artwork for Katrina Gray's writing

Ms. Bloom’s Day: A Twitter Stream of Consciousness
Katrina Gray (@Katrina_Gray)

Assembled from selected unaltered* tweets tweeted between 2009 to 2012.
     *except for the occasional removal of #s or @s

I hate it when I hit my fancy alarm’s “schmooze” button instead of “snooze” and I’m stuck making polite chitchat first thing in the morning. Someone bought up all the hair weaves and flip flops from the Piggly Wiggly and now I have no clue what to wear on casual Friday. Suri Cruise would make fun of my shoes.

I found a feather in my thong this morning. I don’t know what happened last night, but I’m now craving souffle.

Woke up dizzy the past two mornings. On the bright side, I did not wake up as Ke$ha.

So are you supposed to smoke wheatgrass or snort it? (Someone said juice it, and I was all, HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.) My yogurt totally gave me a pearl necklace when I opened it. Would have been a good money shot if I hadn’t made that anti-O-face.

My dog’s sphincter is dilated to 8, maybe NINE, you guys, so the big moment should be any minute! Will update with time, weight, and length. 4 years of near-nakedly taking the dogs out back in the morning, and finally today, Anonymous yells, “Hey you! In your panties!” Aaaand, I guess that raccoon that died overnight on my $250 organic soil mound just became my new spirit animal.

I feel like such a loser. I’m the same age as Selena Gomez’s mom, so I should have acquired a Justin-Bieber-in-law by now. :( When I see a baby and briefly think I want another one, I’m thankful that my bruised vagina can talk my tingly ovaries down from that shit. If I could eradicate a word, it would be mommyblogger. If I could eradicate a human, mommyblogger also stands a very good chance. I sure wish more new parents would name their newborn girls Something Grace Something.

I am one twenty-fourth octaroon. I became a mother because I make a fucking good sandwich and I wanted more people to make sandwiches for. Jessica Simpson says she cried big “crocodile tears” when she felt her baby move. God, I hope she's not planning on homeschooling. Proof, meet puddin'.

Imagine the deafening mid-game silence when a particularly spunky kid said, “Mother, may I...STEP ON THE CRACK?”

Drove through projects, almost rolled down window for fresh air, remembered I could get my ass kicked for playing The Outfield full volume. Billboard says: “Jesus is on the throne.”

Where do the Planned Parenthood protesters pee? I never see people in wheelchairs protesting anything. Ergo, it must be assumed they are pro-Gadhafi and anti-union.

I am exactly one full version of Manfred Mann’s “Blinded By the Light” away from the farmers’ market. Met ex-lover/friend and his new girlfriend for coffee. She called me “stunning” so I pretty much want to do her. This one’s a keeper, sir. Every gal wants to be called “Amazonian.”

Oh hell. The monster trucks have come to town the same week as Fan Fair. This is the week I’m not a Nashvillian, if anyone asks. Just saw a cop slowly riding a Segway crazy-close behind an oblivious pedestrian and now I have another thing to have nightmares about.

Saw my songwriter ex driving down the street with his BlueTooth on, speaking emphatically, because MUSIC HAS TO BE WRITTEN RIGHT NOW, FOLKS! Just saw a string of flannel shirts and jeans along the highway. No sighting, though, of anyone's naked lumberjack ex-boyfriend.

When I’m still deciding how my day will go, nothing moves the needle toward Existential Doom like Gilbert O’Sullivan coming on my iPod.

When I hold open the door to the stairs for an uncomfortably overweight coworker, I somehow always know my gesture will be in vain. Keeping a popped-out contact wet until you find saline is like rushing a heart to a transplant patient. I basically just saved a life today.

I had to tap out “kids incorporated king of wishful thinking” into Roku YouTube so my husband & I could gawk, if you wonder why I was late.

Just got an email with a smartypants “Geothe” quote sig, which means I’m pretty much obligated to snarkily email back that it’s “Goethe.” CareerBuilder says my own company is interested in me. Don’t underestimate my ability use this as leverage come performance review time.

When responding to most females’ emails, I feel like a dick when I don’t match them exclamation point for exclamation point. How much disability do you get for that disorder where you can't take grown women named Katie seriously? It’s affecting my ability to work. *I’ll* decide if your reminder is friendly or not.

Um, earth to coworkers: there is *no* company policy against conducting my own breast exam at my desk. Duh. I really have to get better at not rolling my eyes when someone starts a statement with, “As a Christian, I....”

