Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Freedom's just another word for...

In America, we get bent out of shape when people destroy things in protests. We also get bent out of shape when people protest silently. Which one is it, America? Would we rather Colin Kaepernick set things on fire in protest, scream and give the middle finger during the national anthem, or sit down silently in protest? Or would we rather no one ever say anything that paints us in a bad light?

Personally, my vote is for sit down silently in protest. There's no honor in staying silent about things that matter. With silent, peaceful protest, there's no destruction of property (an illegal and asshole move even during protest) and no disrespect (legal during protest but off-putting), there's just taking a stand and he is getting fucking roasted for it because the Internet is a hotbed of hate and we absolutely love to label people as anti-American.

Unfortunately for the rabid Internet dwellers, peaceful protest against your government or its entities and what you think they represent is very, very American.
When members of America's armed forces defend those first amendment rights we hold so dear, they do so for ALL of us. Not just those of us with the most popular opinions. Are you guys familiar with blogger and veteran Jim Wright? He is an awesome writer, so you should check his blog out here, but also check out his thoughts on Kaepernick here.

Look, I hate the Westboro Baptist Church and the KKK and everything both of those shitbag hatefucker groups stand for, but I absolutely support their right to speak freely and to peaceably assemble, even though their speech and assembly are in utter opposition to every fiber of my being. I may not like what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it.
Of course this issue is not technically about anyone infringing on Kaepernick's freedom of speech because the lynch mob coming after him is not the government, but his fellow citizens. We don't want our government to infringe upon our freedoms but we will gladly dance all over each other's. That's not really how it's supposed to work. 

What I feel for America is an innate love that comes from deep in my bones. I truly believe the quote that goes something like there is nothing that is wrong with America that can't be fixed by what is right with America. Even when something shameful happens here - and there have been many shameful things that have happened here - I still have an intense love of this country.

And I love that other people feel so strongly about what happens here that they take to the streets or in this case, the bench, to let their feelings be known. In the past few years, it has become the very pseudo intellectual/faux patriotic/snide smug superior person thing to do to hate on protesters. We have opinions on how they protest and where they choose to protest. If we're with them, we support them. If we're not, we bitch about them wasting time and resources.

We'd all do well to remember that we would be sipping tea, celebrating Boxing Day, and singing God Save the Queen if some guys sat on their asses instead of protesting back in the 1700s. This country was birthed out of the vagina of a protest and it's one of the only way changes have occurred throughout the years. Protesting is as American as apple pie.

It takes guts to take a stand against something that is largely accepted by your fellow citizens. This man sat down because America is not that great to him right now, and we hate him for it. But many of us love Donald Trump who has stood at podiums across this 
land saying that America is not that great to him right now, but he'll make it great again. Are we okay with that because he stands during the National Anthem?

The thing about love of country is that we all show it differently. I don't put my hand over my heart during the anthem, something quite a few have come under fire for in recent years, but I would wrestle you to the ground if you accused me of not loving and respecting my country. Pointing out problems we face as a nation, whether you do it at a podium, on a football field, on the street, in writing, in a crowd, or by yourself does not make you un-American.

You know where you have to grit your teeth and act like you love and respect your anthem even if you don't feel like it represents your ideals for your government and your country? Nazi Germany. Nothing perks up your civic pride like being watched during the anthem with rifles pointed in your general direction. In America, you don't have to pretend. Well, technically you don't have to but the Internet wants you to. It seems like a lot of us want everyone to fall in line, and we want to scream and call out and label and cart off those that don't. Sort of like a technology age version of the Secret Police.

Why would I want someone to stand with me during my anthem if they didn't feel like it represented them? I don't want to stand next to pretenders who look the part but have hate in their heart for this land or the roads we're travelling down. I definitely want everyone to love my country like I do, but I know that we do not all come from the same circumstances and that it might be harder for others to salute this flag and sing this anthem. Group Think does not become you, America. That's not what this country is about. It's the anithesis of what we're about.

