Monday, February 23, 2015

Where My Girls At, DC Comics?

I like to post funny stuff because funny stuff is fun to write. This isn't funny and it wasn't fun to write. If you have a young lady in your life, you'll understand why I felt compelled to shed some attention on this.

I read an article this evening about a little girl that wrote to DC comics, questioning why there weren't more female superheroes.  Her letter is beautifully executed (her parents are college English professors), and she addresses the fact that she's watched comics since she was a little girl and knows that she's not the only little girl that ends up questioning why there are few superhero figures that are girls.  She goes on an explains that she received a set of Justice League figures for her birthday and of the 12, only 2 were female.

How sad that this 11 year old has already discovered that female superheroes are just not desirable enough for DC to market and make. Yep. It's not important to show little girls that they can aspire to be strong and save the day, because that's a boy's job.  Errrrrrrr. Which means that we are also subconsciously reinforcing this same message to little boys. Little girls don't need strong role models. Girls aren't strong enough to be considered superheroes. They're not as strong, and they aren't smart enough to save the day.

In case you didn't read about this article, DC comics did tweet back to Rowan and tell her that female superheroes and movies where female superheroes are the main character are in the works. Their artists also turned Rowan into a superhero and I think their response is cool for this little girl, and also continues to shed light on what Rowan has exposed as a problem.

And now it's time for a little story:
I am one of those moms that pretends to enjoy making my kids' Halloween costumes.  It's fun to get crafty, but I'd be lying if I said it WASN'T a major pain in the a$$ most of the time. Long story short, I ran out of time and energy a couple of years ago and I sat down at the laptop with my 6 year old BOY and said "let's find costumes for you and your (3 year old) sister."

Side by side on Amazon were Batman and Robin costumes. My handsome man flipped out and determined that he was going to be Robin and that his LITTLE SISTER HAD TO BE BATMAN.  I asked him if he was sure that I heard him correctly and that he didn't want to be Batman (shame on me). He confirmed his selection, and the purchase was made.



Boom....Halloween.  No sewing machine, coffee binges, and 4 hour Michael's and JoAnn Fabric trips.  My 3 year old, sassy, beautiful, strong, sensitive little miss ROCKED that costume while her much taller, handsome, confident, older brother stood proudly next to her as HER sidekick.  He even pulled the wagon with her in it from house to house, because that's what good sidekicks (and amazing brothers) do.  And there were comments about how cute it was that their roles were reversed, and how people couldn't believe that the older brother wanted to be Robin and that he "let" his sister be BatMAN.  We ignored them and continued to enjoy the fact that we gave the proverbial middle finger to traditional gender roles that night.

So to review and state the obvious, at six years old, my little guy saw nothing wrong with taking a sidekick role to his sister.  And my 3 year old was thrilled to be Batman. BatMAN...(and to get technical, she was Batman wearing a tutu...because that's how, as a culture, we deal with the fact that there aren't many female superheroes to pick from--we just throw tutus on the male superhero characters...#totallynormal).

Throw an equal number of empowering girl superheroes into the mix and we might encourage a generation of strong, empowered, advocating, save-the-day females.  They might grow up to be superheroes and have male sidekicks. Or they might grow up, completely smitten with the CHOICE to choose what and who they want to look up to. And the boys, well, they would be completely cool with the fact that girls are bumping elbows with them for leadership roles. Whoa.  Mind blown.

Girls are much stronger than they (and others) give them credit for.  I mean, so strong. Even when they don't mean to be:

Hey Rowan, you don't need a superhero to inspire you to be strong, but I appreciate the fact that you're advocating for little girls so they don't have to fight so hard to be considered as strong, as tough, and as deserving of a #1 spot.

So, thank you, Rowan.  Keep pushing for what you believe in.  Dedication and persistence are quite the superpower...

Sunday, January 11, 2015

You're the Parent of a Hockey Player When...

