Mommy Wants Vodka

…Or A Mail-Order Bride

What Comes Next


I’ve spent the better part of 10 years trying to figure out what I’ve wanted to do next. Skydiving? Climbing some obscure mountain? Going into space? All things I’d considered before deciding that I’d stay home with my wee germ factories and write; two events that I’d not foreseen coming. I knew this wasn’t going to be one of those THIS IS MY DREEEAMMM kind of things for me.

Initially, I wrote because I had no one to talk to and with a husband who (then) considered a sixty hour work week to be “a slow week,” which meant I was pretty lonesome. Kids, especially challenging tots like my Alex, who demanded that I hold him every second of his first year of life, don’t exactly allow you the freedom to go out and make! new! friends! nearly the same way you can when they’re older.

When I discovered that I did, in fact, like to write more than clinical research studies, I finally felt like I’d found that missing piece; I’d discovered what comes next, which was both intensely liberating and oddly arousing. Writing, though, especially on Teh Internetz, I knew was going to be something that lacked staying power, and while I love what I do more than I love butter, I’ve known for a long time that I had to find something more; something that truly completed me (and not in the stupid fucking Jerry What’s His Name movie).

For many moons, I thought it would be a book – I had agents, a proposal, and a wealth of unpublished essays I’d easily compile into a book (and have) – until the great crash of Aught Eight happened and the publishing industry became more shaky about publishing new authors than a Chihuahua at the vet.

I’d toyed with the idea of self-publishing for upwards of five seconds before dismissing it as something I’d never be proud of. I mean, sure, I could beg my Pranksters to help me promote my book, but honestly self-promotion like that makes my vagina hurt – and not in a “climbing ropes in gym class” way. Self-publishing is a good fit for some, I know this, but not me.

So I dropped the idea of finishing the book like a hot potato and founded Band Back Together instead. That, too, I knew wasn’t a forever thing for me. Sure, the site will always be there, but I knew then that I wanted, well, more from my life.

Since I’ve moved out, I’ve been struck both by an incredible case of The Lurgy and some pretty heavy shit to go through. Having to reinvent your whole life at 32 isn’t quite as easy as it sounds, no matter how necessary it may be (and it is). As I’ve sat on the couch, watching endless episodes of shitballs television, trying to work up the motivation to do things like “pee” or “brush my teeth,” I’ve been dipping my toes into the murky depths of my mind, trying, once again, to figure out what happens next.

As someone smarter than me once said, “if you don’t like the end of this chapter, it’s not the end.”

And it’s not.

Rather than dwell on the past, thinking on all of the ways I suck at life, the decision I’d been waiting for smacked me upside the head in the middle of a Law and Order: Don’t You Dare Bitch About Your Life.

It was time to go back to school.

Whaaaaa? I can hear you all asking the computer, wondering if the meds aren’t working properly AGAIN.

Let’s step into the wayback machine, Pranksters.

Many, many years ago, I lived in this very same apartment complex with my then-boyfriend as an act of both teenage rebellion and an inability to see what came next. I’d like to paint you a rosy picture of those days, but that’s like putting lipstick on a pig. Lost doesn’t begin to describe how I felt and try as I did, I couldn’t see a way out. I was working at the time, at a diner known for making things like “Macaroni Cheeseburgers” and milkshakes, getting miserably low tips because the cooks “hadn’t done the hashbrowns right” or other such nonsense. I took less than zero pride in my job or, to be fair, my life.

My then-boyfriend once remarked snarkily – after I’d fallen the eleventy-niner time that week in the ice cream cooler at work and was making love to a heating pad – “Wow, I make just as much as you do and I get to sit at a desk all day!” He laughed, meanly, and had my back not been on fire, I’d have popped out his eyeballs with an iced tea spoon. Instead, I sighed, waiting, once again, to see what came next.


He’s what came next.

I discovered I was pregnant shortly after Christmas of 2000 at the not-so-scandalous age of twenty, moved home, and popped his enormous melon out of my poor girly bits. The path then was clear: fuck becoming a doctor and get a degree that allowed me to make more than 10 bucks an hour going through fecal samples (I was halfway toward my BS in Biology/Chemistry). I took another waitressing job, this time, one that I loved, and met Dave halfway through nursing school. We married shortly after I graduated and Ben turned four.

