My kid’s birthday is tomorrow. I told her I’ll rename her Batman.

So Munchkin’s 12th birthday is tomorrow.

I teasingly told her I’d rename her Batman for her birthday instead of getting her presents, because she’s getting older and she can handle that kind of responsibility now.

Her response?

This.

It reminds me once again that becoming a mom, especially to someone so hilarious, is one of the best things to ever happen to me.

Happy birthday, Munchkin Batman. You’re awesome.

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Just Dance probably turned me into an assassin

When I was about 15, I was home from school sick, and my mom rented some movies to get me to stop my constant whining help me feel better.

I don’t remember most of the titles, but The Manchurian Candidate stood out. To my arrogant teenaged mind, it was the dumbest thing ever, though it was kind of awesome to see Mrs. Potts from Beauty and the Beast and the guy who sang all those songs that other people’s dads sing when they’ve had a couple of glasses of red wine.

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It revolves around a guy who is brainwashed into being an assassin, and his trigger phrase is “go jump in a lake”. Whenever anyone says “go jump in a lake”, he enters this crazy murdery fugue state and all hell breaks loose.

I mean, who would do that? Brainwashing? Is that even a thing? Pffffffft. I was 15 and I knew everything, and I said it wasn’t a thing so it wasn’t.

Fast forward mumblemumble years to a time where I am ever so slightly less arrogant. I was listening to internet radio and Jump came on. The one by Kris Kross, not the one by Van Halen, The Pointer Sisters or almost the one by House of Pain. You know, the one that’s on one of the Just Dance games.

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Without even realizing what I was doing, I started doing this.   Dropped my laundry basket and everything. That’s right, it’s 3 minutes of gameplay that I engaged in without a single reason to do it and plenty of reasons not to, the second most important of which is that I am not a 13 year old with a hit song, but an oldish housewife with no rhythm and even less coordination.

The most important reason–not that I even need to tell you this, because you know where I’m going with it– is that Just Dance obviously has malicious intentions and I’m probably an assassin now and I don’t even know it.

I laughed at “go jump in a lake”.

“I’m the miggita miggita mac daddy” though? That’s the real deal, folks.

Thrift store book reports: Meth = Sorcery

This post is meant to be funny, but addiction isn’t. If you or a loved one is struggling with drug addiction, please call the Narconon helpline at 1-800-775-8750. Experienced drug counselors are available 24 hours a day.

If you know me at all, you know that I love the thrift store like Joanie loves Chachi. The book section? Even if a book is so terrible that you wonder if a publisher was somehow blackmailed or held hostage into putting it out, you just can’t beat 10 books for a buck. Mostly. Usually. Not this time.

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Meth = Sorcery has just risen to the top spot in my list of worst books I’ve ever read. In fact, it is so bad that it takes all the spots on the list. That’s right, one book, ten spots. It is just that bad.

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My luxurious fancy cat likes it as a pillow. I must grudgingly give one quarter of a star.

The…hmmm, plot? Thesis? Point? I’m not sure what to call it… of Meth = Sorcery is, in fact, that methamphetamine is made by sorcerors of Satan. We’re not talking figuratively, folks. The whole idea is completely literal. Apparently, Satan comes up from hell and sticks demons in your body like Britney Spears stuck cheetos in her mouth during the dark Federline era. These demons give the meth user and manufacturer special powers of alchemy-full methal alchemists!- because it’s the end times and meth is mentioned in Revelations or something.

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By this definition, baking bread is also considered part of the dark arts. I am now the Sauron of Sourdough.

Okay, are you still following? Good! So then, once there is a belly full of demons and not even enough room for a wafer thin mint, the user is capable of projecting images of themselves through time and space and other forms of witchcraft and spellcasting. There was also something about dog food and trucks and hallucinating 20 ft tall pigs, which im not sure is what happens on meth being that it is generally known as a stimulant and not as a hallucinogen, but as a meth-virgin, I really don’t know.

