Honest Review: My Ex-Boyfriend

IMG_0693I don’t really do product reviews on this blog, but it seems like everybody else does, which makes me feel like I’m missing out.  So I’m starting a new feature:  LBG’s Honest Reviews.  I promise that, whatever I’m reviewing, I will give you my completely unbiased opinion, no matter how many people try to stop me.  I will also make sure I thoroughly try out what I’m reviewing, so I can tell you all about it and you’ll be able to trust my conclusions, or at least understand them.  With that in mind, I thought I would make my first review about something I’ve examined from every angle, something I’ve used multiple times and in multiple ways, something I can truly say I gave my all:  my ex-boyfriend.

I realize that there are tons of different ex-boyfriend models out there, with newer ones coming on the market every year, and not every model will have the same features mine has.  For instance, not everyone will want the cries-when-drunk version, or the optional incipient beer gut, and of course the POS-car attachment can get pretty expensive.  But for those who are tired of constantly upgrading and are ready to make a commitment, here is my honest review of my ex-boyfriend.

Pros:

My ex-boyfriend comes with attractive packaging and initially presents as very appealing.  He has an excellent marketing campaign aimed at the slightly-inebriated thirty-something female:  his introductory approach emphasizes his southern charm, complete with cowboy boots, accent, and pulling the chair out for his date (which I have to admit was completely adorable) and obscures his less appealing qualities with copious amounts of alcohol.  It’s certainly an approach that’s been taken before, but the polish and professionalism that come with experience set my ex-boyfriend apart from the frat boy crowd.

IMG_0696Once you have my ex-boyfriend back in your home and you’ve taken off the wrapper, you’ll find that he comes with several notable upgrades from the standard model.  The one that’s proven the most popular is that he comes with his own guitar, which he can actually play quite well.  Upon further exploration, his repertoire is mainly limited to country music and mullet rock, but his acoustic version of Warrant’s classic “Cherry Pie” will surprise you with its wistful acknowledgment of the fragility of innocence.  Other pre-programmed features include:  the ability to perform eerily good imitations of all the main cast members of Game of Thrones; an extensive familiarity with every film in the Saw franchise; and, for some reason, clogging.

My ex-boyfriend also comes with a self-cleaning feature that is among the most elaborate currently on the market:  he will spend hours in the bathroom with a hand mirror, three different kinds of razors and special beard scissors trying to achieve the perfect beard-to-mustache ratio.  He will then spend three minutes cutting his hair.  He does require a special cleaning formula to keep his designer vintage-look jeans in pristine condition, but while the purchase and storage of a specialty cleaning product can be a nuisance, the actual cleaning requires no effort on your part as he does not trust anyone else to wash his denim, performing the entire task himself by hand.  Note to potential consumers:  please be ready to sacrifice all other use of your clothes drying rack for up to two days at a time, as my ex-boyfriend will begin to glitch if you suggest anything like, I don’t know, using the dryer.

Cons:

Those of you with slow internet connections may want to consider a different model,  as my ex-boyfriend takes up an astonishing amount of bandwidth while interfacing with such programs as Fortnite, Overwatch, and something involving Tom Clancy, who I honestly didn’t even realize did anything other than books.  While my ex-boyfriend is engaged with these programs, you will be unable to do anything requiring an internet connection, the ability to concentrate without someone shouting “SUCK IT!!!” every few minutes, or crossing the living room.  I recommend using the time during his pre-gaming ritual to download the kind of movie he refuses to watch with you (for instance:  anything starring Melissa McCarthy) and then retiring to the kitchen with your laptop and a pair of headphones.

IMG_0694Other things to consider when my ex-boyfriend sits down next to you in a bar include:  he often makes an extremely unpleasant buzzing sound while recharging at night.  It seems to come from his nasal area and resembles a kind of erratic, intermittent jack hammering, or possibly an exceptionally winded Darth Vader.  It can be temporarily alleviated with a flailing slap on his upper arm, but it will almost inevitably start up again within ten minutes.  There does not appear to be an update or patch in the works to remedy this minor but disproportionately annoying design flaw, probably because he will never actually admit it happens (he will also never admit that komodo dragons are real, no matter how many pictures, Wikipedia entries, or actual komodo dragons you show him, but he believes every word of The Da Vinci Code.  Make of that what you will).

