Sunday, August 13, 2017

Tag Sale - Everything (Including this Lipo Machine) Must Go

My friend was out shopping tag sales last weekend and came across an estate sale for a doctor. The sale items included a "gently used" liposuction machine -- apparently the doctor was a plastic surgeon. 

His first thought was, "Who in the world is going to buy this?"

My first thought was, "How hard could it be?"

NB I love the bucket attachment in this image. Ewww....

Monday, July 31, 2017

IKEA Is Swedish for Crap

Yesterday was Sunday and I decided the lesser of two evils in terms of weekend days to go to IKEA in New Haven. Where to begin? First, the traffic was still pretty heavy even though it was a Sunday. Second, I hadn't slept well so never a good idea to go shopping when you're tired. Third, it's IKEA, the place that lures you into buying crap just because it's cheap. Oh and the kicker? It was almost lunch time, and what was once only a handful of food trucks has turned into a mini-Austin, Texas food truck fest.

I went in search of very specific items like a new duvet cover for the guest room to replace the old duvet cover that ripped in the washing machine. I also needed 2 new pillows and a bedspread for Will's room. Here's what I came home with:
  • Duvet cover that doesn't match anything in the guest room (to be returned)
  • Bedspread (keeping)
  • 2 pillows (keeping, already in use)
  • 2 storage boxes that look like mini-ottomans or stools (to be returned, what was I thinking with the white fabric?)
  • 4 small plastic bins I was going to use to organize tools in the basement but they don't hold anything (to be returned)
  • 3 tin planters that I was also going to use to organize nails/screws in the basement but we don't have any loose nails/screws so I don't need them (to be returned)
  • Gray stain to stain my back porch (already stained, looks good)
  • Set of three of the world's crappiest paint brushes to apply said stain (1 down, 2 to go)
When I finished staining the porch, Will took a look from inside the kitchen. He said, "I like it. It looks very rusty." Meaning rustic. #epicfail

I've decided IKEA should install a mandatory meditation room directly in front of check out as part of their corporate social responsibility. All IKEA shoppers would be forced to sit and stare at their carts and ask rhetorical questions of themselves like, "Do I really need this lucky bamboo? Am I actually going to follow these ridiculous anime assembly instructions?" No. At least 50% of the time, the answer will be no. 

The long and short of it is, I have to go all the way back to New Haven to return this stuff. On a positive note, it is IKEA so I can get a soft serve yogurt cone for a buck. 

NB: This is a picture of a small child wrapped in a bath mat that makes her look like a polar bear cub. This is what happens at IKEA people.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

My Blog, and Falconry, Are Making A Comeback

I don't even remember how it started, but this is the conversation I had with my husband Rod last night. Wait, I think it was related to him watching ESPN.

Anytime I have a conversation like this, I am reminded of the far wittier and more prolific blogger and author, Jenny Lawson aka @theBloggess.

Rod: Falconry is making a comeback.

Me: What?

Rod: Falconry. It's making a comeback.

Rod again: Someday, I may come home with a surprise for you.

Me: If you come home with a falcon, we're going to have a problem. 

The End. 

NB: This image is from a Groupon for a discounted falconry experience in San Juan Capistrano, California. Apparently, falconry is making a comeback. In California.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Just the Way You Are

This sign makes me sad. I think it's supposed to be sweet, but it makes me sad. 

I saw it on a walk through my neighborhood today. At first, I thought what a cute idea. Then I looked closer and saw that small children wrote their 2017 resolutions on this board. One says, "Stop sucking my thumb." The other says, "To focus better at school." And that makes me sad. 

I feel like knocking on my neighbor's door and saying, "Hey I sucked my thumb until I was driving and I hide chocolate bars in a small Igloo cooler in the pantry. I hide them from MYSELF!"  

But I totally get it. We want our kids to do better. "You can do better!" we say. I think it comes from a place of wanting better for them, wanting what we think we lack or didn't have or should've done differently. 

Now that Will is away at college, I'm thinking about all the things I wish I hadn't done as a parent. I think about what I put in his head with my "you can do better" prodding. 