Okay, I said to myself, this is what comes next…

…until that old itch started back up again – I couldn’t stay at home with my kids without going insane, I loved to write, but it’s nearly impossible to make a living doing so and, quite frankly, it was time to figure out what I wanted to happen with my life now. I could sit and wallow, feeling sorry for myself, immensely sad about the way everything ended, or I could make a change and do something for me. Something that made me proud of myself. Something that would open doors where windows had been firmly bolted.

It was time to dust a dream I’d so carefully packed into a box 10 years prior and make it happen. It was up to me this time and I was going to do what I had to do to move on with my life.

It’s time to get my PhD in one of the hard sciences – micro, virology, immunology, forensics, genetics. I don’t know which one I’ll go for. Not yet. But I will.

It’s time – really time – to start over. Only this time, it’s going to be for me.

And for the first time in as long as I can remember, I can hardly wait to see what happens next.

Tales of a Fifth-Grade Narc


There I was, sitting in my homeroom, trying to see how quickly I could write “Becky Rules” on my desk without being caught, when the teacher said, “Now kids, it’s time for us to meet our new teacher. It’s Officer Malone!”

We were enchanted. A real cop. In OUR presence! Not arresting us or even asking who had spray painted “STC Suckz!” on the playground (it was Jimmy).

He spoke.

“Welcome to DARE!”

(cool, I thought, DARE sounds awfully kicky! Like a superhero or something)

“Do you know what DARE stands for?” he continued.

(no, no I didn’t.)

“Drug Abuse Resistance Education!”

(well, I thought. That sounds RIDICULOUS. That barely even makes sense)

I opened my mouth to tell him so when I realized he could probably arrest me for insubordination. I shut my mouth and tried not to roll my eyes.

“From now on, we’ll have this box,” he gestured to a box in front of him. “To allow you to anonymously report any suspicious activity you’ve seen.”

(Wait a minute, I thought. Now we’re narcs?*)

We went on to learn about drugs. I was, for the first time in years, fascinated. You mean these drugs CAN MAKE ME SEE SHIT THAT’S NOT THERE? COLOR ME IN!

Week after blissful week, we learned about drugs and their effects. For the first time ever, I took judicious notes.

I can successfully attribute DARE to what I like to call “The Lost Girl Years.” Because who DOESN’T want to see shit that’s not there? Or feel blissfully happy? Or SEE SHIT THAT’S NOT THERE? Jesus wept.

I learned later that they disbanded DARE because a) it didn’t work and 2) it made a fuckton of kids (including Your Aunt Becky) WANT to do drugs.

This is why I was surprised when my son brought home paperwork from The New DARE which is called something like, “We’re Not DARE,” or “DARE V2.o,” or “We’re SO Not DARE, Please Don’t Cut Our Funding.”

I wonder how long The New Dare will be a part of the curriculum before it’s proved to cause a new generation of kids to snort toilet bowl cleaner or linked to zoophilia or something.

And I can only hope that my kid doesn’t try to turn me in for gratuitous overuse of the word “fuck.” Because I would be SO busted. Because really, who wants their kid to become a narc?

Answer: NOT ME.

*My parents were hippies. I knew what a narc was before I could shit in the toilet.

Family Circus of Horrors


It may shock and sadden you, Pranksters, that I was once neither Your Aunt Becky nor a mother. It’s hard to believe, so I understand if you need a couple of minutes to compose yourself.




Done? Okay.

Approximately 383 sesquillion years ago, the girl who will be known as Your Aunt Becky went away to college. She packed all of her stuff into the back of her friend Scottie’s hot purple Neon and trundled off (very quickly) to college in the city. Loyola University Chicago, for those in the un-know.

Well, Loyola made a very, VERY grave error in judgement. They paired me with someone who I was so utterly unlike that it was a hot mess from the get go.

The first time I met my college roommate, she smelled like meat (she worked in a deli) which wasn’t too bad. What was too bad is that she was the most over-prepared person I’d met. If you know me, Pranksters, you know that I’m not exactly…*ahem* PREPARED. I’m not going to say that I fly by the seat of my pants because that’s not quite true, but I’m a definite Type B.