In addition, although initially providing a very satisfying user experience, his performance quality degraded rapidly after a few months.  He would often fail to perform tasks he deemed “stupid” until the third or fourth request, and he developed a tendency to wipe his memory after he put something down, rendering him incapable of picking it back up and putting it away again.  It’s also worth noting that his attractive packaging conceals some frankly below-average hardware and that certain basic boyfriend functions become unavailable after the consumption of alcohol.  Also, it turns out he was sexting his ex-girlfriend the entire time we were together, so f*ck him.

Conclusions:

Overall, I’m afraid I can’t recommend my ex-boyfriend.  While his design is stylistically and aesthetically pleasing, his performance is unsatisfactory and his habit of going into sleep mode at unscheduled intervals can be extremely inconvenient.  His failure to deliver on his initial promises cannot be offset by claims of future upgrades involving “hitting the gym extra hard” and “just focusing on my baby girl and making sure she’s happy.”  In such a crowded market, we can and should demand more.  Especially if he’s still sexting his ex-girlfriend.  F*ck him.  Actually, you know what?  Don’t.

[Disclaimer:  I did not receive any payment or other compensation for this review, and while I did technically receive my ex-boyfriend for free, overall he ended up costing me quite a bit of money, especially since he never paid me back for that wedding present we were supposed to go halfsies on and that was for his friends who I barely knew anyway.  There really ought to be a “My ex stiffed me on a joint wedding present” deduction for tax returns.]

 

[All images are in the public domain courtesy of pixabay.com:  Image 1, Image 2, Image 3.]

Positive Affirmations For People Who Like Steak

meditation-303260_640Positive affirmations used to annoy the crap out of me.  “Tomorrow is bringing good things my way”?  How do you know?  I want proof.  I want bar graphs and pie charts.  (I may just want pie; I’m a little hungry.)  I’ve finally learned the secret of positive affirmations, though— it’s totally okay to just make them up.  They’re like lullabies:  no one actually expects to get all the pretty little ponies.  You just go with it because it’s less likely to give you nightmares than singing about getting all the nasty little tax bills.

That said, I think positive affirmations represent a real missed opportunity.  If you’re just saying things that may or may not be true, why go in for all that vague, flowery stuff?   I deserve better affirmations than “Tomorrow is bringing good things my way.”  I deserve an affirmation like “Tomorrow is bringing a free Prada handbag my way,” or “Tomorrow is bringing the perfect ribeye steak, cooked rare and very lightly seasoned with salt and pepper, my way.”  Here’s a list of some of my positive affirmations:

  1.  I give myself permission to love pie.
  2. Today I will replace my anger and frustration with unicorns.
  3. The perfect outfit will come to me easily and effortlessly.
  4. I trust the universe to bring Ryan Gosling into my life at the right time.
  5. I am open and receptive to experiencing beer in multiple ways.
  6. Today I will keep my mind ON the lottery numbers that DO win, and OFF the lottery numbers that DON’T win.
  7. Good hair days happen to me all the time.
  8. I choose to surround myself with delicious cheeseburgers.
  9. I am in charge of my minions.  My minions are not in charge of me.
  10. Every day, in every way, my blog is getting better and better.

The truly genius part is that, if anyone criticizes my affirmations (like, for instance, my therapist), I can reply that I accept and love my affirmations the way they are and choose to believe in them despite the negative words of others.  Of course, if I keep this up, I’ll probably start craving cheeseburgers and pie at odd times, but I kind of already do, and now I’ve got a reason that no one’s allowed to argue with.  I don’t know why I’ve been resisting this all my life.  Positive affirmations are awesome!  I just gave myself permission to believe it.  That makes it true, right?

 

[Image in the public domain via pixabay.com]

Voiceovers In My Head: Totally Normal, Right?

Scene 1 from the Mary Tyler Moore Show 1977You know those TV journalists on 60 Minutes and the evening news who do exposés on sweatshops and conduct interviews with people who have their faces blurred out?  I have one of them in my head.  She likes to turn everything in my life into a hard-hitting news story and do dramatic voiceovers at inconvenient moments (of course, for me, everyone’s faces are already blurred out, which saves some work).  It can get a little silly at times.  For example:

In line at the convenience store:

Cashier:  I’m sorry, we’re all out of Milk Duds.

