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musings on being lame.

17 Jul

I’ve just been accused of posting something lame by one of my “friends.”

You know what, dude? I try really really hard not to be lame. In fact, one might argue that I am the least lame girl in town.

The following are examples of how not lame I am.

  • I sport like 6 bracelets at a time from (chain stores) all over the world.
  • I didn’t get the anti-reflective stuff on my glasses so as to fully achieve the “nerd chic” look, which is all the rage right now.
  • I wear Tory Burch flats to work because I work in Plainview and in this town, conformity rules.
  • My babygirl wears a vintage charm necklace and can perform a one-man version of Macbeth. She’s 2.
  • I can’t remember if in the olden days when I wrote these posts, I used all lowercase letters or not. I feel like I did to be stylish, but it goes against nearly everything I believe in. (If you spell a lot as one word, please stop reading now and never ever ever ever try to contact me again. You are dead to me.)
  • That’s all I can think of. Maybe you’re right, Sandy.

In other news, being a mommy to two restaurants is really annoying for me, and potentially interesting to you. So maybe I’ll actually write about the business again.

Today was my first day back from vacation (Naturally, we went to Disney World. Because there is nothing more relaxing than chasing hungry and tired babygirls/stepkids/dads around multiple theme parks and hotel lobbies for 7 days. The highlight is a tie: the Jr. High Miss America Pageant and a child talent scouting conference, both held in my hotel. Exploiting children is one of my favorite hobbies, that and car singing). I spent my first 4 hours back at the restaurant working on a list of things to do so that I can be focused and completely on my game. It currently consists of the following items:

  • call farms.
  • make an about page on the website.
  • plan a beer halloween party.
  • reboot hashbrown harry’s. 
  • “email.” (I don’t remember to whom I am to send one)
  • find miniature disposable tongs.
  • refinance house.

The to-do list was all I did. Oh no wait. I also bought a stamp and a smoothie. I was trying to do other stuff but then the whole lame fiasco went down and now all I can think about is how true it truly truly is.

The new restaurant (Wait, have we even talked about the new restaurant?? Ok, we opened a new restaurant. It’s fucking baller. There’s incredible beer. My belly is like, dude, stop drinking that shit, you look preggers and it’s too hot outside for more than one layer of Spanx.) is getting on nicely. We’re yet to be reviewed by the newspaper. The food is yummy and I play Lumineers radio on Pandora, so basically we’re guaranteed a perfect rating. If we don’t get a perfect rating I’ll basically go into a state of depression so deep that people will confuse me with Wednesday Adams and my daughter will cry every time she sees me. I sure hope the reviewer is reading this so she realizes the potential damage she’s doing to an adorable Shakespeare-performing babygirl.

On Tuesdays we have Taco Tuesdays, and it gets super crowded,  which I find really confusing since the menu is in no way Mexican and we don’t have guacamole, and why would you want to go someplace that doesn’t have guac for your tacs? Alas, people are entitled to make the decisions they make, even if they are wrong, and show up at my restaurant on a stupid night of the week. Fools.

The new restaurant is in a town so deeply Jappy that I started talking like I’m from Long Island again, a habit I happily kicked when I was in my tweens. I sound like Fran Drescher. I constantly make myself want to puke. It’s so Jappy that I think I’m going to have a CAMP viewing party on Friday nights. Oh shit! Something to add to my to-do list! No, like I really think I’m gonna do that. Not taking advantage of being a Jewish business owner in this town is like not taking advantage of being an Eskimo on a college application. For instance, I’m currently planning a “Jews and Brews” charity event, and there’s a farm-to-table Rosh Hashanah menu on the horizon. Also a weed dinner (dreams do come true!!!) but I probably shouldn’t talk about that because my mom totally reads this and she’ll be all disappointed in me and lecture me and say “Shelby you can’t sell weed!” and I’ll say “But moooommmmmmm!!!” and she’ll say “I said no.” and I’ll say “I hate you mom! You ruin EVERYTHING!!!” And then I’ll do it anyway.

OK. Let’s talk soon, alright? Because seriously, I really do miss you.





memoirs of an invisible blogger.

15 Jan

Something really interesting about the restaurant business is that January is supposed to be a little bit calmer than December and I’m supposed to have time to do some writing, or perhaps parenting or movie watching or January bargain shopping or sleeping. Instead, life seems to have gotten more hectic. All I really want to do is send out the 4 thank you cards I wrote out for gifts I received over the holidays and see Silver Linings Playbook. Modest aspirations, one might think. But the thank you cards have gone missing, never to be seen again. And three extra hours simply do not exist, except at 9am when I drop my babygirl off at school, but the movie theater doesn’t open that early.

I’m not sitting here having a pity party for myself. The pity is really for you, because you don’t get to read my genius musings with any sort of regularity. It’s just not fair. Seriously, fuck these people who keep calling to book their communions! I have fans to produce semi-sensical works of blog for! Screw trying to build my craft beer empire! You are losing sleep over the lack of entertainment in your life!

