Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Read It and Weep

I would venture to say that most people love reading for pleasure, but have a hard time fitting it in. Finding the time and the place to read a book with our hectic schedules can be difficult. It’s not like everyone has Kat’s schedule…where you can put your feet up….eat bonbons and donuts…and stick your nose in a book during the day.

Last week I was at a red light and glanced over to see a man with a book open on his steering wheel. I guess he found the perfect place…his Saab900s. Hopefully he’s only reading at lights and in traffic jams…and not while he’s whizzing down the road at 65 mph. Speaking of whizzing………..

There are those who do their reading in the bathroom. Hopefully it’s just light reading with the Reader’s Digest (Is it still in print?) and not heavy reading with War and Peace. Enough said about whizzing.

The other day I saw a guy with his nose in a book as he was walking down the sidewalk. Now that takes concentration and coordination. I wondered if he was really reading or trying to look book smart? I don’t get it. For me, just walking on the treadmill while watching TV and eating bonbons and donuts is hard…Let alone add reading a book.

Most people find time to read in bed before they go to sleep. I’ve tried plenty of times to do that, but haven’t mastered it. If I read more than two pages, my eyelids begin to feel like book bags. And then I haven’t a clue what I’ve read the next time I pick up the book. I always have to reread pages. I haven’t a clue what I read the next time I pick up the book. I always have to reread pages. I haven’t a clue what I read the next time I pick up the book.

My natural talent is reading when the TV is on. Especially sports. So when PaulA is watching a football game or golf (the golf whisper is the best)…I book-it. I am able to tune out the TV and everything around me and envision myself alone with my book, eating bonbons and donuts. I actually inherited this talent from my mom. Growing up, we all knew we were doomed when we saw mom with a book…dinner was only a four letter...I mean, six letter word.

I know a lot of people who like to read when they are traveling on a plane or in the airport to help pass the time. But I have to be careful about reading in public places…especially a ‘Read it and weep’ book. At the airport in St. Louis, I became an emotional wreck while reading the ending of “The Notebook.” I tried so hard to hold everything in...that my body shook.

I have a helpful suggestion for those who find it difficult to find the time or place to read a book…stick with some easy reading at your computer…and read Kat's blog. I’ll even supply the bonbons and donuts.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Gossip Girl

What’s the buzz…tell me what’s a happenin’???

Did you hear about Perez Hilton, the celebrity gossip? (I guess this blog makes me a gossip…or a gossip girl once removed.)

Anywho…Perez was (allegedly) attacked by the Black Eyed Peas manager or their singer Will.I.Am, or both. Was it something Perez said that initiated the attack? Probably. Heck, as I said: Perez is a celebrity gossip…so that’s what those people do…gossip. They open their mouths and say things that aren’t always true…and sometimes people want to help them close them…with their fists.

I don’t condone violence, so I would never make fun of what happened to Perez. Celebrity gossip or not…no matter what someone says, it doesn’t mean you have the right to physically beat them up. But what I find most interesting is what Perez did after the assault.

What does a celebrity gossip do after he’s been assaulted and bleeding? Call 911 and ask for the police like the rest of us? Nope. Perez logs onto Twitter and starts sending out tweets….
A tweet to his followers giving a real time account of what was taking place and a request for assistance: “I’m in shock. I need the police ASAP.” Interesting choice.

I suppose twittering for help doesn’t work for just everyone. It requires you to have a lot of followers on Twitter for anyone to even notice and bring help. If I was to twitter for assistance…maybe 1 of my 4 followers would see my tweet…3 days from now. And by then, I’d be a goner.

However, if I had the capability of sending out a tweet to MILLIONS of folks asking for assistance…my tweet would read: “Someone Help!!! I’m dying over here…I need a Carvel twist in a cone…ASAP.”

PS. Special tweets today to my tweety hubby, PaulA: “Happy Birthday!” Love, your Gossip Girl.

Friday, June 26, 2009


Remember taking vocabulary tests in school? Memorizing the definition for the test…and then never using it again in a sentence…let alone in a lifetime? And choosing the answer “B” on the SAT test…just because.

Do you envisage yourself as possessing a sterling vocabulary? I would not say I have a prodigious vocab…but it gets me through the day…and this blog. I’m sure my vocabulary could stand to be augmented, but I think I get my point across. My urban vocab, however……is da bomb diggity fo sho.

