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Don’t say nothing

July 28, 2010

The other day, a small white spider crept across my windshield while I was driving home from work, completely crippling my ability to function. And the very next day, a different spider – I know it was different because I sent the first to Spider Heaven, also known as my own personal hell – sized me up on the inside of the driver’s side window during my afternoon commute.

A few weeks ago, my sixth-grade teacher Mr. Stuart randomly emailed me. And no, thankfully, it wasn’t because he’d found this blog. This may come as a shock, but I wasn’t as open and vocal about my life as a coitus-challenged cat lady when I was 12 years old. I didn’t have cats then.

Yesterday, I ordered coffee oreo ice cream at J.P. Licks. I loved every drop. And here’s the thing: I *hate* oreos and coffee. But together? A magical party in my mouth.

I couldn’t help but think that if I were a better blogger, I could find a common thread – something that ties together the unwelcome arachnids, my middle school mentor and an intolerance for unpalatable snacks that combine for a delectable dessert. But then I realized it wouldn’t add up to a blog post, but rather a folksy, socially-conscious song by the Indigo Girls. And it would be incredible, and insightful, and somehow shed light on the disappearance of small American farms. Or the unconstitutionality of Arizona’s new immigration law. Or the importance of scissoring those plastic holders on six packs of soda so seagulls don’t get stuck.

So I’ll forward that idea on to the band. You’re welcome, Indigo Girls. Because lately, I’ve been the opposite of inspired.

Outspired, let’s say.

I’m reminded of their song “Second Time Around,” in which Amy Ray laments, “If you ain’t got nothing good to say, sister, don’t say nothing at all.”

I really relate to that sentiment. For starters, I’m a sister. And for the past couple of weeks, I ain’t got nothing good to say. And I know how to tell time. It was as if they were singing about me and me alone.

And I pretty much do whatever the Indigo Girls tell me to do. They’re all, “Multiple life by the power of two.” And I’m like, “I am *on* it.” And they’re all, “The hardest to learn was the least complicated.” And I’m like, “Word, homegals.” And they’re all, “Chickenman, chickenman, chickenman, hold my hand.” And I’m like, “Umm … OK?”

Taking cues from the Indigo Girls is par for the course if you’re a gay gal. Also? Par for the course is par for the course. Because gay gals *really* like golf. It’s a hole thing. I’m not sure why.

Anyway, it seemed as though the Girls were telling me to take a break from blogging. I felt vindicated in my recent silence until the grammarian in me – and to be clear, lest you think my sex life has taken an unexpected turn for the sublime, there isn’t an actual grammarian in me – took a closer look at their words.

“If you ain’t got nothing good to say” is a double negative.

As is “don’t say nothing.”

I appeared to be confronted with the elusive quadruple negative.

I don’t know why the Indigo Girls didn’t just say this in the first place, but I think the life lesson they’re trying to convey to me is this: “If you don’t not have anything good to say, don’t not say anything at all.”

So effective immediately, like the good gay that I am, I’ll be doing that. Because the outspirational Indigo Girls told me to.

As soon as I figure out what the fuck “if you don’t not have anything good to say, don’t not say anything at all” means.

43 Comments leave one →
  1. July 28, 2010 4:06 AM

    “Bitten by the bitter bug”…. oh I know how that feels

  2. July 28, 2010 7:19 AM

    eating ice cream and becoming a serial spider killer are GOOD things. or was i only joking?

  3. July 28, 2010 7:33 AM

    I was wondering where you have been!! I have missed your posts, glad to have you back!

  4. July 28, 2010 7:41 AM

    I’ve done the algebra (as one does when confronted with multiple negatives) and they seem to be suggesting that you should wait until you have something good to say and then just pick a topic at random to talk about. Fortunately, this is apparently only applicable to sisters, so I’m off the hook.

  5. July 28, 2010 8:09 AM

    Ignore Kyknoord. I’d read about the pros and cons of different breakfast cereals, so long as its you writing it.

  6. Dizzy Goddesski permalink
    July 28, 2010 8:34 AM

    Baby I woke up cryin’ last night, just to realize that you were gone; It’s been two long [weeks] without you…
    Your cleverness is still there, even if the confidence is in hiding. Glad to hear from you 🙂

  7. July 28, 2010 9:25 AM

    It’s a good thing you blogged too because I was on the cusp of getting all missing person on you. AGAIN.

    Also, if bad grammer bothers you, does that mean you find reading my blog to be a painful experience? Because it would, and if it does then I am sorry. That having been said, dont expect things to change any time soon.

    Love and hugs and stuff,

  8. July 28, 2010 9:46 AM

    “Get out the map, get out the map and lay your finger anywhere down…” It’s got a good beat and you can dance to it – bad grammar aside, I give it a ten, Dick.

    (For anyone under the age of 40, it’s a Bandstand reference – Google it).

    Hate the spiders….love the post!

