Thursday, October 30, 2008

Why are they showing commercials for Green Bags on Nickelodeon?

How do I know that they running commercials for Green Bags on Nickelodeon? Well, besides watching the occasional episode of iCarly (what?), THIS was the conversation between my 7-year old son and his 7-year old friend when I tried to serve them carrots that were a little dehydrated for dinner tonight.

Friend: Um, no thanks.

Son: Yeah, mom, you should have gotten Green Bags. They keep fruit and vegetables fresh for up to 30 days.

Friend: Yeah!

Son: Over 40 million Green Bags have already been sold.

Friend: Oh, more than that.

Why are they running commercials for a product that will keep fruits and vegetables fresh on a channel that targets consumers who wouldn't TOUCH a fruit or vegetable unless it was drenched in chocolate or ranch dressing? Oh, and consumers that don't HAVE ANY MONEY?!

Oh, and while I'm on commercials, what's with the One-A-Day Teen spot where the boy gets stuff in his vitamins for his muscles and the girl gets stuff in her vitamins for her skin? Seriously? Is that where we are in 2008? I keep waiting to see her sucker punch him right in the masculine symbol and say "I've been taking yours! Loser!"

Friday, October 24, 2008

Ghosting guilt

There’s a Halloween tradition that has become HUGE in my neighborhood – Ghosting. If you haven’t heard of it, sometime after dark your doorbell rings and you think “Who the f*^@ is ringing my doorbell just when I’m putting my kids to bed so I can get a few minutes to myself? Is that too much to ask?” and when you open the door no one is there, just a paper bag with Halloween candy or Halloween-related items and a note telling you that you have been Ghosted that is written in rhyme (so not necessary, btw). Sometimes the note says You’ve been Booed and my husband and I actually got into an argument the other night because he asked who was at the door and I said “We just got Booed” and he said “Hello! It’s called Ghosted.” And I said “Well, the frickin’ NOTE says Booed!”

The rules of being Ghosted are that you are supposed to make three copies of the ghost picture and the poem and within 48 hours “Ghost” three houses yourself or … your house will be haunted!!!!!! You’re also supposed to hang the picture of the ghost on your front door so everyone knows your house has already been hit.

Being a somewhat lazy family, by the time we get around to doing our Ghosting, there isn’t a house in our neighborhood that doesn’t have that ghost pic hanging on the front door, except the one with all the No Trespassing signs in front, and you would think that the one exception to No Trespassing would be someone leaving you a bag of candy but I’m not willing to risk it, having no idea if the homeowner owns a gun. One year we drove around with our three Ghosting bags in the car for about a week until I finally drove to another neighborhood where we didn’t even know anybody and Ghosted complete strangers. I still laugh when I think about my nine-year old running from back a stranger’s front porch with terror written all over her face because I’m screaming “Hurry up! They’re coming!”

They weren’t coming.

Which brings me to this year. We got Booed the night before last and I forgot to hang the ghost pic on the front door so last night we got Ghosted. I feel somewhat guilty about this; we’re not really playing by the rules. On the other hand, if I never hang up the sign, I can almost count on some other family providing us with dessert every night until Halloween. And if I don’t go out and search for the few houses that haven’t been Ghosted, well, is that really so bad? Is it any worse than the high school kids who come around late on Halloween night without any costumes accepting free candy?

OK, OK. I hung the ghost pic on the door.

Thursday, October 23, 2008


I can’t believe it’s been a year already but it’s time to sit down and figure out which food group(s) I want to give up so I can drink Starbucks Eggnog Lattes.

You probably think I’m crazy; that only means you’ve never tried a Starbucks Eggnog Latte. They are so rich and coffee-ey and eggnoggy and warm and delicious and if they put rum in them I would probably never leave the store, just survive on them until January 15 or whenever they are discontinued.

