Kids, Don’t Try This At Home: The Nastygram

You guys know how much I miss my career, right? Or have I been remiss in whining? I miss my career a lot. I loved working. I had a couple of short-lived, crappy jobs over the years, but for the most part enjoyed my day-to-day work. That includes the fine art of office politics. Admittedly, I was frequently on the losing end because I wear my heart on my sleeve and I never, ever suffer fools well, but when I wanted to play the game I was good at it.

I was especially good with email because, you know, I’m a “writer” and all. Right? The invention of email was pretty much the best thing that ever happened to me. I think before that we used to write memos, print them out and distribute them, but honestly I don’t remember that far back. I spent many years working in branch offices of large firms. Places where I never even met half the people with whom I worked, because they were in far flung places around the world. Or, because at a certain point I had been banned from headquarters, but you know, sh*t happens.

When you work with people who don’t have to face you every day, it’s easy to get in the habit of emailing nastygrams, saying how you really feel, because there’s no uncomfortable eye contact over the water cooler. I would like to say that I was always the recipient, and never the sender, but that would be a complete lie. I will say that when I wanted to, I could get my message across quite well, with seemingly no snark, while still building in plenty of snark. Especially with people who aren’t particularly bright, because typically sarcasm eludes them. Ooops, that right there was blatantly snarky. And yet, true. The recipient would be suspicious, because it was coming from me, but unable to put their finger on any specific thing that would indicate I wasn’t playing nice. So it had the built in bonus of frustrating the hell out of the other person.

The honest truth is that on occasion I used these exercises to amuse myself at work. But the majority of the time I was really just trying to get some work done. Stuff that needed to be done, and could be done with little fanfare, if I wasn’t relying on someone in another office to hold up their end of the work. Super annoying to take a task or project nearly to completion, and then have to turn it over to someone in another office, who may or may not be a complete moron as motivated as I would like.

I suppose that when I miss working, that’s one of the things I miss. Because I am not mentally stable, which explains why I did these things for a living in the first place. So I was delighted when a friend FaceTimed me recently and asked me to help him compose a delicate email. Something that screamed you are a lazy idiot while seeming to calmly say hey, let’s get this task done. It was exactly the kind of precision, stealth operation that is my trademark. Everyone is good at something, right? That’s my something.

Together, in just 10 minutes or so, we crafted a really solid missive. It accomplished both things, while also providing my friend a lot of CYA in writing. The trifecta. My friend was really happy with the final product.

I don’t like to brag, but when we were done he rewarded me with a huge compliment. “You are really good at coming up with BS.” High praise indeed.

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WTF Wednesday: Why Is Everyone Worried About What’s Under Someone Else’s Dress?

This transgender bathroom situation is a wholly manufactured problem. There is an implicit social contract when we use the restroom; we assume we’re all there for the same purpose, and no need to ask for birth certificates. It never crossed anyone’s mind to be concerned because there was no reason to be concerned. But the North Carolina legislature poked a hornet’s nest, and now we’re all getting stung.


