Category Archives: Musings

Mawwiage, that bwessed awwangement…

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So that pretty much sums it up.

Marriage in 74 days.

This is written on our refrigerator white board, Hubby-to-Be started the countdown this past weekend (which I’m not going to lie, is one of the cutest things EVER. He came into the bedroom and demanded I look at the fridge and was so proud of himself.)

It has me in a minor panic.

When you get engaged a good two and a half years before you’re planning on actually tying the knot, it definitely seems like forever away from the day. And when you pick the venue and the flowers, DJ and photographer about two months after getting engaged, and more than a year and a half away from getting away, you feel like you have all this time.

And then it’s less than three months away and you realize it’s probably a good idea to pretend this is happening and get your shit together.

Luckily, although we are getting married in New York and are living in Florida, (and planning a wedding at home is just insane), we have a lot of great support at home and they are amazing.

But I’m still on the verge of a panic attack. (Well, not every day. But I can see to some extent why the Bridezilla nonsense happens).

It only occurred to me like three days ago I should probably figure out if the people I wanted to do my hair and makeup were available and willing. Luckily, they are. (Thank GOD!)

I still haven’t managed to figure out any of the music stuff. What do you play in the church? And sitting down and listing out all the stuff for the DJ… ugh, my blood pressure is rising just thinking about it. (This is coming from the bride that took three separate visits in order to register at Bed Bath & Beyond. The whole idea of asking for people to give you things was bizarre to me, even though it’s the norm. I was totally overwhelmed by the gadget wall and refused to do it until the last trip. I also didn’t want the consultants following me around because I felt pressured at first… like seriously? I clearly have issues. I did let them come, though, in the end they were helpful. Although I had to make a point of telling them to stop trying to get me to select bread makers and ice cream makers and the makers of all the random things I decided I would never make. They kept telling me I was the weirdest bride they’d ever worked with because usually they are more excited, and here I am, trying not to hyperventilate).

(hmmm, maybe I should have asked for the ice cream maker. I also never thought I’d be making jewelry and crafting, so who knows.)

And then the bridal store didn’t want to do Saturday fittings. Seriously? Tell me, are they under the impression the magical wedding fairy is paying for all this? Do they not realize people work? Also, I am 1200 miles away and we bought 13 dresses from you. Figure it out! You knew six months before my initial consultation I live out of state! (That advance notice was probably excessive. It’s the producer in me.)

And once I managed to get them to bring someone in for a Saturday fitting, now I worry that the dress won’t be altered appropriately. (I’m not tiny, but managed to shed a few pounds. Dress was originally sized for my bottom-heavy hips, and I’m smaller on top, and ugh.)

And everyone is always asking where our honeymoon is.

We don’t have one.

First, I’m taking off a week and a half just for the wedding because of the distance factor… so for a nice honeymoon, I’d be off for like 3 weeks… and let’s just say I like my job. (Although I must admit, they are really accommodating, that does seem a bit much. We’d rather spread our vacation out for a little reprieve later in the year).

And again… there’s no little honeymoon fairy. So we will just have something else to look forward to later in the year 🙂

I totally lost all momentum in this post. I forget where I was going here… SEE WHAT THIS DOES TO ME?!

I guess the key points are: Hubby-to-Be is being real cute about the wedding… Only 11.6 more pounds until my weight-loss goal (well… the attainable goal. What I originally wanted eventually became physically impossible without being sick)… planning an out-of-state wedding (not destination wedding, like full-blown Long Island-style deal)… and I clearly need to go to sleep.

Oh! That jewelry I mentioned? Like me on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/renengadejewelsshop

I like sparkly things and I put them together.

(Don’t judge, I just started.)

I JUST ALMOST WENT BRIDEZILLA ON MY LAPTOP, YOU DON’T EVEN KNOW! This entire pointless post was just nearly deleted and I can. not. deal.

Anyone know why my laptop randomly selects things and deletes them and skips around while I type? I am going CRAZY! (well, crazier).

UGH.

By the way… what movie is the title from? 🙂

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The American dream…

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Actually, that image is me apologizing to myself.

Despite working in television, I really do not watch that much of it– at all.

Except for HGTV.

I watch a RIDICULOUS and totally inordinate amount of time watching HGTV fantasizing about a house I don’t even own. (In fact, as Hubby-to-Be and I sat here this evening looking at listings for homes we have no hope to buy in anything that’s remotely considered the near future, I said more than once that I could assist with any renovations because “I watch HGTV.”)

(I don’t actually think that qualifies me to renovate much. I am not that much of a twat, I promise. However– I am not TOTALLY hopeless… I mean… I figured out how to make jewelry, right?!? I can probably paint a room or arrange tile in a pretty design, right? I mean, if Hubby-to-Be thinks he has solid experience as an electrician because he worked with one for three months, then clearly, not only are we READY to take on a fixer-upper, we can probably build a shelter equivalent to a child’s homemade blanket fort.)

(We GOT this.)

Anyway– I LOVE looking at houses, floor plans, renovation shows, the whole thing.

But the thing about HGTV I can neither understand, nor keep my blood from boiling over, (though clearly their tactics work because I continue to tune in regardless), is the unimaginative & annoying homeowners they cast. (Buffy…)

Okay, so yes, I get that it’s not true reality. I would wager about 90% of the time the Love It or List It people already know what they really want to do and are just looking for a discount renovation, and I’ve heard the House Hunters people are totally staged.