They are not too sweet, they are not too thick. It’s like a warm parka in a cup. A really delicious warm parka. So, something’s got to go. I can probably get by without cookies; though I’ve been strangely attracted to them lately. I blame that on the chocolate cream Oreos that I bought for the kids but still claim I have no idea how half the package disappeared so quickly.

Maybe I can give up cake. Lately I’ve had a hard time finding that perfect piece of cake where the cake part isn’t too dry or the frosting isn’t too sweet or crunchy. Yeah, I can give up cake.

What? You don’t consider cake a food group?

And no, Starbucks did not sponsor this blog.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Freakiness runs in the family

A couple of blogs back I wrote about my son amusing a nurse while she took his x-ray by posing like he was in a police line-up. I have to admit that I think my son is pretty funny. He’s always doing goofy stuff (goofy verging on annoying but never really tipping over) and when people comment (as they invariably do) “Gee, I wonder where he gets it!” I say “So do I.”

Because I do.

Or I did.

And now I understand why no one ever believed me when I insisted “He’s nothing like me!”

Yesterday I went to the chiropractor. I have two herniated disks and am trying everything possible to avoid surgery (magic? witch doctor? they’re next) and had spent a week in pretty bad pain. He made me walk down the hall and back, then “adjusted” me and had me walk down the hall again.

“You’re moving your whole body now,” he said. Apparently I’d been walking incorrectly to accommodate the back pain.

He grabbed my arms and moved them back and forth. “You need to walk like this.”

And I started giggling.

The Doctor stood there (somewhat) patiently with his hands on my shoulders while I tried to pull myself together.

“I’m like that woman from Seinfeld!” I said, and giggled again. He didn’t say anything so I continued “You know. She didn’t move her arms when she walked!”

Oh. My. God.

My son is doomed.

Monday, October 20, 2008

PLEASE stop sighing!

My daughter has a friend who is a sigher.

Whenever I see her and say "Hi Stephanie, how are you?" (yes, I should have learned by now) this is the response I get.



I get that she's 13 and probably has some issues but I've known the girl since she was nine and she's had angst since then, and probably longer. Seriously, what is so BAD about the life of a pre-teen from the suburbs? Even becoming a full-fledged teenager couldn't have been that traumatic. Especially today with the ridiculous high baby-sitting pay scale and suburban-parent indulgence. I've never seen this child denied anything.

I SO want to ask her "What the hell is wrong?" but I'm afraid of the answer I'll get. I'm afraid the vapidity level will be so high that it will suck the oxygen from the room we're in and result in everyone passing out. I'm afraid she'll say "Oh, I don't know" and I'll be unable to stop myself from saying something sarcastic and then she'll tell her mother who will all the other mothers and then I'll be the Neighborhood Pariah.


Sunday, October 19, 2008

Is this mic on?

I can't tell you what the new Elmo doll does. Is he a stand-up comic, or is that just the theme of the commercial? All I know is I crack up every time the commercial comes on and I hear...

"Elmo just flew in from Sesame Street. Boy are Elmo's arms tired."

"Is this mic on?"

Where was all this witty advertising when my kids were small? When my son was in his Elmo phase we had the new Tickle Me Elmo with the secret new tickle spot that only kicked in after a specific date which seemed kind of questionably perverted and a little Orwellian.
When my daughter was 2 1/2 I taught her to throw her arm up and say "Thank you, I'll be here all week" whenever anyone complimented her and that a spit-take was the ultimate compliment. We would have totally dug a stand-up Elmo.
I wonder if he reminds the kids to tip their waitresses?

Friday, October 17, 2008

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Congratulations, Joe, you're rich! And a liar!

John McCain wasted half the final debate talking about and raising sympathy for poor 'Joe the Plumber' who has worked soooooo hard and just wants to buy the company he works for without getting taxed out the ass but turns out -- Joe's not a licensed plumber!

Go figure.

Apparently he's a cranky racist - and registered Republican - from a suburb of Toledo who wants everyone to vote for the cranky candidate he supports.