* Your entryway smells like an absolutely horrific combination of mildew, Febreeze, feet (err, skates), and mint "flavored" alcohol disinfectant, yet you're sure the only thing that's been disinfected are your nose hairs from breathing in bleach fumes from trying to remedy what is now (until April) referred to as the "entryway situation"...
* You say things like "get your blocker away from the crockpot" and "have you waxed your stick lately?" and it is part of a completely normal and acceptable conversation.
* Sleeping in on a weekend morning means you can sleep until 7am (!), instead of leaving the house BY 7am. #booforweekendalarms

* You suffer extreme embarrassment when your seven year old tells your cousin and his fiancée he can't be in their wedding 9 months from now because he *might* have a hockey practice or a game. (#sosorryRJandMK #yournuptialsAREmoreimportant)
* You eat macaroni and cheese and hot dogs for two months leading up to the ice fees due date...(and vow, again, that next year you will budget better...)

* Your youngest child is often referred to as a "rink rat" and you are completely okay with it.
* You know how to construct a "balanced" meal in a pinch from the rink's snack bar (#cheesesauceisALMOSTdairy)

* You know more about what is going on in the lives of the other hockey parents than you do in the lives of your own family members.

* You've purchased three or more pairs of gloves this year because you keep forgetting one of your 42 pairs at home.

* Even though it sounds like you've put a small mammal in the washing machine, you're aware that it's just a cup (the protector of the "beans and franks"...not the Red Solo kind)
* You base your level of enjoyment on how well the heat works in the rink you're traveling to or whether or not you can grab a brew or two there, and NOT whether or not your kid's team is going to win or even be competitive.... (oh. perhaps that's just us and not the majority of hockey parents. OOPS.  I guess I mean #goflyers, not #samadamsplease)

* You're proud to be one of the insane parents that supports this ridiculously expensive sport because your kid (or kids) glow on the days they get to breathe in that crisp air, gliding from line to line, developing skills but also friendships that they'll cherish forever. #hallmarkmoviereadyscript 

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Baby Alive's Real Name Should Be "Baby Stab Me In the Eye"

If you are my Facebook friend, you may have noticed that we started a casualty list with my daughter's toys.  On Christmas Eve, she ripped the arm off a lifesize doll and proceeded to laugh hysterically about it.  Perhaps I was the one laughing.  Not sure on that one, but regardless, it was funny.  That was casualty #1.  Honestly, that ugly doll had it coming.  I'm not sure whattttt Santa was on when he slated that poor gal' for our house.  She didn't stand a chance....
I knew enough to number these "casualties" because my daughter is, ahem, a little rough.  She's not exactly the type of delicate flower that you'd expect in a four year old girl, unless that delicate flower can be mistaken for a nuclear missile.  Her smile can easily light up a room.  Her hands can easily tear down a nation, or the internet in a nation (I'm talking to you North Korea).

In addition to the ugly a$$ doll (Lefty, I like to call her) that Santa stained Christmas with, my little miss was gifted a lot of art supplies.  My husband and I, even against our better judgement, SOBERLY, purchased her a rubber stamp kit.  Casualty #2 was my window sill which was stamped with beautiful purple and pink fairies. For the record, a magic eraser will remove rubber stamps from painted window sills....
This post is actually about Casualty #3 though.

ME.

I AM CASUALTY NUMBER 3. I made a major error in judgement and told a family member to purchase <drum roll, or trumpet Taps> BABY ALIVE.

For those of you that don't know, Baby Alive is a doll that eats, drinks, and sh*tzzz her pants. You feed her, give her water *SO SHE DOESN'T GET CLOGGED, according to the directions*, and then wait for the digestive magic to happen. So I tried to get her on Black Friday at a reduced rate because who the eff pays full price for a doll that makes poo and requires so much damn attention? 

I ordered it on Walmart's website at a discounted price, only to receive an email 12 hours later (after I'd already been to Walmart and walked past her Black Friday display, saying "hey girl, I ordered you online already so I don't even need to pick you up right now because you're in a box with my address on in a FedEx terminal somewhere) that says "Your item is unavailable, but we've credited your account.  Sorry about the inconvenience."

