In Her Time of Dying: What Is and What Will Never Be

Six Feet Under is one of my favorite T.V. Shows in the history of everything forever. It is, to date, one of the most brilliantly written and acted shows I’ve ever seen – and the series finale? I honestly do not think any series will ever come up with anything as perfect as the Six Feet Under finale.

Josh and I watch the entire series from start to finish about once a year. We do the same with OZ, and we watch Firefly even more often than that. After my mom died, I found myself wondering when I’d be ready to tackle another viewing of Six Feet Under. The subject was something that was somewhat sensitive to me where it hadn’t been before. We tried to watch an episode shortly after mom died and I had to turn it off. I just couldn’t deal with death in any form – even if it was the death of a fictional character on a television show.

Josh suggested it a few weeks ago when we found ourselves with nothing to watch. I agreed, and was happy to find that I was able to watch without any huge problems. We’ve been making our way through the series and as I was finishing up an episode after Josh had gone to bed, I was stricken with a very sudden and very fresh sense of grief. The scene that got me was one between two main characters on the show – Claire and her mother, Ruth. They were sharing an emotionally vulnerable moment – one that was unexpected, tender, loving, and sweet. I watched Claire, who has always been very hostile verbally and closed-off emotionally, reach out to her mother in a gesture of acceptance and understanding. The two characters connected in a way that I imagine only a mother and daughter can, and the tears started to roll down my cheeks. Words began to roll through my brain, over and over, until they became a sort of sorrowful, aching chant.
I want a mother.
I want a mother.
I want a mother.
I want my mother.

The painful realization that I never truly had what those characters on-screen had and never, ever would hit me in the face like it has a hundred times since my mother’s death and all I could do was pause the show and cry. The sense of grief and mourning was so fresh it took me by surprise. It has been 6 months (to the day) since my mother died, and still the grief takes me by surprise.

I cried more that evening as my sad little mantra repeated itself in my head again and again. In a way, I suppose that I’m going through two grieving processes: I am grieving the loss of the mother that I did have, and I am also grieving the loss of the mother that I didn’t – and never will – have.

I’m grieving a relationship that cannot be mine, no matter how badly I want it or how hard I cry. It doesn’t matter how many mother figures I surround myself with – none of them will ever be able to give me what my mom could have, if only things had been different. If she had been different. Cultivating a relationship with my daughter is wonderful and will help lessen my pain, I am sure, but the mother-daughter relationship is something I will never be able to experience on the daughter’s end. These harsh revelations come at me from time to time; unexpectedly, viciously, and knock me off my feet with the severity of the pain they make me feel. I am learning to just accept them as they come, allow myself to feel them and to cry and to be angry. I am teaching myself to own my pain and accept it as something I will live with forever; to validate it and not stuff it back down inside of me to fester and rot.

It’s a slow process, one that I’m still trying to figure out. Maybe one day I will be able to accept with peace the loss of what is and what will never be, but for now it hurts, and it sucks. There’s no other way to put it. It just sucks.

Easy Canvas Prints Giveaway

I have a confession: I’m horrible about printing out photos. I have snapped thousands of pictures since Nellie was born – most of them coming from my iPhone since I got my hands on it. I don’t even remember the last time I actually used my digital camera. I’m just so lazy and so bad at ordering photos, I always forget, “oh yeah, I have pictures, I could print them and frame them and hang them on my wall”.

So when Easy Canvas Prints contacted me and basically offered to do the grunt work for me by providing me with a canvas on which a photograph of my choice could be printed I obviously was like YUP. Sounds great.

It’s super easy to order photos on Canvas Prints from this company – you can provide your own, or they actually have a gallery of beautiful prints that you can choose from. If you choose to create your own, you just upload your photo, choose your size, – they will position it for you – choose the type of wrap you want around it (standard wrap, gallery wrap, or framed) and that’s pretty much it. It’s super simple – the hardest part is choosing what photo you want to have printed on these beautiful canvases! If you find yourself struggling, Easy Canvas Prints has an idea gallery that you can browse if you’re in need of inspiration.

I decided to go with the 8×10 (another cool thing is that when you order, it gives you a size comparison so you can get an idea of how big your canvas will actually be) , and used a photo from our photo shoot with a local photographer a few months ago – one of my favorites from the shoot was a shot of Nellie playing in the water. The expression on her face is one of pure joy and it was a moment so beautifully captured, I knew I wanted it printed on something unique and fun.

