Holiday spirit

What are my plans for the holidays, you ask?

We kept wondering why they wouldn’t let us in!  Special shout out to my Sainted Mother, who’s deaf in one ear.  She’s half deaf and I’m half blind.  We’re awesome together!  “What’s that over there?”  “What?”  “That over there!”  “The cat has hair?”  We’re thinking of taking the act on the road.  Remember to tip your waitresses!  We’ll be here all night.

Oh, my sainted mother!

Trivial Pursuit

Image via Wikipedia

One Christmas, my sister and I were playing Trivial Pursuit with our mother.  Our sainted mother is many things:  intelligent, talented, brave, funny.  But even she would admit that she’s not hip.  She’s not with it, street-wise, down with the kids.  She got all the science and literature questions, but the pop culture questions were proving to be her undoing.

So when she came to the question, “What East Coast rapper was killed as a result of a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles in 1997?”, Big Sis and I both just assumed she wouldn’t know it and moved on to the next turn.  Sainted Mother stopped us and said, “Hey, give me a chance.  I might know it.”  We assured her that she had no chance of getting it right, but she insisted that she wanted at least to try.

So we asked her, and she said, “Oh, is that that Biggie Smalls person?”


Sainted Mother, we will never doubt you again.

Alternate ending to Twilight series

Bella Swan

Image via Wikipedia

Disclaimer:  I’m actually quite attached to the Twilight book series.  It’s soothing, purely escapist fiction.  But some of the repetitions get on my nerves.  Turns out, they got on the author’s nerves, too (further disclaimer: not actually true, of course).  This alternate ending to the Twilight series recently came to light:

Bella and Edward had skipped school yet again to find somewhere for Edward to sparkle in peace. His glorious perfection overwhelmed Bella, who tripped over nothing, but adorably.  Edward smirked at her as they climbed through the endless supply of woods in Forks.  “Edward?” asked Bella, with tears lurking in her voice.

“Yes, my true and eternal love?” replied Edward.  His incomparable, perfect voice hung in the air, more melodious than the most perfect symphony.  Bella gazed at his gorgeous, most perfectest face and forgot what she was going to say.  Edward chuckled.  Bella started to cry.  Edward sighed in exasperation, but perfectly.  “I realize I may regret asking this, but what is making you cry this time?” he asked, disapproving.

“I just know I’ll never be good enough or smart enough or pretty enough for you.  I’m so weak and vulnerable.  I don’t deserve such a strong, amazing, perfect savior man.  If only you would ravage my body so that I could deserve you at last,” she sniffed, as Susan Faludi’s head exploded into tiny, angry pieces.

Edward started to reply, but his constant chuckling distracted him from the path in front of him, and a low hanging branch hit him across the head.  Stunned for a second, Edward shook himself, then looked at the girl to whom he had given his cold and unbeating heart.  Somehow, something seemed to have clicked in his head after the blow he received.  “You know, you’re right.  What was I thinking?  I should just go hook up with that blonde vampire chick in Alaska.  I hear she’s easy!”  And without further ado, Edward drained Bella’s sweet, sweet blood from her body, dumped her down a convenient ravine, and got on with his undeath.  Party at the Cullen house!

Edward Cullen

Edward Cullen: now available! Image via Wikipedia

And the award goes to….

Academy Award

Image via Wikipedia

I recently received a Versatile Blogger award nomination from onwindydays, which I think is super nifty keen!  I’m very flattered that anyone would think my blog is worthy of an award, and I’d like to thank onwindydays for the nomination.

Here’s the thing about the Versatile Blogger award, though:  it’s basically a chain letter for blogs.  It’s a really warm and fuzzy chain letter, but when you’re nominated, you’re supposed to nominate 10-15 other bloggers for the award, and they nominate 10-15 others, and so on until, as far as I can tell, no one is blogging about anything except how they’ve been nominated for the award!  Also, it doesn’t look like there’s any way actually to vote on which nominees win, which means I never get to put on my virtual couture gown, parade down the virtual red carpet, and look as if I virtually believe myself when someone else wins and I have to pretend to be thrilled for them.  Always a nominee, never a nom!

