my day off

est. 1975 has a day completely to herself! What does she do with it? You'll never guess... because it's boring as hell. #funny #humor #est1975blog #est1975 @est1975blog

A couple of weeks ago, my husband approached me and spoke the words I’ve been longing to hear since our son was born.

No, not: “I’m finally going to stop bugging you about butt stuff.”

No, not: “I’m so over sticking my hands down my pants while watching television.”

No, not: “I promise to never again leave my dirty clothes on the kitchen floor after coming home from work and undressing in front of the stove like a crazy person.”

(Though, let’s be honest. I never had the slightest expectation that my husband would say any of those things. Because I am a realistic woman.)

This is what he did say, however:

“So . . . I’m thinking about taking our son on a day trip.” 

Here was my external reaction:

est. 1975 has a day completely to herself! What does she do with it? You'll never guess... because it's boring as hell. #funny #humor #est1975blog #est1975 @est1975blog
“Ho hum. Whatevs. Like I care. I’ve already forgotten what you just said. I’m out, y’all. PEACE.”

My internal reaction, however, was more like:

est. 1975 has a day completely to herself! What does she do with it? You'll never guess... because it's boring as hell. #funny #humor #est1975blog #est1975 @est1975blog

“Oh, really?” I replied, casually. “Where you gonna take him?”

“Down to Cincinnati to watch Nadal play some tennis.”

“Huh,” I said, disinterestedly. Because you gots to play it cool, am I right? Even when you’re already making a “My Day Off” mix tape in your head. (First song? “Celebration” by Kool & the Gang.)

“Wanna come along?” asked my husband.

Um . . .

est. 1975 has a day completely to herself! What does she do with it? You'll never guess... because it's boring as hell. #funny #humor #est1975blog #est1975 @est1975blog

But it was a fine line I needed to walk. I had to seem like I wanted to go, but not enough to make my husband think I really should go.

“Nah,” I smiled. “You two go on and have a special father-son day.”

“You sure?” asked my husband, sounding concerned. “You won’t be too lonely?”

Now. I’m all about Real Talk here on est. 1975, so I’ll freely admit that what was running through my head was this:


But what I actually said was this: “Of course I won’t be lonely! You guys will have an awesome time.”

Wow. Such cool. Very cucumber.

So my husband and son clambered into the car, all excited to go watch athletes of some nature play some kind of sport I didn’t care about, and I waved at them through the window and blew them a thousand kisses. Kisses that were fake as hell. Because as soon as my husband’s car was out of sight, My Day Off began.

I even had an agenda.


10:30 AM: Immediately turn off the television. Relish the fact that for twelve hours I will not once have to watch SportsCenter or hear the theme song to Teen Titans Go!

11:00 AM: Go directly to KFC for lunch. Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200. Do not wear a bra or put on deodorant.

est. 1975 has a day completely to herself! What does she do with it? You'll never guess... because it's boring as hell. #funny #humor #est1975blog #est1975 @est1975blog
I want fried chicken in my mouth and I want it now.

12:00 PM: *burp*

12:30 PM: Say to myself: “While they’re gone, I might as well get some work done.” Then laugh and laugh because YEAH, RIGHT. Spend the next two hours watching YouTube videos.

2:30 PM: Start to feel legitimately bad about not doing anything productive. Do three sit-ups and feed the cat.

3:00 PM: ZZZzzzzz.

5:00 PM: Wake up from my nap with a mouth as dry and gritty as the floor of an ancient Egyptian burial chamber. Chug five glasses of water while watching more YouTube.

6:30 PM: *beep boop beep* “Hello, is this Pizza Hut?”

8:00 PM: “Shit. They’re going to be back in less than three hours. I haven’t done any work. I haven’t done any cleaning. I haven’t even showered. I better get something done pronto. But first, I’ll just check Facebook.”

8:30 PM: Still on Facebook.

9:00 PM: Still on Facebook.

9:30 PM: Still on Facebook.

10:00 PM: Realize that My Day Off is almost over and I have literally nothing to show for it. Decide to at least put on some clean pajamas, then change my mind, because that would just make for extra laundry.

10:30 PM: Hear the garage door open. Quickly dive into bed, turn off the lamp, and commence with fake snoring, because twelve hours clearly wasn’t enough time alone and I still want more. Does that make me a bad wife and mother? Maybe. Do I care?

est. 1975 has a day completely to herself! What does she do with it? You'll never guess... because it's boring as hell. #funny #humor #est1975blog #est1975 @est1975blog

Not even a little.