My Canvas Print shipped really quickly, was nicely packaged, and when I opened it I was floored. It was such good quality, and so lovely that I was honestly shocked at how nice it turned out. Here is a photo, but the photo does not do it justice. Trust me. I have gotten so many compliments on it.

Easy Canvas Prints

So, how can you get an awesome Easy Canvas Print for yourself? You can go to their website and order one OR you can enter my super awesome giveaway! Check out details below – entering with Rafflecopter is SUPER easy.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Enter and get yourself a beautiful canvas print to display in your home – you WON’T regret it! Good luck!

Teaching Children About Death

Now that the week is well underway (in fact, the week is almost over), I figured now would be a good time to delve into the subject of death. Surprise! In particular, I wanted to talk about teaching children about death. More specifically, I wanted to talk about teaching a toddler about death. Even MORE specifically, I wanted to share my experience with teaching my toddler about death.

Nellie has, unfortunately, been around death more often than I’d like. Not saying that she’s been involved in a lot of tragedy but since May of 2011, we have had 6 people in either our immediate or outside family die. Nellie herself has been around two dying people; Josh’s Nana, and my mother. She visited both while they were being cared for by hospice.

Nellie was almost two when my mom died in December of 2011. My mom had been in her life relatively regularly. I did about all I could manage considering my strained relationship with her. When Nellie came to visit while mom was in the hospice unit I could tell she was somewhat affected; the sight of someone lying unmoving and unresponsive in the bed was probably a little scary for her. I’m a strong believer that children are very perceptive so I am sure she picked up on the vibe in the hospice unit as well.

When mom died, I didn’t take the opportunity to teach Nellie what that meant, because she didn’t really notice. It’s not like my mom was around every single day. I took care to talk to Nellie about her grandma. I would talk about my mom when Nellie would play with the Twilight Turtle that was my mother’s last gift to her. I told Nellie who the turtle was from, and stressed the fact that it was a very important gift.

The first lesson regarding death that my daughter received was more recently. I haven’t blogged about this yet, but while she and I were away in Chicago, my cat Mungo died.

teaching children about death

Mungo, circa 2005 or so.

I’d had Mungo for over ten years. We’re not sure what happened – Josh said he was acting a little funny, and a few days later he was gone. When I got the news I was sad, of course – but not devastated. Friends and family gave me their sincere sympathies – which I appreciated – but when I told people that I was okay, I really meant it. His absence was weird at first; it was the first time in my entire life that I hadn’t had a cat. But once I’d gotten over the initial feelings of being kind of bummed and getting used to his furry little presence not being in the apartment, I was really okay.

Losing 6 family members – one of them being your mother – in a year kind of puts things into perspective.

Anyway. I was sitting on the floor playing with Nellie once we had gotten home. We’d been home for a day, and she hadn’t said anything about the absence of our cat. She was playing with a toy cat that she has when all of a sudden, she picked her head up and looked around.

“Cat? Where my cat?” she held her little hands out, palms up to the ceiling.
I paused.
“The cat is gone, Nellie,” I told her.
“I go find him.” she said with certainty and a little nod.
My heart tugged – just a little – and I took a deep breath. It was one of Those Moments in parenting – one that would lay a brick in the foundation of her Self. Even if she is too little to really remember – somewhere inside of her, what I had to say about such a heavy topic would stick. Teaching a child about death is one of those things that holds such responsibility it’s almost scary. What I said in that moment could affect her forever: I could teach her to fear death and view it as a horrible, unfair part of life and leave her unable to cope or process when someone she loves dies… Or I could teach her to embrace and accept it as an inevitability; something we all must go through – every one of us – and to take it as it comes with as little fear as possible.

I chose the latter.

“No, baby,” I said. “We can’t go find him, because he is gone. Mungo is dead, and that means that he is gone. And he is never coming back. And that is okay.”
I could have stopped there and she probably would’ve been fine, but I’m awkward and over-analyze everything so I continued.
“And it’s okay to feel sad. And it’s also okay to not feel sad.”

A little heavy for the toddler perhaps, yes?

I explored her face, watching for a reaction. She looked at me for a moment, considering, and said:

“I watch Beauty and the Beast!” She scrambled up off the floor and to the television.

