Posted by Ilana Angel
I wish I was the type of chick that knew about cars. I cannot change a tire, or my oil, and I describe things in my car as doohickeys and thingamajigs. The only thing I am able to do in terms of my car, besides drive it, is gas it up. By drive it of course I mean I am a New York City taxi drive and I mean business. I don’t like to drive and my goal is to get from point A to point B. I am aggressive on the road and have very little patience for people who cannot drive. I am woman, who drives like an Andretti, with no clue about anything technical.
My car was making funny noises and I needed to take it to the shop. When my son had his car accident I took the car to be repaired by a friend and colleague of the Englishman. It turned out to be someone I knew which was Jewish Geography at play. Gary the body shop guy got it looking like new, then sent me to Dwayne the mechanic to take care of the guts. I’m not the kind of girl that should ever deal with a mechanic because I will believe anything. Tell me something needs to be replaced and I will replace it.
My father was always mortified that I was so uneducated when it came to cars. He would call to remind me to get my oil changed and check my tires for air. He believed that I should never have less than half a tank of gas and insisted I always have $5.00 in my glove compartment. He would tell me never to use my horn because it might piss someone off and send them into a road rage frenzy of pulling out a gun to shoot me. He clearly watched too much television because he thought I was driving through a war zone when I hit the streets of Sherman Oaks.
I think about my dad everyday. I wonder what he would think about the things going on in my life. He would be thrilled that my son is driving, and would get a kick out of cruising around with him. My Englishman is a lot like my dad and last week he told me I should have my car inspected and make sure everything was good so I would not need to worry when my son drove it. As the Englishman spoke I could see his lips moving but I could hear my dad’s voice. I am thankful he looks out for me and I smiled because I know my dad had a hand in our meeting.
I took my car back to Dwayne at Walker’s Complete Car Care in Reseda. It’s a bit of a schlep from my house but I felt like he knew the car, knew my Englishman, and would not try to make a few bucks screwing over the chick who knows nothing about cars. I was there today and felt compelled to write about what happened. It was the best experience I have ever had in terms of getting repair work done. Not because they fixed everything, but because they understood their customer. They spoke to me like a car owner with concerns, not an idiot.
I spoke with a gentleman named John who was lovely, professional, and not at all condescending. I told him there was a doohickey rattling in the glove compartment, there was fluttering when I hit the gas peddle, the brakes were whining, and the car was a little fercockt. Clearly I was not speaking in technical terms, but he seemed to understand what I was saying. He did not laugh, did not mock me, did not even change his facial expression. He wrote it all down as if he not only knew exactly what I was talking about, but he had actually heard it before.
I was dying to look at his notes because I was curious to see if he wrote down the work doohickey, but instead I took a seat and watched Live with Kelly in the waiting room. After about 40 minutes John came back to tell me what was going on. He went through the noises I was hearing and told me what was happening. He spoke in simple terms that I could understand, without making me feel stupid or confused. To tell the truth I was confused. Not by what John was saying but rather because I actually understood what he was saying.
John explained not only what they did, but why the noises were happening. It was great. I asked John what I owed him and he said nothing. He let me know it was a series of minor adjustments and since I had already taken the car in for a bunch of work, he did not want to charge me anything additional. There was a quick second when I thought I might cry, that quickly passed and I thought I might hug him, but I recovered, thanked him for his help, and got in the car curious to see if all the things I was concerned with had actually been fixed.
My car is now perfect. There are no weird noises or any funky shaking. The car runs smoothly, quietly, and my mind is at ease that my son can take it out and be safe. While I like to think it will happen, I am never going to know how to change a tire or properly explain what is happening with my car, but I will never run out of gas and always have five bucks. Thanks to the boys at Walker’s for fixing my car, thanks to my Englishman for taking care of me, and thanks to my Dad for continuing to make his presence known. I love you Dad and I am keeping the faith.
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July 9, 2012 | 9:50 pm
Posted by Ilana Angel
I have primary physical custody of my son during the school year and he goes to his dad’s every other weekend. During the summer however, we split his vacation two weeks on, two weeks off. It is nice for my son because he can settle in without major disruption. That said, it is really hard for me. Two weeks is a painfully long time to not see him.
He has been with his dad for 3 days of his first two week visit and I am sad. By sad of course I mean I slept in his room last night and it’s not just me either. His cat has been sitting in his room for three days waiting for him to come home. When I walk into the room she looks up, realizes it’s only me, glares with complete disappointment, and goes back to sleep.
My son is two years away from going to college so summer vacations are good practice for when he goes I guess. I really love my kid. Not only because he is my child, but because he is a wonderful human being. He makes me laugh, think and dream. He is going to change the world and do remarkable things one day and I am excited to watch him carve out his path.
