Friday, January 30, 2009

ISO: Dentist Who DOES NOT Speak English

Way back when I was 13 I had to undergo a few operations. The whole shebang is kind of a long story, but what's relevant for today is that basically I was terrified. Not terrified because they'd be cutting me, or terrified of being put into a medically-induced coma, or terrified of being in a hospital, or anything normal like that. No, this being me, I was terrified because somebody told me that in the process of going under from the anesthesia a lot of people start to talk about random stuff that they can't control and don't remember later, and this threw me into a full-on panic because WHAT IF I START TALKING ABOUT MASTURBATION. Oh, my god, those doctors would KNOW! And what if I said something like "Hey Doctor so-and-so, your breath smells!" Well, it did smell, but if I actually said that?!

When I woke up after the operation this was the first thing I thought to ask about. Not "How'd my operation go," or "Where's my mom." No, the first question out of my mouth was, "Did I say anything embarrassing?" The nurse assured me that I talked about dolphins, but I know she was lying. I just KNOW I told Dr. Smelly Breath that I knew about masturbation, and OH MY GOD, BURY ME NOW IN A HEAP OF STEAMING EMBARRASSMENT.

What's amazing to me about this particular childhood paranoia of mine is it's longevity. I mean, I used to be scared that I'd die in the middle of the night, and scared of worms, and scared of dogs, and I hated avocado, but I've gotten over all that. But this fear of being unable to control the words that come out of my mouth? I think it's here to stay.

The dentist that I go to in Austin, for example. I am terrified of dentistry, largely because of a hard-to-forget episode in my life called Drilling Right On the Nerve Without Novocaine. Ugh, just remembering it gives me the heebie-jeebies. Well, my dentist is nice and, knowing how scared I am of dentistry, he always offers to give me a little laughing gas to relax me before he does any work, or, you know, a cleaning. This sounds wonderful to me. A little shot of something to take the edge off, so I don't leave my permanent handprints on the arms of the dentist chair. But can I do it? No, of course not. Because my dentist is cute and married, and WHAT IF I TELL HIM I LUUUURVE HIM? Oh, earth, please swallow me whole.

So here's the point of this story. I have to go to the dentist, I think. I was eating chicken for lunch and I bit down on a bone and sweet lord it hurt. Two hours later it still hurts a lot. If it keeps hurting in two days, I'm going to a dentist. And you know what I'm going to do? I'm going to find a dentist that doesn't speak a word of freakin' English and I'm going to say, "Drug me up, you crazy dude! I'm going under and no matter what I say, YOU WON'T UNDERSTAND ME!! YAHOOOOOOO! SEX SEX SEX, YOUR BREATH SMELLS, MASTURBATION MASTURBATION, YOU ARE SO SEXY!!! YOU CAN'T UNDERSTAND ME!!"

Thursday, January 29, 2009

In Matagalpa, Pueblito Lindo

Just a quick note to let anybody interested know that I'm in Matagalpa now, safely ensconced at the Hotel Central, a charming little place with a dubious claim to having hot water and a righteous sound system that is programmatically working its way through our favorite hits of the 1980s.  Peter Cetera should be particularly pleased, as he's been highlighted more than once.  I'm meeting some potential housing arrangements today and tomorrow, and should be able to pass along an address soon to those who wish to send me postcards.  In the interim, my cell phone here is 505.490.2264, should anybody be dying to chat me up at exorbitant international rates.  

So all's well.  The transition was amazingly wonderful, and I can only thank my fantastic and wonderful Aunt Mary for that.  You see, I'm not really traveling light this time around, what with bringing lots of books for research and other useless items.  I've got one big bag suitcase, a traveler's pack, and a small backpack, which for me is an outrageous amount of luggage, but there you have it. I was contemplating, with no small amount of dread, the prospect of taxi-ing to a 
bus station, lugging luggage through a bus station, boarding a bus, getting off a bus, finding a taxi, lugging luggage, etc., all in the chaotic environment of the Nicaraguan public transit system.  Then it was as if Mary were right next to me, and I could hear her whisper, "See, this is one of those problems that you can throw a little money at and it will all be much better." So I asked my favorite taxi driver if he'd drive me up to Matagalpa, we haggled a price, and wha-boom.  As usual, Aunt Mary was right. Here I am, for the ridiculous (by Nicaraguan standards) price of $35, and it was worth every penny. Thanks, Mary.  If I keep following your advice I might end up broke, but at least my hair will stop turning gray.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

New and Wonderful Things

A number of new and wonderful things to be listed in no particular order:

1. Look what I just learned how to do Kate just taught me to do! I've wanted to know how to do that line-through-the-text thing for years!