Sometimes (like in the case of Crys, Ben and Jana, my counterparts on Band Back Together), it works well. They can Type A me into submission whereas I can remind them that color-coding properly isn’t exactly a worthwhile investment of time.


But the true horror of my college roommate came to light when Scottie and I – both very drunk on vodka (which we were hilariously pronouncing with a very bad Russian accent) – moved my piles of crap into my room.

The door shut behind me, I looked at it to see that my roommate had decorated it. The quotes and the like weren’t exactly awful (albeit a little cornball). And there, in the middle of the door, it sat.

Three Family Circus cartoons.

There’s NOTHING I hate more, Pranksters, than Family Circus cartoons, with the exception of Precious Moments figurines, and GAH! next to those, were a couple of Precious Moment cartoons.

I died.

I literally died on the floor, laughing and crying. I mean, just, NO. We were 19, not 69. How was I gonna get laid with Grandma’s cartoons staring at me creepily?

It turned out, of course, that our relationship was not meant to be. She was too control-freak and I, well, I got knocked up and had to go home to pop out a crotch parasite. She meant well and all, but I couldn’t overlook the Family Circus crap. Could you?

(the answer should be a resounding no)(possibly a FUCK NO)

So thanks, Jason, for the flashbacks.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to vomit up what’s left of my breakfast.

Dish, Pranksters. Do you have any awesome roommate stories for Your Aunt Becky?

She Said I Can’t Take The Way He Sings, But I Love To Hear Him Talk


2009 BlogLuxe Awards

Part I is here and Number B is here.

I’d tried to explain to Matt, after the initial upset, that I really just wasn’t that into him. But after he’d simply call me and breathe into the phone heavily, I gave up and stopped answering the phone altogether. I had a roommate who never left the room and an answering machine to catch any other calls, so I turned into sort of a telephone-a-phobe.

Which angered me greatly. Known for talking paint off walls, the forced exile of my phoneness made me feel trapped. Feeling trapped by some creepy guy with lips like two pieces of fleshy liver made me irate.

Working in my favor after awhile was my new boyfriend. Not because he had done or said anything to Matt, but because I now had one.

Matt got the hint. Matt also got angry.

Soon enough, I was back to my telephone-o-philic ways and felt free enough to call Matthias again without fear that Matt was going to burn down my dorm. It was concrete anyway, I reasoned, but I did try and make sure to call when Matt was at class.

One night, the lot of us were sitting around plotting a trip with our new fake ID’s to the local college bar, and we decided to see if Matthias wanted to come along with us. I picked up the phone, dialed and was dismayed when Matt answered. Never one to back down even when I should, I asked to speak to Matthias.

“He’s not here,” Matt spat and slammed the phone down.

“Fucker hung up on me!” I said angrily, depressing the off button while my face flushed scarlet. “What a fucking dill-bag!” I’d been prepared to let the whole I’m-stalking-you-creepily-thing go and let bygones be fucking bygones, but now? All bets were off.

“Let me try,” Pashmina Stimpy (her name is STIMPY. I was Ren, she was STIMPY on our old blog.) took the phone forcibly out of my clenched fist. She dialed the number.

“Hi, this is Stimpy, can I please speak to Matthias?” She used her most professional sounding voice which made me crack up. She listened for a moment and then hung up. “Dude. He hung up on me, too!”

Oh hell no.

The phone was passed to Stimpy’s roommate who called. “Hi, this is Stimpy’s roommate,” she said cheerfully, “Is Matthias available?” I was beet-red, trying to stop the laughter. “Oh FUCK no,” she said as she hung up. “Dickhole hung up on me too!”

James, an RA from the guys floor below was next. “Hi Matt,” he chirped, cheerful as a clam. “This is James!!! Is Matthias there??” He practically bubbled the last sentence through the phone managing, I noticed jealously, to sound entirely sincere while doing so.

After Matt hung up on him too, we all were roaring with laughter. They’d all kept me away from Matt’s creepiness for months before and were suitably freaked out by him. But not, obviously, freaked out enough to have some fun.

