Monday, April 19, 2021

Get mom something she really wants like... idk, help her booty dream come true? (WTF advertisers?? Seriously?)

So this is what came in my email today as a suggested Mother’s Day present. 

Have you heard of the “DB” machine? I’m not exactly sure what it stands for (except maybe “Diabolical Buttocks”) but this is a specialized squat machine solely designed to work the glutes.

I cannot imagine a less fitting Mother’s Day present than this, because:

A. Exercise machine, really??

B. Nothing says “I love you mom!” more than gifting her a machine which says “I’ve noticed your buttocks!”

C. Not only have they been noticed, they’ve been identified as needing improvement.

What was the marketing team thinking?!?

I just noticed that the small child in the photo probably means the targeted audience is NOT adult children afterall, like I thought, but even worse... This is for the husband. So you can imagine who’s sleeping on the couch on Mother’s Day.

Granted, he’s the only one in the house who’s *allowed* to notice mom’s body parts but not by gifting something that essentially says “that needs work!” Oh my.

Thursday, March 11, 2021

Monday, February 22, 2021

Tubing in Florida waters... does that sound safe to you??

True story, on visiting Florida. 

Them: "And then on Thursday, we can go TUBING!!"

Me: "Tubing?"

Them: "Yes! It will be so fun! The water's so warm."

Me: "In the ocean?"

Them: "No, silly, in a river. It's super cool."

Me: "Um... isn't that where the alligators are?" 

I should pause here and mention that my favorite hobby is assessing risk. I'm hyper aware of any predators in the environment at any time and my first thought, when I think "ocean" is "oh no, that is the SHARK'S house. NOPE." 

It's a well-known scientific fact that predators are allowed to eat whatever walks into their house. Like the famous quote from this lady, "if you're in the shark's house, you're on the PLATE."

Now, sharks may live in the ocean but all other bodies of water in Florida are owned by alligators and crocs. 

I have no idea how to tell them apart and never will unless one of them develops some obvious bloodthirsty characteristic which sets it apart. But since they both have gigantic teeth and stomachs and are capable of swallowing a full-grown man, I can't seem to retain any other information. If jawlines differ, they don't seem to do so in a way which inhibits the eating of people, so my brain has lumped them both into the same category: MONSTER. This is to make sure I do not say yes to dangerous activities, like tubing on rivers in Florida.

Anyway, back to our convo. I had to ask again:
Me: "Isn't that dangerous?"

Them: "Nah, people do it ALL the time."

Me: Are you SURE it's safe? I mean...

Luckily, they decided to "pivot" to another activity instead and I lived to tell this story. No tubing for me! (At least not in rivers with dangerous things... turtles are fine! Even the snapping ones don't go out of their way to attack, just defend. We can coexist peacefully then.)

Stay safe!!

Saturday, January 30, 2021

"Support Bar Not Stable" (Really??)

 I was at the doctor’s office recently and saw this sign in the restroom:

It says, “SUPPORT BAR NOT STABLE.” (Why have a support bar that can’t support? But I digress.) 

Anyway, the sign is obviously unecessary, as the support bar has already been ripped out of the wall. They can take the sign down now…

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Covidcoping: and how are you?

I haven't had much of a sense of humor lately. It's tough. I'm trying not to be too hard on myself about this, however. It IS my first pandemic, after all. Maybe the next plague will be funnier.

Too soon?
However, memes are helping. I've been interspersing news intake with dark comedy for balance. Staying at home has not been difficult; turns out that I hate leaving the house anyway, so this has been convenient. At least for the time being.

Everything I find fun is at home: reading, writing, making crafts, learning about personality disorders, you know. The usual. 

But I haven't really had cabin fever.

I haven't missed the commute to work. 
I wasn't surprised when social distancing recommendations changed from 6 to 13 feet though. And that's just for BREATHING. Everyone knows a sneeze is basically a rocket launch of germs, right? 

Credit: Classical Art Memes 

People can be contagious for up to 2 weeks before getting symptoms and can continue spreading the virus for up to 37 days AFTER they get better. No wonder it's spread like wildfire.

The apocalypse: idea vs. execution. The dude lives!

Still, this has been quite an unexpected start to 2020.
And the whole world is going through it.

This virus has been the great unveiler for issues that already plagued many but weren't always at the forefront of mainstream consciousness. For some folks, being confined and isolated at home was their norm far before local governments mandated it so.

Half of the exhaustion and weariness we're all experiencing is not knowing how the future will pan out.