2. You know what's keeping me up at night? Mangoes. Not, sadly, lascivious dreams of sweet yellow mango meat. Just mangoes. There's a mango tree that hangs right over my bedroom and while they aren't ripe yet, the wind has been pretty strong lately and they're falling on my tin roof by the bucketload. Seriously, it sounds like a hailstorm or something. Loud, loud mangoes.

3. My father (at least, I think it was my father) just sent me the weirdest email of my life. SOMEBODY (you will die, Crasey) let the cat out of the bag about a certain situation that was to remain top secret and he wrote me a very Faulknerian message about how he'd heard I was seeing somebody down here (from DURHAM!!!), and this is how I'm to think about it: God is setting things up in my life, presenting me with opportunities and eligible young men (that's a quote), so I'd better be a good customer (good customer!?!) or God will banish me like the Israelites to Babylon (another quote). For the record, he was kidding about the banishment part, but still. My response was merely an inquiry to see if he really was the person who'd written that, since my father is something of a Biblical scholar and from my fuzzy memories from Vacation Bible School, I'm pretty sure the Israelites were banished to Egypt, not to Babylon, right? Well whatever it was, I loved that email. Half capitalist, half Southern gothic, half Bud Buttinsky. Wait, that's three halves.
UPDATE: I just checked with Captain Mommypants, who is a minister. Turns out my fuzzy memories of Vacation Bible School are appropriately labeled as "fuzzy." Turns out the Israelites did spend exiled years in Babylon. And Syria, for that matter. Who knew?

4. I've been daydreaming about getting my dog when I settle down this summer, so I went over to and took the Choose a Breed Quiz. Here are my results, and I'm charmed by more than one option. I'm also tremendously happy to know that if I so choose, I could get a dog called a Dorkie. Seriously? A dorkie? Nothing's more awesome than that.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Year of Ox Looking Good

You know what? Lately I've been feeling pretty good. The last year and a half have been kind of stressful for me, first personally (rotten awful break-up), and then professionally, as I faced down my comprehensive exams (barf-aroonio) and then leaving the town I love to live in Managua for four months in the rainy season. Not that it was all "poor Cheasty," of course. I had many wonderful times and wonderful experiences during that year and a half, but a lot of those days I lived with this sort of icky cloud of doom over my shoulder. "Sure I'm having fun right now," I'd think, "but ugh, broken heart. Or ugh, comps. Or ugh, Managua in the rainy season. I just can't wait for this to be over."

Well my comps exams are over, I survived living in Managua in the rainy season, and my heart is feeling a lot stronger and less cynical than it has in a long time. I've had a few personal breakthroughs.

Personal breakthrough number one: While I look forward to being back in Austin for the long-term at some point this summer, I'm actually excited about being up in Matagalpa for the next couple of months. Imagine that; I don't dread doing my work!

Personal breakthrough number two: Also, I'm excited about April, which is when I will move in to my own place for the first time in my life. On a dream-inspired impulse (long story), a few months ago I called a friend of mine who lives in a completely adorable, tiny, cute, pretty, lovely, affordable little one-bedroom loft house in Austin. "Hey," I said, "if you ever decide to move out of the Elf Palace, could you put me first on the list to take over your lease?" "Why, Cheastypants, funny you should mention that..." she responded. I signed the lease while I was home, and when I return to Austin I will have my own place. Roommates can be wonderful (hello, Penata!), but I really feel like living on my own. I'm so thrilled about moving into the Elf Palace that I am nervous about it, like I might jinx myself or something. But more than nervous, I just feel tremendously pleased. I can't wait to decorate and plant a garden.

Personal breakthrough number three: Not so much a breakthrough, as much as it is just realization of a long-held desire. When I settle down this summer, I'm getting A DOG!!!! I've wanted to get a dog for three years now, but with this year of work abroad pending, I always put it off until "after research year." Well guess what. In July it will be officially "after research year," and I'm getting my dog. Ooh, I can't wait!

Personal breakthrough number four: While I generally make it a policy not to discuss my love life, this next breakthrough is general enough and wonderful enough to merit a mention. Since horrible-awful-break-up of a year and a half ago, my position towards dating anybody has been, to say the least, defensive. The disappointment, the shock, the heartache, it seemed, was inevitable, so why bother. And if I bother, wouldn't it just be easier to push the guy away once I start to care even an iota about him? l've been struggling with this for a while. I was "over" the last boyfriend, but I couldn't really even countenance trusting anybody else. I guess I was too scared of getting hurt again.

