Saturday, September 27, 2008

Don't blog a gift horse in the mouth

Sitting in airport lounge that offers free drinks, snacks, wireless access and quiet comfort. I am enjoying it more because I don't usually qualify for the benefit. Then, low and behold, I sit at the bar and have my complimentary drink while a few badly matching outfitted travelers walk up next to me and grab scores of snacks out of this Stanley Cub Fruit Bowl of bliss. It is like they just suffered a national disaster and the RED CROSS finally airlifted water and grain to ease the mobs.

It's a granola bar people. Take one and go sit in your complimentary chair on your complimentary time and appreciate the little things in life. If you grab one more Little Debbies before we take off, we are going to have to check all our carry-on bags to balance out your greedy pillaging of the system. If someone offers you a pack of gum, do you take the pack or grab a stick and return the rest? When you go out to dinner and are completely full, do you ask for one more basket of bread, rolls or crackers to take it home in your Samsonite purse?

Perhaps I'm overreacting and you just happen to be the one who goes to a friend's house for a dinner party and brings a six pack but drinks a case? Or brings a bottle of wine but has your own royal size gimlet that keeps your glass filled higher than my SUV gas tank.

They just announced my flight and I would love to write some more complimentary comments about this experience, but if I don't take at least one of these stale, 6 month old granola bars for the flight, I JUST won't feel like I got my money's worth out of my trip. Anyone got a pack of gum?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Time to Watch Curb Appeal

Whoa...Hold on just a moment. I have to stop and see that again. Just drove by your modest 1br home with a one car garage and was caught off guard by the fact your yard has enough objects and accessories to qualify for a Strip Mall.

If you aren't holding a garage sale, explain to me why you have enough junk (I mean personal items of interest) on your front lawn to qualify for two days on HSN (Home Shopping Network..Like I really had to spell that for you)

Let's be kind and say your small abode is worth $350,000. Now lets add up the 45 ft. boat, 35 ft. camper, the Belgian block driveway and retaining wall, the two ATVs, three motorcycles, a heated pool that IS your backyard (Serious, you can actually use the gas grill shelf next to the sliding door as a diving board), chain link FRONT fence, a dog house, cat house, bird house, outhouse, pool house (which is the old dog house) to come up with a conservative estimate of $900,000.

You must REALLY love that home to have more money invested in CostCo toys and yard ornaments than in the equity of your house itself.

I know, a 1/32th of an acre just doesn't hold as much junk as it did 20 years ago.

Do you come home and reflect on the fact that if you sold even 30% of your yard's value you could bail out the Mortgage Companies and leave the government out of it?

Do you ever think for a moment that Going Green doesn't count if your 150 solar outdoor yard lights took up the allotted space for grass, trees and flowers. Of course not, because you gotta love gravel landscaping next to faux bright red mulch as much as I do.

Now on the bright side, I'm sure you are going to have fond memories of being able to walk outside your paneling walled bedroom and REV up the first thing that has a dip stick. But when you can't figure out how come your credit cards unlimited limit gets limited by forgetting the minimum payment since 2003, just take out that pimped out Gokart that is one muffler short of street legal and run down to the bank to open a new line of credit.

By the time you navigate around your six cars (five that actually aren't on blocks) and find a bank to welcome you, the H&G channel will be back at your house preparing for the Before Shot of the new SHOW, "Neighbors Don't Let Neighbors Drive, Barbecue, Mow Lawns or Purchase Pink Flamingos Drunk".

Monday, September 22, 2008

Acting the Wrong Way on the Right-A-way

No..Please, it's ok. Take your time. As a human being and licensed driver, I of course will slow down as I see you beginning to cross the street in the middle of rush hour without acknowledging danger or the assumption I DON'T want to hit you.

I mean, You aren't disabled, overweight, old or have an emergency. I get it. You just need to cross the street. I understand WHY...As we ALL need to get to the other side.

But have some sense of urgency for my sake. Act like you see my 1/2 ton piece of steel and leather coming at your self indulgent smirk.

I have no problem giving you the right-a-way even when you don't wait for an intersection. But give a little back, my tortoise with a trench coat friend. Give me a wave of acknowledgement, a tiny shuffle of a step faster, something to show me you actually appreciate the fact that I could have made you a hood ornament before 9am.

I do understand. You are too proud to actually make some valiant effort to hurry yourself for anyone but yourself. You are important and to have anyone this side of your embarrassing family tree see that your effort into getting across one lane equals the 200m time of Gold Medalist Usain Bolt is unacceptable.

