Foolishness, Naked Baby Style!

Birthday Collage

Last June, I was sitting at my in-laws house mindlessly browsing on my phone to find a notification from WordPress.  What!!??  Back then I would usually only get one notification per week.  Naturally, I needed to check out this comment from an actual person who wasn’t even married to me.  Who could this new person be?

Enter the man, the myth, the legend…

El GuapoEl Guapo!

I’m one of many bloggers that El Guapo has befriended.  El Guapo really goes out of his way to not only write a great blog, but to make everyone feel welcome, and to encourage comments, interactions, and friendship.  It’s generous bloggers like El Guapo who really make blogging both fun AND meaningful.  I’ve also met him (and a few other blogger friends) in person, but I’m afraid of saying too much and making Ginger super jealous…

Anyway because today is his birthday, I wanted to wish him a Happy Birthday, Foolishness Style!

Today’s music….


Birthdays… Who doesn’t like celebrating the day they came into the world, naked and screaming?  So, for today’s quiz, what’s the best way to celebrate a birthday?

Alright, thanks to Gingersnaap, there are a lot of other posts out there dedicated to El Guapo today.  Here are a few of them.  Happy Birthday El Guapo!!!  Hope you have a good one!  No one deserves it more than you.

Gingersnaap

Joe Hoover

Le Clown

HR Nightmare 

HE Ellis

The Cheeky Diva 

Edward Hotspur

Red

A Frank Angle

Madame Weebles

Lizzie Cracked

Linda Vernon

According To Mags

Brain Tomahawk

Kayjai

Betty Rants

Okay, there are SO many, I give up…  If you click on Red’s link, you will find even more…

Posted in Random | 51 Comments

The Tale of the Christmas Sausage

MonteThe holidays really are magical.  There’s the beautiful sparkling tree, the animals dressed as Santa, the boxes of Raisin Bran under the tree…  It’s particularly tough to top the gift of fiber.

My paternal grandmother was a legend.  She was…  How can I put this diplomatically?  She was a woman of many quirks.  In my family, if you mention the name Grandma, one of two things happens.  Family members either start grinning mischievously or they sigh and shake their heads.  She had that effect.

There were a lot of unusual things about my Grandmother.  She grew up in the Bronx where she had a live-in maid.  My grandfather taught her how to drive and cook.  Sorta.   She was extremely creative, but her refusal to follow directions usually didn’t bode well.  The woman could ruin just about anything, even something as simple as a salad.   Naturally that didn’t prevent her from constantly trying to feed us; it was her way of saying I love you.

She also had this strange fascination with hair.  Every time I saw her, she would rave over my hair, almost as though she had never seen me before.  Then she would tell me how lucky I was to have such a thick head of hair.  We had a lot of conversations about hair.

However, what was truly amazing about my grandma was her melodrama.  From the time I was a wee lass, my grandmother was dying.  This wasn’t based on scientific fact, illness, or even nihilism.  She was a healthy eater, took daily walks, and never smoked.  She rarely even caught a cold, but nevertheless, she was convinced she was on the brink of death for twenty years.

The years where she was truly convinced she was dying we would get awesome Christmas presents.  She wanted us to have nice things to remember her, so we’d get beautiful jewelry, always with the price tag still attached.  Leaving the price tag on the gift was key.

Sadly, we weren’t clever enough to use her hypochondria to our advantage, and most years we didn’t get nice gifts.  More often than not, we’d get a savings bond from my grandfather, a box of cereal, and one small toy.  Occasionally, she’d also re-gift, but we weren’t really offended by this.  The re-gifted presents were usually the better loot.  The worst was always when you were the one who unwrapped the box of Raisin Bran.  Unless you haven’t eaten in two weeks, it’s truly difficult to fake excitement over Raisin Bran.

We tried though; we’d thank her as profusely as possible.  Then we’d go home, and we’d write her another thank you.  My mom was very big on good manners, regardless of the gift.

The Bear of Wisdom-RedThe year I was seventeen was pivotal.  My grandfather had passed away earlier in the year, and we didn’t see my grandmother until after Christmas.  We kinda knew we’d be getting re-gifted, but none of us cared.  She ended up coming over on New Years Day with five packages.  My sister got an umbrella for $5, and I got a small rhinestone pin for $8.  My mom received a pair of orange kitchen towels on sale for $5.