Well I was stressing out about this with Penata while I was home, and in the midst of all my dramatic "I can't! I just can't!" a line from a song I used to sing in church Bible camp popped into my head. Church bible camp being what it was (life-threateningly boring), I don't normally spend a lot of time re-hashing memories, much less singing those songs (except for Kum-Ba-Ya, which is sort of inevitable). But there we were, walking around Town Lake, and right after I'd finished some grandiloquent statement about how I was just afraid to start anything with a certain guy because of x, y, and z, all the sudden I started humming "Love Is Like A Magic Penny." You know that song? Probably not. It goes like this. And it was like I felt something sort of let go inside me. Love is like a magic penny! If you give it away, you end up having more! Of course! If I hold it tight, I won't have any! Naturally! But if I lend it, spend it, I'll have so many they'll roll all over the floor. I couldn't have said it better myself. So that's my new M.O. I am the magic penny of love. No jokes about "giving it away," please, as you know very well I'm not talking about that. I know I sound silly, but I'm still sort of happy for myself.

So this is how I've been feeling. Optimistic, I guess is the best word for it. And you know what? It turns out, according to my horoscope, that this feeling of optimism, of happiness, of contentment, is all pre-ordained. Some Chinese astrologer could've told me this would be a good year back when I popped out in 1977. I got this in my inbox today:

Snake Overview (2009)

The Snake has an incredibly favorable year ahead. The year of the Ox provides many opportunities for the Snake to fulfill long awaited career goals and achieve more than he/she ever imagined. Your wisdom and patience are tools that prove successful in all aspects of your life. Relationships could be taken to new heights and deep and meaningful friendships are acquired. This year proves to be one of action, the year that all of your planning and waiting pay off for you. The later months prove to be especially successful, tying a year of arduous work into an extremely blissful culmination.

Snake Rating:

79% (10 favorable and 2 neutral months)

Well that sounds all right to me.  Happy Year of the Ox, Cheastypants.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

One Year and Ten Days

Hi everybody, here I am in Nicaragua, and guess what. It's just about the same as when I left a month ago! Not much new to report, except for how nice it was to see the people I've missed while I was gone. I'm settled back in to ye olde casa de Managua for a few days, and then I'll take off for Matagalpa later this week.

So here is what I have to report, with no small degree of astonishment. It appears that while I wasn't looking, this blog turned one year old. **Clang!** (That was the sound of my jaw hitting the floor. From the sound of it, both my jaw and the floor are made of some highly resonant metallic substance. This may or may not bear future consideration.) At any rate, for what it's worth I'd like to wish myself a happy blogiversary, even if I am ten days late.

Other points of interest:

1. A mighty big round of applause to my wonderful friend Octavia, who managed to get herself engaged over the inaugural weekend. Hooray!

2. In the course of his research down in Panama, my friend Mutt happened to find one of the most bizarre things I've ever seen. It appears to be a tourism pamphlet for Chinese prisons. You should check this out; it's utterly bizarre, and Mutt is hilarious.

3. One year ago today on Cheastypants:

In My Next Life I Will Be British

This hilarious article from the NY Times highlights a spectacular example of one of my most favorite kinds of humor in the world. I know, I know. I'm supposed to be a mature 31-year-old woman who, in working on a PhD, is embracing the serious, academic side of life, but please. In all seriousness there is nothing that amuses me more than a little lavatory humor. To this day, be it at a party or in a board meeting, I still snigger whenever somebody says the word "duty." And if somebody scoots a chair and it sounds like a fart? Fuggedaboutit.

Here you go, folks, a small homage to the most embarrassing place names a person could manage to live in in Great Britain.

(Updates from Nicaragua to follow.)

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Back to Nicaragua

Oh, I know what you're thinking. "God, Cheastypants," I can hear you all say. "Why do you always stay in the same place? It's about time you moved on from Austin. After all, you've been there three whole weeks. Gah."

Well, you're right, I suppose. Sigh. As much as I love Austin -- and trust me, I love Austin -- it's time to trade 80 degree January weather for... oh, I don't know. How about some more 80 degree January weather? Yes, that sounds just about right. So where shall I go? Oh, hmmmm. Think, think, think. Tap, tap, tap. AHA! I've got it! How about... NICARAGUA!!! Yeah, yeah, yeah!

Oh, I know what you're thinking. "God, Cheastypants," I can hear you all say. "Weren't you, like, JUST there?"

Well, you're right, I suppose. Sigh. I hate being predictable. But this time there's a difference, you see. I won't be living in Managua, as charming as that little city can be. (cough, cough) No, this time I'll be making my bed in a wonderful little mountain city called Matagalpa. Still starts with M, still in Nicaragua, but kind of like a different universe, all the same.

