Domestic Violence Sends Guy Into Outer-Space
MARS (AP) Mr. Elton John of Hollywood was allegedly forced to become an astronaut when his spouse packed his bags pre-flight zero hour nine AM. He was quoted as saying, “I miss the earth so much, I miss my wife. It’s lonely out in space on such a timeless flight.” But male friends who knew him well claim he’ll soon be as high as a kite. Asked why his children didn’t accompany him on the trip, John responded, “Mars ain’t the kind of place to raise your kids. In fact it’s cold as hell.” But thanks to modern technology, rather than a typical drawn-out angry divorce, John will remain a Rocket Man burning out his fuse up here alone. As for any future return flight home, John had this to say, “And I think it’s gonna be a long long time till touch down brings me round again to find I’m not the man they think I am at home. Oh no no no I’m a Rocket Man.” When pressed for an exact date of arrival, his voice echoed and trailed off in a plaintive tone: “And I think it’s gonna be a long long time…And I think it’s gonna be a long long time…”
Black Friday Sale Dupes Woman Into Odd Purchase
(Stairway To Heaven)
LOS ANGELES (AP) An unidentified female victim who was sure “all that glitters is gold” recently bought a Stairway to Heaven. When she gets there she knows if the stores are all closed, with a word she can get what she came for. One witness, a Nordstrom salesperson observed, “There’s a sign on the wall but she wants to be sure ’cause you know sometimes words have two meanings.” Friends expressed concern, citing they never knew the injured party to exhibit shopaholic tendencies. “Maybe she was having an affair with the Rocket Man and this was her only access to reach him,” one neighbor speculated. The woman’s own husband contacted local authorities in the middle of the night to add, “There’s a feeling I get–when I look to the west, Ooooh, and it makes me wonder.” When asked to be more specific, he reiterated, “Oooooh, it really makes me wonder!” Upon further interrogation, including whether his wife ever scoured estate sales or shopped online for other modes of transportation to heaven, the haggard mate of the victim could only recall one instance when his beloved was obsessed with obtaining a lead zeppelin. “Ooooh, and it makes me wonder,” he repeated once again, dazed and confused. “One things for certain … her buying a stairway to heaven means our credit cards will be maxed out for decades.”
Pair in Forced Marriage Make The Best of Things
(I Got You, Babe!)
PALM SPRINGS (AP) A young naive couple found out the hard way that being in love isn’t everything. “They say our love won’t pay the rent,” stated Mr. Bono. “Before it’s earned, our money’s all been spent,” lamented his exotic looking wife who volunteered only her first name, Cher. The unknown perpetrator of this forced union is wanted in 13 other states for additional human trafficking crimes, but managed to give the couple the following advice before he absconded, “Don’t let them say your hair’s too long, cause I don’t care with you I can’t go wrong.” During times of extreme grief or fear, rather then resenting each other for their lost dating years, the committed duo remind one another, “And when I’m sad, you’re a clown. And if I get scared, you’re always around.” But the main way they’ve sustained their romance has been singing ad nauseam to each other, “I got you, Babe.” Blech.
Labor Dispute Results in Crowded Nightclub Joy
(The Piano Man)
NEW YORK (AP) At 9:00 on a Saturday as the regular crowd shuffled in, many patrons allegedly inundated a helpless pianist with random musical requests. Some were sad, some were sweet, and some were incomplete as people struggled with their memories, substituting “La la la, di da da La la, di da da da dum” for actual lyrics. Even the bartender, who was identified only as John and who gave free drinks, was quick with a joke, or to light up a smoke, seemed to hold the compassionate piano player accountable for his own unhappiness and the fact that he couldn’t break free from the nightclub to become a movie star. “Bill, I believe this is killing me,” he was quoted as saying. Other innocent bystanders included a real estate novelist, a waitress practicing politics, and some businessmen slowly getting stoned. One witness claimed the piano sounded like a carnival and the microphone smelled like a beer, but this could not be substantiated. In fact many customers ordered the drink special of the night, called “Loneliness” and this seemed to evoke a common sentiment that if the pianist would only sing them the right kind of song with the melody they were in the mood for, everyone would be feeling alright. The manager finally appeared and gave a smile, aware that it was his establishment that helped everyone forget about life for a while. It was unknown whether the Piano Man later sought therapy for the extreme pressure he felt during this incident.
Depression and Suicide Over Specks of Dirt
(Dust In The Wind)
I have officially been blogging for 3.5 years now and the people who are my biggest fans (and my best supporters!) are those I haven’t even met (yet!) and who’ve never watched me grow up and feel no particular attachment to my success. That’s right — all my cyber friends really go out of their way to cheer me on. But what about my adoring family and all my real world “in the flesh” friends, you ask? They absolutely cannot be bothered to give my blog the time of day. In fact, I just eavesdropped on this conversation the other day from two people who love me very much.
My Grandmother: So what does our girl do all day long again? She’s a Bragger? A Blotter? A Blooper? A Blabber?
My Mother: She’s a Blogger!
My Grandmother: And for this we sent her to college? What does she put on her blog anyhow?
My Mother: They’re called pillars or poles. Something like that.
Me: (bursts into room) Posts, Ma. I put posts on my blog.
That’s actually not so bad. We don’t really expect people who aren’t in this field to understand what it is we do. That’s fairly innocent. But did you know that not only are the people you’re closest to in real life not supportive, they’re downright hoping your blog gets shut down?
Why Real People Want You To Quit Blogging!
- SLOTHFUL: If you don’t write stuff, they won’t have to pretend to read stuff! Your family and friends are incredibly lazy. Just let that sink in for a moment. At family reunions, I hand my brother printed out pages of my blog because I know he won’t ever bother to click on the links I text him. And this way I can oversee which parts he likes by monitoring his facial expressions as I peer over his shoulder while he reads. “What?? That line about how controlling our mother is doesn’t even get a chuckle?” I chastise. “I think it warrants a guffaw at the very least.” The Laugh Police is out in full force.
- FEARFUL: They don’t want to be IN your blog. That’s right. We’re in need of material and they’re the ones we have daily contact with. My family and friends preface everything they tell me now with, “And this stays between us! So don’t even think about sneaking it on your blog even if you change my name, my gender, or my profession.” My 15.5 year-old daughter refuses to learn to drive unless I give up blogging. I am bribing her to get behind the wheel, my pen poised.
- NO CONTROL: You’ve entered the blogosphere and are socializing with a whole new set of people named, “Food For Thought” and “Diary of a Scatterbrain” and frankly the people in your normal daily life can’t come along to these Posting Parties. They will wonder if someone who goes by “Biff Sock Pow!” is a harmless comic book character or looking to do you real harm.
- SOUR GRAPES: They’re jealous because they secretly wanted to start their own blog but you already beat them to it — so now it looks like they’re just big fat copycats without an original idea in their head. Work with me on this one, will ya? It could be possible.
- MAGAZINES: They’re old school and believe the only real way to ingest information, entertainment, and knowledge is to turn tangible pages in their hot little hands. Every time I get published, it never fails that my mother asks, “Which magazine? Cosmo? Glamour, People?” And I always say, “It’s going up on an online blog, Ma. But it gets a million hits a year!” Only to hear her retort, “I hope they have good insurance. Those hit and run drivers, I’ll tell you. They cause lots of damage.”
- MEMORY ISSUES: There are a percentage of your friends who can’t even remember your name, let alone what you wrote on today’s post. They’re wanting to avoid the grilling and interrogation that inevitably happens if they become a regular reader. When I was married, I regularly quizzed my husband on what he thought of my topics, the title, the hook, the ending, and if he found anything that needed fixing like typos or punctuation. I desperately wanted his input but he couldn’t recollect a thing about my blog. It got so bad that he finally told me he was resigning as my editor because he had “Correctile dysfunction.”
- JUST ANOTHER NUMBER: Your family and friends don’t want to turn into a run of the mill statistic. They know you watch your Google analytics like a hawk and you can see when or IF they’ve tuned in to your blog. And if they did read it, but failed to leave a “like” or a “comment” — well that’s a crime punishable to the fullest extent of the relationship. That’s right! If they’re going to give you the silent treatment on your blog, you’re not going to speak to them in real life.
- FOLLOW THE LEADER: Many people bristle at the thought that they’re gonna become one of your “followers.” “Really??” My cousin recently told me. “I watched you grow up, a goofy little girl who stuttered and wore “waiting for a flood” pants with your Farrah Fawcett hairdo which by the way you somehow still wear today? Farrah Fawcett went down the drain in the 80’s, ya know. I should follow you? I’d rather play Simon Says!”
And there you have it. Nine creative reasons why the people in your life want you to delete your blog. And a few more interesting explanations (justifications) would be left in the comment section below, by all my well-meaning friends and relatives — but NONE of them will ever read my blog!
Important Note: if you have real life relationships who genuinely WANT to be the wind beneath your wings with regards to your blogging craft, but they’re not sure how — immediately direct them right HERE because this is brilliant advice authored by a Christine Carter, (a highly supportive cyber friend of mine!) that will guide them on exactly how they can help you and perhaps more importantly, WHY they should help you.
- Decide that you need a new hobby, but because you’re a raging alcoholic and also because you have terrible knee injuries, home beer-brewing or bodybuilding would be risky and painful. By default, blogging seems a sobering and safe pastime.
- Announce to everyone and their uncle that your exciting mystery blog (more colorful and explosive than fireworks!) will burst into the World Wide Web on July 4th, 2017.
- Starting July 1st, send countdown emails to everyone you know. “4 More Days Until Mystery Blog!” then “3 More Days Until Mystery Blog!” etc. until finally it’s just “1 More Day Until Mystery Blog!”
- Become nervous with all the pressure and expectations you’ve built up and on the day of your blog’s birth, scramble for a good domain name and any interesting content.
- Call your new baby simply, “My Mystery Blog!” and make your first post a list of good places to view fireworks across the country. There! That oughta hold ’em until July 5th.
- Realize you need someone to host your blog, but nobody has the good manners to offer. Don’t be a rude guest and blatantly ask someone to host it for you. Briefly consider hiring Hostess, but then you’d have to write about Twinkies and Cupcakes. Conclude you’ve read enough Martha Stewart magazines to be able to Self-Host.
- Install WordPress even though you’ve never even installed carpet, tile, or a kitchen sink before. But don’t worry about installing any of those “plugins” — after all, it’s not like you need an outlet for a toaster. And certainly skip over anything that has the word “Yoast” in it. If they can’t be bothered to correct their typo in the word “Toast,” why should you be bothered to prepare bread with jam? Just have a bagel and cream-cheese instead.
- Choose whatever theme you prefer. Just avoid flying toasters as that’s passé.
- Contemplate whether you want to allow comments or not. Go ahead and permit comments, but make sure the people who leave them must first prove they are human by solving for X if Y = Yoast. To the 10th power.
- Find your blogging niche, which is just another way of saying “write what you’re passion about.” It can be anything except for Passion itself. Being passionate about passion is like being curious about curiosity. You’re not Alice in Wonderland.
- Define your ideal reader and then promptly forget about your blogging niche. From now on, you’ll want to solely cater your writing specifically for your new Followers. Example: Your very first subscriber goes by the name of, “Eat to the Beat!” They’re probably into food, so blog about recipes. However they might also be into music so write about Billboard’s Top 40. Your next follower’s name is “MamaBelly” so be sure and make your post about getting pregnant. However “MamaBelly” could mean they want to lose weight, so cover your bases and review the 5 Best Low Carb Diets. Your third and fourth subscriber’s names are “Raindrops on Roses” and “Where the Sun Don’t Shine” so play it safe and just blog about the weather. Keep incorporating a wide variety of topics in each post until every single reader feels you’re speaking directly to them. Never write just for yourself — you’re the last person who will be reading your blog.
- When people begin to remark it’s impossible to predict your subject matter, remind them that’s why you are “A Mystery Blog.” Tag your stuff with words like, “Guess What Now?” and “Mishmash” and “Hodgepodge.”
- Figure out the best time of day to post a new blog, taking into consideration all the different time zones of your 8 followers. Evening hours work best if you want your blog to be considered a cure for insomnia.
- Decide you’ve lived your life a bit too safely, never running a red light or telling a single white lie. Google lots of awesome photo images for your blog posts and then cut n’ paste without paying for them or giving proper attribution. Stay up late at night flirting with disaster and tempting fate each time your blog is viewed.
- Hire a lawyer to plea bargain on your behalf for Copyright Infringement.
- Admit that this whole thing is far more work than you thought and invite a friend to co-author your blog with you. But always place your initials in parenthesis after an especially witty sentence so that readers will continue to know it’s really still YOU they’re laughing at. (LMM)
- Never visit other blogs. Once you begin reading their stuff, you will be distracted from writing your own. Or worse, accused of trespassing. It’s “a blog eat blog world out there” so mind your own business! If you do peruse other blogs, take care to leave zero evidence behind. Even a short “this was great!” comment can enable the blog owner to retrace the breadcrumbs back to your blog and then the jig is up. Didn’t your mother ever read Hansel and Gretel to you?
- Invite businesses onto your site so you can make money by keeping a percentage of what they sell. Hookers will fight over who gets to stand in front of your blog advertising “their wares.” But that happens on popular street corners as well. A good pimp will settle disputes.
- Don’t write articles with titles on, “How NOT to Do Something.” This will be confusing, deceiving, and contradictory. Should people do as you say but NOT as you do? No! Should they NOT do as you say and NOT do as you do? Yes!
- And lastly, check your statistics obsessively because they will tell the entire story of your success. If you see a lot of search terms having to do with raging alcoholics and terrible knee injuries, congratulate yourself on choosing the best hobby for you . . . BLOGGING!
Yup, Summer is Upon Us! Here’s how NOT to Plan a BBQ Get-Together!
- Feel guilty remembering last July when you were grilling steaks in your backyard, the newly moved-in next-door neighbor popped his fat head over the fence and yelled, “Mmm, something sure smells good!”
- Resolve to invite anyone who lives within “Wafting Aroma” distance.
- Rethink leaving notification flyers under everyone’s welcome mat on their front doorstep because that’s what pushy realtors and obnoxious cable companies do. Instead hang “Everyone is Welcome to Our Backyard Cookout” posters on group mailboxes.
- Hide your shock when the postman personally delivers bills/letters to your porch and then asks if it’s okay to bring his cousins and their kids?
- Overhear through your open window two mothers chatting on the sidewalk below, “Do you know her? I don’t either. How lame. Maybe she has no other friends.”
- Realize you wrote “Potluck” on the invites to promote camaraderie and teamwork, but now everyone will probably just think you’re cheap. Also since you didn’t do that organized Martha Stewart trick where you divide the alphabet into A-L = side dish/drinks and M-Z = main course/appetizer, there will now be 17 containers of Costco white chocolate macadamia nut cookies on your dessert table.
- Knock on individual doors because you forgot to put RSVP info in your flyer. Act surprised when the first neighbors (The Coopers?) thank you for inviting them, but then they remark they’ll only come if they’ll know someone else there. Reassure them that the O’Donnell family will definitely be attending, because you know they like them. Break a sweat running to the O’Donnell house and casually mention the Cooper family will be at your BBQ and you hope they’ll come too?
- Pray that the Coopers and the O’Donnells never EVER bring this topic up in conversation with one another.
- Go in your backyard and fret that your plants are dying, your lawn furniture is tattered, and everyone else’s property is surely a better place to hold a BBQ than yours. And what’s there to do back here after scarfing down burgers? Absolutely nothing.
- Re-landscape, buy patio seating, and put in an underground swimming pool with a built-in waterslide.
- Make the case to your husband that you need to repaint your home’s interior as neighbors need to walk thru your entire house to get to the backyard because if they go via the side gate, it stinks due to trashcans. Keep talking about Benjamin Moore “Swiss Coffee Shoreline” color palette when he interrupts and says he’ll simply relocate the garbage barrels inside your garage.
- Phone a marriage counselor when the divorce papers are delivered.
- Field phone calls from your siblings and parents who complain they were looking forward to a quiet family reunion BBQ but now you had to go and invite a bunch of strangers so now they’re not coming.
- Traipse around the entire neighborhood canceling your event when the local weatherman claims an unseasonable rainstorm is hitting San Diego this weekend.
- Ask what looks like your mailman’s grandma to please pass the butter for the corn-on-the-cob and then tell the mailman’s cousin’s children that you’d appreciate if they’d use their indoor voices while sitting at your formal dining room table.
Do’s And Don’ts To Get Along Swimmingly At a Community Pool!
This season you may be visiting a group swimming pool, so here’s my official list of Do’s and Don’ts, which you are encouraged to take with a grain of salt. (Or if your pool isn’t a saltwater based system– a capful of chlorine.)
- DO arrive at the community pool with proper identification and whatever keycard you need to get through the gate. DON’T shout out to nearby sunbathers on lounge chairs from behind the bars, “Listen! I really do live here. I can prove it. Maybe you know my neighbors, The Coopers or The Odonnells? You can call them to verify my residency. Ready? 760 – 944 …” And DON’T rattle off a list of neighborhood trivia (like previous fires, burglaries, times car alarms go off in the morning, or who the mailman is sleeping with) as further evidence. If you’re desperate (and you really do reside in the development) DO make your best puppy dog expression at the individuals sitting under the umbrellas nearest the fence and offer to share your oatmeal cookies or fudge brownies with them if they let you in.
- DON’T bring oatmeal cookies or fudge brownies to a pool! It will exacerbate the current ant problem. But DO bring “Ants on a Log” (the old peanut-butter on celery sticks with raisins to get kids to eat healthy) because the ants will view this snack as a prophetic bad omen and march off the premises.
- If it’s forbidden to play “Marco Polo” (and it should be!) DON’T tell your children it’s okay to start shouting “Parco Molo!” at the top of their lungs instead. Just DON’T. Also while swimming, DO offer friendly salutations to people you recognize strolling by, but if they casually inquire, “So how’s the water today?” DON’T automatically answer with that tired cliché, “Like a bathtub!” There are many other ways to describe a warm pool so DO be creative. DO say, “Like a beach in Hawaii” or “like toasty hot cocoa.” DON’T say, “Like about 85 kids recently peed in it.”
- Remember license plate holders that proudly declared, “My other car is a Porsche?” DO post a sign on your chest claiming, “My other bathing suit is a string bikini!” DON’T recline on your back overtly reading scandalous books with inappropriate covers for others to gawk at. But DO make phony dustjackets that say, “Dog-Paddling for Dummies” or “10 Wholesome Short Stories to Read at Public Swimming Pools” to slip over your provocative novels, because you shouldn’t have to miss all those juicy chapters!
- DO use the outdoor shower that’s usually provided before you jump in the pool because that’s its primary purpose, to clean off your yuckiness. DON’T assume the shower was built for your personal grooming habits after your swim, which means DON’T bring a deep-conditioner, a razor, a loofah brush, an acne facial mask, a fogless mirror, and a luxurious bathmat. DO bring a rubber-ducky cuz that’s just plain cute.
- And finally, DO let that family (with the really sad eyes and a bag full of oatmeal cookies and fudge brownies) with no key or ID into the community pool, because it’s probably my six kids and me. And I swear (on my other bikini) that we really do live here!
Welcome to today’s much anticipated (at least by the interviewer herself) Q & A session with the renown “Little Miss Menopause.” The questions will be asked by Stephanie D. Lewis, (SDL) essentially the exact same person as Little Miss Menopause (LMM) although if you believe in different personas, then this is a totally legit interview! So here we go . . .
SDL: Welcome Little Miss Menopause! It’s so nice to have you here. And you needn’t waste readers’ time by responding, “thank you for having me!” so let’s just get into our first question, shall we? How did you come to call yourself Little Miss Menopause?”
LMM: Well before I was a blogger, I wrote for an organization called, “Wine, Women & Hormones” and they paid me to make hot flashes, muffintops, and memory loss funny. I thought mid-life symptoms were the extent of my humor so I started this blog titled, “Once Upon Your Prime” and then I further boxed myself in by naming myself after the female change of life.
SDL: Way to go. I suppose it’s lucky you weren’t writing for a company about puberty or you might have been called, “Little Miss Menstruation!”
LMM: Ha. I’ll be the funny one. Okay, we’ll split the one-liners equally. Next question?
SDL: How long have you been writing for?
LMM: I had a feeling you’d ask me that. I kept a diary from about 7th grade on. It was Snoopy brand (fittingly!) and had a lock with this silver minuscule key, but I always assumed that because I peeked inside everyone else’s diary, mine was also being heavily perused — so I’d purposely weave in these really entertaining fictional anecdotes. It turns out my family respected my rights and nobody ever violated my privacy.
SDL And so you you started intentionally leaving it unlocked, right? To tempt people. When that didn’t work, you actually left a post-it note with, “Please read!” on top, right? But still nobody picked it up.
LMM: Yes, yes! How did you know all that?
SDL: Because you’re boring, predictable, and also I was kinda there. So let’s see, next question . . . how did you manage to break into writing for The Huffington Post?
LMM: That wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t gone to a BLogHer writer’s conference in 2014 where Ms. Huffington was the keynote speaker.
SDL: Cornered her with the ole boring diary, did you?
LMM: No, I pretended I was already a Huff Post columnist but that I’d recently been unfairly let go. I pleaded for another chance and promised I’d be funnier. So I got myself rehired when I was never really hired in the first place!
SDL: And if you were never hired, you could never be fired either. You steal a lot of stuff from Seinfeld’s character Kramer, doncha?
LMM: Speak for yourself. So what made you decide to interview me? Or shall we just drop this whole reporter pretense and ask, what made you decide to interview yourself, Stephanie?
SDL: The idea came to me last week that everyone deserves the chance (even if they’re not famous) to have stimulating questions thrown at them. I waited around to see if anyone would ask me anything, but only my kids approached me with a certain amount of curiosity. They asked me what was for dinner? I finally decided there was nothing wrong with doing this myself. It’s part of my personal Self-Care which I just wrote about in the entry below this one. (Small plug!) Now mind you, I didn’t have to disclose that this was a self-interview because nobody would have figured it out, but I pride myself on being brutally honest.
LMM: Yes, I’m sure Arianna Huffington would concur. So might this interview thing also be in honor of finally hitting a certain number of followers that has been your long time goal? And if so, what’s that number?
SDL: I’m not going to disclose how many followers I have, are you crazy? Some people would think it’s too high or too low. Just like my weight, I wouldn’t tell you that either.
LMM: I already know what you weigh, fool. Remember? I am you. You are me. Ohh yeah, that’s right . . . we use one of those scales that doesn’t show our weight, it only specifies if we’ve gained or lost. Which is like a doctor not telling you what your diagnosis is, only if you’re getting better or worse. Don’t you think? Of what use is that?
SDL: I’m kinda getting sick of you. And somehow you’ve turned this whole thing around so now you’re the one interviewing me. Let’s just cut to the chase and issue our challenge already.
LMM: Alrighty. If you’re reading this and you’re feeling brave (and quirky!) try interviewing yourself on your own blog. C’mon! What have you got to lose? It’s fun and everyone should do it. Just like masturbation.
SDL: OMG. I am so relieved that my persona said that last line, and not me! How totally embarrassing. Anyhow, if you take me (us!) up on this self-interview challenge, feel free to come back and post a link in the comments section. Thank you! And thank you for your time Little Miss Menopause.
LMM: No, I’m thanking YOU!
SDL: Nope, thank YOU! Now sign off.
LMM: No, you sign off. I want the last word.
SDL: Unbelievable. Seriously?? Goodbye.
LMM: Aha … Gotcha!
SDL: Could you be a more Immature persona??
The 70’s and 80’s commercial slogan, “Calgon take me away!” has nothing on today’s overused buzzword we know simply as, “Self-Care.” In fact my six children do a fake vomiting impression whenever they hear those two little words, probably because they got so sick of its predecessor — that classic analogy meant to justify my taking a break that went like this, “Mommy has to put her own oxygen mask on first before she can help you put on yours.” So now they officially refuse to travel on an airplane with me. (By the way, these same kids also signed a petition to prevent my talking about myself in the 3rd person, but that’s another blog entirely!)
So how did the pendulum swing so far in the other direction for females? You may recall not too long ago, most mothers put everyone else first, to the point of truly neglecting themselves, making motherhood synonymous with martyrdom. Gradually women learned it was okay to sometimes say, “No!” and that was kind of a nice, happy medium. Because sometimes we still said, “Yes!”
But now it’s gotten to the point where nobody shows up to help in an emergency because we can’t cope with any crisis until we’ve practiced good self-care. Imagine a horrible earthquake occurring, but before the American Red Cross sends assistance, they must slather Neutrogena’s soothing beauty balm onto their skin!