I think it is extremely disrespectful to talk or be on your phone during the national anthem. I've seen both more times than I can count and I'm betting many people bitching about Kaepernick have done one of those two things. In my eyes, you might as well be sitting down. Good thing you're not famous, right?

I respect Kaepernick's right to sit during the anthem for what it does not represent to him at this time as much as I respect my own right to stand and be moved to tears by what it represents to me. His protest does not threaten me. It doesn't threaten you either. It doesn't make him un-American. It makes him someone who thinks differently than you do and expresses himself differently than you do. And in America, those things are not a crime.

Not yet, anyway.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Shit MFD Said: Vol 32

Driving to the shore
MFD: If I ever die on the side of the road do not erect anything.
Me: Oh no, I would never. Do you know me?
MFD: I just had to state it out loud. 

While at the shore
MFD: You know what I don't have any of?
Me: Underwear?
MFD: Not a stitch.
Me: Classic.
MFD: Do you think they have them at Rite Aid?
Me: No. 
MFD: Could you check while I'm out? I'll wear corny ones.
Me: Sure...come to think of it, do you think they have shorts there? I am a pair short.
MFD: They'll be corny but sure. Why not?
Me: So we're people that buy clothes from Rite Aid now. Something new for us.
MFD: No. We're trying to buy them from Rite Aid. We haven't been successful yet.

While tubing
MFD:  I need a knife to cut these shoe laces. 
Me: We're in the middle of a river. 
MFD: I'll figure it out. Like this guy is coming on a kayak, I'll ask him.
Me: You cannot ask a stranger for a knife in the middle of a remote area.
MFD: Sure I can. He's fishing. You don't go fishing without a knife.
Me: But you are NOT fishing, so he should not give you one. You're just a stranger on the river with his wife asking for knives. 

In text

All read and approved by MFD before they go live...
Shit MFD Said Vol 1Shit MFD Said Vol 2Shit MFD Said Vol 3Shit MFD Said Vol 4
Shit MFD Said Vol 5Shit MFD Said Vol 6Shit MFD Said Vol 7Shit MFD Said Vol 8
Shit MFD Said Vol 9Shit MFD Said Vol 10Shit MFD Said Vol 11, Shit MFD Said Vol 12, Shit MFD Said Vol 13, Shit MFD Said Vol 14, Shit MFD Said Vol 15, Shit MFD Said Vol 16, Shit MFD Said Vol 17, Shit MFD Said Vol 18, Shit MFD Said Vol 19, Shit MFD Said Vol 20, Shit MFD Said Vol 21, Vol 22, Vol 23, Vol 24, Vol 25, Vol 26, Vol 27, Vol 28, Vol 29, Vol 30, Vol 31,

Monday, August 29, 2016

TWTW - the short one before the long one

Friday I was at the shore by 7, had dinner with MFD and Angie at some eh Italian place I can't remember the name of, and we were in bed by 11, which made it easy to get up at 5:30 the next morning for a lovely sunrise. I played photographer for a girl staging an elaborate hammock photo on the pier before hanging on the porch with the dogs.
I was off to meet Jenn from Going the Distance at Drip-n-Scoop for iced coffee and donuts. I was glad we could make it work because we were supposed to rendezvous earlier in the summer and then I wasn't down the shore that weekend. We were gabbing nonstop for over an hour.
The rest of the day was spent at the beach with MFD and Angie, Evan & Jenny and the kids, and Jenn & Steve and the kids. It was a good one so we stayed until close to 7:30. We had a bonus run-in with our friend Mike from junior high and high school and his girlfriend.
Sunday morning sunrise
Followed by porch laziness and a weekenders group photo organized professionally by Evan and cropped poorly by moi.
I was at the beach from noon until 5 on Sunday, then sort of shoved everything in a bag and went home reluctantly. It was the first weekend without renters since June, and it was nice to not worry about what anyone might need. It was a great weekend and I was bummed to leave. I always leave weekends like these thinking I'm so lucky to have such good friends, most of whom I've known for many seasons of my life.
Weekly food prep: Yeah, no. I'm working three days this week and am on my own for dinner Monday and Tuesday and down the shore by Wednesday. Breakfasts are burritos out of the freezer, lunches are turchicken burgers from the freezer or salads, and dinners are salads too. Boom. 

