Thursday, April 30, 2009

Tongue Twister Time

Don’t cha just love a tongue twister? I remember getting a book of tongue twisters as a kid and saying them out loud…over and over. I practiced saying them as fast as I could… in case I was ever in a World Tongue Twister competition. I wanted to make sure I could win the title.

The most noteworthy of all tongue twisters is about Peter Piper and his peck…er I mean, peck…of pickled peppers. I loved that one. It was especially fun to pucker when pronouncing the p’s…so you could get a mouth spray going with each “p”.

I got to thinking….(please Kat don’t think) that the ole Peter Piper tongue twister is outdated…and the world needs a new one…for future tongue twister competitions. I’ve come up with a modern-day tongue twister…which leaves a non-pleasing Peter Piper picking pecks of pickled peppers…plenty in the past. Twitter is the perfect word for a tongue twister.


A Twitter Tongue Twister
by TKat

Twanda Twain tweeted a twit of twittered tweets.
A twit of twittered tweets Twanda Twain tweeted.
If Twanda Twain tweeted a twit of twittered tweets
How many tweets of twitter did Twanda Twain Tweet?

Bet you can’t say that 5 times…TFAST!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Gonged to Dogs

“They” say: Necessity is the Mother of Invention. I say: Duncandog is the Father of Invention. The other day when I brought Duncandog home from the groomer, I had him ride in the seat next to me. His presence made quite an impact. Hefty Duncandog weighed just enough to set off the seatbelt alarm so the dang thing dinged…the whole weigh home.

I lectured big boy for the next couple of miles home. It was a serious conversation…gato to perro: “Sorry Duncandog, but starting tomorrow I am putting you on Dog Food Lite…this seat is screaming that you are too big to ride shotgun.” His look of misery showed he understood that his fat and happy days were over. Then it hit me…EUREKA…a perfect weight loss device.

Alarms could be installed in our favorite chairs. Whenever we sat down a little “ding” alarm could go off…to remind us of our recent Frito-Lay Fest. Or for a more impressive effect, the alarm could be a “gong.” Remember the Gong Show? The device could work in the same fashion…Outta here lardo. The gong could be heard reverberating through the house and down the street proclaiming: Put down the Frito, you Bandito.

If my chair had the capability to humiliate me, I might rethink the whoopee pie I was about to shove in my mouth. And god knows I love the whoopie pie! And maybe rethink the Chubby Hubby I was craving (the Ben and Jerry’s version, PaulA.)

After months of a long winter in the blog chair, my ass has grown to its full potential. A gong device could be just what I need to take action. I’m gonna have to thank Duncandog for his weighty contribution in helping to keep katkind fit.

I know Duncandog will be happy for me to join him in the dog house of humiliation. Misery always loves company.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Waiting Game

Yesterday I waited. We’ve all had to do it at some point. We’ve all had to sit and wait at either the doctor’s office, dentist’s…or in my case, the auto shop. I had put off service for my car long enough. But when an SOS flashes…I think it’s telling me…"get off your blogging butt and take me in.”

Waiting can be boring, so it helps to pass the time by taking a look around the room to see what people are doing. Heck we all do it. We all sneak peeks at each other…trying not to get caught. That’s how the waiting game is played. And if you get caught and make eye contact…you lose. I managed to get some good peeks…………...

One man was diligently working on some papers with a red pen in hand. I took a closer look and saw that that he was correcting test papers. He obviously was a school teacher. So this was how he was spending his spring break vacation…while his students were teens gone wild on a Florida beach? I watched him carefully as he unloaded his red ink on one particular paper. I hoped the kid who would be getting back the red Jackson Pollock paper was having a real wild time during his break…’cause his paper wasn’t exactly a masterpiece.

The woman next to me was on her laptop and madly typing. I think she was trying to impress us by showing off her fast keyboarding skills. I tried to look over her shoulder to see if she was typing real words or if she was just going with: ;alkj;vodiu ;oikdfnm;sdklj ;oijv ;oj. Heck, even I could do that. But I didn’t get a good enough look to make a determination…too much glare on the screen. Come on lady, get an anti-glare screen.

The other people around were pretty tame in a lame sort of way. There was the cutest preppy older couple wearing berets and plaid outfits. (It’s hard to top that for cuteness.) But the worst part of the wait was the television…which ironically is supposed to help you pass the time. It was a beautiful TV…a big, flat screen TV with HD…no complaints there, but many complaints about what was showing: Dr. Freakin’ Phil.

When I first saw Dr. Phil back in the day on Oprah, I thought he was pretty good. But that guy has since slid downhill and landed right in-between Maury Povich and Jerry Springer...the new Three’s Company. Only difference between Phil and his present company is his Texan accent. At least give me Kathie Lee and Hoda!! Those are some spunky spitfire women.

I watched one man leave the waiting area to go to the bathroom 2 times in 20 minutes. But who’s counting? I think that’s where he went…I didn’t follow him. He must have a growing problem. If he ever stayed seated long enough and watched the loser television, he might recognize himself in one of those growing problem commercials.