Anyway, these are the following reasons that I don’t have time to become a world renowned blogger:

  • I became an activist. I really can’t explain this. Somehow I’m this like political person, even though I totally don’t know the difference between a republican and a democrat. It all started when I found out that thermal receipt paper contains a staggering amount of BPA (google it. This isn’t a science blog, ok?) and my mom and I (and the rest of my employees, and you and your whole families) handle the hell out of receipts on a daily basis. So I switched to BPA free paper at the restaurant so that my mom and I can die from some other cause and I told a local Breast Cancer activist and somehow we became the “sample” business when it got introduced at the legislature and I had to go speak in front of these elected people even though I was dressed totally inappropriately and blah blah de blah, now thermal receipt paper is banned by law in Suffolk County.
  • I consequently became a movie star. Exaggeration? Um, yea, obviously. But I was on the news on 3 different channels so I think that counts. First the CW came to the house, giving us only about 15 minutes to prepare (Harry “cleaned the kitchen” by dumping any loose object in the trunk of his car, and I changed out of my pajamas and into a maternity shirt because it made me feel less nervous). Then a couple days later, they decide to sign the bill at the restaurant, and also decide that I’m to sit at the table with the politicians, and then, what the hell, they decide that I should say something. Which shows up on Fox and News 12. And now I’m a household name practically everywhere, and hopefully before that ever happens again I will have more than 1 day’s notice so I can lose 28 pounds or so.

outcast me, accopanied by handsome legislator and other people.


  • I got fired. It totally sucked. You see, sometimes in life you say stupid shit, and occasionally it’s during a family business meeting about opening a new restaurant and your father fires you. Next time I get fired, I hope it’s from both locations. Because I’m in way over my head, and nobody seems to be recognizing this fact. Like, hello, I have absolutely no business running a restaurant. I really just want to hang out with my babygirl all day doing puzzles and teaching her how to spell her name. I’m a socially awkward film major hippie who is like shorter than most of the kids who order off the kid’s menu. I didn’t even brush my hair today. Like not once. I tried at the end of the night, but it was too far gone. It’s one giant dreadlock. So really getting fired made sense. Unfortunately I think I was rehired. I was so looking forward to puzzles. 
  • I caused my father to go deaf. It’s one of those moments that “I meant well” really means nothing, because your dad can’t hear you say it. I got him tickets to see Queen (except that Freddie Mercury is deceased, which should have been the first indication that this was a bad idea) for Hanukkah because I’m like the best daughter and so so so cool. After purchasing 2 tickets that were on exact opposite sides of the venue from one another, we endured the most horrific cover band ever. During the intermission (fancy pants shit right here) I told my dad “This is a very special concert for us to be at together because Queen is the band that made music such a big part of my life, and you’re the reason I started listening to them.” He didn’t hear me though, so he bought me another beer because I guess that’s what he thought I said. So that part was cool.
  • I threw a wedding. Ok, it was really just a big giant party that just so happened to be a total replica of my nuptials sans religious ceremony and first dance and porta potties and sweltering heat. If you were at the party, you’d have thunk that an actual professional planned it, not just some girl with a gift for creating inspired Pinterest boards and buying old farm equipment. You’d have thunk it was the sweetest combination of rustic and elegant. In fact, I may have to give up my day job and switch my career over to planning hardcore amazing parties in barns. Hopefully there is no BPA on craft paper or burlap, otherwise that would have to be a whole new legislative hurdle.

genius barn party planner.

  • I missed my first blog birthday. This is possibly the most devastating thing that’s ever happened in my entire life. I mean, I vowed to not give a fuck, I really did. But the fact is, writing on the regular is like the sort of thing that actual writers do. Like, as in writers who write professionally and publish things and call themselves writers and I did it! Still truckin’ even! (sort of) So really I missed out on a really good opportunity to publicly sing my own praises and have some sort of party with milkshakes and noisemakers and wear a sparkly dress (Restaurant people don’t participate in New Year’s Eve. We rely solely on bigtime parties where we are the guests of honor to break out sequins. It’s true.) and do showtune karaoke and eat the shelbytown cake that some of my biggest fans (of which there are at least one) baked for me, anything but red velvet because that shit is literally just food coloring.happy blogday to me.


  • I got eaten by a puppy. This is actually the real reason I can’t write anymore. As a result of literally being consumed by a lab pointer mix, I have resorted to writing this blog post in the dark hallway outside my bedroom door. There’s simply no place left for me to turn. 

adorbs puppy after he ate my leg.

In conclusion, thank you to Brad and Jen for the cell phone case. Thank you Susan for the platter. Thank you Mom and Dad for the Clarisonic, seriously my skin has never looked better other than all the stress breakouts I keep getting but that totally doesn’t count. Dad, sorry I’m an asshole and drag you to concerts. Next time I will give you ear plugs and a weed brownie, so it won’t be as bad. Mom, thank you for watching the Golden Globes with me after the concert. It’s the best having a mom as nocturnal as you. Thank you Harry for the trip to Texas that we are taking in less than a week. I am thoroughly looking forward to eating and drinking more than ever thought humanly possible, and also to not having my body parts ruptured by puppy teeth. Also thank you for the skateboard, you sure know how to keep a girl young.

heavy petting: secret to my success.

1 Jan

So lately at work, like for the past year or so, there’s been some heavy petting going on between Harry and Thing 2, one of my middle aged spinster party waitresses. I let it happen because I like to keep morale up in my joint, and what the hell do I care if some weird lady wants to pet my husband’s hair?

Oh wait, did you think I meant that he was like feeling her up or something? Yeah, no. She just really likes to run her fingers through his thick locks. And I’m like “Whatever, Thing 2. I’m just gonna sit here and watch you pet my man,” and she’s like “Oh man, Shelby. Thank you so much, it just makes me feel all hot and bothered” and me and Thing 1 just sit there rolling our eyes at them.

