Friday, December 31, 2010

Got NYE Plans?


The number one question asked today is: What are you doing for New Year’s Eve? Unless you’ve planned something in advance…like a trip to Times Square…or a get-away…you are probably in the same boat as everyone else…the “USS Nothing Really.”

That pretty much sums up what most people have planned in advance for New Year’s Eve. And everyone is looking for options...so they’re not putting their money down, figuratively and literally, unless forced.

For some reason because it’s New Year’s Eve…people feel like their plan should be “really something” instead of “nothing really.” You can’t stay home, drink beer from a funnel, eat wiener schnitzel, and pass out by 10:30 pm. That’s so pedestrian.

You have to don your cool clothing, get together with cool people, clink cool glasses and stay up wicked late. (That is, if you live in Boston.) As the year comes crashing to an end, you have to yell the countdown as you watch the ball drop…5-4-3-2-1. At midnight, you have to kiss everyone near you and risk a monster cold three days later.

Anywhoooooooooooo

This. I. Know. Over the years, we’ve had some successful New Year’s house parties. When one of your guests rides the reindeer you have as a decoration …you definitely know you’ve had a good party.

For some reason...New Year’s Eve parties tend to drag on and on before midnight. But once the clock tower strikes midnite...it’s suddenly 3 am...and someone is mounting Rudolph. Ya hoo.

I always have mixed emotions on New Year’s Eve watching Dick Clark’s ball drop in New York City. And this year will be no exception. Happy...that I am not shoulder-to-shoulder with 20,000 maniacs in Times Square. Sad...when I hear the depressing Auld Lang Syne song. (Couldn’t we get a happier song?) And perplexed...that Dick Clark is still on....(Did someone say train wreck?) WTH?

So PaulA and I are working on our options for this New Year’s Eve so we won’t be stuck aboard the "USS Nothing Really."

This. I. Know. For. Sure. Tonight we’ll awkwardly watch an awkward Dick Clark. I’ll cry when I hear Auld Lang Syne. And we’ll reminisce about the New Year’s Eve when our reindeer decoration was ridden like nobody’s business.

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Armed and Dangerous


I have a bad case of gadget philia. I LOVE new technology. I could be considered a gadget guru. Thank God I wasn’t born in an era when the biggest advancement was the metal washboard. As far as I’m concerned, even washing machines that wash and dry could use some advancements. They should at least fold.

The latest piece of technology I’ve added to my arsenal is the “Droid.” I love everything about the Droid...especially the name. And when a text comes in...it even says “Droid” in a robot voice. Love it! I am now so loaded down with technology that I am considered armed and dangerous.

I hadn’t planned on adding the Droid, but I found myself in a Verizon store because Wishy conveniently needed a new phone two days before Christmas (after Santa had already made and wrapped all her gifts.) Poor Wishy’s Blackberry was making her blue because it wouldn’t charge anymore. (Wait, I wonder if that pencil I saw her sticking into the side of her Blackberry had anything to do with the problema?)

Verizon was offering a twofer...or like they call it a “Buy one, Get one free”...or like I call it..."Buy one, Spend more money." And of course, Bri wanted to trade-up...not sideways. What’s the fun with an even Steven trade? Much more fun to go with an advance Lance trade-up. (Lance is always more fun than Steven.) So it was One Droid for Wishy...One Droid for Kat.

There is so much to know about the Droid, a device that can do just about anything. You can sit and play around with it for hours. And you should, otherwise it would be like owning a Porsche and never driving it over 40mph. Or owning a computer and only using it for email.

Anywhoooooooooooooooo......................................

Now I own a device for every mood.

Desktop...Old school mood
Laptop...trendy Starbucks cool mood
iPad...app mood
iPod... chillin’ with my earbuds mood
Droid phone...multitask mood

Granted, there is a lot of overlap between my devices...so I probably don’t need them all...but I could never part with anyone of them. They are my children. I love them all equally.

But if my wash machine could wash, dry, fold, balance my checkbook, and make me look 10 years younger...I would quickly do an advance Lance.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas


Auto-Reply Message:

I am currently out of my blog chair. For some reason...my family is insisting. I will resume the blogging growing ass position very soon. Oh, and please feel free to leave any comments. I don’t bite. Remember…Kat’s just scratch.

Merry Christmas to YOU and YOURS.

Friday, December 24, 2010

T'was the Night Before Christmas


I miss having little kids at home believing in Santa. The excitement, the anticipation, the sugar-high. Sweet little ones in footy pajamas…going to bed with visions of sugar plums, tiny reindeer, and Santa in their heads.


Question: Who first told your kids that Santa Claus and his 8 reindeer were a bogus, fictitious sham? I would venture to say, they were told by someone at school...someone who enjoyed every moment of ruining the charade. I’m guessing that kid had his own Santa fantasy ripped prematurely from him, so he was returning the favor. Merry Jingle Balls Christmas.

We never discussed the existence, non-existence, or existentialism of Santa with our three and they never questioned us…maybe because Jingle Balls Brian wasn’t in their class to spill the Santa bag…. or maybe because our kids didn’t want to mess up a good gig.

So they kept the charade going: (Okay, so the ‘rents say there’s a big guy in a ratty ole suit who flies around the world in a sleigh pulled by 8 tiny reindeer…and he shimmys down 8 trillion chimneys in ONE night. As long as the payday keeps coming…why open our mouths and ruin a good thing?)

I’m not so sure that our three children didn’t get together and conference, “What do ya think? Katwoman and PaulA as Santa??? Nah, they couldn’t be Santa. Although…Kat is filling out those red velvet pants.”


Anywhooooo……..……….


In our house…WE BELIEVE in the true meaning of Christmas…and also in the spirit of giving and sharing...St. Nick Style.



Countdown to Christmas – Day TWENTY-FOUR

Merry Christmas Eve

Santa Claus is coming…to a hood near you.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Are We Having Fun Yet?


Christmas will be here in two days…ready or not. Hopefully you’re ready…or almost.


Christmas is a happy, festive time of year…but before you can get down to the business of fun, there are many “chores” to be done. Which, if any, is your favorite?


Could it be bringing up the boxes stored in the basement, putting up outside lights, hanging garland and wreaths, decorating the inside of the house, finding a tree, setting the tree up, stringing lights, putting on ornaments, sending cards, baking cookies, coming up with gift ideas, shopping for gifts, dealing with crowds at the Taj MaMall, standing in long lines at the Post Office, paying the bills?

Are we having fun yet?

My favorite worstest job …is stringing lights on the tree. Yep…lights out, it is definitely the worst. Somehow I have become the resident tree Lighting Designer…but that’s probably because PaulA has already tied the dang thang to the roof of the car, squeezed it through the back door, moved the furniture around, put it in the stand, and worked to get it straight. And then have me say… “It’s crooked.”

Are we having fun yet?

So it’s only fair that my job is to wrestle with tree lights. Untangle them from square knots. Test strands to make sure they’re working. Get the female and male parts to “hook-up.” (Oooh la la.) Balance on a stool to reach the top. Get stabbed by bristly needles.

Are we having fun yet?


Oh, and my second favorite worstest job is…facing the woman at the Post Office. She can scare a Kat away any day of the year…but during the holidays…she drinks the mean juice.

Are we having fun yet?


Anywhooooooo………………..


Hopefully your “chores” are done and you can kick back and enjoy…so you’re having fun…NOW.


Christmas Countdown – Day TWENTY-THREE


Walking around in a joyous mood…chores are done. “It’s a Wrap.”

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Scary Santa


Back in the day, our kids had a special request on Christmas Eve: “Santa, Do not come in. Leave the presents at the door.”

They were scared out of their minds by The BIG Guy. Was it his rugged rough looks? The long, white natty beard, rosy wind-burned SLASH alcohol-flushed cheeks, the Jack Nicholson-ish twinkle in his eye, the Heavy Weight Champion of the World belt buckle?

I actually think they were okay with his looks...they have seen their mother without make-up. They just didn’t want this strange man entering our house.


Think about it what it’s like…you’re 8 years old and you’re lying in your bed on Christmas Eve. You know the stranger will be creeping around your house in a matter of hours. And you’re supposed to sleep?

Most people think kids can’t sleep on Christmas Eve because they’re shaking with excitement…thinking about the toys Santa will bring. But in fact, they’re shaking with terror…remembering those stranger/danger talks.


They’ve been taught all year about the dangers of strangers…and now suddenly it’s okay for a creep to enter the house in the middle of the night while the whole house sleeps? Now all the talks go out the window??? Or down the chimney?


Anywhoooooooo……….

On Christmas morning…after our kids saw the truck load of toys that were dumped on them…the stranger/creep was deemed a good guy. They decided “Hey, not all strangers are bad. The creeper is a keeper.”

Which was cause for my concern…when a couple of days later in Blockbuster, I noticed the kids gravitating towards a large man in a ratty bad suit, donning a black chapeau.