The lot of us ran down the hall to my room where we persuaded Vanessa, my roommate, who was also well aware of the antics of Matt’s weirdness, to call. Like everyone before her, she was hung up on. My sides ached from laughing and the tears had wet the front of my shirt completely.

But now we’d run out of people to call him, so we headed back to Stimpy’s room to have a smoke and decide what to do next after James did my makeup so that I could pass as a 28 year old Greek chick (I was 19 and not even close to Greek). I ended up looking somewhat like a transvestite, but it was only appropriate. Calling Matt had left us all in a punchy mood, so we giggled like schoolgirls at everything.

It was Stimpy, I think, who had the next brilliant idea. And it was a brilliant one.

“Hand me the phone,” she commanded to James, who handed it over, mystified. She grabbed it and dialed while we stared at her. What the hell was she doing now?

“Hey Matt, this is Stimpy,” she cheerfully reintroduced herself. “Hey, I’d just called, and I know I asked if Matthias could call me back but, you know, I’m going out to the library now, so you don’t have to tell him I called.”

I told you it was brilliant.

One by one, we called back, asking Matt to ignore our previous request to have Matthias call us as we were all going out somewhere or another. By the time it was my turn, he’d taken the phone sadly off the hook.

The best part of the entire situation was that Matt now avoided each and every one of us like we were diseased plague-ridden rats. We’d see him walk past The Ashtray–which we were trying to fill with butts–and wave wildly, and he’d turn the other way, pretending not to see us or answer our frantic “HI MATT’s!!”

He never bothered me again.

Mature? No. Highly entertaining? Abso-fucking-lutely.


Stalker stories? College stories? BRING IT.

She Tore It Up And Threw It In My Face, Just For A Laugh


Part I is here.

Also, The Daver was spurned into action by my review and put up Part I of his review of Pacify Me on his oft-neglected blog. Will Part II ever air? Likely no, but hey, what can you do?

And there’s this:

2009 BlogLuxe Awards

My plea to you to help me try and not be spanked so badly out there. They won’t spam you, and all you have to do is enter your email! It’s simple to vote and damn, I know you’re out there, my sweet lurkers. Why don’t you come out of the dark? I won’t bite!

So there we were, sitting there, Pashmina, Matthias, Pashmina’s roommate and I. Newly minted members of The Loyola University Polo club. After a brief moment of congratulating ourselves on an idea well played, the idea was shoved back away to make room for more pressing issues: namely, would my roommate break the Bubble Chair again?

(answer–although the suspense would be grand– Yes. Like me, Vanessa didn’t seem to learn from her mistakes)

The fall pressed on as Matthias searched high and low for stables and horses the rest of us just sort of forgot about the Polo Club. But we were still often in each others’ company.

One mid-winter Friday night, Matthias invited the lot of us to his apartment which felt so grown-up and urban after living in the shoe boxes we referred to as The Maxi Pad (why yes, we did think we were clever!) for wine and pasta. Oh! How Continental we all felt! We also felt like alcoholics, as we’d each gotten a bottle of wine to bring with, making the total bottles of wine somewhere near 7.

Dinner was eaten off paper plates and the wine was happily dug into by all of us, including Matthias’s roommate, Matt. Whomever had paired them together was obviously a joker.

Wine has, and probably always will, in addition to making me swell up like the Michelin Man, gotten me hammered as fuck.

So, we were ALL suitably toasty when we started to play a game, sitting there on the floor passing the wine bottles around. The game was, of course, a favorite of mine: Truth of Mother-fucking Dare. There’s very little I won’t do or won’t answer truthfully (a blessing AND a curse), so I was stoked.

The game, as we were all 19 or so, immediately took a sexual tone. Someone answered describing losing their virginity, someone else discussed fantasies, and I’m pretty sure that someone streaked, but my memory is suitably foggy. Eventually, it was my turn.

The question must have been something or another about The Sex, for the life of me, I don’t remember the specifics, but my answer was, in drunken drawl, “I *snort* I dunno. I *hic* just like *hic* sex.”

It was a most unfortunate choice of words that I would pay for for months after.

Because Matthias’s roommate lit up like a Christmas tree. We’d been talking earlier because I am chatty and I could tell he thought I was cute (obvs: wine goggles), but there was no interest on my part. He just wasn’t my type.