It’s already 9:30 and not one Kardashian has mentioned what she’s doing for Bloomsday. I was asked today if Ulysses was “kinda like Harry Potter.” (No, I said, no, no, no.) Overheard someone refer to James Patterson books as “that intellectual shit.”

Also heard, as person digs through snack bowl: “I have a sore where it was oozy but now it’s an itchy scab that I can’t stop scratching at.”

Nice try, GRAD SCHOOL, but we English majors could have used more courses in coffee-making, photocopying, lunch ordering, and tongue-biting. There aren’t nearly enough hot people at work to justify Friday Jeans Day.

Hey, office bathroom shitters who stop shitting when anyone walks in: we all know what’s going on in there, so pinch it off already. The best thing to do when faced with a bathroom stall cell phone talker is to fart a lot and flush repeatedly. Hey, sure: It’s a fine time to discuss edits to your PowerPoint, as long as you know pissing, flushing, and washing are my first priorities.

Generation gap today: Me: “Fergie’s divorced, so she didn’t get an invite to the royal wedding.” Youngster: “OMG, she divorced Josh Duhamel?”

I’m totally the wrong person to talk to interns about the no-flirting policy. I’ll giggle when I tell them to think long and hard. E for effort, intern, but when your boss is taking close-up iPhone pics of her eyeball, wait until she's done to ask your question. The best way to suck up to your boss is to take her company ID photo and make it your desktop wallpaper. When a coworker says, “Printer’s out of paper, just so you know,” it really means, “…just so you’ll DO.”

I just spent an hour googling Eric Roberts, if anyone is wondering how good I am at procrastinating today. Bubble wrap is the poor man’s BubbleWrap iPhone app. Repeatedly called Futons, Futons, Futons and hung up. Hello, FutonsFutonsFutons. Hello, FutonsFutonsFutons....

Dim Sum with a group of 30 equals Dim None. You guys, FYI: “Potluck” is one of those words that sounds like something other than what it really is. Lesson learned.

I can’t hear the word “super-user” in a meeting without imagining a dude working his way through like a pound of weed.

In 2006, a Very Important Person at work tried to have a serious conversation with me while “The Thong Song” played on my radio. Last Sunday, I helped repair Harmony Korine’s fence after ping pong. A casualty of a previous match gone awry. A friend saw Rick Schroder downtown last night so I guess that’s closest I’ll ever get to riding that train in the Silver Spoons house.

There has been an outbreak of Questionnaire’s Disease in the office this summer. Editing question: We’re now putting quotes around “actor” when referencing Kirk Cameron, right? So, you guys: is there an update on whether anyone has conjured enough balls to tell Bono that “catorce” doesn’t come after “tres”? WTF are the Olsen twins doing on my Newsweek?

Today, a Greek coworker misspelled “Parthenon.” So good luck with that flotilla, you guys. I’m sure things’ll go really great.

I am growing tired of when people are named Gary. I do not condone or encourage workplace looming. Seriously, I’ll figure it out faster without an extra set of judgy eyes.

I ordered a US map for the person in my Nashville office who just said, “I wish someone would have TOLD us we could drive to Terre Haute.” The CEO who lauds our tech savvy doesn’t know about Lady Who Asks Me To Alter PDFs or Dude Who Answers Emails By Writing On Printed Copies.

Bad news: turns out “the hallway smells like kitten farts” is not a valid reason for me to move from a cube to an office. :(

The maintenance dude corrected my use of a word, so the student loan debt for my master’s degree in English was totally worth it, you guys. America in a nutshell: I am wondering if I can pay for brakes this week, and coworker is stressing over how to invest her 5-fig bonus. I was just introduced to a CEO named Tammi, so I’m slipping on my Armageddon shoes.

Answering today’s emails with only James Brown album titles has a downside too. “Sho Is Funky Down Here” doesn’t BEGIN to describe my day. Quote from a real-life corporate email from work: “Please excuse my bad.”

What’s awkward is when the cleaning lady doesn’t know you’re working late and says “They nasty!” just outside your cube. Yes, we nasty.

If there are 30 peeps in an EastNashville street, there’s either been a murder or there’s a music video shoot. Guess which slowed my commute? Saw chick who took my ex out for drinks the day we signed divorce papers. Was riding a bike. I did not run over her. I am SO going to heaven.

RIP Phoebe Snow, who taught me that “home’s that place somewhere you go each day to see your wife.” Just heard neighbor woman in cutoffs and a bikini top yell for her husband and call him “Paw.”

Feeling a little odd watching my helpful toddler attempt to fold my thong with the rest of the laundry. I just told my son, who was being careless with his snack, “Hold on to your nuts!”

