Saturday, February 28, 2009

And we Wonder why People Don't Help One Another.

You saw this story, right?

Injured good Samaritan ticketed for jaywalking

The gentleman was helping two ladies across the street and was hit by a truck. He had managed to push the ladies out of the way before they too became casualties. Then he got ticketed for jaywalking.

There is a laundry list of injuries and he has finally been upgraded from critical to serious condition. Thankfully (and probably after an ENORMOUS public outcry) the police department decided to drop the charge.

Colorado State Patrol withdraws jaywalking ticket issued to injured good Samaritan

It blows me away that the ticketing happened in the first place. Mr. Moffett was helping two of his elderly passengers across the street. The fact that he had stopped to drop them off indicates to me that there is a bus stop, right? Then he got out of his bus to help them. He saved their lives. And he got a ticket. Do you think they handed him the citation in the ambulance or tucked it into his flowers at the hospital?

And the fine? $22? I understand that times are tough all over but is the Colorado police department in THAT severe of a budget crunch to give a man a $22 fine for saving two lives?

I'm guessing that the officer involved has been reprimanded, mocked and probably has a locker full of nonsense citations by now. What does a beat cop get demoted to? Crossing guard? Well, they can't do that for this fellow. The crossing was what got him!

I am bummed about the whole situation because of it's larger implications. The Boy Scouts might have to rethink that whole "helping a lady across the street" image. People can't help one another anymore without worrying about being sued for doing CPR wrong or being ticketed for jaywalking.

Just another answer to the question, "How did we get into this mess?"

Friday, February 27, 2009

Oh How I've Missed the News!

If you hang out at The Zoo you know that I've been up to my ears in a decorating project that has left me half bald. But I finally took a minute to catch up on my news and oh, what a glorious minute it was! Odd news once again.

He is accused of "abusing" a corpse. That in itself is just a weird phrase that I never want to see in print ever again!

Because throwing coffee at the driver will definitely stop the driver from striking. How do you spell "nutcase" again?

Who knew there was a gourmet black market for condiments! I've got some dijon ketchup in the pantry. Any bids?

You guys saw my lenten math. You know I so would have been bummed about opening that thing and not seeing the cheesy goodness!

Hey Uncle N! Want to score some points with your nieces and nephew? Knock over a QT on your next trip!

And finally. The ultimate. The one that has tears rolling even as I type.

I have NO commentary. Just make sure you read all the way through the last line. I can relate Mrs. B. I can relate.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

A Topic for Next Week's Show me the Funny!

I've been wracking my brain for an idea for next week's Funny and I finally had one. Guess where? That's right Bowl Fans! In the bathroom!

If you want feature space (which we all know you do!), you have to use a bathroom word. Toilet, bowl, toilet paper, flush, potty or any other bathroom related idea you can come up with. Come on, people! I can't be the only one potty training or cleaning the bathroom! You can do this. Remember to take the button with you for your post and send me back your link for consideration for next week's feature. There will still be a linky so even if you are funny outside of the bathroom you'll still have a chance to share.

Any takers? Flush ya next week!

Show me the Funny! No holds barred edition.

Oh great fans of The Bowl. You have come through for me in such a grand fashion. I don't even know where to start. I sent out the call a little earlier this week and the response has been gut wrenching - as in no Pilates for me this week, can't breath, tears and snot rolling, laughing my butt off. (Which could be a good thing considering my Lenten Math.)

I believe I shall start with this little gem submitted by my own sister in response the train track post over at The Zoo last week.

My fabulous web designer Karen, shared a peek at Brotherly Advice gone Wrong and a great lesson in Men versus Women. I swear that brother thing could have happened at our house.

Or Sissy's house! Speaking of Sissy, she passed me two side splitters that she found this week. The first was a reflection on Tummy Tucks from The Mad Housewife, Jaci. The second was a new perspective on Spanx supplied by Her Nashville.

Hey Trisha! Did you get any glimpses of those while you were at Mom Summit? Now Trisha was very open that going to the conference last week was taxing on her but to make her brain create this take on (Mom) Blogging? {Some things are just too painfully true, you know!}

And finally my Utah contributor Trisha learned this week that she is raising a Milk Mooch. But when the Mooch takes the pants off her head she really does make a great princess don't you think? How could she not with Trisha as the Queen?

Want to play along with Show me the Funny? Snag the button over there and write your own post or drop a link in Mr. Linky (he needs a chuckle - ya'll work him too hard on Wednesday!)

Until next week, live, love and LAUGH!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Wordless Wednesday: Lenten Math

(Photo by Tucker - thanks for catchin' the chin pal!)
Plus this

(That's a funnel cake for those of you who haven't been to a county fair in a while.)

Equals this

And people wonder why they call it Fat Tuesday!

For more Wordless Wednesday (you can scroll through my archives), you can visit MomDot.

See who else used photoshop to make their butt look enormous.

(Think anybody bought that?)

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Now You Too Can Take the Pledge!

For only $19.95!

Ok, so the whole pay for it thing isn't real but you CAN take the pledge! My wonderful creative and inspired pal Christy heeded the call for a Olive Pledge button and whipped this up. So feel free to snag it for your own blog if you need an occasional reminder to be better than drab. I would love the linky love back to The Pledge but that is entirely up to you.

The Olive Pledge!

And as long as I'm being a self promoting hussy, remember that we are about 36 hours away from "Show me the Funny!" If you saw something funny. If something made you snort. If it made stuff shoot out your nose I want it! Not the stuff you shot out - the cause of the said shooting.

I should stop shouldn't I?

Bring me your funny posts or funnies you have read and drop them in my linky. Right now I have no submissions for features so you might have to just look at all of my highlights from the past week if you don't get your acts together.

I'll also take suggestions for a topic for next week's funny if you have any inspired ideas!

Show me the Funny!

Two Cents Tuesday: Inspiration!

