Sunday, February 27, 2011


Well, this is embarrassing.  It seems I've come down with something.   A disease that's been afflicting millions has finally caught up with me.

A certain fever.

Of the Bieber variety.

Bieber Fever.

As in Justin Bieber. 

I know.

It's kind of like announcing you have an STD.  But with a lot less itching and burning.

Just so we're clear, I do not like Justin Bieber's music.  Just Justin Bieber.

Oh stop judging me.  It's not like I wanted this to happen.  I know you're expecting me to add: it just did.  But I won't.  Because it wasn't a one night stand.  It evolved as any proper relationship should.  Over time.

Me and the Bieb started out like you and that douchey guy at the bar.  You know the one.  You're amazed he can stop lifting up his shirt and admiring his six pack long enough to hit on you.  And you're like, "Ugh get this tool away from me."

That's how I was with Justin the first time I heard his music.  Repulsed.  Okay, maybe that's a little harsh.  There was just so much build up about this kid with an amazing voice who became famous from YouTube.  And when I finally heard his music, baby, baby, baby, I was like really?  This is a joke right?

But apparently?  It's not.

Like the douchey guy at the bar.  He buys you a drink, gives you a line.  It's cheesy and you both know it.  He smiles.  He has dimples.  He seems less douchey.  Kinda...charming?  Not quite, but he's starting to grow on you.

As did the Bieb when he and Shaq went toe to toe on the basketball court.  And wow... he has skills.  The Bieb.  Not Shaq.  I mean, of course Shaq has skills, he's a professional.  I expected him to be good.  But the doll-faced boy who swings his hair and makes the pre-teens swoon?  Dribbling and shooting and making baskets was not what I expected.

Then he challenged Shaq to a dance off.  And guess what?  I hate to say it.  Truly I do.

The kid can move.

And my repulsion started to melt.  The wall started to crumble.  But I wasn't smitten yet.

You're willing to dance with the douchey guy, a little butt/crotch grinding.  But you're not willing to give him your phone number at the end of the night. 

That's where the Bieb and I stood.

And then I read about him in Vanity Fair while waiting to have my lady parts probed at the Gyno's office.  I didn't want to read about him.  I really didn't.  I read Good Housekeeping.  A parenting magazine.  People.  But there he was, with his swoop.  Beckoning.

I devoured the article like a fat kid does cake.

And I could feel it coming.  Heart palpitations.  Sweaty palms. Rise in temperature.  I was infected.

Put it down!  Stop reading!  A voice somewhere deep inside me, growing smaller by the second, urged.

By the time I was finished reading, the infection had spread.  I ignored it.  But doing nothing only made it worse. Just like an STD.  Sure it may lie (lay?) dormant for awhile.  Until your next sexual encounter. And then it's back with a vengeance.  Or so I hear.  I don't personally know.  Ew.  STD's are gross.  Not that I'm judging you if you've had one.  I'm just saying, maybe you should be less of a whore.  You know, don't go home with the douchey bar guy.  Even though he's saying all the right things, has all the right moves.  It's only going to end badly.  He won't call.  You'll cry.  And that walk of shame will be nothing compared to that disgraceful trek to the Women's Clinic because YOU JUST CAN'T STAND THE ITCHING ANY LONGER!!!  And don't even try the "I must have got it from a public toilet," line.  Nobody buys that crap.  Everyone knows you're a whore.  And they'll judge you.

But not me.  Because sometimes?  Things happen.  Like reading a Vanity Fair article.

I left my Gyno thinking I had everything under control.

But the fever?  It was in me.  Waiting for the opportunity to flare up.




Cue Chelsea Handler.  She had the Bieb on her show.  He said all of five words.  But they were the right words.  Said in that way.

And I was done for.  Officially obsessed.  The Bieb and I?  We're connected.  No amount of medicine, cooling balms, denial, support groups or looking at photos-of-lesbians-who-look-like-Justin-Bieber is going to change that.

As for you?  Go ahead.  Take as many pregnancy tests as you want.  They're all going to say the same thing.  You're having the douchey guy's baby.  Making the two of you linked. 


You feel bad for judging me now, don't you?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


Red Dress Club Writing Prompt: write about a memory, to really mine it and write about what the memory means to you.  I'm not exactly sure I've written it memior-style, but it's a memory that's special to me.  People that are special to me.  That shaped my life. 

For you, T and A.


Only two kids at a time were allowed to go to Australia.

You could go any time you wanted. A self-determined time-out from spelling and math, reading and writing. You had ten minutes "down under" the table at the far side of the room. Ten minutes to read or draw, to whisper quietly, to sleep.

Only two kids were allowed to go.

Except for when the three of us went.

We didn't know who The Three Muskateers were, probably wouldn't have understood the phrase thick as thieves, but that's what we were. We talked, a little louder than quietly. We read, devouring The Babysitter's Club faster than vultures on road kill. We wrote notes to each other in a secret language. We giggled at a bad word in the dictionary. We ripped the page. Our eyes grew wide and we slapped it shut. Put it back on the shelf. Our little secret.

Under a table in our second grade class the bonds of friendship were formed.

Elementary, junior high, high school and college. We were T, K and A...all the way!

Twenty years later we live in different cities, have different careers, lead different lives. We talk, occasionally. The Babysitter's Club has been replaced with the likes of Nora Roberts. We have long forgotten the secret language.