Not only is he not registered to work as a plumber in Ohio, he never even took the apprenticeship training. And there is a lien against him for failure to pay property taxes.

The union of the trade that Joe "works" for supports Obama.

I'd like to imagine the conversation in the McCain Campaign Bunker today...

"Who's frickin' idea was it to use Joe the Plumber during the debate?"

"Uh, that would be the same person who told you to choose Sarah Palin."

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A fictional vacation

I get that times are tough and we’re all trying to be a little more creative with our vacations and I have absolutely no problems with people “camping” in their backyard or switching houses to save on hotel costs. But when thriftiness joins up with obsessiveness and delusion it gets a little freaky.

Vampires Put Tourist Town on the Map

That’s the latest in travel news from AP and the story is about the 48% rise in lodging tax revenue in Forks, WA where the Twilight series by Stephanie Meyer is based.

Not being idiots (apparently), the under 5,000 residents of Forks have embraced their 15 minutes of fame; adding Twilight-themed entrees to menus (What? Blood?) and reserving a parking space at the hospital for Dr. Cullen. Marcia Bingham, the executive director of the Forks Chamber of Commerce, said that most visitors don’t mind the rain because “We all know vampires can't be out if it's bright."

Oh. We all know that.

Like we all know that the book is fiction.

We all know that, right?

Because if you’re skipping a trip to Disneyland and driving your kids up the coast so you can maybe catch sight of a hot vampire in the rain, or see the house where the hot vampire lives with his hot vampire family, or see the high school the hot vampire attends even though he’s, like, over 100 years old well….

I don’t even know what to say about that.

Oh. Wait. Yes I do.

Get a life.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Big bang offenses

Before I begin I would like to acknowledge that I am not the most fashionable person, I definitely have my faux pas. Like the jeans I wore today. Yes, they’re from Costco and yes, they’re faded like they’re from the early 2000’s (or maybe not even popular then, I really have no idea) and yes, a woman over 40 really has no business wearing them but they are so SOFT and COMFORTABLE that they feel like a pair of sweat pants yet somehow give the impression that I still fit into a pair of jeans from my 20’s (the faded thing again) that I gladly give up all semblance of style to wear them.

I do, however, feel qualified to discuss bangs. Some of you still aren’t wearing bangs correctly and you are either going to have to retake Bangs 101 and its follow-up class Styling Tools: Their Correct Use or grow them out and forfeit all rights to bangs in the future.

Let’s start with the basics. Bangs should look like the rest of your hair only shorter. Ergo, if your hair is curly your bangs are curly. If your hair is straight your bangs are straight. If you have curly hair and straight bangs it looks like you are too lazy to blow-dry your whole head or you think that people are only going to look at you from the eyebrows up. If you have straight hair and curly bangs you have bigger issues than I can deal with in this little blog and I suggest you get professional help.

A variation of the second offense is Curling Iron Bangs. These bangs are produced by the operator curling the entire section of hair that are the bangs and then sliding the curling iron out sideways so that the bangs are left in a tunnel shape then hair sprayed like a muthah to retain this shape. This hairstyle is misdemeanor in 14 states.

Another bang offense is the Wall; most often spotted on Wal-Mart clerks and hair-band groupies. It is the female variation of the mullet. To create the Wall, the bangs are moussed, gelled, teased, and sprayed to stand up completely vertically thus rendering the impression that the wearer is 4” taller or is dressing like Cameron Diaz from There’s Something About Mary for Halloween. Bangs are high-maintenance and are really best left to the young who A) care enough to tote around styling tools and B) are obsessed enough to recheck and restyle their hair every 20 minutes or whenever they can get a bathroom pass. My daughter was 13 before I let her have bangs and she was tested on their proper care and maintenance for months before the actual cut. You can call me obsessive, but I’m doing my best to make sure she doesn’t end up looking anything like this.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Debate disappointment

It’s probably my fault for turning on the Presidential debate and expecting to see the candidates actually answer the questions asked and discuss their plans for running the country, but I feel so let down today. It took McCain only 8 minutes to ditch the questions and start attacking Obama – off-topic. How is that supposed to prove you are Presidential? All it proved to me is that he is a cranky old guy who can’t let it go (much like grandpa when you change the channel but change it back when he insists he wasn’t sleeping and then he keeps bringing up how you changed the channel ALL freakin’ afternoon).