But between the stupid comment about sex (to be fair, the rest of the comments were much, much more raunchy, and had I been any less drunk, I’d have been more descriptive) and the fact that I responded to him in a conversation, he was smitten by the time the night was over.

In yet another gigantic error in judgement, we’d made plans to hang out the following weekend when we were both home as we’d discovered we lived in the same hometown. By the time that weekend rolled around, and I was home, I had no real desire to hang with him and told him as much when he called my parents’ house. I wasn’t being unkind, just wanted to see my other hometown friends. I forgot to call him back and promptly forgot that I’d forgotten.

This, apparently, was the Wrong Thing to do. Because when I returned to school the following Sunday, my roommate informed me that someone “named Matt had called about 10 times.” She looked a little freaked out. I felt a little freaked out.

Over the next week or two, he called non-stop and had taken to hanging outside around our dorm, his eyes glinting creepily as he scanned the crowds for me. Maybe he just wanted to sell me some Amway, maybe he wanted to tell me that he’d discovered the key to world peace, maybe he wanted to give me a check for a million dollars. I won’t ever be sure.

Because the constant calling and skulking about the Ashtray (the gigantic fountain in the middle of the quad, outside of our dorm. Seen from above, it looked like, you guessed it, a large, concrete ashtray) had made me skittery and nervous with a touch of anger thrown in for good measure. Because now I couldn’t even call Matthias without fear that Matt would pick up and tell me that he’d been sacrificing kittens in my name.

He was just that kind of guy.

Part III will air tomorrow. Sorry, y’all.

She Bet On One Horse To Win And I Bet On Another To Show


2009 BlogLuxe Awards

You totally want to vote for me again! It’s EASY! Because you can vote DAILY until July 6, at which point I will stop shamelessly begging you. Also: you can make me do shit for you if you vote for me. But not BJ’s. Because THAT would be weird and uncomfortable.

Many, many years ago, before I was Your Aunt Becky, before I was Mrs. The Daver, and before I was mother to my three crotch parasites, I was Super Student Becky Overachiever, Esq. One night, I packed up all my shit into my friend Scott’s purple Neon and we drove off into the sunset. Or, more accurately, to my new school.

Yes kids, that’s right: Aunt Becky Does College.

A sunny fall afternoon, I sat on a bench outside of the science building where I was catching a quick smoke while listening to my well loved copy of 40 Oz To Freedom on my discman (that’s what we had before we had iPods, kiddos), enjoying the cool breeze from Lake Michigan and wondering if I had enough cash to grab a bottle of vodka after class. Some things, they never change.

I’d noticed that a slim, neatly dressed guy had sat down while I smoked–this was also back in the days before people mandated smoke free benches–but hadn’t thought beyond that. I looked about, stubbing my butt out on the concrete, craning my neck to see if I could see what time it was.

I didn’t want to be late for Calculus as my raging bitch of a professor (her name was Dr. Funk. Which, honest to God, is the coolest name ever for the world’s least pleasant person. Let’s just say I’d still kill for that name.) hated me. Finally, as I realized that I was in the one spot at school WITHOUT a clock nearby, I noticed a large Swiss watch on my bench-mate.

I took off my headphones and asked the guy what time it was.

“It’s 2:45,” he informed me, with an accent of indiscriminate origin. He paused a moment as I nodded my thanks, “Or how would you say that? Quarter to three?”

“That works,” I smiled at him.

He stuck out his hand to me and introduced himself, “I’m Matthias, nice to meet you.”

I shook his hand and replied, “I’m Becky, nice to meet you.”

In that matter, Aunt Becky met Matthias.


Matthias, it turned out, was from Switzerland–my earlier snobby summation of his watch had been unfailingly spot-on–and was, just as I was, new in town. Although we had no classes together, we quickly fell in as fast friends, and were often in each other’s company.

One afternoon, Matthias had come up to my dorm floor, where I lived with Pashmina and my roommate Vanessa. Should you want to read The Vanessa Chronicles, I suggest here, here, here and here.

