Hey. Do you need something?

Okay.  Next week we’re doing the  7th Annual James Garfield Miracle.  Every year I think it will be the last and every year the people who were helped in the past ask me if it’s going on again because they’re now back on their feet and they want a chance to give back and this year is no exception, so technically I blame you.  But in a good way.  (In case you’re new, the James Garfield Miracle is when we get together and help give toys, blankets, and books to homeless children or to children whose parents are seriously struggling during the holidays.  It’s done anonymously in this community without any sponsors and it is a great joy to watch.)  If you want to help someone, or if you’re unable to buy a toy for your kid this holiday then watch this blog next week and I’ll set it up with all the instructions then.  It is awesome and exhausting and THIS IS NOT THAT.

Today’s post is just a small way to say thank you to everyone here who has been so amazing and supportive.  Because of the sponsors on the sidebars we’re able to keep this blog going without losing money.  Because of the people who buy things using my affiliate links I’m able to give back that money during the James Garfield Miracle.  Because you’ve been so incredibly supportive with my writing I now have two #1 NYT bestsellers and can spend my time creating ridiculous things that somehow help others.  That’s pretty amazing and I am so incredibly lucky.

As a small ‘thank you’ I decided that it would be nice to give back in some way so I pulled out a stack of my books that I usually drop off at Little Free Libraries and I’m going to give them away to the first people who say that they really need one.  Maybe you haven’t been able to afford one of them yet, or maybe you know someone who needs one, or maybe you’re in a bad place and you just need a reminder that someone cares…whatever.  Just leave a comment (with an email address!) telling me if you want Let’s Pretend This Never Happened in hard cover, Let’s Pretend This Never Happened on CD, Furiously Happy in hardcover, or Furiously Happy on CD.  If YOU ARE HERE was finished I’d give it away too but we have a couple more months before it’s done.  I’ll email you for your mailing address so make sure you check your email today.

Additionally, I know there are a lot of people during the holiday seasons who feel alone so I thought maybe I would set up an open thread on my Facebook page if any of you want to become friends or exchange info to send cards or to find someone struggling with similar things to have someone to talk to.  I have no idea if this is a good idea or not, but what the hell.  Click here if you want to find friends in the community.

And now, comments are open.  Let me know if you are in need of a book and be sure to specify which book and which format because it’s first-asked, first served.

Things to give away today. Dorothy Barker not included.

Things to give away today. Dorothy Barker not included.

 

UPDATED: Holy crap, that went fast.  I gave away the 35 copies I had and I’m going to check the closets to see if I have any more.  I think I have a box of Let’s Pretend copies somewhere if I can find them.  I left comments on all the comments that I could fill and I’ve already been told that some people are contacting others to pass on their copy or buy one for others.  I love you people so hard.  If I find more books and email you but someone else has bought it for you since I’ve written this then just let me know and I’ll move on to the next person.  Thank you for being you.

PS. I’m not sure how safe it is to have your email address in a comment so I’ll probably go back and delete them in a day or two so they don’t get used for spam or something.  Also, if you want to buy someone a copy but don’t want to ask for their physical address you can just confirm that the email works and then send them an electronic gift card.  I trust everyone in this community but I’m just throwing it out there just in case.

PS. Thank you.

 

Spellcheck is a bit of an asshole.

Today I got an email from a friend and it said, “Just thinking of you today, diarrhea.  How ya doing?” and I was like, “I was doing better before you called me ‘diarrhea’?  Is that your pet name for me?  Because I’m not sure I love it” and then she was like, “FOR FUCKS SAKE, SPELLCHECK.  I typed ‘dearheart’ and spellcheck auto-corrected it to ‘diarrhea’.  I don’t think you’re diarrhea.” And I guess that makes sense because even as I’m typing this spellcheck is like “‘DEARHEART’ ISN’T A REAL WORD.  I’M HELPING,” but when it comes to someone calling me “diarrhea” spellcheck is all, “YEP!  THAT SOUNDS RIGHT.  NO PROBLEMS HERE.”

Thanks, spellcheck.  You’re a real dearheart.

PS.  Now spellcheck is like “‘Dearheart’ still isn’t a real word.  Did you mean ‘dearhreart’?”

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No, really.  WTF.

At this point I think Spellcheck has become self-aware and is just fucking with me.

*******

And now…time for the weekly wrap-up!