There are some of us who have extensive vocabularies…and that would include my friend BillyA. I wonder if that’s because he’s a master at crossword puzzles. The sensei of the puzzle. Hysterically BillyA, (I mean, historically BillyA) has done many crossword puzzles. His vocabulary may have been honed through years of working on crossword puzzles. I’m not sure if you achieve a better vocabulary after working on puzzles….or you work on them because you have a good vocabulary. Which comes first…the chicken or the egg? The headache or the hangover. The crossword puzzle…or the vocabulary?

In my case, I’ m not too proud to say the Thesaurus is a handy tool…a reference book that assists me in replacing elementary words with SAT words. I find the name “Thesaurus”, however, to be an enigma. The Thesaurus sounds like it should be a book about dinosaurs…instead of a synonym reference book. Tyrannosaurus, Stegosaurus, and the Thesaurus.

In case you’re wondering about a few of the colossal words I’ve employed in this blog…I may have referenced the book of dinosaurs. I like utilizing the online Thesaurus…the more recent of the dinosaurs. The Thesaurus helps me sound like I have command of the English language. Without Dino…this blog would read:

My friend BillyA has a good vocab. BillyA is also good at crossword puzzles. When I use the Thesaurus I sound intelligent. The Thesaurus has a name like a dinosaur.


My peep, BillyA, is da masta when it comes to da word. BillyA is da bomb diggity wit da crossword puzzles…fo sho. I’m a poser when I use a thesaurus. Da thesaurus sounds like a dinosaurus.

BIG WORDS…little words…urban words…either way…you get the point.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Graduate

Brianna graduates later today. I can’t believe it. I really can’t believe it. When Brianna was a baby…I remember thinking ahead…into the future...that Brianna would graduate from high school in TWO THOUSAND AND NINE. The year sounded so strange to me. I remember laughing to myself, thinking 2009 was light years away….a darn eternity. That her graduation day wouldn’t get here anytime soon.

And now it is here. The day our youngest child walks across the stage and receives her diploma. Brianna, The Graduate. My kids will tell you, “Mom always cries.” And they will be right.

I’ll try not to be a big baby. I promise that I’ll be good and not embarrass anyone….but I will cry…happy and sad tears. Happy tears that we have many beautiful memories of Brianna during her school years …and sad tears that those school years are over …and all we have left are the memories.

It’s easy being Brianna, The Graduate’s mother. She makes me look like I know what I’m doing…like I’m Mom of the Year. (Give that mom a raise.) Through Brianna’s school years, I’d go to teacher conferences and the teachers would spend our limited conference time telling me about her wonderful intrinsic qualities. And I would say, “Thank you. That’s nice to hear, but how’s she doing academically?”

When Brianna walks across the stage tonight…I’ll be seeing her move in slow motion. It will be like I’m watching a sequence in a movie…where you see flashbacks from days gone by. And I’ll be happy…I promise. Happy for Brianna as she says goodbye to one chapter…and hello to a new chapter in her life.

I love you Brianna. I am so very proud of you. Congratulations on your graduation.

Monday, June 22, 2009

No Fly ZZZone

Have you heard the buzz about Obama and the fly? Last week President Obama was sitting down for an interview at the White House when a pesky fly was buzzing around his head. What’s a Commander-In-Chief to do?

Catch the fly in his hand and look for an open window to free it? Of course not. Knock that sucker from here to eternity…and say just that, “I got the sucker.” PETA called the fly swatting incident an “execution.” They want Obama to show a little more compassion to even “the least sympathetic animals.”

Maybe insects are technically animals…but I don’t think a flea or gnat are in the same category as say, Duncandog. (Duncandog is at least 2 rungs above a flea…on the ladder of pesky animals.)

PETA is a little too radical for me. Come on, it’s a fly. It’s not like Obama Michael Vick-ed his dog or anything. We’re talking a…nasty, dirty, been riding on some cow’s butt…fly. Does PETA boycott and protest companies that spray insecticides? Is it their mission to have mosquitoes, ants, and cockroaches inherit this Earth?

I think the word “execution” is a pretty strong word to use for Obama’s actions. What’s his punishment? Time in a trashcan with rotting garbage? And what’s the punishment for someone who uses a fly strip that hangs from the ceiling. You know…the sticky strip that traps numerous flies until their eventual demise. Is that considered a mass execution? Would their punishment be…time in the town dump?

To tell you the truth I’m glad our President swatted the damn fly. At least I don’t have to worry about Obama being too soft and that “Obama can’t hurt a fly.”

I was also quite impressed with how fast Obama’s reflexes were and that he was able to get the sucker so quickly. When I go after a fly…I usually break everything around me before I get anywhere near it.