For a minute I forgot that Two Cents was coming up and I posted that great blog peeves rant. Phooey! Well at least you can still scroll down and read it if you want. In the meantime I'll get back to this week's topic - Inspiration.

Who wants to sing with me? You're the meaning in my life. You're the inspiration! You bring feeling to my life. (Everybody!) You're the inspiration! Something tells me this is NOT what TuTu had in mind when she picked this topic. But I bet she's singing it now! Tee hee!

Now where do I get my inspiration? I'm a pretty random person so my inspiration literally comes from everywhere. You know that you have entered blogger life when you can mentally blog about the freakish birds that keep launching themselves out of the bushes and into the side of the minivan while you are sitting in the carpool lane. Or what about the dog food issue? There was a whole blog drafted in my head about my husband, his work hours, the fact that we were out of dog food and the inevitable end to the whole drama.

And let's not forget that I am a mom. Holy blog fodder Batman! Every day there are funny things they say, hysterical reactions to things they do, dramatic melt downs over an elephant animal cracker whose nose was just bitten off by a spiteful little brother just as you were about to do the exact same thing.

Then of course you have the daily barrage from the media. I don't watch the evening news. I can't listen to people actually say the words that depict some new moronic action, heinous event, or cockamamie scheme someone has pulled. I prefer to read my news. Then I can cling to the tiniest hope that tomorrow I will come back to that same story and there will be a retraction in its place. But the ridiculousness around me is pretty inspiring.

Of course I am starting to get people emailing me absurd things to blog about too. Ok it's just my sister and she's a rabid fan (love ya!) and has bitten a few of her friends (love you guys too! now go bite more people!). But just the same, stories come to me that cry out for mocking and satire. I haven't blogged it yet but last week I was sent a story about a pair of guys who tried to used thongs as masks for a robbery. How can you NOT be inspired by that?

To tweak Forrest Gump a little. "Inspiration is like the school cafeteria. You never know what you're gonna get."

Monday, February 23, 2009

My Blogging Pet Peeve, Pledge and Olives.


I know when I first started blogging watching paint dry was a highlight but I have learned and I have tried to change it up. I work very hard at it every day. I try to pepper in some funny here and there. I even share some of my deep personal reflections on mental health from time to time. But I do not post the same stuff day in and day out. I try to mix it up.

We bloggers live for comments. We can have 974 followers and 82 email subscribers through various reader services but if not a one of you leave a comment we feel like we have failed. Like we are a total waste of URL.

But I say if we are boring you to tears, then we don't deserve a comment. We deserve to sit in our squeaky office chairs and type our fingers to bloody nubs and get nothing in return. I just went through 29 posts from other bloggers. And when I tried to read through their various pages I was reading the same post over, and over, and over.

I beg you to do something for me. Should this blog or The Zoo for that matter ever get redundant and bland and drab and olive, I plead with you to leave me one comment that says, "Olive." It will be our little safe word. I'll know exactly what that comment means and I will redouble, retriple, re whatever my efforts to change things up and make them worth your visit.
And if you are a blogger and you get a comment from me that says, "Olive" know that I mean it in love. I mean it to remind you that olives come in different colors and stuffings and flavors and seasons. So should your blog.

What an Appropriate Story for The Bowl.

I took a long weekend off to deal with all the Switch-a-Room drama that is playing out over at The Zoo. But let me tell you about the doozie I found for my great return.

Man forgets thousands of euros in toilet

Fri Feb 20, 9:14 am ET
BERLIN (Reuters) – A German businessman lost more than 10,000 euros ($13,000) in a plastic bag after forgetting the cash in a public toilet, authorities said on Thursday.

Hesse state police said the man took the "five-figure" sum with him as he stopped to relieve himself in a motorway service station near Haiger in western Germany. He then drove off.

A police spokesman said it was not clear why the man took half an hour to notice his loss -- by which time the money had gone.
(Reporting by Dave Graham; Editing by Phakamisa Ndzamela)

We really have to sit down and digest this together. Are you ready?

Man forgets euros in toilet.

Now this is just a study in North American English and European English. We say "toilet" and we are all picturing a bag floating on the water right? They say "toilet" and they are seeing the room as a whole.

It was unclear as to why it took half an hour to notice the money was missing.

Now I'm a mom. It's really not hard for me to forget that my pants are missing for way more than half an hour. And again you are talking to the woman who took $60 out of the ATM machine and promptly took it home and threw it in the big garage garbage can. Some of us are just scattered sometimes. Granted I'm pretty sure even feather brained, scatter shot I would have noticed a missing $13,000. This dude was on something!

And my favorite part..."by which time the money had gone."

Maybe I should have this fellow come handle my potty training issue. If he can get his money to go, he really is a fellow I want to have on my side.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Take a Laugh; Leave a Laugh!

Welcome to the first Show me the Funny! I am not one to play memes very often but since I made this one up myself I should probably play, right?

But Sarah, what IS Show me the Funny? It's a break from all the bummer news out there. It's a chance to laugh until you shoot stuff out of your nose. It's a reason to buy your keyboard a slicker. And it's a good workout for your abs.

So here's the deal. If you have stumbled across or written a good funny this week you post your link in the Mr. Linky at the end of the post. Should you write a piece between now and next Wednesday that you think is worthy of a feature on Show me the Funny! you e-mail it to me at ineedthezoo(at)yahoo(dot)com and I get to feature you next week. 'Cause we all know it's about the linky love, right?

Now let me share with you a few of the great funnies I came across this week!

I think we should all go thrift shopping with my pal Staci! She meets the most interesting people when she's Thrift Shopping!

Now CSI in training Jenna let school get the better of her but at least It Was Interesting!

I think Stephanie (who has given me awards before! See how that works?) is trying to cover her secret battle against the economy but I'll let her blame it on her kids this time. Just don't make Wishes while you're over there!

And if you thought my rant about spam was funny earlier this week you have to go check out Suzanne's inbox. That girl gets some seriously funny Spam!

Miranda the Cheerio Queen has come face to face with the Mother's Curse and survived to blog it - for now.