The next time you hang up the phone or part ways with someone while casually saying, “Take care of yourself now!” be aware that you’ve just granted someone permission to go get a mani/pedi, watch a soap-opera, and eat chocolate bonbons. That’s because “Self-Care” is loosely defined to encompass anything from aromatherapy (using essential oils!) to literally running away from life.
Join me now as we listen in on a “Self-Care, Self-Help, Do-It-Yourself Support Group” in progress: (And if you think that has too many “Self” words in it, congratulations you catch on fast!)
Leader: Take out your Self-Care journals and let’s make a list of what we need to have in our Self-Care kits. And then let’s take a Selfie holding them. Selma, please read your list?
Selma: Bath Salts, Bath Bombs, Bath Oils, Bath Bubbles, Bath Gels, Bath Sponges, Bath Scrubs, Bath Soaps…oh and you should put an actual Bathtub in your kit if it can fit.
Leader: Definitely! Sonia, your list please?
Sonia: I went the Mindful route. Is that okay?
Leader: Oh goody! Mindfulness and Self-Care go together like bagel and cream cheese, which you should also have in your kit by the way. Please continue . . .
Sonia: Mindful Yoga mat, Mindful Meditation book, Mindful Crystal, Mindful Meditation CD, Mindful Sunscreen, Mindful Money, Mindful Bra, Mindful Pillow, Mindful Birth Control, Mindful Michael Kors Purse, Mindful Nutella. . .
Leader: Terrific. You’ve discovered the main secret to Self-Care — just put the word “Mindful” in front of anything you desire and it’s automatically gonna be healthy and get our approval.
Sonia: Except “Mindful Children.” Somehow it doesn’t work with kids.
Leader: Whatever. Now let’s all recite the Self-Care first commandment together. Ready? “Caring for myself is not self-indulgent, it IS self-preservation.”
Suzanne: What about, “I think, therefore I am?”
Leader: Definitely not. You’re in the wrong place. The Self-Aware Support Group meets in the room down the hall.
Stacey: How about, “You can’t love someone else until you can love yourself?”
Leader: Sorry, you also don’t belong here. You’ll find the Self-Esteem Support Group meets in this same room but on Thursdays.
Stephanie: I have a question. I keep a diary, light lots of candles, get hand massages, eat avocado toast, go cloud-watching (I once saw one shaped like Gwyneth Paltrow!) unplug my cellphone daily, and breathe deeply while smelling roses, but still I’m completely miserable. Are some people just not good at this Self-Care stuff?
Leader: Security! Come quick! Code 5, I repeat Code 5! A Self-Sabotager has snuck into Self-Care! Calgon, take her away!
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying Self-Care is completely responsible for society’s narcissistic behavior or that we’re all returning to the “Me” generation, but perhaps “Self-Care” could include things like volunteering at a retirement center, adopting a homeless pet, buying the guy behind you a Starbucks, and leaving a comment on my blog. 😉 Now wouldn’t those things also make YOU feel good??
And if you’re a guy, what does “Self-Care” even mean for you? Have you been sucked onto its bandwagon too, or is this just a girl thing?
What would happy couples do without bestselling author, Gary Chapman? That’s who wrote the The Five Love Languages (8 years on the NY Times Non-Fiction List!) where he asserts that each person has one primary way of perceiving love. Here are your only choices according to Mr. Chapman:
- Gift Giving
- Quality Time
- Words of Affirmation
- Acts of Service
- Physical Touch
But what would you do without Little Miss Menopause to break it down and give the list a quickie tweak to simplify things for you?
- Gif Giving — Try sending some of THESE)
- Quality Thyme — You should probably spring for the very best parsley, rosemary, and sage that you can find too. Try your local farmer’s market! Definitely the way to spice things up, but do pass on the garlic and onions.
- Birds of Affirmation — I would suggest a parrot, an African Grey, or a Myna bird. In a pinch you can try training male parakeets to talk. Just teach them to greet your lover warmly with the following phrases to give your mate the affirmation he/she is seeking: “Polly doesn’t wanna cracker, Polly wants YOU!” or “Pretty Birdy” (works best if your significant other is named Betty or Billy and is slightly hard of hearing) and also, “I can talk, but can you fly?” (which isn’t necessarily affirming, but will give your sweetheart something to think about while they wait for you to finally move on to the 4th love language.)
- Acts of Cervix — This is an advanced love language and should be saved for the final stages of pregnancy. But if you’ve reached that point then by all means, go ahead and communicate in this most articulate fashion. Instantly dilating your cervix to 10 centimeters says, “I think you’re gonna be a dynamite father and I’m ready for us to be a team with this baby!” Failure to dilate and needing an emergency c-section might send the message that, “Uh, I’ve changed my mind about this whole parenting thing with you. Can we walk back up the aisle and reverse the marriage as well??”
- Psychic Touché — This might be the most important love language of all. You need to somehow communicate the meaning of “Touché” (“Wow, you got me! That’s another point for you! Aren’t you the most clever one tonight?!) through your sheer mental powers alone. When you can convey this one simple word (with just that hauntingly familiar look in your eyes) all the way across a crowded laundromat during a power outage while experiencing a hot flash, you’ll know you have mastered this communication skill down pat. But be very careful that it doesn’t get misinterpreted as, “F*ck off and die!” because they’re very close together on the spectrum and the latter won’t make you appear quite as loving.
- * BONUS 6th SECRET LOVE LANGUAGE! — Poor, deprived Gary Chapman. Because he obviously never thought of including just plain old, “Wild n’ Crazy Sex” — (No simplification or tweaking needed.) And now . . . Touché!!
Readers: If you know someone Jewish who feels kinda slighted when they go to Disneyland during Christmas, I’ve given them their turn at feeling welcomed in the theme park, right HERE.
The plane you’re flying on begins to get slightly bumpy:
a) It’s just a little normal turbulence due to this sudden windstorm.
b) The pilot just discovered his beautiful fiancé is in love with another man and now he doesn’t want to live anymore. And he’s taking us all down with him!
As you sip a Diet Coke, a new health report comes out proclaiming artificial sweeteners have now been proven to cause dementia:
a) Uh huh, and next month they’ll say people with higher IQ’s drink six diet colas daily.
b) As you choke and sputter on the carbonated amber toxin, you can feel your brain cells dying off one by one, and you no longer remember your own middle name.
Your coworker pays you a compliment by saying how funny you are:
a) You say “thank you” and return the favor by remarking that she always brings a smile to your face as well.
b) Start a humor blog complete with an online store that sells mugs and tee-shirts with humorous original sayings on them, but first design a greeting card line called, “Cracking You Up!” while simultaneously securing an agent familiar with booking into the comedy circuit.
It’s been an hour and your kid hasn’t responded to your text.
a) He’s probably distracted having fun.
b) Somebody’s got him in an old basement with bad reception and he’s covertly trying to activate his “Find Your Phone” app so you can send the authorities just as his Android is roughly yanked from his frail hands while a deep voice growls, “Your mother will never hear from you again… unless it’s in her dreams!”
The receptionist leaves a voicemail saying the results from your routine blood work are in and asks you to return her call.
a) What a great office — they’re so careful about the privacy laws and not leaving overly detailed messages.
b) Something tragic showed up in your hemoglobin (probably from drinking diet sodas) and this woman didn’t have the heart to leave the specifics in a recording so you’re going to have to go in for a face-to-face meeting and as the doctor tells you to please have a seat in his large back office, he’ll glance to his desk at the framed photos of his own sweet children, and say a little gratitude prayer that it’s you and not him.
The busboy in the restaurant keeps staring at you as he clears the dishes from the next table:
a) You must remind him of someone he once knew.
b) He’s fantasizing about asking you out on a date, but it’s going to hurt his feelings when you decline unless he gets promoted to a waiter, but that will never happen since he looks like the type who arrives late to work every day and he’ll get into a motorcycle crash before he ever straightens out his act because he has issues proving his masculinity to his father.
At the check-out stand in the grocery store, the credit card you pulled out has suddenly vanished:
a) You’re getting so careless nowadays, you must’ve put it back in your wallet before you even used it.
b) Okay, so where’s the camera? You’re on that new show where the magician catches people off guard with clever tricks making them think they’re losing their mind because they don’t know they’re being filmed. You knew you should’ve straightened your hair this morning!
At the pediatrician’s office, you observe all the children on the floor, playing with other kids and sharing toys that belong to the doctor.
a) It’s great to see little ones so well-adjusted and socializing early in life.
b) Why don’t all parents wear shirts with little beads, buttons, bells, and whistles sewn on the front so their children can sit happily in their laps and self-entertain — thereby avoiding all the germs in places like this? They’d sell like hotcakes online and you can call them “Activi-Tees”
At a wedding, the fish entree is not seasoned to your liking:
a) You send it back because rumors of chefs spitting in the food are largely unfounded.
b) You’re certain the salmon was laced with cyanide and this plate was actually meant for the man seated on your right because he’s been having an affair with the beautiful fiancé of the chef, who used to be an airline pilot but lost his job when he flew erratically into a windstorm because of a jealous rage.
QUIZ RESULTS: Subject to your imagination, but mostly “b” answers suggest a career as a writer, inventor, or paranoid parent.
*Credit for the phrase, “Inflammation of the Imagination” goes to Dr. Bradley Shapero.
Do you sometimes wonder how certain (relatively inconsequential) things in life get decided? I mean who was the one specific individual that arrived at the ultimate conclusion? I’m not even talking about who makes all the major, significant determinations — (YOU can be in charge of making that particular list!) I just mean the odds n’ ends type of stuff that needs a final verdict. Let’s delve deeper, shall we? Because here are 12 things that nobody really knows who is in charge of!
Who’s In Charge Of . . . ?
- Selecting the specific kind of pornography for the men who use the “deposit” room at sperm donor or infertility clinics?
- Deciding that 1970’s Chia Pets (with their annoying “Ch Ch Ch Chia” commercial jingles) should now be a “health” seed that we must sprinkle on frigging EVERYTHING we eat?
- Figuring out the number of seconds a doctor leaves the examination room so a patient can fully disrobe and put on that silly paper gown? (As an aside: Who told doctors to rap on the door three times first, when they’re just gonna barge in on you half-naked anyhow? For once I’d like doctors to knock, then wait patiently while I yell, “Be right there. Will ya hold your horses already? I’m just taking something out of the oven!”)
- Singing the alphabet in a singsong voice so that the five middle letters sound like just one long one… “elemenopee?”
- Substituting the inane phrase “reaching out” for the old sensible word, “contacting.” When someone thanks me for “reaching out” on the phone, I wanna burst into Neil Diamond’s syrupy lyrics, “Hands, touching hands, reaching out…touching me, touching you!”
- Prescribing what the average “room temperature” should be in a house? Because this individual is solely responsible for a great many of the arguments I have with my ex-husband. (Identify yourself!)
- Firing the classic national Time Lady? C’mon you remember her? You’d call the telephone number and a familiar recorded voice reassured you it was 5:32 EXACTLY. She’d throw in the outdoor temperature as a bonus — (so my ex-husband and I could squabble over the indoor one.) And while I’m at it, who also decided who the voice of Siri should be?
- Determining at what age a woman should stop wearing a mini-skirt?
- Checking if a bride actually has something old, new, borrowed and blue?
- Choosing which side of the bed a husband and wife get to sleep on? And why can’t they alternate nightly?
- Stating that a “portion size” of Reddi Whip Cream is a mere two tablespoons? (And shouldn’t the measurement be calibrated as “squirts in the mouth?’)
- Deciding which foods (salmon, I’m looking at you!) get to qualify as “Good fats?” (And why can’t Reddi Whip make the cut?)
Readers, leave me a comment about something you often ask, “Sheesh, who the heck was in charge of THAT?” (But don’t blame me — I was only in charge of six children.)
In an age where amusement park rides (“Pirates of Caribbean”) and board games (“Clue”) can become movies, comic strips (Lil’ Orphan Annie) become Broadway musicals, books (“Gone Girl”) become cinema thrillers, and novels become a controversial Netflix television series (“13 Reasons Why”) I’ve decided WHY STOP THERE?
Songs Becoming News Stories!
(Billy Joel’s “Piano Man”)
In a New York bar on a Saturday night as the regular crowd shuffled in, many patrons allegedly inundated a helpless pianist with random musical requests. Some were sad, some were sweet, and some were incomplete as people struggled with their memories, substituting “La la la, di da da La la, di da da da dum” for actual lyrics. Even the bartender, who was identified only as John (and who gave free drinks, was quick with a joke or to light up a smoke) seemed to hold the compassionate piano player accountable for his own unhappiness and the fact that he couldn’t break free from the nightclub to become a movie star. “Bill, I believe this is killing me,” he was quoted as saying. Other innocent bystanders included a real estate novelist, a waitress practicing politics, and some businessmen slowly getting stoned. One witness claimed the piano sounded like a carnival and the microphone smelled like a beer, but this could not be substantiated. In fact many customers ordered the drink special of the night, called “Loneliness” and this seemed to evoke a common sentiment that if the pianist would only sing them the right kind of song with a melody that they were in the mood for, then everyone would be feeling alright. The manager finally appeared and gave a smile, aware that it was his establishment that helped everyone forget about life for a while. It was unknown whether the Piano Man later sought therapy for the pressure he felt during this incident.
Recipes Becoming Poetry!
(Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies)
Baking time will be less than a half hour at 350 oven power
First grab 1 tsp salt, baking soda, and 2 1/4 cups flour,
Add in 3/4 cup sugar, 2 eggs, and be sure it’s 1 cup butter
You’ll be dropping by spoonfuls, no need for cookie cutter!
Don’t overbake, you want them soft and chewy to the lips,
And they won’t taste right if you don’t add chocolate chips!
Poetry Becoming Dog Tags!
If you’re reading this, it means I’m lost.
Maybe there’s a street I shouldn’t have crossed.
But the worst is over ‘cuz now I’ve been found. . .
And you’ve saved me from ending up in the pound.
So pick up the phone and give my owner a holler
And tell them you read this rhyme on my collar!”
Lyrics Becoming Essays!
(Katy Perry’s “Firework” – Graded by Little Miss Menopause)
Kati Perry “Firework”
8th Grade/Eng Comp 101/Period 4
Do you ever feel like a plastic bag drifting through the wind, wanting to start again?(Careful beginning any persuasive essay with a question — if the answer is “No” you’ve just lost your reader.)
Do you ever feel, feel so paper thin like a house of cards, (archaic phrase, nobody knows what this is except for the popular TV show.) one blow from caving in? (overly dramatic, credibility?)
Do you ever feel already buried deep six feet under? Screams, but no one seems to hear a thing. (morbid tone, not in keeping with rest of your paper, Ms. Perry)
Do you know that there’s still a chance for you ’cause (you must type out ‘because’ in formal essays) there’s a spark in you. (more supporting evidence needed) You just gotta ignite the light and let it shine, just own the night like the Fourth of July. (awkward sentence structure!)
‘Cause baby you’re a firework, come on show ’em what your (you’re) worth. Make ’em go “Oh, oh, oh!” (use proper dialoguing format here.) As you shoot across the sky-y-y. (cliche) Baby you’re a firework. (cite your source) Come on let your colors burst! Make ’em go “Oh, oh, oh!” (Choppy!) You’re gonna leave ’em fallin’ down down down.
Boom, boom, boom even brighter than the moon, moon, moon. It’s always been inside of you, you, you
And now it’s time to let it through. You’re gonna leave ’em fallin’ down down down. Boom, boom, boom. Even brighter than the moon, moon, moon. Boom, boom, boom. Even brighter than the moon, moon, moon. Etc, etc.
(D+ You tried Katy, and this is a much better effort than your “I Kissed a Girl and I Liked It” term paper, but your closing argument paragraph is redundant, nonsensical, and frankly better suited for a song lyric. I’m recommending you repeat English Comp 101.)
Movie Dialogue Becoming Resumes
Skills and Experience:
- Phoning Home
- Building it so they will come
- Showing the Money
- Looking at you, Kid
- Rounding up the usual suspects
- Putting my lips together and whistling
- Seeing dead people
- Depending on the kindness of strangers
- Never using wire hangers. EVER!
- Martini making, shaken not stirred
- Making your day
- Keeping the force with you
- Not putting babies in corners
- Not giving a damn, but in a very frank way
Readers, join me in the fun of mixing and matching our crazy media! Why not leave me a comment with your own creative blend?
You may think our logic is slightly flawed,
Certain we know best, even better than God.
Our kids wear sweaters when we’re really the ones who’re cold.
And good luck throwing us Surprise parties without us wearing a blindfold.
Need to know everything — we’re obsessed with discovering stuff.
You may admonish, “Mind your own business!” but never have to say, “Get off your duff!”
It’s not enough to just know the outer you, we want to know your internals.
That’s exactly why it’s fine for us to snoop thru your diaries and journals!
And if we’re extra polite, saying thank-you and please quite often,
We think you won’t bristle at our demands, in fact we think you’ll soften.
But look at the upside to being one of us — we’re meticulous with wars we’re waging.
We fight about marriage, work, schools, friends, and we’re totally against our own aging!
‘Micromanaging’ — such a vulgar term, we’d never EVER do it!
But alas our “helpful hint” is taken the wrong way, folks just misconstrue it.
So if we cannot manipulate our world at large, you, or even our own mate’s lives,
At least we’re gonna stay in charge of our kid’s health… with the prevention of hives!
Um, that last line was stupid, but controlling peeps are stubborn,
Even over words, language, rhymes, we must try and govern!
And there’s one more thing we’re planning to subtly orchestrate . . .
Bestowing a new name on US, one that promotes a euphoric state.
‘Cuz calling us CONTROL FREAKS is rather harsh, ugly, and bleak.
How about just saying we have special powers due to our technique?
So from now on, “Universal Supervisor” replaces “Control Freak” as our new term.
Can we all just agree on this? I really need to know you’ll confirm!
And ‘cuz we’re certain that most of you find our control issues something to condemn…
Therefore nobody who is “One of Us” will admit that this is actually them.
But I’ll raise my hand proudly (sorta!) because once you get to know me . . . I’m really quite a gem!
Lastly before I leave you, I’m not beyond using guilt to influence and apply a little pressure,
If you don’t leave me a comment, nobody will know you exist or that you’re such a WordPress treasure!
I hate the Experts. They’re always making us give up things we like. Honestly it’s been on my (long) list of self-improvements to finally “Kick the Can” but it kept slipping my mind. And now I know why! Last week, a shocking news story went viral that was “sodapressing” for me. Its headlines exploded (like when my son mischievously shakes my Zero Calorie Pepsi can) “Diet Soda Causes Dementia and Strokes!”
Wow. Just wow. But it was too late. My fate was already sealed. This amazing memory of mine had always been something I prided myself on until recently (hitting the big 5-0) when suddenly I’d walk into the proverbial room and couldn’t remember why.
I posted signs on the walls with hints meant to jog my mind.
- To tell someone something?
- To play with my kittens?
- To use the bathroom?
- To nag a child?
- To search through my purse for change?
- To have sex?
- To write a new blog?
- To clean something?
- To ask for a compliment?
- To pay a bill?
- To drink a Diet Coke?
This worked for a while, until I couldn’t even remember to look up and read my little signs. And to think this downhill slide into oblivion could all be attributed to my tiny, little addiction to a “sugar-free fizzy party in the bottle.”
Such an innocent vice, really. Years ago, I used to balance that red two-liter bottle of infamous carmel-colored carbonated liquid on top of my skull and tease that I was officially a “Cokehead.” But seriously, give me a break, Experts! I drink zero coffee or black tea so this was my only source of caffeine. (NOTE: YOU HAVE NO TANGIBLE PROOF ABOUT ME AND CHOCOLATE.)
And then I began to date a holistic, homeopathic, health and wellness doctor and suddenly I felt the need to hide my “criminal” activity to avoid disapproval. I slunk around the house (when he was over) snatching sips of the dark toxic bubbles from random flower vases and fishbowls, denying I had a problem. “Look at the huge spider on that wall!” I’d gasp and point, then slug down my Chanel #5 perfume bottle.
Finally I recognized that my Diet Soda was out of hand. Or rather, it was always IN hand. I needed the Twelve-Steps Solution for my Six-Pack Problem. I knew I was truly frightened that a bad thing could happen if I didn’t quit. But I couldn’t even recall what that thing was anymore. And the only “strokes” I wanted were high praise for my writing.
Soon a well-meaning girlfriend (from AA) suggested I slowly taper off the poison by pouring something else in the cup to dilute it down. Gin, rum or vodka. No, she actually recommended water.
Sadly “moderation” isn’t a word in my vocabulary. (Although I was once just a “little bit pregnant” with twins.) But mainly I’m an All or Nothing type. Black or White. Up or Down. Feast or Famine. Push or Pull. Diet Coke or Death.
And so I had no choice but to go Cold-Turkey. But first because of the language lover that I am, I had to find out why we call it that? Would I soon be walking around shivering and saying “gobble, gobble?” If you love word origins, you can find out HERE.
And then to my surprise, another viral internet headline surfaced from the Experts. It refuted the first study that diet soda caused these awful things. And tossed around words like “Absolute Risks,” and “Control Groups” and made some other really important points that I can’t recall at the moment.
I love the Experts! Yay. Giving me permission to continue doing something I want to do!
And then I realized. It’s not just something I want to do. I NEED to do it. I get headaches without diet soda. I crave more and more. I hear that familiar “fffsssssst” when someone flips the lid of a can and I flip my own lid trying to obtain some. (Thank you Pavlov!) Yes, I DO have a real problem, expert or no expert.
Also . . . (and here comes my love of wordplay again!) DIET COKE starts with “D” and so does Dementia. Coke rhymes with Stroke and Croak. And speaking of croaking, Diet contains the word “Die” in it. Cola even perfectly rhymes with Ebola, which nobody has mentioned yet but you can bet your pop-top that’s the next big scare. And Bubbles rhymes with Troubles. Coincidence? I think not.
Forget the experts. Forget dementia. Forget the experts. (Oh right, I already said that.) My own astute language associations (above) are all the empirical ‘absolute risk’ evidence I need to kick the habit. Starting today, I’m getting completely off that bubbly stuff you drink when you don’t want calories or sugar or fat and whose name I might recall right now if I hadn’t been drinking so much of it in the first place.
READERS: Do you have a little “addiction” you rationalize and think is innocent in the grand scheme of things? Tell me about it in the comments so I won’t feel so alone! Or before I move to Minnesoda. 😉
Have you detected the newest fad in eating? The trendiest ingredient of the millennium is now getting its own dedicated restaurant. A few of them, in fact! In Brooklyn, New York, “Avocadoria” just opened on April 10th. And in Amsterdam, “The Avocado Show” has already been serving nothing but these green gems for a while now. And don’t forget Avocado Athens, in Greece.
Little Miss Menopause (of course!) felt compelled to go undercover for a review, an interview, and to get all the facts on why these Avocado Advocates were so passionate about something that when mushed up, looks like it belongs in The Exorcist. As I deplaned in NYC, I changed into my only green shirt with this graphic I made for the front.
Me: Thank you for granting me an interview in between mashing, dicing, slicing, spreading, scooping, chopping, pureeing, mincing, and blending.
Owner: Don’t forget whipping.
Me: I never read Fifty Shades. So tell me WHY the avocado?
Owner: Why NOT the avocado? Avocado lives matter. And avocados have been greatly misunderstood. Not knowing if it was a vegetable or a fruit. And having it be just a $2.50 item listed on the menu under “Sides.” An avocado ain’t no side to nobody.
Me: Of course it’s not.
Owner: It’s the main course here. In fact, there’s nothing in my restaurant that isn’t made out of avocado.
Me: Is that so? Nothing? I heard you even spread it on sandwiches in place of mayo or mustard, true?
Owner: Absolutely! There’s nothing in our sandwiches except avocado.
Me: But what about the bread?? Aha . . . caught you!!
Owner: Where you been girl? Avocado loaves!
Me: That’s not a thing.
Owner: Oh it’s soooooo a thing!
Me: Hmm, okay well how about this? If I were to order guacamole . . .
Owner: You’d be one boring, sheltered girl.
Me: Never mind that. If I were to order guacamole, what would you serve me to dip in it? Got ya there! You’d bring me tortilla chips, wouldn’t you?? You would!
Owner: Nope. We slice avocado into little half-dollar size circles and deep fry them in . . .
Me: OLIVE oil! Busted!
Owner: Extra Virgin Avocado oil. Didn’t see that coming, did you?
After I left the interview feeling totally beaten, I had to admit the place was packed, the ambience was
green and creamy, clean and dreamy, and the chef had it so easy. Just one ingredient for their entire menu! The wheels began to turn for me . . .