So I did quite well in the game of wait. I proclaimed myself a winner. "Self, you are a winner." I avoided all eye contact…Not one single person caught me sneaking peeks. My Grand Prize for winning? It would have to be this blog. Unfortunately that doesn’t do much for you.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Klutzy Kat

There was a reason I was not given the name Grace. It would have been a misnamer. When I was a freshman in college, our dorm floor gave out awards at the end of the school year. The awards were paper plates…with a simple description for each girl. Mine said “Klutz.” Klutzy Kat…simple and to the point.

When ‘they” gave me the award, they said I had the unique talent of tripping up the stairs. They were right…I did that a couple of times a day. But come on, it takes a special talent to trip UP the stairs. If I tripped going down…I would have gotten the ‘Most Broken Bones Award.’ That would have been an easier award to win. No real talent there.

So I’ve thought about it and admit…I can be clumsy. It mostly happens when I try not to be. Isn’t that the way? If the pressure is on…like I’m know I’m being watched…that’s when I trip over an invisible obstacle directly in front of my mother-in-law…just miss spilling my plate of food…as I catch my balance. Whoaaaaaaaa. Whenever PaulA sees me working with a knife…he always stops me. He has saved me from me…cutless times.

I think I would rather be called Butterfingers…than Klutz. It has a sweeter ring. Usually I know it’s gonna be a Butterfingers day…when I first wake up. When I’ve dropped the toothpaste 3 times, tripped over my shoes…and can’t fight the urge to stop at CVS for the candy bar…it’s a dead give away.

Luckily my clumsiness has never hurt anyone. My kids were never dropped…although there was that time I fell holding Colinboy as an infant. But that wasn’t my fault, we were looking at homes and the front walk was covered with ice. As I went down, I held my Colinboy ever so tightly…he never even bounced off the bricks. I took one for the team.

Oh, and I did spill blood on me every now and then when I worked in the blood bank lab. Mostly on my shoes. Nothing like going home to PaulA with a little blood on my shoes to set the mood.

As I’ve gotten older, I think I am less clumsy. Not that Grace has moved in and taken over Klutzy Kat. But I eat more Butterfingers these days than act like one …………although I do enjoy a good SNICKERS once in a while.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Writer's Block

What if I get writer’s block? (How is that, Kat…you’re a blogger?) Okay, What if I get blogger’s block? What if Kat comes up high and dry…got nothing….nada…zilch…a big fat zerO? That my friends, is a possibility. Today I’m at 365 blogs…a year of blogs. I might have gone to the blog well, one too many times. What if the blog well is drying up and becoming just a trickle of ideas?

What could I possibly do to help unblock the block….unstick the stick…juice the juices. Maybe run around the room, then stand on my head? That might get the creative energy flowing to the brain. But, I think I would probably just end up winded with a monster headache. Actually, I’ve tried it….so I know it doesn’t work.

What if I took a trip somewhere exotic…Bali, Tahiti, Yonkers…to experience new experiences …that would give me new material and insightful views. Yeah, that’s the ticket. But that’s the problem. No tickey…no go.

What if I ate some weird combination of food like tacos, garlic, and oysters and then went immediately to sleep? Maybe I would have some weird ass dreams that would provide me with some crazy material to write…get my thoughts running. But I have a feeling the only thing that would be running, would be me…to you know where.

What if I went to visit Colinboy or Big C …lived their wild and crazy life…maybe that would kick my imagination…kick it into overdrive? But then I’m afraid the only thing kicked….would be my ass….kicked out.

So I’ve exhausted all possibilities and probably exhausted my readers in the process. I just might be stuck in a moment and I can’t get out of it. (Borrowed that line from U2…didn’t steal it.)

That’s it! I’ll steal stories….I mean, borrow them. Blogger’s block over.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Feathered Friends

Most people think the world is divided in half...between dog people and cat people. But there is another population to consider…that is the bird people population. The bird people population consists of those who are fanatical about birds…they watch birds, study them, follow them, feed them, and wash them. And then there are the Ornithologists, the bird experts.

Once my bro-in-law pretended to be a Bird Expert. We (PaulA, bro-in-law and his wife, and I) were trespassing in a bird sanctuary (having a picnic)…and a distraught woman brought a wounded bird to the sanctuary for help. To cover our trespassing butts, Bro led her to believe he was the resident Bird Expert there. It didn’t take her long to figure out he was no Dr. Beak. She looked at him in bird fraud horror.

Some people are freakish about birds. They are so afraid of birds that they duck and run for cover…especially if there is more than one flying overhead. They probably saw Alfred Hitchcock’s movie “The Birds” and ruined themselves for life. I still remember the telephone lines covered with hundreds of birds in that movie. Sometimes it only takes one Hitchcock movie…to do permanent damage. That ‘s why to this day, I am so terrified of men who wear grey haired women’s wigs.

Normally I could give a flying sparrow about birds…until now. Interesting enough…right outside my blogging window I have been watching a cardinal. I don’t usually know the names of birds, but we lived in St. Louis for 2 years. I do know the difference between a bald eagle and the Froot Loops Toucan Sam. That Sam is one impressive bird.