That’s the thing, you guys. You need to keep your employees happy. An upbeat work environment makes for a productive staff. Even if said employee is unhealthily obsessed with your spouse and it requires essentially pimping him (his hair, let’s not be dramatic) out.

This weekend Harry and I are catering our wedding for some other couple in a barn someplace on Long Island. An event like this requires a team stronger than titanium (and I need like sooo many Xanaxes and weed brownies) to run smoothly. Naturally, Things 1 & 2 are vital components to this team, because they know that I’m an anal bitch when it comes to certain party details (angle at which to place tables / level to which water glass should be filled / EXACT time candles must be lit) and that they should BACK THE FUCK OFF and just do whatever I say, and they always have a good stash of pot for the end of night. Knowing these facts, I remain content, which, in turn, keeps Thing 1 cucumber cool. Thing 2 is a different story. She gets a little snippy if I don’t let her fondle my husband, so that’s a concession that I make. Just for her.

It also keeps Harry feeling young and virile, like he’s some strapping pornstar celebrity chef. And in case you didn’t know this about the restaurant business, a cranky chef is a FUCKING DOUCHEBAG. Ask anyone who works with Harry. I mean, a chef. Not Harry, he’s like never cranky. Like ever.

Anyway, Charlie is also working the party. I got him to do it by telling him that I knew for sure that there are going to be some hot guys as guests. Charlie never turns down the chance to rip a heterosexual out of the closet, even if it’s only for a few hours. I’m paying him in bottles of vodka and condoms. There’s also a redhead working the party. But if I write about him he may lose his day job. So we’ll just call him Gregory and say that he would also like to be paid in vodka and condoms, but substitute the vodka for Charlie.

Do we know how to throw a party or what?????

Ya we do! We’re so good at throwing a party that I WROTE A HAIKU ABOUT IT!!!!!!


Hire us for fun.

There may be weed in your apps.

Pigs in a blanket.

Also, this happened today. It is a clip of me being interviewed by the CW 5pm news about something really crunchy and professional. Which proves that you can be a hippie who wears inappropriate footwear to a legislative session and skateboards around her development on a custom neon pink Penny Board, and still occasionally appear to be somewhat of a responsible adult.

Disclaimer: I like never ever ever associate my blog with my actual restaurant, but due to extreme vanity and egomania, I am doing so this evening. Kindly do not sue me because suddenly you’re putting 2 + 2 together and you realize that I’ve been writing shit about you all along. Moreover, don’t be scared to bring your children to my restaurant just because I talk like a sailor and have a brain like a pervy fifteen-year-old boy. Thanks dudes.

a public service announcement to those of you who are interested in opening a restaurant (aka idiots).

19 Dec

Tonight on my way home from work I called my mom to ask her if she can babysit my kid on Thursday night because I have a party.

“Who’s party?”

“I don’t know. Some dude.”

“Oh, I thought you were invited to a party. I didn’t realize you meant for work.”

“No, mother. I was not invited to a party.”

“I got so excited!”

“Yeah, well sorry.”

“I didn’t mean to make you feel pathetic.”

“I don’t feel pathetic. In fact, I’m going to blog about how the only parties I ever attend are the ones I’m throwing for somebody else and that I’m seriously an awesome party planner.”

“Well maybe you shouldn’t write that. It really does make you look a little pathetic. Stop letting people think that you’re a bigger loser than you actually are.”

Um, no, Mother. I’m being pretty fuckin’ accurate. At some point in time, I went from being the life of the party (TOTAL EXAGGERATION) to the host of the party who doesn’t know anyone except the person who booked it, and they pretty much ignore me the whole time to do things like talk to their friends and drink all-they-can and sexually harass their employees. The holidays are a super busy time for me and Harry, so I get that people don’t want to make us feel bad for declining. That’s obviously why we don’t get invited to do anything festive. But they’re making a big mistake! We’re very valuable guests!!!!

The following is a list of reasons that we should definitely be invited to parties of people we actually are acquainted with:

  1. We never show up empty handed. And I’m not talking a cheap bottle of wine. Maybe we’ll bring a totes gorg fruit platter on a bamboo cutting board for your brunch. Or maybe even a 1 pound block of butter. Throwing a cocktail party? We’ll show up with hors d’ouerves for like 50 people, just because we’re that nice!
  2. I mix a mean martini. All this self-serve bar shit means that most of the drinks will have the incorrect balance of vodka to mixer. But helloooooo I’m like a bartender. I can make creative, seasonally appropriate, refreshing cocktails with simple ingredients you can find laying around the kitchen! I’m the MacGuyver of Holiday Booze! In addition to mixing a great drink, I also mix a great Spotify list. Just in case your boring lame-o Pandora station blows as much I’m assuming it does.
  3. I have compiled a VERY LONG list of potential hostess gifts that I am DYING to purchase. I literally don’t care who I buy one of those trendy aprons from Anthro for. You can be the lucky winner if you just send me a damn Paperless Post. And I bet you’d be super happy if some special guest of yours showed up with one of those Pop Phones that you secretly want but can’t think of any legit reason to purchase. Just sayingggggg…..
  4. I have an arsenal of interesting topics to discuss with fellow partygoers. For instance, the best food I ever ate in the parking lot after a Phish show / how I still mourn Amy Winehouse on the regular / my parents have a rat infestation / motor homes are the best / my brother got bullied at theater camp.
  5. I am an extremely entertaining drunk. It’s just that I never get the chance to prove it! Like, do you know HOW AMAZING I can sing karaoke? Neither do I!!! Because I never remember it the next day!!!!!!! But how the hell did I get that huge ass bruise on my wrist?????