If you haven’t already done so, consider following est. 1975 on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Pinterest! I add fresh, hilarious material every single day.


Photo credits:
“KFC Store” – CC BY 2.0; File:KFC signs – Old and New.jpg; Uploaded by Jayblue42; Created: 11 June 2006 — Modified
Michelle Visage .gif – Source unknown, footage from Rupaul’s Drag Race, aired on LogoTV

sheet stains

There has been a smear of liquid foundation on my bed sheet for a week.

It looks like poop. And it’s right at about butt level, too. If someone were to accidentally wander into my bedroom, they would probably jump to the conclusion that I’d sharted during sex.

I know *I* would jump to that conclusion.

est. 1975 has a stain in her bed and she is not doing shit about it. #funny #humor #stain #bed #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
My husband and I. About every single stain and/or smell that appears in our bed.

Fortunately, only my husband, my son, and I ever go into my bedroom. And I know this to be the case. So when I was doing my makeup in bed (why) and accidentally pumped my little bottle of foundation too hard and squirted it all over the sheets (dumb), I made the controversial decision to:

  1. Give it a half-assed blot with some toilet paper.
  2. Abandon the pretense.
  3. Toss the duvet over it and act like nothing ever happened.

I didn’t decide these things because I’m lazy (I am). I didn’t decide them because I’m gross (also yes). I decided them because I hate changing sheets with Every. Fiber. Of. My. Being.

est. 1975 has a stain in her bed and she is not doing shit about it. #funny #humor #stain #bed #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
You see an unmade bed. I see the stuff of nightmares.

Now, now. Calm your tits. Don’t go running to the phone to inform Social Services that I’m an unfit wife and/or mother. I may be gross but I’m not that gross. I change the bed sheets just as regularly as anyone else. It’s just that in this particular instance I had JUST changed them. Like the DAY before.

And I really, really, really didn’t want to change them again.

I felt a *teensy* bit guilty about not doing it. Just a teensy. So I had a mini-conversation with myself in order to justify my reasoning:

Me: “You should probably change those sheets.”

Myself: “Don’t be ridiculous. Look at that. It’s just an itty bitty blemish on an otherwise pristine set of sheets.”

Me: “But it looks like poop.”

Myself: “So?”

Me: “So, poop is gross.”

Myself: “It might look like poop, but it isn’t poop. There’s no smell. There’s no germs. There’s no hygiene issue here.”

Me: “But…”

Myself: “Oh, so you really want to rip off all the sheets and fucking do all that work right now?”

Me: “No.”

Myself: “Well, then.”

Me: “ . . . ”

Myself: “Do we have any Cheetos? I’m hungry for Cheetos.”

And thus the sheets remain unchanged.

Oh, don’t judge. When my son was just a little guy with what I would characterize as an “unpredictable esophagus,” I was changing sheets constantly. That kid could barf, and he did it a lot. Every time he ate something funny. Every time he got stressed. Every time he caught a cold. Every time he took a ride in the car. Every time anything happened at all. He was a master of the violent and overly productive retch, and a disproportionate amount of this retching happened at night. In bed. On clean sheets.

est. 1975 has a stain in her bed and she is not doing shit about it. #funny #humor #stain #bed #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
If my son was the Christ child.

Still. A mom has to do what a mom has to do. My husband and I swiftly came to an arrangement: he cleaned up the kid, and I cleaned up the sheets. Each of us did these jobs reluctantly, but we did them nonetheless, looking stoically forward to the day that our son would grow out of his incessant horking. Which he eventually did.

Then, what seemed like a blink of an eye later, the nightly nosebleeds started.

It turned out that my son had a bunch of blood vessels in his nose that were too close to the surface, and he ended up needing nasal cautery surgery to fix the problem. But it took us about a year to a) definitively diagnose the problem, b) try out non-surgical options, and then c) convince our son that he was not going go to into surgery and wake up dead.

A whole year. Of bloody pillowcases and sheets.

*shakes head*


Fortunately, my son is now six and he no longer pukes at the drop of a hat. The nosebleed problem is solved. There are no more overnight accidents (which I didn’t even bother to mention, because we all know what those entail.) And last but not least: our two elderly cats, who were also a dab hand at expressing biohazard all over our bed sheets, have at long last crossed the Rainbow Bridge. So I’m finally back on a “normal” routine of changing the linens.

