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Category Archives: problem-solving

Help solve a very important mystery! Win valuable prizes! (There are no prizes.)

We all like mysteries, right? Sure we do. They’re like the best.

Want to help solve a mystery that happened at work today? I’d tell you there was a prize involved, but there’s no prize. Other than you can feel really proud of yourself that you solved a mystery, I suppose. Like, I’m sure Scooby-Doo and Shaggy feel pretty good about themselves when they unmask Old Man McGillicutty as the Coalpit Ghost or whatever. You, too, could feel proud of yourself like a stoner and his strangely oversized speaking dog!

Doesn't he look so self-congratulatory? Sure he does.

Doesn’t he look so self-congratulatory? Sure he does.

First, let me set the scene.

Oh, disclaimer: this story’s kind of gross. Just a warning.

So at work today, I had to use the facilities. In our office, we have the following for ladies’ bathrooms on my floor: a large bathroom in the lobby, with four stalls; a smaller bathroom in our actual office, with two stalls; and a unisex bathroom that’s really for the men, but we can use it too, right next to the smaller bathroom. There are also bathrooms on the second floor and the first floor, but we don’t use those much. Why would we? If you need to use the elevator to get to the bathroom, that’s too far.

I was in the lobby area anyway, getting water (hence the needing to pee – I drink a LOT of water at work) and went into the big bathroom. I went into a stall that a woman had just come out of.

“Hmm,” thought I. “This stall sure smells like poo.”

So I turned around and there, on the toilet, ALL OVER THE TOILET, was all the poo.

But it was in the WEIRDEST PLACE EVER. Like, it was in a place poo had no reason to be.

Don't piss off the toilet. No pun intended.

Don’t piss off the toilet. No pun intended.

I tried to draw you a photo of where the poo was, but my computer is NOT playing nice tonight. Probably too upset I’m writing a post about bathrooms. Anyway. Pretend you’re sitting on a toilet and you put your legs together and then put your calves back against the bowl. It’d be the front part of the bowl, facing you as you enter the stall. The outside part. NOWHERE NEAR WHERE A BUM GOES.

That’s where the poo was. All over there. SO MUCH POO.

So I was like, oh. Oh, WTF is this poo. But a woman had just come out of that stall. What if she was the pooper? And she was still in there washing her hands. So I stood in there as far from the poo bowl as I could and when she left I ran out and into the furthest stall from that stall as I could get only GUESS WHAT.

Totally poo, totally in the same place, TOTALLY ALL OVER THAT BOWL TOO.

OMG YOU GUYS WHAT THE HELL.

We needed caution tape in that bathroom. Like bigtime.

We needed caution tape in that bathroom. Like bigtime.

The middle two stalls were poo-free so I peed super-fast and got out (OMG YES I TOTALLY WASHED MY HANDS THAT PLACE WAS GERM CENTRAL) even though those two middle stalls have wonky doorlocks and you’ll be peeing and all of a sudden the door opens and you’re like oh no now you can see my hoo-hoo so no one ever uses those two.

Later in the day I had to pee again (I seriously drink a lot of water) and went into the small bathroom closer to my desk because, well, I wasn’t in the mood for all that poo. So I went into the stall and was all, aaahh, no poo, until I looked down and ZOMG YOU GUYS.

There was totally poo on the floor between the two stalls. Like, someone squatted and took a poo on the floor of the bathroom.

I was seriously flabbergasted at this development in the poo situation.

So I then washed up AGAIN super-fast and got out of there and looked for my boss because I was all, “Amy, you’ve got to report this poo thing” and she was at lunch so I told my coworker and she was like, “SERIOUSLY? I do not know what to say at this particular point in time” and I had to agree because listen, we work at a REALLY NICE PLACE! and we decided that emailing the facilities guy was probably the best move so I did and he emailed back “Thanks ~” and I don’t know what the tilde was for. Flair, maybe. Possibly because this was the actual email I sent him: “Hi: There is fecal matter all over two of the four toilet bowls in the women’s bathroom in the third floor lobby and someone defecated on the floor of the women’s bathroom near the copy room. I know. I am so sorry. We’re all sitting up here wondering what is wrong with the world. Thank you!”

But he never showed up and the poo abided. All day, actually.

And because we are children, we made poo jokes and giggled about the poo ALL AFTERNOON LONG. We made jokes about “doing our duty” and giving Depends out as Secret Santa gifts and all of the men in the office (there aren’t many of them) went in the women’s bathroom all giggly because they were expecting to see, I don’t know, pillowfights and tampons in there, or something, and one of them took a cell phone photo of the poo and they were all “WE CAN SOLVE THIS MYSTERY!”

They decided the toilet overflowed and deposited the poo there, but there was no water on the floor. We shot down that theory quickly.

I told my parents about this, and Dad got VERY SHOUTY. “That is the FIRST SIGN OF A DISGRUNTLED EMPLOYEE!” he shouted. “You stay vigiliant. STAY VIGILANT! There’s some sort of name for people who save their poo in plastic bags and put it places at work and also smear it all over. I don’t know what that name is, but the next step is bringing in an Uzi and killing all their coworkers. You should get pepper spray and scope out your exits.”

STAY VIGILANT, YO!

STAY VIGILANT, YO!

“That seems like a bit of an overreaction to the poo situation, Dad,” I replied.

Mom’s answer was just, “That is gross. Why would you tell me such a gross thing? One time I saw toilet paper on the floor of our bathroom. I couldn’t go in there ALL DAY.”

“That seems a bit of an overreaction to the toilet paper situation, Mom,” I replied.

So! Now it’s your turn, intrepid blog readers. What are your thoughts on the Office Pooper? Are the two poo-areas connected, or just separate things altogether? Is there any way poo could have gotten on the front of the toilet like that, or was someone purposely being smeary? How, exactly, did someone get poo on the floor of the toilet nowhere near the bowl? AND WHY?

There are no prizes for this mystery-solving, but you could add it to a resumé, if you wanted. SKILLS: Totally Badass Mystery Solving (Poo-Related)

I know. You had no idea when you clicked on today’s post you’d be a gumshoe. Or that there’d be so much poop involved.

Get to solvin’, little bloggonians. This mystery’s not going to solve itself. (Or clean itself. I’m so hoping the janitors come in tonight. Good gracious. I’m so disgusted with my office right now.)

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Preparing for the apocalypse with snack cakes and disco balls.

We were talking about the end of the world at work the other day. You know. As you do.

Apparently, the Mayan end-of-the-world is December 21. I don’t know the details. Something about the Mayan calendar ending or something? I read a bunch of things and they were confusing. Something about some sort of period ending? And some people are all DOOM AND GLOOOOOM! and some people are all, um, yeah, that’s not how this works at all, people, you’re being weirdos. But you tell people the end of the world is nigh and people start freaking the hell OUT, yo. (And it’s not even about zombies! I know. Hard to fathom.)

Apparently this thing predicts our DOOOOOM. It looks like a prop from a Nicholas Cage movie.

Apparently this thing predicts our DOOOOOM. It looks like a prop from a Nicholas Cage movie.

Mostly I think the end of the world is hokum. I think we’re all going to have an end of the world; it’ll happen at different times for all of us. Some of our worlds will end with heart attacks and some with cancer and some with accidents and some with, I don’t know, falling into the sea from a cliff or something, there’s always someone who does something like that, right?

Whoa.....splash.

Whoa…..splash.

BUT, just in CASE the end of the world’s happening in less than two weeks, we totally have to be PREPARED. I worry about you, my little jelly beans. What if I poo-poohed the Mayan apocalypse and then it happened and you were all beset upon my locusts or something? I’d feel just utterly TERRIBLE. Well, in-between hiding from those locusts, I suppose. In-between that I’d feel terrible.

LOCUSTS!!!

LOCUSTS!!!

So I totally researched the things you need to do to be prepared for the (potential) upcoming apocalypse. So you don’t fall prey to the locusts. (If the horsemen come, I can’t help you, though. They’re total badasses.)

THINGS YOU NEED TO DO IN ORDER TO BE READY FOR THE UPCOMING APOCALYPSE (OR MAYBE NOT-CALYPSE)

According to this website, which I think we can all agree looks quite sciency in a not-at-all sciency way, we need to do the following:

  1. Get together a group.
    One...two...three...PROCREATE!

    One…two…three…PROCREATE!

    Apparently your group needs to be about 25 people, and with your group you need to repopulate the earth. Oh. Um. Well, I think that’s how you need to phrase it. You should walk up to your friends and say, “Listen. The world’s ending in a little over a week and a half, so I’m trying to get a group together. We’re going to need to have a lot of sex. You’re cool with that, right? Us having a lot of sex, platonic-friend-up-until-now?” That won’t creep your friends out at all that you want to use them as brood mares. Neat! So start making a list of people you want to spend the rest of the end of the world with and/or bone and/or procreate with. (You also can’t bring along family members, obviously, because no one wants to have sex with their siblings. So see ya later, bro, you can’t come. Get out of my apocalypse shelter.)

  2. Plan.
    "Bob, you're in charge of the sex swing, and Jenny, you're in charge of the baking. We cool? Good, good."

    “Bob, you’re in charge of the sex swing, and Jenny, you’re in charge of the baking. We cool? Good, good.”

    Get together your orgy group and talk about the apocalypse. I’m sorry I left this for so late. You don’t have a lot of time to do any of these things. I guess talk quickly. This also says to elect a club president and treasurer and such. You know the president’s going to get the most sex, so choose wisely.

  3. Find a place for your new civilization to begin.
    I choose here. Look! Pretty!

    I choose here. Look! Pretty!

    Claim a plot! Make it be in the middle of nowhere (because of other people who are NOT in your sex-orgy group, and also probably looters.) Get a map, so you can find it once the locusts come. Go camping there in all weather (um…we only have a week and a half left…so again, I’m sorry, I really shot you all in the foot on this one) so you can be prepared because this is your new HOME.

  4. Put together a survival kit.
    Here's mine. I am OBSESSED with these things.

    Here’s mine. I am OBSESSED with these things.

    Now, this site was not helpful about a survival kit, but I was reading a recap of some show on TLC (of COURSE it was on TLC – TLC has some SUPER-helpful programming like about hillbillies and such) about preparing for the apocalypse and apparently what you need is a lot of food in cans like huge cans of pudding and stew; a big garden under a geodesic dome like in that movie with Pauly Shore and the stoner Baldwin who has since found the Lord; rabbits (so you can pet ’em, but also kill ’em and then eat ’em); a portable surgery kit just in case someone needs to get their leg amputated; and guns. A LOT of guns. One guy was pre-carrying his gun everywhere, just in case the apocalypse hit while he was going about his day. He was attempting to learn to SWIM with it on. I’m not even kidding.

  5. Build a shelter.
    Ooh, a BOOK. About SHELTERS. Nice.

    Ooh, a BOOK. About SHELTERS. Nice.

    The site recommends you build it underground and also protect yourself from the elements and also looters. Also since you’re going to be having all that procreatey sex, you probably want to put one of those rotating beds in there with satin sheets, and maybe also a disco ball. And load up on CDs you like, probably. You’re going to be listening to those over and over and OVER. Plus also the site recommends you figure out your power source. Listen, this is a lot of work. Why didn’t you all warn me we needed to start planning for this before this? URGH.

  6. Hoard.
    SO MANY THINGS!

    SO MANY THINGS!

    Hoard a YEAR’S worth of supplies. Shit, you guys, you have to do this in a WEEK. You’d better get on the horn with your 25 sex-people and get them to start hoarding too. Put one in charge of snack-cakes and one in charge of Dumbcat-food, ok? (Oh. Yeah, if the world’s ending, Dumbcat’s coming with. Sorry. There’s going to be fur all up in our shelter. Listen! I’m not leaving my guy BEHIND. He wouldn’t know what to do with all those locusts.) Don’t just hoard food. You also need things like clothes and toilet paper and pens. Don’t forget pens, how will you write to-do lists?

  7. Pray.
    I like this kid's face. PRAYING IS HARD!

    I like this kid’s face. PRAYING IS HARD!

    No, seriously, the next step was to pray. Um. Well, I guess, if that’s your thing, you can do that. I’m not going to tell you NOT to pray. But while you pray, I’m going to use that time to hoard more.

  8. Study.
    NO, you can't have a Golden Ticket. Stop asking.

    NO, you can’t have a Golden Ticket. Stop asking.

    Each of your people who are also sex-orgy people also need to be an expert in something. Well, I think we can skip this step, because I’m not inviting anyone into my underground bunker who’s not brilliant. All of my people are already experts in something. Also, I’m not having sex with anyone who’s not brilliant. Sorry. That’s the golden ticket to my areas.

  9. Cross-train.
    We get to use awesome bouncy balls? That's ok, then.

    We get to use awesome bouncy balls? That’s ok, then.

    This article wants you to be in peak physical condition for the apocalypse. Shit. I don’t think a week and a half is long enough. Sorry. Unless you’re already IN peak physical condition. Wait, do I know anyone in peak physical condition? I don’t know that I do. Those people confuse and befuddle me, plus where would I meet them? Those people don’t live on the internet.

  10. Keep an eye on the sky for…something?
    I guess one of the other group-members will have to look for the bombs. I have to hoard ALL THE THINGS RIGHT NOW.

    I guess one of the other group-members will have to look for the bombs. I have to hoard ALL THE THINGS RIGHT NOW.

    I don’t know. Bombs, maybe? This one’s confusing, plus I’m too busy hoarding.

So, really, what we’ve learned it, mostly we don’t have much time, but once we do all this stuff, we’re totally going to be having a lot of sex with our friends. Um. I don’t…huh. I don’t really want to have a lot of sex with my friends. (Sorry, friends.) But then again, I don’t know that I so much want to go up to complete strangers and ask them to be in my sex-orgy apocalypse group. This is a hard choice, you guys.

OK, so we have almost two weeks. Hoard hoard hoard. Also maybe get some guns and rabbits. Or don’t. But if anything happens to you, I will feel TERRIBLE.

And so will Dumbcat, although mostly he’s just excited he gets to live in a BUNKER and get his fur all over NEW FURNITURE MOM!


Kind-of-Sort-of Ask Lucy a.k.a. I CAN ANSWER THAT! (Volume 9)

Well! Here we are, my most beloved of all my beloveds! Have we got questions? Oh, have WE got QUESTIONS. I can’t even. SO MANY QUESTIONS. Like eleventy-billion questions. No, no, maybe less than that. Like eleventy-million. I don’t like to exaggerate, that’s just déclassé.

Except when a kitten does it. Then it’s ok.

So, in case you don’t remember, here’s a quick rundown of what’s going on here. I don’t know, you might need to know. Like, if the FBI questioned you or something, you’d have to tell them SOMETHING. ANYWAY, because the search terms posts tend to be was insanely long, I break them up into two posts: an open letter to people who find my blog accidentally (that’s yesterday’s post, in case you have goldfish-memory) and a post with just the QUESTIONS that drive people to my blog. And I give advice, and I answer your questions, and it’s really kind of stellar. What? It IS. Isn’t it? Don’t tell me if you don’t think it is. I don’t even want to know. BE NICE.

So, yet again!

Welcome to…

Kind-of-sort-of Ask Lucy.

Subtitled: I CAN ANSWER THAT!

These are all ACTUAL SEARCH TERMS that brought people to my blog. So these people totally need my help, obviously, because they came to Google SEARCHING FOR HELP. And I can answer these questions! Well, some of them. Maybe not all of them. But I can sure as hell try. I’m really good at trying things, even if I fail spectacularly.

what to do if someone is putting trash in my mail box?
kids keep leaving trash in my mailbox, how do i get them back? I got a lot of searches for this this month. I don’t know what’s up in the world. Why so much mailbox-litter? Weird. The first person here just wants to know what to do, and the second wants REVENGE, which makes me laugh. Reveeeenge! Hello, my name is Person Who Randomly Searches Google, you put trash in my mailbox, prepare to die. Listen, I don’t know what to tell you, babe. They’ll stop eventually, is my guess. Kids get bored of such shit. Kids have short attention spans. I wouldn’t put a bomb in your mailbox or anything. You’ll get arrested. Plus you could hurt your mail carrier. I know a mail carrier and I like him very much. I’d feel terrible if you hurt a mail carrier. You’re welcome, I’m sorry someone’s letterbombing you, pun most definitely intended.

which country has lots of sluts Hee! I have no idea. By “sluts,” do you mean legalized prostitution, or do you mean whorey girls that’ll put out? I’d think any country has those. Some more than others. Smaller, more religious countries maybe less? I don’t know. Anyone have any advice for this guy? Is the country you live in slut-laden? Also, sir (or, ma’am, I suppose, don’t mean to be sexist) “slut” is a rude term, and if you use it, women are less likely to sleep with you. Just a tip. We prefer “shady lady.” You are welcome, wear a condom.

why do i always obsess last guy i made out with Well, I would hope it’s because you had feelings for that person, because why are you making out with random people? From experience, I can tell you making out with people you have no feelings for doesn’t even rev your engine a little, while making out with someone you like is TOTALLY engine-revvy. I mean, well, not that I ever made out with RANDOM PEOPLE. Ahem. Cough. Cough. Misspent youth. I always knew who they WERE, for the most part. That guy who was the other guy’s friend who had nice hair. Friend S. from the theater. The pretty boy with glasses I met at happy hour. It’s not like I picked them up on the BUS, come on now. So, the answer to your question is: YOU HAVE EMOTIONS. You’re a human, not a robot. Welcome to the human race, it’s nice. We have cake, sometimes. You’re welcome, wear Chapstick.

Emotions are part of the package. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news.

is lucy football grownup This made me laugh so hard I snorted. Yes. Yes, I am, my friend. I am almost 40. I know. It’s surprising, considering I talk like a sixteen-year-old. But, yep. I’m an adult. I can vote and drive a car and get a tattoo or a piercing and I have grey hair and everything. And I’ve done/have ALL of those things. I’m about to hit my midlife crisis head-on, baby. It’s gonna be GLORIOUS. You’re welcome, I’m glad I could tell you personal information about myself that you seem to need for some strange reason.

what is the meaning of molasses The…meaning? It’s thick, dark brown uncrystallized juice obtained from raw sugar during the refining process. I got that from Google, it’s not like I knew or anything. I like molasses cookies alright. They’re fine. Sometimes I get a craving for them. But I don’t know that there’s a MEANING. It’s not like it’s a EUPHEMISM. Well, I don’t think it is. Ken? Is molasses a euphemism? You’re welcome, stop trying to find the meaning in everything. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, you know?

Sweet sassy molassy!

can I change my gender with a spell or potion Oh. No. No, you…no. Please tell me you were kidding. I know I blogged about this once, but I was KIDDING. As was the eBay seller of the potion. Well, they weren’t KIDDING as much as they were looking to rip you off, but still. Sentiment’s the same. No. If you want to change your gender, there’s no Polyjuice Potion, my love. You need to get surgery and therapy and take lots of hormones and it’s a tough go but it’s worth it to become the person you need to be. I’m sorry. I wish I had a better answer for you. You’re welcome. I hope you’re ok.

Only in the movies, babydoll. Only in the movies. And books, first, of course.

what are some charlie brown relationship patterns Aw, well, I love this. Let’s see. Charlie Brown loves The Little Red Haired Girl from afar, but never gets up the courage to talk to her. Sally loves Linus but he doesn’t give a shit. Lucy loves Schroeder but HE doesn’t give a shit. Everyone bullies Charlie Brown except for Linus. Lucy treats Charlie Brown like dogshit. Utter dogshit. Snoopy’s just the best and so full of life. As dogs are, you know? Especially beagles. My favorite TYPE of dogs! Patty and Marcie seem solid and everyone always said they were lesbians, I don’t know. Patty’s pretty bossy but Marcie seems down with it. So…the relationship patterns in Charlie Brown’s world are…well, really pretty shitty, to tell you the truth. Lots of longing, no one ever gets who they want, everyone’s pretty miserable when you think about it. And did I name my blog after this cartoon? Yes. Yes, I did. You’re welcome, write a term paper about this and let me read it, ok?

did glee ever do a lana del rey song I’ve missed the past couple weeks of Glee so I can’t answer this with any sort of authority. The internet seems to think they did “Video Games” back in May. Am I forgetting this? Glee’s gotten pretty effing forgettable lately and I kind of hate it, to tell you the truth. You’re welcome, watch American Horror Story, it’s better. (Oh, research tells me that, yes, they did, but it didn’t make the episode. Here, you can listen. Puck covered it, so it’s pretty and dark and kind of twisted and now I’ve been listening to it over and over for like twenty minutes. I miss Puck, by the way. Sigh, Puck.)

do men get erections just from seeing someone? “are you happy to see me?” Ha! I don’t know. I think in high school that happens. But I think when they grow up they get better control over such things. This is a very funny question. Men, you can chime in here if you want, I don’t have a trouser snake, I’m not any sort of authority here. You’re welcome, please keep that in your pants. And, yes. I’m ALWAYS happy to see you. Just not…like that.

EUPHEMISM.

do you have to wear a turtleneck with something else Well, I hope with SOMETHING else. Not JUST the turtleneck. With your bottom half all naked? That’s not even REMOTELY sexy. Even someone SO sexy couldn’t make that work, I wouldn’t think. But, yeah, I have a couple of turtleneck sweaters I wear just on their own, well, with pants and shoes and all. Sometimes a skirt. I don’t wear them UNDER anything. Is that your question? This is weird. You’re welcome, coming to me for clothing advice is like going to the ocean to ask it about the desert, honestly.

This made me laugh SO HARD. Look at his little monogram on his sleeve! SO FANCY! So he doesn’t forget who he is, I guess!

from what were animals made out of? This sounds like a Biblical question. Like, Eve was made from Adam’s rib (coughbullshitcough) so the animals were made from…what? The answer is MAGIC FAIRY DUST. And RAINBOWS. You are WELCOME, please feel free to quote me at your next Bible study. I’m sure it’ll be a hit.

I’m sorry. This made me laugh SO HARD. Well, married readers? Is it? Is it just like this? With wild animals and foliage and such?

how do kakopo feel if you touch it Like…a bird? With feathers? I find that birds feel a lot less substantial than you’d think when you touch them. Like, they look all big, but underneath their feathers they’re just spindly. But kakopos are magical and hump your head like it’s a sex-hat, so…yeah, probably don’t touch ‘em unless you want ‘em to be humpin’ up on you. You’re welcome, don’t be screwing a bird.

Aw, kakopo. Poor little horny kakopo.

how to make a paper mache whale I’d think…um…build a whale out of balloons and masking tape, then cover that in paper mache and then wait for it to dry? That’s how I build shit out of paper mache, if I have to do it. Once I built a whole set out of paper mache. It was the messiest thing I’ve ever done in my life, and I ruined a billion sets of clothing and shoes and it was in my hair for WEEKS. Set was kickass, though. You’re welcome, best of all things with your craft project.

HOW CUTE IS THIS. Someone make me one.

how to wear skinny jeans or jeggings without cameltoe Ha! I love you guys, most sincerely. Well, I’d say, don’t wear ‘em, they look silly, but if you have to…I don’t know. Just don’t wear ‘em so tight, maybe? Or, wear extra paddy underwear? I have no advice, here. I don’t wear these types of pant-items. I wear boot-cut jeans and khakis. End statement. Oh, in my house I wear pajama pants that fall down all the time because they were purchased when I was substantially larger. Speaking of which, do you think if you lost a lot of weight without trying, you’re dying? OK, just wondering. For a friend. You’re welcome, dress appropriately.

What’s the male equivalent of cameltoe? Because I’m going to assume, on front-view, this guy’s got that going on.

is being called a fucking bitch normal? “Normal?” I don’t know. Were you acting like a fucking bitch? Does it happen, like, every DAY, or just once and a while? I don’t think calling people names like this is NORMAL. I mean, I call people things like this, but not to their FACES. Like, there’s this person I know. I won’t say where, or when, but a person. I know. And every time I interact with her, she is SO NEGATIVE. So as I walk away from her, I say, under my breath, “I think you might be the biggest bitch I have ever met” or “You make me want to stab baby kittens” or something along those lines, you know? But not TO her. To her face, I am VERY POLITE. It takes a lot to make me shout, actually. I have to be pushed pretty far or be really really tired. I know. You’re probably surprised, I seem all volatile. So, “normal?” No. I don’t think it is. And I think if you’re in an environment where that’s happening, you need to get out, because that is a poison environment. You’re welcome, I don’t think you’re a bitch. I think you’re a lovely special snowflake.

is it normal when kids had the flu after to be so crenky Hee, “crenky.” Yes. That’s normal. The flu is the WORST. It makes you feel like DEATH DEATH DEATH. And little kiddos are less able to deal with such things than grownup people. So, sure it is. Be nice to your little convalescing babies, you. Oh, I spoke to The Nephew today, he told me he was going to be Buzz Lightyear for Halloween and that Buzz Lightyear says “To infinity! And BEYOND!” and I told him, “You are the BEST Buzz Lightyear!” and he giggled and said, “YES!” so I think I win Halloween. You’re welcome, be nice to your little ones, I wish I had some around to spoil rotten.

My little Buzz is better than this. Sorry, real Buzz Lightyear. My little guy’s more excited than you are about…well…everything.

are there social anxiety pills I hear there are. My friend offered me some once, to get me to go to a party with her. I did not take them. I learned in an Afterschool Special you don’t take other people’s prescription medication. So, yes. I think so. Xanax, or something. Ask your doctor. Don’t ask the internet. You’re welcome, isn’t social anxiety the best?

Oh, well, you don’t need pills. You can use PSYCHOLOGICAL TRICKS. This is good news.

is tiger tiger burning bright ee cummings Nope. It’s William Blake. I don’t think (not that I can FIND, anyway) that cummings even referenced the Blake poem.    It’s a nice poem. I like it. I like cummings better, though. I’m a cummings fangirl, what can I say. You’re welcome, I like your curiosity about poetry. Keep it up, sweetpea.

how to see theyr underware with your phone WHAT THE HELL? Your phone is not XRAY SPECS. You are NUTS. And kind of GROSS. And a PEEPER. Cut this out right now. Also, your spelling and grammar are atrocious. STOP IT YOU. You’re welcome, NO NO NO.

Well! There we go, jellybeans! All the questions! All the answering! All for YOU! I hope that was helpful. I love your faces. Until next month, may your questions be answered and your searches bring you to someone who is helpful. Or, lacking that: may they bring you to me, because I try REALLY HARD to help. I totally do.


Building up and being creative

“Now there is a final reason I think that Jesus says, ‘Love your enemies.’ It is this: that love has within it a redemptive power. And there is a power there that eventually transforms individuals. Just keep being friendly to that person. Just keep loving them, and they can’t stand it too long. Oh, they react in many ways in the beginning. They react with guilt feelings, and sometimes they’ll hate you a little more at that transition period, but just keep loving them. And by the power of your love they will break down under the load. That’s love, you see. It is redemptive, and this is why Jesus says love. There’s something about love that builds up and is creative. There is something about hate that tears down and is destructive. So love your enemies.” — Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

I really wasn’t going to talk about this latest shooting. I wasn’t. Coming as close on the heels as it did to the last one. Things have been depressing enough. Also, when I was waiting for one of my most recent job interviews, one of the major networks had their morning show on, and they kept reporting there had been a shooting at a “sick” temple. A sick temple! Not a Sikh temple. I mean, yeah, sure, it’s not a word maybe you say every DAY, but I’d think you might want to research how to pronounce it before you go on national television and rub salt in their wounds by pronouncing the name of their religion wrong over. And over. AND OVER. Seriously, it wasn’t just once. It was repeatedly. And it was MORTIFYING. (If I don’t get that job, I’m blaming the CBS morning show for throwing me off my game by mispronouncing an important word seconds before I had to go into an interview. Do you hear me? I WILL SUE YOU, CBS.)

(Update: per one of my commenters, apparently, it is SUPPOSED to be “sick,” and it’s my public school education and every OTHER network that had it wrong. My most abject apologies. And, well, you go, CBS News, for being the only network who was saying it correctly.)

Anyway, no. I wasn’t going to go into it. I really wasn’t. Because we’ve all had enough pain and misery and heartbreak. I don’t know what’s in the air or what’s been going on. Is it Mercury retrograde? Because that’s July 14 to August 8, and even though I don’t REALLY believe in that stuff…that’s just about when things started to go to shit in Amy-ville. If that’s the case, are things going to start looking up on Thursday? (Oh, for those of you who have no idea what this means – Mercury retrograde is an astrological term for when all the bad shit goes down. People start acting all haywirey; your brain feels all fritzy; the tiniest things make you INFURIATED…basically, it’s crazy-town in star-ville. If you believe in such things. Which I both do, and I don’t. I’m one of those people who’s eminently practical, except for when I’m not at all. I’m an enigma, what can I say.) Is it just a bad time overall for all my friends and loved ones and acquaintances and strangers and such? What the hell is happening? Maybe an alien released some sort of cloud of evil in the air, I have no idea. I just know most people I know are having a tough go of it right now, which is weird.

Damn you, you mercurial planet!

Anyway, then today I read this article. Sikh temple shooter hoped to inspire a wave of hate crimes. Apparently, the shooter was a white supremacist who played in a bunch of white power bands (that’s…a thing? I could happily have lived the rest of my days without knowing that “hatecore” was a thing) and he’s been online for years, encouraging other white supremacists to get out from behind their computers and go out into the real world and practice what they preached. And what do they preach? Again, something I’d be happy living the rest of my life not knowing: “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children.” These are apparently called “the 14 words” and are the core belief system of a hate group called The Order.

I know I live with my head in the sand like an ostrich most of the time, because it’s a happier, quieter, and less-hatey place to be. Sometimes I pop out of my safe sand-hole and see things like this, or movies like American History X, and back to my hidey-hole I go.

OK, yes, it was an amazing movie, but it made my stomach hurt, ok? I’m a delicate flower when it comes to violence like this.

This man not only killed 6 people (and wounded three others), but he apparently did it in the hope it was inspiring. That it would charge others to go forth and do the same thing. A lot of people were saying that he targeted the Sikhs because they look like Muslims, with their turbans, but now it’s looking like it was less of a religious thing and more of a color of their skin thing.

And I absolutely don’t get this. Not at all.

I guess, if forced to do so, I can, on some level, understand why some people, across the board, hate people of other religions. Because those people DARE imply, by believing in their God and individual belief system, that the religion of the person who is doing the hating is wrong. Also, it’s ingrained in us to dislike and mistrust what is different from us. Different = scary! And scary = bad! So, although I don’t agree with it, I can see where that’s coming from. Then add to that the fact that people assume ALL Muslims (and I guess, although I didn’t realize people didn’t know there was a difference, Sikhs) are responsible for ALL terrorism, and there’s that hatred, too. Again, don’t agree with it, but I see where the genesis is.

But I have never, and will never, get the “hating someone because they are a different skin color” thing. (Am I going to get a whole bunch of scary comments because of this? Don’t bother. I moderate and I’ll delete them. I’m not perpetrating your hate speech here.)

Apparently, they’re scared they’re stealing our jobs, and our women, and I don’t know, polluting our gene pool, or something? Well, shit, the gene pool over here before we got here was all Native American, what the hell did we do when we first showed up? We stole ALL the jobs (well, we created them, and the need for them, too, I suppose) and the women that we didn’t bring with us and we made a whole NEW gene pool. This wasn’t even a white country to START with! What the hell? It’s not like we’re preserving something that always was. What am I missing?

The people on this map look mighty not-white to me. Maybe I need a new eyeglass prescription?

And since when are they “our” jobs and “our” women and, well, hell, “our” country? Who died and left it to us just because we’re pigmentally challenged? I think the jobs should be going to the most-qualified and the women (not being property) should be choosing who they want to sleep with, or not sleep with (me, I’d sleep with, oh, I don’t know, THE PERSON IN THE EQUATION WHO ISN’T A TOWERING RACIST DOUCHECANOE) and as for the country…well, it’s here, you know? No one OWNS it. It’s not a barrette or a pair of flip-flops or a can of creamed corn. It’s a COUNTRY. We can SHARE it. We’re a friggin’ melting pot, we didn’t get that name because we were all the same damn COLOR and SHAPE and SIZE. What’s wrong with you people?

Also, and this is what bugs me the most, I think – it’s not like you’re born brown or black or white or yellow or pink and you’re immediately A DIFFERENT PERSON. We’re all the same under our skin. We all have the same things that drive us, even if we look different from the outside. We all want to be loved; we all want acceptance; we all love to laugh; we all want enough money to be comfortable; we all want happiness in our lives; we all fear pain and loss; we all have quirks and peccadilloes. We’re all people, dammit. I’ve said this before. I’ll say it again. We all have the same genetics. We just come in different packages. You can take the same exact product and put it in five different boxes and guess what? IT’S THE SAME PRODUCT. Why are you being fooled by packaging? You must be a shitload of fun to take grocery shopping. None of us are better than anyone else. None of us is superior, based on something as random as what color our skin is, based on genetics.  I’ve actually read that in the future (the far-off future, I don’t even remember how far off, but, far) this won’t even be an issue, because we’ll ALL be Star-Bellied Sneetches. We’ll all have cross-bred so much that we’ll all be a beautiful light-brown color, and no one will be able to claim “I AM BETTER THAN YOU KAPOW GENETICS!” because we’ll all be the SAME.

In the future, they will all have stars upon thars.

Anyway, back to topic. This guy wanted to generate a campaign of hate. He wanted people to look up to him and say, huh. Look at what THAT guy did. I could do that, too! What an inspiration! But here’s what I propose. A counter-measure.

Let’s fight that with a campaign of love.

Our campaign is easier to carry out. You don’t need to stockpile an arsenal. You don’t need to hide guns under your jacket, or buy bullet-proof clothing. You don’t end up dead at the end of our campaign, shot to death by the police protecting the citizenry.

In our campaign, our artillery is something you use every day: words. Words and deeds. Even better: they’re free, and there’s no waiting period or background check.

Be kind to people. Tell people you love them. Support someone who needs it. Instead of leaving a passive-aggressive comment on a blog or a Facebook post: choose to take the high road and don’t leave anything at all. Write a blog post encouraging love. Remember that everyone you meet is struggling with something, and even if it’s not the SAME something you’re struggling with, it’s equally as difficult for them as your things are for you. Don’t make their burden heavier than it already is. If you can? Take some of it on yourself. Everything is easier to carry if you share the load.

If you have money to donate, donate it to a charity that supports something you believe in that will further the cause: a kickstarter for a struggling artist. A fund to keep arts in the schools. A homeless shelter. A food bank. Teach your children that tolerance and love are the answers to things, not hatred and impatience. Use words that build up, not words that tear down. Smile more. Frown less. Laugh often. Be kind to yourself, because if you’re happy, it’s easier to let your love out for everyone else to enjoy it. Let everything you do, no matter how small, come from a place of love.

But Amy! Some people are very hard to love! Yep. See the quote at the beginning of the piece. I know they are. Sadly, those are the people that need us to beam the love onto them the most. I know, it’s tough.

But Amy! This sounds like crazy hippie-dippie kumbaya shit! Yep. I know. Can you think of a better fix? Because I can’t. They’re going to try to pump gallons of hatred all over the world. Can you think of a better way to combat that? I’m listening.

And if we all use our collective power to put all the love we’ve got into the world – well, maybe it doesn’t fix everything that’s wrong. I’m not that naive. But that much love out there, that much positive energy out there, you can’t tell me that’s a bad thing. We’ve already made a difference. And it’s a ripple effect, all that love. It dominoes. It goes from you, to the person you touched, to the person they touch, on and on and on. It doesn’t stop. I don’t remember a lot about physics, but I do remember the Law of Conservation of Energy. Energy might be able to change form, but it can’t be created or destroyed. We put that energy out there, all that love-energy, and it STAYS out there. It’s not GOING anywhere. And maybe along the way, it transforms some of the hate out there into love, who knows.

Don’t let the hate win. Don’t let the badness take over. We’re better than that. They might have their 14 words, but I propose we do, too:

All you need is love (all together now)
All you need is love (everybody)

Love you guys.


Are these my only two options?

Before we get started – it is sj’s birthday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO SJ! You make every day better by being in my life, and I am so grateful to know you and to count you as one of my most favorite people. I hope your day is amazing and your year ahead is the best yet! Everyone be sure to tell sj happy birthday!

Here is a pirate cake for your birthday, sj. ARGHHHHH.

I was talking to a friend the other day, and we were discussing those “would you rather” questions. You know those questions, right? Like, “would you rather eat nothing but sandwiches or popsicles for the whole rest of your life?” (That’s obviously a terrible example, you have to pick sandwiches, if you pick popsicles you would die of malnutrition so there’s really no choice, even though POPSICLES ARE DELICIOUS.) She brought up a good one, that actually is something I’ve thought of before – I’ll talk about it at the end, though, because it’s actually really good, and it’s a good note to end on. 

Anyway, so I was like, huh, I wonder if the interwebs has a million “would you rathers” for me to play with because I’m bored as shit at work today? And the answer is YES THEY DO. So let’s play would you rather today! You can play along. Just see how your answers match up with mine, I guess, I don’t know what the hell. 

Oh, you want rules? What, have you been living under a rock? FINE, the rules are you get a scenario and you have to pick one or the other. You can’t say “neither.” You can have time to think about it and you can puzzle it out or whatever, but there’s no abstaining. It’s one or the other. You don’t get further options, either. THIS IS IT. Them’s the rules, buckaroo, I didn’t make ‘em. Everyone knows the rules of would you rather. I guess maybe dirty hippies don’t, I don’t know. Maybe you’re a dirty hippie, I don’t know your life. 

Here, we’ll warm up with an easy one. 

Would you rather give up your computer forever or your TV forever? 

Duh, you obviously pick your TV. Because with your computer, you can watch all your programs via Hulu or pirating (arr) or whatever, but unless you’ve got that fancy-expensive (and seemingly difficult to use) Web TV garbage, you can’t surf the web on your television. 

All warmed up? Good.  

Would you rather always have to say everything on your mind or never speak again? 

Never speak again. I’d be fine with that. This doesn’t say I can’t type, so I could still blog/email/Twitter, so I could still communicate. Plus, no one wants to hear everything that’s on my mind. NO ONE. Trust me on that. There’s a lot of shit in there that needs to stay where it belongs. Locked down. Tight tight tight. Key thrown away. I’m not even kidding. It’s a dark and twisty place, that brain of mine. My SECRETS even have secrets. 

Would you rather be able to hear any conversation or take back anything you say? 

I’ll take takebacksies. Because I don’t want to hear any conversation. I’m a big proponent of “this is not my business.” And if it’s not my business, I butt right the hell out. I don’t snoop (Facebook stalking DOES NOT COUNT, I mean in real life) and I don’t listen at the cracks and I don’t try to peek at things I’m not supposed to see. Because twice I’ve purposely done that, and both times I found out such terrible things that I was depressed and upset for MONTHS. And who wants to invite things like that into their lives? No one does, that’s who. So I mind my own, and it infuriates me when others don’t mind their own. Privacy is underrated in this world. (I don’t count social media or the internet. It’s your own damn fault if you put something up on the internet. You put it there, that’s there for all to see, dummy.) Also, I say a lot of stupid things. I’d like to take them back, if given the opportunity. 

Would you rather be able to stop time or fly? 

WANT WANT WANT

This reminds me of one of these a boy I used to love (sigh) asked me once. “Tail or wings?” he said. I was all, “whaaa?” and he was like, “you have to choose one, do you choose a tail, or wings?” I obviously chose wings, but he was like, “Nope, tail, because then people know what mood you’re in without asking.” Heh. I just lurved him to bits, that one. Redhead. Southern accent. Swoooon. 

Anyway, in this case, stop time. Because then you could stop time right before accidents, and if you were having a really good time you could prolong it, and if you needed more time to get ready (or, sigh, sleep) you could have it. I don’t care so much about flying, whatever. Birds are assholes and would just peck you and shit on you anyway. 

Would you rather be rich and ugly, or poor and good looking? 

Rich and ugly, OBVS. Who cares what I look like? I’ve got all the money. I can hide all beauty-and-the-beast-style in my mega-library if I want. I don’t give two shits for appearances but I sure would like to be able to pay my bills AND get groceries every month. 

Would you rather be stranded on an island alone or with someone you hate? 

Wilson? Wilson? WILSOONNNNNN!

Alone. I hate people. I’d honestly even choose alone over someone I LIKED, because you’d start to hate someone you liked if you were in constant contact with them with no one else or no technology to be a buffer 24/7/365, I think. So your friendship or romance or whatever would be in the crapper AND you’d be on a desert island (SIDE NOTE one time? I knew this guy who always wrote “desert” as “dessert” so he would have written that sentence “dessert island,” so, hee! and, yum!) so who would you complain to, the palm trees? The seagulls? This island is the worst, I’d rather be alone. 

Would you rather eat a stick of butter or a gallon of ice cream? 

Oh, shit, I just realized – this is a HALF-gallon of ice cream. I take it back. I could barely eat this, I could never eat a gallon of ice cream. Never mind.

Um. People DON’T eat gallons of ice cream? I could totally eat a gallon of ice cream. I mean, I’d have to take breaks in between and like walk around or something, maybe put on a sweater, watch some television, I don’t know, but I don’t even think it would be all that taxing on me.  

Would you rather end hunger or hatred? 

I adore this movie. Does that make me a dirty hippie?

Hatred. Because if you end hatred, then I think people would work harder to end hunger, and both problems would be solved. 

Would you rather find true love or 10 million dollars? 

Twue wuv.

Ugh, this one’s tough. Probably love. I KNOW! Money’s all super-important and shit. But this doesn’t say I have to live like a pauper with my true love, just that I can have either ten million or true love. So probably I can have my true love and live like a normal human, or ten million and…um…random sex with random people, I guess. I take the love. I’m used to not having money, and love would be nice. I know, you’re all surprised I was so squishy on this one. I’m broken, but I still would like to fall in love someday, come on, people. 

Would you rather have a kangaroo or koala as your pet? 

So sleepy, aw! Dumbcat would love him.

A koala. I know they’re supposed to be all vicious (or is that pandas? I forget), but at least they’re small. Kangaroos are bigger and where would you keep it? I have a very small apartment. I could keep a koala under my bathroom vanity if I wanted. A kangaroo would need like a pen or a backyard or some such nonsense. I don’t have those things. 

Would you rather forget who you were or who everyone else was? 

This doesn’t make a lot of sense. I assume, by the wording, if I forget who I am, I know who everyone else is? That doesn’t logically compute, because if I know who everyone else is, don’t I know who they are in relation to me? Or am I just like, “That is Bob, he is a man who lives on Main Street and has three daughters HOW DO I KNOW THIS????” And if I forget who everyone else is, and they know who I am, they could talk to me and we could, I assume, start our friendship all over again, right? Are the memories I made with those people gone? So is my life like a void? Good gracious. 

I’m going to have to say, forgetting who everyone else is is probably the better option, because then I can at least function, and the people who are worthwhile would stick it out with me and would still be amnesiac-me’s friend. I think. The people who had friend-ADD would be like, “BORED NOW” and take off. So I guess I’d know who my real friends are? 

Oh, yeah, back to the beginning LIKE A FULL CIRCLE. Who says I can’t write. So the “would you rather” that started this whole thing was this: let’s say you have a daughter. Your daughter can be one of two things: a terrible bully, or terribly bullied. Which do you choose?  

It’s actually come to mind for me before, because it’s on my list of “reasons I’d be a terrible parent.” I couldn’t imagine parenting a girl for this very reason. If she came home bullied, I’d at least have the tools in my skillset to help her deal with that, even if it killed me to watch her go through that. But if she came home a bully? How would I deal with that? I have no idea. It would be like living with the enemy. I don’t know how I’d be able to handle it. 

But to answer the question. First, I was like, of course I think I’d choose to parent the bully. As painful as it would be for me, at least I wouldn’t have a child who was going through what I went through. So I was all, I saved my hypothetical child! Then I thought, NO, I am damning OTHER hypothetical children to being bullied by my child. Multiple hypothetical children! That is worse! That is so much worse! But if I was the parent of a bully, could I maybe make her stop? Could I get her help, counseling, teach her that it wasn’t ok? 

My final answer, with apologies to my hypothetical and no no no never female offspring, is that I choose to parent the bullied child. At least I know how to deal with that, and at least I’m not foisting a bully off onto the populace to crush other children’s spirits. Sorry, non-existent hypothetical child, for wishing pain upon you. It’s for the greater good. I martyred you before I even had you. 

Shit, I totally want popsicles now, even though they’re not nutritionally sound. DAMN YOU POWER OF SUGGESTION.


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