Friday, August 31, 2012

Children hate Pinterest, Too

Proof positive:

They're lambs, if you didn't guess.  (I know I didn't.)  Don't they look happy?  No?  Well, that's because they wanted to be superheroes and/or princesses, and you are the terrible parent who make them look like a floppy-eared tampon.

The problem here isn't the stains.  The problem here is that you were hopped up on boxwine instead of supervising your child.

The tag for this is, "20 Questions to ask your children when you're putting them to bed to help develop your relationship."  NO.  NONONONONONONONONO.  I'm sorry to have to break it to you, but it is really never okay to make this kind of references when talking about children.

This kid lives in a bubble.  Not because he has any terrible allergies and will fall into a coma if he breathes air that hasn't been sucked dry by an industrial-grade air purifier, but because he's dressed too nicely to be allowed to play.  And he's only got a box, a purse, and an antique telephone, anyway. 

And just in case you were wondering?  Putting your child in shoes with no socks when it's cold enough to require a hat and scarf doesn't make you a cool parent.  It makes you an asshole with a be-blister-footed child.  Asshole.

(True:  These are all from one page of Pinterest.  Because it's lush with crap.)


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Pinterest Makes Me Hate Everybody

WRONG.  Let's try this again:

  • Goodmorning = Good morning.  You clearly are not going for a concise, 140 space text here.  Get it right.
  • i = I.  We humans are ego-centric, and the first-person subjective pronoun is capitalized, which I learned in first grade.  I'm so sorry you didn't.
  • Makeup = Cosmetics.  Making up is what you do naked after an argument.
  • inseperable = incorrect.  Spell shit correctly.
  • bestfriend = best friend.  You are still two separate (See what I did there) people.  You can be close, but your cells are not physically bound together.  The term "best friend" works the same way.
  • your = you're not intelligent enough to use second-person pronouns correctly.
  • people are like "your stillll together = fuck you in so many ways.  If someone is saying something, and you are using a tag such as "they say" or, less-intelligently, "people are like," then use use a comma to separate (See what I did there?) the tag and what is being said.  Just putting in quotation marks implies irony or a lack of truth.  Apparently, people are implying that you as a couple are not, in fact, "stillll together," or are only "stillll together" in a technical (but not a practical) sense.  Also, I don't know of a single word in the English language that uses four consecutive Ls.
The moral:  If you are trying to impress someone, do try not to look illiterate.

These are gift boxes--made from toilet paper rolls.  Because nothing says, "I'm a shitty friend," like giving a gift in a box that's been hanging next to your toilet for a week.  (Except maybe using a tampon box instead.  But that says more, "I'm a bloody awful friend," to me, and less, "I'm a shitty friend."

Yeah.  Fuck you, too.

I'm sure she'll love that when she grows up and becomes the man she always felt she was meant to be and gets married in a tux.  Also, who the hell is supposed to do that much planning? 

Ah, yes, the ubiquitous hipster version of the "Hang in there!" kitten motivational poster.  Shoot me now.

And finally:
  • Braids and other hair styles that are touted to be "easy."
  • Reasons to be fit.
  • Recipes with six ingredients I've never even heard of requiring a kitchen mixer technical know-how equivalent to running the International Space Station.
  • Bridal boards.
  • Outfits.
  • Anything DIY.
Are you on Pinterest?  Do you also have a love/hate relationship?

(True:  You can find me on Pinterest here.)


Friday, August 24, 2012

It's Friday--Your Boss Definitely Probably Won't Mind You Wasting a Couple of Hours

I don't know if you're realized this yet, but there are some pretty neat things on this Internet of ours.

First, Bubbe sent me this awesome and hilarious video, which makes me feel a little better about myself because, well, I need a wall to balance against when I try anything aerobic, too.

You may have already heard about the police officer in Baltimore, who, when called out to deal with a vicious pit pull, gave the dog water, cuddles, and--not very long after--a forever home.  Seriously, how cool is this guy?!

Read the story here.

Oooh, have you seen DogShaming yet on tumblr?  It's moving quickly to become one of my favorite dog blogs.  Because, you know, if you have a dog, they do some crazy/gross/obnoxious things, and a sense of humor about it is absolutely essential...

Now, shocking as it is, the Internet is not entirely about dogs.  I know, it's a bit of a disappointment to me, too.  But we all need to expand our worlds sometimes, and there's actually some neat non-dog stuff out there, too.

Like this.  It's a huge compiliation of do-it-yourself costumes, including this absolutely amazing Weeping Angel costume:

Holy crap, you guys.

And this Inspector Gadget:

The head fan works!
But, sick as my sense of humor is, this one is probably my favorite.

Would someone lend me their baby?  Please?
And finally, a treasure hunt just for you...