We're not as close as we once were.

But maybe one day we'll take a time-out. From work and bills, relationships and kids. We'll run away. We'll escape. Not to a table in a classroom. But to a place far away. We'll talk until our voices grow hoarse. We'll sit quietly, side by side by side, and read. We'll giggle until it becomes a laugh. A laugh so hard we pee.

We'll just be. The three of us. Together. In Australia.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Day Two: Road Trip to Nowhere

The day started off like that long stretch of Texas where there is absolutely nothing but road and dust.  But then on a jaunty trip to the post office I spied a rollerblading couple.  The woman was normal looking enough, I suppose. I didn't have time to pay much attention to her, as I was preoccupied with her beau: a shirtless middle aged man with bulging biceps and stage-one beer gut, wearing jeans, and of course rollerblades.  Did you catch that?  Shirtless.  Jeans.  Rollerblades.  The best part is, he wasn't holding a shirt nor had it hanging from his back pocket as men are wont to do.  Which means he left the house that way.  Sans shirt.  Jeans.  Rollerblades.


I recommend stopping by the post office in any town you visit.  There's usually so much history there and, bonus, you get to see how stuff is, uh...mailed.  And, you have the opportunity to get in on the action and mail something yourself.  Pretty cool huh?

Okay, so it's really not that exciting.

Upon leaving the post office I noticed a little cafe that touts dining amidst the flowers.  Its courtyard and wrought iron gate reminded me of a New Orleans cafe, but with fewer beads and people shouting Who Dat! in my face.

The drive back to the office was quite the little mini-adventure.  I got cut off by an SUV with a South Carolina plate who decided, turns lanes?  Meh, turn lanes are for pussies.  I'm going to wait at the light in the non turn lane and turn anyway.  What are you going to do about it?  I'm from South Carolina, bitch.

Then, when I turned down the one-way street to my office, a conga line of cars and I had to pull off to the side of the road (and let me tell you, there wasn't much room) for a rich (I'm assuming rich, by their car) couple in a convertible to drive the wrong way down the one-way.  The man was driving (of course) and he held out his hand like the President addressing the crowd in his inaugural parade.  His dear wife had her head buried in her hands, unable to bear the shame.  Which made me start cracking up.  And also reminded me of the time the husband and I went to Cafe Risque.  You know?  The strip club.

Well, technically, we didn't go to Cafe Risque.  We went to the Cafe Risque parking lot.  On accident.

We were traveling back to G-ville to get our learnin on at the University of Florida, perhaps better known to the nation as the University of National Champions, when we needed to fill up on gas.   We pulled off at the exit that also happened to be the Cafe Risque exit.  After the getting of the gas, pandemonium ensued and we somehow ended up trying to leave the Cafe Risque parking lot.  But everyone and their mother decided to exit the interstate at that exact moment so there was a steady stream of cars passing zee Cafe inhibiting our ability to turn onto the road.  As car after car drove past and looked at the cute couple in the weathered Corolla trying to leave a strip club in the middle of the afternoon, my humiliation grew and I covered my face in shame.  It wasn't that I was embarrassed to be seen leaving a strip club. I was embarrassed to be seen leaving a strip club in the middle of the afternoon.  Everyone knows the strip club day shift is full of, how shall we say, less tight, less elastic, more natural looking girls.  Translation: real boobs, flabby stomachs, and stretch marks.

I haven't asked around, but I don't think this town has a strip club.  Which seems like the right way to go, considering the average resident age seems to be about 65.

They do have an interesting antique store, called Blockbuster Video, filled with these neat things called DVD's.  The husband and I stopped in and rented the end of season one, beginning of season two of Dexter, which we plan to watch later this evening after enjoying the sunset from the patio.

Our B&B is not exactly what I expected.  In addition to having to make our own food, the place is kind of a mess.  Particularly the bedroom.  The previous guests left their clothes everywhere.   And the shoes.  The husband cannot get out of bed without piercing his foot on a heel.  There are these two adorable dogs, though, who snuggle with us in bed and are SO happy to see us when we return each day.  I'm thinking of taking them with us when we leave.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

There's A Whole Lotta Bloggin Going On. And also? A Road Trip.

It is with much excitement that I share this news: three people, who I happen to think are pretty fabulous, have started blogs!  Yipee!  Blogging completes me.

The first fabulous person is my momma.  Her blog is GetHealthyEasy.  She offers easy manageable ways to get healthy.  Note: this is NOT a diet blog.  As you will read when you check out her blog, DIET is a four letter word.  The dirtiest of four letter words if you ask me.  Her posts are pretty short and each one offers one thing you can do to change your life and be healthier.  It is amazing.  She is amazing.  You should check it out.  And leave a comment.  We bloggers love to know we're not talking to ourselves all the time.

The second fabulous person is my friend G.E.O.R.G.E.  He is taking a three week road trip out west and is blogging about it.  So far it sounds quite eventful: helpful billboards, road kill, 30 varieties of jerky and Bucc-ees Beavers (it's not what you think).  Check it out: Go West Young Man.

The third fabulous person will have to remain a mystery for now.  She is not ready to let the world know she has started a fabulous blog.  But she should, because it is fabulous and she is fabulous.  She was inspired to start a blog by another blogger who neither of us know, but both of us love.  AND she said she was partially inspired by me.  I will totally take that partial credit.