Maybe, instead of worrying about the next thing and the next thing, I should've just sat in the grass and watched him play baseball. Or let him use every single dish in our home to bake his psychedelic, 7 different food coloring birthday cake with his friends. Or let him take hour long showers and run out all the hot water because at least I could hear him singing. Or not lose my shit when he forgot something again, because maybe what he forgot was never important to him or really even matters in the long run.

Will is an awesome kid. But I often think he is an awesome kid in spite of us. That our constant wanting better for him should've been, "You're pretty awesome just the way you are." Period. Mic drop.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Welcome to Kakistocrastan

I learned another new word reading Paul Krugman's Op-Ed in the New York Times about the war of words currently taking place in social media and traditional media between Georgia's Representative from Atlanta, John Lewis, and our PEOTUS, Donald Trump. The word is: kakistocracy.

Here's the word kakistocracy used in a sentence by poet James Russell Lowell, who wrote in 1876: “Is ours a government of the people, by the people, for the people, or a kakistocracy rather, for the benefit of knaves at the cost of fools?”

Tuesday, January 10, 2017


No that's not a typo.

I learned a new word today. Finna. It struck me as an appropriate word to write about on my Fighting Finn(a) blog. It's a slang term that apparently the young people are using these days. It's the equivalent of "gonna." As in, I'm finna avoid my work by learning youthful slang terms and then blogging about them. 

Or as my Granny Helen used to say, "I'm fixin' to..." This is an expression that also means "gonna," and in Granny's Helen's case might be followed by: "I'm fixin' to go out to the barn" to "I'm fixin' to feed the chickens" or "I'm fixin' to make some chocolate pudding." 

I learned this term by climbing down a rabbit hole that somehow led me to a YouTube channel hosted by Olivia Jade, the daughter of  Lori Loughlin who played Aunt Becky on the 1908's sitcom Full House. Probably the most famous Becky other than Becky with the Good Hair from Queen Bey. 

Or me. 

Happy 2017!

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

The Things We Do for Love

When our son was a little boy, we took him to New York City's famed FAO Schwartz toy store. We would go there many times over the years until Will's interests turned to gaming and electronics that were scarce at FAO Schwartz. 

On our first trip, we bought him a remote control airplane. He was so excited about it. We took it immediately to Central Park where we planned to fly and fly it until we needed to head back home. As is often the case in life, things didn't go according to plan. On its maiden voyage, the plane flew into an immense evergreen in the park and came firmly to rest in the tree's branches. 

Will was distraught. His beloved plane just sitting up there taunting him. My husband started throwing things up in the air to try and dislodge it, but the plane was really stuck. We came to the conclusion that one of us should climb the tree and try to shake it loose. The tree was one of those good climbing trees with loads of branches evenly spaced. How hard could it be?

I tried helping my husband up to the first limb but he was too heavy. It would have to be me. Me and my black patent leather shoes were going to climb that tree. With my husband's help, I made it easily to the lowest branch. Once inside the giant tree, I actually felt pretty safe. Branches were everywhere, leaves were everywhere. How could I fall?

I shimmied up that tree and shook the branches until the plane was freed and fell to the ground. Well done me, pat on the back -- until I looked down. 

My husband and I are both pretty terrified of heights. We're the people clinging to the inner edge of the Empire State Building Observation deck saying, "I'm good. I don't need to see it."

As I sat there probably three stories up in that tree, I thought the same thing. I'm good. I'll just stay here. But of course, I couldn't. It's a strange thing adrenaline. The overwhelming feeling that pushes you as a parent to do crazy things for your kids. 

I think my husband started to realize what was happening because he was talking to me like a hostage negotiator, calmly yet firmly reminding me that I needed to get down from that tree. Like most things in life related to fear, it's that first step of letting go that's the hardest, like learning to back dive when you're a kid. That's scary stuff. 

I climbed back down that tree by looking up. It's the only way I could make it. I listened to my husband and son on the ground and I climbed back down that tree at the pace of a giant sloth. I felt my way onto branches, stopped frequently and still considered from time to time that possibly the fire department might show up and rescue me.  Dear FDNY can't you hear my silent distress call?

That was really a proud moment for me as a parent. I did it! I climbed that freaking tree.

NB: Much later in life I would agree to go ziplining through the trees in Mexico with a guy named Loco in charge of securing our harnesses. He was missing part of his ear. But that's another story for another day.