abandoning pretense: three pints of glitter and some electrical tape

It’s Halloween, my loyal so-and-sos! The one day a year when we can indulge our inner demons, wreak havoc wherever we please, and let our secret psychos come out to play, all with the lame and yet somehow perfectly acceptable excuse of “What? It’s Halloween.”

This Halloween I thought it would be fun to have sexy, scary guest blogger Kristen Mae of Abandoning Pretense stop in and share with us a hilarious and ghoulish story of a costume party gone afoul. (Okay, it’s not really that “ghoulish” of a story. And “gone afoul” is a bit of an overestimation. But trust me. You *will* laugh your pants off. So before you start reading, make sure you’re wearing your sluttiest Halloween panties.)

(That goes for the men, too.)

(What? It’s Halloween.)

Let’s read! And when you’re done, don’t forget to check out:

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Three Pints of Glitter and Some Electrical Tape

I got my husband to attend the charitable Halloween ball by highlighting “open bar” on the invitation and leaving it on the sofa arm for him to discover. That way he would think the whole thing was his idea, and never suspect my secret hankering to slather glitter all over myself.

That was the easy part. The tough part was figuring out a couples costume—I was flexible, as long as I got to wear a metric ton of glitter. My husband, on the other hand, wanted to go as a scary monster (i.e., wear jeans, a t-shirt and the horrifying mask we have hidden high in our coat closet because our eight-year-old pisses his pants every time someone mentions it.) I vetoed this option, because:

  • I knew my husband would try to show the scary mask to our son right before ditching him with the babysitter, and no way was I going to do that to the poor kid… or my son.
  • How was he supposed to brainstorm million-dollar inventions with strangers over cocktails while wearing a rubber mask? Luck equals opportunity plus preparation. There are no masks in that equation.
  • He wouldn’t be able to fully appreciate how sparkly I was through his mask.

“Scary monster” was my husband’s only contribution to costume ideas. After that, he flapped his hands at me like a territorial praying mantis and grumbled something along the lines of “I don’t freaking care, just pick something for me and I’ll wear it.

So I scoured the Internet for couples costume ideas, but most of them were crazy and elaborate and required a hefty investment of money, time, and Pinterest-worthy craftiness (think “giant pair of dice” or “sexy Tarzan and Jane” with leaves barely covering the tender parts). I needed something that was both cheap and lazy, but still awesome.

When I stumbled across the Tooth Fairy and Kid Who Just Lost a Tooth idea, I knew we had a winner. I already had a dress that could pass as something a fairy would wear, so that left plenty of room in the budget for three huge pints of glitter. Besides that, I only needed to buy adult-sized wings. (I tried on my toddler’s tiny dress-up wings and, surprisingly, they looked weird.)

Resplendent.

To make his part of the costume work, my husband only needed to wear pajamas—which I thought he would find very pleasing given his general lack of interest in the whole costume-choosing endeavor. All he really needed to do was put some crap over his tooth to black it out, and carry around a teddy bear and security blanket. BOOM. The perfect Tooth Fairy and Kid Who Just Lost a Tooth costume. We would be the most adorable couple at the party.

The big night arrived and I was frothing at the mouth with anticipation. I hadn’t glittered since I was an undergrad, and since motherhood had depleted me of all my regular human woman sparkle, I was determined to twinkle intensely enough to blind at least a few people.

Unfortunately, my husband was having trouble getting the tooth-blackout makeup I’d bought to stay on his front tooth, and he kept bugging me about it. “Babe,” I finally told him, “I am not finished with my glitter. You’re an engineer. I’m sure you can figure out how to make your tooth disappear.” He resolved his dilemma, very effectively I must admit, by wrapping a strip of electrical tape around one of his front teeth.

We arrived late to the party and had to park about four streets away. Fortunately for me and my feet—which were stuffed into heels for the first time since getting pregnant three years prior—a shuttle was circling the neighborhood to bring far-parkers around to the party, which was being held in the backyard garden of a historic riverside home.

When the shuttle was about halfway to the party, my husband suddenly turned to me in a panic and said: “Honey, did you remember my blanket and teddy bear?” After I slapped the gross off myself from hearing him ask that icky question, I glared at him and said, “It’s not my job to keep track of your stuff, remember? We’ve been having this conversation for ten years!

After a brief debate as to the direness of the blanket/teddy bear situation, we agreed that my husband could do without them. I reassured him that he still very clearly lacked a front tooth, and as long as he stood beside me—obviously a tooth fairy—people would “get it.”

We should have turned around and gotten the stupid costume props. Everyone at the party was decked out like it was Vegas. There was a Black Swan, various creepy zombies, some sexy nurses, a few outright hookers, werewolves, doctors, giant babies sucking coffee mug-sized pacifiers, and more. Not a single person was without an elaborate costume.

Not a picture of the actual party, but close enough. You get the gist.
Not a picture of the actual party, but close enough. You get the gist.

As for my husband and I, the entire evening was a repeat of the same conversation:

“Oh, you look SO pretty and sparkly! Perfect fairy!”

“Aw, thanks!” Then I would subtly jerk my head at my husband in a silent plea for the party-goer to try and figure out just what kind of fairy I was.