Three day week for me, it'll be the weekend again in two shakes of a lamb's tail. I'm already all out of sorts on my dates and need a calendar to ground me, this surely won't help.

This unique dog who thinks he is a human turns 11 today. Happy birthday Gussie. Burgers for dinner for all! 

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Thursday Thoughts: The Original

1. Do you know how hard it is to get rid of free things? Pretty fucking hard. We got a new bed for our efficiency at the shore, and I put the old one up on a local page for $50 - for a queen bed and boxspring. A few people contact me, and then got all aggressive "How much? Free, right?" One day before I need it out? Sure, now it's free. Come see it and get it out of there if you want it. The original description stated the age and appearance of the mattress. Do not interview me about this bed like I am a suspect in a murder associated with it. By 10 a.m. yesterday I sent MFD many fuck this and fuck these people texts and said I will actually pay for someone to come and pick it up rather than dealing with these dicks. It's free! Don't act like you're doing me a favor taking it. Take it or leave it but stop asking me questions about it.

2. Blog friends are the shit. Jen from That's What She Read mailed me her copy of The Woman in Cabin 10, which I've been dying to read even though I was stuck in the basement of the library hold list. And she's cool with me mailing it to Jana so we can discuss it for The Armchair Librarians before we send it back Jen's way. And Steph from Not Entirely Perfect sent me her Bumble & Bumble pret-a-powder to try.

3. Speaking of books, because I'm always speaking of books and feel a compulsion to do so, The Woman in Cabin 10 is the fourth book I've begun since Saturday. I've hit a streak of can't put 'em down novels. My personal sweet spot.

4. When I pop into Sephora, nine times out of 10 it's to re-stock my daily go-to lip product.

5. Geege went to the vet Tuesday night - he needs some teeth removed, which the in-home vets don't do. This was for his pre-dental surgery check-up. I also wanted to get him started with acupuncture before his back leg issues get worse. We're going with an acupuncture and injections treatment hoping to boost his energy and strengthen his cartilage. The golden turmeric paste the dogs are getting is helping too. I could make a full time job out of the health maintenance of these aging dogs, but I need my full time job to pay for them.

6. Yesterday our last renters of the summer checked out at the shore. It was a successful first season, and one in which I learned a gazillion lessons. I'm looking forward to not being on the business end of the house and instead actually enjoying it over the next few months. We have family and friends down in the next few weeks and most weekends in September and October with only one weekend of people we don't know in the house. September at the shore is one of my favorites. Last year we listed the house on VRBO the first week of January and were booked for the season by the second week of February. I'm hoping for more of the same, and given the amount of inquiries I've already had for the 2017 summer season, I think it'll happen. I already booked a week in July. Plan a head people are my favorite.

7. Last week I talked about officially reaching the point in the summer where I'm wearing the same five things with no regard for anything else in my closet. This week I talk about where I've officially reached the point in the summer where I have no desire to do any food prep or meal planning. Toast for dinner it is! 

8. Top two recent assholes: Lying Liar Lochte and EPI pen price gougers. 

9. Reminder. 
10.  E-card of the week: The poor bats, right?

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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Fun Ways to Introduce Other Cultures to Your Children

When people approach me about sharing articles in my blog space, I don't say yes to every opportunity that comes along. . I am not big into writing about or accepting writing about things like tampons for any amount of dollars. I do accept articles that cover topics that I don't because I think that's an interesting supplement. Like this one:

Exposing your children to the many different cultures that are found throughout the world will make them well-rounded individuals who have a true appreciation for people all over the planet, not just in their home country. To make the experience of learning about other cultures more fun for your kids, though, you should follow the helpful tips and strategies below.

Explore Different Religions
Every religion has something unique to offer; yet all religions have the common theme of loving yourself and loving those around you equally. By exposing your children to the many different religious teachings from around the world, you can prove to them that everyone basically holds to the same hopes and values, but they express them differently and follow different scriptures or deities. You can study everything from Buddhism to Christianity on sites like Deily, and you can allow your kids to determine which religion they connect with most, rather than forcing them to believe in what you believe.

