How to Successfully Pull Off a Homicide

Like most human beings, I am a creature of habit. We all have routines we follow, and wake up each morning with a certain expectation of how each day will progress.

Except I bring this to an entirely new level.

I am ridiculously methodical about how I plan even the simplest of tasks. Take a trip to the grocery store, for example:

  • Make a list of what I intend to purchase.
Thai Peanut Pork is on the menu tonight.

Thai Peanut Pork is on the menu tonight.

  • Re-write the list in order of my regular path through the store, ensuring there will be no double backing due to a produce item being at the end of the list.
How did donuts end up on the list?

How did donuts end up on here?

  • Plan to leave the house sometime between 9:00 am and noon. Outside of this window I have to compete with morning rush hour traffic and soccer moms who have either just dropped their kids off at school or are running their errands before picking their kids up from school. There’s also the potential for a long line of “Lottery Ticket Ladies”, “Money Order Monsters” (seriously, why don’t you have a checking account?), or “Rug Doctor Renters” at the Service Center. All I want to do is buy a pack of cigarettes before I do my shopping so I don’t have to make a second stop at the gas station and be heckled for money by the riff-raff of St. Paul’s North End. While I realize this time window puts me at the mercy of elderly shoppers who block entire aisles with their carts and don’t hear you saying “excuse me” eight times in a progressively louder and more irritated tone… I have to pick my battles. I’d rather deal with that than being run over in aisle 12 by a soccer mom pushing her cart full speed because she’s already late to pick up the kids and doesn’t have my impeccable planning skills.
  • Make minor adjustments to the previous step if it’s summer and school is not in session. This usually results in an early grocery run to avoid the addition of kids bee-bopping around the store and J-walking across Rice Street.
  • Check to make sure the blow dryer and/or hair straightener are unplugged.
  • Check to make sure the cats have water (I mean, what if I’m in a car accident and no one is home for a few hours?)
  • Check to make sure lights/TV/etc. are off.
  • Check the blow dryer/hair straightener situation a second and potentially third time.
  • Do I have everything I need? (looks in purse, says to self, “phone, smokes, lighter, wallet, keys”).
  • Check the blow dryer again.
  • Leave the house. Make sure no cats are near the door (I have this strange fear of slamming one of their tails in the door).
  • Give the door knob a jiggle and push against the back door to ensure it’s locked.
  • Get in the car, only to immediately get out and check the back door again.
  • Arrive at the grocery store. Fuck. All three of my “usual” spots are occupied by other vehicles. I park one row closer to the store than typical.
  • Consider laying down on the floor and dying, but know that someone has to feed your husband, and muster up the courage press on.
  • Manage to find everything you need in the store without incident.
  • Upon exiting, experience a short panic attack when you do not immediately see your car, silently curse about the punk kids that stole your car, then remember that some bastards parked in your spaces, forcing you to adapt to the circumstances.
  • Arrive home and meticulously put groceries away according to temperature (frozen, refrigerated, pantry… in that order).

Can you imagine what I was like when I was planning a wedding?

In conclusion, don’t cross me. If I can spend this inordinate amount of time planning and adapting for a simple grocery store trip, imagine what I could do if I didn’t like you?


I know what waits for me in the basement… in the night.

Everyone has a skill in which they’re particularly savvy. Some talents are more impressive than others.

Take this guy, for example:



Or this gentleman, who clearly has a lot of time on his hands,

If this dude has this steady a hand, he shoulda put it to good use and become a surgeon.

If this dude has this steady a hand, he shoulda put it to good use and become a surgeon.

Based on many happy hour conversations, my girlfriend, Beau, is a master mouse clicker,


Some skills aren’t as useful as others. So what is this girl’s contribution to the world during her time on planet Earth?

You might think cooking or baking based on previous posts, “master of wasting time” may have crossed your mind…

But no.

In my 31 years of life, I’ve become proficient in the art of worry/paranoia/OCD.


  • I will check AT LEAST three times to ensure I’ve unplugged the blow dryer and/or hair straightener prior to leaving the house.
  • I will jiggle the door knob and push on the door multiple times to ensure it is locked. In addition, if my husband and I leave the house together, and he is the one locking the door, I will watch to make sure he does a knob jiggle and push before we get in the car.
  • I run up the basement stairs after dark to ensure any zombies, spirits, demons or white walkers don’t have a chance to “get me.”
  • My feet can’t hang off the end or edge of the bed at night. Ever since I watched Paranormal Activity, I think about an invisible presence grabbing my ankles and dragging me down the basement stairs into the “Detective Stabler Room.**”

Last night, B-Bones woke me up at 3:00 am. You can’t just shoo this cat away. He is a persistent little monster, and if he wants to be snuggled and petted at odd hours of the night, he will give up at nothing.




He then grabs my hair with his teeth and starts pulling. If that doesn’t work, he’ll start nibbling on my arms or face, and progress to full on biting if I’m in a really deep sleep.

I get up, use the bathroom, go outside to have a smoke, then crawl back in bed.

3:15 am: “meow.” “Meow….” (hair pulling begins). I start to pet B-Bones and he lays down on the bed . I begin to doze back off.

3:25 am: “meow” (arm biting begins). I roll over onto my back, and let him crawl up on my chest. He lays down, and acts all extra adorable.

3:30 am: Now I’m almost fully awake. My brain starts leaking, as it often does if I’m having trouble falling asleep. It’s like my mind gets stuck on “infinite loop,” and I start sifting through all of items on my to-do list, like a revolving door that goes nowhere,

This went on for over an hour last night.

This went on for over an hour last night.


3:45am: I’m not sure why I never do this sooner, but I finally throw B-Bones out of the bedroom and shut the door. Like most nights, he opens a chapter of The Sad Cat Diary and proceeds to spend the next fifteen minutes singing the song of his people, as per protocol.

4:05am: OMG. What was that? I hear a noise outside of the bedroom. B-Bones has ceased body slamming the door and howling.

Should I get up?

Maybe I should go check.

But what if it’s an intruder? Or worse, what if it’s one of those things that I’m afraid of in the basement? I reconsider thoughts from previous nights like this, and tell myself that this time I will put a knife in the nightstand come morning. Well, that OR I’ll get my hands on some dragon glass.

4:10am: Ok. THAT was a noise. It sounded like glass breaking. A parade of fire trucks and marching bands could come through our bedroom, and my husband still wouldn’t stir from his slumber.

I get up.

Of course it’s B-Bones. He’s hovering over a case of beer bottles waiting to be recycled. And then I see it. I see what all of the commotion is about.

THERE, AMONGST THE BEER BOTTLES, IS A SPIDER… THE SIZE OF A PANCAKE. He and B-Bones are playing a little game in the maze of bottles.

I put on my brave face, grab a magazine off the table, and go postal on this thing.

B-Bones is displeased. I, however, have just conquered the Godzilla of spiders.

4:30 am: “Zzzzzzz.”


**The “Detective Stabler Room” is an area of my basement cut outside of the foundation. It’s about 4x4x5 feet, and has dirt walls, floor and ceiling. I think it’s supposed to be a root cellar, but who knows? I wouldn’t go in there… even if a tornado were coming straight for me. Pretty sure that’s where the stuff I’m afraid of in the basement waits for me.