Saturday, January 28, 2012

Camel in the Headlights

When I told my 17-year old daughter about my blog project, she looked like a deer in the headlights.

She typically ignores me when I talk about my blojects, but this one got her attention. She looked me directly in the eye (for the first time in about 3 years) and said, 

"NO!. You cannot blog about that, Mom. It's gross!!!"

Which made me even more excited about my bloject. 

I needed to find something made of hard plastic with a curve. The "Fun Air Scoop" was the perfect shape, but it was simply too big.

I started wandering around the house looking for a smaller version. Nothing in the kitchen. Nothing in the garage. I checked in the bathroom.


It was perfect! I tried it on. It fit.

So I went to Linda's bedroom to tell her about my discovery. When she opened the door I was wearing the headband on my head and a huge smile on my face.

"What?" she asked, waiting for me to say something.

Then I repositioned the headband. "See?" I said, proudly.

"No cameltoe!"


"Don't worry, Linda! It doesn't go on top of my sweat pants," I said, in an attempt to reassure her. "It goes underneath."

I figured she needed more convincing, so I started sharing my marketing plan with her.

"They sell these SmoothGroove Camel Toe Cups on the internet for $25 plus shipping and handling. I can set up a kiosk at the mall and sell them for $19.99!"

Of course, I was just kidding about selling them in a mall kiosk for $19.99.

I could get at least $29.99. Maybe 2 for $50.

They don't call me a stinkin' marketing genius for nothing.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Sampling the Sushi

It was embarrassing to say the least, and completely avoidable.  I should never have let Linda talk me into sampling sushi.

Don’t get me wrong; I have nothing against sushi. I think sushi is very pretty. It would make lovely earrings.

But I prefer my edible pastels to be of the candy variety.

With that said, when Linda begged me to buy some sushi at Publix last Sunday so she could try it, I agreed.

The problem was that we were sushi virgins, and the sushi inventory was vast and, frankly, overwhelming.  So we asked the nice Japanese man standing behind the counter (let's call him "Takayuki") for advice. 

"Excuse me, sir, but which of these would be best for sushi newbies?"

Takayuki looked at us in confusion.  Apparently he was not fluent in English and thought we were asking to sample sushi. He sliced a couple pieces and handed them to us.

“Oh, no thanks!” I said politely, backing away.
“Try it, Mom!”  Linda encouraged.

I inspected it.   

“What’s in it?” I asked Takayuki. He came around the counter and pointed at a sign. Linda read the ingredients. “It has raw crab and avocado rolled in sea weed covered with white rice”

“Are you stinkin’ kidding me?” I asked, suppressing a gag.

Then, as Takayuki watched, Linda and I regressed to a couple of 5 year-olds. 

“You try it”. 
"No, you try it first"
"No.. you. No you  No you..No you..."

Where’s Mikey when you need him?

Linda took the first plunge. Then she elbowed me, and waited for me to do my part. Takayuki was looking at me expectantly. Since I'd rather die of food poisoning than hurt someone's feelings, I took a teeny tiny nibble.

It was horrid.

“Thank you so very much!” I said, backing away while Takayuki shook his head in what appeared to be a combination of disappointment and pity.

Linda pushed me down the soda aisle spitting the mouthful of sushi into her hand. I was retching, but managed to suppress the urge to vomit.  Somehow we managed to avoid the embarrassment of "Clean-up in Aisle 9".

Then my Catholic guilt kicked into gear.  Big time.  We had insulted  Takayuki, his sushi, and most likely his entire culture!    

So on the way out of the store, I found a manager and told him what a fabulous employee Takayuki was and how he had given us samples of the best sushi I'd ever tasted.

It was also the worst sushi I'd ever tasted, but I left that part out.

But guess what!  I've been converted!

I love sushi now!  I found the perfect sushi for someone like me:

Twinkie sushi. 

It's absolutely delicious.  And good for you, too!

I found the recipe today on the Hostess Twinkie web site and cooked up a batch of my own.  And it only takes 3 ingredients: Twinkies, green fruit roll ups, and candy.

I think Takayuki would love it. 