In conclusion, if you open a restaurant, you will be a SLAVE to that restaurant, and you will never be invited to a party ever ever ever again unless your friend throws a party at your establishment, and then you will go from talking to him about business and shit like that to bumping in to him while you’re trying to carry a bus tub of dirty glassware into the kitchen and slipping and nearly dropping the whole lot of glasses attempting to keep your breast inside your shirt because you’re good friends but not that good. Not that this scenario happened to me tonight or anything…..


naughty (and nice, i guess) holiday party roundup.

12 Dec

Something really interesting about the restaurant business is Christmas Parties. (Oh, hey guys, remember Hanukkah? The holiday that it ACTUALLY IS right now? Can SOMEBODY bring a fuckin’ Secret Santa gift that’s wrapped in blue and silver paper for once??? Whatever, maybe next year. Anyway…)

drunk christmas

Right now we’re deep in the heart of party season. What this means for you is that you get to drink with your colleagues and eat a free meal. What it means for me and my staff is that if we could all crawl in some sort of hole and hide from all of you freaks, we definitely would.

No offense, but the holidays bring out the worst in you. Like, we get it. You’re stressed because your kid hates you but you still need to buy him a skateboard (Yo, did I mention I got a skateboard for Hanukkah? A pink one with green wheels? Because I’m a woman-child? And I’m going to break my face open and post gruesome photos of it? And it’s going to be so awesome?) But that’s no reason to be scroogey/too happy/wear terrible festive clothing/berate me because you drank 13 double Jack Honeys on the rocks and we ran out.

What you may not realize is that you don’t all suck in the same way. There are many, many different types of Holiday Parties! And with each party, a different Spotify list is necessary. Spotify lists are essential to the success of a holiday party, because at my particular establishment, we have carpet and so bosses have the perfect excuse to not pay a DJ, disappointing millions of horny secretaries who are sincerely looking forward to grinding on a doctor or partner or other secretary or whomever. Because the best part about the office holiday party is most definitely the one-night-only lift on the company sexual harassment policy. Gotta take advantage of that shit.

Merry Christmas Party Season to the following partiers:

1. Christmas Over-Enthusiasts. These bitches show up an hour and a half before the party starts to “accent” our holiday decorations with their own. Poinsettia leaves strewn across the tablecloths, cinnamon sticks in the water glasses, reindeer antlers hanging on the wall and a personalized rudolph nose for each guest. They play every classic holiday game there is, including an ugly sweater contest, “pack santa’s toybag” and other shit that nobody wants to participate in. PLAYLIST: 100% Classic Christmas, highlighted by the Mariah version of “All I Want For Christmas is You” and “The Hanukkah Song” and the ever horrible “Dominic the Donkey.” They sing along to nearly everything, except when they’re laughing-til-they-cry during the “Naughty or Nice gift exchange.”

2. Cheap Boss. This guy calls in a lunch reservation for 8 people so that he doesn’t need a party package, and throughout the month he needs to “add a couple folks” until the number has topped 40. He fancies up the non-private room with one bouquet of Trader Joe’s seasonally appropriate flowers and gifts his staff with leftover giveaways from the pharmaceutical rep. Half of his staff “goes to the bathroom” together and hits up the bar to take a bunch of shots, because he has decided that booze is not appropriate to celebrate the holidays. After party is back to work.     PLAYLIST: Fuck that, we’re listening to country music. If this isn’t technically a holiday party, then I can technically listen to my regular playlist, and sing at the top of my lungs to every other song.

3. Funeral. Someone needs to tell these people that they’re at a party. They are so dull that if we talk about how boring they are in the server station too loud, they will all hear us and start crying. They all wear festive clothing, which is all ugly. They sit down the second they get to the party, which makes for an awkward cocktail hour with passed hors d’ouerves.  After party is the next morning on Facebook, with elegantly posed photos of each attendee.     PLAYLIST: The Michael Buble Christmas album, followed by the Charlie Brown Christmas album by the Vince Guaraldi Trio, followed by a funeral death march performed by a local high school bagpipe band, with a finale of “River” by Joni Mitchell on repeat for the last hour.

4. Drunken Fools. The holidays are the ultimate time to attempt a sexual encounter with your boss and/or his wife, and there’s no better way to do this than to drink yourself silly. At some parties, this scenario is a sure thing. Except you can’t really fuck a boss who’s passed out in the corner, so there goes that theory. These party people decorate by coming early and taking shots at the bar. After party is at the strip club. After after party is at work the next day, where everyone is still drunk.     PLAYLIST: The Chris Brown Christmas Album, along with whatever else the DJ chooses. Your boss hired a DJ for this one, because he wants to show off his moves and he’s seriously hoping to get his wife laid tonight.

5. Teachers. Teacher parties fall into 2 categories, both of which involve karaoke. Both after parties are bed, there’s school to be taught tomorrow! Except for this one guy. It look’s like he’s gonna need a sub.