It was time to have “that talk” again.


Christmas Countdown – Day TWENTY-TWO

“I’ll be home for Christmas.”….Those lyrics express my favorite part about Christmas.
Wishy is home. Big C is home. Colinboy is a homie. (jk) Can’t wait until Colinboy comes home and completes us.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Man VS Tree


Who hasn’t had a decorated Christmas tree fall over…at least once? A Christmas tree disaster is a horrifying event.

To enter the room and find your tree flat, horizontal on the floor, is like entering a police crime scene…and seeing the chalk outline of a dead body. I know this because it has happened to us 2 and a half times. (The tree silly, not dead body.)

So you were wondering…How is it possible for a tree to fall half a time? So nice of you to ask, thank you. Well…I caught the tree in the act of falling before it hit the floor…so technically this makes it half a time.


I had just finished putting on the last glass ornament and the 12 foot tall, 5 foot wide tree started falling. I quickly stuck my hand through the branches and grabbed hold of the trunk. And then screamed for help.

But help never came.


The kids weren’t home and PaulA was in the basement running on the treadmill …watching the Patriots on TV with the volume on 50. There I stood, with my face planted in the tree. The pine needles smelled great...but they hurt like hell as they scratched my arms and poked my eyes. The tree got heavier and heavier, as I listened to the sound of PaulA's pace on the treadmill and the Patriots game in the distance.

Anywhooooooooooooooooooooo………………………..

As out-of-luck would have it…that day PaulA decided to be treadmill marathon man so we both worked up a sweat with every minute that passed. Finally, PaulA stopped and heard my distant cries for HELP and came to my aid. I had held on through a decidedly tough brush of Man vs Tree...and perservered.

I was NOT about to give in. Over my dead body, there would be a Christmas. Put the chalk away....this was not to be another crime scene.



Christmas Countdown – Day TWENTY-ONE


This is a FIRST that I’ve been this organized for Christmas...and I don’t even drink Red Bull. Big C comes home at midnight! Gonna watch UCONN Women’s basketball tonight. They are ONE WIN away from the longest winning basketball streak EVER. Go UCONN.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Lick or Click?


Oprah has her favorite things…and I have mine. During the holidays, I live for the holiday cards…Merry Christmas cards, Happy Hanukkah cards, Kwazy Kawanza cards. I watch my mailbox from the window and wait for the mailman to come around the corner. “Close your door dude, you’re gonna fall out.”

Think about it, at what other time of the year do you actually receive snail mail…hand delivered by a letter carrier? Old School style…not the electronic inbox: “You’ve got mail.”

Getting cards out in the mail can be a monumental task so I appreciate the time involved around the process. I know how tricky it is if you want to include a family photo, especially one with your dog…and have the dog looking straight into the camera and not licking his privates.


Then there is the tedious process of addressing the envelope, stamping it, and licking the envelope. Yuck! Maybe the family dog could help by putting his tongue to better use. “Oh Duncandog…I have a project for you.”

Anywhoooooooooooo………

With today’s technology…there are many short cuts to the whole process…especially if you are computer savvy. Like using the computer to make cards with photos you’ve upload, downloaded, and off-roaded.

The family newsletter is a great shortcut to writing letters to everyone and helps alleviate writer’s cramp. I like reading newsletters…until I realize how painfully average we are as a family.


Although I’m partial to an Old School holiday card, I do appreciate email greetings. The big advantage with receiving email is that you don’t have to worry about “who” or “what” licked the envelopes.


Christmas Countdown – Day TWENTY


Five more days. This is the first year I’m actually in good shape…Okay, I’m talking preparedness for Christmas.


House decorated - check
Tree decorated – check
Cards sent - check
Presents shopped - check
Presents wrapped – check
Groceries shopped – check
Booze bought –Double check


Wishy is home – time to go stare at her.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Situation


During the holidays there is just so much food to be had…to be eaten…to be applied...to the thigh and butt area. I understand where Santa gets his girth.

Think about St. Nick…he’s constantly around food. There’s at least 1,000 calories waiting for him at the bottom of every chimney. Millions of kids have left him cookies and milk and he’s expected to consume it all.

Another Christmas…another trip around the cookie world. There’s Snickerdoodles in Switzerland…Toffee in Thailand…Peppermint Pinwheels in Portugal…Gingerbread in Germany. And to wash it all down…Finlandia in Finland (which can lead to hazardous sleigh driving.)

Rumor has it that back in Santa’s younger years, he was svelte and ripped. He was known in the North Pole as Santa the Playboy…but that was before Mrs. Claus bagged him. After too many years and too many cookies…everything slid to his equator.

Anywhooooooooooooo………………………

I found this picture of St. Nick back in his younger years…back when he was Nick with the six pack…and not the six he was dropping off for PaulA. Back then he had dark hair and liked to walk around without a shirt. I’m just saying….a young Santa could have given Mike "The Situation" a run for the Jersey Shore…no doubt.



Before Santa began hitting the “milk” and cookies…he had it…and liked to flaunt it...especially after a good session of GTL.





Countdown to Christimas – Day SIXTEEN


Went to PattyO’s annual “To Heck With the Cookie" Party for laughs, libation, LCR, swap and spit. Okay, not the spit part….


Mailed half the Christmas cards.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Duncandog's 12 Days of Christmas


We all know that through the years, prices have skyrocketed…especially on essential every day items…gas, food, and Bon Jovi tickets. So it only makes sense that the gifts in the Christmas song "The 12 Days of Christmas" would come with a hefty price tag.

At today’s prices…purchasing all 78 of the gifts mentioned in the 12 days of Christmas would cost your true love a whopping $96,000. But Duncandog’s gifts to Kat come at a cheaper price. They don’t cost him a thing…no hair off his furry ass…sorta speak.

Anywhooooooooooo…………………………

I've taken the liberty of changing the words to the annoyingly popular Christmas tune: The Twelve Days of Christmas - gift-giving from Duncandog.

In an attempt to spare you the pain of all twelve verses…I’ve cut to the (dog) chase and went straight to the last verse.


Sing with me now……………….

On the Twelfth Day of Christmas
My Duncandog gave to me:

12 years of living
11 deer ticks carrying
10 nylons ripping
9 leashes pulling
8 treats a begging
7 butts a sniffing
6 tails a wagging
5 EATEN SHOES
4 booming barks
3 face licks
2 burnt-out lawns
And a large poop on my kitchen rug

This new version may soon become another annoyingly popular Christmas favorite.


Countdown to Christmas – Day FIFTEEN

I put the little white candles in all the windows. Note to self: Put timers on your Wish list.

Alert: 10 days of shopping before Christmas. If you still have more shopping to do...you’re running out of time to order gifts online and have them arrive before Christmas. Looks like you’ll have to enter the dreaded…Taj MaMall Triangle...where many a shopper's money has disappeared.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Join the LOSER Club


Everyone hates to lose. Unless, of course, you’re on the show The Biggest Loser. On that show…The Biggest Loser always wins.

Most times, however, it sucks to lose. NO ONE likes it. And some people are really BAD LOSERS…they pout and walk around grumbling, “I’m a loser baby, so why don’t cha kill me?”

They say, “No one likes a bad loser.” Does that mean, we like a good loser? I don't agree. If you’ve become too good at losing…you’ve reached loser status. I’m just saying…you’re looking kinda dumb with your finger and your thumb in the shape of an “L” on your forehead.

Anywhoooooooo……….....………

Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose (Carol King sang it best.) And it’s never fun to lose…especially your cell phone, your keys, and your cookies all in one night. Very. Rough.

But one thing for sure…….

You can’t lose by checking out Dear Havanah’s new single….LOSER. It’s a cover of the 90’s Beck song…and a definite winner.

And just so you don’t lose your way…here is the link: http://www.dearhavanah.com/

Join the LOSER Club…and download your copy of Dear Havanah’s “LOSER”…TODAY.


Countdown to Christmas – Day Fourteen

Some costs of Christmas

Packages shipped at Post Office….$25.50

Lights and ornaments on tree…blood, sweat, and tears

Tree still standing…priceless

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Original Yankee Swap

This holiday season I was invited to a Yankee swap and I got to thinking (I’m always thinking, even during the holidays)… Does anyone know why it’s known as the “Yankee Swap” and not the “Rebel swap”? What is it about the Yankee mentality that makes them want to swap? Is it a flaw in character? Questions, questions, questions.

We know northerners have the reputation of being cold, pushy, and fast-paced. Apparently this is inline with what goes on at a Yankee swap…with stealing, grabbing, and trash talking. “Hey you @#$%, that’s my gift now…hand it over. Let’s fight.”

A Rebel swap probably would be run a little differently…more polite. “If ya’ll want my gift, go ahead. What’s mine is yours. Would you like a sweet tea?”


Anywhooooooooooooooo…………………..