The person would inevitably turn to my husband with a confused look on his or her face and say, “Hold on. Lemme guess. A homeless person? No? Hmm… a college kid? Oh, I know! A junkie! Not that either? Hmm… I dunno. Hey, what happened to your tooth? Did you have a bad fall or something? Or is that just a big piece of spinach? Here, lemme get it for you. Hold still.”

Each time the conversation occurred, I stood to the side, mildly concerned that I’d dressed my husband like a meth-addicted homeless college student for Halloween, but my mouth was exploding with too much empanada for me to give enough damn to rectify the situation. My husband got pretty irritated that only my half of the costume had worked out, but I pointed out that he’d had zero interest in the costume selection up to 30 minutes before it was time to leave for the party. However, in a gesture of compassion, I suggested he go ahead, take the electrical tape off his tooth (it was inhibiting his eating), and get comfortable. Dejectedly, he insisted the blacked-out tooth was the only indication that he’d put in any effort at all.

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I’m pretty sure this was what people were saying about us.

The party wasn’t a total bust, though. I kept the beer in ready supply, and soon my husband and I were shaking up the dance floor, me pretending I didn’t have eighteen blisters on my squashed feet while poking everyone in the eyes with my fairy wings (told you I would blind people!), and my husband grinning next to me like a drunk fool, his missing tooth on full display. Oh, and it rained.

By the end of the evening, I’d given up on shoes and decided to just limp back to the car barefoot and wet, leaning on my inebriated gap-toothed husband, hair sticking to the sides of my face.

“Did you have at least a little bit of fun?” I asked him, feeling guilty for roping him into attending the event in the first place.

“Eh. It was okay.”

“Maybe next time we could just donate.”

“Or hope the party’s inside.”

“And you can choose your own costume.”

“Yes! I’ll wear my scary mask.”

“Anything but the mask, sweetie. How would you talk to people through that thing? And how would you be able to see how glittery I am?”

He sighed. “Ugh. Who cares? I’ll just let you pick.”

“Sounds good.”

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When Kristen Mae isn’t running absurdly long distances, washing poop out of her dog’s butt-hair, or taming her two booger-machines, she’s tossing her expensive Master of Music Performance degree out the window by feverishly attacking her “writing career.” She is a regular contributor at Nickmom.comBluntMoms.com, Mamapedia.comMamalode.com, and ScaryMommy.com. Her writing has also been featured Huffington Post and HotMessMom.com. In addition to her blog, Kristen shares hilarious and heart-warming tidbits of her life on her Facebook pageGoogle+Twitter, and Pinterest.

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Photo credits:
“Tooth Fairy Man”: http://www.amazon.com/Tooth-Fairy-Costume-Chest-48-53/dp/B001ODU9U8/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1444315748&sr=8-9&keywords=tooth+fairy+costume+man — Modified
“Costume Party Attendees”: CC BY 2.0; File: VFS Makeup Design Students display Halloween makeup on Urban Rush.jpg; Uploaded by Flickr upload bot; Created: 29 October 2010 — Modified
“More Costume Party Attendees”: Halloween 2010 – By Armando Salum, Veracruz; Date 8 November 2010; Source originally posted to Flickr as “Beater Clown & La Catrina”; Author Eduardo Pavon; This image, which was originally posted to Flickr.com, was uploaded to Commons using Flickr upload bot on 11:41, 27 November 2010 (UTC) by Infrogmation (talk). On that date it was licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license. — Modified

the european mama: dealing with a hangry person

How you be, loyal so-and-sos? Ready to read some funny shit, I hope? Because BOY OH BOY HAVE I GOT A TREAT IN STORE FOR YOU.

Today’s guest blogger is Olga Mecking from award-winning ex-pat blog The European Mama, and guys? This lady is one of the sweetest, smartest, and most adorable women I’ve had the privilege to meet on the Internet. She will charm your pants off in FIVE languages, y’all. FIVE.

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Originally from Poland, Olga now lives in the Netherlands with her German husband and three (count ’em three) children. She blogs poetic about ex-pat life in the Netherlands, how to parent multilingual kids, and what it’s like to speak waaaaaay more languages than I ever will. Let’s hear what she has to tell us about “hanger” management!

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“I think I should write a blog post about dealing with a hangry person,” I told my husband, after I’d just recovered from one of my notorious hanger episodes.

“Yes. Yes, you should,” said my husband, still traumatized and trembling from said episode. I’m pretty sure he was agreeing with me solely for the sake of self-preservation.

If you don’t know what “hangry” means, it’s probably time to learn, because I’m sure you’ve experienced it yourself at some point. “Hangry,” if you’ve never come across the term before, is nothing more than a portmanteau word combining the adjectives “hungry” and “angry.” Get it? “Hungry” + “angry” = “hangry”? It’s just that simple.

Except when it isn’t.

When my husband and I started dating, he was blissfully unaware that when I say the words “I’m hungry,” it constitutes an emergency on par with a child telling you that she REALLY needs to go pee RIGHT NOW. For the record, I am usually a sweet, friendly, and wonderful person –but there are two things that turn me into an unreasonable monster. One is being with other people for far too long. The other one is when I’m hangry. The type of hangry that only a pregnant woman can pull off, except for the fact that I’m not pregnant. In fact, the only time I wasn’t hangry was when I was pregnant, but that’s because I was either puking, suffering from heartburn, or just feeling too full to eat.

