All I Do Is Win
All I do is win win win no matter what
Got money on my mind, I can never get enough
And every time I step up in the building
Everybody hands go UP
And they stay there, and they stay there
And they stay there – up down up down up down
Cause all I do is WIN, WIN, WIN
And if you goin in put yo’ hands in the air, make ’em stay there!
– DJ Khaled
The moment I signed the papers on my second dog, I knew I had made a huge mistake.
I knew I had fucked my perfectly unbalanced life up.
I knew that I had just walked up to the gnarly flood gates of hell, and not knocked – no, no, no. This was too out-right ballsy to be a knock. I just straight-up kicked those mother fuckers in, like, “What up bitches! I’m here!”
And here I am.
Here. I. am.
Never get two of anything that breathes. Don’t get two dogs, or two cats, or two babies, or two birds. Fuck, I’d even advise against two fish because you can never be too safe. Generally, never put yourself in a position to be out numbered, ya dig?
Because you know what two is? Two is a couple. Two is pair, a group, a club, a clique, a union, a possy. Two is a fucking gang.
And gangs fucking talk, man.
I know what they say too. They say, “Sup, brah? Sup wit you?” “Aww, nothin’. Just figured I’d shit on Momma’s bed again today. You know, I ain’t shit on her bed in a minute, yo.” “Word. Word. Hey, while you’re workin’ on that, I’ll head on over here and puke on this rug.”
That’s what those bastards say to one another. And then, the next thing I know, I’m doing a load of laundry and chunking another rug in the dumpster.
This is my life, people.
Last night, I caught myself singing “fuck.” That’s all. Just the word “fuck” at the top of my lungs. Like, “FuuuUUUUuuuUUUUUUUUUuuUuuuuUUUUUUk!” Why, you ask? Because between the times of 5:00 and 10:00 p.m. it sounds like an episode of Game of fucking Thrones in my apartment.
And winter is coming, y’all.
They fight. They bicker and pick on each other. If one has a specific toy, the other one wants it. They have to eat and drink out of the same bowl. If one is on the bed with me, the other is climbing up too. I have become a K-9 jungle-gym. They step, and sit, and lay, and claw, and chew, and lick, and bite, and waller all over me. I can’t watch TV anymore. I can’t eat food or drink a drink in peace anymore. Hell, the other week, Styx got a running start from the hall and jumped on my lap while I was on the fucking toilet. I can’t even pee anymore.
Those smelly assholes are everywhere. Everywhere. And they are always needing something.
Yesterday, I took Styx to the vet for his last round of puppy shots. Luckily, I have found a really great vet out here and it’s just a few blocks up from my building. I am super thankful for that. I am thankful they are sweet, and thorough, and helpful, and kind. However, they are always going over and beyond. To the point that I spent nearly $200 yesterday. And I’m totally convinced they gave my dog cocaine.
After we got home, he was a fucking raging lunatic. He ran around the apartment like his dick was on fire. Sonny stood back and looked up at me with exhausted eyes. “I know, Bubby. He’s a crazy bastard. But he’s our crazy bastard.” Styx puked twice and then refused to go to sleep in his crate. Typically, homeboy loves sleeping in his crate. But last night, last night he pounded on the bars of his tiny home and yelped like a howling monkey all hopped up on Viagra at peak mating time.
Around 3:30 a.m., I opened the door to his crate, “For the love of God! Shut the fuck up!” He was frightened at first. It took him a minute to actually step out into the room. Once he did though, I scooped him up and brought him back to bed with me.
Styx isn’t a bed dog. He doesn’t curl up with you and drift off to sleep like an infant. He isn’t a cuddler. That’s my Sonny. That’s my sweet little houndy dog, Sonny. It is most certainly not Styx. No, no, no. Styx is a sneaky mutt. He’s the type that draws you in with playful pawing, flirty brown eyes, and tiny kisses… only to bite you on the nipple when you least expect it. Styx is a hateful asshole.
So, after 15-ish minutes of trying to get him settled, I finally just pushed him off the bed and said, “You know what? Just do whatever the fuck you want.”
Because that’s good parenting, my friends.
That’s how you handle it – how you get shit done.
You just throw up your hands and say, “Fuuuuuck it. Here’s a sippy full of Motrin, dude. Knock yourself out.”
But soon after I said that, Styx quietly hopped back in bed and curled up beside me. He slept until 6:30 a.m. I smiled each time I woke up to check the bed for vomit and saw his tiny black ass sleeping soundly.
You see, I had given him the opportunity to make the decision for himself and he decided to make the right one.