If you haven't done so already, check out my fabulous friend Juli's blog Waiting for Baby Peanut.  It's about her precious baybee who is freaking adorable.  Highlight of her latest post?  Her dog and her baybee try to eat bark in the back yard.  HA-larious.

And you must check out Smitten Design by Ashley.  Her fabulousity knows no limits and you will quite simply be...smitten.

You may have noticed my skin turn a distinct shade of green whilst talking about George's blog. It is the green of envy my friends.  I am tres jealous of his road trip.  Not only is George traveling, but he's blogging and traveling.  I die.

I told the husband I want to go on an East Coast road trip because oh my gosh how much fun would that be and OH MY GOSH I COULD BLOG ABOUT IT. HOW MUCH FUN WOULD THAT BE.  Unfortunately there's this thing called life which prevents us from do so right now.  So, instead of being all mopey and sad and my life sucks, I've decided to pretend that I'm on a road trip right now, in my town, going about my daily activities, and of course blog about it.  Greatest.  Idea. Ever.  You guys are gonna love this.

Here we go.

Road Trip to Nowhere, Day One:

Everyone knows the most important component of any road trip is tunes.  I've been listening to the same CD for the last four months, and now any time I hear one of the songs on it, I want to stab myself in the head with a pencil.  But that would hurt.  So instead, I'd probably stab someone else in the head with a pencil.  And likely go to jail.  Not a good way to start a road trip. That's the number one rule of road trips: don't go to jail.

So I dug around in my glove compartment for an old CD. (Yes, I realize to the rest of the civilized word CD's are antiquated and you all listen to music via your ipod or iphone or have songs downloaded directly to your brain, or whatever, but I still listen to CD's.  And I like it.  So back off.)  I pulled out three badly scratched CD's; my player promptly rejected each one.  Finally I found a mildly scratched CD labeled Hey Ya.

Folks we have a winner.

My baby don't mess around because she loves me so and this I know fo sho.
But does she really wanna but can't stand to see me walk out the door
Don't try to fight the feelin
Don't try to fight the feelin
Fight the feelin

Okay, the scratches are coming into play.  On to the next song.

3,6,9 damn you're fine
move it so you can sock it to me one more time
Get low.
Get low, get low, get low, get low, get low.

Yesssss.  Lil Jon and the East Side Boyz.  I windowed to the wall all the way to work.  (Which according to Urban Dictionary, the window is where you enter the pu... You know what?  I'm going to let you guys look that one up yourselves.)

After a stimulating morning of work, I ventured to this charming little B&B where the husband and I are staying called Casa de Mi Casa for lunch.  They have this new style of lunching called Make It Yourself.  I enjoyed a delightful meal of processed hormone infused foods, making a mess during the preparation process.  But that's the beauty of being on vacation: making a mess for someone else to clean up.  Or so I thought until the husband told me there are no maids at this B&B.  We have to clean up the mess ourselves.  Really?  Really?  What kind of place is this?  I cannot wait to fill out the comment card when we leave here.

After lunch, I drove north to the neighboring town for a visit with the Gyno.  Cause nothing says road trip like a pap smear.

The 25 mile trip was pretty uneventful.  I attempted to play the license plate game, but all plates were of my home state so that got lame pretty quickly.  Really, the only highlights were Psychic Stephanie's $30 SPECIAL TODAY! and the old dude with the waist-length gray ponytail and cowboy hat trying to jump start his Hover Round.

The medical plaza that contains my Gyno's office is kinda like entering a third world country.  Okay, maybe that's a little dramatic.  It's like a second world country, complete with bars on windows, bums passed out on sidewalks, men with machine guns, children with dirty faces peering around corners, hookers soliciting sex and signs everywhere saying CAUTION! SLIPPERY WHEN WET. USE RAMP.  Except?  There are no freakin ramps.

After my lady parts were sufficiently prodded, I returned back to work, getting held up by some Q-tips (old people) going ten miles below the 30 mph speed limit on the mile they call Miracle.

The husband stopped at a local market called Publix on his way home to the B&B and we made a delightful dinner which we enjoyed on the couch in front of the TV.  We plan to retire early so we can get an early start on Day Two of the Road Trip to Nowhere.

Stay tuned.  And try to keep your envy in check.  Jealousy doesn't look good on you.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Recent Conversation With The Husband

While cooking dinner...

the husband: That was a sad movie you watched last night.

me: What movie?

the husband: Country Strong.

me: Oh. Yeah.

the husband: That's not what the previews made it seem like.

me: What are the previews like?  I haven't seen any.

the husband: They made her seem like a real sassafras.

me: What's that mean?

the husband: You know, like a sassafras.

me:  No, I don't.  Like bitchy?

the husband: Yeah, sure.

Later that night in bed...

me: what was that word you made up tonight to describe Gwenyth Paltrow in Country Strong?

the husband: ?

me: ...

the husband: Oh.  Sassafras.  That's not what I meant to say.

me: What were you thinking?  Sassy?

the husband: Maybe.

me: Fresh?

the husband: No... I meant sassafras.

me: Sassafras isn't a word.

the husband: It's a type of food.

me: No, you're thinking of sasquatch.

the husband: No, that's a mythical creature.

me:  It's not mythical.

the husband: Oh, I'm sorry.  I didn't realize I was living with a crazy who thinks Big Foot is real.

me: A mythical creature is

the husband: A creature of myth.

me: A unicorn.

the husband: I'm looking up sassafras.

