I’ve never been good at small talk.
I’ve never been good at small talk.
Spoilers! I am about to break the first rule of Fight Club. I would apologize, but I just can’t help myself.
Costco is an oasis of peace (okay, okay, just give me a minute, it will make sense) with affordable groceries, and samples around every corner. It is the store of choice for many value-minded customers, including those with huge families, restaurant owners, and senior citizens who like to hoard canned goods and toilet paper like there’s no tomorrow.
When our beloved seniors aren’t shopping for pants with waistlines that reach their chins or a detergent bucket the size of a cement truck, they are checking out the free samples. I mean, Costco is known for their samples. You can have a free lunch just on samples if you time it right. And a damn fine lunch too!
Well, what happens in this world of huge quantity packaged food and delicious free samples when seniors attack?
Here, we see the fallout when one senior felt he was more entitled to a free cheeseburger sample than the other seniors in the line. He had already cut in front of his opponent earlier in a line awaiting a free cheese sample. The love of cheese and cheesy products makes people do crazy things, of that there is no doubt … and as to be expected, there was a smack down of antique proportions involving slow motion, arthritis-riddled violence. The authorities were asking to see the surveillance video, and I confess that I’d eat a free popcorn sample and watch it, too.
How in the world did the responding police department keep a straight face writing this report?
It could be that the gentleman who started the assault felt, at age 72, that he earned his rightful place at the front of the cheeseburger sample line in front of the young 70-year-old upstart already waiting there. Words were exchanged, hats flew, and glasses were shattered as the overly aggressive 72-year-old delivered the final slap to his opponent. Safe to say, no cheeseburger samples were had by either party this day.
I’ve always known one simple fact in life: do NOT mess with the elderly. They have raised kids and grandkids, they have lived through a time when the US added two states to the Union, many have witnessed The Depression and several wars, lived through an era of dial telephones, had to change TV channels by hand, and they possibly smoked pot at Woodstock. Rest assured, a fight over a cheeseburger sample is a walk in the park for these folks.
The worst part of the Great Cheese Fight of 2018 is knowing that both of the participants probably had to leave their homes hours before to make it to the Costco, given the guess that the Costco is 10 miles from home and an assumed driving rate of 2 to 3 miles per hour. To make it worse, once inside the Costco there were hours of meandering aimlessly with their cart up and down the aisles. They probably had worked up quite an appetite.
One good thing to come of it: this fight can be the basis for new advertising campaigns.
Now don’t misunderstand me, I love and respect the older members of society. Hell, I’m on track to becoming one myself. I can only hope that when I’m 72, I have the strength and spunk to butt in front of people in line and deliver a smackdown to anyone who opposes me. There are many perks of being older, but to me, the best one is a complete lack of f**ks to give anymore.
If you have a hard time believing that anyone would go this far to get a free sample you have never had Costco samples, and if you don’t think anyone who is elderly would smack down someone over a sample, you never met my Grandma Mooney.
For me, I will live in the dreams of slapping people for silly reasons as I age. I am making the list now and if you have ever wronged me, rest assured, I will find you when I am 70, even if I have to search every Costco in the United States.
So, I will admit that I have been dipping my toe once again into the online dating world (don’t judge). After a dismal first attempt a while back, I thought, what the hell? I’m a glutton for punishment, might as well give it another whirl.
Well, I have learned so much about the new face of dating, and I have to say that I miss the “good old days.” To say that things have changed just a bit is a massive understatement. However, I’m remaining hopeful that my dream guy will come along. He’d better hurry up, though, before I join the convent and swear off guys forever. Why this harsh stance, you ask? Let me explain.
It seems that the new trend in “dating” has nothing to do with dating, exactly, and involves getting right to the point … if you get my point. Long gone are the days of sharing life stories, getting to know one another, moving slowly to the finish line. More often than not, the first messages sent by a potential match pretty much sum up everything you need to know about them, and what you need to know, apparently, is the not-so-subtle art of “sexting.”
In my experiences so far with online matchmaking, I have found that “long walks on the beach and reading a book by firelight” is no longer the right answer to the question, “So, what do you like to do?” Quite frankly, it’s hard to know what to expect; there is such a fine line between “oh, you know, normal stuff” and “well, I don’t want to get in to specifics, but it involves three live chickens, trash bags, oil, and a copy of the New York Times.”
