Slime! You’re Eye Candy!

That was the sign that confronted me as I left the optometrist’s office yesterday: “Slime! You’re eye candy!”

I had just been told my eyesight was perfect, so since I was reading the sign backward through the glass I figured it had to be another instance of my attention-deficit dyslexia. I went around and checked it from the correct side and sure enough, it said, “Smile! You’re on camera!” But at least I got a chuckle.

It’s been that kind of week: Bass ackwards and downside up. I feel as though I’ve been running around in ever-decreasing circles until I’m in imminent danger of disappearing up my own ass.

Since October is breast cancer awareness month, I had planned for today’s post to honour several of my personal friends and all the other brave women who have fought or are fighting breast cancer.

When one of my friends was going through her chemo treatments, she wanted a break from all the scary serious stuff and we usually ended up laughing in the treatment room. Cancer has enough innate solemnity, so I wanted to write a light-hearted post.

But my scattered brain wouldn’t cooperate. I made several attempts but they all felt as cheap and forced as the drilling company that sent pink drill bits out to their sites to promote awareness despite the fact that some of the chemicals they use are believed to cause breast cancer.

I could just see the board meeting for that one:

“Hey, let’s paint our drill bits pink! We’ll get all kinds of good press for supporting breast cancer!”

“Um, our chemicals cause breast cancer. We’re supposed to be supporting awareness of breast cancer, not supporting breast cancer itself.”

“Oh… Well, close enough. Paint ‘em pink and send out a press release.”

Usually I write my blog drafts on Monday, but by yesterday afternoon I had nothing but three boob jokes and an off-colour toast. (That’s three jokes about boobs, not jokes about three boobs… though I did, in fact, give my blogging buddy Linda Grimes a hard time about discovering a middle tit last week, so maybe that qualifies.)

I’m still clinging to the hope that my gray matter will cooperate and I’ll manage to write that post by next week. Meanwhile, all I’ve got is a joke that combines three of my favourite things: engineers, smart women, and raunchy humour (not necessarily in that order). Oh, and a boob reference, to, um, round things out:

An older male engineer and his young female counterpart were going out to inspect a site after the survey crew had finished. Wanting to impress the young engineer with the breadth of his knowledge and experience, the man turned to the woman as they got out of the truck and said, “We’ll get this done faster if we split up, so take whatever you need from the toolbox in the back of the truck. If we need to communicate at a distance we’ll use the secret engineering code.”

She nodded and they went their separate ways with the man chuckling inwardly. That showed how little she knew. The secret engineering code was something he’d just made up on the spur of the moment.

Looking back to enjoy her rear view, he tripped over a survey stake and knocked it over. By the time he got dusted off she was quite a distance away, watching his discomfiture with a grin. Embarrassed, he decided take her down a peg or two. He pointed to his eye, then his knee, then mimed a hammering motion. “Eye… kneed… the hammer.”

Expecting her to be completely bamboozled, he was startled and not a little perturbed when she shrugged, gripped her left boob, and then hoisted her hand into her crotch.

Frowning, he exaggerated his movements, pointing forcefully to his eye and knee and madly hammering the air. “EYE… KNEED… THE HAMMER!”

She scowled back and repeated her insulting gestures with even more emphasis.

Enraged, the male engineer strode toward her and she did the same, meeting him in the middle and looking just as irritated as he.

“What’s wrong with you?” the man demanded. “I need to pound in that stake. I told you very plainly, I NEED THE HAMMER.”

She replied, “I answered, you moron! Don’t you understand the secret engineering code? I LEFT TIT IN THE BOX!”

…And speaking of eye candy, I know I link to this video approximately every second year but just because I’m completely devoid of originality today, here’s my favourite reminder to get those breast self-examinations done:

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I Went Out And Got Pithed

No, I haven’t begun to lithp. I did actually mean ‘pithed’. Getting pissed would have been a whole lot more fun.

The story begins long ago in a little country school…

Nah, never mind. I’ve got the world’s shittiest memory, so anything I told you about my school days would be pure fabrication. That might be amusing for me (if not for the classmates I’d likely malign) but it’s not what I had in mind for today’s post.