Hmmm….I’m on to something. (Not to be confused with: I’m on something.) The reason the Yankees Baseball team has been so good over the years is because they are masters at the game of stealing and swapping. The Yankees are the original Yankee Swap.

This season, if your favorite gift or baseball player…gets stolen. Remember, there's no crying in Yankee swaps or baseball.


Whaa…whaa…whaa.


Ps. Happy Birthday Shout-OUT to Frankie, one of my faithful (and commenting) blog readers…the best kind.


Christmas Countdown – Day THIRTEEN


I started addressing Christmas Cards. (Got writer’s cramp?) PaulA put the tree in the stand. (Got decorations?) I bought a few gifts. (Got cash?)

Friday, December 10, 2010

Acting Chops


Some actors work their entire career hoping to sink their acting chops into a larger-than-life role. We have a member of our family who has had such a role and received notoriety at a young age.


Exit stage left: Meryl Streep
Enter stage right: Brianna

Brianna’s larger-than-life role?? Baby Jesus.
.
Anywhooooooooooo……………….

The director of our church Christmas pageant had casted Chelsea, age 5, as an angel…and Colinboy, age 3, as a sheep herder. After getting one look at Wishy, the director was immediately interested in her for the role of Baby Jesus.

Brianna had all the attributes needed to play the role. She was a director’s dream. She could sit up without slumping forward. Her temperament was calm and serene. She had the face of a cherub, with the most beautiful peaches and cream complexion…and her best attribute for the role of Baby Jesus…she was a baby. Brianna was 6 months old.

I was the typical stage mom…of course. Doting on my child...demanding special privileges; front pew seats for my family and friends…requesting special products in her dressing room; extra Huggies and binkies. I know I was a little over the top with all the demands but…Come on folks…we are talking the Baby Jesus.

I was so proud of Sweet Wishy. She did a great job of sinking her acting chops into the role…especially with only having two teeth to work with.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Re-gifting


What do you think of the practice of re-gifting? Do you approve or disapprove? Have you ever re-gifted or been the recipient of a re-gift (that you are aware of)? I have been on both sides of re-gifting.

A re-gifter should not be confused with an Indian giver. (Note to self: never use that expression…very offensive.) A person who gives a gift doesn’t ever expect to receive the same gift back…although sometimes it finds its way back. I call that the “boomerang gift.”

Years ago, I mailed a child's birthday gift…and low and behold…it came back 3 months later. The boomerang gift…the gift that keeps on giving.

So what is the etiquette of re-gifting?

Do NOT re-gift anything monogrammed…especially when the initials don’t match up.
Do NOT re-gift something you have opened or licked.
Do NOT leave old name tags attached.
Do NOT re-gift something out-dated, dirty, or dusty.

I would like to add:

Do NOT re-gift partially used gift cards…especially with odd amounts ($37.09)

Do NOT re-gift half eaten food items.


Anywhoooooooooooooooo…………………….

My own re-gifting incident didn't involve an unwanted gift I was pawning off. It was a bottle of wine and all gifts involving fruit-of-the-vine (NOT LOOM) are wanted by this Kat…Honest Injun. (Sorry. Again, totally unacceptable expression.) I was in a hurry and needed a hostess gift…so I re-gifted. I actually didn't want to give the nice bottle away. Too bad I don't practice Indian giving, I could have gotten it back. (Like I said before, very offensive.)

I do admit, however, of thoughts of re-gifting my dusty, dirty wok…cracked crystal bowl...and Whitman’s Sampler (Minus the caramel.) Ahhh, caramel…my favorite.

Christmas Countdown – Day EIGHT

Hmmm…What did I do to get ready for Christmas today??? Absolutely Nada.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

A Slow Death

OMG. Alicia Keys laid out in a coffin. Lady Gaga outstretched in a pine box. Justin Timberlake horizontal in a casket. Kim and Khloe Kardashian...sarcophagus bound?

This might sound like the Living Dead, but it is Alicia Keys's way of bringing attention to her charity..."Keep a Child Alive." In an effort to put the spotlight on her charity, she recruited other celebrities to join her in a digital death. Their plan was to "sacrifice their digital lives" in order to raise money to fight HIV/AIDS in Africa and India.

On December 1st the celebrities swore off social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter and signed off until they reached their goal of 1 millian dollars in donations. When I first heard about the publicity stunt...I wasn't sure if it was a threat or a promise. I had hoped it was a promise.

Apparently there are many others who felt the same...because Alicia and her friends are still ding dong dead. It is December 6th and they have raised 300,000 dollars. At this point her stunt to raise money appears to be dead in the water. I'm still laughing....and I'd be rolling over in my grave if I, too, had died a digital death. But I'm happy to report I'm blogging, facebooking, and tweeting.

Anwyhooooooo...........

Alicia Keys is doing the right thing by bringing attention and support to her charity, but she went about it the wrong way. The problem lies in the fact that she made it more about her and her friends than the act of giving and her charity. That's the problem with brain dead celebs who have over-inflated egos....it's always about them.

So...her campaign backfired...probably because people are dead tired of being manipulated. In the end, she will raise the money...but probably after she gets a big donation from "Anonymous"....who you just know is gonna be her husband...because he feels sorry for her and doesn't want her embarrassed anymore. Especially when she thought they would be resurrected and back online in a matter of hours.

Alicia would have been better off donating the money with all her celebrity friends...and been a good example of generosity and goodwill.

I love Alicia Keys and her songs...but she was dead wrong with this one. "Noone" was "Fallin" for this publicity stunt. It is so hard for me to keep a straight "Poker Face" and not die from laughing.

ps. Just as I finished writing this blog...a pharmaceutical billionaire with a dead pan look gave $500,000 ....to help raise them all from the dead.

Countdown to Christmas....Day SEVEN

Today marks Pearl Harbor Day and Aunt Mary's birthday....one day is a bomb and the other is da bomb! ShoutOUT to Mary,"Happy Birthday." I finished decorating the house...and it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. We don't have a tree yet...probably get one this weekend....but I hear Big C has one in Hotlanta!!!

Monday, December 6, 2010

What are you in for?


I love a laundry mat…especially a clean one without broken down washers, dryers, or people. Granted I don’t go all the time. I’m sure if I had to schlep my butt and basket of clothing every week I wouldn’t be as excited.

I love that the washers are so big…you can get a lot accomplished at one time. But the bigger the washer, the more quarters they eat. Luckily laundry mats these days can make change for bills up to ten bucks. I put in a ten dollar bill and I felt like I won at the slots when 25 quarters fell out…which is waay better than I do at Mohegan Sun.

Anywhooooooooo…….........…

The big question when doing your laundry at the Mat is: “What are you in for?”

I was in for a couple of comforters. I looked around me to see what the others were in for.

There was a woman in for scatter rugs. A young man in for tons of blue jeans. Another woman in for blankets. And an old man in for some towels and white handkerchiefs. (Someone needs to tell him about disposable paper tissues. This is 2010.)

After I put everything in the wash I sat down and listened to the machines working all around me.

……….filling, agitating, spinning, rinsing, tumbling, drying………

I loved the sounds they made as they hummed and whirled away. The Mat was quiet except for the sounds of the machines. People were either dozing, reading, or thinking….

…..Until a man walked in with a hands-free phone head set…talking loudly, like he was Mayor of the Mat. “Can you hear me now?” I almost stood up and said to him… "Hey, I can hear you now. This is a zone-out zone…so zip it.”

I think The Mat should be kept as hallowed ground for man and machine…a quiet place where man becomes symbiotic with machine…where people are permitted to go deep in thought without interruption.

Obama might want to think about doing his laundry at a Mat in DC. The quietness and solitude could be beneficial to him. Maybe it would help Obama to arrive at better policy decisions. One thing for sure: The Mat definitely is a good place for dirty laundry to be exposed…waaay better than WikiLeaks.


Countdown to Christmas – Day SIX

I hung the Advent Christmas tree calendar…which serves as a constant reminder of how little time I have left before Christmas and how much I’ve procrastinated. I miss having Wishy home to move the little ornament for each day onto the tree. I hung the wreaths on the doors...and started to put up decorations from the boxes that PaulA brought up from the basement in-between plays during the Giants game.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Face This


I have mentioned before that I’m on Facebook, but without a face. So technically, I’m not Facebooking. (Isn’t it amazing how words like “Google” and “Facebook” first started out as nouns and morphed into verbs. I find that fascinating…but it doesn’t take much.

About a year ago, I set up a Facebook account, but then I chickened out and didn’t use it…for two reasons. (Chickened is also a verb. Which came first the chicken or the Facebook?)


The first reason I chickened out: I didn’t want a cool social network thing to be ruined by a fart of my age.


The second reason I chickened out: If I started farting…I mean Facebooking, I might turn into a Facebook addict and then I might end up mainlining Facebook more than mainlining my blog. (BTW, a Facebook addiction or blog addition is more socially acceptable than a fart addiction.)