What Obama did to that pesky fly is something we’ve all done. I bet there isn’t a human alive who hasn’t swatted a fly.

Let he who is without flyswatter swat the first fly.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Twitter Blog

I am making today’s blog a twitter…putting it in twitter format. That’s because I don’t have much to say. Just enough for a tweet…which is less than 140 characters. I am sure you wouldn’t mind if I was short and tweet for a change.

By my calculations, if I throw in some dots……and then some more dots…..that doesn’t leave much for actual words. Which is perfect when I am feeling wordless. Here’s my twitter blog:

“Tell your family…tell your peeps…tell your homies...and your homies' peeps: Read Kat’s blog at Katstaleof5.blogspot.com TODAY.”

The above is a typical twitter….short, tweet, and SELF-PROMOTING.
(Hey, it works for Ashton Kutcher.)

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Sign My Yearbook

Remember your high school yearbook? Before school let out for the summer we’d pass it around so our friends could sign it. “Stay Sweet.” “I’m going to miss you.” “Never change.” I dug out my senior high school yearbook and took a good look at myself. OMG…who is that person with the dark eyes staring back at me? I think I’ve changed, but I hope I stayed sweet.

And remember the infamous senior quotes underneath your picture? I hope you chose a good one…because it’s the type of thing that comes back to haunt you. Quote: “Life’s a blast.” The Unabomber.

Colinboy had a friend who actually quoted him in his senior yearbook. No kidding. A Colinboy quote smack dab under Alex K.’s senior photo: “Keep it Fresh.” I wonder what Alex’s parents thought when they saw some random quote from some random kid under their son’s picture. Granted, over the years we’ve heard many lines from Colinboy, but I’ve never considered any one of them to live in infamy. But then again, if you check The Book of Famous and Profound Quotes…you will find "Colinboy says", right before “Confucius says.”

Remember Superlatives? Superlatives in a yearbook are always fun. “Most likely to become President: Barack Obama.” “Most likely to be a tramp: Lindsay Lohan.” “Most likely to have a following: Jesus.”

I never received a superlative. “Most likely to not receive a Superlative: Kat.” I was a newbie at my high school. My father was in the Air Force and retired in a small town in Vermont when I was a sophomore. Every kid in the school had known each other since they were toads in kindergarten. But if I were to receive a superlative today, it would probably read: Most likely to write a dull blog: Kat.

Are you familiar with the line from John Mayer’s song “No Such Thing” about high school: I’d like to think the best of me is still hiding up my sleeve? That is such a superlative line because it rings so true. There are definitely those people who peak in high school…and then it’s all downhill from there.

Take one of my high school classmates, Jack. Voted…most successful...most popular…most good-looking. Regular triple threat. Jack got married after college to his high school sweetheart. A few years later…King Jack was a pauper…because he couldn’t hold a job due to his drug addiction. He was 175 pounds overweight…due to his food addiction. He and his wife divorced…due to his sex addiction. Yep…Jack peaked early.

Jack may have peaked too early, but at least he peaked. I’m still hoping to peak...or plateau...and not plummet.

To my blog readers….all 3 of you: “Have a good summer.” “Friends 4-ever.”

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Nothing But The Truth

Back many moons ago, when we lived in Jax, I had an emergency wisdom tooth extraction. And unlucky for me, my oral surgeon happened to be…very handsome. If he could read the bubble over my head, it was shouting, “Woah, this is one good looking Doc.”

The nurse informed me that during the extraction, I would be knocked out…sent to the twilight zone with a little sodium pentathol. Hmm… “Isn’t that truth serum?” I asked her. “It sure is,” she said, “people usually do a little random talking right before they nod off. You would be surprised about what they say sometimes.”

OMG, I thought…What if I say something embarrassing in my truth serum trance? What if I say something about how cute he is? I tried to put his cuteness out of my head and think of other things…anything before I fell asleep. Do not think this doctor is cute…Wait, I’m still thinking that. Think of something sad….lost puppies. Think of something sappy...Hallmark Special.

The next thing I knew, it was over and I was awake. Wisdom tooth extracted. The doctor told me everything went great. I couldn’t look at him…I immediately felt my face go red. I was so afraid I said something about his looks …and how would I know?

When the Doc was out of the room, I asked the nurse, "Did I say anything when I was falling asleep?" She coyly replied, “Nothing I wouldn’t have said.”

OMG, what does that mean??!!