And that was that.

She asked about the cat one more time, this time when Josh was around. He handled it similarly to how I did, she didn’t have much of a reaction, and she hasn’t asked about Mungo since.

I am sure that this will not be the last lesson we will have in regards to the subject of death and dying. When she is older, the finality and gravity of death will mean more and the conversation will probably be more difficult. It’s an interesting thing, being handed these tiny human beings and being expected to teach them these lessons about life – lessons that some full-grown adults have yet to fully accept and absorb. It’s scary, it’s humbling, and it’s an eye-opener that our words as parents have the power to affect our children to their very core.

What experiences do you have in teaching children about death? Have you had to have that talk yet? What will you say if you haven’t?

Potty Training a Toddler

Nellie will be 2 ½ in July and is completely and utterly uninterested in potty training and all things having to do with the potty. Everything I’ve read says don’t push, wait ‘till they’re ready. Don’t worry, they won’t go to kindergarten in diapers! You’ll turn them into an anal retentive, shotgun-wielding maniac if you push them to use the potty before they’re ready. Not to mention it can cause bladder infections and a multitude of other problems.

So everything I’m reading/hearing/making up in my head because I’m crazy seems to point to the “don’t worry, it’ll happen when she’s ready” but HOLY FUCK KID, I AM READY FOR YOU TO USE THE DAMN POTTY.

We have tried gently suggesting:
Us: “Hey Nellie, would you like to use the potty?”
Her: “Nope.”

We have tried being REALLY EXCITED about it:
Us: “OMG! NELLIE! USING THE POTTY IS THE GREATEST EVER. LOOK. MOMMY IS PEEING ON THE POTTY RIGHT. NOW. Don’t you want to be JUST. LIKE. MOMMY?”
Her: “Nope.”

We have tried being REALLY EXCITED and talking about all the AWESOME PEOPLE who use the potty:
Us: “Nellie, did you know that Spider-Man uses the potty? And Thor? And I’ll bet Rapunzel uses the potty, too.”
Her: “Who else uses potty, Mama?”
*getting excited. Uses more enthusiasm*
Us: “Well, daddy uses the potty! Gran uses the potty! Pop uses the potty! Tiana and Belle use the potty! IRON MAN USES THE POTTY. Don’t you want to be a big kid that uses the potty, too?”
Her: “Nope.”

FUCK.

We bought her big girl panties. They have Disney princesses on them. She chose them herself. Woo! Sirens and bells and whistles THROW A PARADE, IT’S UNDERPANTS, PEOPLE.

She wants to wear them, sure.

OVER her diaper.

We tried picking a special potty book – a book she only got read to her when she was sitting on the potty like a big girl. The result of that was ten repeated readings of “Llama Llama Mad At Mama” (and no pee pee), which is cute the first time but right around the ninth reading I wanted to take that little drama queen llama and throw him into a wood chipper. STOP THROWING PASTA YOU LITTLE ASSHOLE.

We haven’t tried a reward chart yet, but that’s probably my next plan of attack. Her teachers at daycare keep casually asking us if we’ve tried potty training at home yet. I always shake my head and explain that we feel she’s just not really ready, and we’re trying not to push it. Her teachers are totally understanding and assure us there’s no big rush, but HOLY FUCK KID JUST USE THE POTTY.

What do you think? At 2 ½, should we be a little more aggressive, or is it still a little early for that just yet? Should I paint the toilet seat like Elmo’s face? Or will that just teach her to take a leak on every Elmo she sees?

….That last one’s actually not a bad idea. TAKE THAT YOU ANNOYING RED BASTARD.

So… anyone got any pointers for potty training a toddler?

Current Music Obsessions

Happy Monday! Er… Is there such a thing as a happy Monday? I don’t know about you, but I was in some serious denial when my alarm clock went off this morning.

I was going to post today about my daughter’s first lesson in learning about death but I thought that might be kind of a morbid and heavy way to start off the week. So instead, I decided to share some of my current music obsessions with you. It’s been a while since I posted some of my current favorite songs. These are in no particular order.