So, a smear of foundation? It didn’t come from a butt. It didn’t come from a nose. It didn’t come from an unpredictable esophagus. It is NOT EVEN A THING. It can wait till the weekend.

IT. CAN. WAIT. Trust.

This, on the other hand:

est. 1975 has a stain in her bed and she is not doing shit about it. #funny #humor #stain #bed #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
Aw hell no.


An earlier version of this piece was published in 2014 on BLUNTmoms.

If you haven’t already done so, consider following est. 1975 on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Pinterest! I add fresh, hilarious material every single day.


Photo credits:
“Woman Washing Kettle”: Artist Adriaan de Lelie (1755–1820); Title “Woman scrubbing a kettle”; Date 1796; Source/Photographer; — Modified
“Virgin and Child: Title “The Virgin and Child,” a painting attributed to the Master of Flemalle; Date 6 March 2013; Source — Modified
“Unmade Bed”: Date 18 April 2005, 01:04:01; Source Flickr; Author Liz Lawley — Modified
“Couple in Bed”: Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864–1901); Title “In the Bed”; Date 1893; Source/Photographer The Yorck Project: 10.000 Meisterwerke der Malerei. DVD-ROM, 2002. ISBN 3936122202. Distributed by DIRECTMEDIA Publishing GmbH. — Modified

my son the mouth-breather

my son the mouth-breather, by est. 1975 at #funny #humor #parenting #est1975blog #est1975 #established1975 @est1975blog

On most mornings, my husband tries to wake up before dawn. It almost never actually happens, but what *does* happen is that his phone’s alarms go off at 3 AM, 4 AM, 5 AM, and 6 AM. With plenty of snoozes in between.

I sleep through all of it.

My son used to get chronic bloody noses. We eventually had his nasal passages cauterized, but before that, there was a good long year of him waking up in the wee hours of the night, screaming, crying, with blood gushing out of his adorable face. He would call for us, frightened out of his little mind: “Papa! Mama!”

I would sleep through all of it.

Loud things happen at our house all the time, and a lot of them happen after lights-out. The cat will spend a half hour hacking up an enormous hairball. Our ancient furnace will shudder, thunk, and sometimes shut down altogether with a god-awful CLANK. A thunderstorm will rant and rage, causing the garbage can to blow over, hit the ground with a thud, and roll down the sidewalk.

I’ll give you one guess as to whether I sleep through all of it.

And just in case you’re wondering, I really am ASLEEP. Not “oh, the baby is crying, pretend you don’t hear it” asleep but “ZzzzzzzzzsdfjsdhSNRKzzzzzz” asleep. My deep sleep is the deep sleep of the gods. It takes me a long time to get there, but once I’m out, I’m OUT. Nothing can wake me.

Except for one thing.

But before I tell you what it is, let me back up for a second and give you a little bit of context.

My son, who is seven years old and an only child, complains a lot about being “cold and scared and lonely” in his bedroom at night. He makes these claims despite the following facts:

  • We let him sleep with the bedroom door wide open;
  • We keep the hallway light on, even though it is brighter than a thousand suns;
  • His bedroom is less than two feet away from our bedroom;
  • We keep the thermostat at a toasty 72 degrees;
  • He has over one hundred thousand million blankets and stuffed animals to keep him warm; and
  • We have provided him with (among other things): a night light, a radio, and a white noise machine.

Oh, and the cat likes to sleep with him. At the foot of his bed. A snuggly warm companion if ever there was one.

my son the mouth-breather by est.1975 at #funny #humor #parenting #est1975blog #est1975 #established1975 @est1975blog
Cold and scared and lonely, my ass.

So. Because of my son’s totally “reasonable” and “legitimate” concern about freezing to death in his sleep, alone and petrified and unloved, his bedtime now heralds a nightly dramatic production of Why Can’t I Sleep In Your Bed With You? A Play in Three Hundred Acts. It usually starts at about 7 PM and wraps up around 9:30 PM, with many glasses of water, trips to the bathroom, goodnight kisses and hugs, and random complaints involved in between. He falls asleep eventually, of course.

For a little while.