(As though you don’t have anything better to do)

Pashmina, her roommate, Matthias and I were all sitting in Pashmina’s room, eating shitty Chinese food from the place down the street that you could spend $5 and get food for a week (you’d also get acute GI distress for that $5 but hey, we were young) and Matthias started in on Why Europe Is Better Than The States. It wasn’t as though he didn’t care for the states–he did–but same way that I find the whole WC/sink-in-another-room thing odd, he found many of our customs equally strange.

Namely, the fact that our school, even with it’s billion and a half dollar tuition, didn’t have a Polo club. Matthias was outraged, and even mentioning that we were in the city where horses didn’t exactly roam free, could dissuade his bewilderment.

So, he the next thing he suggested was that we start our own Polo club.

I have to backtrack a bit, Dear Reader, so that you understand who he was talking to.

While I personally love a romp at the gym–hello endorphins–I don’t much care for competitive sports, especially ones that involve balls being thrown at my face. See, I don’t win, I’ll never win, and although I’m not a sore loser, being The Loser gets old after 20 or so years.

Pashmina is and was back then a swimmer by nature, which, like the elliptical, is a sport best enjoyed alone. Besides, even then (she’s still one of my best friends), I knew how frighteningly competitive she was and there was no way in hell I would compete with her for anything.

And honestly, the only sport we’d get picked to play on back then would have been a Competitive Smoke-A-Thon.

If that doesn’t clear it up for you, let me try this: remember The Wedding Singer? At the wedding when Adam Sandler mentions the “mutants at table 9” and the camera pans over so you see a table full of gangly weirdos?

We were the table 9 of sports. So the prospect of putting us on horses and doing whatever it is that you do in polo was absurd at best.

We each agreed immediately.

This was how I became Vice President of a polo club at age 19.

Part II will air tomorrow.

With Highest Honors


As the monotony of this past weekend chock full of boring speeches and long lines begins to fade in my mind, and the blisters on my feet from uncomfortable shoes heal, it has finally hit me.

I did it. I fucking graduated from college summa cum laude. No one thought I was going to do it, and I proved them all wrong just like I always do.

And now I cannot I say “I’m a student” when people ask me what I do, I can say “I’m a nurse.” And I am. I start work on July 18.

Well, I have decided to give thanks to those who have helped to see me though these long, long years.

*The Daver: with your undying support and your knack for talking me down from a sheer panic, and your willingness to hold my hair back while I barf from stress, you have been my numero uno* support system. You even pretended to listen while I described in vivid detail the green stuff that I had to scrape off of some other dude’s wang during clinical’s without throwing up.

You deserve a medal or something, man.

*The Benner, my son. You are my first reason for becoming a nurse, and the thing I thank God for most each and every day. You have taught me well to stop and look at the world around me and appreciate the smallest bug and the grandest planet. I can now ALWAYS stop and see the forest for the trees.

*BeJeweled. for the low cost of $4.99, I was able to purchase a version for my phone that I spent many a 3 hour lecture playing. You saved me from pulling out my own eyes with my admittedly long fingernails or gnawing off part of my own arm from the complete and total boredom that was my nursing classes.

*SlimFast. You have saved my diet from many a delicious looking donut. Although you may not taste any better than licking my cat’s butthole, but you have consistently provided me with many vitamins and minerals essential to my body’s well-being.

*Sugar-Free Red Bull. The taste of your brew is essentially no different than drinking Drano, but on many an early, early morning after a late, late night, you have enabled me to get to class or clinical without killing anybody, especially myself. Which, really, was the only one who mattered to me.

*Parliament Lights- the fragrant aroma of your smoke, the wonderful taste in my mouth, the nifty filters that make a sun-shape while being smoked, are just some of the many fantastic components to my addiction. Honestly, you were often the only thing that could get me out of bed when the alarm clock reared it’s ugly head.

*Ortho-Evra- although your adhesive turns grayish black and crusty by the end of the week, and sometimes you itch like herpes, you have successfully prevented me from becoming pregnant with any more children before I am damn ready to do so. Thanks for not letting me get inconveniently knocked up again.

If I neglected to thank you, let me be the first to explain that I did so simply because I hate you. I hate you with all of my heart and soul, and wish that I’d never met you.


*That means “number one” in Spanish. I know that because I have a COLLEGE DEGREE now.

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