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Everything Falls Apart

January 23, 2006

...provided that it is anywhere close to me. I don't know what my problem was this weekend, but apparently, I have caught some brand of funk that causes all things within my vicinity to disintegrate before my very eyes. Everything is breaking. House! Appliances! Dogs! Self! Every damn thing.

As for the house, the most interesting (well, relatively speaking) item to go was the pantry door. Now, that door is old, and it's been creaky for a while, but I really had not anticipated the spectacular door explosion that was in store for me. I thought it might just...I don't know. Sag gently to the ground one day, crumpling under the weight of its years in a sort of quiet, dignified submission. Kind of like the leaf book. It would go gently into that good night, and then we would bury it in the garden with the 1/3 of a bird I one time found in the bushes. (You do not want to know which 1/3.)

Anyway, So, that is what I thought. That was wrong, though.

In the end, the door decided to forego Freddie's example and instead opted to rage, rage against the dying of the light, because one second I was walking across the kitchen, having just put away some cans; the next second, I was jumping through the fucking CEILING as an enormous CRASH CLATTER BAM pierced the silence, frightening the dogs into a howling hysteria, and sending the contents of the pantry flying around the room with a Poltergeist-like enthusiasm. Turns out: doors do not crumple. They do not float gently to the floor. NO. They fall off their hinges and leap across the room in an attempt to flatten your ass. And they do this dramatically. And loudly.

Actually, now that I think about it, it was kind of like being fly-swatted. I have a feeling the door was aiming for somewhere between one and four dogs, who have spent countless hours scratching at its base, whimpering forlornly and chanting, "That is where the food lives! That is where the food lives!"

Yes, one to four dogs were probably the intended target. Missed, though.

Unsurprisingly, I have been whining about the door at length, to pretty much everyone, because it's going to be a massive pain in the ass to fix the thing. The holes are stripped, and so we're going to have to drill new holes for new screws and get a new plate-attaching thing, too, and yes, that is not THAT complicated, but in my world, anything involving an electric drill qualifies as an actual Project. And in my world, a Project cannot be performed without a minimum of seventy-four people. Most of whom are only there for the free Project Beer. One of whom actually knows what to do. And that one person is never, ever me.

So, while waiting for the team to assemble and drill new holes and whatnot, the door is now propped inside the doorway, with a handwritten sign warning everyone "NOT TOUCH DOOR FALLS BAM" because I couldn't find a pen and had to write it in the nub of a crayon. And that was all I could manage before the Burnt Sienna ran out. But I think it's descriptive. And onomatopoeic!

So, door. That was one thing. But the door's death leap was not half as exciting as when I myself fell apart before everyone's very eyes, because y'all, remember my fucking toe?

Well, it healed, and it doesn't hurt anymore or anything, but apparently...well. Apparently, it was not quite finished healing, I guess. Apparently, when I smooshed it in the door, the toenail got broken way down at the base. This I did not know. And this Dukay did not know. This was a little secret that my toe was keeping from everyone.

So, I've been tooling around with (what I thought to be) a complete toe, la de da, whatever. Until the other night, I was sitting in front of the fire, and I took off my boots and my socks, and I was rubbing some lotion onto my legs, when all of a sudden: my toenail fell off. The whole thing. Pop!

Dukay just happened to be watching me at the time.

"Ew," I said.

"AHHHHHHHHHHH," he shrieked, running hysterically from the room, arms flailing in the air.

He fell into a fetal position in the hallway, shuddering, and covered his eyes with his hands.


"Yeah," I said. "I guess it was, like, broken down there. That's gross, though, huh? Doesn't hurt."


"Well, it's the toe I smooshed that time," I explained. "I think it's oka--"


"It's not vitamins, it's smoo..."


Eventually, I was able to convince poor Dukay that toenails don't typically fall off as a result of not getting enough calcium (although, hell. Maybe they do. If so: Shh!), and calmed him down to the degree that he was willing to join me again in the den. For the rest of the evening, though, he continued to send sidelong, shuddering glances at my foot.

"It's a naked toe," he whispered, scandalized. "I mean, it's...bald. That is the most disturbing thing I have ever seen."

"It is not that disturbing," I told him. "Come on. You've seen worse things! It's just a little t--"

"I cannot look away," he whispered. "O, the horror. The horror."

If you want to send Dukay into a full-body shudder, complete with screwed-up terror face, touch him with your little bald toe. Watch him squirm. Enjoy! I do!

Anyway. So those are two of the things that have fallen apart. Also acting suspiciously: the dishwasher, Gimmme's right foot, and the rear left window of my car. I suspect plotting. I suspect complicated planning sessions, including spreadsheets and synchronized watches, that take place while I am at work. And I am pretty sure that the door is masterminding it all.