I also have worked in some manner of reality TV before and now work in news, and yes, I understand scripting, and editing and all that nonsense, but here’s the thing. Even if we WERE going to edit things together totally out of context (which on a serious note, I am totally against and is totally unethical, but that’s a serious journalistic rant for another time and place), you STILL HAVE TO SAY AND DO THE STUPID STUFF in order for us to string it together!

For example– Every SINGLE episode of Buying & Selling or Property Brothers I’ve ever seen where the couple/family insists on living in the home while it’s being renovated, they all spend approximately 85% of the time whining about how it’s such a pain to live in a home that’s in the middle of being renovated and less than 10% being grateful for what they’re getting, and whatever’s left is when they finally act like acceptable humans. I’m talking tears, confessional cameras with heavy, panicked breathing, anxiety over having to sit on the floor to eat, the whole nine. Um… okay, A. YOU CHOSE THIS. You SIGNED up. I’ve lived in a home that was being renovated before, too, and I am against washing dishes in the tub as much as the next person, but are you seriously that ungrateful you can’t see what you’re getting and there’s a means to the end? Really? I would LOVE for those adorable brothers to come hook up some dump of a house into the Taj Mahal for me, I don’t care how inconvenienced I am for a few weeks. (Apparently I have no B. here, but you get the point.)

Then, there’s the aforementioned Love It or List It. If you’re unfamiliar, the gist is, one person hates their house because they were stupid when they bought it and didn’t realize what a disaster it is, and other person is fully convinced that despite the fact that it’s an 800-square-foot shack, somehow when the magician designer is finished, they will be living in a 4-bedroom, 5-bath McMansion, on a $30,000 budget. Inevitably, both people once again come off like unimaginative spoiled brats. They’re stunned they can’t get a larger, fully renovated, stunning home in their same city neighborhood while only paying $25,000 more than their current home is worth. Who ARE these people? And if the producers script it, are we supposed to hate them? I don’t get it. And how do they manage to only find people with current homes that will have some sort of totally shocking, completely devastating and budget-eating must-fix-now-or-die issues? What do the producers put in these casting call requirements? I won’t even touch on how awful the hosts’ banter is.

And finally, House Hunters. These people are perhaps the most unrealistic of all. They never seem to understand why they aren’t getting a perfectly designed and decorated home with huge rooms, the exact paint colors they want, right on the beach, for their $175,000 budget (or insert whatever is a ridiculously low budget in your area here). What do you MEAN I can’t have a penthouse suite on Park Avenue for a song and $10K? Most of the time they pass up homes I would be THRILLED to own,  because there’s yellow paint in the living room, the carpet has a stain, or the driveway is on the left instead of the right. Do any of these people have any idea how that sounds? That’s not even talking about the guy who had to have all his sisters accompany him to check out townhouses whose chief complaint was whether his garage would be good enough for his “baby”, which was admittedly, a beautiful red sports car of some sort, that he spent FAR too much time petting in the episode. Or the guy who kept complaining living rooms weren’t big enough for his Sunday Football multi-TV setup… and when they cut to him at the end, he had a flatscreen TV wired to the wall, and then what looked like 2 different 13-inch woodgrain wrapped tube TVs from 1973 atop barrels. (Classy. I can see why you made your wife forego all the houses she liked for this). Or the lady that thought giving a home character meant painting the beautiful cherry cabinets varying, non-matching shades of green. The list goes on.

I get that the shows have to be entertaining, but it does make me mad that all my favorite designers only work in Canada and the people they choose to do cool stuff for on the shows are rude to them the whole time. (Well, most of them.)

So here I sit… typing this post, petting my dog, and planning my upcoming weekend of HGTV watching.

I have no life.

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Some assembly required

I have spent the last few days crafting.

I have spent far too many waking hours in a craft store.

This is because, under some likely misguided notion, I have decided to make several items for my wedding (which is in less than three months at this point, but we’ll not think about that right now, because I’m pretty sure I will have a heart attack if I think about all that’s left to do.)

GULP.

Anyway, no one tells you that once you get engaged (and are wanting on the funding aspect of things), you suddenly think you’re Martha Stewart, and rather than buy all of the wonderful things on Etsy that you’re obsessed with (and there are A LOT of them), you are clearly qualified to make them all yourself. And then, once you get around to it (no more than one year but pretty down to the wire) you spend an inordinate amount of both time and money scouring websites and stores to buy all your supplies.

Not only have I decided to wrangle peacock feathers into a sort of addition to my already-selected and beautiful flower centerpieces, but I also became obsessed with all the beautiful beads and things at Joann’s and Michael’s and- poof!- I am suddenly a jewelry designer.

Making your own jewelry is fun– but now my hands hurt, it costs more than you think it does, and now I have to sell it all in order to feel like it was worthwhile. (Luckily, I did make a few things with an actual purpose, so Hubby-to-Be hasn’t questioned it… yet.)

(Anyone need a beautiful beaded necklace? They’re actually quite good, email me at snarksense@gmail.com if you’re interested, as I’m writing this blog post instead of setting up an Etsy store of my own for people to then make things themselves based off of).

It’s also, as I’m sure you’re aware, New Year’s Eve. (For some of you, possibly Day at this point, but you know.)

This jewelry nonsense– and this blog– has me thinking about what’s to come in 2014.