  1. Transgender people are not pedophiles. They don’t have a sexual perversion. They were born in one body and have neurons and such wired for a different body. Or something science-y like that. I myself feel like a tall blonde inside and am shocked each and every time I look in the mirror and see a short redhead. Also, I walk around all the time imagining that I have a waist. Don’t ruin it for me.
  2. Why do I care if Jane, in the stall next to me, used to be John? Exactly in what way does that affect me? For all you know, I used to be Joe; it doesn’t change your opinion of my blog, right? We all grudgingly agree that it is occasionally semi-humorous whether I’m Jill, Joe or a space alien. No further comment on that by the way.
  3. Public restrooms are disgusting because people are pigs. Other people. People we presumably don’t know, who don’t care about those who follow in their, umm, footsteps. I am much more concerned about whether or not a person washes their hands after using the restroom than I am about what parts they are sporting.
  4. Anyone, transgender or not, could be kind enough to tell me when my skirt is tucked in to my pantyhose or when I’m trailing toilet paper on my shoe. Yet no one ever is kind enough. I have learned though, that when people are pointing and laughing at me as I exit a public restroom, it’s likely there’s a problem. I’m not saying it happens a lot, I’m just saying it happens enough that I learned my lesson.
  5. Your kid is something like 100X more likely to be sexually assaulted by someone they know than by a stranger. This is completely true; I was just too lazy to look up the actual percentage, which is probably a lot higher. A bigger number than my brain can process cause it stops at 100%.
  6. It is endlessly annoying that transgender women typically look better than me; more put together. No runs in the pantyhose, make-up that stays put, perpetual lipstick. Let’s start making some laws about that.
  7. Do you think that transgender people, who have probably been suffering their entire life what with being in the wrong body and all, are looking for more trouble? Because telling everyone they know that although they were born male (female) who they really are is female (male) isn’t painful enough? I once had no choice but to tell my mom that I flunked 10th grade PE, and I would be mortified if the whole world knew! I’m guessing working up the nerve to tell folks you are transgender is just a tad bit tougher.
  8. Nearly everyone who was ever a teenager has gotten drunk and peed on something or other outside, while trying not to pee on their jeans, even though they are laughing hysterically with their girlfriends who are doing a terrible job of standing guard. I mean, that’s what I’ve heard. If you got through that you can get through the immense trauma of not knowing the anatomy of the person in the stall next to you.
  9. People seem to be very confused about what transgender means. So check out this HRC glossary. You will learn that transgender people are not big hairy, scary men in skirts waiting to harm someone. I, however, haven’t shaved my legs this decade but I still use the women’s room. That should frighten you.
  10. My new most favorite person in the world is comedian Trae Crowder, the Liberal Redneck. He has additional salient points. Caution: lots of adult language and other potentially offensive stuff (another reason I love him).

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What The World Needs Now: Another Adorable Cat Story

I feel like I’ve been overdoing the cat blogs lately, but then again with four cats I’m overdoing the whole cat thing, so I guess it follows suit. 

We’ve not had a TV in our room for a couple of years now, but since I’ve been sick a lot lately we set one up again and good old Dan sprung for another satellite box and everything. So suddenly the cats had access to a very exciting TV cabinet that had been closed up for a long time. We knew that they would jump behind there, and possibly even get stuck, because it happened with our last batch of cats. 

Tempting to any cat, obviously

Tempting to any cat, obviously

Janet helpfully demonstrating how a cat could climb behind the TV and get stuck

Janet helpfully demonstrating how a cat could climb behind the TV and get stuck

Dan ended up cutting out a hole in the back of the bottom of the cabinet so stuck kitties could escape.

Chrissy helpfully demonstrating use of the hole

Chrissy helpfully demonstrating use of the hole

Sure enough, Helen goes flying back there one morning. I hear her pawing around. See her head pop up. She makes attempt #1 of 483 lame tries to leap back up out of the cabinet, succeeds only in bashing her head against the wood shelf.

I open the bottom of the cabinet to see why she isn’t climbing through the hole and it is immediately apparent that although the hole is big, it’s not Helen size. I mean, so few things really are. Now Helen is meowing up a storm and I don’t know if she’s caught on cables and stuff or what, and I have no choice but to call Dan, who then uses his lunch hour to dash home and somehow lean all the way back there and grab her and yank her out. Where she promptly stretches, yawns, and strolls away. Ingrate!

So when Dan got home that night, out came the saw. He enlarged the hole so even Helen can fit through if necessary. For now.

The new, enlarged Helen-sized hole

The new, enlarged Helen-sized hole

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I Have Reached The Promised Land

In the glory days of ancient Rome, I imagine emporia brimming with earthly delights. All manner of items. Which leads me to, well, Wegman’s. We recently got a Wegman’s convenient to me. As I entered for the first time, I heard the flutter of angel’s wings as their voices soared to the high ceilings in the wood-floored, climate controlled, colorful and beautiful store.


There is light pop music playing. Something contemporary but hummable by all ages. The lighting is bright…but soft. The fruits and vegetables are gleaming and dewy. The store is vast. Huuuuuuge.


I try to comprehend all that is before me. There is an Asian food bar. A Mexican food bar. A Mediterranean food bar with at least six different kinds of hummus. A sushi station with what appear to be very authentic sushi roller people speaking to each other in Japanese. There is a bakery (bread and pastries, separated of course), a dessert bar, a coffee shop and even a pub. They handcraft candy in the store. Before my very eyes. There is a bulk food station with nuts and granola. One corner of the store is reserved for big box store style pallets of goods so that if I really wanted to, I could buy hundreds of rolls of paper towels and thousands of cans of cat food quickly and easily. There is even a freakin’ cave aged cheese section. I mean, not just any old Kraft singles or one impressive wheel of real parmesan. Cave aged is serious business.


