The Evolution of Valentine’s Day

On Valentine’s Day you make a special effort to love and cherish all the people in your life who mean the most.  The longer you’re with someone, the more those displays of affection tend to evolve over time – especially with regards to this holiday.  I’ve been married to the same man for almost twenty years, and have noticed several Valentine’s Day changes that have happened for us during that time….

When presented with a heart-shaped box of chocolates:

At 20:  “Aw, that’s so sweet!!”  And then you spend the rest of the night feeding each other chocolate and making out like Johnny Depp and Juliette Binoche in the movie Chocolat.

At 40:  “Aw, just what I always wanted – a larger size pair of pants.”  And then you spend the rest of the night trying to force feed your kids chocolate so you minimize the inevitable caloric damage from your chocolate-fueled binge at 2am.

Mmmmm.... nothing tastes yummier than an extra hour at the gym.

Mmmmm…. nothing tastes yummier than an extra six hours at the gym.

When presented with flowers:

At 20: The sight of the large bouquet of roses makes you feel loved…. and a little horny.

At 40:  The sight of the large bouquet of roses makes you wish he had spent the $75 on a babysitter and booze instead.

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Nothing says “I love you” like helping to fund your florist’s trip to Jamaica.

When looking for a Valentine’s Day card:

At 20:  There are too many to choose from – you spend several minutes trying to decide between the five cards you think best represents your unwavering love and devotion.

At 40:  You stare dumbfounded at the cards for 20 minutes because you can’t seem to find one that says, “There are some guys who fart in bed, and scratch their balls in public – I love you because you’re not one of them.”

There was nothing in the Hallmark store like this - I looked.

There was nothing in the Hallmark store like this – I looked.

In preparation for your Valentine’s Day date:

At 20:  You make a special trip to Victoria’s Secret to pick out some sexy lingerie.  Then you create a romantic iPod playlist that will provide the soundtrack to your night of passionate love making – Marvin Gaye? Check!

At 40:  You decide to go all out – you shave your legs AND wax your mustache.  Nothing’s too good for your man!

Trust me - after two kids, this lingerie works out better for everybody.

Trust me – after two kids, this works out better for everybody.

Things he does that gets you in the mood:

At 20:  He spends the day teasing you with soft caresses and fleeting kisses, and then recreates the secret fantasy you once felt brave enough to share with him – tonight is going to be Fifty Shades of RED HOT!!

At 40:  You wake up in the morning and discover that he has cleaned the kitchen, including the sink full of dirty dishes you were dreading having to wash.  You haven’t felt this turned-on since the night he put the kids to bed and took out the garbage without being asked.

Is it wrong that this is the guy I fantasize about?

Is it wrong that this is the guy I fantasize about?

Happy Valentine’s Day!!

Tempting Slate

There are moments in everyone’s life when they get the urge or opportunity to begin anew – a clean slate….

For a dieter, it’s any given Monday or the night after all the cookies and ice cream has been purged from the house.

For a smoker who wants to kick the habit, it’s the moment they stub out the last cigarette in the pack.

For a new mother, it’s giving birth to her first-born child…. right before the realization hits her that there is no possible way to avoid screwing the kid up.

For a writer, it’s a blank page – or in my case, a brand new year for my blog.

The list of clean slate hopefuls and their situations vary wildly, but they all hold one thing in common – they’re all hoping to change something old, and create something new.  And what better moment to do that than when presented with a clean slate?  Our clean slate offers the inspiration and momentum to leave behind our old way of life, ditch our bad habit, or achieve a new goal.

That is why we usually fall hook, line, and sinker for the ultimate in clean slates, the one day of the year when everyone gets a big, fat, do-over – New Year’s Day.  It’s a magical day when we give ourselves absolution for all the times we sat on our asses instead of going to the gym, all the broccoli we passed over in order to save room for the brownie sundaes, and all the debt we incurred because it’s more tempting to go on a weekend bender to Vegas than to stay in and pat yourself on the back for being frugal.

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So we make a list of all our resolutions, and hang it on our bathroom mirrors, near our refrigerators, or any other location in our house that’s usually designed for self-flagellation.  And when we see our list, it comforts us and swears that regardless of years passed, this year will be different.

This year we will shut off the TV and start reading more books – beginning with the classics we hated in school.

This year we will join a gym and workout everyday. Everyday!!

