Tuesday, November 12, 2019

               Defeated By Plastic Packaging and Seeking Therapy

I have a brilliant idea because I am certain there are other shoppers like me that don’t want to risk their fingers slicing and dicing through molded plastic to open a package.  There should be special containers for people who simply want to rip open the product they purchased, no muss no fuss, no bloody hands or more importantly not go mad in the process.  I appreciate the skilled men and women who have studied product design and pride themselves on the ability to find a way to make plastic packages secure with tightly folded and molded corners but I think they do this to make me seek counseling.

Last Sunday morning which is my time to relax, read the paper and calmly drink coffee I decided to put up a shower curtain.  A very simple task I thought. Now irrespective of risking my life by putting a stool in the tub so I could reach the curtain bar I had to open a hermetically sealed package of rings.  It was closed so tightly that I had to get down from my teetering stool to try and open it.  I was ripping and tearing and bending corners but the plastic didn’t budge.  I fought harder to perforate the packaging and at the last minute had to stop myself from a giant dental bill by using my teeth to lift up one corner.  I resorted to screaming and throwing the package against the wall and although it was cathartic nothing came apart.

With tears in my eyes I headed for the kitchen and grabbed a serrated knife.  I madly sawed through the package and a little of my thumb.  Was this a joke played on me by the god of domestic chores, who I was certain was resting, reading and drinking coffee because it was Sunday? I gathered myself together and tried to remember all my years of therapy in order to stop crying. Slowly with sweaty hands and bleeding finger I loosened each curtain hook from the plastic molding.  At last victory was mine and I had eight rings freed from the package.
I threw away the mess I had made, bandaged my bleeding thumb but no longer wanted a shower curtain or even to ever shower again.

Monday, August 5, 2019

INSANITY, Brought to You by Godaddy

Help! I need a Techno Prince Charming to come to my rescue. I'm weak, confused, dazed, and downright numb. My life has been turned upside down because Godaddy wreaked havoc on my web-site. Havoc I say! It wasn't my fault that my web-site now displays a sign that roughly reads..."enter and die or be struck by lightening."  How could this happen to poor little innocent moi at this point in my life?  I already have sleeping issues and now it looks like I may never close my eyes again as I have been up talking to a Godaddy rep every night since last Thursday. I know Joe, Antonio, Cliff, Mic, Nick, and Mike who made promises like knights in shining armor that they would have the heinous signs on my site down within hours.  "Liar liar pants on fire," to the whole bunch.  It sounded simple, easy, no problema; I believed all of them .  I've gone through a box of Kleenex sobbing as I struggle to dial Godaddy for the 12th time in 4 days. I resist the urge to throw my laptop out the window. Bye-bye little crazy making machine I'm moving to a tree house with no internet access.

 Life was so simple before I talked to the evil Ann at Godaddy who never warned me of the dangers that lay ahead.  Ann, you bitch the sin of omission is on you.  Destroy a male caller, not a fellow woman!  Innocently and to save $79.95 I thought I didn't need an SSL certificate on my GailForrest.com web-site and asked her to cancel it.  I actually had no idea what it was , just the price.  According to Joe, Antonio, Mic, Mike, and Cliff she should have told me of the dire consequences of cancelling, but alas no such words. She began my journey into the land of the technologically insane!  Warnings everywhere on my site to stay away or else die a painful techno death.  Thus began my non-stop calls morning, noon, and half the night to Godaddy.  Empty promises of a fix lead to three glasses of wine and a Valium to calm my jangled nerves.  Now I need rehab, not a web-site.

I hate technology and remember lovingly the click clack of my typewriter keys and the messy carbon paper that got all over my hands and clothes. I would scream, crumple it into a ball and throw it across the room because I couldn't line it up with the paper correctly. So simple and weren't those the halcyon days?  I had my little bottle of white-out that I could never apply thinly enough so I had a big blob over my typo. This brings tears of joy to my eyes.  My typewriter was too big to take to Starbucks, but I didn't care. I could manually line up margins and set tabs, no SSL certificate and Goddaddy employees to make a fool of me or drive me to drink at 10:00 a.m. 

Techno Prince, if you're out there, call me.  Or better yet a good therapist.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Sex Over Sixty - Hot or Not?