Anywhooooooooooooooo…………..


After a year, I signed onto Facebook and saw that I had some “friend requests pending.” I hope the people “friending” (also a verb) me didn’t think I was snubbing them. I just hadn’t committed myself (interesting choice of words)…to the Facebook culture.


Anyway, I’ve decided to do an about face…and put my face out there. I think it might actually help me with my blog addiction…Facebook is very ripe with material. Plus I can easily pull the face off my book if anyone from my past shows up online to stalk, bully, or even the score.


It looks like I’m gonna be kept very busy from now on with all this…blogging, facebooking, texting, googling, and friending. Sure makes me wonder what the hell I did before all these nouns became verbs.


Christmas Countdown -- Day THREE


I designed our Christmas card online through Shutterfly and I hope the Fam approves. I know I’ll hear about it if they don’t. But it will actually be too late…they are ordered. Sorry Mateys.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

So Boring...


I’m so bored.” “I have nothing to do.”

I remember when my kids would mope around the house…head hanging…feet dragging…voice moaning. Bored to tears.

So I’d try to help by thinking of things for them to do...of course, a chore was never high on their list. Emptying the dishwasher wasn’t a viable suggestion. It was a life sentence.

So I’d rack my brain for ideas…and they always had an answer.

“How about going outside and play?” “It’s raining.”

“How about playing something with your brother or sisters?” “Colin won’t play with Ken.” “Bri and Chels won’t be Ninja warriors.”

How about playing a board game with each other?” “Games are boring. Wishy cheats at board games.”

“How about playing cards?” “Cards aren’t fun.” Wishy cheats at cards.” (hehe)

“How about reading a book?” "I don’t have a book report due."

“How about I take you all to Disney World, go on all the rides, have meals with the Disney characters, visit the water parks, and I buy you lots of Disney stuff?” “That sounds pretty good.”

Anywhooooooo…………

I read online that THE most boring day since 1900 was determined to be April 11, 1954. On that Sunday, a Turkish academic named Abdullah Atalar was born, and a soccer player named Jack Shufflebotham died. That was about it. No major events occurred that day.

Apparently the computer programmer who used algorithms to determine the uneventful day, was bored and looking for something to do. So now that 4/11/54 has been given the distinction of “Most Boring”…it isn’t so boring anymore. Go figure.

If my kids were living at home and still bored to tears…I would say go surfing (yes, even in CT.) They could surf the net, surf hundreds of cable TV channels, sidewalk or street surf, and crowd surf at a concert. Oh and there is also a delicious Surf and Turf dinner at the Red Lobster.

Doesn’t everyone eat when they are bored?

****************************************************

Christmas Count-Down -- Day TWO

Received our very first Christmas Card of the season. Wow, some people really are on the Christmas ball. This got me thinking about different ideas for our Christmas Card…and then I hit the refrigerator. I do my best thinking on a full stomach.

Got another email from Wishy about her Wishlist. Keep Wishing....

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Christmas Count Down - Day ONE


It’s hard to believe that Christmas morning will be upon us in 24 days. I’ve decided to write each day what I’m doing to get ready. Maybe it will help me to be more organized this year…or MAYBE NOT. So I’m writing a blog about writing a blog about counting down to Christmas ….Huh?

Thankfully, today I finished putting away the Thanksgiving/fall decorations. (Whaaat, you haven't done that yet, Kat?) As far as I'm concerned, Christmas is scheduled way to closely to Thanksgiving. I propose that there be an extra week in-between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Note to self: Get ahead of the game next year…decorate with Christmas d├ęcor for Thanksgiving. Call it: ThanksMAS.

I cleverly received an email from Wishy with direct links to order a few things for her for Christmas. I’ll forward the email to Santa and see what he thinks. I also found a list of “Things Chelsea Wants” on my iPad in my To-Do Notes. Hmmm…I wonder how that got there.

It’s raining Kats and Dogs, so today is a good day to stay home and bring up the boxes of holiday decorations from the basement. Hmmmm. I think I’ll wait until PaulA gets home……….

Gift-Giving Mandate


When buying gifts for your children…do you make sure everything is same-same, even-Steven, double-duplicate? Do you get out the ruler, scale, and calculator to make sure they each have the same in number, cost, weight?

Are you careful to be fair? Maybe you use the Distributive Property when applying gifts.…….a(b + c) = ab +ac. Therefore…Apple Computer (Bri + Col) = applecompBri + applecompCol. When the Law of Distribution is properly applied…both Colin and Bri get apple computers. And Santa is plum out of apples.

Sometimes it is hard to even the score when children are at different ages. Gifts for older kids tend to cost more… iPads, iPhones, iCars. Twenty-five dollars for a 4-year old can be stretched to buy…a Barbie, silly putty, socks, and a pencil. For a 24-year old, it might buy 1 mg of a camera memory card. The younger kid looks like they are getting a lot more. Let’s face it…younger kids are getting more…more crap.

Then there are those kids who get a lot of presents because they’ve been good all year…everyone knows Santa gives the “good” kids more...and the “naughty” kids less.

Sometimes it’s wise to set a clear MANDATE on gift-giving to your family. A DECREE. “This year we are sticking to a budget.” “This year we are getting only practical gifts.” “This year we are spending less on us and giving more to the poor children because Santa does a fly-by.”

Anywhooooooooooooooo………..

How much is enough when it comes to gift-giving at Christmas? I think we tend to overdo it…mainly because of the media and people like Oprah. Did you see “Oprah’s Favorite Things Show"?

It was nice that Oprah’s audience consisted of people who give to others…putting them at the receiving end this time. But...did Oprah need to give ALL those material things?

When she gave out Nike sneakers…she gave out 4 pair to each person. A Netflix subscription…for 5 years. Flat screen TV AND a Blue-ray player. New outfits, cashmere sweaters, etc. AND a new closet to put them in. Plus a 7 day all-expenses paid Caribbean cruise including flight.

I can be a material Girl…as good as Madonna…but Enough Already. Oprah makes it seem like gift-giving has to be OVER THE TOP to be worthy or fun. The audience went bonkers when she kept piling on the gifts…making us feel like we should be doing the same.

Wait, I think I hear voices in the distance. It's my kid’s making a MANDATE for Christmas: “This year SantaKat should be more like Oprah.”

PS. rabbit, rabbit, rabbit

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Broke Tuesday


Black Friday...Cyber Monday…Broke Tuesday.

After Thanksgiving Day, did you go to the Taj MaMall looking for deals? For some…hitting the stores is part of their Thanksgiving tradition starting with…..

Eating mounds of Turkey, getting high on tryptophan and falling asleep at 7 pm…waking up @ 4am on Black Friday to nab the Early Bird specials…coming home and taking a nap…watching Football…for 3 days…dozing in and out of consciousness on the couch…and manning (not the brothers) the computers Monday morning for internet shopping, when you really should be working.

So are the sales on Cyber Monday just a marketing gimmick? I would say…you bet your sweet cyber-ass it’s a gimmick. But Cyber Monday shopping has become an American tradition…like fireworks, a lit match, and large amounts of alcohol on the Fourth of July.

As far as this Kat is concerned, any deals on Cyber Monday are given on the dregs that didn’t sell in stores on Black Friday. They would be considered Thanksgiving leftovers….like the smelly turkey, stuffing, and cranberry I still have in my frig. The real deals come in mid-December…when retailers realize they are gonna be stuck with all that gimmicky, sparkly, gadgety crap, unless they do something drastic.

Anywhoooooooo…………….

Cyber Monday basically is a designated day (probably designed by Hallmark) to create an online shopping momentum…using a type of hype that we skype. (I love a forced rhyming sequence.)

Over the weekend, I got at least 100 emails informing me about different Cyber Monday deals. But nothing that made me jump on my laptop, desktop, or rooftop.

I did notice, however, that there wasn’t one single deal or sale on a fruitcake. The fruitcake is always in high demand and commands top dollar…any time of the season….probably because of the fruitcake’s unique versatility to double as food/doorstopper.

Note to self: Remember to order a larger fruitcake for Uncle Freddy this year. Uncle Freddy has a huge appetite and extra heavy doors that need stopping.

So for those who over-indulged with holiday shopping….enjoy a good Broke Tuesday. (Not to be confused with Broke Back Tuesday.)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Pass the Turducken


How many of you out there have heard of turducken, raise your wings?

Apparently this Thanksgiving…I could have had a turducken. Instead of the usual Thanksgiving Day turkey…gobble gooble gooble…I could have feasted on the triple threat of birds…the turducken…turkey, duck and chicken.

Three birds in one…gobble, quack, cluck.

Pass the turducken, please.

When I first heard about the Super Bird, I cried foul. On the outside, the turducken appears like the usual fowl weathered feathered friend who is fattened up for our tryptophan coma. A turkducken, however, is a bird of a different feather. Inside the turducken, lurks 2 other birds quacking and clucking to get out.

