Firearms, Surfboards and Closed Eyed Terror: Part 1

I shot a gun. That’s a sentence designed to strike fear in the hearts of everyone who knows me.  When I was younger, I had grand plans of jetting off to Churchill Manitoba to be a park ranger. My Gran upon hearing this exclaimed “But there are polar bears up there!” To which I replied “It’s ok Gran, they give the park rangers rifles.” Ironically the idea of me holding a firearm was more concerning than my becoming a polar bear’s amuse bouche because my Gran threw up her hands in mock surrender and cried “Oh my god! My crazy grand-daughter has a gun!”

This is the conversation I thought of when Tex*, my hottie, hottie boyfriend, tried to hand me a .22 pump action rifle. My hands shook from fear. I was terrified that I was going to shoot it. I was terrified that it was going to go off accidently. I was terrified of it backfiring. I was terrified of the kick-back. In that moment, I recognized what my Gran had known all those years ago; no one should give me firearms. This fact and my obvious fear didn’t deter Tex, in fact, it made him even more determined to teach me to fire the rifle. For the eighth time that morning, he went over the steps to load the gun.

With a baffling relaxed calm, considering I was convinced that we were both likely to be killed just by my handling the rifle, let alone trying to shoot it, Tex explained the parts of the gun; the magazine holds the bullets, the action moves the bullets into the chamber, the stock was to rest on my shoulder. He also went over basic gun safety; assume it’s loaded especially when it isn’t, point it up and away from people, no touching the gun without hearing and eye protection.

I watched once more as Tex loaded the gun, slid the pump back and forth to chamber a bullet, then fired with an assured confidence that only a cowboy can have, knocking the one of the cans off of the fence that he had set up beforehand as an impromptu target.

The time for stalling was over, it was my turn. The gun was so heavy my hands couldn’t shake; they were too busy trying to hold the rifle up. Carefully I loaded a bullet into the magazine. Tex had put in three at a time, but we had agreed I would only shoot the gun once, so I carefully slipped the ammo in. Then I pulled back the hammer with a heavy sense of doom, utterly shocked that no one had been injured yet. Tex stood next to me, reassuringly repeating the instructions that he covered countless times that morning during my Firearms 101 lesson.

Finally the gun was ready. I was instructed to lift the butt to my shoulder, which would absorb the kick-back. Tex gestured to the sights which I was supposed to use to aim, as though I could hit one of the cans even with my eyes open. However much like when I began ski racing and whizzing around the gates at top speeds frightened me so badly that I would shriek and shut my eyes as I whipped past the blue and red plastic poles, holding the rifle which was trained on the general vicinity of the row of cans, I squeezed my eyes tight and braced my body for both the boom of the shot and the kick of the butt into my shoulder. They remained closed until after I heard and felt the small bag of the gun firing in my hands.

As quickly as I could, I placed the gun back down and stepped away from it, as though it might explode even though it was no longer loaded. “That was great Unwashed” said Tex, hugging me close with tough boyfriendly pride. “Now you can fire the bigger gun!”

*Names have been changed to protect people nutty enough to hand me firearms, no doubt if his identity was leaked, people with butterfly nets might appear to cart him off for trusting me with such dangerous items.

Short Person Problems and Pterodactyl Cries

I just finished my school semester, but before this, life was pretty hairy. I was up to my ears in everything. Which is saying less than if I was a giant basketball player, however it was busy. At one point I asked my father for help. He said no. So I shored myself up and internally encouraged myself by saying “If you won’t help me then I will help myself. To your alcohol.”

So I did. It was a fantastic idea. Or at least I thought so until I got dropped off at the subway station and had to carry my bootleg bounty down the stairs. Up until that point my father had very kindly transported my bag for me from the house to the car and then from the car to the sidewalk in front of the station. All the while wondering out loud what I had packed in my suitcase. “Rocks Dad, rocks, and heavy, knowledge-filled textbooks.”

It was only when I was faced with lifting all of the Baileys from my father’s house down the metal subway stairs, along with all of my other belongings that I began to question my coping strategy.

Luckily subways are located underground so between my spindly arms and the force of gravity, my bag and I clumsily made our way to the bottom of the steps.

That was when I saw it- the turnstile. On the best of days turnstiles hit me somewhere around the sternum. But to top off the theft of my father’s liquor cabinet, I also had a giant backpacking bag with me that I was hauling home in preparation for a forty kilometer hike through the woods. Being a bright soul, I had jammed it full of apples and actual books. An excellent choice for one who normally complains about carrying heavy pillows.

Crossing the ticket barrier with the Mini Cooper sized backpack alone would have been a feat, but trailing two bottles of Baileys, some ice wine and couple fingers of scotch in a suitcase, it was looking impossible. However, this was not my first small person rodeo, so I shimmied up to the turnstile, holding onto my subway token before I was sure that I could make it through. As the arms of the barrier caught both my stomach, back and knapsack simultaneously, I let out a cry; “NiieAH, gRAh!” Far from being past the metal obstacle, I was now stuck. “HuhYEie” I called as I struggled to move the bottom of the backpack up so it was sitting on the turnstile rather than wedged with me in between the two metal boxes.