So for anyone who doesn’t know me well, the metamorphosis from amiable Olga into the Incredible Hangry Hulk can come as a huge and unpleasant surprise. And believe me, I understand why it’s so shocking. After all, how can such a nice, kind person become so terrible and full of rage? More importantly, how is a loved one expected to deal with such a transformation?

This very question is why I decided to write up this following list of tips for dealing with a hangry person:

1) Understand that the words “I’m hangry” are always an emergency. Yes. They are. There is no “I think I may be hungry in a few minutes,” or even “I think I need to eat something soon, but I should be able to manage for another half an hour.” No. It’s either “not hungry” or “hangry”, with no gradation in between.

This means that when you hear “I’m hungry,” you must always assume that “hungry” means “hangry,” or more probably, “I will kill you if you don’t bring me some food RIGHT. NOW.” So act quickly. Cook something, find the nearest restaurant, or order take-away. In other words, do anything it takes to appease the hangry person while preserving your own life in the meantime.

2) Phrases such as “Why are you in such bad mood?” or “Relax! You’re not starving,” or “Are you sure you want to order that much food?” are totally unhelpful. If you can’t think of anything useful to say, just stay quiet and get out of the hangry person’s way. If you absolutely HAVE to say something, try one of these phrases:

  • “Here’s your food.”
  • “Your food will be here shortly.”
  • “You can have my food.”
  • “You can eat my arm.”

You get the idea. If whatever you want to say is not about food or the imminent arrival of food, keep your mouth shut.

3) Speaking of ordering food, the non-hangry person is always in a tricky situation. You want to help the hangry person to get the food she so desperately needs (I’m assuming the hangry person is a woman, though men get hangry too), but you don’t want to make a hasty or unwise decision, resulting in her getting the wrong food… because that would be a tragedy. So be careful. Sometimes you’ll get lucky and she will tell you what she wants; in that case, you can simply relay her order (ACCURATELY, PLEASE) to the waiter. If she can’t tell you what she wants – “Whatever you want is fine” or “I don’t care” or “Anything will do” — due to being apathetic and/or having low blood sugar, it’s best to order something she usually likes. If you use your brain, you may just survive… but not always.

4) While waiting, don’t try to divert the hangry person’s attention to something that isn’t food. It will not work. You will either be faced with an angry outburst the size of an ornery elephant, or a healthy dose of we-will-all-die-if-I-don’t-eat-right-now despair. Trust me, you don’t want any of either of these things.

Also, don’t try any comforting gestures such as patting on the back, caressing of the arm, or saying things like “There, there.” You may just end up being “rewarded” for your good intentions with a punch to your face. Instead, try to become invisible and pray to whatever higher power you believe in that the hangry person’s meal comes soon. Here are some suggestions of things to do while waiting:

  • Stare incessantly at the waiter
  • Nag the waiter
  • Bribe the waiter with whatever you have to offer
  • Do whatever else is necessary to make food appear

(Side note: you might feel like these things fall under the category of “impolite,” “rude,” or “completely unacceptable in polite society,” but you would be wrong. Nothing short of murder is off limits when it comes to helping a hangry person get her food.)

5) Don’t speak to the hangry person while she eats. No small talk. No “how is your food?” No “I bet you’re feeling better now.” Nothing. Just let her eat in peace. Because if you don’t, you may just get devoured along with the rest of the meal. Hangry people know no mercy. I mean, you don’t talk to a tiger while it eats its prey, do you? Of course not. If you find yourself faced with a hangry person mid-feed, your best bet is to keep schtum and not draw attention to yourself.

6) After the meal is over, wait a little until the nutrients from the food hit the hangry person’s  bloodstream. You will be sure to recognize the signs – her face will become softer and the desperation in her eyes will disappear. However, the surest sign that the hangry period is over is when the hangry person finally graces you with a smile. When she does, then and only then is the time to benefit from all you did for her and bask in the warmth of being a hero.

But whatever you do — don’t mention her hangry behavior to her! Just enjoy this feeling while it lasts, because the next hanger attack is closer than you think.

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Now, I realize that this is a long list and it’s going to be hard to remember all of these tips, especially when in the moment. So I will give you one important message to take away from all this and that is this: If it won’t make food appear faster, don’t bother.

You’re welcome.

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Olga Mecking is a Polish woman who lives in the Netherlands with her German husband and three trilingual children. Her blog, The European Mama, was launched in July 2011 and gives readers insights into Olga’s life as an ex-pat in the Netherlands. Initially a trilingual blog, it is now primary in English. Olga blogs about her life in the Netherlands, being an ex-pat, multilingualism, and parenting.

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Photo credits:
“Godzilla”: Film still from Ishirō Honda‘s 1954 film Godzilla.

meg sanity: when life needs more cowbell

Everybody knows that there are a ton of funny and interesting blogs all over this great wide Internet. But you know what there aren’t a ton of? Funny and interesting blogs that ALSO TEACH YOU ALL KINDS OF COOL AND AMAZING SHIT ABOUT PSYCHOLOGY.

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Fortunately for us (and the great wide Internet), today’s guest blogger Megsanity writes a super duper psych blog which does exactly that. Seriously, if you haven’t already checked out Megsanity: Women, Psychology and Expletives, you need to. Trust.

