“The literary equivalent of a summer night, a good friend and a gin-and-tonic: Shannon is a deft writer; a natural storyteller with a wicked turn of phrase and frighteningly specific memory...”

Download Shannon's story, "Beautiful Boy, Brandon Lee," in its full length, excerpted from her book, Smash, Crash & Burn.

4 Sure Signs You’re in Peri menopause

Here is how I know I’m in peri menopause:

1. I’m smoking hot. Not in the good way. I’ll be minding my own business hanging a corpse on a fish hook in a meat freezer in Sicily when suddenly I’m hot and sweating. I’m like a dog who can’t pant. They’re not full blown hot flashes, but they’re like the glass with the trembling water in Jurassic Park heralding the imminent arrival of the man-eating T-Rex!

2. Speaking of man-eating. I worry my va-jay-jay’s expanding. Henry denies it, but perhaps he’s expanding too? Possibly an encroaching prostate? Only the proctologist Dr. Becker and his gloved index finger know for sure. I just think my vagina, now in its elderly cycle, has become a bit of a hazard, much like a pothole without a lid. Yes I’m given to self-deprecation, but consider this …

Six Latino workmen who wait outside Dunlap’s paint for someone to hire them each day have gone missing.  One of them, Jean Baptiste (there was a Frenchman in Oaxaca circa 1942) was especially dear to me.  Every day when I went in to order a cafe latte at the adjacent Food Restaurant on Prosser and Pico he’d appear and exclaim, “Aqui viene la sirena, mi alma, mi corazon!

Last Monday he and five other workers rushed to my minivan in search of work, hoping to care for their families just one more day. Their legs got entangled, they tripped en masse and were never seen again. I was wearing a skirt that day that just happened to twirl up. I believe they fell into my vagina. I can’t be sure as I didn’t feel a thing. But since then my pores sweat Chipotal jalapenos and Bolivian mezcal. When I change into pajamas at night I can hear faint Mariachi ululations of Cielito Lindo with a 5-string Vihuela accompaniment echoing down my fallopian tubes.

Unfortunately I’m the reincarnation of Shirley MacLaine (that’s not really Shirley you see today, but a Qing Dynasty Chinese concubine imposter, named Mao Ling Sa), which means the ghosts of Shirley’s lovers, Yves Montand and Robert Mitchum, are somewhere in utero smoking Camels, knocking back G&Ts between fist fights over Simone Signoret.

3. My breasts are tender. They’d prefer I wear bras made of cirrus clouds, no shirt whatsoever, never mind a jacket or sweater. Much like John Travolta on the set of Face-Off (just ask Henry) they have forbidden anyone to look them directly in the eyes. They’ve become moody, recalcitrant, secretive (I had to read their journal to get their cup size).

4. Mild dementia … What? … You’re the one reading, how should I know what this post is about. Wait … I think I hear something … is that …?

Ay, ay, ay, ay,
Canta y no llores,
Porque cantando se alegran,
Cielito lindo, los corazones…”


Tags assigned to this article:
peri-menopause

28 comments

Write a comment
  1. Desiree Eaglin
    Desiree Eaglin 4 June, 2012, 09:36

    Buahahahaha! You sure are one funny bunny.

    Reply this comment
  2. Megan
    Megan 4 June, 2012, 09:40

    I haven’t lost anyone in my vagina yet, but my breasts used to get so sore that I was reluctant to walk. Ouch.

    And don’t get me started on hot flashes. If it weren’t for hormones I’d have gone on a killing spree.

    Reply this comment
  3. Sharlene
    Sharlene 4 June, 2012, 10:31

    You and your cavernous vagina…. Maybe that’s where my keys are….

    Reply this comment
  4. V
    V 4 June, 2012, 11:01

    ok this made me laugh out loud… and that photo you put there? HILARIOUS!

    http://2bestfriendschubbyroadtoskinny.blogspot.com/

    Reply this comment
  5. Jennifer
    Jennifer 4 June, 2012, 13:59

    Yeah this is really funny, but the sense of impending doom you just gave me is seriously frightening too! I don’t want to lose any Latino workmen in my lady parts!

    Reply this comment
    • Shannon
      Shannon Author 4 June, 2012, 16:05

      The good news is they’re smaller than the Ukraines. I once lost a phallanx of the Ukraine mob in there. It’s been quiet. Too quiet.

      Reply this comment
  6. Jenn Willey
    Jenn Willey 4 June, 2012, 14:14

    Oh my goodness, I think I just threw up coffee out of my nose. You are hilarious!

    Reply this comment
  7. Caryn B
    Caryn B 4 June, 2012, 14:47

    We women have to endure it all! Pregnancy…menopause…SIGH!

    Reply this comment
  8. Julie Ordonez
    Julie Ordonez 4 June, 2012, 15:39

    So THIS is what I look forward to…. sheesh! Too funny 🙂

    Reply this comment
  9. Shelby Barone
    Shelby Barone 4 June, 2012, 20:02

    OMG!! That picture was priceless!!

    Reply this comment
  10. Ciaran
    Ciaran 4 June, 2012, 20:35

    I can see it now. It will be just like the Chilean mine rescue. But instead of the mine, they will be raising those men up out of your vagina. A rebirth cult will spring up in your vagina’s honor. They will tell tales of how they stayed fit and kept their spirits high while trapped down there.

    Reply this comment
  11. Wendy
    Wendy 4 June, 2012, 21:45

    That picture is hilarious!!

    Reply this comment
  12. Elle @ SeeMomWorkBlog
    Elle @ SeeMomWorkBlog 4 June, 2012, 22:57

    Laughing out loud with this but shivering in fear at the same time! Perimenopause and angry peppery vaginas as open manholes?! I’m going to have nightmares tonight! The moral of the story: enjoy our youthful vaginas while we still have them.

    Reply this comment
  13. Donna
    Donna 6 June, 2012, 07:50

    LOVE THAT PEPPER!!

    Reply this comment
  14. Cupcake Murphy
    Cupcake Murphy 11 June, 2012, 11:13

    My hot flashes make me feel like the planet mercury is up my butt and fire breathing dragons are breathing into my ears. It’s so fun.

    Reply this comment
  15. Kim Tracy Prince
    Kim Tracy Prince 19 June, 2012, 17:54

    Score another one for you planting yet another unwelcome image in my brain! Now every time I cut a red pepper I will imagine Mexican workers falling into your vagina.

    Dammit.

    Reply this comment
  16. Anne (@notasupermom)
    Anne (@notasupermom) 15 May, 2013, 06:19

    The screaming pepper really sets this off. Too funny!

    Reply this comment
  17. Cathy
    Cathy 15 May, 2013, 13:20

    I am so glad I’m going through menopause, or insanity or whatever it is I’m going through at the same time as you. You make it hysterically funny!

    I thought I had the NY Philharmonic Orchestra stored in my Big V,because I’m hearing things when there are no lights on. Hmm..

    Reply this comment
  18. Alison
    Alison 16 May, 2013, 10:46

    You had me at the pepper. ROTF!!!!

    Reply this comment

Write a Comment

Your e-mail address will not be published.
Required fields are marked*