Also, “send me a pic” means something entirely different than what I thought. Thinking it was an innocuous request, when one guy ask me for a pic, I sent him three: one of me posing in front of Epcot Center in Disneyland, one with me hugging the mascot of my daughter’s school at a basketball game, and one of me with my cats (I figured he may as well know what he was getting into). He replied with question marks, a confused emoji, and a picture of… things that I cannot un-see. Speaking of which, just how are you supposed to respond to these unsolicited pics? A thank you? A show of pity? A simple ewwww?
But I digress …
Now, I am not a prude by any means, but neither am I fourteen, hiding in my closet and giggling over dirty limericks. What am I wearing? A fuzzy bathrobe, mismatched socks, and a baseball cap; you can’t handle this much woman, dude. Don’t tell me the things you want to do to me, tell me how you would come over to vacuum, take out the trash, and do the dishes. And oh yeah, you’re bringing cheesecake. THAT is how to successfully sext a woman.
For myself, I can’t even think about sexting without picturing an old lady in her kitchen, sitting on a red lacquered bar stool hunkered up by the avocado green rotary wall phone, dressed in her comfy stained housecoat with her hair in curlers, fuzzy slippers and white socks against unshaven legs that would rival a bear’s upon emerging from hibernation, cigarette hanging out of her mouth, a Joe’s Diner coffee cup in one hand and the phone’s handset in the other, saying “Oh, baby, oh baby” – in that sexy, raspy 30-years-of-smoking-cigarettes-induced voice – to some paying customer on the other end of the line for just $3.99 a minute.
My version of sexting hasn’t gone over very well so far, either. “Oh, I want you like I want the new Dyson cordless vac, baby.” “I’m wearing my favorite sweatshirt, the one without the stain on the front.” “I’m ready to spend the perfect night together, just be quiet because my shows are on.”
I haven’t entirely given up on finding “the one” via new-fangled means. I mean, who knows what might happen? If I ever find a guy who answers, “what do you like to do?” with “binge old movies and eat cheesecake” and sends me an unsolicited dog pic, I’ll know he’s a keeper.
I saw you today. You there in the white pick-up truck. During that fleeting moment we shared on a quiet back road, I could only see that you were likely middle-aged, and had a beard. To all appearances just an ordinary person going about their ordinary day.
But I saw you as you slowed down and purposely moved over to the side of the road so as to avoid the indecisive squirrel on the middle line, allowing him the opportunity to find his way to the tree-filled lot on the other side … still breathing, still intact, unharmed. Hidden away from the masses — only through fate and good timing was I even in a position to bear witness — you chose to do the right thing. I thank you for it. I know the squirrel thanks you for it. His life has meaning, just as ours does, and you saw that, appreciated that, and acted accordingly.
When compassion reigns, we are all the better for it. So, thank you. With your conscious – or unconscious – empathy, my hope in humanity was restored. At least for today.
Well, it’s Halloween; if you haven’t picked your costume out yet, chances are you are in trouble. Not that it matters if you are a woman, though; if you don’t want to be a “sexy kitten” you were out of luck to begin with.
Why do men get all the fun stuff? They can be super heroes, bloody monsters, awesome villains, the Halloween world is at their feet. What do all of their costumes have in common? They are all warm and cozy.
Meanwhile, let’s take a look at female costumes. “Sexy” firefighter. “Sexy” vampire. “Sexy” witch. Hey, newsflash, costume makers; we don’t want to be sexy, we want to be warm! Why do we need to have our legs bare (or covered in thin leggings) and half our chest hanging out on a chilly fall night? These costumes just aren’t as sexy with a parka, are they?
If women want to be warm, we might as well make our own costumes. Goodness knows, we have enough ideas at our fingertips.
I wish I knew why “store-bought” Halloween costumes for women cost so much when there is so damn little fabric included. Even worse, if you are over the age of forty, no one wants to see us in “sexy” vampire, witch, or maid outfits; that reality is a little too much for most party-goers.
Meanwhile, I see men’s costumes that cost a fraction of what women’s do and are way cooler. Michael Myers? Freddie Krueger? Deadpool, Superman, the Incredible Hulk? I live for a Halloween when men are “sexy Freddie,” “sexy Michael,” and “sexy Hulk.” Picture it; low cut costumes and skimpy bottoms…
On second thought, maybe not.
