Tag Archives: humor

Traffic musing

I’m not sure if those of you who tailgate drivers who you believe to be driving too slowly realize this, but those of us who are willing to remain stubbornly at the speed limit aren’t going to be intimidated by someone creeping up way too close to our cars. In fact, we are the type of people who will plot out ways to (safely) drive incrementally slower. Just to drive you mad.

Takeaway: just go around us. Seriously.


Mind-blowing pins

Pinterest users seem to be having trouble describing things.  Pinterest requires some sort of comment to be made about a pin, so it’s no wonder that users feel a bit overwhelmed having to write something for every new pin that’s created.  A very popular way of filling in that comment box is simply writing “mind blown.”  This phrase is overused and misused constantly on Pinterest.  I’m here to rectify that. Along the way, I’ll be teaching a few new and exciting vocabulary words to further help Pinterest users properly describe their pins.

Let us start with what “mind blown” actually means so we can later explore what it doesn’t mean.  There is no formal dictionary listing for “mind blown.” However, Thesaurus.com has some synonyms for the term “mind-blowing”. Those synonyms are:

astonishing, eye-opening, hallucinatory, mind-altering, mind-boggling, overwhelming,psychedelic, staggering, stunning, wonderful

I estimate that 85% of what is posted on Pinterest and other social media platforms alongside the phrase “mind blown” or “mind=blown” or something of the sort is not interesting, much less boggling, overwhelming, astonishing, or wonderful.  I have taken a few screen shots to illustrate my point (the vocabulary words for the day are in bold to make learning easy and fun!):

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The only way that this would be mind-blowing is if it was done on purpose. Otherwise, it’s just a coincidence.

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This seems a popular sort of blowing of the mind.  I’m going to give the posters the benefit of the doubt and assume they are unaware that animators often watch the facial expressions and gestures of voice actors in order to make animations more true-to-life.  That’s why many cartoon characters end up with elements of their voice actors’ expressions and gestures.  This is interesting, but it’s not astonishing or shocking.

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No. Just no. Yo-Yo Ma was probably just being funny.  If the poster of Yo-Yo Ma came alive at the sight of his Overlord and Clone Original, then that would be mind-blowing.  His being humorous is just…humorous.

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This is not mind-blowing for the following reason: someone just made something up and applied it to an element of a fictional character.  The people in charge of costume and make up for this actor were likely not thinking, “Let’s cross Voldemort with a squid.”  Even if they were, it still has no astounding implications.  This is just stupid.

This concludes today’s lesson. The words we have learned today are: coincidence, interesting, humorous, and stupid. What other words can you think of that describe the above screenshots?


Oh, Delilah

I work in a room by myself, and therefore am the sole controller of the radio.  I like to listen to something while I work.  On the weekends, I look forward to listening to NPR all day, but during the week, I sometimes tire of the news stories.  My usual go-to for a music station is the local public music station, KXT.  However, for some reason around 6 or 7 at night, it’s really difficult and complicated to get KXT to come in on the radio I have access to, so I usually resort to some sort of top-40 station.

Last night, I was listening to KVIL (Lite FM), which features the syndicated program Delilah at night. I love Delilah.  I really do. I know she can be a tad cheesy at times, but she seems really sweet.

Last night, she said something to the effect of, “If you can’t get through to request a song for the one you love, pick out a song that I play, call that person and tell them, ‘Go listen to the song Delilah’s playing right now. That’s the song that makes me think of you.’ I know it’s not the same, but it’s still a way to connect.”

I started to think: What if someone did this with really weird things? Like, “The Safety Dance” by Men Without Hats or the This American Life episode where they redacted “Mr. Daisey and the Apple Factory”.  I kind of want to do this to someone…find a station that’s playing “Tradition” from Fiddler on the Roof or an episode of the old radio suspense show The Whistler and call up a friend and just say, “Please turn it to *insert station here*. This is what I think of you.” And then hang up.  And never speak of it again.


Parenting Oneself

Being an adult is usually something I enjoy.  However, it can become complicated when I sit around, putting off doing something, and suddenly realize that there’s no one in my life to make me do things and that I have to essentially parent myself.  This happens with a wide range of activities, everything from eating consistently to actually taking my contacts out and cleaning them rather than just sleeping in them for months until they become one with my corneas.

With this new-found responsibility, I find that certain tasks involve basically no inner dialogue at all (“Let’s make brownies! Okay!”), whereas others currently require quite a bit.

This morning, I had a situation in the vein of the latter…and it didn’t end the way I wanted it to.

7:15am. Chelsea awakens.

Me: Get up. You feel rested. Get up. Take your medicine. You wanted to exercise this morning.

Chelsea gets up, takes medicine, and falls promptly back into bed for another 45 minutes until her alarm goes off.

Me: You wanted to exercise. You wanted to go hiking.