Imaginary Voiceover:  And that’s when the Little Blind Girl knew that something was very wrong in Candyland.

At the mall:

Sales Associate:  Would you like to try a free sample?

Imaginary Voiceover:  But as the Little Blind Girl was about to learn the hard way:  nothing in life is ever truly free.

Getting ready for a date:

Friend:  Try the blue skirt.  So where are you going?

Little Blind Girl:  He wants to surprise me.  I just hope he doesn’t end up taking me to the Taxidermy Circus, like the last guy did.

Imaginary Voiceover:  A “good date”:  does it really exist, or is it just a story we tell to make ourselves shave?  The answer may surprise you!

Writing a blog:

Little Blind Girl:  Crap.  Where’d all my ideas go?

Imaginary Voiceover:  It’s 9:00.  Do you know where your ideas are?

Now you know:  this is why I sometimes laugh at what appears to be nothing.  Well, this, and the way I like to replace random bits of movie dialogue with the word “pie” in my head (Darth Vader:  Your lack of pie disturbs me).  And sometimes it’s because I just got a joke I heard two days ago.  So until we meet again, gentle readers, may the pie be with you.  Don’t worry; you’ll get it in a couple of days.

 

[Image By CBS Television (Public domain), via Wikimedia Commons]

Quiz! California: Great Song Topic Or Greatest Song Topic?

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image in the public domain

Why are all the songs about California?  Sure, there’s the occasional Sweet Home Alabama or Midnight Train to Georgia, and plenty of people are in an Empire State of Mind, but in the final analysis of pop songs about places, California tops the topic.  I got a demonstration of this the other day when I put my iPod on shuffle and, in the space of 90 minutes, it played five songs about California and not a single track about Michigan, South Dakota, or Maine.

To be fair, Michigan and South Dakota are hard to rhyme.  Maine is really, really easy to rhyme, though, and when was the last time anyone whipped or nae naed to a song about Maine?  (Nae nae’d?  Naed nae?  Do you nae nae with your bae?)  Here’s a quiz to help you figure out if you think California truly deserves to win the little gold statue for Best Song Topic By A Location or whether you think it just gets all the songs because it’s pretty:

1.  So what is it about California girls, anyway?

A.  They’re undeniable!  Daisy dukes, bikinis on top…
B.  I wish they all could be California girls.
C.  Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, she got the Mercedes Benz.
D.  Soon as I stepped on the scene, I’m hearing hoochies screaming.
E.  Spray tans and Photoshop.  Nailed it!

2.  How is it that, every time California is in a magazine or a movie, it looks like paradise?  Isn’t there a massive drought there?  And, like, a major earthquake fault line?

A.  You could travel the world, but nothing comes close to the golden coast.
B.  From Oakland to Sactown, the Bay Area and back down, Cali is where they put they mack down.
C.  I was thinking to myself, ‘This could be Heaven or this could be Hell’
D.  All the leaves are brown, and the sky is gray.
E.  I never thought paradise would have this many Kardashians.

3.  The official state motto of California is “Eureka.”  The unofficial state motto is:

A.  The state where ya never find a dance floor empty.
B.  You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.
C. Space may be the final frontier, but it’s made in a Hollywood basement.
D.  We’ll melt your popsicle.
E.  Sorry about all the Kardashians.

4.  I’ve heard that all the nuts roll to California.  Is that true?

A.  Let me welcome everybody to the Wild, Wild West!
B.  It’s the edge of the world and all of Western civilization.
C.  Warm, wet, and wild; there must be something in the water.
D.  And still those voices are calling from far away…
E.  No.  They roll to D.C. and stay there until it’s time to run for re-election.

5.  All right, I’m sold.  I’m going to California!  Who’s with me?

A.  Once you party with us, you’ll be falling in love.
B.  Pack a vest for your Jimmy in the city of sex.
C.  If I didn’t tell her, I could leave today.
D.  What a nice surprise!  Bring your alibis.
E.  I would, but I have narcissophobia (fear of Kardashians)

Mostly A’s, B’s, C’s, or D’s:  Party on, California girl!  You know when to whip and when to nae nae, and you always make time to lay underneath the palm trees sipping gin and juice.  Keep on living it up at the Hotel California!  Just try to limit the money and alcohol fiendin’, and remember to practice safe Californication.

