Monica Bielanko
That's What She Said
Just A Junk Drawer Dream
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Dog Snores, Baby Farts and The Old Garbage Switcharoo

Isn't the internet the coolest sometimes? Don't get me wrong, sometimes there are a bunch of pirate douchebags sailing around raping and pillaging folks. Speaking of pirates, if you've followed this blog for a good long while now you'll know there've been various websites set up to just be mean, no good, awful to me. You know, the usual internet stuff: dissecting my appearance and photo shopping pictures of me and making fun of my marriage. Standard stuff. Out of the blue one of the dudes that created one of those blogs (it's been down for a while now) tweets me to apologize. That guy caused me a lot of grief back in the day. Weird.

But the internet is the coolest because I can be totally bummed about what I imagine to be my ancient ovaries, farting dust and disintegrating into nonexistence and then a couple dozen of you can make a girl feel better in no time.

It is weird though, isn't it, how hard we try not to get pregnant during our younger years yet it seems like one always slips past the goalie and then, in our thirties, when our clocks are ticking louder than the bomb in every single episode of MacGyver we're crazily jumping our husbands like rabid bunnies and then maintaining Olympic level leg lifts and handstands for twenty minutes after sex (you know, to help the process along like some sort of demented matchmaker. Sperm, meet Egg. Egg, Sperm. You two are SO perfect for each other!) and still, nothing.

Max is laying next to me on my bed, snoring like a fat truck driver and, my God, I adore it. Screw a bubble bath, there's something about lazily hanging out on my bed next to a snoring dog, man, it's the best.

I just gave Violet her bath and put her down for her morning nap and I wanted to remind myself about the little things.

Ever since she was a tiny baby she has helped me dress and undress her. I had visions of wrestling clothing onto the child every day while she pulled my hair and clawed at my face, like trying to put an outfit on a feral cat. Expect the worst, I say, and then everything is better than you thought it would be.

But even before she could crawl Violet would stand up, holding tightly to the edge of the tub, and dutifully lift up first one leg and then the other as I removed her pants. Then she'd hold out each arm as I took off her shirt. I never taught her this or guided her arms and legs, she's just always done it.

Today she was tightly clutching a toy, well, not so much a toy as the queen from *Grandma's chess set, in her right hand so when I moved to take her right arm out of her shirt sleeve she transferred the queen to her left hand then back again as I moved on to remove her left hand from the sleeve. It kills me every time. Same as when I dress her. Such a compliant little bean.

And is it so wrong to love it so much when she farts? Oh, I live for the farts. The bigger they are, the more they sound like her Dad's, the harder I laugh. Nothing's better than when she realizes she's farting and looks at me like what was that?

Dog snores and baby farts, these are a few of my favorite things.


I'm out of breath. Panting. The garbage man just came up the street and emptied our trash so I ran outside, rolled the container back to the house and filled it with more trash and then rolled it across the street so he'd empty it again on his way back down. The question is, will he do it or will he be wise to my garbage scheme? Hold on! SSSSHHHHHH! HOLD ON! Here he comes.


Okay, strange, I know. Let me go back. Way back to the time, three months ago, when we moved here to the hills of Pleasant Grove and amassed so much garbage it was piled up in the side yard like some sort of hillbilly landfill (good name for a band, Hillbilly Landfill). Moving boxes and Corona boxes and all the boxes from all the books that SOMEONE orders off Amazon. I mean, seriously the Historical Atlas Of The Napoleonic Era? Are you kidding me?

Show off.

I know, I know, we could've loaded it into a truck and driven it somewhere proper, but that would require, you know, effort. And effort takes, well, it takes effort. We'd jam as much as we could down into the single can Pleasant Grove city provides for its' residents, to be sure. But recycling has yet to hit these parts so everything goes in one can. Oh, I could probably drive a carload of recyclable goods to a dumpster somewhere but again, that would require effort and that's something I'm fresh out of these days. So I've been trying to stuff as much garbage as humanly possible into the can each week, a veritable Tetris game of placing the trash into the can, a game that requires planning and strategy and, yes, effort.