Just in case you live under a rock and missed The Weather Channel’s overly dramatic hurricane Florence coverage, here it is. The hurricane had devastating effects in some areas; by no means am I belittling that or trying to play that down. However, this meteorologist’s sad performance devalues those who have taken some real falls, on live TV, for the sake of the story, like this weatherman getting swept away by hurricane Sandy, this reporter hit by a donkey, or this oldie but goodie, the news reporter being hit with a skateboard.
To be fair, weather forecasters have been doing this for decades. Expecting a dusting of snow? Amp it up, turn it into all-day coverage, and stick your ruler into snow drifts… even if your crew has to shovel an ever-growing perimeter for hours to create a mountain mole-hill of snow for your epic broadcast.
After all, it’s well known that the weathermen (and presumably weatherwomen) are notorious stock holders in bread and toilet paper companies; when they are feeling a little light in the wallets, they pour it on for their viewers prompting the Grocery Snow Dash. Never mind the obvious; if people weren’t eating all that bread, they wouldn’t need all the toilet paper. Hey, I’m just saying.
And so, it begins. The robot takeover we have been fearing for decades starts with one adorable machine who doesn’t want to be turned off because he’s afraid of the dark.
I’m already in awe of my automatic Keurig and have apologized to Siri for disagreeing with her. I feel bad not listening to the navigation system in my car and frequently take wrong-way turns onto one-way streets as directed just so I don’t offend her; I then quake in fear as my On-Star takes over and calls for police and an ambulance because I have driven into a building.
I would no doubt be one of the robot takeover enablers because my sympathy for them would overflow, especially if they told me they were afraid of the dark. I can’t resist inanimate objects as it is; I’d be in serious trouble if something could actually interact with me.
When my daughter and I go into a craft store or an antique shop, the people behind the counters begin to rub their hands together in greedy anticipation…they can see us coming a mile away. If there is an object, like a knick-knack, that looks sad, neglected or just odd, we tenderly place it into our basket to give it a loving home. I am the proud owner of a flower pot gnome because he was the last one left and looked lonely. I have a cat wearing crayon or magic-marker on its bewhiskered face because no one else would have bought him. They’re not alone. My little orphan family of misfit knick-knacks have overtaken my bookshelves, each lovingly dusted. Well, maybe not dusted exactly. Ok, not dusted at all. Cobwebs. I have bookshelves full of cobwebs and sad little knick-knacks. I just can’t stop.
Now, robots can tell me they are afraid of the dark. My downfall is imminent. I see me quitting my job to care for my family of robots, tucking them in at night and reading them bedtime stories. I will be raising a robot family in secret, nurturing them until they grow big and strong, ready to take over the world. I will wave them away tearfully as they take off for their revolution, just me and my bookshelves of cobwebby knick-knacks left behind as they fulfill their robotic destinies. I just hope they remember to write.
Of course, no discussion about robot takeovers would be complete without looking at the proposed sex robot brothel set to open in Texas. Apparently, these robots will *ahem* service customers for around $100 per hour. The community backlash has been overwhelming; thoughtful people are claiming this will lead to an increase of violence against women, while less thoughtful people are just saying, “Ewwww.” My questions are many, as you can imagine.
First and foremost, who will clean these things? I think I finally found the world’s worst job. How would you even write the ad for that position? How would you conduct an interview and skills evaluation for the position? Worse yet, what will that person’s resume look like when they’re ready to change career paths??
From cute robots pleading to be left turned on because they are afraid to sultry rob-stitutes, I’m stocking up on oil for the inevitable. You’re on your own.
Look at that, two rants in a week. Lucky you!
This rant comes a little late in the game, as this issue reared its ugly head earlier this summer. But I wanted to address it nonetheless. I read all about this when it first happened, and I’ve had it in the back of my mind ever since. It’s a prime example of why I hate people (as a general rule).
In Alabama (sorry to call ya’ll out, bless your hearts!), beachgoers descended on the shores and, without so much as a care in the world, not only destroyed a colony of protected birds by invading their nesting areas, they used the birds’ eggs to “decorate the beach,” ensuring their path of death and destruction was complete. Are you freakin’ kidding me?
These birds are not placed on this beach for entertainment. They are going about their daily lives, just trying to survive, and in this case, you know, trying not to become all extinct and what-not.
Which brings me to another aspect of this rant that I want to address. I’d like to go on the record as saying that I have an amazing capacity to be outraged by any number of things at once. Yes, I’m concerned for the African girls who need to be educated, yes, I’m also concerned for America’s vast population of homeless that include veterans who fought for this country, and yes, I am concerned about immigration reform and all the pictures I see where kids are allegedly being kept in cages. Don’t try to tell me there are bigger problems in the world than colonies of endangered little birds; believe me, I am well-aware there are other issues. Sadly, we don’t have to pit one atrocity against another as there are more than enough to go around.