For me…the description of the triple bird spurred a triple response …shock/terror/nausea. The de-boned chicken…stuffed into a de-boned duck…stuffed into a de-boned turkey…reminded me of Russian nesting dolls, in poultry form.

Question to self: What wine goes best with a turducken?

Anywhooooooooo……….

The turducken doesn’t fly with me, but a 3-in-1 dessert idea would be a lot sweeter and surely take-off. Let me propose the Munchnutake ……munchkin/donut/cake. Dunkin Donuts munchkins…stuffed into glazed donuts…stuffed into cake.

Reminder to self: Contact Dunkin Donuts with Munchnutake suggestion.

I can just imagine cutting into a Munchnutake…slicing through 3 layers of confection…initiating a triple response…salivation, exhilaration, and satisfaction. Saweet………….

Maybe next Thanksgiving I’ll work on some new side dishes. I’m thinking of…corn and peas baked inside a butternut squash…and gravy inside mashed potatoes.

Such a CAPITAL idea. We all know our food ends up in the same place anyway…and this will surely cut down on the clean-up time with the dishes.

Brilliant Kat, just Brilliant.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Giving Thanks


This is the time of year when we should take stock in what is truly important…your stock/bond portfolio.

As I was saying friends and family are what is most important. And also for me…my blog readers. I would like to take this time to offer you my Thanks for giving any acknowledgment to my blog….whether it be empathy, sympathy, telepathy, or Timothy.

I am soooooo grateful for my faithful blog readers. Without you this blog wouldn’t be possible. Without you I would be…just a pretty girl sitting on my bed, strumming my guitar, and singing my songs to my stuffed animals…(Am I sounding like Taylor Swift yet, Wishy?)

Anywhooooooooo………

Enjoy the day today...a day of college football, Taj Ma Mall shopping, and left-overs, left-overs, LEFT-OVERS.

Go Bama....Beat Auburn.

Let the holiday madness begin.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Renewed License to Eat


Tomorrow is THE day to gobble up everything in sight. So wear your stretchy pants…put extra holes in your belt…DO NOT HOLD BACK. Thanksgiving is not the day to count calories, fat, carbs, OR pieces of pie.

Consider Turkey Day to be the day you have a license to eat. As you can see my license has been renewed…yet another year.

Name: fatKAT
Eyes: Brown
Appetite: Enormous
DOB: MYOB
Legally entitled: to eat everything in sight.
Expiration: November 25, 2010 at midnight.



Anywhooooooooooo………………

From dawn until midnight…I will have my way with the turkey and the turkey will have its way with me.

I will fill and feast…on fowl.
Gorge, gobble, and gulp…the gravy.
Scarf, stuff and swallow…the squash.
Devour and down….the dressing.
Pack and pig-out…on potatoes and pie.
Consume, congest and cram…the corn.
Overeat and overindulge…the orange/cran relish.
Wolf and wallow…in wax beans.

If anyone dares to question my ravenous appetite…I’ll just flash them my license and say, “Listen Buster….read it and eat.”

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Quit the Bellyaching


Sometimes we need to quit our bellyaching and grumbling....it's an easy trap to fall into. I hate to get on my high horse…or on my high (blog) chair… but sometimes we need to take stock of what’s important in life. Note to self: People are in desperate need of your advice. Write a self-help book.

Many times we have no business complaining, especially when there are real complaints to be had. Like my mom used to say to me when I was a child, “No sense in crying over spilt milk.” I thought it was a figure of speech…until I spilled milk on her rug…then we took turns crying.

Anywhoooooo........

How about the complaints from the passengers on the Carnival Cruise Lines. A fire in the ship’s engine room left them without electricity for a few days. Luckily no was hurt as a result of the fire…just heavily inconvenienced. But oh...did they complain when they reached port side.

The complaint cup runneth over with what there was to eat. It was downright unthinkable that they had to eat cereal for breakfast. OMG say it isn't so....a bowl of Cheerios and fruit…no Eggs Benedict or egg burrito? And downright unfathomable that there was salad for lunch…AND just salad and sandwiches for dinner. Thank god for the free booze to keep them from eating each other.

Naturally those on the cruise had envisioned a different vacation...so I understand their disappointment. Their Carnival Cruise wasn’t exactly a carnival or a picnic. But Carnival didn’t plan a “cruise from hell” for their patrons...where they got together and said, "Let's ruin the vacation of three thousand people and damage our reputation."

Carnival tried to compensate with a refund and also offered passengers a voucher for a future cruise. Plus…they didn’t charge them for the all the great stories they got to tell their friends.

After listening to all their grumbling...I was surprised they didn’t make the captain walk the gangplank…at fork point. Apparently cruisers are cruising for the unlimited, non-stop, 24-hour, stuff your face…feeding frenzy.

A little food for thought: With the Thanksgiving holiday coming soon (2 days…man those ovens) we should be thankful for ANY grub in our bellies…especially when there are those with real belly aching and grumbling due to lack of nutriment. And those with bellyaching due to rugs ruined by spilt milk.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Hear Ye, Hear Ye


Hear ye, Hear ye, Hear ye……..

“Friends, Romans, Countrymen, and anyone else who gives a rat’s ass…lend me your ear. Prince William and Kate Middleton are officially engaged.

With thee announcement last week of thee engagement of Prince William and Kate Middleton…Kate can stop singing the Snow White tune, “Some day My Prince will come.”

The British press says the reason for the 10 year courtship was because Prince William wanted to ‘be sure’…before he popped the question. Their courtship was so long, the Press had given Kate the nickname, “Waity Katy.”

So…I pop this question to the Brit Press…What makes you so sure Kate was in a hurry to marry the Prince?

I realize Kate is a commoner…but the Press attaches “commoner” to her name like it’s a dirty word. It’s not like Kate had to sing for her supper every night. “Please sir, may I have some more.” Kate attended private school and grew up in the countryside in a 5 bedroom house…granted she did have to cook her own dinner and drive her own car. OMG.

Okay, now that I think about it…maybe I’m wrong. (Off with my head…to the gallows I go.) Kate will become a Princess and be married to the future King of England. She will live a royal life…where every wish is her command and every pearl is her necklace. She will have literally and figuratively turned the tables from “Waity Katy” …to “Waiting on Katy.”

With her upcoming marriage to Prince William…Kate’s ship has come in with a boat load of privileges that not even Snow White could have dreamt of. Kate will soon be singing a new tune, “On the Good Ship Lollipop.”

Anywhooooooooooo……..

I got to wondering….hmmmm….What will Kate have for a last name? I’m guessing it will be “of Wales.” Like her betrothed…Prince William of Wales.

For some reason, the royals don’t have regular surnames like Middleton, Jones, or Garcia. They have names like “of York”...“of Wessex”...“of Cornwall”...and my favorite “in a can.” Do you remember that Prince? Prince Albert in a can? He was the rage when I was in 4th grade.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Opting for the Other Option



How about John Tyner, the man who refused to go through the body scanner at the San Diego Airport and yelled during his "enhanced" pat-down, "If you touch my junk, I will have you arrested."

For those of you who aren’t intimately familiar with an "enhanced" pat-down...it involves enough touching of private parts...that when it’s over...you’ll be looking for a smoke.

Anywhoooooo......

How do you feel about the TSA screening process? Personally, I don't like the time required around security...the disrobing, the dismemberment, the disfiguring...and then having to put everything back together...re-robing, re-membering, and re-figuring. But if it's gonna save my ass from being blown to shit (sorry about the visual)...I will do it.

Some feel the body scanner is invasive, violating, and even porn. Really? Porn? Hugh Heffner’s magazine would have folded pretty fast if he tried to pass off body scan pictures as porn.

There are also those who are leery about radiation. I've heard the amount of radiation received from the scanner is minimal. If you use a microwave and talk incessantly on your cell phone...you can't be that worried.

So who would opt-out of body scanning and opt for the other option...the "enhanced" pat-down? I think ya gotta wonder about the person in line for a thorough groping...especially if that person is smiling. They might be looking forward to it waaay too much.

There is a grass roots movement calling for a National Opt-Out Day to protest TSA airport security measures. It’s scheduled for the Wednesday before Thanksgiving which happens to be the busiest travel day of the year. Increased numbers of people opting-out and requiring pat-downs would cause total chaos and delay of flights. What turkeys would purposely want to change the flow of events leading up to Thanksgiving...besides the ones scheduled to be served that day?

I think those who are planning to mess up our day of thanks...should dispose of their attitudes and go with the flow. We have turkey, potatoes, stuffing, squash, and pies to gobble down. Do NOT get in our weigh.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Memory Lane



Back in Jax.

We recently returned to Jacksonville, Florida where we lived for two years when PaulA and I were a couple of yuppies. We were transferred with PaulA’s company to a brand new way of life. For us, it felt like the high life...a country club life...a life of fun in the sun in Yuppiedom.