And since I’m getting picky, what was with the lurching around and the windmill arms? It’s like his body had absolutely no idea what he was saying and was either A) performing some kind of obscure I-wanna-be-President dance or B) trying to escape. And he kept getting closer and closer to the audience when he talked to them (while not answering their questions) and at one point I swear he was going to climb up into the seats and sit on that woman’s lap. She looked positively frightened.

And when asked who he would appoint Treasury Secretary McCain “joked” (because I can’t use the word in this context without air quotes – it was nothing like a joke) “Not you, Tom.” Oh, ha ha ha. Like anyone thought Tom Brokaw wanted to be or was qualified to be or would ever be considered to be Treasury Secretary. Where, exactly, is the joke there, John? Or do you need to learn the rules of comedy as well as the rules of debate?

One rule they have in common – STAY ON TOPIC!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


I do believe that KFC is using some kind of mind-meld subconscious witchcraftery in their commercials because I NEVER eat there and when I drive by the restaurant (4x week on the way to and from the skating rink) I never think it sounds good but when I see the commercials it takes nearly all of my willpower not to grab the keys and get in the car and drive directly to KFC and buy some of those darn Snackers or wings with the sauce cooked right in.

Whew. Glad I got that off my chest.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Down down Dow

I let my mother-in-law and Suze Orman shame me into paying more attention to our finances and I am REGRETTING it today. I can’t turn off CNBC, I’m clicking on every Internet story about the slumping stock market, and I’m looking around the house for things to sell off (my kids don’t really need shoes, do they?).

If ignorance were ever really bliss, it would probably be today.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Sarah, you are starting to piss me off

Now we can truly see which voters Sarah Palin and the McCain campaign are going after. People too naive (I held myself back from saying “stupid” but only with tremendous effort) to understand that serving on a board with someone who has radical views (and practiced these views when you were a CHILD) and denouncing said radical views WHILE serving on the board does not constitute “palling around with terrorists.” (And what kind of message is that sending to her children? "No, Piper, you may not call someone fat, even if they weigh 400 pounds, but it's ok to insinuate that someone is a terrorist if you are Running for Office.")

Palin told supporters that Obama does not “…see America as you and I see America.” So I guess she sees America as a place where one should only serve on boards with or sit on the PTA with or go to church with or run for office with people who believe EXACTLY the same way, talk EXACTLY the same way, and have NO difference of opinion.

Too bad McCain didn’t think of that before he chose her.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Giant Tool Sale

Are you curious?

So was I, especially as I saw the words spray-painted in orange on a piece of wood that was propped up on a folding chair at the end of a street.

These are my guesses:

Garage sale of someone who is selling off their entire set of tools.

Garage sale of someone who is selling only their giant-sized tools.

Some woman trying to get rid of her husband.

Sarah Palin (wink, wink)

I’m being nitpicky because, well…I can. But first I’d like to say that as a feminist I WANT Sarah Palin to be smart and capable and able to do the job. THAT would be the best thing for women everywhere.

However…how do you “win” or even “hold your own” in a debate where you can’t stay on topic? When asked questions that one can assume she didn’t know the answer to (because she never came near the topic), Palin resorted to reading prepared statements about something – anything – else. Is that really debate? Gwen Ifill chastised Palin about not staying on topic and Palin responded that she might not answer the question the way that Ifill or Biden wanted her to. WTF? Was she given a pass on the rules of debate, which I understand (or maybe I’m wrong never having debated in high school or even college) to be making your argument about THE QUESTION THAT WAS ASKED?