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Shit I made in my shop (Named “EIGHT POUNDS OF UNCUT COCAINE” so that your credit card bill will be more interesting.):

Shit-you-may-or-may-not-want-to-see:

This week’s wrap-up is brought to you by Gem & Honey infused bath salts from Wild Honey Apothecary.  From them: “A bath is nothing short of a sacred return to the water. Our Gem & Honey infused bath salts are blended with only pure botanical ingredients for highly aromatic soaking pleasure. Charged with the high vibration energy of quartz crystal and infused with biodynamic honey from Wisconsin.”  Their monthly delivery service is only $10 (shipping is included) and sends you two 1.5 ounce sachets of specially blended salts and a small quartz crystal.  I’m ordering some myself.  You should check out it out right here.

Hey, crazy. Let’s be friends.

Today I was driving to my shrink and it’s sort of a long, twisty, weird road to get there and I noticed another car driving in front of me for several minutes and eventually he pulled into my shrink’s parking lot before me. And then he went inside and then I did and after a few minutes in the waiting room he hesitantly said, “Can I ask you a really crazy question that I already know the answer to?” And I said, “Did you want to ask if I’m following you? I’m not. I’m supposed to be here,” and he said, “How did you know that I was going to ask that?” And I was like, “Because I saw you drive to the exact same place and my first thought was that you were following me, except you were in front of me so not only were you following me but you were so good at it that you were following me before I was even there.  And then I wondered if you were a time traveler who knew where I was going and then I realized that was probably irrational but I still thought it was maybe possible because I am open-minded.”

And then he paused for a second and said, “Huh.” And then I was like “See? You were all worried about your paranoia but now you can feel good about the fact that you don’t think time-travelers were pre-following you to your psychiatrist appointment” and he was like, “This is the most helpful psychiatric session I’ve ever had and I haven’t even met the doctor yet.”  And then we fist-bumped in solidarity.

And that’s how the world keeps turning.

Unrelated: Tomorrow I’m going to BookPeople in Austin to sign some books so if you want to buy one for the holidays just click here for Furiously Happy or click here for Let’s Pretend This Never Happened and in the comments section at checkout just say you want a signed copy or you can leave details if you want me to personalize it or draw a cat in it or lick it or whatever.  They ship everywhere.

PS. I don’t have a picture for this post so instead here’s Hunter S. Tomcat eating leftover turkey.  This is pure ecstasy, y’all.  May we all be this happy.

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Possibly the weirdest thing I ever got in the mail and that’s really saying something

Yesterday I picked up my mail from my post office box and it was mainly books and bills and sweet letters and strange, lovely gifts but there was one box that sort of stood out because it was enormous and inside was a single piece of paper with the words “KNOCK KNOCK MOTHERFUCKER” written out of torn magazine letters like a ransom note:

kkmf

And under it was an enormous sloth.  Or maybe a sasquatch.  Or a slothsquatch, which I’m not sure exists but totally should.

"Please play with me. Or euthanize me."

Um…what?

He had long poles coming out of his hands and his legs were long enough to wear as a scarf (not that you’d want to) and he looked at me with such longing.  “Pick me up,” he seemed to say. Or maybe “Put me out of my misery.”  It’s hard to tell.

DRAW ME LIKE ONE OF YOUR FRENCH LADIES.

DRAW ME LIKE ONE OF YOUR FRENCH LADIES.

And I realized that it was a very old, highly used, full-body puppet.  The kind where you strap yourself to its feet so it walks when you walk and of course I put it on immediately and I was like, “VICTOR, DID YOU GET ME AN ANNIVERSARY SLOTH MONKEY?  BECAUSE YOU TOTALLY NAILED IT” but he didn’t respond so I yelled “IT SMELLS WEIRD THOUGH.  IS IT SUPPOSED TO SMELL LIKE A LIVE SLOTH?  OR A DEAD ONE?”  And then he said something from his office that I later found out something about being on a conference call but I couldn’t hear him because he was yell-whispering and my ears were too full of excitement so I was like, “I DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU’RE SAYING. I CAN’T COME TO YOU BECAUSE I’M STRAPPED TO THIS SLOTH AND HIS FEET ARE ALL SLIPPERY.  ALSO, THE CATS FUCKING HATE THIS GUY.”  Because they did and they were hiding under the couch and I was like, “I CAN’T TELL IF THIS A SLOTH OR A SASQUATCH?  DID YOU BUY ME A USED ‘SQUATCH TO WEAR?” and he was walked out of his office and was like, “JESUS CHRIST I AM ON A CONFERENCE CALL SO COULD YOU PLEASE-” and then he stopped talking because he noticed I was wearing a sloth (or maybe a chimpanzee?) and I paused for a second to judge if he was mad that I’d opened my gift too early, but the stunned look on his face told me that he hadn’t bought the slothsquatch at all so I tried to dance some of the awkwardness out of the moment by making Mr. Noodles sing the Copacabana song.  (I named the sloth/monkey Mr. Noodles because his appendages are so noodly.  Also, spellcheck is telling me that “noodly” isn’t a word because apparently spellcheck has never seen this noodly motherfucker.)