I have become quite fond of the cardinal and look for it every morning when I sit at my ole blogging chair. I watch the little bird brain as he builds a nest in our bushes with little twigs and leaves that he carries in his beak. Suddenly, I find that I have developed a real interest in birds.

Each morning, I sit with my nose pressed against the window as my eyes shift back and forth…. following the little red bird from branch to branch…carrying each leaf and twig. I’m finding that I have more than a passing interest in my feathered friend…as my hungry stomach rumbles.

Then I wonder if being a Kat has anything to do with it.

PostScript: Sorry for being such a rare, odd and old bird. I realize this blog is for the birds, but a little birdie told me to do it. Please don’t blame me…and flip me the bird.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Truth or Consequences

Miss California lost to Miss North Carolina in the 2009 Miss America Beauty Pageant…because she gave the judge, Perez Hilton, a politically incorrect answer to a question about gay rights. Granted the woman is blonde and…blonde equals dumb. How dumb? (Okay, no dumb blonde jokes here.) Doesn’t she know to lie or answer middle of the road, like politicians do…especially if her views are controversial. Miss California didn’t deserve to be the winner. You must, at all times, know your audience. She gave her “truth”…and had to suffer her “consequences.” Second Place.

There are certain times when asked about your feelings on a particular subject…that you shouldn’t blurt out your true feelings. Didn’t her mom ever tell her that it’s okay to tell a white lie, once in a while? And that it’s important to know…when to lie. Not all lies are equal. If Miss Cali wanted to win the contest, she should have known that this was definitely poker-face-lie-by-omission-white-lie time.

Men do it all the time. A wife asks her husband: “Do I look fat in this outfit?” There’s only ONE dumb guy in a million who says, “Now that you’ve asked…Yes…Very fat. Why don’t you wear your moo-moo tonight, sweet lard. I mean, sweetheart.” If the husband ever wants to get jiggy with his wife again…he will have to come up with a better answer. A more middle of the road answer: “You look beautiful in everything you put on, honeybunchkins.”

You’re a parent and your child brings you his drawing and asks: “Do you like my cow?” You look at the drawing and see scribble. Do you say: ”You call this a cow? It sure doesn’t look like one. You could have at least put 4 legs on that blob.” Or do you give a more middle of the road answer and say: “What a wonderful picture you drew…tell me more about your cow.”

You’re a grandmother of five and little Lucretia asks you: “Nana, Who’s your favorite grandchild?” You definitely have a favorite…you can’t help yourself. Do you go with the truth: “Well Lucretia, I’m so glad you asked this question. I like Joey the most…but you are a close second…or third. I might give Joey a few more presents for Christmas than the rest of you this year.” Or do you go more middle of the road and say: “All my grandchildren are a gift from god…I am lucky to have all five of you.”

A young student says to his teacher: “Mrs. Thomas, Jack says there’s no such thing as Santa Claus.” Do you go with telling the truth: “Jack is right. That story about flying reindeer and a jolly fat man sliding down your chimney is ridiculous nonsense. It’s about time you grew up. You’re the laughing stock of the 3rd grade." Or more middle of the road with your answer: “Christmas is a time of love and magic when anything can happen.”

If YOU are asked: “What do you think of Kat’s blog?” You have 3 ways to answer:
“Kat….Schmat. That stuff sucks....total garbage.”
“Kat is brilliant. So insightful and damn darn witty.”
Or a more middle of the road answer: “Comme ci - comme ca…Asi - asi…Sometimes crappy - sometimes not as crappy.”

Careful of the “Truth”….you may suffer the “Consequences.” Second Rate Blogs.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Outgrown

Last time I was at the TajMaMall I noted there were stores I don’t go into anymore. My kids are Teenager and Beyond…so there’s no need for me to put one foot inside. Stores that don't apply. Build-A-Bear, Limited Too, Gap Kids, Children’s Place, Gymboree, Disney Store…are all off the list. Self: take note…you are getting old.

I am actually going to miss shopping at these stores. I’ll miss seeing those cute little sizes 2T, 3T…and all the fun stuff we bought the kids…which I later learned was a total waste of money. Stuff that they outgrew in height and outgrew in taste…within 6 months. And instead made the clutter in my basement grow in both height and waste.

But there are a couple of stores that I just won’t miss…the dreaded pre-teen and teen shops. Those were miserable. Take shopping at Abercrombie and Fitch for example. Take Abercrombie and then take ole Fitch. You can have them both. Personally, I would have liked to wring their collars. Is it just me? Self: take note…you are REALLY getting old.

I remember my dreaded shopping experiences in Abercrombie…the store where you buy something that looks old and wrinkly…AND you get the privilege of paying top dollar. Self: take note…you are old and GRUMPY.

The condition of Abercrombie clothing was actually something that I could find in Wishy’s room…on the floor. Granted, both Abby and Fitchy had a way of making old clothing smell new. They had to use a bottled spray of “NEW” …because their clothes never, ever looked as new as they smelled. Self: take note…you are an old, grumpy GEEZER.