  • 5a. Drunk Teachers. Choose the cheapest food package possible. Complain about everything from the very first day of planning. Old teachers are the life of the party. Pay in singles.      PLAYLIST: Karaoke machine. Then the Chris Brown Christmas album.
  • 5b. Sober Teachers. Require more food than drunk teachers, but want to spend less money than them. Complain about nothing except how they don’t have enough food. Young teachers are the life of the party. Pay in singles.     PLAYLIST: Karaoke machine. Then the Michael Buble Christmas album.

6. Segregation City. This group is a mixed bag of blue collar and white collar workers. The sales department and the warehouse guys. The queen bees and the worker bees. People who hire cleaning ladies and people who are cleaning ladies as their second job. This is my preferential group, because it’s sort of like having two parties at one time and it makes me feel more accomplished. Like I brought together separate worlds with my pulled pork sliders. This party typically starts slow and ends with some crazy ass afterparty at the local Spanish bar.     PLAYLIST: Feliz Navidad by Jose Feliciano and Pitbull and Gloria Estefan and JLo.

7. Cool People. I’m not gonna lie and act like there’s more than one of these a year. It’s a needle in a christmas tree farm. These people drink enough to have a hefty liquor tab, but stay sober enough to not urinate on the party room floor. Everyone is dressed fantastically and many of the women wear amazing sparkly platforms that I try to steal. They smoke pot in the parking lot. We all get contact highs. They leave in a timely fashion and tip extra. The after party is a PJ party in someone’s basement apartment and everyone lays around watching Christmas Vacation until the sun comes up.     PLAYLIST: This.  Because I save cool playlists for cool people.

*Note: I am not exempt from this list, but I fall into sort of a hybrid category. My Christmas Party is a lovely combination of #6, #2, #4 and mostly #7 based specifically on my presence. Plus we obviously have a naughty or nice gift exchange.

how to excuse yourself from blogging on the regular due to an emergency amputation.

30 Sep

The reason I haven’t been writing is because I needed to have an emergency amputation of my left middle finger after a customer caught me using it on his wife. The situation sincerely called for it, as she beckoned me over to ask if I “have the fucking nerve to charge a dollar for mushrooms on a burger?” and hissed in my face and poured half a glass of wine on the orange Tory Burch flats that I vowed to never wear to work in case something like this happened. Naturally I flipped her the bird with a sarcastic grin, because that’s what I always do in these situations, but apparently the husband took her side in the whole thing and he snapped that digit back like it was a celery stick and it was just hanging there, but I couldn’t go the emergency room, there was just too much food piling up in the window that had to be run, and by the time the Friday rush was over it was too late, my finger was not able to be put back on, even with those leeches or whatever, and now I’m having a lot of issues with typing, only certain letters though, like E, D, C and the number 3. Thank heavens Harry got the new iPhone so Siri is writing this right now to explain to you why why why oh why my precious writing is so sparse of late. Except she autocorrects and apparently doesn’t know how naughty my vernacular is so she keeps changing fucking to trucking and that seriously makes no sense.

The last button that I can’t push right now due to my amputated bird is the # sign so now I like can’t use Twitter or Instagram and I’m so heartbroken that I just don’t want to write anymore. What is life without Instagram or Twitter?? I don’t know! Actually Twitter I don’t really care about because I only have one follower and frankly he only follows me because I pay him $4 a month to do so. But Instagram???? Holy shit that’s like taking away my only joy! As a result of my lack of ability to hashtag things, I’ve taken to drawing social media icons in other mediums. Like doodling. And chalk. I know what you’re thinking, and no, I did not go to art school. I’m just wildly talented at copying things. Also at recognizing obscure Queen songs. In actuality, my finger is fine. The truth is that I haven’t been writing because Harry got a really bad boo boo at work and I have to tend to his crushed hand morning, noon and night, except when he’s behind the line cooking or making the bed or doing laundry or cleaning the house or rubbing my feet. But other than those times, I am taking care of him pretty hardcore. I even wear a nurse’s hat and bought him flowers and a card and cookies.


Ok. The real real reason that I’m not writing as often is because I fear that you are going to recognize yourself in my blog and stop eating at my place and/or stop reading my blog, which would really devastate me because that would pretty much mean that I’d be talking to myself and Amanda Bynes already has that department filled and while I always wanted to be just like her, this is not one of those particular circumstances. I can’t help it if I have to talk about you, sometimes you make me. Maybe you’re the horribly irritating pain-in-the-ass who called today to tell me that she didn’t want a table that was “a) a booth, b) in the center of the room, and c) near a wall, although a booth would be fine, and if it has to be by a wall that would be fine as well.” It is people like her (you??) who have driven me crazy beyond actual words.

If you have made it to the end of this passage, it is because you don’t believe any of the reasons I’ve given for my infrequent writing/venting/genius productions of literature. And it is for that reason that I am going to expose the true, actual reason to you, and you alone. (If there is even one of you)

TV season is back in full swing and multitasking was never really my thing.


31-year-old working mothers just want to have fun

21 Sep

I couldn’t sleep last night because I’m an adult and it was making me want to vomit. When did this happen? When did my fridge get covered in school calendars and “art projects” and Minnie Mouse magnets and gold homework stars for my stepkid?

The most irresponsible things I’ve done in recent memory are that I left a sippy cup with milk in my kid’s room for a week and it turned into a layer of water and a layer of yogurt, and I let my credit card expire on my iTunes account. Before I was an adult the thought of not having iTunes would make me quiver with fear that the end of the world was near. Now I’m getting by.