After months of kicking around the idea, I finally started writing, so the both of you can enjoy my ramblings… (which I do appreciate, by the way.)

I randomly spent 4 days of my much-too-short holiday vacation making jewelry, which I actually enjoyed and quite possibly may try to continue to do, and maybe make a little side business out of it.

The possibilities are endless.

And that’s an encouraging thought. Hubby-to-Be and I haven’t had that great a year– I don’t mean as far as our relationship, but just as in things happening, or lack thereof. It seems 2013 hasn’t been the year a lot of my friends and family wanted it to be. Looking back, there were certainly things we could have done without (ahem… pretty much the entire month of September)… and we definitely miss being home in New York immensely, but also, some really great things happened.

New jobs, new friends, time with other members of our family, living together again, overcoming challenges, figuring some things out… and even though sometimes it seems like every step forward results in ten steps back, it’s about the journey. (At least, I keep telling myself that. Sometimes you just have to.)

A good friend of mine recently posted something that has given me a lot of thought. I am stalking his Facebook page now, but can’t find the exact post, so here’s the gist: We don’t really need a new year to make a resolution. Yeah, it gives it a mark and a starting point, but if you want to make a change, you don’t need to wait for the time when people just do it. Most people don’t even keep their resolutions (here’s looking at you, annoying gym people… I mean, can’t wait to battle you for a spot in Body Pump! -.- )

If there’s a change you want to make, stop making excuses and make it.

I know better than anyone that that’s a nice sentiment and all, that life’s actually much more difficult than that at times, and things don’t always work out the way you plan, but they aren’t GOING to work if you give yourself an out.

So I’m not going to make any resolutions this year.

Instead, I’m going to continue to work to get healthy and lose weight. I’m going to walk down the aisle in my dream white (well, ivory) dress in precisely 70 days, marry the man that fits with me better than I ever could have imagined, and we will start this new chapter and build our lives together. There are changes we need to make, things we need to learn, ways we need to grow, challenges we need to undertake… and we will figure out a way do it all. It may not be complete this year– but it will all happen at some point.

There is no such thing as can’t.

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Jingle all the way

Happy Holidays, Snarklets!

I hope you had a very Merry Christmas… I know here at the Snarkstead, it was eventful. We had a really nice day with family, though we really miss everyone at home and wish we could also celebrate with them.

I hosted my first Christmas dinner… and I didn’t make anyone sick and it was reasonably tasty! SUCCESS!

However… it may very well be my first and last roasted turkey. Seriously, there’s a reason it took me so many years to roast one (outside of the fact that we have so many amazing family members like my mom, who makes a great turkey and so why the hell should I mess with it?).

But no, the bigger issue is… why in the HELL do they leave all that mess inside the turkey? I don’t care what kind of “amazing” stuffing you make (I do NOT like stuffing… the consistency, ugh, everything, it makes me shudder, though I’m sure you personally make really tasty stuffing to those that do enjoy it), you do not need your turkey liver/heart to be in the damn bird. Can’t they do it so people buy it separately? You’re not even “supposed” to cook the stuffing inside the bird anymore, so why must that mess be in there?

Dear Butterball (& Publix and whomever else farms out these turkeys),

Please stop packaging your birds with the internal organs and gross necks inside. They. Are. Nasty. And, if you’re an inexperienced bird roaster (like me), and stupid enough to feel that you can defy the laws of physics and defrost the bird faster than all Googled sites recommend (like me), not only are they absolutely disgusting, they pose a much bigger problem. Frozen projectiles. You see, if the bird only appears to be defrosted because the breast meat is, but the inside of the bird is still frozen (like mine), and you decide it’s  a really good idea to run it under cool water (like me) and then CHIP AWAY AT THE ICE INSIDE (like me), the organs, and the unidentifiable liquid that’s not water, not exactly blood, and so it upsets me to try to even wonder what bodily fluid it could be, goes flying around the kitchen in ice form (You’ll shoot your eye out, kid!!). So as even the most casual of observers note, they actually pose a HUGE threat. They become a weapon, they spread salmonella unwittingly around the food prep area, and are just generally offensive. (Also, what do you do to the turkeys’ necks to make them so curved? Just a little to the left…  I’ve never seen a turkey’s neck look like that in the wild… actually… don’t answer that. I probably don’t want to know.) Then, I can’t actually touch them, because I’m gagging, so I not only have to use a paper towel to pick them up, but Hubby-to-Be is both annoyed and laughing hysterically because I’m wasting paper towels and so ridiculous he can’t even stand it (story of my life.)

So, please, stop. I was too young to get my grandmother’s recipes that would require such parts, and even if I hadn’t been, thinking about them is making my stomach hurt as it is. For those that do use those recipes, separate packaging would work well. They could still be a package deal, just that if you don’t want them, you don’t pick that package up. Work it out.

Sincerely,

A Decidedly Undomestic Future Wife

However, I made a FANTASTIC peppermint-chocolate cheesecake with chocolate ganache topping. That, plus the ridiculous amount of amazing cookies from my mother-in-law-to-be and the 75 chocolate truffles Renegade the dog “got me for Christmas” (yes, this is real and not an exaggeration) is the reason I nearly cried over my Weight Watchers weigh-in today. Only 12 weeks until White Dress Day and not only am I nowhere near my original weight loss goal, I am 14 lbs away from the one I set on a contingency basis when it became clear if I lost 35 lbs between now and then someone would likely hospitalize me (apparently several spin classes and a Pilates class thrown in for good measure doesn’t combat the 17 lbs of chocolate I ate this week. Who knew?!?)