We bought a brand new home and put a pool in our backyard...a kidney shape. We thought about putting in other, more creative shapes...but didn’t really have room for a large intestine, let alone a small intestine.

While in Jax we were excited to visit our old stomping grounds. We drove by PaulA’s office, the high rise on the St. John’s River where I was employed (yes, I actually had a real job), checked out the River Ralley where we spent contiguous, continuous friday happy hours, and drove by where Big C entered the world as infant c...at 7-11. (Her birth weight...not the birthplace of the Slurpie.)

The highlight we most anticipated...was a trip down Memory Lane. Actually Raley Creek Drive North...our street in our old neighborhood.

We entered the subdivision (neighborhoods are divided into subdivisions...so you need to be good in math while living in Jax) , passed through the entrance with the painted wooden sign of a creek. And headed down our old street....noticing...yards that needed sprucing, shrubs that needed pruning, lawns that needed grass.

And there it was...our house...just not as nice as we remembered. The house needed updating and the privacy fence was old and needed replacing. Things looked let-go, over-grown, and run-down. And like a lot of us that have aged over the years...in major need of a face-lift.

Anywhooooooooo...........

Our trip down Memory Lane...wasn’t exactly how I remembered everything. Maybe Memory Lane is best when kept a distant memory. Or after a face-lift.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Grab this blog. You're On.


I’ve decided that I prefer taking a flight during the evening over a flight during the day. The mood among the passengers and the crew is waay more festive. At least it was that way on our last flight on Southwest Airlines. My plan now is to take later flight times. Grab your bag. It’s on.

Maybe it has something to do with happy hour. Some folks tend to kick back and order a drink...which helps to loosen up the mood. I don’t think, however, the flight attendants are imbibing. There might be a few rules against that.

The Southwest attendants on our flight didn’t need liquor to get silly...they were probably punch drunk from a long day. The 3 attendants had great jokes, witty remarks, and funny punch lines. They even managed to get my attention to listen to the instructions on what to do in an emergency...and usually I’m NOT laughing when I hear about the plane going down into the Atlantic.

So I got to wondering....hmmm....Do they use these same jokes over and over on every flight? I would find out soon enough...I was among 5 passengers who didn’t have to change planes for the next flight. Sure enough...the same material.

Anywhoooooooooooo............

Although I had just heard their repertoire of jokes...I still laughed...snickered...and smiled. Hey, I know that coming up with new material isn’t easy. I can totally relate.

Usually my readers don’t complain about my material...but recently there was someone who has been quoted as saying: “nothing in Kat’s blog has grabbed me lately.” Well, if that ain’t a slap to the face, step on the toe, pull to the hair, crowbar to the knees, and foot to the butt...then what is? OUCH.

I decided to look back at my previous posts. Okay, so the blogs about the cold patient, time change, Douchy the old nun, and a toy-less Happy Meal were not entertaining. Maybe I should have melded them together... “Douchy, the old nun, died of a cold after eating a toy-less Happy Meal while turning her clocks back.”

In the future...I’ll try to come up with some grabby stuff....but until then...like the friendly accommodating Southwest flight attendants offer up... “may I suggest a beverage...with that blog?"

“ I’ll be around to pick up any remaining cups and glasses.”

Monday, November 15, 2010

The Wish Book


It’s been a while since I’ve looked at The Sky Mall Magazine on an airplane. I tend to stay away from it because I’m afraid it’s been sneezed in ten times. Anyway, during take-off on my last flight I couldn’t reach my book, so I pulled the magazine out of the front seat pocket...and risked a week in bed.

The Sky Mall Magazine, as you know, is a catalog of kitschy and schmaltzy products. I remember as a kid loving catalogs...as does my 9 year old niece, Natalie. Natalie takes them with her so often...her parents have dubbed them Natalogs.

When I was her age I loved the Sears catalog and I remember staring at it with Sister Sludge and my cousins. We’d spend hours sitting on the couch flipping through the pages of the women’s clothing section; pointing to each girl in an outfit and asking each other: “Who do you think is prettier? What outfit do you think is the cutest?”

But my favorite catalog...like every kid back in my day...was the Sears Toy Catalog for Christmas...suitably named the “Wish Book.” The Wish Book would arrive at our house in September and my brother, sisters, and I spent the next 4 months examining each toy. By the time Christmas came around...we had done so much wishing our catalog was tattered, torn, and dog-eared.

Anywhoooooooooooo............

As it turns out...I have found that the Sky Mall Magazine is the adult equivalent of the Sears Toy Catalog. It's a wish book...containing many products that promise to make you look years younger.

There were a few stand-out products...especially the one that promised an Instant Face and Neck Lift. The kit consisted of a fully adjustable elastic band and offered surgery results without the pain. Unless of course, should the elastic band snap you in the face...then it probably hurts like hell.

The Butt Pad promised “sexy curves” and was guaranteed to stay on while dancing and exercising. That’s a good thing. I’ve heard of dancing your ass off...and working your butt off...but literally finding your butt on the floor would be rather startling.

The body slimmer product sounded like a dream slash nightmare. They advertised it as a tummy tuck without surgery and you’d instantly look 10-20 lbs thinner. They promised no bumps and lumps from the torso to the thighs. But they didn’t mention the ankles. That’s probably why the ankles weren’t shown in the picture. You just know each ankle carried 10 pounds.

I thought of bringing the Sky Mall Catalog home with me and giving it to Natalie to add to her collection of Natalogs...but I have a feeling she won’t be wishing for these products for at least 40 years.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Happy Birthday, Father


This is a bring back blog for "Jerry Bring Back."

I have to tell the world about my amazing father on his 79th birthday and what better place to do it than here!

First of all, Gerald is a trivia buff. Who knows…maybe knowing the square mileage of Jacksonville, Florida will come in handy someday. He also knows everything about sports…even obscure and random facts about teams, players, and coaches. And not just with professional sports…even high school sports. Go ahead, quiz him…sports fans.

Gerald is a walking GPS who can give you directions to anywhere from nowhere and back. He even knows that everywhere intersects with somewhere in western no kidding.

He is the friendliest guy you ever want to meet and the most easy-going. That’s G.L. He should have run for office because he holds court wherever he goes. He can strike up a conversation with just anyone….and believe me he has.

Anywhoooooo……….


You should have seen Gerald back in the day when he wore his Air Force Blues. I thought he was the handsomest dad ever. And at age 79…definitely the cutest. The dog tags given to me when he was in the Air Force are my most prize possession. And every Veteran’s Day (like yesterday) I proudly wear them. I’m most proud that they say, “Kathy-Anne T.… Daughter of Gerald L. T…”

Over the years Gerald has earned the nickname “Jerry Bring Back.” When my mother buys something and later decides she doesn’t want it…she gives it to dad to return. Who would give a 79 year old man a hard time about bringing back a set of curtains? Remember, he has the cuteness factor going for him...and what would he want with swags and jabots, anyway?

My dad’s famous line growing up was, “Who loves Dad? Raise your hand.” We could be busy doing our homework, washing dishes, or watching television, but whenever he would say, “Who loves Dad? Raise your hand”…we would automatically each raise our hand and keep on doing what we were doing. Do you think we were going to deny my dad his fun?!

I loved it when my mom didn’t feel like cooking dinner and we were lucky to get McDonalds. My father and I had the special job of picking it up. I would get a pad of paper, write down everyone’s order, and then jump in the ole Tempest next to him. I can still hear that car today…sounds just like my washing machine. Off we’d go to Mickey D’s, my dad and I on a burger mission…swoosh, cchuck, swoosh, ccchuck. I remember hoping that mom didn’t feel like cooking the next week. Burgers and time with dad….it was the best.

Happy Birthday, Father. You are dearly loved by me and everyone who knows you. I could write more about how great you are, but I am having a hard time typing with just one hand. You see, my other hand is raised…high...into the air.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Toying with the Rules


I remember taking my kids to McDonald’s and buying them Happy Meals. Does that make me a bad mother? Apparently it does in San Francisco.

The city has proposed an ordinance that would ban toys with unhealthy meals. And according to their tastes…Happy Meals are Unhealthy with a capital “U.”

“They” say that the toy is used to induce children to prefer foods that may harm their health and “it is a creepy and predatory practice that warrants injunction.” Whoa. I would hardly consider a Happy Meal creepy. A toy with a burger is far less creepy than...Ronald McDonald himself.

I remember when Big C was 18 months old…she had enough language skills to tell me to remove the clown statue from the shelf in her room. When I took a good look at it…I agreed. What was I thinking? The large plastered smile of the clown looked so sinister. She was afraid of the clown…and apparently so are a lot people.

They even have a name for it…Coulrophobia, the fear of clowns…which is one of the top ten phobias…right after fear of giving a speech in your underwear.

Clowning around...by intentionally inflicting pain…while maintaining a painted smile...is frightening. So why stop there? Why not pull the red nose off of Ronald himself?