There’s no two ways about it, I am smitten. And then I discover that they have awesome tuna salad. Tuna, celery, mayo. That’s it. Now I am star struck and head over heels in love. They have organic everything, which I think is a scam but still nice to have the option. They have entire aisles of vegan foods. Rows of gluten free foods. All you have to do is think of a possible type of food and it seems to magically appear before you.

My fellow blogger Kate will be thrilled to know they have a dazzling selection of lemon meringue pies. A dazzling selection of everything.

But perhaps what is most impressive is that they have actual employees. Smiling, helpful people everywhere you look. Want to sample something before you buy? No problem, just ask. Not sure if you are holding an organic miniature Argentinian potato or just a regular old miniature Argentinian potato? Simply ask, and your knowledgeable and friendly Wegman’s employee will tell you. It’s raining outside, perhaps you’d like someone to walk you to your car while holding an umbrella over your head? Yes, perhaps. Not raining but just want an escort? You got it.


I’m notoriously bad about checking prices and using coupons and whatnot. So for all I know a gallon of Wegman’s Carefully Crafted Milk costs $28, to pay for all the beautiful goods and incessantly helpful staff. I don’t know, and I don’t care. It is a small price to pay for people to pretend they really, really care about my well-being. The bottom line is that I want to live at Wegman’s, but the only thing I can’t seem to find in the store is bedding. No problemo, I can bring my own.

If you listen closely, you may hear Nero fiddling somewhere. Rome might be burning, but I’m ready to go down with it.

Something for everyone in the family!

Something for everyone in the family!


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WTF Wednesday: Why Must There Be Onion?

It is entirely possible that I will drop dead if I eat an onion. Well, that might be overstated. It is true though, that I will wish I was dead if I accidentally eat an onion of any kind, including shallots, scallions, chives. Raw or cooked, no bueno. I really, really hate onions.


You know what I do enjoy though? Tuna salad. I love a good tuna salad sandwich. A tuna melt. A scoop of tuna salad on top of an actual salad. Love. The problem of course, is what is in the tuna salad. Like sneaky onions. Some people put relish in tuna salad. I don’t love it, but I can live with it. Celery is harmless enough, I even appreciate the crunch it adds. Onion, though, is a huge problem.

Why? Why do people insist on putting onions in tuna salad? It makes my life complicated. I always have to have a back-up order. “I’ll have tuna on wheat UNLESS the tuna has onions. In that case I’ll have two scoops of chocolate ice cream for lunch instead.” Seriously, sometimes it comes to that, because although I eat fish I don’t eat any other kind of meat. So my deli options are limited. Egg salad, I guess, although I think we can all admit that the elephant in the room is that it just doesn’t have the pizazz and glamour of a tuna salad. And sometimes people put dill and other crap in egg salad, that I can tolerate, but I don’t love. If I’m going to eat, it should be food that I enjoy, right?


I know there are people who are not opposed to onions, and people who actually really enjoy onions. Good for you! I’m happy for you, really. But can’t you just add onions to your salad or sandwich? Does it have to be incorporated into the tuna salad, ruining it for my delicate palate? I love tomatoes, but you don’t see those in tuna salad. I simply add them on. It works out fine, I promise.

Yes, this is the very definition of a first world problem. Beyond in fact. Starving children and all that. But this is my blog and I routinely use it to whine about inconsequential crap, and to lament the fact that the world doesn’t always revolve around me, so this is no different. In conclusion: tuna good. Onions bad. Make it stop.

Thank you for your support.

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B.F. Skinner Surely Never Tested Cats

As I’ve shared, we’ve been dealing with kitty dental drama. Helen accidentally lost a tooth, we had the vet pull a bunch of Chrissy’s teeth. It’s not good. At her most recent check-up we learned that Helen is developing a lot of tartar around her teeth. We’re hoping we can avoid having her teeth pulled, so Dan picked up some pet plaque spray.