Mostly E’s:  Congratulations!  You hate politicians, Kardashians, and the culture of celebrity as much as I do.  You win the quiz.  You lose the internet, though; California won that a long time ago.  Second place went to catz.  Sorry.

Green Eggs And Ham: The Election Year Remix

dr-seuss-characters-clip-art-784089Here’s what happens when you get a call from a very persistent political pollster while you’re trying to read Green Eggs And Ham to your godchild:

Who will you vote for, Clinton or Trump?

Politics has hit a slump.
I do not like Clinton or Trump;
I could not be that big a chump.

Would you like Trump’s giant wall?
What if Mexico paid for it all?

I would not like Trump’s giant wall.
I would not like that wall at all.

What about Clinton on college tuition?
Her plan will only cost $350 billion.

I do not like her on college tuition.
I do not have $350 billion.

Do you like them in the polls?
Do you like their policy goals?
Do you like them on Facebook and Twitter?
Do their half-truths make you bitter?

I do not like them in the polls;
I do not think that they have souls.
I do not like Clinton or Trump.
I could not be that big a chump.

What if Clinton found those emails?
Would you like to know the details?

I do not think she lost those emails;
WikiLeaks already has the details.

Would you like them in the White House?food-green-eggs-300px
Would you like them in a courthouse?
Do you think she’s guilty of treason?
Do you think he’s abandoned reason?

I would not like them in the White House.
I’d only like them in an outhouse.
I do not like Clinton or Trump;
I could not be that big a chump.

Would you like them in a sketch on Late Night?
Would you like them in a fistfight?
Would you vote for them on The Voice?
Pick Trump! Pick Clinton! There’s no other choice.

I would not like them in a sketch on Late Night,
not even if they promise to fistfight.
Where did the third party candidates go?
Tell me! Tell me! I need to know.

Would you, could you, pay more tax?
Would you, could you, trust their facts?

I should not have to pay more tax.
I laugh at those who trust their facts.

Would you, could you, with Sarah Palin?
Would you, could you, with Liz Warren?

No way, no day with Sarah Palin.
I’m kind of afraid of Elizabeth Warren.

In the fall! In the fall!
Would you, could you, in the fall?

I would not, could not, in the fall.
I will not vote for them at all.

dr-seuss-clipart-sam_i_amI should not have to pay more tax,
I would not, could not, trust their facts.
Not with Sarah Palin,
Not with Liz Warren.
Not in the fall,
Not at all.

I do not like Clinton or Trump;
I want to take them to the dump.
They’ve turned me into such a grump.
Please, someone bust this political slump!

[all images are in the public domain]

Where The Wild Blogs Are

(For the Sendak-deprived, this is a play on Where The Wild Things Are.)

The night the Little Blind Girl changed her avatar and made mischief of one kind

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and another

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her followers called her “WILD BLOG!”
and the Little Blind Girl said “ I’LL FILTER YOUR CONTENT!”
so she was made to sign out without checking her statistics.

That very night in the Little Blind Girl’s computer the social media grew

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and grew-

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and grew until her smartphone chimed with tweets
and her Pinterest Board pinned the world all around

and Tumblr scrolled by with a private blog for the Little Blind Girl
and she clicked through the pages and gifs
and in and out of memes

and almost over the cat videos

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to where the wild blogs are.

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And when she came to the place where the wild blogs are
they roared their anonymous roars and gnashed their anonymous teeth
and rolled their anonymous eyes and showed their anonymous claws

til the Little Blind Girl wrote “LMAO!”
and tamed them with the magic trick
of standing up to all the trolls without taking their bait once

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and they were frightened and called her the most wild blog of all
and made her king of all wild blogs.

“And now,” tweeted the Little Blind Girl, “let the wild blog-rumpus start!”

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“Now stop!” the Little Blind Girl tweeted and made the wild blogs sign out without checking their statistics. And the Little Blind Girl, the king of all wild blogs, was lonely and wanted to be where someone loved her writing best of all.