Now please give a warm welcome to Megsanity, who’s about to wax eloquently about cowbells, dicks in boxes, and home skillets. (She’s also going to tell us why we hang on to popular phrases and cultural references from our past.)hard-returngif

“MORE COWBELL!”

I love the old Saturday Night Live skits. Not the new “trying-to-be-as-good” SNL, but the old-school height-of-fantastic SNL with Eddie Murphy, Chris Farley and sometimes Will Farrell. You know, back when SNL was still the bomb.

Because seriously, has it been funny since then? I mean, aside from one or two episodes with Justin Timberlake, like the one where he gives somebody his penis as a Christmas gift? (If you’ve never seen “Dick in a Box,” please do so immediately. Trust me on this one.)

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I apologize in advance to NBC for any possible copyright infringement here, but this was too funny not to use. COME ON, PEOPLE! IT’S INSTRUCTIONS ON HOW TO PUT A DICK IN A BOX! Photo credit below.

But while I don’t often get a chance to use the phrase “dick in a box,” I do find plenty of opportunities to use other quotes from the SNL heyday. Quotes such as… “more cowbell.”

People in my life ask me why I use outdated phrases like “more cowbell” that barely make sense in today’s context. I like to think that I do it because I’m awesome, but that probably isn’t the whole reason. So when my home slice Sarah asked me to write a guest post about the phenomenon, I jumped at the chance like a dude in hammer pants straight pimpin’ at the club.

Cultural references from our childhoods have the inherent ability to make us happy. They are comforting beyond what seems to make sense. They were part of our lives before we had so many responsibilities. Put simply: words have memories. They give us feelings. They are part of a strong association network in the brain.

And my brain fucking loves cowbell.

Let’s back up a second. In case you aren’t familiar with it, the “More Cowbell” sketch features Christopher Walken as a music producer and Will Ferrell as a renegade percussionist for the rock band Blue Öyster Cult. In the skit, Walken has a fever – and “the only prescription is more cowbell.”

I saw this episode of SNL as a young, childless person, back when I stayed up later. In those days I read books, went dancing, painted, and actually managed to watch late night television. Good times.

Then I had kids. And those wriggling screaming bundles of awesome changed everything. Don’t get me wrong – kids are all that and a bag of chips, and they allowed my husband and I to use phrases like “Who’s yo daddy?” and actually mean it. But something was missing.

I figured it must be the cowbell.

We all lose a little part of ourselves when we have children. “Lose” is a bad word, perhaps. How about “misplace”? We still have all of the same hobbies, goals, and desires that we had before – but we have to put them on hold for a little bit. Our priorities become different, and these changed priorities are what cause us to forego watching Saturday Night Live in favor of snuggling a sleepy baby, stay home from work to care for an ill child, or buy braces instead of a new car. (WHY DO THEY COST SO MUCH? It sucks when the bling on the kids’ teeth costs more than your whole wardrobe.)

We all miss our versions of “more cowbell” at least sometimes, not just in the form of television, but in the form of all those little things that used to make us feel good. For example, your cowbell might be high heels and party dresses, or the simple freedom to leave home without planning and packing for an hour. Or maybe your cowbell is the ability to fit into that college sweater that you used to love so much, back before you had kids and your abdominal apron started to keep time like a fleshy metronome during your daily run.

We seek things that give us those happy feelings, the same ones we had when we first saw a favorite SNL sketch or hula-hooped our way into a camp trophy. We develop strong emotional attachments to such things because the feelings and the memories are meshed together. Beanie Babies might make us smile. Slap bracelets might make us wince. Nirvana might make us want to weep. We will always remember the feelings these things evoked. It’s why thinking about your first love still triggers strong emotions –your brain does way more than remember experiences. It remembers happiness. It remembers hormone levels. (And teenage hormones are no joke.)

When I watched the “more cowbell” skit, I found it delightful. And I still do today, because nothing dramatic has happened to change that association. It’s the same reason I will still call people “home skillet” occasionally – it’s because all my hotplate home girls of the past have left some pretty fantastic associations in that part of my brain. And I want you in on that. Because I like you.

And even though I work damn hard to make sure I always have some cowbell in my life, I sometimes need to scream, “MORE COWBELL!” Because being surrounded by things that you love matters.

And because cowbells are stupid fly. (Obviously.)

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“Megsanity” is the alias of a licensed clinical therapist who has spent the majority of the last ten years working as the Clinical Director/Vice President of Clinical Operations for a JCAHO accredited mental health facility. She needed an anonymous outlet where it was acceptable to drop the F-bomb like it’s hot, so she started Megsanity. Women, psychology and expletives, a blog that strives to promote an understanding of female psychology through recent and anthropological research, girl power, expletives, sarcasm and sexual innuendo. You can also find her on Facebook.

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Photo credits:
“Dick in a Box”: Television still from the December 4th, 2013 episode of Saturday Night Live, aired on NBC. Featuring The Lonely Island and Justin Timberlake. 
“More Cowbell”: Source unknown. Footage from Saturday Night Live, aired on NBC. Featuring Will Farrell.

vicki lesage: sauce deluxe

Today I am tickled pink to bring you this hilarious guest post from writer, blogger, humorist, and all-around hot mama Vicki Lesage. You can find Vicki on her personal blog and in her memoirs Confessions of a Paris Party Girl and Confessions of a Paris Potty Trainer.