Me: Yeah, but I’ve been having weird asthma-like symptoms and I don’t want to go hiking alone lest I PASS OUT AND DIE. DO YOU WANT ME TO DIE IN THE WOODS?!

Me: Just walk around the complex then. Whatever.

Chelsea ignores her own reasoning, plays HappyStreet for a few minutes, and finally drags self out of bed.

Me: Madness will ensue if I don’t eat first. Brekkie first. Then walking. And I think I’ll finish that episode of Once Upon a Time while I cook. Because cooking and eating eggs and sausage definitely takes forty minutes.

Chelsea watches two episodes of Once Upon a Time on account of cliffhangers involving murder and intrigue.

Me: You really need to go outside and walk. It’s going to get cold later.

Me: Yeah, but that takes energy. Look, I’ve already gotten into my walking clothing. That’s something!

Me: Go. Out. Side.

Me: Just a little more Once Upon a Time

Me: The only exercise you get right now outside of work is walking from the kitchen to the couch with a bowl of cereal in your hand. You need to go walk.

Me: Maybe you’re right. It looks kind of cloudy out now. Better get going on that walk before the storms roll in.

Chelsea walks outside, discovers it’s chilly and has started to sprinkle and immediately retreats to her warmish apartment lest she catch her death of cold.

So, this morning, I kind of failed.  Okay, I failed completely. There will be no exercising today. However, I’m hopeful that, with discipline and determination, I will be able to make a habit out of things that I am currently having to discuss with myself.

What about you? Is there anything that you have to talk yourself into doing? Do you think that ever ceases entirely?


Dear People Sitting Next to Me in the Coffee Shop

Dear People Sitting Next to Me in the Coffee Shop,

First of all, Calculus Student, the phrase, “The person with the highest grade in the class gets a uhhundred,” kind of makes my brain hurt. It’s one hundred or a hundred. Not uhhundred.

To the Study Buddy of the Calculus Student, I find it hard to believe that the idea of curving a grade is so incredibly foreign to you. Maybe you haven’t had professors who have used the blessed grade curve, and if that’s the case, I have to say, you’re missing out. Get new professors, ASAP.

And you, Lady Who Wants to Lose Sixty Pounds in Twelve Weeks, you just admitted that losing more than two to three pounds a week is unhealthy. Also, it’s not realistic. The less you weigh, the harder it is to lose weight because your body burns fewer calories with every pound lost. I encourage you to keep up the hard work, but know that it won’t always result in the exact numbers you’re looking for.

Also, Man Sitting With the Lady Who Wants to Lose Sixty Pounds in Twelve Weeks, you may have lost more than three pounds a week when you were sick, but that doesn’t make it a good idea. Also, the boxers you know who lost ten pounds in a day were likely just flushing water weight. Encouraging someone to have a goal like that is insane.

I’m sure you guys hardly care, and I obviously can’t give my two cents in person. But these conversations were bothering me.

I hope you are comforted in knowing that I do in fact listen to all of you. Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,
Chelsea


Dear Fancy Dallasite Moms of a Certain Type

Dear Fancy Dallasite Moms of a Certain Type,

I find you fascinating.  At least those of you who I’ve met and observed.

In some ways, I want to be you.  Well, not be you, exactly.  I want to have a Freaky Friday experience in which I have to act like you for a few days before returning to my life of looking like the Old Navy Clearance Rack Poster Child and wearing jewelry made of questionable metals that make me break out in a rash.

Because, truth be told, I have no idea what you do, exactly.

Oh, I know you’re Very Busy.  I have experienced the Busyness on many occasions.  Essentially all of my close friends work for you in some form or fashion, whether it be as nannies, servers in your country clubs or just the clerks in your favorite Fancy Clothing Stores.  I have babysat for you.  My favorite mall is the one in which you shop.  I have had plenty of opportunities to observe you in your natural habitat, but I’m still left befuddled and I want to know more.

What do you do all day?

I have racked my brain and made use of every possible stereotype the Great Emily Gilmore has taught me.  You have a nanny or two and someone to clean the house at least once a week.  Your husband typically works long hours at the office.  Though some of you work, those of the Type I am thinking of don’t.  So, you’re kid-free, husband-free, housework-free and work-work-free.

And yet.

You are always So Very Busy.

This is how I imagine every day is for you: You work out somewhere, probably running through the park (I always see impossibly thin versions of you running in the park near your neighborhoods). You go shopping at the Fancy Mall, the one with Nordstrom and Neimans and Saks and the boutiques no one others than your group of friends has heard of (I also see you there.  You’re usually wearing tall boots and skinny jeans and are often heard complaining about people in your social circles to a friend and somehow Everyone knows Everyone Else in your world.).  You go to lunch at the Club, perhaps after playing tennis.  You have Important Event Meetings about Events that benefit something, somehow (later at night, after your husband has returned from the office, you will attend a Similar Event for which you attended the Meetings several weeks ago).  If the nanny hasn’t done it for you, you go grocery shopping at Whole Foods.  You may or may not, depending on the day, take your children to their Enriching Lessons and Sports Practices, escort them to playdates or birthday parties and help them with the absurd amount of homework schools seem to feel is necessary for second graders to complete.