Anywhooooooooooo…….

The proposed ordinance would allow toys to be sold with children’s meals only if they had: fewer than 600 calories, fewer than 640 milligrams of sodium, less than 35 percent of calories from fat, and less than 10 percent saturated fat. That leaves out even their most nutritious Happy Meal: chicken nuggets, apple slice, and milk…37 percent of its calories come from fat.

Maybe San Fran should stop their clowning around and stop toying with all the rules.

Just in….New to the McDonalds Menu:
The Obama Value Meal
"Order anything you want…and have the guy in line behind you…pay for it."

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Age Appropriate




Did you hear the oldest woman in the world died at age 114? I think when you reach the overripe age of 114, you have lived passed your expiration date and it’s about time to hit the dirt…sorta speak.

I think a reasonable age to aim for is 100. To have your 100th birthday announced on television by Willard Scott…would be an accomplishment. I know it would be for me…and for Willie. When I reach 100…Uncle Willie should be over 114.

Eugenie Blanchard, the oldest woman alive-turned-dead, lived on the island of St. Barts in the French West Indies. No wonder she lived way past 100. Island people are so laid back they write songs like “Don’t Worry…Be Happy. A life without stress has to be the key to longevity, mon.

But her Great-nephew attributed her long life to the fact that “she had decided to give her virginity to God.” Wow…and they made a movie about the 40 year old virgin. Steve Carell’s character had nothing on this woman. He was a virgin for 40 years…just a third of her life.

I wonder if Eugenie knew she was gonna die at 114…if she would have waited to take the chastity vow when she was 55.

Anywhooooooo……..

The children on St.Barts called Eugenie “Douchy.” If my kids called an old woman…(and a nun at that)…a douchy, I would have sent them to bed without their fruit snacks. Apparently “Douchy” means “sweets” in the local dialect…but it just sounds so disrespectful in most other languages. Apparently Douchy got her nickname because she used candy as a way to entice the children into religious readings. And that is all I have to say about that.

Hmmm…there a lot of (inappropriate) directions I could go with this blog…but I’ll refrain…I want to keep things copasetic…or is that Copacabana?

Instead, I will leave you with a sick comment (not mine): “I want to die in my sleep at 90 like my Uncle Goober, and not SCREAMING in terror like the passenger’s in his car.”

Monday, November 8, 2010

Fall Back



I hope you remembered to set your clock back this weekend. If not…I’m sorry that you are sitting at your desk an hour early.

The pros and cons of Daylight Savings Time have always been debated…it depends on what side of the timeline you are on. Some people profess the energy savings…others proclaim the sanity costs. The battle continues here……

The upside of moving your clock back an hour…is finding out it’s only 8am instead of 9am...and then hitting the hay for another hour. (Sometimes I like to pretend that I live on a farm.)


Another good thing with DST is that it is a good reminder time of when to change…your batteries in your smoke detectors, the Arm & Hammer Baking Soda in the back of the icebox, and the horseshoes on Black Beauty.


The worse aspect, however, is that the sun sets earlier. Today that happens at 4:38 pm…which also happens to be right smack dab in the middle of Oprah. (I like to take a break from farm chores and watch Oprah.)


Anwhoooooooo…….......


There is a good side and a bad side to most everything…but there isn’t much good about Mondays. I started thinking…seeing we can plum declare a new time...I reckon we should be able to shorten our Mondays.


We could take two hours away from Monday…and add one hour to Sunday night and the other hour to Tuesday morning. That way, Sunday evenings would be longer…leaving extra time for me to can my fruits and vegetables…and an extra hour Tuesday morning…before I have to get out and milk the cows.

Instead of dreading Mondays…people would love them because Monday would be shorter. There would be no more Monday Blues…and no Manic Monday…(and no other Monday, Monday songs that you can think of.)

I’ve come up with great ideas before…but I think this is my best yet. The simple way to beat Mondays without using a stick is to fiddle with time. Why not? We do it every spring and fall. Time now to feed and harness the horses. Giddy-up.

Friday, November 5, 2010

OUTblogged

Could there be a green-eyed monster in the room?

I know it's not a good thing to be green with envy. Jealousy is not flattering...regardless of what color you dress it in.

But I just can't help it.

katOUT has been OUTblogged.

Granted, it's not possible to be mad at the person who has out blogged me…someone who, Frankiely, shall remain nameless. But she only started a blog a week ago and on Day 3 of her blog life...she had 10 comments. Wow...10 more than I get.

Maybe it's as simple as her blog is more compelling. In her blog, she chronicles her training for a marathon she plans to run 6 months from now in Atlanta. Note to self: Readers apparently appreciate motivated, energetic athletes.

Maybe it's as simple as people can relate to individuals who set goals and are working towards them. Note to self: Get a goal.

Maybe it's as simple as her blog is interesting. Note to self: Readers apparently appreciate interesting blogs.

Anywhooooo.....

It's a good thing she is a sweetheart of a person....or I'd have to take her down.

I thought about giving you her blog address so you, too, could enjoy her blog, but like my blog readers..."No comment."

Note to self: Learn to master the art of Pogo Stick jumping. Set a goal to compete in the 2011 Pogopalooza...the extreme pogo competition next August…and write an interesting blog about my training and foreseeable crashes.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

True Blue


The results of the nationwide mid-term elections sent a message to Washington. The message: a rejection of the President’s economic and Healthcare policies.

The Republican Party scored big in many state elections. Republicans gained the majority in the House of Representatives and six seats in the Senate (although the Democrats maintained their majority.) There were also impressive Republican victories in the Governorships. Nationwide we are a sea of red.

But woooah…….wait a minute….not where I live. If you are a Republican in Connecticut, you are not riding in the red wagon. Chances are you are feeling a little blue after Wednesday’s elections. In CT, all five seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, the Senate seat, and the Governorship all went Old Blue Democrat.

Let’s face it…the blood pulsing from our state bleeds blue and not red. We live in a blue state. We always have a blue outlook…and that has some of a little blue.

Republicans, are especially singing the blues with the position of Governor. On election night it looked like the governorship was going Republican, but after waiting to hear the final result the next day because of some polling mistakes (yeah, right) in Bridgeport, we woke up to find that it went Democrat.

I say let’s compromise because it is still too close to call. Let’s combine the Republican and Democratic parties…red and blue…and go Purple. Barney for Governor.

Anywhoooooooooo……………..

We could complain until we are blue in the face, beat ourselves up until we are black and blue…but we will never change…Connecticut has always been and probably always will be a blue state. You might call CT… True Blue.

So for those of us Republicans living in Connecticut…it didn’t come out of the blue that our state went all blue.

Frankly, the blue that I prefer seeing is blue Hawaii.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Perfect Cold Patient


I am on Day 12 with this nasty cold. It is so bad. How bad is it? It is sooo bad…that if I lived in Boston, I’d be calling it a Monsta Cold. (Fenway's Green Monsta brings up other images for me.)


The reason I knew it was nasty…other than the lack of energy, stuffy nose, sore throat, nasal drip and coughing jags…PaulA has been tripping over himself to stay clear of me.


Anywhooooooooo………………..


I'm not a baby when it comes to colds, although I tend to whimper now and then. And sometimes I roll around in my bed, moaning and groaning. I never take cold medication, not because I’m a freak like Tom Cruise and don’t believe in meds…but I don’t think anything really helps, except massive sleep. Everyone has their own way of dealing with a cold…and we are all a little different.

When PaulA gets a cold…he soldiers on. He doesn’t let it stop him. He gets up and goes to work. He marches on…through the daily trenches of life.

When Colinboy gets a cold…he has to first make sure it is a cold…and not a rare disease from South Africa. He goes online to WebMD, researches his symptoms to rule out diseases such as necrotizing fasciitis…that nasty flesh-eating disease. He makes sure he is going to live another day.

When Chelsea gets a cold…she's looking for something she can take. She wants it over and over now. A trip to CVS, down the cold remedies aisle, and she is set to go…with a med for every symptom.

When Bri gets a cold…she never says a word about…let alone complain. She can have something wrong with her and I’m the last to know. When she had mono, she was walking around with a swollen neck gland for 10 days before she decided to show me her tree trunk neck.

Yes, the 5 of us are all different…but if you take the good parts of how we each handle a cold and combine them…we are……………

Someone who…doesn’t complain to anyone…and after ruling out Ebola disease from the Sudan …and taking massive meds…soldiers on through their day…and gets to bed early.

Together we make the perfect cold patient.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Election Day


Yea….Election Day.

The November elections couldn’t get here soon enough. The barrage of advertisements for Senator, Governor, Attorney General, Indian Chief, etc…have taken a toll on me. Everything is so negative, adverse, conflicting, damaging, mean-spirited…and just NOT NICE.

They say the reason for so many negative advertisements is because they’ve been proven to work. Apparently…."Mikey likes it.” So in effect, we have ourselves to blame.