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Ever wonder what it’s like eating at a McDonald’s in Paris? Ever not wonder, but then you just read that last sentence and now maybe you are wondering? Well, you’re in luck. Read on, and discover everything you ever wanted to know about Parisian McDonald’s employees and their unhealthy possessiveness of Sauce Deluxe.

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Pulp Fiction taught me loads of useful information. If someone ODs in front of me, stab a syringe of adrenaline into their sternum (kids, don’t try this at home). I now know the difference between a motorcycle and a chopper (truth: I don’t). Most importantly, mayonnaise + fries = artery-clogging pieces of heaven.

Move along, ketchup. Cavort with hot dogs and burgers all you want. My fries need more calories than you can offer. And not only does mayo with fries taste better, but you look European. Classy.

McDonald’s in France took it one step further, creating Sauce Deluxe. It’s fancy. Don’t believe me? “Deluxe” is right there in the name! I’m not sure exactly what the sauce is, but it’s rich and creamy and has herbs in it. It’s mayonnaise’s rich, sexier cousin. I don’t need to know more. I just want to dip my fries in it, smear it on my face, and swim in a pool of it if I can get my hands on enough of it.

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King of the Sauces.

But that’s the thing. You can’t get your hands on enough of it. The McDonald’s employees guard that stuff like it’s the Crown Jewels. Ordering it requires some secret code. And you’re never sure it’ll actually be waiting for you at the bottom of your soggy take-out bag.

You see, Its Royal Highness is served as a side for Deluxe Potatoes, which is French for “deluxe potatoes.” You have to say it with an accent in order to be understood, so you end up sounding like an asshat saying “deuh-loox poh-tay-tohs” with really wimpy t’s.

Deluxe Potatoes are fine but they’re not as luxurious as they sound. They’re just potato wedges, really. And the potato-to-deep-fried ratio is all out of whack. A French fry gives you way more grease for your buck.

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Deluxe Potatoes. French for “meh.”

So your best bet for a tasty calorie-laden feast is fries with Sauce Deluxe, but good luck completing this black market transaction. My crazy fry-lovin’ ass always tries anyway. “Bonjour, I’d like a Big Mac Menu (pronounced “Beeg-uh Mack-uh Men-oo”) with Sauce Deluxe on the side.”

One of three things will happen:

1. “Huh? Which sauce?” Bitch, don’t act like you don’t know what I’m saying. There’s no other sauce that even sounds remotely like the one I just said. But no matter how many times I repeat “Soss deuh-loox” I’m met with a blank stare. Finally, I tap out Morse code and comprehension dawns. “Ah, you meant soss deuh-loox.” Gah, that’s exactly what I said!

2. “You can only get that with Deluxe Potatoes, not fries.” What, are they stapled together? Why can’t I get Sauce Deluxe with anything other than Deluxe Potatoes? Here’s 30 Deluxe Cents, gimme the damn sauce.

3. “Sure.” Wait, what? I anticipated more of a problem than this. Oh, there we go. They forgot to put the damn sauce in the bag, forcing me to eat plain fries. Did you hear me? PLAIN FRIES, people. The horror.

It shouldn’t be this hard. I should be able to order it, pay for it, and receive it. It’s McDonald’s, not rocket surgery.

But after years of hardcore investigative work, I finally cracked the code.

Step 1: Order everything EXCEPT the Sauce Deluxe. Wait until they repeat it back to you so that you’re sure they didn’t eff the rest of it up.

Step 2: When they ask “Is that all?” NOW is when you say, as if it just occurred to you, “Oh, and a Sauce Deluxe.” They’ll say “You have to pay,” in a tone that indicates they think you’re too cheap to pay 30 cents. You respond with “OK,” in a tone that says, “I eat 30 cents for breakfast” because if you’re going to fork over that much cold hard cash you might as well feel superior about it.

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Oh, you need exact change? Hold on a sec. It’s in my other treasure chest.

Step 3: Wait 20 minutes for them to assemble your order because even though it’s fast food, they never anticipated that more than one person between the hours of 6 pm and 8 pm would want a Big Mac. They did anticipate you’d want fries, though, so those are getting nice and cold in your bag while you wait.

Step 4: Right as they’re about to hand you the bag, gently ask “And the Sauce Deluxe is in there, right?” Nine times out of ten, it won’t be. But if you would have asked earlier, they would have made a mental note to get it later and then forgot. The sauce is too cool to sit in the bag like a chump; it has to be the last to arrive to the party.

Now 30 cents lighter and one Sauce Deluxe heavier, you’re ready to relax and enjoy cold fries. Totally worth it.

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A Midwest native, Vicki currently lives in Paris, where she indulges in wine when she’s not busy working or having babies. IT Director by day, she squeezes in writing wherever she can, from blog posts to books. Her common theme is complaining about France but as an equal opportunist she complains about plenty of other things as well. She loves fondue, wine, math, and zombies. Everything’s better with zombies.