The husband Yahoo's sassafras and finds the following Wikipedia definition:
Sassafras is a genus of three extant and one extinct species of deciduous trees in the family Lauraceae, native to eastern North America and eastern Asia.

me (hysterical laughing): So in the movie Country Strong, Gwenyth Paltrow is a deciduous tree?! Ahahahahahahahah!

the husband: I'm looking it up on Urban Dictionary

Urban Dictionary definition of sassafras: 1. a fiesty girl  2. one who sasses

the husband: see?

I respond by taking the phone away from the husband and go to definitions:

1.     an aromatic deciduous lauraceous tree, Sassafras albidum,  of North America, having three-lobed leaves and dark blue fruits
2.     the aromatic dried root bark of this tree, used as a flavouring, and yielding sassafras oil
3.     ( Austral ) any of several unrelated trees having a similar fragrant bark

me: Nowhere does it say anything about a sassy lady

the husband: Yeah, well that's according to the dictionary.

me: Oh, I'm sorry.  How stupid of me to refer to the dictionary to determine the meaning of a word.

the husband yanks the phone away from and I get up from the bed to grab my notebook.

the husband: This is going on your blog, isn't it?  Don't slander me.*

me: It's not slander if it's true.

the husband (back on urban dictionary): Do you want to know what a magic turd is?

me: No.  This conversation is over.

Why did I feel the need to share this conversation with you?  I just thought you'd like to be privy to the stimulating banter between two highly intelligent individuals.  You're welcome.

*Pop Quiz:  Was the husband right in using slander?  Or is libel the correct word?  I sincerely hope someone knows the answer, because I can never remember which is the written word and which is the spoken word, and I no longer trust the Internets to tell me what words mean.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Rabies and Valentine's Day

I bet you didn't know the two were related.

Well they weren't.  Until the husband gave me rabies on Valentine's Day.

And you thought the gift your boyfriend/husband/significant other gave you was bad.  Nothing says I love you like foaming at the mouth and seven shots to the belly button.  I told him he didn't have to get me anything, but he insisted.

I should probably stop this right here before the husband gets all, "I didn't give you rabies!  Why are you telling people I gave you rabies?!!!"

Just so we're all clear, the husband did not give me rabies.  Yet.  I mean, who's to say he won't some day?  Marriage is a journey, one filled with highs and lows, happiness and woes, joys and tears, taking risks and conquering fears, and possibly rabies.  Unless the husband and I are squirrels.  Then the journey will never involve rabies, but probably a lot more nuts.

But I'm getting ahead of myself.

I've been meaning to post this for awhile, but it never seemed to be the right time.  And then Valentine's Day happened and I was like YES! finally it is time to write about the rabies scare.

Several months ago, my sleepy little town was under a rabies alert.

It started with an email from the Humane Society.  Well, I guess technically it started with a rabid animal biting another rabid animal, biting another rabid animal and so on.  The alert-threat-of-terror-is-orange-today-wrap-yourself-in-Seranwrap-to-save-yourself-from-doom started with an email, the highlights of which are shared below, with my comments in italics.

The health department is emphasizing the importance of rabies prevention, as there has been a confirmed case of rabies in a domestic animal (wild/feral cat) with an associated human exposure.  So which one is it, Humane Society, a domestic or wild animal?  Your parenthetical wild/feral cat does not provide further description of the domestic animal, it says the exact opposite.  Maybe next time consult a dictionary before issuing an alert that is going to ignite mass terror.

Wild animals (e.g., skunks, raccoons and bats) behaving abnormally - such as attempting to interact with or attack pets, stumbling, or acting disoriented - should be reported.  Stumbling and acting disoriented?  Did you ever consider that these animals may just be drunk?  Don't you think it's a little unfair to assume they are infected with rabies, a disease that's going to take down the whole planet?  True, alcoholism is also a disease, but it doesn't have to be deadly.  There is hope.  Instead of being so negative, why don't you try being part of the solution and equip every household with wild animal breathalyzers?  That way, when we see a stumbling disoriented animal we can ask it to blow for 30 seconds and then know whether to issue a card with the number of the local Alcoholics Anonymous, or run like hell in the other direction.  Honestly, I don't know why I even have to explain this.  You're the Humane Society.  Your entire reason for being is to help animals.  I would have thought you'd have figured this out by now.

How can I protect myself from getting rabies?
When traveling abroad, avoid direct contact with wild animals and be especially careful around dogs in developing countries. Rabies is common in developing countries in Asia, Africa and Latin where dogs are the major reservoir of rabies.
What?!  I have to watch out for dogs in the country of Latin?!  But I love Latin!  It is one of my all-time favorite countries.  Oh how it breaks my heart to hear that the beautiful country of Latin is marred by such an ugly disease.  My next donation to your organization will be in the form of an atlas.

The email went on and on, telling me how to avoid getting rabies, the signs of rabies, what to do if I get rabies.  I forwarded it to the husband (minus my brilliant commentary) because we have dogs and I thought it would be tres important for both of us to be on high alert for les rabies.

He responded:
Yikes!  We need to be vigilant. I feel like we are in the movie Daybreakers.