But then, anywhere between 4 AM and 6 AM, my dear son will awake from slumber to “use the toilet.” And of course by “use the toilet,” I mean “stumble sleep-drunk into our bathroom for a pee, then forget to flush the john or wash his hands, then climb over us into our bed, while we’re dead asleep and too out of it to fight him off.”

At which point he crams himself between us and falls instantly asleep, with his head turned towards me and his mouth WIDE. OPEN. And that’s when it happens.

I wake up.

If you’ve never smelled the breath of a 7-year-old mouth-breather in the middle of the night, then you should consider yourself one lucky son of a B. Seriously. I mean it. Little-kid morning breath is a gnarly combination of odors so awful they’re almost beyond description. There’s a fungal and tangy element, like overpowering foot stench, yet it’s also somehow rotten and disturbingly sweet, like a decomposing corpse in the bayou. If I were forced to define it in three words, I would use the words “overwhelming,” “putrid,” and “excuse me while I barf.”

My point is that my son’s 4 AM breath has GIRTH. It has HEFT. It has POWER.

It can wake me from a straight-up dead slumber, like nothing else can.

So I have been driven to take preemptive measures, people. I now sleep facing the wall at all times. I build a “head-fort” of pillows before bed, and I dive under it for relief if necessary. In dire situations, when the wretched stench is powerful enough to waft over my shoulders, I resort to emergency evacuation measures and just go sleep in my son’s bed. His pillows smell bad, but they don’t smell anywhere near as bad as his funky, nasty face abyss.

I mean mouth.

my son the mouth-breather by est. 1975 at #funny #humor #parenting @est1975blog #est1975 #est1975blog @established1975


An earlier version of this piece was published in January 2015 on humor/parenting blog A Day in the Life of a Drama Queen’s Momma.

If you haven’t already done so, consider following est. 1975 on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Pinterest! I add fresh, hilarious material every single day.

Photo credits:
“Lullaby”: William-Adolphe Bouguereau (1825-1905) – Lullaby (1875) — Modified
“Two Sleeping Children”: Title = Two Sleeping Children; Year = c.1612-13; Artist=Peter Paul Rubens; Licensing: {{PD-Art}} –Modified

and panties all in a bunch

1839: Oil on canvas by Edward Delacroix: Tasso à l'hôpital de St Anne Ferrara (Tasso in the Madhouse) - public domain

If you’re a regular fan of this blog, or if you follow me on social media at all, chances are good you’ve already deduced  that yes, I do indeed suffer from a mighty case of depression.

And you would not be wrong.

Still. I wouldn’t go changing your name to “Columbo” just yet. For one thing, you need a fake eyeball, a dirty trench coat, and 38 thousand packs of cigarettes to really sell it. More to the point, you need to be able to crack cases a LOT tougher than this one. I mean, it’s not exactly Unsolved Mysteries over here. I’m pretty sure just about anyone with access to the evidence would come to the same conclusion.

Let’s take a look at the facts, shall we?

  • Given the choice between taking a nap or a shower, I alwZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzz
  • I have actually said the words: “I’m not tired enough to sleep, but I am too tired to watch television.”
  • My idea of a good time? Eating vast quantities of Chinese food, then falling asleep instantly.
  • *sees hairbrush* “Not today.”
  • *sees toothbrush* “Nah.”
  • When my husband gets home from a long day at work, I find the best way to greet him is to ugly-cry for 45 minutes about how I stubbed my pinky toe on the washing machine seven hours ago.
  • I have actually thought to myself: “Thank God my son is in school full-time, otherwise when would I watch my six hours of YouTube videos a day?”
  • “My glasses are dirty.” *does nothing about it*
  • “I forgot to put on deodorant.” *does nothing about it*
  • “Is that a skid mark in my underwear?” *does nothing about it*
  • “I’m a month behind on my work.” *binge-watches The Blacklist*

I guess what I’m saying is: Calm your boobs, Sherlock. It wasn’t like you needed to bring in a profiler or anything to figure this shit out.

But worry not, loyal readers. NEVER FEAR. I’m not going to take you through any kind of detailed explanation of my 25-year history of depression, mainly because it’s really boring and not even remotely funny. (Also boring.) I’ll spare you the long litany of my daily complaints, ranging from “I’m sad today” to “I’ll probably be sad tomorrow” to “How long have I been wearing these pajamas?”

That said, I do think you guys might get a laugh out of just how bunched my panties can get over dumb, relatively unimportant shit when I’m in the throes of my depression. Because that part IS actually pretty funny, especially when you’re looking at it from the outside in. AND there’s pictures.