This year we will not eat anything made by Hostess, Entenmann’s, Drake’s, or Frito-Lay.

This year we will lose forty pounds (should be a piece of cake after resolutions one and two).

This year we will find inner peace through daily meditation (note to self – google the Dalai Lama).

This year we will stop smoking like we own stock in Philip Morris.

This year we will stop drinking like we don’t own a liver.

This year we will keep our house clean (not just for company).

This year we will give Sally Struthers’ charity the 70 cents a day its been begging for since the early 90’s  (it’s the cost of a cup of coffee, for chrissakes!)

This year we will….

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And for the first few days of the New Year, we feel a surge of empowerment every time we lay eyes on our (strategically placed) list and feel secure in our belief that we will have NO problem sticking to our lofty goals.  There is a smile on our face, a spring in our step, and a virtual silver lining encircling our head.  We are completely committed to our sparkly clean slate, and no amount of temptation could lure us back into our torrid love affairs with Ben & Jerry, Jose Cuervo, and the Marlboro man.

But slowly, as the month wears on, our clean slate gets smudged…. sullied…. and eventually shat upon.  And by the end of January we find ourselves lying on the couch in our pajamas, watching Jersey Shore on TV, with an empty ice cream carton beside us dripping its sparse remnants onto our unread copy of Moby Dick.   We feel more stuffed than a pothead after a convenience store run, and in disgust we set fire to our hopeful little list (and our gym membership card), and light a cigarette from the burning embers.

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After several years of this self-destructive nonsense, we start to feel like Charlie Brown right after Lucy yanks the football away from him, and he ends up flat on his back, wondering how the hell he fell for that trick again.  It’s the very definition of stupidity – doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.  Charlie Brown should just realize that Lucy will never stop being amused by watching him fall on his ass, and we should realize that major life overhauls don’t work.

So I am hereby starting the Anti-Charlie Brown movement in an effort to prevent future emotional wipeouts.  If you decide to join, you will forever swear off mile-long resolution lists and unrealistic expectations.  Joining the movement with a friend would work especially well, this way if you try to set your sights on a ridiculously unattainable goal, your partner will be there to smack you upside the head and yell, “You blockhead!

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So throw out that once clean slate of yours – the one that is far too banged up and bedraggled to ever be considered clean again.  And pick one thing you want to change or start anew.  Me?  I’m going to expand my palate by trying new foods…. beginning with all 31 flavors at Baskin Robbins.  See how easy that was?

It’s all about baby steps…..

Sexting With Grandma

Every once in a while, a blog idea comes to me while I’m commenting on another person’s blog.  The inspiration behind Sexting With Grandma is compliments of the incomparable Madame Weebles who wrote a blog post about some of the twisted thoughts that run through her head sometimes.  After reading her post, I told her that I sometimes think about sending my friends and family members wildly inappropriate text messages just to see how they would react; something along the lines of….

“You were incredible last night, Rafael! I never knew it could be like that!  I love how adventurous you are… and that goes double for your dog, Sir Humps-a-lot.  What do you say I ditch my husband again tonight and find out if we can come up with any more uses for that vibrating chicken of yours?”

I loved the idea too much to let it end with Madame Weebles comment section, so I decided to actually send this exact message out to several people I know.  I was both eager and anxious to find out what their reactions were going to be. I was pretty sure they would all take it in good fun, but since I had never really tested the kinky boundaries of my friends and family members before (because… EWWW), I wasn’t positive that they wouldn’t disown me afterwards.  But if Rafael can be adventurous, then so can I!!

Initially, I really wanted to send the text out to my mom.  But my mom’s innocence was protected by the fact that her cellphone doesn’t receive text messages… I know, right?!  But she’s firmly planted on the “people should pick up the phone and TALK” side of the communication debate, so there’s no convincing her of all the merits of texting – like being able to send texts involving vibrating chickens, for instance.

The next victim on my texting hit list was my sister.  So, I sent it out and waited…. as it turned out, I didn’t have to wait long for her reaction.  A couple of minutes after sending her the text, my home phone rang.  I tried to answer with an innocent sounding “Hello?”, but couldn’t quite pull it off because I was giggling too much.  She said something along the lines of, “I just got a pretty interesting text from you….”  I couldn’t keep a straight face, so my ruse was quickly ruined.  Didn’t she know that when she gets a sext from her sister, she’s supposed to sext back?  Seemed like common sense to me.