Indulge in the Delicious Cuisines of Different Cultures
One of the best and most fun ways to dive into a different culture is by indulging in its food. You can actually learn a lot about a culture by sampling its most beloved dishes, so make it a point to research some recipes that you can make at home, and find local restaurants that are family owned and operated and are serving up authentic cuisine. You may be surprised by how different yet delicious the flavors are, and your kids may find that their favorite dishes aren’t their own culture’s recipes after all.

Get a Map
The simple act of printing out a world map is a great way to show your kids where different countries are located and where different cultures come from. You can incorporate these lessons into your other strategies. For example, on a night during which you will be having Indian cuisine for dinner, you can take the map out and show your kids where India is located.

Visit Museums
Yet another fun way to teach your kids about different cultures from around the world is by taking them to a museum. You can go to a natural history museum that will focus on the evolution of various cultures from across the globe, or you can visit museums that are dedicated specifically to a single culture, such as the Native American culture. Museums are highly educational, and they provide parents with a host of resources that they can use to teach their kids more about diversity and global cultures. So go ahead and plan a day at the museum and visit all of the exhibits that will expose your kids to the artwork and history of people from other countries.

These are just a few of the many fun ways that you can teach your kids about other cultures from other parts of the world. Of course, you want to also teach them about your own heritage and its culture, but this is a fantastic way to raise kids who will embrace diversity.


Parents, how do you teach your kids about other cultures?

And a happiest of birthdays to one of my favorites, Jill.

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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

What do I stand for?

Inspiration for this post is from Candyfloss & Persie - please read Caitlin's post too and check out her blog, it's one of my favorite daily reads. I love her photos. Anyway this has been in drafts for a while, and with a lot of people in America standing for a lot of ignorance these days, I thought I'd share what I stand for.

I stand for going with my gut.

I stand for letting my light shine.
I stand for women lifting each other up.

I stand for the Oxford comma.

I stand for my people - if you are in my circle, you are in my circle and I will do anything for you.

I stand for everyone having autonomy over their own bodies and for there being no laws in this land on women's bodies.

I stand for equality at all levels for all people.

I stand for supporting small businesses.

I stand for saying no.

I stand for nerds - we're all some type of nerd, or multiple types. My dominant nerd type is book nerd.

I stand for doing the right thing, even when it's not popular or easy.

I stand for me being me and you being you - individuality is unique and wonderful.

I stand for trying not to plan anything on a Sunday that requires clothes other than lounge attire.

I stand for feminist ideals.

I stand for doing and making things happen.

I stand for justice, and the overhaul of a justice system that is cracked and rotten in too many areas.

I stand for the value of libraries not only to readers but to the community.

I stand for making my way to the other side of fear.

I stand for drugstore mascara when high end mascara wants to talk shit about it.

I stand for reducing waste, reusing items, recycling, conserving, and being kind to this earth because we do not own it.

I stand for helping others because it's the right thing to do, not for any other reason.

I stand for tending to my own grass.
I stand for dogs on the furniture and wherever they want to's their house too.

I stand for going into almost every situation in life with no or low expectations - if it turns out awesome, I'm pumped. If it sucks, it doesn't really alter my day because I considered that it might.

I could go on for eternity, but I also stand for knowing when to quit.
What do you stand for?