By the way… the lyrics: “Oh, what fun it is to ride in a one-horse open sleigh”… what happened to the eight reindeer plus Rudolph?!?! Santa’s sleigh isn’t pulled by a HORSE!

Clearly, it’s time for bed.

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I volunteer as tribute

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A new “Worst Drivers” ranking came out a couple of weeks ago.

You can find it here: http://www.carinsurancecomparison.com/which-states-have-the-worst-drivers/

Well, it’s taken me this long to come to terms with it, because they claim the #1 worst drivers are apparently in Louisiana… Florida’s are the 6th worst.

Stop it.

I feel like this cannot at ALL be accurate. Have you people ever DRIVEN in Florida? Keep in mind that at some point, all the worst drivers from everywhere else come here to visit or live. (Thanks, Mickey.)

A good friend of mine recently wrote a really good post describing the different types of drivers: http://cynicalsassypants.wordpress.com/2013/12/18/road-warrior/

This is all pretty much accurate.

Because, you see, the title of this post is pretty much how I feel EVERY time I get into my car to get on the road, especially during rush hours and/or when required to drive on a highway. I feel like I am heading into a battle to the death.

Drivers here are INSANE. First, you’ve got that death-trap otherwise known as I-4. Then, no one has any idea what a blinker is, much less how it is to be used and what it indicates. Forget when any sort of weather or electronic device is involved. No one knows how to merge, how to park, how to do pretty much anything that one is generally required to know when driving.

I-4 is a highway that runs between Daytona and Tampa, roughly, for those who don’t know. Especially through the Orlando-area, it is bendy, and there are accidents constantly. One of the things that baffles me the most is that motorcycle riders aren’t required to wear helmets here, and most of them don’t. How in the HELL does this make sense to anyone? They don’t wear helmets, but they have jackets or bumper stickers that warn car drivers to “Look twice, save a life”, in regards to bikers, and they weave in and out of traffic, drive on lane lines, hang out in your blind spots, etc. Oh, okay, so if my vehicle is small enough to fit anywhere I think I can bring it, it’s totally acceptable to put it there. (That’s what she said.)

Hubby-to-Be wants a motorcycle. No. As it is, he thinks he’s damn Speed Racer and some sort of professional driver. “Don’t worry, I know exactly what I’m doing, I got this.” -.- Yeah, and you’ll also have my foot up your ass. Stop driving like a tool. (Love youuuu.)

Not that I’ve never used my cell phone while driving, but listen, if you look up and are approximately 234 car lengths behind the car in front of you, people are either honking, or swerving wildly to get out of the lane and pass you, you should probably put the phone down and pay attention to where you’re going.

This also applies to people who like to drive approximately 7 mph. If people are having the same reaction to your progress to the one I just described, either get moving, or if you don’t actually need to be anywhere, stay home, because I do and you’re bothering me. Please at least drive the speed limit.

Florida also has a law where if there’s vehicles stopped on the shoulder, you’re supposed to move over into the next lane to give them some breathing room. This is a great idea; even in New York, there has been cops killed or people trying to change a tire or whatever and killed because some idiot isn’t paying attention and clips them.

Except it doesn’t work if the buttheads that approach the vehicle first move over… and then drive about 13 mph so they can watch the person trying to change a tire and box you in so that you can’t move over. Seriously? What could POSSIBLY be so interesting about changing a tire? If you don’t know how to do it, while you’re in transit is certainly not the time to learn, so KEEP GOING.

Then there’s the blinker issue. I realize a blinker isn’t a demand for me to change lanes, or merge, or turn, etc… merely a request. But I see you as you try as hard as you can to pretend you don’t see it. You’re not fooling anyone. I want to punch you in the throat because you’re purposely not letting me in and I know it. So can you at least speed up and get out of the damn way so I can make it over? (By the way, you are SO right. You are so totally going to get to your destination SO much sooner because you didn’t let me in.)

And let’s talk about holiday shopping. This is where all people, native, transplant or tourist, seem to feel they can make up parking spaces wherever they wish, disregard ALL rules of the road, and dart across the road on one of the busiest streets in Central Florida all because they are going shopping. And no one does anything about stopping the madness. BOGGLES my mind.

I’m pretty sure I was almost shot in the face back on Black Friday over a parking space. This was after I stalked three men for about ten minutes through the parking lot until they remembered where they parked. I WORKED for that spot, dammit! (You’ve done it. You know how it is at the big mall wherever you are. Everyone else magically stumbles upon the person that just happens to be leaving next to you, but you have to hunt these people down.) THEN they try to pull in it from the opposite direction?! I do not think so. Luckily, they seemed to sense my level of rage at this point, so they backed up… but as I continued to yell from the safety of my car (windows up, I am not TRYING to get shot), they actually sat there in their car and watched me for awhile. So I waited until they left and took a zigzag route up the aisles until I got to the mall entrance. (I avoided this mall when I finished my shopping this past weekend.)

But that’s pretty much how it is here– how is a Long Island girl supposed to survive? I have to yell and scream at you as I drive. It’s in my blood. You can take the girl outta Long Island, but you can’t take the Long Island outta the girl. Maybe suck less at driving and then I won’t have to.