Then all around from away across the blogosphere
she sensed good things to read
so she gave up being king of where the wild blogs are.

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But the wild blogs cried, “Oh please don’t go–
we’ll filter your content–we love you so!”
And the Little Blind Girl said, “No!”

The wild blogs roared their anonymous roars and gnashed their anonymous teeth
and rolled their anonymous eyes and showed their anonymous claws
but the Little Blind Girl logged onto her private blog and waved good-bye

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and clicked back over the cat videos
and in and out of memes
and through the gifs

and onto the home page of iliketheworldfuzzy
where she found her saved draft waiting for her

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and it was still good.

 

[all pictures are in the public domain via pixabay]

Modern Dueling, Or: How To Use Up That Spray Cheese

retro-1310390_640 7I recently got into a debate over whether dueling could be considered ethical.  It was the kind of debate you only get into when you start discussing philosophy late at night with people you just met, which is one reason I like philosophy so much.  What else will get you in a no-holds-barred fight about the epistemological implications of reality television (translation:  are the Kardashians making us stupider, or do we just feel stupider for having watched them?).  But, really, dueling?  Surely we can all agree on that, right?

And then I got to thinking, which is an unfortunate side effect of philosophy, and I wondered–could there be a place for dueling in modern society?  And then I got hungry, which is another side effect of philosophy,  especially when done at 2 AM, and I sought revelation in that temple of modern worship, the refrigerator.  Even the knottiest metaphysical conundrum becomes easier to unravel when you’ve had a nice sandwich.  Left-over chicken breast with mustard, maybe, or a nice peanut butter and jelly…

Oh, no.  New and much more pressing conundrum:  all I had was spray cheese and whipped cream.  Oh, I also had all sorts of healthy ingredients with which I could have cooked any number of dishes, but that’s not what you want at two in the morning, is it?  You want something easy, preferably unhealthy, possibly something past its expiration date.  Or chips.  No self-respecting philosopher cooks at two in the morning!  What could I do with spray cheese and a can of whipped cream?

That’s when it hit me, an idea so big it answered both my questions at once.  Question 1:  Is there a place for dueling in modern society?  Question 2:  What could I do with spray cheese and a can of whipped cream?  Answer to both:  it’s obvious!  This is how we can fight modern-day duels:  with aerosolized edibles!  It resolves questions of honor while simultaneously helping you clean out your pantry.  So much quicker and less expensive than lawsuits, plus you’ve got a tasty snack for after.  Well, you do if you pick the whipped cream.

The entire code duello fell into place after that epiphany.  The person challenged has choice of foodstuffs, but the challenger can reject the choice if the challenger presents medical documentation of an allergy to the selection.  Seconds will ensure that the weapons have not expired (it is recommended, but not required, that all duel-related edibles be purchased no more than three days before the date of the duel and still retain all tabs and plastic rings).  Cooking spray may be used in the event of a post-holiday spray food shortage, and it is acceptable to use well-shaken cans of soda if both parties agree, but no person of honor should ever profane beer in this manner.  Unless it’s PBR, in which case, spray away.

When aiming the chosen comestible, one must avoid the face and neck.  The best practice is to wear about one’s person a set of appropriate agreed-upon targets, such as strawberries or crackers, the choice of targets being dependent upon what food will be aimed at them.  It is recommended against using ice cream for this purpose as the target items will tend to become difficult to distinguish upon melting.  The first participant to hit each of his opponent’s targets with the spray food wins the duel.  Either participant may forfeit at any time by eating his remaining targets.  It is considered bad form to continue firing while your opponent is still chewing.

I think this could revolutionize modern society.  Who wouldn’t want to watch a couple of supposed adults attacking each other with spray cheese?  We could televise the duels, have commentators discuss the relative merits of name-brand vs. store-brand and the strategic placement of crackers.  Then we could have late-night philosophy debates over what’s making us dumber:  dueling with spray food or keeping up with the Kardashians.  Any resulting quarrels could be resolved by dueling or, in the alternative, attempting to keep up with the Kardashians.

But if the Kardashians decide to duel each other with edible spray paint (in gold, of course, while naked), I’m not responsible for the resulting global collapse of meaning, logic, and reason.  In fairness to me, I’m pretty sure that’s already happened.

Embed from Getty Images