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Monday, August 22, 2016

TWTW - the one in Lake Harmony

Friday Gail, Nicole, and I packed two tons of shit into a small sedan and trekked up the back roads to Lake Harmony for Crystal's bachelorette party. I know, I don't do bachelorettes but Crystal is family, not to mention a lot of laughs and fun. Friday night was spent acquainting ourselves with 15+ of Crystal's bitches.
A little Saturday morning reading in nature and lounging around, laughing at online dating, and watching people swipe right. And posing with a teddy bear rug, because that's what you do when you see one.
A little after 12:30, Gail, Nicole, and I moseyed on down to the Sand Bar to while away the afternoon watching a wedding, having some drinks, and making friends, including two widowed 70ish ladies who gabbed with me about feminism and kind of people. The girls all went to dinner and we met them later at Shenanigans for, you know, shenanigans. It was a fun night and excellent people watching both in the club and at karaoke in the bar. Crystal's girls did a great job putting together a nice weekend celebrating the fabulous Crystal.
Sunday we were up and out early, had breakfast on the way home where I ate like I have never eaten before, and I was in my living room with a large DD iced coffee before 12:30. 
I lounged the rest of the day, did some laundry, had groceries delivered, and read. We also watched Urban Cowboy and 495 episodes of 30 Rock. Hashtag favorites. I had to lounge because I am out of practice on the party train. 

Weekly food prep: breakfast is English muffins with PB&J, snacks are fruit and bell peppers, lunches are turchicken burgers from the freezer sans bun with a side of riced cauliflower and asparagus, and dinners will be grilled chicken thighs and veggies or eggs with veggies.

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Not to bum anyone out, but it smelled like fall in the mountains Sunday morning.

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Linking up with Biana at B Loved Boston for Weekending

Friday, August 19, 2016

Brother, can you spare a dime?

These emergency organizations are asking for donations to help the stricken state (all information herein a straight copy of an article on The Daily Beast).
In what’s been called the worst national disaster since Superstorm Sandy, southern Louisiana has suffered severe flooding that has left thousands displaced and 11 reported dead.
As thousands of volunteers from all 50 states have rushed to assist the stricken state, here’s what you can do to help flood victims.
As noted by and The Advocate reporter Bryn Stole, monetary donations are preferred to donated goods. This is because cash donations avoid the labor and expense of sorting, packing, transporting, and distributing donated goods, and allow relief agencies to meet individual needs more quickly.

To donate money to United Way of Louisiana, you can text LAFLOOD to 313131 or visit
To donate to the Red Cross,, or call 1-800-RED CROSS or text the word LAFLOODS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

Second Harvest Food Bank says they will distribute thousands of pounds of food, water, and supplies to flood victims, and are asking supporters to donate here.
The Gulf Coast Floods Children’s Relief Fund aims to provide support to specifically help children and families with emergency assistance. They’re accepting donations here.
The Associated Professional Educators of Louisiana has established a relief fund to assist teachers with classroom supplies, which you can donate to here.
A full list of voluntary organizations involved in disaster relief can be found here.

Start your weekend off doing something good for someone in need. No amount is too small. 

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Thursday, August 18, 2016

Thursday Thoughts: summer breeze, makes me feel fine, blowing through the jasmine in my mind

1. A little over two weeks ago, I began the switch from liquid shampoos and conditioners to solid all natural shampoo soap. They say it can take up a month for your hair to acclimate. So week was trying to work out the residue left by normal shampoos, appeared to be a wax helmet in pony tail formation, felt terrible. I reached fuck this shit o'clock very quickly and kicked week two off with a baking soda clarifying treatment followed by shampooing followed by an apple cider vinegar rinse. While an infinite improvement over the wax helmet, I woke up yesterday with wild, enormous, sort of curly hair that felt like hay. My hair has never held a curl even with an implement. Yesterday I walked past LUSH looking for solace while keeping it solid. Is prayers for hair a thing? Also, if you see me, pretend I don't have hair until I get this sorted out. Thanks.
2. Dog days of summer. Pic from MFD. I'm happy we haven't been to the shore in this horrendous heatwave. Geege in particular struggles badly in the heat and I have to carry him much of the way around the block. They're looking forward to fall at the shore with cooler air and a return to beach access once the summer crowds have gone.
3. I finished an advance reader copy of A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles on Tuesday. Such truly beautiful writing. Have you read Rules of Civility by Towles? If not, put it on your list, and also check out A Gentleman in Moscow when it's released. It was the 75th book I read this year. Sometimes I feel like throwing book parties in which I am the only one in attendance. 