Like the existence of tabloid magazines. If we never bought another sensationalized magazine, wouldn’t they be forced to close-up shop?

Not that I always take the high road…but I refuse to buy The National Enquirer. I admit, however, to reading it in the grocery store check-out line until the cashier says, ‘Hey Lady, inquiry minds wants to know…Are you buying that magazine?”

The closest I’ve come to dishrag journalism is People Magazine…which is better than Bounty for mopping up spills.

Anyway, Charlie Sheen makes for interesting reading in any magazine.

Anywhoooooooo……….

Smear campaigning is the ultimate in mud-slinging. By diverting attention from the real issues, you never learn about what platforms the politicians stand on…let alone what sneakers. Hey, I appreciate a good exaggeration as well as the next person. But sometimes the smearing is hurtful and untruthful. I’m not even sure how they get away with such slander. But what’s good for the goose…is slander for the gander.

If I believed every negative thing opponents said about each other…there would be no one left to vote for. Apparently they’re all either…liars, cheaters, drinkers, or have been arrested.

Don’t forget to Vote Today……
and if you aren’t sure who to vote for...why not write in “Charlie Sheen.” Apparently, Charlie has all of the qualifications.

By the way…."I approve this message.”

Monday, November 1, 2010

Tricks with Treats


Did you get many trick-or-treaters last night? We had 14...that is, if we count the kid who came by twice. I knew that little devil looked familiar.

Last year we weren't home for Halloween night which, as we all know, can be a recipe for disaster...two dozen eggs, 6 rotten tomatoes, and a roll of paper.

Luckily we didn’t end up in the eye of Newt of any rowdy ghosts, ghouls, or goblins.

Anywhooooo......

Last Halloween I missed seeing the neighborhood children come to the door in their costumes. So this year I was bound and gagged to make sure I was here. Seeing their little faces brings me back to when our kids were that age.....

I remember our kid's excitement from a night of trick-or-treating through neighborhoods...spreading their loot out on the floor when they got home....separating the candy into categories...making trades with each other...priceless.


I thoroughly encouraged them to spread their candy all over the floor...that way I could check it and make sure it was safe to eat...and make sure I got a good look at what candy I was going to steal from them while they were at school. It was as easy as taking candy from a baby.


I remember the year Wishy had a 5th grade math teacher who turned their Halloween candy into a math lesson. He had them visually display the different amounts and frequencies of their candy by putting them into bar graphs…and then making generalizations about the data. “Nerds are more popular than Air Heads.” That's one way of making math a treat.

Only problem with the math homework was…it made it tricky for me to steal treats from Wishy. With her bar graph around as “proof of evidence”…I knew it would be difficult to explain the missing data…especially in the candy bar category.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Survey Said


WTH??? Is it me? Is it just me?

After a recent auto purchase…the salesperson informed me that the auto manufacturer will be sending me a survey of questions pertaining to how the dealer and the salesperson performed during the sale.

No problem…I was down with that. Until he followed with…“I would appreciate it if you could give us a perfect score.” And….“my compensation relies on high scores. If you have any problems, let us know directly rather than reporting them.”

Woah now. Suddenly I felt that his wife and 2.5 kids were depending on me for their next Big Mac and Happy Meals.

Why should they get a perfect score? Because they asked for one? Geez…who gets a perfect score? Perfect is a no-hitter, a shutout, Nadia Comaneci.

So he should receive a perfect score….because he sold me something I needed and I had to spend hours with him haggling over the price…while he played a shell game with the MSRP, Dealer Invoice Price, Dealer Cost and Trade-in? And because he thinks he went the “extra mile” when he offered me a cup of coffee and an old wrapped piece of hard candy??? I don’t think so.

Anywhooooooooooooo…………..

So instead of his plea causing me to react positively or negatively…I put it “N” neutral. I failed to react. I decided to not complete the survey. Who needs that kind of pressure…unless it’s in my tires?

Besides these types of surveys are not really anonymous. Hey, they could easily figure out who I was…and next time I was in for an oil change…they might top off my engine with EEVO. That might make Rachel Ray happy, but not my car.


Ya know…now that I think about it…the guy didn’t really beg for a perfect score…he wasn’t down on his knees.

But maybe if he was…and spit polished my shoes while he was down there…he would have gotten a perfect score. Or he could have offered me a Hershey’s chocolate bar. Now that is what I would call service.

An old hard candy??? Go suck on that, buster.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Ding-A-Ling


Do you still have a phone line to your house? You know…the land line that gets cut in the classic scary movie when the soon-to-be-attacked is sleeping…or is in the act of calling the police…when the line suddenly goes dead.

If you’re like me, you’re a ding-a-ling...paying for both…a house phone and a cell phone. A lot of people these days are saying ba bye to their home phones and opting to just go with their cell.

Hello…I would consider doing the same. Our home phone never gets used and hardly ever rings…except for calls from Linda McMahon who is running for U.S. Senator in November. You would think Linda and I were personal friends by her constant calls. (Give it a rest, Linda. You gotta know you’re gonna lose. We live in a freakin’ blue state.)

And whenever I want to make a call, I use my cell which is always somewhere on me. Otherwise, I would have to walk waaaay across the room, to use the home phone.

The Numero Uno reason, however, I keep the land line is because our internet is delivered through the same phone line. So if I discontinued service, I would worry about an interruption in service. And from experience I know once you start messing with something…another something goes wrong.

I wonder how many other ding-a-lings stick with things because of all the rig-a-ma-roll.

Anywhooooooo………………..

The home phone does have a useful purpose. I used it twice already this week to help me look for my cell phone that I “lost”…and then “found” in my pants pocket in the laundry basket in my closet. When the hell was I ever gonna find it there? I'm not sure when the next full moon is.

And without the phone line…what are the scary movie producers gonna do to create suspense? Hmm…Have the bad guy sneak in the house…find the person’s cell phone in their closet…and turn it off?

Monday, October 25, 2010

3-Day Walk for the Cure


Kudos to Chelsea for completing the Susan G. Komen 3-Day Walk for the Cure in Atlanta.

When Chelsea first told me she was interested in doing the 3-Day walk....I admit, I was a little hesitant about the whole idea. Not that I wanted to talk her out of joining a great cause…but I wondered if she thought about everything it entailed…all the money she needed to raise, the 60 miles of walking (20 miles/day), the blisters, the tents, the showers, the port-a-potties?

But if you know Chelsea, once Big C puts her mind to something…there is no stopping her. (i.e. her blue couches…hehehe)

There are many women, however, fighting battles more monumental and serious than port-a-potties. And Chelsea wanted to do the walk in honor and memory of those who have had to fight those battles.

At the end of the 3 days, Chelsea attended the closing ceremony in Turner Field with thousands of supporters and many new friends she made a long the way that all gave their heart and sole. Those who walked together stood shoulder-to-shoulder with shared memories and so much in common…from hope for a cure to end breast cancer forever…to calluses, corns, and blisters. Oh My.

We are so proud of our transported Georgia Peach. Good job, Chelsea. Sometimes it makes good sense NOT to listen to your mother.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Pardon My French


Ooh la la……I hope you aren't planning a trip to France anytime soon. The French are… how you say…PISSED OFF. Pardon my French…but there is nothing Les Miserables than a pissed off Frenchman wearing a beret and armed with a rock hard baguette.

So what has put their French briefs in a wad? Apparently the French government has proposed legislation that would raise the retirement age from 60 to age 62. Ay Caramba! (Whoops, wrong language.)

This proposal has resulted in widespread strikes and demonstrations among the young and the old. The young because there will be fewer jobs for them in the future…and the old because they feel entitled to a long retirement of le vin, le brie, et les femmes. It’s a quality of life thing.

Even high school students are protesting with sit-ins, stand-ins, and lotus positions. There is mayhem in the rues…backlash in the Notre Dame…and backwash in the cafes. Labor unions are ceasing transportation and communication. Demonstrations are being controlled with tear gas-ation.

You know the situation has gotten really serious when Lady GaGa had to postpone her scheduled concert. It’s hard for me to keep a straight “P p p p Poker Face”…but you can probably guess Lady GaGa was planning on wearing a little French maid outfit.


Anywhooooooo……….

The work time card of the French, compared to that of an American, is not punched nearly as hard. In France, they are required by law to take five weeks of vacation per year...although it is common for the French to take eight weeks. Their work week is 35 hours long and they are especially noted for taking 3 hour lunches. Momma Mia! (Whoops, did it again.)

Hey, where can we sign up for that gig? By comparison of work schedule standards, Americans have been taken to the French cleaners. Many Americans work at least 50 hours per week, maybe get 10 days to 2 weeks vacation… and a few sick days off (after calling into work...coughing from the beach.)

It’s hard to feel too sorry for the French. I say, “Get over it…get back to work and stop all the wine-ing.”

How you say.... "Say La Vi."