The instructions say to squirt it in the back of the pet’s mouth. Umm, sure, no problem. Have you ever tried to spray anything in your cat’s mouth? Is your nickname now Captain Hook? Dan decided to use the spray not only to address Helen’s plaque, but also to try to “train” her. Have you ever tried to train a cat? Is your nickname now Dumbass?

Helen has a bad habit of licking Dan’s hair. A lot. As soon as he settles on the couch to relax.

So he adopted a stance of spraying her as soon as she started in on licking. Do you think she learned anything? Hell no. She just kept going for it. Recently I wasn’t feeling well and was spending quality time in bed, and Dan was hanging out upstairs, keeping me company. Helen therefore missed out on her normal evening licking time. Sad. But she was not to be denied. She started climbing in bed and licking Dan’s hair as soon as he was in bed or was actually trying to fall asleep. She tried it with me too, woke me up in fact, but I swatted her away.

So the next night, I noticed Dan tucking something under his pillow. Turns out, he was packin’. Loaded for bear. Armed for an attack. Yes, he had tucked the bottle of plaque spray under his pillow. He was giddy at the thought of grabbing Helen when she tried to disturb his sleep, and giving her a rude awakening. The man is deranged.

Dan isn’t even licensed to carry the damn thing. I was convinced that he was going to accidentally blind the cat, or himself, or otherwise injure one of the three of us. Or what if one of the other cats got caught in friendly fire? Then what? No, I didn’t like the idea one bit. Dan swore up and down that it would be fine, and accused me of being dramatic. Ha! Me? Dramatic? I think not.

Anyway, thus far we have not had any midnight incidents. At the same time, Helen resolutely refuses to associate her behavior with a negative consequence. So B.F. Skinner’s theory of operant conditioning worked on intelligent mice, but…well, let’s just say he never met Helen.

Umm, do you want to lose that hand?

Umm, do you want to lose that hand?

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WTF Wednesday: Why Doesn’t Caremark Care?

Sometimes fact really is stranger than fiction. I mean, stuff that you couldn’t dream up if you tried. Stuff that results in a lengthy blog post that absolutely demands a number of ALL CAPS and italics instances, as well as a record number of f*cking curse words to convey my frustration. Demands.

I have whined before about the requirement that I use a specialty pharmacy; there is always some kind of problem. The other day, I had two pieces of mail. One was a refund check from Caremark, for $130 in co-pay overpayments. The other was a thick stack of collection notices from…bet you’re catching on…Caremark.

First of all, WTF? Second of all, I pay all my bills on time. But I am extra vigilant about things like my health insurance premiums and drug co-pays. For obvious reasons. So the overpayment didn’t surprise me; I make a payment every time I order meds, just in case. Then I get a bill and typically pay that too. Because the last thing I need is even more drama from Caremark. But despite all that, they have still managed to f*ck this up. Royally.

Prepare to turn this puppy up to 10

Prepare to turn this puppy up to 10

I call the debt collector first, assuming even they will be easier to deal with than Caremark. They are stumped and tell me to call Caremark. I tell the woman I would rather stick a hot poker in my eye than call them, and she seems to be empathetic, but still unable to help me. She does however give me the number she uses to call billing, in an attempt to get me straight through. It was an act of kindness.

I call her number for Caremark billing, where the auto-attendant strongly, repeatedly, encourages me to leave a message and hang the f*ck up. No. Not gonna do it. Standing tough (well, sitting tough), I wait and wait and wait. After nine minutes I finally get an alleged human. I try to explain the situation but she cuts me off and tells me she can’t do anything until she gets my info, blah blah blah. After two minutes that seems like a lifetime, she comes back and tells me they don’t have me in their system. I go on a rant and she decides to check again, under the name I actually gave her rather than the wrong name she wrote down. Voila! There I am.

I explain everything and get a heavy sigh. SHE is annoyed with ME. Then she places me on hold for another five minutes. Literally.  When she finally comes back she claims she has a solution! Something so brilliant that it required consulting with her supervisor, which explains the long wait. Her triumphant moment is…I should deposit the check and then pay the credit collectors. I said “you’ve got to be kidding right? You’re not actually suggesting I do this?” Crickets. I tell her this sounds like the solution that works best for her, by putting the problem back on me, and my account will still be a mess. I ask to speak with her supervisor. Hold AGAIN, only to be told she is happy to put me in his voice mail.


