There Will Be Blood

PsychoAllow me to set the stage for a recent Day in the Life story that occurred last week.

This took place during my “family vacation” – if by “family” you mean “lots of people crammed in one van,” if by “vacation” you mean “lots of people crammed in one van moving from one geographic location to another geographic location.” But call it what you like.

We were staying at a cabin on a lake near Minneapolis and decide to drive into the city to visit old and new friends. These old and new friends don’t know one another. But we typically like to make things more convenient for us them by awkwardly forcing everyone in a room together. One stop shop, if you will.

The Cast:

  • One family of four:  mom, dad, two young kids.
  • One family of five:  mom, dad, three young kids.
  • One male friend. Single by choice. Childless by choice. Works as senior event planner for fancy art museum. Will thus be called fancy friend going forward. Knows a living room couch’s proper ratio of down-filled pillow to carefully-placed Egyptian cotton throw blanket. Gets extra descriptors here in case automatic response to reading “childless by choice” is “well…but maybe someday.” Let’s just shut that right down.

Continue reading

The Most Dangerous Game II: Avenging Cecil

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Author’s note: Please enjoy this stock photo of a golden, statuesque lion. I refuse to re-post the photo of the douchebag dentist who shot and killed 13-year-old Cecil, a beloved lion who lived in a Namibian national park. Every time I encounter that photo of smug, paunchy white guys smirking atop a bloodied, majestic carcass, I want to puke, punch my computer screen, or invest in a bow and arrow and head to the Land of 10,000 Lakes in search of vigilante justice.

When I snuggled up with my laptop last night, I aimed to write a poetic essay about the slaughter of wild animals and our responsibility to the planet, with a little moral outrage and light politicking thrown in for good measure. But, I realized quickly, that essay was going to be a total drag to write and an even bigger drag to read.

Instead, I’ve decided to GIVE THE PEOPLE WHAT THEY WANT! And by “the people,” I mean one super brave, courageous and macho dentist from Minnesota. That’s right, Walter James Palmer, this post’s for you! I can tell you’re a guy who likes a challenge. You’re a sportsman with a can-do attitude and a Cabela’s platinum card nestled in your crocodile skin wallet. A man like you needs to feel important. Powerful. And I’m here to help. It’s time we take the volume dial of your life and crank it to 11. Continue reading

Manufacturing Courage: Or, That Time a Bull Shark Almost Devoured My Kid

Unless you’re living under Donald Trump’s combover, you probably saw this week’s big story about a South African surfer who barely survived a shark attack. Twitter blew up, experts experted all over the morning news shows, and I experienced a little something called déjà vu, because four months ago, my five-year-old son was THISCLOSE to being an amuse-bouche for a bull shark.

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How could a guy named Mick Fanning NOT become a professional surfer?

As I sat sipping wine on the deck of a rented Florida beach house (thanks, mom) my son frolicked in the late afternoon surf with his cousins. I kept a casual eye on passing dolphins and talked politics with my aunts and uncles.

(Note: earlier that day, while lounging in the sun, I’d speculated about how I’d act if I saw a shark approaching one of my relatives. In my daydream, I was super heroic… sprinting in the sea, launching my sizable self–fists flying–straight at the shark, and then cradling the victim in my arms as I strode onto the beach, level-headed and calm as I shouted for assistance.) Continue reading

Why I Don’t Like Caitlyn Jenner

Mae West

Call her Mae. Not Madison.

I’ve been holding back for a while now and I must get this off my chest. I don’t like Caitlyn Jenner. Not one bit.

Caitlyn Jenner was not meant to be Caitlyn Jenner — and you know it, too.

Oh, I’m very much okay with Caitlyn Jenner the person. I’m very much okay with Caitlyn Jenner not being Bruce Jenner. And the switching out of pronouns. And that I get to be judgmental now about how well she plucks her brows. All of that.