Other differences include, but are not limited to:

1. I have friends there, and, importantly, potential friends there. I have friends in Managua, too, but more in Matagalpa.
2. Cheaper cost of living = more money to rent a car for romantic weekend getaway.
3. Romantic weekend getaway? Well, I may be making some progress in that direction.
4. There's always La Perla, in Leon, wonderful, wonderful hotel in a wonderful wonderful city. Jim Petersen, the owner and my surrogate uncle in Nica, is waiting for me, rum and coke in hand. Ah, rum and coke.

So off I go, ready to spend the next few months with recording device in hand as I ask the citizens of Matagalpa to tell me their health care stories of 30 years ago. How about those Cuban doctors, for example? Or the time you worked as a brigadista de salud? How about the time you went to the hospital to give birth and you had to share a bed with another pregnant lady? Did you vaccinate your babies? What happened to medical care when the Contra war started? And so on and so forth.

Wish me safe travels, my poppets. Will log on after the weekend to post from Nica.

Why I Love Austin

It's because we have people like this. I don't know whether you watch the Ellen DeGeneres show. I don't generally, though I like her, but sometimes I catch something viral that she does, like for example, THIS completely hilarious episode, otherwise known as The Hawaii Chair. But I digress. Watch this conversation Ellen has with Austinite Gladys Hardy, and then try really hard not to want to move here. Gladys Hardy is solid gold.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

New Frontiers In Making My Jaw Drop

All right, maybe I'm missing something, but I could have sworn the human body was not designed to move like this. Watch the following video of a Swan Lake ballet, all seven minutes of it. And every time you think to yourself, "Okay, that was cool and crazy, but I've got shit to do," force yourself not to click off it. I promise, it just continues to get better. I mean for God's sake, she balances ON HIS HEAD. ON HER TIPTOES. THEN SHE DOES A STANDING SPLIT. AND THEN SHE DOES A STANDING BACK BEND. WHILE ON POINT. WHILE HE WALKS AROUND.

This woman may or may not be human.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Introducing the Cupcake Princess Monster

Hello, my poppets, today I'd like to introduce you to the closest thing I have to a niece. Please say hello to Fancy Nancy, otherwise known as the Cupcake Princess Monster. You'll have to excuse her complete and total lack of hair, but there was a recent episode of "Fancy Nancy Cuts Her Own Hair While Mommy Isn't Looking" that required drastic measures to repair the damage. Don't worry, Fancy Nancy still thinks she's gorgeous. Her mommy, who is more-or-less-sort-of a cousin to me, asked her yesterday, "Who is the most beautiful girl in the world?" and Fancy Nancy responded (with embarrassing amounts of glee, I might add), "I AM!!" And you know what? She is completely correct.

Fancy Nancy came up to visit Umulu and me this weekend, and here are some highlights from the weekend. Umulu held up her hand in the sign language symbol for "I love you," and said, "Hey, Fancy Nancy, do you know what this sign means?" "YES!" shrieked Fancy Nancy. "It means I... LOVE... ME!!"

We did lots of fun things while Fancy Nancy was here, but probably the best was making cupcakes. PINK cupcakes. I almost threw up in my mouth, but Fancy Nancy has never been happier.

While there were minor disappointments, like when the Dolly Store was unexpectedly closed, Fancy Nancy's mommy was always there to fix all her boo-boos with some awesome Mommy-Power Hugs.

All in all, it was a fabulous weekend. We played witches and princesses, princesses and witches, and princesses and ponies. We galloped around the yard, hid from evil witches who chased us around with tikki torches (not lit, thank you very much), laid down on floatie mats and waited to be awakened by True Love's Kiss, hid in tents, wore giant magic rings and princess crowns, combed each other's hair with spoons, and then settled down to read our favorite books.

There might be better things in this world than spending a weekend with a real live Cupcake Princess, but right now I'm hard-pressed to think of what that might be.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Wet's Tawk Wike Mawena

I needed a little pick-me-up today, so I went back to two of my favorite SNL skits of all time, and good glory was that a good idea. Both of these clips make me waff so hawd I neawy wet mysewf.

First off, the completely astonishing lingual gymnastics of Baba Wawa and Mawena Deutchwand:

And last, the marvelously hard-of-hearing Miss Emily Litella:

Friday, January 16, 2009

Oh, ARE You Effing Kidding Me.

You know what I hate? Robbers. Robbers are what I hate. I walked out of my house this morning, over to my car, and guess what: robbers. Hooray!

Some assface opened my car (either I left it unlocked or they jimmied the locks) during the night, went through my stuff, and took off with my favorite cycling sunglasses and a duffel bag in which I had 5 pairs of my favorite shoes. Well, four and a half, really, cause I found one of the shoes out by the passenger side door. Mother fucker. BOTH pairs of my favorite red shoes: the flats, which are just unbelievably cute, and the wedges, which are just about the only high heeled shoe I can wear without getting insta-bunions or broken toes.