And finally (for now) Victoria is taking on Barbie! Well, her clothes at least!

What about you? Have you come across a funny that I don't have here? Please share it with me! I love to laugh! And I haven't done my Pilates yet today so you could really help me out. Add your link, leave love for all the wonderful folks who contributed, and Laugh!

Wanna play along? Grab the Show me the Funny button and add it to your funny post today. All I ask is that you tell folks where they can get their own.

Show me the Funny!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Work for a Fast Food Chain?

I was fact checking with a rock star blogger pal of mine who happens to live in Utah (home of the Wedgie Weilding Vet Tech) to see if the story was real. Being the supportive individual she is (who also shares my sense of humor) she shared another Utah news story with me. So this time everyone say thank you Trisha!
Apparently this poor fellow wanted to but got stuck behind the wheel of a truck instead! Now I would copy and paste the story for you but it's copyrighted and I am not in the mood for jail time and don't have funds for bail or major fines so you'll just have to click over.

The driver fell asleep, crashed into the center concrete barrier and tossed his cargo of hambuger patties all over the highway. And by all over I mean both sides of the highway to the point that they shut the whole smash down for several hours. The timestamp on the story was 9:33 AM and the northboud side of the highway was still shut down; southbound had opened at 6:45. My first thought when I read the story?

Gives a whole new meaning to "flipping burgers!"

I was relating this story to my sister (aka my sounding board) and she remarked that it would have been even more bizarre if the truck had caught fire and started cooking them. No we are not wishing harm on the driver at all! We just have a sick sense of humor that's all.
Of course the conversation spiraled out of control from there because we started to think about the bizarre things that have been spilled on the highways. From shoes to livestock to toilet paper and now hamburgers. Out of random curiosity I approached the might Google once again to see what other bizarre things we might find.

It is my profound and hysterical pleasure to present to you a website dedicated to none other than "bizarre highway spills." Man I love the web!

Show me the Funny!

Between stimulus packages and missing children and disease and genocide, it just seems that the world is nothing but bad news and dreary outlooks and miserable times. So I am on a mission. I love laughter. From grown people, from children, from anywhere! I want to share that laughter with my friends out here in bloggy land. To this purpose I am offering you a challenge.

As you blog hop and scroll through your readers I want you to make note of the particularly funny, hysterical, odd and just laughable posts that you come across. Write a few yourself if you like. I'm not picky. Then every Thursday we will have "Show me the Funny!" You can come back here and add your post or one that you have found to our linky. Of course I will be doing a round up of funnies that I have found through the week and will give you my top picks complete with linky love.

Maybe one day down the road I'll even give you a theme to go with it for your own post writing, but for now get out there and hunt up some humor for me! Show me the Funny! launches tomorrow!

Wordless Wednesday: The Rest of the Story

So those who guessed daffodil or jonquil last week were absolutely correct. And out of a whole flower bed full of bulbs this is the only one to bloom as of now. The bed at the mailbox is getting ready to pop with several daffodils and grape hyacinths but that's for another week! Happy Spring!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Ahh, The Power of Underpants!

I would like everyone to say "Thank you Ragman's Daughter!" because I just opened my e-mail to the tastiest tidbit in a while. And it did not involve Mildred (today's e-mailing senior) or naked wildlife. Here it is in all it's glory because giving you a link just wouldn't be right.

Woman uses wedgie to capture suspected thief

It took a wedgie and a headlock to pin down a man suspected of breaking into a car. Yvonne Morris, a technician at the Brickyard Animal Hospital, said she chased a man who broke into a co-worker's car, but he kept squirming away from her.

The third time, Morris grabbed hold of the man's boxer shorts and pulled. Salt Lake City police said she then she put a headlock on the man until help could arrive.
The man was booked into the Salt Lake County jail on suspicion of vehicle burglary, possession of stolen property and outstanding warrants.

Courtesy of our friends at the Associated Press.

But that vet tech scares the bejeepers out of me!

Now this made me snort for so many reasons. First, I play things out in my imagination while I am reading them so I am seeing a woman in scrubs and a pony tail haulin' crocs across a parking lot, hurdling dogs, piles of poo and cat carriers to get to Dude in the first place.

Then of course you have Dude. His eyes are as big as saucers as he watches a woman who wrestles Rottweilers for a living bearing down on him. And she catches him! "But he kept squirming away from her." I'm picturing a reenactment of what happens on my changing table every night only with a full grown man screaming "nooooo! I don't wanna go to jail!" while kicking and flailing every possible body part.

And finally, the grand finale. The icing on my hysterical cupcake. The Wedgie! Now this would be funny all on it's own but I can't even count the number of escapes I have foiled THIS WEEK ALONE by snagging someone by the drawers and either pantsing them so that they can't move their feet or by taking them off the ground for a brief moment.

Around here it ends in a tickle fight and giggles but something tells me Dude was grateful the cops came when they did. I'm pretty sure he was having some serious flashbacks to the high school locker room and was just waiting for the rest of the techs to swarm the parking lot with their wound up towels waiting to snap him in the rear.

I sure do wish I could get my hands on that police report. "We arrived on the scene to find the suspect turning various shades of crimson and gasping for air while attempting to dislodge large wads of cotton fabric from his behind."

Two Cents Tuesday: Sane Parenting?

You can do that? You can't imagine my amazement yesterday when I went to see TuTu and grab the topic for Two Cents Tuesday. "Maintaining sanity while parenting." I am chomping at the bit to hit up her linky and educate myself. There is so much to learn!

But here's my two cents on sane parenting. It can't be done. If you make the choice to become a parent (or in my case if your BC decides to flame out in all its glory - 3 times!), you really have to check your sanity at the L&D door.

A. You will make ridiculous faces that no one in their right mind would ever make.
And some of them will be for cute reasons like making the baby smile and laugh for a million adorable pictures. But I found that most of my ridiculous faces were unintentional and for completely uncute reasons. For example the "Not Enough Hands Face" most often expressed while you are juggling diaper bag, toddler's hand, juice boxes, and stroller while "Mr. I have no Children" lets the mall door slam in your face. Ooo! Or how about "Did I Feed you THAT?! Face" You know the one. The one that contorts your face while you simultaneously try not to toss you lunch as you attempt to clean THAT up.

B. You will ask the same person to do the same thing at least 7 times in a half hour period.
I've read that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. That is exactly what happens when you ask a child to clean up anything. My playroom is a prime example. I can pile the toys up and ask, beg, plead, cry, wail, scream, threaten, bribe and cajole for as long as I have breath. The children simply will not pick them up. They can't fight gravity it seems. Gravity is what pulled everything off the shelves in the first place so there is no way they are going to be able to put it all back up.

C. You will set out to do one simple task and will end up doing everything but that task.
See, I just went upstairs with the intention of cleaning the bathrooms. But I went into the bathroom and remembered that the rugs were in the dryer so I went to the dryer to get them out and ended up emptying the dryer which led to moving the laundry from the washer. That of course led me to check all the laundry baskets for straggler laundry from the weekend. As long as I was in the room why not make the bed? This caused me to gather up an armful of toys who managed to escape gravity's choke hold and migrate all the way upstairs. I brought them back here to the pile in the playroom and thought I would check my e-mail as long as I was here. The bathrooms still haven't been cleaned. Everyone thinks those "If you Give a Mouse a..." books are so cute. They are until you live them. Every day. For a yet undisclosed number of years.

It is my personal opinion, if you attempt to retain all sanity and still be a parent you will miss out on the best part of the adventure. Sure I have a few bald patches here and there but the doctor tells me as soon as they start to fill in again I can take the huggy jacket off.

Monday, February 16, 2009

How Fast do Airplanes Fly?

That was the question sparked by Jon and Kate this fine evening. We are watching them on their ski trip and they have been rerouted 300 miles out of the way. I commented that "that just added at least 2 hours to their travel time."

Mr. Smarty Pants McFly (also known as L.M. Lion) said something to the effect of "that so added 4 hours you mean. Planes only travel at about 150 mph!"

What are you talking about? Mom and Dad are 600 miles away and the flight to their house is only and hour and some change!

You are absolutely wrong about this. There is no way that planes travel 600 miles an hour! Go ahead! Google it and you'll see that I'm right. (Because he's always right.)

I had to take the trash out anyway so I trotted my happy behind down the stairs, ditched the trash, ignored the dry cleaning that I'll end up retrieving in the morning, and popped into the playroom/office. Oh mighty Google who will you favor tonight? The smarty pants know it all or the meek and humble open minded learner?

And it goes to...the Meek and Humble! And in my humility I politely BELLOWED up the stairs, "Commercial airliners have speeds of 500 to 600 miles per hour varying only by the presence of headwinds and weather conditions."



You were right.

My work here is done.

Apparenly I am a 74 Year Old Woman...

With a teenie bopper fetish.
Yes ladies and gentlemen I am about to blog about my spam. And no I'm not talking the canned meat but there WAS a great M*A*S*H on the other day that that involved Spam and it was pretty darn funny. I love Alan Alda. Oh and Harry Morgan - he's cute for a little old guy. Now where was I? Oh yes. Spam.

I think I have laughed harder at my inbox the last few weeks than at anything else. It started with Ethel DeWitt. Now I think I have only known one woman named Ethel and she was the most wonderful woman on the planet. I still have a blanket that she made for us that I regularly snuggle under with the kids. But let's keep in mind that as long as I knew her she was 70+ so when you send me an e-mail from "Ethel" I'm seeing a very old, very tiny woman who raised Indian popcorn. You know the multicolored decoartive ears of corn that you see in the fall? I strayed again didn't I? Sorry.

Here's where the laughter starts. The subject line on my email from Ethel was "I don't know if you got my first note." Of course I blip it as spam without a second thought. But then my college roommate calls and says, "Hey! I've been trying to e-mail you from work but I don't know if I have the right address." My roommate is temporarily working as a long term substitute teacher for a woman who is on maternity leave so I thought perhaps she was using this stranger's email to contact me. "Oh! You're Ethel!"

"I'm WHO?!" I told her the story and of course she burst into hysterical laughter and tears because, well, she's not Ethel. So we've been having a great time with this whole thing and I have taken on the alter ego of "Myrtle."

Now for the teenie bopper fetish. I don't know whose blog I visited last week that flagged me as a porn stalker but suddenly I am getting all kind of spam about "newly legal teens with wild animals" and "new young boobs for the shooting." (Can't wait to see the keywords this week!) So not only am I being mistaken for Maxine of greeting card fame but now Maxine is branching out from the psycho dog she always has with her.

And that brings us to today. The sender is "Carlo." The subject line reads, "This is Hazel and I've been trying to reach you." Seriously? Let me guess the first line reads "I have to send this to you from my 17 year old grandson's account because mine got hacked by a naked zebra who was partying with the newly legal chicks at a photoshoot I was doing."

I promise you that I don't make this stuff up. It really happens to me. Ok so maybe I do a little techincolor touch up with the commentary but I assure you that this really IS my life. Did I mention that next time I'm coming back as a dog?

But I refuse to do any naked canine photo shoots. Unless they're done tastefully.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Call me Cardinal Sinner.

No the next picture will not be me in a big red hat. I'm about to commit the blogger's cardinal sin. I'm about to blog about blogging. Ok, so it's not a sin and a lot of people do it but I don't really like to unless my brain is just shorting out which I'm pretty sure you all recognize that it is doing so right now. But I digress.

I love all these fun little tracker things you can add to your page - most completely unobtrusively. They tell you where people are coming from, what server or browser they are using, the keywords they used to find you, how many people are stopping by, how long they stay, how often (if at all) they come back and probably a ton of stuff that I don't even understand yet. But this is one of those double edged swords that we all encounter.