There is a Gilly Hicks store at the Taj MaMall that wasn’t around back in the day. I see lots of teens go in there, but I have only gotten as far as the front door. The store has a fa├žade that makes it look like a brothel. First of all, it is very dark. Second, it reeks of perfume. I was thinking of entering with a flashlight to get a look around….but the strong perfume emanating from the place, makes me sneeze my head-off when I get near it. I never get very far.

Self: take note…you are an old, grumpy, HEADLESS geezer.

Monday, April 20, 2009

What for Dinner Is?

That is the age old question. It’s very tiring, day after day, coming up with something to put on the table. Meal after meal…slop after slop…same ole after same ole.

I never mind cooking...the actual job of slop slinging. I just never know what slop to sling. Only the same recipes come to mind. I even subscribe to some food magazines…Gourmet and Bon Appetit. And I always read them…as I sit at the kitchen counter eating my tired old sandwich. But for some reason I never make any of the recipes.

I also watch those cooking fools on TV…you know Rachel Annoying Ray. I write down the recipes as I sit watching…eating my tired old sandwich, hanging on every ingredient. But for some reason I never make them.

Sometimes I envy the prison cooks. I think the prison menu would work for me. What’s wrong with having a Bread and Water Night? Bread and Water Tuesday. But just not on Wednesday…never on Wednesday…that is Prince Spaghetti Night. “Anthony, Colinboy, Wishy, Big C…get over here.”

I also found it interesting to read what the Obamas were served when they were in England. For some reason it’s always publicized what the rich and famous are eating. I read about celebrity Chef Jamie Oliver cooking up a slow-roasted Welsh lamb and appetizers of baked Scottish salmon, smoked quail eggs (any relation to the deviled family?)…as I sat eating my tired old sandwich. Hmmmm…maybe next time I should make that a Manwich. I hear a sandwich is just a sandwich, but a Manwich is a meal.

I probably don’t make any of the fancy recipes I read about in magazines or watch on TV because there is usually some ingredient that is so obscure, there is no finding it in Aisle 7 at the Stop and Shop.

So I better go with something I know. I think I might go with Meat Loaf Mondays…and Taco Thursdays. But I am definitely sticking with Sick of Coming Up With Ideas Get Your Own Dinner Saturdays.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Reinvention

With the economy being the way that it is, people are beginning to look within and take stock of their talents or lack of talents…and make a critical analysis of what they are doing. In times like these, people are thinking of ways to reinvent themselves….to make a change…or come up with a new idea. Maybe come up with a new invention or take an old invention and reinvent it. Like reinventing the mirror…one that automatically makes you look ten years younger.

Take Madonna…that woman is the Mother of Reinvention. It would be hard to put a number on how many times she’s reinvented herself. First she was the innocent material girl (Like a Virgin Tour), then slut (Blonde Ambition Tour), then sluttier (Girly Show World Tour), then sluttiest (Sticky and Sweet Tour.) See how she is always changing? She's never the same slut twice.

Coming up with fun ideas, products, or services is a hobby for me and sometimes I come up with good ones. Like the idea of the internet…wait, that was Al Gore not me. But trust me I have had some real doozies…I just can’t remember what they are right now.

I feel a New Idea coming on. I know…I’ll invent something to help “mature” people remember things…especially where they last put something down. I don’t know about you, but I spend most my day looking for my readers. Hmm…where are my glasses? It would be great to have a little invention that could tell me they are sitting on top of my head.

I’ve got it. The perfect idea to help people remember where they last placed something. I’ll invent younger brains…that can be transplanted. (Yeah, that’s the ticket.) I just couldn’t do the transplants, that would be someone else’s job. I would definitely leave that for the professionals.

I am also thinking of reinventing my blogs. Instead of blogging about stupid stuff… I’m thinking of blogging about intellectual subjects. Like the economy and how we should reinvent ourselves. That would be a good idea. Wait…did I already say that?

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Making Cents

I used to get paid 75 cents an hour…that was after a raise. Before that I earned 50 cents an hour. I earned this exorbitant amount in high school babysitting our neighbor’s baby, Matthew.

I remember putting Matthew down for the night…and thinking how easy I had it. Heck, the kid was asleep and I was free to watch TV, drink a TAB…and calculate how much money I was racking up. Let’s see…5 hours of babysitting. 5 times 75 cents…$4.25! I was freaking rich. What the heck was I gonna do with all that money? Save it…isn’t that what you are supposed to do? Put it in the bank and watch it grow. After a few months in the bank…$4.25 becomes $4.27. FREE pennies...YES….I love interest.

I also remember when baby Matthew’s parents bumped me to $1.25 an hour…and thinking they made a mistake. Could it be that I would be making over a dollar an hour? I love capitalism!

Heck I haven’t earned that much money in a long time. A few years ago I was called for jury duty and was paid for 4 days. I was Alternate Juror #1. It was awesome. It got me thinking that maybe I could hire myself out as a juror. Now that’s an idea. Maybe I could be paid extra to tip the scales of justice someone's way. Wait, is that illegal??