I know! I’ll open a restaurant that serves only Yams. I’m tired of people mixing up yams with sweet potatoes. I’ll call it, “I Yam Nuts!” Oh wait, then I’d have to serve cashews and almonds and pistachios as well. But not peanuts. They’re a legume.
As I walked, I brainstormed more mono-food eateries. “Cafe Capers” or “Okra-Homa” or my personal favorite, “Twinkie Twinkie Little Star,” but I’d have to talk to Hostess first.
Ironically on the street with the Avocadoria restaurant were a bunch of apparel stores, but selling one specific item. The signs proudly proclaimed, “Solo Socks” and “Only Underwear” and “Just Jammies” and “Merely Madras.” This was getting really weird.
I walked into “Scarcely Skirts” and tried to get to the bottom of this phenomenon.
Me: I’d like to buy a pair of pants?
Owner: Sorry, we only carry skirts.
Me: Oh, I’m sure you must have something else besides skirts here. I know! I’d like to buy some hangers.
Owner: We don’t have any hangers.
Me: Then what’s suspending all your skirts from the clothing racks??
Owner: Get out, Little Miss Menopause. You are obviously in need of some mushrooms. Go next door and order some shroom tacos at “Fungus ForAllOfUs.”
I have a new plan. There must be some way for me to capitalize on this new segregational commerce trend. And I’ll start with “Avocadoria.” In the vacant space next door, I am going to open a restaurant called, “The Anti-Avo.” We’ll cook everything under the sun. Except for Avocados. I’ll be an Avocado Avoidant.
Customers will become so enraged by what they see the culinary world becoming, that they’ll embrace grub integration once more. So won’t you join me in the
food good fight, hop onto this grassrutabaga grassroots cruciferous crusade where all nourishment and noshes will once again coexist in peace and harmony.
Last night I tossed and turned (a Caesar salad’s got nothin’ on me!) while cursing at my fitted sheet, which ironically is totally UNFIT to be slept on. This is the SIXTH set of bed linens I’ve purchased that have been pre-programmed by the manufacturer to drive me slowly mad by having a corner insidiously slip a half-inch every hour until it PING, snaps off the mattress entirely.
How do I know this? Because any manufacturer of a simple household product who thinks a huge selling point would be to put in large printed letters on a colorful sticker, right over the price tag, the message — “100% Percale! Now with 800 thread count!” is definitely out to get me. You see they know if I’m still moving forward to purchase this product (even after questioning what “Percale” might be and receiving a dire thread count warning), then I’m actually someone who is compulsive enough to recheck and confirm their number claim by totaling up the sum of threads on my fingers.
Okay, so really Mr. Inventor Guy? Seriously?? You can go on Shark Tank with your bladeless windmill, a shoelace-tying robot, plus figure out a way to grow guacamole right inside the avocado so there’s no messy mashing (Okay, I made that last one up, but wouldn’t it be cool?) yet you can’t devise a fitted sheet that stays securely on a bed mattress, without waking up the (already neurotic) occupant with a startle??
So I did what any desperate insomniac would do. I took to the internet for advice. On a website called Question.com I posted this:
Help! How can I stop the sheet from popping off my mattress?
Within seconds an answer appeared, but in photograph form.
Okay so that person must be a former treasure hunt, map-maker who believes “X marks the spot” is the solution to everything in life.
When I finally figured out that what I was looking at was the BOTTOM of the mattress, I explained to the helpful (NOT!) responder that mine was king-sized (and far too heavy to ever flip over!)
Immediately my grandmother (who must diligently read this obscure question/answer website in between her bridge games?) suddenly posted an image of what I can only guess are the garters she uses to hold up her stockings, except grandma has four legs now??
After that, a bunch more “answers” came fast and furiously but not via cryptic photos. There were heated debates about my California King mattress being far too wide for just my regular King-sized sheets. It must’ve been presumed that because I live in San Diego I definitely own a California King mattress?
Next came the comics. On the internet, comedians always come out of the woodwork, (which I guess in the case of bed problems would be out of the headboard) except none were funny. Here’s an example anyhow.
“Hi! I’m Paul. I don’t have anything to say about how to fix this issue you’re having, but I misread the question as, ‘How can I stop the sh*t from pooping off my mistress?’ Haha.
Uh, Don’t quit your day OR your night job, Paul.
Next came all the “handy helpful hints” which are from women named Heloise. They fall under the general theme of using other common household objects to fix the original household object. Like this:
And you just know that once the Safety Pin Brigade begins, it can’t be long before The Duct Tape proponents come out in droves. Followed by The Velcro People.
Next I patiently wade through answers from sheer genius, analytical types . . . (but who can’t spell to save their life)
And to this person I graciously respond, “No sheet, Sherlock?!”
There were many more answers (92 responses in total) to this age old dilemma and soon I realized that everyone had their own special way of handling the old “fitted sheet slipping off the corner” conundrum and I began to feel a certain camaraderie with all these fellow bedmates. I ended my “thank you’s” by bidding them “Sweet Dreams!” and cautioning them not to “let the bedbugs bite.” We shared pictures of our adorable children who had also been subjected to this same irritating fate.
And in this “it’s a small world” moment I was feeling that surely we must all have more in common than just our sheets coming undone from our mattresses, and so I posted a totally new and completely unrelated question.
“Help! After doing laundry, how do you neatly fold the fitted sheet and win the war in your linen closet?”
And just like that, we all intensely bonded over who had the best YouTube video showcasing a live demonstration.
It’s quite a relief knowing I will never lose another night’s sleep wondering who My People are, because I am now a confirmed member of the “Get a life” tribe.
And to all a good night!
Little Miss Menopause
Tonight we’ve invited a non-Jewish family to our special Passover dinner to share our culture and traditions. Obsessed with The Wizard of Oz, they’ve politely requested (for their children’s sake, of course!) that we liken the holiday to their favorite movie so they’ll better understand and appreciate our customs. Uh oh! I don’t think we’re in Egypt anymore!
But hey, it might be interesting to at least find a few parallels, metaphorically speaking, right? Let’s see . . . Dorothy (like Moses?) led her people (The Tin Man, Scarecrow, and Cowardly Lion) through a path to freedom on what could’ve been (if the director was a bit more innovative!) a road paved with crispy boards of Matzo instead of yellow bricks.
Later on in Emerald City, a major plot twist occurs with the significant parting of that fateful curtain (and pay no attention to the man behind it!) which exposes the Wizard as ultimately weak and small, incapable of great feats. Now liken that to the meaningful parting of the Red Sea, revealing the great and powerful miracles of God. No never mind, there’s just no comparison!
But a case can possibly be made that the Wicked Witch was sorta like the Pharaoh, torturing and inflicting pain on everyone around her – even her own slaves, those Flying Monkeys. And then she is ultimately destroyed by an act of water (“Help me, I’m melting, I’m melting!”) and this is a good thing. Similarly, a tremendous amount of water played a huge role in the demise of the Egyptian army when the Red Sea closed up on them – and this was also a very good thing! I’m not sure where this entire analogy is even going and maybe it just doesn’t hold water. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.) “Oh, what a world…what a world!”
But let’s continue with an easier creative stretch! The Munchkins can be Jewicized by simply calling them “Menschkins.” (A mensch means a person of integrity) And the little dog Toto, too! (AKA “Todah,” means “thank you” in Hebrew.)
“Poppy! Poppy will put them to sleep!” Can refer to what the Wicked Witch of the West says as she casts her spell on the poppy field . . . OR it signifies every grandfather who tells boring stories at Passover dinner that begin with, “When I was a kid . . . ”
Well enough of my contrived allegories. Let’s move on to music! I’ve always thought adding rhythm to any family holiday enriches the experience, so in addition to the traditional passover songs, (Dayenu and Go Down Moses) we just might sing the following:
Sung Like the Scarecrow to the Tune of “If I Only Had a Brain!” (No doubt pressured by his Jewish parents to get into Yale!)
There was this brand new Pharaoh,
Had us all over a barrel,
And always gave us flack,
Then from bread we must abstain,
But you won’t hear us complain,
Boiled eggs are the perfect snack.
And the pyramids were built,
So to heck with Jewish guilt . . .
Now if we only had some grain!
Sung Like Glinda to the Tune of “Come Out, Come Out!”
Pull him out, pull him out, whoever you are,
And see the new baby who’ll become a Jewish star.
He floated so far, glided half of a mile,
Meet the special young boy who was drawn from the Nile!
He drifted in that river, it flowed very fast,
And later in his role, Charlton Heston would be cast.
Sung like Menschkins to the Tune of “The Lollipop Guild”
We represent the Matzo Ball League, the Matzo Ball League!
And in the name of the Matzo Ball League . . .
We forbid you to eat bread products for 8 more days!
Sung like Dorothy to the Tune of “Somewhere Over The Rainbow”
Somewhere out of Egypt, way up high,
There’s a land that I’ve heard of, up on Mt. Sinai.
Somewhere, out of the desert,
A flaming bush will burn.
And through those Ten Commandments,
All the idol worshippers will learn.
(yada yada, repeat again until next lines for big finish!)
Now if happy little children can find
The matzo hidden in the venetian blind . . .
Why, oh why, can’t I ???
Okay, okay, so I guess there’s only one thing left to try and integrate for my Passover dinner guests, and that’s how to address those scary Ten Plagues? I suppose we could start by chanting three of them, “Locusts and Boils and Hail . . . Oh My!
Happy Passover to all my readers who celebrate.
I don’t know about you, but I get tired of people pulling dumb stunts on me (pretending apple juice is urine) or visual gags (glueing quarters to the sidewalk) on April Fool’s Day. I much prefer word games. And if they’re set to music and have a catchy beat, all the better!
That’s why every April Fool’s Day I tell the various people in my life that extremely famous songs were written with me in mind. It’s an innocent joke but you’d be amazed how many will buy it, until I can’t contain myself and burst out laughing.
Here are some tips to pull off your own, “I’m The One Neil Diamond Meant When he Crooned, “Girl, You’ll Be a Woman Soon” hijinks!
- Tall Tale Tunes: Otherwise known as Story Songs will work really well for this particular joke. You know the kind where the lyrics teach a lesson or impart a moral? I must admit every time I heard, “Centerfold” by J. Geils Band, I really wanted to be the character in that song. The innocent girl that was “pure as snowflakes” in high school, who was “slipping notes under his desk while he was thinking about her dress!” And then years later, when he’s looking thru the pages of a girlie magazine, there’s his homeroom angel on the pages in-between . . . Whoa, Babam!! Well – – you guessed it, I once told my ex-husband that I went to school with the lead singer of this band and bragged that “Centerfold” was written specifically about me — to assuage the mad crush he had on me, of course. To this day, my ex is terribly flattered I picked him to marry (out of what must’ve been hundreds of offers!) and he’s never once asked which magazine I posed for. (If he did, I’d tell him it was Popular Mechanics.)
- List of Story Songs: Here are some other suggestions of these kinds of songs you can claim are written about you: Bye Bye Miss American Pie (What? Wouldn’t it be a kick to be the person solely responsible for the day the music died?) Stairway to Heaven (All you have to be is a lady who’s sure all that glitters is gold. Easy Peasy! Oh and you make him wonder…you really make Led Zeppelin wonder!) Cat’s in the Cradle (if you’re a guy, this one is perfect! Tell your wife you would have mentioned you were the son in Harry Chapin’s song a long time ago, but you thought she’d cry at your wedding when you refused to invite your dad because your smile never dimmed as you said, “I’m gonna be like him, yeah. Y’know I’m gonna be like him!”
- Name Songs – – Man, do you have it made if there happens to already exist a song with YOUR exact name in it. In fact, women named Wendy seem to have all the luck. Tell him you actually are THE Wendy that Bruce Springsteen was Born to Run with, not to mention a personal invitation to strap your hands across his engines. Mmmm. Wendys can also claim that they’re the one referenced in Prince’s song, Kiss, or “Wendy” the song by Brian Wilson of Beach Boys fame. And even Elton John with his title, “Wake Up Wendy.” Or get fanciful and tell him you’re the Wendy from the musical, “Peter Pan.” But if you really wanna stretch it, tell him The Association wrote their song, “Windy” about you. Ready? Just google your name and see if you already have a song out there — bingo, instant April Fool’s material!
- Naive Targets: There are no songs with Stephanie in them, so I always choose extra gullible people for this type of musical prank. For instance my brother is the perfect kind of innocence for me to easily fool with. (When we were younger, I told him I had my own Candy store inside my bedroom wall and as proof I’d produce a Hershey bar– I also mentioned that a blue furry monster sometimes used our downstairs bathroom and the way to know when he recently peed in the toilet was the water turned the exact shade of his fur when you flushed. I always said this after our mom put those navy colored Clorox drop-in disks in our commode!) So last April 1st, I told this overtrusting brother of mine that many of the Beatles songs were indeed about me and that our parents kept changing my name thru the years to preserve my privacy. He bought that I was Sexy Sadie, Lovely Rita, Hey Jude, Long Tall Sally, Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, and even Michelle, Ma Belle — though he knew I wasn’t ever french. He may have been gullible, but apparently I underestimated his math skills because one day he pointed out that I was just being born in 1964, the very same year the Beatles burst onto the American Scene. Oh well.
- Straight Face: If anyone doubts your sincerity during this April Fool’s joke, all you need to do is perform your own personal rendition of Carly Simon’s, “I’m So Vain, I probably think this song is about me, don’t I? Don’t I?”
If you’re a female and would like other April Fool’s Day options (albeit a bit racier) just click RIGHT HERE for my last year’s post.
Parker Brothers used to hold the monopoly on making a big media production over retiring an iconic object. In February they took a vote and announced which piece would leave their famous board game. It turns out that seams aren’t the only thing ripped from archaic sewing rooms because THE THIMBLE was voted to be torn from Monopoly’s token collection when it was deemed esoteric (Personally I think the word “esoteric” should have been retired from our vocabulary long ago!) and given a big “thumbs” down. The thimble, really?? Well, I’ll be “darned.”
Oy. Do we really care about any of this??
Of course we don’t. At least not anymore. Because this earth-shattering news just paled in comparison to the latest vivid revelation . . .
Today (on National Crayon Day, doncha know?) Crayola finally disclosed (while holding us in suspense for as long as it takes to scrub Burnt Sienna off our bathroom wall after our child throws a tantrum) which classic color will be swiftly retired from their 24-pack.
Turns out DANDELION has been weeded out and put to pasture!
Well color me surprised! Can you really garner this much attention over retiring something? And now people are really getting worked up because it’s been proclaimed that the replacement crayon will be “blueish.” But that’s as descriptive as Crayola cares to get (for now!) because . . . (drum roll!) it seems that WE all get to submit an explicit suggestion for the blue crayon’s new unique name!
Frankly, I’d just be tickled pink if simple tricks like these worked in my life to garner me some respect and fanfare.
It’s worth a go . . .
ME: Hey kids, guess what? I’m retiring an object from our silverware drawer. You’ll never guess what it is, but care to try??
YOUNGEST SON: Wait, we have a silverware drawer? Where is it?? I just grab forks for my scrambled eggs straight out of the dishwasher.
OLDER SON: What?? You get served scrambled eggs! I just get a bowl of Cheerios slapped down in front of me.
DAUGHTER: And ewww, you take stuff from the dishwasher?? Those crusted, baked-on dishes have been sitting in that Maytag appliance since mom was pregnant and we threw a shower for you. And you’re 13-years-old now. Not a baby anymore.
ME: That’s it, I knew you guys would guess it! That’s exactly what I’m retiring from the silverware drawer — his tiny baby spoon! Shall we call Gerber? Channel 7 news? Parker Brothers? And now let’s think of a fun name to call the new utensil that will take its place! For a prize of course . . .
I watched as one-by-one they grabbed Oreos, shoved them in their mouths, and filed out of the kitchen, eying me in that way they did when I remarked that Adele’s song “Hello From The Other Side” was about a ghost in the afterlife.
However (to be fair) later on I received a cryptic text from my 15-year-old that said simply, “Spork!!! Now what do I win?”
Ugh. Next try will be with my boyfriend…
ME: Honey, there’s something very important that I’ve used a lot, but now that I’m menopausal, I think it’s the right time to say goodbye to it.
HIM: Well it can’t be your gym shoes.
ME: I’m retiring my diaphragm.
HIM: Interesting. Won’t you need that to breathe??
Everyone’s a comic. After I retired aspartame from my diet (and replaced it with Sucralose) and nobody seemed to notice, (or care) I took one last shot at an official announcement.
Because three times is a charm.
ME: Hey everyone, I’ve finally made a decision. I’m gonna retire something that’s long overdue to be gone. Can you guess what it is?
EVERYONE: Your so called humor blog??? “Once Upon Your Prime!” OMG! That’s fantastic news. And don’t worry, we’ll all visit it every year in the old folk’s home out in the blogosphere. Yay! So let’s have a big party! We’ll even eat your cake with Sporks! Anything you want. But we just can’t wait to celebrate bidding good riddance to that bland, bloated, blabbermouth blog of yours!!!
Great, that’s just great. But at least now I have a suggestion for the name of the new crayon that’s replacing Dandelion. “Bland, Bloated, Blabbermouth Bloggy Blue!” What do ya say, Crayola??
Or in other (non-alliterative) words — yep, you can create simple memes that will drive more traffic to your blog! And you don’t need a pair of 8-week-old kittens (like I just so happen to have!) in order to do so. But having original photography on a riveting subject will definitely help you get around those pesky copyright issues.
The ability to think up a correlating funny cliche, pun, or witty wordplay also REALLY helps boost the meme’s popularity. Plus at the end of this post I will put a link to my favorite custom meme generator that any dummy can figure out how to use, as aptly demonstrated here.
But first, the most important matter at hand….a few posts ago, I took a vote on names for two tiny litter mates that I was adopting. They’re here now and I’m introducing them officially as “Ritz & Bits!” (Because you’ve heard of Animal Crackers, right?)
Ritz & Bits (along with eliciting lotsa joy, play, innocence, and tons of creativity in the form of great excuses for why my kids are incapable of doing litter-box chores!) have inadvertently brought more followers to my blog than anything I’ve ever written. And all because I turned their cute photos into memes AND remembered to put my blog name at the bottom before posting on Facebook or Tweeting.
Below are some more memes that I made in my sleep. Okay, that’s simply an expression to convey how easy it was because I do NOT sleep anymore. Between the insomnia, the writing deadlines, the strange prowler noises I hear, and now little alien beings that pounce on my tiniest foot movements, I get zero shut-eye.
But (above) I seem to have inherited a pair of furry house-slippers, albeit mismatched colors!
Above they’re only six weeks old but I’m pretty sure the one on the right helped me conquer my phobia with white mice because I swore he looked just like one.
Here they’ve taken up blogging so I’ve got competition . . .
And together we’re collaborating on a sequel for Dirty Dancing and remaking this famous scene . . .
Now below is an example of what NOT to do. As darling of a meme as this could have been, I wrecked it by trying to cram more clever into its wordage than additives in my kittens’ organic food. Instead of piquing interest and luring readers to my blog — the reaction was, “Huh? Weird much? Steer clear of anything this oddball writer posts!”
On the other hand when you have show-stopping eyes, you don’t have to write anything much at all in your meme, but you can never go wrong with simplistic — as you can see below.
And sometimes you’ll miss the obvious . . .
Above I should have just said, “Who’s up for a quick round of CAT-TERGORIES?” But that’s the beauty of a meme, you can rework it until it finally goes viral.
Not to imply that any of these have gone viral. But like I said, if increasing blog followers is your goal – – then definitely make some memes! And then sell some product on your site to take advantage of the extra traffic, making it all worth your while ($$!) I’m planning to sell the little jingle bells you see my kittens wearing on their collars, only for children to wear around their necks because . . . well the need is obvious.
I also have a little (jealous) dog who’s a female and I was certain she’d be very maternal with the two new family members. So no more mention of kittens, Lola’s cute enough to have a meme of her own too, right?
Oh well, I tried to keep the kittens out of the memes.
Now just to make it clear that this blog hasn’t been taken over by a Crazy Cat Lady, I will give you an example of making a meme that doesn’t make people murmur, “Mmmm, How sweet!” or “What deliciousness!”
Now go meme away YOUR life and don’t forget to put your blog name on the bottom so you’ll reap the benefits. Just click HERE to start! Any questions? I’ll answer you purrfectly in the comments section, without scratching your eyes out….I promise.
Not a day goes by that I don’t get an email from this most perceptive, intuitive, and thoroughly insightful guy. An online relationship expert I’ll call “The Love Bug” to protect his privacy here.
How he found me in the first place, I’ll never know — but I’ve been utterly fascinated by his email subject titles. And he apparently personally writes them all JUST FOR ME because my name is always front and center.
Have a look at some screenshots of his emails. First he tells me that I’m dreadful dating material . . .
But he can hear my sighs!
And he’s “got” me.
Next comes this . . .
Wow, he really does think I’m the problem. So I read it. And he’s 100% right. It’s an utter fiasco dating myself. I tell myself stale jokes I’ve heard 100 times before, I never like what I order in restaurants, and I toss and turn in bed — plus steal my own blankets.
So then he goes on to suggest . . .
I guess since I’m a “difficult date” I’ll need to settle for cyber. But it seems I’ve already got “an interesting man” writing to me. Every. Single. Day. “The Love Bug!” And yes, I certainly do know the deal. (And the drill.)
He follows it up with some fascinating questions in his subject titles. Things I’d never dared wonder about before. Like this . . .
Although I was kinda hoping those two things had been minimized after I had my breast reduction surgery.
And then something everyone should ask themselves at one time or another . . .
Gosh. We both receive rocks on Halloween night?
Then he just starts shooting out a bunch of (apparently!) necessary advice.
I quickly solved the “walking all over me” problem by buying an Oriental rug, so guys could step on that instead.
He must’ve approved of that solution because next I get this:
And here I thought all along that I WAS THE BAD DATE??
Next he sent a surprising revelation that was a bit hard to swallow:
Why are you even in this business then???
Not really. But now that he mentions brooms, I don’t like it when men sweep stuff under the rug. In fact I absolutely HATE that behavior. But I should have guessed Love Bug knows me better than even I know myself, because he writes back quickly — this time reiterating the 3 other things he knows I hate besides avoidant men . . .
But hey, at least he put that comma in-between “hate” and “Stephanie” (see pic above) or else I’d be getting a complex right about now.
Well now it seems he thinks there’s still a little hope for me because he sends this subject title next.
I decide this must be one POTENT email and I’ll save it for someone super special. Finally I decide upon George Clooney. I forward the above email to my handsome (unrequited) celebrity with a message asking him to merely read it (and then prepare to fall head over heels for yours truly!) but so far it’s done nothing for him. I subsequently also let my mailman get a quick peek at the email and now he’s smiling more often at me, so it wasn’t a total loss.
But apparently Love Bug thought both George and the postal worker were bad choices because I got this:
And how come I don’t have any recollection of emailing him back?? I am starting to get worried about what else I don’t remember doing!
So I write to him, (this time consciously!) making my case that my mailman was actually pretty nice and now I even get my packages carried up to my front porch!
“I don’t think so,” I write back. “He’s now taken to sorting all my junk mail and puts the coupons on top! I may just have to play ‘postman’ with him soon!”
OMG! I was only joking around! I value old-fashioned letter-carriers who wear uniforms, so sue me. But I can assure you, I am NOT a loose woman. Doesn’t he know that about me already? (Also did you notice he mentions a wife here??? Does SHE know he corresponds with me every day?? Hmmm)
Then the Love Bug does something incredible! He proves to me he’s not like every other man I meet by sending these two subjects back to back!
Wow, I am so impressed with his integrity and humility. So I write him again and say, “All is forgiven. I don’t really think the mailman is all that hot anyhow. Actually I don’t find any male all that hot.
Honestly, nobody likes a Know-it-all!
And then comes his first astonishing confession . . .
Seriously?? Well I know it was NOT with me. I would have remembered something like that. I have a friend Tiffany, who also receives this same love expert’s email advice, (so much for my personal name shining in the subject!) so perhaps he cheated with Tiffany? The hussy. Turns out she read the same message and thought it was with me he’d been philandering with.
By then The Love Bug follows this shocker up with another email saying, “just teasing” and actually he had gone all Dorothy on us! He really hadn’t committed an infidelity — he thought he had cheated but then he woke up and it was just a dream he had of being an adulterer, like the tired plot device in The Wizard of Oz. But he did describe this dream in vivid detail to his loving wife who simply said, “That’s nice, honey. Shall we have lamb or chicken tonight?” He then used this entire scenario to illustrate the ultimate trust between a man and woman.