So I have created my own award:  The Don’t Read This Blog At Work award, for blogs that will make you laugh at inappropriate times if you’re not careful about where you are when you check them.  Here’s the award pic I created for it:

Here are my rules for the award:  you may nominate no more than three bloggers, each of whom must have made you laugh out loud with at least one post.  Those who receive the nominations may consider themselves as having received the award, and they must post a gushing acceptance speech thanking the person who nominated them, perhaps thanking any companion animals they may blog about (I would thank my whistling marmoset, for example), and maybe closing with a shout out to their lord and savior or, failing that, their parents.  Those who receive the award may, but need not, pass on the award, but will not themselves be eligible again until they have published at least ten more posts.  There will be absolutely no oversight of any of this, so feel free to violate the rules at your pleasure.

So there you go: I’ve created this award, and now I’m sending it out into the world.  Who am I nominating?  Onwindydays!  Not just a pretty site, this blog will make you laugh at the blogger’s inveterate procrastination from studying, and then reaffirm your faith in basic decency when you see what a sweet, clever, kind-hearted person the blogger is.  I highly recommend perusing the blog, especially if you have a test or major project you’re trying to put off getting ready for.  And thanks for the nomination, sweetie!

Mad libs and whistling marmosets

P writing blue

Image via Wikipedia

For your reading pleasure and, I hope, your entertainment, I have composed a mad lib about the adventures of the little blind girl.  Go down the list below, pick your words–before you read the mad lib!–then fill in the blanks and see what you get:

1.  noun, singular.  2.  verb, past tense.  3.  noun, singular.  4.  noun; singular or plural.  5.  adjective  6. noun, plural. 7.  question  8. statement.  9. noun, plural.  10.  verb, infinitive 11. adverb. 12.  insult. 13. living creature 14. verb, present tense.

The little blind girl looked up and squinted at the ___________ (noun, singular).  She shook her head, sighed, and _____________ (verb, past tense), something she hadn’t done in way too long.  Once the ____________ (noun, singular) wore off, she went to the store across the street toward the ___________ (noun; singular or plural) and bought one of the ____________ (adjective) _____________ (noun, plural), a purchase she would come to regret.

The clerk smiled at the little blind girl and said, “_____________ (question)?”  The little blind girl, a little puzzled, replied “_______________ (statement).”  The clerk gave the little blind girl her change and waved goodbye.

On the way back across the street, the little blind girl noticed a shop selling ___________ (noun, plural) she had never noticed before, and decided to ____________ (verb, infinitive) her way inside.  But as soon as she stepped in the store, the shopkeeper looked ___________ (adverb) at her and said, “_____________________ (insult)!”  The little blind girl left in a huff.

Back in her apartment, the little blind girl smiled wistfully at her ____________ (living creature) and said, “At least you don’t _________ (verb, present tense)!”

Here’s what I got:

The little blind girl looked up and squinted at the pilgrim hat.  She shook her head, sighed, and did the electric slide, something she hadn’t done in way too long.  Once the pizza wore off, she went to the store across the street toward the shoes and bought one of the stupefying Hawaiian shirts, a purchase she would come to regret.

The clerk smiled at the little blind girl and said, “Where will you be when the Rapture comes?”  The little blind girl, a little puzzled, replied “I’ve never been able to play the tuba.”  The clerk gave the little blind girl her change and waved goodbye.

On the way back across the street, the little blind girl noticed a shop selling tutus that she had never noticed before, and decided to mime her way inside.  But as soon as she stepped in the door, the shopkeeper looked saltily at her and said, “You have the most horrifying socks I’ve ever seen!”  The little blind girl left in a huff.

Back in her apartment, the little blind girl smiled wistfully at her marmoset and said, “At least you don’t whistle!”

Really, I think it was worth it for the last sentence alone!  Feel free to share your versions.  And, for the record, I think my socks are awesome.

Marmoset: CC Image by Tony Hisgett via Flickr

Blind Olympics

Those of us who are blind or have low vision would like a chance to participate, too, which is why I support the Blind Olympics.  Here are a few highlights from the last games of this lesser-known event:

Blind tennis

The highly-anticipated match between the French singles champion and the British underdog drew record crowds, who cheered loudly for the French champion as he came within mere feet of hitting the tennis ball.  His British counterpart fared less well, running into the net while attempting to return a serve and finally getting tangled in the mesh and bringing the entire apparatus crashing down.  Points were awarded, however, for the astounding accuracy shown while he attempted to disentangle himself and, still swinging his racket, scored a direct hit on his opponent’s head.