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Photo credits:
“Gold coins”: English Wikipedia, original upload 17 September 2005 by Swiss Banker, who is the creator of the image. Licensing: Public domain. This work has been released into the public domain by its author, Swiss Banker at Wikipedia. This applies worldwide. — Modified

my girl A: penny wise, tongue foolish

Today’s guest post is a Very Special Guest Post.

*lets that sink in for a moment*

Aaaand we’re back.

Yes, it is indeed a Very Special Guest Post because it is the FIRST AND ONLY guest post written by ONE OF MY REAL LIFE FRIENDS! Please welcome, cherish, and love up one of my actual factual besties: My Girl A!

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So. I’ve got this tiny Chihuahua named Penny. She has one blind eye, and she’s missing teeth on one side, so her tongue hangs out. She’s 11, and she doesn’t care about anything.

I’ve known her to whiz in plain sight of me as if to say “Look at this. LOOK AT WHAT I HAVE DONE HERE.” Same goes for pooping, and the really sad part is THAT SHE HAS NO REASON. She knows full well how to receive “treatsies” – pee and poop outside! I even altered the back door so that she can do it at her leisure.

One day I noticed that Penny was scratching herself to the max. I tend to let her have longer toenails, because clipping them is very traumatic for her — she cries and shakes and is a general drama queen about the whole thing. Then, afterwards, she lays around on her back, giving me The Eye. (If I try and cheer her up, she climbs under my shirt, but verrrrrrry slowly, just to really ram the guilt and sadness home.)

I could see that scratching herself with those long-ass toenails was tearing her shit UP, so I made an appointment with the vet. It turned out that Penny had a skin infection. She received some kind of injection, had her nails clipped (how COULD you, MOTHER!?) and got a salve for her itchy areas. The receptionist also recommended I get Penny an itch-relieving “Hot Spot Spray,” apparently attainable at any pet store. We left, and I took my little chihuahua home to wallow.

Later I had some errands to run (Target, let me keep your lights on with ALL THE MONEY) so I figured that first I’d stop off at the pet store and have a look for the spray.

A very nice young gal showed me the extensive line they carried, and that made me feel better. There were so many of them that I realized this must be a common thing. She described the one I bought as being a “deterrent.” It was all natural, and organic – I could basically drink from the bottle, was what it sounded like she was saying.

So off I went to Target. It was pretty early in the morning, and it wasn’t open yet, so I stopped at McDonald’s for an iced coffee and a biscuit. By the time I got back to the parking lot, I only had about ten minutes left to wait. I opened the bag from PetSmart and had another look at the spray. I thought to myself: “This is all natural and organic and what not — I wonder what it tastes like.”

(Let me stop here for a moment and say that within my group of friends and family, I’m known as “The Taster.” I’ll taste or lick just about anything for a small fee or favor. My nieces and nephews go out of their way to try and bust me. But I’m a master, and will go the distance.)

So naturally I went ahead, sprayed some Hot Spot Spray on my finger, and… tasted it.

All hell broke loose. It was like Satan pissed in my mouth, and then shoved a ghost pepper in there just to teach me a lesson. I started drooling and began to sweat. I became fairly sure I was dying.

I had my McDonald’s biscuit, so I shoved that in my mouth Cookie Monster-style. But somehow the grease settled the Hot Spot Spray even deeper into my throat. I had my coffee next to me, so I took the lid off, opened my car door, and tried to rinse my mouth out, spitting onto the pavement, real classy like. No go.

I wished a silent RIP to myself.

By this time, I noticed people were filing into Target, and in my hysteria, I thought that I would just ask someone for some candy or gum. I ran up to the first woman I saw and asked her. She hustled away, not speaking to me, and I wished I had some Hot Spot Spray to blast in her face.

Then I went up to the service desk attendant and asked if he had any candy or gum. My excuse was that I was ill, and had a terrible taste in my mouth. He was happy to help!  He got his jacket, put his hand in, and pulled out 5 or so pieces of heavenly release for me. I grabbed them from him, and just as I was popping them into my mouth, the familiar scent hit my nose. But at that point it was too late. The damage was already done.

I had just received Red Hots, and I had no other choice but to fling myself off a cliff.

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A true connoisseur of all things Reddit, Tom Hardy, and Benedict Cumberbatch, My Girl A is one of the funniest people I know and I just love her so hard. Hopefully you’ll see more of her on est. 1975 in the future, but if you can’t wait until then, there’s a funny chat between me and her here.

pixie c.d.: friends are golden but vodka is cherry

Today’s guest post is brought to you by a woman who is so real and so funny and so supportive of this blog that I almost don’t even know how to thank her. Please welcome the wonderful Chris Dean of pixie c.d., an awesome, genuine, one-of-a-kind mom-blog that chronicles the adventures of a middle-aged mama who simply refuses to grow up.

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Stick around and read about Chris’ very first time hitting the sauce and getting hit right back. It’s hilarious and true and we’ve ALL been there. Trust.

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Way back in the dark ages of Girl Scouts, we used to (be forced to) sing this song about friends. It was something about them being silver and gold. Or maybe non-refundable. (Or something like that.) Anyway, the point I’m trying to make is: there are times in every person’s life when you NEED the gold friends.

Don’t get me wrong. The friends that’ll hang out with you at the mall or watch that movie your sweetie thinks looks like a waste of time are all fine and dandy. They would be the silver in your life.