At this point, I am thinking I’ve had just about enough of this guy’s bizarre 6th sense and his other shenanigans as well, so I casually click unsubscribe.
Alrighty then, do you see what he’s doing here?? He’s projecting how he feels about my leaving his email-subscription list onto me.
So I thought I’d make it perfectly clear who is pulling away from whom just one more time, so I send an email with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject title.
Really, Love Bug Sir?! You’re still doing this reverse psychology thing on me? Let’s get things straight. I’m pulling away from YOU and YOU’RE the desperate one doing the luring!
Clearly this is a dig that he is now going to make Tiffany his main cyber gal. FINE WITH ME! So I write back and tell him I’ve had better relationship advice from a lady bug and the only reason I can justify his being “The Love Bug” is because he’s starting to really bug me and he should buzz off!
Interesting reframe. I insult him and tell him off and he calls it “sharing.” I decide ignoring him is the best plan. He continues to send me emails and finally this….
Haha! Even my six kids don’t stoop to that dumb tact when they want me to pay attention to them. I ignore some more. He tries flattery.
And it’s not even Thanksgiving! I write back that I am also grateful for the time we had together and don’t mean to nitpick, but I’m just not feeling it anymore.
I don’t see any need to defend myself for not liking mushrooms, olives, or him — so I write back saying I actually now have a solid boyfriend and am moving on to home decorating expert email lists.
He tries the “ticking clock” stunt on me.
Then he tosses out some random Kenny Roger’s poker advice.
Followed by another personal insult because obviously he knows my large bra cup size too.
Triggered, I quickly fire back that my boyfriend tells me all the time how much he adores my breasts, thank you very much.
That does it. He’s just begging for it now! I start my own email list regarding, “Advice For Online Relationship Coaches.” I harass him every night before I go to sleep with subjects like, “Hi Love Bug! Do You Know if You’ve Helped a Couple or Just Instigated a Divorce?” and “What Happens When an Email listee Contacts Your Wife and Tells Her She’s The Subject of Much of Your Relationship Advice, Love Bug?”
Finally I can’t resist and send one final email with a subject header that says, “What Do You and Lucy (From the Peanuts comic strip) Have in Common?” In the body of the email it says, “Both of your advice is worth about 5 cents!
I never heard from Love Bug again.
Hi Readers – – This was a fun blog for me to write, but because the emails were legit, I blocked out any identifying information with those silly hat images. But maybe you recognize the guy’s blue collared shirt?? DISCLAIMER: Before you feel too sorry for me, you might notice the dates of his emails are all out of order. I took them out of context to add humor in this mostly fictional tale where the main point was a woman (me!) thinking someone is writing to her PERSONALLY just because her name is on it, when it’s really sent out to the masses.
You may reread that headline and decide it’s probably a typo. Or you may think having a NON-jealous mate is actually a good thing! And that may be true except … when it’s not.
Bear with me as I relate the following conversation:
Me: So I had lunch today with my publisher, Jamie.
Him: Nice. Whadya order?
Me: Salad. You know . . . Jamie IS a unisex name. Aren’t you suspicious that my publisher is a guy? And feeling a bit concerned that I had lunch alone with a male?
Me: Well he is. And he’s actually VERY male.
Him: That’s nice. Glad to know my gender values books.
Now stop right there. I know, I know. This illustrates he’s perfectly secure within himself. Also it shows he has a ton of faith and confidence in me and our relationship, trusting I’m not going anywhere.
But what does this say about his perception of my potential value and attractiveness? He doesn’t bat an eye that someone else might find me worthy of coveting!
Metaphor Time: Every Friday I drag my overflowing trashcans out to the curb. I never worry someone will come by and flirt with my garbage when I’m not around, or try to take it for their own pleasure. And it’s not because I have a trusting relationship with my rubbish . . . well the recyclables maybe. But now consider this – – parked in my driveway is a shiny, new red Mazda. And you better believe I installed an alarm system on that baby!
Aha! What does this tell you? That’s why I just had to find out more. So I told my best friend to call our home phone several times a day and hang up when he answered.
Him: Darn telemarketers.
Seriously?? So I bought myself some beautiful flowers.
Him: That’s so nice that your older kids would send you an early mother’s day bouquet.
Grrrrrr. So I made a big production out of carrying in a mysterious brown wrapped package from the front porch late one night.
Him: Wow. Who’d guess Nordstrom delivers after midnight?
Ugh. So I secretly opened it in my closet, then intentionally left its contents (a lacy negligee with tags still on) out for him to stumble upon.
Him: Ha. Someone actually believes you could wear a size extra-Small.
That does it.
Me: Haven’t you been the least bit concerned over the past few days? And haven’t you seen the amount of friend requests I receive on Facebook from men who look wild with desire?
Him: Yes. I meant to tell you to stop posting those graphic pics of your brisket and brownies.
Me: Sheesh. What will it take for you to feel threatened? To fight over me? To challenge someone to a duel?
Him: (looks around) Is that last question directed at me or did Sir Lancelot just ride into the room?
Me: OMG! Well, would you at least rescue me if I was tied down to the railroad tracks and a speeding train was imminently approaching?
Him: North or Southbound? Sorry. Absolutely. Of course. No question.
Finally! I decided to stop (the hypothetical questions) while I was ahead. He didn’t need to know that (in my mind) the reason I was tied to those tracks was because Jamie, (my VERY manly publisher) had shouted in a fit of jealousy, “If I can’t have you, then nobody can have you!”
I love hearing from you. Tell me if you get jealous or if your mate ever does?
If I can just get organized enough, I’ll be able to communicate with all six of my kids (and by communicate, I mean nag) well beyond the grave.
And so will you! Because any self-respecting, obsessive control freak will admit if they could be assured they’d continue to exert the same level of power and control over their loved ones after they’re gone, death will be a highly enjoyable experience!
I’ve figured out a way to do it with the written word!
I’ve actually always used my writing for this purpose. The night before any surgery or cross-country flights, I print out letters “to be opened in the event of my unexpected death” ensuring nothing is ever left unsaid.
Yep I take the phrase, “Any final requests?” quite literally and boy do I make a lot of them!
This isn’t a morbid thing to do when you consider people have issues with “lack of closure” that are so prevalent, they put many psychotherapists’ kids through college.
But most challenging is who will distribute my abundant quantity of heartfelt correspondence? I can just hear my sister lamenting, “Who has time to properly grieve for Stephanie? I’m delivering more letters to her offspring than a U.S. postal carrier on Valentine’s Day!”
And I can’t ask any of my friends or neighbors to do it. One is already tasked (the moment she hears I’m dearly departed) to rush over, shave my legs, pluck my eyebrows, and lay my body out in some kind of Marilyn Monroe position. Another has committed to checking all toilets are properly flushed, sinks scrubbed, and confirming there’s no dog hair on the living room white couch. Finally, the busybody across the street guarantees she’ll make sure my children won’t wear white if my funeral is held after Labor Day.
That’s right – I’ve got Glamour magazine, Martha Stewart, Emily Post, Gladys Kravitz, and The Grim Reaper all rolled into one!
But now guess what? We can all breathe a sigh of relief and check “Interventions From The Afterlife” off our To-Do lists because I discovered it’s as simple as composing well-timed emails and companies like THIS will take care of everything for you!
That’s right –there are online services that will facilitate sending your next of kin hauntingly beautiful messages (that you write!) postmortem.
My new plan is simple — anticipate all six of my children’s upcoming happy milestones, as well as all their problems, issues, decisions, shortcomings, downfalls, emergencies, divorces, illnesses, job losses, etc. (I can skillfully do this because I hold an advanced degree in Catastrophizing) and then pour out my unique motherly advice, suggestions, tips, guidelines, instructions, admonishments (And because I’m Jewish — brisket recipes and guilt!) to fill up their inboxes during all future appropriate moments.
But with this new age solution comes an age-old problem, namely money. Costs for these emailing services get calculated per word and that will never work for me. Mind you, Adele’s popular song; “Hello From The Other Side” doesn’t begin to hold a candle to the amount of one-sided conversation I intend to send through the years.
I’ll never be able to afford to speak my mind!
So because I plan to remain ever the frugal mother after my departure, (and until these companies offer coupons!) I’ve come up with an alternate no-cost option. It involves just relying on the simple every day world for crucial communication. You know, like “signs” that hold special significance?
I’ve even devised elaborate codes (with a witty deciphering key included) so now family will be able to interpret all my many future messages 100% FREE.
If a Crow Soars Overhead = Work is for the “birds,” son. Tell your boss you need a vacation and book a “flight” to Hawaii to relax soon!
If a Train Passes By = “Track” down your sister right now for goodness sake, and take her to lunch before your relationship totally “derails.”
If the Cubs Get Into the World Series = Don’t even think about going to “2nd base” with that jerky new guy you’re dating!
If Your Apartment Gets Burglarized and then a Cop (which Starts with the Letter C) puts Handcuffs on the Robber’s Wrists = My diamond bracelet (Yes, the one you always begged me to wear to school dances) is now safely hidden inside your bottle of Vitamin C, which I knew you’d never take.
If The Sun Rises = Always remember your bright mother will love (and nag!) you for all eternity.
And on and on it will go (I have a completed ‘dictionary’ with equivalent meanings all spelled out!) so my kids are guaranteed to spend the rest of their dying days walking around observing stuff that contains messages from me — Yep, they’ll never rest in peace!
Here is a cautionary tale about what can happen if you have OCD and kittens become involved.
It began innocently enough — **a strange cat with no collar wandered into our house and my kids were thrilled to have some temporary pet variety, (we only have one small dog) but they were told the key word was TEMPORARY.
My Kids: Please??? . . .
Me: We absolutely cannot keep him. He belongs to someone else. And we are under NO circumstances ever getting a cat, so just put that idea out of your heads.
But I never said anything about kittens. Fast forward to current day when the adult cat left us, and a certain 13-year-old boy (who somehow inherited my obsessive/compulsiveness) scoured the internet for days on end searching for available kittens, then wrote pleading emails nominating our family’s candidacy as the perfect new owner. We visited 6 different litters (but ONLY because I like to see people’s home decorating styles) and now lo and behold — we’ll be bringing these TWO balls of fluff (pictured everywhere in this post!) into our household.
But we cannot have them FOR ANOTHER MONTH. Apparently they’re too small and must stay with their mother until they’re weaned. Have you ever?? I can’t even. What a wicked breeder! Clearly that’s just a made-up excuse so their lucky family gets to enjoy this adorable kitten stage as long as possible, using up all their cuteness before they finally come to us.
Okay, so it’s Valentine’s Day. Try newly falling in love with someone really soft (or two someones!) and then being apart for four full weeks. It makes you crazy wondering how they are doing, if they’re eating right, if they’re warm enough, why they never write or call, etc. Note: You may have to be a Jewish mother to relate to this.
Meanwhile the owner of the kittens (and the nursing mama cat) has no clue I fanatically stalk her on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest, downloading the proud photos she posts of these little critters. I need these updated pics to keep me from (and believe me, I NEVER use this expression) “pining away.”
This woman also doesn’t know I’m very close to going all Glenn Close on her, picking her unsuspecting child up from school, taking her on a few roller coasters, in the hopes that she will befriend my kids, then frequently invite them over to her house to visit OUR kittens. And when I go to pick my children up, of course I’ll always be invited inside for tea.
All these complex schemes formulate in my OCD brain because this lady has a million different reasons why a strange (but loving) family of six shouldn’t visit her home on a daily basis. The nerve.
My Ex-Husband: There’s an obvious solution, Stephanie. Simply call her up, explain you desperately miss the kittens and you’re willing to take in the mother cat until they are weaned. Boom–Instant kittens!
Me: Already tried that, Smartiepants. She told me all new mothers feel insecure and therefore want to keep the same familiar people around them.
Ex-Husband. Interesting. Each time you gave birth to our kids, you told me to get lost.
My next plan? I just found out she uses Merry Maids, so I’ll be disguising myself as a cleaning lady, sucking up MY two kittens with a Hoover vacuum and then I’ll just be on my Merry way!
Alright so to help me obsessively pass the time until we get these two kittens, please vote on name options for this new little dynamic duo in the comments section. Thank you!
- Sugar and Spice
- Trix and Kix
- Hocus and Pocus
- Monty and Zuma
- Ritz and Bitz
- Tic and Toc
- Nook and Cranny
- Tisket and Tasket
- Peek and Boo
- Mango and Tango
- Snap and Crackle
- Tiddly and Winks
- Bagels and Lox
- Vice and Versa
- YoYo and Jacks
- Scrabble and Boggle
- Topsy and Turvy
- Abra and Cadabra
And because this is a humor blog, if you think some of these names are wretched, I get to say, “Gosh, it was just a joke!” New suggestions welcome as well!
P.S. Did you know there’s a handy Children/Kitten contract that will stand up in court? Seriously! It’s all signed and notarized — so if certain children do not feed felines, change litter boxes, and even do other chores around the house while maintaining their current GPA, they can be sued and will suffer the loss of all electronics! Disclaimer: But under no circumstances will the kittens need to be forfeited. But nowhere does it say the children cannot be. 😉
Footnote ** The author is no stranger to bringing home stray animals and her father used to say, “Thank God elephants never get lost!”
Valentine’s Day is a myopic, narrow-minded holiday solely dependent on Hallmark, hearts, flowers, chocolate, and guilt. That’s why I’ve come up with the innovative idea of merging Valentine’s Day with different national holidays so you get the added bonus of other celebrations and traditions to back up your intense sentiments.
Because sometimes LOVE is just not enough!
Forget Food Combining, I’ve Got Holiday Combining! Ready??
Feb 14 + Dec. 31st – You say you want a resolution? Well then write down some of your New Year Lover’s Resolutions that you’ll vow to keep this time. I’ll start you off…1. Even though now Little Miss Menopause is advocating Holiday Integration, I will no longer combine my mate’s birthday gift with our anniversary gift. 2. I will no longer snoop through my significant other’s pockets to see what they’ve been up to. I will be more hip and snoop thru their cellphone instead. 3. In restaurants, I will no longer annoyingly eat off their plate because I will already have swapped it for my own meal, since they always order better anyhow.
Feb 14 + Martin Luther King Day– Call up the love of your life and say, “I have a dream! That one day we will go out for Frozen Yogurt and instead of each of us ordering a separate small-sized chocolate and vanilla, we will integrate both delectable dairy desserts together using that important middle lever, rejoicing as we watch both light and dark flavors swirl together into one harmonious large-sized cone!” If your partner finds this unacceptable, (or inquires as to the color of your toppings) resist the urge to call him a bigot and instead change your romantic speech to, “I have a scheme!” Then proceed to outline a devious plot regarding your mother-in-law.
Feb 14 + GroundHog Day — Work with me here, ok? Forget Punxsutawney Phil. Too hard to pronounce. In fact Change “Hog” to “Horse” and substitute seeing his “shadow” for seeing a “saddle.” Now we’re talking major romance! Blast Aerosmith’s hit song,”Back in the Saddle Again!” (stay with me now, alright?) as you drive down to a ranch that rents horses. Here’s the kicker–even though you’re two people, rent just ONE horse and sit in the saddle facing each other, which demonstrates unbridled passion. Don’t be a neighsayer just yet –this also proves you love each other enough to be saddled with all the responsibility that comes with it and that your relationship is stable, even if you do stirrup trouble sometimes. What does this have to do with Groundhog’s Day you ask? Oh get off your high horse already — absolutely nothing. It’s just creative.
Feb 14 + Rosa Parks Day — Ever do it on the back of a bus??
Feb 14 + Lincoln’s Birthday — In honor of Honest Abe, you must confess any lies you’ve told your sweetheart, I don’t care if they are just white lies. Speaking of white, I’m getting to the freeing of the slaves part. If you’re female, denounce all housework for the day. If you’re male, take your secretary out to eat and tell her you’re done being a slavedriver. Note: The latter is liable to evoke jealousy in your wife so justify you’re also combining Valentine’s Day with Take Your Secretary to Lunch Day!
Feb 14 + Daylight’s Saving Time –Set all the clocks and watches in your home and car back one hour. This will make you so late that you’ll lose your reservation at that crowded, overpriced restaurant and have to eat at McDonalds. Now you can celebrate your frugality as a couple.
Feb 14 + Easter – Baskets, baby. It’s all about the wicker. Any gift you give each other should be in one. Also bunnies. You know what they do, right? Get busy in the cellophane green grass!
Feb 14 + Passover — Doesn’t matter if you’re not Jewish. Serve your lover matzo in between the sheets then say, “See? I’d never throw you out of bed for eating crackers!” Invent an 11th plague. It should have something to do with raining condoms.
Feb 14 + St. Patrick’s Day — This will ingeniously be all about holiday colors. Ready? Take red from Valentine’s and combine it with green for St. Paddy’s and what do you get? Christmas! Brilliant! You’ve just covered three holidays now! But you should still take this opportunity to pinch your mate compulsively.
Feb 14 + Cinco De Mayo – You have a large sombrero? A sarape to hide behind? Great! Have her shake her maracas and we’re talking a very “buenas noches!”
Feb 14 + Take Your Daughter To Work Day — If you’re tired and want to guarantee there won’t be any “action” tonight, then tweak this holiday combination just a tad. Let your little girl stay home from your office and watch Cinderella instead. But do participate in”Take your Husband to the Gynecologist” day. Trust me, he’ll never get over it.
Feb 14 + Halloween — You dress in a french maid’s costume while your hubby is Iron Man. Knock on your neighbors’ doors, hand them your cellphone for a Selfie while yelling,”Click or Tweet!” You’ll soon break Twitter if everyone participates.
Feb 14 + Thanksgiving – Express your extreme gratitude to your mate that you’re with someone nice and normal because you could could have ended up with a real whacko like me.
Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone! Leave me a comment and tell me how you’ll actually celebrate…
You better have a seat before reading this — in case you’re as shocked as I am. Or maybe not! I’d love to take credit for creating this catchy warning phrase, but a quick internet search brings up headlines screaming the same sentiment for the past few years — like this one RIGHT HERE
Beware of the Chair!! But seriously? They’re asserting that you can never have puffed a cigarette a day in your life but (even with daily strenuous exercise) your chances of heart-attacks/strokes are the same as a smoker’s . . . if you spend the rest of your time sitting.
“Sitting is the New Smoking!”
This gives new meaning to addictions and begs the following questions…
- If you have a problem with more than 4 sofas a day, are you a chain sitter?
- Should you gradually wean yourself off La-Z-Boy recliners, or just quit cold turkey?
- After good sex, how likely are you to have the urge to reach for a barstool?
- Can you tell by someone’s breath and smell on their clothing that they are a heavy sitter?
- Is it still legal for restaurants to have sitting and non-sitting sections in their dining rooms?
- If you’re a super active person but your spouse is a couch potato, are you being subjected to second-hand chairs?
But the real point is…
“This Is The New That!”
It started with our ages, “50 is the new 40.” And the television show, “Orange is the new Black.” Now anything is fair game. So here we go…
- Hugs are the new allowance!
- Bath tubs are the new swimming pools.
- Hatchimals are the new puppy under the Christmas tree!
- Cellphone Trackers are the new “Call to let me know you arrived safely.”
- Google is the new library.
- 155 lbs is the new 125 lbs.
- Tossing & Turning and Night Sweats are the new gym workout.
- Gray is the new blonde.
- Nutella is the new breakfast of champions
- “You’re a jerk, I deserve better!” is the new, “It’s not you, it’s me.”
For Men: (a little throwback in time!)
- “Come over for a home cooked meal” is the OLD “meet you at Starbucks.”
- Opening car doors for females is the OLD click your remote keyless entry.
- A goodnight kiss is the OLD blowjob.
- A perfumed love letter is the OLD sexting.
- Sleeping on the couch after a fight is the OLD sleeping with her best friend.
- His Girl Friday is the OLD Siri.
Disclaimer: It is highly recommended when perusing this blog, that you be (at the very least) sitting in a rigorous rocking chair so you aren’t endangering your health with stationary sitting. Also nobody can accuse you of being “Off Your Rocker” for reading Little Miss Menopause. 😉
After my recent auto crash, the insurance agent told me I could file a claim for loss of wages. Only I thought she said “pages.” Gee, what a nice way to treat writers, validating us just like any other reputable, steady employee.
And it was true! I hadn’t written anything remotely funny since the accident. Gee, I never thought of attributing this to my head injury. But look what a simple tornado did for Dorothy!
What I need is some professionally documented medical evidence.
Me: Hi! Since my auto accident, I can’t make people laugh anymore.
Neurologist: Are you sure? Have you seen your hair today?
Me: Haha. Could you just do one of those magnetic resonance imaging diagnostics with contrast dye of my right hemisphere, focusing on my cerebellum, pons and medulla. And maybe my amygdala and frontal cortex?
Neurologist: You can throw that important-sounding terminology you learned in high school biology at me all you want, but none of it will explain why you’re such a hack writer.
Me: Hey, watch it! Okay, then just scan my brain real quick, print out a copy, and circle/draw professional doctor arrows to the part where my sense of humor used to be, so I can submit it with my claim.
Neurologist: Look Ms. Menopause, I’m afraid it just doesn’t work that way.
Me: Fine. Can you just sign this piece of paper agreeing that I’m now dull and boring?
Neurologist: With pleasure.
What I need are some real witnesses who remember how hilarious I once was.
Me: Kids, do you recall a few months ago we went to Disneyland and then the next day, with my trusty laptop, I turned what was just a basic, typical family outing into an uproarious, creative adventure — writing us into scenes from Cinderella, Aladdin, Mary Poppins, and Shawshank Redemption? It was so humorous, even The Huffington Post published it.
Daughter: You mean when you barfed all the way through Space Mountain?
Me: Yes, I simply changed my character action to “barked” all the way through Space Mountain. And it was a real knee-slapper, remember?
Daughter: Yes. Sorta. Kinda. No.
Me: Okay, well I need to prove that if we had that exact same experience today, there’s no way I could write anything amusing.
Son: Yippy! C’mon everyone, get in the car! Mom’s taking us back to Disneyland for the weekend!
Me: Yeah, not happening. No lawsuit is worth that.
What I need is an ex-husband willing to testify.
Ex: Let me get this straight, you want me to go into court telling a jury how much I used to howl with laughter at you when we were married?
Me: Exactly. And now you don’t even crack a smile.
Ex: That’s because I don’t see you getting undressed or cooking anymore.
Me: Well can you just say it’s the direct result of that fateful last drive in my car?
Ex: Your driving is no laughing matter.
What I need are a few humor writer girlfriends to sign some affidavits on my behalf.
Bethany: Stephanie, give it a rest. We’re all happy you’re still alive, but honestly we’re relieved you haven’t blogged much since your accident. You were NEVER the least bit funny.
Me: What??! Why do I even have you as a friend? You’ve always been so competitive with me and you’re just jealous of my wicked sense of humor! Why, even your name “Bethany” sounds an awful lot like “Stephanie.”
Tiffany: I suppose that goes for my name too? Ha. Don’t make us laugh.
Destiny: Yeah, that’s pretty hilarious. She’s actually a freakin’ side-splitter now. The blow to the head must’ve knocked some humor into her.
That was it! I’ve been approaching this thing backwards. Instead of suing the insurance company for my loss of humor, I need to write the driver who hit me a thank-you note. Because now I’m a complete riot with lots of new car accident material I can use in a stand-up routine! I can even take this act on the road. Well, maybe not quite the road — just the sidewalk… with the rest of the droll, but perfectly safe pedestrians.
And you probably already love this crook dearly! That’s right — If you possess a mobile phone and live with other cell users, a terrible crime occurs in your home at least several times a week.
Your phone charger is either being (A) used without your consent (B) swapped for a seemingly identical, but ever so slightly different charger (different in that the replacement one looks like a starved rat gnawed through the end of it) or (C) blatantly snatched right out of the innocent grasp of your usual friendly outlet, never to be seen or heard from again.
Hanging up posters like this will be totally ineffective.
Here are some insidious indications that you’re either about to fall victim — or if you’re already missing your charger, it is NOT the result of your poor menopausal memory, which many would love for you to believe.
10 Tips To Detect Cell-Charger Foul Play
- Anyone who casually asks you, “Hey, have you seen my charger around the family room today?” is immediately suspect because if they can’t find their own, this means they’ve already set their sights longingly on YOURS, which you believe is safely sequestered behind your locked bedroom door.
- Careful of wrapping a piece of uniquely colored duct tape around your charger cord. Such “defective” tape can inadvertently slide right off in the slick hands of a CCCC (Charismatic Cell Charger Coveter) and suddenly you have no identifying mark to point to when trying to assert your position of ownership.
