Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The Trash Can

Dave’s favorite Christmas present this year came from me.

Yep.  I bought him the hideous, plastic kitchen trash can. 

To replace my lovely stainless steel one.  With the foot pedal. 

You see, nobody in the house could figure out how to put in a new liner.  Except for me.

For two years I had heard nothing but complaints about that trash can. 

“It’s not that complicated,” I’d explain for the umpteenth time.  “You just tighten the bag around the top and then push the ties through the hole.”
Unfortunately, Dave and Linda were in the “special class.” 

They refused to deal with it.  I’d come home to this:

And this:

Then one day I noticed a plastic grocery bag sitting on the kitchen counter.  With trash in it.

“Ugh!  What is this??”

“Oh.  Your trash can was full and I couldn’t replace the bag.”

Somehow, it had become “my” trash can.  (Kind of like how Kevin is my dog when he’s naughty.)

I gave up.  You can’t train chimpanzees to jump on pogo sticks.  Similarly, you can’t train Dave and Linda to replace trash can liners in my perfectly functional and attractive stainless steel kitchen trash can.

Several weeks before Christmas I began my search for a replacement kitchen trash can.  I came home empty handed every time.   I just couldn’t bring myself to buy one.

I loved my trash can.  

On December 23rd I stood in front of an entire wall of trash cans at Bed, Bath and Beyond, a blue 20% off postcard dangling from my fingers. 

Not one of the twenty-seven trash cans on display looked better than my loyal trash can with the foot pedal.

And they all had the same sort of replacement bag system, which requires tightening the liner and pushing the ties through a hole. 

Except, of course, the (gulp) plastic ones.

I began hyperventilating. 

I called Kimmy.  “I can’t do it!”
“Can’t do what?”
“Buy a new kitchen trash can,” I said, my voice raising an octave.  
“Why not?”
“I need your help!!!” I wailed as I ran out of the store, the postcard fluttering to the ground where it landed in a cold dark puddle.  

Kimmy promised to go to Walmart with me the next day.

Christmas Eve at Walmart was a cacophony of craziness.  Last minute shoppers crowded every aisle buying gifts for their loved ones and hunting friends.  Thankfully, we were the only ones buying a last minute kitchen trash can.

“Look they all have the same replacement bag system!” I stated.  “The system that your Dad can’t master.” 

“Not the plastic ones,” Kimmy observed.


“Suck it up, Mom.  This is for Dad, not you.”

We picked out a very ugly black plastic kitchen trash can.  

Kevin could replace its liners if he had opposable thumbs. 

The rest is history.

Except for one thing.  Dave can’t figure out how to fit the cover on the trash can over the liner.

And I’m not helping. 

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Toot Toot

When I saw the latest product on the Japan Trend Shop's web site I realized that I am not equipped to evaluate men’s underwear.  

I studied the advertising copy:

Toot  is a super durable series of underwear. But that's not all. The Toot Nano Colors No Slip Underwear look great AND are designed to keep your little friend in the same position. That's right. Whatever happens, your buddy won't move around because it is being housed in a special Toot cup.

I had no idea that men struggled with this problem!  I decided to interview the man in the house to determine if that is an issue in this country.

Lou: How important is it that your underwear prevents your buddy from moving around?
Dave: My what?

Lou: Your buddy…you know…your little friend…your penis.
Dave: What are you doing?  Go away.
Lou: Come on!  I’m doing serious research for my blog.  Does your buddy move around in your underwear?
Dave: Go away.  No comment.

As I was walking away, dejected by the outcome of my interview, Dave threw me a bone.

“Not if you’re wearing a jock strap.”


But that didn't really shed much light on the situation.  I was still skating on thin ice.  I needed more data.

I decided to ask my brother.  

He has one.

Lou: How important is it that your underwear prevents your buddy from moving around?
Tom: Short leash.  Not a problem.


I guess maybe the Toot Nano Colors Underwear would be of value to those men without a short leash. 

But do they work?  Do they really keep your buddy still?