I'll have to bring him a sample.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Not Your Ordinary Bullet Wound

Not long after I graduated from college, I drove my 15-year old sister Linda to the emergency room with a bullet in the head.

Thinking back, I'm not even sure why we went to the ER. I mean, having a BB lodged deeply in one's ear isn't exactly life threatening. We were relatively certain that the ear canal was a dead end street. But what if there was an alley that led to the brain?

Keep in mind that this was before Al Gore invented the internet, or else we could have googled "How to get a BB out of your ear."

In fact, I just googled "how to get a BB out of your ear" and this is what I found:

Question: I was messing around with a bb pellet and now its stuck inside my ear canal, not yet to the ear drum but far enough so that I can't get to it with my short fingernails, should I tell my parents or something or try to vacuum it out ?

Hmmm. We never thought of trying the vacuum. That might have worked!

And by the way, here's the "best answer": Start by telling your parents so they can get you into the doctor right away.

You are probably wondering how the BB became lodged in my sister's ear. It was an act of athletic prowess never before seen in Sanborn, NY. My brother Jim (who had never played a round of golf in his life) tossed it to Linda while she was laying on her side watching TV. 

He got a hole-in-one!

Linda immediately jumped up and started doing what has since become known in Clyde circles as the "BB in the Ear Dance", violently shaking her head sideways in an attempt to eject the stubborn BB. The more she tried, the deeper it seemed to go.

So we headed off to the Emergency room.

I have to admit that I had a riot at patient registration. I was laughing so hard, I could hardly get the words out. The nurse thought I was the patient (in the middle of a mental breakdown.) 

"My!" I gasped.

"You brother shot a BB in her ear?" the nurse asked, her voice rising an octave.

Which made me laugh even harder!  I howled.

When we finally explained what had really happened, the nurse took us back to the triage area. An ER doctor grabbed the longest set of tweezers I'd ever seen and attempted, unsuccessfully to retrieve the elusive BB.

After about 10 minutes of trying he gave up. By then Linda was in tears and I was starting to get nervous. Maybe it was life threatening after all. "We'll have to call in a specialist. He'll get it out. He's got more tools... better tools."

Better tools? What the heck was he going to bring in?  A nuclear weapon? 

"Get up, Linda! We can get that thing out," I said and I grabbed hold of her head and started shaking it like there was no tomorrow.  I had to protect my little sister from this mad doctor.

What happened next was something right out of a situation comedy.

We didn't notice the curtain open and the little Asian doctor stepping in. He put his hands on his hips as he watched our "BB in the Ear Dance."  Then he said, "Ahhhhhhhh. You must be the girl with the BB in your ear."

Talk about stating the obvious.

He was able to flush the BB from Linda's ear with some fancy water tool.  

Last summer a bug flew in my ear while I was out for a walk.  I danced the "BB in the Ear Dance" all the way home.  

My neighbors just shook their heads, "There goes that crazy woman who does theater.  I wonder what show she's in now?"

"Looks like it's got some really stupid choreography." 

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Spilling the Beans

Kimmy's third year of life can be summed up in two words.

"I spilled."

Kimmy spilled EVERYTHING. It was like her arms and elbows were on amphetamines. One minute the carton of orange juice would be in the middle of the table; the next it would be rolling across the floor, catapulted by a 3-year old arm reaching for the syrup.

"I spilled."

At least once a day Kimmy would manage to tip over something, usually liquid, most certainly sticky, and always voluminous.

(We considered enrolling her in Spiller's Anonymous, but they didn't have a local chapter in Milwaukee.)

In an effort to protect our home value, we had strict "eat only in the kitchen" policy. So when I heard her "I spilled" voice calling for me from upstairs that day I knew it meant trouble.
Big trouble. 

I gathered the paper towels and carpet cleaner and headed for the stairs.  But what was she saying?  Not "I spilled."

It was worse.

"I made a mess."

Holy crap, I thought. This must REALLY be bad. I mean, doubling the number of words used to describe a spill must indicate a truly significant mess.