I am suddenly adult in the following ways:

1. Language. Back in the day (like a month ago) I could curse openly and freely without the worry that my babygirl would chirp it back to me in her adorable little chipmunk voice. No longer the case. We’ve had to quit cursing cold turkey and it fucking sucks. Other things I can no longer subject my kid to in fear that she’ll repeat my actions: Have road rage. Give random strangers the finger. Get tattoos. Throw things at Harry.

2. Wardrobe. Yesterday I put on one of my staple fall/winter dresses that I had picked up last year and worn constantly. Just a little black lace Free People number with a ragged hem and navy blue lining that peeks out of the bottom. “Shelby!” I scolded at my reflection. “This is not appropriate for work. Nobody is going to take you seriously with this outfit. Free People is not an acceptable department to shop in anymore, grow up and go to Banana Republic immediately!” I wound up wearing a dorky printed shirt that I stole from my mom’s closet and slacks and fucking pearl earrings. I looked like the highest form of personal nightmare. Yet I was satisfied.

5. Work Habits. I just don’t know what’s going on with me. Instead of spending all my time at work on my Facebook page, I spend all of my time on the restaurant’s Facebook page. Instead of spending countless hours Googling upcoming concerts, I spend countless hours talking to performers about playing live music at my place. Instead of drinking a Bud Light on one of those very rare evenings that I stop for a drink after work, (Charlie and Nicole are gone. It’s a lonely restaurant world.) I drink Craft Beers and work on educating myself on hoppiness and bitterness and headiness and other beer words so that I can properly provide a hearty and trendy list to my customers. Instead of playing only the music I want to listen to, I play a Pandora list based on only the music I want to listen to so that other stuff plays too. Oh, and we got new hamburger rolls and I take photos on them for Instagram. Surely my maturity level is peaking as we speak.

3. Television Programming. Honestly? The saddest part of my newly acknowledged adult life is that I have absolutely no idea what shows are on the Disney Channel. The last time I had enough time to watch my very favorite brain-free shows was when Wizards of Waverly Place was on, and now Selena Gomez is way too busy tramping it up with The Biebs to do things like make a FANTASTIC TV show with the average target demographic being 12-years-old. Now the only stuff I watch is old people shit like The X Factor and Live with Kelly and Michael Strahan, and baby shit like Yo Gabba Gabba, which is only really fun to watch when you’re tripping on mushrooms and that is NOT OK when your kid is awake, which now seems like ALWAYS, thank you fucking baby teeth.

7. Shelbytown. Right now I am sitting in a Starbucks in the morning sun, sitting upright in a chair and sipping on a healthy caffeinated iced tea and tapping away on my keyboard and wearing a pair of heels. There is a trio of women LITERALLY perusing the school calendar and discussing Candle Fundraisers for the PTA. I’d be less devastated if I didn’t find myself wondering if this is my district or not, and who I can hit up to buy some cinnamon scented sparklers. What the fuck!?!?! This is not the real me!! The real me is lying facedown on a couch in a fifteen-year-old pair of lacrosse shorts with my computer resting comfortably on a throw pillow, munching on self-serve fro yo and barely keeping my eyes open! If you looked at the real me you would think that I’m Googling pot brownie recipes or changing my Facebook status every 3 minutes (which would possibly be the case). But some dude reading a paper just glanced up at me and I bet he was convinced that I was catching up on some sort of vital correspondence with a fellow professional, or building a power point marketing presentation or something white collar like that. Writing at 9am cannot possibly produce anything even remotely interesting. In order to be truly inspired one must must must be polluted on the day’s bullshit. What bullshit happens at 9am? A bitch cut me in line. Big shit. If it had happened at night I probably would have been amped enough to elbow her out of my way and ask for an unsweetened venti iced green tea while I stepped on her kid’s toe. But not at 9am.

As a result of turning into an adult, I’ve decided to rebel. On my next day off I’m hiring a babysitter and I’m going to lay in my bed and watch 3 hours of the Disney Channel. Then I’m gonna go to a mexican restaurant that has karaoke night and drink Corona Lights and do La Bamba 5 times in a row. Also other stuff, but it’s going to be really spur of the moment so I can’t tell you what they are yet. But should it be appropriate for documenting, you’ll be able to read about my inappropriate behavior right here on Shelbytown.

a deep reflection on my mediocre parenting skills.

4 Aug

I had a camp reunion last night so probably some people are only going to be reading this so they can get juicy gossip, like was dancing on the bar and who went home with whom and who looked like shit and who was a douchebag this time, but I don’t really feel like divulging any such information just yet. I need more time to let it all marinate before I analyze the evening. Plus I want to rope you into reading about other parts of my life, you egomaniac. It’s not all about you. Get over yourself. And please stop reading my blog on the toilet, it’s kind of awkward.

So tomorrow is my babygirl’s 2nd birthday. I feel like it’s right about now that I really have to start parenting, instead of just going with the progressional flow, which is basically what I’ve been doing for the past 1 year, 11 months and 30 days or whatever. It’s not that I want to, but she probably isn’t going to raise herself in the way that she’s been doing so far. Like, for the longest time I’ve been putting her in her crib and she just goes to sleep. There is literally nothing I do except turn her little noise machine on to the sound of the waves. And she can even do that now, so my one responsibility became sort of unnecessary as far as the bedtime hour goes. But now I probably have to do things like get her a big girl bed and maybe a pillow and/or blanket. Other things I’ll have to start doing is crazy tedious – sign her up for nursery school which starts in like a week, get her to stop peeing in a diaper and teach her that sprinting away from your loved ones in crowded malls is unacceptable behavior unless you have an alternate ride home. Oh jeez, she’s already getting rides home from the mall? Where the fuck is the time going? I feel like it was earlier this afternoon that I was flipping through “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” trying to find an answer to whether or not my kid would be born with hair because I had so much heartburn. (Yes, she was born with hair. No, I do not miss Tums.) Now she’s tramping it up on (play)dates with all these little baby dudes and going shopping and walking on the balance beam (yes I’m going to exploit her because I want my kid to be worth $9 million in endorsements whether or not she needs to leave the state to make that happen). I feel like I just want to slow down and make time stop so I can take it all in.