And I responded:
I never saw that movie.  Or did I?  Is it about Rabies?  Is that the one with the vampires?  My memory is so bad.  Remember the squirrel at dinner on Tuesday night, and I said it looks like it has rabies?  Did I say that out loud?  I thought it in my head, but don't remember if I actually said it to you.  I remember thinking I shouldn't say it has rabies cuz that's not nice, so I said it looks sad or skinny or hungry or something like that.    Do you remember what I said?  Why can't I remember anything?  When I was leaving work yesterday a squirrel ran under my car from the back.  I didn't see him come out the front so I squatted beside my car to see if he was still there because I was terrified of running him over.  What I didn't think of is, what if he's rabid and he jumps out and latches onto my throat?, which clearly I should have considered, because, hello, there's a rabies scare and I've already seen one rabid squirrel.  But then I told this to BOSS and CO-WORKER - the rabies thing and the possibly rabid squirrel in the parking lot of the Japanese restaurant, not me squatting by the car potentially being attacked by a squirrel - and BOSS said he didn't think squirrels got rabies.  But if dogs can get it, and bats and raccoons, and people, why can't squirrels?  Why are they exempt?  If that's true, it sounds like we'd all be better off being squirrels, because obviously this one case of rabies is going to turn into an outbreak.  Obviously.

And then he responded:
I love you so much. You made my day.

And that is what rabies has to do with Valentine's Day. I send the husband a schizophrenic email about rabies and he responds that he loves me.  True I sent this email about seven months before Valentine's Day, but yesterday on the day of hearts and flowers and chocolate and love and gag me with a spoon, I thought I should write a post about how much I love the husband, how great he is, how wonderful our marriage is, blah, blah, blah.

But here's the thing: our marriage, our relationship, isn't about the mush and the romance.  It took us months and months to pick a song for our first dance, because we don't have a song.  Unless you count Marvin Gaye's Let's Get It On and Sexual Healing. And while both of those are, indeed, very good songs to "get it on" to, they're not the best songs to dance your first dance to at your wedding while your grandparents look on lovingly.

We chose some song by Lifehouse, that neither us can remember the name of and every time it comes on the radio, we change the channel.

That's not to say we're never mushy or romantic.  And I certainly do love the occasional surprise bouquet or candlelit dinner or romantic stroll down the beach.  But our love is better defined by the day to day.  Cooking dinner together.  Laughing at irreverent inappropriate jokes that only we think are funny.  Going grocery shopping.  Doing nothing.  Watching Big Love.  Me blogging while he does a crossword.

And maybe one day, if we're lucky...


Friday, February 11, 2011

4 Tips on How to Have a Successful Facebook Life

Do you login in under your friend or spouse's facebook page to find out what's going on because you're too overwhelmed and confused to have your own facebook page?  Do you have your own facebook page, but wonder why you don't have more friends or get more comments on your posts?

Don't worry.  You're not alone.  Millions, or possibly tens, of people are afflicted with the same FEAR OF FACEBOOK.

Lucky for you I've been signing in under my husband's facebook page for the last year and have been taking notes.  After careful observation I have developed
4 Tips On How To Have a Successful Facebook Life.

1. Your Profile
This is the very first step in setting up your facebook page.  It's a pretty simple process.  If you can fill out a form, you can set up your profile.  A few important things you're going to want to keep in mind.  Be sure to make your full birthday, including the year, visible on your profile.  This will save identity thieves a lot of time when gathering the information they need to steal your life.

You're also going to want to fill in all the blanks that ask you about your education, work, arts, entertainment, and sports preferences, and your favorite activities and interests.  In those answers, make sure you include the names of all your pets, past and present, every nickname you've ever been called, your anniversary date, graduation date, street number, date of your first born, mother's birthday, along with all you hobbies, likes and dislikes.  This will make it much easier for all the hackers to guess the password to your bank account, 401K, Roth IRA, credit card account, ebay account, craigslist account, and, of course, facebook account.

2. Photos
Uploading photos to your facebook page is crucial to having a successful facebook life.  The first photo to start with is the all-important profile picture.  Your profile picture is your first chance to let people know how much better looking you've gotten since high school.  (If you've gotten worse looking since high school just dig out your best looking high school pic and use that.  People will totally think it's a current picture of you.)

It is important that the profile picture is of you and only you.  Don't have a solo picture of yourself?  Not to worry.  You have two options.

A. Hold your camera at arms length from your face.  Tilt head, purse lips, sultry-fye your eyes.  And click.  You have just taken one of the best pictures of yourself ever.  There will never be a need for a do-over because pictures like this never come out bad.

B. Find a really, really good picture of you with other people in it.  Crop everyone out of it, but you.  It's best if you are leaning in toward the person next to you that way when you crop out every last speck of that person, you will have cropped right up to the edge of your face.  It is likely that you will have several inches of blank wall, background or pure nothingness on the other side of your face.  DO NOT crop this out.  If you do, you risk making the photo look unnatural.  Photos like this make great profile pictures because not only do they show off how utterly amazing you look, they let the other people in the photo know exactly how you feel about them.

After you've uploaded your profile picture, it's time to create photo albums.  I recommend creating three photo albums right away.  You can add more as you go, but these three are a must.