I mean, none of us ever really KNOW, but this is a reality many have faced before the virus even hit. Struggles with illness, disability, stress, food and financial insecurity, loneliness, all of these things are now more illuminated. And it's HARD.

So... you want to speak to the manager of Coronavirus?

But at least now that everyone's more aware, we are all being nicer to each other. Kindness is trending!

And (some) policies are changing...

Nature is healing a bit, too. Air pollution is down and animals are spreading out.

Some countries are doing better at providing help for their citizens, like Canada. The U.S. has sent a one-time payment of $1200 which barely covers one month's rent for most.

But other bills are being introduced and hopefully more help will be available soon. In the meantime, let's play COVID-19 Bingo!

So, when the new coronavirus guidelines were first announced, all the toilet paper in the region disappeared. Like, GONE. It was impossible to find.

This was what the shelves looked like:

Actual photo of my local supermarket's toilet paper aisle.
The boxes are completely empty.
Not a single roll of paper goods to be found! While I have read that people go at home 40% more than usual while quarantining simply because they're not leaving the house and going elsewhere, like work, this is a respiratory virus. No need to hoard TP!

Thanks, Brad.
We came close to running out.

I know one can get creative when one must:

But I still resorted to buying toilet paper online (after discovering all the local stores were out). The only place with any inventory was a company that supplied hotel chains. The smallest pack available was a 96-roll box. FINE. We ordered it. It took 3 weeks but it finally arrived:

Let me know if you need some. 
Everyone had trouble finding toilet paper. Like this guy: "After accidentally buying way too much toilet paper for years, I finally ran out. THIS WEEK."

I tried to relieve stress by baking, like the rest of the country, except I don't understand complicated recipe terminology like "baking powder" and "baking soda" so I used pancake mix. I somehow managed to turn chocolate chip cookies, the easiest and most delicious cookie flavor on the planet, into revolting little bricks of salted butter. Whatever. I'm more of an eater than a chef anyway.

Who doesn't want a stronger, more delicious super cereal?

Still, I've been trying to settle into a routine.

Dressing for the day has never been easier.

Reminder: 9pm is the time to remove your day pajamas
and put your night pajamas on.

Even chores have been easier, like laundry. Don't need to wash what you're not wearing!

The most unused household item during Quarantine 2020: Bras.

It's still good to mix up the scenery a bit and get around.

Feeling cute. Might go to the couch later.

At night before bed, I like to read up on the virus just to get extra relaxed before drifting off to sleep.

Satufrituesday at 3:08 AM in quarantine

I don't totally understand why it seems to have been so hard to communicate risks with this pandemic but I guess society hasn't exactly been a shining example of well-informed critical thinking.

People don't always seem to understand why they have to stay home.

Maybe we need better strategies.

If you can see what's on this mask, you are too close!

I'm coping.

 And so is everyone else:
"Exercising and eating healthy are super important!"
"I haven't eaten my young, Molly, what do you want from me?"

I've been trying to give back in some small way. One way has been visiting advice forums to see if I could help anyone asking career, life or relationship questions. I recently expanded my scope to a medical advice group at  

OHMYGOD people, if your eye has fallen out and you "think" you can "see the optic nerve" GET TO A HOSPITAL. I tried hanging out in that group but 99% of my advice was the same: "Please see a doctor." So I'm considering alternative hobbies.

A lot has changed, however. Dating must be even more difficult now:

Classes are being held online:

Meetings are too:

The animals must miss us:

Stay healthy, as much as possible, everyone. Don't let stress get in the way of self-care.

Hang in there!

Friday, February 28, 2020

The Avalanche vs. The Tornado (or, just leave toilet shopping to the plumber)

A toilet is the most boring and overwhelming thing I’ve ever shopped for. EVER.

Replacing one is a rite of passage; one of life's middle-aged hazing rituals. Toilets are not vague about their retirement. When it's time, you KNOW. It told you, and not in a nice way.

I set out to educate myself, learning as much as I could about water tanks and wax rings and... promptly fell asleep. There is no better cure for insomnia than scanning 8,412 results on Home Depot.

Who knew there were so many choices? There are one-piece toilets, two-piece toilets, touchless toilets, water saving toilets, and wall-mounted thrones. There are even composting commodes.

Then there’s shape.

Small bathroom? No problem, get a compact.

Want the luxury of kicking back with the morning paper? Go for the luxurious elongated bowl.

Selling your house in a buyer’s market? A square bowl will ensure your home stands out.

Yearning to feel like you’re in a fancy hotel? Go for the bidet.