Hope y'all are doing better that this, and that you don't lose any appendages as a result of reading. I am a dangerous woman! I cannot insure your safety! I can only promise not to touch you with my creepy, bald toe. And if I do, you have my permission to rage, rage against the side of my head.

Have a good week, everyone!


Speaking of toes (you know. Sure), our friend Mir has committed to walking for three days on her own [toes], in the Boston Breast Cancer 3-Day. It's a great cause, and if you can, I hope y'all will support her. I suspect it will result in good karma, and I have it on good authority that sponsors are generally not flattened to death by their own pantry doors.


P.P.S. Again: Also, for those of y'all who have emailed asking whether I've eaten the dogs or something, because how come do I not have any pictures up this week, huh? what, do you not love them anymore?, etc.: indeed, they have not been eaten (yet), and I have posted some new pictures (including some older pictures I came across; say hi to the Chaos!) on flickr; I'll be posting even more tonight or...you know. At some point. And then you can get your fill of doggie goodness, and the world will be a slightly better place.

Posted by doxie in General Whining | permalink


Things are also falling apart here! iBook! Mobile telephone! Also I dropped my toothbrush INTO THE TOILET!

Our appliances are in cahoots, I'm sure. I will watch my doors carefully from now on. You keep an eye on your electronics.

Posted by: Nothing But Bonfires | January 23, 2006 04:42 PM

Will do, girl.

And, my toothbrush. Ew! Grosser than naked toes!

Posted by: Miss Doxie | January 23, 2006 04:48 PM

Toenails falling off are damned squicky. I also had both my big toenails fall off, 'cause of doing a marathon, and my reaction was somewhere along the lines of "Huh." My boyfriend, however, was like Dukay: running and screaming and shaking uncontrollably. Why do you think that women seem more capable of handling malfunctioning body parts than men?

Posted by: Laura | January 23, 2006 04:58 PM

It's pandemic. Here it's the refrigerator (making terrifying noises at the end of its little running cycle... noises that sound suspiciously like there's something alive in the back of the refrigerator that wants out. NOW.), my cat (the one who seems to have an interlock with endless howling and the lights going out at bedtime), our attempts to purchase a home (offer? counteroffer? countercounteroffer? Migraine?) and the postal services inability to remember where we live. Top that off with the return of my ulcers and you have, in fact, one giant party at my house.

Life is... something.

Posted by: Nola | January 23, 2006 04:59 PM

Oh my, I cannot believe that Dukay was scared to death of your nail-less toe. I thought men weren't suppose to be scared of anything? Sounds a bit like a reaction my own husband would have if he suddenly realized that I had no toenail.

I must say, you sure took it better than I would have. I would have been right down in the fetal position on the floor next to Dukay crying about my pieces falling off if I were you. You are truely a woman made of steel ;).

Posted by: Rochelle | January 23, 2006 05:11 PM

I'm feeling sorry that I read this because now I'm going to be cursed!

Posted by: Anne Glamore | January 23, 2006 05:12 PM

Anne, I'm sorry! Seriously, maybe you have to, like...touch me. Maybe I have to breathe on you. I'm trying not to be contagious!

Posted by: Miss Doxie | January 23, 2006 05:15 PM

If I EVER come to Atlanta I'm going to warn you so that you may prepare yourself for my free home inspection tour. I can prevent these catastrophies BEFORE they occur. I'll bring my own drill. No need for beer.

Posted by: Lisame | January 23, 2006 05:15 PM

Can I have Lisame's beer then?

p.s. Your car is the mastermind. It's that creepy navigational person. He totally called you a 'ho the other night after I had all the vodka. Not that those things are related.

Posted by: Robyn | January 23, 2006 05:21 PM

About 10 years ago the toe of my right foot had a run in with the headboard of a bed (furniture refinishing nightmare!) and I lost the nail much as you have. I called my "bald" toe "The Binford" since my friend Steve Binford had lost both his big toenails as a kid kickboxing and they never grew back. My nail did in fact grow back but then a few years later I popped the same damn toenail right off my foot again when I had a hangover-induced-run-in with some rolling luggage in the French Quarter. That damn toenail threatens to jump all the time now, and I'm afraid the next time it bails it won't be growing back and it will truly be a Binford. Beware the BINFORD CURSE!