- And don’t get overconfident and think scrawling your initials on just the plug part will do the trick. The initial “P” can effortlessly be converted into “B.” And an “H” can easily morph into an “A” (in the
rightwrong hands!) and before you know it, your cell charger can justifiably be claimed by someone named “Benedict Arnold.”
- Think you’re safe because in all capital letters, you spelled out your first, middle, and last name (in Sharpie pen!) all over the darn thing? Think again. Remember that “As Seen on TV Miracle Permanent Stain Remover” you ordered which failed miserably to scrub the tiny indelible ink mark off your leather sofa? That sucker suddenly works like a charm!
- Warning! Seemingly helpful children who regularly play the card game, “Old Maid” (skilled at palming off the ugly spinster woman with crossed eyes and multiple chin hairs!) are instantly experts at redistributing previously mixed-up chargers, making sure you end up with the one in exceedingly ill-repair.
- Beware! Your daughter (who often gains your sympathy) by showing you her home screen so you can affirm she has only 1 measly flashing bar left) will one day tip her hand, revealing a screenshot pic taken at 1% battery which she permanently relies on to strengthen her fraudulent case of a dying cellphone. She won’t intend for you to see this, and that’s why it’s known as a “Fraud-ian Slip.”
- Household members who know you’re deathly afraid of spiders will enthusiastically shout, “Wow! Would you get a load of that black widow crawling on the INSIDE of our window, right where mom does the dishes!” When you run screaming from the kitchen, that’s when the heist is adeptly pulled off.
- Anyone who is overheard using the term, “Frayed” and subsequently witnessed performing strange, delicate balancing acts consisting of holding their hands at weird angles or building a platform out of blocks or tupperware, while charging their phone with something that resembles this . . . and the next day is seen strolling jauntily around the house, whistling a carefree rendition of “When the Saints Go Marching In!” (while sporting a charger that’s miraculously healed) should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law!
- Take a hint from often burglarized neighborhoods and form a “Bedroom Watch Program.” Have a designated individual patrolling unattended cords after dark so people can sleep soundly. Report unexpected “unplugging sounds” or “yanking noises” promptly.
- Resist the urge to show concern or compassion to anyone who frequently utters phrases like, “I’m running dangerously low and expecting a job offer to come in the next ten minutes.” And if they desperately whisper, “Oh my god, I think I’m about to die any second!” do not hesitate to put your finger on the inside of their wrist while sweetly responding, “You’ve got a good, strong pulse there, soldier!” Then demurely add, “But Bravo! Now go try your act on your sister because she already “borrowed” my cell charger an hour ago.”
Are you bombarded with companies asking you to fill out customer satisfaction surveys, enter sweepstakes/contests, and even requests to call designated phone numbers to report your feedback?
It’s time to turn the tables with some unique variations for your own personal life!
“HOW’S MY DRIVING??”
“How’s My Cooking?” Post this bumper sticker on the kitchen microwave with the number “1-800-INEDIBLE.” Forward all phone calls to your local Dominos Pizza.
“How’s My Lovemaking?” Leave this placard conspicuously under a pillow and only field the obscene phone calls giving off-the-chart glowing reports.
“How’s My Parenting?” Follow this up with the direct cellphone number to the parent of your child’s very best friend . . . so they can finally receive the correct feedback you ALWAYS inadvertently end up hearing. “So & So’s mom always lets her wear short shorts with platform heels to school everyday!” and “So & So’s dad says buying a 16-year-old a brand new Mercedes reinforces taking care of nice things.”
“Punisher’s Clearing House Sweepstakes!” Cash, Prizes, & Trips! Motivate your child to think about what they’ve learned during their Time-Out discipline by having them submit a 300 word handwritten essay. Tell them last year’s winning entry was creatively titled, “Thank Goodness Washing Mouths Out With Bars of Soap is Now Considered Child Abuse!” In the small print, have a legal disclaimer stating there are a few minor typos and “Cash, Prizes, & Trips” is really “Squash, Pretzels & Chips” — AKA their after school snack — when they emerge from their bedroom as the lucky recipient!
“Enter Raffle To Win Giant Shopping Spree!” Darn that pesky keyboard. That should read, “Mopping Spree!” Sponsored by Swiffer, of course.
“You Could Be Holding The Next Instant Winner!” Sheesh, really need to fire that proofreader on this whole contest copy thing. This one is sponsored by Lipton Noodle Soup — just add water and you’re holding Your Next Instant Dinner!
Instead of writing in the comment section about the food and service on the back of your restaurant check, give the quaint cafe a survey to fill out for YOU for once!
- What’s your favorite menu item listed under PASTA to cook for your patrons? Don’t you think $29.99 is a bit much to charge for just noodles and sauce?
- When did you first get the idea to keep your prices the same but slash the portion sizes in half?
- Do your chefs spit in our food when it comes back into the kitchen for a do-over or do they just drop it on the floor?
- When your waitress flirts with my boyfriend by touching his shoulder a lot, does she realize I leave the tip?
- On a scale of 1-10 please rate your experience with your customers regarding the following:
a) Knowledge of that old adage, “The customer is always right.”
b) Dietary Restrictions and how slappable our faces are in proportion to how many food allergy intolerances we actually have.
c) Weight Watchers wondering how many points your creamy caramel cheesecake is on our silly plan.
d) Regular diners who feel we’ve earned the right to pinch the bottoms of your cocktail servers.
Thank you! We’ll let you know how your answers modify our choosing your establishment on our next night out.
Social Media Marketing
Don’t just cozy up to random new buddies and pals in real life anymore. Ask them to go online first and tweet about how fun you are for a chance to register for monthly membership where you’ll explain how they can earn extra points by signing up for your Friendship Loyalty Rewards Program. After twelve months of swiping their card, they’ll earn a free invitation to your birthday party, a $100 value.
Let me know when you go to leave a comment here if WordPress asks you to rate them with something like this:
They’re not allowed to do that on MY blog today!!
Youngsters everywhere are getting apology letters from Santa because he’s unable to get his mitts on enough of those wondrous Hatchimals. Yep, parents have gotten smart and are making Santa take full responsibility for lazy procrastinating on buying the most sought after toy this holiday season.
BUT AS ALWAYS, I TAKE THINGS A STEP FURTHER . . .
Template: Santa’s Apology to Jewish Children PLUS A FAVOR!
Shalom Jewish Kinder,
Oy vey, I’m terribly sorry you’re not getting that latest meshuganah fad hatching toy but as you know, you’re not on my gift distribution route — so when I fly by on my sled, sadly I must pass over your house. (Perhaps this is the real meaning of why you celebrate Passover?) Please know however that it’s the thought that counts and I think about you often. I also think about your poor, exhausted parents who must come up with a new and exciting gift on each of the 8 nights of Chanukah. That’s EIGHT! Non-Jewish children are also feeling slighted they don’t get to stretch out Christmas for a week like you do. A great solution to these dilemmas would be that on just a few nights (let’s say an even six) your gifts will be things like socks, underwear, toothbrushes, and those cool refrigerator magnets the local pizza place gives out. Thank you for your understanding and maybe in your next lifetime we’ll be closer buddies.
Happy Chanukah (or however you choose to spell that)
BUT WHY STOP THERE?
Template: The Tooth Fairy is Switching Careers!
Hey there Toothless Tot!
Since I’ve now surpassed the age of Tinkerbell, I’m realizing in my line of work that having a good memory is important. Wait, who am I older than again? Anyhow tooth be told, I’m no longer collecting your pearly whites, but instead I’m into recycling glass and plastics so I can save up for a dream cruise to Europe. Each time you bring the bin out by the curbside every Thursday morning, I’ll leave you one of your old teeth under your pillow. When the new guy takes over my old position, you’ll be all set to start raking in the bucks again. It’s no skin off my teeth to make this offer and it’s a win/win for us both. Whadya say?
Also the Easter Bunny just texted me. The crux of the message was that Halloween infringes a lot on the whole candy concept, so he’s now gonna fill baskets with carrots instead. There’s an option for celery, but if he doesn’t hear a real strong preference, it’ll default back to those orange sticks that make your eyesight better.
Wistfully Your Winged Wonder,
The Former Tooth Fairy
AWW, WHAT THE HECK, IT’S WORTH A TRY . . .
Template: A Terrible Crime Has Taken Place To Someone You Depend On!
To The Family Who Is Accustomed To Everything Being Done For Them,
Recently you may have observed that the contents of your refrigerator have dwindled down to eight fuzzy strawberries, a jar of mint jelly, and a box of Arm & Hammer baking soda. You may have also noticed your clothes not getting magically folded and neatly stacked in your drawers, but instead confined to a laundry basket downstairs. And what about the empty toilet paper dispensers, you ask? And the dust piling up on the piano? Why are there no more Post-It reminders surfacing on the front door, so you don’t forget to grab your pre-packed lunch as you slam out of the house each morning?
There’s a tragic reason for all these changes. We have kidnapped “The Labor Leprechaun” and are holding her captive in the lint trap of the dryer. Let this strange bulletin also serve as a cryptic ransom note. If you want order to be restored in your home once more — beginning this evening, a homemade dinner must be cooked (complete with table set/cleared and dishes washed/dried) nightly if you ever want to see another vacuumed carpet. Do not attempt to alert the authorities at Good Housekeeping magazine, or you’ll never see your beloved Labor Leprechaun again.
Santa, The Tooth Fairy, and The Easter Bunny
Why does standing in line for food bring out the DMV in people? This holiday season, do you know how to categorize the people at your buffets? Don’t worry if you don’t – I’m doing it for you right now. Soon you’ll have a clever classification for each of your family, friends, or coworkers. Just think — you’ll be able to easily identify who you saw last night at Thanksgiving or at upcoming Christmas/New year’s parties. Now you can label all your guests just like you label the chafing dishes. You’re welcome!
19 Types of People You’ll Meet at Holiday Buffets!
- The Buffeter Surveyer – These folks have read “helpful” articles with advice on handling smorgasbords. They know to approach the buffet in a calm, relaxed manner and to always have a predetermined game plan, which includes perusing all the offerings from one end to the other before making their final selections. They also know to use a smaller-sized salad plate to fool their mind into thinking they’re eating more! They’ll still pack on five pounds like the rest of us. These people are first cousins with “The Buffeter Weigher Conveyers” (See below)
- The Buffeter Overstayer – Buffets are their home base. They’ll linger, integrating all kinds of tasks – talking, eating, wiping, consulting, organizing, refilling, and generally becoming a permanent fixture by the soup. Not compatible with the next type…
- The Buffeter Get-Out-of-My-Wayer! – They mean business. Napkin tucked, first in line, making appreciative sounds, as you wonder if a nearby farmer forgot to take attendance in his barnyard today. Not to be confused with this next one . . .
- The Buffeter Wrong-Wayer — Always starting at the opposite end. You’d think they’d get a clue while they’re carrying food in their bare hands, because the plates are on the other side.
- The Buffeter Prayer Sayer – The Jewish buffeter who recites blessings over each food group and requests take-home Tupperware because without a To-Go container, forty years is a long time to wander through the desert. (But forty minutes is just the right amount of time to wonder through the dessert!)
- The Buffeter Cabareter – Hums songs about eating. Often heard belting out, “Food, Glorious Food” from Oliver or “Be Our Guest!”
- The Buffeter Delayer – You know they want food, they know they want food, but they sit until the last person gets up, not wanting to appear to be overeager. Soon you’ll overhear them whispering, “Shame she didn’t prepare enough food,” because half the serving platters were empty when they finally approached.
- The Buffeter Weigher Conveyer – Announces the calories in water and whips out a little kitchen scale for an official cranberry calibration. Do you know how many points creamed spinach count for on Weight-Watchers? Well, you will now.
- The Buffeter Betrayer – Intimately acquainted with the hostess, they won’t hesitate to spill the beans. Yes, even the pintos. “That salad isn’t really organic, Ha!” And, “It’s still just a Costco pumpkin pie, even if it’s sitting on a plate with a fancy doily.” Or, “Skip the baked potatoes, the skins weren’t washed.” Bribe them to keep their mouth shut with the promise of filling it with their choice of leftovers at the end.
- The Buffeter Okayer – You’ll not meet a more pleasant, jovial person in line. The answers to the following questions will always be “Okay!” 1. Can I go in front of you? 2. How’ve you been since last Thanksgiving? 3. Do you think I should help myself to goosing cousin Ruth as she helps herself to some goose?
- The Buffeter Layerer – Obsessed with rearranging the sumptuous spread, even digging through layers of turkey or yams looking for who knows what. Tongs are their favorite tool of choice, but they can function just as well with a spatula too.
- The Buffeter Bouqueter – Gardening types who salivate at your floral centerpieces. Prefers Roasted Red Roses or Fried Fuschia Freesia to light or dark turkey parts.
- The Buffeter Halfwayer – They nearly get to the end of the food display when they realize they forgot to grab a ladle full of salad dressing some twelve platters back. Now they’re gonna stand frozen and flummoxed in line, wondering how they can politely go backwards. Say this, “Aunt Jodie, want me to get you some ranch?” Problem solved.
- The Buffeter Clichér – This guy’s vocabulary is stuffed (fuller than the turkey!) with silly puns and double entendres. While staring at the carved bird, he’ll elbow you roughly while remarking, “Looks scary… It’s a Goblin! Get it?” Or “I’m suddenly in a fowl mood!” Simply tell him you gave up laughing at inane jokes “cold turkey” and move along.
- The Buffeter FoulPlayer – If it’s accidental, it can be forgiven – but youngster buffet-goers will drop a cherry tomato into the honey-mustard to see if it floats or sinks. That’s just the beginning of the havoc they’ll wreak. I hesitate to offer more examples, lest I offer more ideas.
- The Jimmy Buffeter – Knows all the lyrics to “Wasting Away in Margaritaville” and will get a real kick out of you handing him the pepper when he sings, “Searching for my last shaker of salt.”
- The Warren Buffeter – When you ask for some tips, he doles out financial advice. You just meant asparagus tips.
- The Buffeter OyVeyer – “Oy vey, my doctor says my triglycerides are high.” Ask them what a triglyceride is and they’ll just sigh deeply while reiterating, “Oy vey, I really shouldn’t be eating this.” Or worse, “Oy vey, should YOU really be eating that?”
- The Buffeter Essayer – Someone closely observing buffet behavior in the hopes of writing a semi-humorous blog. The nerve.
Did I leave anyone you know out?? Happy Holidays!
- Oh you’re doing that super irritating, sudden jerky movement thing with your body again. Having a dream, I suppose. Must be nice. Could’ve invited me. Of course you have to actually fall asleep to be included! Well I hope it morphs into a nightmare and you’re wide awake. Misery loves
- Those very capable hands of yours just sitting there useless on the sheets for 6-8 hours every night. Someone should invent a way to harness the energy of a pair of hands for back massages, while the owner of the arms they’re attached to continues sleeping, none the wiser. It could be like a “Snoozing Toll.” Direct compensation to your restless bedfellow who has to just stare begrudgingly as you slumber.
- What was that loud noise coming from downstairs? Nobody else is home! I’ll give it three minutes and if the bedroom door doesn’t burst open, then I’ll know I imagined it and mercifully, I won’t wake you.
- I could pretend to talk in my sleep and say really bizarre things I could never be held responsible for. And you would never know I’m not really sleeping. Because APPARENTLY YOU ARE!!
- I wonder what the statistics are for the number of people who kick or hit others in their sleep?
- Okay what was THAT noise? Two minutes!
- There should really be a pillow-flipping mechanism that senses when your pillow is too warm and automatically turns it over to the cooler side. Why is there no app for that?
- “You’re under arrest for stealing the covers. You have the right to remain silent. Because every grunt, groan, snore, snort, loud breathing, and sniffle is already being used against you.”
- I wonder how many songs there are about sleeping? The only one I can think of is “The Lion Sleeps Tonight.” That seems like an open field for a writer like me to compete in. Ugh, never mind. There’s all these too, right HERE.
- How many words can I make from the letters in INSOMNIA? 1.minion 2.mansion 3.amino 4.moans 5. man. Man, this is a really stupid game.
- If a tree falls in a forest with nobody around to hear it, does it really make a sound? If I shout “Sex!” right now in this bedroom while my partner is sound asleep, do I really need to follow-thru? Aristotle and Socrates got started this way.
- Maybe this is all a dream and I’m actually sleeping.
- Another noise! You are so lucky I’m giving it the benefit of the doubt and not waking you up.
- There’s no more lit-up digital clock radio on my nightstand to watch the minutes literally change before my eyes. Gosh, those were the days. “Boy the way Glenn Miller played…Songs that made the hit parade….Guys like us we had it made….Those were the days.” I wonder if the actress who played Edith Bunker really sang that bad?
- Look at you. Just laying there. Breathing in. Breathing out. Rhythmic, pathetic fool.
- I’m hungry. I’m starving. It might be fun to actually get thrown out of bed for eating crackers.
- The downstairs noise has stopped. But I have a good mind to tell you in the morning that you slept through a burglary while I bravely cornered the armed robber with a baseball bat and the police came with loud sirens and now I have a medal of honor for bravery. But you’re just going to the slammer for stealing covers.
- What would you look like if I french-braided your hair, drew cat whiskers on your face with my eyeliner, and put a clown nose on you?
- Why didn’t I fork out the money for that super expensive mattress where one side stays perfectly flat, but the other side sits up at a 70 degree angle, vibrates and plays backgammon with you?
- Some boring one-night stand you are, fellow! If I wanted to stay up all night alone…I never would have picked you up from that nightclub. Sheesh, lose my number immediately!!
What’s your most common thought when you can’t sleep?
Do you have an extra room in your home (maybe your child went off to college?) with nothing but a lonely comfortable bed for someone to sleep in, and a silly roomy dresser for someone to store their clothing in? Frivolous much?! Now you can transform that eyesore into something . . . ELSE!
First a list of special ideas this unused space can easily be converted to:
- A Sewing Room — (For all the times you can never find that tiny needle and spool of thread)
- A Gift-Wrapping Nook — (Your junk closet will thank you. It can go back to just storing junk) Now you can display rolls of paper, tissue, bags, bows, ribbon, scissors, tape, and last minute presents from the dollar store right on the walls. “Pegboard: It’s not just for garages anymore!”
- A Ping-Pong Table/Shuffleboard Room — (think of all the money you’ll save going on cruises.
- A library — So what if everyone’s books are now on a Kindle. That’s not the point. The point IS you get to have a cool ladder that slides along the walls. But you must call it a library because you can hardly call it, “Belle’s Favorite Room From That Beauty and the Beast Scene.”
- A mudroom! — Because you currently have a place to recreate fond childhood memories making mud-pies (with daisies on top) exactly where right now?? Trust me, you need this!
- Jewelry & Scarf Room — You fashionista, you!
- A Home Theatre — My personal choice (see below) because one day my book will be adapted into a script and after I win the Oscar for best original screenplay, I will need a private area to screen my movie for all my jealous friends, where I don’t get mobbed by paparazzi.
- A Parlor (Honestly never knew what this room was, but it sounds like you should serve ice-cream in it.)
- A Contemplation Room — Just give this idea some thought!
- A Morning Room — Each day at exactly 8 am, you’ll throw open the glamourous drapes, so the bright sun streams in everywhere and … I’m getting a headache.
- The Treat Room — Feeling a bit snacky? Here’s where you store all the Godiva chocolate and Nutella that nobody else is entitled to.
- Need I go on listing more room ideas?? Just take any passion/hobby you have and turn it into a dedicated room, okay? Sheesh!
9 Important Steps To Complete This Enormous Project:
- Have a garage sale and sell the comfortable bed and roomy dresser.
- What are you, a complete idiot? Announce to everyone that you’ll have the remodel completed by Thanksgiving so you have something to be grateful for. (Without a contrived deadline, this sucker ain’t never getting done!)
- If you’re putting in a home theatre (the only practical choice listed above, as far as I’m concerned) start stocking up on things for your cute little concession stand which is the only reason to put in a Media Room. Don’t forget to knock yourself out trying to find Flicks candy these days, because if you’re my age, it was synonymous with movie theatres!
- Have someone build a 2 ft. riser in the floor (again only necessary if you’re doing a home theatre, so people in the back row can see your concession stand.)
- Hang a white sheet on the wall for the fancy projection system to display the movies on. After spending all your money on other things in this room, you’ll need to save money by doing this. And what? Do you really think the screen is going to be the focal point in this room anyway??
- Hang framed movie posters and kitschy signs all over the walls, even though when you go out to the movies, you NEVER see any of this stuff inside an actual cinema.
- Make a long list of people you want to invite over to watch a special movie so they’ll feel guilty and reciprocate by having you back over their house for dinner. Do you think it’s easier to entertain folks with a gourmet meal or just starting a DVD with the flick of your wrist? Duh!
- Recycle those tacky purple drapes (see photo below) from your master bedroom straight into the new Home Theatre Room. Nobody thinks purple looks cheesy in a theater!
- Answer the phone and apologize to your children by saying, “Sorry kids, I didn’t think you were coming home this year for the holidays. You’ll have to get a hotel room for sleeping and storing your clothing in. But be sure and come over to watch Miracle on 34th Street on our professional equipment. Why yes, you DO have a practical mother, don’t you??”
What would you turn a spare room into? Here’s my DIY pics!
Forget the typical advice you read about improving communication and adding romance. My list is guaranteed!
- Swap Should for Could! Every time you start to tell your partner what they “should” do, switch to saying “could” instead. Example, “Today you could clean out the garage, organize your DVD collection, walk the dog, and take the kids to the park. Oh and you could also be the one who initiates sex tonight by starting out giving me a massage.” Rather than feeling pressure from you with your typical “shoulds,” they’ll thank you for having so much confidence in their grand potential!
- That’s The Way The Cookie Crumbles! Keep a journal with all the criticisms you have of your partner and when you have thirteen items, that’s enough for a baker’s dozen. Cookies, that is. Make that Fortune Cookies! That’s right, you will no longer criticize your partner, the convenient Chinese dessert will do it for you. Take a tweezers and carefully extract the original slip of paper from the cookie (because really, do those lotto numbers ever win?) then carefully stuff in your new little typed message. “Confucius says you will shave more often.” Or “One who is all knowing thinks you spend too much money at Nordstrom.” Always serve lots of rice at all your meals to justify opening fortune cookies afterwards.
- Send Anonymous Gifts! No, you don’t make your partner the recipient, silly! That’s totally old school and do they really need another coffee mug with “I’m allergic to mornings” on it, anyway? These surprise presents are FOR YOU. And they get periodically delivered to your front doorstep by an anonymous source, right? Of course right! Watch your partner have renewed appreciation for your attractiveness. If someone else finds you worthy enough to buy you presents, they’re going to be extra intrigued by you now. Because what could someone else possibly see in you?? They better find out fast!
- Zero Solutions It’s been said that men try to fix things too much and would be better off just listening. But this advice is really for everyone because truly nobody wants their problems to actually get solved. It would strip them of their identity. So after your mate confides in you their latest crisis, say cheerfully, “I completely understand what you’re going through and not even in a million years, would I have absolutely any idea how to help you. It’s such a shame you’re in this no-win situation.” Watch how happy they get that you’ve acknowledged what a loser they are!
- Bake. Hey, realtors do it for a delicious scent to sell houses. You don’t think a wafting chocolate smell from the kitchen can improve your relationship?
- Lights, Camera, Action! Go out to the movies and then talk afterwards. Sure, you could discuss the plot, the special effects, or the price of popcorn these days. But far better to instead ask your mate if your looks could hold a candle to the star of the film? If they pause too long, stammer and stutter, you can immediately pout and look dejected. If they say, “Yes of course, you’re just as attractive as that stud or babe!” You can accuse them of lying through their teeth. Either way, you are now in prime position to embark on some great make-up sex back at home. See if you even make it past the front door!
- Read This Blog Aloud! You partner will ask, “What in God’s name is that drivel? Agree that the two of you could write a blog far funnier than this junk. Bingo, you’ve got a collaborative project to do together!
- Mumble! Instead of shouting during an argument, lower the volume until your voice gets softer and softer. They’ll be craning their head toward you with wild curiosity to catch even part of what you’re saying. For the grand finalé, (because everyone loves a good secret!)… lean forward and whisper into their ear, “You’re such a jerk!”
- Mirror Your Mate! No, don’t copy them. Write something really scary on the mirror in shaving cream or lipstick. Tell them it was the cleaning lady and now the two of you have a common enemy.