Apparently there is a sophisticated underwear engineering test lab located in Japan where the Toot Underwear was taken through a gamut of testing.  It was all documented in this video.

(Oh, my.  What a handsome test engineer.)

After viewing the test video, I became convinced of two things.  First, the Toot Nano Colors No Slip Underwear would certainly come in handy under certain conditions.  

Regardless of the length of your leash.

Secondly, and most importantly, I’m glad I don’t have a penis.  

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Having a Ball!

Sometimes the best products fail because of a poorly executed advertising campaign.  Such is the case with Japan Trend Shop's newest pet product: The Oppo Food Ball for Dogs

Here's how it is advertised;

The Oppo Food Ball for Dogs is designed to help your pooch get more out of a meal. It will move around as your pet munches away on the food inside, helping the contents gather at the bottom and making it easier for the animal to get to that last nourishing lick. After all, there's nothing more upsetting than a frustrated canine! 

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think the Oppo Food Ball for Dogs essentially turns a dog's meal time into a game of bobbing for apples.

They need a new marketing strategy.  Their advertising is completely off target.   Being the marketing genius that I am, I've decided to share some ideas with them.

It is the holiday season, after all.

Concept #1:  Does your dog inhale his food?  Does he have

indigestion from eating too fast?  Break bad habits with the Oppo Food Ball for Dogs.  Make dinnertime last hours instead of seconds.  Guaranteed to increase his mealtime by 800%.

Concept #2: Are you tired of taking your dog for endless walks?  Let him exercise himself with the new Oppo Food Ball for Dogs.  Sit back and relax while Rover works out as he eats.

Concept #3: Has your dog been naughty?  Show him who’s boss with the Oppo Food Ball for Dogs.  Make him earn every kernel of food he eats.

OMG!  I just had a scathingly brilliant idea.  

The Nerdling Food Ball for Teenagers.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Nerdling Sea Monkeys

I'm not sure what went wrong.

It certainly wasn't for lack of enthusiasm.  

OK,  I'll admit it.  I occasionally rush into projects when I get excited.  And I was REALLY excited about raising a family of Sea Monkeys.

But I promise you.  I did not rush this time.  

I even recruited my friend George to be my lab assistant.  He brought over all the necessary equipment.  And we followed the directions to a tee. 

Step #1 involved adding powder from Envelope #1 to the water.  

Then we had to wait for 24 long hours for Step 2, which involved adding the freeze dried Sea Monkeys contained in Envelope #2 to the water.

Then I waited.

And waited.

And waited.

But the Sea Monkeys never hatched.  A bunch of stinkin' duds.

So Kevin remains an only child.  

You know what's even more disappointing?  I will never be able to publish a sea monkey poem on www.seamonkeyworship.com

And join the likes of Alexis: 

and Leesa:

But wait!  If my poem was exceptionally good maybe I could fool the sea monkey worship people!   

(They don't have to know my Sea Monkeys died in utero.)

I decided to give it a whirl. 

Nerdling Sea Monkeys

Sea Monkeys swimming
Around in their aqua world
Studying chi square and

Submitted by Lou Clyde

I'm so proud.  It brought tears to my eyes.

Admittedly, it would be a wee bit humiliating if I were discovered to be a fraud: a fake Sea Monkey mom.  But I decided to throw caution to the wind and submit my poem to the seamonkey worship people anyhow.

And I got this message: The e-mail message could not be delivered because the user's mailfolder is full.

An ordinary poet might be discouraged.  But not me! 

There's always The New Yorker.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Satisfying Barbie

Barbie was so mad at me.  She didn't like her hair cut.  She's one of "those" people who believes that a good cut actually makes your hair look longer.

Hello....Barbie!  I cut your hair.  That makes it shorter.  Not longer.

She was driving me absolutely nuts.  Pouting all the time.  Apparently, she wanted to look like her friend Totally Hair Barbie.  

I told her, "I'm a hairstylist.  Not a magician."  

And at the risk of offending poor Barbie, how could I possibly be expected to create a Totally Hair Barbie hairstyle on a...well ...  Let's call a spade a spade.  A Somewhat Hair Barbie.