Monday, June 15, 2009

App Yours

A new version of the iPhone is due out this week….and I never had the old one. Actually, I think it’s better to not run out and get the first generation of any product. Much better to wait…a new and improved version always comes out after the first. That’s why I held onto my cell phone, that’s as big as my head.

I am intrigued with the iPhone and the apps that are associated with it. I know you’ve heard the iPhone commercials boasting “there’s an app for that.” APParently they have APPlied many APPlications:

A fitness app…with distance meter, yoga instruction, and calorie tracker. Big deal…if it could only do my workouts.

Apps for the around the house…cooking, decorating, staying organized. Big Whoop. If it could only clean my house.

Apps for going out…restaurant locations, concerts schedule, call-a-cab. Big Whooptiedo. If it could only tell me which cab driver is gonna take me on a life-threatening, nail-biting ride.

The new iPhone is supposed to have many new apps…probably more than my aptitude can apply:

A Compass. Interesting app. But I use the sun as a compass and it works fine, except on cloudy days…then I just stay home.

Galaxy app. I only care about this galaxy and PaulA points out the Big and Little Dippers in it for me.

Garage and yard sales app. I prefer to read all those tacky sale signs tacked to telephone poles on Saturdays.

Blood sugar monitor app. Okay, probably a helpful app to monitor sugar spikes from my D.Q. and donut extravaganzas.

I have an app suggestion: the blog app...blogs written by disturbed housewives with too much time on their hands. App that Apple.

I’m sure the new version of the iPhone will be a big hit for the APPle people. Things usually improve with age…like wine…and heck even people. I would like to think that I’ve evolved over the years. A wine drinking Kat is a big, big improvement…waaay better to be aged and preserved.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Bull Work/Squirrel Work Revisited

Lucky YOU…a bring back blog.

My bro-in-law has created a division of labor for married couples. Before he does anything, he must determine if the work is considered bull work or squirrel work.

Bull work is done by the man…heavy lifting, mowing lawns, cutting down trees, shoveling snow…you know the big physical jobs. Squirrel work is smaller work and done by the woman….scheduling appointments, cooking the dinner, washing the dishes, vacuuming the floor, dusting the furniture…need I say more.

The only problem with my brother-in-law's “rational thinking” is that PaulA is totally on board with it. So for instance, da wife (uh, me) should do jobs like the laundry, because that has “squirrel work” written all over it. BUT if I needed the washing machine moved…yup, that’s bull work. Squirrel work is ironing the clothes and hanging them in the closet. Bull work is building a new closet. Getting the picture?

A very interesting thing about bull work is that sometimes bull work requires other bulls to get together to do it. The bulls congregate, put their bull heads together, maybe get a case, just in case they get thirsty…and talk about how the bull work should be done.

I can’t figure out what I dislike most about Squirrel work. Is it the actual jobs in the squirrel category? Or that I could resemble a gray haired, bushy tailed squirrrel?

Currently, I have a bull work and squirrel work dilemma. It’s time to take Sweet Wishy, who is learning to drive, out on the road. Hmmmm….would this be bull work or squirrel work? It’s a hard one…but I know one thing….all bulls and squirrels should head for the hills!!!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Oprah Effect

Oprah has the Midas touch…some people just have a way with mufflers. Everything Oprah touches turns to gold. Most people (including me) don’t have the same effect…our touch turns things to PEW…ter.

If Oprah endorses your book…you’re an instant Best Seller at the top of the New York Times List. If she endorses your movie…it’s a guarantee must-see movie. If she deems you the next best singer…You’re “it.” If she endorses your brand of cereal…everyone stops eating Lucky Charms (even when they are magically delicious) and buys your brand.

It’s amazing how many people are riding her coat tails. I think that’s why she had to gain back her weight. It’s a wonder she’s able to even move with so many standing on them. We’ve got Dr. Phil, Dr.Oz, Bob Greene, Nate Berkus, a philosophical guru, sex doctor, dog whisperer. (Not to be confused with the dog sex doctor.) If these people would get off her coat tails…and rode someone else's gravy train…she might be skinny Oprah again.

These people were just regular folks doing their jobs until Oprah made them famous. Oh, and let’s not forget to mention Gayle King…she’s famous because she’s Oprah’s BFF. That stands for Best Friends Forever…and not Bi Female Friend. Don’t believe the rumors.

I’m sure you’ve heard of or seen “Oprah’s Favorite Things” show. I have a hard time watching it. I’m not sure if I hate the materialism of all that “stuff” she gives away…or I am just jealous. Okay, definitely the latter.