My son is on a “family vacation” with his dad. It’s his family, and a vacation, but I’m his mom and I’m not there so it feels a little odd. My son has never been on a family vacation with both his parents. He is on a trip where people will assume his stepmother is his mom and that makes me sad. It’s selfish and silly, but that is how I feel.
With my son out of town I am leaning on my Englishman and he has been wonderful. He has a daughter away at college so he understands what it feels like to miss a child so much. When I hear him talk to his baby who is so far away my heart melts and I hope to have that connection with my son when he goes to college. By hope of course I am certain I will.
I am counting the days until my son comes home. By counting of course I mean marking each passed day on my calendar with a big red X. He is in British Columbia, having a fantastic time, and we speak every single day, but he is with his family. I am blessed that his father loves him and that his stepmother has embraced him in the way that she has.
Instead of focusing on the fact that I am his mother, I need to teach myself to focus on the fact that my son is loved by many people, and has a large family that is made up of many parts. I love my Englishman and I love his children. They are not mine, but they are a part of him and they are wonderful young women. I am blessed to know them and their dad.
Family is what you make it. I have my delicious mother, fabulous sisters, divine brother, incredible son, terrific friends, and the Englishman and his kids. These people are my family and I am grateful. A family is a group of people that love you and you love. We are given a family but we also create a family. That is truly one of the greatest blessings.
I am a wonderful mother and I don’t need to prove that to anyone, or get confirmation from anyone other than my child. He knows the role I play in his life, and his family, which makes me happy. I love my family and with age comes the confidence to embrace it rather than define it. I am a very lucky girl and believe it is because I am keeping the faith.
July 5, 2012 | 9:03 pm
Posted by Ilana Angel
I am amazed that these three people have all made the news recently. Bristol Palin’s reality show started airing, Rielle Hunter’s memoir of her life as a home wrecking whore was published, and Anderson Cooper made headlines for coming out. Really? Bristol is not worthy of a show, Rielle is a trashy skank, and we all knew Anderson was gay.
I have been watching Bristol Palin’s new reality show and it is pissing me off. I think she is a bad role model for teenage girls and is doing a huge disservice to her beautiful son. I watched all the episodes that have aired so far and I am surprised by how she openly bashes the father of her child. It is relentless, hurtful, and in front of her son.
Surely Bristol understands that we all think Levi Johnson is a douchelord so there is no need for her to bash him. She would be better off letting him dig his own grave. He is a pig, does not care about his kid with her, and I don’t blame her for falling for the cute guy. I do think it is disgusting for her to talk so badly about the loser in front of their son.
In watching this show I have very little respect for Bristol, and think Willow is a bit of a dingbat. By dingbat of course I mean in a Chrissy Snow kind of way. That said, I am loving Sarah and Todd Palin. I may not agree with them politically, but I like them as people. Sarah Palin is either loved or hated for her views, but for me, politics aside, I just like her.
Bristol needs to be a little more like her mom in terms of not airing her dirty laundry. Her whining about how hard her life is as a single mom makes me want to scream. When she referred to her young son as bi-polar, in front of him, and allowed footage of her son calling her on-again off-again boyfriend Daddy, it was too much and I gave up on her.
I’m not going to watch the show anymore. By not watch it of course I mean watch it and mock her from the comfort of my couch. I raised my son alone, with an ex I have no respect for, without the benefits of having my family nearby, and without her money, so watching her “struggle” makes me laugh. This kid has no idea what it means to struggle.
I like the Palin family and I would watch a show about them, but Bristol is not that interesting on her own. It’s like watching 16 and Pregnant about kids with money. She is immature and not thinking about how this show will look to her son when he is old enough to understand that her crapping all over his dad is just like crapping all over him.
Bristol Palin is a young girl who got knocked up by a schmuck and while I’m sure she is a lovely, the only interesting thing about her, are her parents. She has confused the struggles of being a single mom with hatred for her ex. They are not the same thing Bristol. You can hate Levi, we get it, but enough with the single mom sob stories. You have no clue.
Rielle Hunter is, in my opinion, a whore. She sold her soul to the devil and I am not only never going to read her book, but I won’t even mention the name of it. Just Google whore memoirs and I’m sure you’ll be able to find it. I have seen several of the interviews she’s given while on her book tour and she is truly a disgusting and sickening human being.
It’s not all her of course. John Edwards is a pig and he has secured his first class ticket to hell, but Rielle is a nightmare. I have no respect for a woman who goes after a married man and while the man is equally to blame, there is something very hurtful about a woman hurting another woman in the way she hurt Elizabeth. It is both shameful and personal.