I toyed around with sending the text to my older brother, but for some reason the idea grossed me out more than sending it to my mom.  So, it was on to victimizing my friends.  I sent the text to six of them, and then pretended that it had been a mistake that they got the message from me.   I will share with you my top three favorite responses.   [*Side note: All of my responses are in blue, and my friends are all in grey].

The Twisted Countdown Begins……

Number Three came from my friend, Jenn…. who apparently takes me WAY too seriously, and also thinks that me having an affair with a guy, his dog, and his chicken is a totally plausible idea:

text.with.jenn

Then I waited about twenty minutes for another reaction out of her, but when nothing came, I started to get nervous that she was taking me seriously.  So, I texted her back, and filled her in on the gag:

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Number Two came from my friend, Buck.  I’ve known him since college but apparently, he doesn’t think enough of our friendship to put me into his contact list, so when he got this text message, my name didn’t come up with it.  He thought he was getting this crazy text from a complete stranger:

text.with.buck.

Again, nothing but radio silence for a solid twenty minutes, which got my paranoia working overtime again.  At that point, I didn’t know that he wasn’t aware the text was from me.  So, I texted him back to make sure he knew it was just a joke:

text.with.buck.2

text.with.buck.3

Then much to my surprise, Buck’s wife, Colleen decided she wanted to jump in on the act.  I thought her attempt to shield her husband from a sex-crazed poultry slut and her lover was kind of sweet.  Who says chivalry is dead?:

text.with.colleen.

Number One came to me from one of my oldest friends, Moe.  I’ve known her since high school, and her response is the perfect example of why we have stayed friends for the last twenty-five years.  I love you, my twisted sister:

text.with.moe

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text.with.moe.3

Have any of you ever pulled a texting prank on someone you know?  If so, I’d love to hear about it.  And if not, what are you waiting for?  It’s a fun way to pass the time while you’re waiting in line at the grocery store or during those annoying commercial breaks on TV.  If you have the guts to send out this text or something like it, and tell me the reaction you get, I’ll pledge my undying love and loyalty to you.  I might even throw in a vibrating chicken.

[*Disclaimer:  Get Write Down To It takes no responsibility or liability for any divorce, disownment or involuntary psychiatric commitments that may result while performing this texting prank with your friends and family members…. mostly because I’m too broke to afford a lawyer.  So, proceed at your own risk.]

The Blogger Stands Alone

I’ve been blogging for close to two years, and something happened to me this week that has never happened before:  I wrote a blog post that got absolutely no comments.  NONE.  NADA.  ZIP.  I know there are a lot of bloggers out there who’ve experienced this before.  I’ve seen empty comment sections on countless blogs that I’ve visited…. and then scrolled passed without commenting.  But believe me, had I known how shitty it felt to put on a performance for an empty room, I would’ve taken the time to give you my two cents worth of feedback.  Probably.

I didn’t even get an obligatory comment from any of my friends or relatives – what good are you people if you’re not going to feed my ego and tell me that everything I do is awesome?!  Anyone who knew me back when my hair had its own zip code….

High School

is contractually obligated to blow smoke up my ass every once in awhile – especially when no one out in the cold, harsh world seems willing to do it.  Hey, I’ll probably be the one changing your adult diapers if/when you become too old to remember how to navigate the complicated world of indoor plumbing.  So, the least you can do is comment on one of my blog posts if it looks like it’s going to crash and burn.

Which clearly, this one did.  Okay, so point taken.  Obviously, none of my (almost) 1,400 followers had any interest in hearing about my writer crushes on David Sedaris and Jenny Lawson, or the fact that I’d love to know what it feels like to wear their skin like a suit.  Whatever.  You want to be all judgey about it – FINE.  How was I supposed to know I was the only one who got excited about tumors and children dressed up as dead fairytale characters?  It’s not like they tell you those kinds of things in the blogger’s guide to the galaxy.  I had to learn it the hard way.  But that particular lesson came at a pretty hefty price – now my ego feels a bit like week-old roadkill.

No, that’s fine.  Just paint right over me.  My shame looks good in speed-bump yellow.

No, that’s fine. Just paint right over me.
My shame looks good in speed-bump yellow.