I wonder how she picks the people to have in the audience on her Favorite Things Show. Do they have to try-out? I know I would be perfect for the show. I could get all dressed-up and jump up and down like a crazy lady…especially if she was gonna give me a car. Bring on the Hondas.

But better than getting free stuff…I prefer the touch from Oprah’s golden wand. It lasts much longer than a Honda. If I could make Oprah’s Favorite Things List, I could go from PEWter to golden.

Seeing Gayle has the Best Friend thing all sewed up…maybe I could be her favorite blogger. Yes! Or maybe I could be her favorite doormat….anything!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Keeping Track

I recently read about a hiker who was found because of the GPS tracker system he carried with him. He was hurt and needed help, and his GPS saved his life. Smart thinking.

The GPS is becoming main stream with more and more practical uses. It’s become helpful to keep track of things such as car keys…TV remote controls…golf balls…and the family pet. Duncandog can stay missing…but I hate losing golf balls.

But a GPS on your husband? Hmmmm….that sounds like a problem if you’ve gotta keep tabs on your husband. El problemo in paradise.

Kids on the other hand…that’s a different matter. I can see why parents would use a GPS to keep tabs on them. Where are they going? Are they going where they are saying? Once kids start driving, it’s very difficult to know their whereabouts.

The old school way of keeping an eye on Junior was to keep track of mileage, but the car’s mileage doesn’t give you specifics as to where they have been. And then it seems like you don’t trust them. The trust issue is violated…when you have to say, “Junior, before you leave…I have to check the car’s mileage.”

So now you can pretend like you trust them. Attach a GPS on the car without their knowledge…and who’s the wiser. The GPS will give satellite feedback on every movement. Okay, now they’re approaching Taco Bell. Okay, now they’re on the highway…Oh no!

Then again…there are less stalkerish ways to track Junior…especially with all the other gadgets and technology available. With Away Messages, Facebook, Twitter, and Myspace…you don’t have to be as clever as the FBI. Kids make it easy and usually post their private lives for the world to see.

Twitter: @ Sliders getting wasted.

Away Message: rents away…bring beer.

Plus the next day…all you have to do is check the pictures they’ve posted on Facebook…they incriminate themselves…you don’t have to do a thing.

Heck I am above all that. I’ve got the number one tracker…the debit card. Eventually they need money. And all their movements are right there in black and white…or red (depending on how much damage they do.) Trip to McD’s, Luke’s Liquor, Subway, DMB concert, impromptu road trip to the Cape.

Nothin’ like a paper trail to reveal a person’s whereabouts…the IRS does it all the time.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


I just got back from a long over-due trip to the Stop and Shop and have an undeniable urge for something sweet. While working my way through the self checkout aisle (question to self: Shouldn’t Stop and Shop give me employee benefits if I’m doing their work?)…I came cheek to cheek with an enticing display of Entenmanns. All-butter loaf cake, Raspberry Danish. Cinnamon buns. Pumpkin pie. Cakes, doughnuts and other baked goods. Oh My!!!

I was intrigued with the Entenmanns display…there was something a little different about the boxes…they looked smaller. I thought: What a great idea…a smaller portion of the calorie laden goodies. If Entenmanns can’t cut the calories in half…at least they’re cutting the portion in half. Weigh to go Entenmanns!

I couldn’t resist picking up the cute new sized box. I found my favorite….Cinnamon Buns. That’s when I realized that the tasty buns of cinnamon I was expecting…was really a candle. A 3-wick wax candle with a cinnamon bun scent. Gruel joke. Not funny, Mr. Entenmanns…you’re not so sweet, after all.

I have to admit...it was amazing how edible the candles smelled. If you closed your eyes, you would swear you were in your Grandmother’s kitchen. So then, of course, I had to scent sample others…each one evoking homely childhood memories, I mean, homey childhood memories. (I was not a homely child…I think.) Pumpkin Pie sniff… Ahhh, The family gathered around the Thanksgiving table. Raspberry Danish sniff…Ahhh, Christmas morn…shafted again.

I couldn’t stop myself…until I smelled every single box in the display. At least there were no calories in each sniff. Otherwise, I would have had 50,000 calories. Cinnamon Bun buns-food calories per portion: 1,456. Cinnamon Bun candle-sniff calories per portion: 0. There might be something to this candle thing.

As I stuck my nose in each box, I contemplated buying a confectionary candle for the house. If I bought my favorite…the candle that burns the scent of cinnamon buns…how would the scent effect me? Would the scent be just enough to satisfy my sweet cravings, so I wouldn’t be rummaging through the cupboards at 4pm when Oprah is about to start…or would the smell put me into a sweet-craving frenzy? After all, I do have a sweet tooth…I’m mean, sweet teeth (32 of them to be exact.)