4. See above? That's the Kindle paperwhite screen (yellow portions were highlighed in picmonkey). I'm pleased to report that I can read it outside in full sun wearing polarized sunglasses and be able to see everything just like I'd see a page in a physical book. I was having a terrible time doing that with the Kindle Fire, even with the anti-glare screens and turning the brightness of the screen itself up.

5. LAST book thing today. On this week's episode (out today or tomorrow) of The Armchair Librarians, Jana and I are joined by her daughter to discuss Dork Diaries #2 - Tales from a Not-So-Popular Party Girl. Parents, do your kids enjoy this series? It's been a long time since I've read a kid's series book. It was a nice change from the murder and mayhem I'm usually reading about. FYI, Jana & I are taking the podcast down to every other week since we've been fumbling to fit it in every week. We currently have no books we're co-reading. Is there something you read that you think we should read and discuss? Is there something you haven't read but think sounds like it might be a good book for discussion? Hit me up with any suggestions.

6. I let my pedicure go too long so I was relieved to freshen up yesterday with OPI She's a Bad Muffaletta...and then walk around town with the toe things still in. tra la laaaaaa
7. I've officially reached the point in the summer where I'm wearing the same five things with no regard for anything else in my closet. I need to think about this and let some things go clothes-wise. I'm gearing up for a big Vietnam Vets pickup, so the time is now. Especially since I just bought a few replacement items at GAP for some of my basic stuff that's seen better days. I'm looking at you right now, v-neck t-shirts. I tend to replace in waves. This year since spring I've replaced all of my v-neck tees (I love to catch sales on those at GAP and LOFT). Last year I replaced all of my tank tops. The year before that, non-work pants. 

8. I could not tell you the last time I looked at a magazine. That shit keeps piling up. Most of the time I pass them along to my mom after I've given up and realized I'm not going to get around to reading them. I think I'm cancelling everything but Real Simple and in the future will just buy one when I want to read one instead of having them pile up around me in a useless and dust collecting manner. I never thought I'd be a one magazine type of lady, but here I am, driving towards that toll. 

9. Reminder. 

10.  E-card of the week: Me to 99% of people on the train right now. 

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Wednesday, August 17, 2016

It takes a special kind of asshole

Sometimes (okay, daily) I see people do things and think to myself, it takes a special kind of asshole to do that. So I started making a list of these people and decided to share it with you.

It takes a special kind of asshole to express moral outrage on the Internet because an Olympic gold medalist did not put her hand over her heart during the national anthem. It's not the fucking Pledge of Allegiance, and even if it was, shut up. You know who required that everyone show their patriotism in the same way? Nazis. Go fuck yourselves and get off your patriotic high ground. Seriously, you people don't have anything else to do? Perhaps some interior work on your damaged souls?

It takes a special kind of asshole to butt in line.

It takes a special kind of asshole to throw trash on the ground.

It takes a special kind of asshole to leave dogs outside on hot days.

It takes a special kind of asshole to block entrance and egress points. No, jerky, you are not the only one who needs to get in and out. Move your very important ass out of the way.

It takes a special kind of asshole to perpetually rain on the parades of others.

It takes a special kind of asshole to ignore cashiers. You are entering into a transaction. Be courteous and say hello. 

It takes a special kind of asshole to know everything about everything.

It takes a special kind of asshole to think you are oh my god so busy. Yes, dear. You're not special...we all have full lives. It's not a contest of who has more to do in the least amount of time, and if you think it is, that contest sucks and you should come up with a new one.

It takes a special kind of asshole to concentrate on all the negative news. You're a bummer, man.

It takes a special kind of asshole to put your bag on the seat of a crowded public transportation vehicle. Yeah, people can ask you to move it, but they shouldn't have to. Rude.

It takes a special kind of asshole to listen to music/play annoying loud games/watch videos/etc. on public transport without headphones. Yes, we all have to be trapped on this tin can with you. No, we do not all want to hear your asshole game.

I'm going to end this before it devolves into commuting assholes, which are a category of their own, really. What special kind of assholes have you run into lately?

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