Thursday, October 29, 2009

Mysteries Abound

I'm not the most observant person in the world, it's true, but there are certain things that I pick up while walking around this kooky marble we call Earth that really make me stop and scratch my head. I think, back in the day, C&C Music Factory called it "Things That Make You Go Hmmmm."

There are always those little things that I see that I can't quite figure out the series of events leading up to what I am witnessing. Imponderables, if you will.

Earlier today, I visited the ladies room. As I went to enter a stall, I couldn't help but notice, there was a huge mass of toilet paper hanging from the flush handle into the bowl, but suspended above the water level. I don't know how to describe this large wad other than a hastily constructed beehive of toilet tissue or maybe a ill-conceived pinata. Good Lord, I hope there was nothing inside of it! I should clarify. I wasn't USED toilet tissue left behind by the regular occurrences in the loo. It was unused. It was almost as though the person in question was attacked by the roll and when they were able to free themselves from the entanglement of the malicious TP, crumpled it up and recklessly threw it at the potty in their rush to escape, leaving it suspended over the bowl. What? Do you have a better theory? It was one of those rare times I wished I had a camera in the little girl's room with me. Although, using the restroom in my office building is often an adventure so I ought to know better than to enter camera-less.

A week ago I took my daughter to a kiddie party at a bowling alley. She had to use the facilities and being as germ-conscious as you can manage with an uncooperative 4-year-old, I reached for a NeatSeat -- one of those little paper rings to protect your tush from the invisible evils lurking on the toilet seat surface. Luckily I looked before I reached because someone had stuffed their underpants in there! What could have gone so horribly wrong that someone found the need to dispose of their clearly soiled underwear with such urgency that they couldn't throw it in the trash? Not to mention that they looked like they may have been men's briefs and we were in the ladies room. I didn't really get that close of a look.

I'm a naturally curious person. These things give me pause and I wish there were some way to unravel these mysteries, or explain why they keep happening in the bathroom. Any theories?!?

Another visit to the ladies room resulted in more confusion. As I was walking out, the garbage pail beside the door contained not ONE, not TWO but THREE open and partial consumed bags of snacks in different varieties. As far as I'm concerned, this begs two questions. One: Who is eating chips in the bathroom? Or anything for that matter? Gross. and Two: Considering each was only partially consumed, were none of them satisfactory? Apparently none were tasty enough to satisfy the discerning palette of one who chooses to snack in the bathroom.

This time I got a picture, however poor quality. I learned my lesson.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Define "In Bad Taste"

Pepsi recently released an iPhone app (application) called Amp Up (Before You Score). It categorizes women into types. The user taps to flip the card and get relevant information to help him (or her, if that's how you roll) close the deal. The tips are anything from appropriate pick-up lines to a chart to judge the wealth of a married woman's husband by the size of her diamond (HA!)to stretching exercises if you are about to try to land twins (Double HA!).

The fact of the matter is... it's funny, well-designed and possibly even helpful. Okay, so I agree that the BRAG button that lets the user instantly tweet or FB their conquest is a bit much but, that is a judgment call. The loser who taps that button would be the same tasteless slob who'd tweet his victory anyway. But, I guess Pepsi doesn't need to make it easier for guys to be insensitive assholes. Maybe they could drop the BRAG button but the rest of the app is gold.

What I'd like to know is who's defining "in bad taste" these days? It seems like anything goes. Apparently 36% of us tweet after sex (and that's only counting those who admit it!). One look at and you'll see a whole lot worse than a guy tweeting that he just landed a smoking hot foreign exchange student. If you've ever sent or received a Someecards you'd know that just about any topic is fair game. For goodness sakes, there's a site called Poop Tweet and I'm sure you don't have to visit to figure out what that site is populated with.

With today's net-culture, who's looking at the Pepsi App and saying "WELL! I NEVER!" as she drinks from her silver tea cup with her pinkie held high. C'mon. Cut Pepsi some slack.

I think we are all grown-ups here (at least I hope so). If you don't like the app, don't download it. If you don't like the Tweeter, don't follow. If you don't like the blog, don't read it. Except mine. You should TOTALLY keep reading mine. But you like mine, right? And I'm never offensive so I won't worry.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Warning: This post is not funny. Okay, maybe it's a little funny but I'm actually trying to be serious for a change. Nothing to worry about. I'm sure I'll be back to my regularly scheduled shenanigans in no time.

Today I'm talking about keeping things in perspective in regards to conflict. Everyone argues. It's a fact. People are different and will clash. It's something we have to deal with every day, and frankly, life would be pretty uninteresting if everyone agreed with each other all the time. Everyone would be smiling and happy... practically skipping and hugging with the joy of their conflict-free lives and I'm pretty sure I'd have to be punching them in their stupid faces on a regular basis.