But it wasn't working! We were falling farther behind. Or is it further behind? Can someone explain the different between further and farther to me, I'm too tired to Google. Further or farther aside, I knew I was losing the trash battle.

So I set about watching the garbage man. Learned his schedule, noted his routes, studied his technique and then, when ready, I made my move.

We live near the top of a dead end street. Not a cul de sac, per se, more of a dead end. (Did you see how I used cul de sac and per se in the same sentence? I just wanted to point it out in case you missed) Every Wednesday the garbage man comes up our side of the street, empties our can and those from about five houses past ours and then turns around at a park/picnic area that leads into the mountains at the top of the road.

Last Wednesday at approximately 10:17 am I watched as the garbage man emptied our trash. Right on schedule, I whispered to Max and Milo as we peered from our second story window. And then we waited. Any second now, I told my accomplices. Wait for it... Aaannny second...

His truck began chewing our garbage like an old man jaws potato chips and then the garbage man was safely onto the next house. MOVE, MOVE, MOVE! I shouted to my guys and we streaked out of the house, my 33-year-old tits flapping and flopping beneath my husband's dirty tee-shirt like freshly caught Rocky Mountain Trout.

I yanked the trash can back to the house and piled more garbage bags and boxes in there like I was competing for Survivor immunity. Then I waited, panting like the out-of-shape asshole I am... waited... just a second longer... one mooooorre seccoooooond...


As soon as garbage man was flipping his U-turn up there at the top of the road and couldn't see the crazy woman dashing across the street with two tits and two dogs in tow I cranked that heavy trash can across the road and slammed it down next to a mailbox on the other side of the street.

A tricky endeavor, to be sure, because no one lives across the street! It's an apple orchard and the people live waaay back behind the orchard. I don't know where they put their trash, for all I know they're rocking their own hillbilly landfill. It's just never where I can see it and the garbage man knows this. He could very well be onto my garbage scheme and sail right on by. Mom warned me he'd given her The Business once for attempting the exact same feat.

Would he pass my trash? I crouched behind my truck, waiting and watching as the trash truck rumbled my way. HE STOPPED! The garbage truck rumbled and my boobs jumbled as I danced a barefoot hillbilly jig while the truck Cookie Monstered my second batch of trash into crumbs. A garbage two-fer!

Take that, city of Pleasant Grove. That's what you get for not offering recycle bins! Maybe your grove isn't so pleasant, after all.

Which brings me to today. I was typing on this here blog when I heard the good man empty our trash as he went up the street. I pulled the old garbage switcharoo (is it a switcharoo? Technically, it probably isn't but The Old Garbage Switcharoo sounds cool, doesn't it) and scored another garbage two-fer! Triumph!

It's the little things in life, AMIRIGHT?

*Grandma playing chess: AS IF! Purely decoration. I think she figured it goes with the fancy globe she got for her living room.

Reader Comments (11)

I was just thinking this morning about how my boyfriend wouldn't have sex with me in high school because he was afraid of getting me pregnant and how I couldn't even get pregnant in my early to mid 20's. It made me wonder whether I would have even been capable of getting knocked up as a teenager...

Even France has recycling. Seriously, suburban Utah, get with it! You know it's bad when zee French have caught on and you haven't... lol.

April 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSteph

nothing's funnier than farts. and, like yo mama jokes, they're just as funny the older you get :)

April 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterXmastime

I am not usually a commenter but had to on this one. My husband calls this the double-garbage scam. It worked for us for a few weeks until ... the driver caught on. Unfortunately, he caught on the same week that my husband had placed a heavy piece of sewer pipe (don't ask) in the garbage can. I guess it clattered loudly when the mechanical arm lifted the can and emptied it into the truck (perhaps the truck was mostly empty and the pipe hit the bottom). The driver turned around at the end of the block, rolled up to our garbage can a little too closely, knocking it over, then rolled backwards and forwards over it, crushing it into oblivion. I have photos of the crushed can and wanted to complain to the city ... my husband vetoed that idea, since the driver knows exactly where we live. We haven't tried rolling the garbage can across the lane ever since.