The Civil Wars, “Kingdom Come”

I’ve posted about The Civil Wars before and how much I love them. I think I’ve also posted about how much I love The Hunger Games so naturally, when I heard the Civil Wars did a song for the soundtrack I was really excited. I finally got around to downloading this song, Kingdom Come, this weekend and have pretty much been listening to it nonstop. I still can’t get over the blend of these two singers’ voices. They give me chills. This is such a powerful song and it really fits The Hunger Games perfectly.

Mumford & Sons, “White Blank Page”

This is one of those bands that I’m like, why the hell wasn’t I paying attention to these guys earlier? I’d heard “Little Lion Man” (which, by the way, Nellie loves and calls the “Lion Song”. It’s a tad inappropriate because it has an F-Bomb but whatevs, it’s an amazing song) but didn’t pay Mumford & Sons much attention. Because I’m an idiot. This song is so full of emotion, strength, drama, harmony.. It’s just beautiful.

Gotye “Somebody That I Used to Know”

Yeah, yeah, I know. I love this song – along with a bajillion other people. I haven’t gotten tired of it yet. In fact, I blast it from my car with my windows down while driving around downtown to pick up my daughter from daycare because that’s what cool people do, right? I’m trying to prove to all the hip kids out there that I’m still with it and down with the current jams while I cruise around in my SUV picking up my kid. Word up.

Speaking of “Somebody That I Used to Know”, please check out this amazing cover by Walk Off the Earth. I might actually like it better than the original.

There you have it. A list of just a few of my current music obsessions. I hope you enjoyed!

What songs are you into right now? Is there something burning up your iPod that I should be listening to?

Toddler Travels: From Nashville to Chicago

Nellie and I flew to Chicago for my mom’s memorial service two weeks ago. This isn’t her first trip to Chicago. She flew with me last September when she was 20 months old. Traveling with her the first time was a breeze – navigating the airport by myself with all our carry-ons, car seat and stroller was the hardest part. She flew beautifully, was well behaved the entire trip, and fell asleep for the entire return trip.

This time? I wasn’t so lucky.

Don’t get me wrong. It wasn’t what I’d call a nightmare, exactly… But traveling with a toddler proved more difficult this time. I’ve decided to begin a short series that I call “Toddler Travels” to tell the tales of our Chicago adventure. We’ll begin with the journey North.

Toddler Travels: From Nashville to Chicago
Tuesday, May 29th. 11:00 P.M. I was lying in bed, still awake. Why was I still awake? I had to be up at 4:00 A.M. to load the car, get myself ready, get Nellie dressed, so we could leave the house by 5. While lying in bed all I could think was, “Am I fucking insane? How the fuck am I supposed to get through the airport with her stroller, car seat, carry ons, what if the plane crashes, what if she escapes the stroller and I don’t notice? What if I forget her in the bathroom and it’s like Home Alone? Home Alone in an airport bathroom wouldn’t be nearly as madcap and hilarious as the movie was. Can a toddler even SET booby traps? Where is she going to find paint cans and Christmas ornaments for potential burglers/abductors/monsters to step on? What if there’s a gremlin on the wing? PANIC PANIC PANIC.”

That’s pretty much what was running through my head from 11 P.M. until approximately 1 A.M. when my body took over my brain and passed out from sheer exhaustion.

At 4 A.M. my alarm cheerfully woke both me & Josh up, telling us it was time to GTFOut of bed and get moving. Luckily I had packed everything, and everything was ready to go minus Nellie and the things she was currently sleeping with. Before long, we were loaded into the car and ready to head to Nashville. It was still dark, so we were hoping Nellie would sleep the majority of the way there. Luck was on our side, and she slept until about 30 minutes outside Nashville (it’s a 2 hour drive from Chattanooga) when we stopped for a bathroom break. We grabbed a quick bite at McDonalds (mmm. Stale biscuits and chewy bacon), and after another short bathroom break (MY BLADDER SUCKS, OKAY? NOT FUN FOR ME) we reached our destination. Thank the gods for curbside check-in; Josh was able to help me with my luggage to the curbside check-in and I was able to handle it from there.

I had learned my lesson from last time: pushing a stroller AND pulling a wheeled carry-on? Not so easy. Instead of a carry-on that I had to push/pull/carry, I wore both of our carry-on bags. My purse is a cross-body so that served as mine, and Nellie’s carry-on was her little pink backpack with butterflies on it (can you say BADASS?). That left me free to push her stroller which only posed one problem: her car seat. I decided to bring it with us on the plane for numerous reasons: I was afraid it’d get lost, broken, or stolen if I checked it with my luggage, and I knew she’d be more comfortable and more likely to sit still if she rode in it on the plane.