I almost caused my friend Dee to die of fright.  I told her all the men I date (over sixty) definitely want to have sex. "No!" she cried out. "I'm sorry hon but men no matter how old never stop thinking about sex."  I think it fills the largest portion of their brain no matter how ancient the gray matter. It appears to be a lifetime preoccupation.  Poor Dee it was like super stressful "Breaking News" and I pictured her stumbling to her knees clutching her chest.  In a weakened voice she mumbled "but what about cuddling, holding hands, and best friends" which I interpreted as delusional, wishful thinking and in a galaxy far far away.  

 It's true cuddling is nice but I have not met a male who would trade sex for a cuddle. I once witnessed a man at least 90  teetering on his bar stool barely able to lift up his head,  winking and crooking his finger at women who walked by.  I mistakenly thought he was having a seizure but the waitress assured me he was fine and sat in that exact spot every night trying to hook up. The ick factor was so great I had to leave or stick pins in my eyes. 

My friend Rick likes to call sex over sixty "senior citizen sex" which by definition is accurate but makes me want to re-claim my virginity.  Which begs my wondering if that's possible after enough sexless years have passed. It's tempting isn't it? Ah  to be a virgin again sounds like a place to hide from old guys with sagging balls. "And yes big guy they sag just like breasts."  You see it's not that women don't want to have sex with men over sixty it's just that the idea doesn't fill our every waking moment, or depending on the man any moment.  It's tough out there in my man land to find a hand to hold, a good cuddle, a new best friend, no less a hot sex life.

Now about virginity...

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Mother of the Groom Seeks Shopping Therapist

Help me! Do it quick as I am running out of time and endurance. My shopping tolerance meter is dropping as fast as my blood pressure is rising trying to find a dress for my son's wedding. Yes, I am finally Mother of the groom. And thankfully before they would have to wheel me down the aisle or bring me in a nice vase.  Is there appropriate clothing for this role? Dressy but not too dressy so as not to upstage the bride? To me dressing up is high heels with jeans, so I am feeling pressured and also doomed.  My future daughter-in-law sent me a Pinterest board. Is that a party game about the British playwright?  If not, I am confused with nothing to wear.

I have called in Emily and Karen,the big shopping guns on respective coasts to give me the full frontal fashion outlook.  Sadly these two specialists feel the Spring styles are a throw back to the days of "Little House on the Prairie." Blousey, flowery, and gingham are not a good look for anyone unless you actually have a little house on the prairie.  I felt sweaty and noticed a very unattractive rash spreading across my nose as my coping skills had hit the wall.  I had tried to venture forth alone into the vast wasteland of Bloomingdales but briefly lost consciousness when a flowered dress got stuck pulling it over my head.  

Karen and I searched all the on-line sites but zippo that wouldn't make me look like a giant Geranium. With the days drawing closer and my nerves jangled, I stopped in a neighborhood bar for the sustenance wine provides. At that moment the gods of shopping magically appeared and smiled upon my sorry ass.  Next door to the bar was a boutique that seemed to call out to me..."Gail come in asap and bring your high limit VISA card."  As if in a trance I crossed the threshold and sales person Vanessa, like Glenda the Good Witch, listened to my tale of dress desperation  (and also told me what to put on my rash), but more importantly made me try on a dress.  I was resistant remembering what happened at Bloomingdales but she was enthusiastic and looked strong.  Voila perfection!  I found it, no more searching, crying, sweating , and mixing wine with Valium.
The Mother of the Groom dress was mine.  

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

The Mad Texter Found Me

Is anyone else sick and tired of texting?  What is so freaking hard about holding a phone up to your ear and talking into it?  Is it too heavy?  Did you lose your voice along with your car keys and glasses?  Texting has become a life style.  I refuse to devote my waking hours to answering text messages.  I hate engaging in entire conversations via my thumbs.  Aside from all the typos and the fact that I can hardly see the teeny tiny keys (which almost makes my brain explode), I want to look up, not stare down at the key board.  Use voice texting you say?  Whoever is in my phone makes more errors than I do and is not a good listener.

Ironically, or via my bad date karma I met someone on Match.com that brought texting to a whole new level.  A level which only exists in the matrix or hell.  After reading his profile I thought he might be someone worth pursuing.  We picked a time and place to meet for coffee and exchanged phone numbers in case one of us was late or had to cancel at the last minute.  Reasonable planning if you're not "The Profligate Texter."  It was as if I said "ready, set, text!" Non-stop all day and most of the night I heard ping, ping, ping from my phone.  Words, pictures and links bombarded me.  Every thought he had or movement he made generated a text.  At first I was polite and answered, which was a very bad idea as then the texts came faster and faster.  Is this normal now? Or was I living in the techno dark ages?  I thought about throwing my phone at the wall or giving it to a priest to perform an exorcism. Finally I texted him that I was spent, exhausted, practically unconscious and could not keep up with his warp speed.  I desperately needed a time-out, a moment to remember verbalizing. 