I leave an admittedly lunatic rant voice mail for the supervisor. I finally hang up and notice I missed a call while I was sitting on hold. It was CAREMARK. Calling me to refill my prescriptions.

Fine. I call the refill number back and jump through all the usual hoops to get the three meds refilled. On the very, very off chance that she can help, I explain my collections/overpayment problem to the pharmacy rep. She suggests I call billing. I tell her I did. She suggests I ask to speak with a supervisor. I tell her I did. Crickets.

Running out of options, I call the number on the letter that came with the check.. It is a general, ten tier phone tree about ALL medications Caremark f*cks up services. Has nothing to do with billing or overpayments. I sit through the phone tree and eventually get through to a human.  I go through the whole thing again and she of course puts me on hold. She finally comes back and says “my reimbursement team will not accept your call. This is a billing issue.” Are you f*ing kidding me? Am I being punked? I lost it. I mean I full on went batshit crazy. I reminded her that I am the actual customer and that I want to speak to someone empowered to solve this problem. She tells me she will transfer me to her “escalation team.” More hold. Minutes on end. She comes back to tell me the escalation team will not accept my call because this isn’t their department. I’m not kidding you. That’s what she said. Then she offered to transfer me to billing. I offered to slash my wrists instead, as that seemed to be the only way to solve this problem. Well, for me anyway.


Unbelievably, the supervisor from billing actually calls me back. Makes all pretense that he is going to be helpful right before he spectacularly proves he is not going to help me. And although he has called me, and I have left him a detailed message about the problem, he makes me go through the whole thing again just so he can of course PUT ME ON HOLD for a good amount of time before coming back and saying he has no idea who sent the check or why, but if I want to avoid credit reporting on my “overdue” co-pays, he is happy to take my credit card number and call the balance back from the collection agency.

I take a breath and decide to try another angle; I address the issue of insurance fraud. As in, if you are double billing me and can’t figure it out, then you are probably double billing my insurance company as well. He tells me he can print a statement of all the payments ever made by me and by my insurance company. I point out that is not helpful since clearly there is another department somewhere that has different records that DON’T MATCH. He says that would be my responsibility to research.

Controlling myself enough to use my inside voice, albeit dripping with sarcasm, I suggest that perhaps he take responsibility for researching? Just a thought. Clearly a novel concept for him. He pauses then in a last ditch attempt to get me off his back he tells me it could take a week or more for him to figure out. I tell him that’s just fine. He is clearly pissed now. Yeah buddy, well me too.

Now I am on an absolute mission. Ride or die. I try to find a number for corporate headquarters. I can’t get a human, even when I look up investor relations and the annual report. Just another customer service email. So I send them this whole story. And this is the response I got:

Dear Ms. Hirsch:

Thank you for contacting CVS Caremark. We strive to provide quality customer care to every one of our plan participants.

We show that your medication is handled by CVS Caremark’s Specialty Pharmacies. For specialty billing information, please contact our specialty pharmacy directly at 1-800-237-2767 for immediate assistance. Specialty pharmacy representatives are available from 6:30 AM until 8:00 PM CST, Monday through Friday. Specialty Pharmacy has their own website which you may access at

Should you need additional assistance, please respond to this e-mail or you may contact Customer Service at 1-800-241-3371. We appreciate the opportunity to serve all of your prescription benefit needs and to help you better manage your health.

Surely I’m being punked, right? Tell me this isn’t real.


As what appears to be my final recourse I have filed a suspected fraud complaint with my insurance company, which they will likely do absolutely nothing about. But I want a record of this clusterf*ck so I don’t get in trouble down the road for depositing the f*cking check, which I guess is what I’m going to have to do.

I am mad as hell and would very much like to NOT TAKE IT ANYMORE. But I’m screwed, because I have absolutely no choice but to use this pharmacy and watch them rake in thousands of dollars a month for being incompetent a**holes.

I’m trying to recall why I ever stopped drinking, and consider consuming large quantities of alcohol when I remember I’m already on enough drugs.

So WTF Caremark? WTF?


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They Tried To Make Me Go To Rehab

And I was obliged to say yes yes yes. To something known as pulmonary rehab; a combination of education and physical exercise. Yep. My two least favorite things: thinking and moving.