Now it becomes a pissing contest to see whose blog draws the most traffic. It turns into that evil demon on your shoulder whispering, "You're a failure. Your numbers are lousy. You're wasting your time." And it slowly drives you insane until you are rambling like an old man in his slippers on the baby food aisle. Or like me right now. In my slippers. At my computer. With ketchup on my shirt.

But see I've given up on the numbers. If you find me and you like me (which of course you will because I'm charming like that), you'll come back. And if you don't as long as I don't dwell on the numbers I really won't know, now will I? So the numbers are out for me.

I love to see where people are coming from and of course the keywords are almost always good for a laugh. Now as for where people are coming from...For The Zoo, I have all but 8 states. That's right! I have managed to draw at least one visitor from 42 of the 50 states. Thank you Sissy and Jen for rocking Arkansas's numbers; B for rocking North Carolina, and Nut for kickin' Florida. Hey! I'd give the rest of you shout outs but you haven't made your personal state dark green yet. Oh yeah! And Tena you get credit for Cali.

So now let's take a peek at this particular site shall we. The Bowl...The Bowl...right! We have 40 out of the 50 states. What blows my mind here is for all the crap I gave New Jersey last week, they have yet to phone in. Just one more reason I think we should just chop them off and let them float. Them and their big rat balloon. The only thing saving them is that they know how to make things smell like maple syrup.

What I really want to know is what Montana has against me! Not a single visitor to either of the sites. I have nothing against Big Sky! I prefer the wide open spaces. Maybe that's why they don't come by - is it too crowded here? Estonia! Latvia! But no Montana.

Anyway, the keywords this week were kind of dull so I won't go into those. But I would like to know who Stefanie Wigen is and why I'm supposed to be celebrating her birthday. Well, I would love to stay and share all of the missing states with you but I have to go see what is holding up the robots on the Webmaster tool. Apparently 7 of them have been jailed and I have to go free them. Just call me Cardinal Big Weld.

Let's be Real!

Last night while I was cruising around Bloggy Land I started looking at some profile pics and of course thinking about mine. This is the large version of my profile pic.

Aren't we all so cute and pretty?

But see when I'm sitting here at the computer writing to you and cruising your pages, this is totally NOT what I look like. How about a good dose of reality this morning? Here's what you would see if you could look through your page and see me on the other side.

(Obviously, I don't look that bored when I'm on your page but the web cam was not cooperating this morning and I was annoyed.)

So let's study this for a minute.

A. That would be the ever present ball cap that stays on my head to hide the fact that I haven't showered or even glanced in the direction of a hairbrush in 12 hours.

B. Present from fall to spring, you are now seeing the very fashionable hooded sweatshirt (one of 3 options). This is used to mask exhibit D but we'll get to that in a minute.

C. Please notice the total lack of makeup and the glaring presence of dark circles and bleariness. I don't wear makeup except for church and the bleariness is courtesy of sleeping in my contacts yet again.

D. The syrup and jelly stained shirt. That I slept in.

And you people wonder why I don't vlog very often. I'm just saying. I'm very glad that blogging is something I can do with a computer screen between you and me.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Wow Dianne! You may Actually Pull it Off!

Good for you! I really thought you weren't going to manage to steal NBC's corner on the absurd news market - after all they have Nadya Suleman - but you may just pull it off!
Kentucky is already all abuzz with furor over your depiction of "The Children of the Mountains" and I'm sure Pepsi has their PR department looking for every angle they can to defend Mountain Dew. I hear their marketing department has started action to trademark "Mountain Dew Mouth" for their next ad campaign. Not really. I made that up but it won't be long!

Now for my normal readers who have no clue what I'm talking about here's the skinny. Ms. Sawyer spent 3 years touring the Appalachian Mountains of Kentucky reporting on life in genuine coal miner Appalachia. Her preview story on GMA yesterday showed toothless children and a woman who walked 8 miles each way to attend GED courses. There was a ruckus over the popularity of Mountain Dew and parents putting soda in the bottles and sippy cups of their toddler children.

She finished her story off with the fact that Pepsi wouldn't comment on their product causing such issues as the rampant tooth decay and poor health. That's when my jaw hit the floor. But that's a rant for another day.

I just came from the GMA site where there are 204 comments on the story most from educated residents of Kentucky defending their state. Then there are the expected comments of "if they are so poor why aren't they spending their MD money on water (cheaper) and toothbrushes instead of soda and tattoos and illegal drugs? It's a matter of education."

So again, Dianne, my hat is off to you. I think you may have managed (perhaps through unintentional ignorance or poor editing choices) to create an even more ridiculous story than Ms. Suleman. I know Beloved will be tuned in tonight! I haven't decided if I will yet or not. Part of me wants to watch the rest of the train wreck but the other part of me knows that all you are going to do is raise my blood pressure and I think Nadya did enough of that earlier this week.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Humor Hunting!

Yesterday my sister and I were talking about books we read when we were growing up. Understand that we grew up without television - yes! And we survived! - so reading books was our main entertainment after card games, board games, riding bike, and visiting friends. We would walk from our high school to our county library after school every Friday to meet our parents before the football game/hockey game/track meet/wrestling match. So we have some really good memories of some really great books.

We were talking about a particular series that is no longer in print by Dr. David Taylor about his life as a zoo veterinarian. That of course took my brain on a trip to another author my whole family loved named Patrick McManus. He is a very humorous writer who writes about outdoor life (hunting, fishing and other boy nonsense) and my sister and I tore his books up.

Why? Because they were FUNNY! Very funny! And not crass humor like you see in sitcoms and YouTube videos. They were sincerely funny situational humor. You would read his work and a video of the events would begin to play out in your imagination that would make tears pour down your face.

I tried to read the comics from the Sunday paper this week and I was terribly disappointed. They just aren't that funny anymore. What happened the the humor we used to find in Calvin and Hobbs? Where, oh where, has The Far Side gone?

