I have spent the last three days cleaning every inch of the house, doing my nails and planning my makeup, trying to get my ridiculous acne under control. All because my husband lost a bet on his fantasy football team and this meant we had to host dinner for our "friends". I painstakingly reviewed recipes from marthastewart.com, bought all the ingredients, remembered to put the meat in the fridge to thaw....and now they have cancelled.

By "friends" I mean a horribly obnoxious man who believes my husband is his best friend, and his wife, who I for some reason feel is my arch-rival. So of course everything had to be PERFECT. We are godparents to their little girl, which I never, ever wanted to be because a) I'm an athiest and b) I hate both of these people. They even bought a house farther away from their jobs so they could be close to us. I can't escape them.

I don't understand why I feel this urge to outdo this woman. We have nothing in common. She refuses to hang out with our historical group of friends because she says they only do "boy" things - excuse me, but what am I? Contrary to popular belief, I would welcome other women into our group (and have done), not be jealous of them. Her rejecting our interests as unworthy of her, as unworthy of women, is what's really upsetting. To be honest, I worry about what she has in common with her husband if all of our group's interests are boring to her.

I don't like my husband's friend. I find him almost unbearable to be around. And yet, one of the reasons I hate her is that she's ruining his life and he doesn't deserve it. She "screwed up" her birth control immediately after getting married even though her husband wasn't ready for kids (she's 7 years older than him) and they were nowhere near financially ready. She brought with loads of unpaid student loans, has never had a full-time job in her life and never plans on getting one. She recently quit her part time job even though they are on the verge of losing their house. She doesn't have a driver's license (we live in the rural midwest - being a 30-some year old parent without a drivers license makes it basically impossible to function). This is all with a four-year degree (that took 6 years to get) in a useless subject from a Big Ten (read: not cheap) college.

So now that she stays home all day she gets to (pretend) to be the perfect pinterest housewife - I've been to their place enough that I know she's not. Of course that means even though I work full-time and have the cows at home, I must make a from-scratch meal with farmer's market ingredients and serve it to her in my spotless house. Because I must be BETTER than her. I must be perfect at all my "manly" interests and still outdo her in all her "womanly" measures of success. It's ridiculous.

It's a total farce, of course. My anxiety was really acting up whenever I tried to do laundry (the decision to wash something and possibly shorten it's lifespan is very stressful for me, isn't it weird what anxiety picks to focus on?) so I hadn't done real laundry in almost three months. TMI alert - I haven't even worn underwear in weeks because I didn't have any clean. I have had Kraft Mac n Cheese for dinner at least 4 times in the last week. I love doing my nails but it never lasts, because farm chores aren't very nail-friendly. I was going to make chicken breasts stuffed with homemade pesto, honey-glazed turnips and acorn squash soup with kale. I was going to serve it from a spotless kitchen in an outfit designed to make me look as thin as possible. And then they canceled.

So now my house is clean and my evening is free and I have all this anxious energy for no reason at all. I skipped the GT meetup and dinner with my neighbors Sunday just so I could clean for this. When we reschedule in a few weeks, I'll have to do it all over again. It's exhausting. I don't want to make this fancy food just for Bullbelle and I - I want mac n cheese. I want to sit on the couch and play my "boy" video games.

Thanks for listening to my rant about feeling needlessly competitive, being a bad faux friend, and being really pissed off about having plans changed at the last second. Feel free to share commiserations, insights into my insanity, or your Tuesday frustrations. Here are some weird things I found when I tried to find GIFs related to this rant: