Sunday 31 March 2013

That countdown clock is making me mental. Also, I won an award!

The A to Z Blogging Challenge starst tomorrow and I'm having anxiety every time I see their giant countdown clock, because I only have the first week's worth of posts written and convinced that I'm doomed for failure unless I have them all done ahead of time. On the other hand, I work well under pressure, especially after spending almost 2 months swearing to myself how uber-organized I was going to be and come April 1st, I was going to have the entire challenge prewritten, complete with corresponding pics and each post topic rated on a scale of 1 to 5 flaming middle fingers (for an explanation about the flaming middle fingers, you may want to read this but if you don't, trust me, a flaming middle finger rating system makes all kinds of sense, which you can see starting tomorrow)...and then proceeded to procrastinate the fuck out of it and only last Sunday did I start to panic a bit and convinced myself I had to get the first weeks worth of post written or else. No idea if  the "or else" part meant lighting will strike my laptop dead or if my slackassedness would merely be exposed (not that my talent for slacking is a secret, but still, it can be slightly embarassing at times)

What that all means is I plan to get a few more posts prewritten today. I hope. But it's a beautiful day out and the golf course is singing it's siren song and I always obey the golf deities.

In other news, I won a blogging award!! Thanks to Bad Word Mama I'm am the proud new owner of this:
I'm honoured, humbled and shocked that anyone thinks my blog is inspiring (although blogging about how building a dildo factory in the backroom of my workplace might be a good idea hopefully inspired someone, because the world could always use more dildos), so thank you!

With blogging awards, there are apparently rules to follow...I have to tell you 7 things about myself and nominate 15 bloggers for this award. Due to the fact I have to get to work on my A to Z posts, I'm gonna skip the 7 things part because by if you read my A to Z posts in April, you'll find out more about me than you ever wanted to know in the first place. Also I'm not sure I even know 15 people to nominate, but the following bloggers are awesome and I highly recommend you stalk them:

Dysfunctionally Functional
Cloudy With a Chance of Wine
Don't Chew On The Dinner Table
Gaijin Cracker
Jeneral Insanity
Honest Mom
Larks Notes This
Mod Mom Beyond IndieDom
Mountains Wanted
My Half Assed Life
one classy motha!
Something Clever 2.0
The Incoherent Ramblings Of A Moose
The Next Step

Thursday 28 March 2013

The hole in the ozone layer is partly your fault. At least try to feel a bit bad about this

Dear 16 year old Stacey

This is your 41 year old self, here to warn you and give you advice about a few things, which I realize is a complete waste of time because you're 16, not a strong listener and think adults don't know shit. But I'm doing it anyway, because being able to say"I told you so, dumbass" is fun at any age.

Collect and burn any pictures of yourself between the years of 1986 to 1989. Because that backcombed, spiral-permed-within-an-inch-of-it's-life hair will come back to haunt you at a later date. I know it's impossible to comprehend that your gigantic tower of rocker hair will one day be worthy of much mocking, but trust me, it will. Even Jon Bonjovi stops perming his lid and puts down the ratting comb. Oh stop crying, you little drama queen, he looks a hell of a lot better this way.

How could you not worship this hair?? It's magnificent

Speaking of your hair, please note all your hairspray use is contributing to the eventual hole in the ozone layer. I won't bother to suggest you ease back on the hairspray, because I know that won't happen until 1990, but at least take a moment to contemplate your role in the wanton destruction of the planet and apologize to Mother Earth  for choosing trendy hair over the health of the environment.

In regards to smoking, you may want to quit now because by 2013 hardly anyone smokes anymore and all those ex-smokers have become the Self Righteous Smoking Police. You will be berated, yelled at and lectured anytime you light up (which you only do outside and at a distance from any people or building entrances, because you may be a smoker, but you are respectful enough not to subject non-smokers to your habit, even when they're assholes who deserve a face-full of exhaled nicotiney goodness), which does get highly annoying after a while. So if you quit now, you can avoid being subjected to all this. Also, cigarettes are about $10 a pack now, which means your are spending a couple hundred dollars a month to blacken your lungs and possibly kill yourself in a painful way. So think of all that extra money you'd have to spend on skin-tight acid-washed jeans and Motley Crue cassettes.

The first time you meet your future ex husband, your friend will chug an entire bottle of vodka and throw up in your FEH's car. He will forgive you for letting this happen, but he will bring it up on occasion for the next 20 years. The second time you meet him will be at a lake party, where he is drunk, covered in whatever that shit is inside of glowsticks and he will be dancing/flailing around a bonfire. You will think he's a fucking idiot, but about 6 months later you will be living together. Despite the fact you will end up divorced, you'll have an awesome son together and remain friends, which will weird everyone out because you still get along so well post-split. The divorce will suck, but you will both be better off for it and your son will be fine.

I'm not going to tell you anymore specifics of your future because 1) you probably wouldn't believe a lot of it, and 2) there are some bad things that happen...but trust me when I say you will get through it despite when you think you won't. Just remember when you make shitty choices, your only option is to learn from them. And there are some things that you have no control over...these things will happen in spite of you and they will make you feel like you will never recover...but you will and you will be a stronger person for them.

Finally, I mentioned that you will have a son, even though right now you refuse to entertain the thought of ever having kids. He will be the best thing that ever happens to you, and you need to remember that because there will be times when you'll want to give him away to gypsies. He will enrich your life, make you laugh and smile and fill your heart with pride and a fierce love you did not even know was possible. Also at 13, his room will be a minefield of lego and it will smell like feet, no matter how much you bomb it with air freshener...just keep his door closed to contain the smell and watch where you walk when you do venture in there because stepping on legos is more painful than walking barefoot over hot coals. Trust me on this.

Good luck to you and don't worry, you do turn out fine. Eventually.

Wednesday 27 March 2013

Proof that Canadians are secretly assholes

We Canadians have a reputation for being polite and non-confrontational. The rest of the world looks at Canada and thinks "Awwww, Canadians are so damn nice and non-threatening...they're like vanilla pudding in a world of Sriracha Hot Sauce and they would never do anything untoward to their global neighbours"

Think again.

If you're a yoga pants fan (and what woman isn't?), you may have heard the shocking news that because of a batch of too-sheer black yoga pants made by Canadian yogawear company Lululemon, there will be a worldwide black yoga pant shortage, explained here.

It's ok. Take a minute to absorb that and then calm the fuck down.

According to the article, yoga pant pandamonium has begun and people are encouraged to not panic and start yoga pant rationing immediately

What you don't know is this: the yoga pants shortage is a lie. Oh, there's plenty of Lululemon yoga pants...but Canada has decided to hoard them, for no reason other than WE CAN. We are amused by the ensuing yoga pant chaos and are currently reveling in our butt-lifting, stretchy, comfortable glory, while we watch the rest of the world freak out and go pantsless. Some people just want to watch the world burn. In Canada, we prefer to watch the world descend into yoga-pants-shortage madness.

Check. Mate.

Tuesday 26 March 2013

One of those parenting conundrums

About a month ago, Spielberg took an aptitude test at school that's suppose to help him figure out what sort of career would suit him. His results were mostly not surprising as the majority of them had something to do with the film industry...screenwriter, director, film editor...which thrilled him to no end, because those are the sort of things he'd love to do for a living. As soon as he was old enough to operate his dad's video camera, he started making movies and at 13 he has his own camera, close-to-professional quality editing software and has spent many hour writing scripts, filming them with his friends and editing the results. He even has his own production company...not that it's official or legal, but still, how many 13 year old's would start a production company??

This presents a bit of a parenting conundrum for me. I'm thrilled he's so passionate about something and determined to make a career out of it. My worry is, CAN he make a career out of it? Realistically, the movie industry is a difficult one to break into. It's also an industry that seems to be full of heartbreak and rejection and there are legions of people who work their asses off in a professional community that seems more likely to value who you know and being at the right place at the right time, rather than a strong and dilligent work ethic. Talent counts, but only if someone important happens to recognize it. Movie making can be a chew-you-up-and-spit-you-out career choice...and I prefer my son not spend his adulthood covered in figurative bite-marks.

The thing is, this is Spielberg's dream and I want to encourage him to follow his dreams. He watched his dad stuck in a job he hates for years and it's been a lesson to you sacrifice your dreams and personal happiness to do something you can't stand because it pays well? And then he sees me having a career I love, but where I've sacrificed financial stability at times to have it. Personally, I come down firmly on the side of rather spending my days doing something I love for less money, than doing something I can't stand for lots of money and benefits. As long as my bills are paid, there's food in the fridge and there's enough for occasional treats like a game of golf, a new Lego set for Spielberg and an armful of books from the 2nd hand store for me, colour me happy with my life.

What I want more than anything for Spielberg is for him to be happy. I don't want him toiling away in some job he hates. I want him to do something with his professional life that gives him a huge sense of satisfaction. But I also want him to have stability, not only financially but professionally. I suppose being a director involves  some level of risk and to do that job, you having to be willing to take those risks and accept that there will be a certain amount of failure at times.

I guess the part I have trouble with is encouraging, supporting and cheerleading the hell out of him, while knowing what he dreams of doing requires him to develop a really thick skin and learn how to get smacked down by rejection and to get back up, brush himself off and try again. Love him and his dreams, but dammit, sometimes I wish his dream was to be a dentist or own a dumptruck business.

Do you worry about your kids dreams? Do you encourage? Discourage?

Please visit Honest Mom to see the other Honest Voices linkups

Monday 25 March 2013

There were not enough hours in Sunday. I demand a recount and do-over

Apparently I've hit a blogging milestone here...anonymous spammers have discovered my blog and I've had to change my settings. While I'm flattered that you consider my post about using expired moisturizer and insisting my co-workers smell my face "a thought-provoking article about often-taboo subject matter", if I thought you were even remotely serious, I'd block your weirdo-ass because anyone who considers me an "inspiration" for using moisturizer gone rancid, you sir, are fucked in the head.

Update: I no sooner posted this and came across a post on this very thing . Check it out, it makes a good argument for changing your settings to not allow anonymous comments vs the dreaded captcha

In other news, I decided yesterday that my procrastination over pre-writing my posts for the A to Z blogging challenge has hit critical mass, because it starts next Monday and if I don't get at least a week's worth of posts written ahead of time, I am doomed to failure. I got down to business and hammered out posts A-F and now I'm feeling much less panic-attacky. The posts themselves were easy to write (probably because my theme is What I Hate from A to Z , and bitching about shit that pisses me off comes naturally) but what took the most time was finding the corresponding pics of the objects of my specific hatred. I have a general template now of how I want the posts to be and I even scheduled the posts so they'll be posted automatically at the same time every day. I'm so fucking organized at this point I don't even recognize myself.

Finally, the last two weeks have been busy as hell, which is what happens when you have 2 jobs and work 6 days a week. Not that I'm complaining, because I'm lucky to have 2 jobs, let alone 2 awesome jobs that I love, but my boss at the salon has been on vacation in Hawaii and I've been trying to make sure things have been running as smooth as possible in his absence, and the job at the school is always busy...between helping the students and checking their work when they have clients, and keeping them busy with assessments, assignments and wracking my brain to come up with new colour, cutting and styling techniques to demo for them (because they're super-enthused and constantly want to learn new stuff), there is barely time to breathe. Thankfully, I'm taking Easter weekend off...3 WHOLE DAYS IN A ROW!!!!!! I'm hoping the weather co-operates so Spielberg and I can get some golfing in, and other then that, I just want to relax and revel in not having any work obligations for 3 days.

Do you have plans for the long weekend?

Saturday 23 March 2013

Sorry ladies, the Fountain of Youth would cost a lot more than $59.95

My son and I were watching Criminal Minds (great show, partly because Shemar Moore is delicious eye-candy) last night and it seemed like during every commercial break the same ads would come on, which in itself was annoying (fyi marketing executives: Shoving your product down my throat 6 times an hour does not make me want to buy your's more likely making me want to boycott your product because the repetitive ads are so fucking annoying), but what really made me call shenanigans was a particular commercial for anti-aging cream.

My specific problem with this commercial is they are using what looks to be a 22 year old model to sell face cream to their target audience, which would be middle-aged women such as myself. While I understand that when you're selling a product whose claim is to reduce the signs of aging and using a model whose face has obviously lost the battle with gravity and time would be counterproductive to what you are trying to sell, giving the impression your product is some kind of magical fountain of youth is a jar is false advertising. Women in their 40's are not stupid. We know what 20 looks like because we used to be 20 and we also know that looking youthful is not the same as actual youth. And we object to transparent attempts to claim some overpriced cream is going to turn back the clock.

By using a 22 year old to sell anti aging products tells me that the manufacturers have no faith that their product will live up to the claims they make and they figure we are desperate enough to see their fresh-face model and that we will blindly throw money at them. And unfortunately they are right. Because what 40 year old wouldn't be happy to erase 20 years from her face for the low, low price of $59.95? While I don't object to trying a product that might make some of the lines on my face (that have been appearing at an alarming rate the last couple years) less noticeable, do not show me some 22 year old pretending to be a 40 year old who looks 20 because she faithfully uses your product...all that does is piss me off and make me want to start a an email campaign of complaining to your company that might result in a restraining order or a possible visit by the Skin Care Mafia goons, who will tie me to a chair and, wash my face with dishsoap to dry it out and not let me moisturize for a week. Assholes.

Weekend Funnies

Thursday 21 March 2013

We'd get rid of the bbq after. Because we're not THAT kind of weird

Today's Theme Thursday topic is funerals, a subject that I really haven't devoted much time to thinking about. Which is unusual, considering that I'm a) a massive control freak, b) a planner, and rarely spontaneous and c) a hypochondriac who is known to haunt that WebMD site because I'm convinced I have the plague or anthrax. So you would think for all my paranoia and anal-retentiveness, I would have spent a lot of time planning my earthly departure...but I'm also an epic procrastinator, so that might explain the lack of effort.

My dad has suggested that when he dies, we have no kind of service whatsoever and we should just cremate his remains on the bbq to save money and for the sake of convenience. I wish I could say he's kidding, but I half-think he's serious, because my family is weird like that...except for my mother, who is the shining beacon of normality (except when she went through The Menopause and would temporarily lose her mind at times, which was really quite entertaining and hilarious for my dad and this day if you mention my mother's "own private summer", the dark look she gives you is awesome)

Anyfuckingway, when it comes to funerals/memorials/celebrations of life, I would not be completely adverse to DIY cremation if it was legal. I have no religious beliefs that compel me to adhere to any death rituals and quite frankly, I'll be dead, so it won't actually be my problem (it will be Spielberg's problem and knowing him, he'd probably lean towards the bbq idea, which is fine by me. Because I told you, my family is slightly weird)

I'm of the opinion that burial is stupid because it's a waste of perfectly good land and when the inevitable zombie apocalypse happens, we're all going to wish that cremation had been mandatory. And don't even get me started about how much coffins/caskets cost...why the fuck would I want my loved ones spending thousands of dollars on a box for me to rot in? Seriously, if you have your heart set on being buried use a cardboard box, or dispense with the niceties altogether because're made out of organic material already, so why prolong the inevitable? Go green and skip the box.

And since you are no longer in need of your physical body once you go toes up, why not donate your organs to someone who needs one, or donate the whole shebang to science? If someone can benefit from my kidneys or heart when I'm done using them, they're welcome to them. And how fucking cool would that be that your cadaver is the one they figure out a cure for cancer or diabetes on? Another option (which is my personal favourite. Genetic weirdness, remember?) is donating yourself to the Body Farm aka the University of Tennessee Anthropological Research Facility, where they study the decomposition of human remains. Yes it sounds horribly morbid, but how else is forensic science going to advance unless they can study it in controlled conditions, firsthand? Again, if I no longer have use for my body, might as well make myself useful.

As for a memorial-type service, I'd prefer not to have one, but that is the sort of things that is more important to those you leave behind. The only thing I'd ask is that it be informal and more of a thing where people share happy or funny memories.

Have you made arrangements for your ultimate demise?

The Big Reveal 2013

Ten days from now I will be starting my first A-Z Blogging Challenge and today is the Big Reveal, where I stun and amaze you with my A-Z theme. Although anyone who knows me fairly well will not be stunned or amazed by my theme choice, for reasons that will probably be apparent by the time we get to the letter G.

When considering a theme, my criteria was this: 1) I have no criteria because I've never done this challenge before.

Shit. Theme criteria is probably important. I haven't even started and already I'm fucking this up.

So in lieu of making an intelligent decision based on anything logical, I figured I should go with my strengths. And since I excel at complaining, especially complaining about small and stupid things that most people don't waste 20 seconds even thinking about, let alone spending ridiculous amounts of time building an internal rage over things like eggplant (hands down, the #2 most stupid vegetable on the planet...can't tell you what #1 is because it's on my list, so you'll get to read that particular rant in April), it seemed the best choice

So without further ado, I present my official A-Z Blogging Challenge Theme for 2013...

I found this pic on a friend's fb wall and immediately informed him it was PERFECT for my challenge theme and I was stealing it immediately. Thanks Wade! And thank you Roz idea who you are, but if you wrote an entire book about shit you hate, the chances are extremely high we would get along very well
My aim is to spend 26 days bitching about things I find highly annoying, in a humourous way. Certain things on my list are things I hate in general or on principle, while other things are more along the lines of wtf because the topic seems fairly un-hateable, but there is something specific about those things that makes me hop aboard the train to Angerville and Annoyancetown. I will also be doing a rating system about each topic because some things make me go nuclear but others merely make me annoyed and I thought it would be interesting to see how much or little these same things annoy you.

If you have also joined in the A-Z madness you should head over to Mina Lobo's blog where The Big Reveal is taking up and see what everyone else's theme is.

Don't know what The A-Z blogging Challenge is? Head over here for more info and sign up

See you in April!

Tuesday 19 March 2013

Don't question me, just smell my face

Fact #1 Moisturizer does in fact, expire

Fact #2 Expired moisturizer smells like musty wax

Fact #3 Deciding to use it anyway is not a good idea. Partly because of the smell but also because your face starting to tingle is not a sign  that after 8 years, all the ingredients have grown stronger with age, turning what was once regular moisturizer into some form of SuperMoisturizer and the tingling means it's ultra concentrated and working extra-awesome. Rather, you are likely having an allergic reaction to the rancid cream you just rubbed all over your face because you'd rather believe the opposite of the easiest and most reasonable explanation. Also, you're too damn lazy to wash it off so you go to work with stinky a face that is starting to break out in blotches

Fact #4 Demanding your co-workers smell your face might make them question your sanity

Fact #5 Walking around all day with a smelly, blotchy face due to rancid, expired moisturizer is not the best way to demonstrate that you are a beauty industry professional

Monday 18 March 2013

Can we at least agree that Mary was boring until she went blind?

They say money can't buy happiness. I say bullshit...when happiness takes the form of 12 books from the thrift store priced at 50 cents a paperback and $1 a hardcover, you bet your ass I just bought myself about a month's worth of literary joy. At one point during my book buying binge, a little voice inside me said "do you really need this many books? You still have  the Leaning Tower of Books teetering precariously next to the couch that you haven't even read yet, plus another elevently million books packed into bookshelves and taking up most available surfaces of your apartment. Maybe you should step away from the fiction."

This thought lasted approximately 3.8 seconds and ended as soon as I came to my senses and put that dissenting voice into a mental chokehold while the other voices monkey-stomped the shit out of it. Because if there is one thing I cannot abide, it's book-haters. Even imaginary ones.

One of the books in today's haul is Melissa Gilbert's memior, which I had to have because I'm a rabid Little House On The Prairie fan. As I kid I read those books until they were dog-eared and I still pull them out about once a year and revisit the Ingalls clan. I'm also sure I've seen every episode of the tv show at least 20 times, my favorite being any episode that Nellie Oleson featured heavily in. Because that girl was the best uber-bitch before there even was such a thing as an uber bitch. The snark, the snobbery, the pure evil underneath those boing-boing curls and giant floppy hair bitchtastic!

Look at that sneer...bow down to the Goddess of Mean and worship the boing-boing curls

Anyways, I'm hoping Melissa Gilbert's memoir devotes a LOT of space to LHOTP and has all kinds of juicy tidbits and behind the scenes stuff that will make the fangirl in me squeal with  pleasure. I'm also hoping she talks about when she was dating Rob Lowe in the 80's because I looooooove him (however I did not looooove his book because there should have been way more Brat Pack reminiscing and way less chatting about Rob getting ousted from the West Wing and why Aaron Sorkin is a dick.)

Were you a Little House fan? Team Laura or Team Nellie?

Sunday 17 March 2013

Skincare for the rich and insane

I was reading an article about Creme De La Mer this morning...for those of us peons who don't know what this stuff is because we don't travel by private jets or pay someone to scratch our asses because we are far too rich and important to touch our own ass, La Mer is a luxury brand face cream that costs $150 an ounce. The main ingredient is fermented kelp. That's right. $150 an ounce for seaweed. Why the fuck would I pay that much money to rub overpriced seaweed on my face when I can run down to the beach and do that for free?

Also, the latest trend in high-end beauty treatments? Blood facials. Kim Kardashian had one on her reality show (of course she did, because when you are a flaming narcissist, you are convinced that the time-space continuum will come to a crashing halt unless all of humanity knows about your bowel movements. Scheduled, of course, for maximum time management on Twitter) and I'm sure everyone will soon be clamouring to regain their lost youth via a procedure involving doctors drawing blood out of your arm, spinning  out the platelet in a centrifuge, which separates the red blood from the yellow platelets,  and then applying the blood onto the face via tiny needles.

Yes, she looks FAR more youthful and gorgeous now now.

Seriously? Did I mention this facial costs $1000?

First of all, when did facials stop being relaxing and start involving needles and looking like a vampire after a satisfying meal? And second, how is using my own 41-year-old blood going to make me look younger? Shouldn't I be using the blood of someone younger? Can you imagine the Craiglist ad?

"Blood donor wanted. Must be 20 or younger and genetically blessed with fantastic skin that has yet started to sag, wrinkle and yield to gravity. Blood will not be used in satanic rituals. Honest, it won't. Also, please do not contact the police, I'm only searching for the fountain of youth that may reside in your blood"

Finally, do you remember hearing about some actress a while back that kept the placenta after giving birth? I seem to recall she planned to either eat it or have it made into face cream or some weird shit because apparently placentas are chock-full of nutrients. While I will support any woman who wants to upcycle her placenta (despite the fact I think that's just fucking bizarre), eating it ventures way too far into cannibalism territory for my taste, and the thought of sticking it on my face is a little too Silence Of The Lambs for me. Because for those of you who had a sadistic asshole for a OBGYN who insisted on showing you the placenta right after you gave birth, you know that it looks like a large piece of raw liver. And that the phrase "what has been seen cannot be unseen" is totally true. And the thought of chowing down or applying the meat sack your baby spent the first 9 months of his life in to your face? I don't care if it makes me look 20 years younger, that's not going to fucking happen. Ever.

Weekend Funnies Badge photo weekendfunnies_zps47e39585.png

Thursday 14 March 2013

Teen Shaming. Would you do this?

Teen shaming has been in the news a lot in the last couple years. It's where parents are reacting to their teen's bad behaviour by giving them a dose of public humiliation. The controversy in this is advocates say it's creative parenting and serves an an effective punishment and deterrent for continued bad behaviour...the opposition says it's a form of bullying and cruel.

Personally I'm not sure if I go the sign-on-the-side-of-the-road seems a little over the top to me (but I reserve the right to consider this if Speilberg ever stole or vandalized anything, because I believe he'd thing twice about every doing something so stupid again if he's standing outside a store or building with a sign saying "I stole from/vandalized this place and this is my punishment, along with fixing any damage I did. I am truly sorry and will never do anything so stupid again")  But the first pic? You bet your ass I'd do that if I caught my 13 year old posting pics of himself drinking on facebook. Kids always have done inappropriate and stupid things...nowadays, thanks to social media, they have a much larger audience. So if my kid wants to act like an asshole on social media? He will not be allowed on social media. Right after he explains on social media why he will no longer be there until he learns that facebook is a privilege, not a right

Last year there was a video that went viral, about a dad that shot his daughter's laptop . The short story is that a 15 year old decided to do some complaining about her parents on her facebook page. Her dad took exception to her public bitching and fired back (pun intended) with an 8 minute video he posted on youtube, where he reads out the post she made, makes his own very effective rebuttal about what she said and reminded her this is not the first time she made inappropriate comments on facebook, which previously resulted in a grounding and her computer privileges revoked. He reaches a conclusion that she didn't learn from her previous punishment, so he decides to make his point in a manner so clear, no one could miss it's meaning. Cue to the death of the laptop. (Seriously, watch the whole video. I was rooting for the dad, who was visibly upset and made some excellent points about teens who expect to have life handed to them on a silver platter).

What do you think of teen shaming?

Tuesday 12 March 2013

The cure for insomnia is probably death

Sleep eludes me. I am the Susan Lucci of insomnia, except she finally won a Daytime Emmy after a bajillion years of being nominated. It feels like it's been a bajillion years since I had a decent night sleep and I have no hope of collecting my Slumber Emmy anytime soon, unless I suddenly fall into an unexplainable coma for a few days, which actually doesn't sound like a bad idea

Notice the death grip she has on her Emmy. Trust me, I know how she feels. If I could put sleep in a headlock to prevent it's escape, I would
I've never been a good sleeper. As a baby/toddler, I made sure my mother was a sleep-deprived zombie for about 3 years (sorry mom...but you'll be happy to know the universe has been paying me back for that ever since). As a kid and teen I had frequent nightmares and occasional bouts of sleep-walking. As an adult, my sleep semi-straightened out (meaning I probably got a somewhat decent night's Zzz maybe 3  times a week), but as soon as I got pregnant, sleep went on a permanent vacation. You know how people tell you to sleep before the baby comes, while you still can? I question if those people ever had an unborn baby who decided playing soccer with their uterus all night, every night was a fun game.

And once Speilberg was born? Forget it. Sleep became a distant, foggy memory. Mind you, this was not Speilberg's fault...his waking hours were screamy and difficult but thankfully he made up for it with long naps and sleeping through the night at 9 weeks. Unfortunately my brain decided between 0 and 2 hours sleep was the maximum I was allowed, so the memories of the first 3 years of my son's life are remembered through a hazy veil of massive sleep deprivation and partial insanity. I remember wondering if anyone has literally died from lack of sleep. Then I wondered if I could pay someone to whack me over the head with a 2-by-4, because a coma was starting to look like a heavenly idea.

By the time Speilberg was 3, I broke down and went to my doctor, mostly because I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown, which I wasn't sure was a result of not sleeping or the reason I was not sleeping. Turns out it was both....diagnosis: depression and insomnia, which go hand in hand and all these years later are still the bane of my existence.

I've tried every sleep-inducing method known to mankind...meditation, aromatherapy, relaxation techniques, bedtime routines, medicinal herbs, elixirs, teas...none of them work for me. I have prescription sleeping pills which work some of the time, but when my brain doesn't want to sleep (which is often), I might as well be taking sugar pills, for all the good they're doing.

I long ago reached the conclusion that it's possible to operate on little or no sleep. That my sleep debt rivals the fiscal debt of the US, and there's no hope in hell of ever catching up. And as I age, it's only going to get worse (I've calculated that  by the time I'm 70, I will no longer require any sleep whatsoever, which hopefully will be like Buddha reaching complete enlightenment, but will probably be more like permanent insanity).

I figure I'll sleep when I'm dead. Unless the afterlife consists of constant wakefulness. In which case I'm gonna be REALLY pissed

Monday 11 March 2013

Creative doesn't mean "what the hell is that supposed to be???"

I've been a hairstylist for 22 years and while many things in the industry have changed over that time, one thing remains the same:  while avant garde hair may look awesome on stage at a show or in a photo shoot, it translates in real life to "whatthefuck??"

At this point in my career I'm a little jaded. When I go to a hair show or read an industry publication, I'd like to see styles that are creative but wearable...something I would actually send my client out the door with. While hair is a creative medium and a lot of platform looks are created for the sole purpose of generating an extreme reaction, to show the whole "hair as art" concept and inspire creativity, some of the shit I've seen over the years makes me think we've gone beyond cutting edge and headed straight into downright fucking bizarre territory.

Some examples:

Why yes...rain cloud hair is the new inverted bob
Because all my clients want to look like a psychedelic jellyfish

Sorry don't get a pass here either

Orange and black. For when you wish it was Halloween every day
Multiple colours that neither contrast nor compliment? Check. More than one hairstyle going on at once? Check. Possibility of hair schizophrenia? High

Serving as a reminder that most clients prefer their hair not be bigger than their head

Sunday 10 March 2013

I think the Car Fairy is on strike. Bitch.

Fact: I am the worst car owner in vehicular history

In lieu of actual maintenance, I believe if I wish hard enough The Car Fairy will wave her magic wand and keep air in the tires, the oil and coolant filled and the Service Engine light that is permanently on is merely a suggestion as opposed to a warning to get thee to a mechanic immediately. I also believe if the car gets me from point A to point B without any pertinent parts falling off, minor explosions or sounding like a dying mechanical animal, then it works just fine. I live in a constant state of vehicular an alcoholic, I refuse to acknowledge my car has a problem and I really need to turn it over to a higher power, which in this case would be a qualified mechanic.

Case in point #1: the oil dipstick, which broke off a couple years ago. When I remember to put oil in the car (which is likely not often enough), I never have any idea how much is already in there, so I calculate that it probably needs a "bunch" and start pouring until my gut tells me to stop. I call this Zen Car Maintenance...becoming one with your car so you can anticipate it's needs. All my male friends call this "are you fucking insane?? You can't just guess how much oil to put in...get the dipstick fixed NOW before you fuck up your engine, you idiot!!"

Case in point #2: the Service Engine light. Mine is constantly on. Which is actually not a bad thing, because my dashboard lights only work intermittantly, so the ambient glow from the Service Engine light allows me to see the dashboard when it's dark. It's like my car is sensing my needs and behaving accordingly. That's what I like to tell myself, anyway.

Case in point #3: the tires. Which apparently require air from time to time. Last year I got really good about keeping the tires inflated, mostly because 2 of them had a slow leak and needed air at least once every few days. Supposedly, I have a gadget in my glove box you're supposed to use to check the tire pressure, which I didn't know about until my friend went to put air in the tires for me, and informed me one tire was so over-inflated that he was shocked it hadn't blown out and another was so flat I was almost driving it on the rim. This problem was resolved when one of the tires went so flat it was beyond fixing and I had to break down and take it to the tire shop, where they replace the one tire and informed me the other 3 were so bad that legally, they could not let me drive around on them and I couldn't have my car back unless I replaced all the tires...something about no tread, completely bald and belts sticking out. The nice man there found me 3 more used tires that were 1000 times better than my old ones and barely charged me for enduring the safety lecture from him and eyeball-rolling and head-shaking from all the mechanics who took turned gaping at the horrible state of my tires was totally worth it.

Seriously, I should ditch the car and just start walking instead.

Thursday 7 March 2013

The balancing act

When Spielberg was little, I remember other parents raving about how parenting their little angel was so damn easy..."oh, she's never cries", "we taught little Johnny sign language so he can communicate before he can talk" and "little Janey has been pooping on the potty since she was 8 months old!". When your own kid cries nonstop because of colic/teething/ear infections, your one year old throws a full-on tantrum in the doctor's office, who comments "wow, that usually doesn't happen to that extreme until at least 2", and your 3 year old screams bloody murder every time to suggest he poop on the toilet instead of asking for a pullup, squatting behind the couch and immediately demanding you remove it now that the deed is complete, you wish those parents would just shut the fuck up and shove their oh-so-wonderful parenting realities where the sun don't shine.

In Spielberg's early years, my parenting style was "do whatever the hell it takes to gets us through the day" Because thanks to undiagnosed depression with a side of insomnia, I was not operating with full facilties and the effort involved to try my best to be a good mom and not ruin my kid left me exhausted and questioning everything I did. I read parenting books, I sought advice of other moms and I tried hard to find what worked for both my son and I. As long as he made it through those difficult early years and emerged a happy, healthy kid who does not require some form of therapy later in life, then I did ok.

Parenting a 13-year old is a whole different story. Because now? All those crowed-about,  perfectly-behaved darlings who never had a tantrum in the cereal aisle of the grocery store have turned into sullen,  often-belligerent creatures with a flair for the dramatic and ridiculous. They no longer talk to their parents in a sweet voice...they grunt, if they bother to communicate at all. They spend an hour in the bathroom doing god-knows-what, and they spend their free time attached to their computers or cel phones because it would be an international disaster if they had to go 5 minutes without talking to their friends about whoever they think is hot at the moment. These same parents who would spend an hour rhapsodizing about how their 7 month old could read are now bewildered by the C- in English.

Having a kid who was a difficult baby/toddler now gives me an advantage as a parent of a teen. Because I find dealing with a moody teenager far easier than a screaming toddler. I can reason with Spielberg now, where there is no such thing as logic and reason to a 3 year old. While he's still got those personality quirks that make him who he is (like extreme stubbornness, zero patience for stupidity and a willingness to argue his case in a way that would make a lawyer weep with pride), now those things about him make me proud of him because he's old enough to channel them into something tangible, like working harder to get better grades and developing a social conscience, where he percives injustice in the world and wants to take part in trying to solve the problem because he feels strongly that it's the right thing to do.

Of course Spielberg is a young teen and we still have several years for some scary-assed behaviour to rear it's ugly head. But my parenting style remains the same...fluid, because I believe you need to be prepared for the worst and hope for the best. I don't want to hover or keep him trapped under my thumb. But my eyes are wide open to the realities of his age and the world he's growing up in. So it's constant vigilance, tempered with stepping far back enough so he learns how to find his way. It's finding that balance between wanting to protect him from everything and stepping back to let him soar. It's holding him close, but letting him go.

Wednesday 6 March 2013

I'm kidding about the dildo factory in the back room. But the idea has potential

Social networking is making me feel like I have a multiple personality disorder.

I should probably explain that statement.

I have a facebook profile, where my "friends" are a mixture of family, friends, people I went to school with, co-workers, students, blogger friends and other assorted characters I've known throughout the years. I try to keep my wall relatively PG, mostly because Spielberg can see it and I'd like to avoid therapy for both of us. I have a page (that's age restricted), where I post my blog links, inappropriate shit I find on the internet and stuff that cracks me up (also inappropriate for younger readers or the few of my fb friends with more delicate sensibilities).

The problem comes in with my other 2 pages I have for is a salon page and the other is my personal professional page. When I'm going back and forth between the 4 places I tend to forget which page I'm on and I start to panic about what I posted where. Posting a hairdressing link on my Page of Inappropriateness is not a big deal. However, posting something like this on my salon page...would not be so good I don't do taxidermy. But if I did, this would totally be the kind of taxidermy I would do
Thankfully I caught myself right before I accidentally posted this on my salon page. Despite the fact that my co-workers and many of our clients would have found this funny, I really don't think this is the message our salon wants to send...that message apparently being "We guarantee you will be so pleased with your hair, you will walk out the door smiling wider than a maniacal winged monkey with a halo. Also, please accept this complimentary dildo, because we just started a dildo manufacturing factory in the back room"

Moral of the story: Always double-check which page personality you're using. Especially when there's a crazy monkey with a latex penis involved

Monday 4 March 2013

Monday morning Pinterest hangover

Have you ever started something with the intention of it being sort of nice and elegant and before you know it, you've had a virtual blackout and when you come to, you're covered in cyber-glitter and wondering how the hell you went from gorgeous diamond rings to sparkly toilets?

If you have, I bet Pinterest is to blame.

Yesterday I started a new Pinterest board called "Ooo...shiny!" because I saw a couple of really beautiful diamond rings I wanted to pin. It was all going fine and I was immersed in sparkly gems...and then this happened:

Because if you're paying $6 for a coffee, you might as well push conspicuous consumption to the limit with a blinged-out coffee cup
Once I saw this cup, it occured to me there is a whole world of sparkly, glittery shit out there and now I'm on a mission to find it. And I was hella successful

Unless you live in a nightclub where Andy Warhol is passed out in a corner while Warren Beatty is snorting coke with a model who has eaten one lettuce leaf and a pack of sugar free gum in the last 3 days, I'm really not sure why you'd need disco stairs

I'm sorry, but unless a fairy just threw up all over you? There is no excuse for this

So that's what happens to dead vampires in Stephanie Meyers world

Not only will this keep your beer cold, if you get lost, you can use it to signal aircraft for help

The Glitter Shitter for those of us not content to rest our pampered asses on mere porcelain

And to go with your diamond-encrusted toilet? Because nothing says "I have money to burn AND I'm a fucking idiot" like shitting $400 worth of gold

Please click to button to read or link up to the other I Don't Like Mondays posts!

Saturday 2 March 2013

Denim Deathmatch

Every August, Spielberg and I engage in our annual Sheer and Utter Hell That Is Back To School Clothes Shopping…holy shitballs, I’m glad this only goes on once a year. I don’t understand how shopping for clothes can be so painful but my son absolute hates it. If it was up to him he’d live in the same old ratty-ass sweatpants/shorts and grubby tshirt every day of his life. Since kindergarten I’ve tried arguing in favour of one pair of jeans, just ONE, but he over-rules me every year and there’s no point wasting my breath or money and buy him something that will go in the drawer and never see the light of day again, because this has happened any time I’ve bought him pants that couldn’t double as pyjama bottoms.

However this year he decided since he’s starting high school, he should maybe attempt to be a little more fashionable and actually wear jeans. Now this is a kid who has not voluntarily worn denim pants of any kind since he was old enough to strip them off and run away screaming “NO OUCHIE PANTS” at the top of his lungs (he’s also the kid who complained bitterly if the seam of his socks were not perfectly aligned and demanded all tags be removed from the inside of every item of clothing because they felt “yucky”). I place the genetic blame squarely on his dad who’s personal favourite item of clothing was a shitty old pair of combat camo pants he owned since he was 15 and literally wore them to rags only last year. And trust me, I spent 19 years trying to throw those fucking pants out and visibly cringed every single time he wore them. Which was unfortunately often.

Before we got out of the car at the mall for this year’s shopping trauma, I made Spielberg swear to me he would a) choose at least 2 pairs of jeans and b) bitter complaining would be kept to a minimum. I swear, the closer we got to the store, the more his face twisted in a knot and the grumbling intensified, reaching it's complainy crescendo when confronted with stacks upon stack of the denim enemy, which meant it was time to employ psychological tactics with military-like precision. This meant digging through eleventy million styles of jeans to find the one pair with the most lycra in them so I could point out how sweatpant-like they were because look, stretchy!! Comfy!!! Just like sweatpants!! Denim sweatpants!! And then as soon as he grudgingly admitted they’re “ok, I guess, but I still hate jeans”, I stealthily grabbed a second pair in a slightly different colour and distracted him with zombie tshirts so I could quickly pay for the object of his pants-related hatred and get him the hell out of the store before he changed his mind. Mom:1 Spielberg:0
Thankfully these jeans were not amongst the choices in the store. Because I bet Spielberg would have insisted on them, partly out of comfort but mostly out of spite

And yes, he actually wears the jeans. The minute he gets home from school however, off come the jeans and on go the shorts/sweatpants. I suppose I can relate, because the minute I walk in the door, I release the twins from bra prison, so he comes by that feeling of uncomfortable-clothing freedom honestly

Please link up to the Sunday Funnies blog hop, hosted by the hilarious Vanessa...blogger, asshat wrangler and vegetable enthusiast extraordinaire