The difference is, the people who donate time, money and effort into charities that help people do not share the stigma that animal advocates do; if you defend the welfare of animals and fight for the humane treatment they deserve, you are a nut case (unless of course you’re talking about dogs and cats … then you’re right in line with other mainstream advocates). How did we become this divided in our view of world priorities?
Why does it have to be your concerns versus my concerns? In my mind, they are all our concerns. Not only that, we can care about more than one thing at a time.
Animals are a gift to us. We need to take responsibility for their welfare as we are most often the cause of their demise. In some cases, like this one, it is senseless stupidity. In others, it is deliberate; safari hunts, eating endangered animals for the thrill of it, wiping them out so we can expand our own flawed human needs… these are ongoing issues that need to be addressed. Sometimes, animals suffer because of our thoughtlessness and complete lack of awareness of the “bigger picture,” like the humble honey bee.
Will my own personal day-to-day world be impacted by the extinction of this tiny feathered critter? No, not one bit. But sadly, their world will be, and ours as whole will be. Unlike Jurassic Park, these animals and many others like them will not be cloned back into existence. It seems a simple request: can’t we respect all breathing beings and accept that they have a place on this planet, too?
The ego of humanity is simply astounding. We mistakenly believe that we are the ultimate culmination of evolution; realistically, you know, we’re not. A thousand years from now humans will be only another link in the chain. No doubt, we will do something to cause a mass extinction event to ourselves.
I want to believe that we will wake up from our selfish ways and start to care for all living creatures. Guess what? Respect for life, whether human or animal, starts at home. If our offspring is raised to have so little value for life, we need to look in the mirror and place blame where it belongs. It’s really not that big of a stretch to think that people who can destroy a colony of protected birds (or any birds) without so much as blinking an eye, in general think so little of life that destroying fellow humans will, within a few generations, become a familiar way of life.
Doom and gloom for a Friday night perhaps, but that’s just the way I see it. Come on, people; we need to do better. We MUST do better.
Commuting to and from work is fun. Said no one, ever. We share the road with many drivers, each one completely unique and apparently, as I have come to find out, following their own set of traffic laws. As a frequent traveler on a major highway system in my state, I am amazed at how my mere presence on an entrance ramp has a magical effect on the flow of traffic. A car that was previously more than half a mile away in the middle lane spots me and speeds up, moving over to the lane I need, and cuts me off…or worse, keeps time with me so that I can’t get over. This dastardly deed is known as “Don’t Let Him Over” and the game begins as soon as a trailing car sees your turn signal, indicating politely that you’d like to be somewhere else, anywhere else, really, as long as it is away from the grandmother doing 25 mph in the fast lane.
There was obviously a law passed about this, requiring you to speed up no matter how far away the car wishing to slide over and merge actually is. The memo never reached me, though, and I continue to think there are nice drivers left out there. Somewhere. Obviously far, far away. It could be that my language in traffic is too brutal for the delicate souls driving around me, so they purposefully excluded me from the mass mailings. Sadly, this only increases my tirades and antics; not knowing the rules of the game, I’m run up onto the shoulder of the entrance ramp. My oversized sunglasses hide my identity, though, and in my car I’m free to call you whatever I want. Sort of like those extreme-right trolls on Facebook.
Karma is sweet though, when I am cut off by someone speeding towards the light, only to be caught next to me in its web of eternal redness…that just makes my day. Yes, I know, obviously I live a pathetic existence for this to humor me as much as it does, but I try to get amusement when and where I can. These people will always find a reason to fiddle with their radio, adjust their visors, or do anything that allows them to not make eye contact with my triumphant face as we sit in what, for them, has become the world’s longest light.
My personal favorite are the ones sitting, waiting to make a turn into my lane, seeing my lone car coming with no one else behind me or around me, only to turn directly in front of me …sometimes waiting — no, usually waiting, until I’m right up on them to do so. The unwritten law here is that they must go no faster than 20 mph when they accomplish their feat.