A combination of a jump/twist/fall wedged the giant backpack on top of the barrier. Having attached myself to the enormous bag, I was also yanked up, so my options were standing on my tiptoes or allowing the waist strap to cinch me into a size zero. The last option would have been more comfortable if not for Jeremiah, my burgeoning food baby. Balanced on my toes like some sort of pack-mule crossed ballerina, I attempted to drag my overly heavy suitcase into the turnstile with me, while continuing to emit pterodactyl sounds “Nrah! SHuuueee”.

At last, with my person, the giant backpack and my stolen booze trapped in the turnstile, I was poised to pay. Dropping my token in turned the metal arms and I fell sideways, however the backpack was still sitting atop the barrier and my heavy suitcase refused to allow my falling body through. “EeeeNYah” I cried, triumphantly yanking myself and all my possessions sideways, regaining my balance just before my face hit the subway floor.

After making my way down the escalator to the subway platform, I decided to celebrate the moment with a photo.

Photo Credit: Confused stranger inthe subway

A skirt is always the obvious choice when hauling mass amounts of heavy goods. Photo Credit: Confused stranger inthe subway

Not pictured- my attempt to stand after sitting in the subway. There may have been more pterodactyl cries.

We Need to Talk About Jeremiah

For those of you who are new to my discussions of weight gain, Jeremiah is my food baby. I make him out of butter and gummy worms. He generally appears somewhere around the end of January, after I’ve spent months sitting around on my bum, watching the world become snowier and snowier. Jeremiah, my food baby, is named after a particularly good looking man that I once went out on a date with. (We are still working out the custody terms.)

My food baby didn’t return last year. My grandmother pulled me aside last Thanksgiving and told me in no uncertain terms that I was not to gain weight that winter. So I didn’t. Let it be known that my Gran cuts a forbidding figure when she wants to.

By contrast, this year, because of all of my sitting and studying, Jeremiah is back, and bigger than ever. One might even say that I’m carrying twin food babies if my newly enormous bottom counted; if so then I shall name him Erasmus. However, I didn’t realize how large my weight problem had become until yesterday.

Meredith, my new roommate and I are the same height, have the same shoe size, and we both have knockers so large that if we turn around too quickly while standing next to a child under the age of eight, they could be knocked unconscious. This especially applies to me, as my brassieres resemble Medieval fortresses; heavily constructed battalions, able to withstand the siege of walking quickly or running. The difference in our figures, is that Meredith has a tiny waist, which has become tinier compared to mine of late.

Though Meredith is uncomfortable with showing skin around me, I’ve taken to dashing down to the laundry room in only a bra and a skirt to search for an appropriate top. Prior to yesterday, I had been covert about this, peeking out of my bedroom to see if my roommate was in the kitchen and then sprinting for the stairs. I was running late Wednesday morning, so I burst out of my room and headed for lower, more-clothed ground, without nary a glance to see if Meredith was watching.

Apparently she was because when I returned from my half-naked search for a sweater, I found a pair of pants draped over the chair in my room. “I left a pair of pants for you to try on”. Meredith called cheerily from the kitchen. “They’re too big for me. I don’t know why I thought I was that huge.”

It would seem that Jeremiah is making his presence known to the world, or at the very least to my roommate, as I make my jiggly way to the basement every morning.

Down in the Dumps over my Derrière

I have a sneaking suspicion that my butt is becoming flatter. Not falling, just transitioning from 3D to 2D. I blame it on all the sitting I’ve been doing recently; in cars, on buses, on planes. And the sheer amount of studying I’ve been doing isn’t helping matters, no matter where I am, I seem to be seated. The end result is a smushed tush.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve never had great rear-end aspirations, the next J Lo or Kim Kardashian, I am not. However for the most part I liked my butt. It was mine. It looked like a slightly larger version of my extremely, physically-fit mother’s butt.

This is what my Mom’s bum looks like. (Photo Credit :

This is what my Mom’s bum looks like. We are not a people noted for having shapely posteriors.(Photo Credit :

A photo of my butt, again I’m not in as good shape as my mother. (Photo Credit:

A photo of my butt, again I’m not in as good shape as my mother. Actually if I’m being honest, my bum isn’t that tanned. (Photo Credit:

Because this is her stomach. (Photo Credit:

Because this is her stomach. (Photo Credit:

This sedentary lifestyle is getting to me. I find myself turning sideways every morning to check in the mirror that my posterior hasn’t disappeared altogether. In public, I’m tempted to offer my hiney to strangers who need a surface to write on.

The worst part is, that as it becomes flatter, my bum seems to be getting wider, as though the weight of my body is slowly moving all of the fat in my rump outwards. I’ve debated wearing a wet suit underneath my clothes to keep the limited junk in my trunk centralized. I got the idea after watching my mother zip herself into her wetsuit in preparation for a triathlon. Even though my mother is composed of only muscle, somehow the tightness of the wetsuit managed to gather her minimal body fat into a lump in the middle of her back so she looked like a Quasimodo in training. In my dire, almost 2D state I’d settle for that solution. Having something that resembles a third butt cheek might even make me trendy, what with the popularity of the tri-boobed woman on American Horror Story.

At the very least, I’m comforting myself with the fact that the semester is almost over, so I can return to my formerly active lifestyle and my original bottom soon.