I can only hope that the thief was a diminutive crackhead who is, as I type, mincing about his dirty house wearing nothing but my black stilettos and a French maid's apron. And his Mom's about to walk through the door.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Lefty's Been Canned. At Least Temporarily.

Hello my poppies, my precious petunias, it is I, your friendly neighborhood Cheastypants, back from a brief vacation during which some strange private investigator has apparently hijacked my account and pretended I'd gone missing. All I can say is this: I have no idea where Lefty Detroit came from, it was fun to write like him for a few days, and now I'm sick of him and couldn't possibly conceive of a plot device that could adequately explain why I'd disappeared from the planet without making me sound a) heartless, or b) insane. And while both of those things might be true, I'd prefer not to advertise that on the interwebs. So here I am, and here's a brief update.

I've been doing lots of yoga. LOTS of yoga. My hips have never been so limber, nor so poorly acquainted with one another, and my back is a marvel of no-aches-no-pains for the first time in months, so I'm pleased.

My littlest sister Crasey was in town for a while, which was all kinds of fun. Then my great great friend (and former teammate from back in our days on the UNC Varsity Women's Crew) Low-Ra Fog-Tee came to visit for a few days after her team finished winter training here in Austin. It'd been a while since I'd watched crews practice and race, and when Low-Ra asked if I wanted to come out in the launch while she did her coaching thing, whoa Nelly. I was all there, AND I brought my brand new Nikon of Gold to take pictures. Want to see a few highlights? Of course you do.

This is Low-Ra. I'm sure many of you know people with big smiles, huge laughs, and winning personalities, but let me assure you that in comparison to this woman, you ain't seen nothin' yet.

This is her crew, the University of Louisville women's rowing team:

They row so pretty:

And they have fun, too!

But most of all, they row hard:

This last picture is my favorite one for a number of reasons (click for full size view). One, I used to be a coxswain so this is just fun to see these two coxes going so hard. Two, look at the water drops! Is that freaking cool or what?! Three, look at the oars, if you know anything about rowing. Bend in the far one, buried deep through the finish in the near one. That's some fine rowing, if you ask me. And four, it's pretty rare to get a shot where the boats are literally neck-and-neck, so I love how the far cox's head is literally right on top of the near cox's head. I love my Nikon of Gold!

Ok, lots of other things going on, but it's all boring stuff like reading stuff for research, organizing and labeling photographs of documents. Oh, and dancing, but that's not boring! Off to do more research now, I'll catch up some more tomorrow! Smoochie, smoochie.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Detroit Chronicles: In Search of Amazing Cheastypants, Part III.

Hey folks, it's Lefty again. Lefty Detroit, Private Eye. Sorry about that little interruption, but I'm back. Now where was I? Oh yeah, that Ludmilla lady. What a dame! So there I am, standin' in the door to her boudoir, and there she is, this hot Russian KGB agent, dressed in like practically nothin', and she's calling me to come in there on account of how she's got something she wants to show me, if you know what I'm sayin'. So whaddaya think, I was born yesterday? I don't care how big and round and bouncy her, uh, her eyes are, Lefty Detroit knows when he smells a rat. But like my grandmother always used to tell me, sometimes a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do, and let me tell it to you straight, I knew what I had to do. Clearly this dame was pretty hot for me, and honestly, who can blame her, you know what I'm sayin'? I mean, here I am, Lefty Detroit, fine upstanding member of the community, and on top of it all, I own my own business, right? Plus, chicks really dig all this spy stuff. So I figure I'm gonna have to trick this Ludmilla Krakova von Oopsiedaisypants into revealing infomation as to Amazing Cheastypants's whereabouts, and the best way to do that is clearly the time-honored art of seduction. Now I don't mean no disrespect to the next Mrs. Lefty Detroit, a.k.a. Miss Cookie von Countryclub, but this is how it's gotta be, if you know what I'm sayin', so in I went.

I gave Ludmilla my sexiest smile and walked over to where she was sittin' on this little couchy-chair-thing. "Lefty, vat's wrong, darlink," she said. "Have you got a, how you say, tummyache?"

"Uh, no Ludmilla, I'm just overwhelmed by your hot sexyness," I responded, pretty smooth if I do say so myself.

"Ah. Vell, nevermind," she said, and squeezed her arms around her middle, which, take it from me, did some pretty amazing things to her, uh, well. You know. Her anatomy, right? Huh huh. But back to the story. Ludmilla was still talking, and she said, "Come over to me here, Lefty. I vant that you should take a look at this leetle thing I vant to show you."