- Banish Boring! Everyone knows couples get into dull ruts. So just do the opposite of what they expect and that way you’ll be completely unpredictable. You can even announce proudly, “From now on, you should expect the unexpected!” After a while, they’ll find this spontaneous, impulsive side of you to be a routine snooze-fest. That’s when you get to go back to being your true self. And now they’ll find that so refreshing!
- To-Do List! Does your partner feel like they are always the last priority in your life? Here’s a way to turn that around, showing them you save the best for last! Leave a list of chores in a blatant place where your partner is sure to see it. It can contain things like “Pay bills, clean oven, mow lawn, grocery shop, help kids with homework, etc.” And there at the bottom will be their name in all caps. But you should also add, “When I’ve done all of these things, I get to spend time with mate’s name. They’ll be so flattered to see that they are your reward, (they’ll also feel sorry you obviously have so much to do before it’s their turn) that they’ll do the entire list for you!
Disclaimer: In the intro of this blog, it says “My list is guaranteed!” It does NOT specify for what.
Sometimes a piece of “wise” advice backfires on you. When I was just 18, I had an unusual insecurity — a belief that certain people in my life might be upset with me. And not just slightly miffed. We’re talking thoroughly outraged or really furious. Only nobody ever voiced it. Instead they just gave me dirty looks, or treated me differently.
But was this an accurate perception or could I be imagining things?
My therapist (who was probably thrilled this was one of my more straightforward issues) had a simple cure. She told me, “Just ask them.”
Now why didn’t I think of that? Here’s how that’s worked out for me so far.
With Tiffany, My Oldest Girlfriend:
Me: Hi Tiff. I’m feeling like you’ve been treating me differently lately. Are you mad at me?
Tiffany: Are you getting neurotic again?
Me: Maybe. Would that make you mad?
Tiffany: Because last time you got weird like this, we had to do that friendship circle thingy where we joined hands and recalled boys we liked in 6th grade and frankly I’m menopausal now and can’t even remember what I ate for breakfast.
With My First Husband:
Me: Are you mad?
1st Husband: Stephanie, I am not mad. Mad means insane.
Me: Sorry. I meant are you angry?
1st Husband: I am very irritated.You call yourself a writer and haven’t learned this difference by now?
With My Mother:
Me: Hi Ma. I’ve been feeling like you could be angry with me recently. Thought I’d check. Are you?
My Mother: No. But IF I were angry with you, what might it be for?
Me: Um. Maybe I don’t call you often enough?
My Mother: Could that be true?
Me: No, I don’t think so.
My Mother: Well what other reason do you suppose there could be?
Me: Uh, last Mother’s Day, I promised we’d go to lunch and we haven’t?
My Mother: Warmer . . .
With My Daughter:
Me: Are you upset with me for something?
Daughter: Is that your way of saying I’m in big trouble?
Daughter: You know. You reverse things. You’re really the one upset with me, right? Just tell me, Mom!
With My Second Husband:
Me: We hardly talk anymore. Are you angry with me?
2nd Husband: No.
Me: Okay good, just checking.
2nd Husband: You do that a lot.
Me: I know. I’ve learned in therapy not to make assumptions. I’m glad everything is fine.
2nd Husband: Yes. But we should get a divorce.
With My Neighbor:
Me: When I saw you at the mailbox yesterday, you didn’t wave back. Are you upset with me?
Me: Well would you tell me if you were?
With My Fiancé:
Me: Hi. Are you angry with me?
Fiancé: You’d know if I were angry.
Me: I thought I did know. But I wanted to ask to confirm.
Fiancé: I’ve told you before, if I’m angry I’ll tell you directly.
Me: About how soon do you think you’d announce it?
Fiancé: Immediately. I wouldn’t conceal it.
Me: Are you insinuating that I conceal it? That I am passive aggressive?
Fiancé: What? Certainly not! Now you’re just mad.
Me: Don’t you mean angry? Because mad means a raving lunatic or crazy.
Fiancé: I know exactly what mad means.
With My Therapist:
Me: I’m so angry with you. I want my money back from 34 years ago. Your advice about asking if people are angry doesn’t ever work.
Therapist: I know, I know. But I thought you’d figure that out on your own, and at least it would give you some blogging material on a day you ran dry and your followers would get a chuckle and it might even elicit some good comments.
Me: Ohhhhh, pure genius. Thank you!
Dear Readers: So are you mad? And I mean angry, not insane. Leave me any comments below. I can take it, really I can.
- Beautiful Red Sparkly Shoes, size 8. $15. Or trade for a hot-air balloon ride or strong dog leash? Beautiful ruby beading. A little scuffed during a house-dropping incident, but plenty of wear left. Great for costume if you’re dressing up as me. Just don’t announce, “It’s too late. There they are and there they’ll stay!” after you try them on — or some mean, old bitty might follow you around during an entire Halloween party. Contact Dorothy.
- Poppies: Brightly colored. Some with snowflakes. Excellent cure for insomnia. $4 per bunch. Contact Oz Florist.
- Farmhouse: $159K. Built 1939, 1800 square ft. 3 BR/2BA comes with pigs, horses, sheep and cows. Broken storm cellar, but house doubles as an airplane. You’ll find a few comps but honestly there’s no place like this home! Contact Kansas Realty.
- Stallion: $200. Gallops, Trots fine. Will trade for a horse of a different color. See Guardian of the Gate, Emerald City. Bell out of order — please knock.
- Curtain Panel or Drapes: Fabric that blends into the background so people will pay no attention to it. Large enough to conceal grown man maneuvering levers and switches. Contact ME, because, because, because, because because, because….because of the wonderful things I do!
- Attorney: Experienced in Entertainment Law to bring lawsuit against MGM. The part of Dorothy should have been mine. Contact Shirley Temple.
- Broom: Could have been stolen after several thugs melted me. What a world, what a world. If found contact Margaret Hamilton. Trivia: Did you know I was only 36 years old while Glinda was actually 54? So who was the real old hag?
- Broom: On streets of Emerald City. Must identify or we’re giving it to Burt, the affable Chimney Sweep in Mary Poppins, next soundstage over. Contact any Oz Janitor.
- Is your fave color yellow? Are you a brick layer with tons of experience with grouting. Apply in person. Just follow the . . . other applicants.
- Hiring Surgeons! Experienced in both Brain and Heart transplants. Two patients prepped and ready to go. Must fly here as Heart patient sets off metal detectors and Brain patient claims “it’s the last straw” for airport security. Contact Miss Gulch, R.N.
- Makeup Artist Needed. Tired of green complexion and exaggerated nose. Ready for a whole new look that doesn’t necessarily compel men to pull me into the nearest broom closet, but still bewitching in bed. Also miracle concealer for these undereye bags and droopy chin? Is it too much to hope for defying gravity? Contact Elphaba.
- Lyricist: Needed to change words from “Ding-Dong the witch is dead!” to “Knock-Knock and relax, the witch is just injured.” It’s kinda ruining my job security. Contact: Avon Lady.
- Square Dance Social: This Saturday night, 7 pm. At the end of that famous road. Sponsored by The Lullaby League and The Lollypop Guild.
- Happy Birthday Dorothy! Love Uncle Henry. PS. Hurry home, Auntie Em is sick. Very sick.
- Single White Male Fortune Teller looking to meet female psychic or medium. Owns working crystal ball and I’m a Wiz around the house. Contact Professor Marvel.
- Surrender Dorothy! From Guess Who?
- Munchkins — better watch your teeny tiny backs! Sincerely, Oompa Loompas
Betcha you’ve got some other clever ones? Leave me a “Wizard of Oz” Classified Ad of your own below — C’mon, it’s fun!
Throwing a party? Did you know I’m a retired event planner with some “unique” invitation tips published HERE. Say Hi to me in the comments section over there so I can connect the dots to you back here!
Well at least they got engaged in my imagination. But first they need a little pre-marriage counseling to make sure they’re compatible and each understands what their expectations are from a marriage partner. Let’s listen in, shall we?
Therapist: Hello you two famous celebrities!
Neil: Hello my friend, hello.
Barbra: What’s up Doc?
Therapist: Oh please, I don’t have a PhD in psychology, so just use my first name. It’s Caroline.
Barbra: Hmph. Obviously you’re not a big fan of my films? What’s Up Doc? Ryan O’Neil. Four plaid suitcases get mixed up?
Therapist: Before my time. But I don’t mean to rain on your parade. I’m sorry if I said something I shouldn’t have.
Neil: No one heard at all, not even the chair. If you know what I mean?
Therapist: Well, suffice it to say I’m a big fan of your voice, Barbra.
Neil: It’s a beautiful noise. And it’s a sound that I love.
Therapist: Well that’s a great start! So what can I help both of you with today?
Neil: She hardly talks to me anymore when I come through the door at the end of the day.
Therapist: Oh. Is that all? Well maybe she hasn’t gotten over the fact that you don’t bring her flowers anymore.
Barbra: And roses aren’t that expensive.
Neil: Money talks but it don’t sing and dance and it don’t walk.
Therapist: Let’s try a different tact. How did you two first meet?
Neil: Where it began? I can’t begin to knowing. But then I know it’s growing strong.
Barbra: Isn’t he annoying? Actually we originally met in high school choir. True story!
Neil: She was such a Funny Girl. But I told her, “Girl, you’ll be a woman soon.”
Therapist: So now she’s a Funny Lady?
Barbra: Honestly I don’t know what my age has to do with anything. The underlying issue here is that I’m not quite sure Neil is ready to settle down. And leave all those other females out of his refrains, ya know?
Therapist: There are others?
Barbra: Well for starters there’s that hussy from the Bluegrass state.
Neil: Ahhh, Kentucky Woman. God knows I love her.
Barbra: See that? And Cherry, cherry. And don’t forget about Cracklin’ Rosie.
Therapist: Cracklin’ — Sounds like a cereal.
Neil: No, but she was a store bought woman.
Barbra: And then there was that Shilo.
Therapist: Now I always thought Shiloh was his dog. Neil? Your input.
Neil: Shilo was when I was young. I used to call her name. But honestly I don’t recall much.
Therapist: What’s too painful to remember, we simply choose to forget.
Barbra: Thank you. And something else that bothers me. He starred in The Jazz Singer and could’ve easily suggested that I audition for his leading lady instead of Lucy Arnaz.
Neil: I Love Lucy.
Barbra: Well that depresses me too.
Neil: Me and you are subject to the blues now and then….
Therapist: I think the most important question is… can you both be your true selves with each other?
Neil: I’ll be what I am. Solitary man.
Barbra: He’s always proclaiming his identity. “I am, I said!” He shouts around the house.
Therapist: Barbra. I’d like you to make some physical contact with Neil right now. Then look into his eyes and tell him how you’re feeling.
Neil: Yeah, hands touchin’ hands. Reachin’ out, touching me….touching you.
Therapist: You can do it, Babs.
Barbra: (hesitatingly extends forearm) Hold my hand and we’re half-way there. Hold my hand and I’ll take you there. Somehow, some day, somewhere.
Therapist: That’s very good progress this week, folks. But I’d like to see you for another session.
Neil/Barbra: Do we really even need you anymore?
Therapist: People. People who need people….are the luckiest people!
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BLOG BLUR – noun. The insidious and dangerous blurring of the boundaries between your Blogging life and the real world. “My husband cited “Blog Blur” as his reason for divorcing me. The judge gave him the house”
*Choose the answer that best describes how you feel about the question.
1. When You talk about individuals named, “LivelyTwist” and “Morning Grouch” and “Surviving Butterfly” and “GlueStickMum” and “Writey McWriteface” and “Bitter Ben” or “Shallow Reflections,” your family and friends assume you are referring to:
a) New Muppet Characters that are making a debut on Sesame Street this week to teach kids about Feelings
b) Some very troubled individuals in the new Twelve Step Anonymous program you recently attended
c) Very real (and talented) Bloggers that you often have communications with
2. A member of your household lost their job. A good friend recently started a steamy love affair. Your child got a C- on a History exam. A second cousin (who’s a painter) named her newborn baby, “Hunter Green.” All of these people have this in common:
a) They call you for support, encouragement, understanding or applause.
b) They communicate their latest happenings with you in clever holiday newsletters
c) They advise you that this recent information is copyrighted, trademarked, or patented and under no circumstances are you to blog about it!
3. When you complain about having trouble with your dashboard, your significant other:
a) Makes an appointment with the Toyota dealer to have the warning lights and the speedometer looked at.
b) Looks puzzled regarding this new sport of yours and tells you to stick with a snowboard, surfboard, or even a hoverboard.
c) Immediately logs into WordPress.com and says triumphantly, “Well, here’s your problem right here. You’re blogging too damn much!”
4. A Daily Prompt is:
a) An intriguing word or scenario that motivates you to write a creative new blog post
b) My body’s signal that I need chocolate
c) A note I leave on the dishwasher for other household members that says, “Empty Me Now!”
5. If someone inquires about Stats:
a) You smile, bat your lashes, and tell them yours are, “36-23-36, of course.
b) You rattle off the number of TD’s, Interceptions, Fumbles and Passes Complete for the Seattle Seahawks and loudly assert they should have won the Super Bowl in 2015.
c) Whip out a computerized print-out, a yellow highlighter, and show the person how many hits your blog is currently receiving from Egypt.
6. Someone asks you to please stop following them. Do you? . . .
a) Apply the brakes and remember that in driver’s training you learned it should be one car length per every 10 mph.
b) Remind them that it’s a free country and if you want to wear skinny jeans with a paisley plaid flannel shirt and a backwards baseball cap, you will. They don’t have a monopoly on fashion!
c) Immediately click the “Unfollow” button on your blog. You’ll show them! They were lucky you gave them the time of day in the first place.
7. When someone asks if you are happy with the new Post, you:
a) Nod and offer to give them the name of the contractor that built the entire side fence around your house.
b) Tell them, “Absolutely not, the price of stamps these days is outrageous.”
c) Launch into a diatribe about how many drafts it took you and how nobody left a single Like or a Comment.
8. When you remind your kids to Share, you actually mean:
a) You’ve given them extra cookies in their lunchbox and they should pass them out to friends.
b) They should raise their hand and give an opinion when a teacher asks, “Class, what do you think?”
c) “For god’s sake, post a link to my latest blog on your Instagram and Facebook accounts or you’re losing your cellphone for a week!”
9. After you Tag, you:
a) Shout, “You’re it!” or “Gotcha last!”
b) Wipe your fingerprints off the can of spray paint so nobody traces the upcoming election graffiti back to you.
c) Hope and pray that every search engine in the world brings up your blog first
10. Someone has asked you what kind of Views you have? You:
a) Say there are some decent ones from your backyard but your home would be worth much more if you could see the ocean from your bedroom window.
b) Politely state that neither candidate is fit to run this country.
c) Spout off an embarrassingly low number but tell them you’re working on publicizing your blog more (even offering prizes!) so you’re sure it will grow to be thousands.
* SCORING: Mostly A’s – Congratulations! You’re able to compartmentalize and keep both aspects of your life in order. Mostly B’s – Your Worlds Are Colliding just like George Costanza in Seinfeld. Mostly C’s – You have Blog Blur so bad, even Extra Strength Mindex won’t wipe away your confusion. GET SOME HEALTHY SEPARATION RIGHT NOW! (Right after you leave me a comment below!)
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Halloween time has become hell for my family so I’m weaning us off of celebrating. Here are 12 reasons from previous years to justify why I’m doing this. Note: They’re listed in the order they always occur on the calendar.
September 23 — While shopping in Costco, an innocent little voice whispers in my ear, “Be organized this year and buy this economy, ginormous fun-sized variety bag of candy!” And then (because Costco doesn’t sell matching sized bags of discipline or willpower) I pull in the driveway and a much louder voice shouts, “Kids, get downstairs this instant and hide this bag of candy from your mother until Oct. 31. And don’t cave, no matter what!”
September 28 — My period begins = The Four C’s begin. (Coercing, Coaxing, Convincing, and Cajoling) But the children stay strong and refuse to tell me where the bag of sugar is stashed. Courageous kids I’ve raised.
September 29 — I ransack the house.”Listen,” I say. “I’m a grown-up. I don’t have to take this nonsense from you brats. I can just get in my car and buy more cancer, err candy.” When I return from Walmart, my sister waits with outstretched arms. I shamefully hand the sweet package over to her and cry, “Put this where you know I won’t come across it.” I also hint that she should hide all my children as well.
Oct. 1 — The annual masquerade party invitation arrives from my well-meaning sister-in-law. Immediately the “S or S” dilemma begins. “Spooky 0r Sexy?” Should I be something frightening that either grosses people out and scares them off? Or something seductive that (let’s face it) will be even more terrifying! The costume companies have solved this issue by sexualizing everything creepy anyhow. Witches, ghosts, devils, skeletons, mummies, brides of frankenstein are all sold with garter belts and black fishnet stockings.
Oct. 15 — My kids begin to pester me for unusual items to construct creative (and by creative I mean elaborate and expensive) homemade costumes so they can win their school’s contest. Why don’t I have plastic butterflies, metal rivets, black pearls, gold spray paint, white feathers, a sarape, and a pirate hat in our garage? What was I thinking tossing out the cardboard box the new refrigerator came in? Am I the meanest mom EVER? Yes, I think I’ll own up to that. It’s a great costume idea, actually!
Oct. 16 — I start tossing out suggestions for no fuss, no muss (cheap!) costumes. Note: they all hinge heavily on wordplay. 1. Wear a fancy dress and draw whiskers on your face. You’re a “Party Animal!” 2. Don’t shave and carry around bowls you threw on the wheel in ceramics class (You’re “Hairy Potter!”) 3. Glue a bunch of sponges and rolls of paper towels on your body. You’re “Self-Absorbed!” 4. Write, “Yay Ceiling!” on a tee-shirt and carry pom-poms. You’re a “Ceiling-Fan!” 5. Wear really dark pants and shirt and stick postage stamps all over your clothes, threaten people a lot. You’re “Blackmail!”
Oct. 24 — We only have one week left. Why isn’t our house decorated like the rest of the neighborhood?
Eldest Daughter: Can we at least stick pumpkin decals on our door and hang spiderwebs in our trees?
Me: Sorry kids, we’re Jewish remember? And Halloween was originally a Paganistic holiday and we’re against Pagans.
Youngest Son: But they’re so cute waddling their black and white bodies.
Youngest Daughter: Are we against Madagascar and Happy Feet too? Those movies are also about penguins.
Oct. 29 — While doing a once-a-year, heavy-duty, deep housecleaning, I find BOTH large packages of candy inside the vacuum in place of its usual bag. As I flush the last empty wrapper down the toilet, I realize I have an unbelievable bellyache — but if I recover in time, I’m thinking I can just go to my sister-in-law’s party dressed as an Insulin Shot.
Oct. 31 — Replenish candy at supermarket at 5 pm. The doorbell rings incessantly, triggering my dog’s ADHD.
Oct. 31, 5:15 pm. — Place sign on door, “Sorry, out of Candy. Please don’t egg house while I’m at a 12-step meeting finding a sponsor.”
Nov. 1 — Hide kid’s pillowcases of Trick-or-Treat loot from them so they can’t eat it without asking me for permission. Think this over. Request they hide it from me instead, but this time somewhere I’ll really NEVER find it!
Nov. 2 — Get a strong urge to finally fold the 8 baskets of clean clothes that have been cluttering laundry room since last Halloween. And BINGO! Now I have to Google, “Dentists who weigh your trick-or-treat candy and buy it back from you for five bucks a pound.”
3 weeks before next year’s Halloween — Decide that it’s really a pretty good holiday after finding what my children made:
Leave me a comment about this and if you can’t think of anything to say, tell me your favorite costume!!
For the sake of this list, let’s presume there are some very good reasons why you’re looking to implement it. Let’s also assume you’ve already thought up basic cuddling/snuggling and watching movies. Great! Now it’s time to depart into some odd, quirky, playful, and unique little activities that may not have occurred to you simply because you’re not me. Without further ado . . .
- Play Truth or Dare with one another.
- Plan a vacation just by talking. A real one, or a dream one, doesn’t matter.
- Take turns drawing on each other’s back. Start with letters. If you’re good at guessing those, advance to words. Slip in a few erotic words but when he guesses them, tell him he’s wrong and accuse him of having a dirty mind. Advance to sketching actual pictures on each other’s backs. Don’t forget to sign and date your portrait just as all artist’s do. Note: Do not auction off his back in an art gallery.
- *Use the flashlight on your phone (assuming everyone brings their cells to bed these days! And if you do, check THIS OUT! ) to make cool shadows on the ceiling with your hands/fingers. Bonus if you can create witches or goblins which lead into this next one —
- *Tell each other your best campfire ghost stories. You do NOT need S’mores for this.
- Have an old fashioned pillow fight.
- Read aloud from the same book to one another. Alternating paragraphs. Use dramatic voice tone. Resist the thought that this is how you used to get your stubborn children to enjoy the act of reading. But it backfired and now they hate it.
- *Sing, hum, or whistle a few notes and challenge the person to guess the song. Your own “Name That Tune!”
- Share a list of pet peeves (it’s okay if it includes being in bed with someone but not getting any sex)
- Practice mind-reading skills. Concentrate hard and work on thinking of a number between 1-20 and the other person guesses. Then test your soul-mate connection by transmitting the number “69” instead.
- Have a staring contest. The prize is a massage for the person who doesn’t blink or look away.
- *Jump on the bed! (Seriously? What are you, five??)
- 12. Here’s the real number 12. Brush or braid each other’s hair. Don’t imagine lice.
- Give one another a very bizarre survey. Ask questions like, “What’s your favorite type of flying insect? Do you prefer salted or unsalted butter? Which is worse, being hungry or thirsty or nauseas?” After you get through those basic questions, start on the bizarre ones.
- Share your bucket lists. (Shovel ’em all out!)
- *Foot massages. Skip this if someone can’t stand the thought of touching anyone’s toes. Also pass on this if one of you has a foot fetish, though how that can possibly be I will never know. (Note: I did not think up this one)
- Tickle fest. Find the spots you are both the most vulnerable. File this info away for future use.
- Shave her legs. OMG I am so completely joking about this one. But would you believe some male folk are not. Click HERE and read #2 on their list. But come back here and finish mine!
- Look at old photo albums together. Make fun of how his mother wears her hair.
- Play the “What’s Poking Me In The Back?” game. Best done in pitch darkness or eyes closed and using distinct grooming objects like combs, toothbrushes, but not razors because it might lead to #18.
- Meditate (or just deep breathe) together. Practice inhaling something you want more of, like sex. And exhaling something you wish would leave your life. I once exhaled the lice from my daughter’s hair.
- Do art together. Yes, in bed. I don’t mean the Patrick Swayze and Demi scene from the movie Ghost, unless you have a potter’s wheel and clay under your bed and he can hum that Righteous Brothers song. See #8. No, I mean those terrific adult coloring books which surely you’ve seen because they are literally on every cashier’s checkstand now. Okay not the artsy fartsy type? Fine. Play hangman. Note: Playing Tic-Tac-Toe is liable to lead to #16 and the Toe Hater won’t be happy.
- Play this game. I have no idea what it’s called, but it’s intimate. Have your partner close his eyes and extend his arm. With your fingers, lightly touch/tap/crawl up the inside of his arm starting from his wrist. He has to shout “Stop” when he thinks you are exactly on the crook of the inside of his elbow. You’ll laugh when you see how far off he is. But stay in the relationship anyhow.
- Explore “too bad you’re missing that special gene” challenges like A) Who cannot trill their R’s when speaking? (trying to do this has become the bane of my existence and the amusement of many) B) Who cannot curl their tongue into a sideways roll-up? C) Who puts their left or right thumb on top when clasping hands? D) Who has attached ear lobes? E) Who can encircle their own wrist using just their pinky and thumb? F) Who can take their thumb and excruciatingly bend it all the way backward, touching the wrist on their same hand?
- After the extreme pain of the ridiculous double-jointed thumb task above, the conversation might veer into S & M (sadomasochism). But no, you still may NOT have sex. Instead think of other things to add to this novel list until you both get bored and fall asleep, which is the most practical and intimate thing you should be doing in bed anyhow.
*Credit for these goes to my fiancé!
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The Twilight Zone:
Submitted for your approval . . . One Mr. Henry Bemis, thrilled to be a library squatter with zillions of books to read and nobody to bother him as the rest of humanity is wiped out in nuclear war. While a Ms. Stephanie Lewis simultaneously climbs into her bed, (a mistress upon a mattress) ecstatic for a night without children to disturb her sleep. On this particular evening, menopause strikes Ms. Lewis with a vengeance — hot flashes, night sweats, and a bad case of insomnia wreaking havoc as she also hears loud snoring sounds, though clearly her husband disintegrated. It’s a dimension of sight, a dimension of sound, a dementia of mind, as Ms. Lewis has the sudden realization that no zzzzzz’s await her. In an ironic and eerie twist, Just as Mr. Bemis drops and breaks his precious reading glasses, the camera zooms in on Ms. Lewis catching up on some light chick-lit reading until she gets drowsy. Because anything is possible in The Twilight Zone.