Label the first album "Memories" and upload every photo of you from age 3 to 18.  It is vitally important to include as many middle and high school photos as possible, especially the ones that all your classmates are trying to forget exist -  the girl with the unibrow, the scrawny kid who never went through puberty, the girl dressed like she shopped in her grandmother's closet, etc.  After you've done this, check your calendar to make sure the next 4-6 hours of your life are clear.  That's how long it's going to take to tag every single person in all 248 photos you just uploaded.  Although you may soon grow weary, DO NOT GIVE UP!  If you do, how else will all of Maria's facebook friends know that, although she is a total babe now, she was a real train-wreck in high school?

The next album you create should be labeled "My Life."  Fill this album with photos that let people know how awesome your life is: photos of you in Maui, standing in front of the Eiffel Tower, at the base of a volcano, photos of you and your hunky husband, your model children, pictures of your house, your car, your engagement ring, basically anything that lets people know your life is so much better than theirs.

The third album, "Crazy Times!" should show people just what kind of party animal you are.  Include pictures of you half naked, pictures of you doing shots, pictures of you playing drinking games, pictures of you rolling on the floor with your friends, pictures of you making out with your friends, pictures of you dancing on a bar, pictures of you passed out on the floor, pictures of you with penises drawn on your face, pictures of you peeing in your neighbors pool, pictures of you vandalizing private property, pictures of you stealing road signs, pictures of you doing drugs, pictures of you selling drugs, pictures of you cheering on people doing and selling drugs.  Basically anything that would cause your current employer to fire you, prevent a future employer from hiring you or make your mother cry, should go in this album.

3. Wall Posts
Wall posts are quite possibly the most important component of your facebook life.  Wall posts are like the windows to your soul.

After you've created your profile and spent 867 hours uploading photos, you will, no doubt, be eager to post your first status update.  But wait!  This step is not to be entered into lightly.  Open up a blank word document and practice writing wall posts.  Keep posting until you've run out of interesting things to say.  Now you are ready for your first facebook wall post.

WARNING: If you skip the word document practice session and go straight to your first post, you could end up posting something people actually care about.

Here are some suggestions on good wall posts.

A. Share a mundane task that you just completed and follow it with LOL!

Example:  Just tied my shoelaces.  LOL!

This is a good wall post because everyone can relate to how hilarious shoe-lace tying is.

B. Share a routine part of your day.

Example:  Just drove to work!

This is a good post because it makes you sound interesting and important, causing all your friends to wish they too could know the utter awesomeness of something unique as "driving to work."

C. Post something mysterious.

Example: Got the test results today. So relieved!  ("So relieved" can be replaced with "So excited!"  "It's just what I feared."  "So scared." "Worried for nothing.")

This is a good wall post because it will cause no less than 32 people to comment, including those you friended 8 months ago and have never once "spoken" to you, wanting to know what happened.

Chris: Are you okay?
Myra: What's wrong?
Kelly: What happened?
Chip: What kind of test was it?
Donald: Have you been sick?
Laura: Was it the SAT's?  I just took mine.
Ally: Are you pregnant?

You're going to want to ignore these and all other comments except for the one from Jenny, the only person you've had an actual conversation with in the last eight weeks and the only one you want knowing what is actually going on with you.

Jenny: What did the doctor say?
You: I'll message you.

This means you'll have a private facebook conversation that no one else can see.

You may be tempted to just start out this way and skip the wall post.  But don't.  That's rude.  Would you be at a dinner party with a bunch of friends and wait until you and Jenny were alone to share your private news?  No.  You would lean over and whisper in her ear in front of everyone else.  Jenny would gasp and the two of you would exchange a look.  That's called manners. The rules that apply in real life also apply in facebook life.

Which leads me to the last tip to remember when setting up your facebook page.

4. Commenting on Friend's Wall Posts
This tip is pretty straight forward.  Someone talks to you, you respond.

Example: Your friend says he just tied his shoelaces. LOL!

Appropriate responses include:

So funny dude!
No way man, so did I.
I did that yesterday.
My daughter can tie her shoes.
Shoelace tying is the best.
I'm wearing slip-ons!
My dog ate my shoelaces.
Loop & Swoop or Bunny Ears?

That last one is great because it will start a Loop & Swoop v. Bunny Ears debate among the other commenters.  In facebook life starting a debate is like buying the bar a round of drinks in real life.

The other thing to remember about commenting is that it's always good to comment on a conversation between two friends, especially if it involves an inside joke.

Mary: Pillow Time!
April: Haha.  That was a crazy night.
Mary: I still can't believe he did that.
April: Seriously, he was out of control.
Mary: Now every time someone gets our their camera, I have to resist the urge to yell Pillow Time!
April: LOL!
You: What's Pillow Time?
You: Are you guys talking about Robert?
You: Pillow Time!  LOL. So funny.

This is a good thing to do because it's like in real life when two people are standing off to the side having a private conversation and you jump in and want to know what they're talking about.  People love it in facebook life as much as they love it in real life.

So there you have it.  Follow those four simple tips and kiss your FEAR OF FACEBOOK goodbye.  You will soon have hundreds of friends and enjoy a rich and rewarding facebook life.


P.S.  I'm launching my facebook page this weekend.  Probably.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Could We Be Any More Dysfunctional? No, Really. Could We? I Need to Know if it Could Get Worse.