"Oh, Ludmilla, you are so hot and sexy," I said, getting closer.

"Hot?" she asked. "Oh, no, darlink, you are quite wrong. I am, how you say, freezing to death. It is so cold in here!" Hmmmm. Maybe that squeezing herself up wasn't a calculated move of unadulterated seduction, I think to myself. And it's true, her lips did look a little blue, but who's to say, so I tried one more time to trick her into falling in love with me and thereby revealing her cleverly hidden clues. "Oh, Ludmilla, I'm so in love with you, baby," I said, trying to slide my arm around her.

Ludmilla laughed her husky Russian KGB laugh and put on a sweater. "Oh, Lefty, you're so terribly funny, you dear boy. Vhen I vas in the KGB ve used the same little tricksies, no? Now please to stop playing around and look at this very important clue I vant to show you. I think it might help you to be finding my sweet Amazing Bunnypants."

And sure enough, she pulled a folded up yellow sticky note out from between her bosoms and showed it to me. In scribbly writing it said, "Hey Bunny, see you at yoga, 5pm! Love, Alishka."

"You see, Lefty," Ludmilla explained. "After Bunny wasn't to come to our bridge night, I, too, became qvite vorried about her. I vent over to her house that night while Cookie and Mitzi vere still playing vith the cabana boys, and I vas finding this note stuck to her door. I am not knowing who is this Alishka, but perhaps it could to be helpful for you?"

Well, a man knows when a woman's working hard to fight her attraction to him, and the way I figure it, Ludmilla's probably got some hot and sexy Russian boyfriend she's tryin' to stay faithful to. So I did what any gentleman would do in these tricky circumstances. "Ludmilla," I tolk her, "I'll look into this here clue, and thanks so much for passing it along." I pocketed the sticky note, turned around, and ran like hell for my Ford Fiesta, cause God only knows how many surveillance cameras and recording devices were aimed at my ass, and the last thing Lefty Detroit needs is an angry KGB boyfriend huntin' him down. I've gotta stay healthy and strong for my future wife, Miss Cookie von Countryclub.

Ok, I'll keep you folks updated as to my ongoing search for Bunny, a.k.a. Amazing Cheastypants. As always, if you got any clues, leave 'em in the comments, or sent 'em to my address at the Banshee Building, office 555A, 7th floor.

Over and out,
Lefty Detroit, Private Eye.

Monday, January 12, 2009

The Detroit Chronicles: In Search of Amazing Cheastypants.

Uh, hello Internet. It's Lefty Detroit here, just givin' you an update on my ongoing search for Amazing Cheastypants, who was reported missing to yours truly just a coupla days ago by one Cookie von Countryclub. Don't worry, I'm hot on the trail. As you may know, in my ongoing quest to make Cookie von Countryclub into the next Mrs. Lefty Detroit, I have proceeded with all speed, if you know what I'm sayin'. So Miss Cookie, she'd left me a coupla really good clues, you know, that I could use in tracking down her friend Bunny (a.k.a. "Amazing Cheastypants"), but Lefty Detroit is no fool, and let me tell you, I do my own footwork.

So my first stop was over at one of Bunny's friend's house. Miss Cookie had mentioned a woman called Ludmilla, so I bribed one of the cabana boys over at the country club, and got Ludmilla's address. In fact, I got directions to her boudoir, too, huh, huh, which I'm only tellin' youse guys 'cause I ain't gonna use that particular information, seein's how I'm completely and totally in love with the next Mrs. Lefty Detroit, a.k.a. Cookie von Countryclub. Anywho. Where was I.

Oh, yeah, Ludmilla. So I drove my red hot Ford Fiesta down over to Ludmilla's house and rang the bell. And from my mouth to God's ears, somethin' fishy's going on over there. As I'm waitin' for the door to open, I'm pretty sure there were about five or six surveillance cameras all pointed at me from different places in the garden. Mighty unnerving, I don't mind saying, but then I got all distracted when the door opened, because goodbye, Cookie, hello, Ludmilla! A tall, stacked, blue-eyed Russian Amazon stood in the doorway in a slinky negligee, and all thoughts of my darling future-Mrs. Lefty flew my head as I gazed up at Ludmilla's big, beautiful, round... er... At her eyes, is what I was sayin'. Her big round eyes. Yeah. So, back to the story.

I think I mighta just sort of stared and muttered for a minute, but then she looked me up and down, raised one eyebrow, put her bejeweled hand on one slim and elegant hip, and said in the sexiest Russian accent I've ever heard, "Yes, can I please to help you?" Well, between you, me, and the lamppost, I almost passed out right then and there on Ludmilla's porch, but thankfully I pulled myself together just in the nick of time. I puffed out my chest, sucked in my gut, which, by the way is hardly noticeable I've been told, and thought about James Bond. "Hello," I said, in my smoothest voice, "the name's Detroit. Lefty Detroit, private eye. I'm looking for one Ludmilla Krakova von Oopsiedaisypants regarding the recent disappearance of her friend, one Amazing Cheastypants, a.k.a. 'Bunny.' Do you have a minute to answer some questions?"