Rielle Hunter is, in my opinion, delusional, crazy, twisted, creepy, pathological, and whorish. She is selling a book while dancing on the grave of Elizabeth Edwards and it’s not appealing or interesting. I feel sorry for her little girl that this is the legacy she is putting out for the world see. She clearly cares more about herself than her child.
Finally, I simply must talk about Anderson Cooper for a minute. I love him. He is a brilliant journalist, a wonderful host, and while I don’t watch his talk show with regularity, he has been great on the ones I have tuned into. I’m not sure what it was exactly about Anderson that said gay to me, but most people who know of him simply assumed he was.
By most people of course I am not referring to my mother. My mom called me practically in tears when the breaking news broke. She heard Anderson was gay and she was mortified. She wanted to know if his coming out meant she should stop fantasizing about their love affair? By fantasizing of course I mean she truly thought she had a shot.
Anderson Cooper should not be defined by his sexuality and his coming out should not be breaking news. Good for him for standing up for who he is, and bravo if it helps someone else with their coming out experience, but seriously Anderson, I don’t care. Breaking news would be that you are going to marry my mother, not that you are gay.
If aliens are watching us and see a teenage mother, a whore, and a gay guy as the top news stories, they are going to take earth off the list of places with intelligent life. Bristol needs to get a job, Rielle needs to shut up, and Anderson needs to be left alone. As for the aliens, they might just decide to blow us up so we better start keeping the faith.
July 3, 2012 | 7:17 pm
Posted by Ilana Angel
From my family to yours, I wish you all a happy, healthy and safe holiday.
God Bless America.
Keep the faith.
July 2, 2012 | 12:00 am
Posted by Ilana Angel
I spent the weekend in Africa. Africa, California that is. I am certain that in some African dialect, “Palm Springs” translates into “Africa”. It was 110° in the shade, which made it difficult to do anything. I went with the Englishman and we had high hopes for a weekend of rest and relaxation by the pool, but in the end by the pool was the last place we wanted to be.
We got cold drinks, lathered up in suntan lotion, and settled in our very comfortable lounge chairs. I think we lasted less than an hour and moved to the shade. That lasted another 15 minutes before we could hear the air conditioner calling us back into the house. The heat was oppressive and I felt like my ancestors crossing the desert to the promise land.
In Palm Springs, the promise land is the casino. I love to gamble. By love it of course I mean I might actually have a gambling problem. If I am winning I think it is a sign I should keep going and win more, and if I am losing, I think just another twenty bucks will win it all back. Going to a casino was a real test to my relationship because I was sharing my addiction.
We had a great time and it turns out I can control my addiction when needed. By control it of course I mean he controlled it for me. He took away my ATM card, wouldn’t let me slip $20 into every slot machine I passed, and gave me tips during blackjack that resulted in our winning. He was kind, supportive, and funny, with just the right amount of mocking.
It turns out I have a really wonderful boyfriend. This was our first time away without the kids and I saw him in a new light. Granted I was blinded by the sun, and had heat stroke, but this is a very special man. When you are alone with someone, with nothing to focus on but them, you can see them clearly and I am surprised by how much I like what I saw.
I am a complicated person. I over think, over analyze, over plan, and over romanticize. I have been alone for so long, and made enough bad choices, that I don’t always trust myself when it comes to men. I saw things a little differently while I was in Africa, and in spite of the insane heat, there was no mirage. I am a lucky girl to be loved by this man.
Sidebar: I have become a soccer fan and it was rough to have England knocked out of Euro 2012. To be honest I lost interest in the European Championships after England went home, but I’ve been writing about soccer so much lately that I want to take a moment to say Mazel to Spain who beat Italy in the finals. I’m happy for you, but not really. Go England!
I was so happy to be with my Englishman that I agreed to see a movie of his choosing. Important to note that when I let him pick the movie it was 112° outside and I was thrilled to escape the heat. In an attempt to be a good girlfriend, I went to see the Seth MacFarlane movie Ted. I’m not a huge fan of his work, but I went and I must tell you it was really funny.
To be clear, it was raunchy, perverted, dirty and crude, but it was also really funny, and I enjoyed it. There are a lot of offensive jokes, but if you are a woman who is able to channel your inner teenage boy, you will love it. If you are a man, there is no channeling required because you will think it’s hilarious. It’s a guy’s movie with just enough humor to keep girls interested.
I had a wonderful weekend and as I sit here and write about it I am smiling. I am happy to be back in the civilized temperature of 75°, happy to be home with my son, happy to have a short workweek, and happy to know that being alone with my Englishman gives new meaning to being alone. I am out of Africa, back to reality, and blessed to be keeping the faith.