I quickly came to my senses and decided I couldn’t have the scented candle in my house. The smell would just start a brain-stomach-buns chain reaction. I would be fantasizing about sweet concoctions all day long. Then my gastrointestinal stomach juices would start flowing. The kind that makes my stomach sound like a washing machine with a full load…on its last leg. I wouldn't be able to stop my run for the buns. I figure I have enough buns on my buns…the last thing I need are buns on my brain.

And the scent would be a tease to anyone who entered the house. When Bri got home from school she would be so excited; thinking I’d been baking all afternoon. “What a nice treat, mom. You’re the best.” And then I’d have to show her the 3-wick cinnamon bun candle. Nosh on this, Wishy.


Monday, June 8, 2009

Show of Ears

How many people out there own a television with a pair of rabbit ears? Don’t be bashful…Let’s see a show of ears. So you’re using Mr. Rabbit to tune into a picture? That’s not surprising…rabbits have a way of getting around.

Well…on June 12, 2009 your Rabbit will be…outdated…old technology…and no use to you. Hare today – gone tomorrow. When you turn on your TV all you will see is a test pattern…unless you get the converter box. Here’s a little carrot of information that should be easy on the eyes.

The reason for the switch to all digital is because digital bandwith takes up less air space than that of an analog signal. So there will be more air space available for alerts, and nationwide wifi. Wow…and I thought the government just wanted all rabbits out of it’s hair.

When my dad was in the Air Force we lived on Wheelus Air Force Base, Tripoli, Libya, North Africa for two years. I was in the 6th and 7th grade and enjoyed every minute…although we had to live with a few minor adjustments like powdered milk and bugs in our dry cereal. (A little sifting worked for both.) But the biggest adjustment was limited television.

The base had only one TV station…that aired at 4 pm. Most of the time the television screen was a test pattern. But everyday at 4pm, the broadcast would start with the National Anthem and the American flag waving. The broadcast ended at 10pm the same way. The only shows I remember seeing, that weren’t old movies, were reruns of The Big Valley and Gunsmoke. Dog and Pony TV. Occasionally someone will talk about a television show that I have never heard of…those were my lost TV years. But it’s a different scenario now.

We have so many channels and choices...that between HBO, HDTV, HoboTV…we can hardly keep up, so we use the DVR to record shows and watch later. We get so darned back logged …we find it’s a full-time job to watch all our Must-See TV.

Let’s just hope that on June 12th…we don’t encounter any hare-raising experiences resulting from old rabbits clashing with new technology...leaving The Big Valley and Gunsmoke…the only dog and pony shows left on Must-See TV.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Wishy is 18!

Remember the 80’s…who could forget the decade of material girl, big hair and bad clothing? During the mid-eighties, PaulA and I decided to ditch our yuppie life-style and begin our clan…or in scientific terms, develop single diploid zygotes. And in layman’s terms…we got busy.

First came Chelsea in ‘86…then Colin in ‘88…then Brianna ‘91. So that makes Brianna 18 years old today…June Fif…as Bri used to say before she figured out the “th” sound. (We certainly weren’t going to correct her when she sounded so cute.)

When I was pregnant with Bri, I remember people saying to me “You already have a boy and a girl…and you’re having a third?” I also remember responding, “Mind your own business.” No, actually I remember responding, “Our third will make our family complete.”

Being the youngest…sometimes Brianna's name is listed after the word “and.” She’s not a fan of Christmas cards signed…PaulA, Kat, Chelsea, Colin and Brianna. It makes her feel like an afterthought…like we suddenly remembered we had her… “Oh, and Brianna.” I see what she means...that’s where the dog belongs…not my sweet wish….

I also try not to call her Wishy in front of her friends. I don’t want to embarrass her…but family nicknames are hard to retire. Her nickname comes from the Cinderella song, “A dream is a wish your heart makes”…a song I would sing to her at bedtime…and then whisper, “good night sweet wish.” She actually preferred the songs "How much is that doggie in the window?" and “Take me out to the ballgame.” I thought about giving her the nicknames "doggie for sale" or “three strikes you’re out” …but they were a little too long.

Eighteen years ago…Brianna was the sweet wish that completed our family…….

PaulA, Kat, Chelsea, Colin, Brianna…and Duncandog.