Blind pole-vaulting

The team from Kenya took the gold with their amazing performance in this event.  As fans of the event know, blind pole-vaulting is scored by averaging how far each vaulter is from the bar at his highest point and awarding the medal to the team that averages the closest to the bar.  Kenya placed first with two vaulters skimming high a few yards to the left of the bar, two flying low and to the right, and one flinging himself right into the bar in what must have been a heart-breaking turn of events for second-place Japan.  Medics at the event pronounced the last vaulter bruised but essentially unharmed, but speculation is that his vision may actually have improved as a result of the impact, leading commentators to wonder if he would be eligible to return for the next Blind Olympics.  His many supporters can only wait and hope for his vision not to return.

Blind soccer

This first attempt at including soccer in the Blind Olympics ended not with a bang, but a whimper as Germany won the toss and took a dominant position early on, until an unfortunate kick sent the ball to a location none of the players could find.  Sighted referees eventually had to locate the ball after every play and stand beside the ball shouting so that the players would know where to go.  Sadly for the referees, the players did not always land their kicks on the ball, and more than one referee ended up limping off the field with a nasty bruise on his shin.  The game ended with no scores on either side when the supply of referees had been exhausted.

Blind shot put

The most highly-anticipated event of the Blind Olympics, blind shot put, drew to a nail-biting conclusion when the Belgian front-runner and his Australian rival each entered the last round having caused 4 concussions and 18 broken bones.  A simple nosebleed could determine who received the gold and who went home with the silver.

The Belgian contender aimed carefully at the noisiest section of the audience, then threw.  The sound of a crack! and a shriek of agony brought loud cheers from the Belgian supporters. The injury was determined to be a broken collarbone, a painful but nonfatal injury earning the Belgian a nearly-unbeatable finish.

The Australian, visibly nervous, was initially unsure where to aim due to the numerous audience members all shouting and screaming, but then settled on a location and made his throw.  Incredibly, the impact was greeted with not one but two screams of pain, determined finally to be a 5th concussion and a shattered kneecap from the ricochet, catapulting the Australian into first place and winning him the gold.

It takes guts to compete in the Blind Olympics.  It takes a high pain tolerance and good health insurance to be in the audience for the Blind Olympics.  It may take clinical insanity to be in the audience during Blind Shot Put.  But you must admit:  it’s anything but boring!

Even Krakens have housework

This is reposted from my friend’s blog.  It’s less heavy than my last post.

The Kraken comes home after a long day of consuming pirates, looks around at the mess, and sighs.  Maybe he shouldn’t have eaten the last housekeeper:

Kraken Vacuum by C. Cottrell

Check out his blog, and his band, aptly named Kraken Vacuum.  Well worth the time!

Sketch a Day

Little Blind Red Riding Hood

Public domain image via Project Gutenberg

A tale of a legally blind girl trying to run errands:

Once upon a time, a little blind girl got ready to go to the market.  She put on the gloves her father gave her, the scarf her mother gave her, and the little red coat she wore to make sure people saw her even when she could not see them.  You see, the little blind girl lived in a part of the forest where the carts would go crashing past without looking for pedestrians or obeying the cart traffic signs nailed to the trees along the path.  So the little blind girl stepped out in her red coat with its nice warm hood and went to the market.

On the way there, the little blind girl saw a cart approaching the point where the paths in the wood intersected, just where she was going to cross.  The little blind girl remembered what her mother had told her:  “Beware of strange carts in the wood, my child.  Give them a wide berth, and do not trust them to go straight when they do not signal to turn.”  So she waited patiently for the cart to pass her by.

But the cart did not pass her by.  Instead, it wove back and forth as it approached the point where the paths crossed.  The driver appeared to be distracted by the smoke signals he was issuing as he drove, holding the air bellows between his ear and his chin as he struck the flint.  ‘My, what a large bellows that man is holding,’ thought the little blind girl.  “I’d better get an answer!” yelled the cart driver.  ‘My, what a loud voice that man has,” thought the little blind girl.  “The wind had better hold off.  The smoke signal reception here is terrible!” shouted the cart driver.