Nothing felt better than a paycheck with my name on it. That’s why it was so hard to quit working after I got pregnant with Chelsea. I always believed I would continue working, even after having her. When I was pregnant, I told my employer I would be back, and I actually believed I would. But that was 23 years ago. I think they figured out… I’m not coming back.

I didn’t have anyone in Jacksonville to leave Chelsea with so I didn’t return to work. I just couldn’t leave my little bundle so I had to kiss my paycheck goodbye. But that was a lot easier than kissing Chelsea goodbye.

And instead of a paycheck with my name on it that gave me self-worth…I had a baby with the name of Chelsea…who gave me a NEW self-worth.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Word to the First Dog

“Yo Bo! I say: “represent”...from a fellow Portuguese Water dog…Yours truly, Dunncandog. It’s important that you give us Portuguese Water dogs a good name while you are in the nation’s limelight.

First, I’m glad the Obama’s re-thought your name. I heard they were thinking of the name Frank…which is definitely not dog-worthy. Bo is a pretty good name…almost as dog-worthy as Henry or Martin.

Here’s some good advice, from one Portie to another, as you prepare to take your official role as First Dog: Make sure you get the upper hand and train your family early. Take it from a pro…someone who has the Fam tied around his paws.

Always look cute…that way you’ll get away with murder…or even better...an incidental crap on the floor. Or maybe even a spew on the Oval Office rug. They might raise their voice…but after you give them your best I’m-so-sorry tail between the legs, and puppy dog eyes impression…they’ll calm down. Cuteness rules.

Always give a short bark when you want something. Not a yappy string of barks. Just ONE LOUD bark that makes them jump and disturbs their train of thought. One that startles them so much they spill their coffee…or mistakenly push the infamous red button. Just make sure that bark gets them off their asses.

Speaking of asses, you will notice…all they do is sit around all day and stuff their faces with food. You’ll actually be surprised how much food a human consumes. And they never share…just an occasional crumb drop. Like I’m supposed to get excited over a CHEEZ-IT crumb on the floor. “Hey Kat, next time drop a pork chop and then we’ll talk.”

Oh, make sure to train them so that…when you come towards them with your butt first…you are due for a good scratch…right on the ole buttinski…Portuguese style.

Occasionally you gotta let them think they’re boss…so play along. When they say “Come here, boy”…listen to them…that way they think you’re obedient. Wait until you are really interested in something you care about (like sniffing Hillary Clinton) then blow them off. Save it for when it really matters. I let Kat think she is the Alpha dog in this household, cuz it makes her think she is big and powerful…but I yank her leash every chance I get.

Oh, make sure to wag your tail a lot…even when you don’t feel like it. You don’t want them to put you on puppy Prozac.”

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Who's the Kid?

I admit I like to make faces at kids…when their parents aren’t watching. The other day in the Post Office, there was a woman with a crying baby in a stroller doing a massive packaging deal. I felt sorry for the little mole-creature strapped in a stroller at noon…lunchtime. The kid was trying to eat his hand he was so hungry. Why would she choose this time? Just because it was convenient for her…babies get no respect.

So I felt it was my civic duty to make faces to amuse the baby. Which by the way, is easy for me. Bambino instantly stopped crying…and became interested in my freak of nature. The last time this baby probably saw a face so strange was when he was entering the world during childbirth. After a few minutes of zany faces, I felt I had to come up with a new face when he got tired with the old one. But then I remembered, all my faces were old.

I also enjoy entertaining kids that sit on the back of the school bus…the fun place. They like to wave at you and I always wave back, give them the bird…I mean, peace sign. They seem to appreciate it on an otherwise, bumpy boring bus ride. The only excitement they’ve had in the last 4 hours was seeing Joey hit Johnny in the head with a dodge ball. I’m just trying to put a little fun back in a kid’s life.

Whenever I’m driving behind a station wagon with one of those third jumper seats and see kids that are facing me…it’s fun to mess with them…with a little Bullwinkle ears action. Come on, you know what I’m talking about…when you stick your fingers in your ears and wave them. I love to watch their reaction.

First …the kids do a double take. Wait, did that woman just do that? Is that a kid or an ole lady? What ole lady does that? Then they turn around to tell their parents about the crazy lady who is making faces at them. That’s when I turn my head and look the other way. So the kid looks crazy….and the ole lady looks sane.

Who’s the kid here…anyway?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Color My World

There are some careers that seem quite difficult…Doctor, Lawyer and Indian Chief. But then there are others, that on the surface, seem quite manageable. You may think… "Heck, I can do that. Anyone can do that.” But once you get going with it…you find the job wasn’t as easy as you first thought. Take…race car driving. Geez…I can drive fast….and I speed all the time. Then take painting.

Painting a room seems like an easy job. Color my world: Easy Breeze Green. You may wonder why painters get the big bucks to slap a little color on the wall. But once you get into the middle of the project with paint up to your elbows…you would give a professional painter anything…(my dog)…to come in and take over.

I think painting is very difficult...right from the beginning…right from the word “chip.” Choosing a paint color is dabbling in science…especially having to use the 1 cm by 1cm dab the paint companies provide. As a matter of fact, the color never even looks like it's related to the actual paint. It’s more of a distant cousin.