“Here’s the story of a lively lady who is joining three lovely girls all hair of gold. She’s not their sister, not their mother, because she’s obviously too old! Till the one day this woman invites herself over for lunch, because she knew it was much more than a hunch. And that’s the way Stephanie Lewis moves in with the The Brady Bunch!” Just in time for their 3-part Hawaiian vacation trip (Why not? It’s the most glamorous of their filming locations) Stephanie experiences some strange mishaps due to a Brady Island Curse: A tarantula climbs into her beach-bag. She disappears under the water while surfing.A football gets thrown at her nose. Her hair turns orange. She goes to the prom with Davy Jones. She gets the chicken pox. She contracts laryngitis. She can’t stop exclaiming, “Marcia, Marcia, Marcia!” even with the laryngitis.
“The ship set ground on the shore of this uncharted desert isle. With Gilligan, the Skipper too, the Millionaire and his Wife. The Movie Star, Professor and Stephanie…..here on Gilligan’s Isle!” Stephanie knocked off dear, sweet, little Mary Ann. Was it for her coconut cream pies or because she coveted her flirty shorty shorts?It can’t be both because cream pies = stretchy yoga pants.
Stephanie celebrates Festivus, calls George Costanza “Art Vandelay” then tells Kramer, “These pretzels are making me thirsty.” She confesses to Elaine, “The Dingo ate my baby.” The show reaches an exciting climax with Stephanie telling Jerry her name is Mulva. Yes, it is an episode about nothing.
The Fonz admits he has a secret wife named Stephanie whom he hides in a closet behind his leather jackets because she’s uncool. Surprising the live audience, Stephanie leaps out with both thumbs up, gives a throaty, “aaaaayyyyy!’ then rides off on Henry Winkler’s motorcycle.
Stephanie spends the entire episode on speakerphone with Charlie frantically pleading with him to let her work in his detective agency but wearing concealer and corrective foundation instead of a bikini. Meanwhile, Farrah Fawcett and Jaclyn Smith beg Bosley to hire Kate Jackson back because she wasn’t such a pain-in-the-ass co-star.
Wilma, Betty, and newcomer to Bedrock, Stephanie go around shouting “Charge!” (Just because I always wanted to do that.)
The Partridge Family
Stephanie can’t sing and it comes out she’s only on this episode to kiss teen heartthrob David Cassidy and tell him, “I think I love you.”
Stephanie magically turns into Samantha for a day and points out that two different actors (both named Dick) played the role of her husband Darin, but nobody (except her) seems to notice, care about, or remember the major switcheroo.
Stephanie and the gang sit around drinking coffee from oversized mugs and reminisce about past Thanksgivings. When an old boyfriend accuses her of cheating on him, Stephanie cleverly shouts, “We were on a break!!”
Stephanie, (along with gal pal Ethel Mertz) loses her passport, gets locked in a freezer, sets her watch backwards instead of forward and misses a dinner party, gets a lobster red sunburn, diets down to a size 2 to be in a show, schemes to get her son a raise but instead gets him fired, accidentally overdoses herself on cold medication, thinks her ex-husband is trying to kill her, and pretends she’s fluent in a foreign language so her future mother-in-law will like her. Oh wait, these aren’t Lucy Ricardo stunts, this is Stephanie’s actual life.
So what’s your favorite “older” television series and have you ever imagined being in the cast?
P.S. I am super excited to announce that my very first collaborative humor writing with my real (not fictional) son just got published this very weekend right HERE.
Buried under my bed, a keepsake box that if opened will summon Pandora,
Lo and behold, at the bottom — my school yearbook with signatures galora!
I’m not gonna admit the year I graduated, surely you’ll guess the date,
Michael Jackson ruled, but Men At Work had a hit — so it was a G’day Mate!
My name misspelled when classmates signed, “Have a Bitchin’ summer!”
“K.I.T!” (with their 7 digit landline, no area code!) “I’ll miss ya. Total Bummer!”
And though the things we penned were “bogus” or “rad” or bordered on perversive,
We thought we were super “gnarly” because we never printed, we wrote in cursive!
Guys in corduroy pants and girls flaunting that leather n’ lace look.
All our smilin’ pics, “Let the good times roll!” The original Facebook!
As I turn the pages thinking, “These were the best years of my life?”
The Mean Girls jump out at me and I remember all my fashion strife.
Bonjour, Calvins, Jordache, Sasson, Sergio Valente – all those designer jeans,
My mother nixed buying them, ($$) so I was just a big fat loser in my teens.
Needless to say, popular “Candies” shoes were also not in family’s budget,
So I wore cheap knock-offs thinking “It’s just footwear, I can fudge-it.”
But when it came to hair, I had it down pat — the exact way to toss it,
Mine was a perfect cross between Jaclyn Smith and Farrah Fawcett.
Whom do I kid? My locks are still long and layered today — frozen in time.
Maybe that’s what qualifies me to write here at “Once Upon Your Prime?”
Once in a while, it’s fun to dig out yearbooks and it’s great for some posterity.
A laugh or two over hilarity and show your kids where you ranked in (un)popularity.
All I know is the “Most Likely To…” page wasn’t meant for me … The Underdog.
Unless they could vote for, “Most Likely to document it all in her weirdo Blog!”
Do you look back on high school as the best years of YOUR life? Leave me a comment with the popular phrase most used when signing your high school yearbook (Mine really was “Have a bitchin’ summer!”) and I’ll try and guess the year. Or at least the decade.
In a recent survey (and I HAD to conduct a formal survey to write this particular blog, otherwise I’d be viewed as disgusting if I thought all these things up on my own!) here are the top 10 things most people wouldn’t bother doing if they were assured they were completely alone.
My bold commentary follows. (Or my commentary follows in bold!)
- “I wouldn’t recycle!” It appears that if nobody is around, the commitment to our environment gets trashed. Quite literally. I myself have experienced the opposite of this. When people ARE around, I’m suddenly the President of the “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Repurpose” committee. i.e. During a party in my home, someone holding an empty soda can is asking where they should put it? I’ve stopped myself mid-sentence from directing them to my usual kitchen garbage and instead will pull out a “special container” (which is actually just an old toy chest) and pretend it’s our recycling bin.
- “I would no longer wipe down gym equipment when I’m done using it!” Okay, so now the truth comes out….your perspiration is actually just precipitation, like the fresh morning dew. But ours is….SWEAT.
- “I’d quit shaving my legs!” — I dunno about this one. Sometimes I think I do this just for myself. In fact, I often become so enamored with my smooth calves that if I were to stop shaving, I might file to divorce myself.
- “I wouldn’t sit like a lady!” — With those hairy thighs? Who could blame you?
- “I’d stop using good manners when eating.” Right? Somehow food tastes much better if you don’t have to be dainty when eating it.
- “I wouldn’t bother picking up my dog’s poop!” — Aha! Alrighty. So this one is actually mine. I know, I know…it’s terrible. But I never wanted a dog in the first place and I have a notarized contract stating my children will be doing this chore. However, if a neighbor is standing outside watching me, I have been known to make Avoidance into an Art Form. It looks like this: First I make a big show of taking out the little plastic bag with a graceful flourish. Then I bend down and make sure it rustles the grass in a purposeful manner, just slightly adjacent to the actual poop. Next, I double knot the bag and proudly lift it up, feigning that it now has a bit of weight to it. (However, I manage to resist the urge to clown around, pretending to struggle with a twenty-five pound package!) My heart then begins to race as I saunter quickly off, fearing the neighbor will be one of those “checking” types and call me back, announcing, “And the Oscar for Best Pooper Scooper goes to Little Miss Menopause, but you’re completely full of it! So get back here and do it for real this time.” The whole charade probably takes a lot more time/effort/energy than if I just picked up after the dog in the first place.
- I wouldn’t cover my mouth when I cough or sneeze! Have at it! Let those germs spread far and wide. May as well burst out into song with “Born Free….”
- “I wouldn’t return shopping carts to their receptacles!” So you’re the one whose shopping cart is always blocking the primo parking space?
- “I wouldn’t wear a bra!” Or, “I wouldn’t wear clothing!” I can’t get on board with either of these. I think I’d become highly offended and issue myself fines for lewd behavior.
- “I wouldn’t waste time washing my hands after using the bathroom!” (Note: Many people private messaged me this exact same answer. But only one person was brave enough to answer it in my public survey. That was my son. But I’d like to go on record stating this should be no reflection on my parenting — it’s a divorce situation, so I get to put this on his father.) Having said that, I’ve hidden quietly inside public restroom stalls before (not for the purpose of this article, but for another strange reason.) and seen just how many people (when they think nobody else is in the bathroom) will skip washing hands. I’ve heard their rationalization too –Urine is supposedly sterile and therefore if they only pee, there’s no need to wash. In my OCD opinion, public restrooms are so filthy, they should even wash their hands BEFORE going to the bathroom. However if you’re in the sterile urine camp, you might want to read this conversation…http://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/index.php?topic=39150.0 And yes, these are naked scientists, so they obviously were the respondents for #9 above.
And there you have it — my top 10 list. I had a lot more answers than this, believe me. In fact, it should be noted that many individuals answered my question with responses like this . . . “I’d sing really strange songs in a dorky voice” or “I’d make funny faces at myself in the mirror” or “I’d pretend I was a fashion model posing on a runway as I walked down the sidewalk.” Okaaaaaay. But the actual question was, “What would you NOT do if there was nobody around to witness?” So while I think these people are fascinating personality types, and I’ve love to have them as my friends…..they need to brush up on their reading comprehension.
What about you? What would you NOT do any more if there wasn’t someone around to judge you??
I’ve recently hit on the magic formula! And because you’re probably slightly distrustful of me and thinking the title of this post is “click-bait,” (so it will go viral itself!) I plan to share everything I’m doing with you as well.
But first an observation. George Orwell was mistaken. He said we’d all be terrified that our every move would be watched and listened to — that our privacy would be seriously invaded. Wrong! We’re actually upset that the world isn’t paying more attention to us. We want to be sought after online (even stalked) and we want our words to go viral!
After much research on how to orchestrate it, here are my top 5 tips:
5. When you see something go viral, duplicate it, but with an unexpected twist.
- Just recently a Target cashier kept a diary of the odd customers he came into contact with on a daily basis. I shop at Target on a daily basis, so I’ll keep a diary of all the cashiers (who look at me oddly when I ask if they sell 8-track tapes or answering machines) that I come into contact with.
- A lady put on a Star Wars face mask (I don’t know which character because I’ve never seen Star Wars) and laughed. I will put on an Anti-Aging Facial Mask and cry.
- A teen marveled at his friend’s outfits and kept exclaiming, “Damn, Daniel,” he’s especially incredulous at a pair of white Vans. I’ll say “Darn, Darlene! Back at it again with those Michael Kors purses!” to my friend with a handbag fetish.
- A question about a photo of a dress (is it blue/black or white/gold?) baffled everyone. A photo of my kitchen (see above) baffles no one. But it will still take off because of the stuffed dog that looks real.
4. Nostalgia is inherently popular. People love to reminisce about their past. Therefore the headshot with my Farrah Fawcett hairstyle (taken Aug, 2016) will do the trick every time.
3. Evoke a Strong Emotion! Examples of posts that will elicit the 5 recommended emotions.
- SHOCK/SURPRISE – “Snopes verified! Woman with Farrah Fawcett Hairstyle who uses “Gee Your Hair Smells Terrific” shampoo, owns pet rocks, quotes The Fonze, and disco dances to Donna Summer, refuses to see the original Star Wars movie!”
- ANGER – Start a rumor that the last of the Tab and Freska cans are being pulled from the shelves.
- FEAR – Twinkies are being discontinued too. For real this time.
- SADNESS – All online kittens are confirmed stuffed, plush toys.
- TRUST – Obviously, just write anything that begins with “Trust Trump . . . “ Never mind, I misread that one. The emotion we’re supposed to elicit is LUST. Back with some racy porn headlines soon!
2. Turn everything into some kind of a list. Nobody gets turned on by long, hard paragraphs that are difficult to penetrate. (Hey, that kinda sounds like a good porno headline!) So always write Top 10’s or pros/cons, multiple choices, or compare and contrast things, i.e. “10 Ways a Marriage is Similar to a Divorce,” etc.
The point is make sure there’s lots of sterile white space everywhere so you trick people into believing they’re not really reading, but are instead lounging around in a hospital.
And now my top tip for becoming viral
1. Respecting Your Privacy. When you write something and post it or send it out, be sure and issue this disclaimer: “This is for your eyes only. I’ll absolutely die of embarrassment if this gets out. Thank you!”
Being a hypochondriac, when I first heard the word “viral,” I thought “OMG! I better take Echinacea and vitamin C.” Now that I know how much fun it is, I want to try and go Bacterial next!
Good luck to us all! (And please don’t even think of sharing this with anyone. This is an exclusive for Little Miss Menopause’s followers only!)
PS. If none of this works for you, then there was a typo in my subject title, and it was supposed to say, “Vital” and not “Viral.” Sorry!
Have you ever gone viral? Did life change? Do you have a REAL tip for going viral?
Dear Diary, I hope this appeases the Pest Gods….
Next door Neighbors complain they have ants in their kitchen and ask if we’ve been experiencing the same? I go home feeling smug and praise my housekeeping skills, noting that our counters are wiped to a sheen, no crumbs or anything that could be an attraction for….huh…um, what? WHAT is that tiny black thing scuttling frantically across my microwave oven? Eh, so what’s one ant? Smash. Ant? What ant? “I am so superior,” I think to myself as I dust my grandmother’s vintage toaster. It’s sure shiny and clean for being so old. Word of the day: Antique. Haha.
As I referee an argument between my kids over who gets pancakes or waffles, I reach into my pantry for the Bisquick. OMG! I’m aghast to see numerous black moving specs clustered around the maple syrup. It hasn’t even been opened yet. Surely an ominous sign that won’t bode well for future smugness. I take the bottle to the sink and rinse about forty five squirming insects off the syrup lid. “Sorry, Aunt Jemima!” The irony of the name of the brand is lost on me because I’m too irritated. Word of the day: ANTagonized.
My daughter is bouncing off the walls to go shopping. “Got ants in your pants?” I teasingly ask. “Go get dressed and I’ll take you to the mall.” She returns moments later to show me her designer jeans absolutely teeming with ants. Who even says “teeming?” Apparently I do, now that we’ve officially been invaded. Never mind that there’s a half eaten strawberry fruit roll-up in her pants pocket, the battle lines have been drawn, and I’m almost looking forward to the kill. Word of the day: ANTicipation.
I would slap my 14-year-old son upside the head as he taunts me singing, “The ants go marching two by two, horrah, horrah,” but I’m too busy spraying Windex across my kitchen floor where there’s a determined trail of them (eight inches thick if it’s a centimeter) streaming out from underneath the dishwasher. I leave the bright blue liquid on my white tile floor for any brave newcomers and go google “Non-toxic remedies for ants.” The first thing it tells me is ants will stay far away from anything with lemon on it. I try it. (See photo above) Works like a charm. Not!! I post on Facebook, griping and complaining of my predicament. Word of the day: RANT!
I awaken to a knock at the front door and I tell the smarmy guy from Terminex Pest Control (whom my pathetic neighbors must’ve sent over) that his services will not be needed. “I’ve got this!” I proudly proclaim. And it’s true. My problems will soon be over. There are literally 34 different comments under my Facebook Ant rant. Everyone has a different recommendation! Each solution more and more creative. But the last one seems super easy and even fun. “Ants hate Borat. Just get that and you’ll be in the clear.” Really? Okay. I download the old movie starring Sasha Baron Cohen from Netflix and within minutes I’m shouting, “Take that!” to the hundreds of ants crawling up my computer screen. Turns out, “Borat” was a typo. She meant “Borax.” I rush to the store to buy some. And some spices that people swear by also, just for good measure. Word of the day: ANTidote.
After the borax fails, I liberally sprinkle dark brown fragrant powder in a straight line in front of every single doorway and windowsill of our home. To an outsider, it looks as if we’re trying to ward off some kind of an evil spirit (Poltergeist has nothing on this!) — but an expert chef would note that we could bake exactly 28 dozen cinnamon rolls. That’s because cinnamon is the top spice claiming to stop these idiots in their dirty little tracks if placed right at their point of entry. Instead, I watch while they gleefully carry one golden granule at a time on their teeny tiny little backs as they uniformly march up my staircase. (They’re probably making potpourri sachets for the dresser drawers they’ve infested in my bedroom.) If I listen closely, I swear I can hear their little soldier voices chant just like the flying monkeys in the Wizard of Oz. Word of the day: MilitANT.
Today is a dark day. Aside from the armies of ants which have now commandeered every single solitary room of our home, my dog has fleas and my daughter contracted head lice. Can bedbugs be far behind? Since we’re Jewish, I’m thinking “The Ten Plagues” and am on the lookout for a really mean Pharaoh. Word of the day: DominANT.
On the telephone, I beg the receptionist at Terminex to send someone over immediately. “Like yesterday,” I plead. “Okay, yes…yes….I’ll apologize to him. Alright, I’ll bake him a cinnamon roll.” The ants are swarming my keyboard as I type this and my fingers crush their infinitesimal little skulls with extra forceful tapping. I pick up a felt-tip marker to start handwriting in my journal instead, but on impulse I raise the mighty pen to the ceiling as I look up toward the heavens, and in my best Scarlett O’hara voice shout, “As God as my witness, I’ll never be crawled on again!” Then I violently slap my arm. Word of the day: FumigANT
The kids call me up at the office to tell me to hurry home because two great Ants, Carol and Arlene, are on the front porch. Jesus, don’t tell me they’ve started naming them now. But as I drive home, I remember my mother’s two sisters were supposed to drop by today. Get a hold of yourself, Stephanie. You’re really losing it. My cell phone rings and my best friend’s ex-husband’s employer’s hairdresser’s daughter is on the phone with some top-secret ant advice. I’ll print it here in case anyone else needs it. Food-grade DE diatomaceous earth works as an ant repellent. This powder is the fossilized remains of marine phytoplankton.The microscopic razor sharp edges of DE can cut through the ants’ exoskeletons, gradually causing their body to dry out. Everyone got that? We’re not going down without a good fight, people! Word of the day: VigilANT!
Today I’m on to something. Something really big. Previously, when I sprayed the ants (with whatever killed them on contact) I’d diligently wipe up their dead bodies — but it was futile and within an hour, a whole new batch would populate the exact same area. But now listen to this! If I leave their ugly ass carcasses blatantly strewn all over the house, it seems to act as a visual deterrent … and no new ants come back around! (Nevermind that tomorrow my home will be the location of a cousin’s fancy wedding.) This is effective advertising at its finest. YES! There is a light at the end of this parasitic hell tunnel. Word of the day: JubilANT!
Dear Diary, Tonight the bride fainted after she ground fresh black pepper into her salad and then took a closer look. My fiancé came over to console me. He shook his head incredulously as ants climbed out of every electrical outlet, poured out of water faucets in bathrooms, and danced deliriously from air-conditioner grates, swaying to the DJ’s music. I cried softly (luckily ant-free tears) as he whispered, “So you weren’t embellishing.” I threw myself in his arms, but this wasn’t a moment for romantic comfort. “It’s time for the big guns,” he said authoritatively. “Bring me the duct tape.” Right now I’m too appreciative to think up a Word of the Day.
I’m waving my cream colored blouse around the house. That’s because I don’t own any white flags. And even this shirt has dark blotches on it. No, they aren’t dirt stains, you optimist. They’re ants! I surrender. I give up. From now on, I’m choosing my battles and this is not the ant hill I wish to die on. Somebody put me away somewhere safe. Lock me up. My son is selling them by the hundreds in zip-lock bags to his football team as DIY Ant Farms. Word of the day: RepugnANT.
I may be having an affair with the Orkin man. He came to my rescue when Terminex postponed until Tuesday. I swooned. His taut muscles rippled across his back and shoulders as he hoisted the heavy container of deadly insecticide off his truck. I welcomed him into my bedroom. I begged him to step into my shower. I invited him into all my cracks and crevices. He assured me this would only be a one-night-stand (He even sprayed one of my nightstands!) and he won’t be back ever again. “Because you won’t need me to,” he guarantees me — as I shiver in delight, a truly satisfied customer, watching him ride off into the sunset. My knight in shining armor. Word of the day: GallANT!
THEY ARE GONE! Every. Single. Last. One. Of. Them. Word of the day: TriumphANT!!!
PS. This is Stephanie’s youngest son. Please come to the funeral in our backyard tomorrow for my hamster, three goldfish, and two parakeets. Oh but don’t send flowers — for some reason they don’t do so well in our house anymore because all of mom’s geraniums and potted plants seem to have died too. Sniff, sniff.
I don’t anticipate leaving this world anytime soon (that I know of!) but ever since Tom Sawyer faked his own death and then secretly came to his funeral and sobbed, I’ve been fascinated by this particular subject.
Now an online company called My Wonderful Life is encouraging us to take charge of all the details so the burden isn’t on our loved ones during their time of grief.
As a retired party planner, this seems right up my alley!
I’m a bit hesitant to bring up such a morbid subject to my very sensitive teenage children. Certainly they’ll become shocked and emotionally distraught, but I’ll quickly explain there’s nothing wrong with me– I’m just doing them a favor. Besides, being straightforward and candid with them has always been my philosophy.
Me: Kids, I’m planning my own funeral right now.
Daughter: Can you please be considerate and not schedule it during prom season?
Son: Did you eat the last of the Nutella?
Well, that went swimmingly. Clearly the rest is going to be a cinch.
Coincidentally, I recently attended a beautiful service for a dear friend’s mother and wept at the poignant beauty of it all. But afterwards, I walked away with what I’ll now term, “Memorial Envy.” (Are you listening Pinterest?) The daughter (my friend) gave a breathtaking eulogy speech, a son played the guitar while singing exquisite original lyrics. Still another sibling wrote a thought-provoking poem. They concluded by showing a video montage on a large screen set to “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” (my favorite song!) which depicted highlights of her life, holding her grandkids, and experiencing family bliss. All for their dearly departed mother. Lastly, in another room as refreshments were served, her artwork was displayed on easels for us to admire. Perfect.
I allow myself to imagine my published novel up on a podium for everyone to thumb through. Hey, with all the people gathered that day to pay their respects to me, I could even hold an impromptu book-signing! That would be a neat party trick.
So who in the world would plan something as nice as this for me? I better get cracking!
The “My Wonderful Life” website suggests starting with crafting your own obituary. Let’s see… that’s certainly an intriguing writing prompt. How about . . .
“Ding Dong, The Witch is Dead!”
A big fan of The Wizard of Oz, Stephanie D. Lewis (AKA Little Miss Menopause) just departed this earth, leaving behind a garage full of junk that nobody seems to know what to do with. After an appropriate amount of time, please come forward if you want several dozen pairs of sparkly red shoes, wicker picnic baskets with stuffed dogs in them, and yards of blue gingham fabric. In lieu of flowers, please paint your face green and cackle, “I’ll get you my pretty!”
“Oh what a world, what a world….” I bemoan, not quite satisfied with the tone or voice of this piece so far. Obviously a work in progress. I think I can extend this editorial deadline by a few weeks, emphasis on “dead” of course.
As any party planner worth her weight in confetti knows, a good theme pulls the entire event together. Since The Wiz of Oz is already being implemented for my obituary, I think a “Writing” theme will do just fine. That’s it, I’ve got it! My memorial service will be held in a public library.
Instead of a traditional guestbook for people to sign, I’ll have a cool vintage typewriter at the entrance so they can “tap-tap-tap-ching!” their names like real authors.
Tasteful floral bouquets sitting on bookshelves will be folded origami style from print-outs of my best loved Huffington Post Blogs. (Okay, maybe there will only be enough for one lily and a couple of gladiolas.)
My favorite book-jacket cover will be enlarged with my photo on it — “GONE WITH THE WIND!”
The local librarian will announce to everyone. “It appears our last copy of Stephanie D. Lewis is permanently checked-out. She’s overdue, but we’ll waive the hefty fine because her final chapter was such a page-turner.”
My humor columns from local newspapers can be paper-mâchéd on the outside of my casket.
Oh that’s right….hmmmm, my casket. “Who should be my pallbearers?” I muse aloud, as my reverie is suddenly disturbed with familiar annoying voices, loudly squabbling . . .