Still, the freakiest part of Palin’s performance was the winking. What is up with that? She would not answer the question, give a prepared, redundant party-line speech, then turn to the camera and wink like “Can you believe I even have to EXPLAIN this to this guy?” when she DIDN’T EXPLAIN ANYTHING!

Besides having to explain to Palin that man did not co-exist with dinosaurs (which reminds me that she kept bringing up the fact that government is the problem and should get out of people’s way and John McCain has been IN the government FOREVER so isn’t he PART of the problem?) someone should explain to her how winking works.

Nobody? OK, I’ll do it. When you give a statement to someone that goes against what people know you really think or you have to explain something to someone that everybody already knows then you turn to us and wink. But since we don’t know what you really think about anything because all you said was talking points from the McCain website the winking just looked like you were trying to get us into bed.

Don’t wink at me like I know who Joe Six-Pack and Hockey Mom are. Don’t brag about how you reduced taxes in your state when I know you were able to do it because your state gets more money per resident from the GOVERNMENT (the same government that is the problem) than any other state in the union. And don’t use a debate to give a speech and expect me not to notice.

Oh, and I lost count of how MANY times you said that John McCain "sounded the warning bell" about Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae but it was Chuck Hagel of Nebraska who led the effort to tighten the regulation and McCain jumped on a year later and you repeating that over and over is reminiscent of Al Gore claiming that he invented the Internet. Learn from the people who held the job before you!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

The pot and the kettle

Priests in Hamtramck are urging voters to vote down an ordinance that includes legal protection for homosexuals so the community can “bring up children according to God’s law” and “Keep it the way it was from the beginning.”

There are SO many things wrong with this and I’m just glad I don’t live in Hamtramck because I would feel the need to hold a homosexual rally on my front lawn and A) I don’t know that many homosexuals and B) haven’t been to the grocery store lately and might run out of punch (or whatever it is that you drink at rallies).

In an effort at fairness and to put it in perspective I googled “scandal priest children” and got 2,030,000 results. When I googled “scandal homosexual children” I got 1,330,000 (just over half) and on the first five pages alone the word Priest was in EVERY SINGLE RESULT!

One of the Priests was quoted as saying that the ordinance, which gives new rights that would protect homosexual and lesbian behavior, expression and attire “goes against the rights of straight people” which makes me believe that he clearly has no idea how the law really works or that he believes that straight people have the “right” to never have to see homosexual behavior, expression or attire.

And if they really want to keep it the way it was from the beginning – well, wasn’t early Greece about the most experimental, bi-sexual civilization around?

That’s it. I’m off to Hamtramck in my rainbow t-shirt and if I get arrested will someone bail me out?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Leave Heather alone!

I try not to obsess about celebrities too much but came face-to-face with Heather Locklear’s mug shot online today and … did she do something to her lips? They’re all unnaturally puffy and uneven and you think these actresses would maybe talk to each other about this. Though maybe Meg Ryan is sitting with Heather right now saying “Honey, just lay off the lip injections. I know they make you feel young and bouncy and they really take the focus off the botox around your eyes but it is a slippery slope, sister, and it leads to nothing but misery and humiliation.”

And I’m the last person who should even mention this as I finally made the appointment for my second hair coloring of the year today, but the ROOTS! Doesn’t Loreal give her a few boxes of the hair coloring she pimps for to keep around the house? I think that really proves that she was depressed not drunk because when you are the representative of BLONDE you don’t leave the house looking like that unless you are really really down. Though she did remember to put mascara on, even if she didn’t apply it very well.

I am tired of being told that celebrities are “just like us.” Of course they are so you don’t need to show us. If they are depressed and want to hit the Piggly-Wiggly for some self-medicating ice cream, leave them alone. Don't take a picture and post it all over the internet. If I want to see someone with jacked up makeup and 2 inch roots I will look in the mirror.