Life can't ever really defeat a writer who is in love with writing, for life itself is a writer's lover until death - fascinating, cruel, lavish, warm, cold, treacherous, constant. 
Edna Ferber, A Kind of Magic, 1963

Remember when my friends wrote something really nice on my facebook wall and I freaked out and yelled at them and banned them from my wall, then tried to get them back and broke facebook and then the world imploded so I decided I was finally going to get my own facebook page instead of hijacking the husband's?

Yeah, me too.

Remember how I friend requested you and now we have tons of fun on my facebook?

Yeah, me neither.

It should come as no surprise to you that I never went through with it.  Because of The Issues.  And The Anxiety.

It really is quite ridiculous that I have so much unease about having my own facebook page since I invented The Facebook.

Well, technically, the husband invented The Facebook.  I know.  You probably think it was that Mark Zuckerackerbergers guy who went to Harvard and got all pissed that his girlfriend broke up with him and retaliated by becoming a billionaire.  (Um, yeah, pretty much the greatest revenge ever.)  But it wasn't.  It was the husband.

You know how every time someone comments on the husband's facebook page, his phone dings because he's a mister fancy pants with his i-phone?  Well the night I was trying to de-ban my friends and restore order to facebook it was dinging every five seconds as my dear friend Tabitha and I had eight separate conversations at the same time as I tried to figure out what was going on.  Which made the husband all verklempt.


The husband:  What's going on on the facebook?


The husband:  What'd you do now on the facebook?


The husband:  Are you getting off the facebook soon?  I thought we were watching Shawshank.

Me:  The Facebook?  Is that kinda like The Kmarts and The Walmarts?  My grandmother loved  the Kmarts.

The husband didn't mean to keep saying "the" before facebook.  It just kept happening.  Like the night he desperately wanted to talk about how Japanese food is so good, but he kept saying Chinese instead.  Because he lips would only allow him to speak the truth, which is: Facebook is really called The Facebook, and also, he's Chinese.  Probably.

Probably about the Chinese part.  Not about the facebook part.  That part is totally true.  We just didn't realize it until a few weeks later when we went to see The Social Network.

If you haven't seen it, I won't spoil it for you, other than to say that Facebook was originally called The Facebook until Justin Timberlake told the Zuckerackergers dude to drop the "the."

So now you see.  The husband wasn't just channeling my grandmother, he retroactively invented facebook.  Making us billionaires.  Well, billionaires as soon as our lawsuit against Zuckerackerbergers and anyone else who claims to have had a hand in inventing facebook is finalized.

Until then, the husband will continue creating "the" facebook pages.  That's right, the husband has created another facebook page.  The husband - who never wanted a facebook page to begin with but decided to create one to hawk some product to all his friends, but then only decided to friend one person so I took his page over and now he gets all pissy and tells me to create my own page and threatens to shut down his page - has created another facebook page.

Why?  So he could be "friends" with a local flag football team that he is a part of.  One week he was named the MVP for his mad ball handling skills.  And was given a trophy.  And they took his picture.  And put it on the flag football facebook page. And I was so proud. True story.

He didn't want to be friends with the flag football team via our current facebook page because apparently the big macho football dudes will get the wrong idea when he constantly talks about girls night out and compliments my friends' dresses and says things like "aw!"  "seriously, she's so cute," and "miss you!"

This new page was the husband's chance to take control of facebook.  His chance to no longer have his wife involved whatsoever.  But instead, he created a "joint" page.    Let's say the husband's name is Ken and my name is Barbie.  Then the new page that husband created is called Ken Barbie Doll.   And the email address he used?  Mine.

Sooo, whenever Ken Barbie Doll gets a message from his one friend, Flag Football team, it goes to my email address.

Whenever Ken Doll (the husband's original facebook page, aka my facebook page) gets a message from my friends, it goes to the husband's email address.


Let me summarize.

The husband, who hates facebook, wants nothing to do with it and never checks it, has two facebook pages.

Me, who is mildly interested in and utterly confused by and but sincerely wanting a facebook page, has zero facebook pages.  Or maybe I have half a facebook page.

I don't know.

The husband and I are the picture of dysfunction.

The good news is, I'm almost ready to have my own page.  Almost.  Over the last year-ish of hijacking the husband's page, I've been observing.  And taking notes.  And I think I have amassed all the information I need to have a successful facebook page.  And I am willing to share this information with you.  So that those of you who have been toying with getting your own page, can finally do so with confidence.

Stay tuned.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Somewhere Along The Course of My Life, I Lost My Mind. I Really Wish I'd Find It.

This post is going to make less sense than usual because I'm really trying to be better about posting regularly, and I don't have a lot of time to think this through. So I'm just going to throw a bunch of words on the screen and see what happens.

My mind?  It's gone ya'll.  I know everyone says "I've lost my mind," but guess what?  They haven't actually lost it.  I know, because I actually have lost my mind.  And it's a scary thing.  And an annoying thing.  It  makes me feel...lost, and alone, and overwhelmed, and intimidated.

Okay.  Not really.  It just makes me feel annoyed.  And I little baffled.  I feel like I constantly walk around saying what the heck just happened? or what was I just doing? or hi, why are you grabbing my boob?  Oh, you're my husband, that's right.