But then there are the folks that aren’t just another shoulder to cry on or ear to listen to you during your darkest hours (like a month into your first year of college when your boyfriend just dumped you over the phone). Oh sure, they’ll be that, but they’ll also have the shittiest of shit-eating grins plastered on their smug mugs as they quietly hand you a bottle of Cherry Dark Eyes Vodka in between your every sob over your two-timing ex. THESE friends? Are pure gold!

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The nice thing is that as you sit there, pouring out your broken heart in tears, sipping straight from the pint bottle your buddy has mysteriously pulled out of his trench coat, the pain will begin to…lessen. Eventually, the giggles will set in, signaling the “I’m OVER that asshole! Because I was too good for that prick anyway and can do SO much better!” phase.

At least, you’re pretty sure that’s what you were trying to say, even though your tongue got all wrapped around your eye teeth so you couldn’t quite see what you were saying. “Now gifs me ‘noder ship, broffer!”

You’re not worried about getting drunk ‘cause nothing that tastes like cherry cough syrup could be THAT alcoholic, right? Besides, you’re starting to feel all warm and relaxed and everything is right with the world because you have the BEST friends in the history of EVER! Right up until you try to stand up and head for the john and everything sort of tilts…sideways.

Forget your buddy with the booze. The wall is your new bestie, holding you up when there’s no one else in the world who will. Which you spend a good five minutes explaining to it, your cheek pressed against its wonderful coolness and your hand lovingly petting it like a wall-puppy.

Once you make it to the bathroom, you probably spend some extra time talking to the sink, since it would be just plain WEIRD to talk to the porcelain perch as you’re perched upon its porcelain-ness. “Don’t worry, Perch. I’ll thank you while I’m trying to remember how to turn the water on to wash my hands.”

Judging by the number of snickering folks gathered outside the throne room door, you guess your conversations with the facilities weren’t in your head like you thought. Or all that quiet. Or maybe everyone in the house has just suddenly gained psychic powers. Which, oddly enough, doesn’t sound as crazy as it should.

You might be wasted if…

But fear not, for these people are your bestest friends You know this by the revolving glasses of sweet, never-before-tasted drinks they keep shoving in your hands. Thanks to their deep love and concern, the night has passed from heartbreak to discovering that your secret identity is Super Woman! Or maybe it’s Super Drunk. Either way works for you, since their superpower is the same — spilling shit.

As the night drags on in a foggy spiral of slurs, spills, enough f-bombs to curl your mother’s hair from 150 miles away, and three times the usual number of visits to your always-there bud, the crapper, it slowly dawns on you that you just.might.be.drunk. HOWEVER, since you’ve never been there before, you’re now forced to ask EVERYONE in the house if you are, in fact, wasted.

Not one to blindly base your belief on the opinions of others, you call friends you haven’t spoken to since junior high to poll them on your state of drunkness. (Drunkness; because good grammar goes out the window in the face of cherry vodka.) Don’t even worry about the fact that it’s after midnight and they’re all away at college; their parents will HAPPILY relay your message first thing in the morning.

The pass-out arrives

As your slurring reaches the point where you can’t even understand yourself and you’re using your fingers to prop your right eyelid half open, it’s officially time to say hello to Mr. Pass-Out-On-The-Floor. Again, your friends are so damn golden that they bring you a pillow and blanket to make the hardwood floor as comfy as possible. They even listen sympathetically as you expound on your fear that, being “asleep” by unnatural means, you might not wake up through the next five or so calls from Nature.

“Don’t even worry!” they say. “We’ll take good care of you.” And that they do, as they continue to drink. Yes, drink to the point that someone comes up with the beautifully TERRIBLE idea to pour a glass of warm water on the floor by your ass, then shake you while screaming, “Wake up! You peed the floor, you nasty bitch!”

Drunken, panicked terror and humiliation — all in the name of a damn good laugh. For them. But the alcohol takes over and you pass back out in your squishy, soggy pants to wake a few hours later to a glorious, sunny, weekday morning. And miss every single class before noon.

Yes, my silver friends, that is the meaning of true friendship. The golden people in your life don’t just love you, they love you enough to offer up their illegally-gotten booze in the name of getting your 17-year-old ass drunk for the first time. They love you enough to lend you their phone for a game of long-distance drunk-dialing. They love you enough to stick around to torture you once the pass-out hits. Because they care THAT DAMN MUCH.

Man, I really miss those guys…

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Chris Dean is married to an amazingly tolerant man who swears he doesn’t mind putting up with her. They live in Indiana with their four adult-kids and the petting zoo she has systematically managed to turn their home and yard into.

foxy wine pocket: my first (and last) brazilian

Today’s guest post is brought to you by friend and sister-wife Kelly Fox: the brains, brass, and beauty behind twisted suburban mom-blog Foxy Wine Pocket. Check out the hilarious post below to learn everything you ever wanted to know about Kelly’s hoo-ha, then go check out her site to find out what the actual fuck a “foxy wine pocket” is.

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Cartoon representation of Kelly that we all can masturbate to.

Now sit back, grab a bottle of vino, and enjoy!

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My husband and I have been married for over 17 years (obviously, I was a teen bride — OBVIOUSLY) so it can sometimes be a challenge to keep the spice in our sex life. We’ve used lots of things over the years: lingerie, toys, porn, you know the drill (we have never used a drill).