April 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterOana

I am a garbage collector and must tell you that we're usually fine taking what's ever out there - regardless of whether you take it out when we're there or turning around. You name it and in it goes. You'd also be surprised at how many women stop to watch the truck compressing and forcing it all in but are too shy to admit it.

April 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGarbageman of my favorite shows of all time. Is that weird??

April 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHanni

scarlett's farts are my favorite thing. not only because she laughs, but they smell rotten and cause her to pause and sniff the air. I think she wants to say, "Did I make that smell because it make me want to vomit." It's only a matter of time till she pulls the old "buttercup".
i don't think i'll ever be that person that acts all adult about toots, still have to laugh when 97-year-old Gammy lets one slip.

north ogden has recycle. i usually do, but when brian is home i purposly put things in the garbage because he freaks out and goes all al gore on my ass. btw, i tip my garbage man at christmas so he lets me get away with murder...literally, i had a body in the trash last week. reminds me, he comes tomorrow...

bummer i missed ya last week. wanna get together....LAVA!!!! BELIEVE IT!!!! I WILL HUNT YOU DOWN!

April 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMeg

Monica, the truth is that you are a genuine & great girl, and those of us who have been reading you for years know your qualities and your faults (which everyone has) and your embarrassing stories (which everyone has too but we don't share them so openly) and we still really like you.

On the internet, hiding behind the mask of anonymity, it is always easier to be nasty than to be nice. Yet I see a lot of people compelled to say nice things to you. And the nasty ones...they just have issues of their own, they are the ones who are bitter an a bit fucked up in the head, so you should just try to just ignore it.

x P

April 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterP

Ahhh, the days of 1 rubbish bin are long gone. We HAVE to separate hard plastic, soft plastic, metal, white glass, colored glass, batteries, newspaper, other paper and organic each into their own bins. Where ever doesn't go in there, goes into 'other.' It sounds like a lot of work, but it's a science really. I can't imagine going back to shoving it all in one can. Makes my heart hurt for the planet.

April 29, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermelanirae

Farther is for actual geographical distance; further is for everything else. I'm sure, being part of the English language, there's 20 or so exceptions, but that's the quick-and-dirty version. Now you know. But if you screw it up, no one will hold it against you. However, if you mess up there/their/they're, I can't make any promises.

April 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterR

Fuck you make me laugh.

I thought we were the only crazy ones. When we get overwhelmed by our rubbish situation, we do "Operation Secret Squirrel". Operation Secret Squirrel starts at around midnight and consists of my husband or I on lookout and whoever is feeling especially daring that night, sprinting out of our gate and running to various neighbour's rubbish bins and stuffing our rubbish into their bins. Over and over again. We get a ridiculously huge kick out of this and the feeling of achievement is awesome.

One time we wanted to dump our old and very revolting mattress. And I mean REVOLTING. The usual disgusting stains but mate it was even mouldy!! We were far too embarrassed to dispose of it in public, so Operation Secret Squirrel was called. Imagine. It's the middle of the night and we sneak out with this heinous mattress across the road to our car. We're struggling like anything to get the damn thing into the boot of the car, I've just pissed myself a bit from laughing so much when I hear behind me a polite "Guten Abend". Jesus Christ. It was our bloody neighbour who likes to think that he's the caretaker of our street. We were mortified but played ever so agent secret squirrel cool. Pretty embarrassing but at least we got rid of that damn mattress.

April 30, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNiedlchen

I suffer from snoring so bad at night that my husband has to sleep in the spare bedroom. I ordered a device called Aveotsd from a New Zealand website called "kiwi drug" and it arrived in a few days by mail. It's a plastic oval shaped tubular device open at one and and closed at the other. You insert your tongue into the cavity while squeezing on it to create suction, which then keeps your tongue protruded into the device when you let go. My husband is now sleeping back beside me and I don't feel worried when I fall asleep that he'll lose out on sleep.

May 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAdele

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