So go burn some microwave popcorn, pull up a chair with a busted spring in it, and get ready to accompany me on a journey through



DUMB SHIT #1: My son’s pajama drawer. Every evening I tell my son to get his pajamas on. Every evening I tell him not to make a huge mess of his pajama drawer. Every evening I walk into his bedroom and find this:

Also? This is actually not even half as bad as it usually is.

METAPHORICAL STATUS OF PANTIES: They’re not actually up IN the crack, but they’re definitely threatening to go there. All it would take is one wrong move with a butt cheek.

MANIFESTATION: Wandering around and muttering: “You know what I LOVE? Saying the same damn shit, day after day, to people who can’t even be bothered to pretend that they’re listening. Why no, I’m not being sarcastic! I’m serious as a heart attack over here! Being habitually ignored in my own home truly is the wind beneath my wings.”

MITIGATION: An entire pint of ice cream, eaten alone and in silence, all while glaring and making the obvious statement of not offering any to anyone else.


DUMB SHIT #2: Slicing my toe open while shaving off my toe hairs. I mean, I could just *pluck* my toe hairs. Or I could use a fresh razor blade on my toe hairs instead of the one I’ve been using since September 11th (never forget). Or I could just not do anything at all about my toe hairs because nobody gives an actual fuck. But no! I have to shave them off BECAUSE HAVING NO TOE HAIRS MAKES YOU SUPER HOT. JUST LOOK:

I Photoshopped my toe wrinkles out of this picture *way* more than I care to admit. And you can still see a butt ton of toe wrinkles. So clearly that was a good use of my time.


METAPHORICAL STATUS OF PANTIES: Making a comfortable home in the ass crack, but not so deep that they can’t be dislodged with an awkward chair swivel or an overly animated walk to the restroom.

MANIFESTATION: Crying buck-ass naked on the toilet, trying unsuccessfully to stem the flow of toe blood with a rapidly disintegrating wad of cheap toilet paper, and repeating “I hate men” over and over again.

MITIGATION: A huge bowl of pasta with cream sauce and extra Parmesan cheese. And don’t you dare forget the garlic bread. Seriously. DON’T FORGET IT. I’ll push your mother down the god damn stairs.


DUMB SHIT #3: The day-old cup of coffee found on the floor next to my husband’s side of the bed. I mean, it makes sense to drink a cup of coffee in bed, doesn’t it? Get that nice big oily jolt of caffeine right before trying to go to sleep? I know that’s what gets me ready for Mr. Sandman. I especially like to not actually finish the coffee, and instead just leave it on the floor for someone else to pick up, or perhaps accidentally drop a dirty sock into. That just sends me straight to dreamland.

If you’re questioning whether or not this photo is staged, I can assure you it is 100% the REAL DEAL.

METAPHORICAL STATUS OF PANTIES: Where the edges keep darting into your butt crack for what seems to be short recon missions. First the right side, then the left. They’re never all the way in, they’re never all the way out.

MANIFESTATION: Staring at the cup of coffee for a second, then deciding to just leave it there until someone else just fucking deals with it. Slumping both head and shoulders in defeat when the realization hits that NO ONE ELSE is going to fucking deal with it. Then, with a morose sigh and a half-hearted “Eh. FINE,” giving in and bringing the coffee mug down to the dishwasher.

MITIGATION: Writing about it on the Internet for all to read.


DUMB SHIT #4: The person who installed the light switches in my bathroom like THIS:

It’s interesting because there are tools out there that prevent stuff like this from happening. Levels, yardsticks, even the side of a piece of frickin’ printer paper. But no. YOU had to do it freehand, YOU STUPID JACKASS.

METAPHORICAL STATUS OF PANTIES: Practically in the rectum. Will have to be manually dislodged at a later point, when there are sure to be no witnesses. They’ll then go straight into the washing machine because reasons.

MANIFESTATION: A pure, unadulterated hatred of the universe. Sullen, empty threats to “burn this whole jacked-up house to the ground” and “move into a dirty dumpster” because even that would be better than spending one more minute in “this janky pile of shit.”

MITIGATION: Taking two Night-time Mucinex and hitting the sack at 9:30 PM.