The story actually begins when I learned what ‘pithing a frog’ meant. That was probably around the time I was in high school, but I won’t swear to it. (The swearing comes later. Wait for it…)

For those unfamiliar with pithing, it involves pushing a needle into a frog’s brain and moving the needle around to destroy the brain so the frog won’t suffer unnecessarily while it gets dissected alive. Needless to say, the procedure stimulates the somatic nervous system, causing the frog to kick and twitch involuntarily. I know; quelle surprise, right?

Fast-forward to last week.

I did some renovations on my step-mom’s deck while I was visiting in Manitoba. (No deck jokes in this post, though. Been there, done that.) I replaced a few boards, belt-sanded the whole thing, and re-stained it. That involved a couple of five-hour sessions bent double/kneeling/sitting/leaning forward. My back was sore and tired.

But I was fine. My muscles recovered after a day or two and I carried on, happily oblivious to the impending catastrophe.

I drove home:  twelve hours of straight driving. I got out of the car in Calgary and felt fine.

Went for a walk that evening and felt fine.

Went to bed that night and slept like a baby on our nice new mattress.

And woke up with a back spasm so bad I could barely walk.

Only I could hurt myself doing absolutely nothing.

Four days later I was still crippled, with my back muscles spasming so hard they reached around and yanked my abdominal muscles into the act, too. Every time I moved, it felt as though I had snakes writhing under the skin of my stomach. So I went to the physiotherapist.

I’ve mentioned before that modern physiotherapy techniques are barbaric. This was no exception. I signed a release form for IMS (Intra-Muscular Stimulation), which means they stick needles in the spasming spots and grind the needles around until the victim muscle submits.

You wanna see kicking and twitching? Wow.

If not for the fact that I had my pants around my knees and needle tracks from my ass to my shoulders, I would have loved to have videotaped it just for the laughs. I’m surprised the carpet didn’t melt from my swearing, because apparently IMS stimulates not only my somatic nervous system but also the profanity centres of my brain.

And for a few days I wondered if one of those needles had destroyed my brain, too, ‘cause I couldn’t even think. But that might have just been the muscle relaxants.

I’m much better now, but I have a whole new sympathy for frogs. Maybe I should befriend some so we could go out and get pithed together.

Tho how wath your week?

* * *

Bonus Question: How do you pith a frog?

Answer: Tell him he thuckth at thwimming.

(Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

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Dear Truckers…

Dear Truckers,

I just got back from driving another 2,400 km trip across the Canadian prairies, and now I’m sad.

I always looked up to you as professional drivers. I admired your skill and courage as you pushed through summer storms and winter blizzards. I respected the personal sacrifices demanded by an exhausting job that kept you far from your friends and family.

I loved to watch a semi starting up from a dead stop: the cab of the tractor torquing with sheer brute power; the big diesel engine growling and snorting. I always enjoyed the sight of your big rigs gobbling up the miles. I liked the thought that in each of those cabs was someone who loved the open road as much as I do.

But my last couple of trips have ended all that.

Maybe some of you are still dedicated professionals, but too many of you are downright dangerous. I spent my drive in dread of having to pass you. Five different truck drivers nearly wiped me off the road; veering into my lane and weaving back and forth. One even drove down the centreline for several miles at a time. If I’d had any safe place to pull over, I’d have called 911 and reported that guy, but I didn’t dare stop in case he caught up and actually succeeded in killing me on his next try. 

I always give you lots of space and make sure I’m driving consistently so you don’t get any surprises.  I know cars can be hard to see from where you sit so I always make sure I’m visible in your mirrors, but that didn’t matter because these guys weren’t watching their mirrors.  Or the road.

Years ago we rarely saw a wrecked semi unless the road conditions were truly fearsome, but I saw three fresh wrecks during this trip. There was bright sunshine and unlimited visibility. A long straight four-lane divided highway on flat prairie. Perfect driving conditions. I don’t know what you’re doing up there in that cab, but you’re not paying attention to driving. Maybe you’re texting or talking on the phone or, like one guy I saw, reading a book propped against the steering wheel.

Why would you do that?

You know you can’t stop an 80,000-pound vehicle on a dime. You know what happens if you run into a smaller vehicle.

When I was young, we called you Knights of the Road. You looked out for us little folk, and you were heroes to stranded motorists. In a blizzard, we knew if we could find a semi and follow its taillights we’d be okay. Now you’re just as likely to lead us over the edge of a cliff.