I'll just stop my life and watch you casually pace yourself and imagine that the next time I see your Flasher Wannabe outfit on a street, I'm going to still let you pass but perhaps skim that puddle next to you testing your waterproofed deep double stitched, buckled J. Peterman Knock off.

(Yes. Referencing Seinfeld episodes just makes me less cynical)

Thursday, September 18, 2008

It's All In a Name

Standing in line at a store with a first time mother and her precocious 4-year-old. Is there a reason some parents feel the need to share their child's ENTIRE name EACH AND EVERY TIME they address them?

The child knows his name, you have been saying it 100 times a day since you forced his dad to sign the birth certificate for your choice while you were recovering from your epidural.

I'm confused as usual, you can't actually think the rest of the world cares that you are that proud of your spawn's name.

"TIMOTHY JAMES...OH TIMOTHY JAMES you are such a smart boy."

...Lady, He just burped. My dog can do that in his sleep.

"TIMOTHY at the lady. TIMOTHY JAMES...Look how friendly you are." wasn't a smile..that was telling you that you better have bought extra pampers.

"TIMOTHY JAMES...Is that a new tooth coming in your mouth? TIMOTHY JAMES you are becoming such a big boy."

....Oh its a big tooth alright and I doubt you are going to be proud of his first name when the kids at daycare see that bicuspid coming through the door before TIMOTHY TOO---I mean JAMES does.

(yes, a little mean. but you haven't seen this tooth)

I know she is thrilled to have a strapping young boy who doesn't have a choice but to be dragged to every store she goes to as she promotes his name, heritage and IQ to the tri-county area in hopes of him running for office one day.

But if I hear TIMOTHY JAMES being called out for another inadvertent, minuscule task that every 4-year old SHOULD be able to do. I'm going to start addressing my shopping cart in front of me to scare the tooth right out of TIMOTHY JAMES.

"OH SHOPPING roll soo well....OH SHOPPING CART...your capacity to hold water, bread and milk is astounding....OH SHOPPING that a new wheel you have coming out of your axis?"

Its amazing how fast the mother and TIMOTHY JAMES leave and move to another checkout line. OH TIMOTHY JAMES' need one more kid so you just start yelling.

"Hey. YOU TWO. stop talking and quit hitting your sister".

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A little Ink on getting Inked

Sorry. I don't get it.

Personally, I like tattoos. I think anyone who chooses artistic expression has the right to do it any way they see fit. They can be meaningful, charming and stylish.

However, I'm not into permanent marks on my body but that is because I change my mind too often to make that type of commitment.

But....If you are a blond hair, blue eyed suburban teenager, why have you chose "Asian Calligraphy" as your expression instead of something that reflects you for who you are, ..Like pertinent shopping terms. (BOGO, I'm a one-day SALE pro or I love coupons)

What is it? The year of the Clueless?

I know for a fact if I asked you to emulate your tattoo on a piece of paper you couldn't replicate, let alone recognize it.

Let's visualize together for a moment. You are sitting at the Ink shop with thousands of choices from everything from the name of your prom date who won't call you back to a dainty butterfly that you could subtly locate on your lower ankle and instead you accidentally choose the Chinese symbol for Coca Cola thinking it gives you a purpose.

You think you have the symbol for "prosperity" written on your back. But little do you know it says, "prostitution" when you raise your hand too high.

You think you are showing originality and conveying a non-conformist attitude, yet the symbol has been copied so much that FEDEXKinkos has a template in the self serve area.

You think by adding three Chinese symbols, you have added creative beauty to your pale, milky skin, yet after 20 years of aging and sunbathing, those characters, which are a precise art, will have a complete Kangxi Dictionary compiling the 47,035 symbols spread across your back.

The funny part is the average Chinese person only needs to know 5,000 symbols to read most of the language...I guarantee you can't repeat five.

When and where in your Midwestern upbringing watching Law and Order SUV were you influenced by Far Eastern cultures?

The next time you decide to add culture to your self, try reading or learning a foreign language first. Because if you did, you would realize your tattoo you thought said, "wonderful goddess" mistakenly reads, "thoughtless wonder".

But as long as you can show it off to your friends and are just waiting for a text message from your prom date anyway.

Friday, September 12, 2008

No Pain No Gain

Hi. Yes YOU. The one who isn't sweating after 20 minutes of riding a bike. Perhaps I can shed some light on the issue of you still haven't lost that college 20 you gained since 1993.

I know no one loves to exercise. We deal, adapt and enjoy the benefits, but we don't love it like we love chocolate or sleep.