Oh– did you read the fine print on the ranking link?

Worst Ranking Factor: Careless Driving: 51st

(In case you’re wondering how they got 51 out of only 50 states, they’re counting Washington D.C. as one. It may or may not have taken me a good 5 minutes to figure this out.)

THE MOST CARELESS DRIVERS IN THE COUNTRY.

Ah. Yes. It all makes sense now.

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Dear parents of teenage girls…

Christmas shopping with just 4 days until the big day is always a hassle.

People are animals, they park in random places that are decidedly not parking spots, and you feel like you’re taking your life in your hands by being anywhere near a mall or shopping center.

This isn’t what bothered me today.

Before I go much farther, I will make this clear that this is going to be a rant of sorts. If you’re a parent, especially one of a teenage girl, stick around… if you’re not, but like a good rant, this is for you. If you’re none of the above… see you tomorrow 🙂

Still with me?

It was like 85 degrees in Central Florida. I still can’t get over it being that hot around Christmas, the New Yorker in me is having a tough time feeling festive.

I went to the mall to purchase the last few gift items… and as usual during this time of year, it was a complete zoo.

But the absolute worst thing was the amount of ass on full display.

I don’t mean one or two adults.

I mean dozens of teenage girls with their butt cheeks hanging so far out of their barely-there “denim shorts”, you were literally looking at cheeks when they were standing up STRAIGHT.

Now, I am not yet a parent. Hopefully soon, in the next year or so, if Hubby-to-Be and I can get ourselves together. So before anyone tells me I don’t know what it’s like to be a parent, I don’t know how hard it is, etc. etc., let me head you off and tell you– yeah, I know, I’m aware.

But this isn’t about attacking any one person’s parenting skills, it’s about a problem we seem to have in society as a whole.

Why are you letting your 11-17 year old girls out of the house wearing shorts so short, that if someone wanted to look hard enough, they could pretty much see all the goody parts? (To be clear– I didn’t have to look hard. Cheeks hanging out of shorts. Right there.)

Listen, I know what kind of a pain-in-the-ass a teen girl can be. I used to be one. I am not at all proud of half the stuff I did and said.

But right about now, I’m almost happy I grew up as a fat kid. My parents only had to worry about my boobs displaying too much cleavage, because after the age of 11 I was pretty much too embarrassed about what my legs/thighs looked like to bother trying to wear booty shorts ever, much less out of the house.

Here’s the thing, though. I know what it was like to want to get dressed up and go to the mall, just in case some really cute guy was there or something. (Not that they were ever interested in me, but it didn’t matter. It’s what girls do.)

I know what it’s like to want to wear whatever is “in style” and whatever all the “trendy” teen stores sell, what all the “cool” girls wear. And my parents knew how to tell me “no.”

But these days, what the teens are wearing frankly scares the hell out of me, and I’m only in my mid-20s. When your butt is hanging that far out of your shorts, before you even bend over, how is that okay?

Parents wonder why cyber-bullying happens, why other kids call their daughters sluts, I mean, are you kidding? Because it’s appropriate for a 14-year-old to wear shorts or a skirt like that, with her belly hanging out, see through, with a neon-colored push-up bra, creating cleavage that rivals a Playboy bunny’s? This is okay?

I am in NO way at all advocating cyber-bullying, calling girls names suggesting they are sexually promiscuous, nothing. I am not even suggesting these same nameless girls I saw are any of those things, either.

But the reality is, stereotypes exist for a reason, right or wrong. We all know they are wrong. But as humans, we cannot help ourselves. Whether we think we do or not, we judge. So why allow your child to perpetuate one?

I am scared to death to have a baby girl, because what will be “in style” when she’s 13 that I’m fighting to keep her out of? Will it make people think she looks like a slut, even if she isn’t? And just as scary, will I have a baby boy, who I will have to constantly fight to make sure he doesn’t see or refer to girls/women that way himself?

So here’s what you can do: don’t buy clothes like that. They make them because you buy them.

I also saw plenty of teenage girls at the mall looking “trendy” and “cool” in age-appropriate clothing. Buy that for your girls.

I can remember plenty of times I argued with my parents over what was okay to wear where. They always won. YOU should always win. Not the child. Stop being their friend and be a parent. If it’s cute, but isn’t appropriate, well, then, they’ll be 18 soon and/or out of the house soon enough, and hopefully you taught them well enough beforehand that they don’t think they need to be hanging out to be accepted or called beautiful.

Don’t you remember growing up and “hating” your parents because they didn’t get you when you were a teen? (I’ll say, I was lucky enough to have parents I never hated. Oh, sure, they pissed me off and vice versa, but they managed to find the right balance between friend and parent.)

But that’s the point! They aren’t supposed to like everything you do or say! You should get along and they should feel comfortable coming to you, but it should be clear– there is a line and you are the parent, disciplinarian, boss. They are not going to like it all the time.

This doesn’t mean you can’t listen to their arguments, value their opinions, but it does mean ultimately, you make the decision that’s in their best interest.

And yeah, you’ll make mistakes. We all do. But it will work out.

This goes for clothes, social media accounts, video games, parties, friends, driving, sex– anything teens want to do, but should be mature enough and educated enough to understand fully and just be able to handle.