1.  Go to Google.  (I'd recommend opening it in another tab, or you won't be able to follow the rest of the directions.

2.  Type "Where is Chuck Norris".  Search.

3.  Click on the first option.

4.  Be astounded.  Or at least mildly entertained.  You know, whatever.

So tell me, faithful followers (or lurkers, or casual passers-by--yes, I know "passers-by" doesn't sound right, but it is) what else is out in the World Wide Web that I need to know about?

(True:  A thing that picks other things up is properly called a "picker-up," not a "picker-upper."  Someone needs to travel back to 1992 and inform Bounty, stat.  Well, maybe not stat, since time travel is involved.  Ninety-two can probably wait till tomorrow.)

(Also true:  I am sorry if you've read all this way and were hoping for something entertaining.  Actually, I'm sorry for this whole post.  I'm pretty sure this is one I'll look back at in a year and think, what was I smoking that day?  Except I know the answer will be nothing, because I've never smoked anything but hookah that one time in college and it gave me a headache so I did it five more times and then never again.  I don't think it counts as smoking, while I'm going up or down the stairs in my building, occasionally having to breathe the miasma of whatever my former downstairs neighbors, ahem, enjoyed.  I don't mean cupcakes, sadly.)

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

If the World Ends, It's Probably My Fault

You know how the Doctor always has a companion?  Keep that in mind.

I was at the store, waiting patiently in line to purchase my items.  There was a man chatting in front of me, and it was unclear whether he was in line.  I figured, no big deal, either he'll move forward with the line, or he won't and I can step up then.  The woman behind me did not agree.

"Can you move up already?" she asked.

"I think he's in line," I said politely, continuing to wait.  A few moments pass.

"Well, I guess because I asked, you're not going to move up, then.  Bitch."

Everyone who has been waiting patiently turns to stare at her, because she's clearly missed her medication.  A passing employee opened their register just for her, because this woman seriously looked ready to slug me. 

But I've figured it out.  If I had interrupted the man's conversation and asked if he was in line, explaining that I had to interrupt because if I could move up about a foot and a half, the space-time continuum would bend, making time go faster, so the woman behind me could buy her cheetah print press-on nails in less time and therefore meet the Doctor back at the TARDIS in time to save the world from alien invasion.


And now, we're all probably going to be infested by alien/plant/parasites and leafy fronds are going to grow out of our eyesockets, and it's all my fault.

Sorry about that.

(True:  If I had the opportunity to time travel, I'd take a lot more naps.)

Friday, August 17, 2012

I'm like a superhero. Only without the alter-ego. Or the spandex. Or the powers. Or the thigh-high boots. Forget it. I'm just awesome, okay?

Things I accomplished yesterday:

  • Plowed through a mountain of tasks at work while actually managing to look semi-professional.
  • Blogged like a boss.
  • Walked to the supermarket, thereby reducing my carbon footprint.
  • Did laundry and cooked dinner (with extra for freezing) and washed dishes, like a motherfucking domestic goddess.
  • Walked the dog, training for polite sitting at stops.
  • Ate dinner--with a real plate and fork.
  • Socialized:  Beer, dart league, cool people.  Like Carrie Bradshaw in Sex and the City.  But with beer, dart league, and cool people.
  • Read fifty pages of a new book, edifying myself on manner subtleties of the 1860s.
Or, in other words I rocked the shit out of yesterday in all matters professional, domestic, social, and intellectual. Carpe that diem, Horace.



(True:  Of course, the rest of the phrase, quam minimum credula postero, means "putting as little trust as possible in the future", so no promises that today has been anywhere near as efficient...)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Hops in the Right Direction: Core Strength

Warning:  This is not a real post.

As a dog with altered mobility, it's important that Prada's core muscles are strong enough to support the way she moves.  For quite a while, I wondered how to go about building those muscles up.  A trainer friend suggested teaching her to sit pretty, but Prada never really took to that.

What she has taken to, without any prompting from me, is pretty astounding, and more than a little funny.  With her back legs in front of her, she sits back and takes her front paw off the floor (or me, you know, whatever) and spins around to see things.  Like a top or a Sit-N-Spin.  Or a Weeble.

So I think her core muscles are probably fine.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Darwin, I Am Sorry

Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species in 1859, giving compelling evidence for evolution via natural selection.

From the first separation from the chimpanzee some five million years ago, to the attainment of anatomical modernity as homo sapiens some 200,000 years ago, we as a species have been culling the chaff and improving upon the gene pool.

(You know, if you ignore everything you see on reality TV.)