Perhaps I’ve been a bit spoiled by the past two years worth of praise from other bloggers and the WordPress powers-that-be (I was Freshly Pressed.  Twice.  Yes, I’m totally bragging – give me a break, did you see the splattered remains of my ego back there??).  I know I can’t realistically expect to always be on top.  I also know writers need to have a really thick skin so they can withstand the public’s scrutiny, time and time again.  And yes, I know that I should be writing for myself, and not just to please the masses or get a pretty ribbon pinned on my shirt.

But here’s the deal – knowing all of that doesn’t make failure suck any less.  It also doesn’t silence the voice of doubt that creeps into my head while I’m sitting beneath a pile of my own stink; the voice that keeps wondering if I’m really cut out for all of this.  And if I wasn’t…. what the fuck am I supposed to do now?  Seriously – WHAT?!

I hope the future has karaoke bars.  If I’m going to be stuck working some shit job,  I’d at least like the option of getting drunk and singing show tunes.

I hope this exit has karaoke bars. If I’m going to be stuck working some shit job in the future,
I’d at least like the option of getting drunk and embarrassing myself in public.

Have any of you writers out there ever had any truly EPIC fails on your blog?  Please share your sob story with me.  Then we can have a few beers, a good cry, and sing a drunken rendition of Gloria Gaynor’s  “I Will Survive”.   It’ll be awesome.

Lipomas & Little Red Riding Hood

As an aspiring writer, I look to find pieces of myself in successful writers because it helps to fan the flame of hope (or delusion) that if they managed to prosper off of their talent, then maybe I can too.  It doesn’t matter how pathetically thin the connective thread is, I will cling to it like my life depends on it…. or at the very least, my sanity.

I’m sure I’m not the only one who does this.  Please, tell me I’m not the only one who does this!!   I imagine some singers look at Lady Gaga and think that because they both enjoy eating and wearing their dinner entrees, they have a chance of playing Madison Square Garden one day too; Or chefs who believe they can achieve Emeril Lagasse’s  level of success because they both use annoying exclamations like “BAM!” at the end of every sentence.

I look to find those little things I can identify with in humor writers like David Sedaris and Jenny Lawson because I stalk love them.  It makes no difference if these commonalities are completely inane or have no correlation with being a writer; I get giddy with excitement when I discover one.  Here are two of the most recently uncovered kindred spirit connections….

The similarities between David Sedaris and myself are (sadly) few and far between, except for our past love affair with cigarettes, and our mutual attraction towards gay men; which makes it all the more thrilling when I stumble upon a new one.  When his book Let’s Explore Diabetes With Owls came out, I raced out and bought it, just like I had with all of his other books.  In his first personal essay entitled Dentists Without Borders he talks about the discovery of a lump on his right side that he described as a little deviled egg tucked beneath his skin.  I had made a similar discovery on myself, except my mysterious lump was on my back and more closely resembled a small marble – but let’s not split hairs.

Where we diverged was how we handled it.  Within twenty minutes of making the discovery, David had assumed the lump was cancerous, called up his doctor, and made an appointment to have it checked out.  Whereas I jumped headfirst into denial (for about a year), and assumed that the lump was just another lovely byproduct of turning forty, like moles and chin hair.  But our two medical mysteries ultimately intersected at the same diagnosis – a lipoma (a fatty tumor).  Gross, but harmless.  And even though my little lipoma might someday reach Quasimodo proportions, I grin every time my hand grazes it because I feel like it brings me one step closer to a book deal.

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Tumor twins!!!

The second recent parallel I discovered was with The Bloggess, Jenny Lawson.  In general, I think it’s easier to find things in common with Jenny (over David) because we are both card carrying members of the almighty woman’s club – very exclusive, only half the world’s population is allowed in.  And we have at one time or another, used our membership privileges (read that as vaginas) to create a person. Add to that, our mutual affection for cats and the word motherfucker, and it’s like we were separated at birth.

While reading this blog post, I found out that we also have equally dark and twisted offspring.  While other little girls dressed up as Disney princesses and over-sexualized superheroes for Halloween, our daughters decided to go the more macabre, Grimm’s fairytale route….