I’m SO tired of covering stories where a teenager goes and does something awful, be it violence, cyber-bullying, commits suicide or anything else… and hearing soundbites from parents saying they didn’t want their teen to be mad at them, or even worse, just not being there at all.

Let them hear the word “no.” Let them learn about disappointment in a loving environment where the end result is a lesson, where at the end of the day you will still love them. Because when you turn them loose on the world… the world won’t do that for them.

It may not be easy. It’s gonna suck. But we can do better.

And as I write this all… I hope that in ten years, this still exists for me to look back on. Because I know that it won’t be easy. I know that babies don’t come out of the womb with a handbook that spells it out. I know that it will be difficult, stressful, and I may sometimes think it’s easier to just say “yes” than argue.

But I hope that at the end of the day… at the end of the teenage years… we’ve all made it through and my kids have self-respect. They can handle disappointment.

And they wear shorts that cover their asses.

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Clean ALL the things!

I read this awesome blog post yesterday:

http://brunchforeverymeal.com/2013/11/22/am-i-an-adult/

(No, I can’t figure out how to insert the link all pretty with the title).

And it got me wondering… am I an adult?

I have my doubts about this.

Let’s discuss.

Pro: I am getting married in 3 months and 3 days.

Con: Hubby-to-Be and I pretty much act like kindergartners to each other. (You know, like kicking the person we like… we haven’t even graduated to “Do you like me? Circle one: yes no maybe”).

For example: Me: Hi, Stinky Butt-Boy. What’s wrong? Him: Your face.

This is standard conversation here in the Snarkstead.

Pro: I actually had a conversation with my OB-GYN about what preparations need to be made in order to get pregnant in the relatively near future.

Con: I was semi-uncomfortable with the whole thing, couldn’t stop smiling like a moron and marveling at the idea that it’s actually “okay” to be having that conversation.

Pro: I think having a baby may soon be a good idea. (A WHOLE new list of topics to blog about, yes? I fantasize about being one of these hilarious mom bloggers… I would have to be hilarious for that, though).

Con: I then think, ‘Man, life would really change! I wouldn’t be able to go out and do stuff when I want to, and… Oh. I don’t do anything really now as it is. Carry on.’

Pro: I have a dog that we take care of properly and he’s amazing.

Con: We regularly have a conversation with him telling him it’s time he start pulling his weight and bringing money in. (He has 40 toys. I mean, seriously?!?)

Pro: I pay my own bills.

Con: Just barely.

Pro: Pretty much the most adult thing we have done was buy a washer and dryer.

Con: Another thing I couldn’t stop marveling at… and I only know how to use two functions. (Even Hubby-to-Be has scolded me because I only do two types of laundry… whites and everything else. I tell him he can sort if he’s so interested. I was proud of myself last week for remembering to clean the lint trap before it reached burn-the-house-down status).

Pro: I’ve taken to cooking real, actual (and pretty decent, if I do say so myself) meals a couple of times a week.

Con: The other days, I do things like yesterday, where I ate several cookies as dinner. And then only had like three bites of my actual dinner. On occasion, it’s whipped peanut butter mixed with fat-free Cool Whip. (Granted, these were some of my mother-in-law’s amazing Italian Christmas cookies… not just any cookie. Shh… don’t tell Hubby-to-Be. He’s only read one of these, anyway, so I’m probably safe, but it took him a whole 24 hours to notice the box in the fridge because a jug of juice was in front of it and he can only see things that are directly in front of him. He’s now accusing me of being selfish and hiding the cookies, so I can eat them all myself. The thought may or may not have occurred to me, but I have to weigh in on Saturday morning.)

Pro: I got awesome Christmas presents for our nieces and nephews this year.

Con: It took me like three hours to pick 5 toys out, because I was too busy comparing which ones I’d rather be playing with.

Pro: I have a sophisticated, adult-like sense of humor.

Con: No, I don’t. It consists largely of “That’s what she said” jokes. Actually, scratch that. I don’t think this is a con.

Pro: We’re having Christmas dinner at my house this year.

Con: I was just about devastated when my mother informed me there was no need to send my advent calendar home this year, that I had graduated from her needing to fill it up with goodies for me to open. (It’s one of those awesome wooden ones that you keep forever and has real little doors that you open and find fun little surprises inside… sigh. It will be missed. It doesn’t quite have the same magical effect when you fill the compartments up yourself.)

Pro: I actually become compelled on occasion to clean my house without someone having to come over. (Clean ALL the things!)

Con: I feel like I’m betraying my younger self when I do… my mom always said, “One day you’ll understand!” whenever I didn’t see the point in cleaning as a child/teen… I refuse to admit it! NEVER!

I’m running out of Pros here… I can think only of more Cons.

I’m going to choose to believe that leaves this experiment at a solid inconclusive.

Living in denial is an adult trait, right?

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Twitter me this

Twitter reportedly has a new feature they’re testing that I find creepy as hell.

It’s called ‘Nearby’… and instead of just the normal stream where you see all the tweets of people you follow, this stream would be all the tweets of the people nearby you (hence the thought-provoking name), whether you follow them OR NOT.

We’re talking locator points on a map, here, people.

So you would literally be able to see where I was as I was tweeting.

No, thank you.

I have several problems with this… despite the fact that I may or may not stalk people on Facebook, and may or may not in particular peruse baby bump photos (see previous post ‘Catch me if you can for explanation’) (and hint: I may)… Something about knowing exactly where I am at the exact moment I am being snarky about something around me is just weird.