How wonderful of you to credit me for the item that I could have purchased in the store that day for the discounted price but didn't because I ordered it online earlier that you've now deemed unavailable.

And that, my literary friends, was some foreshadowing.  I should have taken this as the universe's message: "Lady, you don't want Baby Alive, so take this as your hint and buy an Easy Bake Oven." But I didn't. 

Shortly after, a family member asked what they could get my little darling for Christmas.  I remembered that I was unsuccessful with Baby Alive and offered that as a suggestion.  The family member even questioned my sanity when I make the suggestion.  I said "she really wants it.  It'll be fine!" #dumbdumbdumb

Fast Forward to yesterday, while celebrating with said family member.  The rest of this post will be a bulleted itinerary of events:

* daughter opens Baby Alive and nearly sh*tzzz her own pants out of excitement.

* daughter feeds and "waters" Baby Alive until that doll sh*tzzz her pants so many times that we run out of the provided diapers "in the value pack". Don't worry.  The directions say you can order additional ones (more on this in a minute).

* family member reminds me that I made this suggestion so I cannot be upset.

* I pour myself a large drink and eat a handful of chocolate.

* daughter cries 14 times after I say "we cannot feed this little sh*tter baby until we buy her more diapers" the 19 times she asks. Yes.  I ignored her the other 5 times.

* daughter sneaks into her bathroom, rips open a pack of Baby Alive "peas" and sprinkles some of that mess all over the bathroom floor, then cleans up her spillage with water, creating something I can only describe as a pistachio puddling exfoliation treatment for my bathroom vanity, counter, and floor.  She may have fed small amounts to Baby Alive, as well. I clean said spillage up and reprimand daughter for ATTEMPTING to do exactly what I asked her not to do. 

*Baby Alive proceeds to succumb to the call of nature. I cannot write "sh*tzzz her pants" however, because we had run out.  I place her in the bathroom sink as my daughter cries, horrified, that I would even consider making her sleep in there.
At this point, one would have thought I would have questioned the whereabouts of Baby Alive's spoon and dish and the "non spillage" of peas.  I did not...

*I get both of my kids cleaned up for bed, and happen to trip walking into darling daughter's room. I catch myself on the door, throwing it backwards against the door stopper, and hear darling daughter exclaim "Oh NO!!!!"

*I look down and see that she has hoarded the "non-spillage" Baby Alive "Peas" behind her door, which have now sloshed all over her white-ish Berber carpet.  She was totally planning on sneaking that non-diapered baby into her room for a late night snack!!!

*I freaked out, cleaned up pistachio-exfoilating-suppposedtolooklikePeas-mess on her carpet, threatened taking Baby Alive back all while Baby Alive chimed "Where are you mommy? It is time to play?  Did I make a stinky?" from her comfortable spot-relieving herself in my bathroom sink.

*After getting a hyperventilating preschooler to bed "BUT NOW SHE DOESN'T HAVE FOOD OR DIAPERS!!!", I start searching #amazon for the replacement food and diapers for this PITA toy (which my daughter loves more than pink starburst and more than I love dry red wine).  Oh HELL no. $13 dollars will only score you 10 diapers and 2 more packages of food.  whatanEFFINGdeal.

*I google "Baby Alive DIY" and find a plethora of ideas (newborn diapers, don't feel like you have to get Pampers, DIY cloth diapers, baking soda and food coloring "peas" and "peaches" food, etc.)

Fast Forward 16 hours and through Daughter's 31 questions of "When is it time to get "mibebe"(yes, she's french-mexican now) her diapers?"

*I go into #walmart and purchase some cheap newborn diapers.  A lady walks up to me and asks me if I'm expecting.  My response?  "No, but I have recently lost 15 pounds. Thanks so much." She walked away quickly.

At this point, I must say, I waved the white flag.  You win #babyalive.  I'd like to think I was a nobel competitor.  #casualtynumber3isme

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Black Friday Just Ate Thanksgiving

Black Friday has now turned into "Eat Turkey And Pie And Leave So I Can Shop" Thursday, ETAPALSICS Thursday for short.

Oh yes.  And more commonly known, PRE-2010, as #THANKSGIVING.

What the hell, big box stores!? You are opening at 6pm? That's so @&*%ing ridiculous that I cannot even gather my thoughts to compose this post. Someone is reading this saying 1.) "no one forces anyone to go shopping."  Someone else is reading this saying 2.)"who cares what time they open? It's allowing me more time to plan my evening."

Here is my rebuttal:
1.) I like Thanksgiving.  It's one of my favorite holidays.  I don't want to cut it short to go stand in line for the crap that I think someone in my family needs.  I want to have the holiday, AND THEN go stand in line and drop sharp elbows to people getting pushy around the crap I think I need after JUST being thankful for all the stuff that I have (that I don't use...that I just store and organize). That's what I want to do.  Furthermore, I live in New effing York.  It's expensive to live here.  For the love of Pilgrims, have you seen our gas prices? They're lower than they've been in a half of a decade and they're still like 40 cents higher per gallon than anywhere else. We get taxed for everything.  I sneeze and get a tax bill in the mail saying I owe something for it.  I can't afford NOT to shop on Black Friday.

Which brings up someone else's thought: You need to realign your priorities so that your family members don't want for so much and they see the value in simplicity.

Frickin' good point.  I'll get right on that.  I'm sure my entire family will love a scarf which I will painstakingly make from dryer lint and bathroom drain hair. I'll surely wrap that b**ch up in recycled paper bags that I dug out of the recycling bin at the grocery store. Don't worry, it will have a burlap bow too, making it extra fancy.  I'm sure I'll find a pattern on the homemade christmas board on Pinterest....

Oh, and to the person who was thinking "who cares what time they open? It allows me to spread my evening out..." Let me ask you a question. What's special about standing in line at a store at 6pm on a Thursday night? My friend Shari and I had this conversation and we determined there is NOT A DAMN THING special about that.  You can shop on Thursday nights at 6pm.  You can shop at most stores at 9pm.  But you are not supposed to be shopping at 2am in a store unless it's the most magical grocery store on Earth, #Wegmans, and you are drunk.  So, by starting at 6pm, you will get the crap you think you need but you don't and you will go home at a reasonable hour, and will not be craving lunch at 8am like in previous years. #lame.  

Economic materialism has impacted these stores to open earlier and earlier and release their ads months ahead of Black Friday, I mean ETAPALSICS Thursday (Let's brand that.  It has a really nice roll off the tongue. E-Tap-Al-Sics).  There will be NO MORE enjoying a day with family and friends, being thankful, watching football, leaving the table and getting the most comfortable seat to pass out in before Uncle Johnny starts snoreweezing in that spot so loudly you can't hear the TV (Fun Fact: I do not have an Uncle Johnny).  You will not be tearing through the ads in the paper, because you will have developed a ETAPALSICS Thursday plan which is color coded and organized for efficiency.

So, to recap, Thanksgiving is now to be cut ridiculously short, and shopping on Black Friday doesn't even matter because all the good deals will already be over, and all the stores will look like Fallujah, post-invasion. I mean, what are people supposed to do on Friday?

Perhaps I'm just bitter over this, but in my opinion, the deals kind of suck this year, anyway. I'll be busy though, because I have some dryer lint and hair to knit into a scarf. I wonder what I washed that was red?

Thursday, October 30, 2014

A Letter To Kaci Hickox: The Nurse That Doesn't Want to be Quarantined

Hi there, Kaci (also known as nurse-that-recently-returned-from-Ebola-stricken-region-and-developed-a-slight-fever,-was-quarantined,-and-then-complained-about-it) let me explain what 97% of Americans would like to express to you:

You're pretty awesome for wanting to help people that have nothing to give you besides their gratitude (and their disease that eats you from the inside-out).  Feel free to keep up the good work.

If you happen to go be selfless and do those selfless things aforementioned to help people in other countries, and you happen to come back to the United States where there is not currently a health crisis with this disease, DON'T GET PISSY WHEN YOU ARE TREATED LIKE YOU HAVE THE PLAGUE, because guess what, YOU HAVE a slight chance OF HAVING THE MODERN DAY PLAGUE.

We should quarantine you. Because if we develop an epidemic and do not handle this disease with the respect and caution it deserves, then we will have a crisis.  And do you think the continent of Africa will be organizing humanitarian efforts to help us? NO. They will not. Come to think of it, I doubt any country will send aid to us. But if they do, they'll have a plan and it will hopefully be a good one that protects their people, because a good government protects it's citizens and puts their safety first. They might send us some hand sanitizer and in the meantime they'll likely close their borders to anyone trying to enter their country from ours. Now THAT would be unfortunate. I mean, we Firstworlders have places to go and people to save!

Come to think of it, NurseWhoThinksHerHumanRightsWereViolated, I'm super sorry that you feel that quarantine was inconvenient, but Ebola doesn't exactly work into our 2 month plans, so do us a favor, get a Netflix subscription, watch the movie Outbreak (yes, even screenwriters in 1995 knew this was coming), and SHUT THE HELL UP.

Oh, we are being too callous and cautious? I am not saying that people shouldn't be inclined to help, because humanitarian efforts are really quite wonderful but do not come back to the country and complain about the safety measures that we (albeit, haphazardly) put into place to protect citizens.  Even if they aren't perfect measures, they're attempts at protection, and if they change 3,248 more times in the next 11 days, Ms. ImmaSaveTheWorld, DON'T COMPLAIN and subject us to your whines.  You went, you saved, you feel warm and fuzzy, now make friends with your DVR, grab a Snickers, and charge your tablet for Facetime. 

Lastly, Kaci Smallpox Hickox,   I think that you belong in an attention brothel. I think that you are using this as soapbox to get famous. Is that helping the people that you so desperately are trying to save? No. It's scaring the crap out of the people that may cross your path as you stealthily prance around New England. Just stop. Better yet, continue! Go save A LOT MORE PEOPLE (somewhere besides the United States).

All Our Love,
Everyone That Doesn't Want an Ebola Crisis In the US

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Street Harassment is Lame

I watched the video of the lady walking down the street being harassed. Google it. It's disgusting and disheartening. Anyway, I immediately thought two things:

1.) wow, she looks angry.

2.) what the hell is the intent of this video?

Okay. Do not get me wrong, I LOVE that this video was made and that it's bringing awareness to something that is incredible annoying and unfortunate for women. I cannot ever remember watching a gaggle of ladies chase after a man walking solo, nor have I ever seen just one woman approach a man she doesn't know on the street or in the mall, etc. to tell them how hot they are looking.  My point? This is probably just something that ladies have to deal with. Errr, but not 30-somethings that drive mini-vans and tote snotty nosed children around...if a man is calling out something to them, it's probably because they've dropped a sippy cup, left without paying for gas, or accidentally (on purpose) forgot a kid somewhere.

Deep thoughts here, but will this video PSA affect the men that are doing this? My bet is no. It will raise awareness for the masses and will shine a light on this to the people that already know better than to intentionally make a woman feel uncomfortable by sharing their douchey thoughts with them unprompted. But, I'm not thinking that some cat-calling a$$hat will watch that video and think "well, sh*t, I guess I don't have anything to do Saturday night, now. Maybe I'll go to church and grocery shop instead of attempt to talk to ladies I don't know on the street." Nope. Those guys aren't being reflective about this. They're wayyy too self-absorbed and arrogant to get anything from this. Let's all just take a second and feel bad for that lady just walked the street with her b*tch face on for 10 hours for nothing. I hope she got paid....per mile. Or per dumba$$ comment.