I'm wondering. Where do you find your humor? I mean in this day and age with all the news swirling about the economy and diseases and natural disasters, what makes you smile even for the briefest of moments?

Take your pick!

I was cruising through the news this morning and got trapped in the Odd News section. Now I know that many of you think that most of my news bits come from this section but I assure you that I find the vast majority in the politics, science, and world news areas. For today though we are going to peek at the Odd News headlines.

Naked hikers face spot fines
*Because when I'm climbing the Alps I just find clothes encumbering!

Venezuela military tells voters: don't eat your ballot
*I think they're just trying to avoid the inevitable poop search to ensure an accurate vote tally. Wimps!

Bishop arrested for child chimney pot stunt
*I have to store this one away for high school when the kids refused to do their homework - "Don't make me make you sit on the chimney!"

Deputies: Ohio teacher cut class for prostitution
*And we thought teacher pay in GA was bad! I wonder if she got detention (or couldn't the principal afford her?)

Cheers! Yeast gene map could mean better beer
*I don't know about you but genetically engineered beer sounds kind of scary!

Cops arrest man who sought help removing handcuffs
*Note to self: Do not go to a POLICE STATION to have handcuffs removed if you have been involved in illegal activity.

Ooo! Here's a really good one!
Man runs out of gas after robbing gas station
*That's right folks. He robbed the station but forgot to fill up first. I kid you not!

And finally one more clothing optional story for you.
Nude biker leads trooper on chase in bad weather
*I know on the rare occasion that it sleets here the first thing I do is strip and jump on a motorcycle in hopes of crashing into a police car!

So here it is from me to you. Anytime you feel like the news is too heavy to handle take a stroll through the Odd News - it helps. And the next time you pull a bonehead moment, just take solace in the fact that if you have clothes on you are ahead of the curve!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Who Did Their Homework?

I tried to do mine but Beloved kept changing the channel on me so I may have to go back and rewatch parts of the interview to make sure I have my facts straight. So I want to hear your reactions to Ms. Suleman's interview. Let's go with your gut reactions first - mad? Annoyed? Flabbergasted? Sad? Thrilled? Surprised?

Now give me your why's. Dateline's front page of course is all about the story so if you want to read some other reactions you can check them out there. But that's not what you came for. You came to see if I had done my homework and to hear me rant about it. So here you go.

My gut reaction? I'm sad. I'm sad for so many reasons. Her older daughter's reaction to the question "are you excited?" was met with a pretty quick "no." All of the older children made a note that there would be "a lot of crying" and one of the boys noted that the house was going to be "squishy." It's pretty clear that their feelings weren't taken into consideration.

Then I'm sad because her own mother has been pretty clear about her disapproval. To have that very critical support fall out from under you with any birth is pretty tough to handle. I'm sad because it really looks like she has NO plan financial, physical or otherwise! She's counting on volunteers and friends to help her out. How long is that going to last?

Then I get angry. Her 3 year old is autistic. Can you imagine what an overload it's is going to be on this little guy when eight babies move in? On top of that I'm angry that she used her savings and funds that she earned for all the IVF and she is using disability checks for three of her children and student loans to pay for basic family necessities. If she is going to school but is using the loans for her family, who is paying the school? And aren't some student loans state and federally funded? My pressure really shot up when I noticed the French manicure in the footage of her with the babies. I don't know how much mani's cost in California but around here they are a luxury I have done without from the moment I started having children. So the money issue has me beyond tweaked.
On the schooling issue. I'm wondering when she is going to school. How far is she into her degree? How long before she is able to start working and earning money and paying back those loans and supporting her family?
Now let's get into the doctor. He's up for review and possible censure by his own board of peers for pulling this implantation in the first place. However, to hear her tell it, he's been implanting this many embryos all along. But this is where it gets to a slippery slope for me. If we start to regulate how many embryos can be implanted and how many times a woman can have IVF, are we going to deny women opportunities to have children?

Beloved kept asking me why I was so affected by this story last night. His answer to it all was "She's obviously crazy! Child Protective Services will end up taking the children anyway." But THAT'S exactly what bothers me! If she is unsound mentally shouldn't the public be more concerned about her getting help? And if a person can't be a parent because they are mentally unsound, who is going to start administering that test? And what about all of the mothers who battle PPD daily? Are their children going to be taken away? Won't it be even MORE traumatic for these 14 children to be split up by CPS?
The best answer she had for "how does the father feel" was that he's shocked. This draws into question whether he even knew about this last round of IVF. She says that she talked to him each time she tried but he's shocked that there are eight this time. There is a serious incongruity here for me. Either she didn't tell him that she was doing it, she didn't tell him how many embryos were being implanted or the doctor wasn't implanting 6 every time. Anyway you slice it there's more to that part of the story.

I really wish I had been able to come out of this interview with more answers than questions. I think I'm actually more confused now.

Wordless Wednesday: Woo Hoo Spring!

Remember those sprigs we saw a few weeks ago during the cold snap?
My how far they've come!
And coming soon...
Name that flower?

For more Wordless Wednesday fun check out some more pals at MomDot!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

My Place in this World!

Jen, at TuTu's Bliss stopped by yesterday and left me some love so being the good, kind and friendly blogger I am (most of the time) I popped back over and checked out her page. Holy Homecoming! It's good to know that there are people out there like me.

She has a great little meme (and I know I'm not the biggest meme fan) called Two Cents. Could there be a more perfect meme for me? I give my two cents all the time so finally I have a reason!

This week's topic of course is Romance what with V-Day coming and all. So here's my two cents on romance. I think romance evolves. So many people say that the romance is gone in their relationships after they have children. I don't think it's gone. Maybe dusty. Maybe a little more evasive but I don't think it every really "goes."

I think romance evolves. I don't get cards and dates and flowers every week anymore. But I get help with the baths. I get someone else to clean the kitchen now and then. I get a hand putting away the laundry or an afternoon to myself from time to time. Sure! The flowers and dates and monkey love scream "I LOVE YOU!" But those other things whisper "I value you." "I want to help you." "We're in this together."