Few things can lift my spirits like that “your son Rip is on line toot” commercial. Of course Dr. Oz chooses the black woman to reveal that collard greens reduce hypertension. You know a storm is bad when Oprah gets interrupted, and then the emergency broadcast system interrupts the Oprah interruption. Probably we can all assume that Normal Everyday Makeupless Oprah pronounces it “Twirter.”

I made beer and Cool Ranch Doritos for dinner! My husband’s hiccups sound just like the drunk alcoholic hiccups on Porky Pig cartoons where they play “How Dry I Am” in the background.

Always surprised at the ease with which folks say, “Just get a babysitter.”

I’m always dressed to the fives. I have SUH-WEET washboard abs underneath my protective fatty sheath. “Tonya Harding legs” is a compliment, right guys?

Seen on an ad in the pisser at Douglas Corner: a woman named Lemmonstine Poindexter holds a support group for local “barren women.” If local res Jack White has been there, Nashville considers it coooool.

I feel good about humanity when one Vanderbilt chick frets about pulling an all-nighter, and another selflessly offers up her last Adderall. Wondering why teenage girls who sing karaoke always pronounce words like the lolcats. Baybeh…

1. Before choosing “Brother Louie” at karaoke, remember there’s that white-man talking part: “I don’t want no spooks in my family. NO SPOOKS!”
2. Can someone please just do a bluegrass version of “One Night In Bangkok”?
3. Really, if we’re talking mouth-sound solos, Rupert Holmes’s stellar feat in “Him” blows all other mouth-sound soloists out of the water.
4. What Eddie Rabbitt lacks in vocal power, he makes up for in beard.
5. Mumford & Sons’ songs usually start out pretty cool, but then they have to go and ear-rape you with that surprise last verse about Jesus.
6. Somewhere in my ex-house, my ex-husband will eventually uncover the videotape of me dirty dancing to Michael Penn’s “No Myth.”
7. Nope. Sorry. Still cannot hear Dan Fogelberg’s “Leader of the Band” without giggling when he sings, “his blood runs through my instrument.”
8. James Brown is perhaps the only person able to make white people shout, I’M BLACK AND PROUD! and, most importantly, make them believe it.
9. One day I will have to tell my son about the confusing time in music history when there was The Verve and then also The Verve Pipe.
10. I can’t be the *only* one who spent decades thinking it was Carole King dueting with Paul Anka about having his baby.
11. It is quite convenient for The BeeGees to blame it all on the nights on Broadway. I think it’s high time they took some responsibility.
12. No joke: at a Johnny Cash concert years ago, all the white folks were clapping on the 1 and the 3 during “Get Rhythm.” GET RHYTHM!
13. What Toy Story movie was “You Can Leave Your Hat On” from?
14. No one has as much fun at a Todd Rundgren concert as Todd Rundgren.

Partying with drunk Laotians at Suzy Wong’s House of Fun. So much free Hennessy, so Caucasian a constitution. :( Sofia Coppola is brilliant. Champagne in a can? With a telescoping STRAW? Way more palatable than Godfather III, hands down. Your O’Doul’s is telling me that your AA sponsor doesn’t know you’re in this bar tonight. A friend learned last night outside the Lady Gaga concert that God hates gays. Also, God hates her too. You learn something new every day. Yes, I said “hot tottie.” And make it snappy because I’m late meeting Mildred at Woolworth’s for a phosphate and I’m out of payphone dimes.

Time’s up, driver in front of me: “try, try again” does not apply to your nineteenth attempt to parallel park your minivan.

Says my husband: “You argue like a man!” Compliment accepted. Now get your ass back in the kitchen and fetch me a beer.

Husband won the TN Arts Commission individual grant for literature so I guess that means I have to do him if I want an iPad out of the deal. Guys, remember: There are sexier ways to ask for anal than a Post-It on the fridge that says “Shitty Shitty Bang Bang!” with a winky face. Words With Friends does not count “taint” as a word. Words With Friends has never watched The DaVinci Load.

The porn version of “With Six You Get Eggroll” is “With Six You Get Eggroll.” I appreciate when a spambot thoughtfully remembers my weakness for uncircumcised Italian Jew porn. I imagined my first sexy time set to Manilow’s “Could It Be Magic.” Did not take in account how few Dodge Omnis have built-in record players. Glenn Frey’s “Love in the 21st Century” says we’d “get it by mail” and “get it by phone” so Skype and eHarmony are for losers, you guys.

GMA sleeping tip: keep bedroom lights at 200 watts or below. Is this *really* a problem for some people?

