting so snippy at my husband for leaving bottle caps on the counter instead of in the trash can and tell the tourists at the grocery store "Of COURSE you need marshmallows for the hot chocolate! What kind of fire will you have later without them?" Maybe I should stop blogging and write letters to legislators and companies telling them about my outrage and my suggestions. But I probably won't. I like blogging. I snip. I'm annoyed by tourists. I should see the things I need to change and change them now.

And sometimes I do. I don't smoke. I eat pretty good. I floss. I exercise a lot. The mental energies could definetely be handled better though. I should structure my time more and focus on my writing. I should structure my mind more and focus more on what's right and less on being so fucking critical.

Maybe the teens will be better, the twenty-teens that is. Teens are angsty and full of fear and rage and change. But they're clumsy and insecure too, so maybe we'll keep stumbling around, taking steps forwards and sidewards and cattywompus, never really sure of our place in the universe.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Happy New Year's

I just slid across my kitchen floor in stockingfeet. I love sliding. If I'm walking and there's snow or ice on the ground, I will take a few hurried steps, rushing into a slide. The only thing better is when there's that skin of frozen that you can jump on and crunch beneath your feet. Oh, and crunchy, squeaky snow under sneakers: the really cold kind.

In my first apartment, my roommate and I pledged all the floors and wouldn't let people wear shoes. I loved skidding across that floor. I remember sitting on a pillow and her pushing me around from room to room like a hockey puck. It was hard to stay on the pillow but worth it if you managed it.

But nothing but nothing is better than sliding on snow. So I'm off to ski. Cross country that is. Too crowded for downhill today. Downhill'll wait till tomorrow. Nice and early. And on new snow.

Happy New Year to you and yours. I hope you remember the little things you love, spend lots of time with people you like, and do things you feel passionately about like sliding on snow and wood floors and slick streets.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Friday Quotes! Last of 2009

"is dreaming of a better world...where chickens can cross the road without having their motives questioned"

"Hoping that chocolate makes everything better. The last week of 2009 can kiss my ass."

"New Years Eve and April Fools Day should switch since most resolutions are a joke anyway."

"WOOF! Where's he been all my life?"
"Um, in the cradle."

"If you have a girl, someday she'll get a pearl necklace."
"I'm sure she will."

Matt- "A while back, Juno just jumped in the lap of the cable guy." (the cat)
Dad- "I did that once."

"If Tiger Woods comes back to golf again, he's going to have to change his name to Cheetah."