Well, maybe time can stop on Sunday, because her birthday party is giving me so much anxiety that the 14 Xanax I popped a little while ago aren’t even making a dent. I mean, I’m totally hallucinating right now and I’m typing while standing on my head and the cat keeps asking me if I’ve got a light, but other than that, seriously they have no effect. I don’t understand why my family is unable to throw a low key party. People do it all the time. They go to a restaurant and they sit at a table and have a meal and everyone goes home. That’s all I wanted. Actually, I really didn’t want a party at all. What the hell does my babygirl know? Is she going to turn 13 and be like “Fuck you mom, you didn’t throw me a 2nd birthday party. I wanted to play paintball and you shafted me. You’re a bitch and I never want to talk to you again” and then get in the car with some 17 year old from LA who wants to take pictures of her for his photography portfolio? Maybe, but you can’t live your life in fear. Not that it matters, because my nonexistent party turned into a circus once again. Why does every party have to be a fabulous soiree?

Oh, that’s right, because I’m an ass kicking party planner and Harry goes along with whatever I want because he’s smart like that. And my parents like to have parties at their house because my dad has a gardening fetish and my mom likes to give gardening tours culminating in a hand-picked lunch of cherry tomatoes and string beans. So weather permitting, that is what will go down tomorrow. This party wound up being low key. It’s pretty ghetto in fact. So ghetto that I ordered the cake from a bakery and used a matchy matchy Party City pattern (peace owls, which I have to admit is cute even if it is mass produced  and totally unoriginal). Normally if the theme were peace and owls we would have an actual owl at the party, embroider owls into the tablecloths and hire a John Lennon impersonator. But like I said, low key.

Luckily my dad has some totally homosexual hat that he bought in the Caribbean, so nobody will notice that the strings on the balloons aren’t color coordinated with the liner in the bread basket. I mean, I’ll know and it will be somewhat devastating but I will probably survive. I’m dressing my babygirl in one of those cotton candy looking tutus that those British girls on the Ellen Show wear (ugh I like totally wish my kid were British it would be so awesome). Harry thinks she’s wearing a polo shirt and patchwork Ralph Lauren shorts because his only request this year was that she dress like a normal human being and not a pom pom. But what fun is giving him what he wants? Then he might get used to it and I’m like totally fucked.

Tonight to celebrate my daughter’s coming of age, I did what any responsible adult would do. We got matching tattoos!!!! They’re little peace signs on our feet and they’re justalittlebit crooked and I love love love them and so does she. Even though they’re going to wash off in 1-3 showers, I still feel like I’m influencing her in all the right ways, and I can already tell that she’s cooler than me, which I didn’t even think was possible.

ps. Dearest daughter. One day you will be old enough to read mommy’s posts. You shouldn’t curse this much, it isn’t ladylike. Other than that your mommy is perfect so do everything she does unless it’s illegal and then just don’t get caught. All my love, Mommy.

motorboatin’ with the chef.

29 Jul

A fun thing about the restaurant business is that sometimes you have to cater a party that you’d otherwise be a guest at and instead of schmoozing and boozing, you wind up clearing plates off of people’s tables and brewing coffee for 100 of your friend’s closest friends. Tonight was one such night, except that I wasn’t technically invited to the party and I wasn’t technically working it either, so I basically just put on a shit ton of makeup and chased my babygirl around a backyard for 5 hours while Harry cooked steak and my parents hung out with their friends.

Something that maybe you don’t know about Harry is that he’s a breast man to the max, so imagine my shock and dismay when my Cater Waiter(esses) showed up in the uniform that Harry instructed them to be in – white polo shirts on a day where the forecast ranged from 70% rain to 100% depending on the hour. Luckily the waitresses were Things 1 & 2 (1 has requested that I call her by her first name when she’s not in the restaurant but I honestly don’t even know what it is) so they enjoy being completely sexually harassed by their devilishly handsome nearly-middle-aged Chef. In fact, on more than one occasion I’ve walked in on Thing 2 complimenting Harry for his thick head of hair, and has even asked me for permission to run her hands through it, which I obviously granted because what the fuck do I care if a woman wants to run her hands through my husbands hair? What’s the worst that can happen?

That’s the thing about being married to the devilishly handsome nearly-middle-aged Chef. You have to compete with Things 1 & 2 for his love and attention. Luckily, I won out tonight, most likely because the weather ended up clearing up so the wet waitress uniform contest never went down and because I was wearing a Gilly Hicks weekend bra and a low cut tank top that my babygirl kept pulling down with her little feetsies every time I tried to pick her up, causing my boobs to be like totally out there. They were so out there that my mom looked down at them and was like “Where did those come from??” and I was like “I know they’re big but they’ve always been there,” and she was like “No, I’m talking about your nails,” because they’re like glow-in-the-dark neon pinkish-orangish. But that’s how big they were tonight, big enough that I assumed my mom didn’t even recognize them. As a result, I was fortunate enough to not only win the love and attention of Harry, but also I scored this totally awesome and romantic photo, taken by Thing 1 herself. I’m one lucky girl. And yes, I am flicking him in response to his lewd actions, so don’t think I’m not like a demure and well-mannered princess, because I totally am.