Look, Moms and Dads, here’s the thing. Over the last month and a half, I’ve realized that nothing you do or say truly makes a huge difference in the kind of person your kid chooses to be. I’m sure there are plenty of presidents, and CEOs, and inventors, and doctors, and bajillionaires who had shit parents growing up. Likewise, I’m sure there are many hookers, drug dealers, bank robbers, black-market-organ peddlers, and narcissistic liars who had ‘iight parents. You know, parents that put food on the table, taught them how to ride a bike, told them to wash their asses, and made sure they didn’t play in the street and stuff.
My point is, it’s really just the luck of the draw with these fuckers.
Your job is merely to love them, guide them, and clean up their puke.
Take Styx, for example (again). That fool loves picking up sticks and rocks when we’re out in the courtyard taking potty breaks. At first, it used to drive me insane. I was convinced he was going to get the Zika and die. Every time he’d get ahold of something, I’d chase that little yaywho around, stuff my fingers through his clenched teeth, and yell, “Drop it!” He thought it was the. best. game. ever.
But then, I got tired of his bullshit.
So, one day, we’re walking through the courtyard and Styx swoops down and picks up a piece of palm tree. I’m talkin’ a whole fucking palm leaf, y’all. This thing was longer than he was. And he was so proud of it too, like he actually had something, you know. He had found the stick of all sticks. He comes beboppin’ by me, all, “Yo, Ma. Got this stick here. It’s pretty fucking awesome. You see these green things? Nice, huh? ‘Iight, you ready to go? I’m ready to go. Gotta get this bitch in the house…”
I go along with it. I let him have his stick. He’s trying to walk through corridors and the stick is getting stuck on walls and shit. It’s cracking my ass up. So I say to him, I say, “Styx, now, just where the hell are we gonna put that? What do you need that stick for?”
And then, it clicked.
Just like that.
He threw the stick down and kept right on walking. I kid you not, I know for a fact I heard that dog mutter, “Yeah. Fucking stick… we ain’t got no where to put that shit.”
You see, it was his decision. It wasn’t his lame old Momma telling him what to do. I didn’t criticize his actions, or correct him, or scold him. All I did was point out a hole in his plan, then I took a step back, and waited for him to make the right choice. Granted, it’s not stopped him from chewing mulch every time we step outside, but it’s progress nonetheless.
Being a mother of two has opened my eyes in ways motherhood of a singleton never did.
Now, I let things roll off my back. “Oh, you shit in the grocery store, little buddy? That’s cool. At least it wasn’t in the produce section. Hey, I’m with ya, people do need to lay the fuck off those Fritos. Way to save our fellow San Diegians from obesity, Styxy! Up top!” When one of them does something douchey, I just mumble an apology and walk away. I mean, what else can I do? The other night, Styx jumped up on our security guard and pawed him right in the balls. What was I supposed to say to the man? “Sorry my dog just nut-tapped you? Want some ice for that?”
And actually, come to think about it, that dickbag had it comin’. A couple nights later, I had to take the boys out at, like, 2:30 in the morning. We came barreling around the corner (like we always do) and ran smack into the very same security guard. He said, “Aww, hey, puppy. Hey, puppy. Is she pregnant?”
The look of disgust on my face had to say it all, but since you guys weren’t there, let me spell it out for ya: “Well, fuck no, asshole! She’s a he. And he’s four goddamn months old. Also, don’t speak to us. It’s two o’clock in morning. We’re not even real people – just figments of your imagination.”
I didn’t acknowledge him.
The hounds and I just kept right on truckin’.
Speaking of right on truckin’… oh. my. God, y’all. The worst possible thing that could ever happen – in life – occurred two weeks ago.
So, Styx is (was – knock on wood) still working on the potty-training bit. He’s doing very well but once a week he will pee in his crate while I’m at work. No b, right? I just take him directly to the tub for a quick bath, wipe his crate out, and hit the joint with some Fabreze.
Well, on this particular Wednesday, I opened the door to an odd smell. It wasn’t poop, though. It was weird. Sonny had gotten sick earlier on our morning walk, so I thought maybe it was him. I looked around the house before letting the little bubby out but didn’t find anything – it was definitely Styx. Ugh. Were they both sick? Did they get into something when I wasn’t looking? Was it a treat I had given them?
I took them both outside to use the bathroom. Afterward, Styx and I headed straight for the tub. As I washed him, I tried to figure out what the smell was. Nothing was coming off of his fur, so I was convinced it wasn’t poop, but I saw a brown liquid in his cage? “Poor baby,” I crooned, “is you not feelin’ good?”
Styx isn’t a bad bath taker. I mean, he doesn’t cry, and whine, and act like I’m de-furing him like Sonny does. But he’s not totally sold on the idea of baths either. He does, however, love the drying process.