With that said, customer satisfaction is priority for me.  There had to be some way to make my client happy.

Then I had a scathingly brilliant idea. I would make Barbie hair extensions.  

I studied the picture of Totally Hair Barbie.  Her hair reminded me of something.  OMG!  I realized it was a cross between Kevin's new rope toy and a drapery tassel. 

Unfortunately, Kevin was not the least bit interested in sharing his rope toy with Barbie so I went to Plan B.  

I painstakingly attached the drapery tassel extensions to Barbie's hair and I thought she looked beautiful.

"It's not long enough!" Barbie whined.

Lucky for her I had a Plan C.

Barbie loves her new extensions.  And guess what!!  I have a new client!

Totally Hair Barbie wants a perm and some color.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

The Box

My heart started racing when my secretary handed me the package.  It was, after all, November 13.  Not that far from the holidays.    

Some of our vendors send us candy for the holidays.

Delicious vendor candy.

My mouth began to water.

I was in a teleconference when the package arrived.  I decided to open the box right away, since the people I was meeting with could not see me.  And I was hungry.

I stealthily, and rather unsuccessfully, attempted to open the UPS box.  "Yes,"  I said into the speaker phone.  "That was an unexpected insight,"  I added, as I incompetently tugged on the paper tag attempting to open the box.

It snapped off. Crap. I grabbed the stubby end of the stubborn strip with my teeth.  "What?"  I said, "Oh, no.  That won't be a problem." 

The problem was opening the damn box.   I began to salivate.  This was getting ridiculous.

What exactly was in the box?  I hoped it wasn't chocolate covered fruit.  I hate chocolate covered fruit.  Fruit ruins chocolate.  It better be caramel.  Or mint.  Or chocolate chocolate.

Or chocolate with nuts.  I hadn't had eaten for 45 minutes and really needed some holiday vendor candy.

Doggone!   The strip broke off in my teeth.  I grabbed my scissors. 

"What?  Oh yeah, I'm still here," I said, while stabbing the box, " I was just....[stab] ..checking... [stab] ...the statistical...
[stab]... significance.  1.6345.. [stab]..90%.  Good."

I kept struggling.  OMG!  

I felt like I was in a Hitchcock movie.  How did they expect anyone to open these damn boxes?!?!?!   

A person could starve to death.

I was  about ready to eat my hand by the time I got that damn box opened.   I wiped the sweat off my brow as I reached into the UPS box and removed another box- a  white box with four words:  "Want deeper customer relationships?"  

"No," I said, panting heavily.  "I.  Want.  Chocolate."

Wait.  There was a photo of an i-Pad on the box.  WTH?  Did they have me confused with the CEO?

I held my breath as I opened the white box.

"Get your hands on a sea of behavioral data and watch customer relationships come alive."

OMG.  I could not believe my eyes.  This was not an i-Pad.  It was far more valuable than a stinkin' i-Pad.

This was a Sea Monkey Aquarium.

Holy stinkin' cow!

I looked left and right.  T
his was a true moment of truth. What should I do?  Should I contact Corporate Compliance about this gift? 

I know I should turn it in. 

But I always wanted to raise Sea Monkeys.  I hate that Kevin's an only child.

Hey Kevin!

Guess what!

to be continued....

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Completing the Collection

It has been over a year since I rolled out my Nerdling line of earrings.  And the buyers at Tiffany’s and Nordstroms have been pestering me to release another design in time for the holiday season.

Apparently they cannot keep the Barbie Toilet Paper Earrings on the shelf.  And the Barbie Amputated Foot Earrings have become a something of a collector’s item on the Hamptons.

I was faced with the same challenge that I’m certain Michaelangelo had when he finished painting the Sistine Chapel.  

How can I possibly outdo myself?

I knew that my next design had to be unique, trendy and sophisticated.  I decided to go to WalMart for ideas.  

As luck would have it,  I happened upon the Lollapalooza Diaper Surprise Doll.  I had heard about this amazing doll but had never seen one in real life.  Sinkin' amazing.  You feed her, push her belly button and magic charms appear in her diaper!