Restorative yoga, with all its eye pillows and Mexican blankets, feels very much like nursing a hangover. Meditation can be made sexier by putting on Leonard Cohen’s Ten New Songs. To unsexy your meditation, try George Jones. Saw a vision of the future: “Eep Opp Ork Ah-Ah” is how we’ll say “I love you” and there’s a dude named Spacely I DO NOT want to work for. There sure are a lot of cats that look like Jennifer Love Hewitt.

Sitting in my parked car yesterday, savoring Molly’s soliloquy. A car bangs mine from behind just as Molly says “Yes.”

I experienced a new low today. I heard of a young boy named “Zayden.” My heart *selectively* bleeds. Now that I no longer have a skate key that gets lost, I have no idea what happiness is.

Katrina Gray’s Comments

It was the May 2010 Nashville flood that really got me going on Twitter—not because I was taking part in some deep and profound relief effort, but because Facebook was giving me night terrors, hives, and gas.

My relationship with my family has always been tenuous, but things got batshit that May. My mom posted an essay about how she “lost everything in the flood of 2010.” By “everything,” she meant groceries in her fridge and electricity for a week. Other relations wanted to compare the flood to the still-in-the-headlines Gulf oil spill. “So what if little Susie won’t be able to get her tan on this summer. My hometown is underwater!“ said one. “BP will clean up the oil, but who will clean up Nashville?” said another, who emphatically believed that big oil would do the right thing. And then there was this gem: “I wish people would stop getting all PETA about shrimp when humans are DYING in Nashville!” Um, number one, people died in both places, and number two, did someone miss bioindicators day in science class? And when did tragedies become contests?


I stayed silent. I realized that if these people were not my family, I would avoid them on public transport. It’s like they live for confrontation. It was enough for me to tie up my handkerchief at the end of a long stick and hit the road. Love does not have to equal misery; Lifetime movies taught me that.

I grew up in a small town where pretty much one way of life was tolerated: you love God, you get married, you have babies, you wear mom jeans. My family is a product of that place, and, well, my Very Best Guess is that I slithered out of a U.F.O. and into my crib. I masturbate and show my cleavage and love gay people and believe in global warming and worship Richard Dawkins and don’t take myself so fucking seriously.

I was the dancing Kevin Bacon of Facebook, and I hadda-hadda cut loose.

So I revived my account and came back to Twitter, which stood in stark contrast to the dinosaurs-are-6000-years-old world of Facebook. The same Facebook where a high school classmate had recently unfriended me for making a joke about possibly overhearing my husband say the word “anti-christ” as he read a storybook to our son. On Twitter, that joke would have totally scored. I cater to the depraved crowd.

It started out slow, with me posting dumb links to stuff. I had only been published once or twice, so I had embarrassingly little cache, no cigarettes to trade in the jailhouse. But I clicked on other writers’ links to stories and mags, and that was great. I started following comedians. SUPER-great. And that’s when the magic happened. I got Twitter!

I found a whole nest of minor-comedians, or lay-people who fancy themselves comedians, and they were really funny, usually funnier than the paid ones. It’s an art to make a joke come out right within the 140-character constraint, and not as easy as it may look. I got a teensy bit brave and started doing it myself.

This was a whole new way of writing, a thrilling adventure. Hours, days, can be spent on getting a tweet just right, though I still haven’t found the right formula yet. It’s a challenge, like finding all the magical horseshoes in your Lucky Charms. I’m happy amusing only myself, even if I don’t get retweets, stars, or trophies (has anyone discussed Favstar yet?). I feel free. I won’t get bitch-slapped for saying “bitch-slapped.”

Now I’m going to get really sappy here. Family, for me at least, is not a blood-network, a de facto troop of people who share DNA. I have created my own family, a cadre of funny, bright, lightning-smart friends, people I respect and admire, with whom disagreements don’t escalate into altercations (yes—I am friends with some Republicans!). Some of these relationships blossomed on Twitter.

When I walk into a room, I want to feel good. I want to scurry around listening to all the interesting conversations. I don’t want to feel lousy, or have to figure out a way to gracefully exit yet another conversation about “Adam and Steve.”

Twitter is the social networking version of this fantasy room. We who tweet shove tiny fruit tarts in our mouths, and when crumbs fall on the floor, no one gasps. We forgot to dust, but who cares? We leap, barefoot. Clothes are optional. There is no plastic covering the furniture. The wine comes in a box. And @robdelaney comes in your mom’s box.

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FRiGG: A Magazine of Fiction and Poetry | Issue 37 | Summer 2012 | The Twitter Issue