What I’m not okay with is Caitlyn Jenner. The name “Caitlyn Jenner” is all wrong.  Continue reading

Over-Sext

Confession: I’m not much of a sexter. While I fancy myself a first-rate Casanova (or whoever the female Casanova is.. Colette, perhaps?) who brings it in the boudoir,* sexting has always kind of weirded me out. Fortunately for you, me and—let’s face it—humankind, I decided to push through the discomfort and learn to sext with the lyrical prowess of Sydney Leathers.

Royal FPAnd how better to master the art of sexting than to dive straight into the deep end: sexting a friend’s husband using her phone. There’s nothing like a little anonymity to move things along! Continue reading

Good Grief

Edward ScissorhandsDairy turns me into a bloated whoopie cushion on legs. Beef presses my autoimmune’s buttons. Gluten makes my skin feel as silky soft as sandpaper. Apples, whole almonds and chocolate make me, well, we don’t know each other well enough for that kind of talk. As for nightshades, I have my suspicions. I don’t even want to talk about wine.

When I first found out I had food allergies, I thought surely I’m on an episode of Punk’d. So what if it was 2012 and Punk’d, much like Ashton’s obnoxious trucker hats, was long over. I was still expecting Ashton to jump out from behind the curtain, with camera crew in tow, to tell me it was all a big joke and hand me an enormous piece of extra velvety red velvet cake. But nope, there was no Ashton and no cake, just a plate full of gluten-free shit pie. This news made me grieve. And it went a little something like this:  Continue reading

Assassination by Brunch

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Graphic credit: Helen Jane Hearn

If I’ve learned one thing from Keeping up with the Kardashians, it’s that a little self-promotion never hurt anyone. With that in mind, I’d like to share my latest for Tue/Night, a little ditty about a bowl of fruit salad, some bacterial dysentery, and one of the world’s biggest pop sensations. Enjoy!

Bad Street Food Nearly Killed Me Until Celine Dion Saved my Life

Licensed to “I Don’t Give a Shit”

Bette DavisI’m turning OLD this year. But I’m taking it all quite well, really. There are benefits to aging of course. Social benefits, for example. And one in particular I find quite tantalizing.

Since I’ve always been a tad socially-reckless — over-sharing, stirring the pot, making listeners squirm — what I’m most looking forward to with turning old is my newfound license to I-Don’t-Give-A-Shit (IDGAS). Surely you are already aware there is an entire fleet of IDGAS behaviors that growing old affords, whether it’s IDGAS driving, IDGAS dressing (or undressing), IDGAS civic involvement, IDGAS bodily functions and so forth. For now let’s focus on the latter, specifically the kind that derives from one’s mouth. Continue reading

The Taxonomy of Naps: A Lab Report by Dru

Glow wormIntroduction
Accepting as a given that a majority of parents of young children are frequently sleep-deprived and therefore trudging through daily life in a haze that sounds like Curious George babble and smells like strawberry applesauce, this researcher set forth to assess and categorize optimal napping circumstances for said parents, so as to enable occasional (and unfortunately brief) respite from the chaos.

Materials
Bed or other soft-ish surface
Solitude – optional
Knock-off memory foam mattress topper – optional
Pajamas – optional
White noise machine or one of those soothing classical music-playing seahorse toys – optional
Bag of Target brand caramel cashew trail mix to snack on pre-nap – optional but recommended   Continue reading

For Sale: Fake Friends

It began innocently. Someone’s friend was selling Pampered Chef kitchen goods, and someone else told me that I couldn’t LIVE without the mini spatula, and despite the fact that I bake about as frequently as I compete in Ironman Triathlons, I nodded gamely and made the purchase.

'Madam, could I sell you a collection of encyclopedias that you’ll probably never read?'

(Confession: It’s a remarkably handy utensil that allows me to flip eggs like Al Pacino in Frankie and Johnny. I really don’t know how I lived without it… apparently I spent most of my twenties serving my house guests ragged brownies and dented pancakes. No buyer’s remorse here!)

Within a week, the emails began sneaking in, undeterred by my spam filter and piss-poor attitude.  Continue reading