So! I hope you guys have enjoyed this little  tour of the ridiculous bunched-panty moments of a depressed person. You know, they say you can’t truly understand someone unless you’ve walked a mile in his or her shoes house slippers linty dollar-store socks with cat hair on them.

I realize that my linty dollar-store socks don’t look particularly appealing. But I’m pretty sure you’d rather walk a mile in these than in a pair of my bunched-up panties.

EDIT: Thanks to Jeff of Jeff and Jill Went Up the Hill for helping out with this piece, despite being in recovery from “the snip.” If you’re feeling generous, check out his blog, or send him a bag of frozen peas. Whichev.

If you haven’t already done so, consider following est. 1975 on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Pinterest! I add fresh, hilarious material every single day.


Photo credits:
1839: Oil on canvas by Edward Delacroix: Tasso à l’hôpital de St Anne Ferrara (Tasso in the Madhouse) – public domain — modified

the best baker in the world

My son wrote this story in his first-grade class the other day, and I just had to share it with you.


Just in case you’re having trouble deciphering my son’s handwriting, the story goes like this:

My Mom is a great baker! Is yours?
Yesterday, my Mom made a delicious “French Bread Pizza”!!
She is the best baker in the world!!

Sweet, huh?

I thought so.

Now let’s translate it into reality.

My Mom is a great microwaver! Is yours?
Yesterday, my Mom microwaved a delicious frozen Stouffer’s French Bread Pizza! 
She is the best microwaver in the world!!



If you haven’t already done so, consider following est. 1975 on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Pinterest! I add fresh, hilarious material every single day.

hilarious anecdote crudité

Hello loyal so-and-sos! Today I’m going to share some funny stories with you that are just a little bit too short to warrant their own blog posts. Think of it as “hilarious anecdote crudité.” One story probably won’t fill you up, but if you cram a whole bunch of them in your face, you’ll be all good.

So! Carrot sticks and broccoli florets await! And I didn’t even stretch the ranch.hard-returngif

story #1: the earwig

I almost ate an earwig this summer.

I’m assuming you’ve seen these plastic Starbucks tumblers before. They’re dishwasher safe, they come with sturdy green straws that you can wash out and reuse, and let’s face it, they’re absolutely adorable.

The plastic Starbucks tumbler of which I speak.

My plastic Starbucks tumbler lives in my kitchen cabinet, which is where it was on that fateful day in late June. The weather was boiling hot, my mouth was a dry as a bone, and I had THE THIRST. Nothing but a 20-oz. glass of iced tea would do.

So I brought out the tumbler, filled it up, inserted the reusable straw, and screwed on the lid. Then I took my first sip.

Which is when IT happened.

I’ve given this a lot of thought, and the best explanation I can come up with is that at some point, an earwig out on its morning constitutional thought to itself: “I’m tired. Why not crawl into this sturdy green straw and die?” Because crawl into the straw and die it had. And when I took that first sip of what should have been a cool, refreshing glass of iced tea, a decaying earwig corpse slid right up the straw and into my mouth.

At which point I thought it was a piece of crushed ice and BIT DOWN ON IT.

When the alleged piece of crushed ice was not hard and crunchy like ice, but soft and “whatever the fuck this is, it shouldn’t be in my drink” like an earwig, I spit it out into the sink, saw what it was, and gagged forever.

Eventually I managed to collect myself, rinse my mouth out with cold water, and join the land of the people who had not just almost eaten earwigs. I then proceeded to march around the house for two hours impressing upon my family just how traumatized I was. BECAUSE EARWIG. IN MY MOUTH.


A text exchange I had with my friend Lori shortly after “The Incident.”


story #2: the shopping cart

The holidays had arrived.

My sister Cheeks and I were visiting the old homestead in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. Winters there are never really a picnic, but on this particular day, it was chillier than a dead earwig in a glass of iced tea.

If I recall correctly, there was no actual snow, but there was cold and rain and wind. All told, it was definitely a day for staying inside, and most of the people in our town were doing exactly that. Of course, whenever other people are being smart, Cheeks and I end up doing things that are incredibly dumb. So, in keeping with that tradition, we decided to go to Target.

I honestly don’t remember what we actually went there to get. All that really sticks in my memory was that a) it was FRIGID and b) the entire town was DESERTED. We literally didn’t see a single soul on our way to the store. The residents of our hometown had chosen to remain indoors rather than brave the elements to get . . . Pringles, or whatever the fuck it was we thought we needed.