I’m so disappointed. I feel as though the big brother or sister I’ve idolized all my life has turned out to be a fraud.

I know the days of stopping to help other motorists are long gone, made impossible by your ridiculously tight schedules and the added dangers of armed nutcases and heavy traffic. But do you really care so little about your professional pride and the safety of other motorists that you won’t even bother to drive a straight line?

Come back, Knights of the Road. I miss you. I miss the joy of driving and the sense of safety you used to give me.

And I don’t want to become a grease spot under your wheels.

With sincere sadness,

Diane

* * *

Sorry it’s not my regular foolishness today. I usually love driving that trip, but those drivers really spoiled it for me.  I guess I’m lucky they didn’t spoil it permanently.

Just to show I haven’t completely lost my sense of humour, though, I’d like to share a little personal revelation I had somewhere around the middle of Saskatchewan.  I was singing along with my music as usual when I suddenly realized that I am incapable of screeching out high notes without simultaneously clenching the steering wheel in a white-knuckled grip and contorting my face in a horrible grimace.

Between my awful caterwauling and my scary expression, it’s no wonder the truckers try to run me off the road.

P.S. Something weird is going on with either WordPress or my domain today.  I’m sorry if the blog won’t behave – I’m trying to figure out the problem.  In the mean time, as they say:  “Call me if you don’t get this message”.

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Hey, Brain, Stop Eating Beans!

I must be consuming a high-fibre intellectual diet, because I’ve been having an awful lot of brain farts lately.

A few weeks ago I was out walking in the park near our place. We’re a friendly bunch here in Calgary, and when we meet fellow walkers we usually offer a ‘hi’ or a ‘good morning’ even if we’re total strangers.

I was striding along, my brain totally wrapped up in a plot point for Book 9, when I noticed this smiling lady approaching me. To normal people, this would be a visual cue that some response would soon be required.

But I think we’ve already established that I’m not normal. She said ‘hi’, and my brain short-circuited.

I knew some response was required but I couldn’t formulate any appropriate words. Fortunately my mouth kicked into gear a moment later and I managed a ‘hi’ in return.  Not exactly complex linguistics, but the amount of effort it took was downright scary.

Then a couple of days later I was deep in writing when I remembered it was bread-baking day. I went down to the kitchen and got out my mixing bowl and spoon, pulled my hair into a ponytail… and started looking for my safety glasses.

That’s not quite as random as it sounds. We’d been trap-shooting a few days previously and it’s reflex to put on my safety glasses when I shoot.  But I don’t know why my brain suddenly decided to substitute ‘shooting glasses’ for ‘apron’.  I’ve never heard of anybody requiring eye protection for flying flour dust.

And I guess I was thoroughly involved in my plotting, because a few days later I flopped onto the couch and moved the TV remote from the seat cushion to the coffee table. Just as I let go of the remote, a sudden urgent thought popped into my mind:  “Oh, shit, I just left fingerprints on the remote!”

That was immediately followed by a facepalm. I’ve lived in this house for sixteen years.  My fingerprints are everywhere.  Since I don’t watch TV they’re not terribly likely to be on the remote, but I’m sure in the course of the last decade or so I’ve handled it a few times.

And anyway, why would it matter? I can’t think of any crimes one could commit effectively with a TV remote.  Bludgeoning someone to death would be unnecessarily laborious, and the batteries’ tiny bit of electricity wouldn’t make them do much more than twitch and squeak…

Ahem.

No, I haven’t spent a lot of time considering this; why do you ask?

I guess there’s always the possibility that Hubby secretly owns a fingerprinting kit and has been trying to catch the malignant ghost that causes his PVR to periodically ditch its programming. But even if I had been the guilty party, I hope the consequences wouldn’t have been too severe.

Then again, messing with a guy’s PVR programming is probably grounds for divorce. (Hubby, if you’re reading this, I didn’t push any buttons.  Honest.  You can dust them for fingerprints if you like.)

Meanwhile, I’m trying to figure out what I can feed my brain that might reduce my cognitive flatulence. Any suggestions?

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Wait, Wha…?!?

I’ve had one of those weeks where it seems as though the rest of the world is conspiring to make me say, “Wait, wha…?!?”