They also blurt out, "Where did all this water come from?" "Who didn't rinse their dishes before they put them in the dishwasher?" "Honey where's the cheese (that is always in the deli drawer if one would move things around and look for 2 minutes)?" "Why are the underwear all mixed up?" And "When are you coming home? I need a nap"

But you know evolution isn't always pretty. Welcome to the primordial slime of love!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Tomorrow Night!

I have homework for you all for tomorrow night. The Octuplet's Mom is on Dateline tomorrow night. Now you saw my interview for her and the preview I saw on the Today Show this morning (for 3 minutes before I got aggravated and went for my walk) was some pretty softball questions. I'm really hoping that Ann Curry is a reader of the Bowl and hit her with all of mine. You can bet that we will be disussing this on Wednesday (the not so wordless part) so I expect you to all come to the table with your notes and reviews.

Gentlemen readers (all two of you!) I will be expecting you to shed some light on this mystery man too. You are NOT exempt! From what I understand he is not the man she was married to for 7 years but rather a friend who helped her out. He has not seen ANY of the children he has "fathered." Jay and Buck! I need you to help me understand this.

So until Wednesday! Although my thoughts will probably go into draft late tomorrow night!

A Break from the Stupid News!

Although between today's silent footage of Mr. President bonking his head as he got into Marine One and the Porn Star considering a Senate bid in Louisiana, I would have had plenty of stupid news to cover with you!

But today I thought I would share some cool news. Ok so it's probably only really cool to me but deal! It's my blog and I'll post what I want. A while back I showed you the Beluga Whales at our Aquarium, right? If you tuned into the Beluga WebCam at all then you were probably drawn into a bit of a trace yourself. I love them. They are single handedly my favorite exhibit.

And then of course I shared with you my love of yoga. It's very centering and still tests your body in a physical way. Well get ready for my own little slice of heaven on Earth!

Whales serve as backdrop for aquarium yoga classes

There is a ballroom set up with a viewing window into the Beluga tank which would be incredible for anything - a wedding, a class reunion, a prom. But imagine being able to watch those flowing movements as you worked out. I can only imagine the day that Nico and Natasha start to mimic downward dog or a warrior pose!

Oh, if only funds were available! I would wallow in Sunday night yoga with Nico!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Journey on a Winding Road: Looking out the Window.

Yesterday was a brutal day for me. Pretty much moving from one piece of crummy news to another. I would no sooner get myself put back together and start to lose the red rings around my eyes than the next phone call or the next piece of news would come down. It was one of those days that should have put me into a total and complete tailspin. But it didn't.

Something very odd and unexpected happened in the middle of my day. A person who I have barely known a week sent me an e-mail. It started with "I don't know why I am telling you all of this but somehow I feel like maybe you can help." The story went on and as I read I knew where she was coming from and the response came flowing out without any fight or doubt that it was the right answer for her and where she was. When I was done and hit the send button, I sat back in my chair and...smiled?

That didn't make any sense! I was having one of the worst days in several months and I should have been absolutely miserable. I should have been angry that someone dared to need me. I should have been hopeless and should have had a response along the lines of "You think you have problems! Let me tell you MY story." But it wasn't there. Never for a minute did it occur to me to think, "Good. I'm not alone in being miserable." Instead I just wanted to encourage and help that person with what they were going through.

For ten minutes I was free of my own issues and I was helping someone. And it made me happy. It made me remember my purpose.

I know that my problems are still here and I know that they aren't going to go away just because I'm ignoring them and distracting myself with encouraging others. But they are somehow a little easier to handle when I don't wallow in them.

In my message to my friend yesterday I wrote things that spoke to me too. Maybe if I take my own medicine, this journey will be a little easier.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Denny's is Going to be Sooo Disappointed.

I'm beginning to think that I should be on some kind of Tax Payer Watchdog panel of some sort. Calling all New Yorkers! Here's your Tax Waste for today. Brace yourself because this one will either make you very hungry or just tick you off to no end.

Aromatic Mystery in New York City Is Solved
(And understand that this did not come from Yahoo; this is from the very esteemed New York Times)

For years New Yorkers have been smelling a mysterious syrupy smell akin to maple syrup and they have been reporting it to the city's 311 center. The city's EPA has been investicating it for 4 years and have finally found the source. It is coming from a fenugreek processing plant across the river in New Jersey.

Pancakes Pictures, Images and Photos

The plant's neighbors don't have a beef with it. But city dwellers who apparently would prefer to suck on taxi tailpipes are complaining. Someone please explain this to me! Who complains about the smell of maple syrup? Who doesn't get a whiff and travel back in time to a Satruday morning around the breakfast table? How can anyone hate maple syrup enough to whine to the city dispatchers about it? I'm appalled! Downright un-American if you ask me!

And once again, the city funds are going to fund this investigation! They can't get the World Trade Center hammered out. The crime count has not gone down recently and I'm sure there are still homeless and hungry panhandling on the street corners and children crying in dark apartments. But let's track down the syrup smell and put that on the mayor's desk.

Look out Vermont! They're coming for your maple candy next!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Tee Hee! He's Learning!

Beloved was scrolling through the pictures on the camera and came across the pictures from yesterday's Wordless Wednesday (the washers and laundry?) and never said a word. When I realized what he was doing I said, "Honey ignore those pics of the washer. I forgot to take them off."

"I'm really not worried about it. It was for the blog right?"

He gets me! He really gets me!

They Took a Balloon to Court and WON!!

I am almost speechless. Almost! This one is a doozie even by my standards.

A town in central New Jersey took on the local Electrical Workers Union over an inflatable rat they had displayed to signify a labor dispute. Now the article was a little confusin gon the first couple of takes but I think I have it sorted out now.

The union put it up in 2005 but was forced to take it down when an ordinance about banners and such was enforced. They began a lawsuit to get their rat BALLOON back. In 2007 an appeals court upheld the decision and allowed the labor folks to assess a $133 dollar fine. And now they have finally had their day in court with the New Jersy SUPREME COURT!