But I was behind you on a treadmill and saw your attempt at fitness on the lifecycle and I just have to comment.

First of all, If you bring a cup of coffee and a newspaper to workout, you have already disrupted the fitness gods, they will not be on your side when you get on the scale later today. I know, TRUST ME.

Second, to actually benefit from working out, your heart rate needs to be a higher number than your waist size. Not trying to be mean, only helpful, (wink) but if you continue at that record pace of 3 mph so you don't spill your latte grande you might actually gain 5 lbs before you decide you are spent for the day. Seriously, you almost look as if you are going backwards.

Third, Yes, your iPod will get tangled in your pedals if you stick it in your short's pocket REPEATEDLY not learning from the the first dozen times it falls on the ground and you blurt out, "Oh NO, AGAIN?"

I know I shouldn't shrug my shoulders and sigh out loud when I address this with you but what is with that SUNDAY TIMES on your lap while you look as if you are churning butter at an AMISH farm with your legs? What are you trying to accomplish other than increasing your SUDOKU puzzle muscles? You can't be doing the CROSSWORDS as you answered the FIVE letter word for late night meal as "TGIF's"

I'm sorry. The towel? What is that for? um...its to wipe the spills from your latte off of the heartbeat monitor so it can show the next person that they have a heart.

Cause after writing this, I supposedly lost my right to express mine.

If exercise was supposed to be fun, it would be called binging.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Style for Sale

I swear it's Déjà vu all over again as I passed Real Estate signs this weekend. I must have missed the lesson in life where people from the same occupation all need to resemble each other.

Every For Sale sign in my neighborhood, whether its a global company or a local firm, they all must hire the same men and women. In their self promoting photos, where else do you see the same hairstyle, over exaggerated smiles and make-up on a Real Estate sign (....and that is just the men).

PS. Knot's Landing/Dynasty called, they want their shoulder pads back.

Some one in the real estate industry needs to stand up and say, I'm not a conformist and I'm going to wear a non-matching pant suit without accessories that has a picture that makes me look like I'm running for Miss Congeniality.

Do they spend all their commission on hair spray and eye shadow? Do they go to the same Beauty Salon and ask for the ReMAXCOLDWELLWEICHERT shampoo and cut?

Drive by any open house and the local Stepford wives and husbands will gratefully greet you at the front door with either Old Spice aftershave or Liz Taylor's Purple Diamond perfume stifling the air as they open their Encyclopedia Britannica size Filofax (um...ever hear of a PDA?)

Now to me, it's all good except the fact when I think I'm stuck in traffic thinking it was an accident and instead find out my delayed journey is the result of LYNN MARIE JOHNSON's "OPEN HOUSE" signs she is placing on the highway median every 1/4 miles with her pointy pumps still on. This is when I start to pray for higher interest rates.

I guarantee in her past life, she was either a Dental Assistant or Teacher's Aide but that 3% commission was getting too small to allow her to afford nude stockings.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Thanking You for Thanking Me

I don't care that you had to give up your precious tanning time to come work at FOOD&STOP-RITE from the brutal hours of 6-8 pm. I truly don't want to hear about your boyfriend calling you on your cellphone because you didn't answer his text to remind you to bring home more Ball Park Franks and Mountain Dew. I'm the one impatiently waiting to check out in the only non-express, no-cash, no candy, no children aisle because I literally have 13 items. I just would like a little courtesy and a thank you when I'm done. That's it...You don't even have to mean it.

When I was your age, we had to check out groceries without conveyor belts, bar codes and digital scales FOR 10 MILES, UP HILL, BOTH WAYS IN THE SNOW.

But no matter how rough we thought we had it, we did manage a smile, a thank you and even a "how ya doin'?'" for good measure.

If you are going to work in the service industry, you can get away with being lazy, inept and unreliable...but to not be polite and considerate to the patrons is just unacceptable.

I just spent over $150 in whole wheat grains, vegetables and fruits and you can't even say, "thank you for shopping with us" as I carry the plastic bags I asked you to NOT use as I walk out the door.

I'm the one who lifted the over-sized dog food bag on the belt for you to scan so you didn't have to move, bend or breathe hard from your throne of existence. I'm the one who ran to get you a price check on the potatoes because you can't read your produce list, or any multiple syllable words for that matter. NOTE: It's Whole Grain, not HOLEGREEN

I only ask that when the next person in line asks you to verify a price on McCormick Condiments, you don't respond on the intercom to the world, "Can I get a price check on McCondoms?"

I wouldn't even mind so much except the irony is as I walked away, I for some reason thanked YOU and said, "Have a nice day."