Paint chips should come with warnings: Lilly Green looks green while standing on your left leg and holding it up to a window when the sun is shining through a heavily leafed tree…but otherwise it’s a deep purple once you’ve bought 3 gallons and rolled it on your wall. Color My World: Lilly-Green-My-Ass.

Paint names are fun…almost as good as lipstick names but definitely not as sexy. Instead of Sensual Spice…you get Shaker Beige. Color my world: Tired Tan.

Painting requires the patience of Job and the steady hand of Betty Ford. After putting yourself through spackling, caulking, priming, and then finally the painting…you have to apply a damn second coat. I always think … "Naw…it should be fine with one coat.” Until the next morning when all the missed spaces are clearly visible. Color my world: Pissed-Off Purple. How do I know this?

PaulA and I recently painted our bedroom after a third color attempt...(third cousin once removed.) Color my world: Finally-Got-It-Right-Ocean-Air. PaulA was in charge...the head painter...and I was his assistant. My first job was to pour the paint into the tray. After I spilled it all over my hands, PaulA fired me from my duties. Sometimes deliberate incompetence is a PAINT stroke of genius.

After completing the room…we called in the professionals to paint the others. Color my world: Thank the Heavenly Father Fuschia. I think painters earn every roll of dollar they make painting. Between the smell of the paint that gets you high or sick, the paint that you’ve spilled on yourself or floor, and every other brush with disaster….I say:

Get a professional…and take my dog…he’s yours for FREE. Color my world: Good Riddance Red.

Actually…Color my world: Just Teasing Turquoise.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Bad Case of TMI

“Be careful with your cell phone because I am not buying insurance for it.” That’s the warning I give my kids when they get a new cell phone. So what did I do with mine? I pulled a Chelsea…which is affectionately known as ruining anything electronic. Between laptops, cell phones, cameras, and iPods ….we have a sizable investment in Best Buy.

My phone catastrophe occurred when I was performing the glamorous job of cleaning the throne. I bent over…just far enough for it to come sliding out of my slippery puffy vest. I sound attractive don’t I! I don’t usually don’t put that much elbow into the scrubbing of toilets (or any elbow), but my parents were coming for a night and I wanted the throne to sparkle. After all they are the Queen Mum and King Jerry.

The phone fell so quickly there was no catching it in mid-air before it landed in the bottom of the toilet. It couldn’t have been there 2 seconds before I pulled it back out. (I don’t usually go around sticking my hand in toilet water…although I have put toilet water behind my ears.) But sure enough, my crappy phone didn’t survive the toilet dive.

As soon as I realized I was without my cell, I felt like I had been stranded in some remote part of the world …air lifted and just dropped. No contact with humans. How could I be reached? What if Big C tried to call me? (I wonder if my recorded voice message now sounded warbled?)

So I took a trip to Verizon Wireless and told the phone expert that my phone was no longer working because I dropped it in some water. Well hello…I surely wasn’t going to tell the guy exactly where it had been. That would have been TMI. Sometimes TMI is just not a good thing. He might not have looked into my problem…let alone touch my phone.

After examining it, he said something about “it got wet…you have no insurance.” No shit Sherlock (No pun intended). And something about “pay full-price.” After which, I gave him the song and dance – Beyonce Style (just kidding…don’t worry folks) and told him to look up what an amazing customer I was…especially with the 3 leeches that are on my monthly account. So he cut me a break. It’s amazing what paying your bills and 3 lovable leeches on your account will do for you!

It’s a good thing he cooperated…and didn’t charge me full price. Otherwise I would have acted really juvenile and said, ”Dude…you know that phone you just had up to your face…it’s been in my toilet.”

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Camp Goof-Off

Kids today are so busy……they need a schedule to schedule their schedules. They may be more accomplished at younger ages than we were, but I feel sorry for them. I think they are missing out on having down time. Time unscheduled…time to be a kid.

Today if kids have down time…even an hour between activities suddenly they are bored. And can you blame them? Everything is instant…IM, text message, DVR, On Demand…Mommy on demand.

As a kid, I had lots of down time especially in the summer. A summer seemed like an entire year onto itself. Heck a day, felt like a week…..

During summers we would stay at the camp my Grandmother owned on 100 acres in Vermont with our cousins. Camp consisted of two log cabins, a bunkhouse log cabin, an outhouse…no electricity, and no running water.

Playing outside all day…was our job. And we took our job seriously. We’d pack our lunch and head for the hills….which was easy…cuz we were already there. On warm days we’d spend hours stone stepping through a brook…jumping from rock to rock until we’d get the lunch call for bug juice and sandwiches…pb and j, pb and marshmallow, deviled ham, olive loaf (no thanks!) We’d drink water that collected in a tub from a natural spring. We’d play horseshoes or watch our uncles play…who impressed us with their “throwing” skills.

