Sunday, November 22, 2020

How Not To Buy A Phone

Skylar has been begging me to get a new phone since before the war. I don't know how long it's been since I've upgraded, but apparently "too long," or so he told me recently when he held my current one up and pointed out that it was cracked all over. "You even shattered the back? I didn't know you could do that!"

So he finally got on the internet the other day and ordered me one. Some fancy shmancy new iPhone that is exactly like my previous iPhone, as far as I can tell, except now I have to put in my passwords, none of which I even remotely remember, on all 600 apps I use. 

The phone was supposed to arrive in mid-December, which was fine with me, but Skylar was not satisfied because "I want to play with it!" So he did some research and found out that if he ordered it through Verizon instead of Apple, it would show up more quickly, somehow.

He cancelled the original order and bought the damn phone again through Verizon and told me I'd be getting an email from the company saying it was ready for pickup at the store near our house.

Two days went by and my husband, who is apparently not patient, called Verizon to ask them if they had one in stock that I could just come and get, even though they hadn't yet emailed me.

Thursday, November 19, 2020


My phone starts buzzing. It's Skylar. It's 4:00 PM. The fact that he's calling me at this time probably means he finished his rotation early today.

I answer.

"She didn't really explain what that meant and AHHH I just realized I forgot to pick it up what time are you going to be there and do you know yet what we're doing for dinner?"

He starts every phone call like we're in the middle of a conversation already and he expects me to understand what the hell he's talking about.

"I have no idea what anything you just said means. I'm not inside your brain," I remind him.

The disconnected thought vomit gets worse toward the end of the week as he seems to be in his most exhausted state by then.

"Nevermind," he says. "Your turn. Tell me about your day?"

He requests this as though he's already given me a coherent account of what he's up to.

Sunday, November 15, 2020


When I moved into my house in Year Of Our Lord XIIBV, one of the first things I noticed was that all the walls were beige, which I didn't love. 

"I'll paint them later," I optimistically promised myself. And then I moved all of the crap I've ever owned into the place.

Look. Let me give you some old man wisdom from this old man. Listen carefully. What I'm about to tell you is one of the most important things you'll ever hear in your life: if you buy a home and it is not the color you want it to be on the inside, do not move your sh&t into it. Leave your sh$t out of it. Paint the d@mn place first.

I bleeped out all of my swears for my mother.

The point is, painting an empty home? A pain. But a manageable pain. Painting a home full of your life's worth of hoarding? An unmanageable pain. 

Do not do that to yourself.

I give this advice knowing full well that I could have never followed it myself when I was young and dumb and so excited to sleep under my own roof and start saying things like "are we heating the neighborhood?!" whenever someone left the door open. I couldn't have forced myself to wait several days to get the painting done before moving in. 

Thursday, November 12, 2020


Ok nobody panic but I changed some stuff. I know. I know. We're not supposed to change things. Change is not a thing we handle. There's a reason we're all still here hanging out on blogger in 2020. 


But we're all still living in 2006 over here. The only thing that could make this site more 2006 is if I inserted one of those widgets that automatically blasts a Jack Johnson song every time you visit Stranger. Don't worry. I'm not going to do that. Because lazy.

I changed things because our super talented artist at The Beehive, Josh Fowlke, messaged me and was like "you do realize you have like 19 different and conflicting brandings you're using across all of your various projects, right?"

Then he sent me some new images and fonts and I had to go in and do stuff with internet code and dark magic and I think I may have accidentally launched bombs at Thailand at one point but eventually everything ended up looking how it looks now. Which is good. I think. Probably. 

I'm so very tired right now. Skylar woke up at negative 3:00 AM screaming. Then he flew out of bed and started running through the house in a full panic. Duncan and I were going to follow him to see what was going on but we didn't because lazy and tired. Eventually he came back into the bedroom, climbed into bed, and whispered "the house is secure."

Sunday, November 8, 2020

The Urge To Be Happy

I'm sitting at my kitchen table. The fire is going. Duncan is perched in front of the front door staring out at a snow storm. Skylar is in the kitchen unloading the dishwasher and quietly singing something to himself. Taylor Swift? I don't know. It's probably Taylor Swift.