Those creatures that are too weak or stupid or uncoordinated get eaten or fall off cliffs or are the recipient of a post-mortem by definition Darwin Award.  In general, those creatures never have the chance to procreate.  (For the sake of my argument, I'm pretending Snooki doesn't exist.  Actually, for the sake of my life, I always pretend Snooki doesn't exist.)  Those creatures are the chaff.

But what about the wheat of the species?  We've created awe-inspiring art in all its forms, buildings that almost seem to defy the laws of physics (think of the Pyramids--and the entire city of Dubai), and The Internet.  We've been to the depths of the ocean floor, plumbed the recessed of the earth, and walked on the moon.  We've been pretty damn amazing, and it's sort of breathtaking to think that five million years of evolution has culminated in you or me specifically.

Well, maybe not me specifically.  After all, I did faceplant out of bed this morning in an epically flailing way.  Any moment now, I expect to fall down an open manhole and into the waiting maw of a sewer alligator or be hit by a runaway Segway or blow myself up using only a can of shaving cream and a banana.


(True:  Actually, reality TV in general--and Snooki and her progeny specifically--have me very concerned about the future of our species...)

Friday, August 10, 2012

Spot and Dot Meet the World

I tried to look nice today, I really did.  I even went for professional instead of post-college slob.  Black dress pants, summer-weight sleeveless gold sweater with a deep v-neck, black cami.  (This ensemble is not as 1987 or pimp as it sounds.)  I broke out real shoes for once, instead of slipping on the stand-by flipflops.

I just went to the restroom and looked at myself in the mirror for the first time today.

Note to self:  This cami is only mostly opaque.  So next time, don't wear it with the polka-dot bra.

(True:  I only realized this after the ten-minute conversation with head honchoman.  Super.)

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Hops in the Right Direction: What Happens When You're Not Looking

No, the title isn't a Weeping Angels reference.  (Well, it only is if you get it.)  Rather, so much growth occurs when you're not actively working towards it.

This week, I've been thinking about the adult I wanted to be when I was a little girl.  I wanted to be confident and have a decent job that funded the continuing adventures I wanted to have.  I wanted to be successful on my own terms and eventually be able to cut the financial cord between my parents and me.  I wanted to be satisfied with who I had become.  Pets, family, and great friends were a necessity, of course--and I wanted them to be satisfied with the person I'd become, too.  And sure, I wanted a bit of romance.  Who doesn't?

It occurred to me:  I've got that life.  Out of all the economic hardships, dumb choices, and plain ol' drama, somehow I ended up somewhere good.  And I think it started happening when I stopped worrying about it so much.

Let's back track a bit.  When I was in high school, I got sick.  Really, really sick.  At one point, my prognosis was, "Don't expect to see the end of college."  Obviously, it was a turning point for me--if I had a limited amount of time, I was going to fucking make the most of it.  Valedictorian?  Check.  Study abroad?  Check.  First complete manuscript by age twenty-two?  Check.  Fall in love?  Check.  I got an apartment and a full-time job right out of college, because I needed to prove I could do it.  I joined everything:  choirs, sports teams, theater groups, dance groups, bowling teams, pie parties, writers groups...  If it had anything to do with anything I was the least bit interested in, I signed up.  How can you experience everything life has to offer if I don't experience everything life has to offer?  I had a bad case of DO ALL THE THINGS.

Controlling every moment of my time gave me a sense of purpose and accomplishment.  It made me feel like I was going somewhere.  That feeling has lasted years after my illness went into remission and I was told I should have a normal, long life.


What the hell does this have to do with Prada and tripods?  I'm getting there, I promise.

As I said, I only realized I was where I wanted to be when I stopped working so hard for it--my single-minded goal-setting had blinded me to the goals I was actually achieving.  I needed to stop and smell the roses, as it were.

I needed to let Prada do the same.

Don't get me wrong, it's not like I was training the bejeezus out of her.  We've taken four 6 week training courses in the last year and a half, and we practice several times a week, not every day.  But I have had a mental list of the things I want her to accomplish, in the order I want her to accomplish them.  A lot of the places I take her to, I take her to with the assumption that she will have some experience, and I want her to experience ALL THE THINGS.  In order.  By my mental list.

Sometimes, I'm kind of dumb.  Sometimes, I need to just let things happen in their own time

As long as I've had her, Prada has refused to eat or drink out of any dish deep and narrow enough that she had to sort of stick her head in it to get the food or water.  I bought wide, shallow dishes for her, and put that fear way down on my list of things to accomplish with her.  Getting her to heel nicely, sit properly, and wait politely were clear priorities for me, followed shortly by getting her used to surfaces other than the carpet she prefers.  When we travelled, I brought or scavenged a dish that would accomodate her fear.  It was something I (mostly) remembered to consider when taking her places--I couldn't depend on a Prada-friendly dish of water even at a dog-friendly event.