DSC09824   small-little-dead-riding-hood

Though I have to admit,The Bloggess really went the extra mile, and had her daughter collect (what I can only assume are) the tiny remains of competing trick-or-treaters in her basket; my daughter, Meghan, only had Laffy Taffy and Skittles in hers.  In all fairness though, with Jenny’s long-standing obsession with taxidermy (no really, you NEED to click on that link),  she’s got a really big head start into the world of all things creepy as hell.  So, it look’s like I’ve got some serious catching up to do if I want to call myself a published author someday.

Who are some of your idols?  Do you have anything in common with them?

My Shampoo Tried to Kill Me

I had to get ready quickly because there was a lot on my to-do list for the day.  I rushed to get the kids ready for school, so that I could hop into the shower and prepare myself for the second annual “Boobs & Beers” celebration.  For the guys out there, I’m sorry to say that “Boobs & Beers” has nothing to do with strip clubs or drunken wet t-shirt contests.  It’s a day when I get together with some of my girlfriends and we all go get our annual mammograms, and then spend the rest of the day/night drinking our faces off. As any woman over the age of 35 will tell you, getting a mammogram is kind of unpleasant.  Breasts are meant to be adored and caressed – not squished between two cold metal plates.  But I have found that going with my girlfriends helps to make the process a lot more fun, as does the promise of a few drinks afterwards.

I got in the shower, and was simultaneously wetting my hair down and daydreaming about cold pints of beer, when my shampoo bottle seized its opportunity to stage a coup.  I guess it figured that it had taken just about enough of my manhandling, and finally decided to revolt against me.  When I snapped the lid on the bottle closed, a HUGE glob of shampoo flew into my eye. Right. Into. My. Eye.  There are military snipers with worse aim.  Given the strategic and precisely executed shot, I can only assume that my shampoo had been secretly practicing this attack for months.  Clearly, it had not only been hoping to blind me, but also to stymie my efforts of early breast cancer detection.

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My eye was wide open and unguarded at the time of the attack, because who the hells thinks to wear protective eye gear in the shower? Although now that I know my shampoo is really the spawn of Satan, I will.  I stood in the shower, paralyzed with pain and indecision.  I had an hour before I had to leave the house, I was half-blind, and my right eye felt like it had caught fire. On the pain scale, I’d say it was somewhere between getting Tabasco sauce in a paper cut, and stepping on a Lego – made me wonder if glass shards were an active ingredient in Redken’s shampoo formula.  For those who have never experienced this particular agony, here’s a nine second video demonstration of what it felt like….

I tried to stick my face directly into the shower stream, but that only seemed to aggravate the situation.  In a last ditch effort to save my eyesight, I quickly grabbed a bottle of saline solution from off the bathroom sink, pried my eye open (despite its stubborn protests to remain clamped shut) and tried to flush it out.  After emptying half the bottle’s contents into my eye socket, the pain level was brought from a 10 to an 8 – which would have to do because other than scooping out my eye with a melon-baller, I was out of ideas.

I finished up my shower, skipped shaving because with my lack of depth perception, I didn’t want to miss my leg and accidentally shave off a toe.   When it came time to leave the house, I could open up my eye most of the way, and decided I could see well enough to drive to my mammogram appointment.  Before you scold me for putting other driver’s lives at risk, you should know that even with my (slightly) impaired vision, I still drove better than most of the other New Yorkers on the road.  Which, I guess, isn’t saying much.

But despite my early morning ocular ambush, everything worked out okay in the end.   I made it to my appointment on time, enjoyed my day of girlie “Boobs & Beers” bonding, and as an added bonus, I don’t think my eye has ever had this much body, hold and shine……

Eat your heart out, Breck girls!!

Eat your heart out, Breck girls!!

Daily Prompt

Happy Hawaiian Cowboy Pajama Day!!

It’s 8 o’clock at night, and the moment of bliss most parents dream of is upon me – my kid’s bedtime.  I breathe a sigh of relief and pat myself on the back for managing to keep both my kids alive for another day.  I’m precisely five minutes away from snuggly pajamas and a glass of wine when my youngest child utters six little words that shatter all my illusions of a lazy night of couch surfing….

“It’s Hawaiian day at school tomorrow.”

My body immediately goes into crisis mode, and within a matter of seconds, I’ve mentally inventoried the entire contents of my house for anything that might qualify as even remotely Hawaiian.  With a growing sense of dread, I realize that I’ve got nothing, unless the can of pineapples in the refrigerator counts.   I waste a few more moments clinging to the hope that I can somehow fashion a shirt out of pineapple chunks and dental floss because the alternative is even more gruesome – beginning a scavenger hunt for leis and grass skirts at 8:00 at night.