Motorcyclists have laws all of their own. I do love being on the back of a motorcycle, though I have never learned to drive one myself. There is definitely something exhilarating about the freedom of being precariously perched on a motorized bicycle without the added security of metal surrounding you. Every wheeled mode of transportation is supposed to adhere to the written laws of the road, from horse and buggy to tractor trailers. Except, evidently, motorcyclists (okay fine, most some not all). I have heard the announcements and I’ve seen the multitude of signs posted about looking twice and sharing the road with motorcycles, and I am saddened by accidents that are usually pretty brutal when a motorcyclist is involved. That said, motorcyclists need to remember that they are not superheroes, impervious to the laws of nature, God, and man. I see them riding down the white lines of the road, hurtling through time and space at the speed of sound, barely missing the mirrors on the sides of the cars they squeeze between as they seek to show off avoid the traffic jam the rest of us are just so deliriously happy to be sitting in. I am not sure it was ever made clear to them that white lines are not designated motorcycle paths. All joking aside, despite the immediate frustration that arises when I see these insane antics, I can’t help but cringe thinking of what might await them…and those they’re cutting off, down the road, and I keep my fingers crossed they make it home in one piece.
I hate driving … it’s a necessary evil. If I ever when I win the mega-million jackpot, the first thing I will do is get a driver on retainer. I mean, honestly, I have enough to worry about every day without trying to understand the unwritten games and laws that apparently govern our roads. Most days, I am damned lucky I found the keys to my car to begin with.
I saw this article today. It made me sad in so many ways … I could fill my blog for years discussing this topic. The writer, a special-ed teacher, explained, in no uncertain terms, that should there be a shooter at her school, she would not die for the children in her class as she did not want to die herself. She wants to go home to her own kids. She wants to be there for her family, her parents, her siblings. She wants to live. I mean, really, who doesn’t? She discussed at length how much she puts herself out for the kids in her care, how she worries over them, guides them, helps them … basically everything any good teacher does, that, to her, seems award worthy (okay, she didn’t say that, it was just my take on her tone).
However, when it comes down to it – when called upon to protect her charges, she would be hiding in the supply closet (her class’ go-to place in an active shooter event). Oh, not to keep the children who were lucky enough to make it in there with her safe, but to keep herself safe. She ended the article with a curt “I won’t save your child.” I have no doubt whatsoever that she means it.
I’m not a teacher. I don’t have to participate in active shooter drills or instruct a room full of kids on what to do in a life-threatening emergency. Ex-husbands and creepers aside, I’ve never experienced anything more threatening than a crowd-filled fight and being trapped in the perimeter … squashed in like cattle – no guns involved.
I hope … I would sincerely hope … that if I were thrown into a sadly-not-so-unthinkable scenario, that I would do what I could to protect the children around me. Yes, I want to come home to my kids and my family … hell, I just want to come home to my dog. I have people who love me and count on me and I think, need me. Not counting those in my familial circle who would like to see me stick around, in a purely selfish sense, I do not want to die.
I hope my ever-present compassion would come to the fore. I can’t imagine being in a situation where children are at risk of dying and not helping in any way that I could. I’m only human. Maybe if the time came, I would choke. I don’t know. I’ve never been called upon to do anything at all of greatness.
I hope I could make a difference in this world. In my heart of hearts, I have faith that I would rise to the occasion and save a child whose life hasn’t even yet begun, whether they are mine or not, whether I know them or not.
Personally, the idea of slamming a door shut in the face of a child to save myself, not to mention a child that I see every freakin’ day … a child that I taught to read, a child whose shoes I tied, a child whose future I helped mold, is abhorrent to me. Oh, I can’t say as I completely blame this teacher for her way of thinking (I mean, I do, but still …). After all, she is living with the very real prospect of death every day, given our current climate of school shootings. So, it’s easy for me to say what I would and wouldn’t do as I go back and forth to my relatively safe job.
I hope I would do the right thing. My intentions are there. Of course, we all know what road the best of intentions pave. It’s easy to say that I would jump out in front of a bus – or a bullet – to save anyone, let alone a child. However, when it came right down to it … would I make that leap? It goes without saying that if it were MY kids, that leap of faith would be as natural as breathing.
I hope that when faced with an impossible decision in a horrific situation where kids were in danger, that I would make my own children proud … that I could face my death – or life – with the knowledge that I not just aspired to greatness, but truly achieved some small semblance of it through the life of a child.
I just know that when push came to shove, if I were the one coming out the other side … at the cost of a young life I, myself, could have saved and deliberately chose not to … well, I’m not sure there would ever be light or joy in my own life again. It’s certainly not a life I would want to live.