My list may seem intricate enough to indicate my knowledge of what you do with your time, but to be perfectly honest, I don’t actually know.  In fact, I will never know what your life is like because, even if I marry rich, I still want to homeschool my children.  Which is why I want to switch brains with one you for a day or two.  I want to know how you spend your time because having that amount of Free Time that isn’t actually Free fascinates me and I’m not exactly sure what’s going on in the lives of the thousands of you who exist.

So, if one of you could arrange for some sort of reversible brain switcheroo, that would be great!  I just find you all so interesting, and I’d like to one of the few people in the know.

Sincerely,

Chelsea


Dear People Who Describe Non-Food Things as “Delicious”

Dear People Who Describe Non-Food Things as “Delicious”,

Your phrasing makes me shudder.  Apparently, anything and everything can and should be described as “delicious”.  I don’t particularly feel like going into the dictionary’s definition of the word, as it is broad and can really support both sides of this argument.  However, I want you to give the following phrases some thought:

“This wallaby cordon bleu is delicious!”

“This fur coat is delicious!”

“Those boots are delicious!”

“That fifteen-layer, chocolate-strawberry-pâté de foie gras cake is delicious!”

“Your baby is delicious!”

Now, I don’t know about you, but I imagined someone eating each subject as I wrote the above sentences.  And, that’s the problem, really.  Even though the word “delicious” has a just-barely-vague-enough definition to allow for non-food applications, it is so widely used to describe food in America, that it really shouldn’t be used for anything else.

Because, really, the mental image of someone eating a fur coat or my friend’s baby is simply horrible.

Please, please find other adjectives. They exist in abundance.

Please.

Sincerely,

Chelsea


Dear Pumpkin Spice Latte

Dear Pumpkin Spice Latte,

Most everyone I know loves you with an insane passion.  They associate you with the coming autumn months, as well as the lovely weather and pre-holiday fun that those months bring. (What we all did to tell the passing of the seasons before Easter candy, Christmas cookies, popsicles and you, I will never know.)  I have been determined to like you as others have.  I even spent an entire trip to Michigan two years ago trying to track down the perfect Pumpkin Spice Latte. (Panera’s is the best, at least in my experience.)

But, if I am truly honest with myself and you, I have to admit, I don’t actually like you.

At all.

I like pumpkin pie spice, mainly because the spices that make it up are similar to those used to make wassail.  Wassail, as you may not know (in fact, being that you are an inanimate food product, you most definitely do not know), is a mulled cider drink that tastes of apples and cloves and fluffy scarves and angel wings and butterflies and all things warm and good and comforting.

Despite using the same spices, you are a far cry from wassail. You, Pumpkin Pie Spice Latte, taste like warm, sugary milk that someone accidentally knocked a container of spices into.  Most of the time, I can’t even taste the coffee that is allegedly one of your ingredients because you are so weighed down with tooth-achingly sweet syrups and milk.

You’re gross, PSL.

There. I said it.

You don’t taste like falling leaves or crisp, cool air, or firewood burning and crackling.  You taste like a creation made on Bring Your Toddler to Work, Oh, and Also Let Them Create a Signature Drink That We Can Market For Millions Day.

As someone who has considered herself a bit of an autumn enthusiast since childhood, this was a disappointing discovery.  However, I am glad that I can finally admit just how much I dislike you.

Sincerely,

Chelsea


Dear Concourse A

Dear Concourse A in the El Paso International Airport,

My plane takes off from Concourse B, but I have a three-hour layover here and there are only a handful of eateries and shops in the immediate area.  After an hour and a half of looking longingly at overpriced M&Ms bags and puzzling over a variety of nick-nacks, such as the following:

exploring Concourse A seemed like a really good idea.  After all, this is an international airport.  Surely Concourse A, which houses American Airlines, would be far more awesome than the store selling the Chihuahua in a taco and $7 bags of gummy worms.

You were shrouded in mystery, Concourse A, the kind of mystery that lifts the hopes of weary and bored travelers.  What could you possibly contain? Eateries of better quality than Pizza Hut and Quiznos? A sandwich that costs less than $11?  Peanut Butter M&Ms? I didn’t know, but I wanted to find out.

So, I walked the short distance across the airport to find you, hoping that you would at least host an interesting book store or people worth watching.

Imagine my disappointment when I reached the end of the hall, having passed only a lame sports bar and a newsstand along the way, and found gates and seats and no excitement.  You failed, Concourse A.  Your contents are as vapid and empty as anything Carson Daly is involved in.  There is nothing here that is remotely entertaining.