I rented a luggage cart for $4.00, which worked okay but again I ran into the problem of pushing her stroller AND the cart. All was okay until we reached security. When Nellie saw all of the people buzzing about she freaked out.

“UP. UP. MAMA. UP. UPPPPPPPPPP!!!!” she pleaded desperately, her little arms outstretched toward me. Clearly, she was also panicking about plane gremlins and being left in the bathroom.
“Nellie, baby, Mama can’t pick you up now. We are in an airport and I need you to sit still. You can get out in a minute and walk through that fun thing there! YAY!” I pointed at the metal detector. Nellie gave me the side-eye.

Last time I traveled, there was a helpful woman who hoisted my car seat onto the security conveyor belt for me and helped me collapse my stroller. Apparently Nashville was populated entirely by assholes this time, because all I got was the stink-eye from a busy-looking woman in a business suit. FUCK OFF MS. FANCY PANTS, DON’T THINK YOU’RE BETTER THAN ME JUST BECAUSE YOU DON’T HAVE SMOOSHED-UP FRUIT SNACKS IN YOUR HAIR.

We got through security painlessly albeit a bit slowly, and that’s when I decided to ditch the cumbersome luggage cart. After struggling with it for a few seconds (my brain was addled by plane anxiety, shrieks of “MAMA! UP! MAMA! LOOK! FOX! PLANE!”, and not enough coffee) a nice airport worker gave me a pitying look and returned it to a dock for me. I took the straps of Nellie’s car seat, looped them around the handles of her umbrella stroller and then used the seat to steer. Brilliant. Awards forever.

Nashville airport is the greatest place on Earth, and that’s because they have a playground. It’s like one of those you see at the mall – foam, soft, probably germ-ridden but who gives a rat’s ass at this point, right? Just play on the damn airplane slide and try not to lick anything, kid.

  Mmmm.. Tastes like pink eye.

Nellie had a great time playing and only got in trouble twice when she tried to run off. Instead of having a panic attack and shrieking at her about getting abducted by tourists I very calmly put her in “time-out”, which was actually very effective on her. We stopped for some snacks, gate-checked her stroller and before we knew it, it was time to board the plane. We flew Southwest (which is a great airline, by the way) and the flight attendants were very helpful, just like last time. As I carried Nellie on, they carried her car seat. I crammed her car seat onto the window seat of our chosen aisle, got her situated and flopped into my seat with a sigh of relief. The hard part was over – unless, of course, there was actually a gremlin on the side of the plane. Which OF COURSE there wasn’t – that’s ridiculous. Everyone knows that a gremlin would be smarter and find a way to get ON the  plane, probably through gnawing its way through someone’s carry-on luggage, or posing as a hat, or something equally as sneaky.

I digress. The flight itself was very easy – beautiful weather, no turbulence, and I was able to keep Nellie entertained with apps on my iPhone almost the entire time. The flight from Nashville to Chicago is super quick – you’re only in the air for about an hour. Once we landed we had to wrestle her car seat from the airplane seat, maneuver it out of the plane and once again awkwardly make our way through the airport. Luckily our gate wasn’t at the End of the Universe like it was last time, so it didn’t take long for us to make it through and reach my dad. After some brief confusion where we thought one piece of my luggage was lost (it wasn’t – in fact, some asshat had plucked my small, black cosmetic bag from the belt, realized it wasn’t there bag, and PUT IT ON TOP OF A PODIUM instead of putting it back on the belt like a normal person who wasn’t King Asshat of Chicago), we were settled into dad’s car and headed to breakfast.

We had made it to Chicago in one piece. Our trip had begun, and we made it gremlin-free.

Stay tuned for more tales of our Chicago adventures!

Ten Things I’d Rather Do Than Listen to Nickleback

I’m back! It’s me! Hooray! I had a great time in Chicago but it’s good to be back home. As my first post back home

Ten Things I’d Rather Do Than Listen to Nickleback

We have a running joke in my office about how horrible Nickleback is and how much we all hate them. Sometimes we’ll “Rick Roll” each other with surprise Nickleback videos and then scream how much we hate the person that got us. Fun times. I decided to come up with a list of ten things I’d rather do than listen to Nickleback. Enjoy.

