Philly Report, #1: Broke-Ass Finally Crawls Out from Boxes to Give You a Big, Fat Kiss

Baby. Dolls. Babydolls, babydolls, babydolls. There are just no excuses for the way Broke-Ass has behaved. What has it been–three solid months, and nary a freaking peep? More? Probably more. Broke-Ass is such a rotten friend and such a damnable asshole, she can’t even stand the sight of herself in the mirror. That would be the mirror in her powder room.

You heard right. Powder room.

Once upon a time, the day the terms “Broke-Ass” and “powder room” might be found in proximity to each other in a continuous sentence would have marked the End of Days. Lovelies, Broke-Ass is saying it here, and, Lord of the Universe, she is saying it now: Can I get a witness?

Broke-Ass has landed in Philly and is now residing at what can only be termed La Petite Maison De Broke-Ass. La Petite Maison is a shade shy of 1,800 square feet, making it pitiful by real estate standards outside of the Greater New York Area. But to Broke-Ass and her merry band of schmushkies, it’s fucking heaven. A room for Baby Poodle! A room for Little Mousie! A room for Two Lumps of Sugar! Cabinets in the goddamn kitchen! A laundry room, ample enough to accomodate a bench under which shoes can be deposited! A powder room. 

Frankly, it has taken Broke-Ass several months to digest the splendor of La Petite Maison, to the extent that until now, she has been unable to pen a single thought about it. Even now, all she can drum up are bullet points:

  • The first night of decampment at La Petite Maison, Broke-Ass stayed up all night unpacking the kitchen so as to be able to feed people on morning number one. Lo about four AM, she heard a weird sound. Her first thought was: “Fucking shit–rats.” It turned out to be the freezer’s automatic ice cube maker. She collapsed on the floor in a pool of tears and bourgeois relief. An automatic ice cube maker.
  • The first afternoon, Broke-Ass took Baby Poodle and Little Mousie to the King of Prussia Mall (where Broke-Ass herself lived out a healthy percentage of her adolescence, but that’s another story, which you can read about in In Spite of Everything: A Memoir). The object was to buy her sparkly-minded daughters new curtains and sheets for their new rooms, as well as a new outfit just for fun–and because for the past five years, Broke-Ass has been unable to afford to buy them any clothes at all. Arriving at the sale rack of the Children’s Place, Baby Poodle asked hesitantly, “Can we get socks, too?” Yes, of course we could get socks, too! Then, she looked down and said, “No, don’t waste your money on socks, Mommy.” Searing shame and sadness whipped up Broke-Ass spinal column. That comment, she made clear to Baby Poodle, encapsulated all the reasons for moving out of Brooklyn to a more affordable city, like Philadelphia. Broke-Ass never wants to hear her adored children ever say that she shouldn’t waste her money on socks again. Ever.
  • There is a place for everything.
  • The older two schmushkies can walk around the block themselves. They have never, ever been able to do something like this. Having said that, the minute they turn the corner, Broke-Ass follows them anyway.
  • The second day, Baby Poodle, Little Mousie, and Broke-Ass drove in their new, used car–that’s right, a new used Toyota Sienna which does not sound like someone’s piercing its pancreas every time it pants up the street–to the nearby Whole Foods, where they bought whatever the fuck they wanted. Chocolate dipped cocoanut shrapnel? Go right ahead. Frozen Amy’s pizza? Stick it in the cart. Two bottles of organic pomegranate juice? Done and done. Little Mousie said: “It’s like we’re at Disneyland!” Though we have never been to Disneyland.
  • By the second week, Big Daddy had ripped up the front lawn patch and planted a vegetable garden. We kept six chickens, and they’re in the coop out back. Next step: Big Daddy and Broke-Ass dig trough for catfish farm.
  • Old habits die hard. Really freaking hard.

Okay, Broke-Ass is tired now, even there is much, much, much more to tell. Broke-Ass just wanted to say “yo!” from Philly for now. But rest assured, she’s back. There will be more. A whole lot more. Because Broke-Ass loves you.

As always.


About brokeassgrouch

I'm goddamned broke and grouchy. I live in the middle of the damned ghetto and raise chickens for eggs; grow all my own vegetables and fruit; bake the bread and make the cleaning products. Why? Because I fucking have to, that's why! That's what you do when you're fucking poor! You have to make the shit yourself, dumb-ass! Broke-Ass Grouch is sick of all you Bennington and RISD trustafarians yapping about your "urban farming co-ops" and your "carbon conscious lifestyle" and your "green choices" in the Times Styles section and every alternapress periodical that you can pick up for free in every eye-wateringly expensive, edgy bakery or green-market. Maybe when you have a trust fund, you can make "choices" or have a "lifestyle" or "decide" how to "spend" your "money." Excuse me, but Mama is just trying to feed her kids over here, you little shits. And stop spraying your art-school graffiti on the fence of the vacant lot across the street from my house. I know who you are, and I'm telling my friend Keith (who lives in the projects) that it was you who painted that cartoon of the African mask. So what can I tell you? I don't fucking know. I know a lot about being broke, sure as Bob's your fucking uncle. I know about how useless an Ivy League degree is when you're flat-ass broke. I know how to unclog a drain with baking soda and vinegar, and I know how to make my own CHEESE, for fuck's sake. You tell me.
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7 Responses to Philly Report, #1: Broke-Ass Finally Crawls Out from Boxes to Give You a Big, Fat Kiss

  1. Stephanie Barclay says:

    Yaaaay! Glad to hear you are doing so well. Please post again soon. I love reading your blog. 🙂

  2. GiRRL_Earth says:

    Finally! I’ve been waiting with anticipation… So glad things are going so well for you! 🙂

  3. Cellista says:

    Philly is Fab!

  4. kathelana says:

    I have been faithfully checking your blog for an update – glad and relieved to see this post!
    Keep writing.

  5. Liz Beckman says:

    ah, tears of joy for you and your little ones! and big daddy! what relief. please post again soon…we love us some broke-ass.

  6. SO GLAD YOU ARE BACK!! I started to worry … that your humor and chickens and beauty and food would be gone from my life!

  7. simon says:

    YAY! Congrats on landing on your feet with the added skills of resiliency and self-sufficiency as priceless bonus. Sounds like all great humanities stories, someone moves half-around the world for change, comes back to the same place, finding they’re the ones who changed and it was all good; different perspectives, different skills, making the old place completely new and full.
    Great to read about the veggie garden and the catfish farm.
    Is it raised beds? Thinking on more than veggies? starches? Couple of fruit trees/shrubs maybe?

    Again, C O N G R A T S!!! You’re way ahead of the curve on the perspectives many will learn the hard way and the skills more and more will be aching for. That or become zombies. Look at Greece, look at Spain, so it will spread from the periphery to the core. The longer and harder those in power try to maintain the status quo and go back to Business-As-Usual of permanent exponential growth, the more pain it’ll cause and the more we’ll all lose.

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