So for two months, three days a week, I spent time at Inova Fairfax Hospital in both a classroom and a gym. When I first started rehab I was still working full time, making just getting to rehab a challenge in itself. At exactly 1:00pm, I would go down to the garage and hope that my car was not blocked in by several others. Screeching out of the garage right into midday traffic in downtown DC. After finally breaking free and making it over the bridge to Virginia, I had to zip around two different highways just to arrive at yet another parking garage. Wend my way up to the third floor where (and this is the cool part) we rehabbers had reserved parking.


But remember, I was still in my work clothes, and hadn’t yet eaten lunch. So duck into a bathroom to change clothes, plop down in the waiting room, and pull a Smuckers Uncrustable PB&J out of my bag. Yes they are intended for children and yes I was known to take them to work for lunch. Don’t judge. So by 2:00 I was where I was supposed to be. Of course by that time I was exhausted and wondering why on earth I still needed to exercise.

In the classroom we learned about the cardiovascular system, lung anatomy, and various types of lung diseases. When I say “we learned” I mean of course “they learned.” Because I don’t understand any of this stuff. I have a very limited understanding of my own lung disease, and that’s about it. But in class I had to look at a plastic model of the lungs in mock awe, pretending it didn’t totally yuck me out. It totally yucked me out. There was a class or two on nutrition, which I followed in rapt attention while eating my Uncrustable.


Then…then there was the gym. I’ll admit that it was cool because it was one-on-one instruction with various physiological physo-exercisists or some such specialty. What I know is that they were extremely knowledgeable about my physical condition (or lack thereof), my lung disease, and the equipment I was using.  And they came to learn, quickly, that I am a smart ass of epic proportions. The thing is, they are really good at what they do and despite my attempts to charm/annoy the hell out of them, and distract them from the task at hand, they plodded ahead and whipped my ass into semi-shape. Except for the times I was having a bad day and not well enough to exercise. In those few instances they took my sorry butt to the ER and dumped me there for a few hours to make sure nothing bad happened on their watch. If there is anything worse than exercise it is spending hours in an ER waiting to be seen by doctors who have never heard of PH disease.

We were a motley crew in the gym because we had to wear headbands with heart monitors and some people had oxygen and some of us had to modify various exercises so they were safe and effective. And some of us, mostly me, just look silly in a gym. We did get to listen to music while we exercised, and one of my partners in crime made an awesome soundtrack of breathing related songs, like “Every Breath You Take,” also throwing in Amy Winehouse’s “Rehab” which became sort of our anthem.

But overall, rehab for me was of course just an opportunity to make new friends and socialize with people who had no choice but to spend time with me. There were seven of us in my class, but I also bonded with a few people in the class before me because I am me. We all still keep in touch and have had lunch several times since finishing rehab. Everyone has a different lung disease and other health issues, so we each face unique challenges but all have an awesome sense of humor and the ability to laugh at our predicament. Three of us still exercise together twice a week in a private facility with a trainer who is one of those physio-exer therapist type people. She monitors us and keeps us safe, and the hospital is just a mile or two away. And we still get reserved parking.


We had an official graduation, and one of my classmates brought cake. I love her for many reasons but also because, well, cake.


Unofficial awards were bestowed by another of my classmates, and my buddy and I received the Sonny and Cher Award for keeping the troops entertained. Proud moment.

So yes, I went to rehab. And now I’m hooked.

I am officially certifiable. No doubt.

I am officially certifiable. No doubt.

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WTF Wednesday: Don’t Kids Walk Anymore?

I have decided to establish what will likely be a completely inconsistent series, WTF Wednesdays. Today’s question: why must all kids be driven to school and picked up every day?

I live next to a junior high school. In one of the richest counties in the country, last time I checked. Lord knows we pay plenty of taxes. So there should be money available for, oh, I don’t know, things like school buses and wide, safe paved sidewalks. And yet…

There is a full on traffic jam in my neighborhood every morning that school is in session. I mean there are times I cannot get out of my own driveway. The buses are bad enough, but WTF with all the parents driving their kids to school? And picking them up? Getting out of our neighborhood to the main road, a total of about 6 blocks, can take up to 15 minutes. If there’s rain or snow or any complication whatsoever, it’s longer. And there’s not just a short peak time window either. The rush-to-school-rush lasts 30 minutes or more. So WTF time does school actually start? I suspect those in the early rush are poor harangued parents who need to get to work so drop their kid off early.