  9. July 28, 2010 9:54 AM

    Didn’t Thumper say something like, “Momma said, ‘if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all'”?
    Anyway, glad to see you’re back… I’ll read whatever you write, spider-killing, mouth parties, whatever…

  10. July 28, 2010 10:34 AM

    I, too, have been spoken to by the powerful words of the Girls Indigo.

    It’s why I named my dog Indigo.

    “Ghost” was my personal ballad, and in my mind, totally justified stalking my first serious ex-boyfriend. Even though we lived at opposite sides of damn big state and the internet didn’t exist then. But I stalked him in my heart and that’s what was important.

    I looked in my RSS feeder last night and “Alone with Cats” still sat empty. Apple News? Full of crap I will never read. “Alone With Cats”: empty.

    Life seemed so unfair.

    This morning it’s a little bit brighter.

    Except for the coastal fog, which is expected to burn off by mid-day.

  11. July 28, 2010 12:15 PM

    I wonder how long I’ll be laughing about the Chickenman line. Forever maybe.

  12. July 28, 2010 12:51 PM

    I had inklings of it before, but this post clinches it. I love you. not in a creepy stalker way, of course. I’d tell you if it was too. I’m an overly honest kind of gal.

    Indigo Girls are classic les music, but may I recommend branching our to the Ditty Bops or Tegan and Sara? also fabulously estrocentric, which is essential.

  13. July 28, 2010 1:03 PM

    love. is all, really.

  14. July 28, 2010 1:52 PM

    My favorite cat lady, I am comforted in the fact that you also get blog-tied. I mean… sometimes everything seems so unworthy of word crafting.
    But you did it. You made us laugh with that old double negative Indigo girls joke.
    Thanks. And take your time. We won’t forget you if you take more time off. We love your coitus-challenged cat ladiness whenever it appears.

  15. July 28, 2010 3:11 PM

    All this is just a clever way to deviate from the *real* point in hand… You consumed a coffee-tasting substance, and you liked it.

    I win.

    Sort of. Well, not really. Maybe it’s because I gave up coffee and the universe needed to make up for it, so it semi-converted you into a coffee-liker for [insert time it took you to eat the dessert here].

    PS I missed your posts lots 😦

  16. July 28, 2010 3:26 PM

    Dont go away like that again??!! Glad to see you’re back.

  17. July 28, 2010 3:41 PM

    Coffee oreo ice cream. You had me after the coffee part.

    Any time is a good time to quote the Indigo Girls, though they lose me at “Chickenman…”

    Welcome back to blogging. We missed ya.

  18. insertwittytitleheremomstired permalink
    July 28, 2010 3:45 PM

    I was hoping when reading your title, that you would be using the brilliant musings of Technotronic to show us how wonderful life truly is.
    Don’t say nothing less I saw
    and remember, I like it raw.
    Of course, I have no idea what that has to do with life and how wonderful it is. This is your blog, not mine. Jesus, wrote your own posts. I’m done here.

  19. July 28, 2010 4:51 PM

    It’s only life, after all.
    And now that you’re back to blogging, you’re closer to fine.
    Nah, you’re fine already.

  20. July 28, 2010 7:10 PM

    Another Indigo Girls reference in 3 … 2 … 1 …

    Thanks, y’all.

  21. July 28, 2010 9:06 PM


    Good to hear from you. More, please.

  22. July 28, 2010 9:35 PM

    Ahhhhh….I’ve missed you! All is right with the world now. Except now you’ve given me the equivalent of a math problem but in words. I’ll be up all night. Or is it I won’t be up all not day but dark time? I think my brain just exploded and some got on the carpet…great…i’m going to have to vacuum again.

  23. redg_rl permalink
    July 28, 2010 9:37 PM

    ice cream? good.. but trapped in this remote part of the cape? no go. spiders? ugh. they are more plentiful than one can tolerate & need daily escort out of the house (catch & release via glass & paper) or if they’re the murderous looking sort, guilt-filled smashing. there was a point to this but it seems to have vanished. either way, it’s fantastic to hear from you, please write more & soon, we need yr wisdom & keen wit. daily. now if you’ll please excuse me, I need to move some more spiders in order to get to
    the shower. they even tried to make off with the baby. bastards.

  24. July 28, 2010 10:00 PM

    Yay! You’re back! And I forgive you for being a copy editor who doesn’t like coffee because I’m a lesbian who doesn’t like the Indigo Girls. (Now I can’t believe I said that. Don’t ban me from your blog! I DO like olives! AND CATS!)

  25. July 29, 2010 12:07 AM

    this blog post was clearly written in a more innocent time– a time before bourbon vienna finger cookie ice cream.

    you’re welcome.

    i’m truly sorry that between the move across the river and your dislike(!) of(!) coffee(!), i can no longer hang out with you.

    well. maybe sometimes.