Granted, I realize you have to turn this feature on using your smartphone’s location settings, and people already post status updates on Facebook (as well as all the other social media outlets I’m apparently getting too old to know they even exist), but here’s the thing about Twitter.

I like my @snarksense Twitter and blog here because they’re semi-anonymous… Sort of my like alter ego. Like I’m Clark Kent by day and Superman by night. (Except I don’t actually possess any amazing talents, I’m not epically strong and really, this is all pretty much in my head). Hence my avatar. (Also, I just have always wanted to wear a cape.)

I like to escape and comment on things, and frankly, so do the other 1357834657 bloggers out there.

For instance, how am I supposed to tweet about the stupid hat you’re wearing, or the idiotic touchdown dance you did in the middle of the bar or how the creepy guy at 7-Eleven just hit on me… if you might be on Twitter RIGHT THIS SECOND, look at nearby tweets, and SEE IT? (I haven’t actually tweeted any of these… yet.)

What if you look up and make eye contact? TERRIBLE.

(There’s probably a better life lesson in this than I’m choosing to see at the moment.)

Plus, let’s be honest, an overwhelming percentage of us (but, never me, obviously -,-) use our smartphones on the toilet. It’s like a scientific fact. Can you imagine logging in while you’re sitting on the toilet in a public restroom, just for it to tell you that all the other people sitting in the stalls next to you are tweeting right then? Awkward!!

Just because we all know it’s probably happening doesn’t mean I need confirmation that tweets are accompanying the sounds of your bodily functions from 3 feet away. I don’t want to look at your face, much less see what your Twitter handle is and know how to find you again. And I CERTAINLY don’t want you to know these things about me if the situation is reversed.

I am not even going to talk about how if someone were actually stalking you. It would be all over.

Although… I wonder if the New Zealand guy that tried to follow that poor girl around the world had this feature… if he would have been able to find her faster.

He could have wandered around Washington D.C. playing one giant game of ‘Hot and Cold.’

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Catch me if you can

So I came across this today:

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/new-zealand-man-lovequest-sour-article-1.1545555

If you’re not interested in reading the whole article, let me sum it up for you:

-Man from New Zealand meets American girl in Hong Kong

-They hang out for one night, they go back to respective countries

-He becomes obsessed with her and solicits help from THOUSANDS of strangers on Facebook to find her

-This freaks her out, especially when she gets thousands of emails,  and she deletes her social media accounts

Okay, so now that you have the gist of things, let’s discuss.

Listen, I like a good romantic story just as much as the next person… but is he for real?

 You live across the world from each other, you met her for one night and couldn’t be bothered to get her last name, and then you put her picture on blast on the internet?

I don’t care if she DID leave him with a note that said “find me”, she was obviously drunk, and you, sir, are a stalker.

Not the good kind of stalker, either. I’ll admit… the whole working-in-a-newsroom means there’s some degree of stalking skills necessary to do well at your job. Hell, if he had had our newsroom behind him, between our assignment editors and our social media producer launching an investigation, he would have found this girl in five minutes flat.

Naturally, I realize most people don’t have these kinds of resources.

But you posted the “Help make me look extra creepy and become one of thousands stalking this poor girl” post on FACEBOOK.

Which means you clearly know how to use the website… and in theory, could have just done the same thing to find her yourself!

They obviously made the Graph Search feature for people like you, see: People named “katie” who live in Washington, District of Columbia.

I would have deleted my Facebook account, too, because there has to be something wrong with a single man who has other people chase a woman across the global inter-webs. That he doesn’t even really know. That is SCARY and is in no way acceptable.

Note: women want to feel loved and sexy and sought-after… Just FYI, there is a line between that… and feeling like you and 2,000 other people may or may not end up standing over us as we sleep wearing only a crooked smile, fondling a butcher knife.

I’m SURE there has to be a lovely (albeit slightly off) lady somewhere in New Zealand that would be an acceptable stand-in for Katie. And on the plus side, she would then also be located in your hemisphere.

Why you can’t be a normal social media user like me?

Sure, I “stalk” people on Facebook, but they’re people I know… who hasn’t stalked people they went to high school with? You know, into the wee hours of the morning… looking for just one person that makes you feel like you’ve made one or two good life decisions… I know I have to get up so early, but just one more person, little voice in my head… the next one is going to be the one! oh… no, she’s married… and they bought a house… and… and…

Sniffle. Tear.

Actually, it’s been quite some time since I’ve done that. (No, honestly. Truth.)

Instead, my new favorite Facebook pastime is looking at baby bump photos people post. (I swear, this really is less creepy than it sounds. I seriously re-wrote that sentence six times but realized at face value, there’s really no way I can say that without it sounding highly suspect, so you’re just going to have to bear with me for a minute, please.)

Hubby-to-Be stops being a to-Be in less than four months. He is under the impression if we do not have a baby relatively soon (the timeline on this is fuzzy, but in the next year or so) he will then immediately become too old to play with said baby. (He’s 30. I am not the only dramatic one in this relationship).

So I recently realized this whole baby thing, and you know, being pregnant with it, is in the near future. The plus side of this is, is that it’s inspired me to work on making some lifestyle changes to more healthy habits, like eating better, exercising regularly, drinking more water, hence the Weight Watchers and such. (Well, there’s the white dress, too.)

