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The house sitting is done.

Left it better than I found it.

Perhaps this should be my motto on my gravestone, Carmen Regina Martines, left it better than she found it.

Slightly pompous, but yes, I did clean up the house.  Made me feel better about eating the cookies out of the cookie jar and using their domicile to have my full fledge sugar white flour crazy girl isolation station binge.

I did some writing this morning before my meditation and realized that, and I have realized this before, but it’s always good to see it, I do so much better with a routine, with accountability.

If no one knows where I am or what I am doing it is super easy to listen to the crazy up in my brain and well, no one’s around to witness it.

“Tell me, I want to know,” my friend Cal leaned in eagerly, “whaddya have?”


I rattled it off and it was intense just saying it and very indicative to me that once I start, oh no, I cannot stop.

My no can touch foods are sugar, flour, and popcorn.

For whatever reason, oh I know what the reason is, I cannot start in on the popcorn, it leads me down the rabbit hole.

“I have to say it,” he chatted me, “it’s POPCORN, not crack.”

Yeah, it is, but there something to that total check out where I am gone, gone, gone until the bowl is gone, gone, gone, and I like that kind of check out.

Listen I am not going to liken the two in true seriousness, but it’s like my version of heroin.  I ain’t never tried the smackety smack, smack, so I don’t have anything to really compare it too, but when I get going on a check out, it’s what calls.

I have some memories of eating popcorn that I allowed to scar me, one is going to see Lady & The Tramp with my mom and sister and she sent me to the concessions stand to get three large popcorns.

Well, we were not a family that often went to the movies and I didn’t know she meant the medium size.



I got the three large.

The guy at the stand even tried to talk me out of it, but I was all about following my mom’s instructions, woe to my ass if I didn’t, and I assured him, in my second grade serious demeanor, that my mom really wanted three large tubs of popcorn.

He acquiesced.

Note to self if I can talk a teenage boy into doing what I want when I am in second grade how come’s I ain’t got no date action happening right now?


Sidebar (forgive the ghetto patois, I swung into the Goodwill store on International and 29th Ave on the bike ride back to Graceland and there was a thrown down that happened in the store.  I am not kidding you, this black woman and this white woman got into it.  I actually believe, after moving away slowly and hiding in the dressing room–yes I did these bitches were fucking serious–that the white woman created the drama, I saw her do it again with a couple of black guys at the check out stand.  I really thought there was going to be a drive by at the Goodwill.  Which is maybe why it was such a fucking gold mine of clothes, I only got one thing, but there is some stuff there ladies, get your playa on, if you can handle the trip over it is worth it) end sidebar.

The tubs of popcorn were so big that I could not carry all three and the teenage boy helped me back to our seats.

My mom was wicked mad.

“What is this?  I said ‘large’ not extra-large?” My mom hissed loudly at me as I handed her the tub, then the other to my little sister, then I sat down and the concessions boy handed me mine.

“This is the large ma’am,” the boy sighed awkwardly.

“Well, goddamn, I meant medium then, don’t you know better?” My mom shrilled.

The boy shrugged, walked away, and left me there holding the largest vat of popcorn in the Universe, right next to the seething mother who adroitly monitored every bite I put into my mouth.

It was somewhere around the scene where the Tramp and Lady have their spaghetti dinner, I was happily zoned out, nibbling away at the popcorn, enthralled in the movie (it was my first time to the theater, but not my last, oh no.)

Sidebar number two: (I like to zone out in movie theaters, I probably owe the Metreon an amends for my behavior there, I would score some coke from my dealer and hide in the theater and snort up big bumps from the bag with an industrial size straw I had snaked from the Starfucks counter on the main floor.  I would get the largest Coke I could, no pun intended, my eight ball of cocaine and settle in for a double feature.  The only time this bit me on the ass was when I got tickets to see Briget Jones’s Diary and The Incredibles.  Little did I know that it was The Incredibles was in its opening weekend.  There were no seats left except right down front.  Can you say nothing kills a blowcaine buzz like trying to hooter up some happiness when there are righteous children and their minders all over the place.  I still can’t watch that movie.) end sidebar.

My mom reached over my sister and slapped my hand hard.

I mean hard.

“Stop it, put it down you little pig, enough with the popcorn,” my mother glared over my little sisters head, I remember the crown of her hair, and the glint of the movie shining in my mom’s eyes, I can still feel the sting of the slap on my left hand and see the way it sat helpless on top of a barely dented mound of theater popcorn in the gigantic tub.

“Give that to me, right now!”  My mother almost knocked it out of my lap as I stared at her stunned.

I was no longer in happy zone out mode, I was shrinking in my seat, I handed her the tub and she stashed it on the seat next to her, “and keep your fat grubbing hands out of your sister’s you’ve had enough.” She concluded than turned to face the screen again.

I don’t remember the rest of the movie.

But I do remember craving that popcorn.

I don’t know why but when I want to feel bad about myself that’s where I go, to the dark comfort of checking out with a vat of popcorn and a movie.  I know I am being bad and I am going to do it anyway.  Fuck you very much.

It makes me feel better, you know?

But it doesn’t.

So when I was putting away my groceries today in the fridge at Graceland I heard that little voice peep me from somewhere in the back of my head, “that would go really good with some popcorn.”

“Oh no you don’t,”  I said, out loud, actually.  Followed by, “nice try.”

I made a veggie burger instead and cut up some raw carrots and dipped them in humus.

I poured myself an organic sugar-free stevia sweetened Root beer soda and went out onto the back porch at Graceland and rejoiced that I don’t need to make myself feel bad today.

I did watch some West Wing, but I rode the stationary bike while doing it.

So there.


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