 After one cup of coffee I realized we were as mismatched in person as in text messages.  I texted him good-bye, got up and left.

Thursday, April 4, 2019

                  Ass Kickin’ Women

These women kick ass!  Kickin’ some ass to join the Marine Corps. Holy moly what they have to go through on Paris Island South Carolina brings tears to my eyes…tears of fear. It is the only place in the country where women become Marines who can serve in combat.  I think they have special genes as mine would be screaming “Stop, turn back, go to Neimans.”  The training is not for the faint of heart, or needing their therapist on speed dial.  One call home and that’s it, poof(!) cut off from the outside world until the day before graduation.  I would hold my breath and turn blue right after that call.  No email access which gives me a rash just thinking about it.  I need to text, Instagram, FB, Snap Chat, Tweet, and change my profile picture!   There is one piece of good news, I could pass the initial physical fitness test.  Yes siree all those gym days have paid off: 15 push-ups, or one pull up (that’s still a little iffy), 44 crunches (?) 1.5 mile in under 15:00 (if my left leg doesn’t fall off).  There is hope on the dating front as there are 750-1000 women and 2,850 men.  Better odds than on Match.com I’d say. 

The typical day is a real downer for me however as it starts at 4 a.m. What is 4 a.m.?  There is no mention of your own bathroom which is really a “must have” on my planet. None of those nasty haircuts for the women which is a big relief but do they have a good colorist I wonder?  Uh oh trouble is on the horizon no matter what my hair looks like.

“The Crucible” looms large – a 54 hour marathon of physical and emotional endurance that tests every cell in your body.  I am dripping in sweat writing about it.  The test of all the training and I cannot even remember my name at this point.   Here goes so be strong :  long hikes day and night, climbing ropes, figuring out how to get the last person over a plywood wall and crawling through thick mud while pushing boxes of ammunition under barbed wire as they blast battle sounds.  Is anyone thinking they can do this no problema because there is MORE.

“Noonan’s Evacuation” a mock rescue based on a real evacuation that took place in Vietnam.  The recruits have to tend to and evacuate their wounded and dead while receiving simulated rounds of sniper fire.  I think I just fainted. 

Exhausted and blistered (no pedicure, or big spa day) they receive the coveted Eagle, Globe and Anchor insignia.  I admit I am dehydrated, hallucinating, covered in hives and terrified reading about these women and yet want to thank every last one of them. 

You kick some serious ass!

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Introducing GATEWAY MAN! Dream Date or Nightmare?

I met "Gateway Man" on a Match.com date.  Who or what is a Gateway Man?  He is the answer to your prayers if you are a single woman...just ask him.  He will tell you that he is what every woman over 50 is looking for.  Yikes mister, have you looked in the mirror lately?  He must have the magic kind like most men. The variety when you look in it you see a full head of hair, no bags under your eyes, pearly white teeth, a furrow-less brow , zero laugh lines and no nose or unsightly ear hair.  To say nothing of the magically flat abs and extra 4 inches in height! Trust me that is what they see but not what you get.  Welcome to my on-line dating nightmare.

Gateway Man was 77 and out of my desired age range but coincidentally we had a friend in common who encouraged me to go so I agreed to a dinner. Admittedly he didn't lie about his height (5'7")which most men do by approx 3".  Curiously he asked me if he looked his age and I can only assume he thought I would declare "not even close" but truthfully he looked 85. Gateway Man told me his dating life was going great guns and lots of women liked him. I had to query further, as "huh?" was the bubble over my head. Holy moly, his dating life was flourishing and mine was DOA.  He must have a secret and I needed in.  Surprisingly he volunteered his appeal - money.  With a shit eating grin on his face he stated he offered women a better life ; a way out of their financial struggles and there were plenty of takers! He implied he was fishing in a stocked pond. I grimaced. Could this be true?

Admittedly money is not new bait, it is practically biblical, but no one had ever sat across the table from me and stated their dating strategy so candidly. I have nothin' in the way of bait.  Regardless, this date was not a gateway but a dead end.