We’d have camp fires…and run around at night catching fire fires and playing vampires. We’d listen to our aunts and uncles in the main cabin play cards, sing and tell jokes. We’d get rides on an old jeep up to the top of mountain. We’d pick apples…or crab apples and come down with an occasional belly ache. We’d take off on a hike with our supplies…climb trees, carve our names in trees, cut down trees, make log cabins, run through ferns as tall as us…and play hide and seek in them. We’d have running races and high-jump contests. We’d walk to the Girl Scout Camp down the road and swim (and sometimes bathe) in their pond (when they weren’t there.) And so much more…

What stands out the most….is not once did I mention a phone, computer, iPod, radio or television. Those were the days.

When Colinboy was in middle school we signed him up for a YMCA camp…two weeks on a lake….where he would swim, play games (that were not electronic), live in a bunkhouse …just like my good ole days. A neighbor asked me what our kids were doing for the summer and when I mentioned that Colinboy was going to a YMCA camp…he said, “Oh, a goof-off camp.” He wasn’t impressed…it wasn’t a basketball, baseball, foreign language, or a computer camp.

Colinboy LOVED Camp “Goof-off”….and I loved having him enjoy a taste of the type of summer I experienced…when I was a goof-off.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

A Pirate's Life for Me

After recently reading about the discovery of sunken treasure of coins and artifacts worth a half a billion dollars, I remembered a story a friend of mine once told me about her son’s girlfriend. My friend made the mistake of asking the girlfriend what she wanted to do (with her life). The girl matter of factly replied, "I want to be a PIRATE." So how do you respond to that? “Sorry Matey…the ship has left without you. You are one poop short of a full deck.”

Hmmm… I was wondering what the girl found so appealing about a pirate's life. Was it living on the seas and sailing around the world to distant places? Was it commandeering other ships, ransacking them, and stealing their gold and silver coins? Was it making someone walk the gangplank as you nudged them along with your sword? Not doing it for me. Intimidation on the gangplank does sound like fun…but did someone say “seasick?”

Was it the pirate’s wardrobe that got her cannon-balled over…the tri-cornered hat, bandana, puffy shirt (worked for Jerry Seinfeld), sash, big boots, and gold teeth? The attractive eye patch…which draws attention to your better eye? Oh, probably the wooden leg …extra space to hold your rum. And the gold hoop earrings. I like the idea of matching gold jewelry in my mouth and ears…but did someone say “hat head?”

Maybe it’s the way pirates talk… "Ahoy there Matey. Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum. Arrrr….It’s Ye captain, me buckos.” I like calling people buckos and calling for rum…but did someone say “Mutiny…feed the fish some Kat!?”

If I think outside the ship box…maybe I can understand why she would want to be a pirate. I can see the romanticism of the pirate's life on the high seas back in the day. Way better than working at a sendentary stationary desk, but I just hope she was talking about the pirates of long ago…and not the pirates of today. Today’s pirates use speed boats, machine guns, GPS systems and cell phones…and would be called "hoodlums of the sea."

I’m just hoping she was talking about the ole school Jolly Roger pirates…. Did someone say “whack job?”

Monday, April 6, 2009

Fit for a Queen

The President and Michelle Obama recently made their first trip to England to visit the Queen Mum. It is customary to bring a gift worthy to bestow on her highness...when you go abroad to visit the broad. I mean, her majesty. And as I’m sure you’ve heard by now, Obama gave the Queen Mum an iPod. iLaugh at that. But iKnow the Apple people are smiling.

An iPod is an interesting gift to give a Queen…let alone a woman who is how old? 150? Okay…82. I know one thing, my parents are only in their 70’s…and they can barely figure out their cell phone…let alone an iPod. Sometimes when I call their cell…they answer…but don’t realize they have answered, so I hear them talking to each other in the background. "Jerr…push the button.” “I think I did, Ally.”

I guess Obama was having trouble coming up with the perfect hostess gift. I know it can be tricky coming up with a clever gift. Plus she already has a palace and extra plush towels…what else could he possibly give that would be fit for a queen. I know when I go to someone’s house…I’m thinking…should I bring the customary bottle of wine (Oh, what a nice surprise!) or something less obvious? iThink the iPod as a gift for the Queen was the equivalent of giving the royal couple…his and her matching thongs.

So the question is: Will she use it? Or will it end up in the royal rubbish? A Poll on AOL said that 80 percent of the people think she won’t use it. I am a part of that 80%...(Do you do those polls online??) Frankly, I don’t see it happening. I just find it hard picturing the Queen with ear buds.

Granted, Obama gave the Queen an iPod that was preloaded, so she won’t have to figure that out. But he also loaded television footage of himself. Who wants to watch old footage that can be seen on CNN...bring on U2. It is interesting his gift was also about him. But then again, the Queen gave the Obama’s an autographed picture of herself. That’s it…my next hostess gift will be an autographed printed copy of one of blogs.

I suppose I could have this iPod thing all wrong…I might not know what goes on behind Palace doors. Maybe Queen Elizabeth is more tech savvy then I give her credit for and will use the iPod.