Happy 18th Birthday Brianna!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

A Super Big Kid

This is a bring back blog. Five more years until the SUPER big kid hits the big one…….but who’s counting?? Happy Birthday Dug!

Do you know an adult who’s a big kid? We do…we’ve been friends with him for a long, long time. This person passed the age of 40 a few years ago…but missed the memo: “Dude…you have entered middle age.”

The best description of him would be during the annual 4th of July parade on the Block…not the cell bloc at Sing Sing…I’m talking Block Island. This was before the Block officials changed the parade route and put wild and crazy guys like him out of business. Guys like him were having a little too much fun.

You know the guy…the guy carrying a 100-ounce water tank capacity SUPER-soaker… backup water pistols…and water balloons. Each year his super soaker got bigger and more high tech. He would take no prisoners. Just give him a reason…or no reason…and he would take you out. Those unassuming parade watchers would get an eyeful they weren’t expecting.

Every year the parade has a theme and everyone is welcomed to enter. He would always enter the parade under the guise of getting the kids involved. The themes over the years have been varied…a story book, a movie, a T.V show, or a president. It was interesting to see how he conveniently fit a water device into every theme. “What, I thought everybody knew George Washington carried a super-soaker to ward off the British. Didn’t they use super soakers to wash the spots of the 101 Dalmatians?”

And when it's his birthday…he's expecting the Big Kahuna treatment. You have to hand it to his wife…the pressure is on her each year to come up with the perfect celebration. She has done an amazing job with his 30th and his 40th birthdays…each memorable parties …but his 50th will have to be the SUPER duper of all events. I’ve already thought of a gift for his 50th…a SUPER big, SUPER soaker for the SUPER big kid. (Shhh..that's a surprise.)

The upside of having a SUPER friend, who is a SUPER big kid?…he’ll keep the rest of his friends young…and Lord knows we could use that.

1 comment:
Anonymous said...

I can't believe no one has commented on your friend yet!

He sounds like he should be the Grand Marshall of the LOOSER Parade. Doesn't he know someone could get hurt or blinded. I'm sure he waves his super falick soaker like he just won a free gift from the local Adult Book Store he hangs out at. You know its just a cover up for his short comings.His poor wife, maybe she'll catch a brake and he won't make it to 50.

Oh one more thing, I'm sure his lips move when he reads.Not to mention he "probably thinks this blog is about him."

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Here's the Deal

We’ve all had to…at one point or another …deal with a dealer. I’m talking car dealer here, so don’t be confused. Dealing with a dealer can be very frustrating…and not exactly a Sunday drive in the park.

Everything dealers say and do is a hidden shell game. They talk about MSRP, invoice price, finance price. They offer rebates, discounts and credits...for brand loyalty and military personnel. Extra credits if you are a loyal military person. Under each shell is a new place to hide what is really going on….it’s the same ole bait and switch game the crusty cons play in Washington Square in NYC.

Then dealers ask about the trade-in you’ll be putting towards the sale. They say they’ll give you “x” for it…when they are barely giving any “y”…let alone “z.” All they do is inflate the base price to accommodate the trade-in. So in effect: x =y=z. I’m finding out car dealers know algebra…when I thought all they really knew was basic math.

With the economy and such…people are turning to used cars. Excuuuuuuuse me…I mean…Pre-owned cars. “Pre-owned” sounds much more civilized…but I think “used” is a better description, because that’s exactly how you feel. After a couple of hours with a used car salesperson, you feel like you need to go home and take a shower.

So recently I was at a dealership and pretended to listen to all the figures the salesman scribbled down and slashed through. “This car costs $100,000 but because you are so good looking (okay, I made that up)…but because today is Tuesday, the car is only $40,000. That price is just for YOU…and only for TODAY. No one but YOU and YOU TODAY.”

Here’s the deal………

The dealer whisper: “You are getting an incredible deal. We are not making any profit off the car…just covering our basic costs. We are an altruistic company just wanting to benefit mankind and make sure everyone gets to work on-time.”

The dealer Question: “So what would it take for me to get you into this car today?”

The Answer: “How about some straight talk from a crooked guy.” (Okay, I made that up too.)

The dealer game: In order to get the final offer…the salesman has to meet with the Big Man in the Big Office. Think Wizard of Oz. You just know if you opened the office door…the Big Man would be an Andy Rooney look-alike, bushy eyebrows and all, working on an old school calculator with a paper roll.

The dealer’s deal: The salesman comes back with a monthly payment so small…I can’t believe my eyes. That’s when I realize…they have the car financed over 8 years and the darn thing will be parked in the car graveyard while I'm paying for it.