But my favorite “spice” is pubic hair art. That is, over the years, I’ve shaved various shapes into my pubic region: hearts, arrows, a martini glass, his initial, etc. (My god, I just realized that I’m an artist, and my medium is pubic hair.) If a particular piece doesn’t come out well, I just make it a Rorschach test, and we have great sex anyway.

I will not be including any of those pictures with this post.

For my husband’s last birthday, I decided to surprise him with a Brazilian. Now, I’ve never had a wax job on any part of me before, much less one where they remove everything from my hoo-ha. (I know, I know, they don’t actually have to remove everything, but I figured go big or go home, right?) I decided that I could spare some hair in honor of my husband.

I should have known that this wasn’t going to be my thing when I made the first appointment and got the stomach flu a few days before it. Not the kind of stomach flu where you’re projectile vomiting everywhere, but the kind where you can’t even move without shitting your pants. So, even though the flu was gone the day before the appointment, I just couldn’t trust my sphincter to stay in check. I mean, it’s one (humiliating) thing to poop on the table while you’re having a baby. It’s something else entirely when you’re getting a Brazilian. You could be banned for that shit.

So I cancelled that appointment and made a new one. I didn’t think much of the whole process when I was scheduling the appointments, but honestly, I was a little nervous when the day came. When the technician arrived, I gave her a frightened look.

“First time?” she inquired.

“Yep,” I chirped softly.

She then proceeded to explain the process and how she was going to remove the most sensitive hair first and then the rest of it. And then she moved the blanket.

“Oh. Uhhhhh, well, first we need to trim the hair back a bit. Quite a bit.”

I guess I had a forest going on there. I silently cursed my Italian grandmother. And the technician proceeded to trim my pubes with teeny tiny scissors (at least she didn’t have to get out a chainsaw), which actually tickled a bit. So I giggled and then got nervous about giggling over someone touching my pubic hair. Because it seemed vaguely inappropriate. (But it felt kinda nice.)

“Okay, now that we’ve trimmed the hair, I’m going to remove the most sensitive area first.”

“I’ve pushed out two kids. How hard can this be?” I pretended to be brave.

“Okay, then, here I go.”

“HOLYMOTHEROFUCKINGSHITBALLSMOTHERFUCKER!!” I screamed in my head.

But what I uttered through clenched teeth was a weak, “I’m okay.”

And then she pressed her hand against my pubic bone (I assume to alleviate the pain).

“Harder! Harder! HARDERRRRR!” I screamed. Only that might have caused some more awkwardness.

After she threw me a weird glance, she assured me, “Well, that was the worst one. It gets easier from here.”

And it went like that for one fucking long session. Time became meaningless. I tried to concentrate on my breathing and not kicking her in the fucking face. Breathe in. Breathe out. Restrain foot. Repeat.

Fortunately, she was right. The first one was the worst. (But the rest sucked pretty hard too.) After removing all of my hair, she applied some sort of soothing salve. It had a name. I don’t remember it. I was kind a hoping for a massage. Or a cigarette.

But the awkward sexual innuendo and the pain are not the reasons I will no longer be getting Brazilians. No, I could deal with those again. There are three other reasons I will no longer be waxing the hooha:

1. After the technician left the room, I picked myself up off of the table. Actually I kind of slid off of the table in my own sweat. I walked over to the mirror to examine myself, and I was horrified. Not because I looked like a prepubescent girl (although that was slightly horrifying). I was horrified because it was at that moment that I realized that my pregnancy stretch marks went ALL THE WAY DOWN INTO MY TANTALIZING TRIANGLE. They look like grotesque, greedy little fingers pointing the way down. Or lightening bolts threatening to strike any who enter.

Fortunately for me, my husband didn’t seem to notice the stretch marks. He was quite happy with the results. Also, he was too busy noticing that…

2. …without the hair there to provide a buffer, I was horny as hell. Constantly. This became a problem. (Dan didn’t think this was a problem.) It didn’t matter where I went or what I was doing, I wanted to attack my husband. Or the waiter. Or the lamppost. I had Happy Hairless Vagina-itis. (Yes, I know it’s not actually your vagina that gets waxed, but it had a better ring to it than Happy Hairless Pubic and Genital Region-itis. See?)

Suffice it to say, we had a lot of sex over the next week. But the constant horniness only lasted until…

3. …the hair started growing back, and I switched from ecstasy to agony. AGONY. Apparently — and no one warned me about this — I am not a good candidate for waxing. The itching, while annoying, was the least of my problems. Turns out that I am prone to ingrown hairs, and they hurt like a mofo. I started referring to my lady garden as my “Not So Happy Hairless Vagina” and started telling my husband I had boils and scurvy and bad, bad shit. I looked like a diseased slave from Game of Thrones. Not even a Dothraki would ravage me.

So, basically, I’m done with the Brazilians. Forever. I’ll stick to pubic hair art to spice things up.

I’m thinking about a chili pepper next.

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Spicy!

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Kelly Fox is a mom and a writer, and she lives in the San Francisco Bay Area of California. She has two (young) school-aged children and one fabulous husband (that’d be weird if she had more than one, right?). She also has a cute dog—a *really* cute dog. Her blog can be found at http://foxywinepocket.com.