OMG!  I could make the next generation of Nerdling earrings out of the
Lollapalooza's magic diaper charms!  

I was getting goose bumps.

But she was $29.99, which was way out of my prototype jewelry budget.   I was about to walk away when I noticed that WalMart sold the Diaper Surprise Diaper Packs separately.  For a fraction of the price.  

When I got home I had second thoughts.  What if word got around that I harvested the diaper charms without a
Lollapalooza doll?   I was relatively certain that I could just pour water into the diaper and the magical charms would materialize, but that was cheating.  And it felt wrong.  

Plus, I have a reputation to protect.  

Barbie offered to help, but she put me in an even worse mood.  “Come on, Barbie.  You are way too old for that diaper!” 

Or too young. 

In the end, I decided to pretend that a $29.99 doll was peeing into the diaper.  Through a Go-Girl. 
Admittedly, it was the most fun I’d had in weeks.  That is, until I realized that the charms were made of plastic.  

Pink plastic.  

Earrings made of pink plastic were certainly not worthy of my Nerdling earring collection.  

I decided to go back to the drawing board.  Don't worry...I have another idea.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Pooping Peanuts

I wish my dog pooped jewels.  But he doesn't.  He poops poop.  Plain old poop.

Avery's dog poops jewels.  Red jewels.  Probably rubies.

Avery is part of the Moxie Girlz  Poopsy Pet collection.    According to the Moxie girlz website, "the pets are cute- and just like magic, they have silly poop!"

Kevin's poop is not at all silly.

As a side note, while researching the Moxie Girlz Poopsy Pets, I googled  “I poop jewels” and was disturbed delighted to discover a whole new world of jewelry made of, you guessed it, poop.

Apparently moose poop makes very attractive earrings.  As does bird poop.  And quail droppings.

BTW, these earrings better be produced by some crazy-ass engineering geniuses, because the ear lobe is not that far from the nose.  And I don’t know about you, but I would not want the eau-de-moose poop wafting around my face all day.  

Even if they are swank as shit.

Back to those Moxie dolls.  They don’t just poop jewels.
This animal collection is truly extraordinary.  It contains a caboodle of crap.  There’s an elephant that poops peanuts, a panda that poops bamboo shoots, a tiger that poops striped eggs, and a unicorn that poops rainbows.

Yes.  You heard right.  A unicorn that poops rainbows.

It’s almost too good to believe!

I decided to take a trip to amazon.com to  see what the reviewers had to say.

I was not disappointed.  They appear to love it! 

"This educational toy is great for teaching kids about pooping. Personally, I poop rainbow drops that feel like velvet and smell like orange sherbet, unless I eat chili, then its more like rose petal potpourri. If its just gas, then a rainbow beams out and swirls the room, wrapping itself around anyone in the room with a loving embrace."

"My life was incomplete without a rainbow-pooping unicorn amongst the many unique toys decorating my professional office. This newest conversation piece is, without question, the crème de la crème of the lot"

"Lots of poopin' fun! The only way they can top this rainbow-pooping unicorn is if they make a pet cat that poops out dead mice. Now THAT would be epic."
Seriously?  A cat pooping out dead mice?  

I couldn't agree less.  A cat pooping out dead mice would do absolutely nothing for me. 

Now a Pomeranian pooping tampons?

That, my dear readers,  would be legendary.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

The Evasive Pop Tart

It was almost impossible to believe.

I’ve never seen a Pop Tart go to such extremes to avoid being consumed. 

I didn’t hear the toaster pop up, but it had.  And my Pop Tart was missing.   I looked around.  Who could have possibly pilfered my Pop Tart?   Dave?  Nah.  Maybe if it was a Cheeseburger Pop Tart.  But it was Brown Sugar & Cinnamon. 

It wasn’t Linda.  She was still in bed (since it was before noon). 

Kevin was the next logical suspect, but he’s too short to reach the counter. 

Where did it go?  I looked inside the toaster.


It was literally hiding at the bottom of the toaster.  It had folded itself in half and was attempting to slink its way out the bottom.  Like Flat Stanley.