Posted by: Suz | January 23, 2006 05:51 PM

Was married TWO years before discovering my own husband's toe-phobia. I come in feeling all purdy from a pedicure, toes painted a beautiful red. I slide my foot onto the arm rest of his Lazyboy.. and proclaim, "Look honey, they look good enough to eat". He lept from the chair and huddled in a corner disgusted & scared. Had to coax him out with a copy of that month's Bass Pro sales ads.

Hell, I WISH I had a "bald" toe. Was fun seeing the Alpha male huddled & whimpering-like a forest animal licking his injured paw.

You are SO lucky (with the exception of the possessed pantry door, and well,.. the dishwasher thing... and well, now I'm scared my shit's gonna break for even responding)

Posted by: jojothedogfacegirl | January 23, 2006 05:54 PM

Seriously, I have received at least 4 different stories from "helpful" people about folks who did the 3-Day and ended up losing toenails. It's sort of a theme, now, and I consider your kamikaze toenail a gesture of support and goodwill. God bless you and your naked toe, Leigh. ;)

Posted by: Mir | January 23, 2006 06:04 PM

Your writing is wonderful! Forget the law! Take your stories and hit the club circuit! The Bo stories alone would have them in the aisles. But, you know, the bald toe--not so much.

Posted by: shaxgirl | January 23, 2006 06:22 PM

I just can't say it enough. You fucking crack my shit up.

Posted by: Bethany | January 23, 2006 06:27 PM

you seem to be one of those people whose things just break [sunglasses, cabinets, etc.]. which is better than the alternative, moi, who thinks things will break/go wrong and is oh. so. freaked. out. about. it. and the outside world doesn't seem to notice, all "huh? the world is going to end because you're a bitch? uh-huh. SURE. let me know when that happens, film it, and i'll put it next to my picture of the blue moon."

yes. sigh. at least i don't whimper over other people's pedicures [yet]. but i have been known to chant at a few pantry doors in my time. or maybe that was the computer.

Posted by: meretyping | January 23, 2006 06:41 PM

When I was a wee little thing, my older brother convinced me to stick my hand in a mousetrap. You know, just to see if it would hurt.

And WAP! Off with my thumb nail. If that wasn't bad enough, I couldn't suck my thumb for months. (See? I was THAT wee)

Dukay should be thankful that you can hide your nail-lessness in a shoe.

Posted by: TwoThumbsUp | January 23, 2006 07:14 PM

A picture of the bald toe is required. Yes, REQUIRED.

Posted by: mom on a wire | January 23, 2006 07:55 PM

Squicky is a funny word.

As for the bad mojo - no worries here. My car died Friday and it's costing us $1200 to fix the damn thing. My pantry door taking a suicide leap isn't even on my radar.

I do hope your car hangs in there. You know, just in case your squicky toe needs a ride to the ER or something.

Posted by: Tracy | January 23, 2006 08:28 PM

"For the rest of the evening, though, he continued to send sidelong, shuddering glances at my foot."

That? Put me in to some serious stitches. (Stitch?)

Thankfully I was able to keep the alcohol in my mouth and swallow it in one painful gulp before bursting out laughing. Hmmmm...you ARE dangerous!

Posted by: S. Faolan Wolf | January 23, 2006 09:09 PM

How odd - a part of my car I thought broken started up again, two mishaps that should have injured me didn't, and funding for my next project cleared in record time. I think your good luck is on vacation in England just now. Don't worry, I'm sure it will return to Atlanta with gifts for all, first and foremost, your toenail.

Posted by: steve J | January 23, 2006 09:21 PM

It's an epidemic for sure. I was sideswipped on 85 this weekend (luckily I am 100% okay, and my car is very nearly 100% okay) but still it was scary. Also, our washer apparently is leaking water. Yay!

Posted by: msmack | January 23, 2006 11:07 PM

Teeeeeeeeeeeheeeeeeeee. Thank chrizzie that the placeholder is gone! I have to tell you, Mr.Banshee is TERRIFIED and DISGUSTED with feet. He finds them vile. His, mine, yours. And I have DAMN cute feet, thankee very much. A missing toenail? Well, he'd just have to go to the lunatic asylum. That's all there is to it. Seriously, his feet? Must Never! Be! Touched! I accidentally do it every morning. Evil.

Posted by: missbanshee | January 23, 2006 11:40 PM

OK lady, you are evidently contagious. The kitchen light fixture, the back porch light fixture, the dishwasher and the bottom oven have rebelled. You know what this is, don't you? It's that damned Emilio Estevez. He should never have made Maximum Overdrive. It gives our stuff Ideas.

Nice computer,... nice, sweet computer...