Oh, man, that Ludmilla's just as cool as a cucumber, I tell you what. She didn't even answer me; just took her time looking me over, then got out one of them long cigarettes, though I don't know where she had it hidden. I'm pretty sure that skimpy nightie didn't have no pockets, if you know what I'm sayin', huh huh. Anyways, she stuck it in one of them long cigarette holders, and said, "Vell, that depends. Mr. Detroit, did you say it was? How perfectly charming. Are you please having a lighter?" Well, naturally I don't approve of a woman smoking, but what's a fella gonna do, you know, especially when you're sitting there staring into such big, beautiful, round eyes. So I lit her cigarette for her, she took a nice long drag and then she said, "A terrible habit, I know, but vat can I to do? It is, how you say, a bad habit from my days in ze KGB." And without so much as a by your leave, she just turned an walked back into the house, leaving me there on the front porch with my mouth hangin' open. But she didn't close the door, and Lefty Detroit always gets his man, so in I went after her, even though when she said KGB my heart started racing and my palms got all sweaty. But if you tell anybody I said I was nervous I'll take out your kneecaps, ya lousy rat, so leave it at that.

So there I am, sneakin' into the house of a former KGB agent, and it's a good thing for her that nobody dropped a glass or no car went backfirin' outside, or I mighta done something I'da regretted later. But that's what happens when a highly trained intelligence professional such as myself goes into the field. It's a jungle out there, and from my mouth to God's ears, I'm gonna be the one comin' home for dinner that night, you know what I'm sayin'? In the end it's a good thing that cabana boy gave me directions to the boudoir, because Ludmilla wasn't in the kitchen or the living room or the dining room. But a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do, so I straightened my trench coat, sniffed my pits, and opened the door to Ludmilla's boudoir. I looked around, checking out the silk bedsheets and candlelight, when Ludmilla's voice called from the other side of the room where she lay draped all sexy-like upon a chaise lounge.

"Lefty is that you, my darlink boy? Please to come inside, there is something I want to show you."

Oops, I'm flat out of time, folks. I'll tell you the rest of the story tomorrow.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

The Detroit Chronicles.

Hello, tap tap. Is this thing on? Ok, from my mouth to God's ears, I hope this thing works, you know what I'm sayin'.

Uh, hello, Dear Internet. I'm Lefty Detroit, private eye, and it has been brought to my attention that a certain person that is the writer of this here blog has gone missing, but I'm here to tell you never fear. I'm on the job, and Lefty Detroit always finds his man. Or woman, as the case may be, huh huh. But enough with the funny stuff. Let me fill you in on the details, right, 'cause sometimes people have clues they didn't know was clues and that can help me solve this case, you know what I'm sayin'.

So the other day I'm sittin' in my office over at the Get It Done Detective Agency, and it's kind of a slow day, if you know what I'm sayin'. So I'm sittin' there with my feet propped up on the desk when all of a sudden, bam! In walks this real classy dame. And wowza, this was one hot broad, a real diamonds and pearls kind of class act what doesn't walk through my door every day, right? Big brown eyes and this floaty cloud of hair under this cute little hat that peeked down over one eye. Man, she looked like Chanel Number 5. So I'm all ears and eyes, and I drop my feet and take off my hat, and she opens her mouth and says in this breathy voice, "Hello, I'm Cookie von Countryclub. Are you Lefty Detroit, the private investigator?" And from my mouth to God's ears, I could hardly speak. I mean this dame had a voice like one of them Frenchie actresses what talks all sexy, you know what I'm sayin'? So I says to myself, 'Holy Mary Mother of God, pull yourself together, Lefty, don't let this dame walk out your door!" And let me tell you what. Hey, Ma, if you're out there listening? I done you proud, Ma. I tucked in my shirt, straightened my hair real quick like, and said, "Yes, lady, that's me. What can I do for you today?"

"Well," she said, all breathy and distressed like. "It's just that my dear dear friend has gone suddenly missing, and we are most distraught! Oh, please, good sir, I can tell by your rumpled trench coat, battered fedora, and nicotine-stained index finger that you are a most adept private investigator, and I'm terribly, terribly frightened that somebody has abducted our sweet Amazing Cheastypants. Oh, do say you can help, I beg of you."