Life is conflict. The key to harmony is keeping those conflicts in perspective. I've seen so people fight with their friends and loved ones over little things and turn those little things into something all consuming. They turn the disagreement into something much bigger than it needs to be: a huge, ugly, angry monster that seethes and grows until it consumes the people involved. Ick. Who needs it?

A conflict doesn't necessarily require a resolution. It just requires the strength and presence of mind to move past it.

It only takes a few minutes of thought and a little effort to take a step back and see the conflict for what it is and not make it into something it's not. If a woman fights with her husband over who's turn it is to empty the dishwasher, she shouldn't make a disagreement about a household chore into a show of disrespect or a power play. "He knows full-well it's his turn, he just wants to see if he can control me and I'm not going to let that happen." Chill. Maybe he's just an idiot. Maybe he woke up on the wrong side of the bed. Maybe he did empty it last time and she didn't realize it because she was at the grocery store. In any case, she married the guy for a reason, right? It might be hard for her to see that reason clearly when she thinks he's being an ass but it's still there. She just needs to adjust her perspective.

I know that I have a lot of friends reading this right now and thinking it's all about them. It is, and it's not. It's not ALL about anyone. It's about everyone. It's just some advice. I think it's good advice. You may think it sucks and that's fine. I still love you. (look at that, a conflict... and now it's done.)

I'm not a Pollyanna (okay, maybe a little). I don't think people can just put all of their differences aside. Sometimes it's hard work. Sometimes it's a family member or a co-worker. Sometimes it's a friend that you work with and you get along famously outside of work but butt heads constantly in the office. In these cases, you have to work harder to compartmentalize the disagreements. "Sure, we fought for a day and a half over how to handle that account but that doesn't mean we're not still going to watch the game this weekend."

I used to work closely with one of my best friends. To be clear, we didn't make friends on the job, we were friends BEFORE working together. Actually, I was his supervisor. At work, we used to fight. Not bicker, not banter but FIGHT. That didn't make me love him any less. I didn't twist it into some crazy notion that he had some other agenda or vice versa. We'd fight at work and let it go. We've been friends for 20 years.

My point is, these conflicts, in the grand scheme of things are so minor and insignificant. They are what they are an nothing more. Differences of opinion. Conflict of views. They are nothing more and to let them consume you is, well, just dumb.

Life is so much better when you count your blessings instead of counting your misfortunes.

(There. I'm done. We now return to our regularly scheduled silly posts about parenting, fashion and other nonsense.)

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Faux Celebs on Twitter

I'm not, by any stretch of the imagination, a celebophile. I don't watch E! I don't check the news on TMZ. I don't follow Brittany Spears on Twitter. I have followed a few celebs on Twitter but I remove them if they are boring or obnoxious or repetitive (read: Kevin Smith, who tweets solely about Hockey and banging his wife). I don't keep following the rich and famous for the simple fact that they are a celebrities and, therefore, worthy of my attention. Blah.

Of course, anyone who knows me knows that when I do catch the obsession-bug, celeb or otherwise, it is with stalker-like severity. It's scary, really and sometimes useful (ask my husband how we met). But that's not what this post is about.

I do follow a few celebs on Twitter. Usually attractive male celebrities, go figure, like James Roday, Hugh Jackman and Michael Johns. Sometimes I'll pick up some celebs because they are just funny or interesting, like Mike Rowe, Adam Savage or Stephen Colbert.

But what I don't get is what some one gets out of impersonating a celebrity Tweeter. Where is the thrill in pretending be a famous person in 140 characters or less? Is it just so fanboys or fangirls will @reply telling them how cute/talented/sexy/funny they are? How can that be validating? Sure, everyone loves a compliment but they aren't actually complimenting the twit-faker, just the persona they've assumed. Or maybe they're hoping someone with Twitpic them something risque. If that's the goal, they should realize that could go horribly wrong (read: fat, hairy, wrong gender).

I also don't understand how some celebs get many more impersonators than others. It seems very random. There are quite a few fake Wentworth Millers on Twitter. He's not a super star. Most people are sadly unfamiliar with the sexy brooding star of Prison Break (now off the air) yet there are dozens of people pretending to be him in micro-blog form.

What is even more astonishing is the number of followers these impostors have and that they continue to send them messages of adoration when it's so obvious that they are faking it. It's sad, really, that some people so badly need to make a connection that they'll ignore the warning signs. It is the same formula that makes people stay in relationships with cheater, abusers, addicts, etc.

I guess we all have our voids to fill.

For me, I prefer to pretend that I actually AM an Internet celebrity, rather than impersonate one. I like to imagine that I have tons of adoring fans anxiously awaiting my next blog or tweet or status update. I like it here in my fabricated "JT World". It's pretty. There are rainbows and bunnies and chocolate ice cream for everyone! I don't want to go back to reality. You can't make me.