“My, how fast you’re going, sir,” said the little blind girl to the cart driver.  “I hope you can see me, in my little red coat.  I wear it so drivers will be able to notice me.”

“All the better to run you down while I turn at this intersection much too fast without signaling my intention!”  screamed the cart driver, maddened by rage and frustrated by the wind disrupting his smoke signalling.  He turned suddenly, heading right toward the little blind girl.  But the little blind girl, who had been well taught by her father and mother, jumped out of the way of the cart.  As the cart passed, she threw the scarf her mother had given her through the spokes of the wheels.

The little blind girl then went to the inn where the King’s soldiers were quartered.  “Good heavens, little blind girl, where are you running to in such a hurry?”  asked the startled sergeant on duty.   “Oh, please, sir, a cart just nearly ran me over,” panted the little blind girl.  “Did he not see your little red coat, which you wear so that drivers will see you even when you cannot see them?” inquired the puzzled sergeant.  “Oh, yes, I am quite sure he did,” responded the little blind girl.

“But how will we find which cart it was that nearly ran you over?” asked the sergeant.  “Though the driver could not know it, you would not be able to read his cart license, and there are so many carts on the paths.”

“I threw the scarf my mother gave me through the spokes of the wheels,” replied the little blind girl.  “Just look for a cart with a little red scarf fluttering behind.”  And so the King’s soldiers found the cart with the angry smoke-signaller, who had not noticed the little red scarf in his wheel, and brought him before the King, who sentenced him to be rolled through the intersection in a barrel filled with spikes for nearly running over the little blind girl in her little red coat.

And the moral of this story is:  use your mother-loving turn signals when you’re driving, will you?  You’re making me crazy!

Audio reading of Little Blind Red Riding Hood:

O donuts! My donuts!

English: A pink, frosted doughnut bought from ...

Image via Wikipedia

I’ve had an extraordinarily taxing week, and the whole time I’ve been absolutely obsessing over donuts.  Oh, donuts, you luscious, glorious foodstuffs, I love you so.  I love you in all your incarnations.  I love you glazed, with your sweet, sweet skins of sugar, so thin, so easily overcome to reach the fat-laden wonder within.  I love you covered in chocolate, bittersweet cocoa warring with cakey goodness to delight body and soul in equal measure.  I love you lightly dusted with powdered sugar, firm and filling, straightforward as the heart of a good man and so much easier to digest.  Hmm, this is getting a bit weird.  And I’ll tell you, I’m not actually that fond of krullers.

But, yes, Potential Boyfriend notwithstanding, it’s donuts I’m longing for at the moment.  Donuts will never let me down.  Donuts will always think I’m pretty.  If I don’t make it through to the weekend, I want to buried as I’ve strived to live, surrounded by donuts.  I could be like the ancient Egyptians, carrying my treasures with me as I journey into my afterlife.  Right now, my doctor is shaking his head, wondering how I don’t weigh four hundred pounds and have arteries 90 percent blocked. Doctor, I promise, I’ll dutifully cook and eat my green beans, fish, and brown rice, and I’ll drink my lowfat milk, but like a bored trophy wife, I’ll be thinking of donuts the whole time.  Except for the krullers.  And the bearclaws.  They kind of freak me out, and I don’t think they should really count as donuts.  And, frankly, donut holes are just a gyp.  But otherwise–viva la donut!

Guide to Types of Female Hotness

Hanging out with a bunch of guys, I naturally hear a lot of behind-the-scenes guy talk.  At this point, I may be an honorary guy.  Except for my undying love for Johnny Depp.  And my obsession with makeup.  And all the skirts.  And the, you know, reproductive organs…ok, so I’m not a guy.  But I speak fairly fluent guy, and I’m occasionally called upon to interpret for my female friends.  So for the benefit of my female friends and followers, I am posting a Guide to Types of Female Hotness.  I would think this would be fairly easily adapted for male hotness, but there might be physical fights over what category Robert Pattinson goes in (if any), so it might be best to leave it alone.  Anyway, here are the categories:

Sorority Girl Hot

By Absinthe via Wikimedia Commons

This is one of the temporary categories of hotness; some kinds of hotness last longer than others.  It is generally recognized that merely being a sorority girl will convey some kind of hotness on a girl which can overcome the inexplicable tendency of such girls to wear snow- and rain-boots with miniskirts.  This kind of hotness can be recognized by the year-round tan from the tanning booth sessions that Daddy pays for, the inappropriately dark eye makeup and bronzer on almost all occasions, and the inability to make a statement that doesn’t end up sounding like a question.  “So, I was doing my laundry?  And I ran out of quarters? And I had to leave my clothes there while I got some change?”  Celebrity example:  Mischa Barton.