"Lady," I told her, puffing out my chest to make her notice me like a man, if you know what I'm sayin', "Lefty Detroit always finds his man. If your friend is missing, we'll get her back, and that's my promise to you. Why don't you take a seat and let's get down to business." So while she got all fluttery and thankful, and kept saying how "terribly, terribly grateful" she was, I cleared a stack of files off the other chair in my office and took her coat. A mink stole, I don't mind sayin', and just by accident I happened to notice she ain't got no ring on that there left finger, if you know what I'm sayin', and Lefty Detroit always gets his, er, well, woman, huh huh. Anyways, I think I've got a good a shot as any, you know what I mean?

So once she was sittin' down all comfortable like, I got out a yellow legal pad and looked around for a pencil stub. It took me a while to find it, what with all the files and newspapers, coffee cups and cigarette butts, but I finally did. So I licked the end, and said, "Ok, lady, tell me what you know," and commenced to writin' down what she said.

"Well," Miss von Countryclub began, "last we heard from Bunny - oh, that's what we call Amazing Cheastypants over at our club - well, the last we heard from Bunny she'd been terribly, terribly busy with out of town guests. As I understand it, her sister and a very dear friend from her days at university were both in town at the same time. She'd sworn to us that she'd still be on for our bridge game on Wednesday night, but Mitzi, Ludmilla and I never saw her that evening. In fact, we couldn't even play bridge, what with the uneven numbers. But it's all right, of course, we can always entertain ourselves with the cabana boys in such an eventuality. They are terribly, terribly adorable, you know."

Well I don't mind sayin,' that bit about the cabana boys sort of took me by surprise, and when I looked up, that Miss Cookie had quite a different sort of look in her eye, if you know what I'm sayin'. But she snapped out of it, and got right back to lookin' confused and upset, so I figured, hell, any person's got a right to a little fun, but from my mouth to God's ears, I'd give a million dollars to be a cabana boy at Cookie von Countryclub's club. Looks like Lefty Detroit picked the wrong line of work, huh huh! So, back to the story.

Turns out that the next mornin,' Cookie went over to Amazing Cheastypants' (a.k.a. "Bunny's") house and found some pretty fishy lookin' stuff. First off, she says how one of Bunny's coats was gone missing, and second, how all of her stuff was in a suitcase. Pretty fishy, if you ask me. On top of it all, she showed me how Bunny (a.k.a. "Amazing Cheastypants") had changed her voice mail message and now it was the theme song from "Where In the World Is Carmen Sandiego." Last, and this was a real kicker, she showed me this note written in elegant scrawl on some fancy perfumed paper like what you'd buy in Paris or somethin', and it said, "Buy insurance, call credit card company, yogurt, cereal, fruit, tires half off at Sears." Then Cookie looked up at me with her big brown eyes and those cute little lips all aquiver. She laid her hand on my sleeve (I flexed my muscle just a little bit to impress her, you know what I'm sayin'?), and said, "Oh, Lefty, whatever can it mean? Do you think it terribly, terribly, sinister?"

Well I hardly knew what to think, feelin' all like I'd been poleaxed when she looked at me like that, so I don't know what I said, but I must have muttered something sensible, cause the next thing I know she's holding my hand and sayin' hows she knew she could trust me and I would do a terribly, terribly good job finding her dear, dear Bunny. She looked so cute and sad that I practically shed a tear myself, but if you tell anybody I said that I'll break your fingers, so just forget about it, if you know what's good for you, chump.

So that's the story so far, folks, and I don't mind sayin' that I might need a little help so's I can get this case closed in an expeditious manner, especially since I've got an eye toward making Miss Cookie von Countryclub the next Mrs. Lefty Detroit. Have any'a youse guys seen this Amazing Bunnypants person around? Do you know where she might be hidin' out? Here's the physical descriptors Cookie von Countryclub passed along:

Eyes: of deepest blue.
Hair: acres and acres of gorgeous bouncy curls.
Height: practically a midget.
Weight: lighter than air.
Smile: thousand kilowatt.
Other: inexplicable tendency to sparkle as she moves through the air.

If you have any information as to the whereabouts of the abovementioned individual, please report any and all relevant details to: Lefty Detroit, Get It Done Detective Agency, Office 555A, 7th floor of the Banshee Building.

Lefty Detroit, Private Eye

Monday, January 5, 2009

I'm Not Dead

Hi everybody, sorry I've been AWOL for so long. I'm back in Austin, but my little sister Crasey is in town, and so is one of my best friends from college, and between the shopping, the wine drinking, the hanging out in the park, the making plans, and the eating lots of food, I haven't even had time to check email. Everybody leaves Wednesday, so it'll be back to your regularly scheduled Cheastypants at that point. Smoochies!