The down side is I am now slightly obsessed with exactly how my body will change during pregnancy, whether I will gain too much weight, and having a cute baby bump. THAT’S why I look at baby bump pictures… because I’m trying to guess what kind of bump I will have, and what it will look like.

I have issues.

I know when the time comes, I’ll just be thrilled to have a relatively easy, healthy pregnancy and a beautiful, healthy little one.

But for now…

Seriously, though, did you read the last paragraphs in the article??

“We found the girl … She is from DC, she’s not there at the moment, but she’s sorta taken all her public profiles (offline) for a little bit,” he wrote, according to the Herald.

McKee told the Herald he plans to reach out contact the girl “when things died down a little bit.”

STOP IT.

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You’ve been smoochin’ with everybody

I was originally going to write about something else tonight… but then Hubby-to-Be and I decided to watch ‘Home Alone 2′.

One of my favorite movies as a kid, holiday or no, it’s totally bizarre to watch as an adult. (Bizarre, but hilarious. The two of us were cackling in our living room… it’s times like these that make me glad the walls to the neighbors’ appear to be soundproof… or at least, very well insulated.)

Let me start by saying, yes, I know it’s a movie, it’s not real, it’s meant to entertain, be fake, etc. Well aware. Okay, now that that’s out of the way…

First, I can’t get over anyone’s haircuts. Let’s be serious, the 90s, especially the early 90s, resulted in a good look for pretty much… no one. (I can be included in this. While I can’t recall anything I wore in this specific year, at some point in that general time period, I distinctly remember thinking my maroon corduroy pants and awful navy and white patterned short-sleeve sweater with maroon accents was going to the outfit to take me straight to the top of the fashion food chain… huge, multicolored plastic glasses, the perfect accessories. Thanks, Clueless.)

Second, I love Tim Curry. This really requires no further explanation.

But let’s get to some of the finer points. This is clearly not a movie made in this decade… DCF (or CPS or whomever) would be ALL OVER these people. Not only do you forget your child to go on vacation once, but it happens again? You don’t even seem all that upset, who ARE you people? A rule of thumb: if you have so many kids you can’t notice if one is missing, that’s too many.

Plus. this kid would NEVER have made it onto the plane after having dropped his boarding pass now, get real. You misspell your name on the boarding pass, they won’t let you on. (True story. Ask my mom.)

And don’t even get me started on the idiots at the hotel that allow him to check into the room.

You have to admire Kevin’s ingenuity with all his moves to thwart the robbers… I am pretty sure most adults can’t pull off all that in such a short period of time. Though, can someone explain to me why a ten-year-old knows about kerosene? It’s not like he’s Googling that in 1992.

The best part, which Hubby-to-Be joyfully pointed out to me, close to the end, right before they leave the Munster house the action takes place at, Kevin’s “operational” plans to stop the bad guy are completely laid out right in front of the guys, but naturally, this escapes them, and instead, after all this kid has put them through, they decide yet again, to follow him.

But all of this I can take. Although my brain is so fantastical that this is what I was thinking during the movie, none of this is truly what bothers me.

It’s the pigeons.

I can’t do it. I really just cannot do it.

I don’t particularly like birds of any kind, to be fair– though I wouldn’t necessarily wish harm on any of them. But pigeons? Rats with wings? Any native New Yorker can tell you, pigeons are not okay.

And not only does the kid TOUCH. THEM. The homeless lady WEARS THEM!!

Absolutely not. The bile is rising in my throat as I type.

Listen, in the past, I have had my share of rough patches concerning love life, broken hearts, etc. etc. but there is nothing on this planet, no amount of money, nothing at all that could make me want to spend YEARS with pigeons, let alone frolic about with them perched on my arms and head, with all their mess and sure-to-be diseases.

I get that you’re depressed, lady, but I assure you, the pigeons really aren’t going to help matters. No man, no heartbreak, is worth living with pigeons.

And then at the end, HE.HUGS.THE.LADY.

Nononononononoooo.

By the way, there IS a reason I have such an intense dislike for pigeons. I used to go on home appraisals with my mom when I was a kid… and one day, we were inspecting this four-family home in Sea Gate, Brooklyn. Big old, vacant, jalopy house, with a unit to a floor. I’m maybe a tween or something at this point, and she asks me to head up to the fourth floor to see if the unit is laid out the same way as the third floor. No problem, right?

WRONG.

Because someone left a window open up there… and there are literally HUNDREDS of pigeons… which scatter AND FLY INTO ME when I open the door. THEY TOUCH ME.

And then, years later, I’m walking down Steinway Street in Astoria… and a pigeon flies into my head!! (Yes, this did result in me nearly being Baker Act-ed. I’m flapping my arms around wildly as if to bat it away, screaming my damn head off, and naturally, no one around me saw it happen. The only saving grace is, in NYC, someone flailing and screaming at something invisible is not all that uncommon, so the kind strangers let it pass.)

So pigeons and I, we don’t really have all that great a history together. I’m sure all this thought on the subject is going to bring me interesting nightmares tonight.

The evening ends with me fighting the tears as the neglectful mother and demon-child son are reunited. I avoid having them spilling over solely because of my horror at the Pigeon Lady-hugging.

Damn PMS.

Merry Christmas, ya filthy animal.

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