Effdis holds the stance that the men portrayed in this video are total idiots. They don't deserve respect because they aren't being respectful. I cannot imagine a single woman that would respond positively to this type of treatment, therefore, the only intent they must have is to intimidate. And ladies, if you are interested in a guy that intimidates you or makes you feel uncomfortable please start running---TO THERAPY. And before someone says "oh they're just kidding", guys that do this are not being funny. Harassment is not funny.

Sadly, this message will be preached to the choir. This message will not get to the people that need to hear it and even if it does, it won't affect them.

Share this message... with young woman that will experience it, but especially with young impressionable men that will have the choice between being respectful, or being intimidating.

And, if you have the opportunity FathersMothersCoachesTeachers, INTIMIDATE those young men into being respectful. It's your job, because it takes a village...

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Ebola Scares Kids--And So Does the News

I am sad about the conversation that started at my dinner table tonight, and then continued multiple times throughout the night.

While I was making dinner in the kitchen, the news was on in the living room.  My son, I assume, walked into the living room and listened to a news broadcast that tidied up any lose ends about ebola that the kids on the elementary bus run hadn't already explained

Yes, my 7 year old discussed ebola on the elementary bus run.  I don't know if I should be proud or sad...I mean, whenIwasakid I was copying the neighbor's math homework, jumping in the seats when the bus driver went over a bump, and waiting for my favorite song to come on the radio (because buses were just outfitted with radios and it was pretty sweet if you were lucky enough to hear your jam before you were dropped off). My kid, however, was discussing a world heath crisis. #heisprobablyadopted

First, he asked me about the disease from Africa that people keep dying from, the one that starts with the A.  Ummm. Yeah.  We are still working on vowel sounds. It's "EEEEE-bola. not Ahhh-bola, buddy." 

Then, he asked me how you get "AhEeeebola."  I explained that it's transferred by fluid and germs from people that have the disease and that there are only two people in the whole United States that have been diagnosed with this virus, so I didn't want him to worry. 

And then, this is where it hurt a little:  He asked that "if two people in our country got it because they were the people that were taking care of the one person that traveled to Africa, weren't more people going to get it because they would be taking care of the two new sick people?  And then more people would get sick, and then they would come to NY?" And, as a mom, this is where the water gets muddy.  As much as I appreciate his understanding of germs and how disease spreads, etc., I don't want him to be worried and stroking out every time someone sneezes. (#howiemandel) I also don't want this mature topic taking up brain space, because I'd prefer that space be used for things like his spelling words, errr....vowel sounds, and putting the toilet seat down (or CLEANING IT if he leaves it down) after he pees.  Ebola is not a 7 year old concern.  Contracting ebola should not be an adult concern.  At least not in the United States.

Or should it be?  No. Not yet. Right? 

Well, depending on who you talk to, depending on what political party you belong to, depending on what profession you identify yourself to be in--this is either a huge national concern, or you're an idiot for even thinking twice about it. 

Ebola has become ANOTHER "situation" for us to have differing opinions on. It's become another topic for us to argue about on social media, make memes about, and rant about (this post, included). The political talking point that it has become has taken away from the fact that it's a health crisis that has affected our world, not just our country, yet our country (minimally affected) and the politicians running it have used it as a political springboard. #lame 

Ironically, I haven't seen a single post on social media just asking for people to send a thought or a prayer to the people (GLOBALLY) affected by this virus, or to the healthcare workers that have to put on a brave face knowing that their protocols will be changing and that they'll be on edge this flu season.  

My 7 year old is scared of Ebola, even if he can't say the name of the virus.  He asked if we lived close to Texas (no), and if Myrtle Beach (our favorite vacation spot) was close to Georgia (kinda!) because he heard that is where the second nurse was being sent to.  He asked if Santa would stop here first before going to Africa, Georgia, and Texas because he was concerned that Santa would contaminate our living room. 

But honestly, the only thing that I am concerned about contaminating my living room is sensationalized news broadcasts. Because, as much as #iloveyoubrianwilliams , even a team in hazmat suits couldn't clean those up these days.