The first thing was the fortune cookie I got on the weekend. I was expecting the usual sort of fortune; you know, ‘You will soon go on a long trip’ or ‘Your persistence will be rewarded’ or something.

Instead, I got this:

fortune - goal

Wha…?!?

I’m somebody’s goal? That’s… really… kinda creepy. I’d be pleased to be someone’s role model… or no, wait, scratch that. I’d be seriously concerned if anyone selected me as a role model. I’d be unsurprised by being held up as a bad example; or perhaps as an object lesson. But to be the goal of many individuals? Suddenly I feel as though I’m the prize in a game of Capture The Flag.

The next two things that boggled my mind happened in quick succession at a shopping mall. Here’s what confronted me when I walked in the door of Hudson’s Bay Company (a Canadian department store):

Check the sign: "2015 RED MITTENS".

Check the sign: “2015 RED MITTENS”.

I read the sign on my way by, stopped, backed up, and read it again. Then I squinted at the sign and the big display of mittens beside it. Wha…?!? In what world are those mittens red?

Granted, they’ve got some red on them. But The Bay has carried a new design of red mittens every winter for years, and they’ve always been, well… red.  See?

These red mittens all have one thing in common: They’re, um… red.

These red mittens all have one thing in common: They’re, um… red.

I guess nobody bothered to inform me that blue is the new red.

Then a few minutes later, in the same store, this:

Yes, that is a giant hairball.

Yes, that is a giant hairball.

A big ball of human hair. Right in the middle of the clean white floor, not far from a service desk.

Something like that doesn’t just drop unnoticed off somebody’s head. A hairball of that magnitude has to be gathered from a hairbrush, rolled up, and deliberately dropped. Gross. But that wasn’t what made me say, “Wait, wha…?!?”

No; I put the defunct dreadlock out of my mind and carried on with my shopping. My ‘wha…?!?’ moment occurred two hours later when it I came back and it was still there.

So this big gross hairball, visible from 50 yards away in a main traffic aisle, close to a service desk… was cheerfully ignored by every staff member for two hours.  That might not be surprising if it was a dollar store or some other place that doesn’t worry too much about their image. But in a department store that pretends to be moderately upscale? Wha…?!?

And finally, I’ll leave you with this arrival in yesterday’s mailbox:

Tell me, does this colour scheme say ‘Glow’ to you?

Tell me, does this colour scheme say ‘Glow’ to you?

I don’t know why they persist in sending me this free magazine. It’s all about fashion and makeup, which everyone knows is a lost cause with me. But at least I got a laugh out of this issue’s cover. A murky green background and a model with deeply shadowed eyes, pale lips, and a greenish cast to her skin just doesn’t say ‘Glow’ to me. ‘Reanimated Corpse’, maybe.

But I guess that title would be too long to fit on the cover.

Did anything make you go “Wait, wha…?!?” this week?

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Only In My World

I’m a weirdness magnet. All kinds of oddball stuff happens in my world; everything from finding machete wrappers at bus stops and dick prints on my hotel window to experiencing unusual coincidences pertaining to warm guns and email.

The past few weeks have been no exception.

I was out for a walk when I spotted something on a perfectly-manicured front lawn. When I got closer I blinked twice, but I wasn’t hallucinating. Nope; no matter how I looked at it, it was still a large dead mouse smushed in a mousetrap. You don’t see that very often on nice suburban lawns, even if you’ve been partaking in unusual substances (or so I’m told).

The whole situation was weird. Both mouse and trap were soaking wet, so the homeowners must have dumped them in a bucket just in case the mouse survived getting whacked. I’ll grant them points for thoroughness, but since they’d obviously succeeded in making the mouse as dead as possible, why would they chuck it out on the front lawn?  Why not release the body and flush it or bury it or dump it in an unobtrusive corner of the back yard instead of displaying it to passersby like a bizarre welcoming gift: “Hello, may I offer you some lovely drenched vermin attractively served on wood with steel accents? No? Whyever not?”

Just to keep things interesting, Fate has served up a couple of unusual coincidences in the past few weeks, too.

Such as the day I walked into our local postal outlet. The postal clerk knows me by sight, though not by name… I thought. Until she cheerfully greeted me, “Hi, Kelly!”

My brain was deep in plotting my current book and I absently returned the greeting before realizing that I was not, in fact, Aydan Kelly. Explanations and laughter ensued, but she still insisted that I looked like a ‘Kelly’. She had no idea I’m a writer and she hadn’t read my books. So what are the chances that she would have called me by the name of my main character?

And speaking of coincidences, it’s no coincidence that I mentioned the dick print on my hotel window earlier in this post. Only a few days after we got home from that trip, I was over at my friend Chris’s place when he eyed me very seriously and said, “I hate to tell you this, but I’m afraid you have a stalker.” He pointed to the sidewalk outside their house. “There’s a dick on the sidewalk over there. It followed you all the way from Canmore.”

Sure enough, somebody had chalked a dick there. I just laughed and told him it hadn’t followed me; it had followed him. Not my problem, bucko.

But I spoke too soon. The very next day I stepped out of our house only to discover this:

It followed me home; can I keep it?

It followed me home; can I keep it?

I realize kids draw, er… unusual things… now and then, but I’ve lived here for sixteen years and this is the first time I’ve seen a dick drawn on our sidewalk. It’s so soon after my Canmore experience the coincidence seems ridiculously far-fetched. (Unless Chris has chalk dust on his fingers… hmmm…)

Am I really the only one? Please tell me somebody else has happened upon a sodden dead rodent on a suburban lawn, or something equally peculiar…

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Dear Autumn…

*F-BOMB ALERT* – CONTAINS (more) COARSE LANGUAGE (than usual)

Dear Autumn,

I’m not quite sure how to tell you this.

I know we’ve been seeing each other for fifty years, but I have to admit that for me it’s been more out of habit than any real affection.  And lately I’ve realized I want… more.

Maybe I shouldn’t have read all those self-help books, but it’s too late for regrets and what-ifs. Now I can’t help analyzing our relationship, and the more I think about it the more I realize what a vicious, controlling bastard you really are.

Oh, you hide it well. You pretend you’re all about new beginnings as you usher the kids off to a new school year. You’re everybody’s favourite season, with your handsome colouring and irresistible scent. They don’t realize you’re hiding your heartless personality behind that pretty façade.

Well, I’m onto you. You’re a actually the sociopathic poster child for dysfunctional relationships. You act sweet, but you sneak into my garden and kill my plants when I’m not looking, you force me to wear ugly bulky clothes, and you systematically isolate me from all the things I love.

Plus I’ve finally figured out it’s no coincidence that my dearest love, Summer, always vanishes when you show up. For years I thought it was just Summer’s way, to love me and then leave me with memories so sweet I couldn’t help but fall for him all over again when he reappeared.

But now I know that you’re the one who drives him away. What do you hold over him, you son of a bitch? What leverage could you possibly have that would make him disappear without a trace for months at a time?

I’ve got news for you, Autumn, I don’t care if Summer has other lovers. I don’t care if he loafs around and goofs off work. I don’t even care if he sometimes burns me.

All I know is that Summer encourages me to get out and have fun with my friends, he likes it when I wear shorts and tank tops, and he’s out there with me every single day in my garden.  Summer encourages me to eat right and take care of myself, too. He brings me all kinds of delicious healthy fruits and veggies, but he’s not a stick-in-the-mud – he makes sure I get to enjoy lots of treats like ice cream and cold beer, too.

And then you come along and spoil it all.

Well, I’ve finally had enough of you. It’s over between us. Pack up your pretty clothes and get the hell out of my life.

Oh, and by the way? Take your rotten sidekick Winter with you when you go. He’s all sparkles and charm until he convinces me to go out, and then he gives me the cold shoulder. And you can tell him this for me: that white-on-white look went out with the last episode of Fantasy Island in the 80s. It doesn’t make him look sophisticated; it just shows he has no imagination. You two are real pieces of work, you with your garish wardrobe and him with that weird monochrome thing going on.

Both of you can go take a flying fuck at a rolling doughnut.

With the utmost sincerity,

Diane

* * *
A couple of days ago I was bemoaning the impending loss of my garden and I took this photo:

I thought this was bad...

I thought this bit of snow on the roof was bad…

This morning I woke up to this:

Snowpocalypse.  This is AFTER I went out and knocked the snow off our trees.