THIS SLOTHSQUATCH ONESIE DOESN'T FIT ME BUT IT'S A GOOD DANCER.

THIS SLOTHSQUATCH ONESIE DOESN’T FIT ME BUT IT’S A GOOD DANCER.

Mr. Noodles is made of awesome.  And possibly some horror and whimsy.  And maybe some dead cats or skinned muppets.  Hard to tell.  He speaks in a high-pitched, kinda nasally  british accent and when I dance with him it’s like if Weekend at Bernie’s replaced the dead guy with an anorexic sasquatch.

"Hellooooooo!"

“Hellooooooo!”

Then I spent most of the day posing Mr. Noodles in all the rooms of the house or jumping out of the bushes at the neighborhood kids so they could have a sasquatch sighting and then Victor got on a plane and left Texas.  But he was already planning on leaving for work so it’s not like he was fleeing.  Probably.

I'M GOING TO PET YOUR DOG...INSIDE MY STOMACH.

I’M GOING TO PET YOUR DOG…INSIDE MY STOMACH.

I still don’t know who sent it to me but I think it was my friend, Neurotic Owl.  The return address is “BASEMENT UNDER THE OPERA”.  I have a weird life.  And a slothsquatch named Mr. Noodles.  I feel like I’m winning at life today.

UPDATED: Video, as requested…CLICK HERE.

That’s not how this works.

So a few days ago I shared this picture on twitter:

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…and then a stranger (whose twitter feed was mainly angry rants and vengeful bible quotes) tweeted, “ABORT YOUR DOG”.

And after about 15 seconds of this:

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200w_d

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…I realized I couldn’t stop laughing because it was so ridiculous.

I was confused for a bit but then I figured out that she was yelling at people about abortion all day and then one of those people said something nice about my dog and this lady couldn’t handle it and also couldn’t come up with a better insult than “ABORT YOUR DOG”.  Which just makes me feel sorry for her and also makes me start giggling again because I’m a bad person and I can’t stop laughing at stupid people.  But then I thought, maybe that’s a great insult?  Because how do you even argue with that?  You can’t.  It’s too ridiculous and it makes anyone you’re fighting with pause and just walk away because you’re probably dangerous.   “Abort your dog” is the new “delete your account”.  Thank you, crazy lady.  Abort your dog too.

*******

And now…time for the weekly wrap-up!

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Shit I made in my shop (Named “EIGHT POUNDS OF UNCUT COCAINE” so that your credit card bill will be more interesting.):

Shit-you-may-or-may-not-want-to-see:

This week’s wrap-up is brought to you by Sleep Styler. which lets you dry and style your hair while you sleep. Before bed simply divide damp hair into sections and wind around the rollers for curly styles or hold flat and parallel to the rollers for straight.  When you wake up, just shake out of your soft, bouncy curls, and go.  The patented rollers are made with absorbent yoga towel fabric that wicks moisture away from the hair while remaining dry to the touch. Inside is soft laser-cut memory foam that conforms to your head while you sleep and the suede-like microfiber polishes the hair smooth.  For the cost of one blowout you can have effortlessly styled and healthy hair every day with The Sleep Styler.  You should check it out here.

Thanksgiving: They can kill you, but they can’t eat you.

Thanksgiving is always stressful and I’m on record as being a big proponent of just celebrating it once every four years (like Leap Year, but better) but no one else ever agrees, so apparently it’s still on.  This year might be more stressful than most because this election is a bit of an open wound/dumpster fire and so many of us spent the last year arguing on Facebook with those relatives you only see at holidays and eventually writing “NONE OF WHAT YOU ARE POSTING ON FACEBOOK IS REMOTELY BASED ON FACT.   PLEASE STOP BEING AN ASSHOLE OR I’M GOING TO TELL YOUR MOTHER.”  And now you have to go see those people in person and it is going to be awkward.  So here’s my advice to you.  Print out all of the reasonable and sane articles you want to share and put them in a big briefcase and as soon as you get there just throw them through a window.  It’ll create a loud, terrible noise to distract people from their stress and it will work just as well at convincing that one crazy motherfucker in your family that they shouldn’t fuck with you.  And – BONUS – now you’re the craziest motherfucker in your family.  The crazy you know (and are -sort of- in control of) is better than the crazy you don’t know.  That’s what I always say.

