Category Archives: Embarrassment

750 Words a Day?

What was I thinking? I stumbled upon this site (750words.com), it emails you daily to remind you of your promise to yourself to spit out 750 words each and every day. Of the year. Of your life. It’s a commitment!

Right now I struggle with commitments. I floss daily. There’s a commitment I can commit to! Do you know psychiatrists and lawyers use that as a question to evaluate the mental sanity of all potential sociopaths?

That last question is entirely false, but I would believe it if it were true. Continue reading 750 Words a Day?

What Happens in a Public Shower…

Showerhead
Showerhead (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Back in the day, when I worked out daily at a public gym, stuff would happen. Stuff happens to me all the time. But when this gym was halfway between the home and the place of work, well needless to say showers at the gym were imposed.

BEING STUCK BETWEEN A DIRTY WALL AND FLESH
My gym had a pretty big shower area. There was the common spot with over 5 shower heads, and on one side was 3 private stalls. I always chose the common open area. I had my reasons (general laziness to walk to a stall, close the door, lock the door, only to find out the shower wasn’t working, then the process would need to be repeated in another stall). Actually, I was generous in leaving the stalls available to the women who were uncomfortable in the open area.

I’m a general Mother Theresa type of person like that. Always a giver.

I may be a giver, but one thing I don’t like is to touch dirty shower walls with my wet and freshly washed skin. I get the hibby-jibbies over such contact. It’s like the shower liners in hotels. I don’t even want to come near those! Not sure what’s worse. coming in contact with a dirty wall or with a naked woman I don’t know.

Whoa! What a segue right? The reason why I mention it is, well, there was this time when… A woman was standing in the doorway. She was blocking the doorway. She was a rather large’ish woman. My shower was done. She wasn’t done talking with her friend. She saw me. She knew I was done. She saw me picking up my shower bottles, my soap, and my scruffie thing. Yet, knowing all this, she remained there.

I didn’t want to make her feel like I couldn’t get by her. Didn’t want to make it obvious that her frame was the actual width of the doorframe. I decided to play the “Red rover” game and clear my way through to the 4 inches of opening between her naked body (had I mentioned this aspect? She was naked. She wasn’t showering, she was just chatting in the doorway. Naked. There should be rules and regulations against that.) So I am mid red-rover, almost in the clear, when she decided the time was appropriate to laugh. Not a mild chuckle, nor a simple ha-ha. No. She needed a full out belly laugh, the pee-your-pants kind of laugh. And that’s when it happened.

I got stuck between a dirty shower wall and a naked large’ish woman.

AND THEN THINGS GOT WORSE
This was another day. And another encounter. One entirely different.

I was alone in the shower. I was totally enjoying the freedom to bend over and grab my shampoo bottles without any concern for who would see what because there was no other who present to see any what I could have. Or something like that.

But turns out as I opened my eyes after the second rinse and repeat that I was not alone. Oh no. Not at all! A woman had walked in. She was with her two sons, they needed to shower before entering the pool. She was muslim, so she obeyed her religious laws. Head gear, blouse to the wrists, and full length pants. All I could see of her was her hands, her feet (pool rules). She insisted her sons get a full and complete shower.

“Get your hair wet too” she told them.

Just as I had omitted to mention my previous lady in the shower was naked, I forgot to mention the age of these boys. One would think that if a mother brought her sons in the women’s showers, they would be about 3 or 5. One would be wrong. In this particular case at least. These boys were over ten years old. I’d say maybe 11 and 13?

Their own mother, all they could see of her was her face, hands and feet. And then there was this strange woman, fully exposed. I didn’t even have a towel to hide myself. It was hanging outside the showers, on the hooks. I think they ignored their covered mother.

For this performance I deserved the Academy Awards for best female performing a role of deer caught in headlights.

My life is grand…

They Call Me Maria Blanca: The Real Story

Mexican laundromats – las lavanderias – are the bomb. Trust me. But before I go on, haven’t I proven time and time again that I can be trusted?

You walk into a lavanderia, drop a bag of dirty, sweat-drenched, over-worn clothes, and you come back a few hours later. What you find is a (washed) bag. They wash your laundry bag! Inside is a big clear plastic bag with your nice smelling (nice, really nice, like oh-my-god I’ve died and gone to lavender smelling heaven nice) clothes. It’s not just clean, it’s super clean. And folded. FOLDED!

Side note: Nobody, not even Martha-Fucking-Stewart can fold clothes as I can. Fitted bed sheets? Kickass. Undies? Folded uniformly and piled so incredibly perfect, like a neat little stack even Macy’s could never accomplish.

But what about the price you have to ask. This is Mexico. Fifty pesos can feed a family of four. Fifty pesos runs anywhere between $3.70 and $4.50 USD. So a big bag of clothes, with bedsheets, towels, kitchen rags runs at 80 pesos. Math? With the current exchange rate that’s like less than a hamburger, fries and a drink at Five Guys.

Intro done. On with the reason why they call me Maria Blanca.

I feel the need for another side note:

My Spanish is still very ‘See Dick. See Jane. See Spot. Spot plays with ball’. You get the drill. I can conjugate most verbs in the present tense, I handle past with a certain amount of decency, and my vocab is asi-asi (so-so). My attempts at making jokes are hilarious. One sided-hilarious. Joking with Mexicans sounds like a laugh-track off timing on a poor 70s sitcom. They laugh, loudly, but not always on time. Which makes you think they are either laughing AT you, or have a different sense of funnies. Or… they laugh an awkward nervous laugh “why is this whitey still talking to me, why is she smiling, what does she want, if I laugh at her she may go away hahahaha”.

During my first visit at the laundromat, when I dropped my smelly bag off, they asked me my name. “Maria” I said. They told me there was a lot of Maria’s in town. Obviously, this is Mexico. They asked my last name. When I told them my real name they looked at me with many question marks in lieu of eyes. I went the easy route and said “Blanca”. I pointed at my skin. I assumed it was clear and that to them, we are all just ghostly white.

In my creative and self-proclaimed genius mind, I made a great joke. It was intended as a wink-wink telling them, it’s okay, I know I’m very white, let’s use it. They laughed, “Ha ha!” I was proud. I made a joke they understood.

TWO – WEEKS – LATER!

My husband and I are walking with a cruiser friend on our way to the local carneceria (butcher). A woman runs down the street hailing me “Maria! Maria!” I turn around, it’s the laundry lady, but she’s in a different part of town. She tells me she now has her own place, and wants my business. I tell her as soon as my shit stinks enough, I’ll be happy to unload it on her. I’m a very civil tourist, always glad to help new entrepreneurs take care of my tighty whities.

The cruiser friend is shocked, he looks at me and says “Are YOU Maria Blanca?”

“Of course,” I say, shaking my head “Everybody knows that!”

“She’s been asking me over and over about you, and I told her I didn’t know any Maria Blanca’s!” I don’t feel it necessary to add that he pronounced it without rolling the r.

My attempt at a joke: fail! She really thought my last name was Blanca. Not as in color-of-my-skin white, but Blanca like Jones or Thompson. So wherever I go, and am required to provide a full name – unless it’s an official visit such as with my sexy gynecologist who dresses like a hot cougar in a rave – I give them my new Mexican name of Maria Blanca.

It’s better than the direct translation of my real name which would be Maria Punta. That makes me sound like I should dress just as my gynecologist does. Maria Punta is the chick you want to be sucking jell-o shots right out of her navel. Maria Blanca is more pure.

On second thought, the Blanca may not be entirely fitting either, unless we talk color.