Maybe when no one’s looking…she’s hiding in one of the drawing rooms in Buckingham Palace … surfing the net…and going on Facebook under an alias: Queeney. I’m gonna keep my eyes out for her…so I can friend her, poke her, and write on her wall: Kat was here.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Google Your Name

Have you ever googled your own name? I have….and I don’t think I’m the only one who has done this. Uninteresting enough, I didn’t find ME…the real Kat in google print…only a copyKat. Even with having a blog, I wasn’t listed in Google. But that’s probably because I never use my first and last name together. Heck, I have to protect myself…you never know what lurks…below the blog….ahhhhhhhhhhh.

Anyway, the copyKat listed in Google …was in a newspaper article for doing something nice…a good Samaritan Kat. See how that works for me? Others might read about the copyKat and think she was me….I could get props.

The article mentioned that: One day copyKat was shopping. (So far that sounds like me. People would definitely believe that.) And copyKat was in a dressing room (hey, I go in dressing rooms) when she found a wad of bills with a $50 on top and a $100 underneath. So what did copyKat do? (I like to keep the reader involved with questions.)

CopyKat turned the money into the sales lady (umm…Any similarity ended right there. Not because Mama needs a new pair of shoes… but because I wouldn’t trust the sales lady. Which explains my maiden name, Thomas…Kat Doubting Thomas.) The money was returned to the woman who lost it. But the story doesn’t end there.

For being such a good Samaritan, the sales lady then gave copyKat a promotional box of mints from the store with a chance at a winning ticket. Turns out, copyKat had the winning ticket for $10,000 DOLLARS in her box. Saweet. What a happy ending... I liked that ALMOST as much as the Happy Ending I had at Friendly’s the other day.

So why don’t you Google your own name. You might find that you, too, are a lucky good Samaritan...or a not-so-lucky creep, wanted for a string of petty crimes throughout the southeast.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Traveling

Every now and then, there's an idea that makes good sense…like seat belts and soft-serve ice cream. Brilliant. I have read that some airports have revamped their security check-through process. Allelulia. The traveler, however, still has to go through the same hell of undressing and redressing in a public place…but the process is run a little differently. I think the idea makes good sense:

The TSA in some airports have set up lanes according to 3 different types of travelers. They are set up like a ski mountain…where slopes are designated as either expert, intermediate, or beginner.

So the expert lane is for the experienced frequent traveler…the business traveler. The intermediate lane is for the casual traveler…those who need a little more time than the frequent flyer. And the blue lane is for families with children and those with special needs requiring assistance.

When I first heard about it…I thought…damn good idea. That’s until I remembered what skiing is like. Will the traveler really stick to the lane he belongs in?

When I’ve skied, it is amazing how many times I’ve seen someone on a black diamond slope who has no business being there…someone totally out of control. Okay, that was me. But that wasn’t my fault. There is always someone who wants to get you out on an expert slope, just to see what happens to you…just for giggles.

I can see the exact same thing happening in the airport. Some chucklehead thinks he’s an experienced flyer because he once flew on a plane to Toledo. He doesn’t understand why he can’t be in the fast lane. So he maneuvers his way over to the frequent flyer lane. And holds everybody up. The people behind him are not giggling.

Then again, there is the black diamond skier, who can handle the expert slope, has every right to be there…but is a total menace to those around him. He is skiing as fast as he can….in-between people, trees, and trail repairs. He is flying off jumps and skiing like crazy through moguls...on the other skiers’ last nerve.

I would say, that’s the same as the business frequent flyer who gets in the fast lane he belongs in, but ends up taking forever to get through the security process…because he has to unload a laptop, a PDA, a cell phone, a blackberry, belt, tie-shoes, and his carry-on suit case...on the other flyers’ last nerve.

That’s when the family lane is looking good….no carry-on suitcases, laptops or PDAs…instead elastic pants….and Velcro shoes.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Reply To All

You often hear stories about the trouble people have gotten themselves into with emails. They’ve written something that is intended to be read by one person… but when they hit send…they hit “Reply to All” …whoops. Or there is a person on CC that you didn’t realize was there. The email was meant to be a “For your eyes only” email…PRIVATE – KEEP OUT…but now there are 8 eyes viewing.

That’s a BIG problem. Now Betty knows how you really feel about her new hairstyle. You told her to her face…that it flatters her face…brought out her eyes. But now she will find out that was total bull…you really think she looks like a buffoon.

I got a text once from Big C that made absolutely no sense to me. So I texted her back “huh?” and she texted back again: “Sorry that was for someone else.” I’ve heard of calling a wrong number, but now we have to worry about texting a wrong number.

Another thing to watch out for is with the cell phone. Sometimes you really haven’t totally disconnected and ended your phone call. And you swear you just heard someone mumble “buffoon” under their breath. Or your phone is in your pocket or purse and it accidently speed dials someone. Bri…did that to me the other day. I couldn’t make out what was really going on when I answered…but I could hear more than one person talking. I have a feeling there were numerous adolescent buffoons there.

So be careful…all this technology can get you in real trouble. But today, of all days...you can get a free pass that will get you off the hook if you accidently call someone a buffoon…. “Just say April Fools.” Tomorrow you are on your own.