Posted by: MissFish | January 24, 2006 12:15 AM

My washer has suddenly decided to not get my clothes as dry as it used to with the spin cycle. I don't know if it is actually broken or just needs some TLC, but I hope it's the latter. I can afford that TLC. I can't afford a new washer.

Posted by: bonkrood | January 24, 2006 12:26 AM

My toe nail fell off once... you're right, it didn't hurt. And Dukay's right. It IS disgusting.

Posted by: for Joke! | January 24, 2006 04:59 AM

I went to my mother's house for dinner a few weeks ago and forgot that the electric baseboard heaters at her house occasionally like to reach out and bite. I lost the tip of my middle toe and a quarter of the nail.

Toes bleed alot more than I thought they would.

My husband also was throughly disgusted at my gimpy toe.

Posted by: Confessions of a Neurotic Newlywed | January 24, 2006 08:39 AM

"Naked toe!" That's halarious.

Posted by: alfredsmom | January 24, 2006 09:04 AM

If it makes you feel any better, Miss Doxie, I had a droppy day yesterday. I dropped EVERYTHING. 2 beaten eggs all over my living room chair and my new coat (don't even ask why I was carrying a bowl of beaten eggs in my living room, and it won't come out of my coat, which kind of makes my coat look like it's been starring in dirty movies...*sob*), my face cream all over the base of the toilet, and my makeup bag in a sink full of water. I was kind of afraid to leave the house.

Also? When I dropped the eggs? It was because I tripped over 3 storage boxes I just bought at Ikea that were stacked yay-about-waist-high in the middle of my floor. How does one not NOTICE a waist-high stack of boxes? That were put there by one's own damn self? Anyway, ended up with bruises all over my clumsy damn legs.

All this to say? I feel your pain. I do.

Posted by: Kathryn | January 24, 2006 09:18 AM

Miss Doxie, I am falling apart too. Am recovering from a squicky wisdom tooth infection and in just TWO days, am having three of my wisdom teeth pulled. ACK! I would take a naked toe any day. Actually, I just told my husband this morning that I would rather be in labor with no epidural again than have my wisdom teeth removed. I think when I said that he realized how insanely scared I am about this.

Doors, no, just AWFUL, AWFUL LOOMING PAIN here. But have a good week!

Posted by: Peyton | January 24, 2006 09:36 AM

The curse does tend to ebb and flow. I drop, spill and break thing (mostly expensive) in waves. I try to never wear white as soy sauce, tomato sauce or really anything ends up on it and EVERYONE knows what I had for lunch. I most recently dropped my Blackberry in the loo - not sure which was more gross - hauling it out with the use of the toilet brush or having to take it to work and explain how it dropped in and why I need a new one. And of course, while I had to explain this - I spilled on my cream pants.

It never ends....but it does amuse my friends and family greatly.

Posted by: Diane | January 24, 2006 09:58 AM

I ripped a fingernail completely off back in July and it took until now to grow all the way back. It still has this weird bump in it. Good luck with your toe!

Posted by: TB | January 24, 2006 10:27 AM

My dryer that is older than dirt and has run fine all its decrepit (avocado green) life decided to give up the ghost YESTERDAY -

Just so ya know.

Posted by: Daffy | January 24, 2006 10:34 AM

Bad thing: Cutting the HELL out of the knuckle on my middle finger with a pair of thinning shears. (don't ask, I'm still not sure how I did it)

Good thing: Spending the next few days giving people the finger and exclaiming 'It hurts!'

See, there's always a silver lining, even if it's only having a free pass to give your boss the finger several times in one week.

Posted by: Contrary | January 24, 2006 10:41 AM

Hee. Y'all are funny.

I'm so relieved that I'm not the only one, but...is it wrong that I am laughing at your pain? I am doing it in a sympathetic way, I swear!

Posted by: Miss Doxie | January 24, 2006 11:25 AM

I was going to leave you a witty, wonderful comment, but "I Am the Walrus" just came on the radio, and now all I can think is "goo goo gajoob." If you look closely, you can maybe see my brain cells light up tiny little joints.

Posted by: Blue Meany | January 24, 2006 11:29 AM

Another good way to freak out your significant other with your toes is to take him with you when you are having part of a toe-nail removed. It's like a car crash - he can't look away, but he is thoroughly traumatized for weeks afterward. It's fun to tease him about for those weeks plus many many more.

Sorry to hear that everything is falling apart!

Posted by: Jessie | January 24, 2006 11:44 AM

My toenail fell off one time while I was trying to make out with a boy. He reacted sort of like Dukay did. I hadn't even had any sort of toe injury. I called the advice nurse the next day and told her that my toenail had fallen off. She asked a series of questions: What I had been doing at the time (I claimed to have just be lying in bed), whether it hurt (no), whether there was blood or pus. When I said no to that last one, she asked "What does it look like?" When I told her it looked like a naked toe, she actually laughed. I never made the advice nurse laugh before.