Suddenly I’m launched into the parental version of  The Amazing Race – can this exhausted, frazzled mom find something Hawaiian before the clock runs out?  Or will she just give up and drink herself into oblivion?  Stay tuned and find out!!

I opt out of getting drunk (for the moment), race over to the party supply store, and squeak through the doors ten minutes before they close.  I shrink beneath the glares of the workers who silently berate me for standing in the way of their own dreams of pajamas and couch surfing.  But my remorse only lasts for a second because at the moment, my life sucks even more than theirs.

When I find the luau section, I realize that my worst nightmare has come true – it’s totally picked clean.  All the parents who paid attention to the flyer that was given out last week, telling us about Hawaiian Day, have already been here like a plague of overly organized locusts.  All that remains is one pathetically mangled, plastic lei that would make Don Ho sob on his ukulele.

The pineapple chunk shirt, it is.

Before all the inhabitants of our beautiful 50th state get pissed off at me, you should know that it’s not just “Hawaiian Day” that I have a problem with – it’s all of these special theme days that schools set up thinking it’s going to promote a sense of school spirit.  Because all they really do is make 90% of the parents frantic, and inflate the (already inflated) egos of the other 10% who see these days as their opportunity to prove to the world that they’re the BEST PARENTS EVER.  You know who you are, and if you fall into the 10% category, please stop reading.  I’m sure your time would be better served finishing up that batch of homemade Play-Doh for your kids, or continuing your search for organic crayons.

For the other 90%, please know that I feel your pain:  the panic, resentment, inadequacy, and guilt over knowing that your special themed outfit will suck in comparison to the other 10%.  But fear not.  Here on my blog you are free to bitch about all the special themed days that make you want to set the PTA president’s underwear on fire.

Here are some of mine, in no particular order (because they all suck equally)….

Hawaiian Day- Not only because of the aforementioned Hawaiian Day story fiasco, but also because it seems unfair that only one of the fifty states should be celebrated every year.  Where is Disgruntled People of New York Day??  Not festive enough for you?  Well, excuse the hell out of us for not pooping sunshine and rainbows, Hawaii.

Looks like these kids got to the party store first.

Clearly these kids got to the party store first.

Crazy Hair Day – If we’re being honest, this day should really be called You’ll-Be-Scrubbing-That-Crap-Out-of-Your-Hair-For-Hours Day.  It’s not “special” enough to just leave your kid’s bed head alone in the morning.  Now, you’ve got to dye, mold, and sculpt your kid’s hair until they look like they stepped off the pages of a Dr. Seuss book.

Cindy Lou Who motherfuckers.

One fish, two fish, red fish, screw this.

Pajama Day – This day is deceptively difficult.  On the surface it looks like a great opportunity to save parents time in the morning.  You get to just hop out of bed and you’re already dressed for school, kids!!  Wrong.  My kids sleep in oversized t-shirts and sweatpants that are too crappy to wear to school.  But thanks to the magic of Pajama Day, now I’ve got to go out and buy actual pajamas so my kid’s teacher doesn’t think we’re homeless.

I bet half those pajamas were hanging on a department store clothing rack 24-hours ago.

I bet half those pajamas were hanging on a department store clothing rack 24-hours ago.

Victorian/ Colonial Times Day – Stop it.  Seriously.  I’m not going to go out and spend gobs of money on time period clothing just so some school teacher can have a reason to live out her secret Little House on the Prairie or Queen Victoria fantasies.  Kids should learn about history the way nature intended – from a textbook.  Too boring?  Tough shit.

Where are parents buying these little doily hats?!  Sure as hell isn’t the party store.

Where are parents buying these little doily hats?!
Sure as hell isn’t the party store.

The Hundredth Day of School – Most of the time this day is commemorated by making the kids dress up like they’re 100-years old.  Because nothing says school spirit better than adult diapers, polyester-blends, and dentures!  Am I right?

Smile and pretend that you’re life is almost over, kids!!

Smile and pretend that your life is almost over, kids!!

Okay, now it’s your turn.  Vent, rant and rave to your heart’s content because it’s better to do it here than at Parent/Teacher conference night…..