My father was the last to open his gift.  It was shaped like a cylinder, and inside was… A THIRD OF A SAUSAGE!  Apparently she had tried it, ate a third of it, gave a third to my aunt, and saved a third for my dad.  She didn’t think to give him anything else, and the sausage was room temperature from sitting out.  Why did she give her only living son a third of a sausage for Christmas?  Because is was just so good, it had to be shared.

After she left, my father walked over to the trash can and threw out the sausage.  That year my mother told us we didn’t have to write Thank You cards.

What’s the worst Christmas gift you’ve ever received?

Posted in Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 26 Comments

Migraines and Ballerina Princess Monsters

Even from pictures, you can see we're a boisterous bunch.

Even from pictures, you can tell we’re a boisterous bunch.

I keep telling myself everything is going to work out, but I can’t seem to get my mind to agree.  Instead the pun “homeless for the holidays” keeps reverberating through my brain.

We’re not actually homeless, mind you, but we will be putting everything in storage and moving in with my in-laws shortly after the holidays… unless the Mayans were right and the world ends.  I’m kinda quietly tempting fate by singing the lyrics “Come Armageddon, come Armageddon,” as often as possible.  So far, it’s not working.  Also, my Morrissey impression sucks.

We actually had a house, but couldn’t seem to iron out the contract issues.  The contract had no mortgage contingency, part of the property had no title, and the seller wouldn’t budge on (fixing or price adjusting for) any of the problems raised during inspection.  Every time we asked the lawyers to change a clause we would wait 7-10 days to hear back from him.  However, just before Thanksgiving, the asshat seller gave us a take it or leave it offer, with 24-hours notice, that still didn’t solve the title problem.  So that was it.

Our ballerina princess monster, in a rare moment of quiet repose...

Our ballerina princess monster, in a rare moment of quiet repose…

We’ve noticed an uptick in real estate activity since the hurricane.  Suddenly there are a lot more people looking for houses, and good houses are going even more quickly.  Most likely, the asshat seller already had another offer on the table, when he gave us the 24-hour ultimatum.

Anyway, I’m frustrated.  We’ve bought two other houses, and both were bullshit-free affairs that went pretty smoothly.  Instead, we’re now back to full-scale house-hunting, with seven weeks wasted.  And even if we found a house tomorrow, we’d still have to move in with my in-laws because our house is sold.  Although it’s incredibly generous of my in-laws, it’s really… not ideal for anyone, least of all my in-laws.  We’re not exactly a quiet bunch, and my father-in-law already gets nasty migraines.  We’ll keep the kids in their current schools until we’ve bought another house, but it’s going to be incredibly chaotic for the next few months.

I keep trying to tell myself it will all work out, but the bottom line is I’m 26 33 and moving in with my in-laws.  Also, as long as I’m griping, I’m still fairly annoyed about being 33.  When did that happen?

P.S. Please send large quantities of Tequila Patron.  My stash is getting low.  It’s for my father-in-law, obviously.

Incredible levels of noise!  Coming soon to a house near you!

Incredible levels of noise! Coming soon to a house near you!

*Dear Mr. Morrissey, thank you for not suing me.  You’d be getting a blue minivan with a penguin decal on it, and not much else.  Also, in case you’ve actually been wanting a blue minivan with a penguin decal, you should know I haven’t cleaned the backseat in at least three years.

Posted in Life | Tagged , , , , , , | 51 Comments

Twitter Voodoo and Other Adventures in Social Media

When I first heard about Twitter, I thought it sounded ridiculous.

I have enough trouble with editing, and typically have to shave off entire paragraphs to get my blog posts to a reasonable length.  How was I ever going to get something meaningful into 140 characters or less?  Then I would read celebrity tweets in “Us Weekly” and I would laugh.  Who cares what Ashton Kutcher eats for breakfast?  Definitely not me.

As it turned out, like so many things, I was wrong.