“Exactly where do you think you’re going, Pop Tart?” I asked the fleeing felon as I grabbed a fork.

WAIT!!!  Did I really want to risk my life for a Pop Tart

No, I did not.  So I unplugged the toaster.

By the time I returned to the chase, only the tail end of the Pop Tart was in sight.  I attempted to grab him with a fork.  A fight ensued and he fought for his stinkin’ life.  

Make that his sweet smelling life.  I removed my weapon and came out with HALF of a Pop Tart.

I looked inside the toaster.  Where the heck was the rest of him? 

I opened the secret escape hatch on the bottom.  Empty.

OMG. This was no ordinary Pop Tart.  It was Harry Houdini himself hiding in a Brown Sugar & Cinnamon pastry.

I thought seriously about pushing down the toaster button, which would essentially send him..or half of him... to a fiery death in toaster hell.  

But that's just not me.  I'm merciful.  Benevolent.  Nice.


I don't like my pop Tarts too crispy.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Fun with Craig's List

Linda was nervous.  She had listed a cell phone on Craig’s List and we were meeting the buyer at a Waffle House parking lot.    

“What if this is a trap, Mom?” she said as we headed down I-26 toward the St. Andrew’s exit.  “What if he robs us?”
“It’s broad daylight!  We’ll be in public.  Nobody will hurt us.”

She was unconvinced.  “You don’t know that.  He could have a gun.”

I told her not to worry.  We would be completely safe.  

But Linda’s watched way too many scary movies.  “What if he’s a rapist?  Or tries to kidnap me?”   

By the time I pulled into the parking lot, she had converted this cool, calm nerdling into a bit of a neurotic.  I looked around for evidence of Isis militants and strategically picked a parking spot between two innocuous looking cars.

“Text him and tell him we’re in the red Elantra,” I told Linda as I shut off the car.  

Her phone buzzed with his text.  “OK please with in gas now.”  Linda and I looked at each other and said in unison, “What?”   She texted him back. “What”

“Please wit”

As I glanced in my mirror I noticed four thugs heading straight for our car.  “OMG!” I said in an unsuccessful attempt to remain calm “LOCK THE DOORS!!!!  I hope they don’t have guns!”  

They walked right past the car and into the Waffle House. 

At that point I decided to back into the parking spot so I could make a quick get-away.  Which is always an interesting maneuver.  For me.

"Read those texts to me again, Linda," I asked, and after careful study I said, “Oh!  He must be getting gas and wants us to wait.”

Another text came in. “I pure ves my car.”

“See,” I said. “I was right!   He wants us to wit because he’s puring ves in his car.”

Then came another text.  “Nex 10 minutes stay dare.”

At this point, Linda was ready to bolt.  “Let’s just go home,” she said.  

“Are you sure it’s not one of your friends pulling a prank on you?”  She didn’t thing that was the case.  Obviously, this guy either had very fat fingers or could not speak English. Or both.

“You know what would be really bad, Linda?” 
I said, attempting to lighten the mood.


“If he were from Liberia.  Get it?  Here we are, afraid of getting raped or robbed by this guy, and what if he kills us with Ebola??!!"

"Very funny Mom."  

I thought I was.
Then came the most confusing text of all.  “Hi here babcok&more.”

“Let’s just go home,”  Linda said, emotionally spent.  

But I wasn’t ready to give up yet.  I can recognize a good blog topic when I see one.  Plus I saw the sign in the plaza down the road.  The sign that said, you guessed it, "Babcock & More".

Red flags were flying as I turned into the Babcock & More parking lot: Why was he in this large deserted parking lot instead of the prearranged Waffle House parking lot?  Was his assault weapon aimed at my head?  Was he going to sneeze Ebola snot into our eyeballs?  

Despite those suspicions, I bravely drove up to the lone car in the parking lot and Linda expeditiously executed the transaction.

“See, Linda” I said, as we drove away, my heart racing like a metronome.  “There was absolutely nothing to worry about."

Then I added, "Let’ go sky diving in Charleston!"  