The dealer’s new deal: “We have the perfect car in your price range. It’s our base model…manual transmission, roll-up windows, no ac, no radio, no ash tray (OMG), a missing back seat. And it’s in Portugal. You’ve always wanted to take a trip to Portugal, right?”

I’m not sure why they are called dealers…I never, ever see any deals being dealt.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Six Degrees of K.B.

Kevin Bacon lost his Blackberry. Actually it was stolen from him at a subway station in NYC. Someone had the nerve to grab his phone and take off with it down the street. They say smokin’ Bacon ran after him, but lucky for the thug…Kevin never caught him. The guy obviously never saw Kevin Bacon in the movie “The River Wild”...cuz if he did…he would have known he was messin' with one bad ass narly dude.

The obvious and most interesting angle about this story is… the names and phone numbers that Kevin has stored in his phone. Kevin Bacon’s Contact List. I’m sure he’s got some big, big names and some sexy celebs listed. Everyone is linked directly, indirectly, to, and through Kevin Bacon…it’s the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon Theory. The theory has been tested and retested and and is offered as a graduate course at MIT.

Maybe Kevin has Brad Pitt’s phone number…but then again NOT. Brad might be too pretty for the nitty gritty Kevin. Kevin doesn’t wear a scarf around his neck like Hollywood Brad in Cannes, France…unless he needs it to tie a tourniquet.

Kevin also has a foot loose in the music world…so ya know he’s sure to have some cool band name contacts. And I’m not talking Kris the American Idol winner who should have come in second Allen. (That’s another blog.)

This makes me think about Kat’s Contact List. I’ve got lots of valuable contacts stored in my phone and I’ sure there are a lot of people out there who would pay good money to get their grubby hands on it. Let’s see… I’ve got the high school guidance counselor’s direct line. A very serious contact. It’s no laughing matter when you need advice on how many times your kid should retake the SAT.

I’ve got my golf peeps teed up at the top of my contact list….Pia, Eva, Linnyj, and Juanita. No…mis amigas are not from Mexico…they just sound like they are. Most importantly, they are willing to play a round of golf at a moments notice…and pay their golf debts in margaritas. Who wouldn’t want their numbers?

I’ve got sexy PaulA…on speed dial. His number is a coveted phone number for those needing a quote on a ten million dollar construction job in Dubai. And kids needing cash. Priceless.

The people on Kevin Bacon’s contact list just might want to think about changing their phone numbers now that they’re out...otherwise, they might get cranked called from random imposter Kevin Bacons.

Kevin continues to be a living breathing social network...the new Facebook. The Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon Theory stands strong.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Bonfire of the Vanities

I think vanity plates are fun….especially the ones that are tricky to decode. It gives me something to do while driving…Otherwise, I’m left singing my head off and texting. Hey, that was just to get your attention…I never text and drive. But I do sing and drive…and occasionally text and sing.

When I bought my first new car…the kind with 48 monthly payments….I had a vanity plate. I requested “Kat” from the DMV, but two other Kats had the same brilliant idea. “Kat” and “Kat1” were already taken…so they sent me “Kat2.” I figured Kat2 was okay…I had twice the katness. And if I ever ran into the other Kats…I could say, “Hey, I’m Kat2.”…(sorry, bad jokes are a blogger hazard.)

Vanity plates can tell a lot about the person. “HOTGRL,” “CHRG-IT,” “BRN2BWD"…kinda cute…but mostly obnoxious. I guess that’s the reason they call them vanity plates.

There is a major downside to owning a vanity plate…they're a built-in GPS system. People always know where you are. So instead of driving an incognito blue Chevy Malibu…like the millions of others out there…you're driving a blue Chevy Malibu with the vanity plate “DMBLND”...which screams, “Hey, I’m over here now.” Regular smoke signal from the bonfire of the vanities.

When folks meet up with you…they like to let you know where they saw your car last. “Hey, I was driving behind you when you almost hit that mailbox…were you texting?” “I saw your car at the Hair Loft… probably taking care of those roots, eh?” Or “I saw your car at Joe’s Bar at 3pm …on a Tuesday. I guess you were getting a head start on happy hour.”

I’ve been thinking about getting a vanity plate again…regardless of the GPS radar. If people get a charge seeing my car at the adult book store, then so be it.

But I have to come up with something clever…something that fits my personality. I suppose I could go with the obvious…“Blogger," or something that matches my vanity …“QTPIE," but my number one contender right now is…………..katOUT