Snowpocalypse. This is AFTER I went out and knocked the snow off our trees to keep them from breaking. Trees are down all over the city, and we’re having power outages.

But just because I can’t bear to leave this post with such a repulsive image, here’s what I rescued before the snow started to fly:

Summer's last gift. Now you know why I love him. :-)

Summer’s last gift. Now you know why I love him. :-)

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Doing The Crabapple Tango

Don’t worry, it’s safe to read this post – the Crabapple Tango is nothing like the Green Apple Two-Step. I won’t even mention diarrhea. (Okay, technically I just did, but that’s all for this post.)

Most people have probably never heard of the Crabapple Tango, but anyone with a fruit tree knows what I’m talking about.

First you need a fruit-laden tree and a stepladder. Ideally, the tree will have been pruned by an irresponsible orangutan with the express intention of creating an impenetrable mat of tough branches garnished with millions of spiky twigs.

Like all fine dance performances, proper preparation begins months in advance. Throughout the summer the tree should be repeatedly drenched with road dust, pollen, tiny black bugs with an affinity for human mucous membranes, and that particular brand of sticky dirt that’s peculiar to apple trees.

The crabapples must be at that precise pinnacle of ripeness whereby half of them rain down upon the performer’s head at the slightest disturbance of the branches, but the rest are so firmly attached that it’s necessary to twist and yank them loose. This sets up the proper blend of tension/release in the dance.

As always, stage layout is critical. The ground beneath the tree should never be flat or level. And the tree should be jammed in the inside corner of a five-foot tall fence, making it impossible to safely access it from any angle.

Ideally, the Crabapple Tango should be performed on a windy day in bright sun. This adds to the entertainment value while the audience waits to see whether the performer will be thrown bodily from the tree by wind-tossed limbs or merely blinded by looking directly into the sun while reaching for the topmost branches.

Once all is prepared, it’s time to introduce the star of the performance.

Me.

Yes, the crabapples were ripe this weekend, so that was my cue to drag out our stepladder and attempt to inflict grievous injury upon myself. Fortunately I failed, but anyone watching would have given me points for trying.

I had the requisite sun and wind, and after picking everything I could reach from the ground I took to the ladder to reach the apples twelve feet up.

Having suffered abrasions to both epidermis and equanimity while contorting myself through the web of branches, I poised precariously on the second-from-the-top step. With one thick branch pressing into my stomach and another crushing my kidneys, I made a 90-degree pivot, locking myself between the branches… just as the wind gusted.

Trees move in the wind. A lot. And their branches don’t move as a unit. More like scissors, actually.

Balanced on one foot on the ladder, I performed my most emotive tango yet, arching and dipping and twisting. I managed to escape, but it was a near thing.

And the whole time I was thinking, “I don’t need all these crabapples. I don’t even want all these crabapples.” But I was powerless to stop the dance, possibly because I was brought up to never waste food, or maybe just because I’m an idiot.

But I’ve got almost four bushels of crabapples to show for it.

Anybody got some new crabapple recipes? I’ve got jelly, jam, applesauce, apple butter, cider, spiced crabapples, cake, muffins, and pie…

* * *

P.S. I was the irresponsible orangutan who pruned the tree. Next year I’m going to wait until the apples are ready and then just go up the tree with my saw to do my pruning and picking all in one efficient act. Juggling a sharp object on an unstable ladder… what could possibly go wrong?

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…In Which I Go Soak My Head

I didn’t even know the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge was a ‘thing’ until my sister nominated me (read ‘bullied me into it’).

But it’s for a good cause – I had a friend whose mother died of ALS, so I’d love to see some progress in the fight against this degenerative and 100% fatal disease. If you haven’t heard of ALS or Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (also known as ‘Lou Gehrig’s Disease’ in North America and ‘Motor Neuron Disease’ in the UK), there’s more info at the ALS Association’s website:  http://www.alsa.org.

I was slightly distracted by the thought of dousing myself with ice water on video, so I wasn’t quite as coherent as I had hoped when I reeled off my little blurb.  I forgot to mention that I’ll donate as well because, while it may give some folks great satisfaction to watch me make a fool of myself, my brain freeze won’t benefit the ALS Association directly.