If that seems too extreme then maybe bring bottle of schnapps and tell everyone that you’re going to take a shot every time someone says something reprehensible.  (Hint: Smashing a window with even the most well-intentioned of briefcases is sort of reprehensible so please have a shot for me.)

Or you could just stay calm and sober and engage in a thoughtful conversation that leads to understanding and compassion and empathy.  That last one sounds like the right answer but – just in case – I’m still bringing my schnapps, several pertinent articles to hand to anyone who picks a fight with me, and a brick to throw through the window because I just realized I don’t even own a briefcase.

Happy Thanksgiving, y’all.  I love you even if I disagree with you.

But none of your damn windows are safe.

PS. I just remembered that Thanksgiving is supposed to be about giving thanks so I’m going to try to turn this around to something more positive.

Things I’m thankful for:

My friends

My family

Bricks

Cats

Schnapps

books

you

Sometimes it’s easier to just burn down your house and start anew.

You know what you should do when your house is messy?  Burn it to the ground and salt the earth so nothing can ever grow there again.  Or just get a second house.

I can’t afford either of those things so instead Hailey and I built a tiny house.  And by “built a tiny house” I mean we went to park and made a house for fairies.  But just the outside because architecture is hard when you’re squatting in what might be poison oak or might just be really itchy leaves you’re allergic to.  Regardless, my house is still a bit messy but at least it’s not built on poison oak or giving me a rash.  So all things considered, things are pretty good.

before

after

AFTER.

Click here for the video tour.

PS. Some of you have asked for a tour of the real, haunted dollhouse I’ve been making for the last 12 years.  Working on it.

Words of comfort and giant squid attacking innocent people on dry land.

Amazon asked me to participate in their round-up of celebrity picks of the best books of 2016 and I suspect they confused me with Jennifer Lawrence but I still did it, although I picked way more than the 3 books that I was supposed to stick with and also I chose books that helped get me through 2016 even if they came out long ago so I broke all their rules and also I ended up not being Jennifer Lawrence.  I am very disappointing.  You can click here to read all about why I picked what I did.  If you’ve read anything that helped you find comfort in this year, feel free to share in the comments.  We could all do with some escape and comfort and magic.

(If you don’t want to go there, here they are: Unmentionable, Discworld, Stolen Things, Let Me Tell You, Akata Witch, Buffering, I’m Judging You, Shades of London, and everything by Jessie Burton and Rainbow Rowell.)

In unrelated news, Victor is in Japan this week and every year he goes there he’ll call on FaceTime and walk around a giant toystore and let Hailey pick out a stuffed animal, which is very surreal because basically I woke her up at midnight in Texas to let her visit a toy store existing in a sunny Japanese afternoon.  She picked a cat in a cloak, but I saw this awesome giant squid and I was all. “BUY THAT NOW” and Victor was like, “This is enormous.  I can’t fit that in my suitcase” and I was like, “Even better!  Because you’ll have to carry it with you on the plane and share a seat with it and you can use it as a pillow.  EVERYONE WINS.” And then he disagreed with me on the the meaning of the word “EVERYONE” but Amazon says I’m a “celebrity” so all bets are off on words and eventually he grumpily but with adorable resignation carried the giant squid and caped cat (and also a tiny slow loris) to the cash register.

I told him he should take Nicole Squidman everywhere and get pictures of her all over Japan and he totally balked but he did take one picture of Nicole Squidman climbing into his hotel window, except that most of the body was hanging out of the window and a breeze came and suddenly a giant squid plummeted nine stories down toward the polite screams of several confused pedestrians.  He considered just walking away from the whole thing but Victor is my personal hero so he went down to rescue Nicole Squidman and explained to the doorman who was holding her that his wife is insane and that she made this happen even though she’s in Texas right now.  I suspect that no matter how great Victor’s Japanese is the doorman suspected that he was using all of the wrong words, but regardless, Nicole Squidman is alive (ish) and well.

Technology is kind of amazing, y’all.

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I’m barely moving and that’s just fine.

I’m working through this depression and finding more and more days where I’m  feeling human.  (WHOOOT!)  Today is one of those days and it’s an incredible change from the one I had yesterday when Hailey came down for breakfast and was like, “Why are you laying on the kitchen floor?” and it seems pathetic to say I was too tired to sit on a chair, so instead I was like, “I’m doing the mannequin challenge” and Hailey was all, “I don’t think that’s how that works” but I was like, “Agree to disagree.  I’M NAILING IT.”

Whenever I have days where my mind and body shut down I draw.  Last week  when I shared a drawing I was working on (and the furry person keeping me from completing it)  people asked how I’d made such perfect circles and the truth is that I use whatever I have on hand to trace the shapes I need.