And then, at the rally event we went to, Prada got thristy when I had left her with my parents to run an errand.  (Okay, I had to pee.)  Without even thinking about it or making a fuss or balking at all, she shoved her head all the way into Linka's very deep, very narrow water dish.  And drank.

I like to think I've been pretty good about adapting the way I train to the way Prada learns.  Now I need to learn that I don't need to teach her everything.  Some things, she will learn without my interference.  Some of it is just going to happen, probably when I'm not looking.

And that will give us more time to just enjoy each other, which is kind of perfect.

(True:  I still have lots of goals  Long-term, I need to find an agent for that manuscript I wrote back when I was 22.  Short-term, I need to do my laundry.  Unless some helpful reader wants to offer to do it for me?)

Monday, August 6, 2012

It's Contagious--Like the Plague

I nerded out this weekend the the Bristol Renaissance Faire.  (You know it's nerdy when there are superfluous Es.)  I've been there several times, and I love everything about it.  The actors with great or terrible accents, the shows, the shops, the food, the dusty paths and haphazardly-placed stonework and seating--it's all fantastic in my book.

I accompanied a friend from work and her family, which included a toddler, a five-year-old boy, and a teenage girl.  The little ones were, naturally, immediately enchanted.  Hey, there were face paint, costumes, and rides, and that's really all it takes to make for a fantastic experience at that age.  And if you've been there, you know that all the people who work there are amazing with kids--fun and playful without being the least bit patronizing.  I only tried bartering them away for a chance to throw the axes once.

As it turns out, you can't barter with other people's children.  Who knew?

Our small group also included my friend's teen cousin, G.  G had never been to a ren fair before, and I wasn't certain it was going to be her cuppa.  When I mentioned a lot of people go in costume even though they don't work there, well, you should have seen her face.  I'm pretty sure "ren fair" and crazytown became synonymous to her at that moment.  When it came out that there was no pavement anywhere, G became very anxious about the state of her new shoes, and I became concerned she was not going to enjoy the experience.

Cut to five hours later.  G has had her entire face painted, a new henna tattoo, has eaten something called "meat on a stick," and is adding her own comments about the costumes and people around us.  She is excited.  She is having fun.  She is totally geeking out with the rest of us.

And it is awesome.

(True:  I made a reference from the Narnia movie about the bear's battle cry, "For Narnia!" making him sound like he has a speech impediment.  But now I can't find a clip of it.  Please someone tell me I'm not crazy...)

Friday, August 3, 2012

Breath Mints of DOOOOM!

Even though I no longer run karaoke, I still go pretty regularly.  It's usually a nice mix of people I know and new faces.  Some of those new faces do not approve of me.

For example, the time I was sitting by a bar buddy and her friend, who I'd never met before.  New Face seemed like a nice enough lady, and we chatted casually for a while.  It seemed natural enough to offer her a mint when I opened the tin to grab one myself.

New Face took a long, hard look at the tin and finally said, "No thanks, I'm a Christian."  And then she got up to grab another beer, finding another seat when she'd been served.


Later, by the light of a lone, black, chicken blood-scented candle, I spun a maraschino cherry on the lid of my Mystifying Mints, and the stem pointed to "Good Bye," and I realized what a terrible person I am.  But at least I'm a terrible person with devilishly fresh breath.

(True:  The pointer thingy that comes with a Ouija board is called a "planchette."  I know this because I read trashy romance novels.)

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Hops in the Right Direction: Come One, Come All

This weekend, I had the pleasure of joining my parents at a UKC rally and obedience event.  I've mentioned before that Linka and my dad do rally obedience, which is like an obstacle course with obedience challenges, but this was the first time they had tried classic obedience trials as well.

Needless to say, it went well.

The event was hosted by the wonderful people at the Northwest Obedience Club in Carey, Illinois.  If you want to meet a nicer, more welcoming group of people, well, good luck to you.  Several of their members act as rally obedience judges for both the UKC and the APDT (Association of Pet Dog Trainers), and get this:

Both associations allow amputee dogs to participate.  In the UKC, the tripod only needs to perform all the excercises exactly as they are printed.  A judge in the APDT may allow variations in the excercises with valid reasons.  So, for example, a judge may at their discretion allow Prada to compete even though she heels on my right side, which in formal obedience, is the "wrong" side, because she prefers a barrier (me) between her more vulnerable amputated side and the rest of the world.

Most of us dog-lovers only have one job for our furry friends:  to be really exceptional cuddlers.  There is a large minority, though, that really enjoys the challenges and cameraderie (and yeah, okay, ribbons) that can be achieved with performance dogs at obedience and rally obedience trials.  So it's pretty cool that several of these clubs recognize that even "handicapped" dogs can perform with gusto.