I started praying. Dear God. Please don't let it be as bad as the infamous pitcher of lemonade spill. The one that left the invisible adherent that caused our feet to stick to the floor for weeks. And drew ants from as far away as the Twin Cities?

And God, please make it easier to clean up than all that stinkin' pink Amoxicillin that exploded all over the kitchen as a result of shaking a bottle that hadn't been properly closed. 

I held my breath as I ran upstairs, praying for the best, but fearing the worst.

Kimmy was in the bathroom.

Oh no. A bathroom mess. The worst kind.

But Kimmy was smiling. She was pointing to the toilet bowl, the contents of which were shaped like the letter "S".  

I had misunderstood her.

"I made an S," she repeated proudly. And she had.

Holy crap is right.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Snot Just Another Craft Class

Step aside Martha Stewart.

Today I'm going to teach my readers how to make a one-of-a-kind tissue box cover to adorn your residence and increase your home values.

 You're welcome.

You will need the following materials:

  1. a shoe box
  2. a tissue box
  3. box cutter
  4. band aids (just in case!)
  5. tape
  6. scissors
And most importantly, you will need a picture of someone with a big nose.

Of course, you know one of the cardinal rules my blog is to never hurt anyone's feelings. (Sure, there was that one time when I made fun of Miss Teen S.C. (The Accidental Pageant June 21, 2011)  But that was a very special exception to the "no hurt feelings" rule.  She asked for it.)

I needed a picture of someone with a big nose. But who? Jimmy Durante was obvious, as was Barbra Streisand. Lea Michele might work. But considering the fact that my nose is not exactly petite, I could not in good conscious exploit their noses for my craft project.

I decided to sacrifice my dignity and use a picture of myself.....until I envisioned my guests pulling tissues out of my nose.  You may think that's funny but it's snot.  

Get it?

Instead I chose to use Shrek.  I mean you can't offend a cartoon character, can you?

You know, the more I think about it, I should set up a kiosk in the mall.  Right next to the eyebrow threaders.   These guys will sell like hotcakes.

And I've already thought of a couple product line extensions.  The nose shower gel dispenser

and my personal favorite, the nose egg white separator.

I'm going to be a stinkin' millionaire.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Bang-Bang, The Prequel

I learned my lesson that day.

Never invite a clients’ child over for a play date.

My client, let’s call her “Prudence” lived in our neighborhood in Jacksonville. When she discovered that we both had 4-year old daughters, she suggested we get them together to play.  Something told me that this was not a good idea, but I agreed.

There was one word to describe Angelica. Precocious.  Angelica was a miniature adult. 

My older daughter, Kimmy occasionally babysat for Angelica, and when she did, she'd come home smarter. "Hey, Mom. I learned a new word from Angelica tonight: iconoclast. It means a non-conformist".

Angelica not only acted much older than her age, she looked older, too. In fact, she reminded me of Moe, from the 3 stooges. She had one of those bowl cuts that look cute on some kids. 

Not on Angelica.

But Angelica's maturity and confidence helped her compensate for that Moe haircut. (She was far more mature than anyone in my family...myself included.)

But back to the play date invitation.  Red flags should have been going up all around me, but I chose to ignore them. I mean, what could possibly go wrong?

Bottom line?  I was focusing on the wrong potential outcome. You see,  Linda had flunked Sharing 101 and that’s where my focus remained. 

“Linda, make sure you share all your toys with Angelica,” I instructed.
“Not my Barbies. My Barbies are special. She can play with my giraffe Beanie Baby. The one with the missing eye. That's all,”  Linda responded, generously.
“No, Linda. Angelica is our guest. She is welcome to play with all of your toys.”
“Not my Marble Works.  She might break it."
“Linda. If I find out that you didn’t share your Marble Works with Angelica, I will give it away. To Angelica. Come on! Be nice," I pleaded.

I was worried.

Prudence dropped Angelica off and they headed to Linda’s room to play. For the 1st hour, I popped my head in every 10 minutes or so and Linda was sharing. They were getting along famously.

Then I let my guard down.

Linda and Angelica came out of Linda’s bedroom. Angelica was wearing one of Linda’s t-shirts, turned inside out. But that’s not what got my attention.