We walked around the neighborhood this morning to get coffee and breakfast. As we walked, we talked about our favorite Nevada memes from this week. Like this one:

Thursday, November 5, 2020

Every Damn Day

Skylar's latest rotation is in dermatology, which I've been looking forward to because of a baseless but immovable assumption that it would give him access to an entire ocean of free botox that he will urgently funnel into every crevice of my body.

So far that hasn't panned out, but I've at least been able to corner him every evening for a full consultation about every suspicious growth I've ever discovered but haven't gotten checked out because I've always assumed I'd be married to a very gay dermatologist one day and could deal with whatever at that time. 

"What about this one?" I say, pointing to some crusty bump at my hairline. "I don't know man. Go see a doctor or something," he responds.

"I thought that's what I was paying the GDP of a mid-sized country for you to be!" I yell at him as he slumps away and disappears behind his laptop to study until midnight. 

The third year of medical school is not great, in case you're wondering. I felt very emotionally prepared for the first two years. Sure, he studied all the time, but he was also home nearly all the time. Skylar and I have been steamy lovers (not sorry) for over half a decade and his first year of medical school was far and away the period in our relationship when we spent the most time together, apart from the first couple months of These Unprecedented Times of Uncertainty when he was stuck at home with me. 

Sunday, November 1, 2020

Halloween In These Unprecedented Times

Despite These Unprecedented Times Of Uncertainty We're All In This Together And It Came To Pass, I decided we'd still try to celebrate Halloween. We simply must. It's part of the Gay Agenda. Yes, everyone is given specific roles by Judy Garland when they come out. Some of those roles include things like ruining the definition of family or fixing straight people's houses. But all of us are assigned to celebrate Halloween and we can literally be fined for failing to do it.

Side note, moment of silence for queer icon Cousin Itt:

Thursday, October 29, 2020

Tickling Texts

On Tuesday morning I woke up to something of a surprising email. I get quite a handful of emails to the Stranger account. Most of them are from you people telling me how good my hair looks and yelling at me for all the ways my recipes suck and asking if Skylar is single and stuff. 

But this one caught my eye, because, well. Just read it.

Sunday, October 25, 2020

Physical Exam

I heard it before I saw it. It was coming from the next room over. A one-sided medical based conversation by my exhausted spouse who has been working graveyard shifts between long days.

He comes home when he can and traps himself in some corner of the house, a space heater at his feet, and he studies until he falls asleep. "I'm just so tired. I'm just so so tired," he'll say to me if ever I happen to see him.

But on this evening three nights ago he wasn't studying quietly. He was instead practicing physical exams, and he was doing it loudly.

"Now I'm going to check your heartrate," I heard him say to what I thought must be an imaginary patient. I thought it must have been imaginary because I was pretty sure we were the only two people in the house.

But then he continued: "your heart rate is about . . . uh . . . hundreds of beats per minute. That's either very alarming or completely normal."

At this point I became curious enough to put down my knitting and pause my shows, for I was engaged in equally important tasks as Skylar.

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

I made this with my man hands.

I embarked on my third sweater project in early July. I was determined to knit one Skylar would actually wear. 

Skylar is not a good liar. I don't think he's really capable of lying. It's a very disappointing thing to have in a spouse. I know I know. "But Eli, why would you want your husband to be dishonest with you? Don't you want to know you can trust what he's telling you?"

Y'all, that sounds nice on paper but when I'm like "do you think I'm getting soft around my mid-section" and he responds in a high pitched "WHAT NO OF COURSE NOT WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT YOU'VE NEVER LOOKED MORE FIT AND YOUR HAIR DEFINITELY ISN'T THINNING" and I'm like "WHAT'S THAT ABOUT MY HAIR???"

I'm just saying, sometimes I would like for him to be a good liar. 

When I had him try on the first sweater I made, which I knew was a disaster (it had like five holes in it and it was four inches longer in the front than in the back) I asked him what he thought. He did the same high-pitched voice and said something about how the sweater "really tells a story."

I haven't seen that sweater since.