I’ll scoop him up in a towel like a baby and cradle him in my arms. “Oh da sweet bay-bee,” I say. “My suh-weeeeeet little Styxy-pix. Ohh-weee, bud, yous the cleanest puppy I ever did see!” I kiss his nose and nuzzle his face. I rub, and rub, and rub until he’s mostly dry. And then, we stand up, look in the mirror, and I “show him tha baby.”
He loves that.
But on this particular day, it was too much.
I watched it happen in slow motion.
I was holding him over my left shoulder and looking at us in the bathroom mirror. His head was facing backward. I was trying to get his attention, “Look, bud. Who is that? Who is that puppy right there?” The next thing I knew, his mouth opened like he was going to yawn, and then…
He puked every where!
We’re talkin’ an Exorcist-style vom scene right in the middle of my bathroom. My mouth fell open. I was in complete and utter disbelief. How could that much upchuck come out of such a tiny body?
And then, the smell hit me.
I practically threw Styx back into the bathtub, tossed the towel he was wrapped in over the mess, and ran to the toilet.
Look, I do not have a weak stomach. I can handle most anything. But this? This was the work of some sort of demon if I had ever seen a demon at work before, my friends.
At that very moment, it became crystal clear to me what had went down in the apartment while I was away. My puppy – my suh-weeet little bay-bee Styxy-pix – had shit in his crate and then ate it.
He ATE his own shit, y’all!
He ate his own shit and then puked it up all over my fucking bathroom.
What kind of devil dog even does such a thing?!
As I’m dry-heaving over the commode, I hear the little fucker trying to escape the confines of my tub. I think fast. I hold my breath, grab Styx, run through the house, and trap him out on the balcony. By this point, I’m pacing the living room. I’m muttering in different languages. I’m praying to every god I’ve ever heard of. I’m trying to figure out how we can move that very night. “Should I book a hotel room? Who can I call? Who the fuck can I call?!? Can I light it on fire? Can I just burn this whole mother fucker down?!?”
Panicked and scared, I did the only thing that came to mind… I grabbed a dryer sheet, strapped that bitch to my face with a hairband, and got to work.
As I scrubbed, and mopped, and laundered, two things kept going through my mind:
- I bought these pink suede Steve Madden pumps one time. Ahh. They were beautiful. The right color pink too. But they just had to have been bought and returned by an Asian (no offense to my Asian fans out there!) because they smelled like a fucking China King. I only wore those bastards once for fear I was leaving everyone in my wake wondering where the hell the wontons were. Fast-forward to present day, and all I could picture was walking into work wearing a pair of the shoes Styx had just spattered with his shit-spew. People would think I’d quit wiping my ass. Couldn’t risk it.
- Thank the water-to-wine making Jesus, Mother Mary, Joseph, St. Vincent, Genesis, Psalms, the Koran, and Walt Disney none of that shit got in my hair because if it had… y’all, I swear, I wouldn’t have lived to tell this story.
Meanwhile, on the balcony, Styx had relieved himself once more and was smearing poopy-puke prints on the windows. You know, just to really drive home the fact that he had had enough of my shenanigans and was ready to come back inside. Exhausted, I grabbed every mixing bowl I could find and filled them with water. As I emptied the bowls onto my balcony floor, people on the sidewalk below started to yell, “There’s a hole in it!”
Oh. Yeah. Did I mention I live on the actual street side… where people walk below. Whatever. Fuck ’em. And fuck their dumbass comments too.
Two hours of deep cleaning, a rug, a towel, a pair of Michael Kors shoes, some Steve Madden flats, 17 rolls of paper towels, and 62 Swiffer wet sheets later… my household is back to normal.
And Styx hasn’t shit – or pissed, for that matter – in his crate since.
Guys, the moral of the story here is: You have to let them think it was their idea. You have to let them think they have the power. But all along, you’re coaxing them to do the right thing, make the right choices, be the right people. You are the puppeteer behind the curtain pulling all the strings. You. are. OZ.
Sure, they’ll fuck up from time to time. You’ll have to clean up after them, and pay off their speeding tickets, and make them apply to college. You’ll have take them to get birth control for fear they’ll screw around and get knocked up by some idiot kid named Graham on the high school soccer team. You’ll have to tell them to get off their ass and go outside, unload the dishwasher, and stop walking into the street while playing Pokemon Go. And eventually, you’ll have to take away their dinner when they’ve decided to eat their own shit.
But at the end of the day, you can sleep easy, because you didn’t raise an asshole.
You raised a free thinker.
So, the next time your kid is bucking the system and you’re at your wits end, take a page from my book…
Drop the leash and say, “Fuck it. Just do whatever the fuck you want.”
Because really… what are the chances of him eating his own shit twice?
Pretty fucking slim.