Cheeks and I finished our shopping and emerged into the Cold ‘N Shitty parking lot. Two spots down from my car was a man sitting in *his* car. He hadn’t been there before, but we paid him little mind. It was freezing, after all, and we were hyper-focused on getting our cheap bras and nacho cheese Combos into the trunk of my car tout suite.

After we unloaded what I’ll generously call our “groceries,” the skies opened up, and Cheeks and I felt ourselves being pelted by an icy drizzle. We looked around for a place to put our empty cart, but the corral was maybe eight to ten feet away literally a million miles across the parking lot. In a windy, icy Chicago rain? Forget it. We weren’t going to walk that shit over there.

So Cheeks did what we have all longed to do at one point or another—she simply gave our cart one good hard shove in the general direction of the corral and yelled: “FLY FREE!” At which point, the cart went maybe two feet, turned sharply, and fell over in the middle of the street.

And we decided to leave it there.

Laughing like idiots, we scrambled to my car in order to flee the scene of The Stupidest “Crime” Ever Committed. And that’s when we noticed that the guy in the parking spot two cars down from us had witnessed the whole thing and was laughing so hard he was crying. Like “wiping tears from his eyes” crying. Like “I can hardly breathe” crying. Like “these two people are the biggest morons I’ve ever seen” crying.

Enjoy this holiday picture of me and Cheeks. My husband took it. He thought he was being funny.


story #3: one million poop jars

My son wants to get in the Guinness Book of World Records.

Him: “Will you help me set a world record?”
Me: “Uh, sure. For what?”
Him: “Most consecutive hours watching television.”
Me: “Um…”
Him: “You could make me a bed on the couch with lots of pillows and blankets.”
Me: “…”
Him: “And get me like… twenty Capri-Suns.”
Me: “Twenty?”
Him: “Hmm…not twenty. Fifty. No, a hundred.”
Me: “Okay…”
Him: “And a LOT of snacks.”
Me: “How would you go to the bathroom?”
Him: “One million pee jars.”
Him: “Yeah.”
Me: “And what if you have to poop?”
Him (with “duh” expression): “One million poop jars.”


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Photo credits:
“Starbucks Tumbler”:

mcdonald’s: i’m hatin’ it

This wasn’t the post I had intended for today, but I had an EXPERIENCE yesterday and I just *had* to tell the six people that read this blog ALL ABOUT IT.

Let me begin by saying that yesterday was the first day of my son’s summer vacation. And as I’m sure many of you already know, summer vacation presents stay-at-home parents like myself with one of two choices:

1. Entertain your kid 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.


2. Sign him or her up for a whole bunch of inconveniently-timed and unreasonably-priced activities just so you can actually have sixty seconds to yourself without hearing some variant of:


It’s not exactly Sophie’s Choice, people.

Needless to say, I went with Door #2 and consequently my son is attending soccer camp this week. And because I hate myself and want to make my life even more miserable than it already is, the soccer camp we chose is one that requires me to a) get up at the exact same time as if I were taking my son to school, b) drive just as far as if I were taking my son to school, and c) pack food and a drink as if I were preparing my son for school. AND YET THE CAMP ONLY LASTS HALF AS LONG AS A SCHOOL DAY. 9 AM – 12 PM to be exact.


The unfortunate timing also means that I have to deal with lunch the minute I pick my son up from camp. Now, normally I’d take him back to the house and make him eat something cheap home-made, but yesterday he and I thought McDonald’s might be a good way to kick off the summer. Because nothing says fresh air, sunshine, and healthy living than hitting up the McDonald’s drive-thru, ordering a mess of burgers and nuggets, and then eating them in the air-conditioned living room while sitting on the couch watching television.

Yesterday’s McDonald’s experience went somewhat differently than expected, however.

We pulled into the drive-thru line which was LONG. But okay, it was noon. I made a mental concession. My son and I chatted about soccer camp during the wait, and when I finally got to the speaker thing I placed a very simple order:

  • A chicken nugget Happy Meal
  • Two cheeseburgers
  • A small fry

I pulled up to the This Is Where You Pay Window and I gave the dude his money. No problem there. It was only when I pulled up to the This Is Ostensibly Where Get Your Food Window that things started to fall apart.