Good news though. If you get a religious official to hold you down, you can literally barf up these demons. Literally.

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There was no word on if laxatives would work as well as vomiting or how puked demons are on tooth enamel.

Then, scripture, because obviously.

Then, the end.

I really have no idea what to say about this. I’d like to say the you shouldn’t write a book until you know the difference between your and you’re. I’d like to say that capitalization counts. I’d like to say that starting stories in the middle of other stories is bad. I’d like to say that science should be your friend, especially when you’re trying to use it to prove a point. I’d also like to say that alchemy isn’t science. I’d like to point out that meth seems to cause massive brain damage, and this writing might well be evidence.

I can’t say any of that and be really sure of myself though. I read the book twice now, and still have no idea what in the meth-lovin’ hell I just read. Maybe the real alchemy here is turning this 155 page jumble of puked demons and dog food and words into something understandable.

I will be giving this book away to one lucky (?!?) reader on 25 January. Like, comment and share ninevoltcandy’s giveaway announcement on Facebook for your chance to win.

Because why wouldnt a kid need to know how to do a tracheotomy?

My Opa passed away when I was about 15 or so. My family lived really far away, and we didn’t see each other often. In fact, I only have a very few memories of him.

Those memories…whew. See, when most people remember a departed grandparent, the memories bring up an emotion. Whether its of PB&J sandwiches with the crusts lovingly cut off or drunken holiday arguments, it all brings up some kind of feeling,

In my case, the feeling is that of complete and utter confusion.

My Opa was an incredibly intelligent man, and was quite skilled in his chosen field of medicine. That isn’t the confusing part, nor is it a strong memory. It is quite simply fact, and to a little kid, all jobs from mailman to neurosurgeon are pretty impressive and grown up.

I get the feeling that he had–probably quite rightly, as that level of education and ability is something to be proud of– a teensy bit of arrogance, or maybe ego, or maybe just enthusiasm about his knowledge. That isn’t confusing either. When people study hard and master something difficult, it is totally understandable. I was going through my own struggles and triumphs with cursive writing at the time, so I totally understood.

The confusing part is that my strongest memories are of him drawing on napkins on our yearly dinners out. Paper, linen, didn’t matter. If it was suitable for wiping one’s fingers, it was also clearly suitable for some learnin’!  He’d get all excited about something, and whoops, out came the ballpoint pen from his shirt pocket, and we were all set to get a lesson, complete with diagrams.

Had I, with recent cursive victories on the dastardly letters “m” and “z”, been allowed to draw on napkins to show everyone, I would’ve done it in a heartbeat. My mom was not having any of that though, and while she couldn’t give my Opa a spanking, she could easy give me one, so I sat there, both attentive and envious.

I remember two of these impromptu lectures.

One was vague, and for some reason, it was about showing my sister and I how to properly draw a bird. It’s a shame that this memory is so vague. Drawing birds comes up surprisingly often in my life, because of course it does.

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This is a bird. You can tell by the label saying “bird”.

The second lecture is something I will keep with me forever. It was a diagram and instructions on how to perform an emergency tracheotomy with a penknife and Bic pen casing. I don’t know why I would do this, like, ever. I remember it being about if someone has something caught in their throat and the normal methods of using your finger to sweep the mouth or doing the Heimlich Maneuver (Heimlich Remover, to a seven year old) just won’t work. He drew it, then said “like so.”, because apparently, this napkin diagram was pretty much self explanatory.

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Like so. If you don’t get it, you’re obviously not trying hard enough.

I think he was showing my dad this, but I took it very seriously. You just never know, right? I felt like I was pretty much ready for anything.

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Relax. I’m almost 12% sure that I know what I’m doing with these.

Our meals came then, and no one ever spoke of it again, but that’s pretty much the one and only thing I remember about him. Kids, the lesson here is twofold:

1)when you have grandchildren, make sure you give them interesting life skills to remember you by.

And 2) if you and I ever go out for dinner, make sure you chew very well. You really, really don’t want to choke around me.