"But  fis I have to I pure ves my car."

Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Leaky Letito

I could not believe it.

Who would have thought that the Japanese could possibly upstage themselves in the toilet department?

But they did.

You heard me.  The country responsible for the S400 Luxury Washlet, the toilet complete with a 3 temperature setting warm air dryer, heated seat, wireless remote control, and front and rear washing capabilities has released a new product. 

A scathingly brilliant product:  Letito Emergency Disposable Toilet Bags.

Because guess what?  If there’s no running water, your $5,000 luxury toilet will start to smell like an outhouse after a few…um… deposits.

No amount of Poo-Pourri  will make that privy passable.

According to the Letito advertising materials: 
When an emergency strikes you may be without running water for quite some time.  What do you do about basic human functions?

(As a side note, I know the answer to that question.  You see, I am a survivor of the infamous city of Cayce
2011 water main break.  And there were a whole lot of humans in my office whose basic functions functioned.  It was not a pretty picture.)   

The Letito fits all toilets, not just luxury ones. 

And when you’re done using your Letito bag, you can just sling it over your shoulder and carry it to your next waterless toilet.   Or shopping.  

Talk about functional fashion!

Letito bags come with an absorbent sheet that results in “less odor and leakage than a regular bag”.

Wait. One. Minute.  

LESS leakage? 

If there were ever an instance where I would want a bag to be leak-proof, this would be it.  Can you imagine what people would think if they saw sewage seeping from my Letito?

I have a reputation to protect. 

I know what you’re thinking.  I should make my own Nerdling Letito bags.  Ones that don’t leak.

Nah.  I have a better idea.

Introducing the Nerdling Letito for the Go-GirlGuaranteed not to leak.  Simply zip lock the bag when done.

My lawyer insists that I include the following small print:  works best with tiny bladders. 

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Aiming to Please

Good help is hard to find.  And it is near impossible to coerce either one of the two people I live with to take a stinkin' picture! 

In fact, they seem to have sunk to new levels.   

Linda is acting like I’m asking her to take a picture of a decomposing corpse.   “I’m not getting anywhere near that disgusting thing.”

“My Go-Girl is not disgusting”, I declared, defensively.

“You used it already, didn’t you?”

“Yes I did,” I replied.   “And it works great!”  

Of course I used it!  A good photographer does her homework:  studies the surrounding,  checks the lighting,  and tests the equipment prior to beginning the photo shoot.   

And after I test drove my Go-Girl I washed it with soap and warm water, as per the directions.   I left it on the counter to air dry.

“Mom EUUUUUUU!  Get that off the counter.  It’s disgusting.”

OMG, is this the same teenager who had mold growing on a plate in her closet last week?

“Make Dad take the pictures,"  she said, racing out of the room with her fingers covering her nostrils.

But the only way Dave will take a picture for me is if he can take it while laying down on the couch in the family room.  Between innings on the baseball game he’s watching.  

I really didn’t want to pee in the family room.   Who pees in their family room?

But Dave told me I could pee in the family room if I used a bucket.   

COME ON!  He is seriously missing the point.  You don’t need a bucket if you have a Go-Girl.   You can pee anywhere you want to with a Go-Girl

I could pee in the bushes in my back yard if I wanted to.  Just like a man.

BTW- Barbie had her own ideas for the Go-Girl.  Apparently, she was still pouting about the Nerdling Makeover and decided that the Go-Girl made a good hat.  That coincidentally hid her new hairdo.

Very funny, Barbie.

I get no respect in this house.  Who needs them anyhow?   In addition to being a gifted writer, inventor and cosmetologist, I take outstanding photographs.  Plus, I’m ambidextrous.

So I went into the bathroom, lifted the lid, and with one hand on the camera and one hand on the Go-Girl I proceeded to pee like a man.

And I learned an important lesson.  

It’s very difficult to aim a Go-Girl and a camera at the same time.  My aim was a wee bit off. 

Which reminds me of a sign I saw in a restaurant bathroom once.

That's when I realized just how effective my Go-Girl is.  

 I peed just like a man.