Please tell me that this did not happen. Yahoo News! Please come back tomorrow and print a retraction that this was a big joke tailored just for me, your one dedicated reader.

People tied a court up for 4 years to argue about whether their grotesque rat balloon was legal? What was the stinking labor dispute over anyway? And did you win that one? Or were you waiting to see the outcome of the rat?

I don't know who I'm more annoyed at. The town, county, and state of New Jersey for allowing it to go that far or the union for making it such a big deal to begin with! Can't we use our free speech for something more important than an ugly balloon rat on the side of the road? That's what you're going to spend county and state tax dollars on? Those roads up in New Jersey must be paved with gold and all their citizens are fed, healthy and happy. Domestic violence and the state child protection system must be incredibly well funded and food pantries must be overflowing!

Stupid people make my head hurt.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Wordless Wednesday: Big Baskets to Fill!

If you missed the beginning of the story you need to go to The Zoo.

The new Baby! Isn't she pretty?!

And she's a hard worker too!
(I told you I was anal about how my laundry was folded!)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

My Interview for the Octuplet Mom

babies Pictures, Images and Photos

I've tried to keep it in but I just can't anymore. This woman has made my head just about spin off my shoulders. I'm not paying her to grant my interview but here's what I want to know (just in case any of you are journalists). I watched the CNN story this morning and I have more than just a few questions.

#1. How did a person who has not had a job for several years afford IVF?
#2. Who is this "sperm donor" they keep referring too and how does he feel about this?
#3. How can you responsibly have 8 more children when you just bankrupted your own parents for a house?
#4. How did you afford to hire a publicist when you have no job?
#5. According to your own mother, you did this because you wanted "one more girl." Why didn't you take all those funds (#1 and #4) and adopt a child who needs parents?
#6. What makes you a parenting expert?

It's that last question that blows my mind the most. This woman has 14 children under the age of 8 and she thinks she's an expert? I'm sorry. But until you have at least covered puberty with at least three of your children, I don't think you can even dream of claiming expert status. What exactly are you an expert on? Getting them to eat their veggies?

There is something very suspicious about this whole thing. Where did all this money come from? Who did the procedure in the first place? CNN is reporting that they can't find a single fertility expert who would implant that many embryos in a young healthy mother to begin with. The highest number I have heard is 5 and that is for a woman in her 40's or a high risk mother. From my understanding she is only in her thirties (and young thirties at that) and since she already has six children I'm thinking high risk isn't an accurate description either.

And let's get back to the father(s) in this scenario. Where is the father(s) for the first 6? And who is this "sperm donor?" That in itself is irritating me. He is referred to as the donor everywhere so this only affirms my thought that this was a science experiment that went too far.

I understand a woman controlling her own body. I have to wonder though what is in this woman's head to do all of this. And to paint herself as an expert on top of it.

I fear for these children and their future. They aren't even a month old yet and it's already gone sideways. But this is just my take. Please, can someone spin this for me so that I stop thinking she needs to borrow my huggy jacket?

Monday, February 2, 2009

Journey on a Winding Road: Outlets.

I have to confess that when I started this Journey I was sure that it was really just for my benefit and my personal therapy. As I read comments and as I hear from people I am learning that there are a lot of you out there who have experienced or are experiencing all of the things that I am. You have all taken your own road but we are all heading in the same direction.

Which brings me to outlets. This is my personal outlet but I also use baking, cleaning, blogging, and encouraging others to help me work through my brain junk. So I am opening my outlet up.

If you would be interested in posting your story here (by name or anonymously), please drop me a line at ineedthezoo(at)yahoo(dot)com. I'll be happy to publish for you complete with linky love if you would like. I know how I feel about putting "random" information on my blog that doesn't fit with my theme so if you feel like you would love to write about your own experience but just can't bring yourself to put it up in your "home blog" feel free to use my space free of charge.

BTW! You probably didn't notice but this is actually post 101. I completely missed 100 but I can't say that anything other than the Groundhog would have been more appropriate!

Healthy Journeying.

Happy Groundhog Day!

And before you blow me off and say, "Sarah, you already posted this over at the Zoo!" stick with me. This isn't the same groundhog.

I was thinking about Groundhog Day last night and suddenly had a completely different groundhog memory that made me laugh out loud. That of course means that I have to share it with you because that's what my blog is about.

We had a dog growing up named Rowdy. He was dachsund, shepherd, irish setter, mutt mix. Yeah, he was a looker! He was black, about the size of a lab and was probably the laziest dog you ever met. He laid down to eat. I kid you not!

But he hated groundhogs. I mean loathed, despised, and abhorred them. He would be laying in the yard under the clothes line and suddenly take off like he had a firecracker in his rear if he saw one. He was nice enough to bury them if he ever got them. And therein is your story.

I was a camp counselor every summer all through high school and into college. At the end of the camp season every year all the counselors would come to our house and have a barbecue and play croquet and watch Indiana Jones and Tombstone and pretty much just pass out on our livingroom floor and go home in the morning. It was my parents' gift to us for a summer well done. One summer I was bidding good night to one of the guys who couldn't stay and had walked him out to his truck. Out of no where here came Rowdy dog.

black dog Pictures, Images and Photos

(This is NOT our Rowdy Dog - but he WAS this cool!)

Apparently he had found one of his "trophies" which was about six weeks ripe, dug it up and rolled in it. (You just threw up a little didn't you?) Then he proceeded to try to climb into my friend Matt's truck. Over top of him.

This was met with, "GET OUT OF HERE DOG!! YOU SMELL ZACTLY!!"

When I was finally able to pick myself up off the ground where I had collapsed in full on tears pouring laughter, I asked, "Matt? What is 'zactly?'"

"RC, that dog smells zactly like my butt!"

Zactly has been a part of our vocabulary ever since. May you have a Zactly Groundhog Day!