I'm pretty sure many of the folks who follow this blog already know and love this movie... (Photo Credit: trashness.com)

I’m pretty sure many of the folks who follow this blog already know and love this movie… (Photo Credit: trashness.com)

A friend explained to me that he used Twitter in lieu of business cards, that it was an easy way to connect people to his writing as well as his contact info.  That was probably the first time I considered entering the Twitter universe, and mainly because he made it sound so efficient.  I’d send you to a link to his blog, but he currently writes in invisible typeface…

Since a lot of other bloggers also use Twitter, I figured I’d try it out.  I certainly wasn’t expecting to enjoy it.  I figured it would be an easy and painless way to market the blog.  I told myself I wouldn’t be obnoxious about it, that I wouldn’t expect people to follow me, and I wouldn’t spam people with ridiculous levels of self-promotion.  Instead, I would use it efficiently, as a way of keeping track of blogs and writing resources.  Essentially, I would use it for networking.

Again, I was wrong.  As it turns out I LOVE Twitter, particularly when used inefficiently.  Basically Twitter is where I say everything I’d normally just forget.  It’s great for those moments when you’re sitting at a doctor’s office or a soccer game with nothing else to do.  I don’t think it’s a particularly great place for deep introspective thinking, but it’s linked to me to a lot of interesting content that I wouldn’t have found otherwise.

One of the first links that I found was to a speech given by author Susan Orlean.  She described Twitter as “creative” and “great for procrastination”.  Being a master of procrastination myself, I now understand why I love Twitter so much.  Creative procrastination, anyone?

There are still a lot of things I don’t understand about social media.  I’ve figured out Twitter lists, which I initially thought were some form of internet voodoo, but I have yet to master the subtweet.  I also haven’t figured out HubPages, Klout, or Huffington Post “fanning”.  I still have a lot to learn, but the girl who preferred letters written with a quill pen?  She’s gone now.  She’s busy taking pictures of quill pens and posting them on Instagram.

For those who follow me on Twitter, you should know the following:

  • I’m told this is all wrong, but I do NOT follow everyone who follows me.  Instead I check out their tweets and/or follow all the clever folks I already know, which helps keep things more manageable.  It’s happenstance that my numbers are usually the same.
  • I hate hardcore marketing, and attempt to keep things very low-key, but…
  • I do try to retweet things that are interesting, funny, and/or useful.
  • I often favorite tweets rather than outright saying thank you, but I totally appreciate how nice you all are!
  • Lastly, I don’t participate in Friday Follow out of laziness.  (Since I’m too lazy to check out a bunch of new people all at once, I assume others are also too lazy.)  I am far more apt to follow someone who’s a clever twit, so I prefer to directly retweet people.

For those who’ve also made the plunge, how do you feel about your own ventures into social media?  For those who haven’t, what are you waiting for!?  Seriously, if I can be converted, anyone can…

Posted in Social Media | Tagged , , , , , | 58 Comments

Good Causes

Okay, I don’t have it in me to write a real post today.  I have a mountain of laundry, and we’re all going to be naked soon if I don’t get started on that…  So, yeah, you’re getting a post that’s mostly pictures.

Girl With A Book

If you haven’t submitted a picture to Girl With A Book which supports the cause of Malala Yousafzai, here are a few links.  It’s an awesome cause, and they don’t even want your money, just a picture!

Pinterest

Facebook

Twitter

Personally, I really like books because my kids are quiet when they’re reading them.  Umm… I mean, I love it that my kids are learning.

I haven’t finished the book yet.  Perhaps after I’ve caught up with the laundry…

Movember

For those who are like me, and never remember to do things until the last possible minute, it’s not too late to contribute to Movember.  The actual links are within Le Clown’s post, depending on what country you live in.

Donate! It’s way easier (and far less embarrassing) than growing a mustache…

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

I never know what to buy people for the holidays.  Never.  And I hate buying stuff that people will hate, and throw out in six months.  It seems like such a waste.  So, my secret is the following.  Whenever I have no idea what to buy, I buy from the St. Jude’s Gift Shop.  Even if the person hates the gift, I figure the money goes to an awesome cause. 

If you don’t click any of these links, I swear I’ll know…  Oh, just click them already!  Also, if I did it correctly, comments should be closed for this post.

*Per usual, I was not compensated for this post and all opinions are mine.

Posted in Random | Tagged , , , ,