Thursday, March 14, 2019


 I vanished.  Invisible!  Where did I go?  HELLO!!!  Can you see me now? I still have an Instagram account. Maybe I’m on a milk carton, or sign at a tollway booth.  Does a woman become "Vapor Woman" after her 50th birthday?  Poof gone, it's all over but the funeral arrangements.  I find this deeply disturbing and obviously need a better sense of humor to pass the remaining years. 
But wait, hold on just a second, there might be hope as Gwyneth Paltrow just declared she is 45 and also peri menopausal - a double whamee yet she's still visible. Why her and not me?  Her face isn't on a milk carton but in fashion magazines. I wonder if she sees a reflection when she looks in the mirror?  I admit I was surprised by her big announcement, but she's a trickster and also has a new product line called Madame Ovary for menopausal women. I am suspect of her motives but maybe she can save me from my vaporous state.  I have my fingers crossed but might get arthritis first.

And how about the big announcement that Candice Bushnell who brought us "Sex and the City" is coming out with a new book about being over 50.  Ha, ha, ha.  I would be more curious as to how Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte and Miranda would cope with middle age but will have to settle for Ms.Bushnell's new single life.  I wonder if she can find sex in ANY city and make it a hot story line this time around.  Not many Mr. Big types out there now that you're sixty.  Slim pickins' isn't it Candice?  I have no interest in sharing my dating or sex life as it reads more like "Apocalypse Now" than "Fifty Shades of Gray."  I hope she is luckier than I am but I kind of doubt it. Maybe all I can hope for is the name of a good plastic surgeon.

P.S.  I will be making my own funeral arrangements.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019


Oh no another harsh midlife realization; some things never change.  Btw, I have no idea if I am in mid or late life.  It gets increasingly confusing as mortality rates fluctuate, but I insist on calling myself “mid”.  Regardless, I am still a bar loser. In my twenties I made the mistake of going out to bars with my blond girlfriends.This was definitely a lose lose situation for my brown hair.  Clairol had it right when they declared blonds have more fun. Yes, they do and get a hell of a lot more action as not one head ever turned my brunette way.  Bringing reading material was my default activity. I finished a lot of books in bars. I gave up and got a dog.

Fast forward two marriages and multiple failed attempts at dating sites later I decided to venture out to a bar alone to see if times had changed re: hair color. No blonds to get in the way now.  I also brought a book. I was in Palm Desert, Ca where almost everyone is over 60 so I knew I wasn't up against fab, hot twenty-somethings.  Me, my book and my ego sat down at the bar.  I placed the book on my lap like a  security blanket and ordered a glass of Chianti.  There was a nice looking man sitting alone on my left.  If not now when?!  And this was definitely my moment as he was watching a college basketball game on the overhead TV. Coincidentally I am a college basketball savant!  It was like a perfect wave.

 I had a great opening line about the college rankings and although he answered my question there was no ensuing conversation.  Brave and confident in my knowledge I tried again and even switched my focus to the NBA. He was politely monosyllabic. I was a little dumbstruck as what man doesn't want to talk sports?  It was my ace in the hole subject with the male species.  I dazzled with my acumen and in this regard my brown hair never held me back. Hold on a sec! The man on my left suddenly seemed to perk up.

 A blond walked in the bar.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Dr. Pimple Popper and Me

 I thought nothing could be more disturbing to watch on TV than The Real Housewives of Orange County.  Their whacked out choice of clothing , giant breasts and frightening plastic surgery simultaneously mesmerized me and caused a tightening in my chest.  Who are these women and  why are they on TV?  But now the show looks tame and oddly comforting as I have witnessed far worse.  Far worse I say!  Ewwww, it's Dr. Pimple Popper.  Omg, was I having an acid flashback? Shew, go away, get off the screen, pop elsewhere, anywhere but here.   I was grossed out, sweaty and struggling to stay conscious watching the doctor pop pimples that resembled lava flows.  How about a nice little white head and not Mt Vesuvius? I needed blinders!

My friend Amy is addicted to Dr. Pimple Popper. I was innocently watching TV with her and had no idea what to expect. I didn't know that she was a popper from as far back as childhood.  It was never my idea of fun but apparently it was hers. I was fine for the first 60 seconds as the lovely little doc met her first patient.  She was reassuring and smiley as she administered a numbing agent on the arm of a young woman.   Then "the horror, the horror" began.  The scalpel in her petite hand sliced and diced the pimple.  I think there were sparks. "Stop, please stop!"  Amy was watching intently and I saw the room start to spin as rivers of pus were streaming down the arm. Convinced I was having a nightmare I tried to shake myself awake before I realized I was awake!

Is this educational TV because it is on The Learning Channel? I know I didn't learn anything except that the right pimple can become a media star.