10. Lick an alligator on the face
9. Be stung by a jellyfish
8. Watch Freddy Got Fingered one hundred and twenty two times – in a row
7. Chew on a rock for nine hours
6. Drink a bottle of Jagermeister and then ride on a roller coaster
5. Fight a kangaroo
4. Shave my elbow skin
3. Be a door to door salesperson for toilet seats in the shape of Lady GaGa
2. Get a tattoo that says “Bieber Fever”. On my face.
1. Swan dive into a swimming pool filled with rocks, hypodermic needles, and vipers

SO, there you have it. My list of ten things I’d rather do than listen to Nickleback. May seem extreme to some, but if you are like me you’d do just about anything to never have to hear Chad Kroger’s awful voice or see his stupid hair again. One day Canada will be punished for producing the asshattery that is Nickleback. And on that day, I will point and laugh for hours

Guest Blogger: Mommyhood NEXT RIGHT

Nellie & I head home tonight, so this will be my final guest blogger. It’s been a blast hosting such an awesome variety of writer’s here, and I hope you all have enjoyed them, too!

My last guest blogger is Jessica of Mommyhood NEXT RIGHT. Today she’s got a helpful guide on how to make parent friends at the park – which is great, because I’m socially awkward and probably come across as a creeper to other parents.

*********

Growing up, I’ll be the first to admit that I was mostly shy…or, no, I was antisocial. I spoke a lot when spoken to but hardly initiated conversations. I avoided unnecessary eye contact on public transportation, pressed “close,” “close,” close” to avoid riding in elevators with strangers who could possibly, dreadfully, say something like “Hi.” *gasp, and would use my often dead cell phone to feign being “popular” in large social crowds.

This all sounds so pathetic now, but that’s how I was. Really.

But since, becoming a mom, I’ve changed. I’ve become a more social person. I say “Hi” now to random strangers, random strangers who are usually pushing strollers. And I am not as quick to press the “close” button on the elevator at the doctor’s office. Oh, and most importantly, I’m now a professional at meeting and becoming friends with moms and dads at parks.

How did I go from fake cell phone calls to making parent friends at parks? I know you want to know, so I’ll save the awkwardness, and just come out with it. Here’s my step-by-step guide for making friends with parents at the park.

(Disclaimer: The steps listed below are intended to guide you to parent friendships. While many do have success with these steps, individual results may vary.

Step #1. Make eye contact. Yes, eye contact. Stare. But don’t stare too long, or too intently. Smize (smile with your eyes), show teeth when you smile and relax your body. Breathe. And smile. And…look away. Now.

Step #2. Position yourself close to your wanna-be friend. If he or she is at the slides and your child has just run to the slides, that’s your chance. Slowly walk over to your suitor, not too close, but not too far away and stand…for about two minutes. Don’t stare at your potential friend. Just watch your child.

Step #3. (When your child begins playing with your child) Initiate small talk. Common “safe” topics: children’s ages, weather, park architecture, and stroller admiration. Common “unsafe” topics: religion, politics, other moms and dads nearby.

Step#4. Keep talking. From small talk, move into parenting woes and talk of local things to do. Look for connections and make connections.

Step #5. When either you or your potential friend is packing up to leave the park, ask for their number and/or email address.

Step #6. Call or email the same day. Between kids and spouses, things are forgotten. So to keep your existence fresh in their mind, contact them the same day or at least within the same week as the first meeting. No later. No sooner. (Usually)

Step #7. Meet with your potential friend and be yourself…awesome.

You’ve made a new parent friend. Congratulations!

 

3 Things I Find More Offensive Than Gay Marriage: Guest Blogger Veronica Armstrong

So my next guest blogger, Veronica? Effing. Hilarious. Seriously. Words can’t describe how witty and funny this girl is. She also takes amazing photographs, loves the Simpsons, and smells like a fresh summer breeze……. I mean….. Um. *runs*

*****

Fanny Packs

I’m tackling the hard topics today.

Fanny packs. They offend me.

I’ve had it. Its two thousand and something and people still haven’t found a better way to carry their Big League Chew? Seriously what are you carying around that is so important that a pocket will just not suffice?