It started with me… not getting my food. They didn’t have it ready. No big deal — they just wanted me to pull into the parking lot and wait for it. Okay, I get it. Sometimes that happens when you place a particularly complicated order for rare and exotic items such as chicken nuggets, cheeseburgers, and fries. Being a gracious woman, I made another mental concession. But then this happened:

Drive-Thru Lady (in what I will generously call “English”): “Please to park where that blue car and red car are parked.”

Me (confused): “Um. I can’t park there. *They’re* parked there. And there’s no empty spots around them.”

Drive-Thru Lady (exasperated): “Please. See that blue car and that red car? You park there.”

Me: “But there are NO SPOTS THERE. The area you’re directing me to is full.”

Drive-Thru Lady: *glare*

Me (apologetically): “I’m really sorry, but I just don’t understand what you’re telling me to do.”


Me (desperate now): “BUT I CAN’T! I LITERALLY CAN’T!”

Drive-Thru Lady (slowly, emphatically, and as if I was the dumbest person on God’s sweet Earth): “THEN. TO WAIT. UNTIL. THEY LEAVE. THEN PARK THERE.”

At this point I was so discombobulated I just went ahead and pulled out of the line, desperately trying to figure out where exactly this insane person wanted me to park. The Blue and Red Cars of Infamy had no one inside and were clearly not going anywhere. They were surrounded on all sides by other parked cars that had no one inside and were also clearly not going anywhere. So I did the best I could and parked about three vehicles down. Granted, it wasn’t PARKING TO WHERE THE BLUE AND RED CAR WERE PARKED, but neither (I felt) would it be a journey of epic proportions for the McDonald’s people to find me. So my son and I sat back, rolled down our windows, and waited.

And waited.

And waited.

In my rear view mirror I saw car after car leaving the drive-thru, their drivers with bags of delicious greasy food clutched in their hands. This pissed me off and it also confused the fuck out of my son. “I don’t understand why they’re getting their food and we’re waiting here,” he complained. “Where’s our lunch?”

Good question, son.

But I am a patient-ish person and I waited a little bit longer. About ten or twelve minutes total, I would say. Finally, though, both the boy and I were like:


So we got out of the car and walked into McDonald’s. Which was… completely empty.

Girl at Counter: “Can I help you?”

Me: “Uh, yeah. We’ve been sitting in the boiling hot parking lot for ten minutes waiting for our food.”

Girl at Counter: “Oh. I didn’t know there was anyone waiting. Did you park where the drive-thru lady told you to?”

Me: “HA! It’s interesting that you should say that, because she told me to park in one of two spots that already had cars in them. So no. I didn’t. But I parked as close as I possibly could.”

Girl at Counter: “Well, that explains it. It looks like someone went out there but couldn’t find you. Oh, here’s your food.”

At this point she reached under the counter and handed me a bag of lukewarm nuggets and soggy fries. I just stood there for a second, boggling. Really? Whoever brought out the food COULDN’T FIND ME? I literally COULD NOT BE FOUND? I was only three cars down from where the crazy lady told me to park. I had my engine running, my windows open, and a six year old in the car bitching at the top of his lungs about WHY ISN’T THE FOOD HERE YET. And it wasn’t like they had to dispatch Lewis and Clark on an expedition into the Uncharted West — I was parked literally twenty feet from the main entrance of the damn restaurant.


So what did I do then, you probably don’t care? Well, with a grand announcement that we would never be returning to that McDonald’s (as if anyone gave a damn) my son and I marched out with our bag of rapidly-cooling greasy grossness and more than a whiff of the moral high ground. And as my son so eloquently remarked:

“We should have never trusted this McDonald’s.”


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Photo credits:
“French Fries”: English: McDonald’s french fries on a white stoneware plate. Date 29 October 2010. Photo by Evan-Amos. This photo was taken as a part of Vanamo Media, which creates public domain works for educational purposes.
“Detox”: Source unknown. Footage taken from Rupaul’s Drag Race, broadcast by LogoTV.
“Lewis”: Author: Charles Willson Peale (1741–1827) Description: Portrait of Meriweather Lewis.
Date: Circa 1807: Source/Photographer Licensing: This is a faithful photographic reproduction of a two-dimensional, public domain work of art. This work is in the public domain in the United States.
“Clark”: Author: Charles Willson Peale – This media file is in the public domain in the United States. File: William Clark-Charles Willson Peale.jpg. Uploaded by Connormah. Created: 31 December 1809