  26. Roxanne permalink
    July 29, 2010 8:38 AM

    OMG! JP Licks’ Coffee Oreo ice cream is the BEST! It’s been two years since I left Boston & each time I’ve gone back I’ve stopped to get some…including one time when I was extremely stuff from the Vietnamese food I had just had for lunch with a former college professor, but I was like “when am I ever going to get to have JP Likcs’ Coffee Oreo ice cream again?,” so I ate it and almost burst. Exciting story, right? I would definitely order it as part of my last meal, you know, if I ever killed someone and ended up on death row and had to order a last meal……

  27. July 29, 2010 2:26 PM

    OMG. I am in shock. Somehow I’ve never heard an Indigo Girls song or actually seen them. How is this possible? They sounded like I expected. . but i thought they’d be wearing long flowing dresses and shawls. You know, a witchy vibe. I was SO OFF! Wow, you learn something every day!

  28. July 29, 2010 2:29 PM

    I understand. I LOVE banana bread. Yet I don’t care for bananas. Banana bread is FULL of bananas.

  29. Carolspy permalink
    July 30, 2010 12:02 AM

    Nothing creeps me out more than a spider inside the car with me. Well, except for when I see the long, shiny lone spider web crossing the inside of the car and it makes me think, “I know you’re in here somewhere you little fucker, so show yourself before I get all heebie-jeebied just thinking about it!”

  30. July 30, 2010 12:41 PM

    Let’s go hate coffee at an Indigo Girls show together.

  31. July 30, 2010 2:59 PM

    Insight into cryptic I.G. reference via a John Mayer refernce in 3..2..1…

    Say What You Need to Say.

    This (wholey unlike me) reference comes to you via my wife Tina’s influence in my auditory environment, who, unlike myself, likes the singer/songwriter types of music.

    I will also (over)share that the exception that proves that particular anti-auditory assault rule is Jack Johnson.

    BUT! if Tina is listening to it it is okay by me, proving the rule of codependancy and thus returning the lesbian universe back to its formerly stable state of existance.

    Also, I too would read your musings on various breakfast cereals rather than go without, so bang on.

  32. July 31, 2010 4:54 PM

    Holy crap, way to re-ignite my long dormant love for the Indigo Girls.

    Thank you!

  33. August 1, 2010 4:21 PM

    i think you deserve an award for handling not one, but two spiders while driving. that makes you incredibly awesome. as does your ability to write. that makes you incredibly awesome times ten.

    i sat here for a few minutes trying to think of a clever double, or perhaps even triple negative to express that, but it just didn’t work. regardless, the message remains the same: you rock. 🙂

  34. Danna permalink
    August 1, 2010 10:02 PM

    Let’s be outspired together again soon. Glad to see you blogging again. I don’t have nothing good to say, so I won’t say nothing at all. 🙂

  35. August 2, 2010 4:15 PM

    Huh. I was just about to write a post about how I “ain’t got nothin’ to say.” But now I’m too tired. Maybe I’ll just link to yours. That’s the ultimate of uninspired.

  36. August 4, 2010 9:41 AM

    Loved this post. I’m feeling rather vindicated over my fear of spiders. My gf laughed at me when I refused to get back into bed until she killed the spider that had invaded my sanctuary. Little bastard. And I totally ♥ the Indigo Girls and you should totally listen to them about everything, lol…totally.

  37. BeneathTheSpinLight permalink
    August 14, 2010 12:06 AM

    I don’t remember the last time a post made me laugh out loud. Thanks. I needed it. 🙂

  38. August 14, 2010 9:47 AM

    Man, I was so close to getting ice cream from J.P. Licks just recently when I traveled and I ended up not getting anything. Now, you have me salivating at coffee and oreos, yum! Next time I visit Boston I’ll be sure to get it. I loved your post too, aren’t double negatives fun? I think you’ll find a lot of them in country music especially.

  39. August 16, 2010 2:17 PM

    [Because gay gals *really* like golf. It’s a hole thing. I’m not sure why.] hahahaha
    now that i know you’re a gay gal I like you even more, don’t get me wrong I’m straight but I love the way you express yourself.
    Great stuff

    “If you don’t not have anything good to say, don’t not say anything at all.”
    yap sounds about right to me.

    cute post

  40. August 18, 2010 5:21 PM

    That ice cream sounds amazing!

    I think I’m the only person in the world who REALLY tried to like the Indigo Girls but just couldn’t. :/

  41. August 19, 2010 8:20 PM

    I am so glad you’re back.

    Like, when I discovered blogging and cake stands and photography and cheese glad.

    That glad.

  42. October 15, 2010 12:26 PM

    “And they’re all, “Chickenman, chickenman, chickenman, hold my hand.” And I’m like, “Umm … OK?”

    So funny.

    But I do love this – Trying to live your life based on the wisdom of the Indigo Girls.

    Sometimes I just sit in my car and belt out, at the top of my lungs, “Romeo and Juliet,” and I just feel awkward and overwhelmed with my own amazingness.

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