I’m not sure how good the audio will be, so here’s a short summary of what I was babbling about:

The rules of the challenge are that after you take your ice shower, you get to nominate some other deserving folks.  (Apparently my sister is harbouring some unresolved hostilities that we should probably address.)  If your victims friends choose to accept the challenge, they have to do it within 24 hours and post a video as proof.

I didn’t name names since I’m posting here on my blog, but if you’re just spoiling for an excuse to tell your friends to go soak their heads, consider this your official challenge… and don’t forget you have to do it yourself before you get to nominate anybody else!  (If you do, post a link to your video in the comments – I’d love to see it.)

But first you’ll need to stop laughing at me…

P.S. I’ve read a lot of criticism about this challenge.  People decry it because ALS is not a common disease so we should give to other charities that will benefit more of the population/it’s a fad and the people who participate are somehow morally and intellectually inferior to those who sit back and criticize/the ALS society doesn’t allocate a large enough portion of donations to research and patient support so the money isn’t being used efficiently/millions of people are dying of war and starvation and disease in other countries and it’s our fault because we should have donated there instead/yadda, yadda. 

I agree that it’s preferable to channel our donations to causes where the funds will benefit the most people and be used most effectively, but I don’t believe this challenge is somehow taking donations away from other charitable causes.  It’s a one-time thing, and people are impulsively donating.  That won’t prevent them from donating to the causes they regularly support, but it may get some people who don’t regularly donate to do so… and if it builds a culture of giving, that seems like a good thing.  I donate to a bunch of charities regularly, so I doubt I’ll bring about the apocalypse by dumping a bucket of ice water over my head and sending a few bucks to ALSA.  And yes, it’s a silly challenge, but how often do grown-ups get to be silly in public?  (Well, unless they’re me.  I’m silly most of the time.)  Anyway, I figured it’s good fun for a good cause.

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Stop The Fashion Presses!

I wrote this very late last night and I wasn’t quite sober at the time.  Consider yourselves warned…

I’m taking a semi-vacation this week, and I’ve left the writing of this draft to the last possible moment.  So since I’ve had one too many glasses of birthday wine tonight I’m going to offer some random fashion-related thoughts.

Yes, I realize that fashion opinions from me are approximately as valuable as makeup tips from Ronald McDonald, but please indulge me for a few minutes ’cause I’m feeling inspired.  Or possibly just intoxicated.  Sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference…

Anyway, here’s the first thing that inspired me: You know how I postulated a couple of years ago that I was probably a sociopath because I refused to give up wearing my waist pouch? Well, the joke’s on the rest of the world. I wasn’t a pathetic refugee from the fashion police; I was a cutting-edge trendsetter. Look at this:

Matthew McConaughey has made it cool to wear fanny packs: http://uproxx.com/filmdrunk/2014/08/matthew-mcconaughey-has-made-it-cool-to-wear-fanny-packs-again/?sc_ref=direct

And Rihanna rocks a fanny pack, too:  http://perezhilton.com/cocoperez/2014-03-04-rihanna-chanel-show-fanny-pack-paris-fashion-week#.U_QLgNN0yUk

I realize their waist pouches are an order of magnitude more fashionable than mine, but I prefer not to cloud the issue with facts.

So neener-neener to the fashion police! *proudly hoists up waist pouch and strides off into the sunset*

Also on a fashion-related note: Stop the presses; I wore a skirt to my birthday dinner tonight:

diane 50th bday

Sadly, my sartorial choice had little to do with a sudden attack of fashion-consciousness and everything to do with the fact that I wanted to wear stretchy clothes so I could make a pig of myself at the fancy restaurant Hubby had chosen. (And I did pig out; with relish. Or to be exact, with saffron cream dressing on my prawn-and-avocado salad and balsamic reduction on my duck breast.  No actual relish.  That would just be gross.)

But getting back to the point:  Me. In a skirt. Shocking, yes?

I don’t want to cause any more trauma to your optic nerves so I’ll leave you with a cartoon.  I actually posted it for the first time a while ago, but it suited my theme tonight and I’m still tipsy enough not to be bothered by my lack of originality:

fashion

Here’s to being fashionable; or, failing that, being too oblivious to care.

Happy Wednesday!

P.S. I just realized this post is positively rife with semi-colons and colons.  It’s probably some deep Freudian way to indicate the anatomical area I most resemble when I’ve been drinking…

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