Youngest Son: Make your eldest four kids do it. They’re the strongest.
First-born Daughter: Eww, I’m not carrying her body. You do it!
I throw a book in their direction.
Me: Will you kids just be quiet for once and finally let me . . . R.I.P?!
What do you think? Would you plan your own funeral? If so, any good ideas?
This blog has not been feeling well lately (mentally) so I took it to a very renowned, highly regarded Blogchologist for a few therapy sessions. It spent some time on her couch while she asked some leading questions, gave it the inkblot test, and then formulated her opinion on every aspect of its personality, including all the comments it has received in the 2.5 years of its existence. I thought I’d pass on her analysis of all your reader commenting styles. For what it’s worth.
The 10 categories and descriptions below are mine, but her feedback is in RED.
- THE OVERLY FAMILIAR COMMENTER – Calls me Lil’ Miss, Missy Meno, or just “Hey Steph!” Prone to mentioning childhood memories, inside jokes, sexual asides, or telling me last night’s dinner sucked. These are obviously readers who know you well in real life but are feeling neglected and like they must resort to commenting on your posts to have any significant communication with you. They also are rather possessive and want to make it clear to the rest of your readers that they (and ONLY they) are privy to whether your hair really looks that strange in reality. (I can confirm it does.)
- THE CLEVER COMMENTER – Leaves remarks so hilariously witty, my original post seems a tad boring in comparison. Says things like, “Little Miss Menopause, huh? Does that mean you’re taking a short break from guys? Men – Oh – Pause. Get it? Anyhow, I like your blog, but I’m hoping you’re not just some (hot)flash in the pan!” This type of commenter actually isn’t all that clever. They’re relying on silly humor, with the goal of emulating your redundant, insipid wordplay style so they might catch your eye as a possible future Guest Blogger on your site. They may even go so far as to leave some poison-pen writing in the hopes that you will fall deathly ill and they can log-in, (as you) and take your entire WordPress blog over. Why they would want to waste time doing this, I have no clue – but it might be an improvement.
- THE GENERIC WORDS COMMENTER – Always writes, “This was very funny. I liked it.” Even if I’ve written a meaningful post about putting my dog to sleep. Actually I analyzed your entire blog and not once have you written anything that could be called meaningful. Anyhow, this type of commenter feels sorry for you and is just being polite. Plain and simple.
- THE CORRECTOR COMMENTER – Their comments contain perfect grammar, punctuation, and are devoid of typos. They’ll point out that I’ve written “hear” when I meant “here.” Or that I lapsed into past tense when I started out in present. In short, if I want to hear from them, I need to screw up. Former English teachers or just extremely anal individuals with tendencies to not see the forest for the trees. If this is a parent and their child brings home a straight A report card, they’ll ask why there weren’t any A +’s ?
- THE TITLE COMMENTER – They’ll leave a quick remark pertaining only to the subject line and possibly the first sentence. Business-like individuals who believe time = money. They have a quota of comments to leave and you’re just another
cogblog on the wheel.
- THE TIT FOR TAT COMMENTER – They keep track of the frequency and the length of comments I’ve left on their own blog, and then make sure they do something very comparable. If I get too busy, they get too busy as well. These Tits for tat commenters have longterm resentments regarding their mothers for not breastfeeding them as infants.
- THE COMPLEMENTARY COMMENTER – I can do no wrong in their eyes. Every word is a flattering adjective (brilliant & genius!) and the phrase “constructive criticism” sends shudders down their spine. You can spot these People Pleasers a mile away and often they will try to compensate for The Corrector Commenter by saying things like, “I didn’t find your changing from 1st person narration to 3rd person in the middle of a paragraph to be distracting at all.” They have a high need for approval and to be liked by every blogger they meet. Even someone like you.
- THE LINK-LEAVER COMMENTER – They’ll say, “That totally reminded me of this!” and then suddenly I have hyperlinks galore. It’s one thing if it’s pertinent, they’re proud of writing it, and they just want to share. But often it’s for monetary gain like for an online prostitute. Your writing could conceivably remind people of hookers, but it’s unlikely since your opening paragraph never has a good hook. Nevertheless, these are the people in society who will drop a piece of trash on the lawn with a garbage can two feet away.
- THE ANONYMOUS COMMENTER – They mysteriously creep into the comments section during the wee hours of the morning and end their cryptic remarks with “Guess Who?” These are the people who keep “Your Secret Pal” notecard companies in business. They’re the ones who donate to charities and need zero credit or accolades. They’re also the guys who put the bomp in the bomp bah bomp bah bomp. And the ram in the rama lama ding dong. We see these people in our office around age 45 for an identity crisis.
- THE NON-COMMENTER – They’re out there because I see their names by the thousands on my follower’s list and they’ll occasionally venture out to click “like” on a post, but never so much as a “LOL” gets typed. They must be very shy. Shy? That’s the least of their issues. These are the most disturbed members of our blogosphere. Often repressed, suppressed, and fraught with sexual dysfunction. Or otherwise suffering from:
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (Adults)
- Bipolar Disorder
- Borderline Personality Disorder
- Child and Adolescent Disorders
- Chronic or Persistent Pain
- Eating Disorders and Obesity
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder
- Mixed Anxiety
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
- Panic Disorder
- Posttraumatic Stress Disorder
- Schizophrenia and Other Severe Mental Illnesses
- Social Phobia and Public Speaking Anxiety
- Specific Phobias (e.g., animals, heights, blood, needles, dental)
- Substance and Alcohol Use Disorders
Like I said, please take this analysis strictly at face value because personally I think it’s just a bunch of psychoBloggle.
And now….YOUR comments? 😉
Obvious | The Daily Post
Cue the Kenny Loggins song! We all love to scare ourselves silly by riding roller-coasters, jumping out of airplanes, or even just watching horror movies. It’s a controlled circumstance that provides a short term thrill, making us feel more alive after the shot of adrenaline surges through our body.
Lately I’ve noticed companies capitalizing on this with greater frequency. We now have places to pay to be intentionally locked up in a confining space called Escape Rooms and apps that get you Lost on Purpose. Or you can even have a confusing food experience when you Dine In The Dark!
Here are some of my own innovative businesses that I plan to open, so watch for them springing up in your local neighborhoods. They’ll offer plenty of thrills, chills, spills, and (in the case of #5) Goodwills. I think I’ll make an absolute killing, pun intended.
- PINK! A laundromat that cleans all of your clothing with a bright red dyed tee-shirt mixed in the load. You’ll gasp when you pull your prior white garments out of the special washing-machine and spy all 8 pairs of hubby’s underwear tainted rose. And oh no! Did that used to be baby’s white christening gown?? Relax, just pop everything into the Magic Dryer and whew, it’s back to normal again. Wasn’t that fun? ($15 per load)
- EMPTY! Rent a car from my auto leasing company and the gas tank will appear completely full. Within minutes the fuel light will flash on and it will hover precariously under just one barely lit-up bar. Now the excitement begins in earnest… where’s the nearest station? Is the gauge really all that accurate? Could it be that you can actually get another 20 miles out of this thing by putting it in neutral at stoplights? We shall see, won’t we?! Riding on fumes has never been this exhilarating. ($29 per passenger. $40 if combined with a “Getting Lost on Purpose” app.)
- WHERE ARE YOUR KEYS? I’ll hide up to 8 on a single keyring in the most vexing of places — never to be seen again. Your heart will pump wildly – will you lose your job because you’re going to be late? With only a minute to spare, your keys will suddenly appear in a place you swore you looked in ten times already. Won’t that be cool? For added shudders of fear, get the entire Scatterbrained Package and I’ll steal your whole purse. OMG! How many credit card companies will you have to call up to cancel? Can you remember how much cash you had? Shivers abound as you recall that you were foolishly carrying your passport around for your upcoming middle east trip. But hold on a second . . . catch your breath and give a sigh of relief when a good samaritan calls to say they picked up your Michael Kors leather bag after you drove off with it on the trunk of your car. Now the real mystery begins. Will there be an identity theft too? Find out! ($39.99 per set of keys. $80 for Scatterbrained Package)
- MISSING FLIP-FLOPS! I’ll follow you to any beach or pool setting within a 25 mile radius and swipe your footwear when your back is turned. This will occur right before your OB/GYN appointment. You’ll have that familiar panicky sensation (just like the reoccurring dream you have where you somehow go to an important meeting without any shoes on) But wait, there’s more! For an added fee, I’ll leave behind a positive “First Response” test kit with a prominent pink “plus” sign in the little window, saving you the doctor appointment. You’ll be overcome with spine-tingling waves of nausea as you realize you’re actually Barefoot AND Pregnant. ($25 Stolen Shoes or $60 to experience Barefoot AND Pregnant)
- BUT IT’S SENTIMENTAL AND VALUABLE! Clean out your closet or garage and take bags of junk to your local Goodwill for a charitable deduction. I’ll make sure that your Great-Grandmother’s engagement diamond was in that old vintage clutch handbag! Oh nooooo! Your mother told you that ugly ring was worth $18,500, right? But hang on to your hat (or Granny’s!) because it just got even more exciting. A homeless person immediately inherits the purse for her first job interview. Gasp! Will she do the right thing and return the valuable jewel to her local Goodwill branch so the entire story can end up on the front page of Yahoo? You’ve never experienced nerve-wracking terror like this before. ($18 per donation bag or $180 for a Viral Internet Worthy Fiasco)
- MY KID DID WHAT?? This is an exclusive private charter school where the principal is guaranteed to call at least once per semester with a shocking story of your child getting caught doing something that will lead to expulsion. Think of the passionate fights it will inspire between you and your spouse. “He gets that from you!” and “I told you that you indulged him too much when he was little.” ($129 for Tales of Bullying/Cheating/Drug-Dealing or $279 including the Marital Spat with guaranteed phenomenal make-up sex)
- YOU’RE NOT A REAL LAWYER! On an ordinary day the phone will ring with news that it’s been determined you’re actually six credits short for your college degree. You can argue all you want but guess what? You’re a fraud. You’ve got to go back to school at age 42. And don’t even think an online course will count. Beads of perspiration will sprout as you contemplate if campuses still have cafeterias these days? ($15 for phone call from a credentialed university administer)
- LICE LETTER IN CHILD’S BACKPACK! Try and catch your breath as you read that not just one, not just two, but three children have had it in your kid’s class. Google “what does a louse look like under a microscope?” for added squeamishness. Then prepare yourself for the dreaded scalp check. Breathe, breathe. Utter over and over, “Please no nits. Please no nits!” Smile as delicious relief floods your entire body because I’ll make sure those white dots are only dandruff.( $25 per simple Lice Scare or $45 if you want to take it as far as vacuuming all the bed sheets before an authoratative teacher calls and says “False alarm.” )
- MONOGAMY IS MONOTONY! Is your marriage getting a bit dull? Spouse extremely predictable? One night you’ll receive up to a dozen hang-up phone calls and a pair of unfamiliar red lacy panties will surface under your couch. (Really! You’ll refer to them as panties!) And will you notice the distinctive new cologne or perfume in the family car? Be sure and savor that delicious feeling of your blood pressure rising while you mentally rack your brain for a good divorce attorney. ($60 for Affair Kit or $70 if you want to combine the suspicious lacy red panties with turning his underwear pink in the laundromat. See #1 above)
And if you’d like to learn how to text someone a new way and make them feel instantly guilty, please read my latest right HERE. Comments there are very appreciated! Thank you.
I wrote and published a book. That should have been enough.
I did this to prove to my competitive brother that I too, could accomplish something important. He finally believed me. That should have been enough.
Other people read my book. They liked it. That should have been enough.
The following is a 19 step game plan you should NEVER use to get lots of book reviews.
- Feel confidant that you are the new Hemingway and the public has waited with bated breath for your book. (Contemplate whether that should be bated or baited? Feel a twinge of regret that you didn’t hire a book editor.)
- Decide that getting one or two online reviews couldn’t hurt.
- Give your best friend (of twenty years) your precious baby and anticipate her gasping at the acknowledgments page. Give her the extra expensive hardcover version with the dust jacket. GIVE. Yes for free.
- Check Amazon every day for two weeks.
- After no book review surfaces, begin to check Goodreads.
- Realize she’s probably a bit miffed that you forgot to sign the book for her. You better get used to jealous fans behaving this way. She’s feeling neglected and of course this prevents her from writing a glowing review like she normally would. Vindictive little thing, isn’t she! Sour grapes much?
- Give another copy of your novel to your mother. Yes, your elderly mother who thinks Amazon is a rainforest in Australia. She’s almost as good at computer technology as she is with geography.
- Wonder how you will tone down the number of times Mom uses her favorite words ‘Spellbinding’ and ‘Genius’ in her book review of your novel on Barnes & Noble. Thank goodness mom HAS heard of Barnes & Noble.
- Meanwhile decide the barter method has merit. That’s where you agree to do something for an individual and in return they’ll write you a book review. It’s such a simple thing to write a book review (really, it is!) so think of small gestures you can do in trade. Let’s see . . . I know! Buy the person a cup of coffee while they get cozy and read your book. Or bake them cookies. Perhaps write a poem on their behalf that they can give to their spouse on Valentines Day, although that seems a bit much for just one book review.
- Draw the line at cleaning their entire house, mowing their lawn, and babysitting their four brats. What do they think the barter method is anyhow, a replacement for Craig’s List?
- Realize that all these years you never knew it, but your entire family and circle of friends are illiterate.
- Answer the phone when your mother calls to ask if you’ll come to her book club and discuss your book? Agree enthusiastically. There are seven little old ladies there and this represents seven potential book reviews. Actually nine, if a few of them forget they already wrote one and do it a second time!
- At the ladies book club, take a sip of water so your throat doesn’t parch after reading twenty chapters aloud. Remind yourself to clarify to your mother that authors make appearances at book clubs AFTER the book has already been read.
- Return to book club a week later with a package of batteries for their hearing aids. Finish reading your book to them and rave about the prune pie the hostess serves. Schedule one last visit with these lovely ladies to answer any questions about the plot so they can go online and write reviews.
- Return to book club for the very last time and act surprised that the common question about the plot seems to be “what happened in this book?” Smile and hand out pre-written, short, flattering, (but all very different!) reviews that they can post online for you.
- Schedule a follow-up visit to teach everyone how to go online and navigate “The Amazon,” as they refer to it. Say (under your breath) that it would be simpler to teach them to navigate the jungle in South America. Be proud of your geography knowledge. Repeat the sarcastic remark again (much louder) when it’s clear nobody has their hearing aid turned on.
- Head over to see your best friend and offer to autograph the title page of your book, especially for her.
- Clean her entire house, mow her lawn, and babysit her four brats.
- Finally discover a handful of book reviews have surfaced online! Here is what they look like:
My sister wrote this book. She didn’t have to prove anything to me. I always knew she had it in her. Therefore I didn’t need to read it, but maybe you should?
Stephanie D. Lewis cleans house fairly well, although she doesn’t do windows. My kids enjoyed their time with her but they are easily amused. Her lawn-mowing skills leave much to be desired. My name was spelled wrong in the acknowledgments page. If she would have hired me (a book editor) to help her, this would have been avoided. Pass on this atrocity!
My daughter (a genius author) and I will be heading to Australia soon. I plan to read her book on the plane and will come back to give my opinion of it right here. My review will be spellbinding. That’s how you’ll know she takes after me.
And then nine short blurbs all thanking me for giving them “Outernet lessons” so patiently because nobody else would. Bless their hearts.
My next book will be an exposé on authors who write their own fake reviews on Amazon. What nerve.
Oh….and this book? Right HERE. But you are forbidden to review it.
20. Resort to reverse psychology with your blog followers.
Disclaimer: Every once in a while, Little Miss Menopause remembers why she named herself that in the first place and will write an appropriate post related to that topic. And guys, take this quiz too so you’ll be able to relate to “her.”
Is your brain fog so thick and your mind such a blur that you’ve considered breaking out the
Windex Mindex? Are you falling-off-the-chart smart? Or are you just falling apart? Try this fun test to see where your brain cells stand these days.
Menopausal Math. (Choose best answer.)
1. Your family requests fudge brownies for dessert. Two nights prior, you bake four batches containing two dozen each. Next morning you eat six from each batch so all plates look even. By lunch you’ve polished off one entire platter, because your family prefers pumpkin pie anyway, right? How late must you stay up tonight to re-bake and replace all eaten brownies, taking into consideration your husband wants a little somethin’ somethin’ around 11 p.m.?
A) Brownies or Sex? Where’s the dilemma?
B) Uh… “Nobody Doesn’t Like Sara Lee!”
C) Mmmm, pumpkin pie.
2. You’re isolated in a soundproof, locked room with two oscillating fans, four bars of Godiva dark chocolate, one testosterone dispenser, a vibrator, eight bestseller books, and a broken cell phone that neither your husband or two small children can reach you on. How do you get free?
A) Melt the chocolate using hot flashes — and use it to write an S.O.S. message on page from book — slide under door.
B) Use the two fans to grind chocolate into cocoa powder, snorting it until you get high enough to forget where you are.
C) No husband or kids? What are you thinking? You already ARE free!!
3. You turned 50-years-old exactly three months ago and typically Aunt Flo shows up every 28 to 32 days. However, you haven’t seen hide nor hair (Hair? Is she a redhead?) of her since you broke up with that math professor who teaches calculus at the university 4.8 miles away. Oh no! Statistically speaking, how likely is it that you are about to become the oldest mother in preschool history, desperately folding her child’s finger painting into a makeshift fan during a hot flash in the middle of a parent/teacher conference?
A) 0%. Relax, you are not pregnant. It’s just menopause, silly. Plan an expensive trip to Hawaii, buy and wear pretty new lacy panties or book a Brazilian waxing appointment. Any of those things is guaranteed to bring on your period. Or simply call Mr. Calculus and schedule some makeup sex.
B) 50%. Your chance of becoming a new mother again is directly proportional to how close you are to having an adult daughter who is also about to give birth herself (thus bestowing you with grandmother status!). Wouldn’t it be fun to share a double stroller together?
C) 99.9%. Stock up on those diapers. Congratulations! This is guaranteed payback for lying about your age, having a tummy tuck, and saying, “Fro Yo” and “My bad” all the time. You fooled your uterus into thinking it’s 25 again!
4. Use the following numerals to fill in the blanks with the corresponding meanings below.
210, 48, 1310, 0, 17, 4.5, 6, 20, 130
___The top number on your blood pressure when the Dr. isn’t young and totally hot looking.
___Average number of times a week you lose your keys, glasses and cellphone.
___Number of hours earlier you need to start getting ready than you did when you were 25, just to look halfway presentable.
___Number of times you dye your gray hair in a year.
___Number of times you skip dying your hair because, “Gray is the new brunette!”
___The number of calories they claim you can eat and not gain weight—those diabolic, metabolic liars!
___Number of pills you need to swallow each morning just to feel semi-normal.
___Number of hours you actually sleep per night. Note: Divide this by the number of night sweats, then multiply it by number of fluttery, erratic heartbeats to the 9th power and subtract 20 minutes every time you have an obsessive/compulsive thought about breast cancer. Add the square root of Pi every third time you hear a scary noise and think an intruder is in the house. This calculates your MMPH (Menopausal Moments Per Hour).
___Your HDL (Your good cholesterol) Yes, good! Don’t ask me how, but they managed to get some of it to move to the right side of the tracks and perform nice deeds in your arteries. And somehow it’s all related to 77% Cacao! So cheer up!
SCORING: 0-1,500 points? Congratulations and welcome to FU (Foggybrain University). The rest of your Midlife Sorority Sisters have been waiting (impatiently) for you! Note: If you detected a subtle chocolate (without nuts) theme throughout this assessment, you are truly Menopausal Mensa Material and hereby granted an immediate scholarship from Betty Crocker! Stay tuned for another fun test soon!
Now that you’ve worked up an appetite, click here for a special menopausal menu.
Normally Little Miss Menopause oozes about as much wholesomeness as a Hostess Twinkie. But every once in a while she will deteriorate into “Rated R” writing on her blog. A reliable red flag? She’ll usually begin referring to herself in the third person. This is dissociative behavior, but that’s not important right now.
What IS important is that I detest the typical foreplay that gets most normal people horny. I can’t even stand to use the word “horny” because I think of reptiles with warts. Can we please just call it “hot” or “lusty,” people?
This unique problem of mine was probably a main reason for at least one of my divorces. Toward the end of the marriage, he (who shall remain nameless) introduced an “Intimacy Inducing” Smartphone app into our relationship. Desperate measures? You betcha.
The idea was to choose from a huge menu of pre-listed sexual activities, and if both people picked the same things, those particular fantasies went in the couple’s mutual “sexual bucket” to try out in real life. (There really was a beach pail image waiting to be filled!)
After two weeks, when my “To-Do” list remained empty but three hundred disgusting ideas crowded my “To-Don’t” list, the app declared me frigid and referred me to a local sex therapist.
The app also told me the percentage of couples who had tried each particular obnoxious activity, which I guess was supposed to encourage me to “Keep Up With The (Porno)Jones!”
But I quickly realized I needed to be more flexible and open-minded. So listed below are the least repulsive and inoffensive ideas the Smartphone app (and my then husband) wanted us to try. See if you don’t agree with me that these things are NOT sexy.
9 Turn-Ons That Won’t Turn Me On in a Million Years!
- Play Around in a Hot tub Together – The jets were fun but when my then husband (do I have to keep referring to him like that? Yes I do!) wanted to actually “do it” in the bubbles, I kept wondering how many other couples lived in our condominium complex (with this exact Smartphone app) and had been in the very same Jacuzzi recently. Eww. So I composed an “Ode To Chlorine” poem instead.
- Shower Sex — I’ve never understood the appeal here. Get naked under unflattering bathroom florescent lighting to partake in a utilitarian cleansing experience (associated with either gym locker rooms or Norman Bates in Psycho) with my hair plastered to my head while mascara runs down my cheeks and he cracked prison jokes with “don’t bend over to pick up the soap” as the punchline?
- Sex on a Fur Rug in Front of the Fire – As an animal lover, I would forever imagine which cuddly Bambi creature had been killed for our coziness? And fireplaces are for toasting those squishy, white unhealthy blobs. And even though my stomach technically qualified, I would stick with marshmallows, thank you very much. Besides, I sweat profusely when I get “lusty” so I don’t need an open flame to make me perspire even more, thereby necessitating another utilitarian shower together. Blech.
- Add heat or ice to oral sex – Why on earth? This activity was stressful enough as it was! But they want you to alternate turning an ordinary penis into a popsicle and then some kinda fresh outa-the-oven baked goodie that you’ll need an oven mitt to handle? Really, can we all just go back to using the trusty Reddi-Whip can?
- Role Play as Stewardess and Passenger—I’m deathly afraid to fly and pretending to be inducted into the “Mile High” club would have offered me zero thrills per minute. All I would’ve thought about were those air-sickness bags and tiny packages of salted peanuts spilling everywhere.
- Do It In Front Of a Mirror – If I had to view my wide reflection staring back at me during sex, he might as well have been banging me on a doctor’s office scale. I would be obsessing about diets and “a moment on the lips, forever on the hips.” And then fish n’ chips and chicken strips and onion dips and licorice whips and… yes I binge when I’m being scrutinized.
- Incorporate chocolate covered strawberries or caramel sauce into your foreplay – Right! After the above mirror escapade, the only thing I’d be doing with those treats would be adding up how many points they were on Weight Watchers.
- Wrap body Parts in Saran Wrap – Oh sure! Because he needed more proof that he was getting served leftovers again.
- Masturbate in Front of Each Other, Narrate Finger Auction – Huh? Auction? Okay, I guess it would go something like this…. “The next item is a close-up of My Vagina. Done in lovely muted colors and circular brush strokes. I’m now sliding a single finger inside. Do I hear two fingers? Three? Three! Going once, going twice, coming three times!” Oh, never mind. There was a typo in the Smartphone app. It was Finger Action, NOT Auction.
But that gave me an idea! I looked over the other 8 items featured on our sexual bucket list in the hopes that I had misread them as well. But there was no such luck — 100% accurate. There were only two options left — #1. Serious negotiations with my then husband or #2. Make an appointment with that recommended sex therapist.
But I chose option #3, deleting the Intimacy Smartphone app. And also eventually…deleting my then husband.
Note: A modified version of this article originally appeared on BLUNTmoms over a year ago.
And if you’d like to be kept aware of the other places my writing appears, I finally have an Author Facebook Page. I would love (if you’re active on Facebook) for you to click HERE and like it. That way when my personal blog occasionally goes dark, we can still keep in touch. Have a great weekend! Stephanie D. Lewis – – AKA Little Miss Menopause.