Trashy Hot

Image via Wikipedia

This is another major temporary category of hotness.  The window for trashy hotness may be even smaller than that for sorority girl hotness, and is similar but distinguishable in subtle yet distinctive ways.  Trashy hot girls will often have thicker eyeliner than sorority girls, and their hair will generally be more over-processed.  A good rule of thumb is to check the ends of the hair, which will typically be fried to a crisp.  There is also a higher incidence of hairstyles best left in the eighties among the trashy hot.  Perhaps the biggest giveaway is the mother:  while the mother of a hot sorority girl will generally look well-put-together and may be wearing clothing items of camel, taupe, or beige, the mother of a trashy hot girl will often sport even more makeup than her daughter and will almost always be swathed in spandex.  If tempted by the trashy hot girl, taking a look at the mother and realizing how the trashy hot girl is going to look in a few years should do the trick.  Celebrity example:  Britney Spears.

Scary Hot

By chris_nett via Wikimedia Commons

This category is for the girls who, while objectively physically attractive, make guys think they might cannibalize their partners after copulation, a la the praying mantis.  As opposed to the two categories above, girls in this category tend to have extremely pale skin.  They also often, but do not always, have unnaturally dark hair and tattoos.  They rarely smile, instead adopting a nihilistic scowl at a world that is so clearly beneath them and at the little insects that crawl on its surface and call themselves human.  While sorority girls and trashy hot girls will often wear pale or hot pink lipstick, scary hot girls will usually wear dark lipstick in addition to dark eye makeup, and may display various piercings.  They can usually take a man down using the heels on their platform combat boots alone.  Scary hot girls are viewed with trepidation, but also with an undeniable fascination and exude the allure of the forbidden.  Approach with caution.  Celebrity example:  Angelina Jolie, the early years (and, some would say, the later ones as well).

Smoking Hot

By Luke Ford via Wikimedia Commons

Also known as smokin’ hot or, colloquially, bangin’ hot.  Guys, this girl is Too Hot For You and you have no chance with her.  This is the head cheerleader plus the hot babysitter plus that model in the magazine you used to hide from your mom.  This girl walks into a room and the music plays, the fan blows her hair back, and everyone stops what they’re doing and looks at her.  She is hot in a little black dress, jeans and a tee shirt, or the figure-hugging sweats she wears to the gym.  If you are thinking of approaching a Smoking Hot girl, 1)  Don’t.  It’s pointless, and you’ll only embarrass yourself.  2)  Write out what you’re going to say in advance because, if you are able to attract her attention, you will immediately lose the power of coherent thought when her eyes flicker across your face.  3)  Don’t.  It’s a given that she’s already with her male equivalent, a man who could almost certainly put you on the ground in under ten seconds.  But hey, keep hope alive.  Celebrity example:  Megan Fox.

Jessica Alba

By Miguel from London, United Kingdom via Wikimedia Commons

There is a category so rarified that only one individual fits all criteria.  The epitome of hotness, as I have gleaned from my conversations with guy friends, is Jessica Alba.  She has the ability to be both pregnant and sexy at the same time.  While it is generally agreed that she is hotter as a brunette than as a blonde, she is still the standard by which all hotness is judged no matter what her hair color.  She compounds the offense by actually seeming to be really nice, and once presented at an awards show for scientists and technicians at which no other hot people were present.  She, by herself, will raise the hotness quotient of any room to near-tropical levels.  Celebrity example:  um, Jessica Alba?

So there you have it.  Girls, never say I did nothin’ for ya.  I’m not saying it’s fair, I’m not saying it’s right, I’m saying welcome to life with the guys.  If you are among the unfortunate women who were not born as Jessica Alba, I’m told there’s still hope.  You just may have to bring your own music and fan for when you enter a room.  Good luck, happy hunting, and try not to cannibalize your mates!