“We were playing beauty shop. I cut Angelica’s hair,” Linda announced proudly.

That's when the doorbell rang.  The next five minutes were a blur.  "Go get your things, Angelica!" I instructed.

I opened the door, hesitantly. 
Prudence asked, "How'd it go?"
I said, "Well, I've got good news and bad news. What do you want to hear first"
Prudence gave a nervous laugh. "What do you mean, is everything okay?"
"Well....the good news is that they had fun and Linda shared!!! And nobody got hurt" I added.
Prudence looked over my shoulder, beginning to panic, "Angelica, honey...where are you?"

I didn't have to tell her the bad news.

Angelica rounded the corner with her new haircut.

Meer words cannot describe the scream that came from Prudence's mouth when she set eyes on Angelica. But I will attempt to replicate it.

Apparently, the family photo had been scheduled for the next Monday.  


Saturday, January 7, 2012

Behind the Thumb Drive Curve

I had no idea I was so behind the times. Where have I been? 

I mean, I have a flash drive. It works perfectly well.  But it is boring. B-O-R-I-N-G. Until today, I had no idea just how boring it is. It's rectangular. And very gray. Dull.

I used to like it.  Now I hate it.

Somehow I missed the Renaissance of Flash Drives. But I am not going to get left behind in this flash drive fashion phenomenon.

I just don't know how to chose the replacement for my cave man. There are so many options. Since I'm a geek that likes to eat, maybe I should chose a drive in the food genre.

But then again, my new memory stick might make me hungry. I probably wouldn't be tempted by the bacon memory stick hanging off my computer all day, but that donut one sure looks delicious.

Maybe I should avoid food thumb drives and get a regular old thumb drive. 

Sorry.  Couldn't resist.

I asked Kevin to chose, and he voted for the tampon flash drive. According to advertisements, this drive absorbs a lot of data. It also comes in slender (4GB), regular (16 GB) and super (32 GB).

Probably the most entertaining - in an "immature and somewhat disgusting but I can't help giggling kind of way", flash drive that I found is the Humping Dog Memory Stick

(I know this may be shocking to you, but the Humping Dog Memory Stick comes from our friends in Japan.)

According to the advertisement: "Plug him in and immediately his legs will start shaking as the pooch transfers his, ahem, data to your computer. A great gift for the geek in you, or the perfect accessory for an office prank - the humping dog is guaranteed hilarity."

I'm just a wee bit concerned that the Humping Dog Memory Stick's guaranteed hilarity could offend some of my co-workers and land me in the Corporate Compliance office.

I think I'd be a lot safer with my own invention: the Drunken Mexican Toothpick Holder thumb drive. 

And I just thought of something else!  I could replace the toothpicks with paper clips, thereby doubling its functionality.  They don't call me a stinkin' Marketing genius for nothing.   

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The Quicker Picker Upper

It should have come with a warning label!

I'm talking about my new sweater. My very snazzy sweater. My sweater that makes me look like I'm ready for a game of polo.

See what I mean? I think it's cute. And it's is very warm. I wore it to work today and for the first time since that day last summer when the power was out for 2-hours and employees were dropping like flies, I was not freezing.

But I did encounter a bit of trouble today while sporting my snazzy sweater.

Stop reading this now if you are easily grossed out.

(Note that my blog posting comes with a warning label.  Too bad my sweater didn't.)

I'm not sure if it's a design flaw or user error (or both), but the first time I sat on the toilet at work, my very snazzy sweater landed in the toilet water.

The good news is that I realized it before increased the water level in the toilet. (Which is quite an accomplishment, considering how badly I had to use the bathroom at the time.)

I stood up quickly and surveyed the damage. As I swung the back of the sweater around for inspection, I inadvertently flooded the side of the bathroom wall with a tidal wave originating from my sweater.

As a side note, It is absolutely amazing just how absorbent my snazzy new sweater is. It would give Bounty paper towels a run for their money.

But lucky for me, only an inch of my sweater got wet.

It could have been worse. Way worse.  I won't go there.   

You're welcome.

Yep, this snazzy new sweater definitely needs a warning label.