And to whoever it was that asked why women are better at handling malfunctioning body parts than men are? I always suspect it has something to do with the whole bleeding for five days once a month thing.

Posted by: Elizabeth | January 24, 2006 11:44 AM

Never had a toe or any other nail fall off.. all I can think of is 'ow'. But I did almost hit another car yesterday when I pulled out to go to work from my house.. didn't see her lights and I barely missed her. Tho she said she heard a crack.. I think the crack was in her head and she calmed down once she realized there was no damage.. set my day right off to a fabulous start tho, a bit shaken I'd say..

Your car's not a Ford, by any chance, is it? Yes, those break.. a lot.. trust me.

And note to Kathryn: Oxy Clean takes out EVERYTHING! Honest! Just soak it til it's gone.. seriously.. the best thing ever invented!! :)

Posted by: Angel | January 24, 2006 12:00 PM

"He fell into a fetal position in the hallway, shuddering, and covered his eyes with his hands."

All over a toenail falling off? Oh Doxie, whatever will he do if/when you two have babies?

Posted by: ishouldbeworking | January 24, 2006 12:02 PM

LMAO. Oh my. One time, in high school? I was in PE and for some reason the teacher, Mrs. "E" (who we appropriatly dubbed "The Nazi With A Bra") was making us cute, dainty girls play football, which involved kicking. Well, being brilliant, I kicked the football off that little orange standy thingy it sits on. Using not the side of my foot, but straight on with my toes. Result: Mandy immediately reduced to hollering pile in the middle of field. Next result: big toenail bloody and halfway broken off.

One time, I came home from work, and was met at the door by my dad, holding some kind of power tool and the disembodied doorknob stating (in a very Texan accent) "Doors (long pause) have always been my greatest nemesis" and walked away.

Also a couple months ago I turned on my dishwasher, then got in the shower - multitasking!! When I got out I heard gushing water. ??? says I? Oh yeah--the dishwasher had become possessed and was spewing scalding hot hell water all over my apartment. Turned it off--water keeps gushing out. Long story short, half of my apartment flooded, I have a new crappy dishwasher that I am highly suspicious of and now it smells like permanently wet carpet in my place. Grody!

Best of luck with door, toe, dogs, and ailing appliances.

Posted by: Mandy | January 24, 2006 01:47 PM

hey miss doxie. this is probably the cutest korean guy you ever had carpool with. just wanted to drop in and say hi. heard about your site thru some friends. love the site. you got some real talent, girl. lata.

Posted by: klyde | January 24, 2006 03:36 PM

Klyde! You send me an email right away, young man.

Posted by: Miss Doxie | January 24, 2006 04:03 PM

I've never seen a bald toe before. I can't even picture it. You should post a picture of THAT.

Posted by: Monica | January 25, 2006 06:58 AM

You have by far, the most entertaining blog I have EVER read. I'm sorry to hear about your toe and I hope that Bo is over his New Year's Eve incident. I've never lost an entire toenail, or had my head inside the mouth of a black lab - but they both sound kind of crappy.

You should serioulsy try to get published for real. I'd pay to read your stuff! It's awesome! But I am enjoying reading it for free for now. :)

Posted by: Lani | January 25, 2006 12:29 PM

I think I want an email from Klyde too.

Posted by: Emily | January 25, 2006 04:17 PM

Y'all, I just want to thank all of you for your nice comments. Seriously, each one of you makes my day, and I don't know that I've ever thanked everyone properly. So thank you, and thanks for reading.

Posted by: Miss Doxie | January 26, 2006 12:16 AM

I have disaster days on a regular basis, too. My feeling is, why get one nasty bruise from a table when you can have four? Separate. Bruises. From the same corner of the same table. On the same day.
I love your writing. Also, why are you so pretty?

Posted by: Chryseis | January 26, 2006 05:48 AM

You're welcome.

Now where's my check?

Posted by: Nola | January 26, 2006 12:25 PM

Love the photos (and your blog). Thanks for sharing.

Posted by: Allyson | January 26, 2006 05:25 PM

Thank you, thank you for those in my life who did not believe that fuck was an adjective, noun, verb and dangling participle (ok, that one was just for the ha ha factor)you have helped me in correcting them....

also, my handsome long haired mini doxie would like to throw his rump in the air and take one for the team anytime

thanks for the giggles!

Posted by: copzgirl | January 28, 2006 01:41 PM

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