The options are dizzying. You will need help.

I decided on only one essential requirement: flushing ability.

It’s the only function that cannot be compromised. What goes in must go down.

This is where I discovered the vast array of toilet review videos on YouTube.

Did you know that there are people who are extremely passionate about toilet flushing? They compose lengthy and detailed video reviews, demonstrating myriad objects in the flushing process.

You could spend hours watching golf balls, peanut shells, various fruits, vegetables, and food disappear down the hatch if you wanted.

Size does matter: the larger the flapper, the more equipped to handle curious toddlers or vengeful fruitcake recipients. Also, don't forget to find something eco-friendly. Your new toilet should flush with the power of 1,000 black holes but not use a single drop more of water than necessary.

Companies name toilets like sewage superheros, relying on your imagination to instill confidence. These are all actual names of toilets:

  • Niagara Stealth 
  • The Avalanche 
  • Champion 4 
  • Titan 
  • The Tornado

Marketing teams don’t even try to mask their goal: inspire conviction that whatever ungodly avalanche might be offered, the toilet will rise to the challenge. The Tornado will obliterate everything in its path. The Titan will not let you down!

This was not a do-it-yourself decision. At least not for our household.

I gave up and called a plumber. Honestly, I was just happy to find someone who would haul 75 pounds of porcelain up two flights of stairs, hook it up and make the old one disappear.

For an extra $125, we could add a "soft-close" seat, invented for the express purpose of "avoiding injury," as the plumber described. I'm not sure how people are using toilets that they become injured in this scenario, but he seemed to think it was a valuable upgrade.

No thanks. I’m confident in our household’s continued ability to raise and lower the toilet seat without trips to the emergency room. But now we must decide, get the option that can swallow a dozen banana peels or flush 50 crayons?? These are the questions that could keep me up at night, if they weren't also putting me to sleep!

Sunday, December 1, 2019

-- Nurturing your beloved colony of dust mites, or, finding the positive in your allergy report

I got the results back from allergy testing a couple days ago and it turns out that I’m extremely allergic to dust mites. I hopped online to figure out what to do and it appears the only effective way to “minimize” exposure is:

1. Burn your house down.

2. Move to a brand new house in the dryest spot in the country.

3. It must have only wooden floors, wooden or plastic furniture, and not a single plush object that dust mites may find appealing.

4. Make sure that whatever fabric is present is SO tightly woven that nothing larger than 10 microns can fit through it in order to cut down on dust mites and their “by-products” from infiltrating it (hello, vinyl bedding, curtains, and clothes).

5. Vacuum 5x a day with a HEPA filter vacuum while wearing a special breathing mask, but preferably your hired help can do this instead with all the money you have leftover after relocating and buying all new things.

4. Make sure every environment you’re ever in from now on has the same level of sanitization and sparse comfort.

These are impossible standards, of course. A much more realistic course is to just make friends with your new family. 
First you want to learn everything you can about raising and keeping dust mites so you can be good and ready to service your new colony.
Dust mites LOVE humid environments. Anything less than about 45% humidity runs the risk of desiccating them, since they can’t drink water and instead absorb moisture through their bodies. The only way to kill them in the wash is to use the “sanitize” setting of 130-140 degrees F hot water. Bleach might kill them but won’t remove the allergens, necessarily. It doesn’t take much to keep their populations nice and healthy. The average 10-lb mattress is comprised of about 2 pounds of dust mites, according to Dr. Google. 
They don’t bite people or cause issues, however, unless you’re allergic. They can be kindof cute, in a tardigrade kindof way. 
Meet Jeremy.
His first ultrasound didn’t reveal too many details yet — we couldn’t even see the full front casing where his little buckteeth would develop:

He was an adorable baby, however. Look at that smile!

He didn’t stay put in the crib for long though. He was far too active to sleep all day. He had important work to do, like jumping on the bed. His favorite hobby was flinging his allergens into the air.

Jeremy, like any curious toddler, was not content to stay in one place, however. We recently found him exploring the curtains. Dust mites are very light and can easily be launched across the room when you flop down on your shared bed. They don’t mind. Any fabric will do as a fun playground, curtains, even tapestries hanging on the wall.

We are lucky that Jeremy is a sweet fellow but, like any population, troubled critters ARE out there and you may run the risk of them taking over your home.

IF you are unfortunate enough to have a rogue gang and a killer dust mite allergy the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America has some great advice. 
If you aren’t allergic, no biggie. Enjoy life as usual. Jeremy may be looking for a roommate so I can hook you up!