In other news, I saw my Gay Asian Waiter today! It was awesome! Well it was only for like 8 minutes and I got really mad at him because he’s totally scamming me and trying to convince me to to take him to some concert in Vegas that we’re both trying to win tickets to even though if he wins he’s not going to bring me because he totally SUCKS, but it was still really nice to hug him and talk some smack and catch up on gossip. So now I like totally have to win the tickets because apparently that’s the only way that I’m gonna get to go. I feel like in life, concert tickets should go to those worthy, and in the case of a festival that features Brad Paisley and Pitbull and No Doubt and Tay Tay and is hosted by Ryan Seacrest, I should have fucking front row seats. Oh and it’s in Vegas which has really good restaurants and yummy drinks so all I’m saying is that if you know someone who can get me tickets and airfare and hotel accommodations to the iheartmusic festival in Vegas, please give them my email address and tell them that me and Charlie will do ANYTHING. LITERALLY ANYTHING. for seats. This includes, but is not limited to, tattooing the likeness of the said ticket-getter on our asses and attending the concert partially nude. A special treat, if I do say so myself.

Also in other news, I’ve been working on considering becoming a beer expert, in the sense that I’m going to buy new beer for the restaurant, like maybe the kind that looks like wine but is really an IPA or a Stout or something. I really have no intention of ever drinking anything that even remotely resembles a hoppy or heady or bitter brew or whatever it is they say, I will still only drink Bud Light. Although I tried a cider and it was really yummy, like wine coolers for snobs or something. So if you have any ideas on what beers will give me mad street cred, comment on this post. Ok, fine I’m just trying to get you to comment because like nobody ever does. Ok I’m really just testing to see who gets to the end of these posts.

how to be a half-assed hostess.

7 Jul

As a result of a little under-the-weather action by one of my kids, we spent the majority of 4th of July out of commission at the doctor, and unable to do things like buy food, cook it, plant stuff so it looks like we’ve used our backyard this year or windex the inch-and-a-half of dirt and mosquito carcasses off the table. As the hours passed, things got more and more dire. Harry ran to work in order to put out a catering order, stranding me with two bored kids, one empty Starbucks shopping bag, two balloons (until my babygirl popped hers and then one) and a pending meal that we were supposed to be hosting in the late afternoon.

The delay in preparing the festive dinner meant that I’d have to scrap the original menu, which was fucking awesome and I’m still in the mood for it so I better make some friends or have a party so I can enjoy it.

  • Fried Chicken
  • Hot Dogs
  • Cole Slaw
  • Biscuits
  • Orzo Salad
  • Regular Salad
  • Watermelon
  • Chips and Dip
  • Berry Shortcake (Harry beefed it up by switching the shortcakes to fresh waffles)
  • The Ice Cream man, because we’ve got a soft serve guy this year! So how can we not!??!?!

I know, great menu, right?

Too bad that bacteria and fungus or whatever it is that kids transfer to one another while they’re playing dodgeball and arts ‘n crafts totally fucked it up.

Instead we got home exactly 1 hour before our guests were to show with 3 bags of crap from Target and a pigsty house. My stepkid and I washed down the backyard (I had the privilege of cutting back the poison ivy because I am that good of a stepmom). We cleared all the cobwebs, emptied last year’s trash out of the garbage can* and chopped down a weed that had infiltrated the patio. Harry ran to the deli and ordered some cold cuts and bread and cocktail sauce. I defrosted some shrimp, cut lemons that may or may not have been purchased this year and filled a pitcher of water with the finest water my refrigerator offers. I made a fancy salad of lettuce and tomato (I cut the mold off so as not to scare my guests). I clumped the plethora of condiments together on a shelf in the fridge for easier access when we were ready to eat, shoved a few piles of paperwork in a closet, brushed my babygirl’s hair, washed my face and was ready to face my guests.

As a result of our impressive planning, we wound up with a feast fit for kings:

  • Pirates Booty
  • Shrimp cocktail
  • Chips and peach salsa (top layer poured off for freshness)
  • Fancy salad
  • Carrots (nobody ate those, we’re not fancy like that)
  • Hot dogs
  • Cold cuts and a giant thing of Mayo and Italian bread
  • Soupy cole slaw (yum!)
  • I don’t know what else because frankly I’m only concerned with what goes on my own plate
  • Baked Cheetos
The definite lowlight of the afternoon was that we were all in the pool when the ice cream man came, so we couldn’t get soft serve sundaes which totally blew. Fortunately our friends know us well enough to have brought a 12 pack of Crumbs cupcakes, so all was well with the world again.
When they went home, Harry and I high fived and passed out on the floor because being a half-assed hostess is EXHAUSTING!

*Sidebar. Look. It is really tough trying to work full time, raise 1.5 children and a husband, keep up with every series on ABC Family, eat 7 well-rounded meals/desserts a day and be totally beautiful. So just chill out on getting all judgy-wudgy about my nasty backyard. Nobody needs flowers or living grass. Get over it.