Last year when I was on book tour someone gave me a ring with “NEVER GIVE UP” engraved on it to remind me that I’d helped save them, and to remind me that I was needed even when broken.  A few days later someone in line told me they were struggling and I handed her the ring that had comforted me.  And the world goes round and round.  And then I  had Victor buy a dozen more and send them to me on tour and every day I’d wear one and if I thought someone needed a reminder I’d give my ring to someone who was struggling or who was celebrating surviving but scared of the future.  I’m still wearing my last one.  And it’s what I used to make a lot of those circles.

bloggessart

Fitting.

PS. I really am fantastic at the Mannequin Challenge.  I can literally do it in my sleep.  In fact, that’s where I do it best.

Frankly, it’s not that much more ridiculous than a lot of the stuff on I’ve written on twitter before.

Social media is hard as shit right now because everyone is mad and I get it.  There are small reprieves like the Biden memes and otter videos, but mostly it feels a bit scary to writing anything on twitter and Facebook and that’s why today I decided to use YES,THAT CAN BE MY NEXT TWEET to let that website decide what I would probably say today based on my history.  Here are a few of the suggestions that YES THAT CAN BE MY NEXT TWEET gave me to share, and they were incredibly ridiculous and also embarrassingly accurate sometimes.

my-next-tweet

Not entirely out of character, if I’m being honest.

Let’s try again.

my-next-tweet

Okay.

my-next-tweet-3

Hmm.

my-next-tweet2

TOTALLY.  Wait, no.  Is this sexual?


tweets

I like that there’s a question mark.  Like I’m sort of sure it’s flammable but I’m giving it the benefit of the doubt.

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Seems like I’m just under-reacting at this point.

tweets-2

So maybe the question marks were too optimistic.  Sorry.  I’m hiding under the idea of the future.

tweets10

Seems like a good idea if everything is on fire.

A few other tweet suggestions it gave me:

I SMELL LIKE I WAS JUST GROWLED AT.

TODAY IS CANCELLED AND FULL OF HOT GOAT HAIR.

THIS IS THE WORST POTPOURRI.

WE NEED A SACRIFICE TO MAKE THINGS WORSE.

I HAVE RUINED MY PROBLEMS.

HEY, SORRY I HAVE CARPET BURNS.  ALTHOUGH TECHNICALLY WE ALL PAINTED PART OF THOSE GENITALS.

GOATS HAVE DAVID SEDARIS TIED UP.

5 YEARS AGO: ME, A DICK, DEPRESSION.

APPARENTLY I’M MAKING WIGS WITH FERRETS.

2AM SUDDEN DUCK BUTT!  THE CATS WERE BEFUDDLED.

TODAY IS NOTHING AND I’M SO EVERYTHING.

LADIES AND NEAR-VELOCIRAPTORS: NO ONE’S TAKING AWAY OUR TREBUCHET.  FOUND MY CAT!

MY NAME’S LARRY.  YOU CAN’T PROVE ANYTHING.  MAGIC IS NICER THAN MY PAJAMAS.

DID YOU ACCIDENTALLY OPEN A GOOD DUCK?  I’M GOING TO!  OOH, PRETTY!

I DRESS UP AND I’M…JESUS.

YES, I AM A TERRIBLE MESS.  THIS IS A RABID BEAR.

WHAT IN MY CAT WAS INVISIBLE BEFORE?

DUCKS.  MOTHERFUCKER.

SMELLS LIKE THEY’RE BALD DOWN THERE, RIGHT?

EVERYTHING WILL DRESS UP AND BE OKAY.

I SAW A DEMON.  THIS GUY HAS ZERO CHILL.

VICTOR FUCKED SHIT UP IN THE DEMON.  MAKE TINY MERKINS INSTEAD.

I’VE BEEN LANDING INSIDE THE BEST PEOPLE.  YOU SEEN MY STABBING KNIFE?

OCTOBER MEANS DOGS IN MIXED POLITICAL MARRIAGES WHO DON’T HAVE ANY MOTIVATIONAL BOOKS.

THIS IS THE MOST HEAVILY EDITED P0RN I’VE EVERY GLUED MYSELF TO.

VICTOR: WHAT THE FACE?

THE 2AM SUDDEN DUCK NEEDS A SEX DUNGEON.  I’M IN BED WITH SUPER GLUE.  NO CONTEXT NEEDED.

HELLO FRIEND.  BREATHE.  I SMELL REAL NICE.  I AM NOT BALLS.

Your turn.