I mean, at least the shop in Concourse B had a Chihuahua wearing lipstick and false eyelashes.

Why can’t you be more like your little brother, Concourse A?

Sincerely,

Chelsea


Dear People Who Want to Know How I Lose Weight

Dear People Who Want to Know How I Lose Weight,

I have a secret: the weight you’ve noticed me losing over and over again for the past year is, in fact, the same five pounds.

Yes, that’s right.  I simply lose and gain the same five pounds repeatedly, and yet, every time you notice that I’ve lost weight, you think I’m getting skinnier. Today, when one of you asked me what my secret was, I played it off like I didn’t know what you were talking about, but I did know.  I waffled on disclosing my secret to losing and gaining the same five pounds over and over again because it is incredibly complex and took years for me to master.  However, I have decided that I will reveal the time-tested methods I have developed that will ensure that you, too, can have people tell you that you look skinnier every four months or so without actually dipping below whatever weight plateau you are currently on.

First, there a few simple rules to my plan:

1. Drink a smoothie containing at least three different varieties of vegetation every morning for breakfast.

2. Never weigh yourself, except for maybe when you’re at the gym (and you’ll see how often that happens later).

3. Make sure that your wardrobe contains no less than two but no more than six different sizes of clothing.  You’ll see why this is important later.

4. Make baking your hobby so that, no matter what part of the plan you’re on, you’ll always have a steady supply of cookies and cupcakes.

5. Buy only organic fruits and vegetables.  Eat a lot of those, but don’t let your consumption of them get in the way of the rest of the plan.

All right, now that those rules are out of the way, here is my life plan:

Month One

For at least a week, eat chips, with or without dip, for four to seven meals.  For your other meals, eat large quantities of the same vegetable, i.e. an entire head of cauliflower, an entire bunch of kale or a large sweet potato.  Supplement any missing calories with baby carrots, peanut butter on apple slices, molten lava cakes eaten at midnight and/or spoonfuls of ice cream.  Watch a movie that contains ballet and briefly dream about a life as a dancer.  Decide that potatoes and bread are evil for some reason and stop eating them.  Give up the dancer dream when your realize how much more work and how much less cookie eating you would have to do.

Pizza is your friend.

Month Two

Eat so much meat in a three day period that you feel queasy at the mere thought of eating beef ever again.  Become increasingly fixated on a particular spice or condiment (my latest obsession was sriracha) and find ways to eat it with everything.  Mix it into mayonnaise and fabricate reasons to dip vegetables in the concoction, sprinkle it on your baked sweet potatoes for some reason, douse chicken in it.  Whatever gets that goodness in you.

Stand and walk throughout your six-foot work space at your job.

Pizza is your friend.

Month Three

Start to feel like you’re on the upper end of your weight fluctuation.  Wear slightly baggier clothing because it’s more comfortable or because you like the look this month.  Whatever the reason, just be sure your clothing is baggier than usual.

Join the gym/pick up some sort of activity.  Go to the gym multiple times a week for two to three weeks.  Forget you have membership.  Lose membership card.  Lose track of whether the gym is still charging you for your membership.

In the meantime, eat lots of vegetables and fruit throughout the day, with random comfort foods dispersed throughout the week.  A sample day might contain your obligatory breakfast smoothie, a salad and a heaping serving of baked or sauteed veggies for lunch and chicken nuggets and fries for dinner.  Potatoes and bread are now akin to manna from Heaven.  Realize that your previous condiment fixation was kind of weird.  Go back to using normal spices.

Pizza is your friend.

Month Four

As a result of stress or busyness or just life happenings, change your eating patterns drastically.  It doesn’t really matter if you’re eating less or more; just shake things up for a week or so in one direction and then switch to the other direction the next week! This confuses your metabolism and tells your body that it should probably take over from here because you don’t know what you’re doing!

Take vitamins for the first time in three months.

Pizza is still your friend, but doesn’t play as large of a part in your life as it once did.  Start craving soup inexplicably instead, but only eat it from Panera, in a bread bowl.

Instead of all of that drab standing and walking at work, begin getting around by shoving yourself across the room on your wheelie office chair.

Start wearing clothing that is less baggy.  Have someone at work comment on weight loss that you’re pretty sure is imaginary.  With their friendly comment in mind, go home and eat cookies or ice cream for dinner.

And that’s it! If you repeat this entire process, you can literally gain and lose the same five pounds repeatedly (which is, arguably, a part of normal weight fluctuation), but reap the constant rewards of people from work who you barely know commenting on your appearance!  It’s grand! Plus, you get to eat cookies for dinner at least three times a year!  What is there to lose?

I hope this letter has been enlightening to you about how I manage to do what I do.

I’m going to go eat cookies for dinner now.

Sincerely,

Chelsea