I will get up from my desk at work, with the intention of walking to the printer, which is in another room, to retrieve a document I just printed.  But by the time I have left my office I have completely forgotten what I was going to do.  But not in that what was I just going to do? way when you get really frustrated because you can't remember what you were just about to say, get, do, etc.  I leave my office and have zero recollection that I printed something or was on my way to the printer.  I leave my office, head to the kitchen, pour a glass of water and go back to my desk.  Ten minutes later, one of co-workers will walk into my office, put a piece of paper on my desk and say "did you print this?"  Oh.  Yeah.

Happens.  All.  The time.

One day I got up from my desk, walked out of my office and did have that what was I just going to do? feeling, and ended up roaming around the office, walking into every room, hoping it would jog my memory.  It didn't, so I went to the bathroom and sat back down at my desk.

On more than one occasion I have been at home and gone downstairs to the kitchen for the single solitary purpose of getting a glass of water.  A few minutes later I'm back upstairs, and guess what?  No water.  What did I do downstairs?  Opened the curtains, lit a candle, fed the dogs, ate some M&M's.  Pretty much everything under the sun except get a glass of water.

It's happening to the husband too.

The other night we were at Carraba's for his birthday.  Scratch that.  We went somewhere else for his birthday.  We were at Carabba's because I was all MUST HAVE PASTA NOW! and the husband had a bit of a cold so he was all sniffly.  He says, "I'm going to go to the bathroom to blow my nose."  A few minutes later, he returns, sits down.  And sniffles.  And then says, "do you know what I did?"

"You went to the bathroom and didn't blow your nose," I say.

Correct contestant number three!  Would you like the home entertainment set or this new washer and dryer?

After dinner, the husband calls our friend P to tell him and his wife J that we aren't coming up to visit them this weekend.  "Tell him to tell J that I had forgotten that I had made plans with A and that is why we are not coming," I tell the husband.

The husband, "Okay."

Dials.  Ring.  Ring.

The husband: Hey P, we're not coming up this weekend.  I have to work.

Me: tell him about A!

The husband: yeah I have to work

Me: tell him I already had plans with A!

The husband: Where are you?  At dinner?  I'll call you later.

Hangs up.

Me: Why didn't you tell him about A?!

The husband: I didn't know what you wanted me to say.

Me: I told you.  Tell him I had already made plans with A.  J will understand that I wouldn't want to cancel a commitment I had made with a friend.  Now J might think I am canceling with her to be with another friend!

The husband: When did you tell me this?

Me: Right before you called P!

The husband: Oh.  I must not have been listening.

Now, normally I would get my panties in a wad over the fact that the husband actually admitted he wasn't listening to me.  I mean seriously, who does that?  But I would rather accept the fact that he wasn't listening than accept that he might be losing his mind too.  The husband is the stable, sane, reasonable one in this relationship.  Things will not bode well for us, if he starts getting a little One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

But honestly?  I think it's inevitable.  We're both losing it.

At least I, however, still remember historically significant facets of my and the husband's relationship.  Like how he developed his love for mushrooms.  He used to hate mushrooms.  Until I had a giant portobello mushroom on my sandwich at dinner one night and he was all "Ew, what is that?  You're not going to eat that are you?"  And I was all, "Seriously? It's a mushroom.  Try it."  He did and was all, "OMG, GREATEST FOOD EVER.  I LOVE MUSHROOM GIVE ME MORE NOW NOM NOM NOM!"

You would think one would remember the exact location that such a life changing even occurred right?  Well the husband thinks it occurred at Red Lobster.  But it totally did not.  What did occur at Red Lobster was one night in college the husband and I were studying at the computer lab like good little studious students when he was all, "Let's go to Red Lobster.  I want their biscuits."  And I was all, "Right on dude!  I want their Sunset Passion Colada!"

So we drove like bats out o hell and arrived five minutes before close.  I ordered TWO Sunset Passion Coladas and our waiter was all, "I've never seen anyone do that before."

That was what happened at Red Lobster.  Not the amazing mushroom incident.  That happened at...



SHOOT!  I just had it!  The entire time I was writing about the Sunset Passion Coladas the name of the restaurant was dancing around in my head.  And now?  Gone.


See that there?  I censored myself.  I wanted to say shit, but so as not to offend those that are offended by shit, I said shoot.  Not that anyone has told me they are offended by the (occasional, and totally necessary) bad words on my blog, but sometimes I try to be considerate, just in case.  Of course by saying shoot instead of shit, I may have just offended a whole bunch of folks offended by the word shoot.  This is why I'm against censorship.  In the process of not offending some people, you offend others.  And it is my blog and I can say whatever I want and if you don't like it you don't have to read it.  (Oh, hello Soap Box.  Nice to see you there.)  Unless someone's holding a gun to your head forcing you to read it.  In which case, you've got bigger things to worry about than the word "shit" wouldn't you say?

Huh.  Look at that.  In my effort not to say shit, I ended up saying it five times.  Proves my point, doesn't it?  About censorship.  Which is what this post is about.

No.  No, it totally is not.  It's about losing my mind, which, clearly, by the paragraph above, has definitely happened.

What has also happened is that by writing about shit, or in my effort to not write about shit, I remembered the name of the restaurant.


Ballyhoos is where the great mushroom incident happened.

And don't let the husband or anyone else tell you different.  Even when they're committing me to the mental institution because I'm all, "Honestly doctor, the pink polar bear told me it was cereal.  Why else would I eat a bowl of rocks?"