Let me let you in on a little secret: you look like a tool. Possibly a rich tool. If you’re wearing a fanny pack, scheming ass would-be criminal types (me) will assume you have so much cash on you that it won’t fit in to your pockets.

It’s in your best interest to retire your Alf fanny pack already. I’m telling you this as a friend and a concerned citizen even though the thug in me wants all that sweet cash. See how nice I am?

Public canine deification

No one loves dogs more than I do.

I even air kiss strange dogs on the street.

Well, I used to until that jerk chihuahua on College Street in Burlington, Vermont almost bit my face off. Jerk. I’ll see you again.

Anyway. Dogs are awesome. Until they do that awkward pooping squatting thing that they do. It’s vile and offends me on all levels. You could be skipping along having an awesome day but the second you see a dog start to do that nasty squat poo thing your day is ruined. I deserve better.

WE deserve better.

I know dogs have to do their business so I propose that their owners bring pretty Japanese screens or portable cabanas along on walks. Fido gets some privacy, owner maintains dignity, and my sense of decorum is maintained.

Think of it as an art project. Crack out your old bedazzler, some science fair tri-fold boards, and get to work. Heck you could even Chevron stripe and Ombre up that shit. I don’t care. Go nuts.

Play your cards right and I might even pin your creations.

You’re welcome.

Truck nuts

There is absolutely no reason to have metal testicles dangling from the rear of your vehicle. I understand your need to inform the world that your ’98 Chevy S10 “has balls”.

I do.

But can’t you find some other way? It saddens me that I even have to use the word testicle on this here blog (see? the redneck is rubbing off on me) because Lord knows poor Natalie is going to get some nasty googlers here but this needs to be said.

truck nuts

Truck nuts are offensive, disgusting, and useless. And ladies? If you’re willingly riding in one of these treticle having vehicles your parents failed you. Big time.

I’m so sick of truck nuts that I’m thinking about crocheting truck sized short shorts to cover them up while their owners are in Walmart. Boom. Your filthy testicle having truck is now wearing a beautiful peach colored pair of croteched shorts.

Classy.

Enough with the truck nuts. I get that you’re trying to inform the world that you’re a raging douchebag but leave something to the imagination. We’ll find out soon enough when you invite me on a date to TGI Friday’s and then ask me to pay for half of my chicken lunch (you know who you are ex boyfriend douche from 2000).

Here’s the deal.

Gay marriage is not offensive. Your offense is offensive. I am a Christian type (don’t let the fanny pack robberies fool you I’m actually a pretty upstanding citizen and card carrying best friend of Jesus) and have grown weary of the bible thumpers tossing around misunderstood and incorrectly quoted Bible verses.

I get that the Bible says something about marriage being between a man and a woman. It also says a bunch of other things that you choose to ignore. Have you sent your menstruating friends off to sleep in huts for a week? Didn’t think so.

SO if you’re going to live by the Bible you’d better go all the way or else your argument is faulty and I am declaring it void. Even if gay marriage is a sin you’re not the one getting gay married (because really no one wants your pimply hypocritacal ass anyway. kidding!) so what do you care? YOU’RE not the one committing the sin!

Everyone wins.

Rememeber that part in the Bible about only God judging? Oh, you forgot that eh?

You’re a sinner. I’m a sinner.

If you are truly a scholar of the Bible then you should know better than everyone else that ALL SINS are bad. Stop questioning the choices of others because they commit different sins in the eyes of *your* God. It’s ludicrous.

It really is.

Listen if you think your marriage is in danger because gay people might someday get married then you have issues far larger than this one. Let me make this clear: equal rights for everyone does not mean that a gang of tanned, toned, and well oiled men in tight short shorts are going to parade in to your home to a techno beat and abscond with your husband.

It isn’t happening. Gay people are just regular people. They don’t care about your marriage. Why do you care about theirs?

In conclusion there are a million other things to be offended by in this world. Gay marriage? Not one of them.

As. You. Were.

veronica armstrongVeronica is a stay at home mother and freelance writer. She lives with her husband and two small children in Cornell University graduate student housing while her husband studies for his MBA. She blogs at VeronicaArmstrong.com about photography, pretty things, and life as an MBA wife.

Although all of the above sounds slightly fancy Veronica is not above eating bacon off the floor or robbing fanny pack wearing tourists.