The ones who are late come driving through like a bat out of hell. I mean, these people have kids of their own, you’d think they would know not to race through a neighborhood. But I have new intel from my friend who is a teacher in this county…apparently, if a child is late for middle school the parent must park, bring the kid into school and sign them in, so they don’t have an unexcused tardy or some such crap. Can’t send the kid in with a note or whatever. So naturally the ones who couldn’t find their briefcase in the morning and then waited in line at Starbucks too long are now zooming down my street at 40mph. The good news is they didn’t sacrifice the ventihalfcafdoublelattenofoam, they simply sped up a little. We have a drive through Starbucks up the street, so believe me, the parents have stopped for their $5 coffee on the way to school.

The buses are a nightmare all day, coming and going, not really sure why or where. And it’s not just our school. Out in my travels I see cars lined up for blocks and blocks everywhere there is a school, public or private. Afternoon is of course the reverse, only cars are a bit more spread out and don’t cause a jam. It seems to me that a lot more kids walk home from school than walk to school. Maybe because their parents are at work in the afternoon and the little petunias have to wend their own way home.

So I ask again, WTF? What happened to piling kids on a bus on top of one another? What happened to kids actually walking to school (gasp!)?


But then again, be careful what you wish for; maybe strolling kids aren’t the best thing either. Recently my neighbor caught some kids stealing my mail. And a few months ago someone stole a package that had been delivered to our porch. The best part of this is that the package contained…two sets of sheets. Yes, linens. Bet that was disappointing. Dan found the box, which had been pried open and then abandoned in the woods, and recovered the sheets. We’ve lived here 19 years and this is the first time we’ve ever had problems, so I suspect there are a couple of problem children who just entered junior high.

When I am home in the afternoon, I watch the little darlings walking home, past my house. Some put trash in my mailbox, candy wrappers and such, a minor infraction. But let one of these brats try anything major again. Let them!

And this is how I realize I could easily become the mean, scary crazy lady of the neighborhood.


That house that everyone would run past. The myths of children who were gobbled up by wolves just past the gate. That might be my house soon. OK technically I don’t have a gate, and we have foxes not wolves, but let’s not lose sight of the bigger mission here.


In conclusion, WTF do I want? I realize I am annoyed with buses, and with cars, and with the kids who walk past my house. The only solution is for all kids to walk to school, but take the long way around, or at least walk on the other side of the street, and not near my house. That’s what works for me. So, yeah, that.

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Over All, It’s Just A Bad Idea

I caught a segment on Spring Fashion on the Today show. I am horrified but must repeat their report that overalls are “back” in style. I don’t set these trends folks, I just report them.

First of all, in my mind overalls have never been a good option for anyone over the age of 8. If you are old enough to pay attention to fashion trends, you are too old to wear them. Don’t get sucked in to the myth that someone named Osh Kosh B’Gosh is a hot new designer. In general, and I know there are exceptions, but as a rule of thumb, if something would look adorable on your 4 year old, you probably shouldn’t be wearing it, and vice versa.

I don’t claim to be a fashion maven although I am certainly someone who has spent a sizeable portion of disposable income on beautiful clothes and adorable shoes. Sizeable portion, trust me on that. And I’m not even saying I never got caught up in the overall trend, last time it came around. Also painter’s pants. In a rainbow of colors. What, you think I’m proud of that? No! But I’m keeping it real. It was the 70s and that’s just how we rolled.

I had these in every color of the rainbow. Yet the only thing I've ever in my life painted was my nails.

I had these in every color of the rainbow. Yet the only thing I’ve ever in my life painted was my nails.

Look, you don’t have to be Anna Wintour to understand that no adult looks good in overalls. If you have a great body, you’re just covering it all up. Conversely, if you have areas that could use a little camouflage, or a lot; overalls won’t work for that either. So let’s pretend we never heard that overalls were a thing. Again.

Completely and utterly adorable

Completely and utterly adorable

Not adorable, especially with red high heels

Not adorable, especially with red high heels

Not adorable

Not adorable

OK, I'll give you this one. But how many people look like that?

OK, I’ll give you this one. But how many people look like that?

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